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CNN WOLF BLITZER REPORTS
Extradition Held for Muslim Cleric, Al Qaeda May Be Planning Attack in United States this Summer, Interview with Muzammil Siddiqi, Interview with Richard Falkenrath, Interview with General Wesley Clark
Aired May 27, 2004 - 17:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MILES O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, I'm Miles O'Brien at CNN Center in Atlanta. Wolf is off today.
An extradition hearing will be held in Britain for a Muslim cleric accused of trying to train terrorists in the United States. Abu Hamza al Masri also is accused of providing aid to al Qaeda and the Taliban. U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft unveiled the indictment in New York. CNN's Deborah Feyerick joining us live with details -- Deborah.
DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Miles, Abu Hamza is in custody. He was denied bail. Today officers from Scotland Yard are searching his home.
FEYERICK (voice-over): He has preached radical Islam in the streets of London for years, and he is denying links to terrorism. But U.S. officials say Abu Hamza al Masri is a facilitator, helping extremists in Yemen, Afghanistan and the United States.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think of him as a freelance consultant to terrorist groups worldwide.
FEYERICK: The rate of Abu Hamza in London stems from the newly unsealed U.S. indictment. Abu Hamza is charged with hostage taking for an incident in Yemen six years ago. Prosecutors say Abu Hamza provided a cell phone to Muslim extremists who kidnapped a group of Western tourists, four of them died.
Abu Hamza also charged with trying to set up a terror training camp in Bly, Oregon four years ago.
JOHN ASHCROFT, ATTORNEY GENERAL: The United States will use every diplomatic, legal and administrative tool to pursue and to prosecute those who facilitate terrorist activity.
FEYERICK: The indictment focuses on no recent events.
DAN RICHMAN, FRM. FEDERAL PROSECUTOR: The big question in the minds of those who are following the terrorism investigations is whether the government has any information that it can prove at trial that is involved in recent terrorist activities? FEYERICK: Abu Hamza preached at the Finbury Mosque in London. Authorities say it's the same mosque attended alleged by 9/11 conspirator, Zacarias Moussaoui and Richard Reid convicted of blowing trying to blow up a plane with a bomb in his shoes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FEYERICK: At an extradition hearing, Abu Hamza refused to stand. Through his lawyer he said that would not consent to being sent to the United States --Miles.
O'BRIEN: With that in mind, Deborah, when is he likely to be in the United States?
FEYERICK: Well it takes a very long time to extradite people. There are already three people in Britain, the U.S. has been trying to extradite them for four years now. We'll see whether any of the new tools that are available to the U.S. may help him getting here sooner.
O'BRIEN: Four years. OK. Deborah Feyerick, thanks very much.
News of this latest terror indictment comes amid fears al Qaeda may be planning an attack in the U.S. this summer, possibly in an effort to influence the November elections. CNN justice correspondent Kelli Arena joining us from Washington with more on that -- Kelli.
KELLI ARENA, CNN JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT: Miles, it's something that we've heard a lot about, a possible al Qaeda plot to influence elections. But there's their hasn't been a lot of discussion about what the objectives might be. So we checked in with some terror experts to find out.
ARENA (voice-over): Terror experts say it's not about who wins the U.S. election, it's about impact.
M.J. GOHEL, ASIA-PACIFIC FOUNDATION: If, for instance, say, George Bush was in the lead in the opinion polls right now and an attack took place and that changes the equation as it did, for instance in Spain, then al Qaeda would feel that it has scored a major success.
ARENA: Al Qaeda affiliates attacked Spain just before its elections in March. Some suggests that cemented an overwhelming win for the socialist party.
ASHCROFT: We believe, for example, the attack in Spain is one that is viewed by al Qaeda as particularly effective in advancing al Qaeda objectives.
ARENA: The attack did result in Spain pulling its troops out of Iraq. Experts say the less Western influence in Iraq, the better for al Qaeda.
GOHEL: Iraq is a key battleground for the terrorists. The terrorists want to turn Iraq into another Taliban Afghanistan. They would like to see the premature withdrawal of the U.S.-led coalition forces.
ARENA: Neither John Kerry nor the president has said troops pulled out of Iraq any time soon. But there is some speculation that al Qaeda believes it has a better chance of winning in Iraq if John Kerry is in the White House.
BEN VENZKE, INTELCENTER: Al Qaeda feels that Bush is, even despite casualties, right or wrong for staying there is going to stay much longer than possibly what they might hope a Democratic administration would.
ARENA: While U.S. officials say they're concerned of an attack as early as this summer, some experts believe if al Qaeda strikes with the election in mind it will do that just before November 2.
And while much attention is focused on the political conventions, experts say al Qaeda usually hits targets that it can hit on any day of the week -- Miles.
O'BRIEN: CNN's Kelli Arena in Washington. Thanks much.
When Attorney General John Ashcroft asked the public for help yesterday in locating seven terror suspects, he declared all seven suspects represent a clear and present danger to the U.S. security.
O'BRIEN (voice-over): The FBI has been trying to locate some of the suspects for years. One is a Pakistani who's lived in Maryland and Massachusetts.
ROBERT MUELLER, FBI DIRECTOR: Aafia Siddiqui is an al Qaeda operative and facilitator. She attended colleges in the Boston area.
O'BRIEN: A lawyer for the woman's family accuses the FBI of putting on a show to make it look like progress is being made in the war on terrorism.
ANNETTE LAMEREAUX, SIDDIQUI FAMILY LAWYER: And if the best that they can do to make this country safe is to go after a 32-year-old mother of three, then I think we're all in a lot of trouble.
O'BRIEN: Another suspect is Adnan El Shukrijumah. He's said to be fluent in English and some experts have compared him to Muhammad Atta, considered a top planner of the September 11 attacks.
MUELLER: He's a trained operative who poses an operational threat to the United States.
O'BRIEN: El Shukrijumah used to live in South Florida. His mother still does.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: My son is innocent, I am sure and I am as a mother, I have strong feeling my son is innocent.
O'BRIEN: Another suspect, Abderraouf Jdey, obtained Canadian citizenship in 1995. Authorities say he left a suicide message on a videotape recovered in Afghanistan.
Two of the suspects are under indictment in the United States for the 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania. They are Ahmed Ghailani of Tanzania and Fazul Mohammed thought to be hiding in Kenya or Somalia.
A sixth suspect, Amer El-Maati is identified as Kuwaiti.
For many, the real surprise on Ashcroft's list was Adam Gadahn, a 25-year-old U.S. citizen who grew up in Southern California. A statement attributed to Gadahn appears on several Muslim-related Web sites. It says, quote, "I gradually realized I could not be a Christian. It was really a natural progression."
MUELLER: He is known to have performed translations for al Qaeda as part of the services he has provided to al Qaeda.
O'BRIEN: Family members say they hope it's not true.
PAUL GADAHN, ADAM GADAHN'S FATHER: We hope he's not involved with anything weird like that.
NANCY PEARLMAN, ADAM GADAHN'S AUNT: As far as I know he was never militant. Our family are strong believers in non-violence. We are strong believers in peace.
O'BRIEN: Joining with us some insight on one of the seven suspects, Muzammil Siddiqui, the director of the Islamic Society of Orange County, California who had some acquaintance of Adam Gadahn. Mr. Siddiqui, good to have you with us.
MUZAMMIL SIDDIQUI, DIR., ISLAMIC SOCIETY OF ORANGE COUNTY, CALIFORNIA: Thank you.
O'BRIEN: I understand you've recently been interviewed by the federal bureau of investigation. What did FBI agents ask you and when did they interview you?
SIDDIQUI: This morning they came and asked basically questions, when was he here and how he accepted Islam and what kind of person he was. These are the kind of information they wanted.
O'BRIEN: What kind of person is he?
SIDDIQUI: Well, my acquaintance, because he came here in 1995 and he was here for a few months, maybe approximately one year. Sometimes coming here, attending our daily prayers. We have five prayers every day in our mosque. And he was attending the prayers.
He was a very quiet person. He would not talk too much. Sometimes I see him walking in the corridors and I ask you, how are you? He was not (UNINTELLIGIBLE).
O'BRIEN: But he did show some very clear signs of anger at one point, didn't he?
SIDDIQUI: That was related to some work that he did here, and somebody questioned his work so he became angry with that.
O'BRIEN: It was an assault it was not?
SIDDIQUI: But apart from that I did not know his involvement of any quarrel or fight here in this area except that time.
O'BRIEN: There was the one fight and he was asked to leave, was he not?
SIDDIQUI: Yes. He hit one of our officials. And because of that, the police were called and he was asked to leave.
O'BRIEN: Did he ever talk to you or anyone there about perhaps going to Afghanistan?
SIDDIQI: No. Actually, it was 1996-97. There was no question about al Qaeda. Who knew about al Qaeda at that time? We had no idea of anything like that.
O'BRIEN: What do you think motivated him, raised primarily as a Christian, to become a Muslim?
SIDDIQI: As far as Islam is concerned there are many people who come and accept Islam. Islam is the religion of peace. Islam is the religion of prayer, faith, good life and that's what people do and we have many, many people who come and accept Islam. That's the way we thought he was here for that purpose and I hope that's still the case.
O'BRIEN: Did you ever see any signs of him being distressed, disturbed, or depressed?
SIDDIQI: He looked sometimes like a depressed person. He was not communicating too much. Sitting alone by himself.
O'BRIEN: Final thought here. Mr. Siddiqi, were you surprised to hear his name being grouped with the others yesterday. Is there anything you can look back on that makes you think that he could be involved with anything like this?
SIDDIQI: Indeed, I was surprised. I could not imagine he could do anything like that or he would be involved in anything like that. So it was a surprise for me.
O'BRIEN: Muzammil Siddiqi is the director of the Islamic Society of Orange County in California. Thank you for spending time with us. We appreciate it.
Here's your turn to weigh in on this important story. Our web question of the day is this. Which of the following will affect your summer travel plans more? Terror threat? Fuel prices? Those are the choices. You can vote right now at CNN.com/wolf. We'll have results later in the broadcast.
The politics of terror. I'll speak with former homeland security adviser Richard Falkenrath and former presidential contender General Wesley Clark.
Plus, delivering a deal in Najaf. Muqtada al-Sadr makes a promise to the coalition with one major condition.
Disaster in the Dominican Republic. More than 500 dead and the death toll is still rising. We'll have a live report from there. Also this...
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That was given to me by General MacArthur. Everybody on the P.T. voted to take him off (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and we were given the silver star.
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O'BRIEN: Remembering times few people could ever comprehend. One veteran shares his World War II story. Stay with us for that.
O'BRIEN: Senator John Kerry today laid out a four-part national security plan he says will keep America safe from terrorists. On the campaign trail in Seattle the Democratic presidential candidate said that if elected, he'll build new alliances, update the military and use diplomacy to keep the country safe. He vowed to end the country's dependence Middle East oil and he issued a tough warning.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN KERRY (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: This is my message to the terrorists. As commander in chief I will bring the full force of our nation's power to bear on finding and crushing your networks. We'll use every resource in our power to destroy you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
O'BRIEN: Kerry also blasted President Bush's policy on Iraq saying American leadership was weakened by the decision to go to war. The Bush campaign calls the speech political grandstanding. Joining us from Washington to discuss the war on terror is former White House aide Richard Falkenrath. Good you could be with us.
This is the day after the big discussions and the announcement of seven suspects being sought, possible clear and present danger of a terror attack some time this summer in the United States. On that same day that they were talking about clear and present danger at the justice department the Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge was saying no need to elevate the level of concern from yellow to orange. Is that a mixed message and don't you think maybe the American people might be confused at this point? RICHARD FALKENRATH, FMR. WHITE HOUSE AIDE: I don't think it's a mixed message and I don't think the American people should be confused. We've had a heightened risk of terrorist attack ever since 9/11. The decisions to go to orange, to raise the threat level which we've done five times are based on very specific indicators. And I don't believe the government has seen those yet. I wouldn't be surprised if it happened some time in the next four or five months, but what we saw from the department of justice, what's called a BOLO, a be on the lookout notice. Seven individuals who I think they have concern could be potential operatives in an attack against the homeland. What they were doing is trying to alert the American people these individuals might be deployed against our country to carry out another catastrophic attack. They're not the only ones we're worried about but they are seven we know about and need to be very very alert to.
O'BRIEN: But that phrase "clear and present danger" sticks with me and I'm not sure how that jives with not raising the threat level.
FALKENRATH: Clear and present danger, there's no question al Qaeda presents a clear and present danger to the United States homeland. They attacked us to a devastating effect in September 2001 and we know they want to do it again. Thus far, we think we've been successful at preventing them from succeeding, but they're going to keep trying. They are a clear and present danger. They are remnants of the network and they may be operatives who were put in place prior to 9/11 or who have been deployed here since that could strike at any time.
O'BRIEN: Is there any disconnect, though, between the justice department and the department of homeland security as it attempts to wage this war against terror?
FALKENRATH: I don't think so. They both have very important roles to play. They interact constantly through a process. Tom Ridge, the Attorney General John Ashcroft, meet together every single day with the president of the United States. They see the exact same intelligence. They see every PDB related to terrorism and every sensitive FBI report related to terrorism. They know they have the exact same underlying facts.
I think the media is making it a big deal out of what is essentially a stylistic difference between John Ashcroft and Tom Ridge, but their messages have been consistent and are consistent with what the administration has been saying ever since September 2001.
O'BRIEN: To the extent that you can, can you take us behind closed doors? Give us a sense of the tone of the debate. Decisions to go public with these announcements I assume are debated at length inside the White House. Give us a sense of the pros and cons of scaring the American people or running the risk of doing that unnecessarily.
FALKENRATH: It's a very delicate balance that needs to be struck. It's hard to exaggerate the amount of raw intelligence that comes in to senior policymakers every single day from all different sources, signals intelligence, from human sources, from foreign governments and overhead imagery at times and it's a constant flow. The intelligence binders every morning are about half an inch to an inch thick that you will see. The decision's to provide notice of one kind or another are as you say, made at the very highest level.
O'BRIEN: But the issue wasn't necessarily that the intelligence wasn't there. It was putting it all together and when you get into that you start talking about multiple agencies and multiple ways of collecting it. Nobody really having the big picture. Can you say categorically that we have as best that can be done given the billions that are spent on intelligence and the FBI, a big picture of what is going to.
FALKENRATH: I believe we have and I left the White House 12 days ago and I believe I had it and my colleagues, my superiors and the cabinet members with whom we interacted on a regular basis and the president have it. There is an institution called the Terrorist Threat Integration Center which has in effect eliminated the divide between foreign collected intelligence and domestic-collected intelligence that existed pre-9/11. That entity TTIC provides the president with an integrated threat assessment every single morning and that threat assessment is seen by the secretary of homeland security, homeland security adviser, the attorney general, the national security adviser and the White House chief of staff and they have the exact same information.
O'BRIEN: Final thought here. What is your sort of private nightmare scenario here? Are you most concerned about the conventions? Is there any particular event or could it be something that could happen any day, any moment?
FALKENRATH: It's interesting you ask that. Our assumption about al Qaeda has been that they would strike when the operatives were ready to strike and that is clearly what happened with the 9/11 plot. Mohamed Atta was the ringleader there and he got to make the decision about when to carry out the attack. It was not centrally directed and it was not key to any particular date or event. It was just a day. A Tuesday morning. We think there might have been a change of thinking in al Qaeda that they may be actually keying too events and in particular the elections and I think many of the al Qaeda operatives and their sympathizers around the world look to Madrid and the impact on the Spanish election as the sort of thing that they would like to recreate with the U.S. election and possibly the election of some of our allies.
O'BRIEN: But the two mainstream candidates here, neither are saying pull the troops out right away, so why would they want to coincide with the elections. In the case of Madrid, there was one candidate who was saying let's bring the troops home right away.
FALKENRATH: I think they'd like to have some sort of discreet, identifiable impact on America. And the fall of the presidency might be such an impact. I believe personally that would be a miscalculation. If they do attack us again, prior to the election or any time, that the American people will seek an intensification of the war on terror and what al Qaeda's experiencing now will get even harsher and even tougher and the measures that we're willing to employ which are already fairly intense will grow if they do attack us again. They'll try.
O'BRIEN: Thanks for your time, former White House adviser, I appreciate your time here.
More on the latest terror warnings in the U.S. and developments in Iraq. I'll talk with former NATO supreme allied commander General Wesley Clark. Plus the death toll climbs on a Carribbean island devastated by floods.
Lawyers for Kobe Bryant seeks more samples. Whose DNA are they after now.
And the controversial decision in the Colorado recruiting scandal. An embattled coach learns whether he'll keep his job.
O'BRIEN: A weekend of rainfall combined with major deforestation has led to a massive flooding on the Carribbean island of Espaniola. Hundreds of people, possibly a thousand or more are dead in both the Dominican Republic and Haiti which share the island. With us live from the Dominican republic by video phone CNN's Susan Candiotti -- Susan.
SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hello, Miles, a national day of mourning here as officials here in the Dominican Republic are getting an even clearer picture of the devastation from Sunday's storm. The president, the outgoing president of this country flew to the most devastated area today, a little town about 100 miles away and the U.S. ambassador also there.
Rescue workers wearing surgical masks to protect themselves from the pungent smell of death and from dust. Officials seeing firsthand bodies in the lake still being recovered out there, being brought ashore, grim is how the U.S. ambassador describes this. Power is out in much of the area and mud is everywhere. Government officials tell me they are still in dire need of the essentials including drinking water, food and shelter as well as clothing. As many as 15,000 people may be homeless.
Shelter is required, international help is coming in from countries including the United States, from Japan, from Venezuela, for example, doctors and medicine. Those are impassable are in some parts still covered with water. Crops and livestock destroyed and in neighboring Haiti they are also getting help from a U.S.-led international force which has been in Haiti since (UNINTELLIGIBLE) President Jean-Bertrand Aristide in January.
They have flown in as many as a dozen flights over the last few days, on each day up to 1,000 people in both countries and in a town in Haiti about 30 miles outside of Port-Au-Prince. Officials there described to me that much of the town is still under about 10 feet of water and people are getting around in rafts. And finally, Miles, the prediction that no one wants to hear, forecasters are talking about the possibility of about three inches of additional rain tomorrow -- Miles.
O'BRIEN: On that sobering note we'll leave Susan Candiotti, thank you very much. Radical cleric Muqtada al-Sadr strikes a deal. His militia pulls out if U.S. troops step back. Is it the beginning of a truce?
Plus the stage is set as jury selection wraps up today in Scott Peterson's double murder trial. We'll tell you how soon it could start plus this.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was supposed to surrender and I refused. A lot of us refuse and took the jump.
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O'BRIEN: War and survival. A soldier left stranded in the Philippine jungles 60 years ago recounts how he made it back home alive.
O'BRIEN: Welcome back.
After days of fierce fighting, there's a breakthrough in Najaf, details of a new promise from radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr.
But, first, a quick check of the latest headlines.
The U.S. Justice Department has received more than 2,000 tips since its news conference yesterday warning of new terror threats. The FBI, collecting the data, it says people have responded both by phone and over the Internet. An FBI spokesman says, thanks for the tips. Keep them coming.
The United Nations secretary-general is turning his attention to the humanitarian in the Darfur of Sudan. Hundreds of thousands of people are threatened with starvation and warfare. An estimated 30,000 people have died in a campaign of ethnic cleansing there.
Four are dead following an attack of a convoy in Iraq, but the apparent target survived. Dr. Salama al-Khafaji, a member of the Iraqi Governing Council, was unharmed. She had been in the holy city of Najaf and was traveling back to Baghdad when she was attacked.
There's a breakthrough in the deadly standoff in Najaf. Both U.S. troops and fighters loyal to the radical Shiite cleric have agreed to pull back from the city. The move comes after days of heavy fighting in and around Najaf that killed scores of people.
CNN's Harris Whitbeck is in Baghdad. He joins us with more.
HARRIS WHITBECK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has agreed to withdraw his militia from the holy city of Najaf and U.S. troop have repositioned themselves, saying that they'll suspend their offensive military operations around Najaf.
U.S.-led coalition spokesman Dan Senor gave details of the agreement that was announced today.
DAN SENOR, COALITION PROVISIONAL AUTHORITY: As soon as the Iraqi security forces have assumed responsibility for public security and reestablished law and order, coalition forces will reposition to their bases outside Najaf, while maintaining protective units at the CPA offices and the government building and Iraqi police stations.
Until that time, coalition forces will suspend offensive operations, but will continue to provide security by carrying out presence patrols. Throughout the process, coalition forces will retain the inherent right of self-defense.
WHITBECK: So Iraqi national police will take up positions inside the city, guarding government buildings. Iraq's national security adviser, Muwaffaq al-Rubaie, said this would put an end to a -- quote -- "tragic situation."
The U.S. has expressed cautious optimism about the cease-fire holding, although U.S. military spokesman Mark Kimmitt said his troops retain the right to self-defense. And the U.S. still wants Muqtada al-Sadr to face Iraqi justice after the killing of a rival Shiite cleric which occurred after the U.S.-led invasion last year.
Harris Whitbeck, CNN, Baghdad.
O'BRIEN: Joining us with his take on the latest developments in Iraq, former NATO Supreme Commander, retired Army General Wesley Clark.
General Clark, good to have you back with us.
WESLEY CLARK (D), FORMER PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: Good to be with you, miles.
O'BRIEN: All right, yesterday, former Vice President Al Gore, a leader of your party, called for the resignation of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, National Security Adviser Condi Rice and George Tenet, head of the CIA. Would you go along with that call?
CLARK: Well, I think our national security is in trouble today and I think that what was done to bring the country into Iraq and the conduct of the policy there represents a failure of the policy-making process.
But I believe this is something -- and if they resign, I wouldn't quarrel with it, but I think that what we need to focus on is what the real issue here is. It's presidential leadership. The president is the commander in chief. He's the person who makes the final decisions of the United States government. And so I'm not sure that these people weren't simply acting out what he wanted them to do.
And I believe it's up to the American people to hold the president accountable. That's what the election is about.
O'BRIEN: So you would go along for the resignation? Would you go call for it or you just applaud it if it happened?
CLARK: Well, I think it's really that we have got to look to the president and that's what the election is about. There have been a lot of failures and the American people should take due stock of them.
O'BRIEN: All right, let's talk about Abu Ghraib for just a moment. Lots of talk there about chain of command and where the buck stops. You as well as anybody knows how the chain of command works. Where does it stop? Does it go right up to the commander in chief? And if the responsibility goes that high, what should be done?
CLARK: Well, first, there's no doubt that the soldiers that there were there, based on the evidence that's come out, the one court-martial that's been concluded thus far, were way out of bounds of anything that was appropriate. They were totally cross -- they don't represent the values and the ethics of the United States Army. They do a disservice to all of us.
And, frankly, it was appalling and I know the chain of command will take the appropriate actions on that. But beyond the specific abuse...
O'BRIEN: Should some of the general officers in that chain, should they resign just as a matter of principle?
CLARK: No, I don't think they should resign as a matter of principle on the issue of Abu Ghraib. I think that the issue of Abu Ghraib reflects the administration's determination to undercut and to go -- to abuse international law in this case.
There were memoranda in the White House. We know of one of them that the White House counsel wrote explaining to the administration, I guess to the president, how to avoid the Geneva Convention. The Geneva Convention reflects American values. We put that in to protect the men and women in uniform. We don't believe that our soldiers should be mistreated if they're captured on the battlefield.
And yet what we've done in this war is systematically started down the slippery slope of undercutting international law and the Geneva Convention. And that is an issue that has to be resolved at the highest levels. It goes all of the way to the top of the administration. It should be an issue that the American people are informed of and they should make their views known in November.
O'BRIEN: But what do you make of the argument that this is an entirely different kind of war, and war is a lot messier than the Geneva Convention would lead you to believe? You have seen it up close and personal from Vietnam on. The necessities of war, as brutal as they may be, are in fact necessities. Does Abu Ghraib in any way fit into that category?
CLARK: Not in my view. I don't think that Americans can win the view on terror by giving up who we are. We're Americans. We don't torture people. We don't maim people. That's what other countries did. That's what the president was saying when we went into Iraq, because Saddam Hussein was torturing people. And here we are associated with it, systematically? I hope not.
O'BRIEN: In your career, though, didn't you see that kind of thing happen?
CLARK: No, I didn't see that kind of thing happen at all. And had I, I would have never have tolerated it, absolutely not.
O'BRIEN: All right.
Well, then, where does it go from here, then?
CLARK: Well, I think where it goes is that we've got to improve. We have got to strengthen our alliances. We have got to rely on better cooperation between nations to find intelligence. We've got to have measures like preventive detention and keeping people out from our borders.
And we've got to have the appropriate police and law enforcement methodology, but with judicial safeguards, with the protection of our constitutional rights and with the protection of American values. You know, I don't believe you can win this war if you give up on who we are as Americans. And I hope the American people will stand firmly in support, because I think that what the administration's done is push us down a slippery slope that if we're not careful we'll be right down there with every other colonial power in history. And colonial powers don't succeed and we won't succeed if we use these kinds of methods.
O'BRIEN: Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander General Wesley Clark always a pleasure having you drop by. We appreciate your time, sir.
CLARK: Thank you, Miles. Thank you.
O'BRIEN: Kobe Bryant's defense team members play a little offense as they question the Colorado police and their investigation into the alleged assault. We'll tell you what is next in that case.
A high-speed boat bust. See the dramatic finish as the feds catch up with these drug smugglers on the run.
And later, war in the jungle, one man's harrowing tale of fighting the Japanese 60 years ago.
But first a quick look at some other headlines making news all around the world. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)
O'BRIEN (voice-over): Lebanese soldiers opened fire on stone- throwing anti-government protesters, killing at least one person, wounding several others. The demonstration was triggered by a call for a nationwide strike to protest rising fuel prices and the cost of living.
Gay marriage ban. Australia's conservative government is calling for a ban on same-sex marriages. The prime minister also is pushing for immigration rules that would stop gays from adopting foreign children.
The Dalai Lama's visit. The exiled leader of Tibet is on a trip to Britain. He is holding talks with former Secretary Jack Straw and Prince Charles, despite strong protests by China. The British government stressed, it continues to recognize Tibet as a part of China.
Flying high. A Russian the winner of a European balloon race involving teams from Ukraine, Russia, Poland and the Czech Republic. The competition involved flying below a 190-foot-high bridge.
And that's our look around the world.
O'BRIEN: Significant developments in some high-profile cases across the country to tell you about.
We begin with the Kobe Bryant case.
ADRIAN BASCHUK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Adrian Baschuk in Eagle, Colorado, where Kobe Bryant arrived for the 11th round of pretrial motion hearings in his sexual assault case.
It's a case where the tables are turned, with the defense routinely going on the offensive, and today was no different. First and foremost, the defense sought an expert witness on crime scenes, the same man who testified in O.J. Simpson's case, testify at trial that the Eagle County Sheriff's Office botched the crime scene investigation.
Later this morning, the defense asked the judge for access into the accuser's AT&T text-messaging records, despite prosecution rebuttals that the messages are private, should remain sealed under the Federal Electronic Privacy Communications Act and it would be a federal offense for AT&T to release them.
And this case has yet encountered more stumbling blocks, more delays. Both sides will go back to the drawing tables. And key DNA evidence will be once again retested. I'm Adrian Baschuk in Eagle, Colorado.
TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Six men and six women have been chosen to decide Scott Peterson's fate when the trial begins next week on Tuesday morning. The jury selection process concluded here this morning. It took about 30 minutes.
The final group of jurors has a bit of a law enforcement bent to it, three people with ties to law enforcement, a former police officer, a security guard and a firefighter. There was a bit of a glitch in the process this morning. After all 12 of the jurors and the six alternates had been seated, juror No. 9 raised his hand and claimed that he couldn't serve and then produced a letter to the judge from his employer, saying that he would not be paid over the expected five-month trial.
The judge dismissed that juror and replaced him. Following the selection process, the judge did make one ruling allowing the defense to use testimony from a witness that was hypnotized by investigators. Opening statements in the case are scheduled to begin Tuesday morning at 9:00.
Ted Rowlands, CNN, Redwood City, California.
JOSIE BURKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I'm Josie Burke in Boulder, Colorado, where today University of Colorado President Betsy Hoffman reinstated head football coach Gary Barnett. Now, Barnett had been on paid suspension since mid-February. She also said that athletics director Dick Tharp would remain in his position. The bottom line, in the wake of the entire University of Colorado football recruiting scandal, not a single job was lost.
However, Hoffman did today also announce a major restructuring of the athletic department designed to integrate the athletic department more fully into the entire university community. One of the big changes, the athletic director will no longer report to the chancellor. Instead, he'll report to the provost, just like the dean of every other department -- Miles.
O'BRIEN: Thank you very much, Josie Burke in Boulder.
A drama at sea off the coast of south Florida. Two sport fishing boats were stopped, one after a high-speed chase by Coast Guard and immigration officers. It's part of a Drug Enforcement Administration operation. Officials say they found more than 2,000 pounds of cocaine on board, with an estimated $20 million. One Puerto Rican and five Bahamian men arrested.
The nation owes them a debt of gratitude; 60 years ago, they had courage and they had the conviction and they were doing the right thing.
And heading to Afghanistan? Take your golf clubs, because you can now find bunkers of a very different sort there.
O'BRIEN: This Saturday, an emotional, historic event on the Mall in Washington, the long-awaited dedication of the new World War II Memorial. For a dwindling number of veterans, the efforts of U.S. forces in Iraq call to mind their own sacrifices 60 years ago. The quiet lives they lead today belie the bravery and heroism that lead some to call them the greatest generation.
Here's CNN's Brian Todd.
BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): John Tuggle passes his days at the Armed Forces Retirement Home looking at his dance trophies, leafing through mementos, remembering a time few others could comprehend. The Philippines, March 1942, John Tuggle, Navy petty officer 1st class, machinist mate on PT-41, the boat that carries General Douglas MacArthur on a dangerous route to safety as the Japanese overpower American forces on the Bataan Peninsula. Tuggle is awarded his first Silver Star.
JOHN TUGGLE, WORLD WAR II VETERAN: That was given to me by General MacArthur. Everyone on the PT boat that took him off (UNINTELLIGIBLE) and to Mindanao was given a Silver Star.
TODD: Not long after on another mission after his boat runs aground, Tuggle and his mates find themselves virtually alone when U.S. forces surrender Bataan. Surrender is not for John Tuggle.
TUGGLE: I was supposed to surrender and I refused. A lot of us refused and took to the jungle.
TODD: The jungle, where Tuggle and other Americans would join with local Filipinos to engage the Japanese in a guerrilla campaign that would last more than three years. By the time U.S. forces get back into the area to rescue them, John Tuggle has met a young Filipino woman running from the Japanese and married her.
John and Esperanza (ph) make it to America and make a life that would last more than 50 years until her death.
MIMI RIVKIN, WORLD WAR II VETERAN: This is our photo lab group.
TODD: Not far from John Tuggle's room, a woman who has a lifetimes worth of memories from a brief adventure.
RIVKIN: Wasn't I cute?
TODD: Mimi Rivkin spends the last two years of the war outside Calcutta at a key allied base in what's called the India-China-Burma theater. She works at a lab processing aerial surveillance photos. She brings back a few shots of herself.
RIVKIN: It was a tremendous adventure. In those years, India was, you know, fairy land, some place you'd never dreamed of going.
TODD: Think of this lady as a 20-something, half a world away from home, the world opening up. Not so hard to imagine.
RIVKIN: Now, this is me sitting on the mess sergeant's lap, OK?
TODD: Mischief, bravery, loss, reflection, the war's memories.
Brian Todd, CNN, Washington.
O'BRIEN: Tomorrow, our memories of war series continues with the stirring account of a veteran who served as a medic in General George Patton's 3rd Army as it swept through Europe in World War II.
The results of the "Web Question of the Day" are ahead.
Plus, no grass no greens, but nevertheless, golf is back in, of all places, Afghanistan.
O'BRIEN: Some live pictures coming into CNN right now.
You are looking at American Airlines Flight 306, was supposed to be Dallas-Fort Worth to Boston. The pilot declared an emergency while flying over northern Alabama. He requested a landing in Nashville, Tennessee, which is where you see the plane right now. He went in with the escort of combat air patrol.
There apparently was a note found on board the airplane indicating there was a bomb or explosive. We don't know whether it was a hoax or not, but, nevertheless, we're watching it closely for you.
Here's how you're weighing in on our "Web Question of the Day"; 14 percent of you say the terror threat is what is making you -- affecting your summer plans more, while 86 percent of you say fuel prices are the issue. Of course, this is not a scientific poll.
Augusta, it's not, but Kabul's only golf course is back in business and it's our picture of the day. The nine-hole course on the outskirts of the Afghan capital was abandoned for almost a decade, but with mines cleared, duffers, mainly foreigners, are making their way back. Some of them may play in the Afghan Open. It is scheduled this summer. I don't think Tiger will be there.
A reminder, you can always catch WOLF BLITZER REPORTS weekdays at this time, 5:00 Eastern. I'm back in again for Wolf tomorrow. Thanks for joining us.
"LOU DOBBS TONIGHT" starts right now.
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