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U.K. To Deploy Extra Olympics Troops; Massacre Suspect's Apartment Rigged To Kill; Massacre Suspect's Odd Court Appearance; Closer Look At Weapons Used In Aurora; Arrest Made In $400M Submarine Fire; Flooding Rivers In Iowa Now Bone Dry; Who To Watch Out For In The NFL; Shocking New Taliban Video Released; Flight Attendants To Bypass Screening; Triple Digit Temps Across Plains; Driver Rescued After Bridge Buckles; More Of Paterno Legacy Removed; Worst Drought Since Mid 1950's
Aired July 24, 2012 - 10:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
CAROL COSTELLO, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning, Zain.
ZAIN VERJEE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning there, Carol. The bottom line and the message from London this morning is the army is in charge. It's OK, the games will be safe and secure.
There was a private security company that was supposed to handle all the security, Carol, and they totally messed up. They said it was a logistical nightmare and they were not able to deliver the numbers that they promised for the games.
So here is what happened. The army has been drafted in. Today, the U.K. had said this. Take a look at them. They said they're going to deploy an extra 1,200 troops.
Now Carol, that is on top of the 3,500 they have already drafted. So the main thing is now you've got the defense forces and the military beefing up the metropolitan police.
So you have a number of 18,200 security out on the streets of London. They are saying that they want these games to be successful and the message to the public, to the fans, to the heads of states, to all the celebrities that are here, to the athletes, to kings and queens that are here to enjoy the games, that you will be safe. The policy is no risk -- Carol.
COSTELLO: I'm just curious, where are these troops coming from?
VERJEE: Well, they're drafting them from out in the field. They're boots on the ground militarily in all places like Afghanistan, for example.
In fact, if you look at the troop number here, Carol, it's about the same as the maximum troop deployment that the U.K. had made during the war in Afghanistan, so the military is in.
A lot of people are saying they feel a lot safer seeing uniforms and the military around. They're going to be doing things they're not used to though. They're not going to be dealing with IEDs and snipers. They're going to be dealing with bag checks, extra scanners, metal detectors, CCTV.
There are even surface to air missiles, six of them, on buildings in East London. Now the residents are really mad about that, but the government is saying, well, security is number one.
We need to send the message that the games are safe because there have been terrorist threats and they have been foiled. And there are some real concerns that terrorists might try to take advantage of the situation, but the message is that London is safe.
COSTELLO: Zain Verjee reporting live from London for us this morning.
Let's head to Colorado now. Bursts of gunfire killed and wounded so many in minutes, but police say James Holmes may have spent months plotting a sophisticated death trap inside his own apartment.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COSTELLO (voice-over): We now have a better idea of why bomb experts spent more than 24 hours assessing the booby trap before making their first move. Inside the apartment, 30 improvised explosive devices.
One law enforcement official says the setup is unlike almost anything found in the United States. It's more similar to what insurgents use in Iraq or Afghanistan.
The IEDs were wired to a central control box that had to be defused, and that task was daunting. CNN's source says the complexity of the wiring looked like spaghetti.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSTELLO: CNN's Poppy Harlow has been working her sources to bring so many of these new exclusive details to light. Last hour, Poppy told us about the reason for the 10 gallons of gas in the apartment.
POPPY HARLOW, CNNMONEY.COM CORRESPONDENT: What my source says is that this person rigged the apartment to, quote, "enhance the thermal effect of the explosion."
I'm told imagine the fireball you would have in an explosion that would knock down walls of nearby apartments. That flame would have consumed the entire third floor of the apartment complex, and by the time the fire truck would have arrived.
I am told they would have arrived to a building that would have been, quote, "completely consumed in flames." Though what you're looking at on your screen is what detonated those gas containers far away east of Denver.
But imagine if that would have exploded, Carol, inside the apartment building. One other thing that my source tells me that really stood out to me was that they believe that this apartment was rigged in the, quote, "right way."
That it would have successfully blown up. We've been told it was a very sophisticated setup. This was someone who knew what they were doing. It was not crude.
COSTELLO: Poppy Harlow reporting. James Holmes' first appearance in a Colorado courtroom was bizarre. Was he slipping into madness or was he faking it?
He was sporting a mop of orange and red dyed hair. His expressions range from shock to confusion to sleepiness. CNN's Jim Spellman was inside that courtroom for the hearing. He joins us now live from Aurora. Any evidence that he was on some kind of drug, Jim?
JIM SPELLMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Absolutely not, and we asked folks from the sheriff's department there, and they said we don't know, and if we do, we wouldn't tell you.
But we have no indication he was drugged. It's so hard, you hear all of Poppy's reporting about the details about what he allegedly set up in the apartment and you hear from eyewitnesses what happened inside that theatre.
And then to try to square that with this image of this guy kind of shuffling into court. To me he just struck me as being small and weak. He scanned the room quickly, then sort of stared ahead blankly with this bizarre look on his face.
It's so hard to try to put together how somebody who looks to me so ineffectual and weak could have potentially put all of this together. It's just bizarre to try to figure out.
And for family members in the courtroom as well, they, of course, want to get some sort of clue as to why, and at this point we don't have any, and it's likely they'll never get a satisfactory answer to that question -- Carol.
COSTELLO: When is his next court appearance, Jim?
SPELLMAN: It will be next Monday. That's when they will officially charge him. So far they've just said they have probable cause for first-degree murder. Those documents are sealed.
We haven't gotten a look at those. But on Monday, they will have to formally charge him. We can expect that very minimum 70 counts, one for each of the people that are injured, likely many more related to the explosives and other stuff.
Probably not long after that, they'll ask for a competency hearing to see if James Holmes is competent to stand trial. That would be different than any element they may use in an insanity defense.
But they have to decide whether he's mentally capable to participate and understand the proceedings before they can go forward with a trial -- Carol.
COSTELLO: Jim Spellman reporting live from Aurora this morning.
Two handguns, an assault rifle, a shotgun, and thousands and thousands of rounds of ammunition, they're all weapons and ammos. The police say the Aurora attack suspect purchased legally.
Our crime and justice correspondent, Joe Johns talks to a gun store worker about these guns and the ammunition, and why buying them isn't likely to raise any red flags.
JOE JOHNS, CNN CRIME AND JUSTICE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A small arsenal. These are the types of guns and ammo purchased by James Holmes, the suspect in the Colorado theatre shooting. And he did it in just a matter of months through local gun stores as well as online.
We asked Chuck Nesby, an instructor at a Northern Virginia gun store, to walk us through the weapons and their potential fire power. The 12-gauge shotgun --
CHUCK NESBY, INSTRUCTOR, NOVA FIREARMS: This is an eight-shot basically military and police shotgun. Capable of carrying three inch and two-3/4 inch --
JOHNS (on camera): So it's pump action?
JOHNS (voice-over): The AR-15, which in this case would have also had a drum capable of holding 100 rounds.
(on camera): You got 100 rounds in there. How long does it take to get 100 rounds off?
NESBY: Thirty seconds.
JOHNS: That fast?
JOHNS (voice-over): And two 40-millimeter Glock handguns.
(on camera): How many rounds do they hold?
JOHNS: OK, and so you can get of 16 pretty fast with that, right?
JOHNS (voice-over): Whatever you think of the guns, it's also the amount of ammunition the shooter was able to buy that's got gun control advocates fired up.
We're talking about 3,000 rounds for the AR-15, another 3,000 rounds for the Glock, and over 300 shotgun shells. That would be more than six cases of total ammunition, six times what you see here on the counter.
In fact, small gun stores like this one don't keep that much ammo on premises, though there is demand from some customers to buy in bulk.
NESBY: Competition shooters, very common. They go through -- they burn through a lot of ammunition in practice and in competition. They would buy it in the thousands.
JOHNS: Where is it easy to get a lot of bullets? Online. In fact, there are websites where you can purchase ammo 1,000 rounds at a time. There's no federal I.D. or background check required for purchasing ammunition, which gun control advocates see as a problem.
DAN GROSS, PRESIDENT, BRADY CAMPAIGN TO PREVENT GUN VIOLENCE: By and large across our nation, there's very limited -- there's very few restrictions on the sale of ammunition.
JOHNS: A few states and even a few local governments do have laws controlling the sale of ammunition, though gun control advocates say on their scorecard Colorado is one of the most permissive states in the country.
GROSS: It's appallingly low. On our state scorecard Colorado gets a score of 15, which puts them near the bottom.
JOHNS: We reached out to the National Rifle Association for comment. They've opposed restrictions on online ammunition sales in the past. They say they're not making any comments to the media right now.
The NRA has said that now is the time for families to grieve and for the community to heal and that there will be an appropriate time down the road to engage in political and policy discussions. Joe Johns, CNN, Washington.
COSTELLO: Other news we're following this morning, civilian worker this morning is accused of setting a fire that caused $400 million in damage to the submarine "USS Miami." Investigators say Casey James fury admitted to starting the fire and claims he had extreme anxiety and wanted to get out of work.
In Philadelphia, the highest ranking U.S. Catholic Church official charged in the child sexual abuse case will be sentenced today. Monsignor William Lynn was found guilty of covering up rape accusations against priests. He could face seven years in prison.
Take a look at these flooding streams and rivers. Just two years around Des Moines, Iowa. Now they're dry as a desert. Extreme heat and drought is not only drying up rivers and streams, it's also sourcing some cities to look for alternate water supplies.
Time for a little sports now, the NFL rarely is a player's job untouchable. Everyone tries to strut their stuff at training camp. Carlos Diaz is here to tell us which players and teams to watch.
CARLOS DIAZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I have dibs on this screen for my Sunday watching of the games. If we could watch football on this screen, that would be awesome. Can I do that?
COSTELLO: I'm coming with you.
DIAZ: By the way, you're going to see a lot of happy co-workers today because NFL training camps are starting today with the Arizona Cardinals and the New Orleans Saints starting today and then other teams starting, you know, throughout the week.
And you have several high-profile players to talk about. With the Saints, you're talking about them coming off of one of the most drama-filled off-seasons they've ever had with, of course, head Coach Sean Payton being suspended for a year for his alleged role in bountygate where you had players being paid extra to hurt opposing players.
Jonathan Vilma is not being at camp today, being suspended for a year. Drew Brees will be at camp after he signed his $100 million contract. Fans started lining up at 6:00 a.m. this morning in New Orleans to show their support for their embattled team.
COSTELLO: Yes, because New Orleans might not be so good this year. So let's hope all that support is worth it.
DIAZ: It could be interesting to see if they rally around this.
COSTELLO: OK, let's talk about Andrew Luck and some of the high- profile quarterbacks about to take the helm this year.
DIAZ: Yes. You know, you got two young guys in Andrew luck and RG3 in Washington. Andrew Luck is in Indianapolis. They went one and two in the draft in April. The big question is how will they do?
You know, back several years ago, you had Peyton Manning against Ryan Lief and of course, Peyton Manning won that battle. Now you have Andrew Luck against Robert Griffin III. It's going to be interesting to see how they do as they enter training camps with their respective teams.
You talk about Peyton Manning. Peyton Manning is in a brand new uniform with the Denver Broncos. Now, can he take the Denver Broncos to the next level and does he still have it?
Not only his age a factor with Peyton Manning, but the fact that he's coming off with that neck surgery and he hasn't played football in the NFL for over a year.
COSTELLO: : Seems like such a superman though. My bet is on Peyton Manning.
DIAZ: You're still a Peyton Manning fan. There you go.
COSTELLO: Exactly. Let's talk about -- we have to talk about Tim Tebow because what football conversation would be complete without talk of Tim Tebow.
DIAZ: Here is the funny thing about New York. You have Mark Sanchez and Tim Tebow. Who is the man in New York? What about Eli Manning? He won the Super Bowl last year with the Giants and nobody is talking about him.
But that's the big question with the Jets, you know, you have Mark Sanchez comes in as the starting quarterback. Rex Ryan says that he's our guy. Tim Tebow is just there to help out.
But how many times does Mark Sanchez overthrow a wide receiver in camp? Tim Tebow guy. The drama starts this week with teams around the NFL, and no more eyes than watching the Jets to find out what kind of drama happens there.
COSTELLO: Carlos Diaz, thanks so much.
DIAZ: I want dibs. It looks like a football field. It's bigger than a football field. It's unbelievable.
COSTELLO: Thanks, Carlos.
A car plunges 30 feet when flooding washes out a bridge in China and as rescuers frantically try to reach the driver, more ground gives way.
COSTELLO: It's 16 minutes past the hour. Checking our top stories now. Video posted on a Taliban web site claims to show what the Taliban says is a huge attack on an American base. Supposedly this happened last month.
ABC News is reporting it was a suicide bombing and killed two American troops and wounded dozens of others. The blast reportedly felt for miles. CNN has not been able to confirm this story.
Working flight attendants are going to find it easier to get through security. The TSA is adding flight attendants to the known crew member program. They won't get the full search like passengers. They just show identification and pass through, something pilots already do.
In weather news, still no break from the scorching heat. Parts of the Mississippi River Valley will see temperatures topping 100 degrees, and that heat is going to stick around at least until Friday when things could cool off. Temperatures expected to be just about 90. And in flood ravaged China, video of a driver's dramatic rescue. His car was part of a wedding caravan and it plunged 30 feet when that bridge collapsed.
Rescuers lowered themselves by rope, broke open the sunroof, and managed to pull the driver to safety. He reportedly had some broken bones, but -- my gosh, that's scary, but the driver is expected to be a-OK.
Today another piece of the Joe Paterno legacy crumbles on the Penn State campus. Workers demolished the wall that served as the backdrop for his statue, that statue taken down over the weekend.
The cover ever "Sports Illustrated" perhaps captures the grim mood of the football program decimated by the Sandusky child abuse scandal. It turns the familiar boast of the school into we were Penn State.
We know farmers are suffering from the worst drought in 70 years, and we know eventually we'll be paying higher grocery bills because of that. What is congress doing about it? Nothing.
There's a farm bill on the table, which would reinstate expired disaster assistance, but it's stuck in the House of Representatives. Why? Democratic Congressman Peter Welch is here to help us understand. Good morning.
REPRESENTATIVE PETER WELCH (D), VERMONT: Good morning.
COSTELLO: So if this farm bill passed today, how would farmers benefit?
WELCH: Well, a lot of ways. Number one, we'd restore the safety net. Number two, we would reauthorize the food stamp program. Number three, a lot of those drought-stricken farmers, there's relief programs there, and, of course, they're facing the worst drought in decades.
But bottom line, America needs a farm bill. This was passed in a bipartisan vote. The Agricultural Committee really is the last best hope of bipartisan action in the House. And Frank Lucas and Collin Peterson did a great job working together.
About 80 of us have sent a letter, a Republican from North Dakota and I got about 80 members to send a letter to our leadership saying let's bring this to the floor.
This would be the first time in history where the AG Committee passed a bill and it wasn't taken up on the floor of the full House. We've got to act. Tough job, but it's not an excuse for Congress not to do its job just because it's difficult.
COSTELLO: Congressman, this is from a critic, Congressman Jim Jordan of Ohio, he's quoted in the "Foundry." He says the farm bill went from $600 billion in 2008 to almost $1 trillion. It's bloated, he says, and we simply can't afford that at this time. How much will this farm bill actually cost taxpayers?
WELCH: Well, it actually reduces -- it eliminates 100 programs that existed before. It eliminates direct payments. So this is going to be about $35 billion less than it was in the previous bill. So there's actually savings in this.
The debate in Congress is among those like Mr. Jordan who think we should have more savings, and many on the Democratic side who think we should have more spending on the food stamp program.
These are both very legitimate debates. My position is bring it to the floor, let Mr. Jordan have his say. Let Mr. McGovern, who is the champion of food stamps, have his say, let the House vote, and then move it into conference and work it out.
The fact that we have these disagreements is not an excuse to stonewall and not bring this to the fore.
COSTELLO: Let's talk about, you know, this farm bill that includes crop insurance, right? And it guarantees a certain amount of income under all conditions for farmers.
I know a lot of business people who would love to have that luxury. So why should farmers get this kind of assistance and not other business people?
WELCH: Here is why, and the right level is always a fair debate, but farmers do not have any control over nature. So many of our farmers right now are suffering as a result of this drought. That's an act of God.
They can't do anything about it. So we in this country have always had some safety net program to help farmers through those things that are beyond their control and even beyond market forces. So what's the right level?
That's a fair debate, but the necessity to have an opportunity for farmers to stay and survive so they can grow the next year, I think that's essential and it's been supported by Republicans and Democrats.
As I say, the right level of support, that's a fair debate, and we're cutting it back. But to totally take away the safety net I think jeopardizes America's capacity to produce its own food.
COSTELLO: Critics also talk about food stamps. You mentioned this. I don't think many people know that food stamps are under the farm bill for some reason.
Think tanks, conservative think tanks say 80 percent of this bill goes to food stamps. It's something that's not popular with many Americans. Is there any compromise on this issue? I mean, should 80 percent of this farm bill go toward food stamps?
WELCH: You know, we got to feed America. We've got the highest rate of poverty in this country since the '50s. People are hungry. The downturn in the economy is increasing demand for food stamps.
So I do support a vigorous food stamp program, which by the way is good for agricultural. On the other hand, if there's any waste, fraud, or abuse in food stamps or there are reforms that can be implemented in order to make certain food stamps are used properly and not used as a rip-off, let's do that.
I'm totally in agreement with doing it. But we've come a long way on food stamps. You know, the original Ryan budget cut them by $130 billion. The House bill from the AG Committee is down to $16 billion.
In the senate it's around $4 billion. I think we can work it out and address the legitimate concerns about that program, but we've got to have a food stamp program in my view. It's good for farmers and good for nutrition for Americans.
COSTELLO: Congressman Welch, thank you so much for being with us this morning.
WELCH: Thank you.
COSTELLO: What was he thinking? That's a question a lot of people are asking after seeing accused Colorado shooter, James Holmes, in court. But should we be talking about him at all? Should we be showing his picture right now? It's our "talk back" question for today.
COSTELLO: Now is your chance to talk back on one of the big stories of the day. The question for this morning, should we talk about the accused Colorado shooter?
The blogosphere and media outlets are all abuzz with questions about how James Holmes looked in court, with bright red hair, the bug-eyed stare, and the nodding off.
We asked ourselves, is he psychotic? What is wrong with him? Tom Teves, whose son, Alex, died trying to save his girlfriend doesn't care. If it was up to him, we would never see Holmes' face again.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TOM TEVES, FATHER OF SHOOTING VICTIM ALEX TEVES: I'll give you a challenge. I would like to see CNN come out with a policy that said moving forward, we're not going to talk about the gunman.
What we're going so say is a coward walked into a movie theatre and started shooting people. He's apprehended, the coward is in jail, he will never see the light of day again.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSTELLO: The question media outlets have wrestled with before. Remember the mug shot of Jared Lee Loughner who is accused of shooting Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords? He's smirking, almost defiant.
Some newspapers blew up the picture. Others reduced it choosing instead to highlight other photos surrounding the story either way the photo was burned into our collective consciousness.
Experts say while the craving for fame may be one reason people kill, but certainly not the only reason. Notorious serial killer Henry Lee Lucas blamed his crimes on his abusive upbringing.
Some like Ted Bundy seemed to love killing just for the sake of killing. According to TruTV's Shirlyn Scott, quote, "Serial killers are human black holes and the embodiment of the darkness, desire, and power that we must repress within ourselves," end quote.
Perhaps then it's worth exploring why these people kill if only to try to prevent it from happening again. So the talk back question this morning, should we talk about the accused Colorado shooter? Facebook.com/carolcnn, facebook.com/carolcnn. I'll read your comments later this hour.
COSTELLO: Thirty minutes past the hour. I'm Carol Costello. Thank you for joining us this morning. Stories we're following in the NEWSROOM. Video, listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Allah Akbar.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSTELLO: Yes this video posted on a Taliban Web site shows what the Taliban says is a huge attack on an American base. Supposedly this happened last month. ABC News is reporting it was a suicide bombing that killed two American troops and wounded dozens of others. Blasts reportedly felt for miles.
CNN has not been able to independently confirm this story.
In Syria there is a new threat today. The regime threatens to use chemical weapons on any foreign powers that try to intervene in its conflict. Thousands reportedly have died since the uprising began more than a year ago.
Chilling new details from inside that apartment of Colorado shooting suspect James Holmes. Investigators found ten gallons of gasoline and 30 homemade grenades connected to a control box which rescue workers disabled by using a remote controlled robot.
More problems for Pennsylvania. The Justice Department is demanding the state produce detailed documents about their voter ID laws within 30 days. This formal investigation is looking into whether the state's law requiring a photo ID to vote discriminates against minorities. And this just in to CNN. Startling new claims from the ousted President at Penn State. Graham Spanier says he would not have ignored accusations of child sex abuse at the school because his childhood was tormented by, quote, "massive and persistent abuse". The claims made in a letter to the University's board of trustees.
Susan Candiotti has a copy of that letter. She joins us by phone. What does it say, Susan?
SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (via telephone): Well, among other things, Carol, it says that when he was a child that his father used to beat him and that he was a child of that kind of physical abuse. And he also says that because of that in his background that Mr. Spanier says that if he had known about any kind of child sexual abuse, suspicion, or allegations, he most certainly would have acted upon it.
This is in direct contrast to what state -- investigators or rather investigators for former FBI Director Louis Freeh have concluded in his report that found that Dr. Spanier was one of several officials at Penn State who knew that they had a problem on their hands with now convicted child predator Jerry Sandusky and yet did nothing about it.
It also appears, Carol, because it also stands in contrast to e- mails that we first reported several weeks ago before the Freeh Report came out in which -- which followed a 2001 shower incident. You might remember that at the time Dr. Spanier is involved in e-mail traffic in which he states that he's aware of a plan and signed off on the plan not to report the suspicious incident to authorities because they were going to first talk to Jerry Sandusky about it first. And he wondered about being vulnerable down the road, as he put it, for not having reported it.
So this is a letter in which he's presenting now to the board of trustees as a way of explaining his position on this, Carol.
COSTELLO: So -- so just clear this up for us, Graham Spanier is no longer President of Penn State, but he's still employed by the University, right?
CANDIOTTI: Not employed by the University. He is not, no, but he is also under investigation according to sources by state prosecutors who are examining whether he may have some criminal liability along with others who have already been charged with possibly failing to report child abuse.
COSTELLO: So the University is no longer paying Mr. Spanier.
CANDIOTTI: It does not appear to be the case. Now, whether he is getting some kind of compensation after having left -- he's no longer president -- that remains a bit unclear at this time. However, he did write this letter to the board of trustees to make them aware of what his position is following the Freeh Report and following the sanctions by the NCAA. COSTELLO: Yes. I just wondered why he would send the letter to the board of trustees and not have -- not hire an attorney and maybe keep that information confidential until he needed it.
CANDIOTTI: Carol, he has a lawyer. He's had a lawyer for quite some time because, remember, he's also testified before the grand jury last year in connection with this case. And the grand jury did not find any evidence at that time to charge him in connection with the Jerry Sandusky case.
However, they did charge two other people. At the time that the grand jury conducted its investigation, it was not aware of these e- mails that I was just talking about or other information that was turned up in documents by the -- by the Freeh Report.
So it remains to be seen where this is all going, but it is very curious, and you do ask a very good question why he -- and he is represented by a lawyer -- would have sent this lawyer to the board of trustees to explain it to them, to explain his position.
COSTELLO: It's a very complicated story. You do a great job.
Susan Candiotti reporting live with information just in to CNN.
There is a new threat this morning from the Assad regime in Syria: to use chemical weapons on any countries that might attack during its bloody unrest with opposition forces. The Syrian Foreign Ministry spokesman said this on Syrian state TV.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JIHAD MAKDISSI, SYRIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY SPOKESMAN: All of these talks of this these weapons that the Syrian Republic possess are monitored -- monitored and guarded by the Syrian army. These weapons are meant to be used only and strictly in the event of external aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSTELLO: President Obama responded to that comment. Mohammed Jamjoom joins us from Abu Dhabi to tell us more. Good morning.
MOHAMMED JAMBOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning Carol. That announcement you mentioned by the Syrian Foreign Ministry yesterday was significant for a lot of reasons, not least of which because it was the first time that the Syrian regime has actually admitted publicly that they have stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons.
Now what's interesting today a new twist to the story, earlier in the day, Jihad Makdissi -- he's the spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry, the man who gave that press conference yesterday, actually seemed to start backtracking from those comments.
In fact, he tweeted out earlier in the day that the media was misrepresenting what he was saying. He said that his presser yesterday was a response to false allegations from the international community about Syria's weapons of mass destruction arsenal.
Nonetheless, the concern is only growing, and especially within Syria. Today we spoke with a member of the Rebel Free Syrian Army who told us that they have intelligence about stockpiles from Syria's chemical weapons, that they were actually moved to two different parts of the country about 15 days ago and that that is seen as a threat to international powers -- Carol.
COSTELLO: So Mohammed, what is the United States and Israel saying about this?
JAMJOOM: Well, it's -- really they're expressing growing concern and outrage. Yesterday you had the Israeli President Shimon Peres telling CNN that Israel is preparing contingency plans. And that if Israel is directly threatened by Syria's chemical weapons, that they plan to attack Syria's chemical weapons arsenal.
Now, the U.S. for its part also expressing more concern. U.S. State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said that she was horrified and shocked that it was chilling what Syria was saying when they were talking about chemical weapons. And she also reiterated that they need to be very responsible and that they need to safeguard their chemical weapons stockpile -- Carol.
COSTELLO: Mohammed Jamjoom reporting live from Abu Dhabi this morning.
The International Aids Conference under way in Washington. One of the biggest topics is a possible cure. Many are talking about a man known as the "Berlin Patient" who says he's been cured of HIV. We'll hear from him.
COSTELLO: The possibility of an AIDS cure is a hot topic at the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C. We're learning more about a man who says he's been cured of HIV. Let's head to Washington and CNN's chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta. This patient is often referred to as the Berlin patient. You just talked to him.
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. I just talked to him. I'll preface by saying Carol that, you know, when people toss around the word cure with regard to HIV/AIDS it was usually hyperbole. I mean a lot of people in the scientific community very careful for good reason as you might imagine with that word. But they are using that word and they're using it around a guy named Timothy Brown.
I want you to hear from him in a second, but, Carol, he's a guy who was diagnosed with leukemia several years ago and as part of his treatment for leukemia he ended up undergoing a bone marrow transplant. They believe it was that bone marrow transplant that ultimately led to his cure. Again, a term that scientists are using.
Listen to how Timothy Brown put it to me.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GUPTA: Does that mean that you have no symptoms, you have no virus? How do you describe it?
TIMOTHY BROWN, SAYS HE'S CURED OF HIV VIRUS: I quit taking my HIV medication on the day I got my first transplant. Unfortunately, the leukemia came back and so I had to get a second transplant about a year later.
And after the first transplant I did very well. I gained most of the weight and went back to work and everything was great, but the leukemia came back. My HIV was gone after like three months after the first transplant -- totally eradicated from my body.
GUPTA: Completely gone.
BROWN: Completely gone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GUPTA: So, Carol, what you're hearing there, again, is how he is describing a cure, how his doctors are describing him being cured, and scientists here behind me describing it as well. Again, you know, it was sort of a laborious process for him, undergoing the bone marrow transplant, but there's potentially a lot to learn from him, which is why he's the focus of so much study now, Carol.
COSTELLO: So why don't other AIDS patients undergo bone marrow transplants to see if it works for them?
GUPTA: Well, you know, it's a hard thing. First of all, bone marrow transplantation, there's hardly enough donors for people who are getting bone marrow transplants for cancers such as leukemia, which is what originally was the reason he got his transplant.
So it's probably not going to be the answer for people around the world who have HIV/AIDS, but Carol, here is the thing. There's something about that bone marrow that he got that basically turned his cells into cells that were resistant to the HIV virus. The question that a lot of people are trying to answer now is, is there another way to do that using some sort of genetic therapy, for example. Could you make a slight tweak in cells so they are essentially resistant to the virus entering those cells?
It is one of those things that may not come in drips and drabs. It may be a sea change all of a sudden, Carol, in terms of our knowledge in this area.
COSTELLO: So this Timothy Brown, has he been poked and prodded through the years by different doctors and scientists trying to figure out how he underwent this miracle?
GUPTA: Yes, absolutely. He's been tested pretty extensively, as you might imagine. It's worth pointing out that even a couple months ago there was a little controversy around him because in one of the examinations they found some evidence of the HIV virus. But what they concluded though was the HIV virus that was in his system was essentially dead, dead virus. It wasn't active. It wasn't capable of replicating. So even though they found some evidence of it, it wasn't the kind that can actually cause a problem.
He is not on medications. His appetite is good. He's gained his weight back. Again, his doctors are using the word "cure" for him and now trying to figure out what it means for everybody else.
COSTELLO: Wow. Dr. Sanjay Gupta, thanks so much.
The Jackson family, they can't seem to catch a break from battling (ph). This is surveillance video. Yes, things got physical right outside Michael Jackson's mother's home. We'll show you more.
COSTELLO: Ok. So this is new surveillance video was shot right outside of Katherine Jackson's home. That's Michael Jackson's mother. I think that's Janet Jackson. Supposedly things got a little physical here.
The man in the know though is A. J. Hammer. He's in New York. I know you have been looking at this video. So tell us more.
A.J. HAMMER, HLN HOST: Well, it's really interesting looking at the video because it's pretty clear, Carol, it was shot with a camera taking video of a monitor which was of a surveillance camera that was somewhere at this Jackson's home in Calabasas, California.
There was this reported scuffle there yesterday. This is the home, of course, that Katherine Jackson, Michael Jackson's mother, shares with Michael's children. Those would be her grandchildren, and that's who she has guardianship over.
According to a Los Angeles County Sheriff's spokesman, a battery report was taken after the incident. No arrests have been made and you can kind of see from the video at least what we're able to see. It didn't seem to get too physical looking at it here.
The sheriff's department is not identifying who is involved. It's a little difficult to make it out in the video. This investigation is ongoing. So that's why they're not releasing names. But a source with firsthand knowledge of the incident says that Janet, Jermaine, and Randy Jackson were all on the scene. Katherine was not there.
Los Angeles County Sheriff's detectives, of course, just closed a missing person's case opened for Katherine who was found to be with her daughter Rebbie in Arizona. They said that Katherine's fine but her lawyer says that the sheriff's deputies who tried to talk to her in Arizona on Monday were actually blocked from seeing her. So now the attorney is asking for the FBI to investigate.
And Carol, this really could just be the start of an even bigger family feud. We're following up on reports of a new fight now between the executors of Michael Jackson's estate and the adult members of the Jackson family. This is obviously a very, very tangled web.
COSTELLO: So this all boils down to Michael Jackson's money.
HAMMER: It seems that it would. We can't know for sure. There are a lot of allegations about the legitimacy of the will out there. There are a lot of things floating around. We're looking for the real answers right now. And of course, that's what we'll be dealing with tonight on "SHOWBIZ TONIGHT". We have a whole day to try to sort this out.
COSTELLO: I'm sure you will. And I'll be watching.
A.J. Hammer, many thanks to you. Want information on everything breaking in the entertainment world? Well, you heard A.J., watch "SHOWBIZ TONIGHT" at 11:00 p.m. Eastern on HLN.
COSTELLO: In today's "Daily Dose", making the most of your doctor's visit. You know, like all things it starts with communication. Here is Dr. Travis Stork from TV's "The Doctors".
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. TRAVIS STORK, CO-HOST, "THE DOCTORS": I always say that you actually need to date your doctor before you pick a doctor for you. And what I mean by that is if you don't feel comfortable with your doctor, if your doctor makes you feel small, makes you feel embarrassed, that's not the right doctor for you.
And I also need to emphasize, if you're confused by something your doctor is telling you, don't be afraid to say, wait a minute, can you explain that to me again. Because the last thing you want do is leave the doctor's office more confused than when you went in.
And the other tip I give folks is if you're going to the doctor, and especially if you're feeling under the weather, take someone with you because when you leave, they can help you go back through all the instructions that you received, especially if you're feeling tired or weak.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COSTELLO: We asked to you "Talk Back on one of the big stories of the day. The question, "Should we talk about the accused Colorado shooter at all?"
This from Lacy, "I think yes. I also would like to hear what his mother has to say, his teachers, et cetera. Not to place blame on them but to know the warning signs."
This from Heather, "Talk about the heroes of the day and not the idiot that did it. Don't let him have the fame, let the victims have the fame."
This from Elizabeth, "Yes, we need to talk about the perp. It's part of the healing process, for one thing. Even if you're a victim, you still can't hide from this."
And this from Gerald, "It's a really sad day when we give murderers this much publicity. Focus on the victims and their families and others connected to this tragedy."
Please keep the conversation going, facebook.com/CarolCNN. Thanks, as always, for your comments.
I'm Carol Costello. Thank you for joining me today.
"CNN NEWSROOM" continues right now with Kyra Phillips.