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Manhunt Continues in London; Speculation on Troop Withdrawal from Iraq; Democrats Demand Roberts Documents

Aired July 28, 2005 - 09:30   ET


Nine more men arrested in London today in that terror investigation, obviously a broadening one. None of them thought to be one of the suspects from last week's attempted bombings. But clearly, authorities are on to something.

SOLEDAD O'BRIEN, CNN ANCHOR: And coming up this morning, in fact, we're going to talk to an expert about the big picture of terrorism in England and what it's going to take to go from rounding up suspects to bringing down an entire organization. And it's going to be very difficult and a really big struggle, I think it's fair to say.

First though, a check of the headlines with Carol Costello again.

Good morning.


Good morning to all of you.

Now in the news, the International Space Station has some new guests. The crew from the space shuttle Discovery latched on to the space station this morning. Astronauts exchanging handshakes and hugs.

But there is some bad news. NASA announced Wednesday it was grounding future shuttle flights. The problem has to do with a bit of insulating foam that flew off Discovery during Tuesday's launch.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair is welcoming word that the Irish Republican Army is laying down its weapons. The IRA announcing that it will end its decades-long armed campaign and take part in political and democratic reforms.


TONY BLAIR, PRIME MINISTER OF BRITAIN: This is a step of unparalleled magnitude in the recent history of Northern Ireland. The Unionist community in particular and all of us throughout Ireland and the United Kingdom will want to see this clear statement of principle kept to in practice.

(END VIDEO CLIP) COSTELLO: The IRA has said it will disarm, but it will not disband. We are expecting to hear more from leaders in Ireland about this ground-breaking statement. And that should come in less than two hours from now.

A truck crash north of Los Angeles has sparked a quick-moving brush fire. More than 20 acres have been destroyed since the fire started earlier this morning. Authorities say one of the big rigs was carrying a hazardous substance. There are reports of at least one injury.

And if you are hoping to prevent or cure a cold, get this: You may want to scratch Echinacea off the list. Researchers say the herbal remedy does nothing -- absolutely nothing -- to fight the common cold. The study appears in today's edition of the "New England Journal of Medicine."

M. O'BRIEN: Well, now, wait a minute. Wait a minute.

S. O'BRIEN: That's totally depressing.

M. O'BRIEN: If you think it does something, you know, there is the psychological effect.

COSTELLO: You might as well take a sugar pill, then.

M. O'BRIEN: Well, that's what I mean. But there is the psychological effect.

COSTELLO: Yes. But now that people...

M. O'BRIEN: But don't tell people it's sugar pill.

COSTELLO: But now that people know it does nothing, that psychological effect is gone.

M. O'BRIEN: Shh, don't tell them. You just ruined it for them.


S. O'BRIEN: ... Echinacea I have in my cabinet.

COSTELLO: That's right.

S. O'BRIEN: Because it also kind of tastes nasty, too. You suck it down because you think it's going to work.

COSTELLO: Well, that makes you wonder if everything else works, as well, like ginseng is said to help some things, although I can't remember what.


S. O'BRIEN: I think it's memory.

COSTELLO: That's ginkgo biloba. M. O'BRIEN: Now we can't remember. Isn't that classic?

All right. Better press on.


S. O'BRIEN: Let's go back to London now. The manhunt continuing there for three most wanted suspects in last week's attempted bombings. This morning, police arrested nine men in connection with the attacks. They've also arrested three women who are suspected of harboring offenders.

Earlier, I spoke with Sajjan Gohel. He is the director of international security with the Asia-Pacific Foundation. And I asked him if he was surprised by the growing scope of this investigation.


SAJJAN GOHEL, ASIA-PACIFIC FOUNDATION: What we're seeing is that the authorities are following all the leads and information that they're getting. They have to follow it up, because if they don't, it could lead to more problems.

There's already a lot of criticism that they didn't act in advance. So certainly, the heat is on.

The key is now to find out where the remaining three bombers of the July 21st plot are, because, of course, the major fear is that, will they try and plan something again? They failed the first time. They wouldn't want to repeat that the second time.

S. O'BRIEN: Sir Ian Blair said, in fact, that failure should not be interpreted as any kind of incompetence. Let's first listen to what he had to say. And then I'm going to ask you a question on the other side.


COMMISSIONER IAN BLAIR, METROPOLITAN POLICE: The second attacks on the 21st of July should not be taken as some indication there's a weakening of the capability or the resolve of those responsible. This is not the b-team. These weren't the amateurs. They made a mistake. The only made one mistake. And we're very, very lucky.


S. O'BRIEN: Do you think the tone has changed, that they're taking these guys more seriously? For a while, it sort of looked as if, boy, this is a group of copycats. Maybe they didn't really know what they were doing.

GOHEL: Well, this seemed very much like a coordinated follow-up attack, as we have seen in past Al Qaeda-type operations. They like to do a second attack to keep the wounds of the previous atrocity fresh in our mind, the scar etched in our head. And of course, it is a major worry that this cell was very well- planned, it was organized, timed in advance. We were very lucky, because the material, the acetone peroxide, which was the explosive substance, it degrades very quickly.

And it was just by pure chance and luck that they weren't able to orchestrate another mass casualty atrocity, because if they had been successful, we would have had a lot of people dead.

S. O'BRIEN: Well, we look at some of the pictures of these bombs. And they were gotten, I believe, by ABC News from a government official. I want to show them here to you while we talk a little bit about what information is coming from Yasin Hassan Omar.

Is he essentially the key to all of this? Is that why we're seeing more arrests and more progress in this investigation?

GOHEL: Well, he is a central cog. In fact, he was arrested in the northern city of Birmingham. And it's believed that direct intelligence led to his whereabouts.

Now, it's going to be critical to find out from him where the three other individuals are, in particular, Muktar Said Ibrahim, who's the other chapter, has been identified.

And, of course, we need to find out how big the cell is. And the critical dimension to all of this is to see who the handlers were, the people that put the logistics, financing, the operations together, because these are the guys that control all the cells. And the fear is there are more out there, more sleeper cells.


S. O'BRIEN: That's Sajjan Gohel, the terrorism analyst with the Asia-Pacific Foundation -- Miles?

M. O'BRIEN: Now to the much-debated question of a timetable for bringing U.S. troops home from Iraq. The senior coalition commander there said Wednesday that a substantial troop withdrawal could begin in less than a year. But there remain many "ifs" to contend with.

Here is our senior Pentagon correspondent Jamie McIntyre.


JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SENIOR PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Iraq's future and America's exit strategy hinge on troops like these. Iraqi special forces putting on a show for Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who whisked through Iraq Wednesday on a one-day, unannounced inspection tour.

Rumsfeld pressed Iraqi leaders hard to meet the August 15th deadline for a new constitution, the other critical linchpin behind hopes to significantly cut U.S. troops in Iraq by next year.

GEN. GEORGE CASEY, IRAQ MULTI-NATIONAL FORCE: If the political process continues to go positively and if the development of the security forces continues to go as it is going, I do believe we'll still be able to take some fairly substantial reductions after these elections in the spring and summer next year.

MCINTYRE: Casey said the same thing four months ago in an interview with CNN. But recently, Pentagon officials and military commanders have been hinting at details of the draw-down option.

The idea is to turn over large parts of Iraq's relatively peaceful southern and northern provinces to the Iraqi forces, while concentrating the smaller U.S.-led coalition force in the four provinces, including Baghdad, where more than 80 percent of the terrorist attacks take place.

Initial plans call for a cautious troop cut of roughly 25,000 to 35,000 troops, still leaving about 100,000 American forces in place.

LT. GEN. JOHN VINES, DEPUTY COALITION COMMANDER: It would probably be somewhere in that range. That would be my guess. A huge bold shift that injects a lot of risk into the situation is probably not a wise course of action.

MCINTYRE: But others in the Pentagon have argued for bolder reductions to send a strong message the U.S. is leaving, while at the same time reducing the daily toll of American lives. One option outlined in a recent leaked memo from the British government would cut both U.S. and U.K. forces by more than half. But everything depends on Iraq becoming more stable and Iraqi forces more able.

TONY BLAIR, PRIME MINISTER OF BRITAIN: It is the position of Britain, of America, of everybody, that, as the Iraqi force capability builds, so the necessity for our support there diminishes.

MCINTYRE (on-screen): Recent Pentagon reports have cast doubt on the ability of both the Iraqi police and army to take on the insurgents without being propped up by the United States. Still, Pentagon officials argue the exit strategy will work, so long as the U.S. doesn't pull out too soon.

Jamie McIntyre, CNN, the Pentagon.


M. O'BRIEN: Now, the U.S. has set a goal of training and equipping 135,000 Iraqi security officers by the end of next year.

S. O'BRIEN: On Capitol Hill, Democrats are demanding more documents from the White House on Supreme Court nominee John Roberts. But other memos already released are shedding some light on Roberts' legal opinions.

Correspondent Suzanne Malveaux at the White House for us this morning.

Hey, Suzanne, good morning.


S. O'BRIEN: What can you tell about John Roberts, from what you've read in these documents?

MALVEAUX: Well, Soledad, it's an awful lot of reading. But what we get from this is essentially that he really was a Reagan Republican, a conservative true and true. And while some of those opinions, the things he writes about in his formal writings, may reflect the administration's views, you do get a sense from the handwritten notes and candid admissions some more insights about his own opinions.


MALVEAUX (voice-over): On John Roberts' first day at the Justice Department in the summer of 1981, the 26-year-old lawyer was assigned to prepare Sandra Day O'Connor for her Supreme Court confirmation hearings. Roberts, who would be poised to succeed O'Connor on the high court nearly a quarter-century later, advised her, quote, "avoid giving specific responses to any direct questions on legal issues."

Some legal scholars believe Roberts will take a similar tact.

EDWARD LAZARUS, FMR. SUPREME COURT CLERK: These memos indicate that he's got very strong convictions and very strong beliefs, and that he's going to be extremely direct in saying, "I'm not going to answer those questions."

MALVEAUX: On judicial activism, documents show Roberts discouraged it, supporting Republican legislation instead that would limit the Supreme Court's jurisdiction over abortion, busing, and school prayer.

LAZARUS: It will be very curious to see whether someone who's about to go onto the Supreme Court has the same view of limited Supreme Court power that he espoused 23 years ago.

MALVEAUX: On affirmative action, Roberts rejected a positive report about the program by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, saying, "There is no recognition of the obvious reason for failure. The affirmative action program required the recruiting of inadequately prepared candidates."

On school desegregation, Roberts questioned the efficacy of busing in a draft letter for the attorney general, saying, "We do not believe busing is necessary to provide the equal educational opportunity mandated by Brown," the Supreme Court decision that made segregation of public facilities unconstitutional.

And on sex discrimination, Roberts advocated limits to the law affecting gender equality for college sports. Meanwhile, back on Capitol Hill, Democrats are focusing on the documents they haven't seen.

SEN. PATRICK LEAHY (D), VERMONT: The White House is eager to supply documents it selected and, certainly, provided with great fanfare. But we have yet to receive the documents that we have, in fact, requested.


MALVEAUX: And the Senate Judiciary Committee is also looking at a clarification for Roberts' role when it comes to the Florida recount, the battle over the election recount, back to 2000. We know he played a role in at least assisting President Bush's legal team that ultimately allowed him to win the White House. There is a 10- page questionnaire they handed to Roberts yesterday to fill it out to give a clearer picture of that period -- Soledad?

S. O'BRIEN: Suzanne Malveaux at the White House for us. Suzanne, thanks -- Miles?

M. O'BRIEN: Let's get a look at the weather for the day ahead. Chad Myers at the CNN Center, good morning, Chad.


Temperatures across the country today, a lot better in a lot of spots, 72 in New York City right now, 72 in Atlanta, 72 in Philadelphia. Now, the problem with this, this whole area of cool air came in yesterday with a cold front that clashed into some very warm air.

This severe weather right through here, all these dots, 175 of them, all happened when the cold air pushed into the warm air. We're already seeing a couple of showers this morning between the cold and the warm.

The warm is obviously going to be into parts of South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and even into Florida. Still the red zone there.

Look at Chicago, sunny day today, 81. Minneapolis, 79. About 106 in Las Vegas, but a real pretty shot this morning. When you can see that far in Las Vegas, you know there's not much humidity in the air, there's not much haze in the air. Beautiful shot on top of Mandalay Bay, KBBC our affiliate there in Las Vegas.

Seventy-three in L.A., 64 in San Francisco today. Temperatures are going to be very mild in the central plains, still hot in the Southeast, and cool across the upper Midwest.

Back to you.

M. O'BRIEN: Now, isn't the problem, Chad, in Las Vegas, people move there from, you say, the Midwest and they plant a lawn. That actually creates humidity, right?

MYERS: It does. But there's such a problem trying to get that lawn watered, there's no water left to, you know, be growing grass.

M. O'BRIEN: I think the rock garden's the way to go.

MYERS: Absolutely. S. O'BRIEN: It's like California. You get the certain kind of mosses and things that you can plant, you know, little cacti. You don't want a lawn.


S. O'BRIEN: No, it takes too much work.

Thanks, Chad.

MYERS: Sure.

S. O'BRIEN: Still to come this morning, Porsche announces plans for its new sports car.


M. O'BRIEN: Yes.

S. O'BRIEN: There's a twist though. We'll tell you about it. Andy has a sneak peek. He's "Minding Your Business," just ahead.

M. O'BRIEN: I'm in the market. Who knows? I don't know.

S. O'BRIEN: You have two children. You're not getting a Porsche.

M. O'BRIEN: Two kids, two dogs and a Porsche? I doubt it. All right.

Dr. Gupta will make a "House Call" with the truth about exercise. For example, does working out burn fat?

S. O'BRIEN: I hope so. Isn't that the whole point?

M. O'BRIEN: I would think, right? But you know, you never know what Sanjay's going to say. That's next on AMERICAN MORNING.


S. O'BRIEN: Exercise is a good thing, right? Working out should burn a ton of calories, right? Well, to exorcise some of the myths about exercise, we've got a quiz for our senior medical correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta. He's at the CNN Center.



S. O'BRIEN: Let's get right to it, shall we?

GUPTA: Let's do it.

S. O'BRIEN: I mean, some of these seem really obvious to me. Muscle turns to fat when you stop working out. Is it true or is it false? GUPTA: The answer to that one is false.

M. O'BRIEN: Is it actually?

S. O'BRIEN: Really?

GUPTA: False. OK, here's the thing. And you can work with me on this. But muscle and fat are two entirely different types of tissue, so muscle doesn't actually ever turn into fat.

If you get a really athletic person who, several years later, you see this person who is now fat, what's happened is they've lost muscle and they've gained fat. That's what's happening here. It's sad but true sometimes.

S. O'BRIEN: Does muscle then keep more fat from coming out?

GUPTA: Does muscle keep more fat from -- well, if you actually have a lot of muscle on you, you may be able to keep more fat. But when you change from muscle to fat, the muscle itself's not actually turning into fat. You're just losing the muscle and gaining more fat.

S. O'BRIEN: Oh, interesting.

OK, next question. Exercise burns away fat. I mean, obviously, yes, because that's the whole reason you're on the stupid Stairmaster anyway, right?

GUPTA: Actually the answer to that one is also false.

Here's the thing. Work with me here, Soledad. With regards to fat cells, after puberty, your body's actually had the same number of fat cells. The number of fat cells doesn't change. What changes is you have a honeycomb-like adipose tissue, and you can store fat cells into that adipose tissue, and that can expand and contract.

When you exercise, you're actually contracting some of that adipose tissue. The only way to really get rid of fat cells is through something like liposuction.

S. O'BRIEN: So why is anybody bothering to working out, Sanjay? That's another question. That's not one of the quiz questions. We've got more to get to.

GUPTA: I'll get to that, yes.

S. O'BRIEN: Exercise stops the effects of aging. I'm going to guess...



GUPTA: Now I got you scared.

(CROSSTALK) S. O'BRIEN: ... I haven't gotten...

GUPTA: Because you're scared now. Now you're going to say exercise doesn't help anything.

S. O'BRIEN: I'm totally scared. It's true.

GUPTA: It's false. It doesn't help the effects of aging, as well, actually.

S. O'BRIEN: Yes, OK.

GUPTA: There is something known as disuse atrophy, though. When you don't use your muscles, when you don't use muscles in your body, they tend to become atrophied. By exercising, you can improve the function of them, and that may ward off some of the impacts of aging. But it doesn't reverse aging itself.

S. O'BRIEN: Exercise burns a lot of calories. That's got to be true, but it's only if you're doing things, like running a marathon and...

GUPTA: Yes, you know, the answer to this one is sort of is -- I guess it depends on what you think a lot of calories are. Running a mile burns about 100 calories.

S. O'BRIEN: Well, that's not a lot.

GUPTA: That's not a lot. I think you're right. But here's the thing about that. If you are someone who exercises regularly, you're going to increase what's known as your basal metabolic rate. That's the number of calories, the amount of calories you're burning when you're not exercising.

Everybody would love to have a very high basal metabolic rate, so when we're just sitting around, like you and I are right now, Soledad, we're still burning a lot of calories. So that helps.

S. O'BRIEN: Oh, all right. Weights on your arms and legs: Help during exercise or no? I'm going to say no.

GUPTA: That's right. No, it doesn't. If you're trying to do an aerobic exercise, this is probably not going to help. It may, in fact, slow you down. So it depends on what your goals are.

S. O'BRIEN: But will it build muscle? Maybe it won't burn...

GUPTA: It may build up muscle. But if you're, like, running, for example, it's probably not a good idea to put weights on, because you're just slowing down your aerobic part of your exercise. So it depends in part on what your goals are here.

S. O'BRIEN: OK. So then why don't doctors, in all seriousness -- I mean, why don't doctors just say, "The truth is, people who are overweight should really just go get some lipo," I mean, because that would get a lot -- you're laughing, but I'm serious -- get rid of a lot of those cells, in addition to eating more healthfully, and working out, which, of course, is good for your heart.

Why not just get rid of all those fat cells? Wouldn't that be good advice?

GUPTA: Well, certainly, if you want to look better, if you want to get rid of some of that, in terms of cosmetic, yes. That would certainly help.

But in terms of overall fitness, in terms of overall health, every little bit of exercise helps. Now, this there's been a lot of studies on.

In fact, they say that, like, three 10-minute exercises during a day is the same as doing a 30-minute exercise. Every little bit helps, in terms of reducing your blood pressure, lowering your heart rate, improving your immune system, helping better regulate your blood sugar.

So all of those things over time can become cumulative. And remember that metabolic rate thing, as well. If you are someone who is naturally fit, you're going to have a higher metabolic rate, and it's going to be a lot easier for you to burn calories all along.

S. O'BRIEN: A lot more work, though, to be on the Stairmaster. You know I'm lazy.

GUPTA: Funny how that all comes into play.

S. O'BRIEN: Funny how that works.

Sanjay, thanks, as always.

GUPTA: Thank you. All right.

M. O'BRIEN: "I could exercise, or get lipo." Let me just lipo, please. I'll take a tummy tuck, instead.

All right. Still ahead, one vente (ph) soy latte, please. Starbucks is extra hot, surpassing Wall Street estimates and profits. We are "Minding Your Business," next on AMERICAN MORNING.


M. O'BRIEN: All right, Starbucks giving investors a jolt this morning. Get it? Andy Serwer is here to continue on with the caffeinated puns.

Hello, Andy.

ANDY SERWER, "FORTUNE" COLUMNIST: The Clever News Network, they call us this morning.

M. O'BRIEN: Yes, that would be us.

SERWER: Stocks trading higher again. The rally keeps on keeping on. Let's go now to check out the big board. It looks like we're up -- what is that, Miles?

M. O'BRIEN: 27.06.

SERWER: Thank you for that.

M. O'BRIEN: Happy to help.

SERWER: A bunch of stocks moving to the upside. Want to tell you about Starbucks. Profits up 30 percent at its 9,500 stores. New drinks, music sales and, oh, yes, higher prices doing the trick there.

Daimler-Chrysler -- that's how we pronounce it...

M. O'BRIEN: Really?

SERWER: ... up 11 percent. CEO Juergen Schrempp is leaving the company. A bit of a surprise there. Profits are up. That stock is up 11 percent.

And Exxon reporting numbers this morning. Profits increasing there 32 percent to, guess this, $7.6 billion in three months, the world's largest oil company. I don't have to tell you why profits are up there. I'll tell you why. Higher oil prices.

M. O'BRIEN: We got that one. By the way, don't ever call him Mr. Shrimp. That's bad. That's a bad mispronunciation.

SERWER: Is that right?

M. O'BRIEN: Schrempp. Schrempp. Just wanted to...

SERWER: Daimler and...

M. O'BRIEN: Daimler and Schrempp, right.

SERWER: We got it. German lessons from Miles O'Brien.

Another story from Germany this morning. Porsche has a new car out.

M. O'BRIEN: Porsche. No, it's Porsche.

SERWER: Yes, well, see, it depends what side of the pond you're on.


Porsche has a new vehicle out this morning. It's a four-door sedan, the first one, I think, from this company. There are some spy photographs.

It's called the -- now, I'm going to get this pronunciation wrong, too -- and I'm sure it's called a Panamera, Miles. That's the name of the car.

M. O'BRIEN: I don't have a... (CROSSTALK)

SERWER: It's a Panamera. It will only go for about $125,000 to $175,000, if you're interested in buying one of these, but it won't be available until 2009. So it gives you plenty of time to save up.

M. O'BRIEN: Save up. And will they give the employee discount? No, doubtful.

SERWER: How do you say that? Panamera.

M. O'BRIEN: Panamanian? I don't know.

SERWER: Panamera.

M. O'BRIEN: AMERICAN MORNING, back in a moment. Thanks. Danke.


S. O'BRIEN: This week in history, a bomb disrupted the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, killing one person and injuring more than 100 others. Three years later in the same city, on July 29th, Mark Barton, a day trader who lost a lot of money, went on a shooting rampage in two office buildings. He killed nine, before turning the gun on himself.

And on July 24, 1998, Russell E. Weston burst into the U.S. Capitol and open fire, killing two police officers. It was later ruled he was incompetent to stand trial.

And that is "This Week in History."


S. O'BRIEN: We are out of time on this Thursday. We'll see you back here tomorrow morning for a Friday. Oh, that sounds good, doesn't it?

M. O'BRIEN: Yes, my favorite day.

S. O'BRIEN: Fredricka Whitfield is at the CNN Center. She's going to be with you for the next few hours on "CNN LIVE TODAY."

Hey, Fred. Good morning to you.


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