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King Charles III Diagnosed with Cancer; U.S. Launches New Attacks Against Houthi Targets; Jury in Jennifer Crumbley Trial Seeks Clarity on Jury Instructions; "Loud Budgeting", the New Financial Trend Born on TikTok. Aired 3:30-4p ET

Aired February 05, 2024 - 15:30   ET



ALEX MARQUARDT, CNN HOST: An update on our breaking news, that revelation from Buckingham Palace that King Charles III has cancer, but they have declined to say what kind it is.

CNN's Max Foster is in London. Max, you've been talking to sources since this news broke just a short time ago. We understand that the king has already begun treatment. Do we know how he's feeling?

MAX FOSTER, CNN ROYAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, I'm told he's in very good spirits. He's pretty frustrated because he is basically confined to his home where he's receiving outpatient care. He could possibly be visiting the hospital, but they don't really expect that to happen.

He's got a specialist team that he's working with, and he's carrying out his official duties as usual in terms of that top level constitutional stuff. So I'm told that the prime minister will still be having his weekly audiences with the king, and he'll still be doing the paperwork. We just won't be seeing him in public because the medical team has advised him against that.

That isn't because he feels physically unable to do it. It's because they are concerned that being out and about could make him more vulnerable, considering he's had this treatment for his enlarged prostate combined with a separate diagnosis of cancer, not prostate cancer, I'm told, something separate that they discovered off the back of the procedure on his prostate.

So I think that what they're looking at here is the queen carrying on with her official public duties, supporting the king. When he was in hospital last, she was in there every day seeing him, so she'll be spending time with him. And Prince William also carrying out some public duties as well, just to show that the public, that the monarchy is still ticking along, the constitution still holds together. Because of course, without the king's ability to sign off on key government moments, the whole system grinds to a halt. But that isn't a concern.

I just will just say as well, I've been told that the councilors of state, members of the family who would step in for him if he became incapacitated have not been appointed. We would be told if that were the case. So that's when it would get pretty serious, although it may just indicate that he's going under anesthetic for a procedure that might not be too much of a worry, but they'd have to tell the public.

MARQUARDT: Max, do we know when and how we may get updates on the king's condition?

FOSTER: So no running commentary is the word I keep being told. I think that they will tell us when there is something significant happens, if he gets much better or if he gets much worse. The public has a right to know that.

They're not going to drill down into exactly which type of cancer he's got or which type of treatment he's got, only that he's got the best possible expertise on hand.

MARQUARDT: Very interesting to see how they handle this with this revelation, but not providing all of these details. Max Foster at Buckingham Palace, thank you so much for all of your reporting.

And we are getting new details about a blistering U.S. military campaign in the Middle East. U.S. Central Command says that forces struck Iran-backed Houthi rebels again on Sunday. Boris, to you.

SANCHEZ: Yes, they destroyed some anti-ship and land attack cruise missiles, Alex. Those attacks took place just a day after a joint U.S.-U.K. operation bombed 36 Houthi targets across Yemen. And just two days after the U.S. launched a punishing assault on Iranian-backed militia groups in Iraq and Syria, retaliatory strikes over the deaths of those three U.S. soldiers that were killed in Jordan in the previous month.

The State Department says that moments ago -- or rather, the State Department said moments ago that Iraq was not actually given advance notice before those attacks were carried out.

Today, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken is making his way around the Middle East trying to ease tensions in the region, while the U.N. Security Council is set to meet in the next hour about the escalating situation.

Let's discuss with former Defense Secretary under President Trump, Mark Esper. He's also the author of the book, "A Sacred Oath, Memoirs of a Secretary of Defense During Extraordinary Times." Secretary, thank you so much for being with us. Do you think that this response from what you've seen so far achieves the U.S. objective to deter and prevent a widening of the conflict?

MARK ESPER, FORMER DEFENSE SECRETARY UNDER TRUMP: Well, first of all, good afternoon, Boris. It's good to be with you.


Look, I think the straightforward answer to your question is no. I was hopeful on Friday night, I was on CNN, and we were talking about this.

I was encouraged by the fact that 85 targets were struck, that Central Command mentioned attacking Iranian Quds Force forces, etc. And my expectations were high. But we now find out three, four days later that no Iranians were killed, that we don't really have heard much BDA with regard to the Iranian sites.

And on top of that, we've had three attacks by Shia militias since then. So clearly, deterrence has not worked. Now, you hear from senior administration officials anonymously saying that we've degraded their capability.

But my recollection was that wasn't the purpose going into the Friday night strikes. The purpose was to deter Iran and its proxy. So look, at this point in time, I don't think they've achieved the success that they set out to about a week ago.

BORIS SANCHEZ, CNN HOST: You mentioned the response that we've seen from some proxy groups. The Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said that these strikes are now the start of our response. So what are your thoughts on what we might see come next?

ESPER: Well, look, I think you have to go attack things that Iran values. And what they value are their own people, their own leaders. They value Iranian sites outside of Iran. If you want to increase the intensity of attacks, you could attack Iranian vessels or oil platforms.

But look, they're not going to be deterred if you attack the proxy groups. This is our strategy. It's been our strategy for 40-plus years. It's why we're having to deal with Hamas in Gaza attacking Israel, Hezbollah attacking Israel from southern Lebanon, the Houthis. This is 40 years. They don't care about the proxy groups. They're only an extension of the axis of resistance.

So if you want to deter Iranian behavior and the behavior of its proxy groups, you really have to start attacking things that Iran values. And a lot of those things will be Iranian things.

SANCHEZ: So I am curious to get your perspective on this bit of reporting that according to the State Department, the U.S. government didn't give the government of Iraq a heads up that this attack was coming. This contradicts what we initially heard from National Security Council spokesman John Kirby about this. Do you think this is a miscommunication or perhaps a sign that there's tension between parts of the Iraqi government and the United States that's led to a level of distrust?

ESPER: Oh, well, definitely. Look, I had to deal with this as well. I recall on the strikes we made, I think in late December 2019, early 2020, I called the Iraqi president just minutes before, you know, we were making our attacks to give him a heads up. And clearly he was not happy that it wasn't done far sooner.

But we also knew that the Iraqi government was compromised. The Iranians were in there, at least Iraqis who are sympathetic to the Iranian cause. And so we knew that whatever we told the Iraqi government would be passed along to the Iranians.

So, look, I don't know who's telling the truth here, but clearly the Iraqi government's been compromised. SANCHEZ: I'm also curious, Secretary, when you say that the U.S.

should strike Iranian things to deter Iran, are you calling for a direct strike on Iran?

ESPER: No, I've said repeatedly I would not begin by striking targets in Iran, but I would begin by striking targets outside Iran that Iran values. Again, I go back to Iranian leaders of the Quds Force, Iranian leaders of the IRGC, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, Iranian or Quds Force sites outside of Iran and Iraq and Syria, and I would work my way up that escalation ladder until Iran stopped endorsing, supporting, inciting the proxy behavior or until they messaged privately that they were done, that they didn't want to go further. So that would be my view.

Otherwise, we should just accept the fact that these attacks will continue. You know, we're at 168 now over the last four months. We've responded less than 10 times. And otherwise, you've got to accept that's going to continue. We'll be at this whack-a-mole game for the next several months.

SANCHEZ: Former Defense Secretary Mark Esper, appreciate the perspective, sir. Thanks.

ESPER: Thank you, Boris.

SANCHEZ: Coming up, a verdict could set a new precedent for who can be held responsible in a mass shooting. We're going to head live to Michigan, where a jury is deliberating the fate of Jennifer Crumbley, the mother of the Oxford High School shooter. We'll be right back.



MARQUARDT: Happening right now, six men and six women are deliberating the fate of Jennifer Crumbley. She is the Michigan mom whose son shot and killed four of his high school classmates at Oxford High. Classmates back in 2021, that's when that shooting happened. She's also the first parent to be tried for a deadly school shooting carried out by their child.

The jury sent two notes to the judge with questions about witnesses and evidence and whether or not there are different ways to convict Crumbley. Crumbley faces four counts of involuntary manslaughter. Prosecutors painted her as an unfit mother who ignored signs of her son's mental distress, but saw no problem giving him a gun.

CNN's Jean Casarez is awaiting the verdict outside the county courthouse. So, Jean, two questions thus far from the jury.


What does that tell you, particularly the other, the one asking about other ways to convict?

JEAN CASAREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, they're in-depth questions. They really go to the heart of this matter. Now, this jury has been deliberating almost six hours at this point.

Here's the first question. You see, the prosecution is proceeding on two theories of involuntary manslaughter, and a juror can select either one beyond a reasonable doubt. They have to believe it, and they don't have to be unanimous in what theory they are looking at.

So one is that Jennifer Crumbley acted with gross negligence in causing the deaths of the four students at Oxford High School. In other words, she saw there was a risk that her son could commit bodily harm against others. She didn't do anything. She allowed it to happen, and that's gross negligence.

The other one is that legal duty, that under the state laws of Michigan, you as a parent have a legal duty that you must prevent your child from causing harm to others, and that Jennifer Crumbley was aware of an issue with her son. She did nothing. She could have used ordinary care to stop something from happening, and she didn't, and that caused the mass shooting at Oxford High School.

So the judge really said, here are the jury instructions. Two theories. Go back and deliberate.

Then another question. This one's interesting, too. The jury asked, can we infer some things of evidence that didn't come into the trial about how the shooter -- that would be Ethan Crumbley -- got the gun, meaning got the gun to commit the mass shooting?

Well, here are the facts that we know. We know that Jennifer Crumbley left first for work that day. She was gone. Ethan and his father were at the house. Ethan's father took him to school that day. There's surveillance video of the father dropping him off, but we do not know how he got that gun and put it in his backpack.

Conceivably, there's only one person who knows that. It is Ethan Crumbley, and he did not testify because he asserted, along with his attorneys, that Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

MARQUARDT: So much for this jury to debate there in Michigan. Jean Casarez, thank you so much for all of your reporting throughout.

"Quiet Luxury" is out, and something called "Loud Budgeting" is in. We'll tell you about this new viral trend that apparently started as a joke. Stay with us.



SANCHEZ: Being on a budget isn't exactly the height of cool, but it might depend on how you say it. It's part of a new trend on social media called "Loud Budgeting." CNN's Vanessa Yurkevich explains.


VANESSA YURKEVICH, CNN BUSINESS AND POLITICS CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): In an online world where opulence is king. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I was sad, so I went shopping.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): This was a joke.

LUKAS BATTLE, COMEDIAN AND WRITER: "Loud Budgeting" is a new concept I'm introducing for 2024. It's the opposite of quiet luxury. If your friend texts you, I want to hang out. You say, I don't want to spend gas money on coming to you to hear you talk about your ex for three hours.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): Comedian and Gen Zer Lukas Battle, inadvertently started a new financial trend.

YURKEVICH: What is "Loud Budgeting?"

BATTLE: "Loud Budgeting" is kind of new terminology for people to use when they don't want to spend money. And I think it's a term people can use that doesn't make talking about money awkward.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): The joke took off with his more than 600,000 TikTok followers, financial influencers, and even himself.

YURKEVICH: Were you surprised by how many people have related to it?

BATTLE: Yes, only because, and I would love to say I'm a genius, brilliant economist, but this is like a concept that's been around. And I really do think the loud part in front of it is what people are kind of drawn to.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): Gen Z and millennials especially feel the burden of inflation, expensive housing, and student loan payments. Budgeting has been around since the beginning of time, but in just the four weeks since Battle came up with "Loud Budgeting," more and more people are feeling they now have permission to talk about it.

YURKEVICH: What do you think about that, being transparent about the fact that you're on a budget?

JAMES SAMPSON JR. SOCIAL WORKER: I think more so it should be normalized about budgeting and saving.

YURKEVICH: Why do you think so many people are resonating with it?

VIVIAN TU, FOUNDER, YOU RICH BFF: Because for so long we have been shamed into silence. "Loud Budgeting" is amazing because instead of having to hide and like be ashamed about the fact that you have debt or need a budget or want to save for certain things in your life, you can proudly say them and share them with your friends.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): Gen Z and millennials, social media's most active users, were either entering the job market or working when the pandemic hit.

Despite having the lowest financial literacy of any generation, recent economic uncertainty has made them the hungriest for information. TU: With the social edification of society, keeping up with the Joneses is no longer the Joneses. We're keeping up with the Kardashians. So we're starting to get visualizations of wealth that most regular people will never, ever see in their lives.

And so if I'm a young person and I'm in an environment where I feel like it's going to be challenging for me to succeed, I want to arm myself with as much information as I possibly can to give myself that leg up.

YURKEVICH (voice-over): And that makes it cool to talk about money, not just on social media.


BATTLE: Through all this attention, which I love, I decided that I want to become an economist, which means that I'm going to have to push Janet Yellen out of office.


YURKEVICH (on camera): And "Loud Budgeting" actually fits into a larger trend that we're seeing on TikTok, something called FinTok. This is essentially a community of millions, actually billions of people who are looking for financial advice on TikTok and people who are giving financial advice on TikTok.

It's everyone from your really great budgeting stay-at-home mom to a financial advisor. The key here, Boris, though, is to make sure that you cross-reference any financial advice you find on the internet with a news source, a study or research or talking to a certified professional -- Boris.

SANCHEZ: Yes, take my word for it. You can't believe everything you read on the internet. I have some accounts I got to start following. Vanessa Yurkevich, thank you so much for that.

Stay with NEWS CENTRAL. We're back in just moments.



SANCHEZ: I want to close today telling you about retired New York firefighter Bob Beckwith, who famously stood with President Bush in the rubble after the 9-11 terror attacks. He has passed away, sadly.

MARQUARDT: And this really was an iconic image. Beckwith was retired at the time, but talked his way through several checkpoints to help search for survivors and carry out debris. He was 91 years old.

SANCHEZ: "THE LEAD" with Jake Tapper starts right now.