Anderson is reporting live from Chicago tonight and demanding answers. Why are kids killings kids? What's going to be done to solve the crisis? And, today marks the eighth anniversary of the war in Afghanistan. Will Pres. Obama change U.S. strategy in the war zone? We're digging deeper with political strategists James Carville and Bill Bennett on the left and the right.
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Program Note: Anderson is reporting live from Chicago tonight. More on what's being done to curb the violence. AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/CRIME/10/07/chicago.violence/art.arne.duncan.chicago.wgn.jpg caption="Education Secretary Arne Duncan speaks during a news conference in Chicago on Wednesday."]
I watch AC360° report on youth violence in Chicago, and it’s the most thought provoking national news for me since Hurricane Katrina. In fact, I see strong parallels between the two stories. And the question I’m always left with is: how can they be helped?
In late August 2005 when I heard a hurricane was threatening to hit hard in the gulf coast, I admit, I thought – it’s a hurricane – it happens, but it wasn’t going to affect me. I imagine many of us thought the same. But only days later, the whole country was wondering when the help would arrive to the people suffering from that devastating natural disaster.
Now it’s Chicago. It’s not natural, but it’s a disaster by most standards. So far this year, 57 kids aged 18 and under were victims of homicide in Chicago, according to the Chicago Police Department. Last year, 100 kids were killed.
Editor's Note: U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Eric Holder are in Chicago today, meeting with Chicago Mayor Richard Daley on school violence in the wake of the videotaped beating death of a 16-year-old high school student, which drew national attention to the violence in the city.
Check out this interactive map of crime reports, news and statistics in Chicago. You can view specific addresses and offenses by scrolling over the map.
Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear more on how to stop the violence in Chicago from Steve Perry, on AC360° at 10p.m. ET.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/LIVING/07/22/bia.education.success/art.steve.perry.cnn.jpg caption="CNN's Education Contributor Steve Perry grew up in a public housing project and he founded the school to serve kids from similar backgrounds."]
Yesterday before the program Steve Perry, CNN’s Education Contributor, texted me.
He said he was in make-up and wanted to come down and meet him if I had the time. Two hours earlier we had talked on the phone preparing his segment with Anderson about the violence in Chicago and the changes that need to take place in schools around the country in order to curb inner city crime.
I was happy to make time. I’d heard a lot about Steve. He’s the principal and founder of Capitol Preparatory Magnet School in Connecticut. Before that he managed a homeless shelter, campaigned as a candidate for state representative and published three books, including the best seller "Man Up! Nobody is coming to save us". As a graduate of Newark public schools in New Jersey, I’m always interested in educators who are really trying to improve schools in big cities. I know first hand the need that exists.
When I walked into the make-up room. He was already in an animated discussion about education and the economy with Ali Velshi. Ali left for his live hit so I asked Steve what he thought of Jesse Jackson’s op-ed in which he wrote “…in many cities of the country, children are sensibly scared as they go to school. They should have safe passage to school. In Little Rock, Ark., when we first desegregated students, the federal government sent in troops to guarantee safe passage to school…”
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/WORLD/asiapcf/10/06/afghanistan.rural.fighting/art.afghanlanding.jpg caption="CNN obtained this photo of a U.S. helicopter above Forward Operating Base Keating in the Nuristan province"]
Mountainous terrain and harsh weather in remote parts of Afghanistan have proven a deadly combination for the U.S. military in its push to reduce mounting violence in the country.
On Saturday, Taliban militants attacked American and Afghan troops in the Nuristan province in eastern Afghanistan. Eight American troops and two members of the Afghan national security forces were killed, according to the Pentagon.
It was the largest number of Americans killed by hostile action in a single day since July 13, 2008, when nine troops died, according to CNN records.
The fighting was so fierce that at one point U.S. forces "had to collapse in on themselves," a U.S. military official with knowledge of the latest intelligence reports on the incident told CNN. These revelations about the battle that engulfed Forward Operating Base Keating are a further indication of how pinned down and outmanned the troops were. Watch more on the attack in rural Afghanistan »
The base was scheduled to be closed in the next few days, CNN has learned. Gen. Stanley McChrystal, the top commander in Afghanistan, wanted to cede remote outposts and consolidate troops in more populated areas to better protect Afghan civilians.
Program Note: Tune in tonight to hear more from Peter Flaherty tonight on AC360° at 10 p.m. ET.
President, National Legal & Policy Center
With the spotlight this week on House Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY), we found this timeline of his current issues posted by the National Legal and Policy Center.
July 11, 2008- New York Times’ David Kocieniewski reports that Rangel occupies three rent-stabilized apartments in a luxury building, and uses a fourth as a campaign office.
July 14, 2008- NLPC files Complaint with the Federal Election commission alleging use of a rent-stabilized apartment for a campaign office comprises an illegal corporate contribution from the landlord. Rangel announces he will close the office.
July 15, 2008- Christopher Lee of the Washington Post reports that Rangel solicited donations on Congressional letterhead to the so-called Charles B. Rangel School of Public Service at City College of New York (CCNY), in violation of House rules.
Editor's Note: At least 608 people were killed in Indonesia following two devastating earthquakes last week. Hundreds are still missing and authorities fear the death toll will climb as more bodies are found in the rubble.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/10/07/art.indonesia.earthquake.rubble.jpg caption="Most of the homes in Singai Pingai were damaged or destroyed the the earthquake. Families now are bust salvaging what they can from the rubble."]
Program Manager, Save the Children in Indonesia
Blog entry, October 7, 2009, 1:40 am
This morning I led a five-person team of Save the Children staff and volunteers to assess an area near Lake Maninjau, in northern Pariaman district. At first, near the main road, the damage didn’t seem that serious. But once we started heading toward the interior, up into the hills, we were alarmed by what we saw: skeletons of houses, splits in the road and metal roofs lying flat on the ground, surrounded by bricks and rubble. Most of the homes that were still standing had suffered irreparable damage, with huge cracks crisscrossing the walls.
Still many were occupied. People seem to have salvaged what belongings they could and moved them to areas that still provided some shelter. We passed two men sitting at a table in what must have been the dining room – now that the exterior wall had collapsed, it looked more like a patio. A number of homes were propped up by wooden posts, providing some support to the weakened structure. If another earthquake occurs, I fear they will do little good.
During this morning’s journey, our car was passed by a funeral procession. Six men carried a draped body; they were followed by at least 100 people. The crowd was winding its way slowly up the road toward us, so we stopped the car and waited until they passed. As we watched the group walk by, I was struck by how immaculately dressed they all were. Some probably borrowed clothing from friends or relatives. But many must have unearthed theirs from the debris, then washed and (somehow) pressed them. I find that rather noble.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/10/07/obama.afghanistan/art.obamaflash.gi.jpg caption="Only forty-six percent of registered voters say they would vote for a Democrat for Congress tomorrow"]
CNN Senior Political Analyst
In my next life, I'd like to be an opposition party leader. What fun to go to work every day knowing you will always be right, largely because your ideas will remain untested.
So you propose theories to your heart's content, with vague plans and proposals guaranteed to make any voter smile. If we were in charge, you sing, the people would have tax cuts! More money in their pockets! And no deficits! But more jobs!
And, oh, what about the great pleasure of taking on the poor guy who won? On any particular day, the president is either a socialist (health care), a captive of environmental greenies (climate change) or a dithering commander in chief who disagrees with his generals and can't make up his mind (Afghanistan). Name-calling. Can't beat that for a job.
Ready for today's Beat 360°? Everyday we post a picture – and you provide the caption and our staff will join in too. Tune in tonight at 10pm to see if you are our favorite! Here is the 'Beat 360°' pic:
Michael Jordan jokes around with former President Bill Clinton during practice for The Presidents Cup at Harding Park Golf Club on October 6, 2009 in San Francisco, California.
Have fun with it. We're looking forward to your captions! Make sure to include your name, city, state (or country) so we can post your comment.
UPDATE BEAT 360º WINNERS
“Two great African-American celebrities, just horsing around…”
Lana, Toronto, ON
"Jordan grimaced as he realized he was hugging the wrong Clinton…"