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Attorney General's Aide Resigns; Pets, Poison and Profit; British Sailors and Marines Speak Out; Religious Relics For Sale on eBay?

Aired April 6, 2007 - 22:00   ET


JOHN ROBERTS, CNN ANCHOR: Tonight, an A.C. 360 exclusive: tracing not just the toxic ingredient that got into cat and dog food, but a possible money motive for putting it in there -- why a chemical compound that had no business being used in anything edible got into our pets, with such heartbreaking consequences.
We begin tonight, though, with what looks yet another body blow to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Bad enough that his counsel, Monica Goodling, recently involved her Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination. Today, she handed in her walking papers.

"It has been an honor," she writes, "to have served at the Department of Justice Department for the past five years. May God bless you richly," meaning the attorney general, "as you continue your service to America."

Whether that service continues, though, is an open question. Gonzales reportedly has been cramming for his testimony, scheduled for the 17th of this month, when lawmakers will demand answers about his firing of eight U.S. attorneys.

Earlier, he told the Senate Judiciary Committee it wasn't political. He has also said he wasn't even in on discussions of the firings. But the record says otherwise.

For more on where he and Ms. Goodling now stand, we spoke earlier with CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin.


ROBERTS: Jeffrey, the Justice Department has to be pretty relieved at this latest development. Here, they had an employee who was taking the Fifth Amendment, who was refusing to testify, even though Alberto Gonzales had pledged that people in his department were going to do their best to help out the committees.

So, what does it mean for them, the fact that she's now resigned; she's become a private citizen?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: Well, it is true that it relieves them of a difficult legal problem, which is, can you fire someone, a political appointee, for taking the Fifth? I don't think that is a clear answer.

But I hardly think this counts as much good news, because it simply adds to the story and raises the obvious question of, why did she quit? What did she know? What did she do? And that's yet another thing that the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee are going to want to know answers to.

ROBERTS: Well, her attorney has said that testifying up on the Hill could be a perjury trap for her. If she tells the truth, what's the trap?

TOOBIN: Perjury trap is one of those phrases that lawyers use that I never understand, because, if you tell the truth, there's no trap.

And her situation now is that, yes, she can continue taking the Fifth as a private citizen, but the Judiciary Committee can also give her immunity, and, thus, force her to testify. So, she is by no means out of the woods of having to testify and tell her story, although I think her likely exposure for any kind of criminal prosecution has always been remote, and remains that way.

ROBERTS: What could -- what could entice her to take that deal of immunity?

TOOBIN: She -- she doesn't have any choice. If they give her immunity, she has immunity. That is -- they stick that immunity on you, and, many times, people don't want it.

So, she would have to testify, whether she wanted to or not.

ROBERTS: This other dustup, Jeff, that's going on, that Congress is threatening to subpoena documents from the Department of Justice that it had an opportunity to take a look at -- they were heavily redacted -- but not actually keep in their possession, where do you think that's going to go?

TOOBIN: Well, that's a -- it was a very unusual set of circumstances that -- where they were allowed to look at the documents, but not copy them or take notes. And, obviously, they found that frustrating.

The Justice Department really has the upper hand here, because, you know, the clock is running. And the 17th, when Gonzales is going to testify, that's really the date everybody is going to be looking forward to. Yes, it's true the -- the committee could try to subpoena them, but that certainly wouldn't be resolved in the legal system before the 17th.

And, so, I think the Democrats are just going to have to live with what they have.

ROBERTS: So, do you think this is much more about appearances than anything, saying, we want these documents, the Justice Department won't give them to us, just trying to create more of an aura of suspicion around the Justice Department?

TOOBIN: Absolutely. And I think that's just sort of part of the normal political back-and-forth. The real issue here, I think, is, will Gonzales hold the support of the Republicans on the Judiciary Committee? The Democrats are gone. There's no issue there. The issue is, will the Republicans stick with him? A couple have already left him. A couple in the House as well. But, if he can keep solid Republican support, then he's going to remain as attorney general, even in a weakened state.

ROBERTS: But, you know, Congress has canceled that budget hearing that he was supposed to testify at just a few days before the 17th. So, now all the focus is going to be on the 17th. It's going to be something to watch.


TOOBIN: It's going to be very interesting.

ROBERTS: Jeff Toobin, thanks very much. Appreciate it.



ROBERTS: If the Gonzales affair opened up a credibility gap, it is merely a paper cut compared to the one over Iraq.

Today, a newly-classified report from the Pentagon's inspector general gives more ammunition to those who believe that the administration either deceived itself, the country, or both, into thinking that al Qaeda had close ties with Saddam Hussein.

Yet, listen to what Vice President Dick Cheney said just yesterday about al Qaeda in Iraq's Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.


RICHARD B. CHENEY, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: took up residence there before we ever launched into Iraq; organized the al Qaeda operations inside Iraq before we even arrived on the scene, and then, of course, led the charge for Iraq until we killed him last June.

This is al Qaeda operating in Iraq. And, as I say, they were present before we invaded Iraq.

Bin Laden, himself, has said, this is a central battle in the war on terror.


ROBERTS: Yet, the I.G.'s report says interrogations of Saddam Hussein and two aides, along with captured Iraqi documents, confirm what the intelligence community believed prior to hostilities, that the Iraqi regime was not directly cooperating with al Qaeda.

It also slams former Defense Policy Chief Douglas Feith, who ran a kind of intelligence think tank within the Pentagon, for amping up the case against Iraq on al Qaeda and weapons of mass destruction, when the evidence did not support it.

Feith, who strongly disputes that allegation, has taken a beating on this, and not just lately. General Tommy Franks, who led Operation Iraqi Freedom, once said that Feith had earned the reputation of being -- quote -- "the dumbest F'ing guy on the planet."

Kathleen Hicks worked under Douglas Feith. Currently, she is at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. CNN analyst and retired Brigadier General James "Spider" Marks dealt with his share of intelligence concerning WMD in Iraq. His job was securing them.

Good to see both of you.



ROBERTS: Kathleen Hicks, you you worked under Doug Feith. Was he and did he cook the intelligence, prewar intelligence, on Iraq?

HICKS: Well, I don't think you could call the activity by the group within the Pentagon as cooking the books.

It's certainly appropriate for a consumer of intelligence to question that intelligence. But what is quite disconcerting about the I.G. report, and even in the response from the policy organization, is that there is no attempt by them to be responsible for the actions that they put forth.

In other words, you have a small group of people taking on the entire intelligence community, and, yet, there is no sense of responsibility about their activity.

ROBERTS: Spider Marks, intelligence -- and this is the realm that you operated in during Iraqi Freedom -- intelligence is supposed to shape the policy. Did you ever get a sense that, even from some corners, that the policy was driving the intelligence?

BRIGADIER GENERAL JAMES "SPIDER" MARKS (RET.), CNN MILITARY ANALYST: Well, I need to tell you, John, that one of the things that was very troubling for me, as the senior intel guy on the ground, is that, in some cases I felt, because of some either suppositions from above or questions, that somebody had intelligence that I just didn't have. I didn't have the underlying premise on some of the questions.

And, so, I don't know if policy was trying to drive intelligence. And, clearly, intelligence drives operations and drives policy in this case. But, often, I felt like I was dealing with, in some cases, less than a full deck.

ROBERTS: Now, is it fair to say, Kathleen Hicks, that Douglas Feith's office in the Pentagon, the policy office, found a way around the normal channels to get that information into the White House?

HICKS: Absolutely. They were in a really enviable position, having a level of access that others could only hope to have.

And, again, that's -- there's nothing wrong with that. That's always going to happen. Certain people will have access. The problem is what you do with that access and how responsible you treat it.

ROBERTS: Spider Marks, should policy people be out there developing, analyzing intelligence?

MARKS: Well, they should be analyzing intelligence. They shouldn't be developing intelligence. You can't have -- you can't let 1,000 flowers bloom.

The intelligence community has to have the competition of ideas, and, once those ideas have had a -- an opportunity to be vetted, then they're open for discussion. The problem with somebody who is not in the I.C. directly is, you don't know what scrutiny that intelligence has gone through, much like it's gone through in the I.C., in the intelligence community.


MARKS: And that's kind of the challenge.

ROBERTS: Spider, how critical to going to war in Iraq was this issue of Saddam Hussein's ties to al Qaeda? Was it a central issue? Was it icing on the cake? What was it?

MARKS: John, it wasn't part of the ingredient, frankly, in my mind. Again, as the senior intel guy on the ground, I had a whole bunch of things to be concerned about, primarily the fourth largest military in the world. That was Saddam's. And how was that going to posture itself?

There were a number of other terrorist organizations in Iraq that we needed to care about, Ansar al-Islam, Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, Saddam Fedayeen, that we knew of. Al Qaeda was kind of lower on that list. And then certainly we needed to know how those -- those two elements, both the military and those terrorist organizations, might coalesce and come together.

ROBERTS: Kathleen, to this day, Vice President Cheney continues to say that al Qaeda had a significant presence in Iraq before the invasion. You heard what he told Rush Limbaugh.

Have you seen anything to corroborate that?

HICKS: No, I have not seen anything to corroborate that.

Again, today, there is certainly some connection, especially in al Anbar Province. But there is no indication, really, beyond what's already been reported, in terms of the Czech report of a meeting, a potential meeting in Prague, which has largely been discounted, that there was any connection between al Qaeda in Iraq and Saddam Hussein.

ROBERTS: And, Spider, can you understand, then, why the vice president keeps saying this, and saying it with such conviction? (CROSSTALK)

MARKS: No. No, John, I can't. Frankly, I can't.

Obviously, the concern at the time was a dirty bomb, and that toxic mix of WMD and terrorism. But I don't -- I didn't see that connection at that time, and four years ago.


Well, we -- he has been saying it for four years. We expect he will say it for another two.

Spider Marks, Kathleen Hicks from CSIS, appreciate you coming in tonight.

MARKS: Thanks, John.

HICKS: Thank you.

ROBERTS: Good to talk -- good to talk with you.


ROBERTS: Senator John McCain is thinking twice about comments that he made in Iraq last Sunday. You may remember that he took a walk through a market in Baghdad, the Shorja market. You may also remember that he said that security there was improving and that things on the ground were getting better.

Well, it seems as though he has had a change of heart. In a "60 Minutes" interview airing this Sunday, McCain said he misspoke about all that. He also admitted that accompanying him on his tour to the Shorja market were heavily armed U.S. troops and helicopters.

It's early, but the war is shaping up to be the defining issue for the race for the White House, but it's not the only one. There's other topics out there, including the ones that the candidates would rather not talk about.

CNN's Candy Crowley has more on that in tonight's edition of "Raw Politics."

CANDY CROWLEY, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: John, we start raw politics this evening with an old adage: What's good for the goose is good for the gander.

Republican presidential contender Mike Huckabee says his party must hold candidates accountable for their personal lives, or a lot of people will owe Bill Clinton an apology. Huckabee says a different set of rules for Republicans would be one of the greatest levels of hypocrisy in a generation.

In the past month, Newt Gingrich has acknowledged having an affair while Bill Clinton was being impeached. And Rudy Giuliani's children spoke publicly about an estrangement from their father and his third wife. Huckabee, by the by, is a Southern Baptist minister struggling for oxygen in the Republican race.

The I-word from Dennis Kucinich -- the presidential hopeful believes President Bush may be setting himself up for impeachment by setting the stage for war with Iran. Kucinich says the president deliberately tried to inflame the British-Iran situation when he referred to the 15 captured British sailors as hostages.

Non-presidential candidate Fred Thompson is looking less and less non. Mid-month, he is arriving in Washington for a Capitol Hill confab with friends and would-be supporters, a kind of highbrow listening tour. Probably more telling is Thompson's plan to speak to the Orange County, California, Lincoln Club. So what, you say? So, big-money Republicans, we say. You might as well count this guy in the race.

Just off a trip to Iraq, during which he was ridiculed for saying there were Baghdad streets safe enough to walk at night, John McCain is revving up for his own campaign. He will deliver a speech on Iraq next week, using the Virginia Military Institute as a backdrop. Later this month, he plans his speech on the economy and a third on his domestic agenda, after which McCain will announce his candidacy.

Running third in the money race and second in the voter race, McCain is in need of a little gas for the Straight Talk Express.

And that, John Roberts, is "Raw Politics."

ROBERTS: Well, how is the tank doing, Candy, on the Straight Talk Express? Is McCain continuing to fall? Is -- is -- does he have a chance anymore?

CROWLEY: Look, he has a -- he has had a rough three months, but he clearly does still have a chance, and a very good one at that.

They have put together quite an organization and a very good campaign structure. They have very smart people over there. And the fact of the matter is, when you talk to them, they say: This is a sprint -- this is not a sprint. We're in this for the long haul.

Obviously, this is not how they thought it would be at the end of the first quarter going into 2008. Nonetheless, they really believe that they are on track, and that they can -- at least those things that are off track, like the campaign fund-raising, they have made moves to get it back together.

ROBERTS: How are we going to be able to keep looking through the microscope for as long as we're going to have to in this political season?


ROBERTS: I don't know.

CROWLEY: You know, we will just find a way.

ROBERTS: Candy, thanks very much. CROWLEY: Sure.

ROBERTS: Good to see you.

Up next: The British sailors and Marines captured by Iran and paraded before the cameras, they're now singing a very different tune.

Also tonight: pets, poison, and profits.


ROBERTS (voice-over): They use it to make plastics. Was it added to a pet food ingredient just to make money?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's a pretty simple way to say it, but that's exactly right. You're trying to convince your customer that you have higher-quality protein than you actually have.

ROBERTS: Only on 360: a possible money motive in the poisoned pet tragedy.

Also: the last thing you want to hear at a hospital.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All I heard was the surgeon yell very loudly to call 911.

GARY TUCHMAN, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: And were you stunned that, here you are in a hospital, and they're calling 911?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All I can remember saying is -- looking at him and saying, you have got to be kidding.

ROBERTS: It's no joke. A man died. See how to make sure it never happens to you tonight on 360.



ROBERTS: Today, for the first time publicly, some of the British marines and sailors who were held captive in Iran for nearly two weeks told their side of the story. The world had watched them on Iranian television during their captivity. Each time we heard them, they seemed to be choosing their words very carefully, to no one's surprise.

But, today, they were candid. And what they said was riveting.


ROBERTS (voice-over): Today, they faced more television cameras, this time to set the record straight.

LIEUTENANT FELIX CARMAN, BRITISH ROYAL NAVY OFFICER: Let me make it absolutely clear. Irrespective of what has been said in the past, when we were detained by the IRG, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, we were inside internationally-recognized Iraqi territorial waters. And I can clearly state we were 1.7 nautical miles from Iranian waters.

ROBERTS: In front of a roomful of press, the former hostages spoke freely. And what they said sounded nothing like this.

SEAMAN NATHAN THOMAS SUMMERS, BRITISH ROYAL NAVY: I would like to apologize for entering your waters without any permission.

CARMAN: We have been treated with a great deal of respect and dignity. All our needs have been catered for. We have been given food and bedding.

LEADING SEAMAN FAYE TURNEY, BRITISH ROYAL NAVY: We had a very pleasant stay under -- like, the conditions we were in.

ROBERTS: Pleasant isn't a word they used today.

CARMAN: We were blindfolded, our hands were bound. We were forced up against the wall. People were cocking weapons in the background, which, as you can imagine, was an extremely nerve-racking occasion. Throughout our ordeal, we faced constant psychological pressure.

ROBERTS: Pressure intensified by isolation. The hostages said they were held in separate prison cells, the men in one area, and Faye Turney, the only female hostage, in another.

CAPTAIN CHRIS AIR, ROYAL MARINES: She was told shortly afterwards that we had all been returned home and was under the impression for about four days that she was the only one there. So, clearly, she had -- subjected to quite a lot of stress that we, unfortunately, we didn't know about and we weren't subjected to ourselves.

ROBERTS: Turney wasn't at today's press conference. Her comrades said they worried about her throughout the ordeal.

AIR: Being in Islamic country, Faye was subjected to different rules than we were.

ROBERTS: During their captivity, the British marines and sailors say they were given rice and flatbread to eat, and questioned repeatedly.

CARMAN: We were interrogated most nights and presented with two options. If we admitted that we had strayed, we would be back on a plane to the U.K. pretty soon. If we didn't, we faced up to seven years in prison.

ROBERTS: The hostages said the only time they saw each other was during televised gatherings, like these. One of the strangest things to happen came on day two of their captivity. They were measured, according to one hostage, for shoes and suits. Just why would become clear 10 days later.

CARMAN: On day 12, we were taken to a governmental complex, blindfolded and then given three-piece suits to wear. We watched the president's statement live on television and it was only then that we realized we were to be sent home.

ROBERTS: There would be one more photo-op before it was all over. They were made to line up and meet President Ahmadinejad one at a time.

CARMAN: My advice to everyone was not to mess this up now. We all wanted to get home.

ROBERTS: And, now that they are home, they're not holding their tongues, not anymore.

JOE TINDELL, BRITISH ROYAL NAVY: As far as I'm concerned, the whole thing was a complete media stunt. And I have got nothing else to say, really. I'm not their biggest fan. Put it that way.


ROBERTS: We should note that several of the former captives have said they don't blame the Iranian people for what was done to them.

It wasn't the first time, of course, that Iran has taken Westerners captive. Here's the "Raw Data" on that.

In November 1979, dozens of angry Iranian students stormed the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and took 66 Americans hostage. They freed 13 of them within weeks, and another later because he had multiple sclerosis. But the 52 remaining hostages were captive for 444 days. They were freed after outgoing President Jimmy Carter brokered a deal to unfreeze Iranian assets.

Coming up next: finding God on eBay. Sacred relics for sale, is it right? Is it real? That's coming up.

Also tonight: the pet food scare. Did a scam cause cats and dogs to get sick? We're "Keeping Them Honest."


ROBERTS: The pet food recall -- our search for answers took us to a company in China. Tonight, for the first time, Chinese officials say they will investigate.

The recall has generated huge interest. We have gotten thousands of e-mails, some thanking us, others making suggestions, like this one from Ben in Ohio, who wrote: "You should really should put together a single, easily readable list of all the pet foods that have been recalled."

Ben, we have done just that. You will see it running on the bottom of your screen all day on CNN, not there just at the moment, but it will be again.

You can also find links to the information on our Web site at

And we continue to investigate. CNN's Joe Johns "Keeping Them Honest" tonight.


JOE JOHNS, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): When will it end? Del Monte Pet Products announcing it is extending its recall to a variety of treats, snacks, and beef sticks for dogs -- the company called it a precautionary measure -- another day in what could turn out to be the largest pet food recall in history.

And the one thing everyone can agree on is that a chemical called melamine was found in wheat gluten that was used to make the food. The chemical simply isn't supposed to be there, but it appeared at levels of 6 percent or higher, which would be considered a very large amount if this were a random -- in other words, accidental -- contamination.

All of the companies that bought or sold the gluten deny adding melamine, but one theory FDA investigators are exploring is whether the melamine was introduced intentionally into the wheat gluten. Why would somebody do that?

(on camera): One answer is that this whole thing could have been about money, in other words, to make it look like the wheat gluten had higher levels of protein than it actually did, and, therefore, could be sold for more money.

(voice-over): That's right. More protein is considered good. So hypothetically, at least:


JOHNS: Dan Watts is a chemist with the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He says melamine is rich in nitrogen. Protein is rich in nitrogen. High levels of nitrogen would make wheat gluten appear to have lots of protein. But the chemical wouldn't actually raise the protein levels at all.

So, basically, the theory FDA is investigating is that someone could have been trying to run a scam, with no reason to believe any pets would get sick as a result of it.

WATTS: And not necessarily setting out to do anything that was going to be harmful, perhaps setting out to do something that was a commercial fraud.

JOHNS: Until now, no firm research has ever suggested that melamine could be harmful to dogs and cats. And the government is still not certain whether the chemical itself has actually sickened or killed the pets, or if melamine is actually a so-called marker for some other toxic substance.

The research is spotty, and there's not even a basic clearinghouse to track all the pets sickened or killed. The FDA has turned to one indicator, though, the chain of 600 Banfield pet hospitals across the U.S. plugs information into a database every time an owner shows up with a sick pet.

Banfield says it has seen a 30 percent increase in the number of cats diagnosed with acute or chronic kidney failure, compared with a normal period. But the hospital group says it's difficult to extrapolate from that how many pets have been sickened or killed.

The FDA says it has received more than 12,000 calls from pet owners about tainted food, but it doesn't break out how many have actually been affected.

DR. KAREN FAUNT, BANFIELD, THE PET HOSPITAL: We will never know the total number of pets that were affected by this. There's just no way.

JOHNS: Like the FDA, Banfield says it is starting to see fewer reports, so the worst for pet owners might be over. But the FDA is just beginning to get to the bottom of why pets all over the country got sick or died from eating contaminated food.

Joe Johns, CNN, Washington.


ROBERTS: And, as we mentioned before, you can see all of the recalled pet food in the ticker at the bottom of the screen. My apologies. It was there when I mentioned it earlier. The pictures that I'm looking at are upstream of where the ticker is added on.

You can find links to the same information also on our Web site at

Later on: a pet story that has one owner crying tears of joy for a dog that was dog gone, but not anymore.

And articles of faith -- next.


ROBERTS (voice-over): The Shroud of Turin, remnants of a cross, the bones of saints, they connect millions to Christ, and more.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): Illnesses come from our sins. People come and repent and touch the relics of the saint, and are healed.

ROBERTS: More than memorabilia, but how much more? We will investigate the history, the theology, and the reality of holy relics.

Also: the last thing you want to hear at a hospital.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All I heard was the surgeon yell very loudly to call 911.

TUCHMAN: And were you stunned that, here you are in a hospital, and they're calling 911?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: All I can remember saying is -- looking at him and saying, you have got to be kidding.

ROBERTS: It's no joke. A man died. See how to make sure it never happens to you -- when 360 continues.



ROBERTS: A group dedicated to honoring Christian relics today called for a Good Friday protest aimed at eBay. It wants the online auction site to stop selling scraps of cloth, bone, and hair supposedly of sacred origin.

Whether the relics are genuine or not doesn't seem to matter much to believers. The passion stirred up by the items is decidedly real.

CNN's David Mattingly reports.


DAVID MATTINGLY, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Joan of Arc burned at the stake 1431. Her remains displayed in a French museum, declared a fraud in 2007.

The Shroud of Turin surfaced in the 1300s as the burial shroud of Jesus, labeled a medieval fake in 1988. But in 2005 a new study suggested the old tests were flawed.

Such is the mysterious and contentious world of holy relics: revered pieces of Christian history, or maybe more accurately, revered pieces of historic Christians.

DAVID O'CONNELL, PRESIDENT, CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY OF AMERICA: A first class relic would be a piece of bone or a piece of the body of the saint.

A second class relic would be something that the saint used or held or touched his body or her body, that the saint had in his or her possession.

And a third class relic would usually be a piece of cloth or some material touched to either a first class relic or a second class relic.

MATTINGLY: The church does not attribute any power to relics, but there are churches all over the world. In 2000 pilgrims lined up in Moscow, hoping to be healed by the relics of a third century physician who was martyred for treating the poor.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE (through translator): I cried and begged that I could come and touch the icon of Saint Pantenemon (ph). I asked so much, and, look, God sent a woman to help me.

MATTINGLY: The church considers the display of relics a way to celebrate great deeds and sacrifices in the name of faith. Verifying their authenticity is not always possible. DR. RICHARD VALANTASIS, CANDLER SCHOOL OF THEOLOGY: The positive statement is that the Christian faith is a material faith in the sense that it was the true flesh of Jesus that God inhabited and took on in his enfleshment. And, therefore, material substances are extremely important.

MATTINGLY: Theologian Richard Valantasis once kissed the skull of St. Andrew, on a display at a cathedral in Greece. He says it was an act of respect to the memory of the saint, not to the relic itself.

VALANTASIS: Now, whether it's Saint Andrew or not. I don't know. But in a sense it doesn't matter because, you know, you're venerating the saint, regardless of whether it's his actual body or not.

MATTINGLY: It's a tradition dating back to the earliest days of Christianity, but it was the middle ages when the interest and all the questions about relics flourished.

Today there are relics that some believe come from Jesus himself. The foreskin from the circumcision of baby Jesus. Remnants of the loincloth he wore on the cross. And a multitude of fragments from the cross itself, kept in boxes or shrines called reliquaries.

(on camera) How credible is this?

VALANTASIS: It's not credible at all, I don't think. When my wife and I were in Florence, in fact, in Redomo (ph), they have a whole room full of reliquaries, and they probably have enough wood of the true cross to build a house.

MATTINGLY (voice-over): In secular terms, think of it as the world's most beloved collection of memorabilia, way bigger than baseball cards. Way more profound than Elvis.

LAWRENCE CUNNINGHAM, THEOLOGIAN: When people go to Graceland and line up by the hundreds of thousands during the year to look at the king's house and to -- they actually leave notes at his graves -- at his grave and so on.

MATTINGLY: And with the approach of Easter, the day that Jesus rose from the dead, thousands converge on the Church of the Holy Sepulcher, widely believed to be the spot where Jesus was crucified and buried. A physical location where those full of faith come to celebrate the deeds of the most venerated figure in history.

David Mattingly, CNN, Atlanta.


ROBERTS: With more insight, joining us now is Sandra Scham, an apropos name for this segment. She's a professor of biblical archeology of Catholic University in Washington and also editor of the publication "Near Eastern Archaeology".

You heard the story about Joan of Arc's remains. They had been authenticated by the Catholic Church. Now found to be fake. How do they test for authenticity?

SANDRA SCHAM, PROFESSOR OF BIBLICAL ARCHEOLOGY, CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY: Well, I don't think you can really test for authenticity. There are a number of tests that you can do on a relic or any artifact to find out how old it is and also to find out what it's made of.

But as far as even if you did find out it was from the date that it was supposed to be from, there is nothing really that would connect it definitively to Joan of Arc or Jesus or any of the saints.

ROBERTS: And Joan of Arc put to death in the 1420s. The bones that were inside, what were believed to be -- inside the pocket that was holding what were believed to be the remains of Joan of Arc, turned out to be from a mummy who was entombed some 2,000 years before she even lived.

SCHAM: Well, there are a number of situations where they've found that doing tests on these things they find that they are older or that there are intrusions from other artifacts in that case. Some mummies were stolen in huge numbers from Egypt at that time and ended up in all sorts of places, including apothecary shops as mummy dusts. So surprising.

ROBERTS: Sandra, what makes these relics so attractive that the faithful will make pilgrimages to see them? Is it a way of making faith tangible?

SCHAM: Well, it's sort of interesting, because I think that this is something that makes archaeology attractive to people. They want to touch something from the past.

And the more important that the past is, the more important it is to have some sort of physical remainder of it, to have something they can see and just have something that's concrete, so I do think it's very important. It's the same reason that people make pilgrimages to the holy land.

R0BERTS: And for some people it doesn't matter if the item is real or not. It's just the idea of it that makes it real for them?

SCHAM: Well, I think that's a lot of it. I think that a lot of the sites in Jerusalem, for example, that Christians visit cannot, in any way, be connected with Jesus definitely. The Christians still like to feel they're walking in places where Jesus walked, touching places that Jesus could have touched.

And as far as authenticity goes, I don't think you can ever use archaeology or any kind of scientific methods to decide questions of faith. I mean, people want to believe in these things, then I think it's important.

ROBERTS: The Shroud of Turin, believed to be the burial cloth of Christ, was initially thought to be real. Then tests said it was fake. Now those tests are being questioned. Could it still be authentic? SCHAM: Authentic -- well, it could certainly be authentically of the time that is supposed to be from, and that's as far as the tests will get you. There's no -- there's -- there's nothing to compare it to as far as DNA from Jesus, for example, although the people who found the Jesus tomb claim to have it.

But there's really nothing that could connect it absolutely to Jesus, but according to the newer test, it does seem to be from that time period.

ROBERTS: Has there always been a skepticism about the authenticity of these relics? Or is this a recent phenomenon now that we have the technology to be able to determine age and possible origins?

SCHAM: Oh, I think that definitely there's always been skepticism. If you remember in Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales", "The Pardoner's Tale" talks about the pardoner having a pillowcase full of fake relics that people could touch in order to get absolution, so -- and this was in the middle ages. Certainly, from at least that time people have been skeptical about these things.

ROBERTS: Well, it's a terrific subject, particularly at this type -- this time of year.

Sandra Scham from Catholic University. Thanks. Appreciate it.

SCHAM: Thank you.

ROBERTS: One of the largest volcanic eruptions in recent memory. We've got the spectacular pictures of it coming up.

Also, tonight, a story that will leave you enraged. A hospital without a doctor, a patient with time running out. And what do you do?


ROBERTS: The 911 emergency line has been around for more than 30 years now and saved countless lives with outdated equipment and inevitable human error makes the system highly fallible when it's even available.

With that as a backdrop, it might surprise you to know that some small for-profit hospitals are short-staffed at times, so short- staffed they rely on 911 to pick up the slack.

You're at a hospital. You have a problem. They call 911?

CNN's Gary Tuchman reports.


GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is Steve Spivey's father, his mother and wife. What they went through when Steve was in the hospital was harrowing. TRACY SPIVEY, WIFE OF PATIENT: He was panicking, very scared. I had never seen that kind of fear in his eyes ever.

TUCHMAN: Steve Spivey, a father of three, was in this Abilene, Texas, hospital for neck surgery after a truck accident. The operation seemed to go well, but the 44-year-old started to choke that night. His wife was at his side.

SPIVEY: Nurses felt like he was just having a panic attack and the last words he said were, "No, I'm in trouble."

TUCHMAN: The hospital Spivey was in is one of about 140 in the country owned by the physicians who work there, but all the doctors had gone home for the day when Steve lost the ability to breathe.

SPIVEY: His eyes were bright green, and they turned very dark. His face turned dark. And he grasped my hands and shook them like this and looked me in my eyes and then closed his eyes and went out. That was his last breath.

TUCHMAN: Tracy Spivey kept yelling to call a doctor, but in the meantime, incredibly, she says she performed CPR by herself for 15 minutes.

SPIVEY: There was no pulse. I checked, you know, three different places for pulse and could find none. I told them we have no pulse. The one nurse said, "What's wrong? What's happening?"

I said, "He's dying."

TUCHMAN: About two hours after Steve started gagging, the surgeon arrived.

SPIVEY: All I heard of the surgeon yell very loudly to call 911.

TUCHMAN (on camera): And were you stunned that here you are in a hospital and they're calling 911?

SPIVEY: All I can remember saying is looking at him and saying, "You've got to be kidding."

TUCHMAN (voice-over): Steve Spivey was pronounced dead at a different hospital.

This week Tracy went back to the hospital with her attorney as they met with a hospital lawyer in preparation for a likely lawsuit.

DARRELL KEITH, ATTORNEY: I look forward to being their champion.

TUCHMAN: Darrell Keith is her lawyer.

KEITH: Well, I think that the physician-owned hospitals, as a general rule, tend to be more profit-driven than patient safety- driven.

TUCHMAN (on camera): After the death of Steve, the federal government decided to no longer allow the use of Medicare at this hospital, and now the facility is shut down.

(voice-over) The hospital CEO did not want to go on camera, but did sell us, "911 is a last resort to Mr. Spivey's case. We were trying to get the patient to a higher level of care."

He also said that the facility may reopen some day in a different form.

At another physician-owned hospital in Arlington, Texas...

GREG WEISS, USMD HOSPITAL AT ARLINGTON: If we treat every patient like a family member, the patients will want to come here. The referring doctors will want to refer here.

TUCHMAN: ... doctors are in the facility around the clock. The physicians here at USMD reject the broad-brush criticism they hear about doctors owning hospitals and have immense pride in their facility.

DR. JOHN HOUSE, PHYSICIAN OWNER, USMD HOSPITAL: We want a place where we can take care of our patients the way that we want to take care of our family members, and we have the ability to do that by owning and controlling our own facility.

TUCHMAN: But some members of Congress want to take a closer look at how these types of hospitals are regulated.

REP. PETE STARK (D), CALIFORNIA: The hospitals are often second- rate. Sometimes illegal. And it takes profitable business away from community hospitals.

TUCHMAN: Tracy Spivey still has nightmares about when she told her 10-year-old daughter the horrifying news.

SPIVEY: I just put her in my lap and held her, told her to be strong, and I said, "Baby girl, our daddy got very sick, and Daddy is not coming home."

TUCHMAN: Tracy still can't believe a hospital had to dial 911.

Gary Tuchman, CNN, Abilene, Texas.


ROBERTS: Coming up next tonight, giving 360. A teen helping families through their darkest days.

Plus, a dog missing for four years finally back with his owner. So where was he all that time? It's our "Shot of the Day" when 360 continues.


ROBERTS: The "Shot of the Day" is coming right up. A Boston terrier turns up far, far, far away from home and years later. A remarkable story. First, Erica Hill from Headline News joins us now with a "360 Bulletin" -- Erica.

ERICA HILL, HEADLINE NEWS ANCHOR: John, stock markets closed today for Good Friday, but there is still some big news from the business world to tell you about.

The Labor Department releasing a stronger than expected job report today: 180,000 new hires last month, which helped push employment -- unemployment rate, that is, to a five-month low of 4.4 percent.

Off the Greek island of Santorini, divers searching for two missing passengers from a cruise ship that hit a reef and sank. A Frenchman and his daughter were reported missing after nearly 1,600 people were rescued from that ship yesterday.

In the Indian Ocean on the island of Reunion, one of the most active volcanoes putting on quite a show. Lava flowing to the sea, cutting off roads, forcing residents to flee their homes. There are no reports of injuries. The volcano, by the way, has already erupted twice this year.

And meet Elsie McQueen of Chico, California. The 102-year-old hit a hole in one yesterday, setting a new world record. That hole was a 96-yard par three. She hit the ball with her driver, and due to a slope of the green, the ball fell in the hole.

She and her golfing buddies had no idea what had happened. They were looking around for the ball until one of them spotted it in the cup. We're told Elsie fell into a state of amazed shock -- John.

ROBERTS: I can imagine that she would. And you know, Erica, if I look at the way that I play golf, if I played every day by the time I hit 102, maybe, just maybe, I would get a hole in one.

HILL: Maybe you would get that shot, too. There you go.

ROBERTS: That was an incredible shot, but now our "Shot of the Day". You've got to check this one out. This one just goes to show you that if you ever lose your pet, don't give up. This little guy, Mickey, a Boston terrier, disappeared, how long ago, do you think? A week?

HILL: A long time.

ROBERTS: Four years ago.

HILL: Can you imagine?

ROBERTS: From a suburban Kansas City home. Get this. He was found 1,100 miles away in Billings, Montana, and reunited with his owners this week. The dog just said he wanted see the great wide open.

HILL: Pretty incredible. ROBERTS: The woman spotted the dog roaming the streets and brought it to an animal shelter where they noticed that Mickey had one of those little microchips embedded under his skin.

HILL: I tell you.

ROBERTS: They called the company that made it and put them in contact with Mickey's vet, who knew how to track down his owner. Turns out that she used to work at the vet's office. Pretty incredible, huh?

HILL: Isn't that the best? I have to say I have a chip in my dog, and I once found a dog with a chip and got it returned to the owner. It certainly made me feel better for the owner.

ROBERTS: I don't know how the dog got to Billings, Montana, though.

HILL: That's the question that everybody has, and Mickey apparently not talking.

ROBERTS: Well, you know, dogs are like that. They keep secrets.

HILL: Indeed they are.

ROBERTS: Have a great weekend.

HILL: You too.

ROBERTS: See you.

And we want you to send us your shot ideas. If you see some amazing video, tell us about it at We'll put some of your best clips, like that guy falling through the ice the other night, on the air.

In the coming months, AC 360 will profile people with great courage, strength and amazing spirit. These individuals inspire others with how they live their lives. So tonight we begin a new segment that we're calling "Giving 360".

Here's one brave Georgia teen who's making a big difference in the lives of families affected by pediatric cancer, something that she knows about firsthand.

Randi Kaye has got her story.



RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Anna Hanger has had to deal with more than most 16-year-olds can imagine. Four years ago doctors found a baseball-sized tumor in her brain. It was malignant.

Her treatments have taken a toll. She's blind in one eye, almost deaf, and one side of her face has no feeling.

LISA HANGER, ANNA'S MOTHER: They told us we were going to lose her, but we've also learned that there are miracles.

KAYE: Today Anna is cancer-free, but it's been a hard fight. She says the love and support from her family and friends helped her through. In the hospital it wasn't the same for all young cancer patients.

A. HANGER: A lot of the kids around me didn't have parents who support them.

L. HANGER: She was agonizing over these other kids, and she was getting so many gifts that were duplicates. And then I talked to my brother, Bill, and he said, "Well, why don't you, instead of letting her keep those gifts, why don't you just set up a bank account and ask people to make donations?"

KAYE: They created Anna's Angel Fund, a charitable organization which to date has raised more than $130,000.

A. HANGER: We need to find her some shoes.

KAYE: The premise is to anonymously help families and kids battling cancer. Anna and her mother shop for clothing, gas cards, food, toys, and just about anything needed. They haven't kept count of how many people they've helped.

A. HANGER: Mom wanted me to learn how it was to give and get no thank you and just enjoy giving.

KAYE: Anna knows she's been given a second chance.

L. HANGER: Oh, cute.

KAYE: And she's making the best of it.

A. HANGER: It's such a good feeling knowing that you helped other people.


ROBERTS: If you'd like to learn more about Anna's Angel Fund or are interested in contributing, log on to That address, again,

In our next hour, the resignation of a top Justice Department official and more pressure on her boss, the attorney general.

Then caveman and dinosaurs living side-by-side? That question and others at the intersection of God, faith, and hard science. A 360 special, "What is a Christian?" Next.



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