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China Parades Military Might; Investigators Confirm Flaperon from MH370; Technologies of Tomorrow May Save Countless Lives

Aired September 4, 2015 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Fridays are awesome! I`m Carl Azuz, with 10 minutes of commercial-free current events. This is CNN STUDENT


First up -- the numbers: 200 fighter jets, 12,000 troops, 70,000 doves, 70,000 balloons, all part of a massive military parade Thursday in the

Chinese capital of Beijing.

It is the first one since President Xi Jinping came to power in 2012. He unexpectedly announced that China`s military would be reduced by 300,000

troops, bringing it down to about 2 million total. For comparison, the U.S. military has 1.4 million troops.

But China does plan to continue increasing its military spending on high tech equipment. All this comes at a time of international and economic

tensions. A lot of global concerns are focused on China.


WILL RIPLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A technicolor show of force, China boldly displaying new high tech weapons of war. The world`s largest

military presented as a force of peace and stability, as China remains locked in territorial disputes with many Asian neighbors and key U.S.

allies, including Japan.

The parade`s timing 70 years after Japan`s World War II defeat analysts say is no coincidence.

JON GREVATT, ASIA-PAC DEFENSE ANALYST, IHS: China knows very well that the eyes of the world will be watching this military parade and the eyes of the

world will be looking very closely at military capabilities through this parade.

RIPLEY: The People`s Liberation Army or PLA revealing weapons kept hidden from the public until now, long range missiles known as "Carrier Killers",

capable of sinking ships, which could neutralize U.S. naval power; attack drones, heavier and more sophisticated than ever, all of it made in China.

President Xi Jinping promising a peaceful road ahead.

XI JINPING, CHINESE PRESIDENT (through translator): China will never be aggressive, will never invade other countries, will not impose on other

countries what it has gone through.

RIPLEY: Every channel in China order to play programs about past wars that killed millions of Chinese. State media crediting communist troops for the

victory, when in fact nationalist KMT troops bore the brunt of the losses.

"This really upsets me", says this 96-year-old KMT veteran. "The communist party`s propaganda blinds and fools many people."

The spectacular display, a huge inconvenience to those who couldn`t leave their homes or even windows during the parade. But some Beijingers didn`t

seem to mind.

"We just had to sacrifice for this kind of parade", says this state worker who hasn`t been able to drive her car.

Traffic restrictions and factory closures dramatically reduced Beijing`s notorious air pollution, leaving skies parade blue, a perfect day to show

off to world leaders, including Russia`s Vladimir Putin. Noticeably absent, the U.S., U.K., Australia and Japan.


AZUZ: Confirmed. French investigators now say part of an airplane wing found on Reunion Island on the Western Indian Ocean is from a missing

Malaysia Airlines passenger plane that vanished last year. The flaperon, that`s the part of the wing, had a series of numbers inside of it. It took

them weeks but investigators were able to match those numbers with the Spanish company that made parts of the flaperon.

Still, no one knows what happened to the flight, which had 239 people aboard when it vanished on March 8, 2014. No other confirmed debris has

been found. The search continues in remote parts of the Indian Ocean.

One challenge there in finding the missing passenger plane is the fact that only 5 percent of the world`s oceans have been mapped, though they cover 70

percent of the Earth`s surface. That said, technology that can save lives after a variety of disasters is advancing.


RACHEL CRANE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This ape-like simian-inspired four-limb robot developed at NASA`s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, JPL, is groundbreaking

and built for disaster response.

KYLE EDENBERG, ROBOTICS ENGINEER: So, being able to send something like robo simian into a disaster environment means that we could go into a

situation in which it was simply to risky to send a human and do something, things that a human would be able to do but couldn`t because of some sort

of risks.

CRANE: Named after an ape from the Jungle Book, King Louie has seven cameras, or eyes, for all around vision, allowing him to generate a 3D map.

(on camera): And how many different kinds of like maneuvers can this thing make?

EDENBERG: Basically anything you can imagine.

ROBIN MURPHY, DIRECTOR: They need to start recording on the camera if they are not already.

CRANE: Disaster robotics are Dr. Robin Murphy`s specialty, particularly unmanned aerial vehicles, also known as UAVs or drones.

MURPHY: Now we`re seeing a big focus on UAVs, because those are really good for floods and what we call "wide area searches", things like

earthquakes and hurricanes.

Hurricane Katrina was a big one, the Haiti earthquake, the Thailand flooding.

CRANE: Murphy`s team has helped in more than 46 disasters. And UAV technology is advancing with longer battery power, longer flight times and

better images.

Drones are playing a huge role in the aftermath of natural disasters.

And then there`s this --

JIM LUX, NASA`s JPL: So, this is something that could detect an unconscious victim. One of the interesting cases in Katrina was they had

people who had climbed up into their attics as the flood waters rose and then there`s no way to get out of the attic.

FINDER can see people`s heartbeats through the roof. And so if you had a FINDER in a boat outside, you would know which houses have somebody trapped

in the attic. You can go and cut through the roof and rescue them.

CRANE: CRANE: FINDER can detect heartbeats in about 30 seconds and recognizes the difference between animals and humans.

LUX: They`ve got lots and lots of builds that have collapsed. They wanted a way to walk down the street and figure out which buildings have somebody

in them to rescue and which ones don`t.

Natural disasters occur, when they`re going to occur, and you don`t have any control over that.

Devices like FINDER are just another tool in the toolbox to respond to them, help save lives, rescue people after the disasters occurred.


AZUZ: Continuing our cross-country call out of all 50 states and yet adding international school to our "Roll Call".

In Belfield, North Dakota, the Cougars are on the prowl. Hello to everyone at Belfield High School.

In Berryville, Virginia, it`s the Eagles up next today. Good to see Clarke County High School is watching.

And in Barendrecht, a town in the Netherlands, a town in the Netherlands, thank you for making us part of your day at Dalton Lyceum Barendrecht.

When the defending champion New England Patriots open their regular season against the Pittsburgh Steelers next Thursday, quarterback Tom Brady will

likely take the field. That`s significant.

The National Football League had suspended the Patriots quarterback for four games and punished his team after something strange was noticed during

last year`s AFC championship game that the Patriots won. All 11 of the Patriots footballs were under-inflated in the first half. But Tom Brady

fought the NFL in court. And yesterday, a judge tossed out Brady`s suspension.

The ruling was not about whether he deflated the footballs or knew about it. The judge ruled that the NFL didn`t treat Brady fairly in its

investigation, and that it went too far in suspending him. The NFL is appealing the decision.

With Brady expected to play on September 10th, Patriots tickets have shut up in price.


AZUZ: On average, a Merino sheep yields about 11 pounds of fleece when it`s shorn. That takes about three minutes to do.

This took longer.

Just outside the Australian capital of Canberra, a ship was discovered that apparently had never been shorn. That`s dangerous for sheep. It was hard

for him to walk.

So, a champion sheep shearer volunteered to give him a haircut. It took 42 minutes and yielded an unofficial world record of 89 pounds of fleece.

That`s tough to breathe, and shorn enough, and sheep shearing shape the sheep to shift (ph) shape shearly shaping up shear comfort and en-shorning

the shaven sheep would have merino reason to stay sheepish.

We`re keeping it wool on CNN STUDENT NEWS. We are off the air Monday for the Labor Day holiday. Hope to see all of you next Tuesday and hope you

have an excellent three-day weekend ahead.