1 Biden Defends Withdrawal From Afghanistan
President Biden has no regrets about troop withdrawal from Afghanistan – and made that clear during a speech at the White House. Calling it the longest war in American history – spanning two decades – Biden said his decision was "designed to save American lives." Biden alternated between suggesting that his hands were tied by the decisions made by the Trump administration, and stressing that he wasn’t willing to pass the Afghan conflict onto a fifth President. Biden noted the war cost the U.S. 300-million dollars a day for two decades. He said the conflict has taken a steep toll on the families of American service members. Biden also cheered the “successful evacuation” of more than 124-thousand people from the Kabul Airport, calling it “unprecedented.” The numbers of those who were evacuated included several thousand Americans. As for the estimated 100-200 Americans still in country, the President suggested some Americans chose to stay. Of course, that's certainly not the case for a group of Sacramento students, who no one seems to know the status of – other than the fact that they’re stuck. There are reportedly a number of Southern California students trapped as well. While the President stressed that the U.S. is committed to continue helping Americans “who want to leave,” he didn’t offer any game plan.
2 Ida Stomps Into The Northeast, As NOLA Is Hopeful About Restoration
All of West Virginia is now under a state of emergency due to the likelihood of heavy storm damage from what remains of Hurricane Ida. While announcing the state of emergency elevated alert, Governor Jim Justice also reminded everyone to keep a close ear to the radio for advisories and to play it safe. As the storm churns toward New England, affected regions are expected to end up with as much as six-inches of rain over the next day or so. And in the Northeast? "Life-threatening" flooding is expected. Meantime, power restoration is slowly being mapped out in Louisiana and Mississippi, where officials say they’re starting to get a handle on a timeline. In fact, the lights may start turning on by tonight in New Orleans. While it's not known how much power will be restored, Entergy New Orleans leadership is confident. Hurricane Ida damaged all eight of the city's transmission lines on Sunday. At last check, more than one-million people remain without power in Louisiana and Mississippi.
3 CDC Director To Unvaccinated: Don't Travel Over Labor Day Weekend
Those who aren't vaccinated shouldn't travel over the upcoming Labor Day weekend. That's the message from CDC director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. She added individuals need to think about their own situation when deciding whether to travel. Despite the warning about travel, Walensky shared some encouraging news about the nation's battle against the coronavirus. She noted the seven-day average of new cases and hospitalizations is down. Traveling isn’t likely to be a problem in California, where Governor Gavin Newsom says 80% of the state’s residents have gotten at least one dose. What about the future? New vaccine requirements being instituted after the FDA's full approval of the Pfizer shot, suggests that vaccine opposition is going down. The latest Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index finds only one in five Americans say they're not likely to get the shots, which is the lowest level since the start of the pandemic.