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ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT
Moammar Gadhafi Killed; Gadhafi's Money; Interview with Senator Chuck Schumer
Aired October 20, 2011 - 19:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ERIN BURNETT, HOST: All right, we're on the front line in Tripoli, Moammar Gadhafi shot dead today. Libyans celebrating through the night, we follow the oil money tonight and the "Bottom Line" on Gadhafi's death. Is this proof that American power is rising?
Let's go OUTFRONT.
OUTFRONT tonight, Gadhafi is dead. Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi killed today after 42 years of rule. Now we have video in tonight from Misrata that shows the body of Moammar Gadhafi. The video is graphic. It is disturbing and it is not appropriate for all viewers. In the video which we are going to show you now, several fighters are seen surrounding the corpse shouting slogans.
They're shouting Allah akbar or God is great. Others are saying the blood of martyrs will not be in vain. The camera tilts down and Gadhafi, as you see, he has wounds on his face including one on his forehead. Now Gadhafi was reportedly killed by a bullet to his head near his hometown of Sirte. We're going to show you another video taken as he was dying or just after he died. This is also gruesome.
Libya's National Transitional Council released this information -- there he is. They say he was captured wearing an undershirt and trousers. They took a DNA sample while they say his blood was still hot. Hair samples were taken as well. Some of the hair, though, was found to be artificial. Samples from his face and armpit were taken to prove to the National Transitional Council that it was, indeed, Gadhafi.
Well Gadhafi's was a journey from revolutionary hero -- look at him there as a young man when many in Libya cheered him. He became a despotic strong man responsible for bombing Pan Am flight 103. Libyans are celebrating tonight and the whole world is watching because Libya is a powerful country. It is home to the largest reserves of oil in Africa.
With the latest, Dan Rivers is in Tripoli tonight and Dan we're still learning new information. We just saw the disturbing videos about how Gadhafi was captured and killed, but the information is still coming in. What can you tell us?
DAN RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well (INAUDIBLE) you see very keen to put their side of what happened out to the media. We've been briefed by them. They're telling us that Gadhafi was basically captured, as you saw on that footage. He was alive. He was injured, they say, shot in the arm. They tried to get him to the hospital, but in the process of taking him to the hospital, the vehicle he was in came under fire and they say he was killed in the crossfire, shot in the head and confirmed dead before he arrived at the hospital.
We've got details about then what happened as part of the autopsy that they took DNA samples to confirm his identity, but they are very keen to dispel any suggestion that he was deliberately killed by the NTC soldiers that took him. There were earlier reports suggesting he'd been shot in the head with his own pistol by presumably the soldiers that captured him. They're very keen to dispel that idea saying he was simply caught in the crossfire that they wanted to bring him in alive.
BURNETT: All right, well Dan Rivers, thank you very much and I know celebrations are ongoing in Tripoli tonight.
The big question though now is what's next? I met Moammar Gadhafi in Tripoli a couple of years ago and he was a strange man. As part of my reporting there I spent time with a man called Abu Zadorda (ph). He was one of Gadhafi's right hand men during the original revolution. Now Mr. Zadorda (ph) was captured a month ago by rebel forces, but when I met him he had giant dioramas of his plans to build entirely new cities in Libya.
They say they were going to take all the tribes from the desert, move the 100 or 40 so tribes to these new cities and force them to live side by side in apartment buildings because they said the tribes hated each other that much. Tribal identity remains paramount in Libya. George Friedman spent time there. He can answer the big question of what happens now, founder and CEO of STRATFOR Global Intelligence. And George, this issue of tribes and they're trying to pull together and run a country. Can they do it?
GEORGE FRIEDMAN, FOUNDER, STRATFOR GLOBAL INTELLIGENCE: It's going to be awfully difficult. They haven't run a country democratically for 42 years. The tribes are at odds with each other. Gadhafi had a substantial amount of support in the country. It took them seven months to bring him down. Those supporters may well fight back. There are weapons loose all over the country. This looks more like Baghdad in 2003 than a celebration.
BURNETT: So do you think that would mean the United States or someone would need to be involved for quite a bit longer to ensure stability, not just for the country, but also the oil supply?
FRIEDMAN: Well, I mean, it's very obvious that NATO overthrew Gadhafi. It was NATO that did it. Now NATO has a country. The question is what does NATO plan to do about it? The easy part is done. Gadhafi is dead. His regime has been displaced.
Now they have to engage in nation building. We haven't had a very good record in nation building. Nobody is really going to want to invest in it. We don't want to send troops there. So the problem that we have now is we won. So be careful what you wish for. You might get it.
BURNETT: All right, well George, thank you very much. A sobering reminder of just what we may be facing. We appreciate it.
The challenges obviously are huge, but the reason that the world is invested is because the opportunity is huge as well. Libya, quite simply is loaded with oil and money. The country has the largest oil reserves in Africa, 46 billion barrels and it has the fourth biggest natural gas stash in the continent.
In fact, it has the world's largest reserves of so-called light sweet crude oil. That is the kind that American refineries prefer. The bottom line on that is Saudi Arabia's oil isn't as good as Libya's and each though Libya currently isn't producing that much oil due to the revolution it's already reportedly amassed up to $170 billion in oil money. Much of that was frozen during the revolution.
Mazin Ramadan is a director of the Temporary Financial Mechanism. It's a group set up to ensure assets coming back to Libya are spent the way they should be. Thanks so much for being with us. Mazin, I hear the guns going off as people still celebrate there, joining us from Tripoli tonight.
Could you tell me -- the bottom line is do you know where all of the money is or even what the right amount is? Is 170 billion a fair number?
MAZIN RAMADAN, DIR., TEMPORARY FINANCIAL MECHANISM OF LIBYA: Yes, well thank you for having me. And there is a lot of celebrations behind us and you can hear the gun fire. The numbers are an approximation. I think it's more closer to 160 and that's the frozen assets. There's much more assets in places where, for example, investments in Africa it's much more difficult to account for everything, but there will be a process of accounting for all these investments and assets that's assets of the Libyan people.
BURNETT: Do you have enough money now to run a country? To pay the government workers, to make sure that people can still come to work and do their jobs and function as a country?
RAMADAN: Well, we at the Temporary Financing Mechanism -- Temporary Financing Mechanism was established by the (INAUDIBLE) to basically borrow money or unfreeze assets and be able to spend it (INAUDIBLE) reasons (INAUDIBLE) the U.N. sanctions. We currently are in the process of unfreezing assets from both Canada and Holland, from the Netherlands and the amount is close to three billion and we'll use that to pay salaries and pay fuel bills and things like that (INAUDIBLE) reasons.
BURNETT: Mazin, I'm curious, the Transitional Council of which you're a part says it could get oil production back to half a million barrels a day pretty quickly. Just in one year that would be $18 billion. And a big question that America has is -- and NATO is whether Libya intends to pay America back the $2 billion Joe Biden says America spent and perhaps to pay NATO as well for their involvement. Will you? RAMADAN: Excuse me. I didn't catch the last part of the question.
BURNETT: I was saying does Libya intend to pay back NATO and the United States for the money they put into helping over the past year?
RAMADAN: Oh, OK. So currently, the current government is basically a caretaker government. I think issues and questions like this should be addressed by legitimately elected government and that should happen in a very short period of time. And I am sure the representative government will make the right decisions.
BURNETT: Mazin, you were living in the U.S. I know for a while. You were a businessman here. You went back to Libya to be a part of the new government, to go back to your country. Do you think Libya can get beyond these tribal differences we've been hearing so much about? Do you think that democracy is something that will function and that can come out of this?
RAMADAN: Yes, of course. Today is basically a historical day. I think (INAUDIBLE) this or turned the page on the Gadhafi era 40 years of a struggle that ended with the end of this Gadhafi era and now we open a new page and we look forward to democracy, justice and human rights. I'm very optimistic that we will have a democratic, free country.
BURNETT: OK. All right, Mazin, thank you very much for taking the time to join us. I know it's late tonight, but obviously still very busy in Tripoli. Mazin Ramadan joining us from Tripoli tonight.
The housing market is in big trouble and it's going to take a big idea to help and guess what, Senator Chuck Schumer and Mike Lee -- that's bipartisan -- think they've got one.
And then 97 percent of Pakistan's population is forbidden to drink. Why can't we resist Pakistani beer? And Pat Buchanan here to talk about Libya and the presidential campaign OUTFRONT next.
BURNETT: The number tonight, 40. That's the number of pages in Preparedness 101, zombie pandemic. It's a graphic novella published by the CDC and not that sexy. Well the story is a new disease turning people into zombies (INAUDIBLE) out lessons for preparing for an emergency while combating viruses. It was written after the agency's blog post called "zombie apocalypse" went viral in May.
All right, now today's big idea. The world and America needs a stronger American economy right now and bold ideas to build a greater America. Today, two senators have a creative plan for housing. Democratic Senator Charles Schumer and Republican Senator Mike Lee today proposed giving foreign buyers a residence visa if they pay in cash at least $250,000 on a primary residence and half a million total on property in the United States of America.
Now currently the biggest investors in the American residential market hail from Canada, retirement and then, yes, China, Mexico and UK also on the list and their top destinations are with a couple of exceptions, troubled real estate markets including California and Florida and Arizona. Senator Charles Schumer is one of the sponsors of the measure, joins us from Capitol Hill tonight.
Senator Schumer, it's good to have you with us. I want to start though with the big question. How much of an effect will your plan have on housing prices?
SEN CHUCK SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK: I think it can have a significant effect. We calibrated it so that actually the lowest amount of house that someone could buy and live in is $250,000. In many markets that's about at the median and there are many foreclosed homes that are still at that level, and even when the market is somewhat lower, everyone knows you scoop up demand at a little bit higher end of the market it raises prices everywhere.
BURNETT: So how many buyers, do you think this will bring in?
SCHUMER: Well, no one knows, but we do know that similar programs when people invest in America, when people are entrepreneurs and create 10 jobs in America are well oversubscribed. America is still that lady with the torch and there are millions and millions of people around the world, many who have some means, who want to come here. And so if you say you'll get a visa, you'll never become a citizen. This is not a citizenship path, but you'll get a visa if you live here and spend your money here and pay your taxes here, there are going to be a whole lot of people who do it.
BURNETT: Is the goal here just to improve housing prices? Because I mean I know you're saying this isn't about citizenship, but if you get well-educated foreigners with money to buy property they get invested in the U.S., they might decide to stay, have a leg up in doing so. It helps with those highly educated foreigners that some want to come to America.
SCHUMER: The number one goal is to help the housing market which is the biggest anchor around our economy, but the number two goal is to get the economy going. These people will come here. They'll spend a great deal of money here. They have to live here 180 days minimum and they'll pay taxes here. So it will be a net increase in revenues and it will help get the economy going. Now if they want to start a business and do things like that, yes, they can apply for visas to do that as well and they, of course, are more likely to do that.
BURNETT: And Senator Schumer, we had -- did an analysis today, Marcus and Millerchap (ph) for OUTFRONT they did -- who buys property in America. Canadians wanting to retire, the biggest group, but the second biggest group now comes from Asia and specifically we're talking about China. Do you think increased Chinese investment in real estate in America is a good thing?
SCHUMER: I do. I think having money flow here to America is a very good idea. I've never been against foreign investment here. It creates jobs here and if we can get the housing market, if we can sort of kick-start it a little bit with this program, and I've talked to leaders in finance and leaders in housing and leaders in banking. I spoke to Warren Buffett today. He thought this was a great idea. I think it can make something of a difference. No one is going to claim it's going to be a cure-all and the housing market will get better the minute this becomes law, but it should help significantly.
BURNETT: We need big ideas and bipartisan one and this looks like a little bit of both.
BURNETT: So thanks so much.
SCHUMER: Well people don't think Mike Lee and Chuck Schumer would be --
BURNETT: And now the big political questions. Will the Schumer- Lee housing plan fly in Congress and will President Obama get a boost from the killing of Moammar Gadhafi? After all, in the past year alone -- take a look at this -- he's overseen the capture or deaths of several top terrorists including Osama bin Laden and Anwar al Awlaki from al Qaeda and now the overthrow of three dictators, Ben Ali in Tunisia, Hosni Mubarak in Egypt and of course Gadhafi in Libya.
Here now to weigh in CNN contributor David Frum, a former speechwriter for President George W. Bush joining us from Vancouver tonight -- looks nice there -- and from Washington Jen Psaki, former deputy communications director for the Obama White House -- great to have both of you with us. I want to start, Jen, if I could quickly --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Thank you.
BURNETT: -- with the Schumer-Lee housing bill, bipartisan. Bob Toll, homebuilder, was a part of the proposal. Do you think the Obama White House is going to sign on?
JEN PSAKI, FMR. DEP. COMM. DIR. FOR PRES. OBAMA: Well, the most important thing we can be doing for the economy right now is considering every creative idea that is put out there and this is a good example of thinking outside of the box, taking a creative look at what we can do. It doesn't add a dime to the deficit. It doesn't add a dime -- it doesn't cost taxpayers a dime, so I think it is something that people will take a close look at. There's a lot that we need to do in the housing market. So this is one step that should be considered as we look at what we can do for the economy.
BURNETT: David, can this pass?
DAVID FRUM, CNN POLITICAL CONTRIBUTOR: I hope not. I don't think it's a very good idea at all. I mean I applaud the creativity behind it, but really if you're going to auction off U.S. residence visas, I don't think $250,000 is the price. I think you can get a lot more. I don't know why you would only want to reward people who invest in the most overbuilt sector of the American economy and not in the sectors where capital is most required.
And it doesn't do anything to lift the debt burden of the household sector. The job here is not to raise the price of real estate so that people's debts become more bearable. The object is to reduce the burden of debt and to do that you need a very expansionary monetary policy. This is, perhaps, a way of dealing with the Federal Reserve's insufficient action, but it's not the right answer. I applaud the thinking process, but the answer is wrong.
BURNETT: Well, I applaud your optimism that the Fed can get even more expansionary, but let me move on to the next topic, obviously, the story of the day, Gadhafi's demise. Jen, first of all, there was a lot of criticism of the president's decision to be involved in Libya at all, a lot of criticism. Does he feel vindicated today?
PSAKI: Well, I think first this is a victory for democracy. This is a victory for the people in the Middle East. I don't think he thinks of it as vindication, but there's no question that without the president's leadership and courage of conviction Gadhafi could still be in power and if you look at the alternatives and the inconsistency of people like Mitt Romney, he was for it before he was against it before he was for it, I think this is really highlighting the kind of leadership that the president exhibits and the choice that people will be facing next year as well.
BURNETT: David, all the presidential candidates on the GOP side weighed in today. Will this move anything in the polls?
FRUM: I doubt it. Not for very long. I mean congratulations to the president for this success. Let's hope it works out better than the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak did. Congratulations also to President Sarkozy of France and Prime Minister Cameron of Britain who did much more of the heavy lifting and took many more of the political risks.
We'll know later how this has worked out. All we know today is that a dictator is dead. We don't know much about the future of Libya, but you know they didn't reelect George H.W. Bush. They didn't reelect Winston Churchill. So I don't -- I think that once these wars are behind us voters focus on what will happen next.
BURNETT: All right and there are a lot of question marks on that domestically, internationally, everywhere and we'll have you both on again to talk about them. Thanks to both.
Still OURFRONT Pakistan's only legal brewery, yes, there is one, is celebrating today and we can't resist this one. And then what does Gadhafi's death really mean for America? Will we ever recover the billions we invested in the cause? And the latest from the Conrad Murray trial, the state rests. What does the defense need to do to get him off?
BURNETT: And now a story we cannot resist. Pakistani officials have announced the country will begin exporting beer and spirits starting next year. Now this is a really big deal because alcohol exports have been banned by Pakistan in the Islamic Republic since 1977 and the consumption of alcohol is forbidden to the 97 percent of the population that is Muslim. When we were in Karachi last month our crew couldn't even get alcohol in the one hotel that supposedly allowed it.
Now the news of alcohol exports being green lit was celebrated by the Murree Brewery, the only legal brewery in Pakistan, which has until now been forced to produce beer and spirits only for consumption by foreigners who actually have to sign something stating they're not Muslim and by Pakistani minorities including Christians and Hindus. But like I said we couldn't even get any when we were there. Now says Isphanyar Bhandara (ph) whose family owns the Murree Brewery quote "Pakistan is known for a lot of bad things, but it is time for us to be known for some good things, too, like our beer."
Now when we heard about this story we really wanted to try the beer, but as you can imagine it's very tough to come by something that cannot legally be exported, but there's a way. We found a man named Nizar Khan (ph) in upstate New York who has been trying to bring a Murree Brewery to the United States for years. He had a can of a beer and offered to let us have it if we would send a courier up to Albany to get it.
Now a courier would have taken hours and costs hundreds of dollars, so we did it. They also make something called Bigg Apple Drink, so that's B-i-g-g, Apple Drink, OK, and here is the beer. Classic lager (ph), coming to you, by the way I called a bunch of Pakistani food restaurants in New York -- they didn't serve it yet, but here it is, illegal beer. We just couldn't resist.
Still OUTFRONT, the "OUTFRONT 5" and the dictator is dead.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Fareed (ph), what do you know for sure about the new leaders?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What we know for sure is that they don't control much of Libya. (INAUDIBLE) on the ground they're doing pretty nasty stuff.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: The state rests.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: When Dr. Murray agreed to treat insomnia with Propofol, we put Dr. Murray first not Michael Jackson.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: What the defense needs to do to save Conrad Murray and suicide of a super power.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're headed down the road to Greece.
(END VIDEO CLIP) BURNETT: All of this OUTFRONT in our second half.
BURNETT: We start the second half of hour show with the stories we care about, where we focus on our own reporting, do the work and find the OUTFRONT 5.
First, tonight, the Libyan dictator dead. Moammar Gadhafi reportedly shot in the head, killed near his hometown of Sirte.
Libya has a lot of challenges, but also opportunity. The country has the largest oil reserves in Africa, the fourth biggest natural gas stash on the planet and -- get this -- it's got the world's largest reserves of so-called "light sweet crude oil." That's the kind American refineries use and our cars love. Bottom line: it's better oil than Saudi Arabia's.
The country's transitional government, the National Transitional Council, hopes to use money from oil production to rebuild the country. No word yet on whether they'll pay back NATO or the U.S.
The number two: ETA, a Basque separate group, announced today it is ending its decades of violence and seeking a democratic resolution. The organization is blamed for hundred of deaths in Spain and France and considered a terrorist organization by the United States. We spoke to the president of the Associations of Victims of Terrorism and she says her work won't be happy until ETA turns over its gun and disbands formally.
Number three: an attempt to keep terrorists from being tried in federal court is pending right now in the U.S. Senate. OUTFRONT called Democratic leaders to ask if the amendment had Democratic support, they told us no comment. Republican Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire attached the amendment to a spending bill with the goal of keeping terrorist trials in military tribunals. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, Attorney General Eric Holder, strongly oppose the amendment.
Number four: Groupon is cutting back the size of its IPO to a value between $10 billion and $12 billion according to "Reuters." It still sounds like a lot, right? But it's down from earlier expectations of as much as $30 billion. The plunge is partially blamed on less interest in Groupon.
OUTFRONT analyzed the number of visitors to the site, thanks to (INAUDIBLE), they showed that the unique visitors has dropped 23 percent from June to last month. There's a lot of competitors for Groupon.
"Reuters" is reporting the IPO could come next week.
And it has been 76 days since the U.S. lost its top credit rating. What are we doing to get it back?
As we just said, the fate of Libya is much more than the headline of the dead dictator. Libya is a crucial country in the global oil market. Who runs Libya matters to America and the entire world.
Fareed Zakaria is the host of "FAREED ZAKARIA GPS" on CNN, joining me tonight on the telephone from Dubai, en route to Tehran, Iran.
Fareed, it's good to have you with us. And I want to start by asking you about Moammar Gadhafi's son, the person who his heir apparent, Saif al-Islam. It's unclear if he's alive or dead tonight.
But if he's alive, does it change the arithmetic of the risks and who is going to end up leading Libya?
FAREED ZAKARIA, HOST, CNN'S FAREED ZAKARIA GPS (via telephone): I don't think it changes the actual arithmetic on the ground. The site was a creature of Gadhafi. This is a one-man regime and a one- man cult. Saif didn't really have the background or the support in the country, and the support among the armed forces of the intelligent services to have ever run Libya, let alone in the circumstances that he is in now.
BURNETT: Fareed, what do we really know about the new leaders? I mean, I know we've all seen the reports from Amnesty International that the transitional government has tortured prisoners. Obviously well known that there's a history of tribal splits, to say the least, and, of course, there have been reports that groups like al Qaeda are in the leadership there.
What do you know for sure about the new leaders?
ZAKARIA: What we know for sure is that they don't control much of Libya, by which I mean a lot of these reports are really about groups on the leaders or of soldiers that have done bad things. It's not clear they were directed centrally by the transitional council.
Many of the people of the council are educated people, pro- Western. Some of them were within the Gadhafi regime but then left because they felt they wanted a better future for Libya. But many of them are simply frustrated that they have very little control.
So, I think what we're seeing is a kind of a free-for-all and some of the groups on the ground are doing pretty nasty stuff.
BURNETT: Does this mean that America will not be able to disengage at this point? Obviously, NATO is saying, OK, our mission is done. But is America's mission not done?
ZAKARIA: I see the Obama administration has been pretty disciplined about not getting over-involved in this, in providing support, crucial support, but support that allows the Libyans to handle it. And I think in that way, they've brought a pretty clear line that says we don't own Libya. I would guess they would be able to stay at somewhat at arms length. That, of course, that shows that Libya doesn't descend into complete chaos, which at this point doesn't seem likely.
BURNETT: All right. Well, Fareed, thank you so much. We appreciate you taking the time and safe travels.
And a programming note: Fareed will be interviewing Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. And you can see that on "GPS" Sunday at 10:00 and 1:00 p.m. Eastern.
Well, one group of people have more reason than anyone to celebrate the death of Moammar Gadhafi. That's the families of the victims of Pan Am 103.
Brian Flynn's big brother J.P. died that day on his way home for Christmas. He's here with me now.
And, Brian, I really appreciate you're taking the time. How do you feel today?
BRIAN FLYNN, BROTHER KILLED IN PAN AM 103: Funny, when I heard this morning what had happened, and my wife said, wait, Gadhafi's dead, no, he's captured, no, he's dead. And I had this sense of excitement.
And I think if it wasn't tied into the end of tyranny and the freedom of the Libyan people, I don't think I would have had a visceral reaction of excitement.
BURNETT: And it is the joy and celebration that we're still seeing there tonight.
FLYNN: Right, exactly. And they have ever right to. The Libyan people had the courage to do it and I also think the United States, under trying circumstances and a lot of criticism, the Obama administration stepped up and said, we're going to support the Libyan people and helped them win their freedom.
BURNETT: Does this give you resolution? Obviously, Gadhafi is now dead.
BURNETT: It's been two years since the convicted bomber, Megrahi, was released by Britain and sent back to Libya. He was supposed to be dying.
BURNETT: He's still alive. And today, the Libyan ambassador of the United States said they're not going to extradite him. They're going to keep him there. This is the new transitional government. Does that make you angry? I mean, should they be extraditing him?
FLYNN: It makes me angry, but we're used to that. We've been dealing with this for 20-plus years. We've been trying to do what we could to lobby to change things and change policies and we're not going to stop the fight. We're going to go after him and try to get Megrahi to serve his time out in prison.
What everyone wants to happen and this has been going for the better part of 20 years. Everyone wants to push it aside and to move ahead. And today, we should all take a moment and realize that the head of the snake has been cut off. Gadhafi has been killed.
But there are still parts of the snake that need to be held accountable, including Megrahi and other people in the administration, the Gadhafi regime, who are behind the bombing. Moussa Koussa who is head of Libyan intelligence at the time of the bombing is now in Qatar and was one of the early defectors.
FLYNN: He should be held accountable as well.
BURNETT: It's interesting that you point out that it's not -- sometimes people have a desire to see things in black and white. Bad guy gone, good guys in charge. And it's not -- it's obviously not that simple.
BURNETT: You have a family -- every year, your family gets together in honor of what happened.
BURNETT: And this year, it's going to be different.
FLYNN: Yes, it's funny. The families meet every December 21st down in Arlington Cemetery. And what's been great about that is not just the family members, but a lot of people of in the Justice Department and the State Department and people who worked in Congress showed up every year and these people have inspired the rest of us and showed us great dedication to our cause.
So, when we show up this year, it's going to be a memorial service and it's going to be solemn. But I'm thinking maybe there's a way to just add a little bit of champagne, a little bit of celebration to it, because we believe in a small part that we did what we could to help the Libyan people and to help free them and to bring down Gadhafi.
BURNETT: All right. Brian, thank you so much. I hope you get to enjoy the day and enjoy that time, even though I know it doesn't change what happened and you certainly have a fight ahead of you.
FLYNN: Thank you very much.
BURNETT: All right. Thanks again.
And now, let's check in with Anderson Cooper. He's got a look at what's coming up on "A.C. 360." Hello there, sir.
ANDERSON COOPER, HOST, "A.C. 360": Hey, Erin. Yes, we'll be following obviously the breaking news at 8:00 p.m. More on the death of Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi, including exclusive account of his final moments. We warn you, some of the images you're going to see are graphic.
This is how it ended in the city of Sirte, just outside Sirte, Gadhafi's hometown, lying in a pool of blood with a bullet to his head. He was found hiding in a pipe, this pipe right here, flushed out from his hideout -- the writing on the wall, the place of the rat Gadhafi, the bastard and the hole of Gadhafi.
Here's an important point. He was captured alive. Here you see him disheveled and bloodied, clearly alive. Joining us to help piece together the timeline, a reporter who was one of the few Westerners in Sirte when it all went down.
Also tonight, the other story America has been following, exotic animals in private zoos. These are the few survivors from the Ohio incident where a man freed his collection before killing himself. Forty-nine other animals -- lions, wolves, tigers and bears were killed. We'll take you to another private zoo in Ohio and speak once again with animal expert Jack Hanna.
Those stories plus a math lesson for Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul's campaign and tonight's "Ridiculist" at the top of the hour -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Anderson, look forward to seeing you then.
Still OUTFRONT, the "Outer Circle" -- a protester dead in Greece. The demonstrations there turning violent.
And now, new details from the Michael Jackson death trial. Can Conrad Murray possibly head off?
And political commentator Pat Buchanan joins us to discuss Libya, and -- well, the title of his new book. Hmm, we'll be back.
BURNETT: It's just a crazy scenario -- that's how the state's final witness describes the defense theory that Michael Jackson injected himself with the deadly dose of Propofol. Dr. Steven Shafer who literally wrote the book on Propofol use testified Conrad Murray caused the death of Michael Jackson because he was negligent in his care.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DR. STEVEN SHAFER, PROSECUTION WITNESS: When Dr. Murray agreed to treat insomnia with Propofol, he put Dr. Murray first not Michael Jackson.
This is the fundamental violation. The patient comes first. That did not happen here.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BURNETT: Ted Rowlands was in the courtroom and has the latest. Ted, you were there, and obviously some heated debate on the demonstrations of Propofol use.
What's your take?
TED ROWLANDS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes. Well, there was an incident today, Erin, and the first time we saw Dr. Conrad Murray react to anything. He was very upset, visibly upset in front of the jury. His defense attorneys objected to.
And it was when the prosecutor (AUDIO GAP) Propofol which the state alleges Murray used in an infusion into Michael Jackson, (AUDIO GAP) when it was sealed before he touched it, the judge sent the jury out of the room and ended up hashing it out. And when the jury came back, it was explained exactly what happened to the jury through a stipulation. But some dramatics in court today.
BURNETT: Ted, any idea who the defense will call as witnesses? They're getting ready to start. What surprises do you expect or --
ROWLANDS: Well, no surprises. Shafer was an outstanding witness for the prosecution because he really laid out their theory of what happened.
To combat that, they're going to use a guy by the name of Dr. White. He's also world renowned in Propofol and anesthesiology. So, they'll use him to counteract Shafer.
They'll start tomorrow with the cross of Shafer. I don't expect they'll try to attack him because he was a very solid witness.
BURNETT: All right. Well, Ted, thanks very much. We'll see you then.
And now to the "Outer Circle," we do it around the same time every night. We try. We reach out to our sources around the world and tonight, we begin in Greece where one protester died today after anti-austerity protest turned violent. This came as lawmakers approved another round of budget-cutting measures.
Diana Magnay is in Athens.
And, Diana, the protests seem to be getting angrier and more violent. What can the government do to calm the situation?
DIANA MAGNAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Erin, people here are hurting. They're saying they're being squeezed to the very point of their existence and yet lawmakers have just voted for more very painful cuts because they say it's the only way that they can prevent this country from going bankrupt.
And that is why you're seeing this kind of anger on the streets with masked men throwing rocks at police, tear gas in the air. Lawmakers are caught between a rock and a hard place and society is being pushed to the breaking point -- Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Diana, thanks very much. And we will see what will happen. Obviously, there is a crucial meeting for the E.U. this weekend on a bailout for Greece and the European banks. That is going to matter big time for Greece and global markets.
And now to Syria where more government troops were killed today in a firefight with dissidents, according to a human rights group.
Arwa Damon is in Beirut.
And, Arwa, what can you tell us about today's clashes? And I'm particularly curious as to how Moammar Gadhafi's death is playing in Syria.
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Erin, more than a dozen people were killed in Syria as the crackdown there continues. But at the same time after this day, they took to the streets in celebration. Celebrating the death of Colonel Gadhafi with a warning to Syrian President Bashar al Assad, that he needed to be careful because he was about to be next. And they vowed the protests would continue, planning again on having massive demonstrations take place on Friday across the entire country -- Erin.
BURNETT: Arwa, thank you.
And now to Thailand where the worst flood in half a century has killed 320 people so far.
Max Foster is in London tonight.
And, Max, the floodwaters are obviously inching towards Bangkok. There have been reports of people in the northern parts of the city dying. What are residents doing to prepare?
MAX FOSTER, CNN INTERNATIONAL: Erin, the Thai government has got a terrible dilemma. The dams and levees around Bangkok are under so much pressure from the floodwaters that they have to open the floodgates to relief the pressure.
Residents are aware of this and trying to get out of the way. They're grabbing bottles of water from stores and driving their cars to higher ground. And officials are expecting the floodwaters to hit northern Bangkok on Friday, Erin.
BURNETT: All right. Thank you. We'll keep monitoring that situation.
And now, we're going to go back to Libya.
Is the death of Moammar Gadhafi proof that America is still the world's only superpower?
Our next guest is a former GOP presidential candidate and he has a pretty strong view on that. He's author of a book called "Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive Until 2025?" It's more than just a rhyme.
I spoke to Pat Buchanan just before the show began tonight and I asked him if America scored a victory by killing Gadhafi.
PAT BUCHANAN, AUTHOR, "SUICIDE OF A SUPERPOWER: WILL AMERICA SURVIVE TO 2025?": I think we did score a victory that Gadhafi is gone and it does fit in with the thesis in my book, which is that tribalism is very much of the way of the future in the third world and other countries, because the killing of him in his hometown where his tribe is I think means that in the future, Libya is going to be torn apart tribally.
So I'm not sure how great a victory it is for the United States in the sense of what is coming because I think what is coming could be very costly for the United States.
BURNETT: Yes, 140 or so tribes in Libya.
BUCHANAN: Not only 140 tribes (INAUDIBLE) in the eastern section of Libya, as you know. That is the area where per capita they have more recruits for al Qaeda than anywhere else.
BURNETT: What about the Arab spring, though? As you talk about the unrest
BUCHANAN: There's two things, I think, Erin. One, it's a good thing that despots and tyrants go. But when that lead comes off, the noxious forces as well as the benevolent forces rise, and I think you them rising now across the Middle East. Look what is happening to the Christians there, 17 million left. They're being persecuted, murdered, and massacred. Each of the Coptic.
BURNETT: In Egypt, for the Coptic, yes.
BUCHANAN: And the Syrian Christians and the others in Iraq and across that entire region.
BURNETT: Do they prove, though, on one level, than when you talk about suicide of a superpower -- the democracy, the freedom, the ideals of the American Dream are more alive and well than they've ever been before?
BUCHANAN: Any number of people have in their hearts the idea of being free.
BUCHANAN: But when tyrants go down, like the shah goes down and we call him a tyrant, often, you get the ayatollah that's rising. Mubarak has gone down. Who's coming forward? Is it going to be the Muslim Brotherhood?
When Syria goes down, one of the rebels are saying, the Alawites to the wall and the Christians to Beirut, what's going to happen? The Christians in Syria are scared to death about what happens when Assad goes down.
BURNETT: Right. What about America, though? Because one thing we've learned in this, not just the ideals of America, right? But America's military might, that America provided the power of NATO.
BURNETT: That America is the world's biggest arms dealer. Our military still rules the world.
BUCHANAN: The British and French had to borrow rockets and all these other things. We did all the intelligence.
BURNETT: That's right.
BUCHANANA: America is the number one military power and will be indefinitely in the future. But the truth is, Erin, we're coming home from the world. You got the smallest number of troops in Okinawa and Korea that you've had before. They are going to be coming home from Germany. And they should.
The superpower candidly is in retreat from the world. And that's not altogether a bad thing, I think, but it's not going to be a good thing for mankind. It's not a bad thing for us because we got to repair our own situation. We got a deficit of 9 percent or 10 percent of GDP for three straight years. We're headed down the road to Greece.
BURNETT: And you think that the way to cut that deficit, or the one way that the two sides can agree on, which I know you've been frustrated, the lack of agreement between the left and the right. But the only thing they've agreed on is not cutting entitlements but they have seemed to agree that we can cut the defense.
BUCHANAN: You can't continue to borrow from Japan to defend Japan. Borrow from Europe to defend Europe. And borrow from the Persian Gulf to defend the Persian Gulf. And borrow from China to give foreign aid to countries --
BURNETT: Why not?
BUCHANAN: -- who vote with China in the U.N. I think we got to start looking out for America first.
BURNETT: All right. We're going to hear more from Pat Buchanan when we come back.
He comes OUTFRONT his thoughts on the rise of China, the presidential campaign, his dream ticket, and what really is the American Dream.
BURNETT: Is America really losing its status as a superpower?
Pat Buchanan came OUTFRONT just before I show begun. And I asked him about the rise of China. And the big question of our time: is the world big enough for two superpowers, America and China? This is what he had to say. (BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)
BUCHANAN: I do believe this -- we are going to have the American unipolar world where we're the single, last superpower. That is definitely over. I think China is an emerging superpower by 2020. Economically and militarily, it will be the dominant power in Asia and I think an emerging superpower. Look at --
BURNETT: If we're not dead by 2025, though, right?
BUCHANAN: 2025, what concerns me is what's happened here at home, that we seem to be disintegrating as one nation under God, indivisible. All those things we've had, it seems to me we're losing. We're very much at war with each other. It's over ideology, politics, religion, philosophy, everything.
And the terms we're using on each other -- I mean, the term -- I mean, I'm on cable as you are. Every day someone is calling someone else a racist. We didn't use those terms on each other, even during the civil rights era.
BURNETT: No, that's true. But your book has a chapter called "The End of White America."
BURNETT: Which it's a startling term, and I'm curious what you mean because isn't the end of white America as we see the rise of Hispanics, a good thing -- proof that America is a melting pot, that anybody can succeed here, no matter the color of your skin, or your religion or whatever?
BUCHANAN: Well, that's a little concern when people say, Pat, you know, the majority of people looking like you, that's coming to an end, Pat.
So let me say this -- what's wrong with this is the idea that when whites are minority in this country in 2041 and Hispanics are 150 million, what is going to hold us together when we don't have a common religion, we don't have common beliefs about right and wrong and morality as we used to, we are at war over, you know, whether or not equality means equality of rights or equality of rewards.
BURNETT: The American Dream, the freedom, the belief, what caused the Arab spring --that's what holds us together.
BUCHANAN: Do people - freedom in -- the idea of socialist equality and freedom are in mortal conflict. I was in China before you were born, with Richard Nixon in 1972, the most equal society you've ever seen. Everybody had a blue Mao jacket on. And they were the poorest people you've ever seen.
Now, tyranny -- the most -- much of the tyranny has been lifted of Maoism, and it's an unequal society in China. Millionaires and billionaires, as Barack would say, and poor people, but it's freer. Freedom and absolute equality are in conflict. BURNETT: But equality of opportunity. That's what people want.
BUCHANAN: Equality of rights and equality of opportunity. You got it.
BURNETT: Before we go, who do you think is going to be the Republican ticket?
BUCHANAN: The ticket -- I would say Romney-Rubio if I had to bet right now. But if I were Mitt Romney, I'd get into Iowa and shut this thing down because if one person breaks out of there, he could have problems. They like Mitt, but I'm not sure they love him, Erin.
BURNETT: I think you got a point there.
All right. Well, hey, great to see you, Pat. Missing you every day.
BUCHANAN: I miss talking to you from Wall Street. Right.
BURNETT: All right. Thanks to Pat Buchanan.
BUCHANAN: All right. One thing interesting when Pat was talking about the rise of China. In my visit to Libya, there were all these companies trying to invest there. And what was the most amazing take away was all of the Chinese people we saw there. And obviously, we've seen that throughout Africa, but you really notice in Libya. And it was one of the first examples where China got their own people out of the country because they had so many Chinese people when the revolution begun.
Well, thanks so much for joining us. Tomorrow, we're going to talk about the 9-9-9 plan. Herman Cain is going to defend it tomorrow. We're going to break it down.
And we're also going to be -- well, going to Pakistan. We met some young men there who could have one way and went another. We're going to take you there tomorrow.
Thanks for watching.
Anderson Cooper starts now.