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CNN Live At Daybreak

Rice Demands Apology For Sudanese Scuffle; Reaction to John Roberts Nomination

Aired July 21, 2005 - 05:00   ET


Just in, overnight, Condoleezza Rice says she's very angry and wants some answers. A scuffle in Sudan brings harsh words from the visiting U.S. secretary of state.

Plus, hometown pride for a former high school linebacker who could become the next Supreme Court justice.

And strap them on and get ready to ride. There's a new jockey in town. Batteries not included.

From the CNN World Headquarters in Atlanta, I'm Fredricka Whitfield in for Carol Costello.

Good morning, everyone.

We'll have more on the scuffle in Sudan in a moment.

Also ahead, many in the U.K. want this outspoken Islamic cleric out of the country. That story still ahead.

And later, as the search goes on for Natalee Holloway, three young men are asked for their DNA.

But first, now in the news, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice wants an apology from the Sudanese government. Our Andrea Koppel tells us that some journalists covering Rice's visit, along with Rice's own staff, were manhandled by Sudanese security personnel while Rice met with Sudan's president. More on this in a few minutes.

Congress will get an idea today how the Pentagon sees things in Iraq. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld gives lawmakers a report on the military, political and economic situations there.

Also on Capitol Hill, Donald Trump goes before a Senate committee today. He'll talk about the proposed billion dollar plus renovation of the United Nations headquarters. Trump says he can trump that cost and do it for $500 million.

And -- Chad, still, eyes are on Emily?

CHAD MYERS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, now getting downgraded as we speak here, getting smaller and smaller. As it came onshore, it started to get torn up by the very high mountains out here. But the mountains also a problem for Monterrey. Monterrey, Mexico surrounded by mountains and it's still raining there, very hard.

Here's the south part of Texas, Brownsville, Laredo. Here's Mexico and those mountains I was talking about. The rain still piling up right along the mountains and then running back toward the Rio Grande. But there's an awful lot of flooding going on there in Texas and also even into Mexico, more in Mexico than in Texas this morning.

Here are the rainfall totals from yesterday. You have to notice the legend, because when you get back here, all the way over to the purple, that's 15 inches plus. Let me get you -- get your bearings. Here's South Padre, where our Chris Lawrence was, all the way back up to about Corpus Christi. Here's Brownsville. The big black line, that right there? That is the Rio Grande.

All of the areas south of the Rio Grande between 10, and, right there, that brightest purple, 15 inches of rain. Fifteen inches of rain. Ten inches of rain in the red. So we know that rain had to go somewhere. We know it's running off right now and there's just so much flooding going on there right now there this morning.

Watching the wave out here east of Florida, forecast to turn on up toward Florida, maybe even out toward the Atlantic. We'll have to see. They're flying a plane in that today. And, also, a little convection off the coast of Honduras and Nicaragua. But no development on that expected so far -- back to you.

WHITFIELD: All right, so far so good.

Thanks so much, Chad.

MYERS: You're welcome.

WHITFIELD: A quiet affair turned ugly in Sudan while Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met with that country's president. Her staffers and members of the press were roughed up about two hours ago.

Our Andrea Koppel is traveling with the secretary of state and she tells us what happened.


ANDREA KOPPEL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Just a short time ago, while the secretary was in a meeting with the president of Sudan, Lieutenant General Omar al-Bashir, journalists were escorted in in various groups to see this -- the meeting. And we were manhandled by Sudanese authorities, not just Western journalists, but also some of Secretary Rice's staff.

This incident has escalated to such a point that Secretary Rice is now demanding an immediate apology from the Sudanese government. She came back on the plane just a few minutes ago to talk with the journalists who are traveling with her, saying that they had no right to manhandle her staff or the press and it makes her very angry to be sitting there, as she was, with President al-Bashir, while this was going on. The tone and tenor of the atmosphere that we observed from the outside was extremely tense. We were continuously pushed and pulled to try to keep us out of this meeting. And, in fact, there was one exchange in which one of Secretary Rice's aides said, "We have a free press in the United States" and the response from Sudanese officials was, "Well, we don't here."


WHITFIELD: And that was our State Department correspondent Andrea Koppel.

Later today, the secretary of state heads to a meeting with Israeli and Palestinian leaders.

And on this second full day after his nomination, public opinion about would be Supreme Court Justice John Roberts are in. A CNN/"USA Today"/Gallup poll has just come out and apparently more than half of the respondents, 54 percent, like President Bush's choice to fill the vacancy created by Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's resignation. Only 15 percent have a negative opinion, while 21 percent say they're neutral.

Asked their opinions on Roberts' views on the issues, most Americans just don't have enough information, they say. A whopping 76 percent say they need more information. Fourteen percent say his views are mainstream American. Only 7 percent see him as having extreme views.

Well, if you took that poll in Long Beach, Indiana, chances are the opinions of John Roberts would be even higher.

Our Jonathan Freed visited Roberts' hometown, where he was always a high achiever.


JONATHAN FREED, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): John Glover Roberts, Jr. was born in Buffalo, New York in 1955, and he lived there long enough to start elementary school and to make his first communion at St. Bernadette Catholic Church. But it's this town, Long Beach, Indiana, about an hour east of Chicago, that Roberts and his family would call home -- upstate steel country. Roberts' father had taken a job as a plant manager at Bethlehem Steel. Barely a day after Roberts entered the judicial spotlight...

LAWRENCE SULLIVAN, FORMER MATH TEACHER: It was very clear that he was an outstanding student.

FREED: They were staking out bragging rights at his old high school in Long Beach, Lalumiere Catholic Academy, where the future Supreme Court nominee graduated first in his class.

SULLIVAN: And he went far beyond what was really required of students. So, he took extra classes and really surpassed what a lot of other people would have done. FREED: Back then, Roberts sat on the student council's executive committee with Andy McKenna, now chairman of the Illinois Republican Party. He remembers Roberts as captain of the football team and a tough linebacker.

ANDY MCKENNA, HIGH SCHOOL CLASSMATE: Very much a kind of blue collar player -- get it done. You know, maybe not the most talented guy on the field. Worked hard, though. He wasn't afraid of taking a hit, he wasn't afraid of giving a hit.

FREED: After high school came Harvard and two degrees -- an A.D. in history, summa cum laude, in 1976, and a J.D. from Harvard Law School, magna cum laude there, in '79. Roberts also found time to be managing editor of the "Harvard Law Review," where one classmate remembers him as honest, fair, kind and punctual.

Peter Rusthoven was at Harvard Law around that time and later worked with Roberts as an associate White House council in the Reagan administration.

PETER RUSTHOVEN, FELLOW HARVARD GRADUATE: This is a guy who is so smart, so good, so easy to work with. And I worked with him in a small office. There were like seven or eight lawyers and we had one client named Ronald Reagan. You get to know somebody very, very well during the course of that.

FREED: Another Harvard graduate says Roberts had a Midwestern reserve about him, never showing off his intelligence.

Jonathan Freed, CNN, Chicago.


WHITFIELD: Time now for a CNN "Security Watch."

Several new warnings to tell you about, beginning with immigration agents. With Homeland Security Department's internal watchdog says immigration agents may be too busy to do their jobs. It says they're spending time transporting illegal immigrants to jail and reporting to Border Patrol supervisors. All this when the department says agents should be protecting against terror-related activities by mainly investigating, detaining deporting illegal immigrants who are in the U.S.

Food safety is also a big concern. A Senate committee says an attack on America's food supply using biological agents or disease is easy to do and would spread fast. The Agriculture Department has issued some security guidelines to help companies safeguard food, but it's all voluntary.

Another concern, airspace violations. Pilots have flown into restricted airspace 3,400 times across the country in three years since the September 11th terrorist attacks. That's according to a congressional report. Lawmakers are demanding that the government do a better job of coordinating quick responses to such violations. And some progress to report. A Customs official says U.S. border guards have increased cargo inspections six fold since the 9/11 attacks. The government has also installed radiation monitors, which screen trucks and cargo for the presence of nuclear and radiological devices. The Bush administration says around $700 million has gone toward protecting ports. But critics say the ports are still vulnerable.

Stay tuned to CNN day and night for the most reliable news about your security.

Just two weeks after London's terror bombings, an outspoken Islamic cleric has become public enemy number one for many in the U.K. Sheik Omar Bakri Mohammed has not only gotten the attention of a shaken British public, but of a very wary government, as well.

CNN's senior international correspondent, Nic Robertson, reports.


QUESTION: Are you prepared to apologize for what you said regarding the British people yesterday?

SHEIK OMAR BAKRI MOHAMMED, MUSLIM CLERIC: You see, I don't speak with pornographic newspapers.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): He is the man the British love to hate right now. Newspaper headlines demand he be thrown out of the country.

Muslim cleric Sheik Omar Bakri Mohammed, who last year predicted al Qaeda would attack London, now says the British government is to blame for the attacks.

MOHAMMED: I believe the British government is to be blamed, the British public to be blamed and the moderate (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Muslim to be blamed.

ROBERTSON: An internal government report listed his group, Al- Muhajiroun, which he says is now disbanded, as extremists, its followers vulnerable to becoming killers.

A young man who attended one of his meetings went on to become Britain's first suicide bomber in 2003, attacking a nightclub in Israel.

MOHAMMED: Many people attend my meetings. Now, if they attend somebody else, as well, meetings. Myself, I never, ever recruit people to go out to fight. Nor do I believe it is allowed.

ROBERTSON: Proposed new legislation to stop radical clerics inciting hatred could lead to Bakri's deportation. He's lived here for more than 20 years, doesn't consider himself British, but does take government unemployment benefits.

MOHAMMED: You see, I'm living here and I'm entitled for whatever anybody is entitled. If you think I'm not entitled, don't give me.

ROBERTSON: He proudly proclaims himself an extremist, but says he is part of the solution to stopping terror attacks, not part of the problem, that it is moderate Muslims and the government who are out of touch with the Muslim youth.

MOHAMMED: There real issue it is not the problem, not from the extremist (UNINTELLIGIBLE). I believe they are part of the solutions. I believe so. We are part of the solutions. We are able to hold the youth, and we can hold them again, by the divine text and by the world of wisdom, which is based on the Quran.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: For your safety...

ROBERTSON: He claims he had no part in the London bombings, did not know the four men involved; indeed, condemns the attack.

MOHAMMED: I say to you, I condemn any form of bombing here or abroad, killing any innocent people.

ROBERTSON: The British government is holding summit meetings, enlisting moderate Muslims to marginalize clerics like Bakri. He remains unabashedly unashamed of his views.

MOHAMMED: My support for Osama bin Laden. I share with him the same belief and I pray to God will see that he himself will be guided and will be protected.

ROBERTSON (on camera): Bakri may well have had no involvement in the London bombings. But when asked if he thought there would be another attack, he said, "God forbid, but if there is, it's their fault for not listening."

Nic Robertson, CNN, London.


WHITFIELD: In the aftermath of the London terror attacks, Pakistan's president is about to go public with his crackdown on religious extremism. Pervez Musharraf is expected to make a televised speech today. He has been facing international pressure to take some action after it was discovered at least two of the suspected bombers visited Pakistan last year. More than 200 people have been arrested this week in raids Musharraf ordered.

Coming up, you know where President Bush stands on the issue of abortion. But it may surprise you to learn what the women in his life think about it. We'll tell you what they have to say.

Plus, celebrity sex tapes -- the performances they hope you won't see. But do they make or break a career? That's at 55 after the hour.

And racing robots -- at 25 after, we'll show you a new desert sport that combines the past with the future.

But first, here's a look at what else is making news this Thursday morning. (COMMERCIAL BREAK)


WHITFIELD: Your news, money, weather and sports.

It is now 16 minutes after the hour and here's what's all new this morning.

The countdown is on again. NASA plans to go ahead with the launch of the Space Shuttle Discovery next Tuesday even though officials still don't know definitively what caused the fuel gauge failure that forced the mission to be scrubbed last week.

Police in the former Soviet republic of Georgia have detained a man accused of throwing a grenade at President Bush during a visit there in May. The grenade failed to explode and no one was hurt.

In money, there's reason to celebrate at the Nasdaq trading site. It's opening today above 2,100. That's the highest it's been since June of 2001.

In culture, James Doohan, Scottie on "Star Trek," has died at his home in Redmond, Washington. A publicist says his ashes will be sent into space on a rocket later this year. Doohan was 85.

In sports, the Detroit Pistons have a new coach. Flip Saunders, former coach at Minnesota, has signed a four year deal worth about $20 million.

And -- Chad, they can't pay you enough to do what you do.

MYERS: Oh, really?



MYERS: Yes, am I in for a raise?

WHITFIELD: That's what I hear.

MYERS: I don't know about all that.


WHITFIELD: Well, talk about the long, hot summer, in Phoenix, Arizona they've been sweltering through a record heat wave. At least 18 people have died, most of them homeless. Police are passing out battled water donated by grocery stores. And for the first time in years, homeless shelters were open during the day.

Well, how hot is it out there? Take a look at some of Wednesday's highs -- 109 in Phoenix; 114 in Needles, California; 110 in Las Vegas; 111 in Laughlin, Nevada; and 106 in Imperial, California. To protect yourself in the heat wave, be sure to drink more water. And some other tips: dress in light clothes, avoid direct sunlight and strenuous activity. And another very important tip, check on the elderly.

And, Chad, do you have any other ideas people need to look out for?

MYERS: You know, you've got to take care of the pets, too. The pets -- and that's a big thing. Don't let them just sit in the sun tied up to, you know, a post.


MYERS: Try to get them some shade under a tree or maybe someplace that's cooler than that.

It was 109 in Phoenix yesterday and the normal high is 105. It was 110 or 111 in Las Vegas. The normal high is 105. So is it hot? Yes. But it's summer. It's supposed to be hot. Three months ago we were complaining how cold it was in New York and when's summer going to get here? Well, now it's here, so you've got to watch what you ask for.

But I'll tell you what, if you want to ask me some other questions about the heat wave, you certainly can. Today, we'll turn on Stumpy the big-headed weatherman for a change. You don't have to write in your answers, you can write in your questions, instead, and I'll try to answer them as best I can -- Fred.

WHITFIELD: All right, thanks so much, Chad.

MYERS: All right.

WHITFIELD: Well, still to come this morning, this is no fish tale. A look at the one that didn't get away. That story coming up next.

You're watching DAYBREAK for this Thursday, July 21.


WHITFIELD: Time for some "Late Night Laughs" now.

The hot weather and the even hotter issue of the Supreme Court justice nominee are material for some pretty cool jokes.

Take a listen.


DAVID LETTERMAN, HOST: A lot of people get frightened when it's this hot. And we're in the middle of a heat wave. And it's supposed to be 98, 99 degrees again today here in New York City. A lot of people panic. They don't know what to do. And I don't have that problem. Here's what I do when it gets this hot. Do you want to know what I do? It's simple. Somewhere on my body right now I am wearing a frozen bagel and I've never been more comfortable.



JAY LENO, HOST: Hey, did you all feel the ground shake last night? Did you feel it, huh? Well, that wasn't an earthquake, just the Supreme Court shifting the five feet to the right, praise to god.

Well, last night President Bush picked Judge John Roberts to be his nominee for the Supreme Court. The name was actually leaked to the press a couple of hours earlier. Boy, that Karl Rove is unbelievable, isn't he?


WHITFIELD: Chad, thank goodness for replay. I can't stay up that late.

MYERS: Oh, absolutely not. No, I have a little TiVo hooked up to my machine there, to the cable box.


MYERS: It works all right.

WHITFIELD: All right, well, we'll be checking with you with a little bit more weather coming up.

Time now for out DAYBREAK "Eye-Opener."

Here's something you don't see every day along the interstate -- elephants out for a walk. A little lunch makes for an interesting ride. It seems the circus truck taking the pachyderms to Boston broke down on I-95 near Portsmouth, New Hampshire, much to the delight of a lot of motorists.


WHITFIELD: And if you're a dog lover, which you are, right, Chad?

MYERS: Right.

WHITFIELD: Well, what about this, thanks the poochie to the beach? Well, this one is a dogs and owners only beach in western Japan. And guess what? Of course, it's not free. Everything costs something these days. The city charges $9 for cleanup and the use of a shore for your pooch.

MYERS: Well, that's all right, as long as they clean up the beach.

WHITFIELD: That's right. And that's what your $9 is, in part, paying for. The fee also gets you a mandatory life jacket. But guess what? See the life jacket there? It's not for the owner, but for the dog. I guess their doggy paddle just isn't good enough anymore, huh?

All right, and here's the video everyone in the newsroom is gawking at. Talk about high tech. In the desert, remote controlled robot camel jockeys. It looks kind of clever, doesn't it? Almost like the real thing. Well, this is at a race track in the United Arab Emirates capital of Dubai. Children used to ride as jockeys but that was banned earlier this month, hence, the robots. The high tech jockeys cost about $2,000 each. And, of course, they're much safer.

MYERS: Now we see them running, finally.


MYERS: There they go. And down the stretch they come.

WHITFIELD: That's a lot of fun.

Well, here is what's all new in the next half hour.

A closer look at the women behind the man. What do they think about "Roe v. Wade?"

Plus, live to Baghdad, where recent violence is taking a devastating toll on civilians.

We'll be right back.


WHITFIELD: From the CNN World Headquarters in Atlanta, I'm Fredricka Whitfield in for Carol Costello this morning.

Good morning, everyone.

Coming up in the next 30 minutes, President Bush is surrounded by women. What do they think about "Row v. Wade?" Their answers may surprise you.

And later, celebrity sex tapes -- why do they make them? A look at the latest battle to keep a private encounter private.

But first, now in the news, Condoleezza Rice is demanding an immediate apology from Sudan after a run-in with authorities from Khartoum. Rice says her staff and reporters were manhandled by Sudanese security. We'll have more on this development in the next few minutes.

Pakistan's president takes to the airwaves to plead for help in fighting against Islamic extremists. Pervez Musharraf promises to double the country's domestic security forces. A number of international leaders say Pakistan's Islamic schools are little more than terrorist training camps.

A fast moving wildfire has forced 50 families from their suburban Denver homes. Firefighters have three quarters of the blaze contained. Still no word as to when everyone can go home.

And, Chad, it's dry and it's hot in some places.


WHITFIELD: Making for some very -- potentially dangerous conditions.

MYERS: Sure, 115 in Vegas. I mean, you know, the problem, again, back out here in parts of the West, not right here behind me, but Vegas yesterday, and Phoenix, not that dry. The humidity is coming up. Monsoon is coming in. And if you know what that is, that's when the wind shifts direction and the humidity actually blows into Phoenix instead of staying dry.