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Geithner Grilled on Bailout; Facebook's Controversial Privacy Changes; Satellites Show Shrinking Arctic; The SUV of Electronics; Questions About Hitler's Remains

Aired December 10, 2009 - 17:00   ET


BLITZER: Happening now, exclusive details in the arrests of five American men in Pakistan suspected of plotting terrorism.

CNN has the only Western correspondent on the ground where they're being held. We're gathering exclusive information on the case you won't hear or see anyplace else. Stand by.

It may be the SUV of your home electronics. We're talking about those flat screen powers. We're finding how much power they really use and what some people want to do about it.

Plus, the famous Hitler's remains finally revealed. We now know what the Soviets did with them decades after his death.

I'm Wolf Blitzer.


We're getting new developments in the arrest of a group of American men in Pakistan accused of plotting terrorist acts. The State Department says representatives from the U.S. embassy, including an FBI agent, met with the men today. We're getting exclusive information about the allegations against them directly from Pakistani officials.

CNN's Arwa Damon is the only Western television correspondent in Sargodha, Pakistan, where the men are being held.

She's joining us with exclusive information -- I take it, Arwa, you had a chance to actually see where these men were.

ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Wolf. We had a chance to see the outside of the prison facility where they are being held. And now, we have been able to try to begin to piece together some of the details about this very convoluted and complicated case.


DAMON: (voice-over): The city Sargodha has become known as a stronghold of radical Islamist groups. And now police here say that they've thwarted a major terror plot.

This is the room where Wednesday they arrested five men who'd vanished from their homes in the U.S. at the end of last month. Sargodha Police Chief Usman Anwar says a few minutes later and they would have been gone. Anwar tells us they found maps highlighting known terror hideouts and an e-mail account the men used to contact their militant handlers.

USMAN ANWAR, POLICE CHIEF: They were getting specific instructions, I would say. And the telephone usage was privated.

DAMON: Now the five, as well as the father of one of them, are behind bars. Two are of Pakistani dissent, one Egyptian, one Eritrean and Ethiopian. Pakistani officials say all are Americans.

(on camera): Behind these doors is where the six are being held -- interrogated by Pakistani officials and, according to the Pakistanis, by the FBI, as well. None has yet been charged, but Police Chief Anwar claims that they could have posed a serious threat.

ANWAR: They were mercenaries. They were there for jihad. They could have done anything. They had U.S. passports. They could have access to many, many points which another person could not have access to.

DAMON: Also in Sargodha, we meet mother of one of the men. She doesn't to appear on camera for religious reasons. She says she came to Pakistan two months ago to look for a wife for her son. Then he disappeared from their home.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And one day he told me he will come back. When the whole day is gone, he didn't come back. He didn't pick up the phone. Next day again, the other parent told that all are missing. Then I told them now it's -- it's a serious thing.


DAMON: Wolf, Mrs. Farooq says that she doesn't believe that her son or any of his friends could have been involved in this terror plot. She says that when they reported them missing, they thought that they had been kidnapped and then suddenly they turned up in Pakistan. She says her son came here to surprise her and get married.

BLITZER: Arwa, what are they saying, the police where you are, about the motivation of these five Americans?

DAMON: Well, the police chief that we spoke to said that they did, in fact, have a lengthy discussion with the men about what their motivations were. And what they said to us was that these men were not motivated by Islam. That is to say, that it is not that they went and read certain phrases in The Koran that they perhaps misinterpreted and that felt that they had to do this specifically in the name of Islam. He said that their motivation was the ongoing atrocities that they said they had seen being committed against Muslims, saying that hurting one Muslim in one part of the world was like hurting everybody. And that is what they felt they had to fight back against -- Wolf.

BLITZER: How upset was this mother?

You spent some time with her, as we just saw.

DAMON: Yes. We did. And her demeanor changed quite a bit. In the beginning, she was very forceful, a bit agitated. But she didn't seem to be all that upset. It was only toward the end of our conversation that she began to get really rattled, as we were delving more into the topic of what was going to be happening to her son. She wasn't really sure. She was clinging to this notion that he had said to her that everything was going to be fine. And she was also very, very angry because she felt that her son -- her family, was being caught in the middle of this complex U.S./Pakistani Web and that, at the end of the day, they were just being used as scapegoats when, in fact, she's saying her son is innocent.

BLITZER: Arwa Damon doing some excellent reporting for us in Pakistan.

Thank you, Arwa, very much.

And we'll get back to you with -- when we get more information.

We're also learning new information about young men and the path to radical Islam they've allegedly taken -- the details, plus how to keep young Muslims from extremism -- we're going to talk about that with CNN's national security contributor, Fran Townsend and Nihad Awad of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. That's coming up.

And remember, there's also this way you can always follow us, what's going on behind-the-scenes here in SITUATION ROOM.

I'm on Twitter. You can get my Tweets at -- wolfblitzercnn all one word.

Jack Cafferty is joining us now with The Cafferty File -- Jack.

CAFFERTY: Were -- you were Tweeting at the Wizards game or something last night, weren't you?

BLITZER: Well, tonight I will be an official NBA Tweeter...

CAFFERTY: Oh, tonight?

BLITZER: ...when the Wizards play the Celtics.


BLITZER: It will be...

CAFFERTY: Well, what does that mean?

BLITZER: If you don't watch it, you can -- it's on our sister network, TNT.

CAFFERTY: But what does that mean, you're an official NBA Tweeter?

What -- what will you be doing? BLITZER: That means I'm going to send out my Tweets to those that follow me. I've got about 225,000 followers on Twitter.


BLITZER: And then the NBA is going to re-Tweet my Tweets to their million-and-a-half followers. And then many of the other people will re-Tweet their Tweets about my Tweets.

CAFFERTY: That's certainly...

BLITZER: Do you understand what I'm saying?

CAFFERTY: It's certainly something to look forward to, isn't it?


CAFFERTY: Funny you should mention all of that, because picture enough books to bury the entire United States under a pile seven feet deep. That is how much information we consumed last year.

A new study shows residents of the United States consumed 1.3 trillion hours worth of information last year -- everything from computers, TV, radios, cell phones, text messaging, Tweets, video games, movies, books, newspapers, magazines -- you name it.

That averages about 12 hours day for every person in the country. And that doesn't even include the information you soak up at work. It's mind-boggling and it represents -- this is scary -- a 350 percent increase from just 30 years ago.

Can you spell technology?

Researchers at the University of California San Diego found that people get most of their information from television, followed by radio, the Internet, video games and reading. And a lot of these things are happening now at the same time -- you know, multitasking -- people talking on the phone while they're e-mailing or text messaging while watching TV.

It is so bad people don't look where they're going anymore. They walk down the street, they've got their noses buried in some handheld device, oblivious to what's going on around them -- or worse, they do it while they're driving a car. They also sleep with these things by their bedside and use them while they're in the bathroom.

We live in a society where it's nearly impossible to turn the information off. It comes at us from everywhere, wherever we are.

So here's the question -- is there such a thing as too much information?

Go to and post a comment on my blog.

A lot of stuff coming at us from all -- all corners.


CAFFERTY: Too much information.

BLITZER: That's correct.

CAFFERTY: I got it.

BLITZER: There is such a thing. You're absolutely right.

Thank you.

CAFFERTY: All right.


BLITZER: Before he left for Pakistan, one of the American men now under arrest there left behind what's described as a very disturbing video. We're going to get details from someone who actually saw it, Nihad Awad of the Council on American-Islamic Relations will join us here, along with our CNN national security contributor, Fran Townsend. Stand by.

The hidden cost of one of this year's holiday gift items -- do you know how much power a flat screen TV really uses?

Now some states are passing laws aimed at these power hogs.

Plus, the secrets of Hitler's remains revealed -- what the Soviet Union did with them almost 40 years ago. New information coming out right now.


BLITZER: We're learning information about the young Washington, D.C. area men arrested in Pakistan, suspected of plotting terrorism. One of them is a local university student.

CNN's Brian Todd has been digging deeper on this story for us -- Brian, what are you learning?

BRIAN TODD, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Wolf, that student's name is Ramy Zamzam. He was a dental student at Howard University. We have found out he was the one who left behind what some have called a farewell video that drew the concern of local Muslim leaders.

We're also learning more about his background in the D.C. area, in the community and at school.


TODD: (voice-over): Ramy Zamzam, a dentistry student at Howard University, seen here on his Facebook page -- one of the five young men who went missing from the Washington area and was arrested in Pakistan.

On the campus of Howard, he was known as a cheerful, engaging student who happily took part in Muslim community activities.

Imam Johari Abdul-Malik Malik, the former Muslim chaplain at Howard, didn't have close connections with Zamzam, but gives new detail on what fellow students are saying.

(on camera): What did they tell you that Ramy Zamzam was risking by leaving for Pakistan at this time?

IMAM JOHARI ABDUL-MALIK, FORMER HOWARD UNIVERSITY CHAPLAIN: Well, you know, this is the exam season at Howard University. And if Ramy is not here now to -- to take the examinations in his senior year in dental school, it means that he's thrown away this academic year. And if he comes back, not only does he risk this year, but perhaps maybe he's thrown away his hopes of having the life -- the American dream that his family sacrificed, for they are a people of modest means.

TODD: (voice-over): A Muslim student at another nearby college who knew Zamzam tells CNN he was devout, but they didn't talk politics. Imam Abdul-Malik says he's been told the five young men all worshipped at the Islamic Circle of North America in Alexandria, Virginia and took part in youth activities.

ABDUL-MALIK: The feeding the homeless. We have a -- the youth get together from different universities and go to downtown Washington and distribute food to the needy. They were engaged in all of those types of activities.

TODD: Muslim leaders in the Washington area pledge a new outreach effort to counter militant recruiting in the US, including on the Internet.

IMAM MAHDI BRAY, MUSLIM AMERICAN SOCIETY FREEDOM FOUNDATION: We realize that the old traditional ways of just bringing them into the mosque and sitting them down in a circle and talking, that's not happening now.

TODD: One terrorism expert says the stakes are high.

PAUL CRUICKSHANK, TERRORISM ANALYST: At the moment, counter- terrorism agencies in the United States believe that there are a number of Americans still at large in the tribal areas of Pakistan, Al Qaeda's safe haven, potentially receiving terrorist training over there. That's causing a lot of concerns.


TODD: As for these five young men, Imam Abdul-Malik and other Muslim leaders in Washington do not believe there were any recruiters physically sent to the U.S. to lure them to Pakistan. Abdul-Malik says he believes they were radicalized and inspired to make that trip by the Internet -- Wolf.

BLITZER: And, Brian, someone else who knew Ramy Zamzam has also reached out to reporters, is that right? TODD: That's right. We don't feel we can use this person's name at this moment, but he is a youth community worker who knows Zamzam, connected to that mosque in Northern Virginia. He sent an e-mail letter to reporters. He describes Zamzam as someone with "good manners and a good attitude toward people," says he helped raise money to rebuild that mosque. He says there was nothing about Zamzam that led them to believe that he would become radicalized.

BLITZER: Brian Todd reporting for us.

Thank you.

Let's get some more on this.

We're joined by CNN's national security contributor, Fran Townsend. She was homeland security adviser to President Bush.

And Nihad Awad. He's and executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

Guys, thanks very much for coming in.

Nihad, is the Muslim leadership in America right now -- I know you have strong views on this -- doing enough to prevent these young people potentially from becoming radicalized?

NIHAD AWAD, COUNCIL ON AMERICAN-ISLAMIC RELATIONS: Well, we're trying to do our best. Now, we're -- we're owning to the problem. It is a small problem, but maybe it's spreading. It is not widespread. But it is important for us to take action -- effective action and...

BLITZER: Like what?

What do you want do?

AWAD: I think we are planning -- we're putting together an initiative and a Web site that will help people who might find themselves in a crisis like this to answer questions and deal with issues head-on and also refute the misuse of certain verses of the Koran or the misinterpretation of events and conflicts in the world.

The young people need clear and direct answers from people they trust. And we're trying to put this together. But, again, it is a small problem. It is not widespread and does not reflect on the community or even on young Muslims nationwide. (INAUDIBLE)...

BLITZER: Do you agree that this is a small problem?

Because we've seen several examples in recent years of young Americans -- Muslims who have become radicalized one way or another.

FRANCES FRAGOS TOWNSEND, CNN NATIONAL SECURITY CONTRIBUTOR: No, that's right, Wolf. We've seen it in Minneapolis, in the Somali community. We've seen this Pakistan and the recent disruptions -- the one in New York of Najibullah Zazi, as well as the one in Dallas; the guy in Chicago, Headley. And so there's a number of these that are very concerning.

I do think that, as a percentage of the overall population, it is a small problem. And we ought to be clear, there are many American Muslims throughout communities in the United States that quietly do cooperate with law enforcement, because they don't want to see this, because they don't believe that it represents Islam as a whole.

So there -- there's a lot of good cooperation. We need more. And this is the sort of effort we want to see.

BLITZER: You described yesterday, Nihad, the video -- what you described as a very disturbing farewell video that one of these five Americans made before leaving for Pakistan. Describe that video to our viewers. We haven't seen it, but you have.

AWAD: Well, the -- as I said, it's just a juxtaposition of verses of the Koran, which can be misunderstood by people, with images of conflict in the Middle East and justification that there's anger and people need to do something. There was no specific action or plan or destination that was included in the video.


AWAD: I was disturbed because young people who are impressionable, sometimes -- I mean they are adults and definitely, you know, they -- they -- they're responsible for what they do. But the fact that these have taken place without our knowledge, without their -- their parents' knowledge, is disturbing. And that's why I agree (INAUDIBLE)...

BLITZER: Because a lot of, you know, experts remember a lot of these videos over the years that have been made before suicide bombers go out and commit an act of terrorism. They leave behind some of those videos.

Turn around and take a look at this video, because that was back in 2005, one of the London bombers who was -- grew up in -- in Britain, Westernized. And he left one of those farewell videos.

Do you believe, Nihad, that the video you saw was similar to those other videos that someone makes before knowing they're going out to commit some sort of terror attack?

AWAD: No, it's not and I hope it is not. But I -- what I saw is I saw anger there, that people have -- have grievances and they want to address them.

What disturbs me is, again, the misuse of Koranic verses, the fact that I just have the -- I heard a thing that the video is shallow, it does not like symbolize or talk about like figures or -- or movements. But they talk about grievances and, again, the -- that Muslims have to do something.

Without any specific mention of what they want to do and what they were going to do, compared to videos like this, I saw a shallow and hopefully that was only this group of people without major connection to people.

BLITZER: How much of a threat is this to U.S. security?

You know, young Muslims, Americans, being radicalized via the Internet, perhaps going off to Pakistan or someone else -- someplace else, training to commit terror acts and then coming back to the United States?

You worked in this for a long time.

TOWNSEND: Yes. This is -- this is probably the most serious -- not only the most serious, but the most difficult to detect. Obviously, Americans and legal permanent residents get the least amount of scrutiny when they cross borders.

It was clear to us several years ago that what -- what was going to happen, as we clamped down on the borders, our enemies were going to adapt and look to recruit these kind of individuals.

Clearly, that's what they've done. And now we're seeing the fruits of that. Now, the good news is we have programs in place, working with our allies around the world, to try and identify those with travel patterns that would suggest that they are involved in this kind of activity.

We don't know yet whether these individuals were -- were leaving the U.S. to go overseas and fight and then come back or they were going to stay there and, presumably, were going to die.

I will tell you, Wolf, even without the specifics in the video, it's disturbing, because what we've seen is these more shallow videos -- the way they're used after someone is killed is as propaganda, where is then, because he's been a martyr, he speaks with more credibility when he -- when he refers to these verses in the Koran. And so they use it as propaganda even so. And so it -- that's -- it's very -- it's a very disturbing sign.

BLITZER: But you are reassuring our viewers out there that the Muslim community -- the leadership is going to become more assertive in trying to stop this radicalization?

AWAD: Well, actually, I consider this as a success story, the fact that parents came forward. They trusted us. So we have to maintain that trust. The law enforcement authorities were not aware of this case. So the Muslim community, their parents...

BLITZER: You went to the FBI.

AWAD: Exactly. We encouraged the -- the parents and we put them in touch with FBI, also with lawyers, to preserve their -- their rights, because we are a civil rights organization.

So I think the Muslim community took the lead to bring this to the attention of the authorities, for them to intervene in the right moment to prevent, unfortunate, you know, move.

BLITZER: Nihad Awad, thanks very much for coming in.

AWAD: Thank you.

BLITZER: Fran Townsend, thanks to you, as well.

TOWNSEND: Thank you.

BLITZER: Tempers flare on Capitol Hill -- venting frustration over the advanced state of the economy. The Treasury secretary faces some bailout fallout.

Plus, a very pregnant woman comes to the rescue of a police officer and it's all caught on tape.


BLITZER: Welcome back.

Deborah Feyerick is monitoring some other important stories -- top stories, we're calling them -- coming into THE SITUATION ROOM right now -- Deb, what's going on?

FEYERICK: Well, Wolf, you know, if you think you're spending way too much money, you are in very good company. The U.S. government racked up a deficit of more than $120 billion in November. That's the fourteenth straight month it has spent more than it's taken in. And while that number is huge, it is still a lot less than the month previously. Now, President Obama has said once the current economic crisis ends, his administration will work to trim the nation's deficit.

And a frightening shootout in Times Square today. Police chasing a suspect shot and killed a man after he fired on them. Now, the shootout happened around noon outside of the Marriott Marquis Hotel in the Broadway District, as a crowd of pedestrians and holiday shoppers looked on. It's a very busy area. The man had reportedly been selling CDs. He fled after police asked to see his permit.

And, also, check out this video. As a pregnant Texas woman -- that's right, a pregnant woman -- jumps in to help break up a fight. Nine months pregnant, Angela Gutierrez, says she had to do something when she saw a police officer being attacked by a group of young men. Now, she, fortunately, was not hurt in the scuffle and the teens eventually fled. The officers said that the officer she helped suffered only minor injuries. Three teens have now been arrested in connection with that fight.

Boy, she's going to make one tough mom -- Wolf.

BLITZER: She certainly will.

Good luck to her.

All right, Deb, thank you.

Fireworks over the bank bailout -- the Obama administration's point man on the bank bailout comes face-to-face with an overnight -- oversight committee, I should say, here in Washington and there's sharp disagreement about whether or not the program should be extended.

Also, Facebook rolling out some new privacy settings, but they might make your personal information less, not more, secure.

And what really happened to Adolph Hitler's remains?

Secret KGB documents now revealed about when, where and how his remains might have been destroyed.

Stay with us.



BLITZER: To our viewers, you're in THE SITUATION ROOM.

Happening now, President Obama talks a lot about war as he humbly accepts his Nobel Peace Prize in Norway. More on his remarks in Oslo tonight. That's coming up.

She insisted there was no way she could pass a health care bill in the House of Representatives without a public option.

Is that still the case?

You're going to hear what the speaker, Nancy Pelosi, is now saying is different.

Hiding inside a massive spending bill -- a provision that lifts a decade's old ban on medical marijuana here in the nation's capital. We'll explain what's going on.

I'm Wolf Blitzer.


There's plenty of frustration over the bank bailout and some of that turned into a rather sharp exchange on Capitol Hill today. The Treasury secretary, Timothy Geithner, appeared before the panel that oversees the bailout.

Our national political correspondent, Jessica Yellin, is here.

She's covering the story for us.

It got sort of nasty out there a little bit.

JESSICA YELLIN, CNN NATIONAL POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Really testy, Wolf. There were real fireworks on Capitol Hill today when secretary of the Treasury, Geithner, testified before that watchdog panel which is set up just to question the Wall Street bailout. Now, the biggest fireworks were over AIG -- always a flash point. But this time, the bonuses weren't the sticking point. Instead, the big issue were AIG's payments to Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch. All told, AIG got about $165 billion in taxpayer support. After a huge infusion of taxpayer cash, AIG turned around and paid out billions of dollars to both Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch, 100 cents on the dollar. The head of the watchdog panel said Geithner had to explain why he didn't ask Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch to take a haircut, to take a little less money given the circumstances. The debate got heated.


ELIZABETH WARREN, CHAIR., CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE: As you are telling me that these counter-party obligations, these financial instruments that are bought by very sophisticated parties, are going to be treated effectively like deposits in checking accounts and saving accounts.


WARREN: Effectively with 100 cents on the dollar government guaranteed.

GEITHHER: They did because there was no --

WARREN: Which they had never paid.

GEITHNER: Two things. First of all, there is no other way in the context of that storm to protect the economy from that failure. We had no other choice in that circumstance.

WARREN: AIG believes that it had a choice until you moved in and that was that they could pay 90 cents on the dollar, 85 cents on the dollar, 80 cents on the dollar.

GEITHNER: I don't understand why this is so complicated.

WARREN: It is complicated.

GEITHNER: No. It has come down to the nature of choices. You either prevent default because default would be cataclysmic or you don't.


WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: That got testy indeed. What else came up today?

YELLIN: Lot of other issues. The panel challenged Geithner over his decision to extend the Wall Street bailout. They challenged him over whether it is a good thing banks are paying back bailout money so they don't have to be held to the government's new rules important pay and bonuses. And he was asked what else is being done to help Main Street and treasury secretary said he shares their frustrations and wants the bailout program to be shut down eventually. But he says it would be irresponsible not to extend the bailout program for now, Wolf. A really testy day in that hearing.

BLITZER: Only a few hundred billion dollars. Thanks, Jessica Yellin.

An eerie sight in the nature time sky. What's behind this other worldly appearance? That's what we are calling it. Stand by.

Facebook changes its rules about privacy. Some people say it's just too much information.


BLITZER: Here is a question. Are you one of the 350 million people that use Facebook around the world? You may want to check your privacy settings. The social networking giant changed the rulings about who sees what online. Some people are complaining it is too much information. Let's bring in our internet reporter, Abbi Tatton. She knows a lot about Facebook.

What's going on here, Abbi?

ABBI TATTON, CNN INTERNET REPORTER: This comes down to who sees what part of your Facebook profile. Is your information restricted to a small group that you control? Or available to everyone on Facebook? Or to everyone who uses the internet? Facebook admits their privacy settings have been complicated so they are updating them and asking all users to review the changes and choose their settings. Guess what? In this community of 350 million users, not everyone is happy. The Electronic Frontier Foundation points out that you now share more information by default. Your gender, location, fan pages, friend list, all available to anyone on Facebook and unless you opt out, some information shows up in search engines like Google so people who don't even use Facebook, just by doing a web search. Some people are complaining they are simply confused about the new rules and Facebook does promise they are listening. They posted a thousand word blog post to explain the changes. And another 600 words to address any confusion. For a process designed to simplify your online privacy, that's a lot of explaining, Wolf.

BLITZER: A lot of explaining indeed so I hope everybody is real careful with all that information. Thank you very much Abbi.

Deborah Feyerick is monitoring some of the other top stories we are following right now in THE SITUATION ROOM. Deb, what's going on?

DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hey there Wolf. Iraqi's prime minister canceled the planned meeting with defense secretary Robert Gates after the bombings in Baghdad Tuesday. Instead Nuri al Maliki met with Iraqi law makers who summoned him to discuss the attacks. At least 127 people were killed. More than 400 wounded. Gates says he in no way considers that missed meeting a snub.

And pilot fatigue was at issue on Capitol Hill today in the wake of the Buffalo crash. You remember this killed 50 people last February. Senators demanded that FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt explain why the agency isn't working faster on new rules that would prevent pilots from flaying when they are too tired. Babbitt says the FAA needs more time. The families of those killed want the rules changed as soon as possible.

In Norway, the mystery over this strange blue light may be solved. Theories about what it might have been range from a UFO to something to do with President Obama's visit. But the Norwegian Space Center says, quote, it is almost certain, unquote, that the light was caused by a failed Russian missile launched yesterday from a nuclear submarine. The blue color is attributed to the missile being lit from the sun below.

When you think family pet, you are probably thinking cat or dog but definitely not deer. Well, meet Dilly. She lives with family in Ohio. She walks upstairs and eats homemade meals and including her favorites, ice cream and spaghetti. Even has her own room. Dilly is also potty trained and I know you wanted to know that. She was brought to the veterinarian clinic five years ago barely alive. She was nursed back to health. And she's been there ever since. What I want to know is how they figured out spaghetti and ice cream with were her favorites.

BLITZER: That's everybody's favorite. Everybody loves spaghetti and ice cream. Who doesn't?

FEYERICK: You got me.

BLITZER: Thanks very much.

NASA is helping scientists get the big picture on climate change literally. We are going to show you what they are seeing from space.

And information overload, Jack Cafferty is asking you to weigh in on whether Americans are getting too much information.

Stick around. You are in THE SITUATION ROOM.


BLITZER: Right back to Jack Cafferty for "The Cafferty File." But before we get to "The Cafferty File," he may say he doesn't feel snubbed, defense secretary, Robert Gates. He flies in to Baghdad, risking his life. Fair to say. And after all of the United States military which he controls has done for Iraq over these years the prime minister has to meet with lawmakers there and doesn't have time to receive Robert Gates, defense secretary in Iraq? I don't know about you, Jack, but I think that's serious.

JACK CAFFERTY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, I think it is serious, too. And -- it is probably as symptomatic as what eventually will evolve to be the official attitude over there towards us. Perhaps we ought to pack up our money and our soldier and move over to Afghanistan where there seems to be much more of a need at the moment. That's disgusting. Gates is a good guy. You know, he's not some -- these senators and Congressman go flying around in the foreign countries and are treated like royalty. This man has tremendous integrity and served under the last two presidents. For al Maliki to treat him like that is disgraceful.

BLITZER: I'm shocked.

CAFFERTY: I am, too.

BLITZER: He does haven't time to see the defense secretary of the United States.

CAFFERTY: It is outrageous. I couldn't agree more. Is there such a thing as too much information?

Michael writes: "No but it's all about the quality now over quantity. Even as I write this, I'm using Google Reader tracking several other different news feeds, checking my Facebook and waiting for Twitter updates, while watching CNN on television and waiting for text messages on my phone. I'm 32 years old. I can only imagine what my daughter will be able to handle in the way of information by the time she gets to be my age."

Leah in Bradenton writes: "Nope, an informed public is one that's best equipped to guard its freedom. What we do need are people who can logically evaluate the quality of the data and sources that they invite into their lives each hour."

And Andrew of Los Angeles: "The inane garbage most of us send and receive on our mobile devices can hardly be considered information. If those trillions of hours were spent consuming meaningful, stimulating information I wouldn't be so bothered by the strangle hold technology has over our lives."

Dan in Santa Barbara writes: "I'm still not sure what you mean by that. Can you upload an instructional video so I can Tweet my reaction to my college instructor who can in turn let me know if I have a valid point before I respond? I'll text you."

Tim in Crown Point, Indiana: "God you're crabby. Every time I watch you, you're complaining about something. Lighten up!"

Katherine writes: "Jackie-me-boy, your latest gripe is one I have had for years and reminds me of a great bumper sticker I saw here in the Metro Boston area several years ago: hang up and drive!"

Janice writes: "Anything about Sarah Palin is too much information."

Randy in Salt Lake City: "No way. I'm anxiously awaiting the day when I will no longer have to carry around a Blackberry or blue tooth, but instead will have an internet communications device surgically implanted in my head. My goal is to become a robot."

If you want to read more about this stuff, there's more information at my blog.

BLITZER: You got one of those blue tooths?

CAFFERTY: I don't even know what that is. Is that thing you wear in your ear? No, I don't have one of those because I don't have a cell phone.

BLITZER: I know, I know.

CAFFERTY: I don't have any of that stuff.

BLITZER: Wise man.

CAFFERTY: A Neanderthal.

BLITZER: Your nuts. Stand by. If you want to read more on any of Jack's subjects, you can always go to his blog as he just said.

Despite the controversy over those hack e-mails researchers study climate change, most of the scientific community strongly agrees the earth is, in fact, warming. That conclusion is based on more than just observations here on the ground. CNN's Jim Acosta reports on more how NASA uses satellites to help climate scientist cease the big picture.

JIM ACOSTA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Wolf, those British scientists whose e-mails were hacked are not the only experts studying global warming. Over at NASA, scientists are collecting data from orbit now that shows the earth is getting hotter and changing fast.


ACOSTA (voice-over): NASA, same agency that put the shuttle in space and man on the moon --

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One small step for man.

ACOSTA: Also has roughly a dozen satellite satellites in orbit. He uses the satellites to keep a close eye on the stunning loss of ice in the arctic. He traveled to Greenland to confirm his findings on the ground.

If current trends continue within the next 10 to 20 years, we are going to see what in the arctic?

THORSTEN MARKUS, NASA SCIENTIST: We may very well see an ice- free summer in the arctic.

ACOSTA: This animation demonstrates why it is happening so fast. As the ice melts, all that is left to OK up the sun's rays is the ocean.

MARKUS: The solar radiation is most reflected from the ice where it is absorbed by the ocean.

ACOSTA: This accelerates the melting of the ice.

MARKUS: Exactly.

ACOSTA: Marcus, like many scientists at NASA blames the buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.

MARKUS: There's no doubt there is global warming.

ACOSTA: That doesn't convince skeptics that seized on the global warming e-mail controversy known as climate-gate and have now taken aim at NASA. An attorney with the Competitive Enterprise Institute which has received funding from ExxonMobil is threatening to sues NASA if it doesn't turn over its e-mails on global temperature readings.

CHRIS HORNER, AUTHOR, "RED HOT LIES": What I'm asking for is what the taxpayer owns and I frankly the law doesn't require me to have a reason for it. We want transparency.

ACOSTA: NASA is no stranger to controversy. James Hansen one of NASA's top scientists and a fixture of global warming protests accused the Bush administration of suppressing climate data. That accusation led to this inspector general report which found NASA PR officials had marginalized and mischaracterized climate change information.

JAMES HANSEN, NASA SCIENTIST: If we push the climate system hard enough, it can obtain a momentum. It can pass tipping points. Such that climb a change continues out of our control.

ACOSTA: Climate measurements are the earth's vital signs like our own.

MARKUS: If you go to a doctor, the doctor says cholesterol is high, blood pressure is high. And you may have a stroke. And the doctor suggests well, you know, maybe you should be more careful with what you are eating. Do you change your diet?


ACOSTA: NASA never had as many satellites measuring the earth's climate as it does now. Some of those eyes on the earth are reaching their life span. Without new funding NASA scientists worry the satellites will not be replaced -- Wolf?

BLITZER: Jim Acosta, thank you.

What you don't know about your TV could be costing you some money. Why some use more power why some use more power than you might think. Stand by for that. A decades' old mystery supposedly now solved. What the Soviet Union really did with Hitler's remains.


BLITZER: Looking to save some energy? If you are watching us on a flat screen TV, you are looking at what could be a significant energy drainer in your home. That could though change, and change soon. CNN's Dan Simon joins us now with more on what is going on with the flat screen TVs.

What is going on?

DAN SIMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Wolf, California is taking the lead on this issue telling the TV manufacturers to make TVs that are less power hungry. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

SIMON (voice-over): Flat screen televisions may have come down in price, but they are power hogs, the SUVs of electronics says the California Energy Commission.



SIMON: So by a unanimous vote, it is forcing manufacturers to make more efficient TVs to be sold in California. We have hooked up the device to show what it takes to power 42 inch plasma. It is requiring 200 to 400 watts, and by 2011 according to the new regulations, televisions like this should consume no more than 830 watts, one-third less than TVs today. 200 watts may not sound like a lot, because a hair dryer for example can require ten times that, but it is the collective savings that the chairwoman says matters.

KAREN DOUGLAS, CHAIRWOMAN, CALIF. ENERGY COMMISSION: These standards will save us enough energy to power about 864,000 homes. That is the equivalent of a massive 600 megawatt power plant.

SIMON: But critics, chief among them the consumer electronics association says that the regulations limit consumer choice and innovation, and besides they say, manufacturers are already making more efficient TVs without the government intervention.

JASON OXMAN, CONSUMER ELECTRONICS ASSOCIATION: Unfortunately what we have here is a small group of state bureaucrats who have decided to replace their judgment for those of engineers.

SIMON: The CEA says it may challenge the mandate in court. Bottom line, everyone wants more energy efficiency and how to get there is the question, but one thing that you can do right away is to adjust the contrast on your TV. Just by turning it down or making the screen darker, the energy draw can be as much as one-third less.


SIMON: And just by making that one change, you can lower your electricity bill by anywhere from $50 to $250 a month, and that is per television, and that is, Wolf, Senator Dianne Feinstein tried to make the California regulations nationwide.

BLITZER: Thank you, Dan Simon working the story.

And nearly 65 years after the reported demise, Adolf Hitler is still generating controversy, but it was long believed that the Nazi leader killed himself in the bunker near the end of World War II and other than a few bone fragments the remains were destroyed soon afterwards, but now, we are learning that the story is much more complicated.


BLITZER: And joining us now our correspondent in Moscow Matthew Chance.

Matthew, as you know, there is renewed controversy involving Adolf Hitler's remaining and the Russian involvement, and the reaction, you are getting in Moscow. What are you picking up?

MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, some fresh disclosures in response to that controversy about whether or not the parts of the bone fragments held by the Russians are genuinely that of Adolf Hitler, the Nazi dictator. We have had the chief archivist of the former KGB reveal the circumstances of why exactly these bone fragments came into the hands of the soviet forces, and what they did with them over the decades after the end of the World War II and most interesting it seems that the soviet union went to great lengths to make sure that any grave of Adolf Hitler didn't become any Nazi shrine. The remains along with his wife, Eva Brown, were first interned at a soviet base in east Germany in 1946 and stayed there for 24 years until the Soviet authorities in Moscow decided to hand that military base back over to the east German authorities, but they didn't want to leave Hitler's remains there in the hands of German nationals, so they moved the remains with the soviet force, and they handed that base back to the east Germans, and they then created the remains and ground them into ashes apparently and sprinkled them into a local river only retaining those two bone fragments, the jawbone and part of the skull of Adolf Hitler to keep in their archives. So, this is new detail that has not been previously revealed in public before, Wolf.

BLITZER: I understand that CNN has obtained video of that skull fragment, is that right?

CHANCE: Yes, I mean, the back in 2000, in fact, the skull fragment with a bullet hole, and the jaw fragment as well was put on public display for the first time, and I believe the only time since then. And CNN had a camera back there, what ten years ago? Nine years ago now, and have these incredible images of what the general historical consensus is evidence that Hitler not only bit on a cyanide capsule accounting for glass fragments in the jaw, but also shot himself in the head, and you can see the bullet hole clearly in the fragment of skull bone. This is very much the mainstream historical, kind of idea of what happened the Adolf Hitler and how he actually killed himself in the bunker in Berlin as the Soviet forces pounded on the gates literally of the city. So, those fragments have been filmed by us, Wolf.

BLITZER: So the case closed and the controversy is over, is that right?

CHANCE: I don't think that this case is ever going to be closed not least because recently, there has been a number of U.S. academics from university of Connecticut who have claimed that they have had DNA samples from the bone fragments, and they say they come from not a 50- something-year-old man, and Adolf Hitler was 56 when he committed suicide, but from a 40-year-old woman. So this is what their claim is based upon what their DNA, and the Russians have totally rejected that saying no way that the DNA evidence could have proved that and that is why they are giving us new historical evidence to try to add credibility to their version of events, Wolf.

BLITZER: Matthew Chance doing significant reporting in Moscow for us. Matthew, thank you.

And to our viewers, you are in THE SITUATION ROOM, and happening now, war, peace, and the president's prize.