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U.S. Increases Military Planning For Syria; Sectarian Violence Escaltes In Iraq; Will Bayern Join Dortmund In Champion's League Final; Western India Faces Extreme Drought; MindMeld Promises To Analyze Convesations
Aired May 1, 2013 - 08:00:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
KRISTIE LU STOUT, HOST: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. And welcome to News Stream where news and technology meet.
Rethinking Syria. U.S. officials say all options are on the table as the White House weighs evidence of chemical weapons used there.
India's most devastating drought in 40 years is destroying livelihoods. We'll look ahead to this year's monsoon season could bring.
And Samsung is among the investors in a new app that listens in on your conversations.
Now we start this hour in Syria. U.S. President Barack Obama says he wants to know more about the suspected use of chemical weapons there. Now the U.S. had said their use would cross a red line, but what that means exactly remains unclear.
Now the Washington Post says that Mr. Obama is preparing to send, quote, "lethal weaponry" to opposition forces.
At a news conference on Tuesday, Mr. Obama would only say he needs more information before making his next move.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: What we now have is evidence that chemical weapons have been used inside of Syria, but we don't know how they were used, when they were used, who used them. We don't have a chain of custody that establishes what exactly happened. And when I am making decisions about America's national security and the potential for taking additional action in response to chemical weapon use, I've got to make sure I've got the facts.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LU STOUT: Now U.S. officials say they're not writing off anything. But many analysts say there is no good option.
Pentagon correspondent Barbara Starr reports.
BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: CNN has learned the Pentagon is intensifying planning for potential military action against Syria's chemical weapons facilities since a March 19 attack in Aleppo appeared to show Bashar al-Assad's troops using chemical weapons against civilians. There was classified intelligence about as many as three separate attacks.
OBAMA: The use of chemical weapons would be a game-changer.
STARR: President Obama says if it's proven Assad's troops attacked with chemical agents, the threat has escalated.
OBAMA: And that means that there's some options that we might otherwise exercise that we would -- that we would strongly consider.
STARR: A senior U.S. official tells CNN Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel wants details military options he can hand to the president if action is ordered.
CHUCK HAGEL, U.S. SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: I won't speculate on those options nor publicly discuss those options.
STARR: U.S. military sources tell CNN one option, Navy warships carrying cruise missiles on routine patrol off Israel could strike Syrian command and control sites and air defenses clearing a path for precision air strikes against chemical sites.
Military action could involve thousands of U.S. troops, but sources say no U.S. ground troops.
The senior official tells CNN two crisis points potentially could trigger a strike. If the chemical weapons fall into the hands of terrorists, or if the regime collapses and no one is controlling the weapons, but officials stress they need more information before deciding on a next step.
Neighboring Israel, Jordan and Turkey are all being consulted on the intensified planning effort, but the big problem, right now the U.S. says it doesn't know where all the chemical weapons are located.
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN, (R) ARIZONA: Do you have confidence that we could secure it?
GEN. MARTIN DEMPSEY, U.S. JOING CHIEFS CHAIRMAN: Not as I sit here today, simply because they've been moving it and the number of sites is quite numerous.
STARR: Some Democrats and Republicans are still pressuring the White House to provide weapons to the opposition. Administration officials say all options remain on the table, but it would be a major policy change for the U.S. to arm the rebels.
Barbara Starr, CNN, the Pentagon.
LU STOUT: And regardless of what the U.S. chooses to do, the leader out of the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah says Syria's friends won't allow it to fall.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HASSAN NASRALLAH, HEZBOLLAH CHIEF (through translator): You will not be able to take over Damascus. You are incapable of bringing down the regime militarily. The battle will be long. Syria has real friends in the region and the world. And they will never allow Syria to fall to the hands of the United States, Israel or extremist groups. We will never allow it.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LU STOUT: Now CNN's Mohammed Jamjoom joins us now live from Beirut. And Mohammed, President Barack Obama, we heard him then. We say that the use of chemical weapons would be a game-changer, but facts need to be established first. So what is the latest evidence of chemical weapon used inside Syria?
MOHAMMED JAMJOOM, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Kristie, essentially what's happening right now, a lot of accusations being thrown about when it comes to the Syrian side of this. You have the rebel groups, the opposition saying that they have evidence, they are accusing the Syrian regime of having used chemical weaponry in different parts of the country. Several times over the course of the past few months they say that that evidence is being investigated.
The Syrian regime, for its part, has accused the rebels on some occasions of having used chemical weapons against the population of Syria.
Now Syrian president Bashar al-Assad a few months ago had stated that a UN team should come into Syria, should investigate these allegations of use of chemical weapons to try to establish, as he said, that rebels had gotten their hands on chemical weapons and had been using them.
Well, a UN team has still not gone in. In fact, the UN has said on several occasions that they've not been able to be granted entry to go in, even though they do want to go and they do want to try to investigate these claims on the ground in Syria, this fight for logistical difficulties that this would pose. So really just shows you just how messy this situation is.
At this point, you have groups urging the UN to come in, whether it be the UN security council, or UN monitors, or another UN body to try to come in and investigate these very serious allegations. And even that at this stage hasn't happened and hasn't been able to happen -- Kristie.
LU STOUT: Yeah, and if there is solid evidence and a red line is crossed, the U.S. says a range of options are available for actions. One of them is the possibility of arming the rebels. How would that affect the conflict?
JAMJOOM: Well, this is something that the rebels have been asking for for quite some time. They have said for many a month now that they don't need any more non-lethal aid, that they want the U.S. and other countries to provide them with weapons -- anti-aircraft missiles for example -- so that they can really fight the regime with more intensity, as they would say.
Certainly, this would be significant for the rebels. This is something that they want. They say this would help them to fight better, to get control over more parts of Syria.
But the Obama administration, even though there are officials and there are reports suggesting that they are considering this, still is being quite cautious. You know, yesterday U.S. President Barack Obama in that press conference stated that there are a range of options that could be considered, but still they need to know the facts. They're still assessing, trying to figure out if chemical weapons, you know, have been used, who used them.
On many time in the past week you've heard officials say that a chain of evidence still really have -- a chain of custody, rather, still hasn't been established when it comes to chemical weapons that might have been used in Syria, who may have used them.
So, still a lot of questions.
If the Obama administration were to star providing -- were to start providing weapons, yes, that's something that the rebels would want, but it doesn't look like that's going to happen really any time soon -- Kristie.
LU STOUT: All right. Mohammed Jamjoom on the story for us, joining us live from Beirut, thank you.
Now a wave of violent attacks has continued across Iraq. Officials in Anbar Province say at least seven people have been killed and 20 more injured in explosions there today. And since last week, there has been deadly violence in all the cities you see here and more.
Now according to the rights group Iraq Body Count, 1,683 civilians have been killed by violence in Iraq in the first four months of this year alone, that is up from the same period in 2012. And most of the violence is fueled by the divide between Sunni and Shiite Muslims. Shiites make up about 65 percent of Iraq's population. They also lead the government. And that's left Sunnis, who represent 20 percent of the population feeling politically marginalized.
Now they used to dominate Iraqi politics under the government of Saddam Hussein.
And for more on the sectarian divisions, let's go to our senior international correspondent Arwa Damon. She joins us live in Baghdad. And Arwa, can you tell us what exactly sparked this current wave of sectarian attacks there in Iraq?
ARWA DAMON, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: For many Iraqis, this increase in violence, this increase in tensions, is really coming as no surprise, because over the last few years, especially ever since the U.S. troop withdrawal, violence has been slowly increasing. And of course as we know only too well the violence here is mired in sectarian undertones.
This is by and large a byproduct of as you were mentioning earlier, the Sunni population feeling alienated, disenfranchised, and specifically targeted by the Shia dominated government and by the Shia dominated security forces.
Over the last few months, however, in Al Anbar Province, which is where the attacks took place earlier today, there had been ongoing demonstrations that were sparked by the Iraqi government going after one of the Sunni ministers, the finance minister. And since then, tensions have really escalated where we have been seeing an increase in these tit-for-tat attacks targeting both Sunni and Shia populations.
All of that being said and done, many Iraqis do believe that the only real solution is going to be the Iraqi government taking a good, hard look at itself and taking a concrete decision to begin to reform itself, because the very essence of the government right now, the very essence of the nation to a certain degree is built upon the sectarian building blocks. Of course as to whether or not the Iraqi government has the political maturity or the will power to take the necessary measures, well a lot of people we're talking to right now quite frankly say that they don't believe so. And that of course is extremely worrying, Kristie.
LU STOUT: Yeah, the solution, it sounds like it lies with the Iraqi government or whether or not they have the wherewithal to reform.
We've been seeing these reports, Arwa, that the government has taken some 10 TV networks off the air for what they say stoking the conflict. Did the media play a role in this, or are we also seeing a crackdown on free speech here?
DAMON: The Nouri al-Maliki government has pretty much since it came to power been viewed by the journalist community as being a government that does try to in fact crack down on freedom of speech and crack down on journalism. This most certainly is not the first time that the government has come out and accused various media outlets of stoking the tensions that do take place here. Amongst those 10 stations that are no longer being allowed to operate right now is al Jazeera Arabic and then there are also eight station, Iraqi stations, that are viewed as being Sunni and one Iraqi station that is viewed as being Shia.
But it's incredibly difficult to operate as a journalist here. At every step of the way, Iraqi security forces are asking you what are you filming. In many instances when there are demonstrations, when there are things taking place, even violence that the government does not want to see highlighted, we are prevented from accessing these sites.
But when it comes to what's happening right now, the Sunni population most certainly views this move as being yet another attempt by this Shia dominated government to further silence their voices. And it most certainly does not bode well at this point in time when the Iraqi government really needs to be focusing on trying to regain the trust of the Sunni population rather than further alienate them.
LU STOUT: OK. Arwa Damon joining us with the very latest from Baghdad. Thank you so much for that.
Now a suicide bomber has killed at least two people in Dagestan in Russia's north Caucuses. And government officials say that the attack, it happened at a market in the republic's capital of Makhachkala. In a separate incident in the city of Buinaksk gunmen opened fire on a police vehicle, killing three officers and wounding two.
Now two government buildings in the Libyan capital Tripoli remain under siege. Up to 30 armed men took over the Justice Ministry building on Tuesday. They forced everyone inside, including the justice minister, to leave. And they're blocking roads to the building with trucks loaded with anti-aircraft guns.
Now it is a similar scene outside the foreign ministry. The government began their armed protest there on Sunday. They are demanding a new law that prevents Gadhafi era officials from holding government posts.
The U.S. president makes another pledge to close the Guantanamo Bay detention center. And coming up next right here on News Stream, we'll tell you about Barack Obama's latest push to follow through on an old election promise.
Also ahead, police in the UK say would-be terrorists cancel the planned attack. And you won't believe how the failed plot was uncovered.
And western India's desperate wait for water. People are struggling to get through the region's worst drought in four decades.
LU STOUT: It is May Day, it's a day to honor workers around the world. And typically that means marches and protests. With record unemployment across the EuroZone, today's turnout could be particularly high, especially in Greece where unemployment hit 27.2 percent in January. And it coincides with the general strike there.
And in Turkey, riot police use tear gas and water cannons against demonstrators trying to reach a public square which the government says is off limits because it's being renovated. But the protesters vow to ignore the ban, because the square was the center for May Day rallies in previous years.
Now Venezuela will see dueling May Day rallies in the capital. The government and the opposition have been at odds since last month's disputed presidential election. On Tuesday, those tensions led to blows in the national assembly. Opposition lawmakers say they were not allowed to speak in the session because they had not recognized President Nicolas Maduro's victory.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JULIO BORGES, OPPOSIITON LAWMAKER: We will continue fighting millimeter by millimeter, advancing and giving the Venezuela the future and opportunity. Precisely for this reason, they have to turn to violence because we have advanced and we are going to triumph.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LU STOUT; Incredible sight there. Now each side blames the other for provoking the violence.
Right here, we'll take you to the visual rundown. It's a visualization of all the major stories we're covering today this Wednesday on News Stream. Earlier, we told you what the United States may be planning in response to Syria's suspected use of chemical weapons.
And later, we'll tell you about a failed terror plot in the UK.
But now, let's turn our attention to the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba. Now U.S. President Barack Obama called for the closure of the facility when he was campaigning back in 2007. And at the very beginning of his first term, he signed an executive order to shut it down. But 100 days into his second term, it is still open.
Now on Tuesday, Mr. Obama promised to make a new push.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: I think it is critical for us to understand that Guantanamo is not necessary to keep America safe, it is expensive, it is inefficient. It hurts us in terms of our international standing. It lessens cooperation with our allies on counterterrorism efforts. It is a recruitment tool for extremists. It needs to be closed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LU STOUT: Now there are currently 166 inmates at Guantanamo. Only six face active charges. All have been held for years without trial and can be detained indefinitely. Since March, some have been staging a desperate protest against their treatment. About 100 inmates are now taking part in a hunger strike. 21 of them are being force fed through tubes.
Now Christiane Amanpour asked a U.S. army spokesman about the procedure. And Colonel Greg Julian is with the U.S. southern command which oversees Guantanamo.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
COL. GREG JULIAN, U.S. ARMY: Well, this is the same procedure that's used in civilian hospitals for people that are in a condition where they are unable to eat normally. And a tube is fed through their nasal passage into their stomachs and then they're fed a nutritional supplement.
CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You would agree with what the lawyers are saying, that it's pretty invasive and pretty painful.
JULIAN: No, I wouldn't agree. This is a legally approved procedure followed by the Federal Bureau of Prisons. And we adhere to the same procedures.
AMANPOUR: Do you that there have been a number of suicide attempts as well, that could increase.
JULIAN: Yes, that's potential. But by inspecting their cells and monitoring them closely, we're better able to prevent that from happening.
There is no 100 percent solution to keep somebody that's determined to cause themselves harm, but we're doing our best.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LU STOUT: Now President Barack Obama, he blamed congress for blocking his administration's efforts to close Guantanamo. But critics say he also shoulders the blame. They say he should resume the transfer of detainees cleared for release. That's nearly 90 of the 166 current inmates.
Now, the death toll in the Bangladesh building collapse has risen above 400. One week since the garment factory collapse in a Dhaka suburb, 410 bodies have been pulled from the wreckage. And according to the AFP news agency, 149 more are missing.
Protests have become a regular occurrence since the collapse with workers angry at the conditions they've been subjected to. Much of their anger is directed at the building's owner who protesters want to see hanged. He was picked up by police as he tried to flee to neighboring India.
Now major western retailers are also coming under fire over how they check working conditions at their suppliers. Meanwhile, Bangladesh's biggest trade partner, the European Union, says it is considering taking action to try to force the government to improve working conditions there.
You're watching News Stream. And what's next for Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho? That is the question on the lips of football fans after the Spanish side were knocked out of the Champion's League. We'll turn to Amanda Davies for the answers just ahead.
LU STOUT: Coming to you live from Hong Kong, you are back watching News Stream.
Now we may be just hours away from a second German side winning through to the Champion's League final, but it's news outside of Germany that has the football world talking right now.
Amanda Davies joins us with more -- Amanada.
AMANDA DAVIES, CNN SPORTS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, yeah. We'll come on to Wednesday night's Champion's League game in a moment, but the fallout from Tuesday's encounter in Spain is very much grabbing the headlines. And the big question is what next for Jose Mourinho, because Real Madrid were knocked out of the Champion's League by Borussia Dortmund. And he then went on to drop his biggest hint yet that he's on his way out of the club, saying he just wants to be where he's loved.
Madrid beat Dormund 2-0 on Tuesday night in Spain, but they couldn't get that third goal they needed to book their place in the final at Wembley after the 4-1 defeat in the first leg. They did score twice in the final eight minutes, thanks to Karim Benzema and Sergio Ramos, but Dortmund hung on and they can now start planning their trip to Wembley.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOSE MOURINHO, REAL MADRID COACH: At the end of the season I want to sit with Mr. Forentino Perez, my president, my friend, and decide the best for me. I know in England I'm loved. I know I'm loved by some clubs, especially one. And in Spain, the situation is a bit different, because some people hate me.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DAVIES: So, the odds are stacked in favor of an all-German final with Barcelona taking a 4-0 deficit into their semifinal second leg against Bayern Munich.
Lionel Messi is likely to be in action for Barca, having recovered from his hamstring injury. And the Bayern boss Jupp Heynckes has said he'll field a full strength side despite having six players one booking away from missing the final.
Away from football, the World Anti-Doping Agency and Spanish authorities are considering an appeal against the verdict in the Spanish doping case Operation Puerto. They've expressed their disappointment at the order to destroy the blood bags and evidence collected from the convicted doctor Dr. Eufemiano Fuentes.
Fuentes, of course, was the doctor accused of running one of the world's biggest sporting doping rings. And he received a one year suspended sentence on Tuesday for endangering public health. During the trial, which focused on cycling, Fuentes admitted that he treated professionals from other sports, including football, boxing and tennis.
And the U.S. Open tennis champion Andy Murray is one of those whose reacted angrily to the court ruling. He tweeted this, "Operation Puerto case is beyond a joke. Biggest cover-up in sports history. Why would court order blood bags to be destroyed?"
Strong words there echoing the thoughts of many in the sporting world.
Now, NBA player Jason Collins says he hopes he can be a role model for young people after coming out as gay. The first current male professional athlete to do so in America.
The 34-year-old made the announcement in an essay that was published by the Sports Illustrated magazine. And he's now talking to the media about his decision. He says that above all else he wants to be known and he wants to be judged for his actions on the court. But yesterday, Collins spoke about his decision to come out and how he hopes it helps others have the courage to come forward.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JASON COLLINS, NBA CENTER: I hope it will encourage others to live an honest and genuine life. It's important for everybody to make decisions in their life that makes them happy. Once you put down that mask and live an authentic life it's liberating. And you don't have to hide anymore, you can just be yourself.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
DAVIES: And Kristie, it's very interesting. Of course, Jason Collins is a free agent looking for another NBA team. And it's been some pictures that have come out in the last couple of days of Robbie Rogers, who is the MLS soccer star who came out at the start of this year, but then felt he -- or said he felt he had to retire from football. There's been some pictures that have come out that he's actually back training, training with the L.A. Galaxy, so that's great to see.
LU STOUT: Yeah. And hopefully he was inspired by the courage of Collins. That would be amazing to think.
Amanda Davies with the very latest for us, thank you so much and take care.
You're watching News Stream. And still to come, how a routine traffic stop by British police uncovered a potentially deadly terror plot.
Also up next, the app that could help save lives when terrorists do attack.
LU STOUT: I'm Kristie Lu Stout in Hong Kong. You're watching News Stream and these are your world headlines.
At least two people have been killed in a suicide bomb attack in Dagestan in Russia's north caucuses. Officials say it happened at a market in the republic's capital of Makhachkala. In a separate incident, three police officers were killed and two wounded when gunmen opened fire on their vehicle in the city of Buinaksk.
An anti-austerity strike is underway in Greece to coincide with May Day, traditional day for honoring workers. Now transport, hospitals, schools are all affected and rallies are taking place in Athens.
More than 400 people are now known to have died in the Bangladesh factory disaster, that's according to a military official involved in the search effort. Now Pope Francis made reference to the building collapse, condemning what he called slave labor.
A quiet town in northern England was very nearly the scene of a deadly terror attack. Police say the would-be attackers showed up late and ended up calling off their sinister plan.
Now Matthew Chance has the details of the failed plot that police stumbled on completely by chance.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He came out and says, "you're an Islamophobe. Yes, I am."
CHANCE: This was the crowded rally of a British anti-Islamic group, the English Defense League, that the six would-be bombers had been planning to attack. Police say there were as many as 750 people there as well as dozens of officers and passersby who could have been killed or wounded if the plan had been carried out.
But the men, who have now pleaded guilty to the plot, arrived too late and the crowd had dispersed.
MARCUS BEALE, WEST MIDLANDS POLICE: There's no question that if these IEDs had gone off they would have maimed the people who have been close by. There's a really strong possibility that they would have been killed.
CHANCE: It was only by chance the plot was discovered at all. Driving home after their abandoned mission, two of the men were pulled over by this routine traffic patrol. Their car was found to have no insurance and impounded.
Not until two days after that was the car finally searched. Inside, police found an arsenal of improvised weaponry, including knives and sawn- off shotguns, and a homemade bomb packed with nails and ball bearings. There were also components for three further devices made from plumbing parts the police say appear to have been based on designs featured in an English language al Qaeda magazine called Inspire.
Inspire is also the publication that U.S. law enforcement officials believe may have provided the Boston bombers with instructions to make their explosive devices. Analysts say its bomb recipes are easily downloaded from the internet, giving potential radicals anywhere a simple blueprint to carry out violent action.
And this is the man behind Inspire, American born jihadist Anwar al- Awlawki. Police say the British plotters had CDs of his radical preaching in the back of their car. Despite the fact he was killed by a U.S. drone strike in Yemen in 2011, analysts say his message is still being heard.
ALEXANDER HITCHENS, TERRORISM ANALYST, KING'S COLLEGE LONDON: He's incredibly influential. His death has only really taken away his ability, and that of al Qaeda's to respond to events as they happen. All of his most important ideological work, which provides the justification for violence and terrorism, has already been done. And it's already widely available online.
CHANCE: And on both sides of the Atlantic, it's still apparently inspiring radicals to commit violence.
Matthew Chance, CNN, London.
LU STOUT: Now, in the U.S., a man hailed as a hero in the aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings is speaking out in his first TV interview. Now known simply by the name Danny the Chinese entrepreneur says that he was car jacked by Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev during the massive police man hunt for the bombing suspects. And police say that Danny helped lead them to the brothers.
Now with his identity concealed and his voice altered, Danny told CBS News correspondent John Miller how he managed to escape.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DANNY, TSARNAEV BROTHERS' CARJACKING VICTIM: I was counting -- counting out 1, 2, 3, 4. I just -- do it. And I did it.
And I (inaudible) Tamerlan was trying to grab me.
JOHN MILLER, CBS NEWS CORRESPONDENT: So you're going, he's reaching out.
MILLER: And now you're running.
DANNY: I was running. I was just running as fast as I can. And then they were -- never look back.
LU STOUT: And after Danny escaped, police engaged in a gun battle with the Tsarnaev brothers, leaving the elder brother Tamerlan dead. Dzhokhar remains in a prison medical facility.
Now 32 people died in the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007. And a survivor of that day is launching a new app. Now she says it could have helped her then and could have been put to use during the Boston bombings as well from collecting evidence to sending police to the location of victims is technology that could save lives.
Laurie Segall has more.
CHRISTINA ANDERSON, VIRGINIA TECH SHOOTING SURVIVOR: I'm one of the survivors from Virginia Tech shooting, which happened six years ago in Blacksburg, Virginia. And a gunman killed 32 people.
LAURIE SEGALL, CNN TECH CORRESPONDENT: In room 211, two-thirds of her classmates gunned down. Six survived. Christina Anderson lived.
ANDERSON: Within 12 minutes, he killed 11 of my classmates and my teacher. So we did not know that the first shooting had happened at about 7:05 that morning. There was a delay, and Virginia Tech didn't notify the campus. Which, at the time, there was no precedent for a second shooting, so really we had no information. I didn't even have a smartphone at the time.
SEGALL: So for a matter of minutes, you didn't know if you were going to survive. I can't imagine that.
ANDERSON: Yes, it's hard. It's having those seconds of time when it's life and death that you start to realize that life is so precious and valuable and should be treasured. So, I think it would almost be like a really big travesty to survive this whole event and not do something about it for everyone else. He shot me twice in the back and once in the foot.
SEGALL: Injured, but inspired. Years later, in a smartphone- connected world, Anderson is building the technology she wishes she'd had during the horrific day that changed her life.
ANDERSON: So, this is the "report incident" feature right from the app.
SEGALL: Live Safe is an app that lets people report incidents to law enforcement or campus authority in a couple taps. Students are already testing it on college campuses.
ANDERSON: On the police side on the dashboard, they have this (INAUDIBLE) system where see directly who the person is who submitted it and they receive their contact information, their picture, and also the GPS coordinates in real time.
SEGALL: Live Safe also lets users send out an alert to their emergency contacts in a swipe.
ANDERSON: And when you slide to alert, it sends them your GPS coordinates. They have a picture of where you are located.
SEGALL: The tech makes it easy for law enforcement to collect evidence and send safety alerts via smartphone. Tech that could have helped Anderson on that day six years ago.
ANDERSON: If Live Safe had existed and people had actually used it, I would have received a lot more information from people that were already there and might not have gone to campus. Police would have had a lot more, broader wealth of pictures and video coming in beforehand. Sometimes violence just finds you. That's a - you know, that's an unfortunate act of truth. But to know there is something you can do to make yourself and those around you safer, it's a little step in the right direction, I think.
SEGALL: Laurie Segall, CNN Money, New York.
LU STOUT: Using technology to move on and to help others.
Now let's return to our video rundown.
Earlier, we showed you how political tensions led to blows in Venezuela's national assembly, but now let's focus on extreme weather patterns affecting lives in India. Now western India is suffering from the worst drought in 40 years. Many people who depend on farming to make a living have been forced to leave their homes to look for work in the cities. And those who have stayed behind are struggling to get by.
As Mallika Kapur tells us, some have found it just too difficult to go on.
MALLIKA KAPUR, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Bashade Monde (ph) moved to Mumbai four months ago. His daily routine consists of a short walk to this corner, then a long wait. If he's lucky, a contractor will come back and hire him for a day job.
"I had no choice, I had to leave my village," he says. "There's no work there, because there's no water."
We traveled to Monde's (ph) village in the heart of Maharashtra State. We find his father in his fruit orchard digging brittle, dry earth.
"So many people are leaving the area," he says, "there's nothing left here. Look what happened to my neighbor."
Next door, we find a desperate scene.
Mendabiben Sode (ph) tells us her husband committed suicide in March. He hanged himself from a tree behind their home.
She says he had around $5,000 worth of debt, money he had borrowed to get his daughter married. The drought meant there was no work. He had no way to repay his loans.
Maharashtra is facing its worst drought in 40 years. More than half of India's farmlands rely on rain water for irrigation. Poor rainfall, plus mismanagement of water resources means crops aren't growing, cattle are dying, there's barely any water to drink, bathe, or wash clothes.
(on camera): The government fills this well once every eight days. The water supply lasts 15 minutes. That's all the time the 2,000 residents of this village have to stock up.
(voice-over): The local leader takes us to a dry river bed close by.
"There hasn't been a drop of water here in two years," he says.
Though the government announced a $220 million relief package, Dogray (ph) says he's yet to see an improvement in conditions here.
"The government, which we consider our parent," he says, "is not helping us at all, is not giving us anything."
Mansoray (ph) is still waiting for the $1,800 in compensation she's entitled from the government after her husband committed suicide.
In Mumbai, Munde (ph) is waiting to go home. He says he'll only return if there's enough rain this year. If not, he'll stay in Mumbai where there's water and work.
Mallika Kapur, CNN, Mumbai.
LU STOUT: So many people desperate for rain. What kind of monsoon will 2013 bring to India? Let's find out with Mari Ramos. She joins us from the world weather center -- Mari.
MARI RAMOS, CNN WEATHER CORRESPONDENT: Just an amazing story, you know, just the story of two people there, of two families and how important the water is for so many. And that's just a story of millions and millions of people in India that are relying on this. If you think about it, about 58 percent of the population across India relies on agriculture. And agriculture relies on the monsoon rains.
Before we get to the forecast for this season, I want to show you what happened last monsoon season, June through September of 2012. Overall, India had a normal monsoon, but there were these isolated pockets of areas that had either above average rainfall or below average rainfall. And these areas that are here in red are the ones that are suffering from the drought right now. That's why they're saying this is the worst drought in 40 years, because it's densely populated areas, widespread areas, that had deficient rainfall of last year. And as Mallika said in her report, deficient rainfall and mismanagement of water, two crucial issues on making this water shortage so prevalent across so many areas of India right now.
The monsoon forecast for this year is also expected to be normal, but nobody can really predict where that rain is going to fall. And that's extremely important, because if you get those isolated pockets of where rainfall could be too much or too little what you end up with is a mini- disaster in those particular areas and that is of huge concern for authorities, of course, and monsoon watchers, because so much of this -- so much of India's economy relies on what happens with the monsoon.
When does the monsoon start? Usually not until June 1, so we have a long way to go until we begin to see any kind of significant rainfall. Then it continues marching on northward as you can see here all the way until July when it reaches about that time the India-Pakistan border and then Pakistan can get a little bit of rainfall out of this, but not much. And then the monsoon begins to retreat yet again until September when it leaves the peninsular portions of India.
Now, 80 percent of the annual rainfall happens during this period. So if they don't get it then, they're not getting any more. And that was a great example of those reports that we saw there from Mallika.
And the rainfall can vary greatly from day to day or month to month. Last year, for example, it started off strong and then it kind of stopped in the middle months and then it got kicked up again. And those are things that agriculture and farmers don't like to see, because it kind of messes up with their timing of their crops and the -- how much crops they can actually end up with.
So, agriculture is controlled by how much rain falls. You can't have too little, you can't have too much.
The other thing that I want to talk about is right now during the pre- monsoon months, it's also the hottest time of the year. And look at this, right now we're looking at temperatures in some cases up to six degrees above the average for this time of year and little or no relief in sight because there's no rain coming. There's no rain coming until June. June, or maybe even into July.
What happens is this heat is actually what gets the monsoon started, Kristie, which is pretty interesting. The sun heats up this area here in Lent (ph). Low pressure forms here, high pressure still over the ocean, but what happens is because it's lower pressure over the land it begins to carry moisture inland. And that moisture is eventually what brings you the monsoon anyway, so it's all mother nature doing its thing. And we just expect it to be perfect.
Back to you.
LU STOUT: All right. Mari Ramos, thank you so much for the explainer there.
Now you're watching News Stream. And coming up next, we'll profile a new app. It claims that it can analyze a conversation in real-time to provide search results on your iPad. But is there a tradeoff for this kind of technology?
LU STOUT: Now you have heard of Siri. And you may be familiar with Google now, but what about MindMeld? Now, the app, built by Expect Labs, it bills itself as a smarter way to have conversations on your iPad. Now it hasn't been released yet, but tech giant Samsung, Intel and Telefonica have just joined as the startups lasted investors.
Now when you talk, MindMeld listens so you can search and bring up information that's relevant to your discussion, but after looking at its product demo online, some say it feels like Siri on steroids, a voice activated search engine that hangs onto your every word.
For more on this technology, let's bring in our regular contributor Nick Thompson. He's the editor of the NewYorker.com. He joins us now live.
And Nick, there's something fascinating and creepy about MindMeld. I mean, why would I want to use it?
NICK THOMPSON, NEWYORKER.COM: Well, you might want to use the basic MindMeld app you're talking to somebody, you're talking to a group of friends. You're chatting with them. You're talking about where you want to go for dinner and you mention a restaurant and before you have to Google it, suddenly directions to the restaurant appear along with its Zagat ratings or whatever, or you're trying to figure out where you want to go hiking and suddenly trail maps appear.
So it saves you a step. It analyzes your conversation and it tells you what you want to know.
That's all -- that seems fine. You're having a small conversation, you opt into this. What's more interesting and what's more complicated is that suddenly this investment of Samsung as its being described is because Samsung wants to have screens all over your house that are listening to your conversations, figuring out what you're looking for, figuring out what you want to do, and then it's going to either display information or tell you things. So it will -- maybe it will hear me say to my wife that I'm feeling tired, so maybe it will give me directions to the Starbucks, or maybe it'll send a signal to the coffee maker telling the coffee maker to get going.
We're moving into a world where our devices in our houses are smart, where they have ears and where they're paying a lot of attention to us. That could be very useful and it could be kind of weird.
LU STOUT: That's right. Our devices are getting smarter and smarter. Google Glass, it taps into the same thing. It's technology that can track everything you see. And incidentally, I've got to mention this, Google is an investor in your startup on the side out of this. But Nick, why should we welcome Google Glass? This type of technology?
THOMPSON: Well, what -- I mean, I'm not saying we should welcome Google Glass. The argument for welcoming Google Glass is it provides all sorts of information around you, right. You put these little glasses on and suddenly you have easy access to your emails, to all the information you would normally find on your phone without having to pull it out of your pocket. You have an opportunity to record things around you.
I mean, what's happening is that the devices that we put on our bodies -- so from our glasses to our watches to the little things we put around our wrists are all getting smarter. The devices on our walls are getting smarter. And it's changing our relationship to technology.
We're still a few years off from all of this stuff really working. This -- but this is also -- this is coming. We're moving into a world where -- you know, we're used to be smarter than our thermostat and soon our thermostat is going to be almost as smart as us.
And it's a very complicated transition that we're beginning to go through.
LU STOUT: And we're also more and more willing to sort of give up details about ourselves. For example on FourSquare when we do check-ins.
I mean, do you think as consumers we're staring to not so mind so much about our technology stalking us?
THOMPSON: Oh, absolutely. Technology stalking -- that's a great line. I mean, there's a constant tradeoff between privacy and utility with each one of these new applications, each one of these new devices, we tend to give up privacy and we tend to gain utility. And there's usually resistance. And over time the resistance fades and we end up choosing the utility over the privacy.
And I don't know if at any point we're going to stop and say, wait a second, its too much privacy. I can't have something learning from my conversations, right.
I mean, you think about these apps, you think about the devices on your walls listening to your conversations, right.
You think about these apps, you think about the devices on your walls listening to your conversations. They're there to provide you with useful information. But surely they are also going to be storing all of that data, surely they're also going to be selling it to advertisers. That can be worrisome. So this tradeoff between utility and privacy is a very, very fraught one, a very complicated one. Everybody in Silicon Valley has a view that we're always going to choose utility. Some people might differ.
LU STOUT: I like how you phrase it as a debate between utility and privacy. And as tech consumers we've got to find that perfect balance. I don't know how, but we have to. Nick Thompson, we'll leave it at that. Thank you so much as always.
THOMPSON: Thank you, Kristie.
LU STOUT: Now, planning a wedding or are you thinking about throwing a big party. Well, just ahead, we'll take a look at Pinterest, the social networking site that's helping people visualize big events.
LU STOUT: Now you may not know his name, but you've definitely seen his work. Garrett Brown's camera creation has changed the way movies and TV shows are filmed. He designed the Steadicam. And today he gets inducted into the national inventors hall of fame. Now so far you've witnessed what a Steadicam does, but what does it look like? Well, here it is. It is a body mounted rig all designed to make those moving camera shots more smooth and stable.
It's become a mainstay of film production. If you've watched Danny ride his tricycle in this scene from The Shining, you've seen the Steadicam in action.
Rocky Balboa climbing the steps at the Philadelphia art museum -- yep, that's a Steadicam shot as well.
But the next clip you might not have spotted a Steadicam work. This speeder chase from the Return of the Jedi was far from speedy to film. In creating the appearance of the floating bike, the shot needs to be smooth and the Steadicam was the only tool up to the job.
Now cameras were operated at about a frame per second as cameramen wearing steady cams walked through the forest location. And the footage was then sped up 24 times in order to make it look like the bikes were traveling at mind boggling speed.
That's how they did it.
Now, couples are becoming more and more social when it comes to planning their wedding. Many brides to be are turning to social media sites like Pinterest to dream up ideas for their big day. Maggie Lake has more.
MAGGIE LAKE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Here comes the bride all dressed in something you've probably seen on Pinterest. The photo sharing website has become a must have tool for brides to be.
NICOLA BARBER, VOICE-OVER ARTIST: Outfits for the flower girls.
LAKE: They're beautiful.
34-year-old Nicola Barber (ph), a voice-over artist and her fiance Brian Dalessandro, a researcher by day, rocker by night, wanted to plan a wedding that reflected their unique personalities and the life they've built in New York.
BARBER: We like the idea of having a cravat. I'm British, so we like the idea of having a morning coat.
BRIAN DALESSANDRO, GROOM-TO-BE: I kind of wanted like British rock star.
LAKE: A few years ago, brides like Nicola (ph) were stuck doing this, ripping pages out of wedding magazines and sticking them up on boards or putting them in a folder to bring to a wedding planner.
Now users create virtual inspiration boards. For brides, is a game- changer.
BARBER: I have a bunch -- a huge pile of tear outs from magazines in the office that I don't even look at, because it's just so complicated.
Here, everything is organized into categories, and I'm a very organized person. So I like to be able to see it.
DALESSANDRO: She would take all the million choices, narrow it down to 10, put it all together in -- you know, with the colors it's nice to be able to see everything side by side.
LAKE: While wedding posts are hugely popular on Pinterest, early investor Rick Heitzmann says growth is exploding in many areas.
RICK HEITZMANN, FIRSTMARK CAPITAL: Pinterest pulls together a lot of interests around these passion topics whether it be vacations or weddings or anything. It's not algorithmic based, but it's human based. You have people who you have more of a tangible contact with than you would necessarily a Google algorithm.
LAKE: According to Nielson, Pinterest reached the 10 million user mark faster than any standalone site in history. Mobile app user growth, a key measure for investors, is up well over 1,000 percent.
HEITZMANN: I think you're going to see a growth path and a value path similar to a Facebook or Twitter.
LAKE: Though only three years old, Pinterest trademark red pins are all over the web.
The company doesn't advertise or make any money off posts, but many believe it's just a matter of time.
Nicola and Brian use Pinterest for their shoes, clothes, flowers, even the honeymoon. The only thing they didn't need to pin, the entertainment.
Maggie Lake, CNN, New York.
LU STOUT: And yep, I'm on Pinterest too.
That is News Stream, but the news continues at CNN. World Business Today is next.