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Arena: Learning from the hunt for Rudolph

Arena: Agents believed Rudolph was still in the North Carolina area.
Arena: Agents believed Rudolph was still in the North Carolina area.

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Emily Lyons, a victim of the Birmingham clinic bombing in 1998, on her experience.
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A man officials say they believe is Eric Robert Rudolph is arrested in Murphy, North Carolina.
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January 29, 1998 - Bombing at New Woman All Women Clinic in Birmingham, Alabama. One killed, one injured.

February 21, 1997 - Bombing at Otherside Lounge, a lesbian nightclub in Atlanta. Four injured. Second bomb found before it detonates.

January 16, 1997 - Bombing of a women's clinic in Sandy Springs, an Atlanta suburb. A second bomb explodes. Seven injured.

July 27, 1996 - Bomb explodes in Olympic Centennial Park, 1:20 a.m., One killed, more than 100 injured. A Turkish cameraman dies of a heart attack as he rushes to photograph the scene.

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- CNN's Kelli Arena looks at the lessons that can be learned from the capture of Eric Rudolph -- five years after he first went on the run.

Arena: They say the hardest thing to find sometimes is one individual, who is acting as a lone wolf -- and every indication is that Eric Rudolph was very much a loner.

He spent weeks on end out in the wilderness in North Carolina doing his thing, not very connected socially. People like that are very difficult to find.

It has always been speculated he had some sort of assistance, some sort of help. Those are questions that will be most interesting to get answered, of who has been helping him all this time.

CNN: As you say, he left with six months' worth of food, but in fact has been gone for five years.

Arena: Exactly. He's obviously a good hunter, or somebody's helping him. The speculation has always been that he stayed in the United States.

Some people would suggest, 'Oh, he's long gone, overseas now.' But the agents who worked this case have repeatedly said it was their firm belief that he was still in that area.

They had SWAT teams and the dogs and everybody out there looking for him.

CNN: Are there any implications for the domestic terror fight or internationally?

Arena: There's a lot that can be learned if he cooperates. Let's always point out, if he is indeed the person who is guilty. But if he does talk and is the person that did commit these crimes, then A -- what support network exists in the United States for hiding such an individual?

And B -- how did he make the bombs? Did he have help in making those explosives? What's the expertise that's out there?

Finally, where was he holed up? Where was his safe house? I think it will help at least on the domestic terror front.

CNN: What about the role of local authorities in tracking somebody like this down?

Arena: That's very important. We've heard a lot about how important it is to get information out to people on the front line. It is more often than not going to be a local sheriff or a local police officer, who is giving somebody a speeding ticket, that will come upon someone who is wanted.

And so, this is a clear illustration of how important it is to keep the guys and the women on the front lines out there in the loop on information.

CNN: You spoke to sources this morning. What do you think this is going to do to morale?

Arena: Oh, this will be a very big morale-booster. This is someone that they have been looking for for a long time. It's sort of the thorn in the paw that has been there, the fact they weren't able to get their hands on him, weren't able to bring him to justice.

The few people I spoke to this morning were very pleased. One person I called -- woke up this morning, unfortunately -- and I said, 'You know, can you help, I hear you may have caught Eric Rudolph,' and he said, 'Oh, that would be the best news I've heard in a long time.'

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