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tv   CBS Evening News With Scott Pelley  CBS  April 11, 2017 6:30pm-7:01pm EDT

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captioning sponsored by cbs >> pelley: another blunder from the podium. >> someone as despicable as hitler, who didn't even sink to the-- to using chemical weapons. >> pelley: then it got worse. >> he was not using the gas on his own people the same way that assad is doing. >> pelley: white house errors of historic proportions. also tonight, the elite navy seals. cbs news investigates drug abuse in the ranks. >> people that we know of, that we hear about, have tested positive for cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, marijuana, ecstasy. >> pelley: should men get routine screenings for prostate cancer? new recommendations today. and wounded warriors skating
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their way back. >> this is one thing that gets me out of bed on saturdays, gets me motivated. this is the "cbs evening news" with scott pelley. >> pelley: the job of the white house press secretary is to articulate the positions of the president and to clean up the occasional presidential mess. they are not supposed to create any messes for the president. but it happened again today when sean spicer made one colossal error. he was comparing syria's dictator to hitler, and suggested that hitler did not use poison gas on his own people. holocaust, apparently, was not on spicer's mind today, and to make matters worse, this is the jewish holiday passover. here's nancy cordes. >> we didn't use chemical weapons in world war ii. >> reporter: it isn't often that hitler is compared favorably to anyone, but it
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happened today when the white house press secretary was condemning syria's bashar al-assad for gassing his own people. >> you had a, you know, someone as despicable as hitler, who didn't even sink to the-- to using chemical weapons. >> reporter: it was a startling comment from someone who surely learned in high school that hitler sent millions to the gas chamber. spicer's clarification only led to more confusion. >> i think when you come to sarin gas, he was not using the gas on his own people same way that assad is doing. i mean, there was clearly eye understand-- thank you. i appreciate that. there was not-- he brought them into-- um-- to the holocaust center. >> reporter: by "holocaust centers" he apparently meant concentration camps. the executive director of the anne frank center accused spicer of holocaust denial and calling on president trump to fire him at once. in a statement, spicer insisted
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"in no way was i trying to lessen the horrendous nature of the holocaust. i was trying to draw a distinction of the tactic of using airplanes to drop chemical weapons on population centers." defense secretary james mattis underscored that point at the pentagon. >> even in world war ii, chemical weapons were not used to battlefields. even in the korean war they were not used to battlefields. since world war i, there's been an international convention on this. >> reporter: this evening, spicer fell on his sword and apologized, saying his comment was inappropriate and insensitive. a swift mea culpa, scott for a white house that typically shies away from admitting mistakes. >> pelley: nancy cordes in washington. this afternoon, the secretary of defense said there is "no doubt the syrian regime carried out that nerve gas attack in syria." he said he didn't know if syria's main ally, russia, had helped. the secretary of state, rex tillerson, carried a message to
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moscow today, and margaret brennan is with him. >> they have aligned themselves with an unreliable partner in bashar al-assad. >> reporter: secretary tillerson called on russia to break its alliance with the syrian dictator. >> i think it is-- it's clear to all of us that the reign of the assad family is coming to an end. >> reporter: tillerson said the u.s. and its allies want russia to broker a cease-fire and convince assad to step down, a complete reversal from just 12 days ago. >> i think the status and the longer term-- longer term status of president assad will be decided by the syrian people. >> reporter: that was before last tuesday's sarin gas attack, and president trump's subsequent order of a limited missile strike on a syrian airfield that the u.s. says was used to launch the chemical attack. russian president vladimir putin disputes that account and compared it to flawed u.s. intelligence used to justify the 2003 u.s. invasion of iraq.
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putin also claimed that chemical weapons were now being planted in syria to frame assad. the white house accused putin of a cover-up and said russia was trying to "confuse and obfuscate" on behalf of the assad regime. defense secretary james mattis: >> it was very clear that the assad regime planned it, orchestrated it, and executed it. >> reporter: syrian jets have already been spotted taking off from that same airbase that the u.s. bombed just five days ago. and, scott, russia has positioned two war ships off the coast of syria. >> pelley: margaret brennan by the ancient walls of the kremlin tonight in moscow. margaret, thank you. well, russia has dominated the early months of the trump administration. syria is the issue of the moment, but closer to home, there are those ongoing investigations into the russian cyber attack on the u.s. presidential election. here's major garrett. >> putin is backing a person
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that's truly an evil person. >> reporter: in an interview with fox business, president trump called syria's assad an animal. it's the latest flashpoint in the complicated relationship between the u.s. and russia. earlier today, the russian foreign ministry said the relationship "is more complicated than it has been at any point since the end of the cold war." complicated because of syria, russian aggression in ukraine, and also because of multiple u.s. investigations into russian meddling in the 2016 election. >> well, i had nothing to do with it. i have nothing to do with russia. i told you, i have no dealses there. i have no anything. >> reporter: those investigations include examining whether anyone associated with mr. trump colluded with russian officials. prior to taking office, mr. trump repeatedly praised russian president vladimir putin, at one point calling him "very smart." >> if he says great things about me, i'm going to say great
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things about him. i have already said he is really very much of a leader. >> reporter: yet, putin may not meet with secretary of state rex tillerson in moscow tomorrow, even though putin once bestowed an order of friendship on the former exxon c.e.o. white house spokesman sean spicer said the face to face-off not necessary. >> he can convey his sentiments and thoughts of the united states to the foreign minister. >> reporter: would the history of putin meeting with kerry and previous secretaries of state influence the president's judgment on that? >> i'm not going to-- i mean, we're not there yet. >> reporter: white house rhetoric on russia has toftenned but, scott, a thread running through it, is that rhetoric ought to establish that there were no connections between russia, the trump campaign, and the trump transition. now, that's a point often made here at the white house but it is far from proven. >> pelley: major garrett for us tonight. major, thank you. today, president trump said that "north korea is looking for trouble. if china decides to help, that would be great. if not, we will solve the
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problem without them!" the president has sent a naval strike group to the region in response to a series of north korean missile tests. in san bernardino, california, north park elementary school remains closed as the police investigate yesterday's classroom shooting. here's john blackstone. >> we're on our honeymoon. >> reporter: cedric anderson and karen smith appear happy in a honeymoon video posted on facebook in early february. >> oh! >> reporter: but my march, the marriage was in trouble, according to san bernardino police chief jarrod burguan. >> what we were told is that there was an allegation of infidelity in the relationship. >> reporter: smith moved out and was living with her adult children. >> it appears that he had been making efforts to contact her and to have her come back home. and she was resistant to that. and i don't know if that just reached a boiling point. >> reporter: on monday, anderson walked into smith's classroom with a handgun and began shooting, striking her and
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two students before killing himself. >> the two children that were struck by gunfire were simply standing and seated in the exact proximity where she was on the other side, and they appear to be errant rounds that did not struck her. they struck the children. >> reporter: smith died and hours later at the hospital, so did eight-year-old jonathan martinez. in a 2013 restraining order, another woman accused anderson of threatening her with a butcher knife and trying to smother her with a pillow. smith did not tell school officials about her problems but did warn her family. >> those closest to her said that she had mentioned that his behavior was odd, and that she was concerned about his-- his behavior, and that he had made some threats towards her. he did not make a specific threat to shoot her. >> reporter: this memorial at the school to those who were killed is constantly growing scott. the eight-year-old who dhied a condition called williams syndrome which makes children
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particularly social and endaerg. the nine-year-old who was wounded remains in the hospital in stable condition. >> pelley: john blackstone reporting. john, thank you. one of the most honored and vital units in the u.s. military is battling an enemy within. for the first time, navy seals are talking to us about drug abuse in the ranks, and david martin is investigating this. >> i'm sitting in this chair because i'm not proud anymore to be in the community because of the direction it's going. >> reporter: these three navy seals, one active duty, two retired, agreed to talk to us on camera if we disguised their faces and changed their voices to protect them from retribution. >> people that we know of, that we hear about, have tested positive for cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, marijuana, ecstasy. that's a problem. >> reporter: how prevalent is drug abuse in the seal teams? >> it's growing. the drug use. it's growing. >> reporter: last december, as this email shows, the seals
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halted all training in order to safety standdown because of the drug problem. >> i feel like i'm watching our foundation, our culture, our ere in front of myimes. >> reporter: captain jamie sands, commander of the 900 seals based on the east coast, had been on the job for just three months, and already five seals had been kicked off the teams for using drugs. >> i feel betrayed. how do you do that to us? how do you decide that it's okay for you to do drugs? >> reporter: every seal under his command was required to attend this meeting or else watch it online. in response to our request, the navy released an edited version of the video. before sands spoke, his chief of staff ratledded off what he called a staggering number of drug cases which he said showed that the navy special operators had a higher incidence of drug use than the rest of the fleet. >> it's a population that's supposed to be elite performers,
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all with classifications, to where they have national security information and responsibilities. that's dangerous to my teammates. >> if we need your ability, i don't need to be in the back of my mind thinking, other, okay, i can really trust this guy? is he 100% going to cover my back?" >> reporter: admiral timothy zyzmanski agrees telling cbs news in a statement, "anything above zero represents a disturbing trend for this elite force. so why do seals take drugs? you might think it was due to the stress of high-risk operations, but that's not what sands said. >> they think it's okay because they've seen other people do it. they think their teammates won't turn them in. they think it's kind of a cool thing to do. but they think it's okay. >> reporter: a seal who blows the whistole drug use does so at his own peril. >> you stand up for what's right and you get blackballed or driven out. it's a career killer.
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>> reporter: like the rest of the military, seals are supposed to be subjected to random urinal sis, but in practice, they aren't tested when they were away from their home base, which is much of the time because their skills are in constant demand. three active-duty seals told us they had not been tested in years. sands vowed to change that. >> we're going to test on the road. we're going to test on deployment. if do you drugs, if you decide to be that selfish individual-- which i don't think anyone is going to do after today-- believe that, then you will be caught. >> reporter: coman dorjamie sands called an all-hands meeting referencing dangerous problem in group 2. it sounds like he's dealing with it. >> i think it's got tone a point where he had to deal with. you hope he's somebody we can rally behind and hold people accountable but i'm not sure at this point. >> it's because it's hugely important. >> reporter: as part of the safety down, all seals will be
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required to a urinal sis. whon who tested positive last summer, tested positive again. last time for prescription drugs. he is being kicked off the teams. scott, after speaking by phone to one of the seal who is attended that meeting, i asked if we could talk again, which would require using a cell phone that could not be traced. he said, "sure," and then he add, "we need help." >> pelley: david martin break the story for us right here tonight. david, thank you. coming up next on the cbs evening news, it was the bump heard 'round the world. now the feds are investigating. with 9 grams of protein and 26 vitamins and minerals. for the strength and energy to get back to doing... ...what you love. ensure. always be you. ...one of many pieces in my life. so when my asthma symptoms kept coming back on my long-term control medicine. i talked to my doctor and found a missing piece in my asthma treatment with breo.
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oscar munoz issued a third apology calling the treatment of dr. david dow a "truly horrific event." he wrote: retreating from an earlier statement in which munoz raised questions about the passenger's behavior. >> i would say it's the worst response to a public relations crise that i have ever seen. >> reporter: airfarewatchdog.com found george hobica said while passengers are entitled to commization from bumped flights they are few other rights. republic was operating the flight on behalf of united. it's up to the airlines to whose who must leave in these situations. united computer system uses several factors clz ease of
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rebooking, final destination, whether the traveler is flying alone, even frequent flier status. >> airlines will be more like lie to bump you if you have no status in the frequent flier program, if you've paid a sewer-low fare or you're in economy class. >> reporter: last year, united denied boarding to nearly 3800 flierses out of 86 million, better than the industry average. now, united is still facing a firestorm on social media, and, scott, growing anger in china, which is a key market for united where many people felt race was a factor. >> pelley: kris van cleave, thanks. up next, new guidelines for prostate cancer tests. that's why i eat amaz!n prunes now. they're delicious and help keep my body in balance. i love these. sunsweet amaz!n prunes, the feel good fruit.
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dr. tara narula is here with us now. doctor, what are the new guidelines? >> so, scott, medicine say balancing act, and if you imagine scales, before the scales were tipped towards harm, in terms of screening, and now we're slightly tipped towards benefit. and really this is also a reflection of the changing practice of inside this country, where patients are in the driver's seat. so the recommendations say men 55-69 should have a conversation with their doctor, where they discuss the harms and benefites of screening, and for men over 70, the recommendation is still not for screening. , and really, people need to understand that this isn't just a blood test, but it leads to a whole pathway, a cascade, where while it can be life saving it can also lead to overdiagnosis and overtreatment and biopposites and procedures that can cause pain, bleeding, infection, sexual incompetence, urinary incompetence, so really important to discuss it. >> pelley: why the change now? >> there's been new evidence in the last five years, new research that suggests screening can decrease mortality, decrease death in men, and it can also decrease metastatic disease or
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cancer that has fred spread. in addition ther there are new strategies, like active surveillance, so in the past when you had a positive test, you might jump to treatment, and now it's more of a watchful waiting approach and that decreases harm. >> pelley: have a conversation with your doctor. >> absolutely. >> pelley: dr. tara narula, thank you. and we're back in a moment. i didn't know where i was from ethnically. so we sent that sample off to ancestry. my ancestry dna results are that i am 26% nigerian. i am just trying to learn as much as i can about my culture. i put the gele on my head and i looked into the mirror and i was trying not to cry. because it's a hat, but it's like the most important hat i've ever owned. discover the story only your dna can tell. order your kit now at ancestrydna.com. my belly pain i could build a small city
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tell your doctor if you have a history of depression or suicidal thoughts, or if these feelings develop. some people taking otezla reported weight loss. your doctor should monitor your weight and may stop treatment. side effects may include diarrhea, nausea, upper respiratory tract infection, and headache. tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, and if you're pregnant or planning to be. ask your dermatologist about otezla today. otezla. show more of you. >> pelley: we end tonight with american heroes, wounded in war, fighting their way back, armed only with sticks on a battleground of ice. here's dean reynolds. >> reporter: it's been a long way back from the war for richard duzinskas. 10 years ago, a roadway bomb in
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iraq cut his lung in half, left shrapnel had nhis body and night terrors in his mind, not to mention what it did to his left arm. they reattached his arm, but a broken spirit was harder to fix. >> i went through depression of who is going to want me? what am i going to be able to do? and this is one thing that gets me out of bed on saturdays, gets me motivated. >> reporter: he's talking about this-- ducks is a defense man on the black hawk warriors, a team comprised of military veterans are wounds and issues from their service. most people who lose an arm and then have it reattached don't take up hockey. >> this is true. >> reporter: we talked to him and his teammates, jacob blome-- herniated disks, traumatic stress and brain injures-- along with kevin shawarko-- spinal injuries, nerve atrophy, and more. >> it pushes you.
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it pushes you to be better. every time you get out there you want to be better. >> reporter: are you better? >> i think so. i'm not falling down as much. >> hockey is my escape. the anxiety they feel, as soon as i cross those boards, getting on to the ice, it just-- it disappears. >> we're all warriors, so on the ice, we're going after each other, but off the ice, we're friends, we're brothers, sisters. >> reporter: the good part is that they're all improving on and off the ice. >> when i first joined the team, i couldn't tie my own hockey skates because of my health issues. i now tie my own hockey skates. >> hey! >> i don't need any help. >> reporter: that's the goa goa, and they've got a real shot at it. dean reynolds, cbs news, mount prospect, illinois. >> pelley: and that's the cbs evening news for tonight. for all of us at cbs news all around the world, good night.
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. tonight orlando orlando explains all, from the maked paddle boarding picks to kate pearry. >> all i had to do is shave my head, which i'm saving for a public breakdown. >> then, mama june accuses sugar bar home run bear of abuse. >> for many, many years. >> what she's telling only "e.t." >> i'm done. >> plus, nancy kerrigan's miscarriage. her life as a mom now. >> and -- >> chris pratt is singing to his snacks. how his adorable wife and son are getting into the action. >> where's my snack. more on where's my crack! it's good. >>

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