Return to Transcripts main page


U.S. Navy SEAL Releases Book About Raid on bin Laden`s Compound; Democratic National Convention Continues

Aired September 6, 2012 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Hi, everyone. My name is Carl Azuz. When we say it`s no easy day, we are not talking about whatever is going on this Thursday. We are talking about what`s first up today on CNN STUDENT NEWS.

It`s been a year and four months since U.S. Special Forces killed terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden. Story of how he was killed is making headlines once again. It`s told in the new book called "No Easy Day", and it`s written by a Navy SEAL who was on that mission. A lot of information about the even has already been publicized, but the Pentagon says the book may also give secret information about how Navy SEALs are trained, and that`s illegal.

The head of the Naval Special Warfare Command says he is disappointed and embarrassed that troops are writing about their secret work, which he says they should not advertise or try to get recognition for. Rene Marsh considers the next chapter in this controversy.


RENE MARSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: "No Easy Day" is causing quite the buzz as author and former Navy SEAL Matt Bissonnette shares his rare first hand account of the day U.S. Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden.

The book has been number one on Amazon`s bestseller list for two weeks, but the Pentagon is not eager about the release. The military`s top lawyer says they are considering legal action.

GEORGE LITTLE, PENTAGON PRESS SECRETARY: We are very concerned that the classified information may be contained in this book.

MARSH: In a Pentagon briefing Tuesday, Press Secretary George Little said the former Navy SEALs should have submitted his book for a prepublication review.

LITTLE: When you have Special Operations Units that perform these missions, their tactics, techniques and procedures, not to mention human life, that are in play.

And it is the height of your responsibility not to have this kind of material checked for the possible disclosure of classified information.

Bissonnette`s lawyer says he didn`t violate military secrecy agreements or disclosed classified information. Whether or not the controversy launches into a court battle, the 336 page book is flying off the shelves. In Washington, I`m Rene Marsh reporting.


AZUZ: President Obama arrived in Charlotte, North Carolina yesterday. The site of the Democratic National Convention. The members of his party are rallying in the hopes that he`ll be reelected in November. Last week, speakers at the Republican National Convention laid out their arguments for why that shouldn`t happen. During their big event, Democrats plan to point out the tough decisions the president has made in office, and his plans to help more Americans in the future. Speakers on Tuesday night included the mayor of San Antonio, Texas, Julian Castro credited the president with improving conditions in the U.S.


MAYOR JULIAN CASTRO, (D ), SAN ANTONIO: Four years ago, American stood on the break of a depression. Despite incredible odds, and united Republican opposition, our president took action, and now we`ve seen 4.5 million new jobs. He knows better than anyone that there is more hard work to do, but we are making progress, and now we need to make a choice.


AZUZ: The president`s wife, first lady Michelle Obama also spoke that night, she told delegates and viewers that the change her husband had promised when he was elected four years ago, may take a while to achieve.


MICHELLE OBAMA, U.S. FIRST LADY: He reminds me that we are playing a long game here. And that change is hard. And change is slow and it never happens all at once, but eventually we get there, we always do. We get there because of folks like my dad, folks like Barack`s grandmother, men and women who said to themselves I may not have a chance to fulfill my dreams, but maybe my children will. Maybe my grandchildren will.


AZUZ: Beyond CNN STUDENT NEWS, there are a ton of ways for you to get information on this presidential race. Dan Simon explains how the campaigns have noticed and what they are doing about it.


DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Technology is taking center stage in this run for the White House. Obama and Romney are using every digital tool available to reach voters. For the president, it even included a virtual town hall form on Reddit, the social news Web site with just 20 employees, but millions of users. With zero notice, President Obama logged on last Wednesday for an "Ask Me Anything," or AMA. Political observers say his responses probably were not as significant as the mere idea itself of the president engaging in a digital town hall forum.

ERIK MARTIN, REDDIT GENERAL MANAGER: TV appearances, debates and conventions were sort of the only way to speak to a mass audience, and now there are starting to be other channels, other ways to talk directly or talk in some sort of form, and I think that can only improve the access and improve the engagement people feel.

SIMON: No word yet if Romney will follow suit on Reddit. His team tried to generate some buzz with a Smartphone app announcing his VP selection. The media, though, announced it was Paul Ryan before the app did.

But it was indicative of the times, and analysts say, it helped Romney to connect with a slice of younger voters and a generated media attention.

PROFESSOR JACK CITRIN, U.C. BERKELEY: Campaign is about communication. It`s about reaching people., it`s about mobilizing people.

SIMON: So, in that sense, says Berkeley political science professor Jack Citrin, technology has made politics easier. Messages can be targeted at across many different sites and devices. Campaign rhetoric can be disseminated much more quickly today with social media.

With the benefit of incumbency, Obama has a significant head start. Aside from the Facebook, YouTube and Twitter profiles, the candidates and conventions are also using Google Plus, Instagram, Pinterest and Foursquare. Services that weren`t around the last election cycle. But Citrin says it`s unclear whether technology truly has an impact on voter behavior.

CITRIN: What we don`t really know, OK, is how effective any of this is in a direct way on public opinion.

SIMON: But 2012 may be seen as a pivotal year in how election are fought.


AZUZ: Now that you are all back in school, we invite you to check out our end of summer news quiz. It`s a great way for you to test how much you learned when you watched the news over the summer, or how much you missed. So, check it out. I`ve got a quiz question, I`m going to tell you the answer to right now. The question is, on June 24th, what country which had been ruled by former president Hosni Mubarak for decades, elected Mohamed Morsi as its president? The answer, I`m going to click Egypt, because I know it, I answered correctly and I feel wonderful. You`ll get that same feeling, too, when you take our news quiz.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: What`s the word? It`s the amount of money owed by a person or an organization. Debt, that`s the word.


AZUZ: U.S. national debt has hit a new milestone, and it`s not a good one. The government now owes more than $16 trillion. That`s a 16 with 12 zeroes after it, and still counting. We can put it this way, if you spend a million dollars a day, it would take you almost 44,000 years to spend 16 trillion. For this debt many Republicans blame Democrats and President Barack Obama. Many Democrats blame Republicans and former president George W. Bush. Two things we can say for sure. One, the government is spending a lot of money, and two, it`s taking in a lot less tax revenue because of the struggling economy, so you can count on this number increasing in the months ahead.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s time for "The Shoutout." Which of this objects is closest in size to the international space station? If you think you know it, then shout it out. Is it 747 airliner, football field, space shuttle Discovery or Lake Erie? You`ve got three seconds, go!

The length and width of the ISS is about the size of a football field, according to NASA. That`s your answer and that`s your "Shoutout.!


AZUZ: Of course, that includes its solar panels and everything else. The actual living space of the ISS is little smaller, it`s about the size of a five-bedroom house. It didn`t matter much yesterday for two of the six folks who are living there. A NASA astronaut and a Japanese space flyer stepped outside the ISS to fix one of its power units. Though the space station is the single most expensive object ever built, and one of the most technologically advanced, part of yesterday`s repair job was done using a spare toothbrush.

It`s not the only walk we are showing you today. Nor is it the most dangerous. Before we go, why did the ducks crossed the highway? Because they had no fear. Now, don`t duck out on us here, nothing bad is going to happen, although with all these cars racing by, there are a couple of closed calls, including this one, right here. The mother and her babies got blown around a lot, but when they all waddled safely across, which eventually they did, the video went viral. Hard to say if there is some sort of lesson in this. It`s not look both ways before crossing the street, because they didn`t. And it`s definitely not mama knows best, because she doesn`t. If it was a lesson in safety, it certainly ruffled some feathers. A lesson in bravery doesn`t really fit the bill, and if it`s a lesson in sound judgment, there are definitely quacks in her armor.

We`ll see you Friday, and wish you safe travels wherever you go.