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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Latest Details on ABC News Anchor Bob Woodruff and His Cameraman, Doug Vogt; A Bold New Tape From Al Qaeda's Number Two Man
Aired January 30, 2006 - 23:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: Also, tonight, the latest details on ABC News Anchor Bob Woodruff and his cameraman Doug Vogt, critically injured in that roadside blast and ambush in Iraq.
And a bold new tape from al Qaeda's number two man, Ayman al- Zawahiri. The CIA tried to take him out with that Pakistan missile attack. With his angry new threats today, proof the CIA missed. On the eve of the president's state of the union address, what this means for the war on terror.
This is a special edition of ANDERSON COOPER 360. Live from the Mexican border, here's Anderson Cooper.
ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: And good evening. We'll have a tale from the underworld, literally. The underworld of drug smugglers in a moment.
First, though, a report on condition of a couple of men who began the day yesterday as celebrated evening news anchor and his Emmy award-winning cameraman. Bob Woodruff and Doug Vogt ended the day otherwise. However, the way so many others have before them, aboard a medevac flight out of Iraq, in search of life-saving care.
Bombs do not distinguish between soldiers and journalists. CNN's Randi Kaye updates their condition.
RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is how Bob Woodruff's trip to Iraq began.
BOB WOODRUFF, ABC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: There was no way to make it over the land because the bridge over to Jordan opened up too late. We wouldn't have made our flight, so we had to charter this one.
KAYE: And now no one can predict how it will end. A roadside bomb and an ambush. The ABC anchor and his Cameraman Doug Vogt, in desperate need of medical attention.
DAVID WOODRUFF, BOB'S BROTHER: He's going to, you know, recover eventually. It's going to be a long road, but I think he's -- he's a strong guy and he's going to make it. He's going to do well.
KAYE: ABC News Correspondent David Muir calls Woodruff the universal favorite at the network, a natural leader. The two covered Hurricane Katrina together. DAVID MUIR, ABC NEWS CORRESPONDENT: We were all rattled awake by this explosion and before I could even open my eyes and try to figure out what had happened, Bob was already on his way to the story. He's always the first one out the door and he seems to be running a little faster than everyone else.
KAYE: Woodruff graduated Colgate University, where he met his wife. He attended law school, landed a job as a corporate lawyer. But after a stint as a translator for CBS News during the 1989 uprising in Tiananmen Square, Woodruff speaks fluent Mandarin. He got the bug for broadcasting.
STEVE SHERMAN, SHEARMAN AND STERLING: I just think the whole culture of journalism and what that contributed to our society is what really turned him on.
KAYE: Steve Sherman practiced law with Woodruff. While watching CNN, he learned his friend had been wounded.
SHERMAN: And I've seen him on TV over the years, in some fairly dangerous situations, but I didn't connect the dots that way and realized the extent of the danger or risks that he may be incurring.
KAYE: Woodruff and Vogt were embedded with the Fourth Infantry. Both in helmets and body armor. They were riding in the lead vehicle of the convoy, standing in the open back hatch while filming. That's when the vehicle tripped a roadside bomb.
MUIR: Both of them saw incredible value in telling the story that needed to be told.
KAYE: Vogt and Woodruff struggled to find a balance between their passion for this story and their families. Vogt has a wife and three children. Woodruff has four children. Lee Woodruff watches from home as her husband hop-scotches the globe. This hello is from Banda Aceh after the Tsunami.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Hi.
LEE WOODRUFF, BOB'S WIFE: Come home soon.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Come home soon.
BOB WOODRUFF: Dora and Claire, sweeties, you're breaking my heart now.
KAYE: Lee Woodruff wrote this article for Colgate's Alumni magazine about life with her husband on the front lines.
"Foreign correspondent's wives must do what they have always done: shoulder the burden of being both mother and father and blot out the very real chance their husbands might not return."
But Woodruff's passion to report on the world firsthand keeps him on the road. No regrets, as he wrote in his high school yearbook. He quotes Henry David Thoreau, "I wish to live deliberately and not when I came to die discover that I had not lived."
Randi Kaye, CNN, New York.
COOPER: Well, tonight, ABC is reporting both that both Bob Woodruff and Doug Vogt will return to the U.S. as early as tomorrow for treatment at Bethesda Naval Hospital near Washington.
As you just heard, both men sustained head injuries. And though the signs are promising, with ABC reporting Bob Woodruff has been responding to stimuli and Doug Vogt has been able to speak, head injuries are complex to say the least.
Earlier I talked with CNN's Senior Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
COOPER: Sanjay, the fact that Woodruff is responding to stimuli to his hands and feet, as a neurosurgeon yourself, what does that tell you?
DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, these types of things -- and it seems as though we've been talking a lot about head injuries lately, but you know, when you have certain stimuli response to hands and feet, opening the eyes, that could be some reflex maneuvers. I don't know if that was some sort of painful stimuli or what was actually being given to make him move or if he was actually doing it to command, you know, saying, Bob, could you move your hand, could you move your feet. That makes a big difference. A little bit hard to say. I do know, I have been hearing that he's been sedated out pretty heavily, which is not uncommon after a head injury, not uncommon after a head operation as well. So, you know, it's a little bit hard to say exactly what these responses mean right now -- Anderson.
COOPER: Well, when we hear the ABC team -- both of them suffered injuries from an IED, what do doctors worry about most? I mean, what is the most critical at this point in the treatment?
GUPTA: Yes, you know, you talk about these explosive devices; and of course, two things really matter up front. One is how powerful the device was, and two was, how close they were to the device. But a couple of things. One is that there is a primary wave of blasts, sort of, from the shrapnel and any debris that may have been thrown.
(voice-over): The second, is what you see here, sort of the concussive injury of just the blast actually moving the brain within the skull. Sometimes that can cause some bleeding on top of the brain, within the brain, can cause swelling as you see there. All three of those things sometimes could need an operation. Sometimes the operation would be to actually remove part of the skull to allow the brain to swell, with the idea that the brain might actually start to subside at some point.
Over hear, you see a brain. You might actually remove some of the bone around this brain and allow the brain to swell, and then hopefully that swelling will subside later on.
(On camera): It's hard to know exactly what pattern of injuries here, though, either one of them.
COOPER: Why would you allow the brain to swell?
GUPTA: Well, you know, that's the tricky thing. When you're talking about the skull, you're talking about something that can both be very protective of the brain, but also something that can be very detrimental in the face of swelling. The brain has nowhere to swell; and if it swells with the skull in place, it'll just -- what we call herniate, move down into the spinal canal and that can cause death. So what you want to do is allow a little bit of room for the brain. Take away some of the bone, allow the swelling to occur naturally from the injury, just like you get a bruise somewhere else on your body and then subsequently the swelling will go down over time. As it does, and then you place the bone back -- Anderson.
COOPER: Well, our thoughts and our prayers, of course, are with Bob Woodruff and Doug Vogt and their families tonight.
I want to show you exactly where we are. We're right on the U.S.-Mexican border. There's one fence over there and then there's another fence in that direction. Because of increased law enforcement efforts there, smugglers are trying to find new ways to get people across the border and to bring drugs across the border. And one of those ways is tunneling. And they're coming up with some ingenious ways.
Right here, there was what they call a gopher hole that was dug between these two fences. The objective was to try to actually -- these guys were digging the tunnel, trying to get into a drainage ditch, which is actually right here. You can see with this drainage ditch, they actually have to barricade them because people would like to try to get inside the drainage ditch and if they're able to get into the drainage ditch, then basically this could take them all the way into San Diego.
Sometimes people will come out with a torch and try to cut these bars. This is a pretty heavily patrolled area. This gopher hole was discovered by ICE agents, Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, just two weeks ago. And then, of course, last week they found the last week they found the largest tunnel they've ever found just about half a mile or so away.
Coming up tonight on 360, we'll take you on an exclusive tour inside that tunnel. It is an incredibly sophisticated tunnel with electricity and an oxygen supply. We'll take you deep underground right here on the U.S.-Mexican border.
COOPER: ICE agents will tell you this is one of the most sophisticated tunnels that they've ever discovered underneath the U.S. Mexican border. It's got a pipe that brings in fresh air. It's pumped in through Mexico. It's got support beams all running all throughout the tunnel. It's even got electricity here. These cables go for all the 2,400 feet of the tunnel and there are light bulbs all throughout. It likely took years to actually build this tunnel. Parts of it are through solid stone and you can actually see where tools were used to dig.
COOPER: And welcome back. We are live from the California- Mexico border. You are looking at one of the newer fences that has been built here along the border. It's actually the second of two fences. It is a very fine wire metal mesh, very difficult to climb indeed. Just one of the ways Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents are protecting the border here, down in San Diego.
We're in the Otay Mesa District of San Diego, not far from a 2,400 foot tunnel used to smuggle drugs that was discovered just last week. A tunnel this big obviously took some time to build -- years, in fact. And the fact that it went undetected until last week may say something about the daunting task of border security.
Simply put, there are thousands of miles to protect. And not all the people patrolling the U.S. borders are paid to do so. Some are taking matters into their own hands. They don't call themselves vigilantes; others do. CNN's Gary Tuchman went on patrol with them recently and here's what he found.
GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): They call themselves the Minutemen. A civilian border watch group, whose members believe they serve their country by keeping illegal immigrants out of the country.
CARL BRAUN, MINUTEMAN PROJECT: So if they see us here, they've got to go somewhere else. They can't cross while we're here.
TUCHMAN (on camera): Along a remote portion of the Mexican border, about 70 miles east of San Diego, there is a fence that completely disappears. It's a place where many people illegally cross into the United States. But the co-founder of the Minuteman Project says its members find them crossing everywhere.
JIM GILCHRIST, CO-FOUNDER, MINUTEMAN PROJECT: Along all 1,961 miles of the border.
TUCHMAN (voice-over): But it's clearly easier in the great majority of the border that is unsecured. (On camera): This is a well-known crossing point for Mexicans trying to get into the United States. Right now I'm standing in Mexico. And it's a popular site, despite the fact that there's a fence. And as you can see, this fence is not much of a challenge. Right now, I'm in California.
The Minutemen stand on the U.S. side of the fence with their binoculars, looking for sights or sounds of Mexicans.
(Voice-over): They say when they see them, the Minutemen will not take matters in their own hands. Instead, they'll call the U.S. Border Patrol, which makes its rounds at the border while we're there. The Minutemen say they have good relationships with most of the Border Patrol agents.
BRAUN: We're basically a pretty large neighborhood watch.
TUCHMAN: This is video shot by the Minutemen themselves, of Mexicans they've spotted. The Minutemen claim after less than a year in existence, they've reported some 2,000 illegal immigrants to the Border Patrol in four states next to Mexico and 10 next to Canada. It's co-founder ran for Congress on an immigration platform. He lost, but got 25 percent of the vote.
GILCHRIST: My founding fathers did not envision us taking care of the entire world. And that's not to mean that we can't take care of other nations by showing them how to build their own American dream in Mexico and in Guatemala.
TUCHMAN: Some in the group carry weapons with them.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Defensive protection.
TUCHMAN: We climb with the Minutemen on a night mission.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Some of these rocks move, so just be careful when you step on them.
TUCHMAN: We're going to an overlook, but are told to beware of what could be under the ground.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These holes in the ground -- these are rattlesnake holes.
TUCHMAN: We come to a cave just on the U.S. side of the border, where the Minutemen say illegal immigrants sometimes hide. Not tonight.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These are night vision monocles.
TUCHMAN: There are also no sightings from the cliff we stand on. But the Minutemen say the January weather dissuades many from making the crossing.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, it will be down probably around 20 degrees here tonight. TUCHMAN: But they also believe their presence keeps people from crossing. The Minutemen say they are not the paranoid racist people that many critics charge.
GILCHRIST: Paranoid and racist? That sounds like the red brick of either an anarchist or criminal mentality.
TUCHMAN (on camera): Jim Gilchrist says he has nothing against the people who are crossing. As a matter fact, Anderson, he doesn't blame them at all. He blames the U.S. and Mexican governments for being inept about securing their shared border.
COOPER: And are they out there every night?
TUCHMAN: Not ever night. A lot of weekends they're out there. This is not a full-time job. These people have jobs, and a lot of them every other weekend, they go out and do these patrols. Sometimes they sleep out the whole night, wake up in the morning and they keep their eyes open.
COOPER: All right, Gary Tuchman, thanks.
So, just how big are the holes in the border just south of us? According to a new study, they are plenty big. CNN's Tom Foreman investigates.
TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Across land, over fences, through rivers, six million Mexican citizens have illegally crossed the border to live in the United States. That, from a study by the Pugh Hispanic Center, which says another two and a half million Latinos from other countries are also here illegally. Most commonly, because they want better pay than they can get at home.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's not a crime. We're looking for work and supporting their families.
FOREMAN: Latino workers here illegally are undeniably a big part of the low wage economy. And many believe the U.S. economic landscape is being radically altered.
DAN STEIN, FEDERATION FOR AMERICAN IMMIGRATION REFORM: Yes. We're importing a poverty class of immigrants, a new generation.
FOREMAN: Dan Stein with the Federation for American Immigration Reform argues inexpensive, illegal foreign labor may be great for business owners, but not for their blue collar employees who lose wage bargaining power with each body that slips over the border.
STEIN: Americans today want to understand where are we going with immigration? Are we trying to build a community of a billion people, where we have no middle class and some people on the very rich top and all these poor people... FOREMAN (on camera): Do you think that's where we're headed?
STEIN: That's exactly where we're headed.
FOREMAN (voice-over): Immigration rights activists don't buy it. They argue of all the Latinos in the United States, including those here legally, on temporary visas, or from long-time Latino-American families, most are in their 20's, ambitious young workers who are invigorating the economy. So, those activists want to talk about letting those here illegally earn citizenship, and about more temporary work visas for others who want to come.
CECILIA MUNOZ, LA RAZA: The question is whether we can do better than we're doing now. And the answer to that is yes. Absolutely.
FOREMAN (on camera): And you believe the Latino community is as committed to that as the Anglo community?
MUNOZ: Oh, there's no question. And there's nobody more interested in bringing Americans together and solving this problem than we are.
FOREMAN (voice-over): It's a concern growing only more urgent for all. The Pugh center report estimates undocumented foreign workers now hold 5 percent of U.S. jobs, and climbing.
Tom Foreman, CNN, Washington.
COOPER: Well, we'll take you inside the tunnel that was discovered just last week shortly.
Also ahead tonight, the war on terror. Al Qaeda's second in command fires off a verbal blast to President Bush. What's he really saying and to whom? A look at the message behind the message. That's coming up.
And selling the State of the Union. What's at stake for the American public and an embattled American president? Next, on 360.
COOPER: This tunnel is very sophisticated. They've actually poured concrete as the tunnel rises up and sort of built in steps to make it easier to walk on. And it's likely workers used these ropes, which you'll find all throughout the tunnels still to hold onto bales of marijuana as they walked up the steep incline.
COOPER: The longest tunnel ever built by a drug cartel, discovered just last week, close to where I'm standing right here on the U.S.-Mexican border. We'll take you inside that tunnel shortly. As you might have heard, though, earlier in the program, Ayman al-Zawahiri, al Qaeda's number two, is thumbing his nose at President Bush. Al-Zawahiri was a target earlier this month of a U.S. air strike in Pakistan. But as he told viewers of the Arabic network, Al- Jazeera, he is still very much alive and would die when God wished it. That's what he said.
Joining us from Atlanta to discuss the significance of the new tape message, CNN's Senior International Correspondent Nic Robertson. Nic, thanks for being with us.
Why would he offer President Bush the chance to convert to Islam? That's just -- I mean, is that just a rhetorical?
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know, what I think he's trying to do here, Anderson, is appeal to two communities. And one, this is part of this is part of his appeal to the Muslim community in the world, which is essentially to try and set up the fact that the United States is trying to chase him and Osama bin Laden down, not as an attack on al Qaeda, that it is, but he's trying to cast it in the light of this is an attack on Muslims here. President Bush comes across to our side, he's one of us. We can forgive him. So, he's trying to cast it in that kind of light. He's trying to say to the people of the United States that President Bush is lying to you, that you're losing the war in Iraq, you're losing the war in Afghanistan. Indeed, he had some really almost outlandish and very blatant taunts for President Bush.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AYMAN AL-ZAWAHIRI (through translator): Bush, do you know where I am? I am among the Muslim masses enjoying their care with God's blessing and sharing with them their Holy War against you, until we defeat you, God willing.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERTSON: And one of the other things about this tape, Anderson, the fastest turnaround we've seen of an al Qaeda videotape yet. Eleven days ago was probably when it was recorded, about then. It's out very, very quickly.
COOPER: Well, I'm also amazed by the production values of the thing. I mean, he's got this black screen behind him. There are even English subtitles on the tape.
ROBERTSON: It's incredible. I mean, this is part of the process of this very short 11 days, getting it out to Al-Jazeera. They have to get it across the sea to Al-Jazeera from Pakistan or Afghanistan, wherever they're recording it. And it seems as Zawahiri is not bothered or worried about being caught, that he might be traced by this videotape. He seems very confident that he's gone ahead and released it so quickly.
You know, one of the great clues these days for intelligence officials is on computers, quite possibly the titling put on, on a computer. If that computer were found, computers involved in this process, be a great lead maybe to where he is. Big risks.
COOPER: All right, Nic Robertson, thanks.
CNN Terrorism Analyst Peter Bergen is very familiar with the way al Qaeda operates; and before 9/11, he even interviewed Osama bin Laden himself. Bin Laden is the subject of his latest book, a fascinating account, The Osama bin Laden I know, an oral history of al Qaeda's leader. Peter Bergen joins me now, live from New York.
Peter, what surprised you about this tape?
PETER BERGEN, CNN TERRORISM ANALYST: Nothing very much, to be honest. I mean, it's a proof of life and I think it would have been kind of very weird if we didn't have a proof of life for Ayman al- Zawahiri, you know, around this time. Obviously they wanted to get the message out as soon as possible that Ayman al-Zawahiri was alive and well. We have the audiotape from bin Laden, a couple of weeks back also. He's alive and well. The al Qaeda leadership needs to show that they're in the game, that they remain a viable force.
COOPER: He also describes in great detail the attack 17 days ago, very specifically. Let's listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AL-ZAWAHIRI (through translator): The American airplanes, in collaboration with their agent of the Jews and crusaders Musharraf, launched an air strike on Damadola, near Pashara (ph), around the Eid (ph) holiday, during which 18 Muslims, men, women and children, were killed in this fight against Islam, which they call terrorism.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: I mean, I got to tell you, he looks, you know, he looks healthy. The tape has a high quality to it. They even have these English subtitles on it. What does it tell you about al Qaeda's operations that they can release this thing so quickly?
BERGEN: Well, they have long had a video arm, it's called As- Sahab, which means the clouds in Arabic; and they have this -- this video arm started functioning just before 9/11. They've released a lot of these tapes and the production values tend to be pretty good and they've used English subtitles before.
In the byte we just heard from, there is an extra element to it, which Ayman al-Zawahiri concedes that four of his quote, unquote "brothers," were also killed in the strike two weeks back. I think that's kind of interesting. There's very few things the U.S. government and the al Qaeda agree upon, but they both agree that Ayman al-Zawahiri appeared to been at the place where the strike happened and that some senior members of al Qaeda were in fact killed in the strike.
COOPER: He also references Osama bin Laden in the tape. Let's play that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
AL-ZAWAHIRI (through translator): Osama bin Laden offered you a decent exit from your dilemma, but your leaders who are keen to accumulate wealth insist on throwing you in battles and killing your souls in Iraq and Afghanistan, and God-willing, on your own land.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Again, it's raising this idea of a truce. Why do they keep doing that?
BERGEN: Well they did it on the spring of 2004. Osama bin Laden offered a truce to European countries that might pull out of Iraq. That truce expired. And a year later there was the attack in London. From an Islamic sort of jurisprudence point of view, it's important to offer people truces before you attack them. And we've seen a truce expire and an attack happen in London. I don't think that necessarily that the truce will expire and there'll be an attack in the United States, but certainly al Qaeda and people motivated by that ideology will follow this truce idea and if it's not taken up, will be, you know, tempted to try and attack the United States.
Of course, wanting to attack the United States and actually being able to execute such an attack are two very different things. And their ability to attack the United States, has been, I think, severely damaged, compared to their ability to man operations in Europe.
COOPER: Do you think Zawahiri and bin Laden have contact with one another?
BERGEN: I think they do. They've been friends since 1986 when they first met in Pashara (ph), Pakistan. They've had a sort of symbiotic relationship. Ayman al-Zawahiri is bin Laden's doctor and close friend. I think they are in communication, maybe not together, but certainly in communication.
COOPER: It is fascinating, and fascinating to see that tape today. Peter Bergen, thanks very much.
Eric Hill, from "HEADLINE NEWS," joins us with some of the other stories that we are following tonight. Erica, good evening.
ERICA HILL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey, Anderson. A second videotape, showing kidnapped American Journalist Jill Carroll, aired on Al-Jazeera today. Carroll's voice was not heard on the tape, but she was in tears and wearing a head scarf. Her kidnappers say they will kill her unless all Iraqi women prisoners are released. Now the tape was dated January 28. There's been no independent verification, however, of Carroll's fate since her captors issued the first video and a 72-hour deadline nearly two weeks ago.
In the Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania, two supermarket chains report several incidents of food tampering in the past two weeks. Giant and King supermarkets say pins and rusted needles have turned up in vegetables and meat, even in a can of soup. Local and state authorities are investigating. In Washington, Judge Samuel Alito, facing an almost certain lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court. Democrats failed to rally support for a filibuster today. Alito's nomination is expected to be confirmed tomorrow.
And from Brazil, a baby girl is out of the hospital after being found in a plastic bag, floating in a lake this weekend. her dramatic rescue was broadcast worldwide. Scores of Brazilians mobbed the hospital, some of them hoping to adopt the little girl. Her mother is now charged with attempted murder. The mother denies setting the baby adrift. The baby was born prematurely two months ago at the very same hospital. A spokesman, by the way, says she is doing great. Lucky little girl.
COOPER: Man, unbelievable story. Thanks, Erica.
U.S. authorities have never seen anything quite like it, a highly sophisticated tunnel, the size of eight football fields, opening the U.S. to drug smugglers. We'll take you deep inside the tunnel.
Plus, Mexico's ruthless drug cartels, suspected of building this tunnel. Cross them, you could end up in the desert with a bullet in your head. They're even becoming more powerful. That and more when 360 continues.
COOPER: And welcome back. We are coming to you live from the U.S.-Mexican border. At the scene here, on one of the new fences that have been built along the border. Tonight, we are right on the border. The border was busted wide open by a sophisticated 2,400 foot tunnel that was discovered just last week. It was dug very close to beneath the spot where I'm standing on.
Federal authorities say the tunnel, which spans from San Diego to Tijuana, is the longest they have ever found, one of the most sophisticated. Inside, they've discovered more than two tons of marijuana.
Earlier today, I took a tour of the passageway. Here's more of what I saw.
COOPER: The lid into the tunnel isn't much to speak of. It's basically a three by three foot hole that's been knocked in the floor of this industrial warehouse, just south of San Diego. This concrete piece of tiling was removed and they found the tunnel here.
When you go down the ladder, you enter another world. So this is the tunnel. It's 2,400 feet, all the way through to Mexico. It's the size of about eight football fields in length. Seven of the football fields are underneath U.S. territory. One football field is in Tijuana. It goes from this warehouse here all the way to a warehouse in Mexico. The tunnel immediately starts to slope down from ground level. It goes down about 60 feet. If you look down at the ground here, this is all concrete. The walls down here is a soft rock. They don't know exactly how this tunnel was dug, but you can tell some sort of a drill was used. You can actually see the markings here on the side of the wall. They also don't know how long it took to actually carve out this tunnel, but they found out about this operation about two years ago and there's no doubt it took years to dig a tunnel like this.
As you walk deeper down into the tunnel, it really slopes down. It gets to about 60 feet deep here. On the Mexican side, it gets as far as 90 feet down, 90 feet deep. They've actually poured concrete here and they formed steps, which makes it easier for whoever was bringing drugs into the United States to actually climb up through the tunnel.
It's a really sophisticated tunnel, though, there are also electrical cables running all through the length of it. And if you look over here, there's a light bulb. These are actually light bulbs that the U.S. authorities have put in. They've removed the original ones to fingerprint them all. But there are light bulbs all throughout the tunnel. Those were put in by the cartel or whoever it was who built the tunnel.
There's also some support beams every now and then, just to try to make sure the wall and ceilings don't collapse.
All throughout the tunnel you can still find these ropes. The Immigration Customs Enforcement agents believe that these ropes were actually used to help carry the bales of marijuana that they found. A worker would wrap it around the bale and maybe put it on their back like this or somehow use it to just carry it. But the ropes are spaced out all throughout the tunnel.
Also, there's this, which is actually just another sign of how sophisticated this tunnel is. This is a pipe used to pump in fresh air. The pump goes all the way over to Mexico. This would be used to pump in fresh oxygen.
On the U.S. side, this is about the deepest part of the tunnel. It's probably estimated about 60 feet deep. And as you can see, it starts to get very slippery here. There's a lot of water, a lot of condensation on the ground. It's actually coming from the ceiling. And water has become a real problem for federal authorities. They've actually installed these pumps to try to get the water out.
This is an intersection in the tunnel and they're not quite sure exactly what happened here. That way is Mexico and as far as the eye can see, if you look down, the tunnel just goes straight ahead. But it also goes for a couple dozen feet over in this direction. And they're not sure if the people who were tunneling, if the smugglers made a mistake and just tunneled off the wrong direction and then had to backtrack the tunnel in this way; or if they were originally trying to find a different warehouse or had a different warehouse in mind. At this point they simply don't know. They're hoping to bring some miners in here who can examine the way the tunnel was made and that might give some clues about what the smugglers were thinking and also when this tunnel was built.
Immigration Customs and Enforcement agents have issued a warning to anyone who was involved in the construction of this tunnel or the operation of the tunnel itself, they are warning them that their lives could be in danger. In past tunnels that they've discovered, the cartel has tried to kill the people who built the tunnels, that the information about the construction and who built it doesn't leak out.
COOPER: Well, today, U.S. law enforcement officials announced that one man, a Mexican citizen, has been arrested in connection with the tunnel and charged with conspiracy to smuggle drugs. Of course, if this man's guilty, he's not alone. The DEA suspects this tunnel was carved out by one of Mexico's infamous drug cartels. Groups of smugglers who are ruthless, very powerful, even within the Mexican government. And they are only getting stronger.
COOPER (voice-over): We came to think of drug cartels as a Colombian business, but Mexican drug organizations, such as the Ariano Felix Cartel, suspected of building the Tijuana tunnel, have now taken over.
According to the United Nations, Mexican drug lords pump $142 billion in marijuana, heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, you name it, into the United States. Their specialty, transporting the drugs to the states across the border, to safe houses in U.S. border cities, from which they're distributed.
Mexicans have long dominated the marijuana and heroin trades, but now they've also taken over from the Colombians as the kings of cocaine. Mexican cartels now dominate the lucrative cocaine trade throughout the West and Midwest. Chicago is a major distribution point. And according to the DEA, Mexican cartels are now trying to expand their reach into the Eastern United States.
Their influence south of the border is profound. One 26-year veteran of the El Paso police force tells CNN that across the border, in Juarez, nothing of consequence happens without the cartel's okay, or you end up dead in the cartel's signature style, execution. Typically, that means the victim's face is wrapped in plastic, hands bound, a single shot to the back of the head, stuffed into a 55-gallon drum, encased in concrete and left in the desert.
Exactly where the influence of the Mexican government leaves off and the cartel's picks up is hard to gauge. But there's plenty of evidence that the drug lords have infiltrated both the police and the army. Just last week in El Paso, a Mexican military style humvee helped marijuana smugglers escape from the United States back into Mexico. Were the smugglers helped by the military or just thugs posing as soldiers? No one knows. And that's the point.
COOPER (on camera): Well, coming up, we'll have more from the Border.
Also ahead tonight, the speech that could shape the nation for years. Tomorrow's State of the Union address and the fallout it could have for the pivotal mid-term election. That's coming up.
Plus, from the board room to the courtroom, the trial of Enron's two top former executives is finally underway. Stay with us. You're watching 360.
COOPER: Well, tomorrow night President Bush will deliver the State of Union address from the Capitol. The White House says the speech will be uplifting, but for whom? That's the question.
A new CNN/USA Today Gallup Poll shows 58 percent of Americans surveyed believe the president's second term is a failure so far. Clearly, the president has a lot riding on the speech. He is not the only one.
CNN's Chief National Correspondent John King is with us now from Scranton, Pennsylvania -- John.
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, good evening. The president in the White House theater today went through a final run through of that speech. This is a process that has gone on for a couple of months now, has included two dozen drafts of the speech. As the president and his final aides put the finishing touches on it before tomorrow night, they know that it's much more than just a political agenda.
They know it is a policy agenda, but also the framework for the effort to keep the House and the Senate in Republican hands, to keep Mr. Bush from what would most likely be a very lonely two years in the White House if the Democrats are able to take back one or both Congressional chambers come November. So as they make the final changes and decide just what to say, just which political dynamics they need to change, they think of places like this.
KING (voice-over): Coney Island, Texas lunch, the busy grill signals the afternoon rush. And this Scranton landmark for 83 years now. Lucy Warner has worked here the last 20 and thinks anyone upbeat about the State of the Union isn't paying much attention.
LUCY WARNER, WAITRESS: Now, today, I have to get oil for the furnace, my heating oil. It's going to cost me about $350. That's right out of my pocket.
KING: Add in $400 a month for 10 different medications, and Social Security just isn't enough. So 69-year-old Lucy works 30 hours a week. She's worried about the economy and the Iraq war, and confused by that new Medicare prescription drug benefit the president thought would help Republicans with elderly voters.
WARNER: No, I don't understand them. Now, my daughter went on a computer and she's trying to find out.
KING (on camera): Now, you seem to think that somebody needs to send them a message?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Correct.
KING (voice-over): America's anxious seniors are one audience President Bush must reach if he is to rebuild his own political standing and help his Republican party in mid-term Congressional elections where older Americans could be the decisive voting block.
Bill Kive (ph) is one of many elderly Bush voters, now disillusioned.
(On camera): What is different from the Bush you voted for and the Bush you see now?
BILL KIVE (PH), ELDERLY BUSH VOTER: I don't know. He seems like a changed person altogether to me. He's got no whoomph in him, or nothing no more. He's like half dead.
KING (voice-over): Of course, Bill and his friends at the South Side Senior Center won't see Mr. Bush on a ballot again. But any president standing impacts the success of his party. And a little time here tells you why Republican strategists are so distressed. Worried, for example, a sour mood among elderly voters could cost the GOP a Senate seat and two or three House seats just here in Pennsylvania alone.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In God we trust, but in hospitals, never.
KING: Just 20 percent think the new prescription drug benefit is working. More than half, 56 percent of elderly Americans call the Iraq war a mistake.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is it right? Is it wrong? I mean, we're there. We're stuck.
KING: Only 40 percent approve of how Mr. Bush is handling his job; and just 35 percent of those over 65 plan to vote Republican for Congress, well below the 48 percent Republicans have averaged among elderly voters the last three elections.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Looking for big business, but they're not looking out for the smaller person.
KING: This is a generation that remembers guaranteed pensions, when prayer before meals was routine.
KING (on camera): And it is a generation that votes, making their sense that he country is off on the wrong course all the more important and all the more troubling to Republicans because the elderly are so reliable that their percentage of the electorate is much higher in mid-term elections like this year when overall turnout tends to slump a bit. So, Anderson, they are one key constituency. How the president does with them, critical this year, raising the stakes for Mr. Bush. And that big speech tomorrow night, still a long way to go, but all Republicans in the White House would concede, Mr. Bush needs to reverse the tide, starting soon -- Anderson.
COOPER: All right, John King, thanks.
Special programming note about tomorrow and President Bush's State of the Union address.
Join me in Washington after the President's speech. From Senator John McCain to Pastor Rick Warren, best-selling author of "The Purpose-Driven Life," to the outspoken New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin, I'll be covering all the angles, along with Wolf Blitzer and the CNN political team. CNN's special coverage starts at 9:00 p.m. Eastern.
Erica Hill from "HEADLINE NEWS" joins us right now with some of business stories we're following tonight -- Erica.
HILL: Hi Anderson, lawyers have selected a jury for the trial of Former Enron Chiefs Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling. Opening statements are expected to begin tomorrow. Lay and Skilling face more than three dozen charges related to Enron's massive bankruptcy more than four years ago. They're accused of lying to investors about the company's financial state, while making million off Enron's stock.
Americans apparently doing a lot of shopping the last month, even more than economists had expected. The Commerce Department says consumer spending was up .9 percent and it turns out, we're also spending more than we make. According to the government, December was the seventh consecutive month Americans dipped into savings or assets to pay for their spending.
Tough times in the meantime over at Kraft Foods. Today, the company announcing it will cut another 8,000 jobs and close as many as 20 production plants. Those cuts are a part of Kraft's ongoing restructuring efforts, part of its battle with the high price of food commodities. The new layoffs come on top of the 5,500 jobs Kraft is already planning to eliminate.
And there is a good chance you could be in the market for a new job, even if you're currently employed. A survey released today from Consulting Firm Salary.com, found 65 percent of U.S. workers are thinking about starting some sort of job search. The survey also found that most bosses don't even know about it. Not that much of a surprise there.
And, Anderson, I know you're not necessarily looking for a new job, but you've been, you know, dabbling, making some appearances on other shows lately and tomorrow, Oprah. Huh?
COOPER: That's true, yes, I'm going to be on the "Oprah Show."
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OPRAH WINFREY: With a sniper fire 100 feet away, I would be one of those people who would be under the whatever, you know. So I don't know how you are so -- how are you that calm?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The sniper fire is approximately -- approximately 100 feet away. I was just standing there a moment ago when...
WINFREY: How are you that calm? I'd be like, help you all! Somebody call the president!
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HILL: Do you have the direct line to the president, in case you need it, by the way?
COOPER: No, I don't.
COOPER: But, yes, so that'll be on "Oprah" tomorrow. That will be cool. I hadn't seen that. That'll be interesting.
HILL: I'll be watching for you.
COOPER: Erica, you got me all frazzled now.
HILL: I'm sorry.
COOPER: Thanks. It's all right. Thanks, very much.
Coming up tonight on 360, in Brazil, a dramatic rescue caught on tape. A baby abandoned in a lake, found in a plastic bag -- it was all caught on tape -- rushed to the hospital. We'll tell you how the baby is doing.
Plus, more from above and below the border, not just north and south of it, but literally above and below, when 360 continues.
COOPER: Tonight, hundreds of people are literally lining up to adopt a special baby in Brazil. A baby who's amazing rescue was caught on tape. Here's Tim Lister.
TIM LISTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It's the miracle that's gripped a nation. In a park in the Brazilian city of Belo Horizonte, a couple walking see a black bag floating in the lagoon. It sounds as if a kitten is inside.
As people gather, a man with a video camera films the rescue. As they unwrap the bag, shock and amazement. A two-month-old baby girl in a pink dress, crying at the top of her tiny lungs. A small wooden board has apparently kept the bag from sinking.
The baby was rushed to the very hospital where she was born, but astonishing, was none the worse for her ordeal. UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): She is very well. She is very peaceful, eating normally like a healthy baby.
LISTER: As the Brazilian media converged on the story, the child's mother was tracked down, 27-year-old Simone Cassiano Da Silva.
SIMONE CASSIANO DA SILVA, BABY'S MOTHER (through translator): I couldn't stay with her. I wasn't mentally prepared for her. There was a group of people by the side of the lagoon. I asked them to leave the baby somewhere because I did not want to see it.
LISTER: She said she paid the group a couple of dollars and left. Police don't believe her story and she's now in jail, charged with attempted murder.
Hundreds of people have gone to the hospital with gifts or hoping to catch a glimpse of the baby. Hundreds more have offered to adopt her. As yet, she has no name, but to millions across Brazil, she will always be the little miracle in the pink dress.
Tim Lister, CNN, Atlanta.
COOPER: Unbelievable story.
"On the Radar" tonight, it'll be in the headlines tomorrow. Members of OPEC meeting in Vienna to decide how much oil they'll pump, meaning how much you'll end up paying at the pump. They're expected to keep production level steady because prices are already high. But our old friend Venezuela is pushing for a cut of a million barrels a day, effective immediately. We'll see.
Also tomorrow, Russian President Putin's annual news conference. That's the cool thing about being a Russian president, no pesky Q and A every few weeks or so. Look for a lot of questions about Iran's nuclear program and Russia's agreement today to let the U.N. Security Council handle it.
Finally, the last day on the job for this guy, Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan. He'll chair his final meeting and preside over what fed watchers expect will be another rate bump, this time by a quarter point.
In the headlines tomorrow, or expected to be "On the Radar" tonight. More of 360 in a moment from the U.S.-Mexican border. Stay with us.
COOPER: And welcome back. We are live on the U.S.-Mexican border.
This here is the first line of defense. This is the old wall. As you can see, it's actually pretty old. It's kind of rusted up here. The problem with this wall, it's actually kind of easy to climb on. You can see it's pretty easy to get your hand holds on there, get your feet up there.
They then added on to the wall. They built a second part of the wall, a metal mesh. But still, people could climb over pretty easy. In fact, people in this area still try to dig under. They found a gopher hole, or gopher tunnel just about two weeks ago right here in this area. And the tunnel went all underneath here where I'm standing, all the way through to this other wall now. For this 30- mile stretch, they actually have two walls here. There's the old wall and then the new wall, which I'm walking toward right now. But this gopher tunnel went still all the way underneath here. It's a pretty wide swathe here of land underneath this new tunnel.
Now, this new wall, it's a metal mesh. It's really virtually impossible to climb over with your hands unless you can make some kind of a ladder and hook it over the top. But as you can see, it's probably about 18 feet, maybe even 20 feet high here.
This latest tunnel that they found, which was about two weeks ago, went all the way under here and the people who were tunneling were trying to get to an underground tunnel to try to access the water tunnels here to try to get up into San Diego. They were unsuccessful in that effort.
Also on 360 tonight, we've been showing you this largest tunnel that was ever discovered in the United States underneath the border. That was just discovered last week by ICE, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, who also gave us an exclusive tour.
I want to thank all the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents for helping us out here on the border. The investigation continues into who built this tunnel and how many drugs were brought through the tunnel. But again, we want to thank them for their help down here tonight on this special edition of 360.
"LARRY KING" is next.
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