5 p.m. ET: Putin blames the West, church shooting, Watergate anniversary and more – CNN 5 Things

5 p.m. ET: Putin blames the West, church shooting, Watergate anniversary, and more

CNN 5 things

June 17, 2022

Russian President Vladimir Putin accuses Western countries of blaming Moscow for their problems. Additionally, a man accused of carrying a loaded gun to the United States Capitol during the insurrection pleads guilty. We also have an update on a fatal shooting at a church in Alabama. WWE CEO steps down – we have the details. Finally, today marks the 50th anniversary of the Watergate scandal.

Ifeoma Dike (host)


Hello from CNN. I’m Ifeoma Dike with the five things you need to know for Friday, June 17.

[Story 1] Russian President Vladimir Putin blames the West for the global food crisis during a speech in St Petersburg today as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues. He says the West wants to blame all the problems of the world economy on Russia.

Vladimir Putin (translated sound clip)


“Prices will rise even further, threatening famine, especially in poorer countries, and it will be entirely on the conscience of the US administration and European bureaucracy.”

Ifeoma Dike (host)


He says that Russia has nothing against Ukraine joining the European Union because it is not a military alliance like NATO. Although earlier the Kremlin said that Ukraine’s formal consideration for EU candidate status needs, quote, increased attention from Moscow. He added that the restoration of Russia’s relations with Ukraine is, in quotes, inevitable, saying that sooner or later the situation will normalize.

[Story 2] A man accused of carrying a loaded weapon during the Capitol insurrection and assaulting two officers with one of their own batons has pleaded guilty. Mark Mazza faces a maximum of 20 years in prison for assaulting officers with a dangerous weapon. Republican lawmakers and conservative allies have often erroneously claimed that no weapons were brought to the Capitol during the Jan. 6 assault to assert that the attack was not violent.

[Story 3] Authorities say a 71-year-old man shot and killed three elderly people at a religious event outside Birmingham, Alabama on Thursday. CNN national correspondent Nadia Romero has more.

Nadia Romero (journalist)


“They were having a baby boomer potluck. Old people come out and they all bring food and they were enjoying their dinner when a 71-year-old man who had been to this and other events at the he church was also there enjoying his time But witnesses tell us he then pulled out a handgun and started shooting And they say there was a hero among the crowd inside the church who climbed on top of this 71-year-old suspect and restrained him before police arrived.”

Ifeoma Dike (host)


The suspect has been in custody since this morning. Investigators believe he acted alone and are trying to determine a motive.

[Story 4] The WWE chief has said he will be stepping down as chairman and CEO while the wrestling company investigates allegations of misconduct against him. On Thursday, the Wall Street Journal reported that Vince McMahon had secretly paid $3 million to settle with a former employee with whom he allegedly had an affair. The company’s board reportedly began investigating McMahon in April. It will not completely disappear from the company. WWE said he would still appear as a character during wrestling matches.

Next, remember the Watergate scandal 50 years later.

[Story 5] Hey, we’re back. Today marks the 50th anniversary of the break-in at the Democratic National Committee headquarters at DC’s Watergate Hotel. The break-in sparked a scandal that would end with the resignation of President Richard Nixon. Watergate is more relevant than ever, as the Jan. 6 House Select Committee also holds televised hearings into allegations against former President Donald Trump. Carl Bernstein, along with Bob Woodward, was one of the journalists who brought Watergate to national attention.

Carl Bernstein (sound clip)


“It’s worse than Watergate. In Watergate, we had a criminal president of the United States who tried to undermine the electoral system. Here we have a criminal president, Donald Trump. But not only tried to undermine the electoral system, trying to undermine the transfer of basic power.

Ifeoma Dike (host)


You can read more about Watergate in the four-part docuseries “Watergate: Blueprint for a Scandal” on CNN.

Speak Spanish? Interested in news from Latin America and beyond? Check out CNN’s Cinco Cosas for the five must-see stories in Spanish. Listen wherever you get your podcasts.

Jerry B. Hatch