Return to Transcripts main page

Early Start with John Berman and Zoraida Sambolin

Ukraine: Iran Plans To Send 200+ Attack Drones To Russia; Seoul Police Warned About Crush Hours Before Tragedy; 911 Call Of 10-Year- Old Describing Uvalde Shooting To Dispatcher. Aired 5:30-6a ET

Aired November 02, 2022 - 05:30   ET



NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: And in just over three weeks, they've been able to cripple the energy infrastructure.

So the worry is that these new drones, small in number but expected to be more sophisticated -- the Arash-2 type, which has a longer range, five times the explosive capability, potentially, but also is more sophisticated. You can change its routing and target in the air. The ones that the Russians have right now, right, you just set them off and they crash down where you -- where you've sent them to.

So this is a bigger threat. So if Russia uses these 200 in the same way that they've been doing before -- and they're also expected to get some ground-to-ground ballistic missiles from Iran as well -- uses them to try to go after the energy grid or other key parts of infrastructure and government buildings, it could really begin to put more pressure on the Ukrainian government.

And that's the worry going forward because it's not the number per se, it's the capability. These are more capable, more deadly, smarter. And if used as Russia's been showing how they're willing to use them in the past few weeks, that's the worry.

The front line is not far from here. They're hot and active. More Russian recruits coming in there. New areas of front line opening up. It's potentially an additional pressure on the Ukrainian government right now.

POLO SANDOVAL, CNN ANCHOR: CNN's Nic Robertson in Ukraine. Thank you so much for that update, Nic, and do take care.

On to new details now about the Halloween crowd surge in Seoul, South Korea that killed 156 people. According to police records, they received at least 11 calls from people worried about a possible crush. Some were made four hours before this event.

Let's go live now to CNN's Will Ripley in Seoul. Will, good morning. I'm curious what authorities there are saying about these reports.

WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, Polo, they are releasing these transcripts of these phone calls and you have 11 of those calls starting around 6:00 p.m. and leading up to just before 10:00 p.m.

The crush officially happened at 10:15 and that is defined as the event that really led to the horrific and tragic deaths of 156 people -- two-thirds of them young women who were overpowered by the force of thousands of people packed into that narrow alleyway in Itaewon, the iconic nightclub district in Seoul where I've been spending the last several days at memorials in the alleyways themselves talking to people who are absolutely devastated and traumatized after watching young people, many of them in costume, die on the sidewalks right before their eyes.

People were calling about this hours ahead of time, telling the police that the crowd was getting too big and things felt very dangerous. People felt like they were getting crushed -- like they were suffocating. That they couldn't breathe. And they were very worried that there could be a loss of life. This was told to police dispatchers who have a station -- a police station about two minutes' walk from the location where all those people died.

They did deploy a handful of extra officers to Itaewon. But the number of officers -- just over 130 -- pales in comparison with the thousands of police that they will deploy for political protests here in South Korea with a fraction of the number of people who gathered in Itaewon -- that nightclub district you're talking about -- around 100,000 young people there and no police officers with barricades to control traffic, to stop people from coming in when the crowds got too big.

Instead, most of the officers were looking for things like drunk and disorderly conduct, or drug offenses. So, Polo, clearly, there is a growing sense of anger and outrage -- people demanding answers and wanting to know why more was not done to keep those young people out of that terrible and deadly situation on Saturday night.

SANDOVAL: Especially if they possibly would have seen this coming with these calls.

Will Ripley in Korea. Thank you so much for that report.

Quick hits around the globe right now.

North Korea firing at least 18 missiles to the east and west of the Korean Peninsula just a short time ago. One landed close to South Korean territorial waters for the first time since Korea divided in 1945.

Greece's Coast Guard searching for dozens of missing migrants. Their overloaded sailboat capsized and sank in the rough seas off an island near Athens. Ten survivors have been rescued so far.

Officials investigating how five lions managed to escape from their enclosure from a zoo in Sydney, Australia. Four of the lions were rounded up and returned to the enclosure without incident. The fifth had to be tranquilized.

Still ahead on your EARLY START, a never-before-heard audio of a 911 call from a 10-year-old girl describing the slaughter inside her Uvalde classroom. And American workers are getting less done on the job. What's behind this sharp drop in productivity?



SANDOVAL: CNN has obtained 911 audio from the Uvalde school shooting in May that killed 21 people, including 19 children. It includes a 10- year-old girl's call begging for help. And we want to warn you that what you are going to hear -- it is disturbing.

More now from CNN's Shimon Prokupecz.


DISPATCHER: Just advising we do have a child on the line.

SHIMON PROKUPECZ, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This was the moment everything at the scene in Uvalde should have changed. At 12:10 p.m. on May 24, fourth-grader Khloie Torres, who survived the shooting, was inside room 112 at Robb Elementary and spoke to 911.


Police just a few feet away in the hallway were just minutes later made aware the worst-case scenario was unfolding. Khloie, along with her classmates and teachers -- some dead or dying -- were alone, trapped with an active shooter.

It's the phone call that should have made the difference. Instead, it would be another 40 minutes until police finally enter the room and kill the gunman.

CNN has obtained the call, never made public until now. A warning to our viewers it's painful to hear. We're choosing to play portions of the audio with the approval of Khloie's parents, and because it is crucial to understanding the full scope of the law enforcement failure that day.

(Phone rings)

CHILD: Hello?

DISPATCHER: I'm calling with the police department. Are you OK?

CHILD: No, there's a school shooting.

DISPATCHER: OK, yes ma'am. I have multiple units there. Are you with officers or are your barricaded somewhere?

CHILD: I'm in classroom -- what's the classroom number? 112.


CHILD: 112, 112, yes, ma'am.

DISPATCHER: What's your name, ma'am?

CHILD: Khloie Torres. Please hurry. There's a lot of dead bodies.

DISPATCHER: Stay on the line, OK? You said you were in classroom 112?

CHILD: Yes, ma'am. Please send help.

PROKUPECZ (voice-over): You can hear injured people in the room crying out in pain. The dispatcher asks Khloie to tell her classmates to stay quiet. She does her best.

DISPATCHER: You need to tell them that they need to be quiet.

CHILD: I am. I am. I'm telling everybody to be quiet and now nobody is listening to me. I know how to handle these situations. My dad taught me when I was a little girl. Send help. Some of my teachers are still alive but they're shot.

PROKUPECZ (voice-over): Less than minutes into the call at 12:12 p.m., the Uvalde dispatcher sends an urgent message to police on the scene.

OFFICER: 320, go ahead with that child's information. Relay it.

DISPATCHER: (INAUDIBLE) child is advising he is in the room full of victims -- full of victims at this moment.

OFFICER: 10-4, Uvalde. Can you confirm to see if that shooter is still standing, or has he shot himself?

PROKUPECZ: If active shooter protocol had been followed, this dispatch should have triggered police to spring into action and breach the classroom. Instead, 38 minutes were allowed to go by as more officers arrive on scene with more equipment until something is done. Nearly 400 officers responded in Uvalde. Khloie wanted to know where they were.

CHILD: How far are you all away?

DISPATCHER: They're inside of the building, OK? You need to stay quiet, OK?

CHILD: They're inside the building. We just need to stay quiet.

PROKUPECZ: On the other side of the door, the law enforcement response was disorganized and chaotic. Official reports detail the catastrophic mistake that was made. Police on scene thought the shooter was a barricaded subject and not an active shooter. Khloie's call makes it clear an active shooter situation is unfolding.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They think there's kids in there. Supposedly, one kid called in and he was in there with him.

PROKUPECZ: Body camera footage from local and state police departments obtained by CNN shows the officers on scene knew about the phone call and that there were children inside the room hurt and in desperate need of medical attention.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don't know if he has anyone in the room with him, do we?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think he does.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Eight or nine children.

BORDER PATROL EMS: I thought he said victims, room 12.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, we hadn't heard that -- no. We're in the fours, right? This is -- this is building four?

BORDER PATROL EMS: Anybody hurt?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, not here -- no, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, there are.


BORDER PATROL EMS: EMS in there already?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. No, sir. We have an active shooter.


BORDER PATROL EMS: He's in here?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here's in here, yes.

BORDER PATROL EMS: OK, I'll stand right here and be ready.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The last contact -- hold on. The last contact we had was one of our school PD officers. His wife is a teacher. She called him saying she's dying.

MARINO BORDER PATROL EMS: They just had a number of kids in room 12. A kid in room 12. Most of the victims were in room 12.

BORDER PATROL EMS: (Bleep) we're taking too long.

PROKUPECZ: Shimon Prokupecz, CNN, in Uvalde, Texas.


SANDOVAL: And we should add the mother of that incredible -- incredibly brave student in Uvalde is also speaking out. She will be joining our colleagues on "CNN THIS MORNING" just ahead.

We'll be right back.



SANDOVAL: And welcome back.

As you're getting ready for work this morning, there's some new data that has some bosses across America either scratching their heads or maybe pulling their hair out. You see, the Bureau of Labor Statistics saying that worker productivity has dropped more than four percent in the first half of 2022. That's the worst decline on record which, by the way, was back in 1947.

Let's bring in Anita Williams Woolley. She's professor of organization behavioral -- behavior and theory, rather, at Carnegie-Mellon University. Good morning to you.

I'm curious -- you know, before the pandemic, or at least as we were leading into the pandemic, it seems that productivity was up. And now, we see this decline. I wonder, Anita, what are the different factors that are coming together here?

ANITA WILLIAMS WOOLLEY, PROFESSOR OF ORGANIZATIONAL BEHAVIOR AND THEORY, CARNEGIE-MELLON UNIVERSITY (via Skype): Well, there really are a variety of converging trends here. Certainly, we've heard about the great resignation and exactly what's going on there.

But we know, most recently, there is also -- alongside this productivity dip, there has actually been a decrease in unemployment. So a lot of new people have entered the workforce. And so, we have some of these organizations that have new employees. Other openings have not been filled. But all of this means that the people who remain are really shouldering a lot.

SANDOVAL: I wonder, too, work flexibility during the pandemic -- does that factor into some of these trends that you just mentioned?

WOOLLEY: Well, certainly, people want to point to that. However, none of the data really supports that conclusion.


We saw a productivity gain from remote work. But more recently, what we've also seen are some work practices that might be dipping into that, such as -- you know, there's -- Microsoft reports that there's been about a 153 percent increase in meetings over the last two years. And even though people are working more hours they're just being less productive, especially if they're spending it in a lot of meetings.

SANDOVAL: All right, Professor, look into your crystal ball here. What direction do you see these trends going long term?

WOOLLEY: Well, I think we're going to see a differentiation in the employers who really figure out how to make this remote and flexible workplace work for them by adopting some different work practices that can let them regain some of those productivity advantages we saw before. You know, moving to doing things a little bit more asynchronously and probably focusing less on where employees are or what hours they're working.

SANDOVAL: Professor Anita Williams Woolley, our thanks to you for waking up with us this morning. Thank you.

WOOLLEY: My pleasure.

SANDOVAL: All right, CNN has new polling less than one week ahead until Election Day. Which party seems to be pulling ahead? And Russian mercenaries backstabbing each other. The Kremlin's house of cards ahead on "CNN THIS MORNING."




NASA: Three, two, one, zero, liftoff.



SANDOVAL: The sights and sounds of SpaceX's Falcon Heavy. The world's most powerful rocket blasting off for the first time in three years. It launched on Tuesday from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. It's a secretive mission involving hauling satellites into space for the U.S.'s Space Force. It's just the fourth launch of the Falcon Heavy since its debut in 2018 and also the first since 2019.

All right, the Phillies power their way past the Astros to take the lead in the World Series.

Carolyn Manno joining us on set this morning with the Bleacher Report. I have to tell you, it seems like yesterday's game was worth the wait after Monday's --

CAROLYN MANNO, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Rain delay? Oh, yes, absolutely.


MANNO: I mean, the atmosphere was intense. You expect this from these two fan bases, right? A lot of people expected Houston to be here but the Phillies have just snuck into the playoffs as the final wild card team and now they are on this incredible ride, two wins shy of a World Series title. They are undefeated at home this postseason.

And it was such a scene last night. The Phillies' $300 million man Bryce Harper setting the tone in the first inning with a 2-run jack off Lance McCullers Jr.

So when he got back to the dugout he whispered something, which may have helped the other Philly hitters. This is well within the rules to do, by the way. But Alec Bohn, Brandon Marsh, Kyle Schwarber, and Rhys Hoskins seemed to take that advice and go with it. I mean, they all went deep off of McCullers -- the first team to hit five home runs off the same pitcher in a World Series game.

Ranger Suarez and the Phillies bullpen shutting out the Astros on a 5- hitter. Philadelphia wins 7-0 and brings the 2-1 series lead into tonight's game four.

Four Michigan State football players are now suspended in the wake of Saturday's postgame tunnel brawl at Michigan Stadium, bringing the total number of suspended players from the team to eight. Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh is calling for criminal charges here. Police from both schools investigating the fight. The players are going to remain suspended until all of those investigations are complete.

The Brooklyn Nets and Steve Nash have parted ways. Brooklyn has fallen woefully short of expectations in Nash's 2-plus seasons as head coach. It's been a mess despite having Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving on the roster. General manager Bobby Marks is downplaying reports that suspended Celtics head coach Ime Udoka could be in line to take over in Brooklyn.

And after the news, it was another rough night for the now 2-6 Nets. Kyrie Irving finishing with four points on two of 12 shooting. The Nets fall to the Bulls by nine.

In the NFL now, a record 10 deals were made on trade deadline day yesterday. Most notably, the Dolphins acquiring Pro Bowl linebacker Bradley Chubb from the Broncos for running back Chase Edmonds and a first-round pick.

And star wideout Calvin Ridley, who was suspended for the season for betting on games last year, was traded to Jacksonville for two draft picks. So the Jags now betting on him to fill a glaring need there and potentially become the major receiving threat in 2023 when he's eligible to do so without giving up too much. So it seems like a shrewd move.

And lastly for you in sports this morning, the College Football Playoff Committee issued its first rankings of the season last night. Tennessee is number one for the first time in the playoff era. Ohio State, number two. Georgia and Clemson rounding out the top four. Michigan and Alabama are at five and six.

And if you love college football, I'm not telling you anything that you don't already know. Georgia hosting Tennessee on Saturday. They have done an incredible job at Tennessee.

You have to give head coach Josh Heupel a lot of credit. This is a guy who was a college quarterback and won a national title, so understands the implications of a game like this. The winner could basically write themselves into the playoffs. And has really coached up his team in a way that I think has surprised a lot of people.

SANDOVAL: And for undefeated Tennessee, that's certainly a well- earned spot. Though, when you look --

MANNO: Absolutely.

SANDOVAL: -- at the -- at the -- at the -- at the rankings, or at least the lineup, they are not alone.

MANNO: Oh, yes -- no. And this is going to be so tough.

SANDOVAL: They are so tough.

MANNO: Yes. I mean, Georgia's got a 25-year-old, sort of, veteran quarterback, if you can say that, at 25, and the two teams are really evenly matched. So it's going to be a great game and hopefully, we'll be talking about it next week.

SANDOVAL: We absolutely will.

Carolyn, thank you so much for that.

And thank you for letting me spend some time with you this morning on EARLY START. "CNN THIS MORNING" starts right now.