Return to Transcripts main page
CONNECT THE WORLD
Shooter's Attorney Says He's Insane; Amy Winehouse's Funeral; Batiste Sacked as Argentina Coach
Aired July 26, 2011 - 16:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
BECKY ANDERSON, HOST: Police identify the first victims of the massacre in Norway, as the tribute in Oslo grows every hour.
Did extreme rhetoric motivate the shooter?
What can be done to prevent it from inspiring others?
Then, headed for a downgrade?
Well, even if the U.S. avoids default, its debt rating may still suffer. How that could affect all of us all over the world.
And Olympic countdown -- one year before it's put to use for the first time, we'll introduce you to the team that designed this.
These stories and more tonight as we connect the world.
"Well, this whole case indicates that he is insane" -- those words today from the attorney of Anders Behring Breivik, the man charged in Norway's worst peacetime massacre in modern times. Well, the attorney says Breivik sees himself as a warrior out to save the Western world from Muslim demotion. And he also says Breivik took drugs to keep himself strong and alert during the terror attacks. And he says he showed no empathy for his victims, most of them teenagers.
Well, police are questioning Breivik's claim that he worked with terror cells at home and abroad.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHAN FREDRIKSEN, OSLO POLICE CHIEF OF STAFF: So far, everything seems to be the way that he is alone. We have no -- no information about something else. And that is also linked to -- to some of the investigation so far at the -- at Utoeya and also what we have found at some addresses.
And so it seems that he could have done this by himself.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, the bombing and shooting rampage, you'll be well aware, has claimed at least 76 lives. Now, for the first time since Friday's attacks, we are hearing the names of some of the victims.
Michael Holmes, my colleague, joins us from Oslo with the details -- Michael.
MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Becky, that's right. Police said earlier today they would start releasing names and, indeed, they did, at 6:00 p.m. local time.
And you mentioned before that this memorial keeps growing. Indeed, it does. And think it's important to put names to numbers. So we'll -- we'll show you the memorial.
And I'm -- I'm just going to read these names, too, because I think it's important. Gunnar Linaker, who was age 23, was the first person named by police; Tova Knutsen, who was 56, was the second; Hanna Endresen, age 61; and Kai Hauge, age 32. Three of those people died in the bombing here in Oslo and the fourth died on the island in the shooting incident.
Now, you also mentioned that the lawyer has been speaking today, and, yes, it was quite an insight into the mind of Anders Brevik. We heard, as you said, that he took drugs before he carried out this massacre, "drugs to keep himself strong and alert," were the words of Geir Lippestad, his lawyer.
He said that -- when asked what he was like, what Breivik was like, he said he's like no one. He said he's like no one he's ever known before and mentioned that everything, as you said, points to him being insane.
He -- he made another comment, too. He said that Breivik was actually surprised he managed to get to the island. He thought that he would be stopped or even killed after the bombing here in Oslo.
I want you to listen to a little bit more about what he said regarding those cells you just mentioned, Becky.
let's roll that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEIR LIPPESTAD, BREIVIK'S DEFENSE ATTORNEY: He says that he is part of an international organization. He says that it -- there are several cells throughout the Western world. He said it was necessary to start a war here in Europe and throughout the Western world. So he's sorry that it was necessary.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: Yah, that's right, he's sorry that it was necessary, but he admits to all of it and has zero remorse about it -- Becky.
ANDERSON: People want to know what's going on in Anders Brevik's mind.
What are we learning about the state of his mind at this point?
HOLMES: Yes, his lawyer was -- was talking today about, you know, this is a man who hates immigrants, he -- he wanted to have -- he wanted to spark a holy war in this country and Western Europe, in the bigger picture, against, in particular, Muslim immigration. That's his focus, a very right-wing Christian fundamentalist viewpoint.
He hates what most people would consider to be a normal political system, as well, and really, in many ways, a -- a textbook extremist.
Here's his lawyer again.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
LIPPESTAD: This whole case is indicating that he's insane. He's in a war and he says that the rest of the world, especially the Western world, don't understand his point of view, that in 60 years time, we all will understand him. He just hates to every -- everyone who's democratic, everyone who lives in -- lives in the Western world, everyone who believes in a normal political system. So anyone -- anyone who's not an extremist he will hate.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HOLMES: And as people continue to come down here to lay flowers n (ph) light candles and put pictures and flags here at this makeshift memorial, Anders Breivik is spending his second night in remand, in solitary confinement. He will be back in court in eight weeks -- Becky.
ANDERSON: All right.
Michael, thank you for that.
Breivik's father, a former diplomat, says that he will live with shame for the rest of his life. He spoke to a reporter in France who is now living, saying his son must be mentally ill. He hasn't seen Anders in years and says that it will stay that way.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): No, I'll never have more contact with him. In my darkest moments, I think that rather than killing all those people, he should have taken his own life.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Those are strong words from a father.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: They are. But thinking about what has happened, I get so upset and I still don't understand that something like this could happen. No normal human being would do something like that.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, former classmates of Breivik are also speaking out, saying they never imagined that he would be capable of such horrific crimes.
Our reporter, Nic Robertson, picks up that part of the story for you.
MARIT ANDERSEN, HIGH SCHOOL FRIEND: He's not the loner. You know, he's not the person who -- who was struggling, who had no friends. I mean he had friends. He was smart. He did well in school.
NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Marit Andersen was a high school friend but is beyond belief that the man she remembered as an entertainer turned out to be a brutal assassin.
ANDERSEN: He would do little dances and he would, you know, say funny things -- you know, something that was atypical for somebody who looked like that and would sort of make fun of -- of himself in a way. And that was very endearing.
ROBERTSON: The attacks have the whole nation reeling. But the ramifications of the killings and his online ramblings don't stop at Norway's shores. The ripples risk spreading.
LARS GULE, OSLO UNIVERSITY COLLEGE: Not necessarily in Norway, a copycat could emerge anywhere, actually. And that is a real problem, not least because this is what Breivik wants.
ROBERTSON: Gule tracks right-wing radicals through their online postings. He's never seen anything as dangerous as Breivik's diatribe.
Thousands in Norway share his anti-Islamic sentiment, he says, and discuss their views in internet chat rooms.
GULE: The right-wing Web sites, they provide a greenhouse for extremist ideas, because they become isolated. People who do not share these ideas, they tend to stay away, which means that there is no opposition, there is no contrary argument, so they feed upon themselves.
ROBERTSON: Marit Andersen, Breivik's high school friend, says she tried to be that moderating voice, stepping in when she saw his anti-Islam sentiment harden.
ANDERSEN: Later, it became more extreme. And I remember after we all got on Facebook, we became -- I became friends with him there. And he had some rather outrageous statements there. So, you know, you can't say stuff like that. That's completely unacceptable.
ROBERTSON (on camera): That Breivik's extremism was not caught in some greater safety net will undoubtedly become a point of contention. What is beyond doubt is that this nation is changed forever and the closing of the court to the public is just the first manifestation of the price this peaceful, tolerant nation will be paying.
Nic Robertson, CNN, Oslo, Norway.
ANDERSON: Well, the massacre has led to increased scrutiny of far right parties across Europe. Now, critics believe their anti-Muslim rhetoric fans the fires of hate, inspiring people like Breivik. But today, a Dutch politician singled out for praise in Breivik's manifesto, rejected any association or any guilt. Anti-Islam firebrand Geert Wilders says he bears no responsibility for the actions of, quote, "a lone idiot." Wilders says his party operates within a democratic framework and has never advocated violence.
In a statement, he said: "That the fight against the Islamization can be abused by a psychopath in such a violent way is disgusting and a slap in the face at the global anti-Islamist movement."
Well, our next guest says it's tempting to write off Breivik as an ideological madman, but he is more complicated than that.
Sajjan Gohel is a regular guest on this show.
He's the international security director of the Asia-Pacific Foundation, which is an international policy assessment group.
As I said, a big thinker on this show.
You say complicated, complicated in what way?
SAJJAN GOHEL, ASIA-PACIFIC FOUNDATION: His process, his thought, was cold and calculating. On the one hand, he has the skill of people like Timothy McVeigh, the Oklahoma City bomber, in pulling together such a -- a powerful explosive device. On the other hand, he had an ideological component, like Ted Kaczynski, the Unabomber. Even the txt of his manifesto, the 1,500 page one about the European independence, that's a reference to the Ottoman siege of Vienna. He's had a thought process. He's developed it over time.
He's singled out three elements -- multi-culturalism, the left or the cultural Marxism, as he described it, and Islam. And he's identified what has to be tackled first, which was actually the left.
So his thought process is something he's developed over time. He's got a very disturbed doctrine, but it's one that he has articulated with some clarity.
ANDERSON: Breivik claims to be part of what's known as the Vienna School, which includes the Dutch politician, Geert Wilders, today distancing himself from -- from any violence.
Are there, though, parallels in their rhetoric?
GOHEL: To the extent that both have criticized multi-culturalism. But many have been very critical of that, especially in Europe. Angela Merkel, the German chancellor; also, David Cameron, the -- the prime minister of Great Britain -- have been vcll critical of multi-culturalism.
Where there are differences is that Geert Wilders has pushed for a more aggressive approach in terms of being tough in jimnn, tougher on -- on Muslim communities.
But where Breivik has, again, moved the box substantially is he's chosen political violence, something that Geert Wilders and others have not advocated.
ANDERSON: But even the U.S. Christian right might be accused by some as promoting similar sorts of values that we've seen voiced across the far right in -- in Europe.
How do we, as a society, prevent others from being similarly inspired by the sort of hate speech that, it's got to be said, we'd be naive to suggest doesn't exist?
GOHEL: This is going to be a big challenge, because, in many ways, what Breivik has done is he set a dangerous precedent. He's illustrated that the far right can carry out attacks, political violence, target those of the left persuasion. And that remains an enormous challenge.
We already face security threats from groups affiliated to al Qaeda. Now you have this new entity that's emerged. And in the past, the far right hasn't been successful other than isolated, random killings.
This is a clear statement of intent. And, of course, his manifesto is on the Internet, available for people to be influenced and indoctrinated by.
ANDERSON: He has suggested, at least, that he wasn't working alone. I mean you -- you know, you listen to the chatter across the Internet, I know, all the time. You're an expert here.
Do you believe him?
GOHEL: It has to be taken seriously. It shouldn't be dismissed out of hand. But you also have to be somewhat skeptical.
Why would he reveal that there are other cells out there, which could potentially be uncovered by the authorities?
Their plans could be disrupted. He's harming his own agenda by revealing that information. In any case, over the weekend, he had told his lawyer that he acted alone. So that's supposed to be some contradictory statements.
Ultimately, this is a man seeking notoriety, attention, oxygen of publicity. We have to be careful we don't fall into his trap by giving him that pulpit to be able to articulate his views.
ANDERSON: Sajjan, always a pleasure.
We thank you very much, indeed for joining us.
GOHEL: You're welcome.
ANDERSON: Our top story tonight, Norway begins naming its dead as the lawyer for Anders Behring Breivik gives insight into the mind of a killer. He says his client is likely insane, but it's too early to say whether Breivik will plead insanity at his trial.
Well, still, those statements today could preview a potential line of defense.
This is CONNECT THE WORLD.
You're with me, Becky Anderson, at 15 minutes past 9:00 in London.
Ahead on the show, helping others live -- on the day of her funeral, Amy Winehouse's father proposes a foundation to help those suffering with substance abuse. We're going to show you the other tributes to Amy in just a few moments.
Then, football coach Sergio Batista has a parting of the ways with Argentina.
And in 15, the big stand-off -- no deal yet in the U.S. debt crisis, as the deadline looms. We'll look at what a default would mean for you and me wherever you are watching in the world.
This is CNN.
ANDERSON: A very warm welcome back.
I'm Becky Anderson in London.
This is CONNECT THE WORLD on CNN.
A look at the other stories that we are following for you this hour.
And this just in to the CNN newsroom. Lawyers say the status hearing in the Dominique Strauss-Kahn sexual assault case has been postponed until August the 23rd. It was originally set for next week, August the 1st. The former chief of the International Monetary Fund is charged with trying to rape a hotel employee in New York.
Friends and family have bid a final farewell to Amy Winehouse at her funeral in London earlier today. The 27 -year-old singer was found dead at her house on Saturday.
And as Atika Shubert reports, fans have been paying tribute ever since.
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, friends and family have been gathering to say a final farewell to Amy Winehouse, friends like Mark Ronson, who, of course, was her producer for the album, "Back to Black." That album catapulted her into the spotlight with its iconic songs, like "Rehab" and "Back to Black," of course.
Now, it is a private ceremony and service that's being held in London. But here, in front of her house, is where her fans have gathered to pay tribute to the singer. And I just want to show you some of the items that they've brought here.
There's bouquets of flowers, poetry, pictures. There's a lot of photos of Amy Winehouse, like this one here with the message, "Dearest Amy, thank you so much. You touched my soul."
I've seen anon that said, "Rest in peace, queen of Camden," this has been her -- from the neighborhood she's at.
You'll also see here in between all the flowers, bottles of beer, vodka, wine -- a reference, perhaps, to the very public battles the singer had with drugs and alcohol addiction.
Now, we don't know the cause of death yet. A post-mortem examination was conducted yesterday, on Monday, but the results were inconclusive and toxicology results will take some time.
In the meantime, scores of people have been coming here every day and literally, for the last few days, there's just been dozens of people here every hour. And not only do you see the flowers here, but there are also flowers across the street at her house and they're playing music. And, really, it's a way for her fans to pay tribute and say how much she touched them with her music.
Atika Shubert, CNN, London.
(END VIDEO TAPE)
ANDERSON: Well, the United Nations says this is the children's famine, as it gears up to airlift emergency aid to drought-ravaged Somalia. Officials say the flights can begin taking off from Kenya on Wednesday. The World Food Programme says about a third of Somalia's population is on the brink of starvation.
Well, the U.S. is withholding some aid to Malawi after the African country's government used force against protesters there. Since last week, at least 21 Malawians have died in demonstrations over economic and political issues.
Now, a U.S. government agency says it's -- and I quote -- "deeply concerned" and it's halting assistance tied to a deal signed in 2007.
Well, in Southern Morocco, rescue efforts still underway for victims of a military plane crash. State media are reporting a C-130 that belongs to the Royal Armed Forces crashed into a mountain on Tuesday as it was trying to land at a military airport. Now, the state news agency says 78 people died. It's not clear if there were any civilians on board. Local sources say bad weather may have been the cause.
BP is back in the black just one year after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill left it facing heavy losses. The profits at Europe's second biggest oil company still missed analysts' expectations, shaving 2.5 percent off the stock price in today's European trading.
CEO Bob Dudley tells CNN that getting the share price back up is one of his top priorities.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BOB DUDLEY, CEO, BP: It was only a year ago, just, that oil was still flowing into the Gulf. Think about the year where we've restabilized the company, restrengthened the balance sheet. We've announced many divestments of assets, so we're a little bit smaller. We've closed those. We've announced new exploration deals across the globe.
Our credit ratings have increased. We're back heading in the directions that we need to. We've done many turnarounds of our operations in the -- this last quarter, the second quarter. We have more to do in the third quarter. 2011 is a year of consolidation for BP. I'm very clear that the momentum coming out of 2011 and 2012 is on top of things and we'll be very much improving.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: The CEO, Bob Dudley, speaking to us earlier.
Well, BP is also coming back from the failure of its proposed alliance with Russia's state oil giant, Rosneft, of course.
Well, the fast food giant chain McDonald's is revamping its menus and offering healthier, happier meals, we are told. Children at its restaurants in the U.S., at least, will be offered fruit instead of fries. The new Happy Meal will include a portion of apple slices, carrots or pineapple and only a half order of fries. The changes are part of McDonald's response to pressure from campaigners who blame fast food for childhood obesity. Try and sell that to your kids.
Coming up in two minutes, we're going to take a look at Sergio Batista's failure to match Argentina's dazzling array of football talent with results. Fans are still waiting after 18 years without a major trophy. And now the manager has paid with his job.
And what happens if the world's biggest economy fails to pay its bills?
We're going to have the latest on efforts to resolve America's debt crisis here on CNN.
We're at the half way.
Stay with us.
ANDERSON: Welcome back.
Twenty-four minutes past 9:00 in London.
You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD.
Now, his team included some of the world's biggest stars, but Sergio Batista couldn't deliver success. And now he has been removed as coach of the mighty Argentina. Batista's failure to win the Cup of America and end Argentina's 18 year wait for a major trophy has cost him his job.
Let's get more on that and your world sports headlines w Candy Reid in Atlanta.
Sergio Batista, you know, he followed in the footsteps of Madonna, who -- not Madonna, Maradona, who also didn't have any success.
What's going on with that team?
It seems like a poisoned chalice.
CANDY REID, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: A little bit. I suppose. But, you know, Maradona got into the quarter finals, didn't he, of the last World Cup. And then Batista got into the quarter finals of the Cup of America. So perhaps we have a theme here.
Sergio Batista, of course, was an awful lot of success as a player. He won the World Cup with Argentina back in 1986. Argentina last won a major trophy back in 1993. That was the Copa America.
Well, this year, they hosted the tournament, Becky, but lost in the quarter finals, as I said, to eventual winners, Uruguay, on penalties.
And on Monday, just hours after saying he wasn't going to quit because success at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil was really the main aim, Batista was pressurized to step down, which he did.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ERNESTO CHERQUIS BIALO, SPOKESMAN, ARGENTINIAN FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION (through translator): The commission of the national team has decided to rescind the contract that tied Sergio Batista with the Argentine Football Association, to suspend the match against Romania scheduled for the month of August and take advantage of all the time possible to think of who will be the next coach we choose.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, after predecessor, Diego Maradona, was refused a new contract following Argentina's quarterfinal elimination at the 2010 World Cup finals, Batista was given the job and vowed to build a team around Lionel Messi, the world's best player. But the failure at the Copa left plenty of AFA board members and fans questioning his ability to deliver at the World Cup in three year's time.
Now, local media believe that Alejandro Sabella, the coach of the 2009 Estudiantes side, which won the South American Live Cup (ph) is the man who can deliver Argentina a major trophy we may see soon.
Now, Romania say they will seek compensation after Argentina canceled that August the 10th friendly in the aftermath of Batista's departure. FURIOUS chairman, Nassia Sandi (ph), believes Argentina were bound by a $1.2 million contract to play a friendly in Bucharest. Romanian authorities have reportedly been planning for months in advance to inaugurate a stylish 55,000 seated stadium and have already sold some 38,000 tickets. They are hoping to play Portugal instead.
Now, in swimming news, Michael Phelps' world championship took another hit when he was stunned in the 200 meter free style by U.S. teammate, Ryan Lochte. Phelps led over the first 100 meters, until Lochte surged from third place to claim a narrow win with defending champion Paul Biedermann of Germany in third.
It's not all bad news, though, for the Olympic champ and former world record holder in the event. He remains on course for a possible five gold medals in Shanghai, which would actually match his haul in Rome two years ago.
Now, we'll have more on all of these stories on our half hour show, "WORLD SPORT," which is in about 60 minutes time. And we'll also have an interview with reigning champion, Kim Clijsters to see if she'll be fit for next month's U.S. Open. Let's hope she is -- Becky, back to you in London.
ANDERSON: Yes, absolutely.
I'm just wondering after the -- after the performance of Madonna in "Evita," maybe she would make a better case for the Argentinian team.
What do you reckon?
They need one, at least.
REID: I think that's...
REID: -- I think -- I mean she doesn't sing and dance, does she?
ANDERSON: All right.
REID: I'm (INAUDIBLE) they'd be fit as fiddles.
ANDERSON: Best of luck to whoever takes that job.
Thank you, Candy, as ever.
REID: Thank you.
ANDERSON: Candy Reid in -- in the Atlanta studios for you this evening.
Right. Deadlocked debate -- a rising deficit and a deadline of one week before the U.S. could -- just could -- default on its debt. The latest efforts to keep that from happening.
Small amounts -- huge -- small countries -- sorry, huge amounts of air traffic -- how Schipol Airport keeps all these people and their bags on the move.
And then a little later, in the next hour, ahead of schedule and under budget -- meet the men behind the centerpiece of the 2012 Olympic Games.
You're watching CNN.
Stay with us.
ANDERSON: You're back with CONNECT THE WORLD here on CNN, the world's news leader. Let me get you a check of the headlines at this hour.
The attorney for Anders Behring Breivik says his client is likely insane. He says Breivik believes he's a warrior protecting the western world from Muslim domination. Breivik has confessed to terror attacks that killed at least 76 people in Norway.
The UN hopes to start airlifting food to Somalia's capital tomorrow after it was unable to start today. Camps full of famine victims really need the help, but a last-minute bureaucratic snag kept the plane on the ground in Kenya.
At least 78 people are dead after a plane crash in southern Morocco. State media say the military aircraft crashed into a mountain as it was trying to land. Local media there say that there was bad weather in the area at the time. There were 81 people on board.
To Egypt, where ousted leader Hosni Mubarak is described as "weak." The state news agency says he is depressed and refusing to eat. Mubarak faces trial on charges of ordering police to kill anti-government protesters. The former Egyptian leader has been ailing since he was deposed in February.
Amy Winehouse's father says the singer was working on her drinking problem and had been sober for three weeks before her death. He released a statement Tuesday as close friends and family attended a private funeral.
These are your headlines this hour.
Edging closer to default and possibly financial disaster, US leaders have only a week left to strike a deal and raise the debt limit or else the -- debt limit, or else America won't be able to pay its bills, I'm afraid.
Earlier today, the White House said there are no easy ways out, no tricks, and no wiggle room. Months of bitter debate has turned into a high-stakes standoff, as you'll know, Republicans and Democrats each pushing their own proposals for reducing the deficit. But right now, as is, neither plan seems to have a prayer of passing.
Well, the top congressional Republican and the US president have been talking about the divide on primetime TV.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Most Americans, regardless of political party, don't understand how we can ask a senior citizen to pay more for her Medicare before we ask a corporate jet owner or the oil companies to give up tax breaks that other companies don't get.
How we can ask a student to pay more for college before we ask hedge fund managers to stop paying taxes at a lower rate than their secretaries?
How can we slash funding for education and clean energy before we ask people like me to give up tax breaks we don't need and didn't ask for?
That's not right. It's not fair.
REP. JOHN BOEHNER (R), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: You know, I've always believed the bigger the government, the smaller the people. And right now, we've got a government so big and so expensive that it's sapping the drive out of our people and keeping our economy from running at full capacity.
The solution to this crisis is not complicated. If you're spending more money than you're taking in, you need to spend less of it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: Well, the United States's public debt -- get this -- stands at nearly $14.3 trillion. So, something or someone has to give. Joe Johns is at CNN in Washington for you. The question is, who's going to blink first?
JOE JOHNS, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good question, Becky. First, there is, by the way, an underlying belief here that the Congress and the president will figure this out before there's substantive damage to the credit of the US in overseas markets.
But the main reason for the optimism, I think you can say, is past performance. The US has always increased the debt limit when it needed to in the past and difficult to imagine the government would invite this kind of self-inflicted wound to American taxpayers, at least on the heels of the recession, the financial crises we've been through over the last several years.
However, it would help if the political leaders in the Congress, and it's not just me saying it, but many observers, could persuade the rank and file to follow them. The leaders get the rank and file to follow them, but this has not been the case.
The Speaker of the US House has a plan to, as you mention, to avert default for six months. He appears to be facing open revolt on this issue from at least a handful of members of his own party if not more.
They don't like it because, for one thing, a short-term fix may not be enough to avert a downgrade in the US credit rating, and there may be questions whether the Speaker of the House actually has the votes to pass that plan. So, the leaders have to get the rank and file to follow them.
The second thing, I think, is that both sides probably need to do a bit more truth-telling. For example, there are some questions out there about how much cash the US will have on hand when this self-imposed deadline arrives.
We know at that time, the US Treasury Department tells us, the borrowing authority of the US ends on that date, but at least two respected financial sources have asserted the US will have more cash on hand than originally anticipated, which seems to suggest there may be some wiggle room to that August 2nd deadline.
So, everybody needs to be sort of speaking with the same amount of information. The Treasury Department told me today they still consider that August 2nd to be a very firm date. A lot of things for them to consider and a lot of people hoping they'll get it done.
ANDERSON: Whoo, it's going to be a busy week and a busy weekend. Joe, always a pleasure, thank you for that.
So, what countries are at risk if US Congress fails to reach an agreement? Let me just take you through this. China, which is the world's second-largest economy, of course, behind the US, is a top holder of foreign US debt. It has more than $1.1 trillion in US bonds, $1,153 billion, to be precise.
Japan holds nearly a trillion dollars of debt, with $907 billion. In third, it's the UK, holding $333 billion worth of US bonds.
Now, take a look at these next two countries, Taiwan and Russia. Taiwan has actually got more than $150 billion worth of debt, and Russia, well, they are owed $125 billion.
Earlier today, the head of the International Monetary Fund urged the US to clean up its financial mess and fast.
Christine Lagarde told CNN's Fareed Zakaria that American lawmakers need to come up with a convincing plan to bring down what she calls "unsustainable debt levels," and not just for the sake of the US economy. Have a listen to this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CHRISTINE LAGARDE, MANAGING DIRECTOR, INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND: I am worried because this debt ceiling issue has not been cracked. The issue is being addressed from multiple angles, but the debt ceiling is still on the table.
And the United States is the largest economy in the world, one that matters. One that has spillover effects, not just around the borders, but on a complete basis globally, and it's an issue that really is lurking in the background of each and every economy of the world.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: All right, let's just take this down, shall we? How would a US default affect you and me? I put that question to my colleague Richard Quest.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RICHARD QUEST, CNN BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: We don't know. And the reason we don't know is it's never happened before. The US has had a triple A rating since 1917, and the ramifications could be so far and wide.
The dollar would certainly feel volatility. We would know the bond market would be turned upside down.
There'd be counter party risk, because remember those CDSes, credit default swaps that caused so much mischief with AIG and Lehman Brothers? Well, we'd be back with them. All the people who had insurance against it, the risks are as unknown as the damage.
ANDERSON: You and I have been doing this for a long time.
ANDERSON: It seems almost inconceivable that the US would default on their debt. Whether, though, lawmakers get a deal or not before August the 2nd may not matter because the credit agencies may downgrade the debt anyway, and what would happen then?
QUEST: And that's a case -- it's not of can't pay, it's won't pay. If they do downgrade the debt, immediately US borrowing costs go up, interest rates go up, and it wouldn't be the -- it's not -- that would not be calamitous. We know what would happen.
But if it happens, the psyche effect on the US population, on the economy, on the government, on the -- it would be very damaging.
The United States no longer to have triple A, which is what every major economy has, that would be a very damaging situation.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ANDERSON: The clock is ticking, August 2nd, watch this space. You're with CONNECT THE WORLD.
Now, chances are, many of you watching this show tonight will be familiar with this. Let me show you how Schiphol Airport keeps 50 million of us and our baggage moving seamlessly through one of Europe's busiest hubs. It's no mean feat, I assure you. The latest in our special series, the Gateway, up next.
ANDERSON: All right, keep it simple. From easy-to-read maps to handling millions of pieces of luggage, Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport works extremely hard to avoid complications. The world's only major airport below sea level relies on its 60,000 employees to get you and me from A to B hassle-free.
We want to see how well this blue sky thinking flies, so we made Schiphol Airport the latest destination in our special series of reports, The Gateway. And getting behind the scenes is quite something, let me tell you.
ANDERSON (voice-over): Schiphol Airport is a 24/7 operation. In a country of fewer than 17 million people, 45 million travelers pass through this gateway. Over 40 percent of those passengers will not leave the terminal building.
JOS NIJHUIS, CEO, SCHIPHOL GROUP: Schiphol is unique because it's built under one roof. It's the one terminal concept. It transfers passengers from one destination to another passenger -- to another destination as means. The connection time should be as short as possible.
ANDERSON (on camera): High transfer passenger flows mean that bags have to be shifted quickly. This is only one of 140,000 pieces of luggage that will go through this system today.
ANDERSON (voice-over): Deep beneath departures one is the world's most innovative baggage system, designed to increase Schiphol's handling capacity to 70 million bags a year.
Robots work alongside manual handlers to ensure speed and efficiency.
EDWIN BOLWERK, VANDERLANDE INDUSTRIES: This is the very first hub in the world where the main amount of volume goes through the robots. At least 60 percent of the bags goes through the robots.
The challenge was getting the robots to function just like human beings would load bags, meaning gentle and being able to fill up carts and containers in a technical, professional manner.
ANDERSON (on camera): So, we know our bags are being taken care of, but just how much help do we need navigating our way around an airport?
ANDERSON (voice-over): Paul Mijksenaar is a navigational sign designer and the man behind wayfinding at Schiphol. He makes sure that each and every airport sign fulfills its purpose, to guide passengers from all over the world through the terminal and onto their destinations.
PAUL MIJKSENAAR, WAYFINDING DESIGNER: The big difference between Schiphol and many other airports is not the system itself, its gates and check-ins. But it's the consistency.
We start with information at the beginning when you enter the building and we finish it until you reach your destination. That's the goal that rules Schiphol Airport.
The interesting thing is the colors. You will see the yellow. You will see the black on a smaller typeface, so we have a kind of hierarchy. Big typeface for gates, smaller type for all the facilities.
ANDERSON: Color-coding is reinforced by the implementation of easily recognizable symbols, known as pictograms.
MIJKSENAAR: From psychology we learn that you only can use symbols for concrete facilities. If you've never seen a locker in your life, you cannot recognize the sign, either.
Unofficially, the number one question is, where are the restrooms? We make them a little bigger than other signs because there's such a need for them.
What you see is a map, but a map is a very difficult thing to read. We know that also by psychology. Most people don't know to read the map -- how to read the map.
You can find your way on Schiphol easily when you fly?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not always easily.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not always easily.
MIJKSENAAR: What are the problems?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The problem is that it's very often too far away.
MIJKSENAAR: Yes, yes.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It's too big.
What are you looking for, if I may ask?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Six M.
MIJKSENAAR: OK, and do you know how to find it from here?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, I think it's over that way.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It should be.
MIJKSENAAR: Should be, OK.
All right, did you look at the screens?
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Not always, no. Because very often I walk like this.
MIJKSENAAR: Schiphol is an airport that grows, grows, grows. It started one building, two buildings, three buildings, and we are building a fourth terminal building. Now, the longest walk distance for a gate is 20 minutes, but maybe in the future it will be half an hour.
ANDERSON: As the airport grows, so does the need for signposting.
MIJKSENAAR: We started 20 years ago, and most people say, 20 years for an airport? Is it never finished? No, it's never finished. It's a play garden for wayfinding designers because we could always add the newest ideas.
ANDERSON: In 2010, the number of global travelers nudged over the five billion mark and, as we look into the future, that number is expected to grow. A well-conceived airport is more than just a transit point. It's an ever-growing vital hub that has to evolve to match the needs of travelers.
ANDERSON: And there is a whole lot more about Schiphol airport, which is, of course, the feature of our latest series of reports for the Gateway.
It's on the Facebook page, facebook.com/CNNconnect. You can find time lapse video showing what is a life -- or a day in the life of the airport, there, behind the scenes at one of Europe's busiest hubs. That's facebook.com/CNNconnect. Do become a fan.
You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD here on CNN, I'm Becky Anderson in London for you. And we are counting down to the London Olympics 2012. In just two minutes time, we're going to talk to the masterminds behind this.
Building the venues that will be the stage for the biggest sporting event in the world. Find out while London will be a groundbreaker.
ANDERSON: Since winning the bid to host the 2012 Games six years ago, London has wasted no time in setting the stage for its third Olympics.
Now, we are on the eve of the one year countdown to the global sporting spectacle. To mark this momentous occasion, all this week, CONNECT THE WORLD is bringing you big interviews with some of the key players involved in creating an Olympics legacy here in London.
Well, what you have just seen there is the rise of the 80,000-seat Olympic Stadium, the centerpiece of the 2012 Games, here. It's gone up ahead of schedule and, according to organizers at least, under budget.
Tonight, our big interview is with two of the architects involved in the design, not just of this $550 million stadium, but the master plan that helped London secure the Games back in 2005.
ANDERSON (voice-over): Meet Jeff Keas and Philip Johnson, architects with Populous, the international design firm that has helped bring to life some of the biggest sporting events in the world.
Soccer City in Johannesburg, Olympic Stadium in Sydney, Nanjing Sports Park in China, just a few of the iconic stadia that they have created. And now, they're winning acclaim for their work on the London 2012 Games.
ANDERSON (on camera): As an organization, where do you start with a project like this?
JEFF KEAS, ARCHITECT, POPULOUS: Yes? Well, it started back at the bid stage, really. And we were fortunate enough to be part of that bid.
And if you kind of put it in airline terms, we started at the 30,000 foot level, and you start really at that macro level looking at how you're going to master plan all the venues.
There's 35 competition venues, there's several more non-competition venues, and it's where -- where's it all going to go? What makes sense for the city in the long term, the legacy?
And so, you start at that level and, as the years get closer and closer, we're one year out, now, you're all the way down to the detail.
ANDERSON (voice-over): The London master plan is being hailed a new era in Olympic venue designs, and the centerpiece is this, an Olympic arena that is temporary in that it will be partially disassembled once the Games are over.
ANDERSON (on camera): Let's talk about the stadium, because it is unique, isn't it? It's as you described it, temporary or dismountable. Explain.
PHILIP JOHNSON, ARCHITECT, POPULOUS: Yes. Well, that, again, because of the challenge we're trying to go from 85,000 down to 25,000. We had to really think carefully about how it's going to be done. It was completely unique, it's never been done before.
And to answer an earlier question about where do you start, we looked at the historical precedent of various other Olympic stadia in the modern era and we looked at ways of temporary seating.
Temporary seating is often done, as it is for the small venues that Jeff was describing, using standard systems that are available in the market. But because the stadium is so huge, that -- they just don't exist for that scale of a building. So, we had to really think about how that was going to be done in a new way.
ANDERSON (voice-over): Jeff Keas has been here many times before, working on almost every Summer Olympics since Atlanta in 1996.
ANDERSON (on camera): Jeff, you've got a prolific record in stadia design and what's known as venue overlay. And that effectively means making temporary structures and sites work for sport. What's caused you to lose the most sleep?
KEAS: Well, I don't know if I've lost much sleep. We've taken a very -- not only a pragmatic approach, but a different approach to the London architecture from an overlay point of view.
We've used London as the backdrop, so we've actually approached this a lot differently than previous games, and so, it's actually quite energizing in terms of the way we've approached this.
ANDERSON: Give us some examples.
KEAS: Greenwich Park, as a main example. We've -- we have the Queen's house, we have the Royal Naval College behind that, Canary Wharf behind that. We've designed that seating bowl in three sides, sort of a horseshoe shape, if you will, to give that fourth elevation, that focus, back towards the Queen's house.
We want to bring all those iconic pieces of London right back into that seating bowl, so it's not just about the athletes in the field of play. That is the primary focus. But it absolutely sets that venue in its right context in London.
ANDERSON: How does this project compare to other Olympic projects that you've worked on? Because you're a bit of veteran when it comes to this event, aren't you?
KEAS: Well, we've been fortunate enough, Populous has, this is our ninth Olympics. So, we've seen a few. That's good.
I think where London has really taken it to a unique level is they, again, they look at it from the very early days, so from a legacy point of view, we also bring in sustainability. You can't have one without the other.
So London from very early days said, well, if we can use the facility after 2012, we're going to build that new. So, the stadium, as an example. And if we don't have a use for it, we're just going to build that temporary.
And if you look at the amount of temporary components that we're using, it's actually the same as the three previous Games added together. So, we're using an amazing amount of temporary, and that's just because if we don't need it after 2012, we're just going to use the temporary.
ANDERSON: You've had a challenge, haven't you, so far as the stadia design is concerned, because Beijing really had some wow factor. Are we -- should we expect more when we see the 2012 stadium complete?
JOHNSON: Well, London's approach to the whole Games is different from Beijing, and we've really taken the sustainable -- sustainability angle a long way, and we think that's going to have a legacy, not just in London, but for major events around the world anyway.
And in terms of design of the stadium itself, I think there's still quite a bit more to come. There's the cauldron, there's how the ceremonies are going to be -- what's the word?
KEAS: Sort of integrated.
JOHNSON: Integrated in -- thank you -- into the structure. So, yes, there's still another 12 months of work to get it absolutely spot on.
ANDERSON (voice-over): Key players they may be, but that doesn't mean they are being done any favors by the London Organizing Committee.
ANDERSON (on camera): I know you've been able to snag some tickets. Philip, I believe that even though you're the architect of this amazing stadium, you haven't actually snagged any tickets yet.
JOHNSON: No. There are no --
KEAS: I had the feeling you were going to ask.
JOHNSON: There are no freebies in this thing, so yes, I'll be seeing what's left later on.
ANDERSON: Shame. Architects Jeff Keas and Philip Johnson, there, creating a legacy for London.
And tomorrow on CNN, we're going to mark one year until the opening ceremony with special coverage throughout the day. Don Riddell and Pedro Pinto, my colleagues, reporting live from London.
And here on CONNECT THE WORLD, we'll have more interviews of key players and a look back at the legacy left by London's other two Olympic Games. An historic day ahead of us tomorrow, join us for full coverage here on CNN.
Well, there is still a long way to go before London is ready to host the world's biggest sporting event, but in tonight's Parting Shots, why don't we take a birds eye view of some of the finished venues at least?
Just a year from now, cyclists will be heading to the Velodrome to pedal for gold, while swimmers will be hoping to make a splash at the brand new Aquatics Center.
Not all the venues have been built from scratch, of course, as you were hearing there from Jeff. Wimbledon is more than accustomed to hosting a major tennis tournament, and the owners of Wembley Stadium might know a thing or two about football, don't they?
Until cricket becomes an Olympic sport, Lord's will have to make do with hosting the archery events.
Down at Buckingham Palace, the queen should be able to grab a good vantage point when the marathon heads down the Mall, and if Wills and Harry fancy checking out a game or two of beach volleyball, well, they won't have to walk too far. That is going to be held at what's known as Horse Guards Parade.
I'm Becky Anderson. Your world's been connected this hour. Thank you for watching. The world news headlines and "BackStory" will follow this short break. Don't go away, you're watching CNN, the world's news leader.