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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Attack on Kabul Hotel; Bachmann's Double Talk; The Day in Anthony's Defense; Arab Spring Brings Hope to a Region
Aired June 28, 2011 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: We begin with breaking news tonight: a daring deadly suicide bombing attack on a hotel in Kabul, the Intercontinental, frequented by westerners, there you see some of the hotel in flame six attackers in all, at least one blowing himself up. The others spreading mayhem and murder for hour-after-hour until NATO choppers picked off three of them on the hotel roof and other security forces cleared the hotel.
Right now, all six bombers are reported dead. As for fatalities, that is unclear.
Reporter Erin Cunningham managed to get close to the scene. She joins us now by phone -- Erin.
ERIN CUNNINGHAM, JOURNALIST (via telephone): Well, what it looks like is the Taliban fighters launched an assault on the hotel in which at least one blew themselves up at the front gate in order to allow the other gunmen to enter.
After that, they took positions on the roof of the hotel, where they were engaged in an hour-long gun battle with the Afghan police. Later on, the Afghan national army arrived at the scene, stormed the hotel and evacuated many of the guests.
It's unclear right now how many guests were actually staying at the hotel at the time. However, there were RPGs being launched, artillery fire, and it finally concluded with NATO attack helicopters coming to engage the insurgents from the roof.
COOPER: And Erin, this clearly has hallmarks of other attacks that we have seen, even in Kabul itself and in Pakistan; small groups of gunmen, suicide bombers invading facilities and basically shooting who they can, blowing people up, and trying to create as much mayhem as possible. It also kind of echoes back to the Mumbai attacks in India.
What does it say the fact that this had to be brought to an end essentially by NATO gunships and that Afghan security forces in the capital didn't seem up to the job of doing this themselves?
I think that's a major concern right now and a question that has to be answered by the Afghan security forces in the coming days as it becomes more clear how this attack unfolded. Now, the attack itself, while spectacular, isn't necessarily a strategic gain for the Taliban. The Taliban cannot take the city, per se, but they can launch these high-profile attacks that draw a lot of attention. And then it falls on the Afghan security forces to end it quickly.
So -- but there is still that divide between the Afghan security forces being able to stave off an attack and actually end it without calling on NATO for help.
COOPER: And you have an update on the death toll?
CUNNINGHAM: I just spoke with the Afghan -- the Kabul chief of police, rather, who said that 10 people were killed, but he did not distinguish between civilians and security forces. But this is in addition to the six attackers that were killed.
COOPER: All right, Erin Cunningham, I appreciate it. Stay safe. Thanks, Erin.
"Keeping Them Honest" now on a story we first brought you last night, a story that is not going away because it concerns Michele Bachmann, a leading presidential contender, whose answers to some important questions are either incomplete, mistaken or flat-out wrong.
Now as you probably know, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann has built her political career campaigning against big government, and it's a platform she's now running on. But according to her own financial statements, Bachmann has personally benefited over the years from one of the biggest of big-government programs. She denies it, despite what's written on her own congressional disclosure forms.
Now, we've noticed that when confronted with those facts, the congresswoman dodges the question or tries to change the subject.
Watch what happened today when our producer Peter Hamby caught up with her in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. MICHELE BACHMANN (R-MN), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: You know and, again, we have answered that question so many times and everyone's tired of it, because at this point what we do know to be true is that my husband and I have never taken a dime. The farm belongs to my father-in-law.
People are interested in big issues. This is a big campaign. And so that's a talking point for the Democrat Party, and there's nothing to it. We have never gotten a dime.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Never gotten a dime, she says. It's a talking point for the Democrats. It's basically the same answer she gave to FOX News over the weekend, although she said she didn't even get a penny, I believe it was.
She said even less to CBS News. Yet on several accounts, her answers simply do not seem to square with her own financial disclosures. The farm in question belonged to her late father-in-law. But according to "The Los Angeles Times", records show Congresswoman Bachmann is a partner in the company, Bachmann Farm Family LP -- Limited Partnership.
They still own the land which is now being farmed by others. When her father-in-law was farming on it, records show the company in which Michele Bachmann reportedly was a partner of got more than $145,000 in corn subsidies between 1995 and 2007, more than $105,000 in dairy program subsidies for the same period, $7,300 in livestock subsidies; all of this according to the Environmental Working Group, which gets its numbers straight from the Agriculture Department.
So that's more than a quarter million dollars in federal subsidies, big-government intervention in the free market, perfectly legal, of course, and no different from many other farmers. But remember the congresswoman opposed government intervention to bail out Detroit. She opposes the Affordable Health Care Act, Obamacare, as big- government intrusion into the free market.
Yet for years, she's been ok with government price supports and subsidies on the farm. Bachmann's own congressional financial disclosure forms reveal she received between $32,000 and $105,000 of income from Bachmann Farm Family LP between 2006 and 2009.
Now, we can't say for sure about 2007 because the form is illegible. And we don't know about any farther back because the disclosure form only covers her time in Congress. So, when the congresswoman says she has never gotten a dime from the farm, she's contradicting her own disclosure filings.
It's possible her disclosure filings have been wrong year after year or maybe her recollection is wrong. In any case, you saw what happened when we asked her about it this evening. We invited her on the program tonight. She declined. Did the same thing last night.
She did, however, appear on all five network morning shows today, where not a single interviewer asked her directly about her family farm and her statements about it.
Sunday, when CBS' Bob Schieffer asked the right question, he got even less of an answer than we did. Mrs. Bachmann simply changed the subject. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOB SCHIEFFER, HOST, "FACE THE NATION": What about farm subsidies? You -- you benefit from farm subsidies on your family farm. Do you think we ought to think about cutting those back?
BACHMANN: Well, I think everything needs to be on the table right now, every part of government. I will tell you one thing that should be on the table. Under Barack Obama the last two years, the number of federal limousines for bureaucrats has increased 73 percent in two years. I can't think of anything more reprehensible than seeing bureaucrats on their cell phones in the back -- 73 percent increase in the number of federal limousines in the last two years, for heaven's sakes.
SCHIEFFER: But Congresswoman, you're not seriously saying that eliminating limousine service is anywhere equal to reducing farm subsidies?
BACHMANN: What I'm saying is that I think that's an easy one that we need to do. Clearly President Obama is not serious about cutting spending.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, joining us now is chief political analyst Gloria Borger and Erick Erickson, editor in chief of RedState.com.
Gloria, when it comes to income from her family's farm, the congresswoman says one thing. Her financial forms say another. They could be wrong or she could be wrong.
GLORIA BORGER, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Right.
COOPER: Can -- can she continue doing that or I mean, sort of dodging the questions, or will she have to explain the discrepancy at some point?
BORGER: She's going -- at some point she's going to have to do it, Anderson. And we'll continue asking the questions, not because you want to play gotcha, but because when you're a presidential candidate, trust matters.
And these things can come back to haunt you. People want answers to these questions. Voting for president is a very personal vote. And I think back to the 2006 campaign, when Barack Obama -- when Senator Barack Obama was thinking about running, I should say, in 2006, he had a questionable land deal. He came out and said it was a bone-headed mistake.
And, Anderson, the 2008 campaign, it still came back to haunt him. Hillary Clinton asked about it. So you can be sure that other Republicans, if she gets a lot of traction, are going also to start asking her questions about this because it matters, because she's campaigned against big government.
And if she is in fact benefiting from big government, she ought to tell people exactly what occurred. And if she has a good explanation for it, give it.
COOPER: Erick, do you think it matters? Because I mean, you could say, well, look, it's not a lot of money over the course of several years, and -- and this is nitpicking.
ERICK ERICKSON, EDITOR IN CHIEF, REDSTATE.COM: You know, I do think it matters.
In fact, a number of conservatives that I have talked to in the past year, when she first started hinting about this, this was the issue they raised. But, Anderson, I have got to tell you, listening to this report, when I was a lawyer, I dealt in some of these issues. And if it was a limited partnership and she was a limited partner, she couldn't have declined them if the general partner, who I assume was the father-in-law, wanted them.
And also it's not a well-known fact, but it is, in fact, a fact, that if the limited partnership was renting land to another farmer who took AG subsidies, those AG subsidies were attributed to the owner of the land, not the -- not the person leasing the land.
So that could be it. She's going to have to explain what the issue is. There may be no "there" there.
ERICKSON: She did vote to end AG subsidies, even though she apparently was getting money for them, which is commendable. But she definitely needs to do a detailed answer on this.
COOPER: Yes. I believe the time in question is when her father-in- law was actually operating the farm. I think it's now operated by somebody else.
But Gloria, Bachmann's former chief of staff said today that she's --
COOPER: -- not qualified to be president and endorsed Tim Pawlenty instead.
How much stock can you put on a former employee saying something like that? Or I mean do we know the track record of this person? Did they end badly?
BORGER: Well, yes, he's a -- he's a Pawlenty guy. And you can always come out and say, as Sarah Palin did of those former McCain aides, well, they just didn't like me and that's why they're saying these things about me.
But he's not just saying that Tim Pawlenty is -- is more qualified on the issues or I agree with him on the issues. He was quite specific about it. He called her campaign offices wildly out of control and said that she was without any leadership experience or real results from her years in office.
Experience is really an important issue this year for Republicans, because they claim that Barack Obama's problem was that he had no experience. And so they say they need to run somebody who can show that they have the experience to lead that Barack Obama did not have.
So, this is a -- this is a pretty strong criticism.
COOPER: And Erick, do you think she could be the Republican nominee? ERICKSON: You know, if I had to call the race today, Anderson, probably not. But she's making some impressive gains in places I wouldn't think she would make gains. There's a poll out today she's ahead of Romney in Oregon. I think ultimately what's going to happen is what so often happens with meteoric rises, is there's also going to be a meteoric crash when the other candidates decide to pile on her.
It's going to happen to Romney. It will happen to her. There will be a huge pile-on and not by the media, but by Republicans.
COOPER: And Erick, what does this do to Sarah Palin? I mean, I know Palin is in Iowa for the premiere of this new movie about her called "The Undefeated".
COOPER: But what do you think this means for Sarah Palin?
ERICKSON: Well, you know, I realize there are a lot of Palin fans out there who think Palin is the only person who can get into the race. But there are a lot of people who aren't necessarily against Palin, but are thinking, well, what's the rationale for her to get in it? If Rick Perry, the governor of Texas, gets in as well, there becomes a decreasing rationale for her to get in.
Now, I got a preview of the movie. And I understand why the campaign is doing this. They want to rehabilitate her image. If it works, maybe she'll get in. But I got to think there are not a lot of people who are suspicious of Palin or not already her fans who are going to pay to get a movie ticket and go see this movie.
COOPER: It's also interesting, Gloria, because I mean, Sarah Palin is sort of, for some, sucking up the oxygen in early-voting states --
COOPER: -- before the rest of the Republican field can really get a foothold.
BORGER: Yes. She goes to New Hampshire the day Mitt Romney announces. She goes to Iowa the day after Michele Bachmann announces.
You know, I -- I think she's become sort of the political equivalent of a wedding crasher. She's kind of going to these parties that these people don't really want her at. And that's because I think -- and I still believe she's not going to run. Maybe Bristol Palin will tell us, because she says she knows.
I still think she's not going to run, but she wants to be kingmaker. And I think one way to do that is to convince Republicans that you're still relevant to the party, beyond tweeting now and then. And I think that's what this is all about. COOPER: All right, Gloria, Erick Erickson, I appreciate it. Thanks very much.
COOPER: Let us know what you think. We're on Facebook or follow me on Twitter @AndersonCooper. I will try to be tweeting in the hour ahead.
Up next: a remarkable new appearance by Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and a true dilemma in the case of the alleged gunman, Jared Loughner. Can he be forced to take drugs to make him mentally fit enough to stand trial? What does the law say? What do doctors say? We're going to get a ruling by a judge tomorrow. Tonight, Sunny Hostin and Dr. Sanjay Gupta join me to discuss it
And later: more eye-opening testimony in the Casey Anthony trial, including the meter-reader who found little Caylee's body and whether he contaminated evidence by touching her body. Also, Casey's dad back on the stand, answering allegations about an affair -- details ahead.
COOPER: Two major developments at this hour in Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' recovery and the fate of her alleged gunman, Jared Lee Loughner.
There are two -- these are the two most recent photos that we have of the congresswoman shortly before she underwent surgery to replace a portion of her skull. Now, we don't have photos of her latest milestone. She made a surprise appearance last night at a NASA event in Houston honoring her husband, astronaut -- astronaut Mark Kelly.
Now meantime in Southern California, a court is set for tomorrow for Jared Loughner. He's going to get a hearing. You will recall he's being treated in a federal psychiatric hospital in Missouri after a judge ruled him mentally incompetent to stand trial.
Now lawyers want to stop doctors -- his lawyers want to stop doctors from being able to forcibly give him psychotropic drugs that could restore him to competency that could treat his schizophrenia.
Now, this raises all kinds of medical, ethical, and legal questions. I spoke about all of these earlier with Sunny Hostin of "In Session" on TruTV and 360 MD Sanjay Gupta.
COOPER: So, Sanjay, what do we know about Loughner's current mental state? Has anything changed since he was declared unfit to stand trial back in May?
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: It really doesn't sound like it. It sounds like, obviously, he's been in the hospital. There's been this -- most recently this question of medicating him. And that is sort of what prompted this entire discussion now about whether or not he could be medicated.
But it sounds like he still has some of the same issues that have led to this hospitalization in the first place, you know, having sort of the schizophrenic, paranoid delusional sort of behavior, not being in touch with reality, and unable to confer or actually have conversations with his lawyers that are meaningful.
COOPER: And how successful are antipsychotic medications with behavior that -- you know, he was throwing a chair, spit on his lawyers?
GUPTA: Well, it can be -- it can be very effective, in fact. This whole idea of putting someone back in touch with reality, making them more cognizant, organizing their thinking in some ways, there's been plenty of evidence now to show that these medications can do this.
These sort of outbursts that he had in a courtroom at the time that we heard about and then most recently with the throwing of the chairs and the spitting on the lawyers, those sorts of violent outbursts can also be tempered to some degree by these medications.
So there is a -- there is a pretty long history. And, again, my understanding is that the medications were just tried over a few days, so there hasn't been enough evidence in his case specifically to say how they would work.
COOPER: Legally I mean and ethically, it's kind of a dilemma, because on the one hand, his defense attorneys are saying, well look, you guys basically want to medicate him, so that he then can stand trial and possibly be killed by the state or -- or you know, I mean with the death penalty.
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Yes.
COOPER: But prison officials do have the right if they say, and if there's an administrative hearing that agrees that the person is a danger to himself or to others.
HOSTIN: That's right.
I mean in 2003, the Supreme Court sort of laid out the rules as to when you can forcibly medicate someone, because that's a serious thing. I think most people are very uncomfortable with forcing medication on prisoners. One way to do it is you have this full-blown hearing. The defendant is represented by counsel and you make that determination.
COOPER: In a court.
HOSTIN: In a court.
The other way is to have an administrative hearing where the defendant isn't represented by counsel, but is represented by a staff representative. That is apparently what happened here. The Bureau of Prisons had this administrative hearing. There was a staff representative. But my understanding is that staff representative didn't say anything on Loughner's behalf, and Loughner was in fact acting -- or rather asking for his attorneys.
COOPER: The defense is saying that, look, that basically the prison is just making an end run. That they're using this administrative hearing, saying he's a danger to others, but they're saying there are plenty of people who have done worse things and have not been forcibly medicated.
HOSTIN: Right. And that's the problem with the Supreme Court decision. There's a bit of wiggle room. How do you define a danger to others, especially in a case like Loughner's, who is in isolation? He's by himself.
And after six months, all he has done is spit on his attorneys, which is not a great thing, but he did that, and he tossed around a plastic chair twice. Does that equal dangerous under the Supreme Court ruling? I think there's wiggle room there, and that's what the defense is arguing.
COOPER: Sanjay, where does the medical community come in or fall when it comes to forcing an inmate or a patient to take drugs against their will that will then lead to them to be put on trial, where they could face the death penalty?
GUPTA: The duality of it is that you obviously want to treat the person and help them get better, but it is the possibility that that -- them getting better could lead them to stand trial and possibly face death.
I think the medical community as a whole, it's -- you know, it's a hot-button issue. I think more so, people would fall down on this idea that you can't mandate or force treatment certainly in competent people, and in people who are deemed to be not competent, that they have some sort of person who is speaking on their behalf or a family member or something, and that person would be making decisions, as opposed to a third party altogether.
COOPER: Sunny, you think the judge is going to come down tomorrow on the side of the government, saying he can be forcibly medicated?
HOSTIN: I think it's very possible, because he will be in legal limbo otherwise, right? That's sort of what Sanjay is saying. If he isn't made competent and he can't aid his defense and he doesn't understand the legal proceedings against him, then he's in a mental hospital for how long? Until he's competent, forever.
And so I think the judge will take that very seriously. And we know there's going to be a hearing tomorrow about 2:00 in San Diego, California, and the judge will listen to arguments from both sides.
HOSTIN: Even though both sides have argued this on paper, apparently the judge thinks this is serious enough to have actually a hearing on it.
COOPER: Sunny Hostin, thanks.
Sanjay Gupta as well -- Sanjay, thanks.
GUPTA: Thank you.
COOPER: We're following a lot more tonight. Tom Foreman joins us with a quick "360 Bulletin" -- Tom.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Anderson.
A mass protest in Cairo turned violent, leaving at least 31 people wounded. Police fired tear gas and rubber bullets to break up about 1,000 people who gathered in Tahrir Square early Wednesday. Many of them were relatives of those killed earlier this year in the uprising that drove Hosni Mubarak from power.
In Greece, riot police fired tear gas to disperse thousands of protesters on day one of a two-day strike that shut down government offices, schools and some transportation systems across the country. The protesters are rallying against a vote scheduled for Wednesday that would cut government spending and raise taxes.
Greece has to pass the measure in order to secure the last $17 billion of a bailout from other European nations and to avoid a default on its debt payments.
French Finance Minister Christine Lagarde has been voted in as the new head of the International Monetary Fund. Lagarde succeeds Dominique Strauss-Kahn, who was arrested in New York last month on sexual assault charges. She's the first woman to run the IMF.
And look at this. A teenager survived a 20-foot fall -- there he is on the right -- from an escalator in a Boston subway station. The 18- year-old was caught on surveillance video climbing up this escalator handrail and then tumbling over. His family says he only fractured his elbow. A local TV station reports the teenager told police he had been drinking -- Anderson.
Then, coming up, it really -- I mean, every day, I guess, is dramatic in this trial, but today was especially dramatic in the Casey Anthony murder trial, her family members back on the stand.
Plus, jurors got their first look at the meter reader who found Caylee's body. Remember, the defense had made a big deal about this guy. During opening statements, the defense said that this guy named Roy Kronk was morally bankrupt and that he hid Caylee's body.
But did the defense actually do anything to bolster that theory today, or did it kind of backfire? We'll take a look. Plus, Casey's father, George Anthony, on the stand again, asked whether he had an affair with a volunteer searcher, a woman who says that George told her Caylee's death was an accident. We'll show you what George testified about that today and a closer look at the relationship between George and his daughter.
We'll be right back.
COOPER: "Crime & Punishment" tonight.
In Orlando, the defense in the Casey Anthony trial is finishing up its case. Now, as we get closer to deliberations, the defense is hammering out a number of issues, hoping to find a crack in the prosecution's case big enough to qualify as reasonable doubt in at least one juror's mind.
Casey's father, George, was back on the stand today questioned about an alleged affair with a search volunteer. And for the first time, jurors heard from the meter reader who found Caylee's body, the defense trying to prove he disturbed the crime scene enough to contaminate the evidence.
Martin Savidge was in the courtroom today. He has the latest.
MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For Orlando meter reader Roy Kronk, it was the grisly moment of truth. Using a pole, he found what the nation had been looking for.
ROY KRONK, FOUND CAYLEE ANTHONY'S BODY: I was standing behind it, so I was looking at it from behind. And I still didn't think it was real. So I very gently took it and put it into the right eye socket. And I gently pivoted it up. And I looked down and I realized what it was. And I set it down as gently as I could and went up and called my area supervisor.
SAVIDGE: It was December 11, 2008, the day 2-year-old Caylee Anthony's remains were found.
For Casey Anthony's defense team, today was their moment of truth. By putting Kronk on the stand, they hoped to prove that Kronk, for months, manipulated Caylee's remains, in the hopes of gaining fame and fortune.
The defense set the stage early on for their theory. Listen to how attorney Jose Baez described Kronk during opening statements over a month ago.
JOSE BAEZ, ATTORNEY FOR CASEY ANTHONY: I want to tell you that Mr. Kronk -- and, again, we are not saying Mr. Kronk had anything to do with Caylee's death -- but Mr. Kronk is a morally bankrupt individual who actually took Caylee's body and hid her. There was a $225,000 reward in this case, but it was for a live Caylee. Mr. Kronk didn't read the fine print, and he thought he had himself a lottery ticket.
SAVIDGE: But when Kronk took the stand today, defense attorney Cheney Mason over and over tried and seemed to fail to paint Kronk as a man attempting to cash in on a child's death.
CHENEY MASON, ATTORNEY FOR CASEY ANTHONY: You remember talking also to the detectives about the issue of the reward that you were looking for?
KRONK: We were discussing the crime line tip, sir. We weren't talking about the other ones, sir.
MASON: Ok, you were joking, you say, with Alex Roberts and the others about finding this body?
KRONK: No. We were joking about the money, sir. I never joked about finding the body, sir. That's not what I said.
SAVIDGE: Kronk said he went into the woods to relieve himself on August 11th, 2008, and saw something that looked like a skull. He called police.
KRONK (via telephone): I'm a meter reader with Orange County. And I had the route today that included the Anthonys' home. I noticed something that looked white and there was a -- like a gray bag down in there. I don't know what it is. I'm not telling you its Caylee or anything of that nature.
SAVIDGE: He called them again the next day. Finally he called them a third time and says when police arrived at the scene, they barely searched.
MASON: Did you watch Deputy Cain go into the woods?
KRONK: Yes, sir. Sorry.
MASON: Did you see him get close to where you had seen the skull?
KRONK: Am I allowed to say this? Am I allowed to say what happened?
MASON: Did you see Deputy Cain get close to where you --
KRONK: Deputy Cain went down to the water line, did this did this, walked back up the bank, slipped on the mud and then chewed me out for half an hour. That's exactly what happened.
SAVIDGE: At times, instead of testimony it seemed like a test of wills.
MASON: Do you remember January 6, 2009, sir, giving a recorded statement to Yuri Melich when your counsel Mr. David Evans behind us was there, and Eric Edwards. Do you remember doing that?
KRONK: I don't mean to be rude, sir, but you're being a little vague.
SAVIDGE: They weren't the only fireworks. Earlier, Casey Anthony's father George took the stand again with the defense implying he had an affair while his granddaughter was missing.
JOSE BAEZ, DEFENSE ATTORNEY FOR CASEY ANTHONY: Mr. Anthony, do you know a woman by the name of Krystal Holloway?
GEORGE ANTHONY, FATHER OF CASEY ANTHONY: I know her by that name and also another name.
BAEZ: What other name do you know her by?
G. ANTHONY: River Cruz.
BAEZ: Did you have a romantic relationship with her?
G. ANTHONY: No, sir. No. To me that's -- that's very funny.
BAEZ: Very funny.
G. ANTHONY: Yes, sir.
BAEZ: And were you ever intimate with her?
G. ANTHONY: No, sir. And also -- that's also very funny.
SAVIDGE: George Anthony maintains that Holloway was just a volunteer who helped look for his granddaughter. The defense alleges that George Anthony in a moment of intimacy confessed to Holloway that his granddaughter's death was an accident that snowballed out of control.
BAEZ: Did you, prior to finding your granddaughter, tell Krystal Holloway or River Cruz that Caylee's death was an accident that snowballed out of control?
G. ANTHONY: Well, sir, to clarify your question, I never found my granddaughter. To this day I never found her. And to say that I had said something to her about as been stated or even by you here that something might have snowballed out of control. That conversation was never there.
COOPER: So Martin, it seemed like the defense had a lot riding on the meter reader Kronk's testimony. It doesn't sound like they did much to prove their theory, though.
SAVIDGE: No. You know, Anderson, every day is of course a big day for the defense team, but today was really huge. And for Roy Kronk to take the stand there -- because as we know, Jose Baez had made this grand statement in his opening argument that he was going to show that Kronk somehow had taken control of Caylee Anthony's remains and had manipulated them for fame and fortune.
Everybody in the courtroom, when he got on that stand they all did -- one of these, leaned forward in the seats. Even the jury did that. They were laser-focused on him. But in the end, most of those professional and unprofessional observers in the courtroom felt that defense failed to make that point. And in fact it was really not a good day for the defense team when it came to Roy Kronk.
COOPER: Martin Savidge. Martin thanks.
COOPER: Just ahead we are going to dig in deeper to the relationship between Casey Anthony and her dad, especially defense claims which he denies that he sexually abused her when she grew up and that's why she acted strangely and lied so much after Caylee disappeared. The question is, is there anything in the jailhouse recordings of the father-daughter conversations that even hint at a troubled past? We'll take a look.
And reputed Boston mobster Whitey Bulger in court today telling the judge why he's worried about getting a fair trial.
COOPER: Because of what's going on in the courtroom in the Casey Anthony trial we wanted to get a closer look at one of the key relationships in the murder trial between the defendant and her dad.
As we reported earlier, as you know, George Anthony was back on the stand today denying he had an affair with a volunteer searcher and denying that he ever told her Caylee's death was an accident that snowballed out of control. George has also denied molesting his daughter Casey; something that the defense alleged in opening statements that they really offered no evidence.
The defense has said that Casey lied so much after Caylee's death because pretending everything was OK was something she learned to do from a young age because of the alleged abuse.
Randi Kaye looks at their relationship.
G. ANTHONY: Good morning, beautiful. I love you.
CASEY ANTHONY, ON TRIAL FOR MURDER OF DAUGHTER: Hi. I love you, too.
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): From these jailhouse videos, it appears as though the relationship between Casey Anthony and her father George is a loving one.
CASEY ANTHONY: You're the best father. And by far the best grandfather that I've ever -- I've ever met. I'm going to say that, and I mean that with all my heart.
KAYE: Recorded in 2008, you can hear the retired police officer assure Casey he is trying very hard to find his missing granddaughter, Caylee.
G. ANTHONY: I'm doing everything I can. Everything I can to help you and help her. I wish there was more I could do. I would give my life right now for you and for her. KAYE: He repeatedly tries to ease his daughter's pain.
G. ANTHONY: If I could switch places with you this second, I'd do it. I would do it.
CASEY ANTHONY: I know that.
G. ANTHONY: Believe me, I would.
KAYE: But just three years later, on trial, charged with killing her 2-year-old daughter, Casey's defense paints a totally different picture of that father-daughter relationship.
BAEZ: And it all began when Casey was eight years old and her father came into her room and began to touch her inappropriately. And it escalated. And it escalated.
JEAN CASAREZ, CORRESPONDENT, TRUTV'S "IN SESSION": We had rumblings for a while that this was where the defense was going to go. But when it came out in opening statements and came out in that way with so much specificity, I think everyone was floored.
BAEZ: The defense claims the alleged sexual abuse taught then 8-year- old Casey how to keep secrets, and is ultimately the reason she was able to lie about Caylee's whereabouts after she died.
CASAREZ: If it was an accident and if you have been sexually abused, you don't say anything until ultimately you are facing the death penalty? Does that make common sense? Most people would say no.
KAYE: As the state's first witness in his daughter's murder trial, George Anthony told jurors how he was there in the delivery room for Caylee's birth.
G. ANTHONY: It's just amazing.
KAYE: And denied the claims he sexually abused his daughter.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you ever sexually molested your daughter, Casey Anthony?
G. ANTHONY: No, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Have you ever committed any sexually inappropriate act with or in the presence of your daughter, Casey Anthony?
G. ANTHONY: No, sir.
KAYE: Despite the allegations, every day George Anthony is in court, supporting his daughter.
CASAREZ: George sits there in court, and many days he has a Bible on his lap. And many days he has that Bible open, and he is reading it. What he is reading, we don't know. But more likely than not, it's to give him the strength to keep going. KAYE: According to their lawyer, George and his wife, Cindy, do not want to see the death penalty for Casey, but they are seeking the truth.
MARK LIPPMAN, ATTORNEY FOR GEORGE AND CINDY ANTHONY: This is such a unique situation. They've lost their granddaughter, and their daughter is facing the death penalty. And they don't know what happened to their granddaughter. So they're trying to find out what the truth is. And they hope to get closure through this.
CASAREZ: If this case goes into the death penalty phase, I think George and Cindy Anthony will take that stand as witnesses, and they will beg that jury to save their daughter's life.
KAYE: Casey Anthony may still be acquitted. But if she's found guilty, even a father's undying support might not be enough to save his daughter.
G. ANTHONY: Know that I love you, and I want you home. I want you --
CASEY ANTHONY: I love you, too.
KAYE: Randi Kaye, CNN, Atlanta.
COOPER: It's interesting. Because it may look chaotic that the defense attacks on multiple fronts with everything they can, looking for any way to raise a reasonable doubt. But as their case winds down, they also face what may be their toughest decision: whether or not to put Casey on the stand.
I spoke about it earlier with former prosecutor Paul Henderson in San Francisco and Andrea Lyon, a law professor who was Casey Anthony's previous lead defense attorney.
COOPER: So Paul, George Anthony on the stand again today denying an affair with a volunteer; also denying telling her that Caylee's death was an accident that snowballed out of control. It's coming down to a "he said, she said" situation here. How do you think it played today?
PAUL HENDERSON, FORMER PROSECUTOR: Well, you know, I think what -- this is more of a distraction. And the defense is trying to get in all of the side issues to distract the jury from focusing on the real central issue, which is how did this child die and who was responsible for it?
And so to me, the facts that -- or the allusions to the father maybe having an affair or wandering around or who he was involved with in terms of how the search took place, to me is a real distraction from the ultimate issue in the case. I'm just not as concerned with it.
COOPER: Andrea, clearly the defense is trying to bring up everything they can possibly think of, which I guess is their job. But does it make them look kind of scattered?
ANDREA LYON, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Well, you have to remember that George Anthony said to this woman that it was an accident. And that is the --
COOPER: Well, he denies it, though.
LYON: Well, of course, he denied it. But she confirmed it. I mean, you know, he's going to deny it now. But that's, in fact, what at least the investigation at the time I was on the case showed.
COOPER: Andrea, we also heard from Roy Kronk --
LYON: We did.
COOPER: -- the meter reader who discovered Caylee's remains. The defense is saying that he tampered with the remains, planted them in the woods to collect the reward money. He denied that today on the stand. You still think he could be damaging, though, to go the state's case?
LYON: Well, he's damaging to the state's case for a number of reasons. First, he -- his own testimony today was that he put his stick into the skull and moved it, that he moved the bag. So that means that, if that -- those were the remains that were there and they were not moved, he at least disturbed the scene. At the very minimum, that was what was shown.
Secondly, his behavior is pretty difficult to square with someone who is being a good citizen. And, you know, he called his son, told his son that he was going to be famous and going to be on TV long before he discovered the body.
COOPER: He denies that, though. I mean, he testified he did not tell his son --
LYON: You haven't heard all the evidence yet. And again, I expect that -- that based on, at least, the investigation when I was still on the case we'd done, that -- that this, in fact, can be proven, both by testimony and records.
COOPER: Go ahead, Paul.
HENDERSON: It's all just going to come down to who you're going to believe when you're listening to the testimony.
And from my perspective, listening to the defense's versions of things, even if that was how the body was found, that doesn't take away from the fact that the body was wrapped in that bag. It doesn't take away from the fact that the duct tape was on the baby. It doesn't take away from the fact that the baby was hidden and not discovered until months later from when the baby disappeared.
I mean, you know --
LYON: Yes, it does take away from it. It means that -- HENDERSON: It doesn't diminish the fact that child was murdered.
LYON: It means that the scene was disturbed. It means that the scene was disturbed, and there isn't proof that, in fact, it was a murder.
COOPER: Andrea and Paul let me ask you both at this point. The defense had said they were probably going to be able to rest by -- by later this week, Thursday maybe. Does it seem to you at this point that they are not going to put Casey Anthony on the stand, Paul?
HENDERSON: I don't think that they are going to put Casey Anthony on the stand. I think it's going to be really hard for them to put her on the stand and subject her to a severe cross-examination, based on her scattered testimony in the past about what -- what has happened in this case and what she actually has done in this case.
They're going to want to know why she told the stories that she told them. They're going to question her and challenge her severely about her behavior, what she did, why she did it, when she did it. I just don't think --
COOPER: Andrea -- Andrea, I'm curious to hear, do you think she -- they're going to put her on the stand? And if they don't, Andrea, do you think it's a problem that they raised all these things in the opening statements that they haven't really addressed, like alleged sexual abuse?
LYON: Well, here's -- here's the thing. You know, as I've said before, it's a very difficult decision as to whether to put the defendant on the stand. Once you do, all bets are off. And it's "does the jury believe her or not?" And if you don't put her on the stand, they hold it against her. It's a lose/lose proposition most of the time for the defense.
COOPER: Paul Henderson, Andrea Lyon, appreciate it. Thanks.
LYON: Thank you for having me.
HENDERSON: Thanks for having us.
Up next, new violence in Egypt, police clashing with protestors in Tahrir Square. Best-selling author Bruce Feiler was in Egypt as that nation's youth threw Hosni Mubarak from power. Tonight we talk to him about the youth movement there and what it could mean for the future of the region.
COOPER: Earlier we told you of the latest violent clashes in Egypt between police and the relatives of those killed in that country's revolution. My next guest has taken a first-hand look at the uprising sweeping the Mid-East since the beginning of the year. Best-selling author Bruce Feiler says in his new book "Generation Freedom" that he's hopeful these youth driven revolutions will result in positive change in the region.
I spoke with him earlier.
COOPER: I'm really excited by your book because it's looking at the events that are happening right now in the Middle East. And every night almost we're covering what's happening in Syria and throughout the region. It's very easy to be pessimistic about the future what's happening there.
But in your writing you're optimistic about it. You see hope.
BRUCE FEILER, AUTHOR, "GENERATION FREEDOM": Well, you and I have sat at this table. You've been kind enough to invite me a number of times in recent years to talk about this large question of: can we get along? Which is are we in a Holy War between the West and Islam?
FEILER: And in almost every one of these conversations somebody will say, where's the voice of the moderates? What are they doing? We're doing all this thing and this suddenly seemed to me like an enormous event in that conversation we've all been having since 9/11.
The reason I called my book "Generation Freedom is that these young people are really at the heart of the conversation. Two-thirds of Muslims around the world are under 30. That's a billion people. To understand the stakes here, one in seven human beings alive today is a Muslim under 30. We've got to get this right.
And so what's going on really is a battle for the hearts and minds of these people. And for 30 years, the chief way that they've been told they can change the world is the fundamentalists.
Suddenly we have a new narrative. There's a new choice. There's a new player in the game saying that there is a rival way.
COOPER: And really I mean since 9/11 it's al Qaeda which has been kind of stirring that conversation. And now with the death of Osama bin Laden, that also changes the conversation.
FEILER: And even before his death, in every country there is polling, his support has plummeted. The big mosque in Cairo last week issued its final -- its vision for the future of the country. This is the chief spiritual authority of Egypt.
And there were basically three plans. Number one, they're in favor of democracy. Number two, in favor of pluralism. There's been this fear, right, that the 10 percent of the country that's Muslim -- Christian is not going to be welcomed. They've changed that. But they even went further. And they said that theocracy is against the principles of Islam. So they are now standing -- here's Egypt standing up saying we're not going to be Iran. And also we're not going to be Saudi Arabia.
My book opens with this 21-year-old -- he's almost like a movie star from the 1950s with the Brylcreem curls. On January 20th he was thrown into a paddy wagon. But he stuffed a second cell phone into his pocket with. And with 40 people crammed in this paddy wagon he calls his mother, a prominent dissident and they chase down this paddy wagon that is going to the security. She swerves the car, blocks it from going in, and then they storm the back and they let all these people out.
He says to me, I said, so are you Muslim? He says, well, you know, I'm perhaps not as devout as people say I should be. I identify myself with a Muslim. And then he walked arm in arm off with a girl to the rehearsal of one of his four rock bands.
So these young people, they're saying they're Muslim but it is a different kind of Islam than is often portrayed in the media here.
COOPER: There is also still so much fear in the United States and growing fear in a lot of parts of the United States about Islam.
COOPER: And it's odd because it is happening at this time when that question of, well, why isn't there a reformation in the Islamic world? We're seeing some of that as you say. And you hear presidential candidates now talking about giving loyalty tests or asking different questions to a Muslim than they would ask -- a Muslim American than they would ask to a Protestant American.
FEILER: Yes. I think this is really the big test for us. We have said for ten years, we're ready to make peace. But there's nobody out there to make peace with. We're ready to end the holy war. So I think in an interesting way the Arab Spring becomes a burden back on us.
COOPER: When societies which have been under wraps and under pressure for so long, when they do explode or expand or revolt -- I mean Tom Freedman on the show said like a lot of weird stuff is going to come out in the coming years. There's going to be a lot of stuff that's going to make us very uncomfortable. You don't deny that. You're just saying the arc of history is moving in the right direction.
FEILER: Absolutely. It's going to be messy. I went to see a young 31-year-old human rights activist. And he studies sectarian strife. He's the one person who does it objectively in Cairo. And he said to me -- I said well, what's going to happen? Is there a reason to hope or should I fear?
He said -- he thought for a long time -- and he said, I think Egypt is going to become a normal country. And I was like, all this for that? He's like, no. That's a good thing. Take America. You are going to have a whacko preacher burning the Koran on one hand and social outrage against it. You're going to have some people in favor of the Ground Zero mosque and some people against it.
This is the first time in a generation that we've seen something coming from there that gives us some sense of hope. There's a billion people. This is maybe the best chance we have -- not perfect -- to include them into the mainstream of the world.
COOPER: The book is "Generation Freedom. Bruce thanks.
FEILER: Always a pleasure. Thanks.
COOPER: We'll be right back.
COOPER: Time now for the "Beat 360" winner. It's our daily challenge to viewers; a chance to show up our staffers by coming up with a better caption for the photo that we put on our blog every day. Tonight's photo, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, with soldier's at a parade in Windsor.
Our staff winner tonight is Justine. Her caption: "Just try wearing it a bit more to the side. Like this. I promise it's easier than it looks." It looks a lot easier actually.
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