CNN Student News with transcript May 12, 2014: Passenger Plane Nearly Crashing into Drone; Indian Youth Participating in Democracy in Their Country; Largest Flowers Action in Holland
CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: It`s May 12. The school year is winding down. CNN STUDENT NEWS is starting up a new week of coverage. I`m Carl Azuz. Thank you for taking ten minutes for us. Broadly speaking, a drone can be any unmanned aircraft. It could be something the military uses to spy on potential terrorists, could be the R.C. plane your friend flies on the weekends. The Federal Aviation Administration has a new warning about the dangers of drones, particularly in light of something that happened this March.
It apparently involved a remote controlled plane that someone was flying far higher than the legal limit. It almost caused a catastrophe for a passenger flight headed to Tallahassee Florida.
RENE MARSH, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A near nightmare in the sky: a passenger plane nearly crashes into a camouflage drone flying at 2300 feet, well above the typical altitude for a private drone. The incident in the Tallahassee skies involved a U.S. Airways expressed jet flying near the airport.
UNIDENTIFIFED MALE: A remote controlled aircraft 2300.
MARSH: The first details of the March scare previously not revealed until an FAA official spoke about it Thursday in San Francisco.
JIM WILLIAMS, MANAGER, FAA`S UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEM: . said that the U.S. (ph) was so close to his jet that he was sure he had collided with it. Thankfully, inspection to the airliner after landing found no damage.
MARSH: Authorities do not know who flew the drone, but say it could have brought down the plane.
The safety of our passengers and crews are our top priority. U.S. Airways parent company tells CNN tonight in a new statement. “We are aware of the publish report alleging an incident was one of our express jets and we are investigating.
There have been close calls before. The FBI is still investigating a drone that came within 200 feet of an Alitalia flight in New York earlier this year.
PILOT: We saw a drone, a drone aircraft.
MARSH: The pilot in that incident can be heard telling air traffic control. And this Monday a small drone was found after apparently hitting this building in St. Louis.
In the next five years, the FAA estimates as many as 7500 drones could be flying in the U.S. airspace at any given time. Now, the agency has been working on a plan to safely integrate drones into the airspace so that you don`t have accidents with passenger aircrafts. Now, it is illegal for commercial use, although there are some exceptions. As for hobbies, the FAA only allows recreational drones to fly up to 400 feet.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: Time for the Shoutout. What`s the second most populated country in the world? If you think you know it, shout it out. Is it China, India, Russia or the United States? You`ve got three seconds, go!
India is home to more than 1.2 billion people and second only to China and population. That`s your answer and that`s your Shoutout.
AZUZ: Because of that huge population and the fact that it`s a federal republic like the U.S., India is often called the world`s largest democracy. India`s population is also young. Its median age is 27 years old. In China and the U.S. that age is closer to 37.
It`s no wonder why so many Indians who are close to the voting age of 18 are realizing they have political power. This is something that country`s politicians are noticing, too.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: I`m Redeema Sharma. I`m a student.
UNIDENTIFIFED MALE: I`m (INAUDIBLE) Jeswal (ph). I`m a fruit seller.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: My name is Ria Choppra, I work at a fashion magazine.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: And I want .
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: I want .
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: And I want .
MALLIKA KAPUR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: All three are first time voters. Given that India`s youth makes up half of its billion plus population. How India`s young vote will determine the country`s future?
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: We are obviously, very obviously really frustrated with current political scenario in our country.
KAPUR: The only government these youngsters have really known is the current Congress party led one. In power, for the last ten years. In that time, prices have risen sharply, says Mukeish (ph).
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translation): Just look at the price of Petrol, he says. It`s doubled, it`s a huge problem.
KAPUR: Disillusioned, he says he is going to vote for a different party. One that will fight inflation.
Even Congress has acknowledge the problem. It`s Election Manifesto says the party will take firm action to “control inflation in the difficult global economic scenario.
For Radima, though, economics takes a back seat.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: The kind of (INAUDIBLE), the kind of gender disparity. You know, general lack of empathy and sympathy, towards, you know, the situation that we are currently in as a country and community is extremely bad.
KAPUR: A powerful tool in the hands, the Internet. A quick and easy way to share information.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: Instead of calling five people now I can share it with 1000 people on my Facebook friend list.
UNIDENTIFIFED MALE: Hallo.
KAPUR: And politicians are listening. For the first time, they are connecting with the youth online.
But the young will also have to do their bet (ph).
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: And because I believe in democracy.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: They must go out and vote.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: I do not have the right to complain and be angry or be upset if I don`t cast the vote.
Taking part is what will make this generation different. Mallika Kapur, CNN, Mumbai.
AZUZ: Today`s “Roll Call” bridges the continental, if not contiguous United States. What? Here is why. Alaska. Its South Anchorage High School. It`s great to have the Wolverines of Anchorage watching from the last frontier.
Jumping South East. It`s the panthers who are up next. They are online at Eagle Point Middle School in Eagle Point, Oregon. From the northwest to the southwest, we are wrapping up our role in New Mexico. The Portales High School Rams of Portales are on CNN STUDENT NEWS.
The 2014 NFL draft wrapped up this weekend. Some interesting storylines about the latest college football players to go pro. First, the first overall pick – Jadeveon Clowney. The Houston Texans shows the defensive end from South Carolina. Clowney`s contract is worth $22 million, and when he heard the news, he turned and hugged his mom, a woman he says, sacrificed so much for him.
Next, Johnny Manziel, nickname Johnny Football. Quarterback of Texas A&M. He was also chosen in the first round, but as the 22 pick, it was later than many expected.
The Cleveland Brown sold thousands of season tickets right after they chose Manziel.
And we reported on Michael Sam before. A defensive end from the University of Missouri, also the first openly gay player in the draft. The St. Louis Rams made history when they selected Sam. He was the seventh round pick, number 249 out of 256 players in all. Part of the reason he went so late was his lackluster performance at the NFL combine earlier this year. It`s a test of speed, skill and strength.
I hope your mom enjoyed her Mother`s Day yesterday. According to the National Retail Federation, two thirds of people who celebrate in the U.S. buy their mothers flowers. What`s interesting is, they buy them, not pick them somewhere nearby. Those folks are in the minority. Many of us likely got mom plants that traveled over land and sea.
FAREED ZAKARIA, CNN ANCHOR: Let`s imagine the world`s flower trade as a bouquet of 100 roses. 60 of those stems would have been processed through one country, the Netherlands, and most of those have traveled through here, the world`s largest flower auction, FloraHolland Aalsmeer, often called the Wall Street of flowers. Here a sea of flowers of 20,000 varieties cover the floors of one of the largest buildings in the world by floor space, roughly as large as 200 football fields of flowers. The flowers, which have been flown in from all over the world, are paraded on the stage for auction, sold, then shipped back all over the world. This all has to happen very quickly, of course. The 20 million flowers and 2 million plants sold here each day have to make their way to the airport by noon to get in that beautiful bouquet for your mom the next day. Whatever you think of the environmental impact, globalization is clearly blossoming in the Netherlands.
AZUZ: If you play basketball, you`d better hope you don`t have this guy guarding you. He will reject you. When the locker room door opens, Elhaji Taco Fall has to duck to walk through it. At seven feet 5, he`s the tallest high school basketball player in the U.S. Four inches taller than Shaquille O`Neal. Shoe size is 22, and yes, he can dunk.
Elhaji moved to Florida from the West African nation of Senegal. He hopes to play in the NBA, but if that doesn`t pay out, his GAP is 4.0, he hopes to become a biochemist.
From the court to the classroom, the guys got great chemistry. He has several elements to his advantage, several key tone success, no matter what he shoots for. Whether it`s athletic or kinetic energy. A Jersey or atomic number. The competition chances are beating him on near absolute zero. They`ve got chills! I`m Carl Azuz, and this is CNN STUDENT NEWS.
CNN Student News May 13, 2014: Boko Haram Militants Destroying School Site; Referendum for More Independence from Kiev Taking Place in Ukrainian City of Donetsk; Controversial Invention of Fighting Robots; Restoring Washington Monument after Earthquake in 2011
CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: From Africa to Europe and from killer robots to an iconic obelisk, CNN STUDENT NEWS is bringing the world to your classroom. I`m Carl Azuz. First up today, a hopeful sign for the families of more than 200 kidnapped girls in Nigeria. The terrorist group that abducted them has mentioned a trade. Yesterday, Boko Haram released video that it says shows the kidnapped girls. If that`s true, this is the first time they`ve been since they were taken on April 14. Boko Haram says they`ve all converted to Islam and that they`ll only be released if the Nigerian government release members of Boko Haram that it`s holding prisoner.
Nigeria says it will consider all options for the girls release and safe return home.
Meantime, the CNN reporter visited the school where the kidnappings happened and spoke to a girl who escaped from the terrorists.
NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: This is a road few are now willing to travel.
It`s been one checkpoint after another as we have traveled north from the Nigerian capital Abuja. We`ve definitely seen evidence of the security reinforcements that the government has been talking about, but as we go farther north, as we got deeper into the Boko Haram countryside, where there`ve been striking terror into the hearts of villages, much of that presence seems to have evaporated.
Attacks for the militant Islamist group Boko Haram are constant in this part of Nigeria. But what happened in Chibok put the world on notice.
In here, in these rooms is where the girls were sleeping when armed men in what they describe as military uniforms came to their dormitory gate and told them that they come to protect them. The girls started to assemble in the yard as ordered to. They didn`t realize who the men really were until it was too late.
Over 200 girls dragged from their beds to be sold off as bounty, a message that the militant group`s edicts on female education: “Must be heeded”. But avail yourself of big men with guns to make money off terrified girls.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If it`s in Chibok, I`ll never go back again.
ELBAGIR: You never go back to school.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
ELBAGIR: Because they made you afraid.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes.
ELBAGIR: Before the militants left, they destroyed everything they could. Textbooks, the library, the laboratory, their attempt to forever shutter this school.
AZUZ: About 3,000 miles northeast of Nigeria, in the nation of Ukraine, some parts of the country are holding controversial votes. We`ve told you how Ukraine is divided. Some people, including Ukraine`s new government want closer ties with Western Europe. Some others want to secede from Ukraine and possibly join Russia. That`s what a vote indicated in Donetsk, a region of eastern Ukraine. An election official said Monday that 90 percent of voters there support secession from Ukraine. But there were no international election monitors there for Sunday`s vote. And officials from Europe and the U.S. say, it doesn`t count.
Russia annexed Crimea, another region of Ukraine after it held a similar vote in March. Russia says it`s not interested in annexing other parts of Ukraine, but that it wants Ukraine to give its Russian speaking population more power in the government.
The United Nations charter discusses preventing war, having faith in human rights, maintaining international peace and security. It says nothing about protecting people against killer robots.
But at an upcoming U.N. meeting in Geneva, Switzerland, experts do plan to talk about autonomous weapons systems. Basically, robots that can choose and attack a target without any human intervention. These don`t[ exist yet, but .
UNIDENTIFIED GIRLS: No! No!
ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN CORRESPONDENT: A futuristic danger in Hollywood films like “The Terminator” now a big enough threat to warrant a United Nations debate. Robotic Technology has already advanced to levels that wouldn`t look out of place in a sci-fi blockbuster.
These robots developed by the Pentagon can climb stairs, detect and avoid obstacles. And even correct themselves if you push them around.
Robots are getting close to being able to do the physical task that we can do and more. It`s only a matter of time before they appear on the battlefield.
Machine technology is already being used to kill.
We`ve seen that in drone strikes against the Taliban and other terrorist groups, but behind the drone technology, there is still a human being calling the shots. Giving robots the power to make those life or death decisions themselves is what the U.N. is discussing.
A computer`s ability to analyze and think is improving all the time, Google has been experimenting with neural networks, a kind of artificial brain, capable of teaching itself independently from human programmers. And that raises a scary question: will the artificial intelligences that power our robots, one day decide to push back.
Atika Shubert, CNN, London.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: Time for the Shoutout. Which of these objects is an obelisk? If you think you know it, shout it out.
Is it the space needle, Liberty bell, leaning tower of Pisa or Washington Monument?
An obelisk has four sides and ends in a pyramid shape like the Washington Monument.
That`s your answer and that`s your Shoutout.
AZUZ: And it`s a tall one. When the monument honoring America`s first president was finished in 1884, it was the tallest building the world. It`s made of granite and marble, stone that doesn`t have much flex or give when the ground shakes. That`s why it`s been close to the public for three years. And yesterday was its grand reopening.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: For three years, crews have been restoring the Washington Monument to its original glory: hard work, stone by stone – that`s come to a long awaited end. Now that the 555 foot obelisk reopens to the public.
BOB VOGEL, SUPERINTENDENT, NATIONAL MALL AND MEMORIAL PARKS: And we have one the most spectacular views in America, and certainly the best view in Washington D.C. and we aver very excited to allow visitors back up at this level.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It`s been closed since August 23 2011 when a 5.8 magnitude earthquake shook the marble and granite, sending debris flying.
SGT. DAVID SCHLOSSER, U.S. PARK POLICE: We had some initial reports that there may have been some (INAUDIBLE) or even some stones that become loose.
The white crack pictured in this National Park Service video caused rain to poor inside, and down the stairs.
VOGEL: We had to do a careful analysis of over 20,000 stones at the monument before we could figure it out exactly what we needed to do to repair it.
In the first couple of weeks we have people who actually repelling down. They were doing photo documentation and analysis of each of these stones to determine the significance of the damage.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The worst damage was at the top.
VOGEL: Many people who have lived here for many years suddenly have a renewed interest in going to the top of the Washington Monument. So, we are very excited. That`s what we are here four as to have this site open to the public.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The $15 million restoration project for a while lit up Washington skyline. Until the most soaring site in the nation`s capital was back to the way it should be.
Erin McPike, CNN, Washington.
AZUZ: Rolling across the American South and the CNN STUDENT NEWS “Roll Call” from the southwestern state of Arizona, the Bulldogs are on line. We found them at Bogle Junior High School in Chandler. Good to see you all in the Grand Canyon state. Now, to Betsy Layne, Kentucky. The bobcats are making roll in the blue grass state. Thank you for watching at Betsy Lane High School.
And in the pitch state, the Jonesboro High School cardinals are here. It`s great to be part of your day in Jonesboro, Georgia.
At Florida Atlantic University there`s a program that allows talented high school students to earn college credit for some of their courses. Grace Bush saw an opportunity and went for it. She earned her bachelors just before she got her high school diploma, so while her friends are graduating high school, she`s practically graduated college.
She started the program at age 13 and worked through summers. Her parents encouraged her, in part because they have nine children and can`t afford college tuition for all of them. Grace got a degree in criminal justice with the GPA OF 3.8. Next steps – she wants masters` degree, a law degree and eventually a job as Chief Justice of the United States.
Crayfish, crawfish, crawdads (ph), mud bugs. Call them whatever you want because there were plenty to go around at what`s known as the world`s largest crawfish ball. It happened Saturday in New Orleans – where else? It was part of a fund-raiser, bringing in $40,000 to help the hungry. It was also a restaurant celebration of is 125 anniversary. They boiled up 27,000 pounds of crustaceans and they sold out. You could call that cray – cray – you could call that the craw daddy of fundraisers. Even if you don`t like feeding on bottom feeders. If the thought makes your skin crawl, when folks cook up an idea to help others, there`s just nothing crawfishy about it. I`m Crawl Azuz for CNN STUDENT NEWS.
CNN Student News May 14, 2014: Cease-fire Bringing Temporary Relief to Homs Civilians in Syria; Kyle White`s Heroic Actions under Fire Earn Him Medal of Honor; Christopher Columbus`s Ship Santa Maria Wreckage found in Haiti; Wildfire Devastating Texas
CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Hi. I`m Carl Azuz. For CNN STUDENT NEWS. It`s good to see you this Wednesday May 14. We are starting today with a report from the Middle Eastern nation of Syria. It`s a country that`s been divided, and in many places destroyed by civil war.
FRED PLEITGEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That started three years ago, and the Syrian observatory for human rights says at least 150,000 people have been killed, and that roughly a third of those people are civilians. A week ago, a truce took effect in the city of Homs. This is a strategically important city for both the Syrian government and the rebels fighting it. It`s an ancient city, and it`s a city that`s been under siege in the conflict.
The cease-fire is showing signs of falling apart, but it brought at least temporary relief to people who`d seen war at their doorstep.
The massive destruction and an old town of Homs shows the whole tragedy of Syria Civil War. But in the middle of this sad scene some are (INAUDIBLE). Zeina Akhras is one of only a handful of civilians who lived through the entire 2.5 years siege of old Hams.
“I don`t even want to think about it”, she says. The last three months were the toughest because we could only eat grass and leaves all the time.
The Syrian Army sealed off Homs after it fell into rebel hands, supplies of food and medicine quickly depleted.
Zeina`s brother Aiman was trapped with her the whole time. He tried to find food and gather firewood for the little stove in their apartment.
“I took wood this size and bigger” he says. It`s some of the wood rebels broke out of Homs to burn. I only use leftovers.
When virtually all their food had run out, they were forced to eat leaves. Aiman says of all places, he found the best ones in a graveyard. He asks me to try them.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Good?
ZEINA AKHRAS (speaking Arabic)
PLEITGEN (on camera): It`s OK. Everyday?
PLEITGEN (voice over): For breakfast, lunch and dinner, he says. And each meal was just a tiny bowlful.
What we always have to keep in mind is that the people who are stranded here were not only starving. They were also subject to intense shelling pretty much round the clock that laid waste to large parts of the historic town of Homs.
With its use of heavy weapons and the siege of this and other districts in Homs, the Assad regime has been accused of using starvation as a weapon in the civil war.
Zeina and Aiman said their apartment was raided by opposition fighters dozens of times, and rebels took most of their few remaining supplies.
AIMAN (speaking Arabic)
PLEITGEN (on camera): They took everything, he says. Marmalade, five canisters of olive oil, honey, tea – they didn`t leave anything.
After more than two years of hunger, Zeina is week. She weighs only 34 kilos, 68 pounds.
These photos from a family celebration show her before the conflict began.
AZUZ: Next story takes us to the U.S. state of Texas, a wildfire started burning in a panhandle on Sunday, and strong winds whipped it across the landscape. As of last night, the Texas A&M forest service said the fire was about 65 percent contained, but if it had still destroyed more than 90 homes, dozens of other buildings and forced the evacuations of thousands of people.
Wildfires are relatively common in the U.S. On average, the country sees more than 100,000 of them a year. They burned between 4 and 5 million acres, that`s like millions of football fields. And the vast majority of these fires, about 90 percent are caused by people, though officials don`t know yet what caused the one in Texas.
UNIDENTIFIFED FEMALE: Time for the Shoutout. Under what flag did the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria sail? If you think you know it, shout it out! Was it the flag of Italy, Spain, Portugal or Britain? You`ve got three seconds, go!
Because Spanish rulers financed Christopher Columbus` Transatlantic voyages, his ships sailed under the Spanish flag. That`s your answer and that`s your shoutout.
AZUZ: The Santa Maria was Christopher Columbus` flagship, when he first sailed the ocean blue, it never made it back to Spain, the Santa Maria was wrecked when it ran aground near Haiti on Christmas Day, 1492. So, where`s the wreckage? He says at that time. After doing some research. Barry Clifford, a modern day explorer, thinks he has found it. Lying in a reef about ten to 15 feet deep, off Haiti`s coast. But this isn`t a newly discovered shipwreck. Clifford and his team dove the site back in 2003. He says at that time, archeologists misidentified a cannon that was part of the wreckage. After doing some research, Clifford realized that this wreck could be the big one.
There`s a problem, though. The cannon has been looted since Clifford explored it. So, in order to determine if this is the Santa Maria archeologists will have to excavate the wreckage. Clifford`s planning a trip back to Haiti to figure out the next steps.
Before Kyle White received the Medal of Honor he said that from what he`d heard, it was heavy, that when it`s put around your neck, you feel the weight of it, what it all costs.
The former U.S. Army Sergeant found out what that`s like yesterday. It was for his heroism in November of 2007, when he was 20 years old, and a long way from his home in Seattle, Washington.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The platoon radio telephone operator says he`s changed since then. He`s left the Army.
But his service earned him the nation`s highest military decoration.
For radio telephone operator Kyle White and a soldiers of Chosen Company Second Battalion Airborne, the mission to meet with village elders in the mountains of north eastern Afghanistan had red flags from the very start. They suspected the villagers are (Inaudible) with the enemy.
FMR. SGT. KYLE WHITE, U.S. ARMY: A lot of us – we had that, you know, just – you know, I got feeling right before we left that it`s just something – something wasn`t right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: More alarms, it seemed like every male of fighting age and above was at the meeting, radio communications were coming in a language the interpreter didn`t understand. And then when they left the shooting started.
WHITE: One, and then, two shots. And then the echo and then just fully automatic fire and rocket propelled grenades coming in from – it seemed like everywhere.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: White was knocked unconscious. When he woke up, ten of the 14 Americans in his unit were nowhere to be found. Among those White could see was Marine Sergeant Philip Bocks, by now severely wounded.
White repeatedly braved enemy fire to drag Bocks to safety. Bocks later died, along with five other Americans.
The medal of honor is being awarded to White for what he did to try to save his comrades and get them out of there, though he says he never expected to make it home himself.
WHITE: I told myself from the beginning of that ambush that I was going to be killed. You know, just the amount of fire, I just – I`m not going to make it through this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But he did, along with Specialist Kain Schilling of Iowa who says he owes his life to White.
FMR. SPC. KAIN SCHILLING, U.S. ARMY: I was probably more excited for it than he was, just because it shows – you know, he absolutely saved my life that day and many others.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Those who survived wear wristbands bearing the names of those who did not. White sees the Medal of Honor as a tribute to them.
WHITE: To me, the heroes are those who lost their lives that day. Because they gave their lives in defense of all of us, and all of America.
AZUZ: On the Potomac River across from Washington, D.C., Arlington National Cemetery is the resting place of more than 400,000 people. It was 150 years ago. That Arlington was first used as a military burial ground.
An Army Private, who enlisted to fight in the Civil War was laid to rest there on May 13, 1864. Arlington was established as a national cemetery a month later. And today, it`s where you`ll find the graves of presidents, astronauts, war heroes, including men and women who`ve served in every branch of the U.S. military.
Arlington is still active. There are thousands of funerals held there every year. And there are plans to expand the site to ensure its availability for decades to come.
It`s World Wide Wednesday on CNN`S STUDENT NEWS “Roll Call.” What does that mean? It means we are going to places like Kaisersrlautern, Germany. We are happy to be part of your day at Kaisersrlautern Middle School.
Next, we are traveling across the Atlantic to Canada. At the Saint (INAUDIBLE) School. Thank you for watching in Calgary, Alberta.
And now across the Pacific to Japan. At the Muroran Institute of Technology, we are glad you are watching in Muroran, Hokkaido.
Edna Lamping never made it to her high school prom. Her family was strict and didn`t let her go. But more than 70 years later, she and her husband were the VIPs at this year`s prom for Montura High School in Pennsylvania. Edna`s husband who`s one year older at age 92, says he had the best looking girl there and they showed everyone how to dance – or at least how they danced.
I love this season. It reminds me the proms I went to. I`m glad there are no pictures of me lying around anywhere, because that will be pretty embarrassing. Especially considering the size of my hair and the way I just hand it up for the camera. Well, that`s just so you can picture it. I went to junior and senior proms, had perfect attendance. It was a chance to step up, step out and step on my date`s feet. One thing we can promise, there are always puns a foot on CNN STUDENT NEWS. I`m Carl Azuz, hope to see you tomorrow.
CNN Student News May 15, 2014: Devastating Mine Fire in Turkey; MERS Has Come to the United States; National September 11 Memorial Museum To Be Open in New York; Claire Gruenke Brings Her Sister to the Finish
CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: It`s time for ten minutes of commercial free current events. This is CNN STUDENT NEWS. My name is Carl Azuz. Welcome to the show, we are starting today between Europe and the Middle East in the nation of Turkey. It`s a country in mourning. During a shift change at a West Turkish mine on Tuesday, a power transformer exploded. It sparked a fire deep inside the mine. Rescuers were able to save at least 88 miners, the Turkish officials say 274 others are dead. Some people were holding out hope that dozens of miners were trapped, but still alive. Those hopes were fading last night.
Rescuers say conditions inside the mine are horrible: hot, smoky, field with carbon monoxide after the fire. Families and friends of miners have been holding a vigil outside. What happened this week in the town of Soma, is likely to become the worst mining disaster in Turkey`s history.
The MERS virus we`ve been telling you about has spread. The World Health Organization says this is not a global health emergency at this point.
But that the threat from MERS has become more serious. MERS stands for Middle East Respiratory Syndrome. The first cases were in Saudi Arabia, and as you can see from this map, how the disease has spread, it`s reached 18 countries. Worldwide, there have been 571 confirmed cases of MERS, 171 people have died from it. There have been two cases of MERS in the U.S. One in Indiana, one in Florida. Both of them were health care workers who traveled to Saudi Arabia. The silver lining here is that MERS doesn`t spread very quickly or easily.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: MERS, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, has come to the United States. The virus was first confirmed in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and has killed about a third of the hundreds it`s infected. MERS doesn`t appear to spread easily between humans like the flu does, for example.
Risk to the general public remains low, according to the Centers for Disease, Control and Prevention. It takes close contact with the sick person, usually a health care worker or a loved one to catch the virus.
MERS is in the same family of viruses as the common cold, but the reason why authorities are so concerned is that it has a 30 percent mortality rate. MERS attacks the respiratory system, and symptoms include fever and cough and can progress to pneumonia and kidney failure.
Experts don`t know exactly where the virus came from, but it`s been linked to infected camels in Saudi Arabia and other countries in the Middle East. There`s no vaccine or medicine to prevent or cure MERS.
To help protect yourself, the CDC advises you to wash your hands, don`t touch your eyes, nose or mouth with unclean hands and avoid close contact with sick people.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Is this legit?
Patriot Day is marked every year in September. True. Not to be confused with Patriot Day, which is held in April, Patriot Day is on September 11 of every year.
Patriot Day remembers the victims, the first responders, the families affected by the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States. So does the National September 11 Memorial Museum. It opens today in New York. First, for the families who were directly affected by the attacks, and later for the public? CNN`s Kate Bolduan joined Joe Daniels, the museum`s president for an emotional tour of the building.
JOE DANIELS, MUSEUM PRESIDENT: These tridents were from the North Tower, they were covered in the aftermath of the attacks. We brought them back here, and basically built the museum all around them.
KATE BOLDUAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Nearly 13 years after terrorists destroyed the Twin Towers killing almost 3,000 people – the 911 Memorial Museum is set to open. A commemoration of the day America changed forever.
(on camera): You are not whitewashing it. This is the raw, dirty material.
DANIELS: Exactly. I mean this is the steel that bore the attacks.
BOLDUAN (voice over): The museum is built almost entirely underground. Some 70 feet down. It sits in the precise footprint of the World Trade Center.
DANIELS (on camera): So, this is exactly where the South Tower started. And went up 1350 feet.
BOLDUAN: A striking display of the sheer scale of the destruction with poignant reminders of the tragedy at every turn.
(voice over): I mean this – this is unbelievable.
DANIELS: This is actually the front of this fire truck. This is the .
BOLDUAN (on camera): You wouldn`t know.
DANIELS: Wouldn`t know. And it`s completely burned out and destroyed.
BOLDUAN (voice over): Then there`s the retaining wall that remarkably held strong even when the Towers fell.
DANIELS: When the Towers came down, all that debris that was here, right in the space provided bracing for that wall. And when that debris was clear, there was a big concern that the wall would breach, it would flood Lower Manhattan.
BOLDUAN: It could have been so much worse, but this wall helped under all of that pressure.
(voice over): Visitors will also walk alongside the survivor stairs.
DANIELS: Used by hundreds of people as the buildings are crumbling, running from the dust cloud to escape to safety. And it`s for all our visitors to understand the story of survival.
BOLDUAN: And likely, one of the most emotional stops in the museum. This art installation mimics the blue sky on that fateful morning. Behind it, the still unidentified remains of 911 victims, the move met with mixed emotion from their families.
DANIELS: A still shocking statistic is that 1100 family members never got any human remains back to bury, never got to go through the ritual of laying their loved ones to rest.
It`s not a public space at all, only family members are allowed back behind the wall.
BOLDUAN: Right next door, a room dedicated to the lives of those lost.
(on camera): Adjacent to this is the reflection room, which is so important, and why we can`t show it and won`t show it, because the families get to see it first.
DANIELS: Exactly. That room isn`t – in area called “In Memoriam.” And it`s a photographic portrait of each and every one of the 2,983 victims. You see pictures, a father coaching his son`s Little League team, a wedding. You see the lives that were lost that day and not just about how they died, it`s who these people were.
BOLDUAN: Throughout the museum, chilling reminders of the day. Handmade flyers for the missing, across a merging from the wreckage – everyday items simply left behind.
DANIELS: We helped through these autographs and images to tell that story of just – ti was panic, and people were getting out as fast as they could.
BOLDUAN: And it doesn`t- it`s not just the shoes, it tells the shoes worn by this woman Linda. I mean it`s -you are telling everything about that day.
(voice over): And while the museum is vast, one small exhibit has been the biggest source of controversy. Its focus, the terrorists themselves including the film criticized for not making a clear enough distinction between Islam and al Qaeda.
(on camera): There`s been a lot of criticism, why give any time to the terrorists?
DANIELS: You know, it`s one way to look at it, is you don`t build the Holocaust Museum and that`ll be very clear that the Nazis were the ones who committed those atrocities. Al Qaeda was an extremist terrorist group that essentially bastardized that religion for their own purposes. But no one will come through this exhibit and in any way think that we are indicting an entire religion, which we in no way are.
BOLDUAN: It seems very appropriate that you end here, at the last call.
DANIELS: And it again goes right back to resiliency. You`ve seen those messages of hope and remembrance on this very tall column that`s still standing strong.
AZUZ: We are moving from Miami to Maple in this Thursday`s call of the roll. In the Orange State we are calling on G. Holmes Braddock`s senior high school. Good to see the bulldogs, watching in Miami, Florida.
We`ll make a stop in Sandy Springs, Georgia. That`s the home of the Panthers and it`s where we found Ridgeview Charter School. And the Northwestern High School Tigers are on the roll. Hello to everyone in Maple, Wisconsin.
800 meters equals about 2600 feet. It`s almost half a mile. The world record track time for running 800 meters is one minute 40.91 seconds. And 13-year old tweens in Illinois track meet didn`t come close. But you might not have known that from the roar of the crowd.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: 13-year old Chloe and Claire Gruenke are pretty close.
CHLOE GRUENKE, INJURED DURING RACE: And that was – I can`t believe you just did that.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The West-Clin Middle School twins spent the weekend competing at the Southern Illinois State Track Meet. They were both running the 800 when all of a sudden.
CHLOE GRUENKE: And I felt something like pull and pop in my thigh, and then around the first curve and second lap it like just hurt too bad, so I couldn`t go anymore, and then I felt to the ground.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Then something really cool happened.
CHLOE GRUENKE: And Claire like came up behind me, and then put me on her back and then we finished.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And they finished together. Claire carried her sister for 370 – the 400 meters left in the race. And says what she did for her sister has meaning.
CLAIRE GRUENKE: Love and sportsmanship, like even if you do help somebody, even if you are losing, it`s so worth it.
The energy from the crowd made me like stronger.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
AZUZ: So, it seems Claire kept the race on track and (INAUDIBLE) did the challenge. Being quick on her feet when something bad went afoot helped her carry the day, she put on a good shoe and in the end they both came out twinners.
I`m Carl Azuz and we`ll be on our mark and set to go tomorrow.
CNN Student News May 16, 2014: Wildfires in California; Keeping Memories of 911; Russian-American Space Partnership Can Be Coming to An End; Channel Connecting America and Russia
CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: Fridays are awesome. Thank you for spending ten minutes of with CNN STUDENT NEWS. I`m Carl Azuz. Think about the ground covered by a football field. Now, multiply that by 10,000 and you have an idea of who much land has burned in California, San Diego County. In the city of San Marcos, in southwestern California, one wildfire was nearly uncontrollable. Hundreds of people had to be evacuated, schools were shut down, a college graduation ceremony was canceled. Firefighters are working around the clock doing everything they can to save homes and businesses. One of the worst droughts the state has ever seen, plus hot temperatures and high winds, have all combined for what`s being called “tinderbox conditions.
In California`s wildfire season, it`s just beginning.
12,500 objects, 580 hours of film and video. Rescuers, families of victims and survivors of the September 11 terrorist attacks had access to all of that yesterday, at a dedication of the National 911 Museum.
On Thursday, we showed you the tour that one of our anchors got in advance, but it didn`t include one of the rooms in the museum. Families of those who died had access to that first. Today, we have a moving look inside that exhibit and inside the memories of some who visited.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Line from floor to ceiling, with smiling fathers, daughters, brothers, nieces, family. And loved ones. In the same way we have photos in our own homes, these pictures are live, with the memories of the birthdays and weddings, barbecues and baseball games, of those we lost. What you will be looking at, are the pages of the chapter in our history we call September 11.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Where?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There you go.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s a good picture.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It is.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You would be so proud of your daughter. Just amazing, just like you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You know, all these faces is people.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Here you are.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is Hannah, this is you. This was a couple of weeks before 911 actually happens. It was our last family picture.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I love this one.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yeah. That`s him. And that`s you. That`s your (INAUDIBLE) that must – that`s you. You act just like him.
Manners – and everything – is just like your father. You look like him.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And you act like him.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: And sound like him.
AZUZ: A very moving piece. Next up, today is an anniversary, the 60th anniversary, the historic Supreme Court decision, Brown versus Board of education was handed down this week in 1954. It was actually five separate cases that were before the court.
They all focused on segregation, separation by races in U.S. schools. The name Brown was for Oliver Brown, a man whose daughter wasn`t allowed to attend third grade in a white elementary school in Topeka, Kansas. The chief attorney in the case was Thurgood Marshall, who`d later become the first black justice of the Supreme Court.
The verdict was unanimous: all justices agreed that in public education, the idea of separate, but equal, didn`t work. That separate educational facilities are inherently unequal. The cases started desegregation in U.S. schools.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Time for the “Shoutout.” At their closest point about how many miles separate Russia and the U.S. You know what to do. Is it 2300 miles, 1540 miles, 90 miles or 50 miles? You`ve got three seconds, go!
The Bering Strait which separates Alaska and Russia, is just over 50 miles wide at its narrowest point. That`s` your answer and that`s your shoutout.
AZUZ: China has an ambitious idea that connects itself with the U.S. By railroad. And this is where the Bering Strait comes in. The high speed railway would start in northeast China, it`ll run through the Russian region of Siberia, connect with Alaska through a tunnel under the Bering Strait and head south through Canada to reach the U.S.
The trains would travel at more than 200 miles per hour. Experts say they`d cover about 8,000 miles over two days.
China would paint to build it. But – and that`s a big one, it`s not clear if China`s railway industry has the money. It is not clear if this is needed as many travelers just fly. And Chinese engineers say the Bering Strait Tunnel would need to be 125 miles long, that`s four times longer than the tunnel under the English Channel. Engineers have never built something like that before. This project is just in the discussion phase for now.
Also, getting a lot of discussion, Russia says it`s going to quit using the International Space Station four years earlier, and that would affect the U.S.`s ability to get to it. This likely has to do with the crisis in Ukraine. The U.S. has penalized Russia economically for its stance on Ukraine`s crisis. Russia may be retaliating by ending its space station mission.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Final farewell .
JIM SCIUTTO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They were all smiles in the International Space Station this week, but could this be one of the last times that American astronauts and Russian cosmonauts joining together through space.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And the International Space Station .
SCIUTTO: Russian officials are taking the battle over Ukraine into orbit, wowing to abandon the Space Station four years earlier in 2020.
And banning Russian-made rocket engines to launch U.S military satellites. The deputy prime minister even suggested astronauts instead use a trampoline.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The final liftoff of Atlantis!
SCIUTTO: And this is no small problem, because since NASA retired the shuttle in 2011, American astronauts have no other way, up or down, than hitching rides on Russian rockets.
JIM LEWIS, CENTER FOR STRATEGIC AND INTENATIONAL STUDIES: The Russian announcement really means we need to rethink our reliance on them, because it shows we are dependent on them in ways that might have made sense ten years ago. But it doesn`t make since anymore.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (speaking Russian)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, you do the talking, Moscow.
SCIUTTO: The U.S. Russian space partnership has thrived for decades, one of the most visible symbols of daytime during the Cold War and the new peace after the fall of the Soviet Union. And it was very much a win-win. The U.S. saved billions on the shuttle, Russia made billions as a high tech taxi service.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: OK. Kak dela?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: U.S. officials express hope the Russian threat is just bluster.
SCIUTTO: It`s most likely the U.S. will depend on private space companies, such as SpaceX to develop new space vehicles to transport American astronauts to the space station. And as for Russian engines used to launch American satellites, the U.S. has stock piled engines that supply good for about two years of launches. That it`s some coverage, but many believe that NASA and Washington really need to develop a more reliable, longer term plan. Jim Sciutto, CNN, Washington.
AZUZ: When you have Highlanders, Falcons, Bucks and gazelles, all on the same place, you must be watching the CNN STUDENT NEWS roll call. The highlanders are in Somerville High School. It`s in the city of Somerville and the base state of Massachusetts. The falcons are at Nation Ford High School. It`s in the town of Ford Mill in the palmetto state of South Carolina. And the bucks and gazelles are yanked in middle school. We found then and yanked them in the Mount Rushmore state of South Dakota.
You might be first in your graduating class, you might be last. This girl is both. Charlie Gorlasky (ph) will be the only student in her school to graduate this year. It`s not because everyone else failed. It`s because her high school in Texas is new. It`s upper classmen are in the 11 grade. The first time the school will have a 12th grade, is next year. But Charlie took on work of a junior and a senior to finish a year early. And that puts her truly in a class by herself. Of course, we wish her and all of you seniors congraduations. We hope you`re commenced doing great things, and that you always stay classy. I`m Carl Azuz. CNN STUDENT NEWS. We`ll be back next week, we hope to see you then.
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