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Attack Near Karachi Airport; Las Vegas Rampage Killers in a Revolution?; Sgt. Bergdahl Still in Recovery; Hillary Clinton Continues Book Tour
Aired June 10, 2014 - 05:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN ANCHOR: All right, welcome back to EARLY START. I'm Christine Romans.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: And I'm John Berman. About 30 minutes past the hour right now.
ROMANS: Breaking news this morning from southern Afghanistan. Five U.S. service members killed overnight during an attack in the southern Zabul Province. An Afghan National Army soldier also killed in this attack with the Americans. Details remain sketchy about exactly what happened, but it now appears the casualties were the result of friendly fire from a coalition aircraft. More on this breaking story throughout the morning on "NEW DAY."
BERMAN: And we do have more breaking news as well. For the second time in two days, there is an attack under way near Karachi's Jinnah International Airport. Five security agents have reportedly been killed overnight, just hours ago, in fact. This attack coming after a Sunday night rampage at the airport claimed more than 30 lives. The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility there.
Our reporter, Saima Mohsin, witnessed this morning's attack. She joins us by phone from Karachi.
Saima, explain to us what happened.
SAIMA MOHSIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: John, there's a lot of chaos and confusion here. Myself and my team, my producer and cameraman were filming the damage that was made by the attack on Sunday night into Monday at Karachi airport. We were on the runway looking at the cargo holds when we were rushed -- we were rushed towards by the airport manager who said you need to get to safety, this is a dangerous situation, there is another attack under way.
We were led to our cars. When we got into our cars, they told us that the attack was carried out -- being carried out at the Airport Security Force Academy, which is right next to the airport itself that was targeted Sunday night.
Now this is the airport security forces, of course, the very members of the security personnel that were the first line of defense at the airport, that protected the airport and stopped those attackers from getting to the main terminal, and they themselves today appear to be under attack.
Now we have no clarity right now as to what kind of attack this is, whether even an attack is being carried out, John, because a short while ago, the Interior minister and the National Assembly claimed there was no attack under way. But while we were there, there have been at least 30 ambulances rushing past us that we've managed to count, dozens of vehicles with rangers -- that's the paramilitary force here -- and the police and armored personnel vehicles rushing past us.
So there is a heightened state of alert, of course, a heightened state of security, and right now we're trying to get to the bottom of what is going on inside that academy -- John.
BERMAN: Saima, the fact that an attack like this could happen the day after another one did in the same area gives you a sense of the stability, or really the lack of stability in that area right now.
MOHSIN: Yes, John, we've been out there filming all morning, taking a look at the aftermath of that attack on Sunday, which came as a surprise to everyone that they managed to get inside the airport, albeit it the old terminal building, and we did see a heightened police presence. In fact, when we were filming, we were stopped en route by plain-clothed men. They wouldn't let us go any further, they blocked our car with a van.
When we were filming close to the runway, the Airport Security Force, armed force men asked us not to film and leave the area. So, there is a heightened presence of security, certainly, but we are not sure why or how these attackers or this attack is taking place and how they managed to get anywhere near the airport academy, ASS Academy -- John.
BERMAN: All right. Saima Mohsin in Karachi. Saima, you and your team, please stay safe. Check once again when you learn more. We appreciate it.
Thirty-four minutes after the hour right now. We have new details this morning about the couple behind a deadly shooting rampage in Las Vegas that took the lives of two police officers and a Wal-Mart shopper who tried to stop them. They've been identified as Jerad and Amanda Miller. Investigators uncovering a series of threatening antigovernment rants on social media, including a chilling warning that a sacrifice was coming.
Here's CNN's Kyung Lah.
KYUNG LAH, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We're learning disturbing details about the crime as well as the people behind it. Police identify the shooters as a married couple, Jerad and Amanda Miller. Jerad Miller on social media expressed a number of antigovernment leanings, and he expressed that to many of his neighbors, one of whom says she saw them just hours before the shootings began.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) KELLEY FIELDER, NEIGHBOR: I got five deaths on my shoulders. I should have called the cops. It was yesterday morning, and it's 5:45 in the morning. And he said that the revolution had begun. He said, I got to do what I got to do. They had, I mean, a cart full of just ammunition, ammunition, guns, everything.
LAH (on camera): Were they carrying them? Can you describe what they were doing?
FIELDER: They were carrying them because they said that they were going underground.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LAH: Where they went instead, Cici's Pizza, and killed officers Igor Soldo and Alyn Beck. Police say they draped an American revolution flag and a swastika on the officers' bodies. They then headed across the street to Wal-Mart. A good Samaritan, Joseph Wilcox, was shopping there. He tried to stop them using his concealed weapon, but he was killed.
The rampage ended when they exchanged gunfire with responding officers. The wife wounded and cornered, turned the gun on her husband, killing him and then turned it on herself.
Kyung Lah, CNN, Las Vegas.
BERMAN: So Amanda and Jerad Miller moved to Las Vegas from Lafayette, Indiana. A close friend says Jerad believed he was being monitored by the government and that she was shattered when she learned her best friend, Amanda, took part in this bloody ambush before taking her own life.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JESSICA BERNARD, SUSPECT'S FRIEND: The only thing I can think of is saying -- she kept saying that, something about the government, like, watching their every move. I was a little skeptical of Jerad when I first met him, but I was there for her because I knew she loved him and I tried to see through everything.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BERMAN: The father of Amanda Miller says he pleaded with his daughter not to move to Las Vegas, not to marry Jerad. After she left, he says Jerad kept heir isolated and often shut off her phone so she could not be reached.
ROMANS: All right. New questions this morning about who authorized the prisoner exchange that freed Bowe Bergdahl. At a House briefing last night, lawmakers were told as many as 90 members of the Obama administration knew about the deal to free Bergdahl ahead of time while Congress was kept in the dark and that the final decision to move forward with this prisoner exchange did not come from the president.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REP. BUCK MCKEON (R), CALIFORNIA: That was the last question asked, and the answer was Secretary Hagel, which kind of surprised me, because I did see the president out there with the Bergdahls. Sounded like he was taking full credit for the operation. And now they're saying that Secretary Hagel made the decision, probably parsing of words or probably, maybe now that there's a little pushback, or I don't know.
I don't know who's in charge or who's making the decisions. It did seem to me that it was the president, and that was the emphasis up until this briefing. And now they're saying Secretary Hagel.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: In a new "USA Today" poll, a majority of Americans, 43 percent to 34 percent feel President Obama was wrong for authorizing the exchange. The exchange that led to Bergdahl's release. Twenty- three percent say they're not sure. In a survey of more than 120 veterans, 68 percent said the president made a mistake, 16 percent believe he did the right thing.
Doctors in Germany say Bergdahl is in a stable condition, but he still has not spoken to his family and he's not ready to come home to the United States.
Karl Penhaul is tracking Bergdahl's recovery. He's live for us this morning from Landstuhl, Germany.
What do we know about his condition at this point, Karl?
KARL PENHAUL, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Christine, let me tell you, on average, when a wounded U.S. serviceman comes through this hospital here in Landstuhl, Germany they'll spend between an average of three and five days before being transferred back to the United States. Now Bowe Bergdahl has now been here for almost double that amount of time and still no sign that he is about to be transferred.
Getting information, getting the full picture is getting more difficult, because the Pentagon seems to be wanting to really control the information flow about this. And for that reason, medics here at the hospital are no longer authorized to give us updates on Bergdahl's condition. But overnight, out of Washington, a Pentagon spokesman did say that Bergdahl was improving day by day. Well, that, essentially, we already knew since before the weekend.
And he also said that Bergdahl has until now had no contact with his family, although he is authorized to do that at any time. Now each morning, Bergdahl's physicians and psychologists will come together in a huddle and decide whether he is fit enough to be transferred for his third stage of recovery back in San Antonio, Texas. So far they have not taken that decision but are not giving us reasons why. One might also suggest that there are political reasons here as well.
Perhaps the Pentagon is waiting a little for that political firestorm to die down in the United States before they decide to transfer him.
The other interesting detail coming out from Pentagon officials as well is that Bergdahl may be owed up to $200,000 in back pay for the time that he was in captivity, but so far no decision has been made to pay that money out until a judicial review is carried out as to why Bergdahl walked off base and how he ended up in the Taliban hands -- Christine.
ROMANS: Yes, an interesting detail. He was automatically promoted while he was away. Obviously, accruing his pay while he was away as well.
Karl Penhaul, thank you.
BERMAN: More questions this morning for General Motors as that company holds its annual shareholder meeting in Detroit, where victims' families are expected to protest GM's mishandling of an ignition switch defect linked to 13 deaths -- at least 13 deaths. It took the company over a decade to recall some 2.6 million vehicles equipped with the part.
Shareholders are now demanding to know how much the scandal is going to cost. Some estimates put the figure as high as $7 billion.
ROMANS: All right, time for an EARLY START on your money. European stocks mixed, U.S. futures down right now, edging back from what was a big day yesterday. The Dow and the S&P 500, record highs. The three major indices up between 2 percent and 6 percent so far this year, and that is good news for your 401(k).
If you're an Amazon user, this could be good news. The company just launched a new service allowing customers to automatically pay recurring charges with their Amazon log-in. Think your phone bill. It's another assault on eBay, which owns online payment service PayPal. EBay shares are down in premarket trading.
Amazon will launch a smartphone later this month. This new service could help it move into the growing space of mobile payments.
Google, already a big player with Google Wallet. Analysts say Apple is developing its own system as well.
BERMAN: Yes, exactly.
All right, happening right now, Hillary Clinton, she has a new book out. Don't know if you heard. We'll tell you what it says about Benghazi, what she now says about running for president, and also what she says about being broke when she left the White House.
That's right after the break.
ROMANS: All right, welcome back. This morning, Hillary Clinton's new memoir officially goes on sale.
Do you have your copy yet, Berman?
BERMAN: I feel like I don't have to buy it because I've read every excerpt there is already. She's kicking off her book tour with an hour-long interview. The former secretary of state sat down with ABC's Diane Sawyer, getting personal and political. She did not say when she will decide on a potential 2016 run, but she did offer up some reasons about why she might choose to run, ultimately.
ROMANS: Let's bring in CNN politics executive editor Mark Preston.
So interesting, this sort of pregame show that is the book tour before a potential campaign. It's almost like a proxy campaign.
MARK PRESTON, CNN POLITICS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: You know, Christine, you're absolutely right, and I think anyone that watched that interview last night, and you know, is watching how Hillary Clinton is handling herself right now with this book rollout, you can't believe that she's not running for president at this point. She was very careful in her answers. She's willing to take on any questions. She even addressed questions about Monica Lewinski.
It seems like she's trying to get this all out of the way because, as she said last night, she'll probably make a decision about whether to run for president at the beginning of next year.
BERMAN: And Mark, one of the issues, obviously, that will come up in this campaign, is coming up already, is Benghazi. When she was asked about that by Diane, she says it's more of a reason for her to run.
PRESTON: Right. I mean, no question about that, John. I mean, look, the fact is, what we're seeing on Capitol Hill is Republicans are really trying to drive at this very hard. What did she know? Should she take responsibility? And of course, last night, Hillary Clinton, it took her a little bit of time to get to it. She did say that she accepted responsibility, but by and large, she said it wasn't on her necessarily, because she's not the one who should have to know all about the security at all of these embassies and consulates around the country.
She says that's not realistic as a secretary of state. That's why they hire people to do so. However, she did say she had a heavy heart of the loss of these four individuals, including the ambassador over in Benghazi -- John.
ROMANS: She's getting a little bit of grease for some she said about leaving the White House broke. Some people are suggesting that, come on, when you leave the White House broke, you're still the first lady and the former president. I mean, you have a lot of earnings potential. Let's listen to that.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: We came out of the White House not only dead broke but in debt. We had no money when we got there and we struggled to, you know, piece together the resources for mortgages for houses, for Chelsea's education. You know, it was not easy.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: Out of touch or is she's in touch with what most families are going through right now?
PRESTON: Well, I've got to tell you, I mean, that comment made her seem out of touch, no question. You're right, Christine, the earning potential coming out of the White House is enormous. Let me just give you some numbers right here, as we talk about Hillary Clinton potentially running for president and making missteps, although a minor misstep, in many ways.
She did have debt about $3 million to $10 million when they came out of the White House, but Bill Clinton in 2001 made $9.2 million in speaking fees. By 2002, he made $9.5 million. And look, just by early 2013, Bill Clinton had made $106 million in speaking fees. And we've seen Hillary Clinton herself out there making quite a lot of money on the speaking circuit.
BERMAN: So they're doing OK is what you're saying, Mark.
PRESTON: Certainly better than the three of us, I think.
BERMAN: Yes. Nevertheless, congratulations on your new title, Mark. We're very proud of you, proud to know you. Glad you're here with us on EARLY START this morning.
PRESTON: Great. Thanks for having me, guys.
ROMANS: Yes. We promote him and then make him get up at 5:00 in the morning.
BERMAN: Forty-eight minutes after the hour right now. Let's take a look at what's coming up on "NEW DAY." Chris Cuomo with us this morning -- Chris.
ROMANS: Hey, Chris.
CHRIS CUOMO, CNN ANCHOR, NEW DAY: Christine Romans, good morning.
CUOMO: Berman. So, everybody, we're covering all the breaking news out of Afghanistan and Pakistan. We'll give you the latest on what we understand and what's been going on there. There are some allegations that it may have been fracturicide or infighting that may have caused the situation. What was intentional and what is an accident? We'll take you through the latest there. Important to do that. And also, we've all been following the story of these two kids, these
girls who stabbed their friend nearly to death some 19 times. Almost as amazing as the horror, the recovery. She is home now. You know the back story about what this was about. It's some online stupidity that they got involved in. But the main thing to focus on is you're looking at it right there, the purple hearts that this girl is getting sent from all over the country and what they mean to her and her family.
We have friends of the family on today to talk about her recovery, and we're going to be happy to tell you that story. She still has a long way to go, but you'll appreciate the update, promise you that.
And also, another good news story for you. People were hanging on his every tweet. You remember this, Christine and John, the hidden cash guy? The "NEW DAY" Santa, basically, out there in California tweeting a message, go find the money. People are finding the money, making so much good excitement. Turns out he's real, he exists, and he is on "NEW DAY" today. Look at this.
BERMAN: Yes. He pays. I'm interested to hear what he says, Chris, because he did call it a social experiment, and there are serious questions about whether or not this was sort of toying with people's emotions there. So we look forward to seeing that on "NEW DAY" coming up in a little bit. Thank you so much.
CUOMO: Hold a second. I'm sitting here with a $20 bill stuffed in my pocket.
BERMAN: We'll be right back. We got to back.
CUOMO: And you're talking about social experiments?
BERMAN: We'll be right back.
ROMANS: More suspected abductions by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Nigerian officials say at least 20 young women, 20 more, have been kidnapped just a few miles from the town of Chibok, where close to 300 schoolgirls were taken nearly two months ago now. Militants have preyed on residents in Nigeria's northeast. Hundreds of people killed in an attack last week. About 200 girls remain in captivity. The location of the latest victims is not known.
BERMAN: Soccer fans arriving in Sao Paulo, Brazil, met by traffic jams and tear gas as a crippling subway strike stretched into a fifth day. Brazil has been plagued by protests stemming from anger over how much the world cup is now costing. Billions have been spent as that country continues to suffer economically. Subway workers suspended their strike late Monday but warned it could resume just in time for Thursday's opening match.
Brazil versus Croatia, Neymar versus Lauka Modric. Very good game. Thursday. Very excited.
ROMANS: You're going to get no sleep. But we will see the red circles under your eyes.
All right, coming up, a sure sign the economic recovery is not reaching everyone. Wait until you hear how many college grads are still relying on mom and dad for money.
ROMANS: Welcome back. Brand new on "CNN MONEY" this morning, grads are still relying on mom and dad. A new study from the University of Arizona finds two years out of college, half of graduates are still relying on their parents for financial help. These are students who started college in the boom time, but then the recession hit.
The study also found many grads are delaying getting married, having children and buying a home because of financial stress.
BERMAN: You know, there are all kinds of studies that say when you graduate, you know, you get an entry-level job with a lower salary, that you never catch up. Ten, 20 years later, you're still behind others who started out in better times.
ROMANS: And then there's the student loan piece of it. They're graduating and they don't have the financial flexibility because they have all those student loans.
BERMAN: Doesn't that put you in a great mood?
Here comes "NEW DAY" right now.