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Uproar Over CIA Operative; Iraq Weapons Hunt: Congress to be Briefed

Aired October 1, 2003 - 19:00   ET


ANDERSON COOPER, HOST (voice-over): The D.C. Sniper suspects : what's behind their strange relationship?

Was Saddam bluffing? New details on weapons of mass destruction.

Main Street values while wiping out Main Street business? Is there a dark side to Wal-Mart?

"The Spying Game": tonight, catching secret agents.

And suicide on stage: raising awareness or hopes to sell tickets?


ANNOUNCER: Live from the CNN broadcast center in New York, this is ANDERSON COOPER 360.

COOPER: Hey there. Good evening. Thanks for joining us.

We begin with the uproar over the CIA operative whose cover was blown and the question of whether someone at the White House was behind it. Our favorite headline today came from the online journal "Slate": "Leaks and the Leaking Leakers Who Leak Them," it read.

Today, the White House was bending over backwards to show its cooperating in the hunt for the leakers, even suggesting that aides might take polygraphs. And Democrats continue to insist that only an outsider can do the probe right.

The latest now from White House correspondent, Dana Bash.


DANA BASH, CNN WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): President Bush did not respond to reporters' questions about the issue of the day. His spokesman did lots of them, and stuck to script.

SCOTT MCCLELLAN, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: The president has directed the White House to cooperate fully. That message was sent as soon as he learned of the investigation.

BASH: Early in the day, McClellan suggested full cooperation could mean taking a polygraph test, and later called that question and many others about the investigation hypothetical.

MCCLELLAN: The issue here is whether or not someone leaked classified information.

BASH: Deflecting questions like, "If the president is outraged about the leaks, why didn't he raise the issue when Robert Novak's column came out in July?" So far, officials say no one has come forward with any documents relating to former Ambassador Wilson or his wife. And no White House aide is believed to have contacted or been contacted by FBI investigators yet. Democrats, citing conflict of interest, continue to call for a special counsel.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Attorney General John Ashcroft, appointed by this president, investigating the president.

BASH: Senate Democratic leader, Tom Daschle, wrote the president, calling for an internal investigation, demanding, among other things, they compile a list of senior officials with access to classified information and insist senior aides sign a statement denying responsibility for the leaks. But Democrats are not in power and cannot enforce the request, and senior White House aides privately accuse them of politicizing the issue.


BASH: But, Anderson, tonight, those private accusations have become more public. White House spokesman Scott McClellan telling CNN that they believe Daschle is more interested in politics than getting the facts. But he also said they intend to forward the list of suggestions on how to conduct the probe to the Justice Department, because they say that is where this probe belongs -- Anderson.

COOPER: All right. Dana Bash, thanks very much.

Journalists like to generate buzz with everything they write. We suspect this is not the kind of buzz Robert Novak of CNN's "CROSSFIRE" was anticipating. He gave an explanation today for his role in the CIA story exclusively to CNN's Wolf Blitzer. Take a look:


ROBERT NOVAK, "CROSSFIRE": I'm not going to go into anymore description. But I did feel that the idea that this was some kind of a carefully arranged plot to destroy this woman and her husband is -- as far as I'm concerned, was nonsense. It didn't happen that way, and this kind of scandal that has perpetrated in Washington is Washington at its worst.


COOPER: Robert Novak.

On to another mystery, now, one with enormous significance for U.S. credibility around the world. Where are the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq? Why haven't any been found? The CIA official in charge of looking for WMD, well, he is about to testify on Capitol Hill, talking about what hasn't been found and why. We get that story tonight from national security correspondent, David Ensor.


DAVID ENSOR, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The testimony will be behind closed doors, but the stakes will be high for the man the CIA hired to find Saddam's weapons of mass destruction, whose team has yet to find any.

SEN. RICHARD DURBIN (D), INTELLIGENCE COMMITTEE: Here we are, five months after the fact, after thousands of our inspectors have combed all of those sites and others and have come up empty.

ENSOR: The question is why? Given evidence chemical weapons at a minimum were there after the 1991 war, are they still hidden or were they destroyed secretly by Saddam so as to keep the world guessing?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think to a certain extent he may have been bluffing.

ENSOR: But David Kay won't argue Saddam was bluffing, U.S officials say. He will report finding dual-use facilities that could be converted to weapons production on short notice and a massive program to conceal them from arms inspectors.

The U.S. military's heavy-handed approach to Iraqi scientists, like Mahdi Obeidi, may have made Kay's work harder, some experts argue. Obeidi was arrested by troops in front of his family, even after offering to tell the CIA what he knew.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Many of the potential people who could cooperate I think probably have been scared off.


COOPER: David Ensor joins us now. David, this is just an interim report. Kay is expected to go back to Iraq and continue on with his mission?

ENSOR: Absolutely right. There may even be more than one interim report before the final report. This is going to be a major task.

COOPER: It certainly seems to be. All right. We'll be watching tomorrow. David Ensor, thanks very much.

We go now to Iraq, which, on what promised to be an upbeat day, has seen more violence. A bomb exploded in Saddam Hussein's volatile hometown of Tikrit, targeting U.S. troops. A female American soldier is dead, three other soldiers wounded.

In Baghdad, a U.S. convoy came under attack by small arms fire, leaving one soldier killed, another wounded. This was also a bad day for Iraqi police. CNN's Harris Whitbeck has more from Baghdad.


HARRIS WHITBECK, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The day got off to a good start. Eager young students showing up for long-delayed first day of a new school year. Freshly painted classrooms, a lot of donated supplies from the United States. But even while school was in session, this confrontation outside a Baghdad police station.

Out of work, Iraqi soldiers and policemen showed up, apparently thinking they would get jobs. Instead, they say they were asked to pay bribes to get applications. Protesters threw stones and Iraqi police fired back.

Then, after school let out, right before afternoon prayers in this Baghdad mosque, a group of Shiites gathered to protest an incursion by U.S. forces the night before. The soldiers had been looking for illegal weapons. A U.S. military patrol drove by and stopped, protesters threw stones, the soldiers fired their weapons.

Enraged, the cleric and his followers took over another Iraqi police station nearby, raising their flag over the building. "We won't let anyone in," he says. "We won't let anyone take it back. It now belongs to us."

U.S. Apache attack helicopters were called in. They hovered over the mosque and the occupied police station.

(on camera): The sheik says this police station is now under his control. The police officers inside have fled. Many here wonder when stability will ever come to Iraq.

Harris Whitbeck, CNN, Baghdad.


COOPER: One sign of stability, kids going to school, as you saw in the beginning of that report. A news note now on education in Iraq. $140 million has been spent for the first day of school to happen. More than 1,000 schools have been repaired, and, since March, teachers' salaries have increased from $15 per month to $160 a month. That figure comes from the "Boston Globe."

Well, back here at home, it is hard to believe, but it was a year ago tomorrow that a bullet first pierced a window at a Maryland craft store. No one was hurt, but that luck was not to last. The hunt for the D.C. sniper was on.

Today, the suspects in that string of shootings, Lee Boyd Malvo, John Allen Muhammad, once said to be inseparable, were together for the first time in almost a year. More on a reunion, well, that was like no other. Here's CNN's Jeanne Meserve.


JEANNE MESERVE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It is the eve of an anniversary that will not be celebrated. One year since the first of the sniper murders. Wednesday, John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo, the two charged with those shootings, came face to face for the first time since being arrested. Malvo, his attorneys claim, was under Muhammad's spell at the time of the murders and was apprehensive about the encounter in a Virginia courtroom.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I think there was a degree of nervousness, a degree of concern, if not fear.

MESERVE: With heavy security around the court and courtroom, the two made eye contact. But there were no words exchanged, no gestures made.

DYLAN MOORE, POTOMAC NEWS PHOTOGRAPHER: I was expecting more emotion or some sort of reaction between the two of them, and there was nothing.

MESERVE: Malvo was in court so prosecutors could determine whether he would testify at Muhammad's trial, just two weeks away. Malvo willingly answered questions about his name, age, date, and place of birth. When queried about Muhammad, he evoked his right to avoid self-incrimination.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's appropriate for us to take every step that protects his right to have a fair trial in his courtroom.

MESERVE (on camera): Malvo and Muhammad are expected to meet again Tuesday, when the court will revisit the question of whether Malvo will testify against the man he once called dad.

Jeanne Meserve, CNN, Washington.


COOPER: All right. Let's check stories happening overseas in tonight's "Up Link."

Jerusalem: a controversial barrier. Despite international criticism, the Israeli cabinet OKs construction of a new phase of what it calls its security fence deep in the West Bank. Palestinians call it the new Berlin Wall.

Vatican City, Italy: the pope back at work. The frail Pope John Paul II holds a two-hour general audience after last week's bout with an intestinal bug. The 83-year-old pope says he'll even go to Pompeii next week, "god willing."

Beijing, China: national celebrations. Weeklong festivities get under way to celebrate the 54th anniversary of the people's republic. A laid off worker set himself on fire in Tiananmen Square. Reason unknown.

Seoul, South Korea: military show of force reflecting tensions between the two Koreas. A massive military parade got under way complete with numerous fly-overs by fighter jets and helicopters. The parade marks the 51st anniversary of the founding of the military. We go to Moscow, Russia now: reading mission. America's first lady, Laura Bush, attends a book festival today, telling Russian kids and adults it's not only a celebration of books, it's also about freedom and fun.

And in Paris, France: more gallant kisses from President Jacques Chirac. This time the recipient is Jordan's Queen Rania. By the way, her husband, Jordan's King Abdullah, was also there with her, but he apparently did not merit a kiss.

And that is tonight's "Up Link."

Rush Limbaugh on race, politics and football. Is he out of bounds or getting a bum wrap? The outrage on both sides in our "Midweek Crisis."

Also, "Playboy" magazine takes on Wal-Mart. This is a fight you'll want to see. We'll be back.


COOPER: All right. On to tonight's "Midweek Crisis." Talk about being careful about what you ask for. Conservative radio commentator Rush Limbaugh is under fire tonight for his comments about Philadelphia Eagles' quarterback, Donovan McNabb.

Michael Okwu is our reporter on the sidelines.


MICHAEL OKWU, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): If ESPN was looking for buzz in giving conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh a commentary job, they found it. Sunday, Limbaugh said Philadelphia Eagles' quarterback Donovan McNabb is overrated because he's black.

RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: The media has been very desirous that a back quarterback doing well. We're interested in black coaches and black quarterbacks doing well.

OKWU: Wednesday, McNabb said it's a sad step backwards.

DONOVAN MCNABB, PHILADELPHIA EAGLES QUARTERBACK: It's pretty heavy. You know, something that obviously I've been going through ever since I was young. You know, through high school, through college, and through the NFL, that, you know, you figure that it would have been over by now.

OKWU: Outrage and incredulity from McNabb's teammates. Despite the quarterback's shaky start this season, a three-time pro-bowler, McNabb has led the Eagles to two consecutive NFC conference title games.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I feel bad about the little 5-year-old kid with Donovan's or Michael Vick's jersey on that says, hey, is this what society thinks about my idol?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Does Rush care? Maybe not. That's what they paid him to come on the set to do.

OKWU: On Limbaugh's radio show, no signs of backing off.

LIMBAUGH: All this is really oriented around the fact that I was right. All this has become the tempest that it is, is because I must have been right about something.

OKWU: Now, even politicians and presidential candidates have weighed in, asking for ESPN to fire Limbaugh.

WESLEY CLARK (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think that ABC should fire Rush Limbaugh. That comment is outrageous. It has no place in modern America. We have heard enough. That's it.


OKWU: Just moments ago, we got a statement from ESPN, where they essentially said that they have relayed to Mr. Limbaugh that they believe that his comments were insensitive -- Anderson.

COOPER: All right. Michael Okwu, thanks very much.

And a fast fact on the story for you. Rush Limbaugh has brought controversy perhaps to ESPN, but he has also brought eyeballs as well. An ESPN spokesman told "USA Today" that Limbaugh has helped increase the ratings for "Sunday NFL Countdown," up 10 percent overall. Twenty-six percent among men 18 to 34. That's for Sunday's show, and that Sunday show drew its biggest audience in the regular season since 1996.

"Cross Country" now. And we stay on the gridiron. Washington, D.C., score one for the Redskins. A federal judge says Washington NFL team can keep its name, Redskins, finding there is insufficient evidence that the name is disparaging to Native Americans. But, in overturning a ruling that revoked the trademark, the judge said her ruling does not address whether the name actually is offensive to Native Americans.

Maryland: new medical marijuana law. The law going into effect today says people who can convince judges they were using marijuana for legitimate medical purposes may have their penalties reduced. The new maximum penalty is a $100 fine, down from penalties of up to $1,000 and up to a year in jail.

Suburban Chicago: trash talking. No deal means no garbage collection in the parts of the Windy City and its suburbs. About 3,300 garbage workers went on strike today. Their union called for the strike at midnight when the contract expired. The talks continued until the refuse company's bargaining agent called for a lockout. Talks resume tomorrow.

New Knoxville, Ohio: deadly silo explosion. Authorities say two firefighters were killed, at least fire other people were hurt after a concrete silo at a lumber company exploded. The silo blew up about two hours after the firefighters were called in. And Concord, New Hampshire: creating a free state. A group of Libertarians say New Hampshire is their choice for a free state. Five thousand members of the free state project have agreed to move there, to turn the state into a model for small government, few laws and individual liberty.

And that is "Cross Country" for tonight.

On to the recall race now. And the key question: Will California, in less than a week, be transformed into California? The latest "LA Times" poll shows a majority of voters favor the recall, and that Arnold Schwarzenegger leads the pack of possible replacements for Governor Gray Davis.

The governor said at the beginning of all of this that he would fight the recall like a "Bengal tiger." And today he brought out a big gun in the battle: a four-star general and newly minted presidential candidate.

Here's CNN's Kelly Wallace.


CLARK: I stand with Governor Gray Davis.

KELLY WALLACE, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): When you are in a fight for your political life, it's no surprise you turn to a former military commander who also happens to be the current darling of the Democratic Party.

CLARK: I'm here to support all of you who agree with me that you must vote "no" on this recall.

WALLACE: What Democrats must do, if Governor Davis is to pull off an upset, is vote in large numbers to defeat the recall. But the latest poll of likely voters shows some troubling signs for Davis with three key targets: women, moderate Democrats and union members. Their support of the recall going up, not down, in the latest "Los Angeles Times" poll. So Davis tries a new tactic.

GOV. GRAY DAVIS (D), CALIFORNIA: If we don't unite as voters, then we are looking at the real prospect of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, and...

WALLACE: The Davis team says its internal polling shows a tight race, with the embattled governor needing to pick up the support of an additional three percent of California voters to hold on to his job. But Schwarzenegger is looking the part of a confident frontrunner, focusing not on his rival, but on what he would do in his first 100 days as governor.

ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER (R), CALIFORNIA GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE: We are ready to return California to the people. Thank you very much, and god bless all of you. Thank you.

(END VIDEOTAPE) COOPER: And Kelly Wallace joins us now. Kelly, I know, as you said in your piece, the Davis camp has these internal polls, which I guess are a little more optimistic. But they have to be worried by some of these other polls out there.

WALLACE: Well, they are, Anderson. Privately, other Democrats talk about they are worried. They look at that "LA Times" poll. Nearly 30 percent of likely Democratic voters saying they would oust Gray Davis. One Democratic strategist says, look, we're still holding out hope, but we are starting to do a fair amount of praying. It will all come out to turnout.

But Davis will be on a plane this weekend, Schwarzenegger on a bus. Both trying to get more of their supporters to the polls -- Anderson.

COOPER: Praying for turnout. All right. Kelly Wallace, thanks very much.

Now to tonight's "Terror Watch." The White House protection from terrorists on American soil. President Bush signs the first ever spending bill for the new Homeland Security Department. The $30 billion measure includes money for border protection and first responder programs.

Washington, D.C. probably authentic. That is the assessment of CIA analysts, concluding that an audiotape attributed to al Qaeda's number two man, Ayman al-Zawahiri, which aired on Sunday, probably is him.

New York: 9/11 discrimination lawsuit. Ten Muslim men who worked at the upscale Plaza Hotel filed a lawsuit citing severe harassment in the wake of September 11. They say they were called names like "terrorist," "al Qaeda," and "dumb Muslim," and even alleged being called "Osama" in hotel paperwork.

The hotel says they didn't make their complaints known. The men say otherwise.

Those are the stories in tonight's "Terror Watch."

Kobe Bryant heads to training camp as his rape case heads to court. Is he getting the star treatment? Kimberly Guilfoyle-Newsom sounds off in "Justice Served."

Also tonight: a girl's softball coach on the run. He's disappeared with a 15-year-old player. Have you seen them? Was she kidnapped or did they run away together?

And a little bit later on -- how to catch a spy. The man who helped nab Robert Hanssen shares some of the tricks of the trade in part of our weeklong series, "The Spying Game."


COOPER. Well, tonight in "Justice Served," key decisions expected tomorrow in the Kobe Bryant sexual assault case. Will the young woman who accused Bryant of attacking her have to testify in next week's preliminary hearing, and will the hearing be open to the media and the public?

Meanwhile, the NBA star is expected in Hawaii this week to join his team, the L.A. Lakers, at training camp. It has just started.

Kimberly Guilfoyle-Newsom, our 360 legal analyst, joins us from San Francisco. Kimberly, good to see you. Who wants this young woman to testify at this preliminary hearing?

KIMBERLY GUILFOYLE-NEWSOM, 360 CONTRIBUTOR: The defense would absolutely love if she would take the stand in this case so that they would have the opportunity to go after her and cross-examine her vigorously. The idea is to collect inconsistent statements that can be used against her at the time of trial, because this comes down to a credibility call, he said-she said. At the end of the day, do you believe Kobe or do you believe his accuser?

COOPER: How extensively can they cross-examine her in just a preliminary hearing?

NEWSOM: Well, they would pretty much have wide latitude. The judge could shut it down at a certain point. But if she got up to take the stand, it's fair game.

That's why the prosecution doesn't want to put her on the stand and is offering, in lieu of live testimony, a videotaped statement. So the defense is going to say, hey, are we going to be able to get her to take the stand? Are we going to be able to have access to her medical records, and is this preliminary hearing going to be open to the public or not?

Three things that may determine whether or not they may want to wave the preliminary hearing.

COOPER: Has the defense and prosecution come out recently and said anything about whether or not they do want it, in fact, opened to the public? I know they had argued against it awhile back. Has anyone changed their minds?

NEWSOM: Well, interesting. The prosecution actually does want the preliminary hearing to be open to the public and, of course, so does the media. The defense is saying that this will affect his ability to have a fair trial and could taint the perspective jury pool.

But think about it. This comes to really bad PR, is what it amounts to, for Kobe Bryant. There is no way they want the media and the public to have access to this. And, believe me, there really isn't any good precedent whatsoever to shut the doors. We've only seen it in rare exceptions, like juvenile law cases.

COOPER: Is it -- it was just earlier this week that the defense did get access to those three 911 calls that are believed to have been made from this young woman's house. How significant a victory was that for the defense and how are they going to use that?

NEWSOM: It is I big victory for the defense. That's a good point. One of the calls is at the time of this offense that it occurred, that she made information. The other ones are preceding it.

So really, what is the relevance and probative value of getting information, 911 calls prior to it? Obviously, the defense has made some kind of showing that it suggests something about her mental state. And it has to go on to bear on the issue of whether or not she's a person that would be making this up, making false statements or accusations. Keep in mind, though, the judge has basically put a protective order so that the public and the media cannot have access to that information could it concern her mental state, which is privileged.

COOPER: All right. We'll be watching tomorrow. Kimberly Guilfoyle-Newsom, thanks very much.

NEWSOM: Thank you.

COOPER: More "Justice Served" now. Police in Baton Rouge, Louisiana are holding a man accused of sneaking into young women's apartments and -- get this -- snuggling with them while they slept. Snuggling?

Twenty-four-year-old Steve Danno (ph) surrendered yesterday. That's him right there. He allegedly entered 12 apartments in the Louisiana State University area in one morning last month. Police say, in addition to the clandestine cuddling, he watched some of the women sleep and folded some of their clothes.

A teenage girl in Oregon is missing and police believe she hit the road with her 38-year-old male softball coach. John Becker of affiliate KGW reports.


JOHN BECKER, KGW (voice-over): A 15-year-old high school student and her 38-year-old softball coach. Police suspect they've been on the run together at least four days.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There's been some suggestions from people that know both of them that there could be a relationship involved. However, that's something that we have to look at when we find them. A romantic relationship of some kind. I think that's what people are perceiving.

BECKER: Last week, Michelle Smith (ph) or Mimi (ph), slipped a note to a friend in school suggesting she was running away. At the same time, police say Andrew Garber (ph) skipped work, emptied several bank accounts, and leased a new car like this one.


BECKER: Rebecca Dawson has known Coach Garber (ph) for years, talks to him at least once a week, like she does more than 100 coaches she supervises.

DAWSON: There isn't a coach that I have that I would ever suspect would do anything like that. And him being one of them.

BECKER: She says his mandatory criminal background check turned up nothing.

(on camera): What are parents saying to you?

DAWSON: What happened? How could this have happened? Obviously, you know, the thing you say is, I don't know.

BECKER (voice-over): But a schoolmate of Mimi's (ph) and a former softball player says her family never felt comfortable with Coach Garber (ph).

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I didn't really want to have anything to do with him. My mom didn't like him and my dad didn't really care for him either.


COOPER: That was John Becker, KGW, reporting. Now, we've talked to Coach Garber's (ph) estranged wife, who tells us Mimi (ph) lived with her until about a month ago. She says Garber (ph) told friends he had posted missing person pictures around town and had heard from a man working at the bus station that Mimi (ph) was headed for Milwaukee.

But, she says, when friends tried to follow up on this information, they found none of it was true. The Beaverton Police Department confirms that Garber's (ph) claims were false.


COOPER (voice-over): Still ahead: suicide on stage. A band vows to do it live this weekend.

And the tricks of the trade for catching spies.

We'll be right back.



COOPER: Late-breaking story were getting from our senior U.N. correspondent, Richard Roth. He has a draft in hand of a U.N. resolution from the U.S. that would authorize an international force for Iraq.

He joins us now.

Richard, what do you have?

RICHARD ROTH, SENIOR UNITED NATIONS CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, the draft is in. This is what all the speeches and debates have been about. The U.S. has a revised resolution to present to the Security Council on Iraq. It doesn't give a time table for the removal of U.S. forces there. But it does say the occupation is of a temporary nature, that Iraqis should "progressively take over administration of their own affairs and that Iraqis are invited to start writing a constitution."

Will it be enough for France, Russia and China?

We'll see in the next couple of days.

Consultations will start tomorrow -- Anderson.

COOPER: All right. It's just a draft, just the beginning. Richard Roth, thanks very much.

Now, let's "Reset" today's other top stories.

From the White House, word that the Bush administration will fully cooperate with the investigation into the leak of a CIA operative's I.D. The president's spokesman seen there says employees have been told to preserve related paperwork and hinted aides could be expected to take polygraph tests if that's what the Justice Department wants.

The Pentagon, a team of military investigators is on their way to "Gutmo" (ph). They are going to look for any gaps in security at the navel base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. This, of course, in the wake of an arrest of a Muslim chaplain and two Arabic translators suspected of spying.

Sacramento, California, terminating the tax. Republican candidate Arnold Schwarzenegger says his first move as governor would be to repeal the state's car tax. The actor-politician is rolling out other specifics as the October 7 recall vote approaches. He laid out his plan for his first 100 days as governor including a spending freeze and an audit of state budget.

Interstate 90 west of Chicago -- take a look at this. At least seven people killed in a pile-up. 16 other people hurt in the crash. It involved a tour bus, several tractor trailers and a pickup truck. Police say several of those injured were in critical condition.

And on the phone, the first day of the do not call list. There are already complaints about telemarketers making calls consumers don't want and consumers are having some problems about knowing where to go about their complaints mostly because of the court battle to stop the registry. A confusion over which federal agency will over see the list.

That's the "Reset."

As far as we know, there are no telemarketers on the list of the 10 richest people in America. But you can find the names of the heirs of Sam Walden, the founder of Wal-Mart. The gun in a small Arkansas town 40-years-ago, Wal-Mart has grown into a business colossus and that's not over statement. Now that size has some people concerned.

Financial reporter Andy Serwer explains.



ANDY SERWER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: If you haven't been formally greeted yet, welcome to the United States of Wal-Mart. It is far and away the biggest company in America, let alone the world. But is it also the baddest? No company has meant more to the American economy since standard oil or U.S. Steel. According to industry trade groups, Wal-Mart sells or clothing, diapers, toothpaste, pain remedies, DVDs, toys, video games, socks and guns than any other company. And it isn't shy about flexing its muscles. You won't see violent video games, explicit CDs or racy men's magazines on its shelf. Same goes for Previn, a morning after birth control pill. It's America's biggest private employer with some 1.5 million workers. It's the biggest employer in 21 states and has more people in uniform than the U.S. Army. And about 18 million people walk through its stores daily.

But does Wal-Mart have too much clout?

Unlike a monopoly that uses its power to raise prices, Wal-Mart drives prices into the ground. But Wal-Mart's critics say cheap prices carrying a hefty price tag. Call it the great American trade- off. Giving up the local flavor and personality of mom and pop stores in exchange for low rock bottom prices and Wal-Marts presents everywhere.


COOPER: Being the biggest retailer doesn't make them the best in the eyes of some. "BusinessWeek" asked, is Wal-Mart too powerful in this week's issue. Saying the company's business model, and I quote "fraught with complications and perverse consequences." They look at the company's impact on American culture. "Playboy" is also taking a swing at the company. It calls retail's evil empire in an article called "God and Satan in Bentonville."

Now, Bentonville is the Arkansas town where the first Wal-Mart opened back in 1962. Dan Baum, contributing writer at "Playboy" joins us from Denver to tell us why some people at least are saying a lot of things about Wal-Mart.

Dan, thanks for being with us. It was an interesting article. One quote in particular from a gentlemen in Bentonville jumped out at me.

I want to read it, then let's talk about it. This is what someone told you in Bentonville, quote, "Wal-Mart started out as good, selling things cheap to people who didn't have a lot of money. But that's how Satan works. He starts out good, but it's a deception always."

Why the animosity in this town? DAN BAUM, "PLAYBOY" CONTRIBUTING WRITER: I think, there's a lot of animosity everywhere. Two things are going on, Wal-Mart is getting huge and the economy is going to hell, and people see a connection there. Wal-Mart loves this economy. People are out of work, Wal-Mart pays -- the average worker at Wal-Mart earns less than poverty wage in the United States for a family of four. Wal-Mart depends on this. They have the biggest payroll in the world. They depend on low income.

COOPER: You are basically saying that in your opinion, their success is based on paying their workers very little amount of money?

BAUM: Absolutely. Their success is based on paying workers little and on charging low prices. So this company likes hard times. This is a company that is feed on the carcass of this economy.

COOPER: Strong words. We put those to Wal-Mart today. This is what they said to us. We are going to put it on screen. Quote, "We couldn't run our business if we were not a desirable employer and competitive in every community we serve. Wal-Mart offers unlimited career advancement. Two-thirds of our store management associates started their careers in hourly positions."

And Dan, the employee who you start your article talking about says good things about the company.

BAUM: That's an amazing thing about Wal-Mart. I used to be a "Wall Street Journal" reporter, and I've never seen a company that markets itself to its employees with the vigor that Wal-Mart does. They are so dependent on paying low wages that they market this image of themselves, this kind of a big mom and pop store to their workers. And you got to remember. In the places where Wal-Mart operates, Wal- Mart doesn't operate in big cities. They operate mostly in rural areas and small towns. There's not a lot of choice. So it's Wal-Mart or nothing. As people kept saying to me in Arkansas, it's this or the chicken plant for employees.

COOPER: But you do point out in the article, even top executives have the image of rolling up their sleeves. They're not leaving high off on the hog in New York eating in fancy restaurants.

BAUM: They're living high on the hog in Bentonville. The shareholders of Wal-Mart have done well, but the employee's don't.

COOPER: Clearly a lot of Americans like this company and shop there. If you look at their sales figures, according to "BusinessWeek" at least, Wal-Mart saved U.S. customers $20 billion this is last year alone. And at least 82 percent of American households made at least one purchase at Wal-Mart. It seems popular these days to bash this company, but a lot of people like shopping there.

BAUM: That's the deal, isn't it? I mean, that's the deal that American corporate capitalism has made working people for the last 20 years. You know, we're going to send your manufacturing jobs to Mexico. We're going to lower your wages and we are going to freeze your wages, make both parents work in the household. We're going to take away your health insurance. But we're going to let you buy Bangladeshi running shoes for 20 bucks. That's the trade-off we've got. And people say -- people make the choice to shop at Wal-Mart. In a lot of small towns there isn't a choice. I was in...

COOPER: You are saying they are running...

BAUM: There is no choice. You shop at Wal-Mart or you don't shop.

COOPER: Running a lot of mom and pop business out off main stream.

Dan Baum, it's an interesting article in "Playboy." Up coming issues, appreciate you joining us, Dan. Thanks very much.

BAUM: Thank you.

COOPER: Want to go to a story that takes shock -- shock rock I should say to a whole new level. Shock value for that matter as well. It involves a rock band called "Hell on Earth." Don't worry if you never heard about them, nobody has. Probably won't much more than a day or two now. Which says it plans on holding an assisted suicide on stage at a show this weekend in Florida. The band said the concert will happen at a secret place with an unnamed person. The band's lead singer insists it's not a hoax. He spoke to CNN affiliate Bay News 9 in Tampa. This is what he said.


BILLY TOURTELOT, HELL ON EARTH: This person is going to self- deliver themselves and it's going to be a situation where it's going to be done very humane. A couple of different techniques were discussed, like the plastic bag technique. And I can't reveal it because I don't know it myself exactly what that person has chosen.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So we're not talking about an illusion?



COOPER: That was the lead singer.

Hoax or not, advocates for the terminally ill say this is the last way to raise awareness about assisted suicide.

Scott Swenson is with the group Dying With Dignity. He joins us from Washington.

Scott, hoax or not, does this do damage to your cause?

SCOTT SWENSON, EXEC. DIR., DEATH WITH DIGNITY: Well, it's certainly not helpful. If it is a hoax, it is the cruelest form of hoax, playing on a very vulnerable population, the terminally ill. If it's not a hoax, then I would like to say to the who has person considered doing this, that I certainly understand the desperation of terminally ill people who don't live in Oregon and don't have a legal option to hasten their death. But this is not the way to go about. You could do more harm to yourself than you might think.

COOPER: What makes you think -- I mean, you know, when I first heard about this, I think it sounded to me like a hoax. I am still not convinced it's not. I mean, does this -- anything this group has said lend it any credibility? I mean, they said that they contacted various euthanasia organizations. Have you heard of any of these groups?

SWENSON: Absolutely not. There is no evidence that this group, that the band, has a shred of credibility. They're claiming connection with a group called the Euthanasia Society. There is no such organization to our knowledge. I work very closely with two other organizations on the national level who are promoting death with dignity, and our organizations have absolutely no contact with anybody in Florida that's connected with this at all.

We do think that it may be a hoax still. It certainly smells that way. This band is not reputable. And, you know, anybody who would prey on terminally ill people for publicity, regardless of whether or not there's a person involved here, I think is suspect.

COOPER: Yes. And should point out, CNN has not been able to confirm, you know, really much of the facts about this thing, which is one of those frustrating things about it.

In -- in Oregon, where there is -- it's really the only state in the union where there is legally assisted suicide -- I mean, something like this wouldn't even be allowed because the rules are so stringent.

SWENSON: Absolutely.

It's important for people to know we're talking about -- in Oregon we talk about assisted dying. It's terminally ill people within six months of dying who have two doctors that have certified they're within six months, they have mental capacity. They talk with their family, their friends and they work with their physician to make a choice that they have had enough suffering. So they are bringing an end to their suffering.

This is not the situation for this person. We understand the desperation of terminally ill people who live outside of Oregon and we are working very hard to pass laws in other states. But this is not the way to go about helping this cause.

COOPER: Yes, certainly. Scott Swenson, appreciate you joining us tonight. Thanks very much.

SWENSON: Thank you.

COOPER: Want to give you a fast fact about assisted suicide. Some critics thought that thousands would flock to Oregon to end their lives after the state passed the Death With Dignity Act back in the 90's. That has not happened. Take a look at the numbers. Since 1998, 129 patients have used the Death With Dignity Act. In that same period, roughly 150,000 people have died in Oregon.

Well, our series on "The Spying Games" continues as we talk to one of the feds who helped nail Robert Hanssen.

Also tonight, he wanted to go to the Yankees game. Was it worth losing his job to do it? We'll ask the guy who did.

And a little bit later on, does a group of college students need a spanking or is that exactly what they're hoping for?

Stick with us for "The Current."


COOPER: Well, with three Guantanamo Bay prisoner -- prison workers under arrest, U.S. military investigators are urgently trying to find out whether espionage may have set back the war on terror. Between that and the CIA leak investigation, spying is much in the news these days.

Our weeklong series, "The Spying Game," continues tonight with a look at how spies are caught.

Before spy Robert Hanssen was nabbed in 2001, the FBI focused on the wrong guy, an undercover CIA official, Brian Kelly, when, in fact, the spy turned out to be one of their own, Robert Hanssen. That was Brian Kelly, the man incorrectly who was fingered as the spy early on. Robert Hanssen, who was one of his superiors, was the real spy.

We're joined now by Eric O'Neill. He was the young FBI specialist who helped catch Robert Hanssen in his own game, among others.

Eric, good to be with you. Thanks for joining us.

It's just a fascinating case. You were 27 years old. Really didn't have much experience going into this. You joined up on this team with your colleagues to catch Robert Hanssen. What was the thing that surprised you most about trying to catch a spy?

ERIC O'NEILL, FMR. FBI SURVEILLANCE SPECIALIST: Well, it was a complicated case. We really went in there not knowing whether he was a spy in the first place. We had some information that said he was, and I was sent in to find out, Well, is he a spy and then secondly, if he is, what's he going to do and how can we catch him?

COOPER: I got to as you, what was it like -- I mean, the first couple of days when you're with him -- you're -- you know, you're in the office with him. You're watching him. You know he's a suspect. In a sense, you are kind of living a dual life. You're almost like a spy yourself.

O'NEILL: Well, part of being undercover, especially in an office and thinking about being undercover in FBI headquarters, which is complicated in and of itself, is that you have to maintain kind of two lives. One, you're doing your job, your undercover job. The other side of it is that you have to do your real job and you have to make it look like you're doing your real job to the person that you're watching.

COOPER: And I've read...

O'NEILL: So Hanssen...

COOPER: Sorry. Go ahead.

O'NEILL: I'm sorry. Hanssen had to see me as -- as his aide, which was my cover job, and at the same time I was reporting to my superiors in the FBI and following their direction.

COOPER: And there's one moment I heard you describe -- it sounds very dramatic -- where basically you wanted to get information that was on his Palm Pilot. He never left the Palm Pilot. He always took it with him. Then a rouse was developed to get him away from his Palm Pilot. But it didn't really work out that way. Tell us about it.

O'NEILL: Well what happened was, we -- we had to get him away from the Palm Pilot. Part of my task was to find out where he might be storing information that could help our investigation. And one of the places that I thought he probably had some stuff was his Palm Pilot. And it turned out that that was the case.

So we concocted a scheme to get him out of his office and away from his Palm Pilot and we had him go down to the shooting range with two of his superiors. And I thought that if he was going down there with his gun belt and other equipment, he might leave his other things behind.

COOPER: But apparently he got nervous and decided to just come back early and you got a page saying he's on his way back.

O'NEILL: That's entirely correct. And at the time I got the page, we were still trying to download the information. I ran back up with the Palm Pilot and made it and got it back into the bag seconds before he came in the door. I literally heard him coming in the door as I was deciding which pocket to put the Palm Pilot back into.

COOPER: I can't imagine how much you must have been sweating right there, or at least I would have been.

What are the characteristics of a spy catcher? What do you need? What kind of person makes a good spy catcher?

O'NEILL: Well, first of all, you have to be patient. You have to be able to watch and be careful and look for nonverbal and verbal cues that might lead you to decide that this person is holding something back or this person has said something that they shouldn't know.

A lot of it is a waiting game. You wait for the spy to trip up and do something wrong. Then you have them. Or you find the information on something like the Palm Pilot. But part of that is talking to them and getting them to trip up and finding out that information.

COOPER: And it was a long investigation, I know, and Robert Hanssen ultimately paid off. Eric O'Neill, thanks for joining us. Fascinating details.

O'NEILL: Thanks for having me here.

COOPER: All right.

Well, coming up, we're going to have more on our spy series tomorrow night.

Would you give up your job just to go to a Yankees game? What do you think? We'll talk to a guy who did just that.

Plus, Rosie O'Donnell is going to court. It has to do with a bitter break-up and we'll tell you about it in "The Current."

Stay with us.


COOPER: All right. Is it possible to love the Yankees too much? Consider this, if you had to make the choice, what would you do, continue to have a job or go to the Yankee game? Yankee game, or maintain the life sustaining gainful employment. Well, for Joey Greenstein, it was no contest. He says, his boss at the Brooklyn Pizza Place made it clear, go to the game, you can kiss your job good- bye. No contest, he went to the game and his beloved Yankees didn't even win. Beaten yesterday by the Minnesota Twins, 3-1. Joey Greenstein, Yankee superfan and newly unemployed, joins us now. Joey, thanks for being with us.


COOPER: Was it worth it?

GREENSTEIN: Yes, it definitely was. How many chances do you get a chance to have Yankee playoff tickets. It wasn't too easy to get, so when I finally got them, we wanted to go to the game.

COOPER: And you basically said to your boss, I got these tickets. I got to go to the game.

GREENSTEIN: I told him a day in advance, listen, I go the tickets. It's a day game. You got to let me go. And he said, listen, I need you in the store, we're short on crew. And I said, listen, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity. I could work in any other pizza shop. There's pizza shops all over New York. He said, you go, then you're going to walk and get another job. I said, all right no problem. And I went to the game.

COOPER: And you called him up today, what did he say? GREENSTEIN: I called him today actually. He saw the article in "The Post." I told him about what happened. I said, listen, I might be on tonight. I said I might be on CNN tonight.

He said, I'll believe it when I see it. He said if I get on TV that maybe I'd be able to get my job back. We'll see what happens. I doubt that, but we'll see if he sees the video.

COOPER: What does your wife think about it? Does she think you are crazy?

GREENSTEIN: She thinks I'm crazy. If I don't get a job in a week, I think I'm out.

COOPER: We have your boss on the line, you boss, Richard Koto (ph), he's on the telephone now. Richard, apparently you told Joey, earlier, that if he got on CNN he'd get his job back. How about it?

RICHARD KOTO, PIZZA PARLOR OWNER: I guess, you know what, I got to be a man of my word. I don't know how you did it Joe, but somebody must be watching you up there.

COOPER: So are you going to give him his job back?

GREENSTEIN: So I get my job back?

KOTO: If you worked a little harder. I know how mad you get when I play on the tennis court.

GREENSTEIN: That's the truth. He likes to play on the tennis courts while I watch his store.

COOPER: But the bottom line is, he gets his job back right?

KOTO: He's got it.

GREENSTEIN: I got to come in after 10:00.

COOPER: Your already negotiating for...

KOTO: Joey, you have any pull with these guys? Maybe you can get us tickets for tomorrow night.

COOPER: I don't think so. Richard Koto, thanks for joining us. Thanks for giving him his job back. Joey, good luck to you.

GREENSTIEN: Maybe my wife won't kill me after all.

COOPER: We want to put this story in perspective for you, for justa moment. It's not just Brooklyn Pizzeria where this cruel, cruel dilema has played out. It happened right here as well. Just this Monday, listen to this.

One of our producers, Eric, a rabid Chicago Cubs fan asked for the day off to go to yesterdays game, which was in atlanta -- look he's so sad. But another producer had already asked for the day off. We're a small staff here. So Eric's boss, who shall remain nameless, Kathleen, denied the request. Eric, was sad. I mean, when was the last time the Cubs did this well. But worth quitting for? No. He watched the game on TV and was rewarded with a Cubs victory over the Braves. Eric, thank you for being with us. We appreciate it.

Time to check tonight's current. The Motion Picture Association of America is no longer letting studios send free copies of their movies to potential Oscar voters. The move is intended to stop piracy. If it also happens to stop small artsy films from beating big studio epics at the Oscars, well, hey, that's a price the studios are willing to pay.

A judge has set a trial date of October 28 for Rosie O'Donnell and her former publisher. Rosie magazine folder last year and the publisher claimed she acted unprofessionally. O'Donnell accused Gruner and Jahr of denying her editorial control and repeated failure to be a cutie patutie (ph). He didn't really claim that.

A student club focusing on bondage and sado masochism is applying for funding at Iowa State University, this story got Joey's attention. An Iowa Christian group's leader told the "Des Moines Register" the students need a good lesson in morality. It's not clear whether he offered to spank them himself, but the message was clear that bondage and paddling should go back to where they belong, in the basements of campus fraternity houses.

And this late development. Sad news for one couple and heartening news for at least 2 million men, or 2 billion men. "Entertainment Tonight" is reporting -- I've never said that before -- that Halle Berry is break up with her musician husband Eric Benet. In a statement to "ET", Berry says, "Eric and I have had marital problems for some time now and have tried to work things out together. However, at this point, I feel we need time apart."

All right. When we come back, a different promotional announcement. This one has a surprise ending.

And tomorrow: exclusive, the last interview with the Guantanamo Army Chaplain before he was taken into custody. Does what he said before his arrest hurt his case or help it? See for yourself tomorrow on 360. Be right back.


COOPER: Tonight's self-promotion taken to the Nth degree. CNN today announced that they will co-sponsor a Democratic Presidential forum next month. The other co-sponsor is "Rock the Vote," the nonprofit organization dedicated to engaging younger viewers in the national political process. The 90 minute forum will be held November 4, exactly one year to the day before the general election. And it will be in Boston, the site of next year's Democratic convention.

It will be a town hall format with questions from audience members as well as viewers. The forum will air on CNN and CNN radio from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Eastern time. Now in a statement today, the forum's moderator, CNN anchor Anderson Cooper said he is quote, "excited by this opportunity to engage America's young people in a process that will affect the course of their lives." What a wise anchor that Anderson Cooper is.

Thanks very much for watching 360 tonight. Our week long series "The Spying Game" continues tomorrow night. You're not going to want to miss is. Coming up next "PAULA ZAHN NOW." We'll be right back.


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