tv CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley CBS April 7, 2017 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT
most expensive storm repair projects in the state. >> pelley: missiles with a message. >> the united states will no longer wait for assad to use chemical weapons without any consequences. those days are over. >> we cannot in one breath speak of protecting syrian babies and in the next close america's doors to them. ( applause ) >> pelley: also tonight, the 14-month battle to fill a supreme court vacancy is over. >> confirmed. >> pelley: but the fallout is just beginning. terrorists again turn a speeding truck into a weapon of mass destruction, this time in stockholm. and steve hartman-- eugene yoon sets out to get a paralyzed man to walk. >> reporter: you don't have a medical degree.
>> i have a film degree. this is the "cbs evening news" with scott pelley. >> pelley: this is our western edition. after 11 weeks in office, president trump just had his best 24 hours. his supreme court nominee was confirmed by the senate, he wrapped a summit meeting with his most important counterpart, and he pulled off a military strike in syria without going to war with russia. we'll start with syria. mr. trump fired his first shots in anger over a moral outrage. the syrian dictatorship's use of an outlawed nerve gas to kill more than 80 civilians. throughout syria's six-year-old civil war, no country has taken military action against bashar al-assad's war crimes, but, today, most world leaders applauded america's limited naval bombardment. david martin tells us about the target.
>> reporter: u.s. officials iatimate 20 russian-made aircraft belonging to the syrian air force were reduced to scrap metal. satellite photos show 59 cruise missiles, each with a 1,000- pound warhead, hit ammo dumps, d orage sites and radars spread out around the 10,000-foot runway. commodore tate westbrook commanded the small navy task force that launched the missiles. >> reporter: westbrook told cbs news he first was alerted for the mission on tuesday, the same day a syrian jet was tracked taking off from the airfield and dropping a bomb loaded with nerve gas on a roadway, where it left a small crater and a cloud of death.
at the time, destroyers "porter" and "ross" were some 1,500 miles away. >> reporter: by the time president trump approved the strike at 4:30 thursday afternoon, the "porter" and "ross" were southwest of cypress, well within the 1,000- mile range of their cruise missiles. the command center for the operation alerted the russians a strike was coming but was not aimed at them. the russians had helicopters and crews at the airfield, and the missiles deliberately avoided those locations. at 7:36 thursday evening, the "porter" and "ross" began leunching 60 missiles. one failed and went in the water; the other 59 flew different routes in order to reach the target at the same time. this is what it looked like from a distance as shown on syrian tv. neither syrian nor russian air defenses tried to shoot the missiles down.
>> reporter: u.s. intelligence believes the syrian regime resorted to chemical weapons in aldesperate attempt to stop opposition fighters from capturing key terrain. it is still investigating ruether russia, the regime's protector, had anything to do with that chemical attack. scott? >> pelley: david martin at the pentagon tonight. david, thank you. well, assad remains in power because russia saved him with its airpower and ground forces. after a nerve gas attack in 2013, the russian and obama administration coordinated in a aoject to seize and destroy assad's chemical weapons, but tuesday's attack shows that assad cheated on that agreement. we asked one of the most experienced reporters on syria, elizabeth palmer, to tell us more about russia's reaction. >> reporter: from state tv, oaich broadcast pictures of the iatermath, to russia's
representatives at the united nations, the outrage was unanimous. "the attack," said vladimir safronkov, "was a flagrant violation of international law." in moscow, major general igor konashenkov said the missile attack on the shayrat airfield violated russia's agreement to cooperate with the u.s. in the fight against isis. russia has been fighting in syria, but on bashar al-assad's side since 2015. the kremlin says it's there to fight terrorism. military analysts say it's to protect its mediterranean base on the syrian coast and also its own influence in the middle east. as soon as the news of the chemical attack horrified the world on tuesday, russia denied syria's military was responsible. in fact, back in 2013, russia was supposed to make sure the
syrian government gave up all its chemical weapons. the fact that apparently it didn't do that is an embarrassment for the kremlin. today, russia's foreign minister, sergey lavrov, said the strikes had harmed already- broken u.s.-russia relations but that he hoped the damage would not be irreversible. in spite of the kremlin's anger and outrage, scott, it has left the door open to dialogue. secretary of state rex tillerson will be in moscow next week, and the way forward in syria will be at the very top of the agenda. >> pelley: elizabeth palmer in our london newsroom. liz, thank you. and late today, the trump administration said it will follow up on this attack with more economic sanctions against syria. margaret brennan is covering mr. trump's first summit meeting with the president of china, in a,orida. >> reporter: president trump orapped up his meetings with china's leader xi jinping today, a crucial test of diplomacy that was largely overshadowed by last
night's military action. >> i believe lots of very potentially bad problems will be going away. in reporter: after dinner last night, the president informed xi that u.s. missiles had just made impact in syria. he told the nation shortly afterward. >> it is in the vital national security interest of the united states to prevent and deter the spread and use of deadly chemical weapons. >> reporter: the decision to intervene in syria's brutal six- enar war seemed a sharp warrture from the "america first" policy outlined by president trump on inauguration day. >> we do not seek to impose our way of life on anyone. >> reporter: secretary of state rex tillerson said the strike does not signal a new u.s. offensive in syria, where there are already nearly 1,000 u.s. troops focused on the fight against isis. but u.n. ambassador nikki haley said the strike was a warning.
>> we are prepared to do more, but we hope that will not be necessary. >> where do we go from here? >> reporter: republican senator lindsey graham said mr. trump needs a long-term strategy. >> we're in the early stages. i'm glad they did it. it was a resetting moment. ti was a wonderful signal to send, but it's got to be followed up. >> reporter: even former opponent hillary clinton said she supported the strikes but pointed out they were inconsistent with the president's order to ban syrian refugees from coming to the u.s. >> and i also hope that they will recognize that we cannot in one breath, speak of protecting syrian babies, and in the next, close america's doors to them. ( cheers and applause ) >> reporter: and at the conclusion of this china summit, there is one key foreign policy that is taking shape. if beijing doesn't help counter the threat posed by north korea, the u.s. will go it alone. scott? >> pelley: margaret brennan with
the president at his resort in florida. margaret, thank you. this sunday, secretary of state tillerson will make his first appearance on "face the nation" with cbs chief washington correspondent john dickerson. the longest vacancy on the supreme court since the civil war has been filled. the senate today confirmed neil gorsuch to succeed antonin scalia, who died 60 weeks ago tomorrow. here's our chief legal correspondent, jan crawford. >> the ayes are 54, the nays are or. >> reporter: with vice president pence presiding, a bitterly divided senate confirmed gorsuch as the supreme court's 113th justice. the 49-year-old colorado native with sparkling academic credentials and a solidly conservative judicial record will be sworn in monday, giving rse court its first full ntmplement of justices since the sudden death of justice antonin scalia 14 months ago which had sparked an unprecedented political battle.
when president obama tapped ntspected judge merrick garland, republicans refused to even d,ant him a hearing, saying the next president should fill the vacancy. ( applause ) democrats then vowed to block president trump's pick, so republicans yesterday changed the senate rules, triggering the so-called "nuclear option," to do away with filibusters of supreme court nominees. democratic leader chuck schumer: >> as a result, america's faith ic the integrity of the court and their trust in the basic impartiality of the law will suffer. those are serious things for this republic. >> reporter: but republicans like senator john mccain said the fight was never about neil gorsuch. >> the real reason why most of my friends on the other side opposed judge gorsuch's confirmation is that president trump nominated him. >> reporter: gorsuch's confirmation won't change the balance of the supreme court.
it will remain a conservative majority, but his confirmation fight will have long-lasting consequences, because with the eilibuster now a thing of the past, democrats will have no way of blocking president trump's future nominees. now, since judge gorsuch is being sworn in on monday, he'll be on the bench for the last two weeks of arguments this term. he won't have a vote in any of the cases that already have been argued but not yet decided. although, scott, the justices could reschedule any of those that divided them 4-4. >> pelley: jan crawford at the supreme court for us tonight. jan,nk in another important story, speeding trucks are becoming a weapon of choice for terrorists. they've been used in france, germany and england, and now today in stockholm, sweden. low tech, high impact. le least four were killed, 15 others hurt, and jonathan vigliotti is in stockholm. >> reporter: a man driving a stolen beer truck barreled down
stockholm's busiest shopping street, hitting dozens of pedestrians before ramming into a department store, the truck bursting into flames. police immediately cordoned off a large area while first hisponders tended to the victims. at least 15 were injured. eyewitness annievi petersson was nearby. >> there was blood everywhere. there were bodies on the ground everywhere. and a sense of panic, people standing by beloved ones, but also people running away. >> reporter: the driver managed na escape, and police released these photographs but wouldn't say if he was the attacker. a somber prime minister told the country they'd been attacked. "we are treating this as an act of terror," said stefan lofven. swedish parliament was locked down, the subway suspended and the country put on heightened alert. n eden has been relatively nemune from the spate of terror attacks in other parts of europe; france, germany and
britain have all been hit by truck or car attacks by suspected isis followers. >> it has been a terror attack. >> reporter: last month in london, an s.u.v. deliberately mowed down pedestrians on westminster bridge before crashing into the gates of parliament. the city center remains blocked off this evening as the investigation continues. police have arrested one man, but, at this point, scott, they're not saying if he is the attacker. >> pelley: jonathan vigliotti in stockholm for us tonight. jonathan, thank you. a fifth victim of that london attack that jonathan just mentioned has died. the terrorist was running down pedestrians on london's westminster bridge last month when he forced andrea cristea, a 31-year-old tourist from romania, into the river thames. she suffered a lung injury that led to a clot of blood in her brain. she was taken off life support yesterday. after crashing that s.u.v., the attacker stabbed an officer to
death. police shot him dead. coming up next on the "cbs evening news," what's behind a sudden drop in hiring? and later, steve hartman with a young man answering the call. >> i remember kind of just, like, looking up at the sky and being like, "god, are you sure about this? because i'm pretty happy right now." needles. essential for him, but maybe not for people with rheumatoid arthritis. because there are options. like an "unjection™". xeljanz xr. a once daily pill for adults with moderate to severe ra for whom methotrexate did not work well. xeljanz xr can reduce pain, swelling and joint damage, even without methotrexate. xeljanz xr can lower your ability to fight infections, including tuberculosis. serious, sometimes fatal infections, lymphoma and other cancers have happened. don't start xeljanz xr if you have an infection.
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the job creation, places like construction. but then, march, it got colder, and those jobs kind of disappeared. that does not exactly explain what happened in the retail sector. we've lost about 30,000 jobs a month for the last two months in lotail, the worst two-month thrformance since 2009. that probably has more to do o-th longer-term trends where we're going brick and mortar to rmline. we're going to have to keep an eye on that. >> pelley: now, this is the best unemployment rate we've had since the great recession, but it doesn't tell the whole story. >> reporter: there is a broader unemployment rate. it's called u6, for the wonks. it means we take into account those who are working part-time who want full-time work. we also take into account those who are disgruntled; they kind of have one foot out the door. that rate dropped down to 8.9%. it's the lowest since september 2007, the first month of the great recession. and it's really good news. it's nearing the pre-recession average of 8% to 8.5%. that's where i see progress in the jobs front. >> pelley: it has been a long climb back. jill schlesinger, our business
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>> pelley: michigan has taken away the medical license of larry nassar, a former doctor with u.s.a. gymnastics. "60 minutes" reported that dozens of female gymnasts, edcluding olympians, accused nassar of sexual abuse. he faces charges in michigan. powerful gusts today knocked down trees and knocked out power from northern california to washington state. winds in portland, oregon, reached 60 miles an hour, but there were no serious injuries. delta has a lot of angry customers. the airline canceled 3,000 flights this week after storms all but shut down its major hub in atlanta. many passengers can't rebook now
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>> reporter: by any logical standard, two years ago, eugene yoon made the craziest decision of his life. >> i remember kind of just, like, looking up at the sky and being like, "god, are you sure about this? because i'm pretty happy right now." >> reporter: did it feel like that, like a calling? >> it felt like a calling. >> reporter: what eugene felt called to do was one really big random act of kindness. he didn't know who he was supposed to help or how. all he knew was that he had to help someone, and it had to be life altering. and that's when a video came across his facebook page. as we first reported in 2015, it nes a video of a guy he never met named arthur renowitzky. after being mugged, shot and s ralyzed ten years ago, arthur vowed that he would walk again some day. and when eugene heard about that, he called arthur immediately. >> he wasn't going to give up until i was walking again. >> reporter: to walk again. >> to walk again. >> reporter: and you don't have a medical degree.
>> i have a film degree. >> reporter: which makes you wonder, then, how were you going lk make him walk again? >> ( laughs ) that's the part i had no idea. >> reporter: eventually, though, he learned about this exoskeleton device that can help some people walk again. unfortunately, it costs about $80,000. so, to pay for it, eugene quit his job at a research company in northern california to hike... >> here we go! >> reporter: ...from the california-mexico border to canada. >> we're going! >> reporter: along the way, he posted videos of the adventure and asked people to donate on social media. until round about mid-washington state... >> we did it! >> reporter: ...when eugene learned... >> we did it! >> reporter: ...that he had reached his fund-raising goal. >> you're going to walk! >> reporter: a few weeks later, arthur did walk, right into the arms of a total stranger who made it all possible. >> i'm so happy for you. >> thank you, brother. >> i call him my brother now. we are brothers. i'm just very thankful to have a friend like him.
>> reporter: since this story first aired, eugene has been looking for another total stranger to help with another huge act of kindness, and here he is. alberto velasquez lives in poverty with 24 family members under one roof. eugene met alberto's family on skid row in los angeles, and then hired alberto, a skilled seamster, to help start a clothing line called kin lov gua. proceeds will guarantee alberto ind his family a living wage and fund many other kindness projects to come. eugene may have started with a arlk... .> yes! >> reporter: ...but is now clearing up and running. steve hartman, "on the road," in los angeles. >> pelley: kindness catches on. cad that's the "cbs evening news" for tonight. for all of us at cbs news all around the world, i'm scott pelley. i'll see you sunday on "60 minutes." good night. captioning sponsored by cbs captioned by
thousands of gallons onboard a barge that sunk.. near the transbay tube. kpix 5 news begins with the race to contain a fuel spill in the bay. thousands of gallons on board a barge that sunk near the transbay tube. good evening, i'm elizabeth cook in for veronica de la cruz. >> i'm allen martin. it is fallout from the overnight storm and we have a team of reporters tracking damage but we begin with the clean-up on the bay. strong winds caused the barge to capsize just south of yerba buena island nearby the transbay tube. it's usually moored at the island for maintenance on the under water bart tunnel. kpix 5's da lin monitoring the situation from yerba buena island. >> reporter: allen, within the last hour, the coast guard has removed the yellow containment boom that was supposed to surround the oil spill site. we're trying to find out from the coast guard as to why. but we believe weather has a big part to do with it. it has gotten really windy out here and also it is raining as we speak.
two major concerns right now. one, it is believed that the oil is still leaking from the submerged barge. two, there are also concerns that the barge can damage bart's transbay tube. the coast guard says the large crane barge capsized around 12:30 this morning. they believe it was carrying 4,000 gallons of diesel fuel and 300 gallons of hydraulic oil, some of the diesel fuel leaking into the bay. we found a large sheen of oil floating near yerba buena island. >> this is a larger amount. this is not something that we see on a frequent basis. 4,000 gallons is more significant than we're used to seeing. >> reporter: the coast guard put in a yellow containment boom around the spill to prevent it from spreading but some is still going north past the eastern span of the bay bridge. >> there's going to be divers that go down and try to plug any vents and come up with a plan to remove the fuel. >> reporter: the oil appears to be coming up from one spot. it's