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Israeli Helicopters Strike in Gaza City; Franks Briefs Bush on War Strategy; Prosecutors of Two America West Pilots Release Videotape

Aired August 5, 2002 - 22:00   ET


ANDERSON COOPER, GUEST HOST: Good evening, everyone. The war on terror, in particular strategies for fighting at tops are broadcast this evening. And when it comes to strategy, it's hard to argue with a guy like Anthony Cordesman. He's a respected expert at a top think tank, in case you didn't know. He's a national security analyst for ABC News, and he's received the Defense Department's Distinguished Service Medal. If you look up the word "wonk" in the dictionary, you'll probably find his picture.

Cordesman thinks that when analyzing the perils and pitfalls of the war on terror, you need look no further than Buffy. That's right. Buffy, the vampire slayer. "The New York Times" dug up Cordesman's report irresistibly titled "Biological Warfare and the Buffy Paradigm." We are not kidding. And in case your kids haven't forced you to watch it, here's a little Buffy right there. Buffy has kept lovely Sunnyvale, California demon and vampire free five years running. With a record like that, you might think Cordesman might have high praise for her.

But no. According to Cordesman, Buffy and her cohorts don't learn from their mistakes or plan at all for the next threat. In a nutshell, Buffy is not reflective enough. Cordesman says we need to be better than Buffy. Something to keep in mind tonight as we examine a new report in "TIME" magazine about whether we missed the chance to prevent September 11. By the way, tonight we, too, hope to be better than Buffy.

We start off tonight with "The Whip." After a weekend of brutal violence in the Middle East, today Israel struck back today. John Vause is in Jerusalem. John, a headline.

JOHN VAUSE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, an airstrike in Gaza. Israel says it destroys a weapons-making factory, and it comes, as you say, after a spate of terror attacks on Israelis. Still these two sides continue to talk, even as the missiles were falling on Gaza -- Anderson.

COOPER: All right, back to you in a moment. Talk strategy for another military campaign against Iraq. Jamie McIntyre is at the Pentagon tonight with his headline -- Jamie.

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SENIOR PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, U.S. Army General Tommy Franks briefed President Bush today and his national security team on the current thinking of the best way to use military force to oust Saddam Hussein from Iraq.

COOPER: Also tonight, a new look at those America West pilots who were drinking before flying. There's now a videotape. Mark Potter is in Miami with the headline.

MARK POTTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, you are right. Prosecutors today released a security camera video from a Miami area sports bar, which they think will help bolster their case against two America West pilots accused of operating an aircraft while intoxicated. Those pilots also faced a Miami judge today who laid down the law -- Anderson.

COOPER: All right, Mark, it is an amazing video. We'll be back with you in a moment. Back with all of you, in fact.

Also coming up later on NEWSNIGHT, bloodshed at Fort Bragg. A recent string of murders. We'll talk about what's behind them with a local reporter who knows the terrain very well.

Also tonight, what did the Clinton administration know about al Qaeda and what did they pass on to the Bush administration? We'll talk with Elaine Kamarck, once a top adviser to President Clinton.

We'll also look at new developments in the crime that has shaken Chicago and much of the country: Two men beaten to death after they had an accident in the South Side.

Also an update on a little girl lost, one you may not know about, Alexis Patterson (ph) of Milwaukee, missing for months now. We'll talk with the cartoonist who's trying to keep her story alive with his drawings.

And Serena Altschul kicks off a special segment for us: Vanishing breed, the time-honored professions that are disappearing before our very eyes. Tonight, what's happening to your friendly neighborhood barber.

We have a lot to cover tonight. We begin with the Middle East. A weekend of Palestinian attacks, and tonight the Israeli response. Both sides are making new efforts at diplomacy. The U.S. and Egypt are also taking part. But while the diplomats talk, the bombers strike. The helicopters hit back. And the bulldozers roll. Here's again CNN's John Vause.


VAUSE (voice-over): Israel had promised a swift military response against Hamas targets, and it came over Gaza. Attack helicopters fired three missiles into the southern end of the city, known to be home to many Hamas leaders. This attack destroying a steel factory. Israel says it was used for making weapons.

On the ground, three buildings were left burning, and witnesses say four people were slightly wounded. It has been two weeks since the last airstrike on Gaza. An F-16 dropped a one-ton bomb on an apartment building, killing a senior Hamas leader, his deputy and 13 civilians.

Hamas and other militant groups vowed revenge, and what followed was a wave of deadly attacks. The Hebrew University. A bus in northern Israel. Shootings on the West Bank, and also in East Jerusalem. In less than a week, more than 20 dead, more than 100 wounded.

Israel moved to lock down the West Bank, banning travel to and from Palestinian cities; no one in, no one out. Demolishing family homes of those Israel blames for the terrorist attacks and moving to deport their relatives to the Gaza Strip.

Despite the crackdown, a suicide bomber still got through, only stopped, it seems, by accident. The car he was in was ripped apart when his explosives detonated prematurely. He was killed; the driver seriously hurt.


VAUSE: Now, despite the violence, or perhaps because of it, senior Palestinian officials have met with Israel's defense minister and head of the security services. They met here in Jerusalem. Palestinian sources tell us that the meeting discussed the Gaza Jericho plan. That would see Israeli forces withdrawing from relatively quiet areas of the West Bank or areas where the Palestinian Authority still has some infrastructure intact. And if that works, if handing over the security to the Palestinian officials in that part of the West Bank, if that works, it could be extended to other cities on the West Bank.

Now, these Palestinian sources tell us that the meeting was at Israel's request, and it does in fact have the approval of the Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon -- Anderson.

COOPER: John, you've spent a lot of time in the region. Give me a sense for the average Israeli citizen. How tight is security? What is it like for you in Jerusalem, say, moving around? How common is it for you to be stopped, for you to run into security personnel?

VAUSE: Yes. It happens almost couple of times a day, actually. There are checkpoints all throughout Jerusalem. Jerusalem, because it's so close to the West Bank, is always on a high alert, it seems. There are checkpoints wherever you go. The police are very vigilant. There are security guards on every door. It seems that all the restaurants, all the shopping centers employ their very own heavily armed security guards, and it is more so now than it has been for quite some time.

It seems impossible to imagine how they could ramp up security any more than it was, but they do. They put hospitals on alert, they take police off training schedules and out of the administration jobs and put them on the streets. They put their security forces on tighter rotations when they are manning those checkpoints. But Israelis seem to be taking this in their strides. It seems to be almost a feeling here of here we go again, what can be done. And that is why this could be one of the reasons behind Israel, at least according to the Palestinians, Israel requesting this meeting to try to find a political solution, because it seems it's becoming very obvious that the military solution is not working, and many Israelis now believe that there has to be some other option out there. The military cannot stop all the suicide bombers.

COOPER: Thanks very much, John.

Now Iraq and the president's briefing today. He met with a man who would probably run a war with Iraq if there is going to be a war. No answer to that question today, will there be a war. No hint either that there is even a plan for going to war. Just a briefing. Here again, CNN's Jamie McIntyre.


MCINTYRE (voice-over): President Bush returned to the White House for what administration officials were insisting was a routine meeting of his national security team, but Pentagon sources say Army General Tommy Franks was to brief the president on war planning in Iraq, the latest thinking on how a military ouster of Saddam Hussein might go. One Pentagon official termed it a good proposal for a plan, but Pentagon sources say Mr. Bush will not be asked for a decision and will still be able to issue the same denial he has for months.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: As I've said repeatedly, I have no plans on my desk at this point in time.

MCINTYRE: While making no secret of its desire to remove Saddam Hussein from power and replace him with a friendlier regime, the Bush administration is keeping a tight lid on the state of war planning. Sources say only a handful of people in the Pentagon have access to the information. But it will be difficult, if not impossible, for the U.S. to mount a surprise attack, given the movement of troops, planes and ships that would be required even for a low-end option.

There are currently over 50,000 troops in the Gulf region, in large part because of the current operation in Afghanistan. Pentagon sources say there has been no significant buildup of U.S. forces recently, although the number of ground troops in Kuwait is about 10,000, roughly twice the usual amount.


MCINTYRE: So, Anderson, while President Bush can say there are no war plans on his desk, there are war plans in the works. Although there's no indication that any action is imminent. In fact, there is no indication that President Bush has made that formal decision to attack Iraq.

There are, however, indications that the war may be drawing nearer. One of them, I noticed today several key Pentagon officials had been told, they had been urged to take their vacations sooner rather than later, specifically take it this month if they could -- Anderson.

COOPER: Jamie, any sense of how many serious options there are for an invasion of Iraq? How many possibilities are there?

MCINTYRE: Well, of course the details of the plan are secret, but it does appear that the U.S. is focusing on a single approach, although as part of that approach, there are several subsets of options that are included. But the U.S. is focusing, the planning is narrowing down on a concept of how it might be done. But again, President Bush today just briefed; he wasn't asked to sign off on anything.

COOPER: All right, Jamie, thanks very much tonight.

There hasn't been this much ruckus about two people caught drinking since -- well, since last year, when the Bush twins were snagged trying to order margaritas at a Mexican restaurant. We're talking about the America West pilots who last month were minutes away from takeoff before they were ordered back. Security personnel said they had smelled alcohol on them. Today, Miami police released a videotape from a security camera in a sports bar. Apparently, for these two pilots the pre-flight planning included a lengthy visit to Mr. Moe's (ph). Once again, here's Mark Potter.


POTTER (voice-over): Authorities released the video to defense attorneys and the media. It was taken by security cameras at a Miami area sports bar. Prosecutors claim it shows the two former America West pilots drinking and playing pool with others the night before they were supposed to fly 124 passengers to Phoenix. A bar receipt indicates one of the pilots ran up a $142 bill, from about 11:00 o'clock p.m., to nearly 4:30 in the morning. Their scheduled flight was six hours later.

The receipt lists the equivalent of 30 beers, a martini and a hamburger. Although defense attorneys point out the check does not show how many people the pilots paid for or who drank what amount.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: State of Florida versus Thomas Cloyd and Christopher Hughes.

POTTER: In the first court appearance since the arrest the two men, through their attorneys, asked for travel privileges while free on bond awaiting trial. But Miami-Dade Circuit Judge David Young thought it was a bad idea.

JUDGE DAVID YOUNG, MIAMI-DADE CIRCUIT COURT: The court has some problems with it. We have two individuals charged with very serious crimes, and they have to understand there's some consequences to their actions.

POTTER: 44-year-old Thomas Cloyd and 41-year-old Christopher Hughes asked the court's permission to return to their homes in Arizona and to travel to Missouri and Texas before trial. YOUNG: They can stay in Arizona, but they are not flying around. They are not going to go to Texas and they're not going to go to Missouri. They are staying in Arizona.

POTTER: In fact, the judge ordered them to report in once a week and seized their passports, saying he didn't want them flying out of the country.

YOUNG: There's no bar for them getting a crop duster and flying wherever they want to fly, because they know how to use an airplane. That's what's concerning me.

POTTER: The pilots were arrested July 1 after Miami airport security screeners reported the men appeared drunk before boarding an America West jet, which was ordered back to the terminal. Police say the pilots took breathalyzer tests and were still legally intoxicated more than two hours after they were scheduled to take off.


POTTER: The trial date has now been set for October 21. The defense attorneys have said they might consider a plea bargain, depending on what the prosecution offers. If the pilots go to trial and are convicted, they could face up to six years in prison -- Anderson.

COOPER: Mark, you said that I guess they left the bar around 4:30. The flight was six hours later. What's the time limit that they are supposed to be between having the last drink and flying? Is there a limit?

POTTER: There is, and America West has a very strict limit. It's 12 hours, and they were certainly within that. It appears that there was another hour between leaving the bar and checking into their hotel rooms; that would be about 5:30 in the morning. The flight took off at 10:38. There wasn't much time for sleeping there. That may be another problem that aviation officials are concerned about. Not only does it appear that they were intoxicated, they may have been exhausted.

COOPER: All right, Mark, thanks very much tonight.

Coming up on NEWSNIGHT: What should be done at ground zero? We'll look at more of your ideas. But up next, what the government knew about al Qaeda in the weeks, months and years before 9/11.


COOPER: The White House took issue today with a story running in this week's "TIME" magazine. A piece that says in essence that the Bush administration was briefed by the outgoing Clinton administration on plans to strike al Qaeda. Now, according to the article, the briefing took place in January of last year. There was a PowerPoint presentation. The title of slide 14 read, "response to al Qaeda roll back." Plans included cutting off sources of al Qaeda money, airstrikes on Afghanistan, sending Special Forces there and helping the Afghan resistance take on the Taliban. Sounds kind of familiar.

All that, according to the article, got lost in the transition. No, says the White House. The plans were not all that specific, and did not go far enough in any case. Joining us now to talk about it, Elaine Kamarck, who served in the Clinton administration and was the chief foreign policy adviser to the Gore campaign. She comes to us tonight from Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Thanks for being with us tonight.

What do you make of this "TIME" magazine article?

ELAINE KAMARCK, PROFESSOR, HARVARD UNIVERSITY KENNEDY SCHOOL: I think that it's a very fascinating piece of journalism and that Michael Elliott and his colleagues at "TIME" should be congratulated for it. It also is a real cautionary tale about presidential transitions. Every president and his team comes into office, and they are pretty full of themselves and they are pretty arrogant. And a lot of times they come in and they miss the important messages that people are trying to convey to them.

And one of the stories that runs through, one of the themes that runs through this "TIME" magazine piece is a story of the reluctance to listen carefully to the important messages that I think the Clinton administration were telling the new administration they had learned.

COOPER: And is this something you had heard from -- I mean, you worked in the administration -- is it something you had heard from the outgoing people in the administration as well?

KAMARCK: Yes. Let me clarify, I was not a foreign policy adviser to the vice president. I was a general adviser, and I advised on reinventing government. But we certainly heard many -- a lot of this stuff since September 11. We have heard a lot of this just from talk about what people knew and when they knew. And it was clear that beginning in '93, with the World Trade Center, going to the Khobar Towers, to the bombings of our embassies, the millennium plots in '99 that a picture was emerging that the United States government was watching very carefully.

And I think that the important thing about this story is that when the Bush administration came in, Sandy Berger and the foreign policy team and the permanent government had been very, very, very concerned about what was happening, and they were trying to tell them, pay attention to this. We have watched it develop and we are really nervous about it.

COOPER: But as you well know, there are plenty of people who criticizes the Clinton administration for not moving more aggressively against al Qaeda, for not recognizing Osama bin Laden as a threat, and even in their actions against Osama bin Laden, sending a cruise missile as really too little of a response.

KAMARCK: Well, it's clear that there was a presidential finding several years before Clinton left office. The presidential finding gave clear directives to the military, to the CIA to catch this guy. The Bush administration hasn't been successful in catching Osama bin Laden either. So it's obviously hard to get him, hard to know whether he's dead or alive, and hard to know where he is.

COOPER: There was, however...

KAMARCK: But they did know that he was a threat.

COOPER: There was, however, it would seem, an unwillingness on the part of many in the Clinton administration, in particularly the president, to commit ground troops to operations. I mean, in the wake of Somalia, it seems, you know, the idea of sending in U.S. forces to a region was not looked on very favorably.

KAMARCK: I think there was some hesitancy about it, that's clear. That comes out in the article. But again, remember, this is all hindsight. And we are looking at it now from the perspective of September 11.

COOPER: Do you think anything would have changed had the Bush -- I mean, if this article is correct and the Bush administration did not in fact take to heart, listen to the briefing that they received from the Clinton administration, do you think anything would have been different had had they listened to it more responsibly in terms of 9/11? Would it have been prevented?

KAMARCK: Oh, I think it's possible to say that. We don't know what might have happened. After all, some of these hijackers were already in the country. They were already in flight schools. Who knows what may have happened if we had managed to cut off their funds or even done something simple like that, you may have disrupted some of the operation.

I think that's very, very difficult to know. I think the cautionary tale in this piece is that when you come in, you have to check your arrogance at the door when you come into the White House, and try to listen to what has been learned and what people are trying to tell you about what they have experienced and what they see coming.

COOPER: All right. Elaine Kamarck, thanks very much for joining us tonight.

Coming up later on NEWSNIGHT, the passing of one of the great all-time sports announcers, Chick Hearn. And up next, what the White House wants to do about missing children and what one cartoonist is already doing.


COOPER: There are a couple of developments to report tonight regarding missing children. We are told to expect a Rose Garden announcement tomorrow at the White House. President Bush plans to hold a conference on missing and exploited children. The meeting will take place September 24 at George Washington University. It will apparently bring together lawmakers, police, teachers and other experts in the field.

Also, in southern California, prosecutors say they will seek the death penalty against Alejandro Avila, the man accused of kidnapping and killing Samantha Runnion. Avila is charged with murder, kidnapping and committing forcible lewd acts on a child. Now, it's those two last counts that the law considers special circumstances meriting a sentence of death.

And our next story is really several stories of a number of girls who have not gotten the same attention as Samantha Runnion or Danielle van Dam for that matter. Rilya Wilson in Florida, Precious Doe (ph), Kansas City and Alexis Patterson in Milwaukee. Our guest tonight has made those children and many more like them his cause and that of a super hero he happens to know. The super hero is Omega Man, showing you a picture of him here, hero of the series "Zenith (ph) Omega Man Beyond." He also appears on a trading card, which features the pictures of missing girls on one side, and on the other side, information on who to contact if you see them.

Omega Man's creator is Alonzo Washington. He joins us tonight from Kansas City. Thank you very much for joining us.

ALONZO WASHINGTON, CREATOR, OMEGA-7 COMICS: It's a pleasure to be here, sir.

COOPER: What gave you the idea to do this?

WASHINGTON: Well, I looked at all the various media coverage on the other children and I knew of a number of African-American children missing, and I would see their stories in the local press but didn't see them nationally. And instead of just complain about it, I wanted to do something to change that and also raise the issue.

COOPER: And is that the difference, in your opinion, between these young women and the other children, that they are African- American? I mean, is that simply the difference that separates them?

WASHINGTON: I think that's the only difference that separates them. That in that they are not capturing the attention of the national media. And I think in this day and age, particularly after post-September 11, when we are supposed to be united, all children should be looked at.

I mean, according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, black children are missing at a disproportionate number. And I just think that the media should tell us that side of the story as well.

COOPER: So, I mean, is it, in your opinion, simply racism?

WASHINGTON: I think it's writing off where these kids are from, their social background and it's somewhat racism. I think when producers look at white children, they identify with them. And I think when they look at children from the inner city, they simply do not.

But I think as -- I think responsible journalists and citizens should care about all children. I'm an activist. I do safety campaigns for children of all races. I just felt like I had to use the power of Omega Man to speak up for the voiceless. And Samantha Runnion and the others deserve all the press that they receive, but a Precious Doe (ph), Alexis Patterson, Jaheed Turner (ph), various children that are not famous deserve that same type of media coverage.

COOPER: I just really don't think anyone would argue with you on that point. How does it work? I mean, how do your trading cards work? There are small cards that you give out?

WASHINGTON: Yes, I give them out at expos, police departments hand them out. You know, I travel all over the country with various expos. And I will be visiting these various cities where these kids are missing from to raise attention on it. Then also with the comic book, they are sold nationally and places like Osco Drugs, Wal-Mart. And inside, the stories you see the pictures of these missing children. So I'm using my medium to publicize these children.

COOPER: Have any of the children so far been found?

WASHINGTON: None whatsoever, but this program just started, and hopefully they will be.

COOPER: And what was it -- was there a particular case that got you involved in this?

WASHINGTON: Well, yes, the case of Precious Doe in Kansas City. This was a decapitated child found in the woods. And, you know, the local media, local police was kind of lackluster in dealing with the case. And as an activist, I stepped out to really mobilize the community around her. And I was able to do that, able to collect 5,000 signatures to get her story on "America's Most Wanted." And, you know, parents from across the country that are African-American began to contact me and others to find out if their child was Precious Doe. In fact, they thought Rilya Wilson was Precious Doe. And, you know, that's the child that was lost by the DCF system.

And I think it's very interesting that President Bush is calling a summit on missing children. I hope he includes our children because, you know, his brother is over the DCF system in Florida, and I know that he called out all the federal authorities for Samantha Runnion. But with Rilya Wilson, we didn't see that federal help. In fact, it was just a story about the foul-ups of the DCF and, you know, Rilya Wilson is still missing. So I think that we need to be searching for her and it would be a good suggestion for President Bush to call on some of his federal powers to help his brother.

COOPER: All right. Alonzo Washington, thanks so much for joining us tonight. It was really interesting. And good luck with the comic and the trading cards.

WASHINGTON: Thank you for having me, sir.

COOPER: All right. We go to Washington -- to Chicago now and a case that has horrified the city as well as much of the country, for that matter. Two men beaten to death by a mob after their van jumped a curb and hit a group of people. Yesterday, the judge described what happened as nothing short of a riot in the street. A prosecutor saying that one of the alleged attackers stomped and kicked the victims until he was out of breath. There were arrests over the weekend as well as a remembrance of the victims by dozens of ministers who visited the spot where they were killed.

Today, another innocent person died as a result of the incident, one of the women who was hit by the van. Here's David Mattingly.


DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It started last Tuesday afternoon with a rented van out of control, crashing into the front porch of a Chicago home. Three women on the porch were injured. At the time, one critically. All three were sent to the hospital. But details of what happened next, a violent, angry mob, the murders of the two men in the van, are only now becoming clear.

TERRY HILLIARD, CHICAGO POLICE: That was a simple accident, a simple accident, traffic accident, crash accident. And for a mob to pull these individuals from the vehicle and beat him them the way they did, you know, you would think that you was in some third-world country.

MATTINGLY: According to prosecutors, Robert Tucker punched and dragged out of the van the 62-year-old driver Jack Moore. 16-year-old Antonio Fort allegedly did the same to 49-year-old passenger Anthony Stuckey. Prosecutors allege Henry Lawrence joined in the attack, kicking and punching the driver, his brother Roosevelt Lawrence allegedly stomping on the passenger. Both men reportedly related to two of the crash victims. The 16-year-old attacker, along with 20- year-old Lamont Motes allegedly smashed the driver's head with a block of concrete. Both Moore and Stuckey later died.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How many people were beating these men?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I couldn't even tell you; it was so many. It was so many guys jumping -- jumping in there.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was like a crowd?


MATTINGLY: In all, seven men were taken into custody. But based on eyewitness accounts, authorities believe more may have been involved. Charges include two counts of first degree murder. The teenager, Antonio Fort, is charged as an adult. But one defense attorney argues police moved to arrest too quickly, that the real killers may still be loose. Another attorney says his client wasn't involved in the beatings at all. He was instead attending to one of the women struck by the van.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: James Ausley (ph) is as innocent of this crime as you and I are. He was simply there only to help the victim.

MATTINGLY: 26-year-old Shawna Lawrence was one of the three women injured in the crash. She died shortly, afternoon Monday, of internal injuries. The other two have been released from the hospital. Meanwhile, a community works to address the tragic outbreak of violence.

ROOSEVELT WATKINS, COMMUNITY PASTOR: Unfortunately we have terrorism right here in our own city, in our own backyard, and we are bringing an end to the terrorism and the violence that's in our community.

MATTINGLY: The seven suspects remain in jail without bond, while authorities continue to look for others -- possibly as many as 20 from an angry mob that killed two men.

David Mattingly, CNN.


COOPER: NEWSNIGHT has been asking you for your ideas on what to do with ground zero here in New York. The CNN Web gods tells us that we are getting so many suggestions, we can barely keep up with them. We appreciate all of your suggestions. Going to take a look now at just a few of the ones we got over the weekend.

This one, Patrick, calls these towers "the twins." Buildings that will face in all compass directions, one north/south, the other east/west. He also think also the design reminds us of the number 11.

This one does, too. Michael in Nevada calls his design "risen," a pair of stainless steel towers, one of them 1,500 feet high, quote, "an enduring symbol of American strength and unity," that's how he describes it.

This one looks like some blades of grass to some, but Anne in Massachusetts says they're supposed to be buildings representing seven continents. "Very organic," she says.

This one from Gregory in New York, "A 21st Century Eiffel Tower," he calls it, the tallest on the planet. It would help restore the skyline and would have a three-acre memorial reflecting pond at the base.

Jamie in the Bronx wants two new towers as tall as the original ones. In the center, a 12-story memorial with two reflecting pools and an indoor park with trees.

A final one tonight from David and Bridgette in Schenectady, New York. Five buildings to create the points of a star; a sixth building shaped like the Pentagon. In the center, courtyard surrounded by a pool of water and a grass park.

Keep the ideas coming. Go to, and follow the link to sending your proposal.

Still to come on NEWSNIGHT, what has happened to the neighborhood barber? They are part of a vanishing breed, that is to be sure.

But up next, we'll talk about a mysterious rash of murders at an American military base.


COOPER: When we last looked at this story, there had been four killings at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Four soldiers' wives were dead; their husbands either charged with the killings, or dead themselves, having killed themselves as well.

Now there are five killings. The latest happened on the 23rd of July. The victim this time an Army special forces major. Police have arrested his wife, and today also picked up a 15-year-old in connection with the killing. All this, five killings in less than two months. We asked it then, is there something about a military base during wartime that makes for domestic violence? It is a question we must ask again tonight.

Joining us now, a reporter who has been asking the same question, Tanya Biank, a military affairs reporter for the "Fayetteville Observer." Thanks very much for being with us tonight, Tanya.

TANYA BIANK, FAYETTEVILLE OBSERVER: Hi, Anderson. Thank you for having me.

COOPER: What are people saying down at Fort Bragg? I mean, this is obviously a huge story down there. What is on people's minds?

BIANK: Well, first, Anderson, I want to tell you that these have been very troubling and sad times for the Fayetteville and Fort Bragg communities. People are just devastated by the string of murders that have happened over the past several weeks.

COOPER: Is there anything...

BIANK: I do want to say...

COOPER: Go ahead.

BIANK: I do also want to say, it's very important to note this up front, that the majority of military couples do not deal with their problems in their marriages through violence.

Now that being said, since I first wrote about this story about a week and a half ago, I have been inundated with calls, e-mails and letters from military wives and former wives who have shared with me abuse in their marriages, and for many of these women, they are sharing their stories for the first time. And for this group of women, this is telling us that somehow these women fell through the cracks of a system that was meant to support them, and that is something that is not just a problem here at Fort Bragg or in the Army, but also military wide. And I believe that it's something that the Department of Defense, as well as Congress, will have to look at, and it may result in both institutional and systemic changes in how the military views and handles domestic violence within its ranks.

COOPER: Well, really, two things I want to ask you tonight. The only common link in many of these cases seem to be that the men were serving in Afghanistan and obviously had been away for a long period of time. Is that, does that play a role? I mean, the separation that so many of these families have to endure? And I think it's the thing a lot of people who are not in the military don't understand. I mean, the difficulty that is involved with being separated from your loved one for so long.

BIANK: Right. Many military families will tell you perhaps the hardest part of being part of a military family are these separations, the military deployment. And here at Fort Bragg, that means separations that can last anywhere from three months to nine months out of the year. And these soldiers, Anderson, are not going to the world's garden spots. They are going to dangerous places. And sometimes, they can't even tell their loved ones where they are deploying to.

COOPER: I'm sorry to interrupt. We don't have much time, and I just want to get one other question in before we go. What is the military doing about this? I know you said you have talked to a lot of wives and who have called you up. Do they feel there's a support system for them?

BIANK: The wives, again, it depends on who you talk to and it depends on the chain of command, the husband's chain of command. Some women feel there is a good support system, and other women feel that there has been no support system for them at all.

COOPER: All right. Thank you very much for joining us tonight. It is a very strange story, to say the least, and one we, no doubt, will be interested in following.

Tanya Biank, we appreciate you joining us tonight.

Some other stories from around the nation, beginning in Florida with a story about school vouchers. A voucher plan backed by Governor Jeb Bush was declared unconstitutional with just weeks to go before classes resume. A Florida circuit judge ruled that the state's constitution does not allow public money to go to religious schools, where most kids in a voucher program end up. The governor vowed to appeal.

President Bush met today with the nine Pennsylvania coal miners rescued last week, describing their story as the best of America. A big day for the miners in another way: They sold the rights to their story to Disney in a deal that will give them $150,000 a piece.

And a piece of history today was retrieved from the floor of the Atlantic. The gun turret of the USS Monitor raised nearly 140 years after the warship sank during a storm. Divers over the weekend removed most of a human skeleton found inside the turret, believed to be one of the 16 sailors who dies when the ship sank back in 1862.

Coming up on NEWSNIGHT, the first in our series of reports on vanishing jobs. We'll start with the friendly neighborhood barber.

And up next: he coined phrases like "airball," "slam dunk," the life of announcer Chick Hearn. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Anyone who watches basketball, anyone who listens to it will never forget the voice of Chick Hearn, the voice of the Los Angeles Lakers. We speak tonight in the past tense because we will never hear his voice against except in highlight reels and, perhaps in memory.

Chick Hearn died tonight after an accident at his home late last week. He was 85.

Keith Olbermann knew the voice and the man, and joins us tonight with a remembrance.

KEITH OLBERMANN, NEWSNIGHT SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, much more than just a basketball or sports announcer. Really sort of a transcendent figure in that community, in which I lived for 10 years.

In ever more sprawling, ever more diverse, ever more different southern California there have been many times in the last 40 years when Los Angeles has seemed like 30 cultures and 60 suburbs that had one basketball team in common. That team was the Los Angeles Lakers. And the glue that held that team together was not a player, but an announcer.


(voice-over): He did not invent basketball, but in Los Angeles it sure seemed that way.

There's going to be some exciting play off games.

OLBERMANN: Before Francis Dale "Chick" Hearn, basketball did not have the term "airball" nor "showtime" nor:


OLBERMANN: But Chick Hearn was a lot more than just a collection of descriptive catch phrases. When the Lakers moved to Los Angeles in 1960, there was no other pro basketball team west of Minneapolis. Even the college dynasty at UCLA was in the future.

The Lakers were a fringe team playing a fringe sport, just so many more relocated Midwesterners. But they a secret weapon, a man who called himself Chicky Baby.

So colorful, so non-stop was his play-by-play, usually broadcast simultaneously on radio and TV, that Hearn soon came to symbolize the team. By the '70s that was so true that the Lakers frequently sent him to New York to make their selections in the annual college player draft.

Hearn's endurance was also legendary. He missed a Lakers broadcast on November 20, 1965. When heart valve surgery was required, he missed another. Last December he had announced 3,338 consecutive games. HEARN: I went on NPR (ph), and the guy told me, hey, you're getting near 1,000 consecutive games. And after that I started thinking about it. Well, 2,000 came and I thought, gee, this is crazy. What am I doing this for? And my wife said, well, you asked for a job, didn't you? And I got it.

OLBERMANN: Yet he had really wanted to work for another team. In 1953 the baseball St. Louis Cardinals sought a new announcer. Their two finalists were the play-by-play man from their farm team in Rochester, New York, Jack Buck and a young sportscaster from Peoria, Illinois, Chick Hearn.

They chose Buck. He held the job for 48 years before his death in June, a revered part of the cultural fabric of St. Louis.

Last month Ned Martin, for 32 years the announcer of Boston Red Sox games died, his voice still echoing through remembered New England summers past.

And now another giant, another narrator of a community's entertainment and identity is gone.

HEARN: This game is in the refrigerator, the door is closed, the lights are out. The eggs are cooling, the butter is getting hard and the Jell-O is jiggling.


OLBERMANN: He signed off virtually every Laker game that had already been decided before the final buzzer.

Chick Hearn was almost comically gruff with his producers, even with players whose games he covered. Though clearly on the side of the Lakers and their fans, he never hesitated to criticize them, their coaches, their management, or even his fellow announcers.

Walt Frazier, long-time player, long-time announcer of the New York Knicks once wrote that to be Hearn's on-air partner, an announcer had to know only four words: Right you are, Chick.

Stu Lantz, who was Hearn's last on-air partner, would smile whenever he heard that, and then add: but he is right.

Chick Hearn was 85 -- Anderson.

COOPER: Wow. You knew him. What was he like?

OLBERMANN: He was a larger-than-life guy, like so many of the sportscasters who started in his era, and especially in Los Angeles. The guy sort of held the fabric of life together.

But he used to work halfway up the seats in the old Forum in Inglewood. He didn't work courtside until they moved to the new building. And he would walk up to these seats, through the fans often, and certainly after the games, when the fans were still there, and say hello to everybody. And he would be the friend to the fan, and often the enemy to the players and refs, and even the guys supposedly on his team.

COOPER: Did you get to call him Chicky Baby?

OLBERMANN: That was a third-person reference that he reserved for himself to himself, and we had all had too much respect for him. He was a good man and yet, at the same time, a great figure in that community.

COOPER: All right, Keith, thanks very much. That was really nice.

Next on NEWSNIGHT: They're one of a vanishing breed: neighborhood barbers. Their story next.


COOPER: Ah, "Segment 7." Now, in a minute we'll get to the beginning of our series called "Vanishing Breed." But first, here's something that can't vanish fast enough. "The Anna Nicole Smith Show." Did you see it last night? I mean, I like tacky TV, but Anna Nicole was too much. She can fill out a blouse, but not half-an-hour of television, even on E!. Take a look. This was a typical moment.



Hold on, I have got to eat something.


COOPER: Now, before I watched last night's show, I used to think of Anna Nicole as the Madonna of mobile homes, giving hope to cosmetically enhanced women everywhere that if you jiggled in a strip bar long enough and manually (ph) manipulated the right man, you too could one day upgrade to a double-wide. The long distance love affair with a nonagenerian husband gave hope to women that maybe good men weren't that hard to find. Sure, they may have glaucoma, be hard of hearing and have an oxygen tank, but hey, they're out there.

To me, Anna Nicole was, to paraphrase Churchill, a riddle wrapped in a pringle inside a hot pocket. Seeing Ms. Smith slur, stumble and stagger surrounded by slimy sycophants broke whatever illusions I might have had. Dream dies hard. My advice to Anna Nicole, stay in bead, eat some bonbons, and watch trash TV, don't try to make it yourself.

Finally from us tonight, the start of an occasional segment here on NEWSNIGHT that we're calling "Vanishing Breed." The great and noble profession of a bygone era, ones that are disappearing by the day. Tonight, a place to get the shave and a haircut where everybody knows your name and probably a whole lot more. The neighborhood barber. The story from Serena Altschul.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) SERENA ALTSCHUL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): This barber shop that we are going into now was founded in 1906. Can you believe it? Here in Brooklyn, Park Slope, come on in.

(voice-over): John Fumafrado (ph) runs this shop with his two brothers. And like many traditional barber shops, it has been passed down through generations.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's been in the family for over 50 years, and it's a neighborhood place. The people like it. And they like the atmosphere. We do fairly good work. They love the music.

ALTSCHUL (on camera): Conversation?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Conversation. Anything they want to talk about, we can talk.

ALTSCHUL: So you are a regular then?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah, I'm a regular.

ALTSCHUL: And what do you like about coming in here?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's more personal. It's not like corporate, business like. It's a more relaxed atmosphere. You know, you come in, you can read your paper, the magazines. You wait your turn, get your haircut, and you leave.

ALTSCHUL: So it's -- maybe it's not so much about the haircut, it's more about the music and the good company and the reading the paper?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, no, no. Not only that. They are good barbers, too.

ALTSCHUL: And cheap.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think these places offer a value that the kind of fast-food hair cutting chains don't offer. It's the quality. It's the ambiance. It's a good haircut, as well.

ALTSCHUL: So how is it?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think it's fine.

ALTSCHUL: Yeah, it looks excellent to me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That looks good. Actually put a few more hairs back right there.

ALTSCHUL: Did he? He added a couple of extra ones there for free?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I don't know if they're for free. ALTSCHUL: Right, you'll see when you get the check.

(voice-over): 67-year-old Tony Martez (ph), like most remaining master barbers, is past retirement age. He has worked in this shop for 40 years.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The customers we have, they are very, very nice people. We don't have any complaint from anybody.

ALTSCHUL (on camera): They always come back.


ALTSCHUL: Why do you come to a barber shop and not go to some fancy spa?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, you can accumulate the experience in here and you can add that up to about 300 years, because most people have been cutting hair here for at least 25, 30 years.

ALTSCHUL: So how is it, how do you like the cut?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Wonderful. Except for the gray hair in my hair, but that's natural.

ALTSCHUL: That's the look. That's in style right now. Anderson Cooper started that fashion.

(voice-over): Unfortunately, charm and experience haven't been enough to compete with the bigger, fast-paced salons.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Right now, people are into unisex. It's a bigger buck item. They don't want to work in places like this. It's a dying barber shop itself. Around here any way.

ALTSCHUL: Adrian Wood (ph) agrees. His shop has been open for the past 89 years, and he was hoping to eventually pass it down to his daughter. He, too, is worried about the uncertainty of the industry.

(on camera): How do you even find a barber these days?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, if I put an ad in "The New York Times," I probably interview 500 people, and maybe I'll find one person. Most of the people in here are third or fourth generation barbers. It's like trying to get (UNINTELLIGIBLE), you know, there are just no barbers left.

ALTSCHUL (voice-over): But the few we visited that are left have no intention of giving up their trade.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I love what I do. All my life. All my life.

ALTSCHUL (on camera): You never wanted to do anything else?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (UNINTELLIGIBLE). I love it, you know. Makes people happy, you know. ALTSCHUL: I see we have CNN on in the background. Did you do that for us?


ALTSCHUL (voice-over): Although these old-world establishments have now become a dying breed, those that have survived plan to continue to offer what made them popular in the first place -- quality and community.

Serena Altschul, CNN, New York.


COOPER: I like that Serena Altschul. I think she said I have style, which is not true, but I appreciate it anyway.

We would like to get some more suggestions from you for what you think should happen to the site of ground zero. To submit your proposals, you can go to and follow the words to our link.

Thanks very much for joining us on NEWSNIGHT. I'm Anderson Cooper. I'll be back tomorrow night. Aaron will be back the night after that. Good night.


Bush on War Strategy; Prosecutors of Two America West Pilots Release Videotape>



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