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  • Happy New Year! Great to see you again in 2015.

  • I`m Carl Azuz with CNN STUDENT NEWS,

  • commercial-free current events for middle and high school classrooms.

  • First up this January 5, remembering two New York City policemen.

  • Thousands gathered yesterday for the funeral of Officer Wenjian Liu.

  • Thousands attended the previous weekend`s funeral of Officer Raphael Ramos.

  • The two men were ambushed and shot to death on December 20

  • while parked in their patrol car.

  • The suspect who killed himself afterward,

  • ranted on social media about his hatred for police.

  • Since the shooting, the policemen have been hailed as heroes.

  • Officer Liu`s wife said he was proud of his job.

  • Officer Ramos saw his job as a ministry

  • and was working towards becoming a lay chaplain.

  • New York Mayor Bill de Blasio called them the very best of New Yorkers,

  • but many police turned their backs on the mayor as he spoke.

  • During protests of recent police killings in Ferguson, Missouri and New York,

  • Mayor de Blasio was criticized for appearing to support the protesters and not the police.

  • Leaders encouraged them to lay their anger aside out of respect for the slain officers.

  • A few days after Christmas,

  • America`s formal combat mission in Afghanistan came to an end.

  • What does that mean?

  • Well, around 10,000 U.S. troops will stay there for the time being,

  • and they may have to fight,

  • but the mission in what has become America`s longest war

  • is far different than when it began in October of 2001.

  • This is ISAF headquarters in Kabul, Afghanistan.

  • The home of the international security assistance force,

  • and in 2015, it`s undergoing a massive change in both size and mission.

  • After 13 years of a combat mission here following the attacks of 9/11,

  • it is now transitioning to a train,

  • advice and assist management helping Afghan security forces secure the country.

  • But the size also changing,

  • from a pick of 140,000 international forces here,

  • most of those American, down to about 13,000.

  • Of those 13,000 almost 11,000 are going to be American.

  • Although the mission is now defined as train and advise and assist,

  • there will be some combat role for U.S. forces here for forced protection,

  • self-defense, they say, if those forces are under threat,

  • U.S. forces will have the right,

  • the ability to go out in the field and attack that thread,

  • attack Taliban forces behind him.

  • U.S. forces will also continue to carry out operations against the remnants of al Qaeda,

  • and carry out close air support,

  • and support of Afghan operations on the ground.

  • Now, you speak to commanders here, and they say,

  • there are differences between Iraq and Afghanistan,

  • so that the withdrawal will not lead to the same situation we saw in Iraq,

  • a collapse of the local security forces and there, the advance of ISIS.

  • One of those differences, they say,

  • one that the population here in Afghanistan

  • has much greater support for international security forces.

  • They also say that the Afghan security forces are much more advanced already,

  • leading, they say, 99 percent of missions here.

  • So, what happens if U.S. forces believe

  • that Afghan forces cannot continue to secure the country?

  • Will they have the latitude or flexibility,

  • perhaps to extend the mission or change the mission overtime?

  • That remains an open question,

  • but already after more than 13 years here, the U.S. mission,

  • the international mission in Afghanistan much longer than anyone expected,

  • and it is changing dramatically.

  • All right. First "Roll Call" of the year.

  • We picked these schools from our transcript page at cnnstudentnews.com.

  • First one today is from Cheonan, South Korea.

  • Cheonan - middle school as on today`s roll.

  • Call it the wolverine state, call it the Great Lake state, call it pure Michigan.

  • The Indians are online at Hartford High School in Hartford.

  • And in the first state, Delaware,

  • we are aware of the Conrad Schools of Science.

  • Hello to the Red Skins in Wilmington.

  • If you`ve already made a "Roll Call" request,

  • or if you are planning to you are going to notice,

  • our site looks different.It`s part of the massive redesign at cnn.com.

  • Everything we provide is still here, the show is front and center,

  • teachers for the transcript page and program archives,

  • just scroll down. Under our extra credit resources,

  • you`ll see a link to the new CNN digital.

  • It tells you about the changes at cnn.com and takes you on a tour of the new site,

  • and under feedback, you can send us an email telling us what you think.

  • The Center for Disease Control is calling this year`s influenza virus an epidemic.

  • It`s everywhere, and we are only midway through the flu season.

  • It goes through May.

  • So things could get worse before they get better.

  • One reason - this year`s flu vaccine, researchers say,

  • it`s not as effective because the flu strains

  • that are spreading are not covered by it.

  • The scientist are getting better at predicting where the flu will hit.

  • It`s amazing how much more we know about how to predict the flu.

  • What they are trying to do now,

  • is predict the flu very much in a way that you predict the weather.

  • Hurricane season. NOAA is predicting a below average season.

  • Many parts other state were under a hurricane warning early Thursday.

  • I know. All kidding aside, we don`t always get the weather right,

  • but this is pretty interesting.

  • They used mathematical modeling to sort of predict

  • where flu viruses are going to be most dominant,

  • but then they look at real time data,

  • and the real time data is fascinating, people searching for flu on Google,

  • for example, and they assimilate all that

  • information to give you what it called hot spots,

  • but they can go even deeper than that.

  • This is a particular project that comes out of the Columbia school

  • that you can actually figure out

  • which week is going to be the worse in your particular city?

  • New York City, January 10, that`s going to be your week, but also for hospitals.

  • They could be anticipating more patients coming in,

  • so leading more search capacity, more bed available,

  • having more medications, flu vaccine, things like that on standby.

  • But this is sort of where we are headed with regard to

  • predicting when things are going to get really bad.

  • It was a 1949 that "1984" was published.

  • George Orwell`s classic novel that many of you are required

  • to read envisioned the world of misery 35 years into the future.

  • Well, a series of movies that came out in the 1980s, envisioned this year.

  • What kind of technology did filmmakers then think we`d have now?

  • And where their predictions anywhere close?

  • Jake Tapper takes us back to the future for a look at today.

  • We are finally here, we are at the future! The year 2015.

  • 2015? We were in the future!

  • And it is exactly as "Back to the Future" from 1985.

  • We don`t need (INAUDIBLE)

  • And in sequel "Back to the Future" part II, foretold.

  • Yes, that stretch included a future with hover boards and flying cars.

  • I need to borrow it. Hover board?

  • Now, hover boards aren`t exactly ubiquitous yet.

  • This "Funny or Die" (INAUDIBLE) from last year sure looked convincing

  • that even featured Doug Brown and legendary skateboarder Tony Hawk.

  • But just a few ago this video popped.

  • Of Hawk riding a prototype of an actual hover board from Handover Boards.

  • Now, how about those flying cars?

  • Hey, going to ... Part of these days are still a ground based technology,

  • but there is something of a tech race going on to create the first flying car.

  • The Massachusetts form Terafugia (ph) has been working on a model as well as iTech,

  • which sells a flying dune buggie (ph) today.

  • We are still waiting on those self-lacing shoes from Nike.

  • In 2009, the giant filed the patent for that technology,

  • but no sigh of them hitting stores just yet, nor self-adjusting jackets.

  • I`m adjusting. Fit.

  • So, the film was a little optimistic, and in some cases completely off.

  • System works swiftly in the future. (INAUDIBLE).

  • 3-d movies are big at the box office,

  • even if we never got to "Jaws 19" or a hologram attacking movie poster.

  • But on the small screen, nailed it.

  • OK, I want channels 18-24-63 ...

  • And those teleconferences on flat screen TVs look like pure sci-fi fiction in 1989,

  • but today flat screen TVs are everywhere,

  • and you can videoconference on your cell phone even.

  • Though phones were one area where the movie really whiffed.

  • Payphones dot the set, but they are almost nowhere to be found today.

  • And fax machines, though they are still around barely,

  • played a huge role in that movies fake future.

  • When to the McFly`s at dinner we are still waiting on

  • those instance pizzas and ceiling mounted gardens,

  • but we did get kids preoccupied by their own digital worlds.

  • Of course, instead of iPhones and iPads the film used glasses based devices.

  • Of course, you can pick up a call today on your Google Glass.

  • Hello, hello, anybody home?

  • Jake Tapper, CNN, Washington.

  • Well our time for the day is passed.

  • Ten minutes in the future from when we started last.

  • Thank you for the present of letting us present a look at the present.

  • We predict we`ll be back for a future show tomorrow.

  • Time we`ll tell if you`ll join us then.

  • We hope you will. I`m Carl Azuz for CNN STUDENT NEWS.

Happy New Year! Great to see you again in 2015.

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January 5, 2015 - CNN Student News with subtitles

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