March 25th, 2008
09:31 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 3/25/08

Anderson is anchoring the program from Los Angeles tonight.

We plan to begin with the growing war of words between Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. A major shot today from Senator Clinton. The subject: Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Sen. Obama's former pastor.

We'll also hear about Sen. John McCain's comments on the housing crisis.

And a CNN Special Investigation Unit report – where are the air marshals. Drew Griffin already blogged about this story today. 

We'll start posting comments at 10p ET and close up shop at 11p ET.

Filed under: Live Blog
March 25th, 2008
07:46 PM ET

Erica’s News Note: The ever-shrinking world

Erica Hill

I started the day with my first NY bus ride (I even had to run to catch it – I felt like such a New Yorker!). I was heading to the UN to moderate a panel at a conference sponsored by UN GAID – the UN Global Alliance for Internet Communications Technology Development (with a mouthful like that, you can see why they opt for the acronym).

The conference is focused on “Web 2.0”. As a technology reporter in the late 90’s and early 2000’s, I followed the development of “Web 1.0” very closely. Then – as now – young people seem to be the most eager to adopt emerging technologies like the Internet.

What’s interesting this time around is there are so many ways for youth around the globe to connect with one another – cell phones, texting, blogs, satellite radio and TV – but some of the same hurdles remain: Forget reliable Internet access, reliable electricity is often more of a challenge.

Then there’s the cost – even with initiatives to get solar powered, low-cost laptops into developing areas, mobile phones and texting are often easier and less expensive. Cultural issues including language barriers and generational gaps are equally challenging...


Filed under: Erica Hill
March 25th, 2008
07:44 PM ET

Endangered No More?

Here’s a story that probably hasn’t been on your radar, but it is truly one of the most significant environmental achievements ever in this country.


Check out Dan Simon's photos from the field, on assigment for 360°. Find out what animal is coming off the endangered species list Friday... And cath his report 360° Friday 10p ET

This Friday, the gray wolves of the West will be taken off the endangered species list.  It’s a big deal because wolves were once wiped out from Yellowstone Park and the Rocky Mountains. In the early 20th century, they were hunted and killed with a vengeance, ironically, by the U.S. government.  Uncle Sam was concerned about their threat to humans and livestock.

The comeback started in 1995. After a lengthy and contentious debate, a few dozen wolves from Canada were captured and re-introduced to Yellowstone. Wolves are highly adaptable; there are now an estimated 1500 wolves in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming.   Biologists say they also have brought more balance to the ecosystem...


Filed under: Dan Simon • Planet in Peril
March 25th, 2008
05:36 PM ET

Afternoon Buzz

There's been another deadly crane collapse.  This time it happened in Miami.  While in Iraq, its been a bloody day of violence.  The battle: Iraqi forces vs.  Shiite rebels.   Back here in the U.S., John McCain is expected to pick up a BIG endorsement this afternoon.  And, at the bottom of planet Earth a massive melting.  Here's your Afternoon Buzz:

Top Stories
Miami crane falls, 2 people killed 
Two people are confirmed dead and four are in serious condition after a piece of crane collapsed and fell through the roof of a home being used on a construction site in downtown Miami.

Iraqi militias protest raids
The political movement of powerful Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has launched a nationwide civil disobedience campaign across Iraq to protest raids and detentions against the group.

Oops! U.S. sends missile parts to Taiwan 
The U.S. Defense Department accidentally shipped ballistic missile components to Taiwan, the Pentagon said Tuesday.

Raw Politics
Nancy Reagan to endorse McCain 
Former first lady Nancy Reagan planned to endorse John McCain for president on Tuesday, as the Arizona senator continued to collect the backing of leading Republicans who might help him win over critical conservative voters.

Obama releases tax returns, challenges Clinton to follow suit
Barack Obama and his wife released their tax returns from 2000 to 2006 on his campaign Web site Wednesday, and the Illinois senator challenged Sen. Hillary Clinton to release hers.

McCain's golden opportunity
While the Democratic presidential candidates are duking it out on the campaign trail, Sen. John McCain is trying to fill up his campaign coffers. But some supporters fear he's not making the most of his time.

Clinton says she 'misspoke' about sniper fire 
Sen. Hillary Clinton said she "misspoke" last week when she gave a dramatic description of her arrival in Bosnia 12 years ago, recounting a landing under sniper fire.

Crime & Punishment
Police believe bank executive killed family,  self 
Investigators are focusing on a former bank executive who had been charged with embezzlement as they seek answers in the killings of his wife and four children, whose bodies were found in their Iowa home.

What YOU will be TALKING about TONIGHT
High School Cheerleader dies from breast implant complications 
Stephanie Kuleba had a charmed life: captain of the varsity cheerleading squad at West Boca High, a nearly perfect grade-point average, good looks and a ticket to the University of Florida, where she would start her journey toward becoming a medical doctor.

Britney goes for laughs 
Britney the Trainwreck showed how she can still be Britney the Performer.

Huge Antarctic ice chunk collapses
A chunk of Antarctic ice about seven times the size of Manhattan suddenly collapsed, putting an even greater portion of glacial ice at risk, scientists said Tuesday.

Filed under: The Buzz
March 25th, 2008
05:10 PM ET

Time For A Democratic Peacemaker: Senator George Mitchell

Robert Strauss: Where are you when we need you the most?

The one and only Great Robert Strauss, former Chairman of the Democratic National Committee in the 1970s, Clark Clifford in the 1950s and 1960s, emerged as the senior Democratic Party leader and peace maker in the 1980s and 90s, and also, a trusted advisor of both Republican and Democratic presidents.

Now, God bless him, Bob Strauss is in well-deserved semi-retirement and I would guess, respectfully, he is at an age where he wouldn't look forward to mediating as solution to the difficult dilemma faced by the Democratic Party over the Michigan and Florida convention delegates...


Filed under: Lanny Davis • Raw Politics
March 25th, 2008
04:41 PM ET

Brain-damaged woman at center of Wal-Mart suit

Debbie Shank, 52, has severe brain damage after a traffic accident in May 2000... Jim Shank, 54, works two jobs and divorced his wife so she'd receive more money from Medicaid.

JACKSON, Missouri (CNN) - Debbie Shank breaks down in tears every time she's told that her 18-year-old son, Jeremy, was killed in Iraq.

Even though the 52-year-old mother of three attended her son's funeral - she continues to ask how he's doing. When her family reminds her that he's dead - she weeps as if hearing the news for the first time.

Shank suffered severe brain damage after a traffic accident nearly eight years ago that robbed her of much of her short-term memory and left her in a wheelchair and living in a nursing home.

It was the beginning of a series of battles - both personal and legal - that loomed for Shank and her family. One of their biggest was with Wal-Mart's health plan.


Filed under: Randi Kaye • Wal-Mart
March 25th, 2008
03:35 PM ET

Beat 360° 3/25/08

Hey Bloggers!

It’s time for ‘Beat 360°.’ Everyday we post a picture – and you provide the caption. Our staff will get in on the action too.

Tune in every night at 10p ET to see if you are our favorite! Can you Beat 360°?

Here is today’s “Beat 360°” pic of the day: Former President Bill Clinton signing someone's cast after his speech at Rochester High School in Rochester, Ind.

Beat 360°

Have fun with it.

Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.

UPDATE: Check out last night’s winner!

Filed under: Beat 360°
March 25th, 2008
02:05 PM ET

Hillary Clinton’s desperation move on housing hits a slump

Beyond the repetitive cable TV news loops of Barack Obama’s clergymen, Hillary Clinton doesn’t have a lot going for her as she faces the fight of her life in Pennsylvania. 


She managed to pull out a win among working class whites in Ohio with a populist pitch claiming that she’d opposed the NAFTA agreement that was the centerpiece of her husband’s trade policy.  That particular hat trick is a little harder to repeat in the Keystone state, however, since a Freedom of Information Act Request has now forced her to open up her records as First Lady. These prove that she actually hosted meetings in support of NAFTA at that time. (See David Sirota’s blog post on the subject.)

So instead of exaggerating her opposition to NAFTA, Team Hillary is repeating a tactic they’ve refined better than anybody else – a multi-point public policy program.  We’ve seen Clinton’s multi-point public policy programs for just about every topic you can imagine, and this one seeks to invent a political advantage from the housing crisis. 


Filed under: Economy • Hillary Clinton • Housing Market • Leslie Sanchez
March 25th, 2008
01:22 PM ET

Iraq 5 years ago: A family searching for a face

At the start of the war in Iraq, I was a booker for the network’s coverage, assigned to work from 4pm – 4am in the Atlanta newsroom.  Part of my assignment was to assemble numbers and reach out to family members of those killed or captured during combat.  To be honest, this is the worst part of my job.  It is never something I want to do, but in the interest of telling what was going on in those early stages of the war, it was a necessity.

I was looking over my files Monday morning from our initial war coverage, and could not believe just how many names were on my list, and how many people I called.  One of the greatest pleasures of my job is seeing an interview that I coordinated and knowing that the people who watched it were touched by it.  I don’t know if anyone was touched by watching the interviews with the family members of those killed in Iraq but there is one that still resonates with me, even 5 years later.

Filed under: AC360° Staff • Behind The Scenes • Iraq
March 25th, 2008
12:32 PM ET

Women Vets: Your comments, her response

360 Tonight

Watch Randi Kaye's interview with Veteran Keri Christensen.

We received an enormous number of comments on Randi Kaye’s Blog: Women vets suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Many of you shared stories, provided insight, and offered your support... but one of those comments came from the very person Randi reported on, Keri Christensen.

Keri was nearly the victim of a roadside bombing in Iraq when the convoy in front of hers was hit. She suffers nightmares from the incident and has brought that anxiety of war home... Keri also suffers from MTS (Military Sexual Trauma); a situation so prevalent in the military that it has its own acronym...Keri shared her situation, the unease she still endures, and you responded...

We wanted to post a follow-up response, from Keri herself:

"Thank you to everyone for the kind words. I told my story because I am a strong woman and feel that it’s important for other Vets out there to get help and let the American people know that it’s ok to speak out on such topics. I joined the Military back in 1991, because I was raised in a family where women were taught that we can do and be anything we want. As far as my superior sexually harassing me, he stepped out of line. He is a married man with children himself and just because we were overseas does not constitute his actions. As far as the military denying my claim, I expected that, and I have to live with that. It’s like being locked up in prison for a crime you didn’t commit and you spend a lot of time trying to prove yourself. I was told by the State of Wisconsin “what happens in Kuwait, stays in Kuwait” Isn’t that what they say about Vegas, I don’t recall my duty overseas was anything like Vegas."

– Keri

To read more about Keri’s story and see the interview, check out Randi's blog: ‘Back from Iraq, but still fighting the battle

For more on bloggers' reaction check out: ‘Bloggers react to women vets story

As always, please share your thoughts with us here.

Filed under: PTSD • Randi Kaye
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