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CNN Student News Transcript: March 25, 2011

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CNN Student News - 3/25/11

(CNN Student News) -- March 25, 2011

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Japan: Disaster-affected Areas



CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Fridays are awesome! Thank you for rounding out your week with CNN Student News. I'm Carl Azuz, here to pilot you through 10 minutes of commercial-free headlines.

First Up: Libya Civil War

AZUZ: First up, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says there are no signs of a cease-fire in Libya. That announcement came yesterday, one week after the U.N. Security Council voted to enforce a no-fly zone over Libya. That's part of the military operation that's been firing missiles and running airstrikes. It's been led by the U.S. Yesterday, there was talk of a deal that would make NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, the leader of the operation. But that wasn't set in stone, and there was some doubt about it.

One interesting point about the conflict in Libya is how it could affect gas prices in the U.S. Libya produces about 2 percent of the world's crude oil; it's not very much. But some stock traders are afraid that the trouble there could happen in other countries that produce more oil. That fear is one reason why oil prices are rising in the stock market. And that means gas prices are more likely to increase too, since crude oil accounts for about 65 percent of what we spend on gas.

Now, getting back to the military operation. Diana Magnay is on the ship that some of those airstrikes are launching from. She gives an idea of what life is like there.


DIANA MAGNAY, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Each night they fly, Harrier jets off the USS Kearsarge, bound for Libya. U.S. strike missions to take out Gadhafi's air defense and attack capabilities as rebels clash with Gadhafi's forces.

CAPTAIN MIKE WYRSCH, HARRIER FIGHTER PILOT: It was pretty neat the next day after the first attacks, to see that the rebel forces, their morale once they saw that they had people coming to help them out. But it's breaking their supply chains as well as slowing down their advance onto Benghazi by taking out their tanks and artillery.

MAGNAY: Day times are about maintenance and repair, checking over these V-22 Ospreys, which had their first outing in Operation Odyssey Dawn early Tuesday morning. A daring rescue mission with a team of 30 Marines to find a U.S. fighter pilot who ejected over eastern Libya after his F-15 fighter jet suffered what the military called mechanical failure.

The pilot's back in the medical facilities here on board. His other crew member, the weapons officer, also had to eject, but landed in a completely different location. So, he was rescued first by rebel forces and is now back on a U.S. Air Force base in northern Italy.

There are around 700 Marines on board, but this isn't a war which involves coalition ground forces. The Kearsarge's six Harrier jets taking the active role in enforcing the U.N.-mandated no-fly zone

REAR ADMIRAL MARGARET KLEIN, COMMANDER, EXPEDITIONARY STRIKE GROUP FIVE: If there are vehicles on the ground that can shoot down our aircraft which are enforcing the no-fly zone, we consider that a legal mandate to be able attack that equipment.

MAGNAY: Precision targeting, 500-pound laser-guided bombs, and the sorties continue. No sign here that this part of the offensive is over yet. Diana Magnay, CNN, on the Kearsarge in the Mediterranean.


Violence in Syria

AZUZ: Syria is the latest country to deal with the political unrest that we've seen around the Middle East and North Africa recently. Syria is located between Iraq and Turkey. And people there have been protesting over economic and human rights issues. Those demonstrations have gotten violent in the past few days, with protesters and security forces fighting on the streets of at least one city. Human rights workers say at least 34 people have been killed in the violence this week. And that includes a soldier who was reportedly shot because he refused to fire on the protesters. Thousands of people came out on Thursday for the funerals of that soldier and some of the other people who've been killed.

Disaster in Japan

AZUZ: Toyota, the car company, might shut down some of its U.S. manufacturing temporarily because it doesn't have enough parts. There's been a delay in getting those parts from Japan because of Japan's recent earthquake and tsunami. Inside Japan, workers are still trying to get things stabilized at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. These pictures were taken inside the plant. Two of the workers were taken to the hospital yesterday after they accidentally stepped in contaminated water. Officials say the men could be all right if they're quickly decontaminated. A U.S. Navy aircraft carrier is going through a similar process right now. Martin Savidge, you're on deck.

MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Right now, every piece of hardware, every aircraft and every piece of machinery used to move that aircraft is on the front of the USS Ronald Reagan. And you can see a lot of the crew hands. You're wondering maybe why are they all sitting around? Well, we'll show you. Look what's going on back over here: water. Lots and lots of water just being sprayed all over the deck right now, in what is probably the biggest cleanup effort you're ever likely to see at sea.

Impact Your World

AZUZ: You can't help scrub down the deck of the Ronald Reagan. But you can support the victims of these natural disasters in Japan. Go the Spotlight section on our home page, Click on the "Impact Your World" link, and find out how you can help.


TOMEKA JONES, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Today's Shoutout goes out to Ms. Mielke's world cultures classes at Gorzycki Middle School in Austin, Texas! What type of food is a peanut? You know what to do! Is it a: A) Grain, B) Legume, C) Fruit or D) Tuber? You've got three seconds -- GO! Peanuts are legumes. And here's another interesting fact: peanuts are not technically nuts! That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!

Allergy Outrage?

AZUZ: Peanut allergies are pretty common. But in some cases, the allergic reactions can be life-threatening. And that's why experts say it's important to have a plan in place in order to avoid a potential problem. At one Florida school, the plan in place affects everyone, not just the student with the allergy. And as Jason Carroll explains, the plan is prompting protests.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They're trying to take away all our rights.

JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Protesters picketing outside a school in Edgewater, Florida. Their signs showing how a medical problem for one of the school's students has turned into a controversy that has some parents calling for that student's removal.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We are not attacking the child or the parents.

CARROLL: At issue, rules the school put in place to protect the six-year-old girl who has a life-threatening peanut allergy. Lunches must be left outside the room. Students must wash their hands before entering the room and after lunch. At one point, students were also required to rinse out their mouths. Parents debating whether the rules infringe on the rights of students and take time away from education.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I guess it's not fair for one kid to have a set of standards that the rest of the kids have to abide by.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's protecting the safety of the child. Everybody has the right to an education, so I don't see what the problem is.

CARROLL: A district administrator says the rules must be enforced because the student's allergy is considered a disability under the Americans With Disabilities Act. More districts could soon face a similar situation. The Centers for Disease Control says food allergies are on the rise. From 1997 to 2007, reports of food allergies increased almost 20 percent among children under 18 years old.

DR. SCOTT SICHERER, PROFESSOR OF PEDIATRICS, MT. SINAI SCHOOL OF MEDICINE: It's always necessary to have precautions for a young child who has a food allergy. There might be specific procedures that need to be in place to just really ensure that that child doesn't end up eating the food that they're allergic to.


Sound off on our blog!

AZUZ: All right, time for you to sound off about this story. Do you think the school policy's appropriate, or do you agree with those parents who say it's unfair? Head to our blog at Tell us what you think. Remember, there's a big rule on our blog: first names only. Please don't give us any more info than that.

Women's History Month

AZUZ: In honor of Women's History Month, we have a quick quiz to test your knowledge. Who was the first female ever appointed to serve on the United States Supreme Court? Was it: Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor, Sandra Day O'Connor or Elena Kagan? The answer: Justice Sandra Day O'Connor served nearly 25 years on the U.S. Supreme Court after being sworn in on the 25th of September, 1981. In fact, tomorrow is her 81st birthday. Be sure to check out all of our Women's History Month materials. You know the place where you can find them: It's the website you see right there,

Before We Go

AZUZ: Finally today, I get sore just thinking about a marathon; most runners are sore after running one. But Captain Ivan Castro doesn't mind. He was injured while serving in Iraq and lost his eyesight. Now, every step is a reminder that he is still alive. After the attack, Captain Castro says it took three people to help him stand up. Last weekend, he finished a full marathon. And the only help he needed was his running partner, who helped him navigate the course with a string tied around their wrists.


AZUZ: It was an amazing accomplishment. And it's time for CNN Student News to hit the road. We hope to run into you right back here on Monday for more CNN Student News. Until then, have a great weekend.