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LIVE FROM...

Will Zarqawi's Death Only Bolster Iraqi Insurgents?; Reports Vary Wildly on Alleged Haditha Massacre

Aired June 8, 2006 - 14:30   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We can expect the terrorists and insurgents to carry on without him. We can expect the sectarian violence to continue. Yet the ideology of terror has lost one of its most visible and aggressive leaders. Zarqawi's death is a severe blow to al Qaeda. It's a victory in the global war on terror. And it is an opportunity for Iraq's new government to turn the tide of this struggle.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: The world's top diplomat calls al- Zarqawi "heinous and dangerous," and calls his death a relief.

Let's get straight to our senior United Nations correspondent Richard Roth with more -- Richard.

RICHARD ROTH, CNN SR. UNITED NATIONS CORRESPONDENT: Kyra, the United Nations has never really been able to come up with a definition of what is terrorism, but the death of al-Zarqawi seemed to produce a reaction from Secretary-General Kofi Annan that he is a terrorist.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

KOFI ANNAN, SECRETARY-GENERAL OF UNITED NATIONS: This is an individual who has been responsible for many heinous crimes, caused lots of problems in Iraq, for the government and the people of Iraq, the people of Iraq who are afraid to step out, people of Iraq who are only demanding peace, stability and to have their streets back.

I think they will all be relieved that he is gone. And, of course, we cannot pretend that that will mean the end of the violence. But it is a relief that such a heinous and dangerous man, who has caused so much harm to the Iraqis, is no longer around to continue his work.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

ROTH: One of the heinous crimes Secretary-General Annan could refer to is the bombing of U.N. headquarters in August 2003. More than 20 U.N. officials were killed there. That was early in the rise of the insurgency -- Kyra.

PHILLIPS: Richard Roth, live from the U.N., thanks so much. And on one hand, joy and relief that a most-wanted terror leader is gone. On the other, anxiety over who's waiting to take over al Zarqawi's crusade. Journalist Nir Rosen joins me now from Istanbul. He's written extensively about the Iraq insurgency in general and al Qaeda in particular.

Nir Rosen, welcome.

NIR ROSEN, JOURNALIST/AUTHOR: Thank you.

PHILLIPS: First reaction to the capture of Zarqawi. From what I understand, you think we're going a bit overboard with this coverage and he's not as big a fish as everyone is making him out to be?

ROSEN: He certainly was a symbol. However, Zarqawi was, in a way -- the myth of Zarqawi was an American creation. In the beginning of the insurgency, the American's government, the American military, wanted to create the impression that the insurgency was foreign- dominated, was not a popular Iraqi movement. So they blamed almost every attack on Zarqawi, creating this myth of Zarqawi that then encouraged Arabs throughout the region to go join his cause.

But, in truth, Zarqawi and his group of foreign fighters were a very small proportion of the resistance of the insurgency. They were, of course, responsible for some terrible attacks. But the dynamics in Iraq and the civil war is going to persist no matter who is killed, because this is conflict between the Shia government, the Shia population, and the Sunni population at this point.

PHILLIPS: So you're saying that even though he was an exceptionally cruel person, he was -- we knew that he had beheaded innocent individuals. He was behind a number of bombings. You don't think this will make an impact at all on the insurgency?

ROSEN: I think, if anything, this is, in an way, an advertisement. Zarqawi's death, ironically enough, might be an advertisement for his cause. Zarqawi came to Iraq to fight the infidels and obtain martyrdom. Well, he did. And now, this is just -- proves to aspiring jihadis around the world Iraq is the place to go avenge Zarqawi's death, to fight infidels and become a martyr and go to paradise just like Zarqawi did.

I think what we're going to see is some new unit. It will be called the Zarqawi brigade, the Zarqawi battalion, and they're going to claim responsibility for some very important attack against a Shia leader or a Shia mosque or Shia civilians. And the dynamics of the civil war will continue, regardless of any particular individual.

PHILLIPS: Now, how you're setting him up -- and then you, no doubt, remember the video that we got in a couple of months ago, video that wasn't supposed to be seen by the world. And that was of Zarqawi not even knowing how to handle a weapon. He was jamming the gun, didn't know how to fire the gun. You remember that video. So -- but why is it that people still follow this man, even though he appeared to be weak and not even knowing how to operate these types of weapons, why did people follow him? ROSEN: He didn't appear to be weak. He didn't appear -- I think the American administration hoped he would appear to that way, because perhaps he fumbled around with one particular weapon. But Zarqawi is famous for his bombings and for wielding knives. The fact that he can or cannot use a particular machine gun is sort of irrelevant. He was a symbol for a certain ideology that despised Shias, that rejected the West.

And whether he could use a machine gun or not was sort of not the point. He was very well-renowned throughout jihadi circles as being a very brave fighter. Even his detractors through -- in the jihad, in Afghanistan and in Iraq, always said that he was an incredibly brave and talented fighter.

And I think nobody could take seriously the Americans trying to convince jihadis that Zarqawi wasn't a good jihadi, because he was, indeed, very successful at killing Americans and at killing Shias.

PHILLIPS: So Nir, what is next, and what do you make of these Iraqi ministers finally in place? Will that make a bigger impact on the insurgency than the loss of Zarqawi?

ROSEN: Well, they say that we journalists only like to report the bad news in Iraq. Unfortunately, there's no good news in Iraq. There's no corner that's been turned, there's no milestone. The civil war began intensively in 2005, and it's continuing. This ethnic cleansing, Sunnis from Shia neighborhoods, Shias being expelled from Sunni neighborhoods, dead bodies on the street every day, tortured and killed because they're Sunni or because they're Shia.

Events inside the green zone just don't really matter. Whether a minister was appointed or not just does not matter these days, because the real stories outside of the green zone where militias, loyal to leaders in Najaf, in the Anbar province, in Kurdistan -- these are the militias fighting each other. Those are -- that's where the leaders are.

The green zone is just a theater for people outside of Iraq. The militias are on the street in Iraq. They are the ones killing each other every day. And I just feel very depressed and hopeless. I think the civil war is going to intensify.

PHILLIPS: Journalist Nir Rosen, I know you'll be covering it. We'll be following your work and your books. Appreciate your time.

ROSEN: Thank you.

PHILLIPS: Straight to the newsroom now. Carol Lin, working details on a developing story for us -- Carol.

CAROL LIN, CNN ANCHOR: Kyra, a small plane crash we're looking at in East Nashville. Let me bring you some pictures here. If look through the trees, there it is. If you can believe it, two people walked away from this plane crash at the Cornelia Fort Airport. But officials -- according to a local news station Web site, officials are still looking for the pilot. Now, coincidentally, over at the Nashville International Airport all morning, there was a drill simulating a disaster which was under way. It started at about -- excuse me, about 1:00 their time. The plane crash that you're looking at right now is completely unrelated to that drill. But just a couple of interesting tidbits that we found out as this plane went down this afternoon -- Kyra.

PHILLIPS: All right, Carol Lin, thanks so much.

The news keeps coming. We'll keep bringing it to you. More LIVE FROM, coming up next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: It may be the biggest development in the war in Iraq since the capture of Saddam Hussein. A coalition airstrike 30 miles northeast of Baghdad, two 500-pound, precision-guided bombs level a house and kill Iraq's most wanted militant.

As proof, the U.S. military released this photograph of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the once-feared leader of al Qaeda in Iraq. U.S. and Iraqi officials say fingerprints confirm that it is him.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEN. GEORGE CASEY JR., MULTI-NATIONAL FORCE IRAQ: This happened in an airstrike that was conducted against an identified, isolated safehouse. Tips and intelligence from Iraqi senior leaders from his network led our forces to Zarqawi and some of his associates who were conducting a meeting approximately eight kilometers north of Baquba, when the airstrike was launched.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PHILLIPS: Well, five other people were killed if that airstrike, including al-Zarqawi's spiritual adviser. Al Qaeda in Iraq is urging its followers to continue the fight.

Straight to the newsroom now, Carol Lin working details on a developing story. Carol, CNN is getting a lot of reaction from Zarqawi's family right now.

LIN: You bet, Kyra. We're trying to find different angles to this story. We're hearing now from -- for example, I'm going to show you, the -- what Zarqawi's brother-in-law had to say about his death.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SALEH AL-HAMI ABU QUDAMAH, AL-ZARQAWI'S BROTHER-IN-LAW (through translator): He's a martyr of Islam, this is what I have to say. He is a imam of all Muslims. I'm happy about this martyrdom. This is not a death. It is martyrdom. (END VIDEO CLIP)

LIN: Now listen to this, Kyra. You recall the hotel bombings that al-Zarqawi masterminded last November. At that time, you know -- Zarqawi's family is in Jordan. At that time, 57 members of his own family signed a newspaper ad disavowing any connection to Zarqawi. They said that they, quote, "severed links with him until doomsday."

And yet you saw what the brother-in-law had to say, Zarqawi's brother himself said that he anticipated that he would be killed for a very long time, but that they believe that he is in heaven, and that he is a martyr. So perhaps blood thicker than water, not wanting fallout from the hotel bombings but acknowledging today an emotional connection with this man who was a killer.

PHILLIPS: Carol Lin, thank you very much.

Investigating Haditha, Pentagon sources say that some of most incriminating evidence against marines suspected of massacring civilians is a set of photos taken by other marines. Those marines were sent in to clean up the scene. CNN is the first news organization to get a chance to examine those images.

Our senior Pentagon correspondent Jamie McIntyre reports on what they show.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SENIOR PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): So far, the only images of the November 19th Haditha killings, in which 24 Iraqi civilians died, come from an aspiring Iraqi journalist, whose video of the aftermath in the houses and the bodies in the morgue convinced "Time" magazine to pursue the story earlier this year.

But CNN has seen a set of 30 digital images shot by a U.S. military exploitation team assigned to document the incident -- images of men, women and children that Pentagon sources say are some of the strongest evidence that, in some cases, the victims were shot inside at close range, not killed by shrapnel from a roadside bomb or by stray bullets from a distant firefight, as Marines first claimed.

For now, the original photographs are evidence in a criminal probe, and only investigators and a few very senior officials have access to them.

GENERAL MICHAEL HAGEE, COMMANDANT, U.S. MARINE CORPS: I have seen the photographs, but they are part of the investigation, and I'm not going to talk about those photographs.

MCINTYRE: But CNN was allowed by a source to examine copies of 30 photographs taken just hours after the killings, which a military official says match, both in number and description, the pictures in possession of investigators.

However, the source would not provide the images to CNN, out of concern for personal repercussions. There are images of all 24 bodies, each marked with numbers in red. Some numbers, one through 24, are written on the foreheads, others on the victim's back.

A senior military official tells CNN, in some cases, the numbers may denote the location of bullet wounds -- among the images, a woman and child, possibly mother and daughter, leaning against a wall, heads slumped forward, another woman and child shot in bed, a man sprawled face down with his legs behind him, an elderly woman slumped over, her neck possibly snapped by the force of gunfire.

All of the victims were wearing casual attire. Some had been shot in the head. Some were face down, others face up. The pictures appear to show the locations of the bodies in the houses before a Marine unit loaded them onto a truck and sent them to the morgue. Pentagon officials say there are no plans to release the gruesome images, even after the criminal investigation is complete.

Like the pictures of detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib prison, they say, the Haditha photos would simply serve to incite anti-American fervor, and therefore constitute a threat to national security.

(on camera): The Haditha pictures raise basic questions about what higher-ups knew and when they knew it. Did commanders ever see the pictures? Did they realize the photographs contradict the official account? Did they seek the truth, or did they just not want to know? One of two investigations now underway is trying to figure that out.

Jamie McIntyre, CNN, the Pentagon.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

PHILLIPS: How did that mission go down in Haditha? A step by step look at the troops on the ground that day in November when LIVE FROM returns.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: Well, like many things that happened in the frenzy of battle, versions of Haditha differ wildly even among those who were there. Our John Roberts laid out a timeline for "ANDERSON COOPER 360."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN ROBERTS, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): 7:00 a.m., November 19th, Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment was rolling through Haditha in four Humvees, Corporal James Crossan in the last vehicle.

CPL. JAMES CROSSAN, U.S. MARINE CORPS: It just happened. Like, the last thing I knew, we were driving back. And we were -- me and T.J., we were just talking crap to one another. And the next thing I knew, I was down on the ground and then passing out again.

ROBERTS: T.J. was Lance Corporal Miguel Terrazas, killed when a roadside bomb tore through the Humvee. Corporal James Crossan was badly injured, knocked unconscious.

CROSSAN: And that day haunts me, because, when we were at the top, I was -- I was going to switch positions with him and drive back. And I just -- I don't know. I just didn't go through with it.

ROBERTS: What happened next depends on who you hear it from. The Marines' initial version of events said 15 Iraqi civilians were also killed in the bomb blast. Another eight, described as insurgents, were killed when they fired on the convoy.

But local witnesses tell a different story, of Marines on a murderous rampage after the blast -- among the victims, they allege, four unarmed students ordered out of a taxi and onto the ground. Witnesses say they tried to run and were cut down by Marine bullets. Witnesses and survivors say a group of Marines walked from their parked Humvees to the closest house.

KHALID SALMAN AN-SAYIF, HADITHA LOCAL COUNCIL MEMBER (through translator): The U.S. raided the house.

ROBERTS: Khalid Salman An-Sayif's sister and nephew were killed in the attacks. He claims they were murdered, along with the family patriarch.

AN-SAYIF (through translator): They started to shoot randomly inside the house. They killed Abdul Hamid Hassan, a 76-year-old disabled man, by throwing a grenade under his bed.

ROBERTS: He says seven Iraqis died in that house. These pictures taken by an Iraqi human rights group show a trail of blood.

EMAN WALID, WITNESS (through translator): My name is Eman. I'm 9 years old. I'm in fourth grade.

ROBERTS: Children were among the only survivors. Eman and her 8-year-old brother told their story to an Iraqi human rights group, at CNN's request.

E. WALID (through translator): First, they shot my father inside the room and set the room on fire. My father's name is Walid. And they killed my grandmother. She was sitting in the living room. Her name is Kamesa (ph).

ABDUL RAHMAN WALID, WITNESS (through translator): When the bomb exploded, they entered the house and they killed us. My father, my mother, my brother, they all died. Only me and Eman were left.

ROBERTS: Attorneys representing Marines have given other scenarios, possible sniper fire, fighting for three or more hours. Marines may have been ordered to clear the houses of insurgents. There is little doubt, though, that the Marines went to a second house, one owned by a family names Yunis.

SAFFA YUNIS SALEM RASIF, WITNESS (through translator): My name is Saffa Yunis Salem Rasif. I am the only one who survived from the Yunis family. ROBERTS: Iraqi witnesses claim eight people were shot to death here, including six women.

RASIF (through translator): We were inside the house when U.S. forces broke through the door. They killed my father in the kitchen, and the American forces entered the house, and they started shooting with their guns.

They killed my mother and my sister, Noor. They killed her when they shot her in the head. She was only 15 years old. Another sister was shot with seven bullets in the head. She was only 10 years old. And my brother Mohamed was hiding under the bed when the U.S. military hit him with the butt of a rifle, and then they started shooting him under the bed.

ROBERTS: Next, witnesses allege, the Marines moved to houses across the road, gathered several families, separated the women and children and killed four men, all brothers, inside.

More than 15 hours after the Humvee was hit by a roadside bomb, the bodies of 24 Iraqis were taken to a local hospital and, according to workers there, dumped in front of them.

Corporal Crossan, wounded in that first explosion, doesn't remember what happened.

CROSSAN: It's a tricky situation over there, because the enemy could be anywhere. But, if someone does get hurt, you are going to get angry, and you are going to want to retaliate.

AINE DONOVAN, DARTMOUTH COLLEGE ETHICS INST.: If Haditha proves true, it will be, unfortunately, and very sadly, the most memorable episode of this war.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

PHILLIPS: And you can hear more of John Roberts' reports on "ANDERSON COOPER 360." John fills in for Anderson tonight at 10:00 Eastern.

A long road to recovery brings Kimberly Dozier home to the U.S. The CBS correspondent critically wounded last week in Baghdad arrived yesterday along with about 40 other patients from the U.S. military hospital in Germany. Dozier's now at Bethesda Naval Medical Center, just outside Washington.

"A sick animal." That's reportedly how murder suspect Jerry Buck Inman describes himself. Police in Pickens, South Carolina say Inman, a registered sex offender, has confessed to the murder of Clemson University student Tiffany Souers.

Detectives say Inman has also admitted to sexually assaulting women in Alabama and Tennessee just days before Souers' body was found in her off-campus apartment. Inman arrested in Tennessee late Tuesday and sent promptly to South Carolina. He's being held without bond in solitary confinement. Women soon will have a powerful new weapon against cervical cancer. The Food and Drug Administration just approved Gardasil, a vaccine that prevents infection from the human papillomavirus, also known as HPV, a sexually transmitted disease. The vaccine includes two strains of the virus that cause 70 percent of cervical cancers.

The vaccine was approved a record six months after clinical trials showed it to be 100 percent effective against HPV. Gardasil is approved for use in girls and women 9 to 26. It seems to be most effective in younger girls and women.

When we talk al Qaeda, we're usually talking about Iraq or Afghanistan, but Africa is home to some of the organization's fiercest terrorists. In the next hour of LIVE FROM, CNN's African correspondent Jeff Koinange tells us why Somalia is so sympathetic.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: It may be the biggest development in the war in Iraq since the capture of Saddam Hussein. A coalition airstrike 30 miles northeast of Baghdad, two 500-pound, precision-guided bombs level a house and kill Iraq's most wanted militant.

As proof, the U.S. military released this photograph of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, the once-feared leader of al Qaeda in Iraq. U.S. and Iraqi officials say fingerprints confirm that it is him.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEN. GEORGE CASEY JR., MULTI-NATIONAL FORCE IRAQ: This happened in an airstrike that was conducted against an identified, isolated safehouse. Tips and intelligence from Iraqi senior leaders from his network led our forces to Zarqawi and some of his associates who were conducting a meeting approximately eight kilometers north of Baquba, when the airstrike was launched.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

PHILLIPS: Well, five other people were killed if that airstrike, including al-Zarqawi's spiritual adviser. Al Qaeda in Iraq is urging its followers to continue the fight.

Straight to the newsroom now, Carol Lin working details on a developing story. Carol, CNN is getting a lot of reaction from Zarqawi's family right now.

LIN: You bet, Kyra. We're trying to find different angles to this story. We're hearing now from -- for example, I'm going to show you, the -- what Zarqawi's brother-in-law had to say about his death.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

SALEH AL-HAMI ABU QUDAMAH, AL-ZARQAWI'S BROTHER-IN-LAW (through translator): He's a martyr of Islam, this is what I have to say. He is a imam of all Muslims. I'm happy about this martyrdom. This is not a death. It is martyrdom. (END VIDEO CLIP)

LIN: Now listen to this, Kyra. You recall the hotel bombings that al-Zarqawi masterminded last November. At that time, you know -- Zarqawi's family is in Jordan. At that time, 57 members of his own family signed a newspaper ad disavowing any connection to Zarqawi. They said that they, quote, "severed links with him until doomsday."

And yet you saw what the brother-in-law had to say, Zarqawi's brother himself said that he anticipated that he would be killed for a very long time, but that they believe that he is in heaven, and that he is a martyr. So perhaps blood thicker than water, not wanting fallout from the hotel bombings but acknowledging today an emotional connection with this man who was a killer.

PHILLIPS: Carol Lin, thank you very much.

Investigating Haditha. Pentagon sources say that some of most incriminating evidence against marines suspected of massacring civilians is a set of photos taken by other marines. Those marines were sent in to clean up the scene. CNN is the first news organization to get a chance to examine those images.

Our senior Pentagon correspondent Jamie McIntyre reports on what they show.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN SENIOR PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): So far, the only images of the November 19th Haditha killings, in which 24 Iraqi civilians died, come from an aspiring Iraqi journalist, whose video of the aftermath in the houses and the bodies in the morgue convinced "Time" magazine to pursue the story earlier this year.

But CNN has seen a set of 30 digital images shot by a U.S. military exploitation team assigned to document the incident -- images of men, women and children that Pentagon sources say are some of the strongest evidence that, in some cases, the victims were shot inside at close range, not killed by shrapnel from a roadside bomb or by stray bullets from a distant firefight, as Marines first claimed.

For now, the original photographs are evidence in a criminal probe, and only investigators and a few very senior officials have access to them.

GENERAL MICHAEL HAGEE, COMMANDANT, U.S. MARINE CORPS: I have seen the photographs, but they are part of the investigation, and I'm not going to talk about those photographs.

MCINTYRE: But CNN was allowed by a source to examine copies of 30 photographs taken just hours after the killings, which a military official says match, both in number and description, the pictures in possession of investigators.

However, the source would not provide the images to CNN, out of concern for personal repercussions. There are images of all 24 bodies, each marked with numbers in red. Some numbers, one through 24, are written on the foreheads, others on the victim's back.

A senior military official tells CNN, in some cases, the numbers may denote the location of bullet wounds -- among the images, a woman and child, possibly mother and daughter, leaning against a wall, heads slumped forward, another woman and child shot in bed, a man sprawled face down with his legs behind him, an elderly woman slumped over, her neck possibly snapped by the force of gunfire.

All of the victims were wearing casual attire. Some had been shot in the head. Some were face down, others face up. The pictures appear to show the locations of the bodies in the houses before a Marine unit loaded them onto a truck and sent them to the morgue. Pentagon officials say there are no plans to release the gruesome images, even after the criminal investigation is complete.

Like the pictures of detainee abuse at Abu Ghraib prison, they say, the Haditha photos would simply serve to incite anti-American fervor, and therefore constitute a threat to national security.

(on camera): The Haditha pictures raise basic questions about what higher-ups knew and when they knew it. Did commanders ever see the pictures? Did they realize the photographs contradict the official account? Did they seek the truth, or did they just not want to know? One of two investigations now underway is trying to figure that out.

Jamie McIntyre, CNN, the Pentagon.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

PHILLIPS: How did that mission go down in Haditha? A step by step look at the troops on the ground that day in November when LIVE FROM returns.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

PHILLIPS: Well, like many things that happened in the frenzy of battle, versions of Haditha differ wildly even among those who were there. Our John Roberts laid out a timeline for "ANDERSON COOPER 360."

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

JOHN ROBERTS, CNN SENIOR NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): 7:00 a.m., November 19th, Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment was rolling through Haditha in four Humvees, Corporal James Crossan in the last vehicle.

CPL. JAMES CROSSAN, U.S. MARINE CORPS: It just happened. Like, the last thing I knew, we were driving back. And we were -- me and T.J., we were just talking crap to one another. And the next thing I knew, I was down on the ground and then passing out again.

ROBERTS: T.J. was Lance Corporal Miguel Terrazas, killed when a roadside bomb tore through the Humvee. Corporal James Crossan was badly injured, knocked unconscious.

CROSSAN: And that day haunts me, because, when we were at the top, I was -- I was going to switch positions with him and drive back. And I just -- I don't know. I just didn't go through with it.

ROBERTS: What happened next depends on who you hear it from. The Marines' initial version of events said 15 Iraqi civilians were also killed in the bomb blast. Another eight, described as insurgents, were killed when they fired on the convoy.

But local witnesses tell a different story, of Marines on a murderous rampage after the blast -- among the victims, they allege, four unarmed students ordered out of a taxi and onto the ground. Witnesses say they tried to run and were cut down by Marine bullets. Witnesses and survivors say a group of Marines walked from their parked Humvees to the closest house.

KHALID SALMAN AN-SAYIF, HADITHA LOCAL COUNCIL MEMBER (through translator): The U.S. raided the house.

ROBERTS: Khalid Salman An-Sayif's sister and nephew were killed in the attacks. He claims they were murdered, along with the family patriarch.

AN-SAYIF (through translator): They started to shoot randomly inside the house. They killed Abdul Hamid Hassan, a 76-year-old disabled man, by throwing a grenade under his bed.

ROBERTS: He says seven Iraqis died in that house. These pictures taken by an Iraqi human rights group show a trail of blood.

EMAN WALID, WITNESS (through translator): My name is Eman. I'm 9 years old. I'm in fourth grade.

ROBERTS: Children were among the only survivors. Eman and her 8-year-old brother told their story to an Iraqi human rights group, at CNN's request.

E. WALID (through translator): First, they shot my father inside the room and set the room on fire. My father's name is Walid. And they killed my grandmother. She was sitting in the living room. Her name is Kamesa (ph).

ABDUL RAHMAN WALID, WITNESS (through translator): When the bomb exploded, they entered the house and they killed us. My father, my mother, my brother, they all died. Only me and Eman were left.

ROBERTS: Attorneys representing Marines have given other scenarios, possible sniper fire, fighting for three or more hours. Marines may have been ordered to clear the houses of insurgents. There is little doubt, though, that the Marines went to a second house, one owned by a family names Yunis.

SAFFA YUNIS SALEM RASIF, WITNESS (through translator): My name is Saffa Yunis Salem Rasif. I am the only one who survived from the Yunis family. ROBERTS: Iraqi witnesses claim eight people were shot to death here, including six women.

RASIF (through translator): We were inside the house when U.S. forces broke through the door. They killed my father in the kitchen, and the American forces entered the house, and they started shooting with their guns.

They killed my mother and my sister, Noor. They killed her when they shot her in the head. She was only 15 years old. Another sister was shot with seven bullets in the head. She was only 10 years old. And my brother Mohamed was hiding under the bed when the U.S. military hit him with the butt of a rifle, and then they started shooting him under the bed.

ROBERTS: Next, witnesses allege, the Marines moved to houses across the road, gathered several families, separated the women and children and killed four men, all brothers, inside.

More than 15 hours after the Humvee was hit by a roadside bomb, the bodies of 24 Iraqis were taken to a local hospital and, according to workers there, dumped in front of them.

Corporal Crossan, wounded in that first explosion, doesn't remember what happened.

CROSSAN: It's a tricky situation over there, because the enemy could be anywhere. But, if someone does get hurt, you are going to get angry, and you are going to want to retaliate.

AINE DONOVAN, DARTMOUTH COLLEGE ETHICS INST.: If Haditha proves true, it will be, unfortunately, and very sadly, the most memorable episode of this war.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

PHILLIPS: And you can hear more of John Roberts' reports on "ANDERSON COOPER 360." John fills in for Anderson tonight at 10:00 Eastern.

A long road to recovery brings Kimberly Dozier home to the U.S. The CBS correspondent critically wounded last week in Baghdad arrived yesterday along with about 40 other patients from the U.S. military hospital in Germany. Dozier's now at Bethesda Naval Medical Center, just outside Washington.

"A sick animal." That's reportedly how murder suspect Jerry Buck Inman describes himself. Police in Pickens, South Carolina say Inman, a registered sex offender, has confessed to the murder of Clemson University student Tiffany Souers.

Detectives say Inman has also admitted to sexually assaulting women in Alabama and Tennessee just days before Souers' body was found in her off-campus apartment. Inman arrested in Tennessee late Tuesday and sent promptly to South Carolina. He's being held without bond in solitary confinement. Women soon will have a powerful new weapon against cervical cancer. The Food and Drug Administration just approved Gardasil, a vaccine that prevents infection from the human papillomavirus, also known as HPV, a sexually transmitted disease. The vaccine includes two strains of the virus that cause 70 percent of cervical cancers.

The vaccine was approved a record six months after clinical trials showed it to be 100 percent effective against HPV. Gardasil is approved for use in girls and women 9 to 26. It seems to be most effective in younger girls and women.

When we talk al Qaeda, we're usually talking about Iraq or Afghanistan, but Africa is home to some of the organization's fiercest terrorists. In the next hour of LIVE FROM, CNN's African correspondent Jeff Koinange tells us why Somalia is so sympathetic.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

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