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CONNECT THE WORLD
Japan Airlines Ground Boeing Dreamliner; Helicopter Crash In Central London Kills Two; Former French Prime Minister Juppe Calls French Involvement In Mali Risky
Aired January 16, 2013 - 16:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
MAX FOSTER, HOST: Tonight on Connect the World, Obama's battle against gun violence.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: If there is even one thing we can do to reduce this violence, if there's even one life that can be saved, then we've got an obligation to try.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOSTER: The U.S. president unveils a raft of sweeping new gun control proposals.
ANNOUNCER: Live from CNN London, this is Connect the World.
FOSTER: President Obama set up for a showdown with gun rights activists in the United States. Tonight, what it will take to get his proposal past.
Also ahead, the French former prime minister tells me he's worried about the country's intervention in Mali.
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MALE: It's a risk, a very high level of risk. And we cannot continue to be alone on the ground.
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FOSTER: And in sport, after rising to the top of his field, where this football manager is going next.
First tonight, U.S. President Barack Obama is proposing the most sweeping gun control measures in decades saying the country can't put off this any longer.
Among other things, he wants a ban on what the White House calls military style assault weapons, a ban on high capacity magazines like the ones used in the Connecticut school massacre last month, and mandatory background checks on all gun buyers. Mr. Obama says he'll put the full weight of his office behind the initiatives.
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OBAMA: While there is no law or set of laws that can prevent every senseless act of violence completely, no piece of legislation that will prevent every tragedy, every act of evil, if there is even one thing we can do to reduce this violence, if there's even one life that can be saved, then we've got an obligation to try.
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FOSTER: We'll have more on President Obama's proposals in just a moment, but first an opinion poll released just a few moments ago that gives us an idea of where Americans stand on this incredibly divisive issue. CNN political editor Paul Steinhauser joins us now from Washington with the numbers.
You've been going through them, Paul, so how does the nation stand?
PAUL STEINHAUSER, CNN POLITICAL EDITOR: Well, Max, you know, since the shootings in Newtown, Connecticut one month ago we've seen a spike in support for gun control. And our brand new CNN/Time Magazine/ORC national poll here in the United States really backs that up.
You can see right here, we asked do you favor stricter gun control laws. And a solid majority, 55 percent favor stricter laws, 44 percent oppose.
But Max, you know what's interesting, we've seen over the last month right after the shootings there was a big spike, we're starting to see a slight deterioration for the support for gun control, and that may be one reason, one reason why the president is really trying to fast track these gun control measures. You saw him signing 23 executive orders today for some smaller steps to curb gun violence. And also he's talking about, and you just mentioned, three big steps that he would have to push through congress.
And what about support for those? There's a wide amount of support here in the United States for those background checks you just mentioned. And that is across all party lines. But there is less support, a majority support -- but Max, less support for the resumption of that assault weapons ban here in the United States, and also for banning those high volume magazine or ammunition clips. And there's definitely a partisan divide there, Max. Democrats really support such moves, Republicans are opposed to such moves, Max.
FOSTER: And just clarify for us what an executive order actually means, because it has been real change today even though it's been small.
STEINHAUSER: Yes, an executive order is something the president of the United States can do without having to get approval from congress. It's -- and that's what he did today with those 23 executive orders. These are usually smaller things, when you want to have some more sweeping change it has to go through congress, but by signing these executive orders, these 23 executive actions, he is taking some small steps towards curbing gun violence.
You were talking about the poll, Max. And we just talked about how overall, yes, support for gun control definitely spiked after Newtown, but look at these other numbers that just came out moments from our poll and this is really fascinating. We asked, would stricter gun control laws actually reduce violence in the United States. Look at this number, you may be surprised here, less than four in 10 say yes. More than six in 10 say no they would not.
Why? Go to the next number and it really tells the story. What is the primary cause of gun violence here in the United States. Well, Americans say, you know what, the availability of guns is only one small part of that, only less than one-fourth say that. A lot of people, more people say that parenting, the raising of our children, and popular culture like those violent video games and violent movies are big contributors to gun violence here in the United States. Fascinating brand new numbers from CNN and Time magazine, Max.
FOSTER: OK. Paul, thank you very much indeed for bringing us those figures.
Well, let's get some reaction now to President Obama's new initiatives. We're joined by Elliot Fineman, CEO of the National Gun Victims Action Council. He's been pushing for tougher gun laws since his own son was killed by a gunman in 2006. Also joining us, conservative commentator Will Cain, a regular contributor to CNN.
Will, I just wanted to ask you about those polling numbers first of all, because they do seem to show a shift in favor of more gun control, but when we talk about specific measures, the sort of measures the president is talking about, what sort of support will there be for them when it comes to the crunch? WILL CAIN, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: You know, when you ask generally vague or broad questions about -- in polling, Max, you're going to get those kind of responses. Are you in favor of more gun control. You're going to have that weighted 55 percent over the 45. When you start boring into more specific questions like Paul talked about, the assault weapons ban or the ban on high capacity magazines, you're going to see lower numbers.
And I would suggest to you this, even on something that polls very high. For example, extending background checks, something I would support as well, where you see poll numbers in the 80, 90 percent range on people who would support extending background checks, we have to understand that language, just extending background checks is again vague. It is abstract. You have to ask yourself well what is in the background check? What kind of information are we checking it against? And what gets you on a list that bars you on a background check from buying a gun?
Once you start talking about specific ways to limit American's ability to buy things, or their rights to own things, it gets much, much more difficult.
FOSTER: Elliot, this is exactly the problem you're up against, isn't it? Because you do have general support, but when it comes to those specifics, it's very hard to get them through the system.
ELLIOT FINEMAN, CEO, NATIONAL GUN VICTIMS ACTION COUNCIL: Well, the reality is that it's not going to get through the system. The executive orders that Obama signed are good. They're a good step in the right direction, but I'll say something that I think the viewers will find startling. If a magic wand was raised and everything Obama proposed today, legislatively and executively orderly, were passed tomorrow, we still have an enormous problem with guns in this country.
There are a few reasons for that. One is that if there are millions of assault weapons and large magazines out there already. So if you ban the sale of new ones, you still have millions, millions of them out there already that can do the damage they can do.
Number two, there are millions of records missing in the background system. It's pretty easy to define who should be denied a gun. And I resent the idea that we can't figure out who should not have a gun.
But that said, having -- there are 10 categories who shouldn't be allowed to have guns -- but that said, 90 percent, nine out of 10 of the people with mental disabilities are missing from the background system. And I know that, because of a grant I got to study precisely the quality of the data in the system.
So even if you had universal background checks, how good are they if the data is not there?
FOSTER: You're also up against it as well in terms of the lobbying power as well, aren't you? The NRA, the most powerful U.S. gun lobby didn't even wait actually for Mr. Obama's announcement today to fire back. The National Rifle Association released a commercial on Tuesday night that references the president's own daughters. Have a listen to this.
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ANNOUNCER: Are the president's kids more important than yours? Than why is he skeptical about putting armed security in our schools when his kids are protected by armed guards at their school?
Mr. Obama demands the wealthy pay their fair share of taxes, but he's just another elitist hypocrite when it comes to a fair share of security. Protection for their kids, and gun free zones for ours.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOSTER: The White House calls the ad repugnant and cowardly, saying the president's children shouldn't be used as pawns in a political fight. But Will, it's a clever strategy isn't it? It does play -- they know who they're appealing to. And it does work with that constituency and they will actively lobby against gun controls whereas those who are sort of in support of gun controls aren't as vociferous about it.
CAIN: You know, Max, I'm going to tell you something, the NRA is the least of President Obama's worries. The gun lobby is the least of President Obama's worries. He has to battle two problems in getting any kind of gun control through legislation. And that is, one, the logic of whether or not it will work. And two, the second amendment. You know Elliot is on very firm evidentiary ground when he talks about the fact that if President Obama had a magic wand and he could wave everything he proposed today into law, NRA or no NRA, it would have such a minimal effect on gun violence in the United States that you'd have to ask yourself how does it weigh against the burden on the second amendment.
You see, assault weapons are 2 percent of gun violence in this country. And what more on the background checks, it doesn't account for the fact that, you know what, criminals don't care about laws. They break the law. They steal the weapons they seek to get.
Secondly, the second amendment is what stands in his way. I've said this before. If you wanted to make real dent in American gun violence you would have to do -- and there's a historical model for this, what the United Kingdom or Australia did, and that is ban and confiscate all semiautomatic weapons, that is what you would have to do. Now that you're going to have a very big second amendment problem in the United States.
FOSTER: How are you getting around that, Elliot, because this second amendment is core to the argument, isn't it? And it's cherished in the United States. And the president did refer to it saying he does respect what the NRA is saying on that to a certain extent. But how are you fighting that, because it's a core U.S. value?
FINEMAN: Well, first of all, the argument that's always advanced that we shouldn't have any laws because criminals don't follow them is absurd. You can say the same thing about drunk driving. We shouldn't have any drunk driving laws because the drinkers won't follow them, so why pass them? But the reality is having toughened the regulations about drunk driving, we've cut drunk driving deaths in half from 20,000 a year to 10,000 a year.
The way to get around this -- the second amendment is missing a couple of words that is not the word gun in the second amendment or firearm, or assault weapon for that matter, nor is there the word self defense. The second amendment has one legal standing that was just passed recently by the Heller decision, which is you can have a gun at home for self defense. I won't get into the fact that studies show that you're 22 times more likely to be shot with that gun that you have at home than you are to defend yourself, but you do have a right to have a gun at home for self defense.
We absolutely must follow the Australian and English model if we want to get rid of gun violence. There's no need for assault weapons. There's no need for large clips. I haven't heard one story reported where somebody used their assault weapon to defend themselves. Every one of those stories is a person using the gun to commit mass murders.
So, yes, we can do it.
FOSTER: OK. We'll have to leave it there. Elliot Fineman, thank you very indeed. Also Will Cain, thank you both for engaging in this debate. And there will be many more years left of it as well. Thank you very much indeed.
Well, still to come tonight, the former prime minister of France tells me the risk his country is taking by sending ground troops into battle in Mali.
Chaos in Central London as a helicopter falls out of the sky. We'll be live at the scene with all the details.
FOSTER: You're watching CNN. This is Connect the World with me, Max Foster, welcome back to you.
Now the hostage situation is underway in Algeria in what appears to be a revenge attack for the French intervention in Mali. Algeria's government has confirmed a gas field partially owned by BP was attacked by terrorists with a number of people taken hostage.
Let's go straight to CNN's Nima Elbagir who is in Mali for us. And Nima, we're getting some detail aren't we about those kidnapped and some released?
NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We are getting some detail. The Algerian minister of the interior has said that the Algerian hostages that were taken have been released, but that the western hostages, amongst whom are French, British, and American are still being held captive.
What we haven't been able to pin down yet, Max, is exactly how many people were taken. The captors speaking to local -- local news agencies said they had as many as 41, 42. The Algerians said that they understand it's closer to 10 or 12. But what has been confirmed, through the Algerian minister of the interior is that this is still ongoing.
And some of those details, Max, are pretty audacious. The Algerian minister said that this attack was actually staged as the western workers were being driven to the airport by Algerian security. They said they came in about three pickup trucks, were heavily armed, about 20 men. Some of those hostages are still being kept on the base in their living quarters while some are at the location of the shootout that's currently taking place between the captors and Algerian security forces.
We also are getting a little bit of detail about who this exactly is. The Jihadi group has said that this is in retaliation for Algerian opening up its air space for the French aerial attacks on Islamists here in Mali. We now understand from the Algerians that Moqtar bel Moqta (ph) who is a commander with the al Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb has actually been giving instructions and that the captors asked that the Algerians negotiate with Moqta (ph). But the Algerians say that so far they are holding firm to their line that they will not negotiate with terrorists, as they call them, Max.
FOSTER: Nima, stay with us. We'll be back with you in just a moment. But the situation in Algeria is just one sign of a growing threat of terrorism across parts of Northern Africa, specifically what's known as the Sahara region. CNN's Dan Rivers has more on the groups believed to be behind the new wave of terror.
DAN RIVERS, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The (inaudible) gas facility is in Algeria, right on the border with Libya jointly run by British Petroleum along with a Norwegian and an Algerian company. An Islamist group called Katiba (ph) claimed it carried out the attack, although this has not been confirmed.
Now Katiba (ph) has been active in Mali and Libya. Its leader, Moqtar Bel Moqta (ph) came to prominence through smuggling. It's affiliated to al Qaeda in the Islamic Magreb, which operates across North Africa. During the fall of Colonel Gadhafi in Libya in 2011, large numbers of arms were stolen by Islamist groups and taken south into the desert via Niger and Mali.
This whole area is known as the Sahal. It's becoming a major concern for security agencies. In a rare public speech last year, British MI5 spy chief Jonathan Evans warns al Qaeda affiliates in Yemen, Somalia and the Sahal have become more dangerous as al Qaeda in Pakistan has declined. And we see increasing levels of cooperation between al Qaeda groups in various parts of the world.
The French operation to defeat Islamists in Northern Mali may be just the beginning as the war on terror widens to include the whole of the Sahal.
FOSTER: Nima, we're going to get back to you now in Bamako, because that's the -- Dan was getting that perspective there. In terms of the operation on the ground you've got the French, you've got some other African nations and European nations getting involved as well. But what did you understand about that side of the operation?
ELBAGIR: Well, we're of course coming to the close of the sixth day of French air strikes here in Mali without that hoped for decisive Islamist retreat. But the French are looking forward to Thursday when the expectation is that 2,000 troops will be arriving from some of Mali's neighbors in the hope that that will push back some of that Islamist momentum. But one of the major concerns here, Max, is of course that the French have lost that element of surprise. And the French themselves are slightly changing their tune.
Initially they said they had said that they would stay for -- only for as long as it took for Mali's neighbors to step in and support it, but now they're saying they'll stay for as long as it take to stabilize Mali, Max.
FOSTER: OK, Nima, thank you very much indeed for that.
Well, earlier I spoke to the former French prime minister Alain Juppe who told me the deployment of French troops to Islamist territory presents a great risk for France.
JUPPE: At the beginning, I supported this intervention as most of the French politician did. I think this intervention was necessary and legitimate to stop the terrorist attack against Bamako. And if the capital of Mali had collapsed, the consequences on the whole region could have been terrific. And so it was a good idea to try to stop that.
And now we are in a second phase, in the second step of this operation. And I am a bit concerned by the involvement of French troops on the ground. I think it's very risky. And I think that France cannot carry out such an intervention alone. We need the solidarity of the international community, especially after the European Union and other countries.
FOSTER: There does appear to be French boots on the ground. Do you think that's a terrible mistake? And what do you think the response should be? Do you think Hollande should pull them straight out?
JUPPE: I not say that it is a mistake. I think it's a risk, a very high level of risk. And we cannot continue to be alone on the ground.
We are all concerned by the terrorist threat in this region. The Salah has become a stronghold for drug trafficking, for international crime, for terrorism, and this terrorist threat concern not only France, but all European countries and also all democracies.
So I think it's absolutely necessary to mobilize all our means to stop this attacks coming from north Mali and now in Algeria as we are seeing.
FOSTER: Which country do you think should be taking the lead on sorting the situation out in Mali?
JUPPE: We're working with what we call a ECOWAS, the Economic Community of Western Africa States. And I think it's a rule of this regional body to deploy this -- those troops on the ground.
It's also absolutely necessary to implement reforms in Bamako and to reinforce the local authorities, because there is no real government for the moment in Bamako.
We need, also, to keep contact with different groups in the north of Bali, because the solution will be at the end of the day political and not military, of course.
FOSTER: You are, of course, involved in the Libyan conflict as well as foreign minister. Do you think lessons were learned from your role in Libya that should be being picked up right now by Hollande?
JUPPE: The situation is very different from that one in Libya, because in Libya it was on the international operation with the participation of the British, of the Americans, of other European countries and also with Arab countries.
For the moment, in Mali, France is alone. And I think it's not possible to implement and to carry out such an operation, such a difficult operation, very risky in the desert alone.
We need the solidarity of other countries, and especially of the countries of the region. Algeria is concern also by the terrorist threat as we have seen in the -- this site along the border of Libya with 41 hostages taken by terrorists in Algeria.
FOSTER: Alain Juppe speaking to me earlier. Well, coming up next, we're live in Central London of the scene of a deadly helicopter crash.
FOSTER: A helicopter crash at the height of the morning rush hour in Central London has killed two people, including the pilot.
Let's go straight to CNN's Erin McLaughlin who is at the scene. Erin, it could have been much worse, though, from the -- from the look of the pictures.
ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Max. What began as a busy morning commute here in London soon plunged into chaos.
MCLAUGHLIN: A helicopter hit a construction crane, crashing into a ball of flames in Central London.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I look up, a helicopter down.
MCLAUGHLIN: Daniel Toledo was there when it happened.
And this is what he saw recorded on his computer flaming wreckage, cars and pieces of the chopper scattered across the streets.
Eyewitnesses say the commercial helicopter was traveling very fast through the sick morning fog when it collided with the crane which then spiraling towards the ground where it burst into flames on impact.
PAUL ROBINSON, TRUCK DRIVER: And I felt something go in the back of the lorrie. And I thought it had hit me. Then I looked at the window, see stuff coming from the sky and just panicked and run.
MCLAUGHLIN: Two people were killed in the crash -- a bystander on the ground and the pilot, 50 year old and father of two Peter Barnes.
NEIL BASU, METROPOLITAN POLICE BOROUGH COMMANDER: It is something of a miracle that this was not many, many times worse given the time of day that this happened.
MCLAUGHLIN: The crane now dangles beside the 50 story luxury apartment complex. It was once being used to construct, now the most visible part of the wreckage.
BASU: At the moment, the most important thing for the emergency services is to try to get London back to a state of normality as quickly as possible.
MCLAUGHLIN: The area around the building was cordoned off for the duration of the day. Authorities are still assessing when it will be safe to reopen to the public. Meanwhile, questions here persist as to how this could have happened.
MCLAUGHLIN: Authorities are currently investigating the incident. They're looking at factors like the foggy weather conditions at the time of the collisions, the height and lighting of the building. But they say that it could be months, Max, before they have any sort of definitive answers.
FOSTER: OK, Erin, thank you very much indeed.
The world news headlines are up next. Plus one man in Texas says his shotgun saved the day.
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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I grabbed my shotgun and, you know, I've been thinking about this moment for a long time.
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FOSTER: We'll hear how he captured a burglar in his home, an example of why gun advocates say the right to bear arms is essential.
Plus, another safety scare for the Dreamliner. What's behind the ongoing nightmare at Boeing's premier plane?
And the man described as the most coveted manager in football is no longer available. We'll get the story covered in our sports update.
FOSTER: I'm Max Foster, these are the latest world headlines from CNN.
US president Barack Obama has unveiled sweeping measures to curb gun violence. He says even if only one life is saved, it's worth it. Amongst other things, he's calling for a ban on, quote, "military-style assault weapons."
Islamists are holding foreign hostages after storming a gas field in eastern Algeria. Algeria's interior minister says there are as many as 12 hostages, whilst an Islamist group says that there's at least 40. North African media report at least two deaths.
Meanwhile in Mali, French troops are engaged in a ground battle with Islamist militants. So far, the French military has been hitting targets from the air. Now is close to combat -- it's close combat in the small town of Diabaly. France is helping Malian forces in their fight to keep the al Qaeda-linked rebels from overthrowing the government.
A helicopter crash in central London has killed the pilot and a person on the ground. The chopper hit a crane on top of an unfinished luxury residential building in Vauxhall, 13 people were wounded in the accident.
Barack Obama has already used his presidential powers to implement 23 measures to reduce gun violence, but he says the toughest ones will need congressional approval, and you'd better believe there will be a fight.
Let's get more now from chief US correspondent John King. John, what were the highlights from the president today, and how realistic is it that he'll get them through?
JOHN KING, CNN CHIEF US CORRESPONDENT: The congressional proposals, Max, will be very tough. Let's start with what the president could do and did with the stroke of a pen today.
He's essentially asking every federal agency, including law enforcement agencies that have anything to do with gun enforcement, registration, background checks, to scrub the laws and see if there's anything they can do to be more aggressive, tougher, smarter, use technology in better ways.
So, part of the president's package is take what's already on the books and try to amp up enforcement. Some if it is new studies on the effects of gun violence and the causes of gun violence.
But the most difficult things that he's asking the Congress to do are things in which he will face fierce opposition from many Republicans, fierce opposition from some Democrats in his own party, and outside groups, like the National Rifle Association, an incredibly powerful lobby group here in the United States.
The president wants universal background checks. Now, if you buy a gun at a gun store, you're subjected to a background check. If you go to a gun show, say, that travels from town to town, or if you buy a gun from your neighbor or from a friend, you're not subject to background checks. The president wants that universal background check done.
He also wants, as you noted, to ban military-style assault weapons and ammunition magazine clips that hold ten or more rounds so that somebody can't walk into, say, a movie theater or a school, as we've had recently here in the United States, and fire off so many shots so fast.
Those proposals the president said he would use all the weight of his office, and the president of the United States has a strong bully pulpit, but with such fierce opposition in Congress, Max, it is a big question mark as to whether the president can get those legislative proposals through.
And because he's entering his second term, he has other big legacy items he wants to accomplish as well. The big question here in the United States, how much political capital is he really prepared to spend fighting for new gun laws.
FOSTER: And there's so many elements to this. I wanted to get your reaction from this in a moment as well, because we've got another story.
Pro-gun lobbies like the National Rifle Association make a lot of headlines, but only a fraction of US gun owners actually belong to the NRA. Many Americans aren't concerned with the politics of guns, but still believe there are good reasons to be armed. Matt Rivers has the story of one Texas man who drew his weapon against an intruder.
MATT RIVERS, KSAT CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Just home from a work party, it started with Heidi going out to the car.
CAVAZOS: When she came back, she said that she had seen this guy --
HEIDI URIOSTEGUI, CAUGHT BURGLAR: Grabbed my boyfriend and said, "He's here!"
RIVERS: By "he," Heidi means the man who burglarized their home twice. So, what happens next?
CAVAZOS: Grabbed my shotgun and -- I'd been thinking about this moment for a long time.
RIVERS: And by the looks of it, Paul was ready. His home security camera picks him up bolting out the door, barrel first, locked and loaded, pointed at the crook as he tried to walk away with someone's TV. And just like the cops do, Cavazos told him to get on the ground.
CAVAZOS: Compliant. He was very compliant, and --
RIVERS (on camera): Smartly so, probably.
RIVERS (voice-over): He stays that way, with a face full of green, until the cops show up and take over the scene. The thief is accused of breaking into several homes nearby as well. So, for many, relief.
URIOSTEGUI: We didn't feel safe at all, and I was still looking, always, around, over my shoulder.
RIVERS: As for the man of the hour and his trusty sidekick, he's hoping it lays quiet in the safe for a while.
CAVAZOS: I would hope I wouldn't have to, but -- I like the fact that if it does happen again, we'll be prepared.
FOSTER: Well, that's -- it's a very powerful story, isn't it? Certainly to people that want to protect their gun rights, John. So, this is exactly what the debate's about.
KING: And it's part of the American culture. It may be hard for some people watching around the world where you don't have as many guns as you will across society, but it is part of the American culture. It is guaranteed in the US constitution.
And so part of the president's big challenge, Max, is that 99.99999 -- and I could go on -- percent of American gun owners are law-abiding citizens who have their guns for recreational purposes, hunting, target practice, or for self-defense purposes.
And they say, I have done nothing wrong, ever, in my life. Why should I be punished? Why should my rights be restricted because somebody, in the case of the Newtown school tragedy or the Aurora movie theater tragedy, somebody with clear mental health issues.
And some -- perhaps even a lot of people are saying today, even if you enacted every step the president spoke of today, would it have stopped the Newtown school tragedy? And most say probably not. So, that's part -- part of the president's hill is political, but part of it is cultural.
FOSTER: And as you say, it is a cultural issue, and it's different around the world. As the US grapples with curbing gun violence, we're also looking at how other parts of the world handle this very complicated issue.
CNN's Nkepile Mabuse reports from Johannesburg on how South Africa tackles crime and gun culture, but ahead of that, Matthew Chance looks at how the UK changed its laws after a school shooting in Scotland.
MATTHEW CHANCE, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I'm Matthew Chance in London, and here in Britain, there is some of the toughest gun control laws in the world. Owning a handgun here is strictly against the law for private individuals.
A restriction imposed after an horrific school shooting at in the Scottish town of Dunblane back in 1996. There, a 43-year-old former scout leader burst into the gymnasium of an elementary school, killing 16, five- and six-year-old children. The teacher was trying to protect them.
In the months afterwards, a public campaign against gun ownership culminated in a petition containing more than 750,000 signatures and, of course, that gun law changed.
Of course, Britain never had a gun culture like that in the United States, and there are still illegal weapons here on the streets. But few doubt that this country's tight gun control laws have had a significant impact.
NKEPILE MABUSE, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: I'm Nkepile Mabuse in South Africa, where late last year a grade 11 pupil at this school east of Johannesburg shot dead another child in class using his mother's service pistol. The murdered boy had a long history of bullying other children.
Now, school shootings are very uncommon here in South Africa, so much so that this incident sent shockwaves across the country.
What is, however, not uncommon here is gun-related violence. South Africans proportionately own fewer guns than Americans, but a higher percentage of gun-related deaths are recorded here. Experts point to the proliferation of illegal firearms, and they say this has been exacerbated by tougher gun laws.
The right to own a gun here in South Africa is not protected by law. In fact, civilians have to motivate to the authorities why they need to own a firearm. But increasingly, we see legally obtained weapons being stolen from their owners to commit crime, just like happened in this incident.
FOSTER: Certainly a lot of people, John, around the world are looking at the American situation and studying it and have comments on it. But do Americans look abroad on this issue at all?
KING: Some do, and you see now -- as you'll see some people who are advocates for some new gun control steps, they do point around the world. They point to the tough mental screenings you would have to get in Japan. They would point to the changes made, as Matthew Chance just noted, in Scotland after a horrific incident.
The important part there, largely no in the sense of what gun rights advocates would say is it's in the United States constitution, there are 50 states in the United States, it's part of our history and culture since day one.
But in Matthew Chance's piece, he spoke of 750,000 people signing a petition. That is a global example that you should watch very closely as the debate unfolds here in the United States. What typically happens when a difficult issue like this comes to the forefront is it gets a great deal of attention, and today presidential attention.
But then, as the weeks and the months pass, it tends to fade if there are no other horrific incidents. The president of the United States acknowledged that he needs help today. He needs people to sign petitions like that. He needs them to write letters to the United States Congress.
He needs them to show up at town meetings when members of the United States House and the United States Senate go home for their legislative breaks and pressure them.
Because as we speak today, Max, the president does not have the votes, plain and simple, to do what he wants to do. He's going to have to change minds, change the politics of the United States. In some ways, change the culture of the United States to get that done. A huge task, and he can't do it alone.
FOSTER: OK, John King, as ever, very much appreciate your time on the program.
Up next on CONNECT THE WORLD, grounded and under scrutiny. Another mishap for the problem-plagued Dreamliner. We're asking why.
FOSTER: More drama for the Dreamliner as Boeing's nightmare over its star aircraft goes on. Another safety incident involving the 787 has temporarily grounded the new planes in Japan. CNN's Alex Zolbert reports from Tokyo.
ALEX ZOLBERT, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Not taking any chances, Japan's two biggest airlines, All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines, have now grounded their entire fleets of Boeing 787 Dreamliners.
The move comes after another incident Wednesday morning, when and ANA flight carrying 137 passengers and crew was forced to make an emergency landing while en route from a city in Western Japan to Tokyo's Haneda Airport.
Passengers say they noticed a burning smell in the cabin, and according to the airline, an alarm indicated a problem with a battery.
Japan's aviation administration has launched an investigation, joining US aviation officials, who are conducting their own probe after a battery fire last week.
There's been a string of problems with the Dreamliner in recent weeks, and with 800 of these aircraft still on order from airlines around the world, many will be watching for the outcome of the investigations very closely.
Analysts, meanwhile, are standing by the assessment that, while serious, this is part of the teething process with a revolutionary new aircraft.
PAUL SHERIDAN, HEAD OF CONSULTANCY ASIA, ASCEND: Incidents happen to aircraft, and the safety records are pretty impeccable. According to our sense surveys, the last two years have seen record levels of safety. So, airlines know how to deal with these things, they know how to interpret them.
ZOLBERT: Boeing says that it is convinced of the aircraft's safety, and the Japanese airlines that have purchased the plane are also standing by that assessment.
ZOLBERT (on camera): As for why most of these problems have arisen with Japanese airlines, well, it's essentially a numbers game. Japan Airlines and ANA here in Japan are flying about two dozen of these planes. That's about half of the 787 Dreamliners that have taken to the sky so far.
Alex Zolbert, CNN, Tokyo.
FOSTER: Well, even though Japan Airlines and ANA have grounded their Dreamliners, many other airlines are still operating the 787s. They include Qatar Airways and United Airlines. United says, quote, "We inspected all of our 787 aircraft, and they are flying as scheduled."
Despite those words of confidence, though, Boeing's shares had a tough day on Wall Street, losing 3.5 percent by anxiety over that latest safety scare. My colleague, Richard Quest, has been looking at what could be behind the mishaps bedeviling Boeing's premier plane.
RICHARD QUEST, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: The core question comes down to why does this new aircraft have so many problems seemingly so frequently? Is it because, as Boeing says, there are these teething issues, these glitches in a highly-sophisticated new technologically advanced aircraft, or are there problems?
For example, supply chain issues on quality, or assembly and manufacturing problems by Boeing themselves. After all, we know that the Dreamliner has used new technology, carbon fiber. It has brought suppliers from different parts of the world together to assemble the aircraft in the United States.
Whatever the final determination, the raw fact is that two of the airlines, the launch customer ANA and JAL of Japan have both grounded their fleet. Other airlines like United, Qatar, and even LOT, the Polish airline, which is due to make its first trans-Atlantic flight with the Dreamliner, are continuing with the aircraft in service.
And so we have this, perhaps, confusion for the traveling public -- two airlines saying that they're out of service for the time being, and the rest remaining and continuing to fly. One thing is certain, for Boeing itself, the manufacturer needs to get to grips with what could rapidly become a reputational crisis.
FOSTER: Well, a quick programming note for you. Tune in tomorrow for a special edition of CONNECT THE WORLD. Becky will be live from Greece, where she'll take stock of where we are four years into the eurozone crisis, now. That is 9:00 PM London, 10:00 PM Berlin, Thursday night, CONNECT THE WORLD.
You can read about Becky's trip as well to a snail bar to meet two Greek entrepreneurs on our blog, cnn.com/connect.
You're watching CONNECT THE WORLD. When we come back, one of the most sought-after coaches in football now has a new home. That story when we return.
FOSTER: Pep Guardiola has ended his year-long sabbatical from coaching. Don Riddell joins us, now, with news of his next job, and it's not in England, Don.
DON RIDDELL, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Yes, that's right, Max. We thought, or at least many people thought that Guardiola was heading to Manchester City in the summer, but he's not going to England, he's going to Germany, and he'll be succeeding Jupp Heynckes at Bayern Munich as of this July.
Ever since Guardiola stepped down from Barcelona last summer, he has without doubt been the most coveted football manager in the world.
And you can see why, because when he was at Barcelona, he assembled a team that is considered to be the greatest football team every built. The Catalans won 14 trophies in four years under Guardiola, including the Champions League twice and the Spanish Liga three times.
He said in the end of his time at Barcelona that he was just kind of physically and mentally exhausted. It's such a tough gig, being the Barcelona boss, so much pressure you are exposed to. But he's taken his sabbatical, he's had is time off, and he's now agreed to resurface in Germany with Bayern Munich.
And I think he's going to do very well there. They've already got a very good team. They were in the Champions League final last year, they're nine points clear in the Bundesliga, so I think when he takes over, he's going to have a really good set of players to work with. He'll be there for three years, by the way.
And it's expected that he will still manage in the Premier League one day. Remember, he's only 41, Max, so there's plenty of time for that.
FOSTER: Yes, absolutely. And there's the other story, it is the story of the week. It's the Lance Armstrong interview with Oprah. But whilst we wait for that, a major league soccer club says they've had enough of their involvement with Livestrong which, of course, is his charity.
RIDDELL: Yes. Well, it's the charity that he founded 15 years ago, but of course, the doping scandal actually forced him to step down as chairman of that charity, and he's now not even on the board. But his association with Livestrong still, I think, affects them.
Now, this is an interesting one, because the major league soccer team sporting Kansas City, as you can see there, their new stadium, was until very recently called the Livestrong Sporting Park. That was part of a rather unusual kind of stadium naming deal, where actually the team would donate $7.5 million over six years to Livestrong and they would have the name on the stadium.
But the two have had a bit of a falling out. It will now be called just Sporting Park. The Livestrong is going to be taken off. And both sides really are kind of blaming each other for what's gone on here.
The Livestrong charity are kind of suggesting that the football club is in difficulty and didn't want to pay its bills, but a completely different version of events from Rob Heineman, who said -- he is the CEO of the football club -- "Our faith and trust in this partnership have been permanently damaged. Therefore, we are terminating our agreement with Livestrong, effectively immediately."
So, two different sides to the story there as to why that relationship has come to an end. But of course, coincidentally, the news breaks in this week of all weeks when Armstrong really is very much under the microscope.
FOSTER: OK, Don, thank you very much, indeed, for that. Just one word on him. Is there any information coming out about the interview at all? No update from yesterday, basically?
RIDDELL: No, it's kind of frustrating, isn't it? That this interview was done on Monday and really the big news at the time was that he would -- he had confessed in some way to something, but we don't know the extent of which.
And of course it's a very long wait until Thursday evening here in the United States when we're going to see what is only part one of the interview because part two will be airing on Friday night.
RIDDELL: So, we'll have to wait until the weekend until we know everything.
FOSTER: OK. All right, Don, thanks very much. Much more with Don on "World Sport" in just over 30 minutes from now.
Before we go, if you think your car needs an upgrade, you'll want to see this. CNN's Peter Valdes-Dapena has a look at some of the gadgets set to put the va-va-vroom back into driving.
PETER VALDES-DAPENA, CNN MONEY SENIOR AUTOS WRITER: Here at the Detroit Auto Show, you can really see how automakers are working to keep up with the pace of change in consumer electronics. It's kind of tough when you get a new phone every year or so, but you only ever get a new car about once every five or six years.
Companies like Johnson Controls, a supplier that makes a lot of the parts that go into cars these days, they're looking at ways to take technology from iPhones and tablet computers and put those into the dashboard of your car so you can keep up with all the changes in real time.
Now, that doesn't mean that buttons and knobs are going away completely. What it does mean, though, is you can do a lot more with them. For example, this knob here could be either a radio knob, or could set your temperature for your air conditioning.
And up here, you can decide what type of information you want to display, as many kinds as you want, including moving that information up here into a virtual gauge cluster, or even in a heads up display that you can see while you're driving down the road.
And it's not just about the driver. For example, in this back seat intended for luxury cars, the back seat passenger can adjust their seat using their own iPad and a Bluetooth connection. I can put the back down, I can put the footrest up, chill out and listen to some music.
While all this technology is pretty much ready to go right now, the fact remains it still takes about three to five years to develop a new automobile. But before too long, yes, you could be using your iPad to control your car.
For CNN, I'm Peter Valdes-Dapena.
FOSTER: Imagine. Well, in tonight's Parting Shots, a cautionary tale for any of us who rely on a GPS to get from point A to point B. A Belgian woman who thought she was picking up a friend 140 kilometers away in Brussels ended up more than 1400 kilometers from her starting point in Croatia.
How did it happen? Well, she says she got distracted and kept driving. For two days. In the wrong direction. She slept in the car and even suffered a minor crash. She says Croatian road signs finally convinced her the GPS was way off course. She had a lot of faith in that system.
I'm Max Foster, that was CONNECT THE WORLD. Thank you so much for watching. We'll be back tomorrow.