May 19th, 2009
04:44 PM ET

Video: Astronaut Film School?

Program Note: Tune in tonight to see more home videos from the astronauts on the space shuttle Atlantis on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

Commander Scott Altman and Mission Specialist Mike Massimino talk about filming the landing of the shuttle. Altman wants to make sure Massimino knows how to capture the landing.

Altman, a retired Navy F-14 fighter pilot is the commander of the current space shuttle Atlantis mission to repair and upgrade the Hubble Space Telescope. He also doubled for the actors, including Cruise, during the Southern California shoot of the 1986 hit movie 'Top Gun.'


Filed under: 360° Radar • John Zarrella • Space
May 19th, 2009
03:23 PM ET

Video: 'Top Gun' astronaut

Program Note: Tune in tonight to see more about the astronauts from John Zarrella on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

CNN's John Zarrella talks to a space shuttle commander that had a big screen role in the hit movie "Top Gun."

Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • John Zarrella • Space
May 19th, 2009
02:23 PM ET

U.S. pledges $100M to help displaced Pakistanis

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/05/17/pakistan.taliban/art.pakistan.girl.apf.gi.jpg caption="A Pakistani girl displaced by the offensive against the Taliban rests at a camp Saturday north of Islamabad."]


The United States is sending $100 million in aid to Pakistan to help alleviate the plight of the estimated 2 million people displaced by the offensive against Taliban extremists, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced Tuesday.

The money comes on top of $60 million in assistance already provided by the United States to Pakistan since last August.

The assistance is "essential to the global security and security of the United States," Clinton said in a White House briefing. Much of the aid will be directed toward the purchase of Pakistani grain as part of a larger "investment in the people and economy in Pakistan."

The Pakistani government is helping to lead the fight against extremists threatening "our collective security" and therefore deserves to be supported, she argued.

Clinton called on individual Americans to support the relief effort in the form of $5 donations by texting the word "SWAT" to the number 20222.

Pakistan's military launched a massive operation against Taliban militants in its northwest region earlier this month after a peace deal collapsed and the militants moved within 60 miles of the capital, Islamabad.

Much of the recent fighting has been centered in and around Pakistan's Swat Valley.

Keep Reading...

Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • Hillary Clinton • Pakistan • Taliban
May 19th, 2009
01:33 PM ET

Video: The Vick dogs - then and now

Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear Randi Kaye's report on what happened to Michael Vick's dogs on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

The organization BAD RAP (Bay Area Doglovers Responsible About Pit Bulls) was formed in 1999 to rescue and redeem American pit bull terriers. The organization helps Bay Area residents adopt Pit Bulls and uses training sessions designed to socialize dogs and make them suitable for life as a pet. After fighting pit bulls were taken from football star Michael Vick's Bad Newz Kennels, BAD RAP took part in evaluating, training and finding homes for the dogs. Watch this video of some of the dogs that were originally owned by Michael Vick.

Go to the BAD RAP web site to see a timeline of the dogs' healing process.

May 19th, 2009
01:06 PM ET

Video: Crisis in Pakistan

Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear more on the situation in Pakistan on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.

CNN's Ivan Watson reports on the first pictures from the battles between Pakistan's army and the Taliban.

Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • Ivan Watson • Pakistan
May 19th, 2009
12:43 PM ET

Suspect arrested in shooting of rapper Dolla

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/CRIME/05/19/california.rapper.killed/art.rapper.dolla.gi.jpg caption="Rap artist Dolla arrives at the Soul Train Music Awards in Pasadena, California, on March 10, 2007."]


A Georgia man suspected of shooting to death a 21-year-old up-and-coming rapper at a ritzy Los Angeles shopping center Monday afternoon is being held on $1 million bail, Los Angeles Police said.

Dolla, whose real name is Roderick Anthony Burton II, was shot in the head about 3:10 p.m. at the Beverly Center, his publicist said.

Police later arrested Aubrey Louis Berry, 23, at Los Angeles International Airport, a Los Angeles Police statement said.

No other details were given about Berry, who was arrested on suspicion of murder.

Dolla, who was based in Atlanta, Georgia, was in Los Angeles recording his debut album.

He caught the attention of multiplatinium R&B singer Akon when the then-12-year-old Dolla was performing with friends at showcases around Atlanta.

Keep Reading...

May 19th, 2009
12:40 PM ET

Upgraded Hubble flies solo again

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/TECH/space/05/19/space.shuttle/art.shuttle.arm.nasa.jpg caption="An astronaut works on the Hubble Space Telescope during a spacewalk Monday."]


The Hubble Space Telescope was released into orbit Tuesday.

Space shuttle Atlantis crew member Megan McArthur used the shuttle's robotic arm to release the telescope at 8:57 a.m. ET.

"With soft separation burn, Atlantis now is slowly backing away from the telescope," NASA said in a statement.

"A jet firing will be performed in about a half-hour to increase Atlantis' separation rate from the telescope, as the seven crew members bid farewell to Hubble for the final time."

The Hubble has been in orbit for 19 years. It can capture images that telescopes on Earth cannot, partly because it does not have to gaze through the planet's murky atmosphere.

Keep Reading...

May 19th, 2009
12:06 PM ET

Senate OKs credit card curbs

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2009/LIVING/wayoflife/04/19/college.credit.cards/art.college.credit.cnn.jpg]

Jennifer Liberto
CNNMoney.com Senior Writer

The Senate on Tuesday voted 90-5 to approve a bill that will make it tougher for credit card issuers to raise fees and interest rates starting early next year.

The bill includes an unrelated measure that would allow people to carry concealed weapons into national parks.

The bill now goes to the House, which is expected to take it up on Wednesday and pass it before the weekend. The bill would get to President Obama's desk before Memorial Day, as he called for.

"To have the industry reaching and be as abusive to consumers, it needed to stop and it needed to change," said Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., a bill sponsor.

The legislation is moderately tougher on card issuers than are new Federal Reserve rules that take effect in July 2010.

The Senate's bill would take effect in nine months and make it harder for people under age 21 to get credit cards. It would also ban rate hikes unless a consumer is more than 60 days late – and then restore the previous rate after six months if minimum payments are made.

Keep Reading...

May 19th, 2009
11:38 AM ET

Financial Dispatch: Home construction at record low

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2009/LIVING/wayoflife/05/06/credit.cards/art.window.gi.jpg]

Gene Bloch
Managing Editor
CNN New York

A stark sign this morning that the housing market is not yet out of the woods. The Commerce Department reporting new home construction plunged 12.8% in April to a record low, as rising unemployment and mounting foreclosures slammed new projects. A plunge in new apartment projects led the decline. Applications for new permits fell as well, indicating the rough patch for housing is likely to continue. The news underscores the recession is still taking its toll.

The upside of the housing decline is, of course, lower prices for homebuyers. Homes are, in fact, at their most affordable in two decades.

A big announcement today on one of the most important energy and environmental issues, fuel economy standards. The Obama administration today is setting new CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) standards in an effort to reduce fuel emissions. The plan will require cars and light trucks to get an overall average of 35.5 miles per gallon by 2016, according to a senior administration official with knowledge of the plan. Cars will be required to average 39 mpg, and for light trucks the number will be 30 mpg. There is a 1215p announcement from President Obama, who will be joined by Calif. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm, who have played major roles in the policy (think environment and industry).


May 19th, 2009
10:51 AM ET

Morning Buzz: Swine Flu Vaccine in Sight?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/HEALTH/05/19/swine.flu.cases/art.flu.death.gi.jpg caption="Flowers sit outside the New York school where assistant principal Mitchell Wiener worked."]

Penny Manis
AC360° Senior Producer

A NYC hospital says a 16 month-old boy died last night with flu-like symptoms and the Center for Disease Control is looking into whether the baby may have had swine flu.

CDC officials are warning that there already could be up to 100,000 Americans infected with this flu strain-meanwhile South Korean scientists say they’re close to a breakthrough on a possible vaccine. This vaccine has not yet been approved by health authorities in the United States or the World Health Organization.
Sanjay Gupta will check all this out for you tonight.

Hey gas guzzlers- hold onto your seat belts: President Obama, Gov Arnold Schwarzeneggar and Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm will announce a plan today for stricter fuel-economy standards in an effort to cut down on pollution… we’ll let u know what it means for you.

Congressional Republicans continue to stoke the flames over House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s accusations that the CIA lied to her about water boarding. Will Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele use this issue to rally the base when he speaks at a gathering later today?


Filed under: Penny Manis • The Buzz
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