Return to Transcripts main page

Quest Means Business

Five Dead After Planes Collide At Tokyo Airport; At Least 57 Dead After Earthquake Hit West Coast; Hamas: Senior Leader Killed In Beirut Explosion; Supreme Court Rules Against Netanyahu's Controversial Law; Harvard President Announces Resignation; Maersk Halts Red Sea Shipping "Until Further Notice"; U.S. Suburban Drone Deliveries To Ramp Up In 2024; NHS And Zipline Deliver Supplies To U.K. Hospitals; Seeking Gratitude In The New Year. Aired 3-4p ET

Aired January 02, 2024 - 15:00   ET



RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL HOST: Delighted, you and me together, start of a new year, 2024.

Not so good when you look at the markets. You've got a really -- the Nasdaq is the worst. It's all about downgrades on Apple, worries about tech, all

the major tech spots (inaudible). The Dow is holding its own, but it's the bigger boys and girls that are really the -- those other markets, the

events that you and I will talk about.

Twin tragedies in Japan. A plane responding to a deadly earthquake is then hit by a landing large passenger jet. The fiery ball you can see is the


Hamas says Israel killed a senior commander when it struck in Lebanon's capital in Beirut.

And the president of Harvard University has resigned. Claudine Gay's embattled tenure, it's the shortest in Harvard's history.

Live from New York, you and me together, Tuesday, January the 2nd. We're on our way. I'm Richard Quest. In the New Year, I mean business.

Good evening. We begin with aviation authorities in Japan investigating the fiery airplane collision that which killed five people in Tokyo's Haneda

Airport. The video, just there you go. That's when the 350 hit the Dash 8, and it's the 350 that continues down the runway, on fire. But as you can

see the larger blaze, in a sense, is coming the Dash 8, which is just about destroyed from where it was hit.

Five crewmembers on the smaller plane, the Dash 8, it was a Coast Guard plane. It was about to take off. The captain on that second plane is

reportedly in critical condition.

All 379 passengers and crew were evacuated from the Japan Airlines jet, the A350. Japan Airline says four passengers have been taken to a hospital.

The Coast Guard plane was taking part in the earthquake relief efforts on the Japan's west coast. CNN's Will Ripley reports.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice over): A Japan Airlines jet touches down in Tokyo, the cabin calm until passengers look

out the windows.

(SATOSHI YAMAKE speaking in foreign language.)

RIPLEY (voice over): "We saw fire coming out of the engine. And I found it's strange," Satoshi Yamake tells CNN. Within seconds, black smoke

billowing throughout the aircraft.

The Airbus A35-900 packed with nearly 400 passengers and crew, including parents with young children. He says some passengers were scared,

especially the kids and women. The scene outside, even scarier. People on other planes captured the chaos.

GUY MAESTRE, EYEWITNESS: And just as we were starting to just pick up some speed, we heard that big bang. And I turn, and I saw that flame that was

making a trace. And then we saw a plane that in flame.

RIPLEY (voice over): The runways, full for a Tuesday evening. Haneda Airport in the heart of Tokyo, handling extra holiday traffic, and a Japan

Coast Guard plane with six crewmembers, carrying badly needed relief to parts of Japan jolted by a massive 7.5 magnitude earthquake. The quake,

causing widespread destruction, dozens of deaths just hours into the New Year.

Japan's transportation minister says the two planes collided on the runway. The Coast Guard captain, badly hurt; five other crewmembers killed. A very

different outcome for the Japan Airlines jet.

With just seconds to spare, 12 crewmembers safely evacuated all 367 passengers, including eight children under the age of two. Only a handful

had to go to the hospital. Everyone walked away as flames fully engulfed the plane.

For a nation obsessed with transportation safety, one question, how could the New Year begin like this?


QUEST: Will Ripley reporting. One thing was very obvious from the A350. Crewmembers prepare to evacuate planes under very tight schedules. The

rules required 90 seconds. The plane has to be evacuated with half the doors inoperable, and it's called a survivable crash.


Manufacturers run tests under the gaze of regulators, ensuring every single person can make it off that plane. This was an Airbus test. I believe it

was the A380 tests that took place. And it's one of those tests that always has to be done very carefully.

Then you've got the crashes that actually, again, survivable where people get off of the aircraft in time -- Air France 358, which crash-landed at

Toronto Airport in 2005. Every passenger survived when the plane ran off of the end of the runway. The aircraft itself was completely destroyed.

David Soucie is CNN's safety analyst and former FAA inspector. David is with me.

We're all -- two aspects here, let's deal with them in turn. Let's, first of all, look at the accident itself, the proximate cause. Two planes should

never be on the runway in the same time. Somebody made a mistake. The investigation will find out what happened.

DAVID SOUCIE, CNN SAFETY ANALYST: Yes, Richard, there's actually two mistakes to me at this point. One is that airplane was in the wrong place

at the wrong time. The second is air traffic controllers are responsible not only to give the commands and say do this, they're also responsible to

make sure that that command that they executed was executed properly.

So there's two failures here. There's the failure of someone making a mistake and doing not what they were told, and then the other of the air

traffic controller not recognizing that and taking action to prevent and mitigate any further damage.

QUEST: Right. I mean, one doesn't know whether the Dash had been cleared to take the runway. We don't really know whether the Dash was just protruding

onto the runway. I'm guessing, bearing in mind, that the 350 is intact or, I mean, was intact even though it was on fire, it looks more like a

glancing blow than a full throttle head on because if you're in a full throttle head on, it probably wouldn't have continued down the runway.

SOUCIE: Most definitely, just the inertia of the aircraft hitting together, but you can tell that it was glancing. It was off the top it appears to be

because the undercarriage of that aircraft is pretty well-destroyed. So you can see that that happened.

You can also see that there was enough impact though to cause severe structural damage to the aircraft. That's how it would allowed that fire to

go up .

QUEST: Right.

SOUCIE: . through the belly of the aircraft and into the cabin area. So it was not just a light blow, it was definitely a severe collision, but it's

survivable, obviously.

QUEST: And now let's talk about that survivable part because like Air France in Toronto and there have been other cases, I mean, obviously, if

you hit the mountain, you ain't coming back from that. But this 90 seconds with half the doors, this is -- I mean, this was textbook in a sense.

SOUCIE: Most definitely, Richard. And it really -- it surprises me -- well, not surprises me, but I'm -- in light of the loss of life, I hate to be

pleased about anything about this, but the silver lining here is that the regulation that was in place. And the General Accounting Office had been on

the FAA over the last five or six years about the fact that they didn't think that this evacuation process was strength -- was survivable, was

really the right way to do this, but now we have proof that it actually is the right thing to do.

And I witnessed several of these in the certification of the Airbus 380, for example .


SOUCIE: . I was in Toulouse for that.

And you can tell, even during that time, in that evacuation you showed there, there were two broken legs -- excuse, me a broken leg and broken arm

just doing the evacuation sampling. So the fact that there weren't any serious accidents or injuries with this evacuation is just really a

testament to how well the training was done and how prepared they were to save lives in these emergency situations.

QUEST: The issue, of course, will also have been non-standard operating which, of course, shouldn't be an issue. But Haneda, along with the other

airports, will be dealing with more air traffic as a result of the earthquake. And that in itself creates more pressures within the system, a

system that's probably already running since its New Year's Day at full throttle.

SOUCIE: Most definitely, Richard. And put yourself in the idea of the air traffic control. They not only have to think about where the aircraft are

at this time, at this specific time. They have to think in what I call the fourth dimension. Where will they be, at what time?

So if all of it goes the same, if the aircraft are going the same way, there's no introductions of the outside sources that they're not

anticipating. That in itself is a herculean task -- to be able to monitor all that and think in the future of what might happen as these air traffic

go in .


QUEST: Right.

SOUCIE: . different speeds and all of that. So you add into there this new issue.

The fact that you've got this going on over the earthquake, there you have an innate deed to help other people and they're going to try to get these

other aircraft on as quickly as they can. So that most definitely could have a -- be a contributing factor to what's happened here on this flight.

QUEST: I'm looking at the pictures now. You can't see them, but it's the flames going out of the fuselage, over the top of the aircraft. The plane

is, I mean, a combination of the number of doors coupled with the flame- retardant interior and all the things. But the plane still does catch on fire.

SOUCIE: Yes. The work that's done for those materials, every single material that's inside of that aircraft on every certified airplane is

tested to see if it will sustain flame. It won't. There's nothing on board that aircraft it will sustain flame. It's not a good fuel. So there's

something else introducing fuel into that area in order for it to burn like that.

So that's what we are talking about before, about the fact that there must have been some kind of structural damage or failure that either did one of

two things. It either ruptured a fuel cell that allowed the fuel .

QUEST: Right.

SOUCIE: . and fumes really to get in there, or it was the connections, which there are a lot of connections in that section of the aircraft where

the fuel grows from that AF tank forward. So it could've also just ruptured a fuel line.

Remember, the fuel itself doesn't really burn surprisingly when it's wet. It has to be atomized or vaporized to burn. So that could just be the

result of that. The vapor is coming up above with that open fuel cell or open fuel line that's causing it to burn.

QUEST: David Soucie, very grateful. Thank you, sir, and a Happy New Year, too. We'll talk more as the year moving on.

SOUCIE: Oh, thank you, too, Richard.

QUEST: Many parts of Japan, of course, are still struggling to deal with the devastation caused by Monday's earthquake. We now know at least 57

people are dead. There are those who are in shelters after thousands of people fled coastal areas because of the tsunami warnings.

CNN's correspondent Hanako Montgomery has been at one of the evacuation centers and sent us this dispatch.


HANAKO MONTGOMERY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): It's been more than one day since the powerful quake. But for Minaya (ph) and her mother, the

impact still very fresh.

(MINAYA (ph) speaking in foreign language.)

MINAYA (PH) (through translator): Thinking about it now still makes me tremble. My heart was pounding. My mind went blank. We just scrambled

things like our wallets and ran outside.

MONTGOMERY (voice over): Minaya (ph) was visiting her family for New Year's when the quake struck. Her mother's house now unlivable because of the

powerful impact. The pair luckily able to escape unharmed. But with the constant aftershocks, they're still far from safe.

MINAYA (PH) (through translator): I feel like even now the building is shaking. Whenever an aftershock happens, I think of the main quake, and my

body trembles.

MONTGOMERY (voice over): But it's not just the tremors people here have to worry about. Other than a roof, there's little else.

MONTGOMERY (on camera): There is no eating right now, so people are sleeping on mats. They're using thick blankets to stay warm. There's also

no running water. So the Japanese self-defense forces are just outside of this building, handing out water to locals.

MONTGOMERY (voice over): This water, a lifeline for dozens here and thousands across the region. Left without supply or simply without homes

after Monday's powerful quake, the devastation difficult to comprehend at night, but clearly visible from the sky.

In Wajima, the shock flipping multistory buildings on their side and raising entire blocks to the ground. Tsunami waves forcing large vessels on

to the shore and fires adding to the destruction. Amid it all, authorities desperately searching for the dozens still trapped underneath the rubble.

(YOSHIMASA HAYASHI speaking in foreign language.)

YOSHIMASA HAYASHI, JAPAN CHIEF CABINET SECRETARY (through translator): Prime Minister Kishida instructed us to once again put lives first,

understand the situation of the damages, and make an utmost effort to save people in emergency rescue operations.

MONTGOMERY (voice over): Urgent efforts slowed down by the devastating impact. The quake destroying access to the most impacted zones and making

these already remote areas nearly impossible to reach.

Hanako Montgomery, CNN, Nanao.


QUEST: As you and I continue, recriminations in the Middle East after a top Hamas leader has been killed in Lebanon. And that historic ruin by Israel

Supreme Court while the war with Gaza rages on.



QUEST: Hamas says that an explosion near Beirut has killed one of its senior figures. Saleh al-Arouri was considered a founding member of Hamas's

military wing. Israel's military is declining to comment on the announcement.

Lebanon's official news agency said four people were killed and several hurt after what it's calling an attack on an office building. Nada Bashir

is with me -- and joins me.

The -- interesting, what happened here?

NADA BASHIR, CNN REPORTER: Interesting and it is certainly concerning in terms of the escalations that we have been seeing over the last couple of

weeks between Israel and Lebanon.

You can see behind me this has drawn a crowd. The authorities here gathering after what has -- or looks to be an explosion. It was an office

building in southern Beirut.

As you mentioned, there's Hamas media outlet confirming that their deputy political leader of Hamas, as you mentioned, is some considered a founder

of the al-Qassam Brigade, the military wing of Hamas, Saleh al-Arouri killed in this right now.

At this stage, Hamas's media office is accusing the Israeli military of carrying out a targeted strike on this building behind me. We have reached

out to the Israeli military. They have .

QUEST: Right.

BASHIR: . declined to comment at this stage.

But important to remember, Richard, of course, that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has repeatedly said that the Israeli military will

target Hamas officials not just in Gaza, not just in the occupied West Bank, but wherever they are located.

QUEST: But I mean, give me an idea. This is a bit of a leap, isn't it? Because you've got the West Bank, you've got the border, you've got the

skirmishes with Hezbollah over the border. But to actually start sending a drone up to Beirut to do this slightly takes us into a different air.

I'm not sure whether you can still hear me, Nada Bashir. You might have be unable to hear me at the moment.

No, Nada Bashir is not with me. We'll maybe come back to her in just a moment just to find out the answer because I am interested in that aspect

of that story.

Israel Supreme Court, at the same time, has struck down Prime Minister Netanyahu's controversial efforts to reform the judiciary. The new law have

rolled back some of the court's power on government oversight.

Now, to be sure, it's historic. It marks the first time the court has thrown out a basic law which says there's Israel's constitution.


Here's there -- here's where it gets really tricky. The judges overwhelmingly agreed they did have the right to do this. Twelve out of 15

judges said, yes, this is our ability to do this. And then you get to the actual pace, where only eight out of its seven dissented.

Again, Elliott Gotkine is in Jerusalem. So, I mean, you've given your take here, don't you? The -- on the one hand, the judges all pretty much

agreeing about, you know, this is our business, mate, get out of the way. But then saying, no, this is far -- this is a stretch too far, at least in

some of them.

ELLIOTT GOTKINE, CNN JOURNALIST: Yes, Richard. Look, I mean, it was an unprecedented ruling. As you say, the first time that the Supreme Court has

ever struck down a basic law or an amendment to run these quasi- constitutional laws are the closest thing that Israel has to a constitution.

I think what is the most stupefying aspect of this whole ruling on New Year's Day is that up until October the 7th, this was all we were talking

about in Israel. This was the most important item coming out of Israel. It was tearing the country apart -- these government's plans for this judicial


Then the Hamas terrorist attacks of October the 7th took place. And with Israel at war now for the best part of three months with Hamas in the Gaza

Strip, this judicial overhaul issue has really taken a backseat. But on New Year's Day, it did move back to the front.


(ISRAEL SUPREME COURT JUSTICES speaking in foreign language.)

GOTKINE (voice over): It was a bombshell. In an eight to seven ruling, Israel Supreme Court struck down legislation that removed its powers to

throw out government decisions on the grounds of reasonableness. It rejected the amendment because of the severe and unprecedented blow it

represented to the core characteristic of Israel as a democratic state.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had argued the change was required to restore the balance of power between the executive and court. The law was

the first of a multipronged government plan to weaken the judiciary to be passed by the Knesset last year.

The Supreme Court's decision could now reopen the deep divisions in Israeli society that saw the country convulsed by months of protests and even fears

of civil war. With Israel now almost three months into an actual war after the Hamas-led terrorist attacks of October the 7th, those divisions had

felt a lifetime away.

Indeed, Justice Minister Yariv Levin, the architect of the government's judicial overhaul plans, assailed the timing of the court's decision,

saying it was the opposite of the unity the country now demanded.

Strange as the timing of the Supreme Court's decision may appear, it had no choice. Two of its justices officially retired three months ago that had

until this month to submit their final ruling.

When the reform was introduced last year, massive crowds regularly took to the streets to decry Prime Minister Netanyahu's plans, which they saw as a

serious threat to the country's democracy.

In Israel, which has no written constitution, the Supreme Court serves as one of the only checks on the executive and legislative branches of

government. In an interview with CNN in July, Netanyahu rejected the notion the overhaul posed a threat to democracy, but declined to say whether he

would abide by Supreme Court ruling that went against him.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: We'll go into unchartered territory. And I really would like to believe that they won't do that. And

the reason is that, first of all, we're all subject to the rule of law. The prime minister is subject to the rule of law. The Knesset, our parliament,

is subject to the rule of law. The judges are subject to the law. Everybody is subject to the law.

GOTKINE (voice over): The court's decision marks a major loss for a prime minister still facing a corruption trial and outrage for failing to prevent

the Hamas-led massacres of October 7th.

With no end in sight to the war in Gaza, Netanyahu has more pressing concerns than another spat with the Supreme Court. That fight will be for

another day.


QUEST: Right. Now, while we've been -- there you are. Sorry about that. While we've been talking about that, Elliott, the -- we're just following

obviously not only that judgment and an interesting question of whether or not they should have gone through with this while the country is at war.

But now, of course, we also have this issue going on in Beirut at the moment. Nada Bashir, I believe, is still with me.

Nada, one of the Israeli leaders, government spokesman/adviser Mark Regev has said Israel has not taken responsibility for that attack. But whoever

did it must be clear that this was not an attack on the Lebanese state.

I'll come to you, Elliott, in a moment for political interpretation.


First of all, what will you make of that up in Beirut?

BASHIR: Well, that certainly is in the line that officials in Beirut are taking. We've heard from the Lebanese prime minister himself, Najib Mikati,

he has accused Israel of trying to, in his words, pull Lebanon into a confrontation, a new phase of confrontation as he has termed it. He's

criticizing, condemned what he has said is an attack by Israel.

Hamas, of course, through their military, through their communications will have accused Israel of carrying out this strike. Again, as we know, Israeli

prime minister Netanyahu vowing to go after Hamas officials wherever they may be located.

And, of course, Richard, we have seen that escalation over the last couple of days and weeks throughout the course of the war in terms of the tension

building on the southern border of Lebanon. They're, of course, focused between Hezbollah and the Israeli military.

Of course, we are expecting to hear from the chief of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, tomorrow. All eyes will be watching to see what he has to say in

response to this incident.

QUEST: All right. Nada, I'll let you get back to your news gathering duties, having put that into perspective.

Elliott, back to you on this question. Regev is wiley old bird, and he would have chosen his words carefully, saying Israel has not taken

responsibility, but whoever did it must be clear that this was not an attack on the Lebanese state. It was not even an attack on Hezbollah. So

who has the technology to put up a drone, send it into Beirut, recognizing what will happen, and blowing, kill up somebody?

GOTKINE: Well, Richard, I wouldn't like to suggest who might have that technology or even the desire to carry out such an attack. But although

Mark Regev has said that Israel is not taking responsibility, the main spokesperson for the IDF has said that Israel is in a high state of

readiness, but wouldn't be drawn onto the responsibility.

We had a tweet or whatever we're calling it these days on X, formerly Twitter, from Danny Danon, Israel's former ambassador to the United

Nations, congratulating the Israeli security services for killing al- Arouri.

So, you know, Danny Danon is quite close to Prime Minister Netanyahu. He's from the same party. He is not an official spokesman for the government. He

is not in the cabinet. But one assumes that he would choose his words more carefully if there was the possibility that it was in Israel. So no

official confirmation, but perhaps a bit of a nudge and a wink that it was Israel after all -- Richard.

QUEST: Curious, sir, and curious, sir. Grateful. I -- good to see you in Jerusalem. I'm grateful. Thank you.

QUEST MEANS BUSINESS tonight, Harvard's president is heading for the exit. Claudine Gay's tenure is the shortest in university's history. But what was

it that finally did her in?



QUEST: Hello, I'm Richard Quest. More QUEST MEANS BUSINESS as we continue. Maersk, the shipping line, says it's ditching plans to return to the Red

Sea at the moment. One of its ships were attacked over the weekend.

Delivery drones have very much been on the agenda after clearing some major regulatory hurdles. We will speak to the CEO of Zipline.

We will get to that after the new headlines and that always comes first because this is CNN.


QUEST (voice-over): The leader of South Korea's opposition party, Lee Jae- myung, is recovering after being stabbed in the neck. He was on a campaign stop in the city of Busan. Witnesses say the attacker asked for a picture

of him and then lunged at him. The suspect was taken away by police.

Police have released new details in the deadly New Year's Day crash in Rochester, New York. They say that this suspect, Michael Avery, rented a

vehicle and spent hours buying gasoline before plowing into traffic. He killed two passengers in a car and injured nine pedestrians.

Avery died on Monday night. Authorities said that they haven't found any link to terrorism.

At any time, a U.S. federal judge might release the names of Jeffrey Epstein's alleged associates and victims. The move follows in the case of a

woman who accused Epstein of sexually abusing her while she was a minor.

A very important note, being on this list does not mean that the person committed a crime. Epstein died in 2019 while awaiting trial. His death was

ruled to be a suicide.

And a great story in the world of darts, 16-year-old Luke Littler is now the youngest player to reach the semifinals. Next up for Littler, a match

against the former world champion Bob Cross.


QUEST: Harvard's embattled president says she is stepping down. Claudine Gay has been facing increasing pressure over plagiarism allegations as well

as her answers during a congressional hearing about anti-Semitism on campus.

In her resignation letter, she says that her decision to step down was difficult beyond words. Matt Egan is with me.

Matt, after the first brouhaha when Pennsylvania went, the president there, it looked as though Gay was OK in the sense that she had gotten a lot of

support from existing faculty.

Was it the plagiarism which finally did her in?

MATT EGAN, CNN BUSINESS SENIOR WRITER: Richard, I think it was. It was the fact that it was not just her poor performance before Congress last month

over anti-Semitism. There was also the university's initial response to the October 7th attacker.

Remember there was the anti-Israel student letter. And some Harvard officials and donors and they criticized her administration for how they

responded to that.

Yes, layer on top of that these questions about Claudine Gay's academic career. These allegations of plagiarism. You put that all together and the

fact that the plagiarism allegations did not come out all at once. It was not as though there was one big announcement, one big series of


It was a drip, drip, drip. It was all playing out over the last few months. Just three weeks ago, Harvard's top board announced their unanimous support

for Claudine Gay. Now they have accepted her resignation, Richard.

QUEST: Hearing some words, of course, that some are going to demonstrate, saying that they were going to protest against this decision.


I mean, whichever way this goes, it gets messier.

EGAN: It gets messier. It is just so politicized. Remember, it was a hearing before Congress that helped to spark all of this controversy, which

also helped to draw all of the scrutiny, putting a real microscope on Claudine Gay's academic writings.

So much of this is tied up in politics. Some right-wing activists have really pushed these plagiarism allegations. They feel as though some of the

presidents of Ivy League, Ivy League schools are too left leaning. They have tried to push them out.

A lot of this has been tied up in politics. Now Harvard has to find a new leader. They say they plan to launch a search for a permanent president.

Whoever that is, they are really going to have their work cut out for them.

QUEST: I was talking to a very senior administrative executive, at one of the large British universities. They basically said that the pressure being

brought to bear at the moment on both sides, left and right, Israel and Palestine, up and down, is so intense, alumni and existing students, I do

wonder if anybody can really manage these top institutions.

EGAN: It is an almost impossible job right now, given all of the political pressure on the left, on the right, the pressure from billionaire donors,

threatening to close their checkbooks, from lawmakers demanding more information and promising investigations.

It is a very, very difficult job for anyone. I would note that Harvard's top board has been criticized by some for maybe failing to do their

homework on Claudine Gay.

There have been questions about whether some of these issues about her writings, maybe they should've come up earlier so they would not have come

up in the middle of this swirl of controversy.

QUEST: Matt, very grateful. Happy New Year to you, sir, a very busy, year one way or the other.

EGAN: Same to you.

QUEST: Some reports over the next several months, thank you.

In a moment, one of the most important trade routes is the Red Sea. It goes up to the Suez Canal. It is still too dangerous for Maersk shipments who

are deciding Maersk, they said they would not, then they would, now they're not going to. We will talk about that. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS.





QUEST: The shipping giant Maersk is now extending its pause in operations in the Red Sea until further notice. The company will instead send some

vessels around the Cape of Good Hope, going around southern Africa.

One of the company's ships was attacked in the Red Sea over the weekend. That has caused U.S. helicopters to sink three (INAUDIBLE) boats, killing

those on board. Iran is leaning in, amidst its true intentions, sending a military destroyer to the Red Sea on Monday. Anna Stewart is in London.

Just when we need more boats going in there. But Anna, let's look at this. Maersk was the first to state it was stopping going there, one of the

first. Then it said that it would go back in because the operation whatever it's called was going to be put into place.

That would make it all nice and safe. Now they have pulled back again. I understand this is very difficult for everybody.

ANNA STEWART, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It really is. I think that it's very interesting, just days after resuming transit through this, route they're

hitting pause. It was extended. They say that they will further assess the constantly evolving situation.

To be clear, Operation Prosperity Guardian, as it is, called this multinational mission led by the United States with naval warships. It was

successful. A U.S. Navy helicopter came to the defense of a Maersk ship on Sunday. It shot at four boats with Houthi militants on board, sinking three

of them.

But clearly for a shipping giant like Maersk, it's a risk too far. They're going to wait and see. You have to remember the huge cost for all of these

shipping companies if they do hold up and wait or take the very long route around the Horn of Africa.

QUEST: The -- what do they do now?

In the sense that the danger isn't going to go away anytime soon, it is probably very difficult to put more ships out there now. Now Iran has ships

coming in there as well. There is -- as Alex Stubb would always put it, a suboptimal response or answer available.

In other words, go the long way around. It's not ideal but it works.

STEWART: And shipping companies can make a lot of money, Richard. Freight rates are through the roof. A ship from Shanghai to New York a, container

on that will cost you about 40 percent more than it did a few weeks ago.

I think the question is, what will international powers like the U.S., the U.K. and other allies do in this situation?

Will there come a tipping point should this continue for a long time?

This is the global archery for trade.

Will there come a point where they just act in self-defense?

Do they look at targeting Houthi militants in Yemen?

Of course, that risks a major escalation. I think the moving of an Iranian destroyer into the Red Sea has certainly rung a few alarm bells at this


QUEST: What purpose do we think that is serving?

STEWART: It is interesting. We don't have an official omission from Iran. We do have news from an affiliated news agency in Iran, which said that the

Albus (ph) destroyer is one of the many vessels taking part in regular missions in international waters.

That could be the case but many people pointing out the fact that both the U.S., U.K. and other countries have massive warships in that region right

now, trying to protect commercial ships from Iran-backed Houthi militants.

QUEST: It is only January the 2nd and already, we are off to the races. I am exhausted. Many thanks, Anna Stewart.

Drone deliveries could come to fruition in 2024. The CEO of Zipline is one of the industry's biggest players. With his understanding exactly what they

are going to do with these drones. Yes, they will put them in the, air. That much I get but there's a plan is doing work with the National Health


It's all to do with, as you can see, parachuting down. QUEST MEANS BUSINESS in a moment.





QUEST: 2024 could be a breakthrough year for drone deliveries in the U.S. Some can now fly longer distances out of the range of vision, if you will.

That paves the way for widespread deliveries for everything from meals to medicines.

One of the industry's key players in the international region is Zipline. It has been delivering medical supplies in Rwanda and Ghana. Now it has a

partnership with U.K.'s health system. And Keller Rinaudo Cliffton is the CEO and cofounder, with me now from San Francisco.

This is fascinating. It is one of these things, sir. We've been talking about deliveries by drones and, yes, it hasn't happened as fast as we all

thought it was going to. It never does. But we all know that's where it is going to be. So this idea is you send your Zipline up to deliver medicines

and it drops a parachute or something. Tell me.

KELLER RINAUDO CLIFFTON, CEO AND CO-FOUNDER, ZIPLINE: Yes, Richard, it's a good point. It's always easy to get excited about new technology. It

usually takes about a decade for the technology to do what it promised.

Interestingly, luckily, Zipline has been working with national scale health care systems in eight other countries throughout the world over the last

seven years.

We're really excited to be partnering with the National Health Service starting this year, in order to deliver medical products throughout the

U.K. in a way that can both save lives and money.

QUEST: Are you delivering direct to the end consumer?

Or are you delivering to hospitals, in a sense, larger amounts?

CLIFFTON: Today, we're focused on delivering to hospitals, nursing homes and GPs. There are some places. Today Zipline globally serves about 3,000

hospitals and health facilities. We will be serving over 30 in the U.K. in the partnership with the NHS.

QUEST: How far from the takeoff point can you deliver, recognizing that you've now gone beyond the rules of, it has to be in vision?

CLIFFTON: Zipline designs, manufactures and operates these aircraft from scratch. These are electric, autonomous aircraft. So the range is defined

by how far an aircraft can fly on a single battery charge.

These aircraft can fly about 300 kilometers on a single charge. We need to go there and back and we need to plan for weather and a wide variety of

other things. So we typically guarantee a service radius of about 100 kilometers around one of our distribution centers.

QUEST: Right. This is, classically, a poor analogy, forgive my bad analogy. But for those of us who have seen things like "Spy in the Sky" and all of

those movies, this is somebody sitting in a hut or at a desk, not having visual sight of the drone other than by through radar and/or other cameras

on board.

CLIFFTON: It is even a step further than that. These aircraft are fully autonomous, making all of their own decisions. Not only using flight

control algorithms to control how the vehicle moves but the communications architecture is communicating back to the distribution center many times

every second.

They are literally flying themselves. There is a human in the loop. But typically there is one human in the loop for a fleet of up to 30 or 40


QUEST: I was reading, of course, the way in which the Zipline is designed to emergency land if things go wrong, avoid air traffic control, all of

these sort of things.


I guess that is all fine in practice. It's when it goes wrong there's a problem.

CLIFFTON: Of course. I mean, luckily, Zipline has now crossed 65 million commercial autonomy miles and we've done that was zero human safety

incidents. So we feel really good about the safety track record over the last seven years of operating across eight countries.

It makes us confident that, in a place like the U.K., we can operate in a way that is safe and has really big both health care and economic impacts

and benefits for the NHS.

QUEST: So what's the next?

Think much more ahead.

Is the future for this to deliver -- forgive me mentioning Amazon -- but is the future for Amazon to deliver like this?

"Mr. Quest, it will be dropped by parachute at 4:30 in the afternoon at XYZ."

Is that the future?

CLIFFTON: It's interesting. Zipline, last year, announced our next generation technology, which we are launching with partners in the U.S.,

like Cleveland Clinic, Mayo Clinic, some of the preeminent health care systems in the world.

They're using that new technology to actually deliver directly to patient homes. We can deliver in a way that is gentle and silent, 10 times as fast

as traditional logistics at about half the cost. Obviously, zero emissions. So I think the future is a logistics system that serves all people equally.

QUEST: Quick final question.

How often does whatever is in the bag break when it gets dropped from a parachute?

CLIFFTON: You know, when we were originally launching in a number of different partner countries, we guaranteed a 97 percent service level

guarantee. We've achieved a 99.5 percent service guarantee. In terms of broken products, it's way less than that. That encompasses anything that

could possibly go wrong with the delivery.

QUEST: We'll try with a couple bottles and a bit of cut glass. Thank, you sir, very grateful for you to join us tonight.

First day of trade on Wall Street, the Dow set to close slightly lower. Just off of 3 percent, 1 percent. But look at the other major indices.

There, you're going to see the trouble.

The Nasdaq is off nearly 2 percent. It's come back, pulled back just marginally. Apple has been downgraded by Barclay's and that has been

weighing on stocks. As for overall, the markets closed out 2022 with a rally. It was a banner year and all of that economic strength came despite

major rate hikes, low consumer confidence.

You and I talk about this thing every night but my colleague, Christiane Amanpour, asked the IMF boss, Kristalina Georgieva, are the Feds more

aggressive moves?


KRISTALINA GEORGIEVA, MANAGING DIRECTOR, IMF: It has brought the desired impact without pushing the economy into recession. That is for all

Americans good news. You have a job and prices are finally starting to moderate.


There is this thing called vibes. It is used by the younger generation to describe everything. But it seems to be there's something vibe-y that is

not aligning in the United States right now.

Can you explain that?

Why do people feel so bad about the economy despite the successes that you've just outlined and the fact that it should get better throughout


What is it economically or in the atmosphere that causes individuals to tell pollsters that somehow I feel bad?

GEORGIEVA: The two factors that determine the vibes in the United States -- and actually elsewhere, one is price dynamics. Christiane, for decades, we

got accustomed to very low inflation. We forgot what it is for inflation to go up.

Suddenly, it jumped. That has impacted the mood of people because, for some, for the younger generation, they do not even know what is this thing,

inflation. They did not live through one.

Secondly, interest rates went up. Again, for a long time, interest rates were very low, sometimes even in the negative territory. When you get

accustomed to borrowing cheap, then when interest rates jump, that is a shock.


QUEST: Entire generations who have no idea what it means when interest rates -- well, they do now.

What the years brings, who knows, whether it's prosperity or challenges. The wellness guru, Jay Shetty, sent us the following tip.

So gratitude -- we know the secret is gratitude. So how to seek it in 2024.



JAY SHETTY, AUTHOR AND LIFE COACH: A friend shared this trick with me a few years ago and I want to share with you.

Grab an empty jar, grab some Post-it notes and every week this year, write about the one thing that was amazing, the one thing that was special, the

one moment which really moved you. It could be something big, small. It really doesn't matter.

Now I wrote down something earlier. You fold it up, put it into the jar and you can do this with a family member. You can do this with a friend. At the

end of 2024, you can empty that jar and relive all of these magical memories and moments.

I found this a great way to hold on to gratitude, to hold on to these meaningful, beautiful moments that we all get to experience in our life.

I hope that you will try it out this year. I am wishing you all an abundant, joyful 2024. I hope that you are surrounded by all of your loved

ones and I'm sending you all of my love as well. Happy new year.


QUEST: I am writing down the first one now.

Being here with you after the break.




QUEST: Ladies and gentlemen, there are six emergency exits on this aircraft. Take a moment to locate the exit nearest you and note that it may

be behind you. Count the number of rows to this exit.

How many times have I heard that announcement?

And because I have covered aviation and have for some time, I do take a note of where the nearest emergency exit is. I've counted the rows,

sometimes in case the cabin is full of smoke and I have to feel my way to where it is.

You want to know the reason why?

That is the reason why. It is very easy to be blase. Oh, I fly all the time, I've got to listen to that dreaded announcement again. Let me tell

you, looking for the exit when the plane is on fire and there's smoke and you're choking, that is not the time to wish you had listened.

So leave your shoes on, that's another one. I know everyone is taking your shoes off before we take off. Leave your shoes on. If you run off that

plane in the middle of the, night you don't want to be doing it in your stocking feet.

And that is QUEST MEANS BUSINESS for tonight. I'm Richard Quest with some salient words of safety. Whatever you are up to in the year ahead, I hope

it is safe and, of course, profitable.