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Hometown Of President Zelenskyy Hit With Missile Strikes; Ukraine Gaining In Their Counteroffensives; New Co-Defendant Of Trump Released On Bond; Judge Rejects Trump's Bid To Disqualify Fani Willis; Trump's PAC Spent $40 Million In Legal Fees; Poll: Trump Trouncing DeSantis, Rest Of GOP Field; Police: Officers Shoot Suspect Firing Gun At Hebrew School; Nurse And Child Abducted In Haiti Amid Rise In Gang. Aired 5-6p ET

Aired July 31, 2023 - 17:00   ET



BIANNA GOLODRYGA, CNN HOST: Cardi B's concert tussle is hardly the first. Artist such as Harry Stiles, Pink and Bebe Rexha have been clocked and even injured by flying fan objects.

Folks, just be respectful and enjoy the show. Well, that is it for us this hour. I'm Bianna Golodryga in for Jake Tapper. Our coverage continues now with Wolf Blitzer in "The Situation Room."

WOLF BLITZER, CNN HOS: Happening now, a frantic search for survivors after a deadly missile attack on Ukraine in the hometown of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Russia hitting back after a new Ukrainian drone strikes targeting Moscow. I'll get a new U.S. assessment of the war from key White House official John Kirby.

Also tonight, Donald Trump's new co-defendant in the classified documents investigation appears in court for the first time. This, as Trump could face new charges in other cases very soon. The top prosecutor in the Georgia election interference probe declaring she's, quote, "ready to go."

And amid rising gang violence and terror in Haiti, an American nurse and her child have been abducted. We'll have the latest on their fate as the US orders all U.S. citizens to leave Haiti immediately. Welcome to our viewers here in the United States and around the world. I'm Wolf Blitzer, you're in "The Situation Room."

We begin with the escalating attacks and counter-attacks in Russia's war against Ukraine. Kremlin forces attempting to hit President Volodymyr Zelenskyy close to home as Ukraine ramps up strikes inside Russian territory. CNN's Nick Paton Walsh is on the ground for us in Ukraine. Nick, crews have been digging through the rubble after that deadly attack on President Zelenskyy's hometown.

NICK PATON WALSH, CNN CHIEF INTERNATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPODENT: Yeah, and the target's blatantly civilian, a technical college but most severely an apartment block where we appear to have lost six lives so far, including a 10-year-old girl and a startling number of injured, over 70, as you say. Rescue crews continue to look through the rubble here. And just in the last hours, Wolf, hearing that the town of Kherson has indeed also been hit in civilian areas with local officials talking about four dead and 20 injured.

The civilian toll are repeated sign of Russia's, I think, frustration, savagery in the face of what appears to be its slow losses on the southern front line. Here's what we saw there today.


WALSH (voice-over): The fight so fierce and victory so bitter, there is little left of Staromaiorske to defend it from. No cover for troops, no structures, just the dust of a tiny four-road village, the first gains of Ukraine's renewed full-throttle counteroffensive. So small, but symbolic, Russia even claimed Monday with constant shelling it had pushed Ukraine out of it again.

Something these men, fresh back from that fight, would scoff at. Krivbas (ph), his call sign, fought all the 10 days of the assault until the Russians finally fled. Here he is as shells rain around in the initial advance. When you assault under enemy shelling, he says, you have nowhere to hide. That's the hardest part. They've since tried to assault again twice with small groups.

And he fought for here too, Neskuchne, the town before it where the Russians hid 200 troops in the basements, not even leaving for the toilet, so Ukraine attacked with a smaller force. He takes us to where the Russians made their final stand, the school hall and its corridors. There is no love, says the wall. They seemed to relish the nothing they brought and left no clues as to why they fought.

(On camera): One of the hard things for the Ukrainians to understand is quite why the Russians are fighting so hard for here, Neskuchne and the more recent victory of Staromaiorske down the road. Is it that these are their last lines of defense? Well, no, they think there's far more fighting to be done.

(Voice-over): I hope that when we get through their last line of defense, he says, then they start to run. For now, they still feel there is something behind them. Yeah, we feel support, but we are very, very tired. There is so much more ahead to come. Ukraine may have put in its reserves now to the fight, but they face the same Russian brutality.


Their tactics haven't changed, he says. They put the Storm Z convicts in front with no communications or information. They stand till the death. I don't understand their motivation or what they're fighting for. Reaver (ph) carries a new Russian AK-12 as a trophy as he describes the gas they used on him. There was chaotic shooting, he says, to find out where we were. Then the gas. You don't feel it. It moves slow along the ground. I was packing my rucksack when I felt burning on my throat and nose.

One mine sapper, call sign Volt, is busy telling me how the Russians have started booby-trapping mines putting a grenade under an anti-tank mine when he's interrupted. Almost endless the noise of outgoing fire. They are moving, but just not sure how much longer for.


(On camera): It's important to note that while there are indications, particularly from U.S. officials, that we're into a new phase of Ukraine's counteroffensive where reserve forces are being sent to the front line, sometimes they still, when you talk to men like you heard there, Krivbas (ph), who've been fighting for the past months regardless of the change in the overall tempo, they feel exhausted, they feel progress.

But that sapper you heard, the D-minor at the end of that report, they move forwards, sometimes at 100 meters per day. That's how slow the work is de-mining. That's how perilous the ground they're fighting for is, Wolf.

BLITZER: Nick Paton Walsh in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine for us. Nick, stay safe. We'll stay in touch with you. Thank you very much.

Now let's get more on how Russia is lashing out as Ukrainian forces strike in Vladimir Putin's backyard. Look at this drone attack in Moscow and listen to the fear it unleashed. Listen.


CNN's Nic Robertson is following all of these dramatic developments for us. Nic, Ukraine is now repeatedly striking targets inside Moscow as Zelenskyy says the war is, quote, "returning to Russia." What's behind this new strategy?

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: You know, perhaps it's an effort here by the Ukrainians to puncture the propaganda of President Putin who continues to say, look, the war in Ukraine is going our way. He calls it a special military operation. Everything's on track. We're doing it all right. Even then, his own national security, number two in the national security, Dmitry Medvedev, the former prime minister, former president, is saying, well, if Ukraine does make advances with its counteroffensives just as Nick was reporting there, then perhaps Russia will have to use its nuclear weapons.

So, you know, on the one hand the Russian narrative is we're doing well, on the other hand is maybe we're not and we'll have to -- we'll have to up, you know, up our attacks to nuclear attacks. There's no evidence by the way that that's actually happening. But on the ground in Moscow, most people there, all they get is the Putin propaganda. They think the war is going well. Well, here, Ukraine is able to show them something else.

Last weekend, there were also strikes in Moscow. A couple of weeks back, there were more strikes in Moscow as well. And we're also seeing in other places just over the border from Ukraine in Russia, vital military hubs, where Ukraine is also increasing its number of drone attacks there. Now, Russia's defense minister has said that they will respond, that they will double down back. The Kremlin is saying that this is all a sort of a desperate act by Ukraine to strike into Moscow.

But it very clearly tries to puncture Putin's propaganda. Can it let all the air out? We'll know because the Russians still control the narrative. But it does get that message to Russians. There is a cost for this war, and potentially the Ukrainians are going to put that price up.

BLITZER: Yes, indeed they are. Nic Robertson reporting for us. Thank you.

Joining us now here in "The Situation War" to discuss the war in Ukraine and more, the National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications, John Kirby. John, thanks very much for joining us. How concerned are you right now about this escalation in attacks from Russia, including in Zelenskyy's hometown?

JOHN KIRBY, NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL COORDINATOR FOR STRATEGIC COMMUNICATIONS: This is very much of a piece of Mr. Putin's desperate efforts to truly terrorize the Ukrainian people, to really bring the war home to them. I mean, he's not even making the pretense of going after military targets. And this has been going on for months. So, we see this as yet more steps for him to try to really break the back, the will of the Ukrainian people. And you would have thought by now he would have long ago learned that's just not going to happen.


BLITZER: What's the U.S. position on Ukraine launching these attacks against various targets right in downtown Moscow?

KIRBY: Well, again, we've seen this in the past before. I just want to make it very clear that we are neither encouraging nor are we enabling attacks inside Russia.

BLITZER: Are you opposing those attacks?

KIRBY: We are neither encouraging or enabling them. We've had conversations with the Ukrainians about our concerns about attacks inside Russia. They can speak to their targeting and what they're doing.

BLITZER: What is the U.S. position?

KIRBY: Our position is we want to focus on the war inside Ukraine. We want to make sure that they have everything they need to succeed in this counteroffensive, the kind of counteroffensive fighting that, you know, Nic was just reporting on.

BLITZER: But is the U.S. accepting what Ukraine is doing, launching these drone strikes, for example, at this huge building in Moscow?

KIRBY: It's not -- it's not about accepting, Wolf. I mean, this is -- they have to make decisions about what they're going to target and where they're going to put their military capabilities. We are not encouraging attacks inside Russia and we are certainly not enabling attacks inside Russia. We really want to focus on what's going on in Ukrainian territory, but the Ukrainians should be the ones to speak to whatever targeting they're doing outside their borders.

BLITZER: You heard Nick Payton Walsh's report. What's the U.S. assessment on how the Ukrainian counteroffensive is developing right now?

KIRBY: I actually think Nick did a great job really summarizing, even though he was in one little area. He really did summarize it well. They are moving slowly. And they'll be the first to tell you, they are not moving as far or as fast as they would like to. But I think it's important to remember that when they're running into these defensive lines, Wolf, they are sometimes three deep and they're protected by minefields.

It's hard enough to go through a terrestrial minefield just on its own. And when you're being shot at and shelled, which they are every single day, it's really painstaking work. So, they're making some progress. It's not as far as they'd like, but they are making progress. And we're going to keep at it. We're going to keep making sure that they have all the materials they need. You might have noticed in the last couple of packages that we sent; mine clearing equipment was right at the top of the list.

BLITZER: We're going to get to what's going on in Haiti right now, not far from the United States, with a report later this hour. But I want to get your sense on the kidnapping of this American nurse and her daughter and what the U.S. position is. Does the U.S. know where this woman is?

KIRBY: Well, obviously we're deeply concerned by this report and we're tracking it and monitoring it as closely as we can. We're doing everything we can to get more information about where she and her child are, how they are and obviously we want to get them back home to their families where they belong.

I think you can understand we want to be a little careful what we're saying publicly about the conversations we're having and what we're trying to do because we don't want to do anything and say anything that would put their safe return in jeopardy.

BLITZER: Which makes total sense. Final question before I let you go. President Biden has decided not to move the U.S. Space Command, the space command --

KIRBY: Right.

BLITZER: -- from its headquarters in Colorado to Senator Tuberville's home state of Alabama.

KIRBY: That's right.

BLITZER: Tell us about that.

KIRBY: This was really a decision based on one thing and one thing only for the president, and that was operational readiness. He took the inputs of many leaders across the Department of Defense, but when it came down to it, he believes that it's in the best national security interests of the country if we leave Space Command in Colorado because moving it, especially a move that would take place over sometime between the next five and 10 years, at a critical time in the space domain when the PRC is developing incredible capabilities in that regard, that moving it could have a negative effect on Space Command's readiness, and the president finds that unacceptable.

BLITZER: Well, do you think it will affect Senator Tuberville's position? He's withholding confirmation of all these generals and admirals moving up the chain of command.

KIRBY: Well, that's going to be up to the senator to decide. I mean, he's the one who's put this vast hold on now more than 300 generals and admirals. And it's already having an effect on morale and on families. Their kids are not being able to enroll in school and spouses are not able to find new jobs. And now some flag and general officers, they're deciding whether they're going to vote with their feet and leave the military rather than wait an interminable amount of time to get the next assignment.

So, his reaction is going to be up to him to speak to. What I can tell you is that this decision by the president was based solely on the operational readiness of Space Command at a critical time in our history.

BLITZER: John Kirby, thanks so much for joining us.

KIRBY: Glad to be with you.

BLITZER: Coming up, new movement right now in two of the criminal investigations involving Donald Trump as his newest co-defendant is in court and a judge rules against the former president in Georgia.

And Trump's mounting legal troubles may only be helping him with Republican voters. We'll break down a new GOP presidential poll that has Trump trouncing his primary rivals.



BLITZER: Tonight, Donald Trump's newest co-defendant in the classified documents case is free on $100,000 bond. The Mar-a-Lago property manager appearing in court today for the first time since he was charged last week. CNN Senior Justice correspondent Evan Perez is working the story for us. Evan, tell us more about this hearing today and this Mar-a-Lago worker's role in the documents case.

EVAN PEREZ, CNN SENIOR JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Well, his name is Carlos de Oliveira and he was released on a $100,000 bond. This was his first appearance in court. The judge, however, has scheduled another hearing, Wolf, for him, where he'll be formally arraigned, in part because he doesn't have a Florida attorney, an attorney who is barred in the state of Florida, to handle that arraignment. So that'll be scheduled for June 10th.

He's facing four charges. One of them, of course, is false statements. We know that a couple of them had to do with altering documents and, of course, obstruction. And we know, Wolf, that, you know, he is a key part of this case in part because there is this one section in the superseding indictment where prosecutors describe him having a conversation with a Trump employee identified as Trump Employee 4. We've now identified that person as Yuscil Tavares this is what went down in that conversation according to prosecutors.

They said that De Oliveira insisted on getting this surveillance video deleted and then he said what are we going to do about it. So, the issue with Tavares is we don't know that he was -- he formed a key part of the of this allegation that was being brought in the superseding indictment.


We know that he was sent a target letter by prosecutors after the first indictment of the former president. And we know, Wolf, that he provided information that was used in this description of these allegations against De Oliveira and against the former president. So, the question is, you know, was he -- is he cooperating? We don't know if we can call him a cooperator. We do know that he certainly spoke to the FBI, spoke to prosecutors after that initial indictment.

BLITZER: More dramatic developments unfolding. Evan, stay with us. We'll get back to you in a moment or so. I want to go to Georgia right now, where a judge has rejected Trump's latest bid to halt the investigation of 2020 presidential election interference in that state. CNN's Sara Murray is joining us live from Atlanta right now. Sara, the Georgia investigation is moving forward tonight. Tell our viewers what you're learning.

SARA MURRAY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. I mean, Trump's team really got a smack down from a judge here in Fulton County who said he was not going to disqualify Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis from overseeing the case and was not going to throw out months and months of evidence she collected with the help of a special purpose grand jury.

And this comes as Willis is on the precipice of announcing whether anyone in this case, Donald Trump or any of his allies are going to face charges. We still think that's probably a week or two away rather than a day or two away. But she made very clear in an interview with our affiliate WXIA over the weekend that they already have security concerns at the top of mind and as far as she sees it, her investigation is ready to go. Take a listen.


FANI WILLIS, FULTON COUNTY DISTRICT ATTORNEY: Some people may not be happy with the decisions that I was making and sometimes when people are unhappy, they act in a way that could create harm. The work is accomplished and we've been working for two and a half years and we're ready to go.

(END VIDEO CLIP) MURRAY: And they are worried about potential security issues here in downtown Atlanta when Willis does make her charging announcements. We've already seen barricades going up around the Fulton County courthouse behind me. We know Willis has instructed much of her staff to work from home and over the weekend she also shared a pretty vile racist and sexualized threat that she had received with her partners here in Fulton County basically as a warning shot of the kinds of stuff she's been getting over the last two and a half years of this Trump investigation.

She said in her e-mail that these other Fulton County partners. I guess she was sending this as a reminder that you should stay alert over the month of August and stay safe. Wolf?

BLITZER: All right, Sarah Murray in Atlanta for us doing an excellent job. Let's get some more on all of these developments. Our legal and political experts are joining us right now. Shan, let me start with you. You're one of our legal analysts. We're waiting to see how Carlos de Oliveira will eventually plead. We don't know how he's going to plead. If you were his defense attorney, what would you advise him?

SHAN WU, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, he's certainly going to plead not guilty because this early in the case that's always what's going to happen. I would have been advising him a long time ago that he should be looking out for his own interests and therefore he should be truthful and answer questions rather than taking this tactic of ending up being charged.

You know, maybe he feels he's being loyal, that's understandable, but a good defense counsel would say to him, this is the time you got to think about yourself.

BLITZER: You know, it's clear, Norm, that the Fulton County District Attorney, Fani Willis is moving very rapidly now towards a final charging decision. What do you think those charges could be?

NORM EISEN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Wolf, I think the charges will come in three categories. You have the fake electoral certificates. Georgia was one of the worst alleged examples of that. That's like counterfeit money, Wolf. You can't have electors say, I am the elector of the genuinely elected president, Donald Trump. No.

Second, the pressure campaign against state officials, in particular Brad Raffensperger. January 2, 2021, Trump said to him, just find 11,780 votes. So fake certificates, fake votes. Number three, there's been a very intense focus on computer hacking in Coffee County, Georgia. And that's to derive information for fake conspiracy theories.

And each of those has a very strong corollary under Georgia law, including Georgia State RICO, which allows racketeering, conspiracies, an alleged of the kind that we find here.

BLITZER: When do you anticipate these charges will be made?

EISEN: For sure it will be before the end of August. She's declared a work period when she wants people to stay at home. We saw the images of the barriers that are up there. Good practice, starting early with your security precautions. So, I think in the next few weeks we're going to see those charges and we'll be on indictment watch yet again.

BLITZER: The district attorney, she says, they're ready to go, so we'll see when that unfolds.


Kristen, Trump and his team clearly are burning up a lot of cash with all these various legal problems that they've had, not just Trump, but his co-defendants as well. What are you hearing from your sources?

KRISTEN HOLMES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yeah, they are hemorrhaging money. So, you have the Save America PAC, which has been paying these legal bills, and we expect them to file today that they have spent $40 million just in the first half of this year. And just to give you a little context there, they only spent $16 million total in 2022.

Now, again, this is not the money that is just going to Donald Trump's legal bills, but to all of these associates in these various investigations -- former and current aides, employees at Mar-a-Lago, staffers, members of the White House team. So, there is a big umbrella here of people who are getting their legal fees paid for.

And we talk about that Mar-a-Lago case. We talk about those two co- defendants. Both of the lawyers in that case are people who have gotten a large amount of money from the Save America PAC. But again, $40 million. They've actually -- they gave $60 million to their Super PAC when Trump announced he was going to be running for president. They've actually asked for that contribution back. That is how much money that they are hemorrhaging right now because of these legal bills.

BLITZER: Huge legal bills and there might be more. Evan, you're following what's going on here in Washington. The federal grand jury is scheduled to meet tomorrow and Thursday. The special counsel could move at any time with additional charges involving the election interference.

PEREZ: That's right, Wolf. I mean, look, I think everybody's eyes is going to be glued to the grand jury tomorrow, depending on when they arrive, to see whether we might have an indictment as soon as tomorrow. We certainly believe that, you know, everyone at the Justice Department is aware of the schedule. We have the first Republican debate in the next three weeks or so.

And so, time is of the essence for the Justice Department if they want to get out of the way of the political calendar, which is, to be fair, I think they're already in it. And the former president keeps making certainly an issue of that. He's bringing it up at rallies now increasingly. So, I think certainly this week, seems like a very ripe time for that to happen.

Keep in mind, we know that there are still some additional witnesses who might be scheduled, including Bernie Kerik and others, but nothing indicates that they're key to an indictment against the former president. It's possible that they are important for maybe other figures, people who are also involved in the broader effort of the former president's effort to stay in office, but for the former president himself, it's not that important.

BLITZER: I want to get Norm to weigh in. How much legal peril is Trump facing right now?

EISEN: Wolf, I can't think of a political figure in the entire history of the United States of America, including Richard Nixon, who has faced as many simultaneous criminal cases that have been filed or that are threatened. Remember, we have Alvin Bragg, who's prosecuted him in New York for alleged 2016 election interference through covering up hush money payments. Alvin Bragg had a big win in federal court the other week to carry his case forward. No one even noticed because there's so much additional peril. And all these other cases as well, he's in tremendous legal jeopardy.

BLITZER: Yeah, and I suspect he understands that. I assume he does. All right, guys, thank you very, very much. Up next, are Donald Trump's Republican rivals becoming emboldened by his growing legal troubles? What Chris Christie and others are now saying about the former president.


BLITZER: Despite his growing legal peril, Donald Trump is dominating, dominating the rest of the Republican presidential field, earning more than triple the support of his closest rival, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis. In a brand new poll, let's discuss all these developments. I want to bring in our political analysts, Gloria Borger and Nia-Malika Henderson. Gloria, this "New York Times/Siena poll shows that Trump is 37 points ahead of DeSantis. It's a staggering lead. What do you make of it?

GLORIA BORGER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, I think you would say under normal circumstances, that it was completely unbeatable. Except we've never been in a situation where you have somebody who's running for president, who has already been indicted and is facing more legal indictments. And so that's, you know, that's kind of the wild card there because otherwise, who could beat someone with a 37 point lead? And he may still very well be unbeatable because Ron DeSantis, the number two, isn't exactly doing a bang up job out. I think, you know, obviously you'd have to say he's the huge favorite, but the unknowns still remain the unknowns.

NIA-MALIKA HENDERSON, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: You know, I think that's right. I think Donald Trump was smart to attack Ron DeSantis as early and as often as he did. He basically, you know, kneecapped him just as he was about to get ready to take off and run for president. And it turns out he never really has taken off. Maybe he can at some point. His campaign has been talking about this sort of pivot and he's going to run as an insurgent underdog. Well, he's certainly an underdog. One of the things that is coming up, obviously, is the debate on August 23rd. We'll see how he does there. It doesn't look like the former president is actually going to be on stage. Why would he be if he's up by almost 40 points against these, you know, these opponents? The other thing is --

BORGER: He can't help himself.

HENDERSON: Right. Yes, yes. Or the attention, he wants to be on that stage, I'm sure. The other thing is, and I don't know if you were surprised by this, but the other candidates, they're like three, you know, three percentage point in this poll, you know. Ron DeSantis is at what, like, 17 percent or something. But the others are so low in the polls, it just seems difficult for anybody to shake out of this race.


BLITZER: Yes, it's interesting, though, you know, we are beginning to hear some of the other Republican presidential candidates go after Trump more directly than they have in the past. I want to play a few clips. Let's listen to this.



CHRIS CHRISTIE (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: By the time we get on the debate stage on August 23rd, the front runner will be out on bail in four different jurisdictions.

NIKKI HALEY (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: If these accusations are true, it's incredibly dangerous to our national security.

GOV. RON DESANTIS (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: When he hits me with the juvenile insults, I think that helps me. I don't think voters like that. It's just a reminder why there's so many millions of voters who will never vote for him going forward.

WILL HURD (R), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Donald Trump is not running for president to make America great again. Donald Trump is running to stay out of prison.



HENDERSON: Yes, listen, I mean, none of these arguments so far are helping these candidates. And as Gloria said earlier, it's, you know, it's just a little bit that they're trying to go after Donald Trump, say that he's not electable. You look at this poll, they think he is electable. And one of the reasons they think Donald Trump is electable against Joe Biden is they think that Donald Trump already beat Joe Biden. They have completely bought into the big lie. And in so many ways, Donald Trump is running almost like an incumbent president, and he's still got the loyalty of the Republican Party. BORGER: So here's a couple of things that caught me from this poll. The people who are the most loyal MAGA category, they are 37 percent of the Republican electorate, so they're not a majority of the Republican electorate.


BORGER: So if you hold out hope that it's not going to be Donald Trump, OK, that might give you some hope. But here's something that gives you no hope, which is and this is an amazing fact that in this poll, there wasn't one person in the MAGA category considered himself or herself a true MAGA person who believed that Trump had committed any serious crime whatsoever.

So it's not that they're saying, oh, yes, we can get over the fact that Donald Trump may have done X, Y, and Z. They believe that he did nothing wrong, and that's a much higher bar for any opponent to get over. When Will Hurd says, oh, he wants to keep himself out of jail, they're not paying attention to that.

HENDERSON: I think Will Hurd was booed at that Iowa event. And so that's how well some of these arguments are going over with primary vote, you know, these, you know, with primary voters. They are attached to Trump. He, in many ways, created this primary base as it exists now. And they're sticking with him, as we can see in this poll. We'll see how it shakes out.

BLITZER: That's the key word. We'll see how it shakes out. Guys, thank you very, very much.


Just ahead, an American nurse and her child have been kidnapped in Haiti as the security situation in that country deteriorates. Stay with us here in the Situation Room.


BLITZER: Just into CNN. Police in Tennessee have shot and critically wounded a man who was allegedly firing a weapon at a Jewish day school. CNN's Ryan Young is following the story for us. What more are you learning about this man who allegedly tried to enter this Jewish day school in Memphis with a gun?

RYAN YOUNG, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Wolf. We're still working on details on this story. But what we know right now is around 12:20 this man appeared at the school. We're told it's the Margolin Hebrew Academy. It's in East Memphis. And when he went to the door, apparently he tried to gain entry, but they had security there. He wasn't able to gain entry. And then he started shooting at that door.

Once that happened, police were called. He left that location. The people at the academy were able to give an excellent description of the man, thanks to pictures they were able to take and his truck that he tried to get away in. At some point, police tried to stop the man. There was a shootout after he got out of the car with his gun. We're told he's critically injured. At this point what we're told, no one at the school was injured.

We don't believe school was open at the time. But you could understand why there's heightened security right now around that school. The FBI, the TBI, and the Memphis Police Department all investigating the situation, trying to figure out why this man was focused on this academy. Right now, though, Wolf, the good news, no one hurt but obviously dangerous and concerning.

BLITZER: Yes. The time of heightened anti-Semitism all across the United States, security at these Jewish schools intensifying dramatically. Ryan Young, thank you very much.

An American nurse and her child had been kidnapped in Haiti as the security situation in the country becomes more dangerous, that according to the humanitarian aid organization she worked for. CNN's Paula Newton was reporting from Haiti recently and has the story.


ALIX DORSAINVIL, AMERICAN NURSE: Haitians are such a resilient people.

PAULA NEWTON, INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Alix Dorsainvil in her own words, saying how much her work in Haiti means to her. Now her family and friends are asking for prayers and mercy and the safe return of this nurse from New Hampshire and her child. They were snatched Thursday from the grounds of the faith based charity El Roi, near the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince.

Her husband, Sandro, is El Roi's director. A statement from the charity reads, our team at El Roi Haiti is grateful for the outpouring of prayers, care, and support for our colleague. We continue to work with our partners and trusted relationships to secure their safe return. The U.S. State Department says they're aware of the abductions and doing all it can to assist.

MATTHEW MILLER, STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESPERSON: We are in regular contact with the Haitian authorities and will continue to work with them and our U.S. Government interagency partners.


NEWTON (voice-over): Haitian police and government authorities have not responded to CNN inquiries about the kidnappings. But on the same day, Dorsainvil and her child were taken, the U.S. ordered all non- emergency staff to leave Haiti, and again warned that all Americans should leave, citing the increase in violence and the risk of kidnapping.

But it was the dire need in Haiti and the hope that gang recruitment could be stopped that Dorsainvil said so compelled her to live and work in Haiti over the last several years.

DORSAINVIL: Lots of people who would just have turned to gangs or turned to the streets, they're able to get vocational training. People are learning how to read. The community is being transformed. Where it was once ashes, now beauty's coming up from it.

NEWTON (voice-over): Brutal street battles and ever more violent incidents still plagued the streets of Port-au-Prince and beyond. And now with an equally violent vigilante uprising, Bwa Kale, in recent weeks that has seen suspected gang members stoned and burned to death. In fact, the U.N. reported earlier this month that an alarming cycle of violence persists.


NEWTON: And Wolf, it has to be said that this is the kind of terror that Haitians go through each and every day. Again, the community Regis College, in fact, where she went to school in Massachusetts, registering its shock and saying quite bluntly that she is amazing. She risked her life to be in Haiti and saying point blank, Wolf, we need to get her back. Wolf?

BLITZER: All right, Paula Newton reporting for us, very disturbing. Thank you very much.

Coming up, CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta takes a closer look at a medical problem plaguing this year's Women's World Cup. What experts are saying about an ACL injury and why female athletes are especially at risk.



BLITZER: As the U.S. prepares for a critical Women's World Cup match against Portugal tonight, the team is adopting its game plan around a common injury, keeping some of the world's top players out of the tournament. Our chief medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, has more.


DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): North Carolina Courage Midfielder Meredith Speck started the season off on the right foot. But like so many other professional players, you've been hearing about, an injury brought it to a halt. Now, what will surprise you is that for nearly all these women, it's been the same injury. And many have been going through what you're about to see with Meredith.

MEREDITH SPECK, MIDFIELDER, NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE: It's a weird situation. Even though, you know, it's a surgery and it's nine months of your career, like, it is a big deal.

GUPTA (voice-over): Today, Speck is getting her anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL repaired. You've probably heard that term before, but let me show you. It's this ligament right here. It runs diagonally in your knee from the outside of your femur to the inside of your tibia. It's what helps players do this, lateral movement. And it's an injury now that has become almost synonymous with soccer, but remarkably more so among women. (on camera): Ten players or so are out of the World Cup because of these ACL injuries.


GUPTA: That's pretty staggering number. Does that surprise you?

SILVERS-GRANELLI: Yes. But we do know that women's risk is higher. So the NCAA data indicates that the risk for women is about three to four fold per male counterpart.

GUPTA (voice-over): Holly Silvers-Granelli is the chair of Major League Soccer's Medical Assessment Research Committee. And this is a disparity she's been trying to draw attention to for decades.

(on camera): What is going on?

SILVERS-GRANELLI: We started looking at this data literally 23 years ago. We had determined that there's anatomic risk factors, there's hormonal risk factors, there's environmental risk factors, which would take into consideration are you playing on grass or turf or what type of cleat you're wearing?

GUPTA (voice-over): The anatomy is also pretty fascinating. For starters, women's ACLs they're just smaller than men's. But look over here. Women also have a greater Q angle, that's the ratio of hip width to thigh length, which basically means this can happen. The body can more easily go into a knock knee position, making the ligament more vulnerable.

(on camera): Just standing here, how are we different in terms of our biomechanics?

SILVERS-GRANELLI: We know that women tend to be a little bit more quad dominant. We tend to be a little bit less underdeveloped on our back muscle groups. Also, when we tend to do things, we tend to do things more upright or erect than men do. Yes.

GUPTA (voice-over): Yes, easy fixes for anyone, Holly says, an extra 10 minutes twice a week to reduce ACL injuries by around 70 percent.

SILVERS-GRANELLI: So if we're running and we go to the side, we would plant and cut and then change direction, plant and cut.

GUPTA (voice-over): The idea, strengthen the muscles around the ACL, play low and avoid the knock knee position.

SILVERS-GRANELLI: This is engaging these muscles, which is your gluteus medius, and that's a massively great muscle to help control your lumbar spine and your pelvis when you're cutting and changing direction. So this is called a Nordic hamstring.

GUPTA (on camera): Oh, yes, I feel that.

SILVERS-GRANELLI: Yes. It's very hard. You'll feel your hamstrings engaged?

GUPTA: Yes, I do.


GUPTA (voice-over): It's starting to catch on, but slowly. Brian Maddox, head athletic trainer for the women's professional soccer team the North Carolina Courage, uses these concepts now with his own players.

BRIAN MADDOX, HEAD ATHLETIC TRAINER, NORTH CAROLINA COURAGE: You're sort of watching movement, quality of movement, whether it looks natural, where, you know, they look like they're not in control of what their body is doing.

GUPTA (voice-over): And he says this is the type of attention and training that needs to start among the youngest players.

MADDOX: One of the biggest, preexisting risks for an injury is if you've had that injury before. So I think that's why the emphasis on trying to prevent this at a younger age. So when they come to us, they're ready to perform at the level we expect them to perform.


GUPTA (voice-over): For now, Speck recovers. We're told the operation went well. The hope that one day she returns to this.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN reporting.


BLITZER: Thank you, Dr. Gupta, for that report.

Coming up, the latest on the Trump investigations, the former president facing legal peril on multiple fronts right now as another Mar-a-Lago employee makes his first court appearance in the classified documents case. Stay with us. You're in the Situation Room.


BLITZER: Happening now, we're learning more about new surveillance video in the Trump classified documents investigation, as the former president's new co-defendant just appeared in court for the first time.

Also this hour, a new poll shows Trump is crushing his GOP presidential rivals even as his legal problems are growing by the day. Do any of Trump's primary opponents have a strategy to slow him down?