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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Tornado 911 Calls Capture the Terror of Killer Tornado; Terror in Jordan: 67 killed, more than 100 wounded; Who is Al-Zarqawi?; Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Chalabi in Washington; Bush/Cheney Relationship Unraveling?; No Warning Signs From Alleged Tennessee High School Shooting Suspect; Do Grief Counselors Really Help Victims?
Aired November 9, 2005 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER (voice-over): Searchers still looking for victims after terrorists bomb U.S. hotels in Amman, Jordan. This hour, a minute-by- minute breakdown of how the terrorist attack unfolded.
Is al Qaeda to blame? The bombings just hours ago, and already a man, himself born in Jordan, is the prime suspect:. Abu Musab al Zarqawi, under suspicion.
Plus, moment by moment, the shooting in the high school. Today, everyone asking, what snapped in a 15-year old boy?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He's been like a normal kid.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANNOUNCER (voice-over): Tonight, the latest from the scene.
This is ANDERSON COOPER 360. Live from the CNN Studios in New York, here's Anderson Cooper.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Here's what's happening at this moment. In Amman, the capital of Jordan, at least 67 people were killed, more than 100 wounded, when apparent suicide attackers detonated three bombs. The targets: three American hotels. Many of the victims were celebrating a wedding.
Officials say they believe the man behind the attacks is Abu Musab al Zarqawi, a Jordanian operating out of Iraq. Jordan, of course, is a major American ally in the region.
In France, at least four cars were set on fire in the southwestern city of Toulouse. The widespread rioting, which had thrown the country to crisis, appears to be winding down. In the suburban region outside Paris, where the rioting began 14 days ago, police tonight said the situation was very quiet.
The highest court in Texas today upheld a lower court ruling, throwing out the murder convictions of Andrea Yates. She's the mother who was convicted of drowning three of her children in a bathtub four years ago. She had a history of post-partum depression, plead not guilty by reason of insanity. Today's ruling clears the way for a new trial or a plea bargain.
And Reporter Judith Miller is leaving the "New York Times." The paper announced her retirement today, effective immediately. Miller is a 28-year veteran of the "Times." She's known in part for writing stories about the existence of WMD in Iraq in the lead up to the war. The stories have, of course, proved to be wrong. More recently, she had been under attack for her role in the CIA leak case.
We're going to have more on the terror bombing shortly. But first, from America's heartland, and just in tonight, compelling 911 recordings that were released just a few hours ago. They capture the terror of what it was like last weekend when a killer tornado devastated an Indiana trailer park.
CNN's Ed Lavandera reports.
CALLER: There's been a tornado out here. There's people yelling help.
CALLER: Every trailer around me is gone.
ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Seconds after the tornado struck, the frantic calls for help began.
CALLER: Help! There's a tornado! My house just fell down! Please help! I'm at 3-6-3 (INAUDIBLE).
911 OPERATOR: Well you better quit screaming, I can't understand your address.
CALLER: Oh my God, ma'am, you don't understand, our houses are upside down.
911 OPERATOR: No, I do understand, ma'am. And we do have the fire department on the way. They should be arriving there shortly.
CALLER: Do I need to get out and look for survivors? These people had small children, ma'am!
LAVANDERA: It didn't take long for these mobile home park residents to realize they were dealing with a major disaster.
CALLER: We've got people trapped in these trailers out here...
911 OPERATOR: Sir, we've got everybody coming as quickly as they can.
CALLER: OK, I hear people screaming everywhere.
911 OPERATOR: Do you know where you're bleeding from? CALLER: My leg I think. All I know is everything coming through my bedroom window...
911 OPERATOR: Alright, sir, we've got everybody on the way.
LAVANDERA (on camera): In the first hour after the tornado struck, rescue crews say they pulled 40 people out of the rubble here alive. The twister cut a path right through these homes. And the survivors say they still can't explain why they were spared and 18 of their neighbors died.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We found a baseball card, we found (INAUDIBLE) here.
LAVANDERA (voice-over): Sifting through the pieces is now a desperate search for memories of loved ones. Densil Sprinkle came back to what was left of his home and found what he was looking for -- a picture of his 67-year old mother, killed by the tornado.
DENSIL SPRINKLE, TORNADO SURVIVOR: I'm happy. I've got my family back. I hope and pray that she just never knew anything had hit her.
LAVANDERA: Sue Day was so severely injured that her family looked for her at the morgue. She's in a hospital on a ventilator, fighting for her life.
BOB FULKERSON, TORNADO VICTIM'S RELATIVE: We're out here picking through the rubble, and you know, we don't even know if she might make it or not.
LAVANDERA: Day's family found this unfinished quilt she was making. They hope she'll pull through and put the final touches on it.
Ed Lavandera, CNN, Evansville, Indiana.
COOPER: Well, the big story tonight, of course, is what is happening in Amman, Jordan. A usually peaceful place in the Middle East, is the scene of carnage tonight. As we said, more than five dozen dead, some 150 wounded in Amman, Jordan, in blasts evidently set by suicide bombers at three downtown hotels. This is a map here showing the locations of those hotels. American names, of course, Grand Hyatt, Radisson and the Days Inn.
CNN's Guy Raz is standing by live, for the latest from the stricken city of Amman. Guy?
GUY RAZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, just about nine hours ago, the social landscape of this city, indeed of this country, was shaken to its core. Three separate bombs targeting three Western-owned hotels, all happening moments -- minutes within one another. Those bombs leaving at least 60 people dead, and as many and perhaps many more than 120 injured.
It's being described as the worst terror attack in Jordanian history. And Jordanian officials are already pointing the finger directly at al Qaeda-related groups, particularly the notorious Abu Musab al Zarqawi, the man widely believed to be the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq and himself, a Jordanian national.
Now those three hotels targeted -- the Radisson, the Days Inn, and the Grand Hyatt -- are all hotels popular with Western tourists, particularly those who use Amman as a transit point in and out of Iraq. But it appears as if the main victims of these bombings were in fact Jordanians. One of the worst incidents took place at the Radisson hotel. A wedding reception -- about 300 people inside a large wedding hall when, according to eye witnesses, a suicide bomber walked into that hall and detonated a vest, leaving scores injured and dead. The groom told CNN just a few hours after the attack that 10 members of his own family were killed.
Now, Anderson, as dawn breaks here in Amman and Jordanians and the residents of this city wake up, still reeling from those attacks, the full force of this tragedy will certainly become clear.
COOPER: What time in Amman is it right now?
RAZ: Right now, it's just about 6:00 in the morning. The city will start to wake up in the next few hours. It's a relatively bustling city. It's obviously the commercial heartland, the political capital of the country. And many people throughout the night were streaming by the hotel -- there are cordons around those three hotels -- but, were trying to catch a glimpse of what happened. We can expect to see many more people throughout the day going to those locations, perhaps placing flowers, putting up some kind of makeshift memorials.
COOPER: We'll try also to get an update on the casualty figure. It's remained the same. Information hasn't really been coming out of the last couple hours. Guy, thanks very much for that. We'll check in later with you.
9:00 isn't much past the dinner hour in Amman -- not late at all in the Middle East, where the cool of the evening is something that people like to make the most of. On this night, though, in Amman, the evening wasn't cool for very long.
COOPER (voice-over): It was just before 9:00 p.m., local time, when the first explosion rocked the Radisson, a luxury hotel frequented by both tourists and diplomats in Jordan's capital city. Witnesses said a suicide bomber walked into the hotel's ballroom, in the middle of a wedding celebration, and blew himself up, taking dozens of innocent lives along with his own.
Just minutes later, a second blast from a second suicide bomber. The target, the Grand Hyatt, a five-star hotel frequented by both tourists and diplomats visiting Amman. The bomber walked into the hotel's lobby and detonated a belt filled with explosives, reducing the hotel's stone entryway to rubble.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (voice-over): We saw three people in the street that were lying in the street -- they weren't dead. They were moving, at the time when we got there, because we were one of the first people there. And there was some body parts in the street. Obviously, it looked like the guy exploded, exploded by the three guys that were in the street. And there were two cars parked there.
COOPER: But the carnage would not end there. A third explosion at a third hotel came just moments later. This time the target was the Days Inn. The device -- a car, laden with explosives.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I saw guy standing with the bodies, carrying bodies. And I was walking down the stairs with them, you know. It was very traumatic.
COOPER: A steady stream of ambulances ferried victims to the hospital, police and soldiers secured the deadly scenes.
Within hours, Jordan's deputy prime minister said there was a prime suspect, Abu Musab al Zarqawi, a leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, who was born in Jordan.
Three nearly perfectly timed blasts at three American-owned hotels, dozens dead, dozens more injured, in the Middle East where they list the day, then the month when writing a date. It is their own bloody and tragic 9/11.
COOPER: Joining us now in Washington to talk, of course, about the event of the day in Jordan, but also more generally about terrorists and their tactics, our CNN national security adviser, former CIA Deputy Director John McLaughlin and CNN military analyst Brigadier General James "Spider" Marks. Gentlemen, I appreciate you joining us tonight. I'm sorry it's under these circumstances.
Brigadier General Marks, did this surprise you at all, the methods, the way it was done?
BRIG. GEN. JAMES "SPIDER" MARKS, CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Well, it really doesn't. You know that there's been great surveillance and reconnaissance on targets in Jordan and elsewhere within the Middle East and we could certainly expect to see acts like this occur again. So, I don't think we should be surprised by this. And I think we should be certainly concerned and checking ourselves to make sure that we are equally or more so prepared here in the United States.
COOPER: Mr. McLaughlin, do you think it's inevitable that it's going to happen here in America?
JOHN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: Well, sooner or later they're intending to do it here. And the fact that they haven't yet is a testament to some of the success we've had against them, but I'm convinced that this is still the brass ring for them. They want to do it here. COOPER: You know, I was amazed -- every time I go to Amman, the security in the hotels. I mean, it's really non-existent. You can just walk in. I mean, there are a couple of big guys in suits and maybe they have guns somewhere. But, do you think Jordan took this threat seriously enough? I mean, did they think -- not think it could happen there, Brigadier General?
MARKS: Well, I would tell you the Jordanian intelligence service is very aggressive and there is great sharing with the United States, certainly -- and John could speak to that. But I would tell you that there is a sense of freedom and movement that you see when you're in Amman and elsewhere in Jordan.
COOPER: And I guess, Mr. McLaughlin, that of course, is why it becomes a target. I mean, that freedom of movement, that freedom, that modernity is something which these guys want to stop.
MCLAUGHLIN: Well, that's what provides the opportunity, Anderson. But it's a target also for many other reasons. Al Qaeda wants to destabilize a major country in the Middle East, and Jordan is a good candidate for a whole series of reasons -- not the least of which is the closeness they've had to us. I mean, King Abdullah was the first Arab leader to visit to the White House after 9/11, for example. And so, it's seen as a very close U.S. ally. So there's that part of it, too.
COOPER: You know, you look at most of the victims being Jordanian -- I mean, yes, they were American hotels, perhaps, but, you know, the bloodshed is Jordanian blood. Does that help or hurt a person like Abu Musab al Zarqawi?
MCLAUGHLIN: Well, it hurts him in the sense that in fact Zawahiri, bin Laden's deputy, warned him about this, saying that you have to be careful. You're killing too many Muslims and it's not playing well among the brethren.
COOPER: Do you believe that letter is real? I mean, there are a lot of people who kind of question it. It just seems almost too perfect.
MCLAUGHLIN: No, it's real. I have ever reason to believe it's real.
COOPER: So, you think it hurts Zarqawi, or at least that Zawahiri thinks it hurts Zarqawi. Doesn't it -- I mean, isn't part of terrorism, isn't it the objective to kind of show that the government cannot control things, that no one is safe and thereby sort of sow dissension?
MCLAUGHLIN: Well, if Zarqawi has an objective here, it's probably to get Jordan to crack down more. It's probably also to scare foreigners from coming to Jordan because, as you know, Jordan's one of the few countries over there that has no oil to speak of -- has no oil, and its sources of income are very limited. And tourism's a very important part of it. So one thing Zarqawi is trying to do here is put a dent in that. But, at the same time, I'm pretty sure this is going to inspire the Jordanians to crack down harder on these guys. They're not going to weaken under this attack.
COOPER: Well, General Marks, is that part of -- I mean, Mr. McLaughlin referenced that -- is that part of what these guys want? I mean, from my reading of guerrilla warfare, it's always the guerrillas want an overreaction so that it will sow dissension, so the people will be unhappy at the overreaction.
MARKS: Frankly, I think they've got this one wrong. If anything, the monarchy will be strengthened and there will be great support for King Abdullah. And from my perspective, also, I think it's extremely important that we now take this and just suppose what occurred in Jordan to what's going on or what has happened or what has been affected in Iraq. Has this weakened the architecture or the enabling architecture that exists in Iraq for the insurgency? Does this mean that Zarqawi feels that he has in place in Iraq that which can sustain itself so he can divert his attention as efforts elsewhere?
I think it's important that we focus in on this and see what the next steps are going to be for our military presence certainly in Iraq as this affects that.
COOPER: General Marks, why do they call you "Spider?"
MARKS: I'll talk to you over a couple of beers on that.
COOPER: That's got to be a long story -- quite a good one, I'm sure. General James "Spider" Marks, I appreciate it. And John McLaughlin, thank you very much, gentlemen.
MARKS: Thanks, Anderson.
COOPER: Still to come tonight on 360, more on the man believed responsible for the carnage in Jordan, Abu Musab al Zarqawi, himself a Jordanian, now perhaps a killer of dozens of his own countrymen.
And are President Bush and his right-hand man, the most influential vice president in American history, on less good terms than they once were? Rumors of a rift in the quarters of power. We'll try to check them out.
Also tonight, a school shooting -- from the shooter's point of view. A remarkable talk with a man -- a kid -- well he was a kid at the time, Evan Ramsey. He was 16 when he shot a schoolmate to death, wounded two others in Alaska eight years ago; shot a principal as well. He is now in jail. I talked to him about why he pulled those triggers.
COOPER: We have Breaking News on the terror blast in Jordan. The Associated Press is reporting that the father of the groom and his father-in-law are among the dead. These are two people who were killed in the Radisson hotel, a wedding party -- a wedding celebration was taking place at the Radisson, one of the three hotels targeted -- the first hotel to be targeted. The first blast went off there. The others hit, of course, were the Grand Hyatt and the Days Inn, in that order. The AP also reports that three Chinese people were among those killed. The wedding celebration, again, taking part when that bomb went off. Someone went in there with explosives strapped on their chest, and according to reports, at this point -- and again these are early reports -- they detonated the bomb in the middle of that wedding reception.
No claim yet of responsibility for the bombings today. But one prime suspect, a butcher with a long record and a telling past, Abu Musab al Zarqawi.
Recently, CNN's Nic Robertson went in search of that past. Here's what he found out about the man and the terrorist.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice- over): Iraq, May 2004. American Nick Berg was about to be beheaded.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
NICK BERG, VICTIM: I have a brother and two sisters (INAUDIBLE).
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: American Nick Berg is about to be beheaded. His execution recorded and released on a website titled, "Abu Musab al Zarqawi Slaughters an American." Its barbarity rockets Zarqawi from relative obscurity to front-page familiarity. But already he is the deadliest insurgent in Iraq.
Born Ahmad Fadeel al-Nazal al-Khalayleh, he later took his nom- de-guerre, Zarqawi, from the name of his hometown, Zarqa. It looks pretty from a distance. But up close, it's different, crammed by successive waves of Palestinian refugees. One of the poorest towns in the country.
(on camera): With its densely packed housing and intense tribal loyalties, Zarqa's been compared to the Bronx. But others liken it to down at the heel working class neighborhoods to Detroit. To Zarqawi, though, it was a place of limited opportunity.
(voice-over): Outside the house where he was born in October 1966, neighbors say they remember the family well.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They were simple people. They lived a simple life. They barely made it.
ROBERTSON: His father fought against the Israelis in 1948 and was well respected before he died. In this picture at the time, the young Zarqawi looks unremarkable, but seems determined to earn respect like his father.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If someone would even harm his neighbors, Zarqawi would always come to defend the victim. He always did good deeds. Nothing wrong. ROBERTSON: His days were spent here in Zarqa's school. But, by all accounts, he didn't excel academically.
(on camera): Zarqawi left school before his final exams, disappointing his parents. He didn't seem to have a career in mind, and his father tried to fix him up with a job at the local municipality.
(voice-over): That was 1982. Zarqawi was about 16, developing a reputation as a tough guy who, against Muslim custom, drank and got a tattoo. Outside his old mosque, I tracked down his brother-in-law, hoping he could tell me more.
(on camera): Excuse me, sir. Can we talk to you about Abu Musab, your brother-in-law? Is that possible? You don't -- nothing? You don't want to say?
(voice-over) He's not unfriendly, just unwilling to talk.
In 1989, the U.S.-backed Mujahedeen were on the verge of driving the Soviet army out of Afghanistan. Thousands of Arabs, including Osama bin Laden, were in the fight. Zarqawi decided to join them.
In these rare pictures, taken soon after he arrived, Zarqawi is seen relaxing, mixing happily with other Mujahedeen or Muslim holy warriors. He'd arrived as the war (ph) was ending. Some reports say Zarqawi never fought the Soviets. Others, that he was very brave in battle. All accounts agree though, he befriended this man: Abu Mohammed Al Magdisi, a Kuwaiti-born cleric intent on the violent overthrow of secular Arab governments.
Zarqawi left Afghanistan in 1992. He came back to Jordan with new friends, ideas and an agenda.
Nic Roberson, CNN.
COOPER: Well, we may have seen a piece of that agenda play out in Amman today. We're going to have more on the bombings later on.
But first, a check of the headlines. For that, we go to Erica Hill in Atlanta. Erica?
ERICA HILL, CNNHN ANCHOR: Anderson, a major setback for the president's number one ally in the war on Terror. British Prime Minister Tony Blair watched as Parliament voted down a measure he championed, one that would extend the amount of time authorities can hold terror suspects without charging them. It was Blair's first major parliamentary defeat. It raises some questions, some say, about his political future.
In Washington in the meantime, Congress will not investigate the leak of classified information concerning secret CIA prisons. Today, Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Pat Roberts called off the probe because the Justice Department is doing an investigation of its own. The information appeared in a recent "Washington Post" article.
In Hollywood, they don't call it the boob tube for nothing. A new study by the Kaiser Family Foundation finds the amount of sex on TV has nearly doubled in the past seven years. The study says TV shows like "Desperate Housewives," popular with teenagers, have more sex than other programs.
And there won't be any premarital sex for these two giant pandas. They tied the knot in a zoo in Thailand. Thousands gather for the wedding party. The giant pandas -- the only two living in Thailand -- have begun mating. So zoo officials figured, hey, well, we might as well make it official. So there you go.
Anderson, I'll leave that with you.
COOPER: Yes, it sounds like pandering or panda-ing, whatever the case may be. Erica, thanks.
Still ahead on 360, is one of Washington's famous fast friendships slowing down a bit? Tension between President Bush and Vice President Cheney. We'll look into that.
And a hard look at a hard man to pin down, is Ahmad Chalabi an honest broker? Or just a (INAUDIBLE) in it? Well, he's in America, for one. We'll take a look.
Also tonight, who is the boy in the blood-splattered shirt? And will he be charged with murder, not as a boy, but as a man?
COOPER: Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Chalabi arrived in Washington today to talk about his country's reconstruction efforts. But as you probably know, it wasn't as simple as all that. Chalabi was once a favorite in Washington, but he has since fallen far from grace, to say the least.
CNN political correspondent Candy Crowley has more on a very interesting day for, well he's a very complicated man.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AHMAD CHALABI, DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER OF IRAQ: Well, I'm very pleased with the reception and the warmth and the welcome that I received from everyone.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CANDY CROWLEY, CNN POLITICAL CORRESONDENT (voice-over): A news quiz about the visiting deputy prime minister if Iraq. He is, A, a gifted politician, a coalition builder who may run for Iraqi prime minister; B, a former Iraqi exile, suspected by critics of supplying bad info to goad the U.S. into removing Saddam; C, a former Bush administration favorite (ph) flown triumphantly by U.S. forces, who less than a year later saw his Baghdad office raided because the Americans suspected he betrayed the U.S. by passing secrets to Iran. Yes, yes and yes. Ahmad Chalabi is all of the above.
SEN. RICHARD DURBIN (D-IL), MINORITY WHIP: Well, I don't know what the word for cat is in Iraq, but it may be Chalabi. This man has more lives. He comes back in so many different ways at us. And it appears that we don't learn from his previous lives. We just keep entertaining him as if he's a new person arriving on the scene.
DANIELLE PLETKA, AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTION: Chalabi is a smart and a capable politician. He's gone a variety of different ways. What we want is for him to be our ally and for him to do the right thing and for him to work with other Iraqis to do the right thing.
CROWLEY: Chalabi is in the United States now getting a nice welcome -- and not. The FBI is still investigating who might have given Chalabi the information he's suspected of giving to Iran, which he says didn't happen. And Democrats on Capitol Hill want him subpoenaed, to talk about his role in pre-war intelligence. That won't happen this trip, but for the record ...
CHALABI: As for the fact that I deliberately mislead the American government, this is an urban myth.
CROWLEY: Chalabi is quite a sticky wicket in Bushville, which can neither embrace nor dismiss the relationship.
J. ADAM ERELI, STATE DEPARTMENT SPOKESMAN: I would characterize it the way I did, which is he's a member of the government of Iraq.
CROWLEY: Probably the blandest thing ever said about one of the most controversial figures in this most controversial war. But love him or hate him, trust him or not...
CHALABI: It's always more important to look to the future than to the past.
CROWLEY: No debate. Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Chalabi is a survivor.
Candy Crowley, CNN, Washington.
COOPER: Chalabi's fall from grace in Washington may not seem all that unusual, especially after no weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq. What you may find shocking is that the problems in Iraq have reportedly put a strain on the relationship between President Bush and Vice President Cheney, though they'll never let it show.
COOPER (voice-over): In public, their relationship is a solid as it's ever been. Zero cracks in their resolve. In private, however, things may be different. THOMAS DEFRANK, "NEW YORK DAILY NEWS": The relationship between the president and the vice president has eroded somewhat, and actually it's not new. This has been going on for a couple of years. It really has its roots in the run-up to the Iraq war, but this "distance" -- is the word that -- the phrase that I keep hearing.
COOPER: If that's true. And nobody in official Washington is going anywhere this as of right now. Reporters are saying it is mainly because the vice president and that CIA leak investigation. The two- year probe centered around former Ambassador Joseph Wilson and his wife, a CIA officer whose identity was disclosed in a newspaper column.
RON BROWNSTEIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: It is not implausible at all that there is some frustration on the part or President Bush about the situation he's in over this leak -- not only from the vice president's actions and the actions of the vice president but also Karl Rove, his top political adviser.
COOPER: The resulting indictment of Mr. Cheney's top aide, Louis "Scooter" Libby, may have done little to strengthen the bond between the two. But even before that, according to some journalists, seeds of discord were being sown.
DEFRANK: Some of the political advice that the president got from the vice president about how Iraq would spin out has become troublesome and has created a bit of a wedge in the relationship. There are other issues as well. Some people think that maybe he should not have gone so hard on Social Security.
COOPER: Republicans say all this is wishful thinking in the extreme. Mr. Cheney, they argue, is a Washington insider who has survived dozens of inside the Beltway power struggles and has always come out on top.
BROWNSTEIN: There is not doubt that the president has relied enormously on Dick Cheney. Dick Cheney is an important bridge and an ambassador to the conservative wing of party. And even though there may be tension in this relationship, as some are reporting -- and I think there is enough reporting on it that there is probably some fire behind the smoke -- that doesn't mean that Dick Cheney is going to be isolated or exiled.
COOPER: Well, just ahead, answers emerging from the scene of the school shooting in Tennessee. We're going to take you step by step through the killing ground and try to piece together a portrait of the young suspect.
Also, what turns a kid into a killer? We're going to talk to a young man who pulled the trigger twice at another school, and is now paying the price. He killed a boy from the school and the school's principal. I spoke to him earlier tonight.
Also later, coping with the trauma. We'll hear from an expert who says professional help may actually hurting, not helping.
A break first. You are watching 360.
COOPER: It is just about 6:35 a.m. in Amman, Jordan. Some Breaking News. King Abdullah visiting the Radisson hotel. This happened just a few moments ago, we're not sure what the king's schedule is this morning -- if he's going to be visiting other sites. The Radisson, of course, is the first hotel that was struck in a wave of three hotels; three American owned hotels which were bombed at approximately a little bit past 9:00 p.m. in Amman, Jordan, Amman, Jordan time.
In the Radisson there was a wedding going on. A suicide bomber walked into the wedding reception and detonated the device.
There, you see the king's motorcade leaving to points unknown in Amman.
More on the terror attacks as we look at what's making headlines at this moment. Here's the latest. Sixty-seven people now known dead, more 150 wounded by the bombings Wednesday in Amman.
American hotel chains were targeted. We're talking about the Radisson, the Grand Hyatt and the Days Inn. Thought to be the work of suicide bombers, all of them. Officials do suspect the attacks were directed by Abu Musab al Zarqawi, from his base in Iraq. He, of course, is a Jordanian national.
The highest court in Texas today upheld the lower court ruling throwing out the murder convictions of Andrea Yates, the mother who was convicted of drowning her children in a bathtub four years ago. She had a history of post-partum depression, plead not guilty by reason of insanity. Today's ruling clears the way for a new trial, or a plea bargain.
In France, now for two nights running, diminished tensions. Only a handful of arson attacks. The rioting, which has shaken the country for the past two weeks appears to be under control at least, and at last.
And reporter Judith Miller is leaving the "New York Times". The paper announced her retirement today, effective immediately. Miller is a 28-year veteran of the "Times". She is known in part for writing stories about the existence of WMD in Iraq and the lead up to the war -- stories that, of course, proved to be wrong. More recently, she has been under attack for her role in the CIA leak case.
In Jacksboro, Tennessee, November 8, is the day everyone is going to remember. The day that terror struck there. The day one of the small town's teenagers allegedly opened fire inside his high school, an assistant principle -- critically wounding two other administrators -- the assistant principle was killed.
Today, the district attorney in the case said the boy would be charged with first degree murder and tried as an adult if he has his way. Tonight we have a much better picture of what unfolded yesterday inside the school.
Now, in a moment I'm going to talk to a school shooter -- a man who is now 25, but was 16 when he killed two people in his school. But first, Rick Sanchez investigates what happened in Jacksboro.
RICK SANCHEZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): These were the first chilling words.
911 OPERATOR: Central to all county units, need you to be en route to Campbell County High School, Campbell County High School. Got two principals down, shots have been fired.
SANCHEZ: It was shortly after 2:00 when a rural high school just outside Knoxville, Tennessee, was turned into a shooting gallery.
911 CALLER: We need an ambulance up here immediately.
911 OPERATOR: What's going on?
911 CALLER: We've got two principals down.
911 OPERATOR: Two principals?
911 CALLER: They've been shot.
911 OPERATOR: Oh, my god!
SANCHEZ: Using the 911 calls and a school floor plan obtained exclusively by CNN, we're now able to better piece together what happened at Campbell County Comprehensive High, in Jacksboro.
It began when Principal Gary Seale learned from students that a freshman was telling other students that he had gun. Police say the principal sent an unarmed school security guard to the boy's classroom to pull him from class and to get him away from other students.
The boy, escorted by the female officer walked calmly down a corridor. Then he was ushered into the schools administrative offices. After a short walk through another hallway, they made a right, into Principal Gary Seale's office. There, police say, the boy was met by the principal and two other assistant principals. The door was shut behind them.
Suddenly, shots ring out. A mom, who was signing her son out early, heard the noise.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I heard three gunshots right back to back, just boom, boom, boom, that quick. And I turned and got out to get away from it, because I didn't know where my kids were coming from or anything. I was scared to death, they're walking through the halls.
SANCHEZ: Police dispatch immediately began receiving calls from inside the school.
911 OPERATOR: Is he the only one?
911 CALLER: He's the only one, yes.
911 OPERATOR: OK, he is under control?
911 CALLER: He's in Mr. Pierce's office.
911 OPERATOR: Who is the kid?
911 CALLER: I don't have a clue.
SANCHEZ: The 15-year-old student was, according to police, armed with a .22 caliber pistol. Authorities plan to try him for murder as an adult because the first administrator he shot, Assistant Principal Ken Bruce, died of a wound to the chest.
Another student near the scene recounts the horror.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Shoots Mr. Pierce, like around here somewhere. And then after, it's like blood all down here -- it looked like he was dying.
SANCHEZ: But the shooting did not stop there.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Mr. Pierce and Mr. Seale tried to stop him and they both got shot as well.
SANCHEZ: Also shot, Assistant Principal Jim Pierce, who is now in critical condition with a gunshot wound to the abdomen. As for Principal Gary Seale, he's in serious condition. Shot in the groin.
Bleeding, Principal Seale managed to make his way to the school PA and place the school on lockdown. An order immediately put in place, as detailed in this 911 call.
911 CALLER: I'm locking the gates, there's nobody getting out.
SANCHEZ: As students gather outside the school, they cannot explain the actions of their classmate, the son of a convenience store shop owner. Other parents say the father is an avid hunter. But police say they don't know where his son got the weapon.
COOPER: Any idea when school is going to reopen?
SANCHEZ: It's been tough on these kids, Anderson, so they're giving a couple of days off. They're telling them to come back on Monday. In the meantime, they have grief counselors out here meeting with some of them at middle schools. They'll be here Monday as well, the grief counselors, that is.
Also, the school is being used by police still. There is still a crime scene in there. They have a mobile crime unit. They're going through some of the lockers. They're looking for other weapons -- if nothing else to alleviate some of the fears of some of the parents in this area, who now have second thoughts about sending their kids back.
Anderson, back over to you.
COOPER: It's such a horrible story. And we're seeing that video of that young man being brought out in that yellow shirt, with blood on the shirt, as he's being led away in handcuffs.
Rick, thanks for the story today.
SANCHEZ: Sure, Anderson.
COOPER: You know, in so many of these types of stories the shooters turn out to be troubled kids, loners, outsiders, kids who were picked on in one way or another, who draped themselves in black trench coats. We've heard that so many times and sent plenty of warnings that should have tipped off the adults in charge. A lot of times other kids, even in the school, knew about the shootings or knew that they were being planned.
Right now, tonight, based on what we know, this doesn't seem to be one of those cases. Not yet, anyway. Here's CNN David Mattingly.
DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice over): Because he is a minor, we will not show his face or tell you his name. But the identity of the 15-year-old Campbell County school shooting suspect is the worst kept secret of this tight-knit east Tennessee community.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: He did have friends. I mean, he talked to everyone. Like he wasn't like someone that sat and wrote in a notebook I'm gonna kill somebody. He was just -- he seemed like a normal kid.
MATTINGLY: His father owns a roadside store, a popular stop for gas and take out. A little over a mile away, there is his grandfather's house. The retired bread truck driver still lives there. They all share the same first name. They are generations of a family well liked, according to neighbors. Making their home in a place that holds small values in very high regard.
DEWAYNE KITTS, LAFOLLETTE RESIDENT: It's a real quiet area, you know? Kind of like a Mayberry type of town, you know? And everybody is just really shocked right now. And it's just hard to imagine something like that could happen here.
MATTINGLY: At the closed high school gates, among prayers and praise for a murdered vice principal, talk turns to a well-known 15 year old, described by many as a smiling face in the crowd.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He always seemed happy, like, he was the kind of person, every time I ever seen him inside the hallway or outside after school, he was -- he would run past me and he would laugh or he'd smile or something. SANCHEZ: But talk to enough people and the picture that emerges seems as unfocused as the one on your screen. A skateboarder who was outwardly happy, but frequently troubled, acquaintances say, when his parents divorced.
(on camera): Neither school officials nor county investigators will confirm or discuss any previous problems. In fact, the image of a dangerous teenagers seems unfamiliar to most classmates.
(voice over): Especially those who talked to him just hours before he allegedly killed.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We just basically said, hey, what's up? How've you been? And we were just catching up on stuff. And then after that, I went to class and he did that.
MATTINGLY: David Mattingly, CNN, Campbell County, Tennessee.
COOPER: Still ahead tonight on 360 an extraordinarily hard-to- get interview with a young killer, who took a shotgun to school, murdered in cold blood his principal, and another kid from the school. And he's serving a life sentence. Why did he do it? That's the question we're going to put to him.
Also, after Columbine and all the other school shootings, came the counseling, grief counselors intent on helping kids cope with the terror. But talking about trauma really help victims. Having it identified as trauma, does that help? Might it even hurt them? Provocative questions and some provocative answers, ahead on 360.
COOPER: You know, after all these school shootings we all ask ourselves the exact same question, what could possibly going through the mind of a young killer in the moments before he pulls the trigger? It is a question that has been on our mind, really, all day today and always in these types of incidences.
Eight years ago, when a kid named Evan Ramsey, he was 16, he walked into a high school in Bethel, Alaska, pulled out a 12-gauge shotgun and murdered two people, another student and the principal. He was convicted of both killings, sentenced to 200 years in prison. Two of his friends even knew about what he was planning to do in advance. They didn't tell anybody.
This kid is going to be eligible for parole when he is 75 years old. He's now 25. He's not even a kid anymore. This was not an easy interview to get. We persisted and the Florence Corrections Facility in Arizona agreed to let me talk to Evan Ramsey earlier today by phone.
COOPER: Evan you shot and killed your principal and a classmate in 1997. Why did you do it?
EVAN RAMSEY, CONVICTED SCHOOL MURDER: Because I was picked on.
COOPER: How were you picked on?
RAMSEY: I had been called names, had things thrown at me. I've spit on. I've been beat up.
COOPER: There are a lot of kids who get picked on who don't end up killing two people in their school, bringing a gun to school. What do you think made the difference in your case?
RAMSEY: Each person reacts differently to a situation. Bad judgment played a role in my decision.
COOPER: There have been some reports in the past, you said that you wanted to kill yourself. And after you shot these two people at your school, you did put the gun to your head, but you didn't pull the trigger. Do you think you really did want to kill yourself or was it more something against these particular people?
RAMSEY: I went into the high school with the intent on killing myself, and like all plans, it fell apart after the first few seconds.
COOPER: How do you see what you did, now?
RAMSEY: I say that it is unfortunate because during special holidays like Christmas and Thanksgiving and birthdays I can't help but think about my victims and their families and what I took from them. And that it is something that can't be replaced.
COOPER: There was more going on in your life than just you waking up one day and deciding to go to school because you were being picked on and shoot people. I know your father had been in prison for a shooting incident. You had been in foster care. I mean, do you feel like all of that built up? Do you think all of that played a role in what you did?
RAMSEY: I didn't feel that my family cared about me. I didn't feel as if there was anybody around me that cared about what happened to me and how I felt.
COOPER: You're not proud of what you did, clearly, and you said you have regrets for it. What do you wish you did differently? What do you wish you could have turned around and stopped or changed?
RAMSEY: I wish I would have realized early on that what other people think about me and about other people, that it doesn't matter. It doesn't matter what the next person thinks about me, as long as what I think about myself is acceptable. I think that might have made a really big difference.
COOPER: Evan, I can't imagine what your life is like now, and nor really what it was like back then. And I hope you have gotten counseling. I hope you have gotten the help that you need and -- you know, I wish you peace. Thanks for joining us. (END VIDEOTAPE)
COOPER: He's going to be in jail, probably for the rest of his life.
Even though nobody fully heals from the deeds, what the Evans Ramseys of the world, or what these people do, people do get through it. Intuition says it helps to talk about it, but does it really? At least, to talk to strangers about it, does that really help to counselors who come into schools? A strikingly different take on grief counseling when 360 returns.
COOPER: Well, they seem to show up after every disaster, whether it's a hurricane or a school shooting like the one in Jacksboro, Tennessee. We're talking about grief counselors. Now on its face, offering counseling to those who have been traumatized may sound like the right thing to do; seems to make sense. But does it? Is it actually helpful to talk about a trauma you've just experienced? To have it identified to you as a trauma? Might it even be harmful?
George Bonnano, assistant professor of psychology and education at Columbia University Teachers' College, has a surprising take on all of this. I talked to him earlier today.
COOPER: It's become conventional wisdom that you send in grief counselors after there's been a terrible incident like a school shooting. You say that is -- should not be the case?
GEORGE BONNANO, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY: Right.
BONNANO: There hasn't been -- well, the research is why. Here's a good example, it's a study done in Britain of people who were injured and hospitalized for injuries in a motor vehicle accident. And they were given a debriefing, which seemingly innocuous debriefing within 48 hours of hospitalization. And among the people that were most symptomatic initially, those what were randomly assigned to the briefing were worse off three years later. They were worse off psychologically. They were worse off health-wise. They had more pain. They were less likely to get back into a car.
COOPER: It's so fascinating. Because, I mean, it runs against what just the common perception is. At least, on television and news, you always hear counselors talking about, oh, we have grief crisis counselors set up.
COOPER: People should just not talk about it?
BONNANO: Well, there is a difference between what people do, and an intervention. And I think the key is that this is an intervention. What this is, debriefing and what you are calling grief counseling are professionals coming in and talking to people who have been through an event. That is very different from people talking among themselves. We do that on our own. We don't need anybody telling us to talk about things.
So when professionals come in, they are strangers usually, coming into an environment, saying what you are all experiencing is trauma. And that, for lack of a better word, freaks people out.
COOPER: So, you're not saying don't talk about it. That actually talking about it is good with friends, with relatives, with whomever you want to, a counselor. But it is just this sort of artificial, being forced to talk about it with strangers who have come in and are brought in just for that purpose?
BONNANO: Yes, the vast majority of people, usually between 90 and 95 percent, recovery just fine.
COOPER: We have a quote from Frank De Angelis, who is the principal of Columbine. He told us about the grief counselors who came to the school after the shooting. He said -- quote -- "They were very helpful. There's not doubt about it. We had to bring in people from Nova and other places that were trained. I am totally in favor of grief counselors. They really helped the grieving process."
What do you think a school principal should do, if there has been an incident at his or her school?
BONNANO: We don't know that much about what helps. I mean, people talk, people take care of each other, people keep going. And I think what I've been doing in my own research is looking at people who are resilient. In these studies we find 50 percent -- or usually around 50 percent or more, people exposed to really horrible things, do just fine. They cope remarkably well.
Those people seem to do a number of things. They distract themselves when they need to. They'd laugh when the need to. Laughter is very good. They get active. And they keep their lives as constant as possible. And the people who suffer the most, seem to then feel that their lives have been altered in some horrible way. So, to keep things as consistent as possible is probably a very good thing.
COOPER: It's fascinating. It's a fascinating way to look at it. Thanks very much.
BONNANO: Sure, my pleasure.
COOPER: Coming up next on the program, John McCain, Karl Rove, and frozen eggs? Whether they're in the spot, on the hot seat, or just plain chillin', they're all "On The Radar" tonight. We'll tell you why when 360 continues.
(COMMERCIAL BREAK) COOPER: A quick look at tomorrow's news "On The Radar" tonight.
Senator John McCain is going to speak out tomorrow on winning the war in Iraq. He's sponsoring a bill on limiting torture in wartime that puts him squarely in opposition to the president. And he's written a book about what makes a hero a hero. Any of which would be good reason to have him on the program. We'll talk about all that and more. Ask him who he considers a hero and what the president can do to regain his stature.
We'd like to have Karl Rove on the program, too. We're not holding our breath right now. He's making one of those black-tie dinner appearances tomorrow night, with as they say, controversy swirling around him. We'll be there if he makes any news.
By the way, do controversies swirl in the opposite direction south of the equator? That's where we find tomorrow's story. This is truly is a new technique, just perfected, allows a woman to put her eggs on ice and thaw them when she's ready to have children. That means even if you have a feminist (INAUDIBLE) or you are still climbing the corporate ladder you can put motherhood on hold, or on ice, for a few more years. Tomorrow we'll follow a woman through the procedure, what is "On the Radar" tonight.
That is it for us tonight. Thanks very much for watching this two-hour edition of 360. We'll have a lot more tomorrow. Join us then, 10:00 Eastern, 7:00 Pacific. Larry King is next.
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