CNN LARRY KING LIVE
Interviews With Michael Isikoff, Richard Shelby, Mark Geragos
Aired June 3, 2002 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight: The CIA was tracking two 9/11 hijackers long before they attacked U.S. soil. Why didn't they stop them? Joining us, one of the investigative journalists who broke this shocking story, "Newsweek's" Michael Isikoff. And with him in Washington, the vice chairman of the Select Intelligence Committee, Senator Richard Shelby.
And then the real-life legal drama starring Winona Ryder. The actress was ordered to court today and ended up injured. We'll have an exclusive interview with her defense attorney, Mark Geragos.
Plus: As Britain's Queen Elizabeth celebrates 50 years on the throne, is she getting ready to welcome Prince Charles' long-time love Camilla into the family? We've got glitz and gossip from our regular panel of royal watchers all next on LARRY KING LIVE.
This issue of "Newsweek" is out today: "The 9/11 terrorists the CIA should have caught." Joining us in Washington, Michael Isikoff, who co-reported the story with Don Cladman (ph), and Senator Richard Shelby, vice chairman of the select committee on intelligence, Republican of Alabama.
In essence, Michael, this story says?
MICHAEL ISIKOFF, "NEWSWEEK": It says that the CIA knew about two of the 9/11 hijackers a lot earlier than we had previously known -- had tracked them to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in January 2000; was concerned enough to have the meeting that they were attending, a sort of al Qaeda summit, surveiled by the Malaysian special branch, the Malaysian secret services.
The Malaysians watched the meeting. They photographed the participants. And then the two individuals involved, Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Midhar, leave. Al-Hazmi flies from Bangkok to -- from Kuala Lumpur to Bangkok, to Los Angeles. The CIA learns shortly thereafter he is in the country. They also learn that al-Midhar has a multiple-entry visa to enter the -- come and enter the United States at any time.
And they do not pass along the information, first of all, to any of the agencies responsible for policing the nation's borders, the State Department, the INS, the Customs Service, that could have stopped these guys from coming into the country. They also don't, apparently, tell the FBI, at least about al- Hazmi and the fact that they know that he is inside the country. The -- there is -- my understanding is late today they're suggesting that they did pass along some information about al-Midhar...
KING: Well, here's to get you up to date on that, Michael. CNN correspondent David Ensor says that CIA officials warned the FBI in January of 2000 that one of the hijackers had participated in that al Qaeda meeting in Malaysia and merited closer attention. That's from the CIA today.
ISIKOFF: Right. The FBI says it has no record of that. And so I think there's going to be some exploration of what was -- what information was passed along and what was not.
What we do know is that nothing was done to follow up on this information about the individuals involved. What the CIA has said, is that the significance of the meeting was not fully understood at the time.
Of course, that raises some questions in and of itself, because the CIA got onto this meeting in Kuala Lumpur because the U.S. intelligence community was monitoring a phone number in Yemen that was a switchboard for al Qaeda, and that phone calls were being used -- were being made from that number to bin Laden operatives and bin Laden himself.
So there was strong reason to believe that these guys were, in fact, bin Laden operatives.
KING: Senator Shelby, what do you make of this?
SEN. RICHARD SHELBY (R), ALABAMA: Well, assuming that all this...
KING: Let's assume all information that's given is correct.
SHELBY: ... is true -- and I can't confirm that because we're talking about things that could be classified. But I can tell you I believe, again, this points toward more failures at the CIA, at the FBI, and all over the intelligence agencies, the community. I've said that for the past six, eight months. Now people are beginning to see it, as information dribbles out, that it's true.
I believe that as our investigation unfolds, Larry, the House- Senate investigation, that you will see more and more failures like this. And what we've got to do, I believe, is get to the bottom of the successes and failures, because we owe that to the American people, the security of our nation.
KING: Your hearings start when, tomorrow?
SHELBY: We do. We start tomorrow. These will be closed hearings. This will be basically, probably tomorrow. The staff bringing us up to date. We have an investigative staff. I think we have a great staff. And we'll go from there. Some of those hearing later on will be open. And I think as many as we can make open, hearings for the American people to see, I believe we'll be better off in this country.
KING: Senator, why don't our gathering information, our investigative agencies, our police agencies, cooperate with each other?
SHELBY: Well, that's a central question. That's a good question you just posed. And we're going to get into this. And I believe, central, or one of the most important things that we're going to find out, is that there's a lack of communication between the FBI, the CIA, NSA and so forth. There are too many stove pipes.
We've known that. We've talked about it. But what Michael's been writing about are examples, if they be true -- and I have no reason to doubt him -- they're just great illustrations of the problem.
KING: Michael, you've covered the scene in Washington a long time. You're one of the best investigative journalists. Why don't they cooperate with each other? I mean, it seems so simple.
ISIKOFF: This goes long back. I mean, there's a long and rich history to the bureaucratic conflict between the CIA and the FBI. They each have different missions. The CIA is into intelligence gathering. The FBI is supposed to arrest people when they commit crimes. And so they view the world differently.
It may well be that the CIA thought that by continuing to track these guys on their own, or track that phone number in Yemen that gave fruit to the original information about the Kuala Lumpur meeting, that they were going to learn more intelligence that would tell them more about al Qaeda, and they didn't want to interrupt that by having anybody block these guys from coming into the country or scoop them up while they were here.
The fact is, we do know that they would have been very easy to find. In fact, they were living entirely in the open. They had driver's licenses, Social Security cards, they opened bank accounts. And perhaps most importantly, they intersected with five other hijackers during the time that they were in this country. So that -- some FBI officials believe, would have given them a road map to, in fact, uncover the entire plot, or at least identify all 19 of the hijackers.
KING: Unbelievable. Senator Shelby, are we going to have accountability here? Will proper heads roll if they need to roll?
SHELBY: I believe they will, if they need to roll. I think it's premature at this point, as far as the investigation is concerned.
But we all are accountable, Larry. I'm accountable. The president's accountable. The CIA director is accountable. The FBI director is accountable. And I think there are a lot of people in the various agencies, below them, that are accountable. We can just look back at what happened with the Minnesota case when it looked to me like -- and I've said this before -- that someone just didn't want the agents who were on top of things in Minnesota to move to the next step. And that is to get into the computer of Moussaoui.
KING: We'll be calling on both of you again as this investigation continues. That's a great story, Michael. You deserve a lot of credit.
Michael Isikoff, Senator Richard Shelby coming to us from Washington.
When we come back: the Winona Ryder saga, as it continues to grow in Los Angeles. Her attorney Mark Geragos is with us. Don't go away.
KING: We now welcome to LARRY KING LIVE Mark Geragos, the attorney for Winona Ryder, who was arrested December 12 of last year outside Saks Fifth Avenue in Beverly Hills, charged with grand theft, commercial burglary, vandalism and possession of a controlled substance, and has plead innocent to all counts.
It was a very tumultuous day in court. But first, how is she? We saw her holding her elbow leaving the court. What's the condition?
MARK GERAGOS, WINONA RYDER'S ATTORNEY: Well, she's quite a trooper. I'll tell you. She -- as we went in there and we were in the midst of that, what was kind of a rugby scrum right there. You'll see that she got -- you can't even see it on that picture -- but she got whacked from behind on the back of the elbow. We immediately went upstairs. That deputy sheriff, who you saw got hit on the head, immediately attended to her. And her arm and elbow area instantly kind of swelled up. We took her to the doctor -- that deputy right there. She deserves quite a kudo. Even though she got whacked in the head, Larry, she was still attending to Winona.
KING: By the way, what hit them?
GERAGOS: It's hard to tell. I think that -- all I could see was the deputy get hit in the side of the head here in -- kind of in the ear area with what looked like a huge camera lens and the lens fell off. Then from behind, we got shoved. And then in front of us, there was a deputy sheriff who fell forward and then there was another reporter who kind of fell back into the glass.
KING: And what hit Winona?
GERAGOS: Winona -- I'm assuming it was one of these cameras that came into the back and hit her in the back of the elbow, because when we took her to urgent care, they did an x-ray, and it turns out that she's got a broken arm and acute swelling to the arm as well. So they put...
KING: A broken arm? GERAGOS: Yes. There's a fracture on the elbow area, and it appears that it's a clean fracture, so it looks like it will heal. But, she's quite a trooper.
We actually -- she wanted to stay there and continue with the preliminary hearing and I'm looking at the arm and telling her, I'm not going to sit here as your arm is blowing up. The deputy is telling her she's not going to allow her to do it. And we're both telling her that. And she's like, no, I want to get through this. I want to deal with it.
And finally, I just went into chambers with the D.A. and told the judge, I'm taking her to the doctor. I'm taking her right now. Luckily, we did because she does, in fact, have a fracture on that elbow.
KING: OK. Now, the press reports -- was it the right elbow or the left elbow?
GERAGOS: It was her right elbow, the same one that she had fractured before.
KING: Because someone reported she was holding her left elbow walking in.
GERAGOS: She was holding her -- lifting it up. She had broken that arm before and she was holding it up like this to elevate it.
KING: Oh, I see. So it's the right elbow.
GERAGOS: It's the right elbow. As you can see, that -- right there -- right after that happened, then there's another slam as we're going in because there's another reporter that falls right after that.
KING: Is she right-handed?
KING: Did they cast it?
GERAGOS: They did not. They have got it in a sling right now. We are going to go to the orthopedist tomorrow. We took her straight there, and I had a doctor examine her today. They took the x-rays, three different doctors looked at the x-rays, confirmed that it was broken.
KING: Is she involved in shoot any movie now?
GERAGOS: Well, she's involved in doing the promotion for "Mr. Deeds." She's done the "W" cover. She did "Saturday Night Live," all in promotion of that comedy. And she's looking at a couple of other projects, but that's kind of out of my bailiwick, if you will.
KING: I see. But, I mean, she's not in something where having a broken arm will prevent her from working? GERAGOS: I don't think -- no, not at all. Remember, she broke this arm back about a year ago during the filming of "Deeds" and was able shortly thereafter to get back to work on that film as well. So, she's pretty tough.
KING: Is she angry over the events today?
GERAGOS: Well, she's not. I am. You know, we started off the day today, Larry, and I had filed a motion to disqualify the district attorney in this case because of what I considered a relentless attack by them in a -- trying to make this into a media circus, which I thought was unfortunate. And then to have this happen, mere hours on the heels of that -- the judge has not ruled on that motion yet. He has tabled it over for 10 court days to have that heard -- to have this happen, and I'm telling you, that it was just awful as we were walking literally on the steps of the courthouse.
KING: The judge was angry at you, though, for not bringing your client to court today, wasn't he?
GERAGOS: No. That's another -- that was on the wires. I think somebody had brought that up to me. I went in there, we filed the motion. The judge asked and I have got the right to keep her on call. He asked where she was. I said she was on call. He said I'll take a recess and I'm going to go read the motion, and you get her over here. And that's what we did. He wasn't angry in the least. In fact, he did about 20 other calendar matters in the interim before we got started on our case at about 11:00 today.
KING: Why didn't you bring her?
GERAGOS: Well, I normally don't for precisely these reasons. I mean, if you -- I think you have in the past driven by that courthouse whenever she has a court appearance. It gets surrounded to the point where you can't get in or out without somebody getting injured. I mean, every time we have come there so far, where Winona has been there, either a cameraman has fallen, some reporter has been trampled or something else has happened.
And today was a perfect example of why I try and keep it to a minimum. It's one of the other reasons why if I'm going to just continue the case, I'll go in there a couple of days before so that nobody will get hurt. It's precisely this type of situation that I'm trying to avoid. I mean, it's almost as if corporal punishment is part of the pre-trial obstacle course that you have to go through here.
KING: Now, when is the next court appearance?
GERAGOS: Well, God willing that she recovers quickly, we're going to go back on Thursday of this week.
GERAGOS: Continue the preliminary hearing. As I said before, Winona wanted to go forward, I mean, as her arm was swelling up, golf- ball size, she wanted to go forward this afternoon. I said no. We talked -- the D.A. and I talked to the judge this afternoon and decided that Thursday was probably, due to witness availability, the best day.
KING: When does he rule on whether the prosecutor should be taken of?
GERAGOS: It'll probably go over until June 18. That's the date we have got it set for right now. And he'll make a ruling at that time as to whether or not the D.A.'s office can continue on this.
KING: Why would the L.A. district attorney have, as you called it, an ax to grind against Winona?
GERAGOS: Well, I filed the motion under (UNINTELLIGIBLE). I will say this much. I believe that they have been so publicly embarrassed by the fact that they put out all that disinformation about her being on the videotape, and the fact that all of this, you know, she was -- they made an announcement at that press conference, the police department did. Then the press spokesman came out and said the same thing when they filed these charges. You notice, sir, you may have heard today they put their first witness on for an hour and they didn't show the videotape. All they would show was little pictures from the videotape because there's nothing on the videotape.
And so, this is kind of their way of getting back at her and being what I consider to be over the top and anything but disinterested in this prosecution.
KING: You are saying they are mad at her because they don't have the tape of her robbing the stuff?
GERAGOS: I'm saying that they have taken steps, and I won't belabor them here, I'll wait and litigate that in court, but things have happened in this case that are highly unusual. Neither I nor others who practice criminal defense in this town have ever seen anything quite like some of the actions that they've taken.
I believe that the reason for this is because they have been publicly embarrassed by the fact that they have made certain pronouncements about this tape and there's nothing on that tape. And now to compound matters, is I'm going to end up calling their own press spokesperson as one of our witnesses in the case in order to find out exactly who misled her.
KING: We'll take a break and come back with more of Mark Geragos, the attorney for Winona Ryder, and then we'll talk about the queen and the Golden Jubilee today.
Tomorrow night, Dan Rather joins us. Andy Rooney on Wednesday. Don't go away.
KING: We're back with Mark Geragos, the attorney for Winona Ryder. Going to cover some other aspect here. Appearing on the cover of "W" wearing a "Free Winona" T-shirt. Is that making light of this?
GERAGOS: Well, she's got a movie to promote, which is "Mr. Deeds," and it is a comedy. And she's out there doing her best to promote the movie. Does it make light of this? I think it makes fun of herself. It shows she's got a pretty good sense of humor, I think, that she's able to do that and carry it off.
KING: Let's watch her here for a moment as she guest hosts "Saturday Night Live." Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE")
WINONA RYDER, ACTRESS: I'm here to host the season finale of "Saturday Night Live." But I have to admit, you know, people have been acting a little strange around here. You know, there's like a lot of, like locking of doors and shifty eyes, and a lot of frisking.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Now, do you think that would kind of tick off a district attorney, Mark? That that works against her?
GERAGOS: The -- you know, the DA's office has done, to my mind, nothing but just pound on this woman from the beginning. So at this point, was I worried about ticking them off? They've done nothing but go out there, file four felony charges, which is unheard of. You know, there's drugs -- the supposed drug count was over two pills. I mean, if you can believe that, they filed a felony over two legal prescription pills.
So, I mean, the idea that we're going to piss them off -- I mean, it's, thank you, sir, I want another. I mean, these people have, to my mind, have decided that they're going to crusade against her. They have expended, Larry -- I'll tell you, it's interesting.
I had another case in the Beverly Hills courthouse where a gentlemen was charged with attempted murder. I could not get the cops to go out and do a ballistics test on the gun that was supposedly involved. Yet in this case, they've got charts. They've gone out and sent investigators out around the world to find any kind of piece of dirt they can on Winona. It's unbelievable. Any amount of resources -- an unlimited amount of resources have been expended for what's nothing more than a glorified shoplifting accusation.
KING: What, basically, is her defense? Now, I know that area, and there are two Saks stores there next to each other with a street separating them. Is her side of the story that she took some items from one store, intending to pay for all of them in the next?
GERAGOS: Well, I...
KING: Is that what happened?
GERAGOS: I would love to get into that, but we'll wait. We go back on Thursday, and maybe I'll come on Thursday and I'll give you kind of a blow-by-blow at that time.
I will tell you now that what they claim happened is obvious did not happen; which is that she was there, she was cut cutting off sensor tags on tape, and that they caught her doing that. Just didn't happen.
So they can't -- they're the ones who have to make their case, and they're not going to do it.
KING: Are you saying tonight that she was not shoplifting at all? That your client did absolutely nothing wrong?
GERAGOS: Yes, I'm absolutely saying that, and I've said that from day one. I've talked to my client, I believe my client. And she's got no reason. I mean, the whole thing is patently absurd...
KING: Why would Saks Fifth Avenue turn in -- I guess there weren't cops in Saks Fifth Avenue -- why would they turn in someone like Winona Ryder without good cause?
GERAGOS: Well, why don't you -- let's just wait until I get to do a little cross examination. Once I get up there, before I tip off the loss prevention people, there's a couple of questions that I think will make it abundantly clear as to what the motivation was here. Clearly there was a motivation, and we'll get into that during the cross-examination.
KING: So the people at Saks -- some of the people at Saks had a motivation. They were motivated to do what they did by something?
GERAGOS: That's correct. And I think the proof of that so far is -- by the way, where is the tape that shows her cutting off the sensor tags? Somebody told that to the police. Somebody told that to the district attorney. Where is that tape? It's nowhere.
So somebody is lying. I don't think that it's the DA's office because I don't know that they ever looked at the tape prior to filing these charges.
KING: Now back to calling the press person for the district attorney. You're going to get her to say what?
GERAGOS: Well, I'm going to -- we're going to ask her, number one, when you issued that press release on February 1 and went out and told the press that she was on tape cutting off sensor tags, where did you learn that from? Who told you that? And then we're going to go back to the person that told her that and we're going to quiz them and we're going to say, can you please show us that tape? We're very interested in knowing where that tape is, because nothing that's been turned over in discovery shows that. And if that's the case, then that's what shows, I think here, demonstrably that this never happened.
KING: Have there ever been any prior charges like this against her?
GERAGOS: She's never been charged with anything. She's got a completely clean record.
KING: What's the penalty if convicted?
GERAGOS: Well, the penalty if convicted, technically, is jail time. Generally -- although in general terms nobody gets filed on for four felonies in a case like this -- but generally what happens in Los Angeles is it's a probationary sentence if you're convicted, which means you're put on probation and you're given a fine and you go on your way.
KING: For first offense?
GERAGOS: For a first offense, exactly.
KING: Any chance of pleading this out some way?
GERAGOS: Think I'd be on here talking to you right now and moving to disqualify the district attorney's office if I thought I was going to be able to plead this case out?
KING: Do you want to plead this case out? I mean, if she's completely innocent, you wouldn't want to plead it out, would you?
GERAGOS: Look, there's a -- part of the problem when you're dealing with somebody like Winona is she's not working right now because we have to deal with the case. And that is tough. There's an enormous cost-benefit to that. And the cost is, is that the longer that this goes, the less work that she's going to take until it's resolved.
And that's a problem. I mean, at a certain point if I was made an offer that she couldn't refuse, I might advise her to examine that. But that's just not going to happen, I don't think.
KING: Does this lead us to think that if she's not guilty or if the charges are dismissed by the court for some reason, you would sue Saks civilly?
GERAGOS: I never -- I'll tell you what I usually tell my clients when they come in on criminal cases: Let me deal with the criminal case first, we'll talk about the civil case later.
KING: Are you shocked at the actions of the district attorney?
GERAGOS: I would say that I'm shocked. I said that in court today to the judge.
In fact, today when we discussed it with the judge, he tabled the ruling. He said that he did not find that we had not made a prima facia case of -- that the DA should be disqualified. He just said -- and they would not, by the way, waive their right to notice, 10 days notice.
In addition to that, I also said -- they said they wanted more notice, they wanted this, they wanted that. And I did say in court that we were willing to waive the preliminary hearing and set a trial date right away. And they said no. And that's because they want to try, if they can, to get out there and poison the jury pool through doing the preliminary hearing.
And that's what they're going to attempt to do. And we're going to fight back any way we can.
KING: We'll stay on top of it. Thanks, Mark.
GERAGOS: Thank you Larry. Good to see you.
KING: Mark Geragos, the attorney for Winona Ryder who, he reports, has a broken right arm at the elbow. It occurred today at the Beverly Hills courthouse.
When we come back, our royal experts gather to discuss today's Golden Jubilee in Great Britain. And a fire. And Camilla.
More ahead. Don't go away.
KING: Queen Elizabeth celebrates 50 years on the throne. It's Golden Jubilee Day in Great Britain.
And joining us in London is Robert Lacey, the best-selling biographer, veteran Royal watcher. His new book, "Monarch: The Life and Reign of Elizabeth II," is now out everywhere.
In Washington, Kitty Kelley, the best-selling biographer as well and author of "The Royals." She's working on a book about the Bush dynasty.
In London, Harold Brooks-Baker, the publishing director of "Burke's Peerage."
And also in London, Philip Hoare, the biographer and social historian. It always great having all of them with us.
We'll start with Mr. Lacey, who I understand attended Saturday night's festivities. What was that like?
ROBERT LACEY, ROYAL BIOGRAPHER: Well, it was just wonderful and tonight's was just wonderful. I hope you'll be able to show some footage and not just our ugly mugs looking across the Atlantic at you.
It's a real moment to make, I think, every Briton proud. On Saturday night, there was this wonderful classical concert where we saw the Queen. Of course, the news item on that was the appearance of Camilla alongside the Queen. And then tonight, we've had this extraordinary pop concert in the palace. We've had the princes, William and Harry, on stage. And it finished with the most extraordinary firework display, which put all those firework displays that bored us during the millennium on the hour around the world, put them to shame. They had them over the top of Buckingham Palace, which turned into a waterfall of fire at the end with all sorts of images played on it. It was -- and it was, above all, it was just a wonderful occasion of national feeling and celebration for this extraordinary woman who has been our Queen for 50 years.
KING: Robert, we understand that Camilla was invited. She was with the royals, but did not sit with Charles. Why not?
LACEY: Well, softly, softly, Larry, she did sit in the royal box on Saturday night and she was in a row towards the rear. But somehow, magically, when the photographers got their photographs, there on one side was the Queen and you could see Camilla clearly on the other side.
Now, for us, that was a definite first. She was there tonight, we are told. We haven't yet seen the pictures. Interestingly, on Saturday night, the cameras focused on her, but tonight they didn't.
KING: Kitty, does any of this surprise you?
KITTY KELLEY, AUTHOR, "THE ROYALS": Well, no, not on the Camilla business. I think that as Robert says, it's going to be softly, softly, but surely, surely.
I do understand, though, that there was a little bit of a rift between the Queen's advisers and Charles' advisers for a while in getting Camilla into the picture and where she would be. The thing that is surprising and really wonderfully so about this Jubilee is that months ago, nobody thought that it was going to be successful. And it does look like a wonderful, wonderful celebration for everybody...
KING: Why did they think it wouldn't be?
KELLEY: And after 9/11, I have to tell you, Larry, I believe that we should all take whatever opportunity we have to celebrate.
KING: Why did they think it wouldn't be, Kitty?
KELLEY: Well, I think they said that there was such a lack of deference towards the Queen, which probably runs parallel with the lack of deference towards elected politicians and certainly the lack of deference towards people in the media and even people in the clergy. But they really did not think that Britons would turn out for this, but they have.
And also, I think that she was great in that she opened up Buckingham Palace, because after all it really should belong to the people. And she certainly allowed everybody inside. And for those who couldn't get inside, they put up great screens so that they could see the concert. Although it was a wonderful picture watching the Queen look at Ozzy Osbourne, one wonders if she knew Ozzy Osbourne from "Ozzie and Harriet."
KING: Harold, that was not exactly the Queen's musical taste, was it, Ozzy Osbourne or Ricky Martin or Eric Clapton or Phil Collins and others, was it? HAROLD BROOKS-BAKER, "BURKE'S PEERAGE": Well, it clearly was the taste of her grandchildren, and the one thing the royal family in this country is trying to do is to bring in the teenagers. After all, that is the future. And it look as if the House of Windsor has now achieved what for many years it could not, and that is interest for young people.
There was a terrific...
KELLEY: You know, Larry...
KING: Hold on, Kitty. Hold on. Yes, go ahead, Harold.
KELLEY: I'm sorry.
BROOKS-BAKER: There was a terrific amount of applause every time the Queen appeared. You saw for the first time this evening that the Prince of Wales referred to his mother in a very affectionate way. That had never happened in public before. There was also an embrace between the Queen and the Prince of Wales.
These are changes in the etiquette and protocol of the royal family. And it looks like to me as if the House of Windsor is here to stay for a very long time, probably many generations to come. Somehow or other, the great love that the people had for the Queen Mother has now been extended to the Queen, and everything is working out extremely well.
KING: Philip, before we get back to Kitty and to Rob, but, Philip, what can you tell us about the fire?
PHILIP HOARE, ROYAL WATCHER: The fire really was -- it was scary because we certainly had all these news reports just after the classical concert and certainly it sort of -- it brought back images of Windsor on fire. It actually was fairly inconsequential and was fairly swiftly dealt with.
But going back to what the others are talking about, I love this idea that we've gone from -- in 50 years, we've gone from a Queen whose anointing at the coronation was so sacred, it could no filmed on TV. We've gone from that to her being presented on TV, being introduced, by a man in drag. It's fantastic. And, you know, this sense that we have got, you know -- we have got, you know -- would you let Ozzy Osbourne in your backyard? I mean, no. And it's almost like a scene out of a John Waters movie.
We have got Brian Wilson from the Beach Boys there doing his thing. Paul McCartney sang a serenade to the Queen telling her off for never talking, for not talking. And that's kind of one of the points about this. One of the things we were talking about just before we came on air was this sense that she doesn't smile enough. You know, there's all this mad stuff going on in your backyard. Loosen up a bit. You know, loosen up.
And I think it's quite interesting. You have got William and Harry sitting there in the royal box watching, sitting there in their suits and you kind of think they want to be down there sort of moshing with people, really. So I thought it was an encouraging sign. And it's been an exciting day for us here.
KING: I'll bet. Let me get a break and we'll be back with our outstanding panel, the royal panel, we call them, on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. Dan Rather tomorrow night. Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRINCE CHARLES OF WALES: So, Your Majesty, we are all deeply grateful to you. And in the words of the non-politically correct, second verse of "The National Anthem," you have defended our laws and certainly given us cause to shout with heart and voice, God save the Queen!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: Robert Lacey, based on all of this, is Camilla in? Is she in-in? And are they going to get married? Is everything hunky-dory?
LACEY: I think so, on the evidence of this weekend. In fact, there was an exclusive story in the "Daily Mail," which usually has pretty good inside scoops in this royal area, that it's now going to be settled family policy that Camilla is included in all public royal occasions.
Perhaps we ought to explain, following on from what Philip was saying, that the concert tonight was actually in two parts. The first part was without the queen. It was with the younger members of the royal family, with Prince Charles and the boys in the box. And it had a definite naughty quality about it. Some of the things Philip is talking about. You know, mummy hasn't arrived yet. And there were some quite lewd jokes.
And as he said, the transition was managed by a female impersonator, Dame Edna Everage, Barry Humphries, you may be familiar with her. And she suddenly said -- or he/she suddenly said -- oh, here's the Jubilee girl. And I think it's the most informal way the queen has ever been introduced in Buckingham Palace. And the response was just amazing.
So, well, what I was proud of as a Brit was, you know, this element of making fun of ourselves, and even poking a little fun at the queen at the same time, but in a very fond way.
KING: Kitty, what do you make of all this, this obvious change?
KELLEY: Well, you know, Larry I loved the concert. And I loved the fact that rock 'n' roll has come to Buckingham Palace.
But I think one poignant part -- it's rather subtle and indirect -- but Elton John was there. And he is a favorite of the queen's. And for those who watched the funeral of the Princess of Wales, it was when Elton John sang that the queen was most moved. So I think that she was quite happy to have him there.
And I was very touched when Prince Charles -- although I don't understand why he couldn't have committed to memory his wonderful tribute to his mother -- but when he kissed her on both cheeks and then kissed her hand, it really was a demonstration of affection that we expect and would want to see more of. But it was very nice.
KING: Harold, will we expect to see, now, a more human Elizabeth?
BROOKS-BAKER: I think you're going to see a great deal more that is the human side of the queen. Furthermore, the queen is definitely following the ways of her nine cousins on the continent who still control thrones who are all very secure on those thrones. The weddings of recent royals on the continent, including William Alexander of Holland, shows clearly that the young people, people of all ages, are enthusiastic about the monarchy and how monarchy protects the world from the difficulties that politicians can bring, even dictatorship.
The fact is that the queen has now been taken to the heart of the people in a way that I never actually thought possible in the 30 years that I've been watching this type of procedure.
And when you read the book by Robert Lacey on the queen, and when you read Hugo Vickers' book on the mother of Prince Philip, and put them both together, you can understand what a complex United Nations the house of Windsor really is. Here is every nationality in Europe represented, and represented over and over and over again.
The fact is that the queen...
KING: Philip -- I'm sorry, go ahead. You can finish, Harold.
BROOKS-BAKER: The fact is that the queen and her husband are related in 85 different ways. And these two books, "Alice" by Hugo Vickers and "Monarch" by Robert Lacey, are the best examples that I can point to of why this monarchy is going to last for probably 1,000 years.
KING: Philip, the queen has been described as the classic familiar stranger, someone nearly everyone knows and almost no one knows well. Is that apt?
HOARE: It's a very good description. I think Ben Pimlots (ph), the historian and another biographer of the queen, has made the point that we have feelings for the royal family which we hope they return for us. This sense of a communion in a way.
And it's odd, isn't it? Because, although, you know, the divine right of kings was, you know, outmoded centuries ago, there's still that weird sense that she is something special. She is something -- she is someone who rises above politics. And she's a source of constancy in an age of change. I mean, Prince Charles, in his speech, talked about an age of profound and sometimes perilous change. And, you know, after September the 11th, that's -- you know, it's something to be valued, that sort of constancy. And I think that's something we suddenly realize in England.
You know, we can sometimes be a bit embarrassed about this stuff. I mean, I know, myself, I'm never quite sure exactly what I really think about our monarchy. But at occasions like this, you just think, yes, no, it works. Why get rid of it?
KING: We'll be right back with some remaining moments with Robert Lacey, Kitty Kelley, Harold Brooks-Baker and Philip Hoare, discussing the Golden Jubilee.
Don't go away.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRINCE CHARLES: You have embodied something vital in our lives: continuity. You have been a beacon of tradition and stability in the midst of profound, sometimes perilous change. Fifty years ago at nearly 4 years of age, I would probably have been playing in the sand pit in the garden just behind this stage. But now you have generously invited everyone in here for a thoroughly memorable party.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
KING: We're back. Robert Lacey, Philip has said his faith in the monarchy has been restored. Harold thinks it's going for 1,000 years. What do you think?
LACEY: Well, let me tell you what the polls say. I mean, there is always a hard core here of 18 to 20 percent who say they're Republicans, anti-monarchists. Add to that 70 percent who say they're in favor of the monarchy, with 10 percent don't knows.
The latest polls show that those 10 percent don't-knows have all gone over to the monarchy's camp. But you've still got 18 percent of people in this country who'd like a different system. And I think that's one of the great strengths of Britain, that this diversity of opinion remains.
KING: Kitty, what do you think? I mean, to be frank, it has no power.
KELLEY: Has no power, but it has great pageantry. And we do love the pageantry.
The polls that Robert just cited also show that almost 41 to 48 percent of the people believe, yes, they want the monarchy, but they do not want a monarchy that doesn't change. They think that this monarchy really does have to change and become more accessible to people. And it seems like it's doing that. You know, Larry, this Jubilee has been in the planning for a year now. And the queen's staff has got creative consultants and publicists and PR specialists, communications experts, and they really have worked very, very hard to represent Britain, which is now a very diverse and different country than it was when Victoria celebrated so many years ago.
So it is a monarchy that is going to last, but it's a monarchy that's going to have to change, I think.
KING: Let's take a call. Austin, Texas, hello.
CALLER: Hello. I'm wondering if William and Harry have accepted Camilla yet.
KING: Harold, have they accepted Camilla?
BROOKS-BAKER: I think there's no question that they have accepted -- they clearly love Camilla Parker-Bowles. Camilla Parker- Bowles will be their stepmother in the not-too-distant future, as soon as the Church of England changes its rules, which will probably happen either this July or next July. And when I say change the rules, I mean allowing divorced people to remarry in the church.
Prince Charles will be titular head of the Church of England if he becomes monarch, which we all hope he will one day. And therefore he must marry in his own church.
Certainly these young fellows are very appreciative of her. And when you see them together, you see people who are very, very happy in each other's company. This is an unusually happy situation.
KING: And Philip, that had to be some good work on her part, because these boys were very close to their mother. And there had to be some ambivalent feelings to begin with.
HOARE: Of course. And there possibly still are. But as Harold says, to all intents and purposes, they are very accepting of Camilla. Of course, we don't see them in public with her, so we can't judge that.
And I kind of sometimes think it's not really our business in a way. You know, I mean, it's a private, family affair. And that kind of -- that's where it has to stand.
KING: Well, but Philip, none of it is really our business, is it?
HOARE: Absolutely not. But there are -- I mean, it's certainly our business when the queen throws open her backyard to 12,000 people and invites them in with free champagne and chicken and God knows what and, you know, she has rock stars crawling all over the place. You know, the doings of, you know, a possible stepmother, I think, are less interesting -- to me, anyhow.
KING: Robert Lacey, it will never be the same. Obviously this monarchy has changed.
LACEY: No, I mean tomorrow we are going to see even more extraordinary things. We're going to see 50 Hells Angels driving down the mile, one for each -- one for each year of the queen's reign. This is on this -- I mean, the mile used to be absolutely sacred to the guardsmen. We're going to have 5,000 gospel singers, 3,000 Samba dancers. I think they've got 20,000 performers lined up in this extraordinary pageant, children performers.
The old guard say it's getting a bit too touchy-feely. But I think Philip's right: It's what the country wants at the moment.
KING: Thank you all very much, Robert Lacey, Kitty Kelley, Harold Brooks-Baker and Philip Hoare, our experts on the subject of her majesty and the court, and the monarchy in Great Britain on this, their Golden Jubilee.
When we come back we will tell you a little bit about tomorrow night and what's ahead.
But a good friend of mine passed away early today, Lew Wasserman. He was 89 years old. He led a long and terrific life. He ran MCA. There you see a picture of Lew. God, hard to believe he's gone.
He was once the most powerful man in the movie industry, indeed, the entertainment industry. He was once the agent for President Ronald Reagan when Reagan was an actor. He started MCI -- MCA, rather, and that became a worldwide conglomerate, which led to Universal Pictures. Lew Wasserman, dead at the age of 89. We will not see his likes again.
We'll be right back.
KING: I want to thank Walter Cronkite for hosting that look at our 45 years in this business over the weekend. We sure appreciated having Walter do it. It was very, very special.
Tomorrow night Dan Rather is the special guest. Andy Rooney will be with us on Wednesday.
We're in New York, and that means we get a chance to be close to one of our favorite people: Aaron Brown, the host of "NEWSNIGHT," who likes to keep the temperature here a very comfortable 11 degrees.
Thank you very much for joining us. I'll see you tomorrow night with pneumonia. Aaron, it's yours.
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