President Joe Biden defended the United States' exit from Afghanistan. Opposition to the COVID-19 vaccine is dropping among Americans. And the Caldor Fire in California is scorching its way toward Lake Tahoe.
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Biden defends US exit from Afghanistan
After the last flight carrying United States forces departed Afghanistan on Monday, the country entered a new era as the 20-year war with the U.S. came to a close. In an address to the nation on Tuesday, a defiant President Biden defended both his decision to end military operations and his handling of the evacuation that left some Americans behind. "I was not going to extend this forever war and I was not extending a forever exit," Biden said. "My fellow Americans, the war in Afghanistan is now over." Read more from President Biden's speech.
What happens next? The Taliban, now in control of the country, will have to contend with terror group ISIS-K as Biden and the United Nations urge the new government to allow for safe travel for Afghans and to uphold human rights. Between 100 to 200 U.S. citizens remain in Afghanistan, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Monday. So, what will happen to Americans and allies still in Afghanistan? Here's what you need to know.
👉 Afghanistan news: Biden addressed end of war in Afghanistan; Taliban declared victory; McCarthy blasted the White House. Catch up on the latest with live updates.
Pentagon denies reports that US left service dogs in Afghanistan.
What happened to US military equipment left behind in Afghanistan?
Maj. Gen. Christopher Donahue: The last US soldier to leave Afghanistan.
Ida death toll rises to 4
The death toll from Hurricane Ida rose to at least four after a highway collapsed in Mississippi, millions were still without power and flooding remained a threat Tuesday as remnants of the monster storm swept across the Southeast. Two people died in Louisiana, including a person hit by a falling tree outside Baton Rouge and a driver who drowned in New Orleans. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said at least 671 people had been rescued from floodwaters by Monday afternoon. Power remained out Tuesday to more than 1 million homes and businesses in Louisiana and another 75,000 in Mississippi, Alabama and Virginia. Ida roared onto the Gulf Coast near Port Fourchon, Louisiana, on Sunday with 1 mph winds before barreling toward Mississippi. With sustained winds at 30 mph, Ida quietened to a tropical depression status Tuesday, but the National Weather Service warned that the heavy rain and flooding threat would spread from the Tennessee and Ohio valleys up through the mid-Atlantic states on Wednesday.
In the wake of Ida, experts fear Louisiana is 'a pandemic tinderbox.'
Photos: Turmoil in Grand Isle after Ida ripped through ships and homes.
Man attacked by alligator in Louisiana floodwaters after Hurricane Ida.
What everyone's talking about
J.D. Power study: These are the 23 highest quality new vehicles of 2021.
Cawthorn calls Jan. 6 rioters 'political prisoners,' warns of 'bloodshed.'
Teen's death led to a professor. Now, he's admitted sex trafficking.
Who is Bishop Sycamore? What we know about the mysterious team.
Illegal 80-lb. pet cougar removed from NYC apartment, taken to refuge.
Fewer people now opposed to COVID-19 vaccine
Amid surging COVID-19 cases largely propelled by the delta variant, and following the FDA's full approval of the Pfizer shot, vaccine opposition is dropping, a new poll suggests. The latest Axios-Ipsos Coronavirus Index, released Tuesday, finds only 1 in 5 Americans say they're not likely to get vaccinated, the lowest level since the start of the index. The percentage of Americans who stand in hard opposition to getting the vaccine has also dropped to its lowest reported levels, at 14% of U.S. adults. The changes are particularly noteworthy among parents: 68% now say they're likely to get their children vaccinated; 31% oppose vaccinating their children. Mask use also continues to increase, according to the index: 69% now report using a mask some or all the time when leaving the home, up from 52% in the July 20 report.
👉 COVID-19 news: Hurricane Ida victims could swamp Louisiana hospitals; Many states already reporting more COVID-19 deaths in 2021 than in 2020. Catch up on the latest here.
State Department: Americans 'reconsider' trips to Canada due to COVID-19.
Caldor Fire scorching its way toward Lake Tahoe
Bearing down on scenic Lake Tahoe, the Caldor Fire grew overnight after jumping a highway and prompting mass evacuations of the lakeside town, California fire officials said Tuesday. For two weeks, firefighters have been battling the blaze, which has burned over 276 square miles, destroyed more than 470 homes and injured at least five people, but is only about 15% is contained. After the evacuation orders went into effect for South Lake Tahoe's 22,000 residents, the fire jumped Highway 89 and moved north on a ridge. Conditions on the ground have worsened since Sunday. Crews face low humidity and gusty winds as the fire races east and threatens to reach Lake Tahoe, but the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection expects full containment by Sept. 8. The Caldor Fire is one of 83 large fires and complexes burning more than 3,900 square miles across the West, according to the National Interagency Fire Center.
Before and after photos reveal intensity, horror of Caldor Fire.
Roads packed as South Lake Tahoe residents flee approaching wildfire.
Patriots cut Cam Newton; rookie Mac Jones wins starting QB job.
Talk radio host who opposed vaccinations dies after battle with COVID-19.
Bank robbers in Brazil tied hostages to cars to use as human shields.
South Carolina Supreme Court hears arguments in student mask cases.
Chicago cop on desk duty after video shows him grab woman walking dog.
Mike Richards fired from 'Jeopardy!' and 'Wheel of Fortune'
Mike Richards, who stepped down as "Jeopardy!" host last week over accusations of past offensive comments, is also being removed from his role as executive producer. Sony Pictures Television executive VP Suzanne Prete said Richards will no longer be the executive producer of the top-rated syndicated game show, "effective immediately." Richards, 46, had been selected for the hosting job this month, but sparked controversy when comments from a 2014 podcast, while he was a producer of CBS' "The Price is Right," resurfaced in a report from The Ringer. In the podcast Richards hosted, "The Randumb Show," The Ringer reported that Richards repeatedly used offensive language to describe and denigrate women's bodies, and also made an offensive comment about Jewish people.
Mayim Bialik steps in as 'Jeopardy!' host after Mike Richards quits.
A break from the news
🍿 From 'Dune' to 'Halloween Kills': The 10 must-see movies of fall.
💇♀️ Looking for a new hairstyle? Wig out over these reviewer favorites.
🛀 Rub-a-dub-dub, destress in the tub! Baths could improve your mood.
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Afghanistan, Hurricane Ida, COVID-19 vaccines, Caldor Fire, 'Jeopardy!' exec Mike Richards fired. It's Monday's News.