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British Cardinal Resigns Amidst More Scandal; Older Pistorius Brother Also Faces Charges; Real Argo Characters Speak Out; Iran Welcomes U.S. Wrestlers

Aired February 25, 2013 - 12:30   ET


SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back to AROUND THE WORLD. Here are top stories right now.

Pope Benedict the XVI's final days in power filling up now with scandals.

MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN ANCHOR: Yeah, a top British cardinal just resigned after four priests accused him of inappropriate acts. And the Vatican now in damage control mode. That's, of course, after reports of a network of gay priests at the Vatican, blackmailed by a network of male prostitutes.

MALVEAUX: We're going to talk to a Jesuit priest and the author of "Inside the Vatican" in just a minute.

Secretary of State John Kerry is in London right now as part of his first international trip as America's top diplomat. He met with British Prime Minister David Cameron as he introduces himself to some of the main U.S. allies.

HOLMES: Yeah, he's visiting nine countries in all as part of this 11- day trip. He's going to be on the move, next stop, Germany. He also called the head of the Syrian opposition group today to encourage him to come to the Friends of Syria meeting in Rome.

MALVEAUX: Wow. The opposition group said on Friday it would boycott that meeting because of a lack of support from the international community.


JOHN KERRY, SECRETARY OF STATE: We are determined that the Syrian opposition is not going to be dangling in the wind, wondering where the support is or if it's coming. And we are determined to change the calculation on the ground for President Assad.


HOLMES: In New Orleans, the federal government and an army of lawyers for oil giant BP are ready to battle it out, a trial getting under way.

MALVEAUX: BP wants to limit the civilian penalties it's got to pay for the worst oil spill in U.S. history almost three years ago. Billions of dollars are now at stake.

Well, now back to the Vatican in crisis. Pope Benedict's final days now overshadowed by -- you're talking about allegations of abuse, sex, blackmail, prostitutes.

HOLMES: Yeah, again. Now let's bring in the Reverend Thomas Reese. He's a Jesuit priest and a senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center -- that's at Georgetown University -- the author of "Inside the Vatican."

Let's talk about this. You say the allegations of Vatican corruption, blackmail, gay clergy members, nothing new and unsubstantiated.

REVEREND THOMAS REESE, JESUIT PRIEST: Well, you have to realize these stories all originated in the Italian newspapers, and the Italian newspapers don't have the same standard of journalistic ethics and procedures that American journalism does.

It's more -- Italian newspapers are more like the blogosphere. Sometimes, they get it right. Often, they get it wrong. So, until these accusations are substantiated and proven, I take them all with a grain of salt.

HOLMES: So, you don't buy this report was actually done and given to the pope?

REESE: Well, was a report done? Probably. What's in it? I'd like to know myself. But these -- you know, simply accusations and saying what's in it without showing it to us, I just don't accept it until I see it.

MALVEAUX: Why the -- I know you give them the benefit of the doubt, though. I'm curious as to why, considering the past within the church, all the allegations and some of the sexual abuse involving young boys that you're not a bit more skeptical. I mean, there's been a lot of cover-up of previous bad acts.

REESE: Well, I mean, first of all, we're not talking about the sexual abuse of children here. We're talking about sexual immorality, gay sex, that kind of thing. Are there some homosexuals in the Vatican curia? I'm sure there are. Are there some people doing inappropriate things? I'm sure there are. To what extent? I don't know.

You know, we believe as Christians that the Catholic Church was founded by Jesus, but it's run by human beings. There's lots of saints, there's lots of sinners in the Catholic Church, including in the hierarchy. This shouldn't surprise us. But to say that this is a huge thing going on, then you've got to prove it to me.

MALVEAUX: Reverend, do you have any sense of whether or not the next pope that is selected is -- whether or not there is going to be any kind of requirement for him to deal with this in a more forthcoming way? I mean, I, being a Roman Catholic myself, there's a lot of disappointment in the church now in terms of how they have handled this. REESE: Oh, I'm more disappointed than you. We did a terrible job in handling this in the past. I think that the sex abuse crisis is the worst thing that's ever happened to the Catholic Church, and, you know, we need to get down on our knees and apologize, apologize, apologize to these poor children that were so traumatized and scarred.

But I think we also need to recognize that the church is in a much better place today than it was, say, at the beginning of the papacy of John Paul II. And one of the reasons it's in a better place today is because of Pope Benedict and, who as Cardinal Ratzinger, you know, he didn't get it either at the beginning. But he listened and he learned and he pushed and he threw hundreds of priests out -- bad priests out of the priesthood. And, so, the church is in a much better position today, mostly due to Pope Benedict than it was in the past.

HOLMES: Yeah, a lot of -- great to get your thoughts. A lot of people, of course, would disagree and there's still a lot of angst and a lot of people who say that the pontiff was stymied at attempts for reform.

We will see what happens the next time around. We do appreciate your thoughts, though, Reverend Thomas Reese, Jesuit priest, senior fellow at the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University. Thanks for your time today.

REESE: Certainly.

MALVEAUX: The last week and a half, we have heard all about the murder allegations against Oscar Pistorius, right? But he is not actually the only family member who's now in trouble.

HOLMES: Carl Pistorius is facing homicide charges, all about a traffic accident. We'll have that story, coming up.



In South Africa, there is some confusion today over the next step for Oscar Pistorius.

HOLMES: Yeah, now, the Olympic star, of course, accused of murder. Everyone expected him to show up today at a local police station as part of his bail conditions. The media were there, they were waiting, but no show.

MALVEAUX: Representative for the court said that reporting to police was actually not written down as part of his final approval for bail. But there are reports that he did check in with other authorities today.

HOLMES: Yeah, popped into a courthouse, apparently.

MALVEAUX: Yeah, a lot of people were waiting, too. They just all went home, right? HOLMES: Yeah, a lot of people, difficult that he didn't show up. But, apparently because everyone had thought it had been written down in the bail conditions, but when they went back and checked, it actually hadn't been.

MALVEAUX: Yeah, no Pistorius. But there's another guy, another Pistorius, actually, who is facing charges in a woman's death. This is Carl Pistorius. He's the older brother of Oscar Pistorius, now charged with culpable homicide. This is two years after he was involved in this car accident.

HOLMES: Yeah, that's right. Prosecutors say Carl Pistorius had been driving recklessly. He was scheduled to go to trial last week, but that had been pushed back to the end of March because of the murder charges against his brother.

MALVEAUX: One of the conditions of Oscar Pistorius' bail is that he can't go back home because it's a crime scene, obviously, so he's now staying with an uncle who lives in a suburb of Pretoria.

Nic Robertson, he's actually taking a look at what it's like for him, life after bail and after, you know, this is a country that's really divided over this whole thing.

HOLMES: It is.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: It has come to this, parole officers checking up on Oscar Pistorius behind the high walls and wrought iron gates of his uncle's security-secured mansion, banned from his own home, which is the crime scene.

Life for the man known as the "Blade Runner," forever changed. His glamorous fashion model girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp, the one Pistorius told friends he might marry, dead, and a nation once united in its adoration of him, divided over his bail.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think unfair. I think the man is not -- we don't know if it's guilty or not, and to trial him now, it's not really fair.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's shocking, really, to think that, despite all the evidence that is mounted up against him, he still managed to get bail.

ROBERTSON: Steenkamp's family appear disappointed at the outcome, too.

NICOLAS VAN EDEN, STEENKAMP SPOKESMAN: Not sure what to feel in the case. They just want to know the truth and, whatever happens, it's not going to bring Reeva back, you know? They just want justice and the truth.

ROBERTSON: Her father, Barry, even more outspoken, quoted in the Afrikaans language newspaper, "Beult" (ph), saying, "It doesn't matter how rich he" -- Pistorius -- "is, and how good his legal team is. He needs to live with himself if he gets his legal team to lie for him. He'll have to live with his conscience.

"But if he is telling the truth, I may forgive him one day. But if it didn't happen as he described it, he should suffer. And he will suffer. Only he knows."

In the affluent Pretoria suburb that is Pistorius' home for now, his uncle issued this statement.

"What happened has changed our lives irrevocably," saying it has drawn the family closer together. Adding, "We are acutely aware of the fact that this is only the beginning of a long road to prove that, as we know, Oscar never intended to harm Reeva let alone cause her death."

Both families say they want justice. It will be a long wait. Pistorius' next court appearance is June 4th, and likely his trial many, many more months after that, possibly as late as next year.

Nic Robertson, CNN, Johannesburg, South Africa.


MALVEAUX: All right, this was the one that we actually watched, right?

HOLMES: That both of us saw, yeah.

MALVEAUX: The one movie we actually both saw, big winner at the Oscars last night, movie, "Argo," actually based on a true story, as you know.

HOLMES: Yeah, based on it. It's about the rescue of six Americans from Tehran.

Now, the people who really lived through that hell are going to tell us what it was like.


HOLMES: Welcome back, everyone, to AROUND THE WORLD.

Well, the movie "Argo" dramatized the daring rescue of six American foreign service workers who escaped the 1979 hostage crisis in Iran. (INAUDIBLE).

MALVEAUX: So what's really amazing is, Alina Cho, she actually got to sit down with some of the folks and get a whole different kind of perspective of what it was that they actually went through. Here's her story.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Six of the hostages went out a back exit. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Where are they?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Canadian ambassador's house.

ALINA CHO, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In the movie "Argo," Ben Affleck plays Tony Mendez, a really life CIA operative who hatches a plan to rescue six Americans who elude capture during the Iranian revolution.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I've got an idea. They're a Canadian film crew for a science fiction movie. I fly into Tehran. We all fly out together as a film crew.

CHO: That fake science fiction movie is called "Argo."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If I'm doing a fake movie, it's going to be a fake hit.

CHO: These are the real embassy workers on which the film is based.

CHO (on camera): What was your first thought when you saw it?

BOB ANDERS, FORMER CONSULAR OFFICER: It was more exciting than the real thing.

CHO (voice-over): Bob Anders, Lee Schatz, Mark and Cora Lijek, Kathleen Stafford, five of the six. The first time they've all sat down together for a TV interview. The only one who couldn't be with us is Kathleen's husband, Joe, currently working for the State Department in the Sudan.

CHO (on camera): These were the actors who played you. What do you think?



STAFFORD: They even got his little sweaters right. You know, he used to wear these little sleeveless sweater vests. That's him.

CHO (voice-over): They took me back to the day, November 4, 1979, when Iranian students climbed the wall and stormed the U.S. embassy.

CHO (on camera): What went through your mind?

LEE SCHATZ, FORMER AGRICULTURE ATTACHE: This will only last for a little while before the government will come and stop this. And I just tried to keep my staff kind of calm and collected.

STAFFORD: I remember calling my mother after about the first 24, 48 hours and I said, don't worry, you're going to see some things on the news, but I'm safe and I'll call you in a few days. And, of course, I didn't call back for three months.

CHO (voice-over): Seventy-nine days they hid from the Iranians in the homes of Canadian diplomats and came to be known as the "house guests."

STAFFORD: People would come to the house. We'd go upstairs and hide. And at one point there were revolutionary guards posted outside the door.

CHO: Then, on January 26, 1980 --

SCHATZ: there was a knock on the door. I open the door. And there's two guys standing there in trench coats. And I said, really? Trench coats?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Have you gotten people out this way before?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. This is what I do. And I've never left anyone behind.

CORA LIJEK: Tony's a very charming guy. Very convincing.

CHO (on camera): Did you trust him?

MARK LIJEK, FORMER CONSULAR OFFICER: We didn't have a whole lot of choice. I think if we had said, no thanks, send in another infiltration expert.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You really believe your little story's going to make a difference when there's a gun to our heads?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think my little story's the only thing between you and a gun to your head.

CHO (voice-over): Movie spoiler alert -- it worked. And once they cleared Iranian air space --

SCHATZ: We all ordered drinks. And I'm sure that the people on the planes, if they wondered, you know, wondered why there were these arms that went up as we made eye contact because we were sitting in different places, but we knew why.

CHO: Alina Cho, CNN, Washington.



HOLMES: I did too.

MALVEAUX: It was such a great movie too.

HOLMES: That was a great story, great movie, good fun and lots of bell bottoms and funny mustaches.

MALVEAUX: I'd like to see you back in the day.

HOLMES: Oh, boy. Yes, they were my teenage years.

MALVEAUX: You've got to bring in a photo. Of course, Iran and U.S. also have a tense relationship up to this day. The bad blood not necessarily, however, extending into the sports world.

HOLMES: No. No. You've got a little detente (ph) on the wrestling mat. We've got a match here that turns into a bit of a bonding experience. Stick around and see this.



While Iran might be considered public enemy number one for the U.S. government, the U.S. and Iran now taking their battle to the net, then the mats, literally.

HOLMES: Yes, exactly. Tehran hosting the Wrestling World Cup. One of the most anticipated matches, not surprisingly, was against Team USA. Here's Reza Sayah.


REZA SAYAH, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): At Tehran's Azadi arena, under the gaze of Iran's supreme leader, the showdown fans were waiting for, Iran taking on the U.S. Two countries whose governments are bitter rivals, locking horns in the Wrestling World Cup.

(on camera): The atmosphere is electric here. But here's what's remarkable. Despite the fierce competition on the mat, there's no sign of bad blood between Iranians and Americans. And here's how you know. Right after their own wrestlers, these Iranian fans are cheering now for this man, American gold medal winner Jordan Boroughs.

JORDAN BOROUGHS, USA WRESTLING: You know, it was pretty cool. You know, every time I step out there, once they see me, they're excited to see me. You know, cheering my name, screaming my name and giving me praise. It's pretty cool.

SAYAH (voice-over): True to form, Boroughs dominates his match. But in the end, Team Iran is king. Final score, Iran, 6, U.S., 1. After each match, a show of mutual respect. Something Washington and Tehran have rarely shown since 1980 when they broke off diplomatic ties.

SAYAH (on camera): What you're looking at is Iranian fans right now chasing after Jordan Boroughs like he's a rock star, and the entire USA team as they get on the bus. All these guys just love Jordan Boroughs. They love the fact that the American team is here. And this is the power of sports. Look at this.


SAYAH (voice-over): There is little love in the U.S. for the Iranian government. In a Gallup poll last year, one in three Americans said Iran is enemy number one.

(on camera): Iran is still viewed by at lot of Americans as a dangerous place.


SAYAH: Does that message match with what you see here and all the love you guys get?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No. I tell you, athletes, right, we (INAUDIBLE). We work, we train together. It enables us to engage with each other.

SAYAH (voice-over): This was Team USA's tenth visit to Iran. Each visit stirs speculation that sport might help build bridges between the two countries.

ZEKE JONES, HEAD COACH: When we got here, they had their arms wide open to our wrestling program and to Americans because they realize that it's a better world with us together.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, if wrestlers can get together, anyone can get together.

SAYAH: So far, the exception to that wrestler's rule has been Washington and Tehran.

(on camera): During our visit to Tehran, the Iranian government's deep-seeded suspicion for the international media was evident. A few hours into our scoot, security officials confiscated our videotape and erased interviews with both U.S. and Iranian wrestlers, saying we were not allowed to ask questions about politics. We ended up doing the interviews over again. It was a reminder that U.S./Iranian relationships remain very complicated.

Reza Sayah, CNN, Tehran.


MALVEAUX: And you've got to give it to Reza, right?


MALVEAUX: I mean, all of the tapes, they're erased, they're removed. He does it over again.

HOLMES: He still got the -- he still got the story.

MALVEAUX: I mean, you know, that is journalism.

HOLMES: Hey, we sent him all the way to Tehran, you better come back with a story. That's what we said. As he said, that CNN has contacted Iranian authorities about those tapes, protesting the confiscating, the erasing of the video and the like. But this sporting detente (ph) thing, sport transcends politics.

MALVEAUX: Absolutely.

HOLMES: Always does.

MALVEAUX: I mean we've see it in the Olympics and, you know, Iran.

HOLMES: Yes. Yes.

MALVEAUX: It's pretty amazing.

HOLMES: Should let them sort it out.

MALVEAUX: Yes. Absolutely.

HOLMES: Let them do it.

MALVEAUX: This is something you actually don't see every day. A car crashing into the roof of a house. That is right, the roof. We're going to explain how that happened.


MALVEAUX: OK. This is kind of weird and gross.

HOLMES: This is. It's weird and gross. It's a sock that sold for thousands of dollars. It's not just used. It's not even clean.

MALVEAUX: Yuck. A collector paid more than 92 grand for this bloody sock that Boston pitcher Curt Schilling wore during game two of the 2004 World Series.

HOLMES: It's blood. It was one of baseball history's most important moments, though. Why? Because it was the breaking of the so-called curse of the bambino.

MALVEAUX: So, the sock's new owner says he also has a contract that started the curse, the one that actually brought Babe Ruth to New York from Boston. But, still, I just wouldn't do it.

HOLMES: From that --

MALVEAUX: I would not buy that sock.

HOLMES: Exactly.

Want to show you something we teased before. You don't see this every day. Police say a driver near Houston lost control on a curve, hit a house. It went -- actually went airborne and landed on the roof, as you can see.

MALVEAUX: Fuel leaked into the house. A crane operator was actually called in to remove this car. Amazingly, nobody in the car or the house was actually seriously injured.

HOLMES: That's good news. Yes, that's it for me. It's not it for you. Thanks for watching AROUND THE WORLD. Love the new name?

MALVEAUX: I do, yes. It's kind of catchy, right?


MALVEAUX: I love it.

HOLMES: All right, you've got more work to do.

MALVEAUX: All right, see you tomorrow. Thanks. "CNN NEWSROOM" continues after this.