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Egyptians Protest Over Constitution Court Rulings; German "Forest Boy" A Lie; Syrian Conflict Devolving Into Iraq-like Insurgency; U.S. Special Forces Train With 14 Other Nations In Iraqi Desert; Japanese Police Arrest Last Suspect In 1995 Sarin Gas Attack
Aired June 15, 2012 - 8:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. Welcome to News Stream where news and technology meet. And we begin in Egypt where tensions are high a day before the presidential election.
Now after 17 years on the run one of the people accused of carrying out the sarin gas attack in Tokyo has finally been caught.
And China prepares to send its first woman into space.
Now tensions are high in Egypt as the country's voters prepare to pick a new president this weekend. In a stunning move, Egypt's highest court ordered the disillusion of the newly elected parliament in Thursday. Now Egypt's interim military rulers also announced that they have full legislative authority, deepening fears that Egypt's democratic future is under threat.
Now more than one year after Egypt's Arab spring revolution, one Egypt watcher warns that the country is now, quote, entering a very dangerous stage as parliament has been in session for just over four months before it was ordered dissolved. And a big political shift, it was dominated by Islamists including members of Egypt's largest Islamist party the Muslim Brotherhood.
Now this weekend's presidential runoff will pit the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohammed Morsi against Ahmed Shafik ousted president Hosni Mubarak's final prime minister.
On Thursday, Egypt's supreme constitutional court rejected a law banning Shafik and other Mubarak era officials from running for office for the next 10 years. But some Egyptian voters say they are not happy with either choice.
Now activists are calling for protests against Egypt's interim military rulers who they accuse of essentially carrying out a coup. Ben Wedeman is watching developments for us in Cairo. He joins us now. And Ben, the reaction to yesterday's court decision, are there more protests today?
BEN WEDEMAN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: So far Cairo at least is relatively quiet. Demonstrations aren't planned until the evening when possibly the heat begins to lessen. However, in the northern city of Alexandria, the second biggest city in Egypt, there's already a demonstration of several thousand people calling for an end to military rule. So we do have certainly signs of mounting tension in the wake of the constitutional court's ruling.
Also it's worth mentioning the day before yesterday the Justice Ministry issued regulations saying that military police and military intelligence can now arrest, detain, and interrogate civilians. This has raised the fear among many is that between the constitutional court's decision and the Justice Ministry's decision that there is in effect a slow, soft military coup occurring in Egypt raising fears that Egypt is about to enter yet another period of trouble.
WEDEMAN: Cairo's normally quiet and staid constitutional court was surrounded by barbed wire, military police, riot police and armored personnel carriers keeping away angry and vocal protesters.
Inside and away from the cameras judges ruled that irregularities rendered the Muslim Brotherhood dominated parliament invalid and ruled that a law banning Mubarak era officials from holding public office was unconstitutional.
It was simultaneously a body blow to the brotherhood and supporters of presidential candidate Ahmed Shafik, the object of much of the demonstrators' anger and derision. He served as the last prime minister under the deposed president Hosni Mubarak.
Protest leader Hossein Abdel Rahman (ph) wears a judicial sash emblazoned with a zucchini, colloquial Egyptian for corruption.
"The Egyptian Judiciary," he says, "has transformed into zucchini, which means favoritism and nepotism."
The disillusion of parliament gives the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, SCAF, full legislative and executive power alongside, it appears, a friendly judiciary. It all leaves frustrated revolutionaries feeling out in the cold on this hot June day.
WISAM MOHAMED, PROTESTER: SCAF are suppressing our protests, suppressing all the youth movements on the ground. They have been arresting thousands of us.
WEDEMAN: Egypt's transition from dictatorship to democracy is no longer a given.
A year-and-a-half since the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak and stability seems to be as elusive as ever. Court decisions, elections after elections do nothing to calm the political storm.
Random scrawlings best explain what's going on. An editorial cartoon in a Cairo daily describes this as the current situation in Egypt. The presidential elections satirized in this online mock-up of a video game pits the bare chested Ahmed Shafik against the bearded Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood. The timing of the constitutional court's rulings could hardly be worse. Coming less than 48 hours before voters are set to go to the polls in the presidential elections.
The choice between a stalwart of the Mubarak regime and the often holier-than-thou Muslim Brotherhood leaves many Egyptians cold, or as is often the case here, making light of the whole process.
University sophomore Ibrahim Gamal al-Din has become a sensations with his satirical music videos here taking aim at the Muslim Brotherhood.
"This is our country, but you are all sleeping," go the lyrics. "We took parliament and the constitutional assembly and we'll take the presidency too. And if you don't like it, you can go to hell."
Humor has long been a form of dissent in Egypt says Ibrahim.
IBRAHIM GAMAL AL-DIN, ARTIST/STUDENT: Egyptians always try to make use of the tense situations by making fun of it, to make it just easier to live with.
WEDEMAN: And with tensions on the rise at least Egyptians can temper the uncertainty with a few good laughs.
WEDEMAN: And of course with all this going on in the streets, in the courts, tomorrow morning Egyptians will go to the polls in two days of presidential run-off elections. There have been no opinion polls so nobody has a clear idea who might possibly win -- Kristie.
LU STOUT: And Ben, there have been calls to boycott this weekends vote. So how many Egyptians intend to vote in the presidential runoff?
WEDEMAN: That's a good question, because in the immediate aftermath of this decision by the constitutional court whereby the Muslim Brotherhood lost its sort of pillar of power in parliament. There was talk that possibly the Brotherhood would pull out of the elections. But Mohammed Morsi, their -- the man who they hope will be the next president for the Muslim Brotherhood said he's going to go ahead and contest these -- go into these elections as planned.
But there are many Egyptians who are alienated by both sides. They don't want to vote for the Muslim Brotherhood, because they reject their form of political religion. And they don't want to vote for Ahmed Shafik, because he's too much a holdover from the old regime. So many Egyptians, we expect, are simply going to invalidate their ballots by marking both candidates.
It'll be interesting to see. And we will be following very closely that sort of middle ground who aren't going to vote for either of them -- Kristie.
LU STOUT: All right. Ben Wedeman joining us live from Cairo on the story for us. Thank you very much indeed, Ben.
And to Japan now and the end of a 17 year manhunt. Now police in Tokyo say they have arrested the last remaining suspect in deadly gas attack on the city's subway system in 1995. Now the attack left 13 people dead and sickened thousands.
Kyung Lah reports.
KYUNG LAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Katsuya Takahashi in handcuffs, this ends a 17 year manhunt and turns the page on a national nightmare. He is the final fugitive arrested in what's known as Japan's first homegrown terrorist attack.
It was 17 years ago at the height of rush hour on Tokyo's taxed subway system. Members of a Japanese religious cult released a nerve gas known as Sarin into the air. 13 were killed, 6,000 injured.
The cult, followers of Shoko Asahara and his Aum Shinrikyo doomsday cult. Police arrested Asahara quickly after the attack. He now sits on death row with 12 other cult members. Police say Katsuya Takahashi, the man captured today, was the getaway driver taking the cult members to the subway where they released the sarin gas. But as police rounded up suspects, Takahashi disappeared.
Then a major break earlier this month. Police arrested Naoko Kikuchi, another cult member. Her confession triggered a large scale manhunt for Takahashi. Police tracked him down, working for a construction company in Kawasaki.
Surveillance cameras caught him at a convenience store buying his morning newspaper, shopping at a department store for luggage. Then earlier this week going to a bank to withdraw tens of thousands in cash.
Then this morning, someone at this internet cafe recognized Takahashi. The cafe called the police. Officers descended. And along with some hordes of Japanese reporters, cameras, and curious spectators.
Neighbors who had to see for themselves where one of Japan's most infamous fugitives was hiding right in the open.
"I can't believe he was right here in my neighborhood," says Hideoshi Imiazumi (ph).
"I remember that day so vividly," remembers Isao Nakayama (ph). "I wasn't a direct victim of the attack, but it was an unbelievable thing that happened for Japan."
A simple, unremarkable arrest ending an ugly chapter in the country's history.
Kyung Lah, CNN, Tokyo.
LU STOUT: Now it's worth remembering just how shocking the attack was on Japan as Kyung said the attack, it was seen as Japan's first ever homegrown act of terror, but it was also where the attack took place that made a difference. Now Tokyo is one of the world's largest cities. And crisscrossing the city is an enormous rail network. Tokyo's subway is one of the world's busiest as many Japanese people spend hours commuting across this vast city. And to strike here in a transit system so vital to people's daily lives, it was part of Aum's plan to spread terror.
Now in China, an update on a story CNN first brought to you yesterday. Now three local officials have been suspended after a woman was forced into having an abortion when she was seven months pregnant. Now the woman's husband says officials in Shanxi Province forced her to have the procedure because the family was not eligible to have a second child under China's one child policy.
Authorities demanded a $6,300 fine, but the family did not have the money. Now the city government has made a rare public apology to the woman and her family. And the case has caused nationwide outrage with about a million comments posted on Sino Weibo.
Now in Syria, opposition forces are using increasingly explosive tactics to counter the al-Assad regime. We'll bring you the latest on the rise of suicide attacks and guerrilla warfare with echos of Iraq.
As Greece goes to the polls once again, we'll meet the youngest victims of the country's economic crisis and show you the desperate measures their parents have taken.
And ahead of round two of the U.S. Open. We'll tell you which of the world's leading players are having a painful time finding par.
LU STOUT: Now the first round of golf's U.S. Open it proved to be a major challenge for the game's top players. Amanda Davies is in London with more on that and the other sports headlines -- Amanda.
AMANDA DAVIES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Kristie. Yeah, we knew that the U.S. Open at the Olympic course in San Francisco was going to be tough, but we had no idea that some of the big names were going to find it quite as tough as they did in their opening rounds. The world number one, Luke Donald, carded a nine over par 79, that was the same as 14-year-old Andy Zhang with defending champion Rory McIlroy finishing seven over for the day.
Tiger Woods, though, was in seriously impressive form as he launched his bid for a 15th major title taking his share of second place with a one under round of 69. Justin Rose, Graeme McDowell, and Nick Watney are also there near the top with America's Michael Thompson leading the way. Here's CNN's Patrick Snell from Olympic on Tiger's big day.
PATRICK SNELL, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: It's been four years to the month since Tiger Woods last won a major, but he came into this tournament as a favorite. And so far, at least, he's living up to all expectations, shooting a one under par 69. His playing partners, though, aren't faring so well with four time major winner Phil Mickelson and the reigning Masters champion Bubba Watson shooting six over and eight over par respectively.
TIGER WOODS, GOLFER: Well, this golf course is so demanding. And if you're off your game just a little bit it's -- you know, you're going to pay the price. And it's hard to make pars. And you know Phil and then Bubba were off just a little bit.
BUBBA WATSON, GOLFER: That was the old Tiger. I mean, that was beautiful to watch. That's what -- that's what we all come to see, that's what we all want to watch. And that was awesome to see him strike the ball like he did. He made a couple of boogies, but under par on this golf course is pretty good.
SNELL: Chinese teen Andy Zhang made history by becoming the youngest ever player at a U.S. Open. And he certainly did pretty impressively, too, shooting a 79, that's nine over par, only one worse than Bubba. And yes, nerves did play a part on that first tee.
ANDY ZHANG: I didn't think very much. I got my buddy Chris, heard them telling me to calm down and I tripled the first hole. I mean, it's in the U.S. Open, you can't expect too much.
SNELL: Tiger is looking to win the U.S. Open for a fourth time and third alone in the state of California. And he'll again join Phil and Bubba for Friday's second round.
Patrick Snell, CNN, San Francisco.
DAVIES: OK. We'll move on to news from Euro 2012 where the teams in Group C will play their second matches today. The host Ukraine tops the group with three points. And if they win, they'll become the first team to secure a place in the quarterfinals. But to do that, they will have to beat France. There we are. I've got that Friday feeling this morning. Yeah, they've got to beat the French in the early match.
France opened the tournament with a 1-1 draw with England. In that late match, though, England and Sweden need a win to get their campaigns back on track. Let's have a look at how we expect the teams to line up.
This is what we're expecting from England. Reports are saying that Roy Hodgson wants to exploit Sweden's weakness in the air. They of course conceded two headers to Ukraine's Andriy Shevchenko in their first match. So that could mean a recall for this man Andy Carroll, hasn't started too often for England, the big, expensive Liverpool striker. This could be his big chance to secure his place before Wayne Rooney returns from suspension, though.
In terms of Sweden, they have already named their starting 11 for the match. A few changes, the biggest one being Johann Elmander replacing Markus Rosenberg up front.
Sweden, though, have never lost to England in any of their competitive meetings. That is 24 years in total, which is quite some record.
There is another football line to bring you, though, and that is that Denmark's Michael Laudrup has been announced as the new manager of English Premier League side Swansea. The 47-year-old has spent time at Barcelona and Real Madrid as a player has signed a two year deal and will hold a press conference next Thursday. He replaces Brendan Rogers who left his post to join Liverpool, of course, three weeks ago.
Laudrup has been out of management since leaving Spanish club Mallorca last year, but had previously had spells at KB Moscow, Getafe and Brandby.
In the NBA finals, Miami Heat survived a late fight back from Oklahoma City Thunder to win game two 100-96 and tie the series level at one-apiece. Just like game one, LeBron James started aggressively. This baseline drive and reverse layup gave Miami a 15 point lead. That was as much as 17 point lead at one point, but the Thunder stormed back.
Kevin Durant's dunk here cut it to eight in the fourth.
Later Russell Westbrook feeds it to Durant. He missed the layup, but Westbrook is there for the rebound and lay-in.
Miami's lead cut to three. But down the stretch LeBron came up big. A nice jumper here with 90 seconds on the clock put the Heat up five. But he comes up big on the defensive end, denying Durant's attempt to tie the game in the closing seconds.
Some thought there should have been a foul, but none was called. So victory to the Heat. Game three back in Miami on Sunday.
And finally, Kristie, we are, you know, just a month away from the opening of the London Olympics. It's been a pretty long journey since London was awarded the games seven years ago. And it's one that's been captured through some fantastic satellite photos. Have a look at these, a series of images of Stratford where most of the venues are. The area used to be industrial land, but as you can see it's really been transformed. It houses the main stadium as well as the venues for the swimming, basketball, cycling, field hockey, and more.
Of course, the Olympic village is there as well. I was lucky enough to go about a month ago. It really is absolutely spectacular. It all kicks off it will become the center of the world's attention from July 27, of course, Kristie.
LU STOUT: Yeah. And seeing the Olympic site from space just then, that was pretty cool. Amanda Davies with the share. Thank you so much indeed.
You are watching News Stream. And up next Greece is at a crossroads as voters there prepare to chose between austerity or the possibility of leaving the EuroZone.
LU STOUT: Live from Hong Kong you are back watching News Stream.
Now Greece has been without a fully functioning government for over a month. It's a situation leaders are desperately hoping will change after voters head to the polls this weekend.
Now Sunday's parliamentary election is the second in as many months. It comes at a time when clear leadership is crucial. Greece needs to outline more budget cuts before the end of the month to meet the conditions of its European bailout. And while neither the New Democracy Party nor the socialist PASOK want to risk it, there is the lingering possibility of an exit from the EuroZone itself.
Now the economic crisis has pushed many people to the financial brink. Now imagine you're out of work, out of money, and have no way of supporting your family. Where do you turn? Matthew Chance reports that some people are taking very desperate measures.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: These are the youngest victims of Greece's economic despair, abandoned not through lack of love, but money. We gained access to this orphanage in Athens where care workers say they've witnessed a surge in the number of Greek families unable to feed and cloth their children.
STERGIOS SINFIOS, DIR, SOCIAL WORK, SOS CHILDREN'S VILLAGES GREECE: I think that it is the first time for us. And I'm working for SOS Villages since 1982. So the first time I see so many poor families ask for help for their own children.
CHANCE: Austerity and years of recession are literally breaking up families.
Of course there have always been orphans, children in care in Greece, but what's changed over the course of the past two years is this: previously children in care came from problem families, parents who were drug addicts or alcoholics, but over the past two years that's transformed dramatically. The vast majority now come from families who simply can't afford to look after their children.
Parents like Kassiani Papadopuolou, single mother, unemployed, and unable, she says, to care for her three children. We caught one of her rare visits.
KASSIANI PAPADOPUOLOU: Dont (ph)
CHANCE: Pleased to meet you. How are you?
PAPADOPUOLOU: Michaela (ph).
CHANCE: Hello Michaela (ph), good to see you.
Giving up this family, she told me, was painful. But in Greece's economic climate still her best option.
PAPADOPUOLOU (through translator): It's really difficult, really tragic for a true mother to leave her children, but when you understand they are not at fault and deserve a future, it's better to make a move like this than have them beside you without even a plate of food.
CHANCE: Who do you blame for putting you and your family in this situation? Do you blame the government? Do you blame the economic crisis? Who do you hold responsible?
PAPADOPUOLOU (through translator): For me, it's all those who govern. They all look out for themselves instead of the people. And the poor like us should be the responsibility of the state.
CHANCE: But this is the terrible social price of Greece's economic crisis. Even for its youngest, most vulnerable, the state can barely afford to care.
Matthew Chance, CNN, Athens.
LU STOUT: Now we'll bring you the main headlines in just a moment. And also ahead right here on News Stream, fighting back with added force. We'll show you how members of the Syrian opposition are turning to guerrilla warfare.
And on the ground with U.S. special operations in Jordan. CNN gets exclusive access to troops in training.
LU STOUT: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. You're watching News Stream. And these are your world headlines.
Now activists in Egypt are calling for protests this Friday. The high court ruled the new parliament is invalid. That means that legislative power reverts to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces who is now appointing an assembly to write a new constitution ahead of this weekend's presidential runoff.
Now Greece is also gearing up for a critical ballot this weekend. Party leaders are making a last ditch push for votes in Sunday's poll. And the result could determine if Greece sticks with unpopular austerity measures or backs parties that could prompt the country to leave the EuroZone.
Now police in Japan say they have arrested the last remaining suspect linked to a gas attack on Tokyo's subway in 1995. 13 people died and thousands fell ill when members of a doomsday cult released sarin gas during the morning rush hour. Now police say Katsuya Takahashi was caught outside a comic book cafe in Tokyo after 17 years on the run.
Now Syrian activists are reporting widespread shelling by government forces in the western city of Homs. They say at least four people have been killed across Syria so far today including one person in Homs. Now UN monitors have finally have been allowed to enter the town of al Haffa in Latakia Province. They found it deserted after days of heavy shelling. The number of casualties is unknown.
Now meanwhile, two senior UN officials are calling on the international community to take immediate action to protect civilians.
Now some rebels in Syria are turning to suicide bombs and roadside explosives in their fight against government forces. And as Arwa Damon reports, the fighting is starting to resemble the insurgency in Iraq.
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORREPSONDENT: In the past few months the armed resistance against the Syrian government has increased throughout the country. There have been suicide bomb attacks against the government and the security forces. And increasingly, some elements of the Free Syrian Army have begun making their own bombs.
CNN has obtained from opposition activists video showing just how these crude devices are being put together by one so-called brigade of the Free Syrian Army. And we have decided to air their images, because they are part of mounting evidence that the opposition in Syria is becoming more like an Iraqi style insurgency and threatening to push the nation ever closer to an all-out civil war.
Most of the clips start with the Koranic verse followed by the title of a group calling itself the Daoud Brigade (ph) of the Damascus Hawks division. Partly audible below the swelling jihadi chorus, a voice says this is a suicide bombing mission against Assad's soldiers in Idlib.
"God is great," the voice declares as a van comes into view apparently approaching a checkpoint. The camera zooms in.
This is one of one of several clips posted to YouTube by the brigade. The videos are very similar in tone to those that came out of Iraq as al Qaeda allied insurgents there took on the U.S. military.
But this is Syria today. Outgunned by Assad's forces, some rebels have turned to suicide bombs and roadside IEDs, Iraq style guerrilla warfare. Their bombs crude, yet extremely effective.
In this video obtained exclusively by CNN, the Daoud Brigade (ph) commander, Captain Zaoud Hassan Mahmoud (ph), shows how the bombs are made. Cylinders are packed with a lethal concoction of explosives, fertilizer, and other chemicals bought locally.
"We don't want to name them so that the government doesn't confiscate them from the market," Captain Mahmoud says.
Holes are fixed to the top of the canisters. One detonated, they will be lethal shards of shrapnel. Wires lead off to a battery.
"This one will blow up a Jeep or a pick-up," Captain Mahmoud says pointing to two devices that another rebel is keeping together. For tanks or armored vehicles, we use six to eight bombs.
The Daoud Brigade (ph), he says, has some 300 fighters. And the Damascus Hawks Division, he claims, is around 8,000 strong operating mostly in Idlib Province. There is no way of confirming such claims.
Mahmoud (ph) says his men are moderate Islamists, fighting for democracy.
"We want a democratically elected president and a military that is separate from the presidency," he says.
Captain Mahmoud (ph) says they're getting no outside help, not from the leadership of the Free Syrian Army, nor the Syrian National Council. "We are reliant on local donations and whatever we're able to capture from the Syrian military," he says.
Their weapons, AK-47s, sniper rifles, automatic machine guns and rocket propelled grenades. No match for the Syrian military.
"We're relying mostly on mines and on making bombs now," Captain Mahmoud (ph) explains.
One of his units is just back from a mission.
"We set up an ambush against Assad's army using IEDs," this fighter says. "But they received intelligence about our plan and rerouted their convoy."
Another fighter claims his group destroyed an armored vehicle.
This is how the battle for Syria is now being fought. Protest has become insurgency, which in turn threatens to become all-out war.
Arwa Damon, CNN, Beirut.
LU STOUT: Now the U.S. Air Force is trying to figure out what is causing a dangerous problem with the world's most advanced fighter jet: the F22 Raptor. Now pilots have been getting sick at the Raptor's controls and apparently suffering from a lack of oxygen at a rate of up to 10 times higher than for any other U.S. Air Force aircraft.
Now investigators are looking at whether the Raptors specialized flight suits are to blame. They're focusing on a vest-like part of the suit, it's called combat edge. And it expands and contracts on the torso to fight the effects of g-forces and may hamper breathing. But that doesn't explain what some mechanics have also suffered oxygen loss while working on the plane.
Now some of the U.S. forces most elite teams are joining up with their counterparts from around the world. They are training for every possible mission from rescuing hostages to stopping militants in their tracks. Barbara Starr reports.
BARBARA STARR, CNN CORREPSONDENT: Deep in the deserts of the Middle East, insurgents blow up a gas station, snipers hit their target. This is actually a training range in Jordan. 1,200 special forces troops from the U.S. and more than a dozen countries are practicing the most dangerous missions. One scenario, a hijacked jetliner sits on the airfield.
This is some of the most realistic training that U.S. special operations forces are getting here in the Middle East. An Airbus 300 hijacked. They will come on board and rescue the hostages.
More training assaulting terrorist safe houses.
This is the kind of training that Navy SEAL team got before they assaulted Osama bin Laden's compound. Coming up a dark staircase not knowing what's waiting for them at the top.
As the U.S. and its Middle East allies consider whether to take possible action against the Syrian regime and even against Iran's nuclear program, their commando forces are working together like never before. Navy SEAL Todd Tinsley runs a team out of the Persian Gulf. The basics, he says, remain unchanged.
CAPT. TODD TINSLEY, U.S. NAVY SEAL: Shoot, move, and communicate. I mean, that's what soft (ph) is very good at.
STARR: There are new partners here like Iraq, which is providing this overhead imagery.
TINSLEY: You get in. You do your job and you get out without anybody knowing about it. And if you can do that with your partner force and they are able to do that, that is success.
STARR: Even after the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the future of U.S. special forces lies in their ability to do whatever it takes. Admiral William McRaven heads all U.S. special operations.
ADM. WILLIAM MCRAVEN, U.S. SPECIAL OPERATIONS COMMANDER: If this is where things really go bad, we want to be able to do is engage with the host nation very early on, begin to build up their capability and allow them to deal with the problem so we don't get to the point where it goes boom.
STARR: The U.S. of course still relies a good deal on drone attacks, unmanned drones striking from the air in countries like Yemen in Pakistan where the U.S. presence is not acknowledged. But the commandos that we spoke to on the ground tell us they really are training up so the next time they go to war they will all go together, a coalition of countries. But if it doesn't work out, U.S. commandos say they are still prepared to go it alone.
Barbara Starr, CNN, the Pentagon.
LU STOUT: Now still ahead on News Stream, it's being called the biggest threat to Pakistan's future, but it's not what you might expect. The details straight ahead.
LU STOUT: Now it is a country already struggling with insurgents, corruption, poverty and political infighting, but surprisingly some experts say the biggest threat to Pakistan is actually its booming population. Now the nation is set to become the third most populous country by 2050. And that is raising alarm bells. Reza Sayah reports.
REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: First came Tazegore (ph), then came Hemletollah (ph), then it was Fidagol (ph), then Sorayah (ph), then Farmalolleh (ph), Andobagola (ph), Anfazia (ph), and Zakia (ph), and Asia (ph), and Takirollah (ph), Indagollah (ph), Anamollah (ph), Moscan (ph), Lelah (ph), Aliyah (ph), Dana (ph), Hadia (ph), Aminolah (ph), and finally Amna (ph). 20 brothers and sisters, all of the kids belonging to dad Islam Moman (ph) and his two wives who didn't want to be on camera.
The Momans (ph) have so many children, dad admits it gets confusing.
"Sometimes I forget their names. Then I ask for help," he says.
This is the last one, right?
And the family may still get bigger.
The Momans (ph) are happy to have more kids, but population experts and aid groups say it's families like theirs that are adding to a rapid population growth there in Pakistan that's fast becoming this country's most dangerous crisis.
AKBAR LAGHARI, DEPARTMENT OF POPULATION WELFARE: I can see the population problem the biggest problem of this country.
ZEBA SATHAR, POPULATION COUNCIL: It's of huge concern that we are growing at one of the fastest rates in Asia.
SAYAH: With well over 180 million people, Pakistan is the sixth most populous country in the world.
LAGHARI: Future is bleak because of this population.
SAYAH: Akbar Laghari of the Population Welfare Department admits the government shares the blame. Pakistan doesn't do nearly enough, he says, to offer effective family planning services and teach people about birth control.
LAGHARI: We do not have that much mobility. We do not have that much sources.
SATHAR: As we are doing a lot of research we notice women say they don't want that many children or they wanted to have a child later, but they just didn't find the services.
SAYAH: Another challenge, a deeply conservative culture. Many here view birth control as unIslamic.
"None of these methods is allowed in Islam," says Muslim cleric Molana Tanvir Alvi (ph). "Why should Muslims worry about population when God cares for everyone."
Today, just one out of five Pakistani women uses modern birth control, a factor that fuels Pakistan's growth by roughly 4 million people every year. Pakistan is on pace to double its population in just 40 years.
LAGHARI: Everything is going to explode.
SAYAH: Everything is going to explode?
LAGHARI: Explode because of the population.
SATHAR: Well, I think it's a frightening idea.
SAYAH: Frightening because Pakistan already suffers from widespread poverty, joblessness, an energy crisis, a woeful education system, and the bloody fight against Islamist militants. Imagine the same problem if the population doubles.
LAGHARI: There will be epidemics, there will be wars, there will be a fight for the food and water and for everything.
SAYAH: The Moman (ph) children are already paying the price. The family can only afford to send four of their 20 children to school, the rest work to support the family denied their most basic rights to have a childhood, an education, and dreams of a better life.
But there's still hope for Pakistan, experts say. They point to Muslim countries like Iran and Bangladesh that curbed their population despite similar challenges. Experts say those countries started with the political will to do something, then spent a lot of time and resources on family planning efforts. Pakistan can do it too, they say, but time is running out.
Reza Sayah, CNN, Raoul Pindi (ph).
LU STOUT: Now with hours to go before launch time, China presents its astronauts, including the person who will be the country's first woman in space.
LU STOUT: Now German authorities say a young man who claimed who had been living in the woods for five years was lying. Now police had been struggling to identify the man. And then authorities from the Netherlands got in touch. Fred Pleitgen joins us now live from Berlin. And Fred, who is this so-called forest boy? And why did he spin this story?
FRED PLEITGEN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Kristie.
Well, he's a 20-year-old from the town of Hengelo, which is actually right on the border between The Netherlands and Germany. And if you'll recall this boy or man, as we know now that he is, because he had originally said that he was 17-year-old, now turns out he's actually 20- years-old. He turned up at Berlin city hall late last year and claimed that he'd been living in the forest with his father for the past five years roaming around. He didn't know actually who he was, only that his first name and asked Berlin authorities for help.
Now for the past seven months they've been trying to find out who this really is. And one of the interesting things they found was every time Berlin authorities wanted to post a picture of him online to help to find out who he actually is, he always refused. So they did a couple of days ago. Some people in Holland identified him. Called authorities in Holland and then found out that his whole story was nothing but a pack of lies, Kristie.
LU STOUT: And what would be the consequences for his actions? Will he be charged for fraud?
PLEITGEN: Well, it's certainly looking like it. I mean, one -- I've been talking to a couple of Berlin officials and they are absolutely fuming at what happened. And they say one thing that they're looking into is they're looking to press charges against this man for obviously falsely claiming to be someone else and also for receiving things from the German government. I mean he's been getting housing and board, obviously. He's been in a youth home here in Berlin for the past seven months.
They say he also got a German course, which apparently he absolutely excelled at. And one of the things they say now is that really isn't a surprise considering that he actually came from the border area between Germany and Holland. He also got clothes, he got a cell phone, and a lot of other things. So the German government is going to look to try and get money back from him.
Also, they say, that he is going to have to leave the home that he's been staying in very soon. They say they're not just going to put him out on the street, but they are going to give him a notice. They might even put him on a train to Holland.
So certainly the future not looking too bright for this young man. And I can tell you all the Berlin officials I've been speaking to are not happy at all, Kristie.
LU STOUT: Yeah. And why did this young man make up this story? Why did he do this?
PLEITGEN: Well, it really is unclear. The latest rumor that's out there on German websites is that this is Holland's way of getting back at Germany for beating them at the Euro soccer tournament two days ago. But really that's pretty much as far as it goes.
It is absolutely unclear why he did this. Certainly the Berlin authorities don't know.
They have, however, confronted him with this new information. He has, of course, said yes it's absolutely all true. He is a 20-year-old. He does come from Holland. He was never in any forest. And certainly everything that he's told authorities so far is a pack of lies, the motive unclear at this point. So certainly the mystery seems to have been solved, Kristie.
LU STOUT: Yeah, bizarre story. Frederik Pleitgen joining us live from Berlin. Thank you.
Now time for your world weather check. And there are two tropical cyclones on either side of the Pacific, both threatening land. Mari Ramos has more. She joins us now -- Mari.
MARI RAMOS, CNN WEATHER CORREPSONDENT: Hey, Kristie. We're going to start in the eastern Pacific with a storm that is closest to land and the one that appears to be the biggest threat right now and that is Tropical Storm Carlotta. Carlotta has winds almost at hurricane strength already. And there are some hurricane warnings posted along the coast of Mexico, particularly across the state of Oaxaca. The hurricane watches extend all the way out into the neighboring state and just fall short of the city of Acapulco. So we're talking about more densely populated areas that have to watch out for this storm in the next few days.
But let's go ahead and show you the latest satellite image. This is what it looks like. And pretty organized weather system. Already the rain bands have been affecting land. High surf also over this area. And as day continues today, we're going to see weather conditions deteriorating very, very quickly over this region.
Winds right now about 113 kilometers per hour. At 120 its officially a hurricane. And we're expecting that to happen some time later today.
After that it should continue to strengthen, but it could be very close to land, we think, within 24 to 48 hours. And it probably is a category one so it's not going to be a major hurricane. The concern is that it's going to be moving very, very slowly across this region. And that is why the rainfall totals could be tremendous for this area. We can see it easily 25 maybe 30 centimeters of rainfall within the next two days, particularly over the state of Oaxaca and back (inaudible). This is very significant, the threat for flooding and mudslides, and notice widespread rainfall that will be spreading up along the coast here over the next few days, dangerous surf and beach conditions. And of course very dangerous for swimmers and boaters and anybody else who might be out there. And inland the threat for flooding and mudslides as well.
So hurricane and I say sooner actually the same thing. They just call them hurricane in the Americas, we call them typhoon here across the western Pacific. And we have a typhoon out here in the Philippines. We've been watching this storm for the last few days. But notice how the rainfall is expected to stay over the water. We'll get some scattered rain showers here back over toward the Philippines, but the bulk of it will be remaining over this area here.
Wind right now with the storm close to 170 kilometers per hour. So much stronger system here. Notice, though, the rain bands are affecting the Philippines and rough seas are expected here.
The other thing that we're going to be noticing is how the storm is expected to move north and not necessarily have a direct impact on the Philippines, but could have an impact over Taiwan, maybe southern parts of Japan. It's going to have -- we're going to have to wait and see what's going to happen. Will it move closer to Taiwan and Mainland China? Or maybe stay out to sea. And how far north will it go? It's going to depend on what this trough right over here is doing. This is going to help either block the storm and send it and kick it out to the Pacific Ocean. But if that doesn't happen it could actually move a little farther north to the Korean Peninsula or maybe western parts of Japan. So we'll have to monitor this over the weekend, and so should you if you live or have business in this area. The best guess scenario right now is going to be the storm staying offshore, far away from Taiwan and possibly affecting the (inaudible) islands.
Let's go ahead and check out your city by city forecast now.
Hey, you know what, Kristie. We've been monitoring the monsoon as well. I want you to notice how we do have some scattered rain showers here across central parts of India, but overall the monsoon is late. And that's a big deal, because by now we have the benchmark date of June 15. It should be way up here already, but notice this white line down here, that is where the monsoon is actually now.
And this is significant, because the rainfall is so critical for India's economy. This is where the rain should be. And right now we're actually, what, some significantly below average for this time of year. About 40 percent so far the rainfall has been deficient. And that is a worry for farmers, of course, for the crops, for irrigation.
But it's also a worry for consumers, because like I said, the agricultural sector is so important in India. Even though it's only about 15 percent of the GDP, it actually employs almost 60 percent of the population. So it's important not just for money, but also of course to provide food.
So we'll have to see and hopefully those rains will come soon. Back to you.
LU STOUT: Yeah, Mari. Thank you very much indeed for keeping tabs on that very critical weather event. Mari Ramos there.
Now China is preparing for a historic space docking mission. It is scheduled for Saturday. The Shenzhou 9 it will have a three person crew on board and will dock with China's orbiting space lab. And if successful, China will be the third nation after the U.S. and Russia to complete a manned space docking. And a member of the crew on board the Shenzhou 9 is Liu Yang, China first female tychonaut (ph).
Now she was chosen from a number of female candidates for her solid flying record and mental toughness. Now she will join a short, but very illustrious list of female space pioneers. Valentina Tareshkova was the former Soviet Unions first female cosmonaut. And the launch of the Shenzhou 9 it comes exactly 49 years after her mission on the Vostok 6 in 1963.
Now Sally Ride was the first American woman to go into space, but that didn't happen until 1983. Now NASA had been sending men into space for over two decades before Sally Ride, but she was also the youngest ever American astronaut at just 32 years old.
And finally it's not your typical celebration, but the U.S. Army is taking a high calorie approach to its 237th birthday. Now this tank, it's made of 5,000 camouflage frosted cupcakes. It was donated to the Pentagon by a local bakery. It's in the shape of an M1 Abrams tank. It's the mainstay of the army's forces. And it can do this.
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LU STOUT: And yep it just shot out a cupcake over Barbara Starr's head, even though she didn't seem to be that amused.
And that is News Stream, but the news continues at CNN. World Business Today is next.