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Newsroom/World View

NEWSROOM for January 13, 2000

Aired January 13, 2000 - 4:30 a.m. ET


ANNOUNCER: Seen in classrooms the world over, this is CNN NEWSROOM.

ANDY JORDAN, CO-HOST: NEWSROOM takes a turn into Thursday. Glad you could come along. I'm Andy Jordan.

RUDI BAKHTIAR, CO-HOST: And I'm Rudi Bakhtiar. Here's what's coming up:

JORDAN: In today's top story, the British government says a former Chilean dictator is too sick to stand trial. But the compassionate ruling on Augusto Pinochet may not guarantee his exoneration.


AL GOODMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A Spanish lawyer who represents the alleged victims of repression under Chile's former military rule says even if General Pinochet returns to Chile, the case has led to important advances in international law.


BAKHTIAR: In today's "Science Desk," why computers could one day move off your desk top and into your closet.


DON MCCLELLAN, WSB REPORTER: Cloth computers built into the clothing you wear.

BRAD SINGLETARY, DOCTORAL STUDENT: And you can throw it in the dryer or, you know, whatever. You know, it can survive the rigors of everyday life.


JORDAN: Next stop Yugoslavia where politics tops the playlist at radio stations. "Worldview" examines why the message of this medium is free speech.


MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: For many of these people, this is more than just about music, it's about political freedom.


BAKHTIAR: From the power of the people to the pressure of the classroom: Today's "Chronicle" looks at the fears and pressures surrounding the SAT.


CHRIS MOFFITT, HIGH SCHOOL SENIOR: Your whole future is riding on this one test and it's just so overwhelming, you just don't want to think about it at all.


JORDAN: Today's top story takes us to three countries, all of which have their eyes on one man. Eighty-four-year-old Augusto Pinochet is in London, England where he's been under house arrest for fifteen months fighting extradition to Spain on charges of human rights abuses.

Now, a panel of doctors says the former Chilean dictator is medically unfit to stand trial, which might mean he could be heading back to Chile. That has protesters in Spain seeing red. And protesters on both sides of the issue are weighing in on the prospects of Pinochet returning to Chile without facing a trial. Many demonstrators want Britain to release the records which might disqualify him from extradition. Pinochet has recently had a series of strokes, although it's unclear if they have led to the medical declaration.

Pinochet's legal troubles now stem from a period of time when he was dictator of Chile from 1973 to 1990. Pinochet has been blamed for the deaths or disappearances of 3,000 people during his reign. Many of them are thought to be Spanish, and a judge in Spain has issued a warrant for his arrest.

Pinochet has been in London since October 1998 while Britain determined if he had diplomatic immunity. That would exempt him from any court ruling while in Britain, in accordance with international law which grants similar protection to all diplomatic figures and their families.

Now, it appears medical considerations could supersede any legal ones. We have two reports, beginning with Margaret Lowrie in London.


MARGARET LOWRIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Britain's home secretary defended in Parliament Wednesday his handling of the Pinochet case, saying the findings of an independent medical team make it difficult to proceed with the former Chilean ruler's extradition.

JACK STRAW, BRITISH HOME SECRETARY: The unequivocal and unanimous conclusion of the three medical practitioners and of the consultant neuropsychologist was that, following a recent deterioration in the state of Senator Pinochet's health which seems to have occurred principally during September and October 1999, he is at present unfit to stand trial, and that no change to that position can be expected.

LOWRIE: Straw says the findings are confidential, but based on what he now knows, he is "minded" to stop the extradition process. Other parties to the case now have seven days in which to make further arguments. Human rights campaigners say they need more information.

ANDY MCENTEE, AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL: We haven't seen the medical reports and we're not going to be given the medical reports. Therefore, it's difficult to draw conclusions on the medical side, and it's difficult, then, to draw conclusions on the legal side coming out of that.

LOWRIE: The Chilean government's own report says some 3,000 people were murdered or disappeared during Augusto Pinochet's 17-year rule which ended in 1990. He was arrested in October 1998 in London on the basis of a Spanish warrant, the start of a lengthy legal process in which Britain determined he did not have diplomatic immunity and could be extradited. Friends and family insisted he was too ill with heart trouble, diabetes and memory loss. Some here hope Straw's statements mean Pinochet will be allowed to return to Chile.

NICHOLAS LYELL, FMR. BRITISH ATTORNEY GENERAL: Whatever the rights and wrongs, if somebody is not fit to stand trial, then certainly they should not stand trial, and he should certainly be sent home.

LOWRIE (on camera): Pinochet's return home, now, is by no means assured. The case has already undergone numerous twists and turns and it's not clear whether this signals the beginning of the end of the case or simply the start of another chapter.

Margaret Lowrie, CNN, London.



GOODMAN (voice-over): The decision in Britain brought out less than a dozen demonstrators against General Augusto Pinochet in Madrid's famed Puerta Del Sol Plaza. Smaller than ever in number, they say they won't give up hope for justice, especially Marcela Pradenas, who says she fled Chile in 1986 after Pinochet's police tortured her because she worked for human rights.

MARCELA PRADENAS, PLAINTIFF (through translator): They say he can go to Chile for humanitarian reasons, which sounds terrible to us. But even so, they should respect his legal rights, something he never did with his victims.

GOODMAN: A Spanish lawyer who represents the alleged victims of repression under Chile's former military rule says even if General Pinochet returns to Chile, the case has led to important advances in international law. JUAN GARCES, LAWYER FOR CHILEAN VICTIMS: The precedent we were looking to create when this case began in Spain four years ago is a reality now. The immunity for a former head of state in cases of crimes against humanity is not recognized.

GOODMAN: Spain, France, Belgium and Switzerland all have sought to extradite General Pinochet. They have a week to convince Britain why the case should continue.

Judge Baltasar Garzon, who issued the original arrest warrant for General Pinochet, walked more slowly than usual into Madrid court Wednesday, but said nothing. If Pinochet is sent back to Chile, many here think he'll never stand trial.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): In Chile you won't see him put on trial. No way.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): I'm from Argentina and there's no justice there or in Chile. Maybe Europe is different.

GOODMAN: Spain's foreign minister, Abel Matutes, says the government would not oppose General Pinochet's release on health grounds, and he again insisted Madrid has been strictly neutral in the case.

(on camera): General Pinochet's opponents desperately want to keep this case alive, but some are expressing sadness that the latest twist means the case could be closed without justice running its full course for Pinochet.

Al Goodman for CNN, Madrid.


SHELLEY WALCOTT, CO-HOST: "In the Headlines," the latest twist in the tangled saga of 6-year-old Elian Gonzalez. Yesterday, attorneys for the Cuban boy's relatives in Miami, Florida announced they'll be taking his case to federal court next week. They're trying to overturn a U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service decision to send the boy back to his father in Havana, Cuba. The move comes after Attorney General Janet Reno told the attorneys that a state court could not challenge the INS decision. Monday, a family court judge ruled Elian must remain in the United States until a custody hearing in March.

Elian Gonzalez was rescued from the waters off of Florida Thanksgiving Day. His mother and stepfather were among several people who drowned when their boat sank as they attempted to reach Florida from Cuba.

BAKHTIAR: If you're a science fiction fan, you've probably read books or seen movies about wearable computers. But the concept is no longer just sci-fi. Wearable computers are already here. Today, we meet a professor who wrote his 250-page doctoral thesis on one of these tiny devices.

Don McClellan of our affiliate WSB in Atlanta has the details in today's "Science Desk."


MCCLELLAN (voice-over): Dr. Thad Starner of Georgia Tech, known by some as the cool dude who wears a computer on his head.

PROF. THAD STARNER, GEORGIA TECH: So this is a display I've been using for seven years. It's called the Private Eye from Reflection Technology.

MCCLELLAN: The MIT graduate is a pioneer in the use of wearable computers. The small eye glass screen does anything you can do with a big monitor.

STARNER: Since it's so close to the eye, it appears like a big screen.

MCCLELLAN: The very lightweight, battery-powered computer itself on his waist or in a bag. The ocarina-shaped device is a combination keyboard and mouse.

STARNER: It allows me to type about 60 words a minute. It also includes all of the control and function keys on top, including a mouse.

MCCLELLAN: Brad Singletary, a doctoral student with Dr. Starner, Kent Lyons in the master's program:

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And I started on an APPLE IIc back in elementary school.

MCCLELLAN (on camera): When I wear this on my bifocals out here, I can't see it; it's too small. I have to put it down here in my reading plane and it becomes very clear.

(voice-over): But if we adjust the monitor focus, can see it anywhere in front of my glasses. Doctoral candidate Singletary talking about the next step: cloth computers built into the clothing you wear.

SINGLETARY: And you can throw it in the dryer or, you know, whatever. You know, it can survive the rigors of everyday life.

MCCLELLAN: For those who fear the wearable computers are one more way to jam our minds:

STARNER: My mind doesn't have to be jammed with it. I can have all of the information I want to remember on the machine and it frees up my mind to be creative.


BAKHTIAR: Grab your barometers and thermometers: Next week on "Science Desk," from tornadoes to hurricanes to El Nino, we'll highlight the major weather events of the 20th century. Make your choices now and find out how close you are next week here on NEWSROOM. ANNOUNCER: Teachers, make the most of CNN NEWSROOM with our free daily classroom guide to the program. There you'll find a rundown of each day's show so you choose just the program segments that fit your lesson plan. Plus, there are discussion questions and activities, and the guide highlights key people, places and news terms. Each day, find hot links to other online resources and previews of upcoming desk segments. It's all at this Web address where you can also sign up to have the guide automatically e-mailed directly to you each day. It's easy, it's free, it's your curriculum connection to the news. After all, the news never stops, and neither does learning.

JORDAN: What do golf, radio and flying have in common? For one thing, they're all forms of recreation, and business, too. For another, they're all part of today's "Worldview." We'll head to England to learn about a new superjumbo, and we mean jumbo. We jump to Yugoslavia where radio is more than hit music, it's a medium of free speech. And we'll hit the greens in the Czech Republic to get a score card on life and capitalism.

WALCOTT: Ten years ago as democracy dawned, the people of Central Europe got a chance to look beyond five-year plans and orthodox proletarian horizons. Materially, many things have been transformed, but has it made them happy? We check things out in the Czech Republic. Today, a stop at a country club, the latest leg in our look "Beyond the Iron Curtain."

Richard Blystone takes us there.


RICHARD BLYSTONE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The pursuit of happiness: Now the government's no longer in charge of that, you have to pursue it yourself. That's the fashion model Michaela Malacova, one of the beautiful people, the well-heeled new middle class, at the Karlovy Vary Golf Club, not far from the German border.

A smorgasbord of the good life in the post-communist Czech Republic, a break from the free-market rat race, a chance for those who've made it to enjoy it.

MICHAELA MALACOVA, CZECH MODEL: Now what to do with the rest of the people? They want to have it also.

BLYSTONE: Michaela's thought echoes oddly amid the consuming, consuming, consuming. For six centuries, the spa at Karlovy Vary, Karlsbad, when Germans ruled here, has been a genteel arena for pitting the (AUDIO GAP) against the pursuit of health. For the taste of well-being, a salty primordial bath water from the bowels of the Earth.

"Bitter," she says.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Sour, a little bit sour.

BLYSTONE: Did those old Russian aristocrats improve it with vodka, as they rubbed shoulders with German princelings and American tycoons in the days of the Eastern empires, later replaced by the party functionaries and worker heroes of the communist era?

Now, in an advanced state of refurbishment, Karlovy Vary is courting the courtly again, the effortless elegance, the gracious pampering, pursuing the days when certain people really knew their luxury, their ease. Wealth is back in fashion here. Once again, there are rich Russians, again, spending their country's wealth; blue- bloods no more, but sought as investors and players.

The wheel of fortune has come round again. These are not the institutions, professional, civic, religious, charitable, fraternal, that give a democratic Western society sinew and resilience, but the capitalist cornucopia doesn't come without hard work, and especially if you don't have a rich uncle like West Germany to help you catch up. All the more reason to have a country club, they say. And don't talk "new materialism" to hotel manager Roman Vacho.

ROMAN VACHO, HOTEL MANAGER: You haven't the right. In the past was everything in the ground from the materialism, but not in the official policy, eh?

BLYSTONE: "Now, people can pick their priorities," says Mayor Josef Pavel. "If it's a beer, you go have a beer; if it's a car, you've got to do something about it."

But has it made them happy?

MALACOVA: Well, sometimes it makes me happy, sometimes not. There are things like this country club, and people are coming, and their situation is like the situation in other countries in Western Europe or in America. But there is one problem: There are many other places in Czech Republic than this club, and they are really far away behind the standard what you can see here around today. And I mean there is a lot of people that are disappointed today; they feel unsure, they feel confused, they don't like responsibility. They want to feel sure that somebody takes care of them. Today, nobody takes care. Now comes the time that we have to realize that it's not only business.

BLYSTONE: Makes you wonder: Is history a golf course that nations have to play over and over again trying to correct that slice?

Richard Blystone, CNN, Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic.


WALCOTT: Reginald Fessenden made the world's first radio broadcast in 1906 when he beamed a Christmas concert from Massachusetts to ships out in the Atlantic Ocean and Caribbean Sea. Since then, radio has become one of the most popular means of broadcasting and has launched many a career. It's also served as an outlet for free speech and expression.

During the Kosovo conflict, one independent-minded radio station was taken off the air because of its opinions of Slobodan Milosevic and Serb forces. NEWSROOM's Jason Bellini visited that station during the height of the conflict. You can check your NEWSROOM archives for September 21 for that story.

Here's Matthew Chance with more on the struggle for a free press in Yugoslavia.


CHANCE (voice-over): The people of Belgrade are out on the streets again. They attend rock concerts here, too, not just anti- government rallies.

But even this festival of Serbian pop is in the name of a political cause. The bands playing here are all supporters of B92, an outspoken independent radio station seized by the Serbian government at the height of the NATO war. Now these people want it back.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: During bombing of Belgrade, we didn't have any information what is happening because everything else is lies.

CHANCE: The people who originally ran B92 now broadcast under the temporary name of B292. They admit it's confusing listeners because their old radio station still transmits news, but only the bits approved by the government, something B92's original staff say they have always fought against.

MILIVOJE CALIJA, B292 RADIO: We are working totally independent and we are trying to provide most accurate and most professional news to our audience. And it is very unique compared to scene which we are part of.

CHANCE: To raise support, the original staff has launched a television campaign.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE (singing): ... my friend, is blowing in the wind...


CHANCE: The winds of change, according to this commercial, will pass by the people of Serbia if the country has no free media.

CALIJA: We strongly believe that we are doing the right thing, and that this is some sort of engine power for us at this moment, and for all these 10 years.

CHANCE (on-camera): Staging a very loud rock concert may not be the most original way of promoting a radio station, but the situation here in Serbia is unique. For many of these people, this is more than just about music, it's about political freedom.

(voice-over): And it's that kind of public awareness many hope will be an important step towards political change. Matthew Chance, CNN, Belgrade.


TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: People around the world are flying, now, more than ever, and airlines are faced with a growing challenge: How to get all those people around. In the 1970s, the Boeing aircraft company came up with a good answer: the 747 jumbo jet, that double- decker plane with the hump up front that seats over 200 people. Now, Europeans are answering back with plans in the works for an even bigger two-story plane.

Sissel McCarthy takes a look.


SISSEL MCCARTHY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The superjumbo will not come cheap. The development of cargo and passenger versions may reach $12 billion. Airbus says it will pursue negotiations on loan facilities with European governments who are part owners of the group. But is there a market out there ready for the A3XX?

KIERON BRENNAN, GEMINI CONSULTING: The superjumbo will require using hubs where passengers are fed into London Heathrow or JFK in New York. And so it's really going to be targeted at the mass market for long-haul business.

MCCARTHY: Now that the superjumbo is on the verge of taking off, the board must make up its mind on whether it will be manufactured on German or French soil. Hamburg and Toulouse are the only two candidates.

Sissel McCarthy, CNN Financial News, London.


ANNOUNCER: You're watching CNN NEWSROOM, seen in schools around the world, because learning never stops, and neither does the news.

BAKHTIAR: We've all been through it: firefighter, astronaut, ballerina, senator, all choices you might make for your career one day. There's one field you don't have to look too far for to get a first-hand view. Look up and check out the person next to the apple. Being a teacher is no easy task, and as a new report indicates, is a profession that needs a crop of qualified candidates.

Here's Greg LaMotte.


GREG LAMOTTE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Kristen Vogel has been teaching 7th grade science for three years.

KRISTEN VOGEL, TEACHER: I remember, when I started, I was very eager, I was very optimistic.

LAMOTTE: Not anymore.

VOGEL: It took me two years to get a complete class set of textbooks. I think the first year, I spent $800 out of pocket just on supplies. You feel like you're hitting your head against the wall.

LAMOTTE: Vogel is thinking about quitting. If so, who will replace her?

VIRGINIA EDWARDS, EDITOR, "EDUCATION WEEK": Most states do not ensure that all teachers have the knowledge and the skills they need to teach in the classrooms.

LAMOTTE: In its fourth annual look at improving public schools, "Education Week" magazine says not enough is being done to recruit qualified teachers. The magazine's report says millions of students are sitting in classrooms with instructors who do not meet minimum state requirements to teach in public school. Only 29 states require teachers to pass proficiency tests; 39 require teachers to have majored or minored in the subject they teach. But all of those states, except New Jersey, can waive that requirement and grant teaching licenses anyway.

RICHARD RILEY, U.S. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION: Its gotten so bad that some schools have been forced to put any warm body in front of a classroom that they can find.

LAMOTTE: Money is another issue. The report found teachers in their 20s make about $7,900 less than their peers who entered other professions. The financial gap more than triples for teachers in their 40s with masters degrees.

JACK JENNINGS, CENTER ON EDUCATION POLICY: We're going to need 2 million new teachers within five to six years, and so we're going have to pay more money just to attract people into the profession.

LAMOTTE: For Kristen Vogel, it may be too late.

VOGEL: There's so much -- there's only so much of you that you can give before there's nothing left.

LAMOTTE: Should she leave teaching, she won't be alone. The report says 20 percent of college graduates who become teachers leave the profession after just three years.

Greg LaMotte, CNN, Los Angeles.


JORDAN: Well, from looking at how schools make the grade to how you are making the grade. A good number of you are probably planning to go on to college after high school. If so, right about now, you might be fretting over the SATs, college applications and submission deadlines.

Here are some dates to help you sort things out. Coming up this month is this year's first round of SATs. And don't forget: For some colleges, the applications are due. Next month, some of you will be taking the ACT. Then, in April, there's another round of SATs and ACTs, and some of you will be getting replies from the colleges you've applied to.

Now, the CNN Student Bureau looks at why the SATs can be the source of so much stress.


FRANCES MEJIA, CNN STUDENT BUREAU (voice-over): Over 2 million high school students will take the Scholastic Aptitude Test 1 this year. The SAT1 is the standardized test of verbal and math skills required by most colleges for admission. High school counselors say getting good SAT1 scores is more important than ever before.

GLENN OZAKI, GUIDANCE COUNSELOR: The pressure on the students nowadays is tremendous, and that's why we're always trying to take some of the pressure off them here. You know, we tell the kids that if they are feeling more pressure nowadays, it's not just them, there is more pressure.

MEJIA: Chris Moffitt wants to go to Harvard. Elite schools look for especially high SAT1 scores, and Chris feels that pressure.

MOFFITT: It's just so overwhelming. This is your future. You sit down, you look at the books and, great, if I don't do well, then my entire life is going to suck. So your whole future is riding on this one test, and it's just so overwhelming you just don't want to think about it at all.

MEJIA: Some students take private preparation classes like this one to raise their SAT1 scores. Most do score higher after taking the class, but a class like this may not be an option for students with limited time or money. The most popular courses run 36 hours and cost from $750 to $4,000 dollars.

MEJIA (on camera): Independent study is another option. Test- taking guides like this contain sample tests and test-taking tips. They can be found at your local bookstore in the test guide section or at your local library. Maybe even in your school library.

(voice-over): Books cost from $15 to $30, and students study at their own pace. So students should prepare however they can, just like they would for any other important test.

This is Francis Mejia for CNN Student Bureau, Los Angeles.


JORDAN: Well, as always, you can learn more about the CNN Student Bureau by heading for this Web site.


CNN Student Bureau:


JORDAN: And before we go, a quick heads-up on what's in the works here on NEWSROOM.

BAKHTIAR: New information indicates more U.S. teens are turned off by drugs than ever. What's causing the shift in attitudes?

JORDAN: Plus, how popular teen role models are getting in on the anti-drug crusade, and why parents are playing such a critical role.

BAKHTIAR: "Drugs: Perceptions, Realities" begins January 20 here on NEWSROOM.

JORDAN: Until then, we'll see you tomorrow.



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