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Tens of Thousands Still Without Power; More Facts, Questions on Petraeus; Brutal Attacks in Syria; Overcoming the Scars; Singles Day in China; A Washington Outside the Beltway

Aired November 11, 2012 - 18:00   ET


DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. Don Lemon here.

I want to get you up to speed on the headlines.

First, today, citizens across the nation pause to pay tribute and give heartfelt thanks to our military heroes. At Arlington National Cemetery, President Barack Obama laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown. Afterwards, he told those gathered that America is a nation that picks up its fallen, especially those who have fought to defend our freedom.


BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: When we get knocked down, we rise again. When times are tough, we come together. When one of us falters, we lift them up. In this country, we take care of our own, especially our veterans who have served us so bravely and sacrificed so selflessly in our name.


LEMON: Veterans Day parades are the traditional way to honor our military. But organizers of today's parade in New York City promoted the event as a rally for storm victims when the coats were collected for those hit hardest by Superstorm Sandy.

In North Carolina, thousands turned out for the parade in Fayetteville. The theme for this year's parade was a welcome home for all Iraq veterans.

Two newly reported deaths in New York have raised the death toll from superstorm Sandy to at least 113. Thirteen days after the storm crashed through the metropolitan area, residents in New York and New Jersey are still clearing debris from their homes and battling the cold. They are also standing watch to ward off looters; iReport from New York just moments away here on CNN.

As for the latest on the resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus, members of Congress are expressing concerns that matters of national security may have been compromised. They question the link that the FBI probed into the general's personal affairs, which began with a complaint that his mistress was sending harassing e-mails to another woman close to the general. Tens of thousands of people in the path of Superstorm Sandy still have no electricity as we have just reported. They are forced to put on layers of clothes just to battle the cold inside their own homes. But some residents are celebrating their first day with power back for the first time.

Our national correspondent Susan Candiotti in the Rockaways neighborhood of Queens right now.

Susan, are there any signs of improvement out there?

SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: There are some signs of improvement out there, Don, but not on the street where I am. You see those apartment buildings behind me, you see some are short. And then the tallest one among all of those, there are 600 families.

But in that one highest of the high-rises there, there's a mother of two who is disabled who cannot get out and has not been able to leave her apartment for the last two weeks. Again, this is a mother of two children. Look.


CANDIOTTI: Out in broad daylight, it's easy to see, but look how dark it's going to get when we walk inside the building.

Bryant Pearson (ph) is in charge of the tenants association. He's going to give us a tour.

Bryant, let's take a look.

Let's see. By contrast, you can se it's bright sunshine outside and I don't know how you can see anything in here, Bryant.

BRYANT PEARSON (ph), IN CHARGE: No, we don't.

CANDIOTTI: I'm holding on to the back of your jacket because I cannot see a thing.

PEARSON: The steps right here.


PEARSON: This is how people get up and down the staircase.

CANDIOTTI: Hold on. I cannot see OK, got it. Yes.

PEARSON: This is how we have to live here. We've been living like this since the storm hit.

CANDIOTTI: Hey, Bryant, is this the seventh floor now?

PEARSON: This is the seventh floor. We're going to talk to a couple people.

CANDIOTTI: Has there been any looting, stealing? PEARSON: There's no looting. (INAUDIBLE) That's it right there. That speaks (ph) to you.

CANDIOTTI: Whoa, whoa, that is right there?

PEARSON: Yes, right here. That speaks (ph) to you.

CANDIOTTI: Be careful where you walk.

PEARSON: When National Guard came, they put tags on the door stating that they came to check.

CANDIOTTI: That was on November 10th.



PEARSON: Bryant.


CANDIOTTI: Yes, I will. What's her name?


Ivy is it all right for them to interview you?

CANDIOTTI: Ivy, hi. I'm with CNN, Susan Candiotti.

PEARSON: Now we're in Ivy Kerton's apartment.

And, Ivy, you have two young daughters over here. You guys are ages -- how old are you?




CANDIOTTI: Ten years old.

Now, it's a little warm in here and here is why. Ivy at least has natural gas working, so the stove is working so she has a pot of water on here giving off steam to at least warm up the room. A lot of places don't even have this much.

Ivy, when was the last time you were able to leave the building?

IVY KERTON (ph), RESIDENT: About two weeks ago.

CANDIOTTI: Right before the storm.

KERTON: Right before the storm. CANDIOTTI: And the reason you couldn't get out, they turned off the electricity. But why can't you get out? You're sitting in a walker --

KERTON: In a walker, yes. I can't get out because I can't go down the stairs.

CANDIOTTI: You're suffering (INAUDIBLE) of a stroke.

KERTON: Right.

CANDIOTTI: What's it like at night?

UNIDENTIFIED GIRL: Nights are scary. Then I have to go empty the garbage. My little sister, my baby sister, she has to hold a flashlight and it's scary sometimes because I hear noises. Like - well, it's not like real noises. It's like the wind is like whooo, like the ghost and stuff. Sometimes it scares me. Even though I'm 10, but I still get scared.

CANDIOTTI: Ivy, what do you think about this?

KERTON: I think it's terrible. They should be prepared for that. They should be prepared, you know, for stuff like this when a storm hits, knowing Rockaways need water. They should be prepared.

CANDIOTTI: How are you able to take care of your two girls?

KERTON: My oldest daughter, she's helpful, that's why. When it's time to go outside, like when the pool comes around, she goes down. But it's kind of scary for me to send her down to because the staircases are dark.


CANDIOTTI: So imagine, Don, for Ivy Kerton, her key link, her really main link to the outside world is her 10-year-old daughter -- Don.

LEMON: Susan, you have been doing such great reporting on really bringing it home as to what people are dealing with. So, I must commend you on that.

But I have to ask a question as well. Again, this building, you showed a number of people in the building. How are they helping not only in this building, but in other buildings around the area? How are they helping out residents?

CANDIOTTI: Well, you know, late today and after we visited her a few hours later, we saw the National Guard come by. We know that the National Guard was there yesterday and marked some of the doors with what they need. They came back today delivering a palette of water and meals ready to eat MREs, a box of them, with enough supplies, meals for two weeks.

And they told me they promised that they will be back and keep checking on these people. They know how rough it is for them. They have seen, quite frankly, human waste inside that building.

LEMON: Goodness.

CANDIOTTI: And they agreed the conditions are horrible. We have seen a generator outside the building, Don, but we can't find management to find out why they are not turning it on.

LEMON: Yes. Susan, I know this sounds, you know, like something odd, but during your piece, I heard it was either a smoke alarm that needed a battery change or it was a carbon monoxide detector going off. And those two sound very similar. You should check on them and make sure they check that because that can be very dangerous.

Susan, again, great reporting. Thank you so much.


LEMON: You know, it's only been two days since General David Petraeus stepped down. As the circumstances surrounding his resignation come pouring in, so do the questions from some key lawmakers on Capitol Hill.

I'm joined now by Athena Jones. She's in Washington for us.

Athena, there's some pointed criticism being directed at the FBI right now.

ATHENA JONES, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Don. As you can imagine, this was a big topic of conversation on all the Sunday shows here. A lot of forceful talk from members of Congress on both sides.

Let's listen real quick to what New York Representative Peter King, a Republican, had to say on "STATE OF THE UNION" this morning.


REP. PETER KING, (R) NEW YORK: The FBI director has the obligation to tell the president or the National Security Council at the earliest state. So it's been going on for several months, and yet, now, it appears that they are saying that the FBI didn't realize until Election Day that General Petraeus was involved. It just doesn't add up that you got this type of --


JONES: And so, Peter King, as you heard him say, he has a lot of questions. He wants to know when this investigation began. He wants to know if they got a court order, was it a federal court order. Did they get -- for this email surveillance. So, a lot of questions from him.

We also heard from Senator Dianne Feinstein who is the Democrat who is the Senate Intelligence Committee chair. And she said that she's going to investigate why it is that they weren't notified earlier. The House and Senate Intelligence Committees weren't informed about this whole investigation until Friday -- so several days later. So a lot of questions and this is just the beginning really of the questions, Don.

LEMON: Athena, let's talk a little bit more about Paula Broadwell. What do you know about her? How she met General David Petraeus?

JONES: Well, we know that she is a mother of two, a married mother of two. She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina. And she first met General Petraeus back in 2006, when the general came to the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, the graduate school there, to give a speech.

So Broadwell was a student then. She was a graduate student then. She met him and, of course, she started later on doing a dissertation on him. All about research later, she decided to turn into a book. And so she was keeping in touch with him by e-mail. She did a lot of interviews by email.

And, of course, as you know, she spent time with him in Afghanistan and went on the long runs we heard her talk about in interviews where she interviewed him. So it seems like she's known him for several years, Don.

LEMON: All right. Athena, thank you very much. Appreciate it.

JONES: Thanks.

LEMON: Here's a question for you: is the Republican Party in need of a makeover? How do they regroup and revamp the party after Tuesday's losing election?


LEMON: Conversation I look forward to, I'm sure you do, too, every Sunday, because it always looks real. All right?

One side still celebrating. The other side still second-guessing. So let's talk politics and look ahead to what Tuesday's election means with CNN contributors Will Cain and L.Z. Granderson.

Earlier I called you Will, I said Will Granderson to Fred. I don't know what I was thinking. You guys are morphed into one person.

Will is also a contributor for; L.Z., a senior writer for ESPN.

OK, let's look at some numbers here, all right, and be serious for a moment. President Barack Obama got more than 90 percent of the black vote, more than 70 percent of both the Asian and the Latino vote, 55 percent of women. And he also got a much smaller, 39 percent of the overall white vote.

So, let's talk about the future here. Will Cain, if Democrats can win the White House --

WILL CAIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Sir. LEMON: -- with less than 40 percent of the white vote, is the GOP going to have to change its message and become more diverse?

CAIN: Well, you said change its message. It's definitely going to have to become more diverse. Is it going to change its message? Well, that depends. Are you asking if they need to change their ideology? Which the answer to that is no. They have to change the way they communicate the ideology -- the answer is clearly yes.

You know, it's interesting, Don. Before this election, there was a lot of conservatives saying, hey, Mitt Romney's actually going to win in a landslide, right? You heard that. And they got it incredibly wrong.

How did they get it incredibly wrong? Because those numbers you showed just a moment ago, they assumed the 2008 numbers, and by the way, I think it's a rational assumption, were a historical aberration, right?

Barack Obama's first election was infused with such enthusiasm. There's no way that's matched in 2012. Well, it was. So, what do you? How do you change? I don't know the answer to that.

I think, quickly and I let L.Z. get in, you have to admit there's one thing.

LEMON: That's filibustering.

CAIN: Barack Obama is a phenomenal politician. He's a phenomenal candidate. He's the guy people want to believe in. So, I don't know that days after a butt whooping are the best time to really have a self-evaluation moment. Let's have some rationalities set in.

LEMON: Well, OK. All right. Go ahead, L.Z.

L.Z. GRANDERSON, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: Well, you know, I think Will talked a lot about what needs to happen. They need to go back and they need to take a look at how we get more diverse. But I think it's important to remember that diversity isn't an external thing.

You know, we're so used to checking things like, oh, we got black people, we've got Latinos, we've got women. It's really about diversity of thought and that's where Will and I separate a little bit here. I think they do need to change their message.

They need to change the message because it's not how someone looks. It's about how they think. And how they think is the reason why people did not run to Romney and people went to President Obama.

Yes, he's a phenomenal politician. Yes, he's a great orator. But more importantly, he was a pretty good president his first term, especially considering what he had to deal with.

LEMON: Right.

GRANDERSON: And Republicans keep getting away from that fact. That yes, he's black, yes, he's a great speaker, but oh by the way, he actually did some things that a lot of people support and agree with. And that's about the diversity of thought and not just about how you look.

LEMON: Yes. So, listen, the reason I didn't respond to what you're saying about messaging because I do think it's a messaging thing and I'm not sure you need to change your ideology, but messaging has a lot to do it.

I'm just going to let Patrick Millsaps say it for me. He was Newt Gingrich's former campaign chief of staff. And last night, I was talking to him about the campaign in 1996. And I asked him, I said, I asked him and he said, I asked very naively, why don't we go to the black churches? He said, well, they never vote for us -- when he got involved in his first campaign in 1996. He said, why don't we go after students and young people? He said those people never vote.

Well, here they are in 2012. That's a completely different story and we need to make the attempt. As a matter of fact, let's listen to him. Let him say it more plainly.


PATRICK MILLSAPS, FMR. CHIEF OF STAFF, GINGRICH PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN: And I asked why don't we go to black churches? Well, they'll never vote for us. Why don't we retreat to students and young people? Those people never vote.

Well, here we are in 2012, that's a completely different story.


MILLSAPS: And we need --


LEMON: So, Will, that sounds like a messaging issue to me.

CAIN: Yes, and it's a demographic issue as well.

You know, you pointed out Barack Obama's share of the white vote. The white vote as a percentage as of the total vote has been dwindling since some time. In 2000, it was 81 percent. You know, in 2008, I think it was 74 percent. This year, it was 72 percent.

You have to have some message that brings people of diverse backgrounds and ethnicities into the tents.

Now, here, back to L.Z. and my disagreement. The ideology that I feel like is superior, the one that I want to message out is one that applies to everyone, regardless of age and ethnicity and gender. It applies to everyone. It should work to the benefit of everyone. It is ethnic and gender neutral.

But how do I communicate that? How do people that think like me communicate that? I guess, you know, various groups who have not benefitted under that general application message throughout our history, when I know -- I know that history and evidence suggests this is the one best for everybody.

We've got to come up with the answer to that, Don. We really have to come up with the answer to that.

LEMON: OK. And you don't know what the answer is?

CAIN: Well, yes, I mean -- yes. I do it every night on this show on Sunday, every Sunday on this show.


LEMON: Go ahead, L.Z. What's the answer?

GRANDERSON: I mean, part of the answer is having a backbone and having some courage. You know, there were many things Mitt Romney, that this campaign could have done that could have sent a different message. But they didn't have the courage to say it.

For example, when they had the RNC during the convention and the report went out that the black woman was harassed and had peanuts thrown at her. And I talked about this on this show. If Mitt Romney would have simply said, I heard this was going on. We do not accept this in our party. That would have sent a powerful message that could have helped --

LEMON: And if you're going to -- if you're going to act like this, you can leave this room. We don't need that kind of message.


LEMON: Absolutely.

GRANDERSON: Right. Instead of turning a blind eye, it was the same thing in 2008. Was it all about race?

LEMON: L.Z., will you do me a favor? Will you do me a favor?


LEMON: Will you hold that thought because I'm going to keep you guys on the other side of the break.

Will, I understand you have an appointment I know you have to get to. But I promise, it will be quickly. We're going to continue to talk about this on the other side of the race. And, you know, because I'm going to talk about what Haley Barbour. He has some very strong words to his own party and we'll talk about that.

Will and L.Z. back right after the break.


LEMON: All right. Will and L.Z. are back now.

L.Z., you were talking about the Republican message about people who are racist, kicking them out of the convention and so on.

GRANDERSON: Absolutely. I mean, they are just things in my opinion that Mitt Romney, that the campaign could have done publicly to help send a message that we are inclusive. And part of that, you know, if you see racist signs, point them and say this is not going to happen underneath our tent.

You know, all the things that are being said about women and rape and abortion, instead of being lukewarm and trying to say we don't support that, they should have been aggressive in saying that. Things when it comes to the way they were attacking gay people and the things that said about the LGBT community.

You don't have to run out and say, I support marriage equality. But what you can say is we're going to stop blaming gay people for hurricanes and stupid stuff like that.

CAIN: Can I --

GRANDERSON: Those are the little things the campaign would have done to send a message of inclusiveness.

LEMON: Go ahead, Will.

CAIN: I just want to say, L.Z.'s example of what happened at the Republican National Convention I think is a very fair one. At the same time, I don't think we should allow our different ideologies to be defined by the deviance that might be within them.

LEMON: Are the extremes.

CAIN: But, by the way --

LEMON: But the reality is, Will -- I know what you're going to say -- but the reality is sometimes we're judged by the extremes whether it is fair or not, and much of the time, that is what's picked up in the media.

CAIN: Fine.

LEMON: The thing at the convention picked up in the media, huge deal. Gay people causing hurricanes -- huge deal. Legitimate rape -- huge deal.

CAIN: But here's the deal, Don, we also have to be responsible in condemning the politicians that create false wars where none exist. So when Joe Biden goes on stage and says Republicans want to put y'all back in chains, that deserve just as much condemnation because that has nothing to do with actual ideology. When we manufacture something like a war on women, that should be condemned as well.

GRANDERSON: That wasn't manufactured, though, Will.

CAIN: It was. I knew you were going to say that. These are laws of general applicability.



CAIN: This is the point. We have laws of general applicability that one side panders to groups. Now, I'm telling you that my side needs to do a better job of explaining how its message helps everyone. But I think the other side needs to be honest about not pandering and creating false wars as well.


GRANDERSON: It wasn't a false war, but I believe Democrats have a huge race problem just as Republicans do. You cannot continue to hemorrhage the white vote and think you're going to get the White House.

The Democrats also have to find a way to get their message across so that they say, you know what? We want diversity, but it also includes heterosexual white males. We're not excluding you in our big umbrella of diversity. We want to include you.

Right now, the Democrats in my opinion are having a difficult time getting that message across.

LEMON: OK. That's going to have to be the end. This is a great conversation. I could have a whole show with you guys. We need to do that.

CAIN: Always enjoy it.

LEMON: It's an honest conversation. Where is Charlie? Is he back there?

CAIN: Yes, he's over here.

LEMON: Will's babysitting. He's got to run.

CAIN: My son is here with me.

LEMON: Go wipe the chocolate off of his face.

CAIN: He got hot chocolate all over his face. Yes.

LEMON: All right. Thanks, guys. See you next week. Appreciate it.

GRANDERSON: Thank you.

LEMON: Straight ahead, Syrian rebels show signs of uniting after pressure from the U.S. and Arab nations.

And a house explosion leaves two people dead, others injured and scatters debris for blocks.


DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: I'm Dr. Sanjay Gupta. Beyond these roads of razor wire, believe it or not, greenhouses and compost bins.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm free except the fence behind the tower. I mean, I walk around out here. I have anywhere the gardens are I could go.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have this duty, this job. It makes it sufferable.

GUPTA: Hardened criminals tending organic gardens. This Sunday on "THE NEXT LIST."



LEMON: Almost half past the hour. I want to get a look at your headlines right now on CNN.

That is New York City and it's the annual Veterans Day parade. It was as festive as ever, but it had a different theme. Organizers turned it into a rally to help victims of Superstorm Sandy. Parade-goers were asked to donate winter coats to those hit hardest by the devastating storm. Good idea.

Two more reported deaths in New York raise the death toll to at least 113. While power has been restored in most of New York City and New Jersey, full-blown protests have erupted on Long Island. With hundreds of angry residents picketing the local utility provider, Congressman Peter King who represents part of Long Island was on "STATE OF THE UNION" today.


KING (R): Because LIPA, the Long Island Public Authority, has failed miserably. They are not doing their job. They are not communicating with the people.

And I'm hoping that they can set up a federal infrastructure led by the Army Corps of Engineers which would have a comprehensive plan which LIPA would be required to follow.

This is an absolute disgrace. We are now two weeks into the storm and still have over 100,000 people without power and with no real estimate as to when they are going to get it back, getting misleading information, getting distorted information.


LEMON: To Indianapolis now where some people are beginning to return home after a massive explosion last night tore through a neighborhood, killing two people. Seven others were injured in the blast and fire that destroyed several homes. About 200 people were evacuated. There's no word yet on what caused the explosion, which blew out windows for at least two blocks in every direction. People heard the blast three miles away.

Israel is ready to ramp up its reaction to the spate of rocket attacks from Gaza.

This is video of rockets being launched in Gaza. Israel's military says dozens of rockets struck Israel overnight, injuring four civilians. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blames Hamas and he says Israel is on the verge of escalating its military response.

Israel fired warning shots into Syria today after a shell hit an Israeli military post. It's the first time Israel has fired on Syria since 1973.

Syria's divergent rebel groups may be pulling together after pressure from the U.S. and Arab nations.

Opposition leaders met in Qatar today and agreed to form a new umbrella coalition which may eventually transition into a new Syrian government. It's considered a big step in the rebel's push to oust President Bashar al-Assad. Syria's president says his government is fighting terrorists bend on destabilizing Syria.

Syria's bloody civil war started almost 20 months ago. More than 35,000 lives may have been lost. And we want to warn you, this next report shows graphic and disturbing video of atrocities allegedly committed by both Syrian government forces and rebel fights. Some viewers may consider it very disturbing.

As CNN's Arwa Damon reports here, heinous attacks may have become too familiar in Syria.


ARWA DAMON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is video from Homs shot earlier this year. Rebel fights crawl through holes, they smashed in walls, and find an entire family killed by regime forces, they say. A woman's body lies on the floor. In the room next to it bodies crowded into the corner. The slaughtered child's face a mask of fear.

More dead are in the bathroom. A small voice whimpers from another room. A child comes into view crawling over a body. He's the only survivor.

The Assad regime has always maintained it is simply targeting foreign- backed terrorists seeking to overthrow the government. But there are a horrifying stream of daily videos, none of which can be independently confirmed by CNN, alleging to show atrocities carried out by regime forces that the opposition claims show no mercy. Not even to those already dead.

Here what appeared to be Assad fighters dragging a man's body up into a truck. And in this video, corpses are used for target practice. Images like these a norm in Syria.

And now a growing number of videos alleging to show similar war crimes carried out by rebel fighters. This video is said to have been shot in the town of Harem in Idlib Province. One clip is especially disturbing. What appeared to be rebel fighters curse as they fire. The man, unarmed, is gunned down.

In the next clip a detainee is walked past the body. This is said to be from the town of Saraqeb, the men on the ground alleged Assad fighters cry out. Their pleas met with a volley of gunfire.

Defected judge Talal Housham, head of the Free Syrian Judicial Council, blames these actions on the ruthless tactics of the government.

"These are isolated incidents carried out by individual revolutionaries. The regime tactics are what created this radicalism," he tells us from his base in Turkey. A person who has had their entire home destroyed with their entire family inside has had their entire killed will naturally become radicalized.

While the council has set up makeshift courts in some rebel-controlled parts of the country, Housham admits that they can't control or monitor every single person. Still, he says, "This is not a reflection of the revolution. Our revolution is about justice, equality and rule of law."

Things that are sadly too often among the many casualties of war, especially one as brutal as Syria's.

Arwa Damon, CNN, Beirut.



LEMON: Two elderly women are dead after eating wild mushrooms harvested near their retirement home in Northern California. Four others are in the hospital now including the caregiver who picked the mushrooms and tossed them into a soup. State and local authorities are investigating now. A sheriff's office spokesman tells our affiliate KXTV that foul play is not suspected.

Heart health experts meeting last week in Los Angeles came up with several things everyone should know to keep our tickers humming along. The American Heart Association, which hosted the conference, boiled down the list to the top four.

So here you go. Number one, multivitamins don't reduce the risk of heart attacks, stroke or death from heart disease. A lot of people think they do. But experts say they do not. Number two, you're never too young for heart disease. Experts say people as young as 18 should have their blood pressure checked and get treatment if it isn't normal. Number three, four signs of ageing can signal an increased risk of heart disease or heart attack. A receding hairline, balding at the crown, ear lobe creases, and yellow fatty deposits around the eyelids. If you see any of these when you look in the mirror, make sure you tell your doctor.

And number four, if you have a heart attack, health insurance claims, prescription costs and lots of time at work can really add up. Lots of time lost at work can really add up. On the flip side, the expert said prevention and wellness programs can really pay off.

Straight ahead, an unofficial holiday is boosting the Chinese economy thanks to the country's single resident and the Internet.

But first imagine growing up with scarring so severe that your only wish was to be able to walk down the street unnoticed. In tonight's "Human Factor," CNN's chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta introduces us to a young woman who's turned a childhood accident into a new career, helping others ease their pain.


GUPTA (voice-over): The scars on Basma Hameed's face serve as a never-ending reminder of a kitchen fire that she endured more than two decades ago. See, Basma was just 2 years old at the time. She was in the kitchen with her who was 6.

BASMA HAMEED, PARAMEDICAL MICROPIGMENTATION SPECIALIST: He took a frozen chunk of meat from the -- from the fridge and he put it into boiling oil so a fire started. He tried to take it over to the sink and he tripped on top of me so the oil spilled on 40 percent of my face.

GUPTA: Thankfully Basma doesn't remember the accident or the pain. She does remember being rushed to the hospital and the surgeon working tirelessly to open her eye, which was stuck shut from that burning oil.

HAMEED: All the time growing up, it was really difficult because everybody would stare and especially at school. It was really hard to fit in.

GUPTA: Feeling frustrated after more than 100 procedures, at age 16, she asked her plastic surgeon what else could she do?

HAMEED: He has said take your money and go on a vacation. So I was still left with one eyebrow and I was really disappointed at that time.

GUPTA: Disappointed but undeterred. Basma began to research her options. Soon enough she began experimenting with micropigment implantation. It's a fancy term for tattoos.

HAMEED: I had nothing to lose. So that's when I took the tattoo machine and I sat in front of the mirror and I started working on my own face for two years.

GUPTA: She's now made a career of helping others soften their scars. Today she's tattooing Annette White's port-wine stain, that's a birthmark that's largely kept her from venturing outside her home since childhood.

ANNETTE WHITE, BASMA HAMEED CLINIC PATIENT: When I was in kindergarten they held me down and tried to erase my face with a pencil with no eraser on it. GUPTA: Annette had tried everything. Nothing worked until she found Basma and medical cosmetic tattooing. It's the last step, both women say, in learning to love themselves from the inside out.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, reporting.



LEMON: Sorry. Things that happen in the break. And it's Veterans Day in the U.S. Remembrance Day in parts of Europe. But in China, millions of unmarried men and women are celebrating Singles Day.

CNN's Azadeh Ansari is here.

What is shingles day? And I realized -- wrong.



LEMON: That's what happened in the break. What is singles day?

ANSARI: Well, it's this like grassroots effort of a holiday more or less which -- it's celebrated in China as a pop culture holiday. But it's really for these group of singles to get together and cast away their single status. But why is that important, Don?

LEMON: Yes, why?

ANSARI: Why is that important? Who cares? Well, because in the east there's always been this norm towards getting married at a young age and with improving economic conditions, more women are going to work and having, you know, marriage, having kids and getting into that whole rat race has really been put on the back burner.

And for generations, as you know, in China there's been preference towards boys.


ANSARI: So there's gender imbalance that's been created. And just now, they are seeing that. So come the year 2020, there's about 24 million men in China who are going to be looking for wives that just don't exist.


ANSARI: So what to do, what to do?


LEMON: Can you imagine? There'd be a lot of single men for the -- yes, confirmed bachelors for the rest of their lives. It sounds like it's kind of a spinoff of Valentines Day but for unattached, for the unattached.

ANSARI: Well, in a way, it's like their way of sticking it to the people who are celebrating the romantic holiday, right?


ANSARI: But -- right. Exactly then. Why is it celebrated on November 11th?

LEMON: Because?

ANSARI: One, one, one. There are six and everything in China has, like, a symbolic meaning to it, right?

LEMON: Got it. Got it. Got it. Yes.

ANSARI: So that's one of the reasons why today is the big day. But that being said, though, it's also big business, Don.

LEMON: Is it a -- is it like a Hallmark holiday?

ANSARI: Absolutely. It's not just about couples finding companionship. It generates a lot of money. And just today alone, they -- online, e-commerce, generated $1.6 billion. That trumped Cyber Monday last year which came at $1.25 million.

LEMON: But -- so what --


LEMON: What about the impact -- the impact of the Internet in China? I mean isn't there -- they censor the Internet. That doesn't have an impact on the sales of this --

ANSARI: Excellent, Don. I mean, excellent, excellent point. And the reason being, just this Friday we saw that happen with Google, right?

LEMON: Right.

ANSARI: But people find a way around this. You know they're savvy. These are young people. And about nearly half of China's population, they call them Netizen. They're turning to the Internet to get their information. But also, as we're seeing, do their shopping. So it's going to be the next merging market here.

LEMON: Singles --

ANSARI: Day, Don. Singles day.

LEMON: Singles day. S-I-N. Thank you, Azadeh.

ANSARI: You're welcome.

LEMON: Appreciate it.

ANSARI: It's great to have you back. LEMON: Yes. It's good to be back in a warm studio. Thank you.

Tonight a CNN documentary investigation into the case against disgraced cycling legend Lance Armstrong. Ahead we're going to preview the documentary and you'll hear more of the evidence against Armstrong.

Imagine this, if you can: a Washington without gridlock. I'm not talking about the nation's capital but a town in nearby Virginia hoping its namesake gets its act together.

CNN's Tom Foreman went for a visit.


TOM FOREMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Just an hour outside of D.C., people in the small town of Washington, Virginia, spent months waiting to see what the election would bring their way. And many like cabinet maker Peter Kramer say they didn't much care about whether the Democrats or Republicans would win. Just as long as the creeping economy starts racing again.

PATER KRAMER, CABINET FURNITURE MAKER: I'm saying it's both of those people's faults. And yes, somebody fix it. Let's get some people in Washington who want to sit down and say let's solve the problem and stop the gridlock.

FOREMAN: Next door the Stonyman Gourmet Farmers Cafe, Susan James spent the run-up to the election feeling much the same way.

SUSAN JAMES, OWNER, STONYMAN GOURMET FARMER: Certainly the economy has changed the way we've conducted business and it's changed decisions we've made. Major decisions.

FOREMAN: Instead of expanding her family-owned business, she kept a close eye on cost, steered clear of debt and watched the electoral process play out.

(On camera): What is it that you most want to see from Washington, D.C.?

JAMES: Leadership and stepping up. The game of passing the buck, it sounds like the way my brother and I used to fight when we were 7 people know, we don't want that.

FOREMAN (voice-over): It was that way all over town before the election. Many like jewelry maker Kaitlynn Mullan were unsure of what would happen with taxes, jobs --

KAITLYNN MULLAN, JEWELRY MAKER, GOODINE'S DESIGNS: I think a lot of people are just scared to commit a large amount of money to anything whether be it a couple of hundred dollars for customed jewelry or a home, you know, a lot of people are nervous.

FOREMAN: No one expects any quick fix for the economy.

JAMES: It's big and it's going to take some time and a lot of work, and it would be nice to get at it.

FOREMAN: But they are more than ready to start building up again just as soon as the other Washington settles down and gets back to work.

Tom Foreman, CNN, Washington, Virginia.



LEMON: Picture this scenario. It's the middle stages of cycling's greatest race, the Tour de France. Three beds set up in adjoining hotel rooms, three world class cyclists being infused with their own blood including Lance Armstrong. That revelation from a teammate who says he was there.


QUENTIN MCDERMOTT, HOST: Tyler Hamilton says that after stage 11 of the 2000 Tour de France, he, Lance Armstrong, and Kevin Livingston had their blood re-infused. Everything was handled by the team's management.

TYLER HAMILTON, LANCE ARMSTRONG TEAMMATE: We were in this small hotel. It was pretty wild. Arrived in my room and it was -- you know, the -- the staff had sort of prepared everything, the doctors, and there was a blood bag taped up on the wall hanging from the wall and, you know, a red tube coming down, a tube filled with blood coming down and basically, you know, they injected me here.

I have pretty small veins so the one place that would always worked was right there, and you can see the scars today.

MCDERMOTT: Tyler Hamilton says the three riders lay on beds in adjoining rooms with an open door between them.

(On camera): Could you see Lance Armstrong?

HAMILTON: Yes, yes. And that's a question that's been asked a lot. Yes, I saw him. I saw his bag of blood and saw it in his arm, yes.

MCDERMOTT: They were taking a huge gamble.

HAMILTON: I'm glad we didn't get caught. I would have been -- we all would have been. Serious stuff. And like now looking back, oh, my god, what was I doing? But you're so deep into it, you know. You don't even have time to take a half step back and look at the big picture.

MCDERMOTT: In 2005 Lance Armstrong denied under oath ever having received a blood transfusion.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You've never used your own blood for doping purposes, for example?


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. I'm not trying to agitate you. I'm just trying to make sure your testimony is clear.




LEMON: You can see much more of this in-depth investigation tonight. "The World According to Lance Armstrong" begins at 8:00 Eastern here on CNN.

Ahead, we remember our veterans.


LEMON: Going to end this hour with some sights and sounds from the Veterans Parade right here in downtown Atlanta. Nationwide young and old lined the streets of their towns and cities this weekend to celebrate freedom and wave their flags in honor of those who have done so much to protect it. Let freedom ring, indeed.

Hello, everyone. Don Lemon here at the top of the hour. We're getting a look at your headlines. And parades all across America. People came out to thank our military heroes.