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Gold Superstar Scotti Scheffler Released After Being Detained; Interview With Slovenia Prime Minister Robert Golob; Russia Advances In Northwest Ukraine; Scheffler Back At PGA Championship After Being Detained; Deadly Storm Rips Through Houston, Texas; U.S. Delivers Aid To Gaza Via Floating Pier; Biden Moves To Bolster Crucial Support Among Black Voters. Aired 10-11a ET

Aired May 17, 2024 - 10:00   ET



LYNDA KINKADE, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Welcome to CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Lynda Kinkade, in for my colleague, Becky Anderson. Good to have you with


This hour, golf superstar Scottie Scheffler facing a felony charge after being arrested outside the PGA Championship. Russia is advancing in

northwest Ukraine in a lightning offensive. CNN is on the frontlines. And as the renewed push by some European countries to recognize Palestinian

statehood, I'll speak to the prime minister of Slovenia about how his country is planning to move forward.

Well, the world's number one golfer is now out of jail and back at a Kentucky Golf Club and on the course. It comes after he was detained by

police earlier this morning. Officers booked Masters champion Scottie Scheffler into Louisville jail on four charges, including second-degree

assault on a police officer, which is a felony offense.

Take a look at the pictures coming in to us. This is Scheffler at the course at Valhalla Golf Club for the second round of the PGA Championship.

He is expected to tee off in just a few minutes, about seven minutes from now.

We do have video of the arrest from an ESPN reporter who was at the scene. He was handcuffed after he tried to drive past a police officer into the

Valhalla Golf Club before the start of the second round of the PGA Championship. Now Scheffler's attorney says the charges against the golfer

for bypassing police outside the tournament resulted from a, quote, "miscommunication."


STEVE RAINES, SCHEFFLER'S ATTORNEY: He's charged with assault second, and criminal mischief and disregarding an officer signals. The assault is

second, it's actually a felony.

UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: Is there a description that you can provide about why assault?


UNIDENTIFIED REPORTER: How is Scottie feeling this morning? What did he say?

RAINES: Again, we'll just let it all play out. That's the extent of what we know. It's moving pretty fast at this time, but we'll litigate the cases as

it comes.


KINKADE: Well, we've heard from Scheffler in the last few moments. He put out a statement on Instagram describing it as a chaotic situation and that

he never intended to disregard any of the instructions. He said he's hopeful to put this to the side and focus on golf today.

Well, CNN's Carolyn Manno joins me now live from New York.

Good to have you with us again, Carolyn. So he's about to tee off really minutes away from teeing off. You can't imagine where his head is at given

the fact that instead of prepping this morning, he was getting his mug shot taken after being arrested.

CAROLYN MANNO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's been quite a morning. And on that Instagram post that you just referenced, you know, he really

said that what happened today put things in perspective in terms of the man who lost his life an hour before, who was involved in that other incident,

who was killed by a shuttle bus. But, you know, he is such a stand-up guy and he is so clean cut that all of this today was jarring.

Really seeing Scottie Scheffler in a mug shot, in an orange jumpsuit is jarring because that's such a far departure from who he is. He arrived at

the clubhouse I would say about an hour ago and then those pictures that you just showed is actually on the range warming up. Normally players need

about an hour to warm up on the range before they tee off with his 1008 T time, which is in just a couple of minutes time here, about five minutes

from now. He will have gotten maybe about 30 minutes.

So mentally, physically, you have to wonder how he's feeling as you look at him sort of try to dial in and focus and work through everything that he's

been through. The felony for second-degree assault on an officer is really the sticking point here. That's going to be what we're talking about.

The other charges were so much lesser than that, but essentially what happened was, from what we can tell, ESPN's reporter Jeff Darlington was

there, Scheffler attempted to drive past police to get into Valhalla this morning and that felony might have resulted from one of the officers

actually attaching himself to the vehicle, according to Jeff's reporting, in an effort to get Scheffler to stop.

Scheffler's attorney said he was properly credentialed. He thought he was doing the right thing, but when he did finally stop the car with the

officer on it, according to Darlington, that's when he exited the vehicle. He was shoved against the car. He was immediately placed in handcuffs and

he was booked.


Now, the video of him slowly walking, cooperating with officers in handcuffs, that all stands to reason as behavior that you would expect from

Scottie Scheffler. And he said afterwards in that statement on Instagram, he was just trying to cooperate.

But this separate incident at 5:00 a.m. this morning that ultimately caused the PGA Championship organizers to delay the start of the second round

involved a man who was unfortunately killed when he was the struck by a shuttle bus near the course and so that incident, that fatality, impacted

traffic. It increased police presence. And it would stand to reason that ultimately it affected Scheffler's ability to get where he was going

because his arrest happened an hour after that time at 6:00 a.m.

So a very unusual morning. And certainly more to follow on this, but for now he is just trying to tackle the task at hand today, which is get back

on the course and play the second round of this major.

KINKADE: Yes, exactly. We will be watching this closely to see how he goes this morning. We might come back to you in just a moment. But for now, I

want to bring in golf journalist, Dan Rappaport, who is with "Barstool Sports."

And Dan, this was far from a routine morning, quite a shock in the way he was arrested and charged with four offenses, but he is a pro. He's now in

the range warming up. What was your response when you heard about these charges?

DAN RAPAPORT, GOLF JOURNALIST, BARSTOOL SPORTS: Disbelief. If you would've told me that there was one player in the PGA Championship field who got

arrested, Scottie Scheffler might be the last person that I would ever guess. He is a deeply religious man, a very kind sort of soft-spoken guy

with a very clean image and rightfully so. And this is not an uncommon thing that happens with golfers in the morning.

Obviously the accident -- I doubt Scottie knew about the accident. I don't know. But there's security all around golf courses all the time, police

cars, and the players are in cars that are marked with PGA Championship. It sort of designates them as a participant. And usually the cops just kind of

waved them through. So I'm sure that's what Scottie was trying to do. Other players have said that's what they did.

They kind of went around the traffic because players obviously need to get to the golf course. When there's a traffic situation, they make room. So I

think misunderstanding is the keyword here, like a really, really unfortunate misunderstanding.

KINKADE: Yes, I mean, just describe your feeling when you saw those images of him handcuffed, being marched across by two police officers in the early

hours of this morning ahead of this tournament today.

RAPAPORT: It's -- you know, golf has been really chaotic in the last two years, three years, so nothing really surprises me, but this managed to

break through. I just -- you know, it's hard to believe that reason didn't win out in the end, that someone didn't say, hey, this is the number one

golfer in the world. He's just trying to get to the golf course. There's almost zero percent chance that he was trying to do anything nefarious.

But I also understand from the police perspective, you know, this was a chaotic situation. Someone passed away at 5:00 a.m. They're trying to make

things. It's pouring rain. The roads are slippery, so I just think it was a horrible sort of confluence of circumstances that led to this outcome, and

the rain delay actually kind of saved the day because Scottie was able to get an abbreviated warm-up in and I was stunned at how loose he was on the

driving range.

He was laughing with his coach and, you know, there was a report that he went into the player dining area this morning and just kind of said, hey,

everyone, so it looks like he is at least going to try to --

KINKADE: He's a professional.

RAPAPORT: -- compartmentalize and focus on the golf. Yes.

KINKADE: I mean, I was surprised by that, too, because everyone wanted to see those images of Scottie Scheffler on the range prepping. And as you

say, he was joking around, laughing, seemingly quite relax. How do you think things are going to go for him today?

RAPAPORT: That's a great question. It's a great question. You know, these players have an unbelievable ability to block everything out when they get

between the ropes, and golf is a deeply mental game. You're out there for five hours, but you're only really swinging the club for about a minute and

a half. So you have a lot of time to think to yourself. So these guys have a lot of practice and, you know, things going on outside the golf course

and they kind of get lost in the process of the round.

And, you know, I'm sure Scottie is going to be tested today, his mental fortitude and his ability to lock in. But look, this guy has done

everything there is to do with golf. He's the best player in the world and he seems to be kind of uniquely qualified to handle this.

KINKADE: Yes, I mean, he's not going to forget this month anytime soon, is he? I mean, this highly unusual arrest, these serious charges, but also

less than a week ago, the birth of his baby boy.

RAPAPORT: Yes. It's -- you know, it was unclear whether he was going to play this week. There was all the stories at the Masters that he was a

phone call away from withdrawing. His wife, Meredith, if she went into labor, he was going to leave. He ends up winning that tournament. So, you

know, there's been a lot going on. He hasn't had a clear mind playing golf tournament in a little while. So it's a chaotic week for sure. I'm sure

it's a stretch we'll never forget, but he's also playing the best golf we've seen since Tiger Woods.

So it's really, you couldn't write this. You know, like when I first saw it this morning, I thought it was, you know, I thought one of my friends was

trying to spam me with a link to something I shouldn't see, you know what I mean?


Like it was that kind of situation where it just so incredibly unbelievable that this would happen to any golfer, but especially Scottie Scheffler.

KINKADE: Yes, exactly. And I just want to read the statement that Scottie has put on his Instagram. He said, this morning, I was directed -- I was

proceeding as directed by police officers. It was very chaotic situation and understandably so, considering the tragic accident that had occurred

earlier. And there was a big misunderstanding of what I thought I was being asked to do.

I never intended to disregard any of the instructions. I'm hopeful to put this to the side and focus on golf today. Of course, all of us involved in

the tournament express our deepest sympathies to the family of the man who passed away in the early accident this morning. It truly puts everything

into perspective.

So clearly thinking about that family and the situation that happened with that shuttle bus earlier, but he is due to tee off any minute. We will

bring you more on that story as it comes to hand.

But, Dan, I just want to ask you one more question while you're here. He is the red hot favorite to win, at least he was before this incident. Besides

this, is there anyone else that you think is going to put pressure on him today?

RAPAPORT: I mean, Brooks Koepka is kind of the first name that comes to mind. He won this tournament last year. He's won it three times. He excels

at major championships, kind of has a Terminator-like mode that he goes into. So, yes, Brooks would be the kind of the guy I'll keep my eye on.

Also, Xander Schauffele who shot 62 yesterday, tied the major championship course record, but it's weird, when something like this happens the golf

tournament kind of feel secondary.

KINKADE: All right. We'll leave it there for now. Dan Rapaport, with "Barstool Sports," appreciate your time this morning. Thanks so much on

what is quite an extraordinary story. Thank you.

RAPAPORT: Yes. Thanks for having me.

KINKADE: Well, I want to turn to Israel now. It's expanding its military operations in Northern Gaza. Video obtained by CNN shows the aftermath of

an Israeli airstrike on the Jabalya refugee camp. Civil defense officials report six people killed there. The IDF says it killed it killed 60 Hamas

militants around the camp in the past week. A hospital official says 112 bodies have been received since Israel ramped up fighting in the north.

And the IDF says it's advanced deeper into Rafah, moving about five kilometers since the start of its operation there on May 6th.

Well, as the war drags on, there's a new push for Palestinian statehood. Slovenia says it will recognize a Palestinian state by the middle of next

month. It joins fellow European Union members Ireland Spain, Norway, and Malta in pushing for recognition both at the United Nations and within the


Well, last week, the United Nations General Assembly voted to advance a Palestinian bid to become a full member of the world body and to give the

Palestinian Authority new rights. Slovenia's Prime Minister Robert Golob penned a letter to fellow E.U. leaders calling on them to support the

Palestinian statehood bid, and he joins me now live.

Good to have you with us.


KINKADE: So, Prime Minister, your government has led this push to initiate the procedure for the recognition of a Palestinian state. You are urging

other E.U. countries to join with you and your country hopes that this will be a form of leverage to end the conflict in Gaza. Is this leverage? And if

so, how will this end the conflict?

GOLOB: So the situation in Gaza is tragic beyond words. What we are witnessing now is like unprecedented, the human catastrophe, the manmade

famine, withholding all -- violation of all the international human rights. And whatever we can do to alleviate the situation is better than nothing.

The recognition itself was meant to come at the end of the two-state solution process. But what we are witnessing now is just -- we cannot stand


So the idea is that we initiate the process immediately, showing the solidarity with the Palestinian people immediately, and then clearly

stating the expectations to both sides. Both sides to cease the fire, to release the hostages, and work towards the two-state solution. According to

our opinion, that's really the only possible solution to find peace and stability in the Middle East. And it is this notion is widespread around

the world. So I think we shall do everything we can to obtain that.

KINKADE: The prime minister of Israel has responded, condemning the move, claiming that this move constitutes a prize for terrorism that would reduce

the chances for a negotiated resolution to the conflict. What's your response to that?


GOLOB: Well, there will be many calls in the past weeks and months to Israel to stall the attacks, to come to the negotiation table, and start

negotiating for the ceasefire. Unfortunately, Israel was not heeding the calls. So I don't think there is anything more to say to that.

Again, we just initiated the proceedings. We want to have a dialogue throughout the process. But in order to have the dialogue the other side

has to be willing to talk. Unfortunately, that's not what we are seeing at the moment.

KINKADE: Of course the U.S. ambassador to the U.N. spoke about this. I just want to play some sound for our viewers.


ROBERT A. WOOD, U.S. PERMANENT MISSION AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: President Biden has been clear that sustainable peace in the region can be achieved

only through a two-state solution with Israel security guaranteed, where Israelis and Palestinians can live side-by-side with equal measures of

freedom and dignity. It remains the U.S. view that unilateral measures at the U.N. and on the ground will not advance this goal.


KINKADE: Prime Minister, what's your response to that?

GOLOB: Well, we do support the same position. However, we also support what, just this week, the Arab League leaders were saying and that is that

first and utmost we need to see the ceasefire and also that we shall start discussing within the United Nations the possibility of sending the United

Nations peacekeeping force to the Gaza as soon as possible, immediately after this the ceasefire.

I think just looking into what is going on at the moment is not enough. We should look beyond, what happens at the day after, and hope that the day

after will come as soon as possible.

KINKADE: We know at the last U.N. vote more than 70 percent of U.N. members supported the move to give Palestinians new rights and privileges. But of

course that doesn't guarantee U.N. membership. What needs to happen to encourage other nations to get on board?

GOLOB: I think working through dialogue is really what will start shifting the positions. But the other thing is also the pressure from the public. We

can see it throughout Europe immediately, already now happening. Not just in Slovenia, but other countries as well, and I think that will shape the

position of the politicians as well, especially on the brink of the European elections. So that could be a momentum that Palestinian people can

really benefit from.

KINKADE: And of course, Prime Minister, your country along with Spain, Ireland, Malta, helped initiate this in March. What are the next steps?

GOLOB: So I just signed a letter to all the -- my colleagues from the other member states calling to them to join our process of recognition process,

which will clearly state the expectations to all the parties involved and that we can assess on a weekly basis. And just by being united at the

European level, I think we can be much more significant player on the international scene especially in the Middle East.

At the moment, there's lots of divergence between the E.U. member states that doesn't help to bring peace to the Middle East unfortunately. So the

first thing to do is forge unity at the European level. And after that, I think there is a possibility to put more pressure on both sides to come to

peace in the Middle East.

KINKADE: Robert Golob, Prime Minister, we appreciate your time today. Thank you so much for joining us.

GOLOB: Thank you for having me.

KINKADE: And all the best.

Well, fire, dust and debris. Still ahead, we're going to take you to one of the flashpoints in Ukraine as Russian forces push deeper into the country

and the remaining residents empty out.



KINKADE: Ukraine's army chief says Russian forces are expanding their southern push into Kharkiv region and they have warned of heavy battles

ahead. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy earlier said Russian forces have pushed some 10 kilometers into Ukrainian territory since last week's

surprise offensive. Moscow captured several villages and is fighting for others, taking advantage of a gap until more U.S. weapons arrive in

Ukraine. The flashpoint is the city of Vovchansk. Thousands have fled their homes in just the last few days.

Our Nick Paton Walsh looks at some of the last to go and what they're leaving behind.


NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): When nightmares recur, they're often the same. Here they get worse.

The border town of Vovchansk bearing the blunt horror of Moscow's race to take as much as they can in the weeks before Ukraine starts feeling

American military help again. Every street aflame, Russians deeper inside the town. Policeman Maxim is answering one of 35 calls from locals on

Thursday to evacuate. The day before, three colleagues were injured. The shelling never stops.

MAXIM, UKRAINIAN POLICE (through text translation): Quiet. Everybody get down.

PATON WALSH: Three people still coming out, and you have to imagine quite how desperate for these final people the situation must be to leave.

(Voice-over): Mikola (PH) and his wife hiding in their basement, but despite staying through the first Russian occupation and then liberation

two years ago, they found the airstrikes last night just too much. They're joined by Maria, their mother, who can't hear the shelling or anything too

well. Thousands evacuated since Russia invaded again around here five days ago.

Why everyone has to leave is clear again as we drive out, as it is with almost every part of Ukraine Russia covets. Just utter destruction, little

left to rule over.

This is their first moment of calm in many days. Entire lives in plastic bags.

She's saying it wasn't like last night was scary and everyone else was talking about significant bombardment, more that it was just better to get

out of there. 85.

(Voice-over): An armored ride to a new world knowing they may never get back to their homes, tormented for days by shelling.

MARIA, MIKOLA'S MOTHER (through text translation): Aerial bombs, everything. And mortars.

PATON WALSH (through text translation): Did you see the Russian soldiers?

MARIA (through text translation): No. They are over there, on the other side of the river, and we were on this side. They were shooting close to

us. Firing machine guns and everything.

PATON WALSH (voice-over): We head back in with another police unit who soon learned two of the houses they must rescue from are impossible to reach. As

we wait, they hear a buzzing noise.

They think they can hear a drone here, it's so hard to tell with the wind and the trees and the artillery, but that's a constant threat for them now.

(Voice-over): Then our security adviser spots it. They raise their weapons, but will firing make them more of a target?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through text translation): What if it's ours?


PATON WALSH: Three drones, one large one that hovers, and two small ones whizzing about. Exposed, powerless, if we run for cover, they might come

for us. All we can do is hide in the trees and hope that if we are seen, the Russians instead have a better target in mind. But they come right

overhead. That noise, either the sound of death or someone deciding you're not worth their payload.

We decide to leave, but again, we cannot travel fast enough to escape the drones, only expose ourselves and pray they lose interest. Perhaps they

did, we'll never know, but behind us, Ukraine is aflame again because however the West's interest in this war wanes, Putin's burns brighter than



KINKADE: Nick Paton Walsh joins us now from Kharkiv.

Excellent reporting there, Nick. Of course Russia launched this attack, opening up this new front about a week ago.

Nick, what is Russia's strategy here? Because the analysts we're speaking to say Russia doesn't have the military capability to take Ukraine's

second-largest city nor does it intend to.

PATON WALSH: Yes, I mean, we heard from Vladimir Putin today that the taking of Kharkiv is not on their agenda today, was his phrasing. And it

will be a huge enterprise to try and capture a city of a million people. So, yes, it's unlikely at this stage. But what is entirely possible, what

we've been seeing Russian forces attempt is to push close enough to Kharkiv that it becomes in range of their artillery.

And that is potentially hideous for the hundreds of thousands of people who live here, who began to see their life get back to normal in the past two

years since Russia was kicked out from near here in 2022. And in fact, in the last hours there's been another heavy strike here in the city. Smoke

still blowing across the skyline. And also too last night, we heard drones, we heard other explosions, too. So clearly this city in their sights.

A lot of the analysts talking about Russia lacking the resources for a strategic success, not entirely clear what they mean by that. I suppose

they're saying they don't have enough troops to take Kharkiv or advance on Kyiv. But remember, the slow incremental advances they're making are

putting a lot of Ukrainian supply lines, key towns within their reach for a summer ahead. They're in a tight window until U.S. weapons start getting

into Ukrainian hands. But some Ukrainian officials are suggesting that 25,000 Russian troops have been committed to this new push from the Russian

territory towards Kharkiv.

That is a huge number and it's certainly showing some progress at this stage. A tough mission, frankly for President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to at

time sound like they have a situation under control, but also sound the alarm to their allies to get weapons in here faster. But clearly, Russia is

seeing significant progress here, Lynda.

KINKADE: Yes, and I want to ask you about the weapons packages, Nick, because, as you say, Ukraine's president says Russians crossed the border

because they lacked the air defense to defend Ukraine. What is the situation on the weaponry now that the U.S. has approved a third round of

aid for Ukraine?

PATON WALSH: Yes. Look, I mean, yes, the statements come out of Washington with less regularity over the past months because of that hold up in

Congress. But just because we get a press release from the State Department saying $2 billion has been approved, that doesn't immediately translate

into weapons in people's hands here. Yes, they are starting to come through again. We don't have full transparency as to what's been happening during

the six-month hiatus in which Congress, the Republican dysfunctional Congress, didn't approve the $61 billion.

Clearly some aid is still being getting through but they definitely lack air defense. There's been an overt appeal for two Patriots, weapons air

defense system just for Kharkiv here alone to defend this particular city. Certainly to the lack of artillery shells that Ukraine has had. We've heard

for months now has meant that when Russia advances with huge amounts of artillery backing their forces up, Ukraine is unable to stop that Russian

advance from shelling the Russian troops as they move forward.

That's a key differential on the frontline and it's one that's quite likely I think in the months or weeks ahead to change back more in Ukraine's

favor. And that's why we're seeing Russia moving fast here, throwing not everything, but a lot at this new offensive. It's going to cost Ukraine.

We've seen already on the roads up towards these northern areas, troops rush in to try and prevent Russia from getting close enough to this huge

city to shell it every night.

But that leaves the rest of their frontline positions extremely vulnerable. And I think we're seeing the first chapter of this Russian move here. They

move towards Kharkiv. That's going to draw resources in and leave other areas where Russia has been seeing significant success already in the past

months, leaving those areas vulnerable again to more Russian pressure.


I'm talking about the areas west of Bakhmut, a city they fought over intensely, and also west of Avdiivka where they also fought hard, too.

Russia has been moving forward significantly in the past weeks. They are likely to be able to do more of that in the coming weeks as Ukraine

struggles to put out the vital fire it's got going near the second city of Ukraine, whilst balancing the fact that they simply can't get into a

position in the Donetsk area. Vital as part of Russia's war goals here.

They can't get into a position for the summer that leaves their supply lines and their troops so vulnerable. And that's what Moscow appears I

think in the weeks ahead to be aiming to try and do as well -- Lynda.

KINKADE: All right. Nick Paton Walsh, incredible job you and your team are doing on the frontlines of the war in Ukraine. Thank you very much.

And still to come on CNN, amid the death, destruction, and suffering in Gaza, a fresh round of critically needed aid is now moving into the

besieged enclave. We're going to go live to Jerusalem.


KINKADE: Welcome back. I'm Lynda Kinkade.

An update for you out of Louisville where police officials are reviewing police bodycam footage following the arrest of the world's top golfer. They

are expected to make a statement later today. Well, Scottie Scheffler was detained by police earlier before the start of the second round of the PGA

Championship. He was charged with second-degree assault of a police officer before being released.

Now the video of the arrest that we're showing you now is from an ESPN reporter who was at the scene. Scheffler was handcuffed after he tried to

drive past a police officer into the Valhalla Golf Club. His attorney says the charges against the golfer for bypassing police resulted from

miscommunication. Scheffler has since made it to the Kentucky golf course and teed off a short time ago.

CNN's Carolyn Manno joins me now live from New York.

What a morning, Carolyn. It's just incredible turn of events. How is Scheffler looking on the golf course this morning following his arrest?


MANNO: So far so good. It's impossible to imagine where he is mentally and even physically after such an ordeal. And if you would've asked me this

morning, which golfer from the tour would end up in a jumpsuit being booked by Louisville police, Scottie Scheffler would be at the absolute end of

that list. I mean he is such a clean cut, new father. He's just such a good guy. And so this was really shocking to see and like you noted he said that

this was really a misunderstanding. A big misunderstanding.

I mean, you consider everything that he's been through right before teeing off in a major in the second round in which he's favorited to do really

well at, and so he was making his way into the course from everything that we've gathered. ESPN reporters were on the scene and detailed this and have

video of him actually being taken into custody, but it sounds like according to Scheffler, he didn't understand what he was being asked to do

in a chaotic situation.

And so when police tried to stop him from entering Valhalla, he proceeded forward and one of the officers, according to ESPN, was still attached to

the vehicle, which may have been the reason for this felony that has been levied against him. One of these four charges that he's going to now have

to deal with. But eventually when he did stop, he got out of the car, according to ESPN, was handcuffed right away.

And then we saw him cooperating, being taken down to be booked on these charges, but a very confusing morning for sure. And all of this set against

the backdrop of tragedy an hour before all of this happened. A man was unfortunately killed, lost life hit by a shuttle bus near the course. And

so that might have had something to do with increased police presence. You always see police officers and a lot of security, and there's a lot of

moving pieces around these majors, getting people in and getting people out.

But, you know, that extra level of chaos and unfortunately tragedy might have added to this. And afterwards Scheffler's mind was very much with

them, with the family of the man who was killed and said that his deepest sympathy is actually there, despite everything that he's been through.

KINKADE: Yes. I mean, he really is going to have to focus as much as he can on the golf today, having face those charges this morning, but also no

doubt thinking of his baby boy, who was born about a week ago, right?

MANNO: Yes. And he is able to compartmentalize with the best. I mean, we saw him, you know, competing at the highest level on the world stage when

his wife was very, very pregnant, just about due, and he was actually able to stay even killed throughout that process and compete and doing

exceptionally well. And so I think he does have the ability, he's the top ranked golfer in the world, to compartmentalize, mentally focus, put that


But you would have to think, especially when you consider the fact that on the video that was recorded by ESPN's Jeff Darlington, you know, he

mentioned, he looked at the reporter Jeff and said, can you help me? I mean, especially being in such unfamiliar territory with somebody who is so

used to staying inside the lines, would never imagine finding them self in a situation like this, that it was probably rattling to him to a certain


So, you know, he's the best in the world for a reason. Mentally, he is sharp. Physically he's sharp. He'll probably be able to move forward and do

quite well, but a surreal scene. I mean, I can't even describe what we were all thinking this morning when we were just watching all this unfold, it

didn't seem to make sense.

KINKADE: Yes, quiet the shock. Well, we will see how he plays today and we await this bodycam footage that police are going through to get some more

details on the incident, how it unfolded.

Carolyn Manno for us in New York, staying across it this morning, thanks so much.

Well, extreme weather is ripping through southern parts of the United States. At least four people were killed in Houston, Texas, after hurricane

force winds and torrential rains carved a path through the city and blew out skyscraper windows. More than a million homes and businesses are now

without power in and around the Houston metro area. And people are being urged to stay home if possible.

Our Ed Lavandera is following the story and joins us now live from Houston.

Ed, it's just hard to imagine what it would have been like when this storm hit with what they're saying is winds equivalent to a category four


ED LAVANDERA, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, absolutely insane when you kind of think about the ferociousness of this story, of this

storm, as it blew through. It is tornado season in Texas. But this is very much in the damage we're seeing kind of very reminiscent of what we have

seen here in this area over the years after covering hurricanes. But look at the damage done here.

There were high-rise windows being blown out throughout downtown. It's been described as a mess. This is the back wall of a popular dance club here in

downtown Houston. And around 6:30 the winds were so intense, essentially blew off that back wall like three stories of bricks cascading down onto

that parking lot. There's a car crushed in there.


They've got crews in there now trying to pick up what is probably thousands of pounds of bricks. You look elsewhere on the city. This is starting to

recede here a little bit, but you can see the floodwaters kind of bubbling up from the manhole because down over here, Lynda, there's a -- this is

bayou that cuts through downtown Houston and this has always been kind of like a good way to gauge just how intense the floods and the storms are.

Here in Houston you can see just how high and intense the waters are. I've seen it higher in past storms that have come through here in really intense

situations. But this still is a significant rain event, but really this was a story of the intense winds that cause so much damage. Four people killed,

one person killed by a crane that was knocked over in the wind. Two trees toppled down killing to other people. So you can really just kind of get

the sense of how dramatic this was.

The cleanup process is underway and emergency officials here are urging people to beware wherever they go.

KINKADE: And right now, many people still being told to stay indoors, schools, many schools still closed. A million people are homes without

power, right?

LAVANDERA: Yes, there's about 800,000 people roughly without power, just under 700,000 here in the Houston area alone. Let's listen to the fire

chief here in Houston and the precautions that he wants people to follow here throughout the day today.


CHIEF SAMUEL PENA, HOUSTON FIRE DEPARTMENT: If you don't need to be on the roads stay home. There's a widespread debris on the roads. Some areas are

without any power, no light. It's hard to see as you're driving.

JOHN WHITMIRE, HOUSTON, TEXAS MAYOR: Downtown is a mess. It's dangerous, due to the glass and the lack of traffic lights, so stay at home.


LAVANDERA: And so really the next couple of days is going to be a story of people without power. And the power company here in the Houston area saying

that it will take several days to get everyone fully back online -- Lynda.

KINKADE: Yes. Hopefully everyone heeds those warnings to stay home.

Ed Lavandera for us in Houston, Texas. Good to have you there. Thank you.

We want to take a look at what may still be to come. CNN meteorologist Elisa Raffa is at the World Weather Center and joins us now.

Elisa, good to have you with us. So what's expected in the forecast?

ELISA RAFFA, CNN METEOROLOGIST: For the Houston area Ed was talking a lot about those power outages and we're worried about heat that could come this

weekend without power, without air conditioning. We still have about, like he said, about 800,000 people in Texas alone without power. A good 100,000

people included in that in Louisiana. But look at the heat as we go into Tuesday.

It starts to get major and extreme from Corpus Christi and then part of it headed into some of those Houston suburbs. We're looking at highs in the

90s feeling like 100 degrees or hotter once you add in the humidity. With the power outages ongoing without the access to AC, that means that that

could leave more people vulnerable to heat sickness. So officials really urging people check on your neighbors as we go through the next couple of


Here's a look at the storms, what's left. We have a line of storms up in parts of Mississippi and Alabama, a couple of showers and storms in the

Florida Peninsula. Right now this is the most intense that we've got, but we haven't had any watchers or warnings with this. It is still pumping lots

of lightning and some heavy rain.

The severe risk continues as we go through the day today. We still have that level two out of five slight risks there. You could see in the yellow

from New Orleans to Mobile additional storms with damaging winds, large hail, and tornadoes possible -- Lynda.

KINKADE: All right. Elisa, I just hope there's going to be sunshine here come the weekend. Good to have you with us. Thank you.

Well, you are watching CONNECT THE WORLD. We have much more news in just a moment. We're going to take a quick break. Stay with us. You're watching




KINKADE: Welcome back. I'm Lynda Kinkade.

A fresh round of desperately needed humanitarian aid is moving into war- torn Gaza via floating pier built by the U.S. The U.S. Central Command says trucks have started carrying international aid ashore. The goal is to get

about 500 tons of humanitarian assistance into Gaza through that pier each day. Well, it comes as Israel intensifies its ground operations in Rafah.

CNN's Jeremy Diamond joins us now from Jerusalem.

Good to have you with us, Jeremy. So let's start with that ground invasion. Just talk to us about the movement in and around Rafah right now.

JEREMY DIAMOND, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, we're watching intensified Israeli military activity in both southern as well as northern Gaza. In Southern

Gaza, the Israeli military sending additional troops into assist with those military operations in Eastern Rafah, where Israeli forces have been

battling Hamas militants, they say, but also discovering and destroying tunnels that they say have been -- had been dug out in the area of Eastern

Rafah near the Rafah border crossing.

In Northern Gaza, the Israeli military now says that its troops are now fighting in the center of the Jabalya refugee camp. And that's particularly

notable because that was the site of some of the most intense fighting in the early months of the war. It's also where from my vantage point back

then in Sderot across the border with Gaza, we could see some of the most intense airstrikes and explosions taking place in that Jabalya refugee


But just overnight, the Kamala Adwan Hospital in Northern Gaza says that 12 people were killed in these operations. The Israeli military has also said

that there were Israeli troops among casualties over the course of the last several days from the fighting in Jabalya, including one friendly fire

incident. And of course this is notable because the Israeli military withdrew from this area months ago, only to have to go back in, as it said,

that Hamas was seeking to re-install itself in that area.

So intense military operations continuing, having a price obviously in terms of casualties as we're seeing on the ground, both militants, but also

civilians among the dead.

KINKADE: All right. Jeremy Diamond for us in Jerusalem. Good to have you there for us. Thanks so much.

Well, Israel is defending its actions in Gaza at the International Court of Justice. Israel's lawyers want the judge to throw out a request by South

Africa to hold its operations in Rafah and withdraw from Gaza. Israel calls its actions necessary to root out Hamas. Its Foreign Ministry has accused

South Africa of acting as, quote, "the legal arm of the Hamas terrorist organization." Israel's representative at the ICJ says Hamas is responsible

for the ongoing hostilities.


TAMAR KAPLAN TOURGEMAN, PRINCIPAL DEPUTY LEGAL ADVISER, ISRAELI FOREIGN MINISTRY: It has turned down numerous proposals for a ceasefire. And it

continues to favor death and destruction as a strategy. We heard nothing about that yesterday. In fact, while South Africa made many outrageous

false statements yesterday, perhaps most striking was what it did not say.

We have hardly heard the word Hamas, even though it is Hamas that has brought about all the suffering and pain that we are witnessing. The

suffering of Israelis and Palestinians alike.


KINKADE: Well, it came after South Africa's delegation said Israel's escalating attacks in Gaza have reached a new stage that breaches the

binding orders of the court.

U.S. President Joe Biden moves to bolster support among black voters across the U.S. but will his commencement speech at Morehouse College spark more




KINKADE: Welcome back. U.S. President Biden speaks today at the National Museum of African-American History. And on Sunday, he's set to deliver the

commencement address at Morehouse College, the alma mater of famed civil rights leader Martin Luther Junior -- Martin Luther King Junior, apologies.

All of these moves obviously are seen as an attempt to rekindle Biden's support among black voters, which has dwindled this election year.

But there is concern over possible student demonstrations at Morehouse as school officials around the U.S. have called in law enforcement to quell

student demonstrations there in recent weeks. Morehouse president David Thomas says he will allow some expressions of protest.


DAVID THOMAS, PRESIDENT, MOREHOUSE COLLEGE: We will allow silent, non- disruptive protests. So, you know, and I had students ask me about it. What if we, you know, turned our backs on the president or turned our chairs,

and I said to them, I'll be embarrassed, but that's not your problem.


KINKADE: CNN's Arlette Saenz joins me now live from the White House.

Good to have you with us, Arlette. So talk to us about President Biden's strategy to try and encourage more black voters to support him.

ARLETTE SAENZ, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT: Yes, and really President Biden this weekend is facing a very delicate balancing act as he is trying

to, one, make this appeal to black voters to continue to support him in the presidential election but also grappling with these concerns about his

handling of the conflict in Gaza.

Now, today, {resident Biden, in just about an hour is set to speak at the African-American History Museum here in Washington, D.C. The speech is

meant to mark the 70th anniversary of Brown versus Board of Education, that Supreme Court ruling which determined that segregation in American schools

was unconstitutional. Just yesterday, the president hosted the plaintiffs from that landmark case here at the White House for a meeting.

A little bit later in the afternoon, he's also set to meet with the leaders of the so-called Divine Nine. Those are fraternities and sororities at

Historically Black Colleges and Universities. And it's all part of President Biden's appeal to try to draw in more support from black voters.

It's a constituency that was key to his election back in 2020. But polls have shown some narrowing in his support among that demographic.

Now another marquee event will take place on Sunday. As you mentioned, the president will deliver the commencement address at Morehouse College, an

all-male historically black college in the critical battleground state of Georgia. There have been some frustrations among some groups of students

and faculty at the college with the fact that officials extended their invitation to Biden, even as some have expressed frustration with Biden's

approach to the conflict between Israel and Hamas.

Now, advisers that I've spoken to heading into this weekend say that the president is intent on trying to keep the focus on the graduate even as the

prospect of potential protests during this event are lingering. But Biden will head down to Georgia as he is really facing a polling deficit with

Trump in that state. A recent battleground poll showed that Biden was trailing Trump by about 10 percent in Georgia, which would be one of the

key states that helped him win back in 2020, and that he needs to assemble support in once again, as he's heading towards that November rematch.


But Biden's campaign acknowledges that they have more work to do with the community in trying to press upon them the steps Biden has taken to advance

life for black Americans in the country, while also trying to draw contrasts with what Trump would offer in a second term if he is realized.

KINKADE: Yes. I think all eyes will be at Morehouse College when the U.S. president shows up to speak at that commencement address. It of course has

a very long list of impressive graduates, including Martin Luther King Junior, Senator Raphael Warnock, Spike Lee. Talk to us about the security

situation that will be there on the weekend.

SAENZ: Well, we know that the White House and the Secret Service have been working with Morehouse College in anticipation of this event and Morehouse

is taking steps to try to ensure that if there are any protests that they will be peaceful in potentially in parameters outside of the actual

commencement grounds. We're still awaiting to hear a bit more about what Morehouse's preparations have been.

But as you heard the college president there say he is keen on trying to ensure that there isn't any major disruption during the commencement

ceremony. He said that he would be willing to stop the ceremonies if there is a major demonstration. He doesn't want to see his students walking out

in zip ties with police. But all eyes will be on the president's speech and the reaction on Sunday.

KINKADE: All right. Arlette Saenz for us outside the White House. Thanks so much.

And that is CONNECT THE WORLD. I'm Lynda Kinkade. Stay with CNN. "NEWSROOM" is up next.