July 2nd, 2008
09:50 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 7/2/08

For what’s in the program take a look at tonight’s Evening Buzz.

Be sure to check out Anderson and Erica on our live web camera from the 360° studio. We’ll turn the camera on at 945p ET and turn it off at 11p ET.

We’ll start posting comments to this blog at 10p ET and stop at 11p ET.

Filed under: Live Blog
soundoff (150 Responses)
  1. Natalia

    I´m colombian and I just want everyone in the states to know how proud we are of our President Alvaro Uribe, and of our military forces that held the most succesfull, incredible, mindblowing and inteligent mission ever, in our country, and in a hosttage situation in the world.
    As Andrew said, Colombia is a great country, that has so much to offer to the world, and that thanks to our president and our military forces, you can walk around our cities, safe and able to appreciate all the great colombian things.

    July 2, 2008 at 11:00 pm |
  2. Katina

    Good night! This has been wonderful news and I'll be following the story as it develops.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:58 pm |
  3. Luis Felipe Molina

    Erica, Colombia has a growth index of 8%, this is a huge number, all began when Alvaro Uribe took the Presidence, and now the Politics of Uribe are giving us the best result, Democratic Security now say that Colombia is better country. In this moment is beggining the Presidential Show , where Uribe explain to us what happened there.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:58 pm |
  4. Cathy Elliott

    anderson, thank you for the comments from the former hostage held in Iraq for 311 days. incredibly moving account of a person's slow and difficult re-emergence into a life that was once so normal to them.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:57 pm |
  5. Dominic

    I'm very excited to hear about the release of the hostages! I'm sure their families are just thrilled, as the hostages are themselves.

    I do hope that the government's of Columbia and the United States do not come out and claim this as a victory, or a successful operation. Let's be honest, it's been 5 years and what I would say is an incredible failure!

    July 2, 2008 at 10:56 pm |
  6. Heather

    This is definetly another good reason to celebrate our independance this week. Anderson and everyone, keep up the great work you are doing.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:56 pm |
  7. Mateo Rincon

    What happened today in Colombia is the result of a securitystrategy stablish by our president since he started

    July 2, 2008 at 10:55 pm |
  8. Ana-Boston

    We have to attribute this success to hard work of Colombian governmant. This is a happy day not only for hostages and their familes, but for all America.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:55 pm |
  9. ericacnn

    david, i'm sure there will be a debrief period, and that there will be several discussions with the government. they must have some very valuable information, and i'd imagine these folks will prob be very helpful, as well – that they want to see the hundreds of other hostages freed.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:55 pm |
  10. Jenny

    Today is a proud proud day for my beautiful country. Thank you for taking the time to discuss this issue. Welcome home all 15 hostages, yet lets not forget those hundreds left behind. Que Viva Colombia! Que Viva la Democracia! God Bless all the hostages around the world and their families. And may our Colombian leaders continue their fight against terrorism. We are winning the war!!

    July 2, 2008 at 10:54 pm |
  11. Derrick

    The FARC has no leadership at this moment, they've all been either captured or killed. Their is a suspicion that neighboring nations are aiding the FARC. But I do believe this is a turning point because of the pressure from the international community and in the Colombia to disband.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  12. Norma

    I hope the media gives the families somtime for themselves and get reunited. Let them be until they are ready to talk to the media.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  13. Janna

    David, interesting suggestion...I'm sure they are in need much recovery and helping bring down the FARC would be a huge help in that!

    July 2, 2008 at 10:53 pm |
  14. Rodolfo

    this is a victory for our president Alvaro Uribe and his "Democratic Security" policy, he believes on a better Colombia, and we dream with him.
    This is prove of the excellence on our arm forces and the good people of Colombia.
    We are very very happy.
    Anderson thanks for your kind work about Colombia.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:51 pm |
  15. Matthew Gomez

    I think it is amazing that even with all the troubles of the past, Colombia is still one of the most developed nations in Latin America. I'm hoping today's news (with the other news that has come up this year), is a start to a brand new future for Colombia and her potential as a LATAM leader. Here's to Presidente Uribe and the military to their great efforts that led to the rescue of these hostages!

    July 2, 2008 at 10:51 pm |
  16. Alex-NYC

    An amazing story! That operation is something you would expect to see in a James Bond movie, congratulations to the army, hostages, and people of Columbia for such an amazing rescue without firing any shots.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:51 pm |
  17. Megan Dresslar

    That is good plan for colombia Military tricked or fooled them! I am so glad they have plan to rescued them and keep away from them.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:51 pm |
  18. Minou, New York City

    Boy! I just came home from work, and now these awesome news!
    Great to have Colombians here on the blog tonite.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:50 pm |
  19. Julian - Hialeah, FL

    This most certianly will be a key point in history. This just adds to the already big blow the FARC has experienced recently, I believe that if the goverment takes this in stride and Uribe continues his tough persistence it could be turning point in the undeniable demise of the FARC. Its an incredible day!

    July 2, 2008 at 10:50 pm |
  20. sumayah

    I agree with you miguel, and it;s not a first unfortunetly,
    the US had been of assistance in the operation but it was ultimatetly the Colombian goverment that deserves the pat on the back and not the US.

    hopefully this "we're always the heroes" act will tone down.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:50 pm |
  21. Kathy, Chicago

    It is really cool to have bloggers from Columbia tonight. I enjoy their perspective as well as Anderson's perspective from his recent vacation there.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:50 pm |
  22. MaryBeth

    This was purely a Colombian operation, right? I think the US had been told about it but I don't think we had anything to do with it. All the credit should go to President Uribe and his military.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:49 pm |
  23. Larry

    Doesn't the FARC cross into Ecuador when the Colombian army gets near?

    July 2, 2008 at 10:49 pm |
  24. Camilo Bonilla, Bogotá - Colombia

    When I saw Ingrid Betancurt and the eleven soldiers, this afternoon,
    I said to a friend, "this is the picture of the FARC's end". This is part of the FARC finale, that begun Augost 7th of 2002 when Pres. Uribe started his goverment.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:49 pm |
  25. Jacqui Chan

    Maire & Mom and 360 very good point; I hope that this release will encourage 360 and other news organizations to stay on top of the story about the remaining hostages in Columbia

    July 2, 2008 at 10:47 pm |
  26. Jo Anne Cummings

    Hi Anderson, what a feelgood story in a week of such disaster!!!! to see your dad and family after so long is awesome.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:47 pm |
  27. David-North Carolina

    but i wonder and erica or anderson if you could chime in on this, when these american ex-hostages arrive and they will get settled, what do you think would be the best thing to do with them.....being prisoners for almost years, im sure that they have valid information to take down this FARC organization......

    July 2, 2008 at 10:47 pm |
  28. Mary H. St. Louis, MO

    Awesome to get the viewpoint of the people in Columbia on the blog. It sounds like this has taken both Columbian and US forces/officials awhile to make this happen. Hopefully, the progress there can continue and more of the 700 can be rescued..

    July 2, 2008 at 10:47 pm |
  29. Sharmel

    Good evening everyone-
    This ordeal that the hostages have gone through is unimaginable. So happy you to see you home. Blessings and best wishes to all the hostages and their families.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:46 pm |
  30. Liz; Colombia and Atlanta

    Lorie Ann, I agree, the Colombian Military did an excellent intelligence job. They truly infiltrated the FARC and crippled them by taking their most valuable hostages. Thank you to the Colombian military and the men and women who chose to risk their lives fighting for a country so many might have believed to be hopeless. Gracias!

    My cousin is in the Colombian military and was stationed nearby where the hostages were taken. I'm so proud of him, proud to be Colombian today. I'm grateful to see that this woman, Ingrid, whom I have looked up to for years is finally free. I hope she chooses to continue to fight for Colombia as she was doing when she was kidnapped.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:45 pm |
  31. Mara Hernandez

    The operation that has liberated these 15 hostages, is proof of a weakend FARC organization and of the amazing tenacity of the Colombian country and of our wonderful leader, president Uribe. The American Embassador in a press conference stated that is was a Colombian military operation all the way; if there was any American help, it was intel. The pilots of the helicopters that picked up the hostages in the south of Colombia by the Guaviare river, were Colombians as were the military infiltrated in the FARC organization as reported by the Colombian Government during their press conference. We are a country that has known terrorism and exploitism for many decades. Today, more than ever I feel proud to be a Colombian. Wohooo! A slap in the face to many who tried to take a role in negotiating liberations.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:45 pm |
  32. MaryBeth

    Negotians are definitely a start...sometimes they do work. It's always better to solve problems with words than with military action. But sometimes military actions are the only thing that will work...and if they are perfectly planned out, like this operation, then go for it. But negotiations should always be part of the plans.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:45 pm |
  33. ericacnn

    for the bloggers joining us from columbia, are people confident this could be a turning point?

    July 2, 2008 at 10:44 pm |
  34. Kaye, Pensacola & Chattanooga

    @Lorrie Ann – I agree. I am glad all the Columbian bloggers are here tonight to give us their opinions. I am very proud for them and their country.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:44 pm |
  35. Brad Samuelson

    This is a historic event, and could not have occurred at a better time, when Colombian president, Uribe, is fighting for his political life, fending off an attempt at invalidating his presidency. Que Viva Uribe. Que Viva Colombia.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:44 pm |
  36. ericacnn

    there has been some stuff from france – specifically comments from ingrid betancourt's daughter. you can check out some of the video here:

    July 2, 2008 at 10:43 pm |
  37. Susan - North Haven,CT

    Erica... I would think, having seen that banner in Paris, that today is especially sweet for you and a day you will never forget.

    Did you ever imagine you would be reporting Betancourt's rescue?

    July 2, 2008 at 10:43 pm |
  38. Annette

    Hi Erica! I'll be in Paris in a week. I'll have to go check it out!

    What a banner day for the hostages and their families!

    July 2, 2008 at 10:42 pm |
  39. Marie Lussoro and Mom

    Welcome home to all the hostages! It is so good to know that they are safely home and with their loved ones. One of the fathers said it well when he stated that we ,the families are happy and excited,but we must remember that there are others still there.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:41 pm |
  40. David-North Carolina

    this just goes to show that nations need to be united to "exterminate" this guerilla organizations.....this shouldnt happen no matter what the circumstances are....

    July 2, 2008 at 10:41 pm |
  41. Juan Pablo Lozano

    By the way, I forgot to mention that I was born and raised in Combia but I am a very proud American Citizen who lives here for almost 17 years. I love this Country and I am very prod to be part of ot, but also I am very proud of the Colombian President and all the army forces of Colombia.
    One last thing, it is COLOMBIA and not COLUMBIA.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:41 pm |
  42. Lorie Ann, Buellton, California

    I agree with the Colombian bloggers on here tonight. We must not forget the role of the Colombian army for taking a bold step to gain the hostages their freedom. The intellegence community should be thanked too.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:39 pm |
  43. David-North Carolina

    as mike stated action had to be taken to free these hostages....i totally agree whats everyone thoughts?

    July 2, 2008 at 10:38 pm |
  44. Felipe

    Anderson, this is a great day for my country Colombia. However, people need to understand this is all thanks to president Uribe. He has changed our country like no other previous president. Every Colombian knows that president Uribe has been the reason why the FARC have been hit hard. President Uribe has to be recognized as the person behind the change in Colombia, and all Colombians support him for even another term and thank him for rescuing Colombia.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:38 pm |
  45. Hannah Storm

    Erica....has any footage from France come in yet? Have not really heard any news out of them and it seems they were very involved as well in what happened today

    July 2, 2008 at 10:37 pm |
  46. Heather

    Im glad this was a peaceful and safe rescue.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:37 pm |
  47. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Erica, they should invite her there to take down the banner personally.

    July 2, 2008 at 10:37 pm |
  48. ericacnn

    I was recently in paris, where there was an enormous banner and picture of ingrid betancourt outside of the hotel de ville, keeping track of the number of days she'd been held prisoner. what a wonderful thing to imagine them taking that banner down...

    July 2, 2008 at 10:36 pm |
  49. Jacqui Chan

    the news is usually overflowing with negative and horrific news this is such a wonderful news story

    July 2, 2008 at 10:36 pm |
  50. deborah, OH

    It's ok, Anderson. That's what 360 does best is go with the story. And this is very important.!!

    July 2, 2008 at 10:36 pm |
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