January 2nd, 2009
09:45 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 1/2/09

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/02/liveblogfinal.copy.jpg]

Tonight on 360°
Airstrikes continue in Gaza as Israel amasses troops and artillery at the border.

A ground assault could begin at any moment. We'll have a live report from Nic Robertson in Israel.

And tragedy strikes John Travolta and his family. His sixteen year old son dies while the family is on vacation.

We’re blogging throughout the hour, and we hope you will join us.

Just follow our rules. Here are some of them:

1) Keep it short (we don't have time to read a "book)
2) Don't write in ALL CAPS (we don't like screaming)
3) Use your real name

Filed under: Live Blog • T1
soundoff (422 Responses)
  1. Jill

    I love how Erica always has funny tidbits to throw into the show. Urkel yesterday and today the "Big Bag" of popcorn. She always makes Anderson laugh too!

    January 2, 2009 at 10:46 pm |
  2. Mr. Black

    Hey Anderson, This is my first time on here but with the horror going on between Israel and Hamas, I had to say something. Israel has to defend itself but justifying killing innocent Palestinian people, women and children well it just doesn't seem right to me. You can not solve a problem by making new one's that will continue past our life time.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:45 pm |
  3. Heather - Spokane, WA

    It make me sick when people treat people with developmental disabilities like they are dumb people. I used to care for a man who had Cerebral Palsy and he was a very smart man who obtained his Master's degree in psychology and social work.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:45 pm |
  4. Megan Dresslar- Shoreline, WA

    EJ (USA) January 2nd, 2009 10:37 pm ET

    And Nic Robertson needs to be careful.

    EJ USA,
    I agree!!!!! He is very be careful where is rocket going fast!

    January 2, 2009 at 10:44 pm |
  5. Judith C. Hassoun

    While visiting Israel last summer, Barack Obama described how he would feel if the home of his daughters was being shelled. I would like to ask Obama how he would feel if his daughters were living in squalor in his tiny homeland, while necessary medical supplies, food, and fuel was being withheld by its powerful neighbor. How would he feel if their home was was being shook to its foundation by continuous bombing?

    January 2, 2009 at 10:44 pm |
  6. Sherrol in Canada

    $500 for a hit on about 4 people? Don't really know much about killers for hire, but if it had been for real, that guys would have been really desperate!!!

    January 2, 2009 at 10:44 pm |
  7. Bob Z

    The israelies have yet to understand the arab/muslim ideology. They go after the end result with all their might with the hopes that these people will just change their minds about destroying israel. They need to go after the cause, the begining, the instigators, Syria and Iran. They destroyed lebanon in 2006 and made Hizballah stronger now they'r destroying Gaza and making Hamas stronger.... the stupidity keeps on going.....

    January 2, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  8. Abayomi, Florida

    How Great would it be if Hamas would 'Build' more of "THE CHILDREN", not use them as 'Blocks'. How Much Joy would there be on the Faces of Children with Better Schools, Drainage Systems, and SOCCER FIELDS.
    That Sport Alone Could Stop the War, if Children Played. Peace, Hamas, Peace, for the Children's Sake.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  9. JacquiChan

    500 bucks wow she she know nothing that cheap – just kidding w my insensitivity

    January 2, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  10. marla

    For years I have watched CNN and found it leaning toward the Islamic terrorist position. Today is the first time I have felt a clear recognition of the torture the Israeli people feel from the terrorist actions. Israel has very little manuevering room in negotiations, They have given up more than any nation has ever done , as surivivors. It is time for Hamas and the other members of the Jihad, to recognize the only way to win ; is to let peace take a hold; to work with Israel in helping it's people not against. I ask all the other arab nations; Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Iran,Iraq,Syria, Pakistan, etc to put forth effort to help their brethen feed their own people,clothe their own people, school their own people, clean them and give medical aid to their own people. Thwe cost of the bombs would pay for the food, clothes and medicine.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  11. Bridget

    I find it ironic that the Bushes wouldn't allow the Obama's to move into the guest house a couple of weeks early because of some plans they couldn't change. Yet everyone is expecting PE Obama to assume the responsibilites Pres. Bush is ignoring as he remains on vacation.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:43 pm |
  12. Emma

    I'm torn regarding the Air Tran incident. While I agree that the passengers did nothing wrong, I can see how their comments would make fellow passengers nervous. Since 9/11, you really have to watch what you say on airplanes....and that's unfortunate.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  13. Brandi - bottom of the boot

    @Deni NS,

    my support is not limited to any one person, i also feel much pain for any parent, famous or not, who has suffered such a tragedy, no matter what walk of life they are from.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  14. Nissim

    I hope Israel won’t go for ground attack. I’m an Israeli living in Ohio and can understand why Israel attacks the Hamas. After Israel left Gaza, I thought that it would be peace, I was wrong. I wish I knew what the Hamas and the Palestinians really want…I think Israel has the right to protect itself. If the Palestinians want to fight and not hurt their own civilians they should fight out of army bases and not form homes, using kids bodies as a shield. I really pray for Peace.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  15. Minou, New York City

    How are these wet monkeys ever get dry without first freezing to a solid block of ice??

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  16. Max

    Hamas fires rockets into Isreal targeting civilian populations and then hides their ammunition dumps and military bases in their children's bedrooms and cry 'bloody murder' when these places become the target of Isreali air strikes. Hamas is just as guilty if not more....

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  17. Sead

    I agree Nasser !!!!

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  18. Sherrol in Canada

    Ha, ha, ha, thief got caught because of a trail of popcorn. Reaaly dumb thief...serves him right.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  19. Mark

    The Israelis waited enough , over 8 years of rockets .
    Israelis left gaza in 2005 so there is no "occupatio".
    They don't want peace they don't care about civillians , they brain wash the younger to be a suacide bombers .
    And why they claim jerusalem if it's not writen down in the Quran not even ones . In the Jewish torah you can count over 600 times the word jerusalem .

    January 2, 2009 at 10:42 pm |
  20. Lori from IL

    Good evening Anderson, Erica and Fellow Bloggers

    The news out of Gaza is troubling.

    And my prayers go out to the Travolta family – what a sad day for them. Enjoyed hearing Dr. Gupta commenting tonight.

    Let's hope next week starts off better than this one's ending.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  21. Jose Monge

    Israel does not want peace. It wants to control the Middle East the way they control Washington, London, Paris, etc. It would not surprise me to learn that Israel has paid Palestinian sympathizers to throw the first barrage of missiles to have an excuse to attack and thus further their Zionist goals of expansion.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  22. Mark


    Israel labels Hamas a terrorist org yet employs terrorisim herself. Why is the American media so silent on this vast injustice? In all seriousness, what would Christ say to the world if he appeared above Gaza right now?

    January 2, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  23. Peb, Valley Village, California

    I think the important thing for the Pres-Elect Obama to do (or not do) is to take sides. That was the big problem with the Bush Administration. Many of my Palestinians friends always complained about the on-sided positions taken by the U.S. Government. In order to achieve some type of peaceful resolution, the U.S. needs to take a neutral position.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  24. adam

    how many little kids dead or injured in gaza in past week ?? imagine the same happening in isreal and you see their kids slatered like that ? i know hamas invoked isreal and all that , but hamas has fireworks rockets compare to isreal"s killing machine ,i just feel sorry for all these kids , they are human too you know !!!

    January 2, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  25. Sherrol in Canada

    That school bus driver should be put away for a long time. What in heaven's name was she thinking?

    January 2, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  26. Tami Cook

    my son had kawasaki syndrome when he was 3 months old. the doctor treated it with an iv solution of glugose and baby asprin. He had to take baby asprin for about 6 months after treatment for swelling of the heart muscles.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:41 pm |
  27. david

    Hamas violence is wrong, and Israel's response is obscenly disproportionate. 4 dead on one side, so Israel kills 400+ in retaliation? Read the history of the last 100 years or so in Palestine and you will see Jewish Zionist terrorists running peaceable Palestinian families off their long-held lands, often killing them. Palestinians often responded w. violence likewise,.
    There is no "good guy" vs. "bad guy" in Palestine: both sides have engaged in terrorism, both are guilty, and the basic issue is stolen Palestinian land and consequently millions of refugees. That is why they are still fighting, but Israel does not want to do justice on the land issue....only hold on to it and drive more Arabs out of Israeli territory.
    For a balanced view, read "Blood Brothers" by Elias Chacour....his family land was taken by Zionist paramilitary and military groups in the 1940s, but instead of becoming a terrorist Chacour became a priest and established schools in Ibillin, Galilee, which receive Chriustians, Jews, Muslims and encourage mutual understanding and peace.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  28. Ellen Thompson

    Israel is not enterig Gaza so not to lose Israeli life.
    With all the American armament they will still LOOSE!
    Just like in Lebanon.
    God will NEVER forget Palestine

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  29. Mari T

    Sorry for my poor knowledge, but I need help to understand about Gaza.
    Is it because-of/for a religious? Or just a politics?
    How can I nowtice about both character or reason/purpose for this tragedy?

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  30. Ken in NC

    PE Obama cannot speak for or negotiate with Israel or Hamas as he is not the "Sitting President" At this time we are still stuck with Pres. Bush. Only he can speak for the government and he does a poor job of even speaking to his friends and family.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  31. Ashley - Hamlin NY

    Does it bother anyone else that shooting a missile, rocket, or bomb resembles a video game? All you do is point and click.

    What happened to having to look your enemy in the eyes?

    Technology makes war far too easy.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  32. Minou, New York City

    The psychological toll a war takes on children and adults is always underestimated... especially the for the children.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  33. Michael

    @Ali..Jackson MS

    Good Question! Where IS the United Nations? Are they so poorly respected now that they hold no threat? Have were heard their stance on any significant issue in some time now?

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  34. Todd

    It's common sense that Israel is completely justified in defending itself against a group that launches rockets into Israel, even when that group hides behind civilians. The sad thing is that the media in our country almost always reports things with an anti-Israel bias. The US media gives very little attention when Hamas and similar groups launch rockets into Israel, but then when Israel retaliates it's front page news.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  35. Jeff

    When your civilians are being attacked, it is the responsibility of any government to do everything in its power to stop it. When the Germans bombed London in WWII, the British sent their air force to firebomb Dresden to the ground, killing 80,000 German civilians. When the US was attacked on 9/11, our response was to invade and totally take over two foreign countries. Israel is doing what any responsible nation would do to protect its civilians. There is no "proportionate response" to terrorism– Protect your civilians.


    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  36. Bea

    The only solution to that conflict is to isolate Hamas in the minds of Palestinians. Bombing them won't do that. But Israel is right to point out that no one else has solved this problem.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  37. adrian

    When will the Palestinians and their supporters wake up and realize that if they stop shelling the Jewish towns Israel will stop bombing Gaza. It is truly that simple

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  38. JacquiChan

    I am not implying that cnn's reporting is unfair but I think they should be airing more footage of the missiles hitting in Israel because pictures speak louder than words veiwers need to see how both sides are suffering not just the Palestinians

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  39. Hazel, Toronto, Canada

    Israel is 100% right to protect herself!!! Would America or Canada allow their existence to be questioned?

    January 2, 2009 at 10:40 pm |
  40. Alex (Aliso Viejo)

    It is heartbreaking to witness the stark contrast of the grief and agony in tonight's news compared to the new year's celebration less than 48 hours ago. This is the real world and I am sorry for those who are feeling such grief and misery. All my prayers.

    Good evening!

    January 2, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  41. Rafael Cubas


    I don't think that Israel is going ground incursion just because it is easier to spend money (bombs) than wasting human lives.


    January 2, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  42. Cindy Hays

    Senator Blagojevich appears to be playing the childhood game of "King of the Mountain", or in DC terms, "King of the Hill". It is a humiliating representation of our country's inability to navigate itself quickly through the gray area of politics. He is making a mockery of our political system and I am embarrassed that other countries may hear of this on their newscasts. This is possiblly one of the reasons that they do mock the USA.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  43. Matthew Supovitz

    The Palestinians have been complaining for years as they are now that Israel is killing civilians with their military attacks. Haven't the Palestinians (Hamas included) been doing but killing innocent civilians for many years? Like we were attacked on 9/11, I believe Israel has the right to defend itself agianst terrorism. Hamas is an organization that does not care about the saftey and well being of it's own or any other people. The people of Gaza have been brought up to hate from youth. The Palestinians have brought this upon themselves.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  44. Bridget

    Dewy @ Ft Bragg, I agree most Americans don't truly understand the war between Israel and Palestine, which is why I don't believe it should be a US/PE Obama problem but a UN problem.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:39 pm |
  45. gary-nyc

    Shouldn't we just pull out of the middle-east and let them figure it out with the u.n.? Let's spend the money fixing our own home(the usa)?

    January 2, 2009 at 10:38 pm |
  46. Marian

    There will be a total blood bath in Gaza if the IDF takes ground troops in. Hopefully some reporters that still want to get to the truth of the casualities will have the courage to see what is really happening in Gaza. Perhaps some of the European news agencies will get some journalists in to report what is really happening and we get less spin from Israel, which is always the case.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:38 pm |
  47. Maureen T

    I pray Nic Robertson stays safe! How brave of him!

    January 2, 2009 at 10:38 pm |
  48. Dewy @ Ft Bragg

    Steven, Israeli soldiers shoot indiscriminately. Collateral damage is only a concern when there is media coverage there. They are blood thirsty soldiers and are trained to spread fear of death to the Palestinians.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:38 pm |
  49. EJ (USA)

    And Nic Robertson needs to be careful.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:37 pm |
  50. Brandi - bottom of the boot

    @ megan, you are welcome, hope you are doing well. 🙂

    @stacy, god bless you and see you safely home. thank you for your service.

    January 2, 2009 at 10:37 pm |
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