May 19th, 2009
10:45 AM ET

The Nightmare Scenario: Why you should worry about Pakistan's nukes

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/05/19/pakistan.refugees.camps/art.bullets.convoy.afp.gi.jpg caption="Pakistani civilians flee to camps for the internally displaced in Mardan district."]

Steven R. David
Foreign Policy

Few who lived through the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962 will forget the fear and apprehension they felt. The world stood on the brink of a nuclear holocaust as U.S. ships imposed a blockade to force Soviet missiles out of Cuba. Everyone heaved a sigh of relief as the Soviets agreed to remove their missiles in exchange for an American pledge not to invade Cuba, but all agreed a cataclysmic nuclear war had been only narrowly averted. Of the lessons that came from this episode, the one that stands out is that never again should the United States be put in a position where its cities are so close to nuclear destruction. Many assumed that lesson had been learned as decades of arms control, détente, and the end of the Cold War seemingly removed the specter of nuclear attack from our collective consciousness.

Well, just when you thought it was safe not to worry about nuclear annihilation, a new crisis has emerged that actually poses a greater threat of an American city being obliterated by a nuclear weapon than anything that occurred during the Cold War: As Pakistan becomes engulfed in chaos, there is a real chance that its nuclear weapons will fall into the hands of extremists determined to kill as many Americans as they can. Although the public has yet to pay much attention to what is happening in Pakistan and there is nowhere near the level of hysteria that gripped the United States nearly 50 years ago, the prospect of a nuclear weapon from Pakistan exploding on American soil is much higher than a Soviet attack from Cuba ever was. If anything can make one nostalgic for the bad old days of the Cold War, what is happening in Pakistan today is surely it.


Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • Global 360° • Pakistan • Taliban
May 19th, 2009
10:38 AM ET

Police brutality?


Police brutality caught on tape?
Police brutality caught on tape?

Gabriel Falcon
AC360° Writer

Did cops go too far in subduing a young suspect? Did an aggressive, uncooperative teenager provoke a violent confrontation? The answer may depend on whose version you believe.

The story unfolded in Toledo, Ohio, but it has spread across the Internet because of a YouTube clip that some say allegedly shows two officers using excessive force on a 14-year-old boy.

The incident happened last Friday morning outside a residential housing complex. According to the police report, the suspect, Trevor Casey, and three other males were loitering outside an address where none of them lived. Two officers in a patrol vehicle told them to leave the area, but Casey refused the order. Instead, according to the report, he "did a dance" in front of the vehicle.

The report alleges Casey continued to ignore commands to disperse and became belligerent when told he was under arrest. According to the report, Casey struggled with the officers for several minutes, hitting one of the officers in the chest with his arm, and wrestling and kicking with them while refusing to "go down."


Filed under: 360° Radar • Crime & Punishment • Gabe Falcon
May 19th, 2009
10:16 AM ET

Guns kill, but poverty’s the trigger

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/CRIME/05/08/chicago.children.slain/art.jody.weis.gi.jpg caption="Police Superintendent Jody Weis says there are too many gangs, guns and drugs on the streets of Chicago. "]

Andre C. Willis
The Root

Recently, longtime Catholic priest and freedom fighter Father Michael Pfleger and members of his parish—the Faith Community of St. Sabina in the South Side of Chicago—made an eloquent plea for justice by flying the American flag upside down in front of his church. Hoisting a flag with the union down is done very rarely and usually only as a call of deep distress. Pfleger and St. Sabina’s are trying to call attention to the “dire emergency” of unprecedented levels of gun violence in their community: Over 36 teens and children, mostly black and Latino, have been murdered so far in 2009.

The flag hanging immediately attracted more media attention than the 36 dead youngsters. National media outlets came calling. Some veterans were offended. Critics speculated that this was another one of Pfleger’s stunts intended to generate more notoriety for Pfleger than solutions to the problem. Mayor Richard M. Daley, Chicago police superintendent Jody Weis and Chicago’s former superintendent of schools Arne Duncan were sympathetic but are confused by the problem.


May 19th, 2009
08:45 AM ET

Dear President Obama #120: The Pelosi Problem

Reporter's Note: Our President, Barack Obama, has asked for the citizens of this country to send him ideas, suggestions, inspirations, even flights of fancy about how he might best go about doing his job. My letters sometimes fit at least one of those descriptions, although just as often I fear they devolve into incoherent rambling. Undeterred, however, I press on with a message each day to the White House.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/05/15/pelosi.waterboarding/art.pelosi.torture.cnn.jpg]

Tom Foreman | Bio
AC360° Correspondent

Dear Mr. President,

Just in case the big DC Republicans are not telling you this (and heaven knows why they would) you should know that they pretty much consider you untouchable these days. You’ve still got the big poll numbers; they’re still being pinned behind the rocks by voter anger; and so even when they pop out for a quick hit and run, they know they don’t have the muscle to take you on directly. So what do you do when you can’t get at the king? You go after his court. And that, politically, brings us to Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi.

Between the Notre Dame trip, your daughters’ soccer games, and grabbing those burgers with Biden (and btw, watch that…former President Clinton loved the ol’ burger and fries bit to the point of punching new holes in his belt, and making Ned Beatty look svelte by comparison. Not pretty.) …where was I? Oh yes, between all the events that you’ve been tied up in, perhaps you’ve noticed that Madam Speaker has become the most popular tin rabbit at the Republican shooting gallery.

There is an awful lot to say about the circumstances that painted the bull’s eye on her back; frankly, too much to get into here. But there she is; and for the first time since you took the oath, GOPers are sensing a potential crack in the vaunted Obama-armor.


May 19th, 2009
08:30 AM ET

Jury service, not duty

Editor’s Note: You can read more Jami Floyd blogs on
In Session.”

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/05/18/jury-box-generic.jpg]

Jami Floyd
AC360° Contributor
In Session Anchor

Last week, I was called for jury duty. No surprise there; but I was surprised at how many friends, family members and even viewers offered suggestions of how i might get out of it. Others offered their sympathies. But no sympathy is necessary because, unlike too many Americans, I actually like jury duty — cherish it, in fact.

I believe in our constitutional system of justice and the jury is at its core. It is an honor and a privilege to serve.

That is why so many Americans fought for the right to do so. African-Americans weren’t permitted to sit on juries until 1867. Women didn’t get the constitutional right to serve until 1975. If you were black or a woman, a jury of your peers really wasn’t.

No one understood this better than Judith Kaye — the first woman to sit as chief judge for the state of New York, and the longest sitting chief ever. Judge Kaye did a whole lot to make jury duty more meaningful — and more pleasant too.


Filed under: In Session • Jami Floyd
May 19th, 2009
08:10 AM ET

Video: Strategy session with David Gergen

Anderson Cooper talks with Senior Political Analyst David Gergen about Speaker Nancy Pelosi and President Obama.

Filed under: 360° Radar • 360º Follow • Anderson Cooper • David Gergen • Nancy Pelosi • Raw Politics
May 19th, 2009
08:00 AM ET

The Shot: 'Thriller'

Best of "Thriller" dances from a Virginia college to a Filipino prison to a wedding reception.

Filed under: T1 • The Shot
May 19th, 2009
07:00 AM ET

Sound Off: Your comments 5/18/09

Editor's Note: Topics from Monday night’s AC360° brought response on Nancy Pelosi’s knowledge of water boarding (and comments on the role she did or did not play by keeping silent), the “Don’t Ask Don’t’ Tell” military policy, and Dr. Gupta’s segment explaining Farrah Fawcett’s cancer and her battle with it. Here is a sampling of comments on these issues. We hope you’ll read them, and then tell us what YOU think:


I do not understand why the media continues to focus on what Nancy Pelosi knew about water boarding, when the real issue is that the Bush Administration was torturing people, and torture is legally, morally and ethically wrong. Whether Pelosi knew about it or not does not change the fact that it is wrong and those who engaged in it should be punished. Why are the Republicans being allowed to change the subject away from the real issue?

Pelosi is saying she was misinformed. At least her 'misinformation' hasn't started a war. The Bush information also says that they were 'misinformed' about Weapons Of Mass Destruction, and then blamelessly started a War! Let's get things into perspective here. Many want Pelosi to "step down" over this controversy and yet have consistently remained silent about the previous administration plunging this nation into an expensive, deadly and protracted conflict because of their “misinformation". What's wrong with this picture?

Gay people are sprung from the loins of many good and Christian people, they aren't from Mars! God created us all!


Filed under: 360° Radar
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