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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES

Newt Gingrich's Confession; Violent Crime on the Rise in Major U.S. Cities; Unfinished War in Afghanistan

Aired March 9, 2007 - 22:00   ET

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


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Good evening, everyone.
He could be running for president. He led the effort to impeach President Clinton. Now Newt Gingrich says that, while he was doing that, he was also having an affair, cheating on his second wife with the woman who would become his third. But he says that doesn't make him a hypocrite -- in a moment, the facts and the fallout.

We begin, however, with a new report on violent crime, a troubling report. For the first time in years, it is on the rise in big cities across America: murder up 12 percent in Houston, 42 percent in Miami, 188 percent in Orlando, Florida, just to name a few cities.

More now from CNN's Tom Foreman.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(SCREAMING)

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In Nevada, a cell phone camera captures a woman screaming, police say, as a man with a knife attacks people at random.

In Florida, officers surround an office building where they say a man shot his ex-girlfriend, then went on the run.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The people inside said they did not know the subject that came in, but it would appear that she was the intended victim.

FOREMAN: The new report by a national police organization says violent crime is skyrocketing in the nation's big cities. The two- year trend is unmistakable, it says. Homicides rose 10 percent, robberies up 12 percent. And assault with firearms climbed 10 percent.

After watching violent crime decrease for more than a decade, federal officials are worried.

ALBERTO GONZALES, ATTORNEY GENERAL: We are concerned about the recent increase in crime, and specifically violent crime. We have made great progress in this area, but we still have challenges that we must confront.

FOREMAN: Challenges in New Orleans, where leaders are scrambling to knock down a soaring murder rate, while trying to build up their city.

SEN. MARY LANDRIEU (D), LOUISIANA: We all need to work together. And every tool needs to be deployed. And all of this must be done without delay, without excuse, and without red tape.

FOREMAN: Challenges in Houston, another place where the number of murders is climbing steeply.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If you see something happening, before it gets out of hand, call the police.

FOREMAN (on camera): The study shows some cities, such as Washington, D.C., have lowered homicide rates substantially. But that's small consolation to some local leaders here. An appeals court has just struck down a 30-year-old D.C. law banning handguns in homes. Gun-rights supporters like the decision.

But the mayor does not.

ADRIAN FENTY, MAYOR OF WASHINGTON, D.C.: Today's decision flies in the face of laws that have helped decrease gun violence in the District of Columbia.

FOREMAN: And he clearly fears the nation's capital could soon join the nation in watching violent crime go up.

Tom Foreman, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Well, here in Los Angeles, violent crime overall, except for robbery, has actually dropped over the past two years. But, at the same time, gang crime is rising. And here is the "Raw Data."

According to L.A.'s mayor, gang-related crime has shot up 14 percent in the last year. He says gangs are responsible for the majority of murders in this city right now and nearly 70 percent of all shootings.

Much of this is happening in neighborhoods where Latinos are moving in. And some of the Latino gangs are using violence to force African-Americans out.

With more on that story, CNN's Ted Rowlands.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This Los Angeles street is a deadly symbol of a racial divide between blacks and Latinos.

DARREN BROWN, RESIDENT OF LOS ANGELES: I have been over here for 11 years. And I ain't never really crossed the 206 Street.

ROWLANDS: Two Hundred and Sixth Street is a dividing line. Darren Brown, who lives on 208th, says he and other African-Americans stay on one side. Latinos are on the other. And, if you cross, there can be trouble.

BROWN: If you do, you have got a death wish, because they are going -- they are going to take you out. They are going to kill you.

ROWLANDS: Fourteen-year-old Cheryl Green was recently murdered along the 206th Street Border. The suspects, both Latinos, are facing hate crime charges.

A week before Cheryl Green, it was 34-year-old Arturo Mercado, who was shot in his front yard. Police haven't made an arrest in that case, but Latinos are blaming blacks, who they claim started this war by moving into the neighborhood about 15 years ago.

CHARLES BECK, LOS ANGELES POLICE DEPARTMENT DEPUTY CHIEF: The dividing line is this street.

ROWLANDS: L.A. Assistant Police Chief Charles Beck blames much of the tension on a Latino gang called 204. He says the gang is motivated by hatred of blacks, to the point that the gang's mission, according to the police, is to get African-Americans to leave the neighborhood.

These police photos show some of the gang's recent hate graffiti. This message says, "Move," followed by the N-word.

BECK: This gang, in a very small area, with a very small membership, has managed to put itself at the very top of our enforcement priority, because they target people based on race.

ROWLANDS: So, why do these Latino gang members hate blacks?

We talked to a 43-year-old Hispanic man who was questioned by police about the Cheryl Green murder. We can't show his face, but listen to some of the things he says about African-Americans in his neighborhood.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just wish they would just leave, and go wherever they got to go, and just leave us the way we were. And everything will be cool. We had a nice little -- nice little community here. And it's not nice anymore, because of them.

ROWLANDS (on camera): What did they bring?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ghettoism. They brought lowlife -- just, they're dirty, man.

ROWLANDS: Dirty?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You guys know, man.

ROWLANDS (voice-over): Black-brown tension isn't confined to gangs or this neighborhood. It's a problem in many cities, prisons, and even some schools, where fights, like this one last year in Southern California, have broken out between black and Latino students. In Los Angeles itself, the tension has spilled into places like Watts and Compton, where competition for jobs and housing often pit the two ethnic groups against each other.

But 206th Street and its obvious climate of racial hate is the symbolic center of what some believe is a worsening problem. And, until there's significant change, blacks and Latinos will, most likely, continue to stay on their own side of the street.

Ted Rowlands, CNN, Los Angeles.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: So, what to do about the rise in gang violence, it's a question that has been asked literally for decades, as the roots of gang life stretch far back.

Cle "Bone" Sloan knows, both as a documentary filmmaker and a member, now inactive, of the Bloods. His film "Bastards of the Party" traces the development of black gangs in L.A., starting back in the 1940s. It airs on HBO later this month. It is a fascinating look at gang life.

He joins me now.

Cle, thanks for being with us.

In that piece, we just heard about the murder of Cheryl Green, a 14-year-old African-American girl allegedly killed by Latino gang members. What do you make of this growing violence between Latino gangs in African-American communities?

CLE "BONE" SLOAN, DOCUMENTARY FILMMAKER: I mean, it's been going on for the last 10, 15 years. And it seems to me like people are really scared to call it what it actually is.

If you talk about the situation in the Harbor Gateway, you know, it's just -- it's ethnic cleansing. You know what I mean? Because there's not a black gang in that area. It's only a Latino gang. They dominate that neighborhood. That's their neighborhood. So, who is this mystery black gang that the media keeps talking about? They keep calling it a turf war, but it's not a turf war, because there's not a black gang over there.

COOPER: Your film really traces the roots of black gangs in Los Angeles, and how they emerged first as a response to racism, and later black power movements. Now the violence, though, does seem to be getting worse. How do you stop it?

SLOAN: You know, like, I think most of the youngsters who come up, they don't know the real -- how blacks and Latinos used to be unified, you know, back in the '60s and the '70s. They strived for pretty much the same things.

Now we have got the -- this whole new breed of youngsters who don't even know the history between blacks and Latinos. So, I think what people are going to have to do is try to teach the youngsters exactly how we used to be together, how we used to be kind of like fighting for the same thing. And now we're fighting each other for -- for crumbs.

(CROSSTALK)

COOPER: And, so, knowledge of history, you think, will -- will help?

SLOAN: Yes. I think it will help. I think it will help, because, if you take "Bastards of the Party," once we broke down the history of what we were doing to each other, and how we came to -- to this Blood-on-Crip war, it was the conditions before us that brought us here. You know, the stage was set way before we -- we got here.

Like I say, this has been going on since 1969. That's longer than any American conflict. You know what I mean? And it has been going on year after year after year. We had a little break in '92. That's about it. So, I think the history...

COOPER: But...

SLOAN: I'm sorry. Go ahead.

COOPER: No. Well, I was going to -- I don't want to interrupt, but, I mean, how do you stop young kids, you know, with little money, little hope, who see gang members controlling their streets, and who hear, you know, rappers and these big corporations basically pushing a thug lifestyle in movies and music? It's a strong message, and it's surrounding them. How do you -- how do you say, "That's not who we are"?

SLOAN: Yes, I mean, it's -- it's tough. It's tough, because they're bombarded with all these images through BET, MTV, and so on. And all these kids, they want to be gangsters. They want to be recognized.

And I always say, the most easiest way for a kid to get overnight sensation is to join a gang. If he joins a gang, everybody is going to be talking about it, his mom, his friends, his sister. And everybody is going to be saying, you know, such-and-such joined a gang -- gang. So, I think that's one of the fastest ways for a kid to get some attention, is to join a gang.

But the -- the sad part about it is that, you know, his life -- his lifespan -- he's cutting his life in half, because he's definitely going to be hurt, maimed, or even, you know, locked up or killed.

COOPER: And the -- the gangs that I have spent time with, every one of the -- the people I have talked in it who have been in a long time, they all say the same thing. They got in because of this bond that allegedly existed...

SLOAN: Yes.

COOPER: ... and with -- with their -- their brothers or -- and -- or their sisters in the gang, but that, over the years, they kind of came to see that was just kind of a lie, that, you know, they ultimately were on their -- they end up on their own.

SLOAN: I mean, it is an -- you do end up on your own as an individual. When you're doing time, you do time by yourself. You know what I mean?

Your gang, your homeys don't do time with you. But, you know, you do time by yourself. So, in a sense, that's true. However, if you look at the roots of this whole thing, it came about, you know what I'm saying, based on a defense mechanism -- defense mechanism, based on some honor, based on some solidarity.

And, yes, in these later years, all that stuff has been broken down. You know what I mean? It used to be me, you know, me and my boys against -- against the world, me and my homeys against the world. You know what I mean?

And, so, that's -- that's the tagline that we kind of embrace. That's the tagline that we kind of try to push. But, as you -- what you said is true. Lately, it's the honor and -- and some of the original concept is definitely being lost. It's definitely being morphed into something else.

(CROSSTALK)

COOPER: You know, it's interesting. You mentioned BET and MTV.

And, you know, when you look at these videos, and you hear the music -- and I don't want to sound like some old fogy who is like, "Oh, rap music is bad," but...

SLOAN: Right.

COOPER: ... the stuff that's being marketed to these kids is so against everything that will help them succeed. And it's just not being marketed by, you know, some guy in his garage who is rapping. These are major corporations making millions and millions by basically sending a message to kids that's destroying them.

SLOAN: Yes, that's a good point.

That's a good point, because I think hip-hop and rap was a joke at first. You know what I mean? And it was like the little engine that could. And it got bigger and it got bigger. Then, you know, corporate America got its hands on it. And that's when it really, really became terrible and more dirty than ever.

You know, we have always had -- you know, there used to be a balance. You had, you know, NWA, but then you had maybe, say, a good rap group. There always used to be some balance. But now it seems like it's all -- you know, it's all geared towards women. It is all geared towards materialism.

And that's definitely not what hip-hop started out to be. But I think, as the corporations got more involved and started controlling it, you know what I mean, because we really don't control it. The rappers don't control it. We don't have -- we don't distribute it. So, I think it's the big corporations that have really, really been dirtying it up and doing it a disservice in the last, you know, five to -- five to 10 years.

COOPER: The movie is "Bastards of the Party." I looked at it. I watched it all earlier today. It's a fascinating look at -- at the history of gangs.

Cle "Bone" Sloan, appreciate you coming in and talking. Thanks.

SLOAN: Thank you.

COOPER: Well, here in Los Angeles, 34 gangs fight for turf in a single police precinct, the LAPD's Hollenbeck Division. It's one of the most violent areas in America, just 15 square smiles. Now thousands of gang members prowl the streets there.

We spent many months in Hollenbeck, investigating the gangsters and those trying to stop them, some pretty tough stuff.

Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: See, a rival gang member starts shooting at me. I shoot back. And sometimes you get hit.

So, they had to take out like eight inches of my intestines.

I'm still here though, you know, take a ticking and keep on -- you know, take a licking and keep on ticking.

COOPER (voice-over): Police say they are not able to solve many of the gang crimes in Hollenbeck because witnesses are afraid to cooperate.

AARON SKIVER, HOLLENBECK DIVISION, LAPD: The gang is their family. If you mess with one of their members, the whole family is going to come after you.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: We're going to have a look at what police are trying to do to stop the violence and hear more from gang members, why they join up, why they rarely get out unmarked. It's a special report, "Homicide in Hollenbeck." It starts in the next hour of 360.

But, in this hour right ahead: Newt Gingrich's confession. While he was trying to impeach a cheating president, he was cheating on his wife. Hypocrisy? Well, you be the judge.

Also: Afghanistan.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER (voice-over): The enemy can be anywhere, the danger everywhere. Wait a minute. Wasn't this war supposed to be over years ago? Afghanistan -- the unfinished war, as the fighting heats up.

Also: how they're paying for the war -- the Taliban connection on American streets.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir. Yes, sir. Yes, sir.

(CROSSTALK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don't -- don't -- don't swallow anything. You understand?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. Yes, sir.

COOPER: Afghan heroin, American cities -- when 360 continues.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: Former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich may enter the 2008 presidential race. He seems to be clearing the way, or at least clearing his conscience, in a very public confession.

More on that from CNN's Bill Schneider.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST (voice-over): Newt Gingrich confesses in a radio interview with Dr. James Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP, "FOCUS ON THE FAMILY")

DR. JAMES DOBSON, FOUNDER & CHAIRMAN, FOCUS ON THE FAMILY: I asked you if the rumors were true that you were in an affair with a woman, obviously, who wasn't your wife at the same time that Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky were having their escapade?

NEWT GINGRICH, FORMER SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Well, the fact is the honest answer is yes.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: The confession makes Gingrich sound like a hypocrite, passing judgment on President Clinton, while, all the while, he himself was engaging in adultery.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: No person, including the president, is above the law. I will never again, as long as I'm speaker, make a speech without commenting on this topic.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: Back in 1998, Gingrich had taken some heat from conservatives for being slow to speak out against Clinton. When he did, Gingrich was careful to say he was not passing judgment on Clinton's personal behavior.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GINGRICH: But there are two core principles. And they don't relate to personal life, and they don't relate to titillating stories.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: He said the principles were the people's right to know and the rule of law, same thing he says now.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP, "FOCUS ON THE FAMILY")

GINGRICH: The president of the United States got in trouble for committing a felony in front of a sitting federal judge.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: Gingrich's confession could be damage control. He says he will decide whether to run for president this fall, after he surveys the Republican field. If he runs, he can treat his affair as an issue he has already dealt with.

Rudy Giuliani has also been married three times, and he's the Republican front-runner. A Southern Baptist leader condemned Giuliani's behavior, calling his breakup with his second wife -- quote -- "divorce on steroids."

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "LARRY KING LIVE")

RUDOLPH GIULIANI (R), FORMER MAYOR OF NEW YORK: I'm a human being. You know, I made mistakes. I'm not perfect.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER: Gingrich, who just published a book called "Rediscovering God in America," confessed to a religious leader, and he expressed repentance.

Religious conservatives are an important force in Republican primaries and caucuses. Will they forgive Gingrich?

Dobson seemed inclined to.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP, "FOCUS ON THE FAMILY")

DOBSON: I think it's really important, and will be for many of our listeners, to know your responses to that point of disappointment back there someplace. And I really appreciate your willingness to do so.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

SCHNEIDER (on camera): Critics may say, they're all hypocrites. Religious conservatives make allowances for people they agree with politically, like Newt Gingrich, but not for Rudy Giuliani or Bill Clinton.

Bill Schneider, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: So, what this really comes down to is, if you're a pot and you call the kettle black, is a confession enough, when your party has invested so much of its image in family values?

Joining us now is CNN political analyst Ron Brownstein.

Ron, good to see you.

You know, Gingrich did actually attack Democrats on the issue of family values all the time. At one point, he went as far as linking them to Susan Smith, the woman who murdered her two kids...

RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, he did.

COOPER: ... in South Carolina. He said -- and I quote -- "I think that the mother killing the two children in South Carolina vividly reminds every American how sick the society is getting and how much we need to change things. The only way to get to change is to vote Republican."

Why do you think he is making this confession to a leading Christian conservative now? Is it just to sell the book, or to sell himself as a presidential candidate?

BROWNSTEIN: Well, there was a line in the 1990s, also, I recall, about Woody Allen family values and the Democrats.

Gingrich always used words like rocks. I mean, he was a very aggressive political partisan.

I think that, at this point, it's -- it is hard to know exactly where -- how serious he is about entering the Republican presidential race. There is obviously value for any public figure in having their name floated out there as a potential candidate. It keeps them in the public eye. It helps them with speaking engagements. It makes people like you and me pay attention to what they say.

Certainly, putting this kind of a revelation out there, although -- frankly, I think, among the -- in the political world, this is, I don't think, a bombshell. Many people, I think, certainly suspected this and were -- were aware of it at the time of his stepping down in 1998. But, certainly, putting it out in his own words, through his own lips, could be seen as trying to get it behind him, in case he does want to run.

COOPER: How do you think these kind of things are playing this year in this race? I mean, you have Giuliani. You have Senator McCain. You have Senator Clinton. All have family issues that have been scrutinized, probably will be scrutinized in the upcoming campaign.

But has the public moved beyond this? I mean, has it -- has it changed from what it was 10 years ago?

BROWNSTEIN: I tend to think so.

I mean, these issues are going to be headaches. They may be obstacles and hurdles. But I don't think they are deal-breakers for the public. For my money, the best book ever written about American politics was "All the King's Men" by Robert Penn Warren.

And he had Willie Stark, who was his fictional Huey Long, tell his young aide: "Man is conceived in sin and born in corruption. There is always something."

(LAUGHTER)

BROWNSTEIN: And I think we saw that the public intuitively understands this, especially during the Bill Clinton impeachment saga. I mean, I think there was a clear sense that we are -- from the public -- that all politicians, like all people they know, are flawed. And you can't really judge people solely by what they do in their worst moments.

COOPER: Does it matter more if you're a Republican or if you're a Democrat?

BROWNSTEIN: Well, I think there is a little more danger for Republicans in a primary situation in these kinds of stories, because, as Bill Schneider said in his piece, religious conservatives are such a large portion of their constituency and their electorate.

So, it is possible that this is a little more of a hurdle and a little more of a headache for a Republican. But, in the end, I don't think, even on the Republican side, these kinds of stories are going to be the decisive factor.

COOPER: It -- it also seems that things on the Internet have reached such a pitch, in terms of people investigating rumors and gossip, that will be a fundamental difference, I think, this time around.

BROWNSTEIN: That really goes to the headache factor.

I mean, I -- I agree. I think the -- the -- there's much more ability to move these stories from the periphery into the mainstream of the media and the political dialogue. I mean, the Internet -- what we have had develop since Bill Clinton first ran is the development of, really, a partisan transmission belt for both parties, through talk radio, through FOX News, through these partisan blogs of left and right.

And there's an enormous ability to take these stories and force them in front of the public. But, in a strange way, the very -- that -- that very fact can undermine their significance. I mean, there are going to be so -- there is going to be so much of this put out there, as there has been now for 20 years, I think there's a sense in the public that we are all cracked -- we are all cracked vessels, as George Kennan once said.

COOPER: Well said. Let's leave it there.

Ron, appreciate it. Thanks very much. Have a great weekend.

BROWNSTEIN: Thank you, Anderson. OK. You, too.

COOPER: You know, we -- we can't cover politics tonight enough without talking about President Bush's trip to Latin America.

Today, the president was in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The centerpiece of his visit was the announcement of an agreement between the U.S. and Brazil to cooperate on ethanol production. The countries are the world's two largest producers of the plant-based gasoline substitute.

The president also took a little time to let loose. During a musical performance by Brazilian teens, he decided to join in, grabbed a ganza, and started grooving to the beat. His rhythm perhaps needs a little work, but he did seem to be having a good time there.

(LAUGHTER)

COOPER: All right.

Up next on 360, we are going to take you to the front lines of the unfinished war in Afghanistan, the war many people here have seemed to have forgotten about.

Plus, the other enemy: Afghanistan's heroin ending up in America's heartland. You may be surprised by who is addicted and how the Taliban is benefiting -- our investigation next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: We have vowed, in the weeks and months ahead, to focus a lot on Afghanistan, the unfinished war, a war that many of the soldiers who are fighting say is not getting enough attention. They feel forgotten.

The biggest NATO offensive against insurgents is under way in southern Afghanistan right now. It's called Operation Achilles. And its goal is to head off a threatened spring offensive by the Taliban.

Now, just yesterday, NATO troops clashed with Taliban fighters. One soldier was killed.

CNN's Nic Robertson is embedded with the 42nd Commando Royal Marines.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): Days into Operation Achilles, British commandos are resupplying the front line: ammunition, food, water and spare vehicles in a near mile-long, highly-armed convoy, too much and potentially too dangerous to send by air.

MAJOR STUART TAYLOR, 42ND ROYAL MARINE COMMANDOS: Support helicopters are -- are very vulnerable in this area. There is a perceived threat of ground-to-air capability by the enemy.

ROBERTSON (on camera): The sun's just beginning to come up now. The convoy has been on the road for about an hour already. The journey is expected to take the whole day. Nobody's really sure what to expect along the route.

(voice over): As they pass through the first village, concerns of a Taliban ambush.

VINCE PULHAM, 42ND ROYAL MARINE COMMANDOS: Well, it's been a (INAUDIBLE) roll at the moment. To the east of Gereshk is called IED Alley. It's about just 4-K -- of just -- see, you can tell it's bumpy and rubbly. And it's had a lot of IED attacks on it in the past, due to the fact they can hide them in the rubble itself.

ROBERTSON: But it's not the Taliban. It's the terrain that becomes the enemy, the heavy trucks bogging down in the deep sand. Time is lost.

TAYLOR: All call signs, cancel my last. No hold two, no hold two. Continue...

ROBERTSON: Past fields full of opium poppies, villages here have been told to leave the convoys alone. As benign as it looks, this is where the Taliban are at their most dangerous, in this area, planting mines.

TAYLOR: The Taliban are using some of these mines to dig up the tracks that we're using, conceal the mines, and therefore deny those tracks to us.

ROBERTSON: Seven hours and 60 kilometers later, they reach their first drop-off. Ammunition at the base is being used up fast fighting the Taliban. Late afternoon, and, slowed by breakdowns, they move off for the next drop.

(on camera): It's about an hour before the sun goes down, and the pressure is on to keep the speed of the convoy up, so we can get to a safe place for everyone to rest up for the night.

(voice over): More than 12 hours on the road, and still not reached the second drop-off, Taylor halts the convoy for the night -- not unexpected, just not as quick as hoped -- resupply at war always hard, in Afghanistan, fighting enemy and terrain, doubly so.

Nic Robertson, CNN, Helmand Province, Afghanistan.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Twelve hours on the road, then a few hours sleep, and then they'll start doing it all again the next day. In addition to the Taliban, NATO troops in Afghanistan are battling drug traffickers. Afghanistan provides more than 90 percent of the world's heroin. More than 90 percent. And a new U.N. report says this year's opium harvest could be bigger than last year's. And last year's was a record crop, up nearly 60 percent over the years before.

Doesn't take long, of course, for that opium to reach America's heartland. Heroin is showing up in cities and neighborhoods that you may not expect. CNN's Randi Kaye takes a look at who is buying and how some of that money ends up back in the hands of the Taliban.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This undercover narcotics team from St. Louis County is chasing a suspected heroin dealer.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We have a black male in the vehicle in UC (ph). He has got a white striped shirt on and blue jeans.

LT. JIM VOLLMAN, ST. LOUIS CO. POLICE DEPT.: The guy didn't have any on him, but he's going to take him to a location where we can get what we want.

KAYE: We tailed the officer and the suspect. They're riding in the undercover officer's car.

VOLLMAN: Any time you put somebody in your car, it is not good.

KAYE: Officers hope the suspected dealer will lead them to what they call china white, heroin so pure, so potent, so powerful, it killed 55 people in St. Louis in just the first six months of this year.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Left on Turner from Sacramento.

KAYE: The suspect makes a buy on the street and gets back in the car. When he and the undercover cop move on, the other officers pounce on the guy who sold him the drugs.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir. Yes, sir. Yes, sir.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Cuff him. Cuff him.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Don't -- don't swallow anything. You understand?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. Yes, sir.

KAYE: It turns out this time it wasn't heroin. This guy was charged with selling crack cocaine. And the suspect in the car got away at the next stop while pretending to make another buy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Release that.

KAYE: But officers say they do catch someone selling heroin virtually every night of the week. One recent bust netted $20 million worth of china white.

(on camera): Who's selling it here in St. Louis?

CAPT. TOM JACKSON, ST. LOUIS CO. POLICE DEPT.: We're seeing it sold by street corner dealers, in some of the worst neighborhoods. And by well off teenage girls in some of the more expensive neighborhoods.

KAYE (voice-over): Sellers likely have no idea the Taliban in Afghanistan is supplying the heroin they deal in the U.S.

The DEA says the Taliban is to blame for Afghanistan's explosion in opium poppy, the raw ingredient used to make heroin.

(on camera): How does the heroin get from Afghanistan to St. Louis? Captain Jackson says it first goes to Nigeria, then to street gangs in Chicago. From there, it makes its way here.

(voice-over): China white isn't an inner city, back alley, shoot-it-up sort of drug. This heroin is so pure it can be smoked or snorted, which reduces the stigma and the fear of dirty needles. This has only increased the drug's appeal among the affluent.

JACKSON: The high school kids and even the college kids are using it as a designer drug. It's just a recreational drug to a lot of kids until they start dying, and they're dying. It's killing them.

KAYE: Inexperienced users, especially the young ones, easily overdose.

JACK RILEY, ASSISTANT SPECIAL AGENT, DEA, ST. LOUIS: We've gone down to the early levels of high school and some indication that it's actually available in the 7th and 8th grade students. And that's quite alarming.

KAYE: DEA Special Agent Jack Riley says besides the drugs, his agents have seized millions of dollars in cash.

(on camera): All of the money that's being made from this heroin could very well help the Taliban resurgence.

RILEY: That's what keeps me up all night.

KAYE (voice-over): But in St. Louis, the "Gateway to the West," stopping the flow of heroin is a daunting task, and the drug dealers know it.

Randi Kaye, CNN, St. Louis.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Coming up, what it's like out on the streets with the LAPD on one of the roughest beats in country.

Also tonight, a wrong turn, a very wrong turn.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER (voice-over): Deadly plunge. What went wrong?

KYLE KING, BUS CRASH SURVIVOR: And I woke up to the bus -- the driver's wife screaming.

COOPER: Seven lives lost. A small town heartbroken. After the crash, the search for answers.

Also tonight, dealing with demons.

THOMAS ROBERTS, CNN HEADLINE NEWS ANCHOR: That was not my life. And there was no way I was going to go back and walk through that ring of fire again.

COOPER: Counseled by a priest, abused by a priest. Anchor Thomas Roberts now confronting his past and the man who stole years from his life.

When 360 continues.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: We've been telling you this week about a 360 special coming up on Monday that you won't want to miss. It's about a member of the CNN family, HEADLINE NEWS anchor Thomas Roberts. As a teenager he turned to his priest for help and the priest in turn molested him.

The abuse changed Thomas' life forever.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

T. ROBERTS: Dear everybody, I'm very sorry. I wish I could be there to tell you this.

COOPER: (voice-over): This is dated November 1st, 1987. Without revealing the abuse he was suffering, Thomas wrote a good-bye letter to his family and friends. Then on his dresser, he lined up a bottle of his mother's pain killers and swallowed one after another. He lay down on his bed waiting for it all to be over.

(on camera): As you were taking the pills, what were the feelings? What were the thoughts?

T. ROBERTS: The feeling was, I'll be out of this. You know, I won't have to deal with this anymore. And I'm sorry that I wasn't able to, but I just can't.

COOPER (voice-over): His attempt to take his own life was interrupted by his older sister, patsy. PATSY ROBERTS, THOMAS' SISTER: I'm like, what did you do? And he started to tell me, he started to cry. And I was like, OK, well, I'll fix it. You know, that was always my answer. OK. We'll fix it. And we fixed it.

COOPER: after calling a friend who was a paramedic, 18-year-old Patsy raced to the grocery store to buy ipecac, the medication to rid Thomas' body of the painkillers and ultimately save his life.

P. ROBERTS: This was my kid brother, this is a kid that I love with every fabric of my being. And to think that he was trying to leave this planet and you know, I would never see him again. I didn't understand. I always thought -- I mean, we were so close, my brother and I, to this day, we're extremely close. And to think that there was something there that I wasn't picking up on, that's tough.

COOPER (on camera): When you got home and realized what had happened, I mean, what were the thoughts?

MICHELLE ROBERTS, THOMAS' MOM: Well, I never thought that it was related to anything but what was going on in our household, the divorce, the emotional problems that we were going through at that time.

COOPER (voice-over): Surrounded by his family, Thomas sought medical attention. But even with the help of a psychologist, he still refused to speak of the abuse.

T. ROBERTS: The option of walking through the front door and telling the truth, it wasn't even something I fathomed. I thought that would be suicide as well by telling the truth. It would wreck any semblance of a life that I could have. So I just thought, I'll carry this.

COOPER: He carried his dark secret back to school, back to his life and, incredibly, back here to the house on cottage lane and Father Jeff Tuey (ph).

(on camera): It just stuns me after the suicide attempt, you go back to Father Jeff and I mean, you would just think any decent human being would stop at that point.

T. ROBERTS: Mm-hmm.

COOPER: But he didn't.

T. ROBERTS: No. The abuse continued. There was never a time where it stopped. It never stopped. It just kept going and growing.

COOPER (voice-over): Thomas did what he could to survive.

T. ROBERTS: Monday, July 24th, 1989, over out. Tuesday, August 29th. December 20th. February 14th, 1990. November 29th, 1989.

COOPER: He hid it all inside, revealing only hints of the truth in his private journal. T. ROBERTS: Sunday, January 14th, 1990. Over out.

I wrote everything down because that was what was going on in my life. I wrote the evenings down in code. It was called "over out," so that if anybody looked at this, they wouldn't be able to decipher exactly what I had written down and what I had meant by it.

COOPER (on camera): What did over out meant?

T. ROBERTS: Over there, out of here. It meant over at Father Jeff's and out of my life. It is almost like I was a twin. I was walking two different lives.

This is where the Christian Brothers live.

COOPER (voice-over): For two-and-a-half years at Calvert Hall, Thomas went on pretending everything was OK.

(on camera): When you see it now, what do you think?

T. ROBERTS: I mean, I can look at this building and I wonder, you know, how did I go here day in and day out? How did I get by and survive?

COOPER (voice-over): In the cafeteria, walking the halls, presiding over every Mass, Father Jeff was at every turn in Thomas' life.

(on camera): And what did you think when you were sitting there watching him give a sermon or give communion?

T. ROBERTS: I thought how people respected him. I thought how people really looked up to this man. Not even understanding what was happening to me, you still have respect for this man in this position as your priest. And I realized also that he had the power, not me.

COOPER (voice-over): Thomas says he was powerless against the priest and that all he could do was sit and wait until finally he was old enough to escape.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Well, the suicide attempt, the escape, both are just part of Monday's 360 special "Sins of the Father" at 10:00 p.m. Eastern.

Coming up ahead on 360, the voice of a survivor. A passenger from the Atlanta bus crash calls 911 and describes in detail the plunge off a highway overpass. You'll hear the tape when 360 continues.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: Last week's deadly bus crash in Atlanta claimed a seventh victim today. A college baseball player critically injured in the accident has died. Earlier 911 tapes of the tragedy were released.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)

OPERATOR: About how many? Give me an estimate so we'll know how many ambulances. How many?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're talking 50 -- or not 50 of us, at least 33, 33 people on this bus.

OPERATOR: OK. You all are on the expressway or are you on the street?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think we fell off the expressway. We hit a road and fell off the next bridge.

OPERATOR: Uh-huh.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

OPERATOR: The bus fell over the bridge?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.

(END AUDIO CLIP)

COOPER: College players on the charter bus were headed to Florida, a road trip that ended in screams and silence.

CNN's Drew Griffin investigates.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

DREW GRIFFIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It is not until you actually approach this split in the road that you're directed to exit left or stay straight on southbound 75. For reasons we will never know, Jerry Niemeyer steered his bus left, onto this exit ramp. He apparently didn't realize it.

(on camera): It's at this moment, Kyle King, seated four rows behind the driver in this seat is listening to music half asleep and hears the only warning.

KING: And I woke up to the bus -- the driver's wife screaming.

GRIFFIN (voice-over): Jean Niemeyer was sitting in the front with her husband.

KING: She said something like, this isn't the exit or the on- ramp or something. And then I remember hearing the bus driver saying something, then I actually heard the tires squeal of him trying to get it back on control.

GRIFFIN: Despite being on a clearly marked exit ramp, stop signs ahead and a "stop ahead" warning painted on the pavement, Atlanta Police say bus driver Jerry Niemeyer hit the intersection without breaking. His bus blew through the stop sign, across four lanes of traffic and headed straight for a retaining wall.

MAJ. C.W. MOSS, ATLANTA POLICE DEPARTMENT: We don't have any evidence on the roadway suggesting that the bus had attempted to stop. There were no skid marks laid down that we were able to determine. As to the reason for that, that remains under investigation. We hope we'll ultimately get an answer to that.

GRIFFIN: This skid mark of wheels turning right is the only evidence of Niemeyer's futile attempt to avoid disaster.

A.J. RAMTHUN, BUS CRASH SURVIVOR: I woke up as soon as the bus hit the overpass' wall. That's when I looked up and the bus landed on the left side, which is the side I was sitting on. And I just looked out and saw the road coming up after me. That's all.

(END OF VIDEOTAPE)

COOPER: Unbelievable. This weekend, the CNN Special Investigations Unit presents a one-hour report on the tragedy, "Fatal Journey: The Atlanta Bus Crash" airs Saturday and Sunday night at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.

Big trouble for the FBI. A new report says agents may have been braking the law by playing Big Brother. That's next.

And later, to live and die in L.A. Gang warfare from the inside in our special, "Homicide in Hollenbeck." That's coming up.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: The "Shot of the Day" in a moment. We got this one from actually one of our viewers, who, like us, can't get enough of Japanese TV shows. We'll explain what's going on there in a moment, if we can. Kiran Chetry right now joins us for the 360 (INAUDIBLE).

Hey, Kiran.

KIRAN CHETRY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There's a chimpanzee doing sit- ups, really, what can we explain. All right. Anderson, let's get you up to date right now. We begin with what looks like a stunning abuse of power by the FBI. That according to a report by the Justice Department's inspector general.

An audit found serious misuse of the Patriot Act. The top watchdog says agents improperly collected phone and business records from thousands of citizens. The information obtained without authority or court order. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales says there is, quote, "no excuse for it."

Well, it's an early Daylight Saving Time, and it could mean a big mess for computer and wireless hand-held users. Many networks were programmed for the time switch to take effect in three weeks, not this weekend. Companies are scrambling now to update software so that clocks will change automatically. Daylight Saving Time comes this Sunday at 2:00 a.m. Don't forget to move your clocks ahead one hour. And in New York, paying the price for a cheap and vicious shot on the ice. Chris Simon of the Islanders struck the Rangers' Ryan Hollweg in the face with his hockey stick last night. As you can see from the video, Hollweg fell. He was motionless for a little while, but he is OK now. Simon was suspended indefinitely by the NHL. And that's a quick look at your news.

COOPER: Yikes.

CHETRY: Yes, he's OK, though.

COOPER: Unbelievable. Time for some far lighter stuff. Yen Li (ph) sent us this shot all the way from Malaysia. It is from Japanese TV. This time around a monkey and a dog join forces to do some ab work in the gym. There you see it. The monkey of course doing very well there. They then reverse roles, Kiran. And oh, the antics, they continue. There you go. See the bulldog. That's the joke. Bulldog doesn't really do anything. Yes. There you go. I can watch this all day, frankly.

Just like Yen Li, we want you to give the shot a shot. If you see amazing video, tell us about it, cnn.com/360. You see, you tell us about it, we'll put some of your best clips on the air.

Straight ahead, 15 square miles. Nearly 7,000 gang member, police stretched thin. How are people fighting back? "Homicide in Hollenbeck," 360 special is next.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

COOPER: Not far from here there's a war going on. Gang-on-gang violence, criminal-on-victim, and cops helping citizens trying to take back the streets. We're talking about the LAPD's Hollenbeck division. In a moment, a special hour showing you up close what we're talking about. But first, a troubling new report on violent crime around the nation, maybe even in your city.

Here's CNN's Tom Foreman.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

(SCREAMING)

TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In Nevada, a cell phone camera captures a woman screaming, police say, as a man with a knife attacks people at random.

In Florida, officers surround an office building where they say a man shot his ex-girlfriend, then went on the run.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The people inside said they did not know the subject that came in, but it would appear that she was the intended victim.

FOREMAN: The new report by a national police organization says violent crime is skyrocketing in the nation's big cities. The two- year trend is unmistakable, it says. Homicides rose 10 percent, robberies up 12 percent, and assaults with firearms climbed 10 percent. After watching violent decrease for more than a decade, federal officials are worried.

ALBERTO GONZALES, U.S. ATTORNEY GENERAL: We are concerned about the recent increase and specifically violent crime. We have made great progress in this area. But we still have challenges that we must confront.

FOREMAN: Challenges in New Orleans, where leaders are scrambling to knock down a soaring murder rate while trying to build up their city.

SEN. MARY LANDRIEU (D), LOUISIANA: We all need to work together, and every tool needs to be deployed. And all of this must be done without delay, without excuse, and without red tape.

FOREMAN: Challenges in Houston, another place where the number of murders is climbing steeply.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If you see something happening, before it gets out of hand, call the police.

FOREMAN (on camera): The study shows some cities, such as Washington, D.C., have lowered homicide rates substantially, but that's small consolation to some local leaders here. An appeals court has just struck down a 30-year-old D.C. law banning handguns in homes. Gun rights supporters like the decision, but the mayor does not.

MAYOR ADRIAN FENTY, WASHINGTON, D.C.: Today's decision flies in the face of laws that have helped decrease gun violence in the District of Columbia.

FOREMAN (voice-over): And he clearly fears the nation's capital could soon join the nation is watching violent crime go up.

Tom Foreman, CNN, Washington.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

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