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tv   CNN Newsroom  CNN  June 18, 2013 6:00am-8:01am PDT

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today. >> thanks for joining us today. >> let's bring you carol costello. >> they were going surfing in high heels. they were surfing in other stuff, too. >> exactly. >> how you guys feeling? >> good. >> we're feeling great. >> day two. feels good. >> feels strong. feels strong. >> thanks, guys. have a great day. >> thank you. >> "newsroom" starts now. breaking this morning, your freedom is on the line and obama on the defense. >> obama is dick cheney. >> the president insisting he's not bush and cheney-like when it comes to spying on you. >> the nsa cannot listen to your telephone calls or target your e-mails. also, shock jocks.
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>> knock knock. >> we do knock knocks on thursdays. >> three atlanta radio deejays fired after mocking a former new orleans saints player with als. >> i watch the "jersey shore." >> what was the mayhem in the a.m. thinking? this morning, they're apologizing. plus, amazing rescue. >> we thought we could walk across a ridge. that's when we realized we're in trouble. >> for more than a mile in the sky, two teens plucked from a rocky ridge only a few feet wide. and florida's marco rubio sending shock waves to would-be u.s. citizens. should english be required to become an american? "newsroom" starts now.
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good morning. thanks so much for being with us. i'm carol costello. we begin with president obama hitting back at critics who charge the government is spying on american citizens. mr. obama says come on, i'm no dick cheney. the president defending his administration against charges that it abused its power and trampled on american civil liberties in the process. we begin this morning with white house correspondent brianna keilar. >> reporter: in a candid and unusually long interview with pbs's charlie rose, president obama revealed how defending the homeland weighs on him, even as he discussed his goal of helping the middle class. >> and that is the thing that i'm going to be focused on for the remainder of my presidency along with the basics like making sure nobody blows us up. >> reporter: obama stood by newly revealed nsa programs that gather vast amounts of phone and online data from millions of americans. >> should this be transparent in some way? >> it is transparent.
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that's why we set up the fisa court. >> that's the secret court that rules on warrants for surveillance. it's suggestions his administration has been heavy handed, obama bristles. >> some people say well, obama was this raving liberal before. now he's dick cheney. my concern has always been not that we shouldn't do intelligence gathering to prevent terrorism. rather, are we setting up a systems of checks and balances. >> reporter: obama discussed the bloody civil war in syria, where his administration recently said the government had crossed a red line by using chemical weapons against rebels, some the u.s. support. long overdue, said republicans like senator john mccain. >> these aren't professional fighters. the notion that there was some professional military inside of syria for us to immediately support. >> in northern ireland, obama met with russian president vladimir putin, whose government is supplying arms to syria.
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no breakthrough, though obama and putin said they will push both sides to negotiate a peace. at the g8 summit, the u.s. also announced additional humanitarian need for syrian rebels and for the countries around syria that are taking in syrian refugees. $300 million for a total of $800 million in aid. president obama with more ammo later, a fascinating house hearing that will star keith alexander alexander. he is expected to tell us how the snowden nsa leaks put all of us in danger. also testifying today, james cole, deputy attorney general. sean joyce, deputy director of the fbi. and robert litt. that hearing gets under way right around 10:30 eastern time. now on to a different
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scandal in the obama administration, the irs's targeting of conservative groups. turns out americans increasingly believe the white house was directly involved. a new cnn orc poll shows 47% of americans think white house officials ordered the irs to target those groups. that's up ten percentage points from just last month. they say boys will be boys, but two teenagers really took things to the extreme while hiking. they wound up stuck on an 8,000-foot cliff. that's 8,000-foot high up cliff. miguel marquez has more on a dramatic rescue mission. >> reporter: a rescue like none other. 8,600 feet up, two boys trapped on the rocky spine of a ridge only a few feet wide. >> as we made up there, we made decisions to get up that ended up making it so we couldn't get back. >> reporter: bad decisions. 16-year-old austin deschler and a friend will never forget, in
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gorgeous but unforgiving nature, biting off more than one can chew, all too easy. >> we thought we could walk across a ridge. when we got up there and saw the other side, it was heartbreaking. that's when we realized we're in trouble. >> reporter: serious trouble. high winds. gusts up to 30 miles an hour buffetting the helicopters. they made four passes before with the rescission of a surgeon plucking the boys to safety. >> it was the most challenging that i've ever done in the 12 years that i've been in air operations. >> reporter: the challenge, lowering harnesses the boys themselves had to put on, then safely carrying them to a landing zone miles away. >> we lowered a couple of times, but the wind would blow us out of position and we'd have to go back around and try it again. >> reporter: the harnesses must be worn correctly, otherwise it's a long fall, for a nervous father watching all of this from below, heart-stopping. >> it's my oldest son. and that doesn't come back,
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right? you don't recover from something like that. >> reporter: thankfully, only a frightening lesson learned. >> miguel marquez. my palms are sweating, miguel. i'm just looking at the pictures. so i've got to ask you, did these teenagers learn an important lesson? >> reporter: well, austin did say stick to the trail is the lesson for him. but look, if all of us faced those moments when we were kids. i did some certainly stupid things. they were darn lucky to have survived. but they lucked out. sticking to the trail. that's the lesson. >> stick to the trail. how did they alert authorities anyway? >> reporter: it looks incredibly remote there, but they were actually just a few hundred feet or yards from a lookout point where they were able to yell at people looking out over the valley. and they alerted authorities and then kicked off this whole thing. the sun was also setting during all this time to even create more drama. but chp did a pretty amazing
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job. >> amazing job. risking their own lives, by the way, to save those boys. miguel marquez, reporting live from los angeles this morning. how low can you go? turns out there's no limit. a sports talk sadly goes out of bounds, and now some shock jocks are out of work. the hosts of "mayhem in the a.m." on atlanta 790 the zone have been fired after making fun of steve gleason, a former new orleans saints player now battling lou gehrig's disease. the segment consisted of a mock interview with gleason. you see gleason there. the real steve gleason has to use a computer to be able to speak. the voice the shock jocks used is a fake robotic one. >> you listening in new orleans? >> i am. how was "jersey shore"?
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>> you cannot play anymore, right? >> no. >> knock knock. >> no. we do knock knocks on thursdays. we don't do it on mondays. we just started doing that again. we do it on thursdays. >> i may not be here on thursdays. knock knock. >> who's there? >> smother. >> smother who? >> smother me. do me a favor. >> 790 the zone put out an apology on its website. "the zone, our owners, sponsors and partners in no way endorse this kind of content. we sincerely apologize to mr. gleason, his family, and those touched by als." they have been fired and apologized continuously on social media but haven't gotten their jobs back. today is deadline day for
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chrysler to respond to the government's request for it to recall three million older suvs for potential fire hazard. allison has more. >> repter: chrysler has got until midnight to formally respond to this recall request. chrysler has made clear that two weeks ago that it's not going to comply with it. what it is expected to do today is add to its case. it's expected to submit more details about why it thinks the jeeps are safe and why the recall request is unreasonable. i should also note that when these jeopardies first came out, they did meet all safety standards. but it does say it can still go ahead and issue recalls anyway if a defect is found that makes the vehicle unreasonably unsafe. >> so i'm curious, how much would a recall actually cost chrysler? >> well, that's the interesting thing. there's this ten-year sort of guideline, it basically says that in order for there to be a
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free remedy, the vehicle can't be more than ten years old on the date the defect or noncompliance is determined, and for a lot of these vehicles, they're much older. they're from 1993 to 2002, 2004. so chrysler really wouldn't be forced to recall these vehicles and ultimately wouldn't be forced to pay for these because of that stipulation, carol. >> all right, alison kosik reporting live. for the first time in more than a decade, afghan forces are now in charge of their own country's security. the formal handover from nato-led troops took place just a few hours ago. that international force, which includes 66,000 american troops, now begins a support role. but despite the handover, violence rages. in kabul, a suicide bomber targeting a parliament member's convoy kills three people and injures more than 20 others. are afghan troops up to the
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task? >> reporter: well, there's no option for them. ready or not, they have taken center stage in the fight to defend their country. much of what the u.s. and nato have done here in afghanistan over the past 12 years is now riding on how these forces do. in a ceremony this morning, in kabul, nato officials transferring the lead role for security. two afghan forcete -- to afghan. this started in 2011 with the safe districts. the process was completed today. what this means is for the coming 18 months, u.s. and nato forces will still be here, but only in a support role, leading the charge will be afghan forces. in the ceremony today, president hamid karzai had some comments. also president was nato's secretary-general. here's what he had to say about today's milestone event. >> five years ago, afghan forces
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were a fraction of what they are today. now you have 350,000 afghan troops and police, a formidable force, and time and again, we have seen them dealing quickly and competently with complex attacks. >> no surprise that he is praising the afghan security forces. if you talk to a lot of officials here, they say they've made a lot of improvements over the past few years, but you also have the critics who say this is a poorly trained army, that there's no way that they're ready to do the job on their own, to defend this country against the taliban. but again, ready or not, they are now in charge and in the driver's seat. >> of course, important from the american perspective is it's a sign that american troops are coming home, or at least most of them by 2014. just ahead, big dig in
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michigan. did they find jimmy hoffa? i know, you've heard it all before. but this time, even the fbi is excited. ♪
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16 minutes past the hour. time to check our top stories. charles sachi, photographed putting his hands around the neck of his wife nigella lawson, has gone to police voluntarily accepting a "caution for assault." he still denies attacking or choking lawson and said although nigella made no complaint, i volunteered to go, i thought it was the alternative of hanging over us for months. the gun allegedly used by the boston bombing suspects in a police firefight was a nine millimeter. the gun came from maine and had its serial number removed making it difficult for police to trace. investigators are now hoping to find out how the brothers got the gun and who sold it to them. they're accused of smuggling people in from pakistan and then forcing them to work at convenience stores for long hours, up to 100 hours a week,
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and then they took most of their pay. now three 7-eleven managers in virginia who own franchises there are due to appear in court. ann mcnamara has more. >> reporter: the three men all face adjudge in norfolk federal court. two of them are brothers, relatives of the new york couple accused of starting the scheme. the indictment says they moved to hampton roads and with the help of the pakistan citizen operated four 7-eleven franchises. the locations at west 26th street in norfolk, london boulevard in portsmouth, and two in chesapeake, one on taylor road, the other on portsmouth boulevard. >> oh, my gosh, that's amazing, isn't it? >> reporter: at the norfolk location, customers stunned to la hear the news and workers less than happy to see us.
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>> i can't comment on anything. >> reporter: the indictment says the three men knowingly smuggled illegal aliens from pakistan to the united states and used stolen social security numbers to sign them up in the 7-eleven payroll system. on paydays, the three men allegedly took a large majority of the workers' earnings. paper work says the undocumented workers lived with the accused, in well-to-do neighborhoods. neighbors in chesapeake say he was arrested here this morning. inside, we spoke to members of his family who communicated they don't speak english. we met more family members of the accused outside federal court. did you guys know anything about this smuggling or identity theft? they kept their heads down and walked away. >> that was ann mcnamara reporting. if convicted, the three men face more than 20 years behind bars. this could be it. really. a mystery surrounding jimmy
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hoffa possibly solved. investigators are digging up a field near detroit for a second day. they believe this time they may unearth hoffa. susan candiotti is in oakland township. how's the dig going this morning, susan? >> reporter: well, they've been pretty busy. they've been resuming their digging for over an hour now, carol. the reason that there's a better expectation than maybe in years past is based on the credibility, according to our law enforcement sources, of this particular tipster. he's tony zarelli and he is very well-connected. he was in prison when jimmy hoffa disappeared. he says when he got out, he talked with one of his buddies who told him what really happened to hoffa, that he was allegedly buried back here, knocked out cold with a shovel and then buried alive under a concrete slab on this property. could this be jimmy hoffa's grave? the fbi once again digging for
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answers, uprooting waist-high grass and weeds on private property in suburban detroit. >> why do we care? i don't know. we do. >> reporter: this time the tip is more credible than most. it comes from tony zarilli, a retired mob boss who himself did time. sources say his dad used to run the show in the motor city. >> he would have known, if anybody would have known, exactly what happened to mr. hoffa. >> reporter: when he got out of prison in 2008, tony jackaloni told him about hoffa's fate. after he was lured to a restaurant, he was taken to this property, killed and buried. >> what happened to hoffa was very simple. he got picked up over there, he was buried where i say he's buried. >> reporter: the search warrant sealed, but sources tell cnn it's several pages long and based on "credible information."
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>> if it didn't rise to that level, we certainly wouldn't be out here because a judge has to move forward on that. >> reporter: other searches were duds. last year, soil samples were taken from beneath a shed outside detroit, but searches went nowhere. in 2006, agents checked out a horse farm. in 2004, they tested floorboards for blood and no hoffa. that reportedly cost the fbi $225,000 to excavate a horse farm. compared to last year, cnn learned local police only paid $45 to replace a broken padlock. zerilli's motive is simple, he's writing a book and needs the money. >> if they find the remains, then i'm in a position to make myself a few dollars. >> reporter: law enforcement sources tell us that zerilli has declined to take a polly graygp. he's not obligated to do so.
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if jimmy hoffa really is buried back there, he stands to make a lot of money from a book potentially, but if it doesn't pan out, carol, i don't think he's going to get much out of this. >> so it looks from the pictures like this is a pretty big field. is there just a contained area where the fbi is searching? >> yeah, years ago, there was a house on this property and that allegedly is where he was killed or in that vicinity. and there was also a barn. so those don't exist anymore. but what they did was they removed the concrete -- two concrete slabs, according to a couple of law enforcement sources, and they've been digging below that. it's unclear whether that slab was a foundation for the barn at one time, we're told, or what it was. but they have a lot of time to spend. they've got some forensic anthropologists back there from michigan state university standing by to test any soil
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samples. >> okay, we'll continue to follow it. i'm sure you'll be in michigan for the duration. thanks so much. still ahead, terror in the sky. >> i'm dead! i'm dead! i'm dead! >> a passenger screams "i'm dead" 23 consecutive times. he's taken down by passengers. we'll tell you what happens now. what's the impact of obamacare? the truth is, americans are already seeing the benefits.
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she's seeing more seniors for free wellness visits. he received a $150 rebate from his health insurance company. and next year, she can expand her small business, thanks to tax credits that cover up to half of her workers' health insurance. better coverage and lower costs. that's what obamacare means for them. get all the facts at: man: how did i get here? dumb luck? or good decisions? ones i've made. ones we've all made. about marriage. children. money. about tomorrow. here's to good decisions. who matters most to you says the most about you. at massmutual we're owned by our policyowners, and they matter most to us. ready to plan for your family's future? we'll help you get there.
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so imagine you're on a plane when a passenger stands up and starts screaming "i'm dead" 23 times in a row. it happened on a flight from hong kong to newark. the man seen in a passenger's cell phone video simply got up and started screaming that he'd been poisoned and he'd soon be dead. he also claimed he had the names of people at the cia. renee marsh joins me live from washington. i guess passengers took matters into their own hands, right? >> reporter: they certainly did. i can tell you this morning, the fbi tells us that no charges have been filed against this man who really created quite a
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ruckus mid-flight. passengers jumped in and reported part of the drama onboard, too. take a listen. >> i'm dead! i'm dead! >> reporter: dramatic cell phone audio captures a man screaming after he claims he was poisoned onboard united flight 116 from hong kong to newark, new jersey. stunned passengers forced to step in. >> i got up along with a few other passengers and at one point he reached up for something in his pocket in his jacket, and that's when about three or four of us basically tackled him to the ground. >> reporter: jacque roizen was one of the passengers who held the man down while flight attendants employed plastic cuffs to restrain him. the unruly passenger was described as paranoid and claimed to have information about nsa leaker edward snowden. >> he said he worked for the u.s. embassy in abu dhabi and he
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was being detained by the cia and being transferred and his life was in danger. he repeated that over and over and over again. >> reporter: this mid flight drama is just the latest in a string of mid air scares. a man aboard a frontier airlines flight from knoxville to denver claimed he had a bomb in his bag. no bomb found, the man taken into custody. and a passenger onboard an egypt air flight from cairo to new york's jfk airport found a note inside the bathroom saying "i'll set this plane on fire." the good news in this particular incident, the plane landed safely and the passengers were deplaned at the gate. about the claim that he worked for the embassy in abu dhabi, we have reached out to the state department after that claim. we have yet to hear back from them. >> well, let's hope that one's not true. rene marsh, thanks so much. stories we're watching right now in the newsroom at just
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about 30 minutes past the hour. stocks expected to open higher today, but all eyes are on the federal reserve. ben bernanke with a news conference tomorrow. we'll keep you posted. in florida, governor rick scott has signed a bill that blocks cities and counties from forcing employees to take sick days. supporters say the law will mean consistency for businesses across the state. road trip for a 50-foot wide, 50-ton magnet. here's animation, the 3,200 mile ride includes the east coast down to florida. we'll be right back. ♪ ♪
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your next trip is calling you. saying, "dan, schedule a 5 o'clock meeting at a hilton garden inn." or "dan"... hey, dad. ..."explore your family tree at a homewood suites." [ family ] hi, dan. or "put your feet in the sand at a waldorf astoria." never stop vacationing, dan. book during the great getaway for great rates at our ten top hotel brands. travel is calling you to the senate will debate immigration reform today. it likely won't be pretty. but then again, nothing is easy when it comes to immigration
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reform. republicans are adding amendments like english-only required. senator marco rubio is proposing an amendment that will require all immigrants to fluently read, write, and speak english before earning a green card. in other words, if you can't speak english, you can't legally work in the united states. in a statement, rubio says in part, "i think learning english is not just important for assimilation, it's important for economic success." and that has caused a firestorm. kathy bird is with the florida immigrant coalition. good morning, kathy. >> good morning, carol. >> kathy, right now, immigrants are just required to take a language course to work here. as a result, many immigrants never really learn english proficiently. some americans say that's not okay. why should someone work here who can't speak the language? >> yes, carol, thank you so much for allowing us to be on the show today. the reality is that speaking
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english is already a requirement in order to become a citizen. it's always been that way. and that's the way that it should be. you know, requiring for someone to speak english in order for them to legalize just makes the path to citizenship so much harder. this really comes down to -- it's not about english. it's about solving the problem with 11 million people that are currently living in our country that want to become americans. that want to be part of our country. and the only way for them to be able to integrate, to learn english and to be part of our communities is to offer a path to legalization. senator rubio's proposal could keep millions of people out. we don't understand. you know, his own parents migrated to this country from cuba, were able to legalize, learn english, become u.s. citizens, and now they have a son who's a u.s. senator. why would he want to keep people
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out? we don't understand where this is coming from. >> i think he's trying to please conservatives, frankly, and from what i understand, when you become a citizen, you have to prove you're taking courses in english, but you don't have the prove you can speak english, write english, read english, etc. >> no, as a matter of fact, in order to become a u.s. citizen, you do need to show english p proficiency. >> we're talking about 11 million people that are already here that are part of our communities. they need to be able to legalize. to be able to register for english courses. to be able to drive their car to their english classes. this is an unnecessary burden. the current bill, as it is, is already a difficult path to citizenship. it's a 13-year path. it's expensive.
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there's many, many barriers as it is. we don't understand why. poll after poll after poll shows that american voters want to see this issue resolved this year. this is not going to resolve the issue. this is going to keep millions of people out. >> i think some americans point to certain communities within the state of florida, for example, where mostly spanish is spoken, and that bothers some americans. so perhaps this is what senator rubio was addressing. so this bill will pass. >> but the reality is if there's anything that our economic crisis has shown us is that we need to be able to connect and communicate with other emerging economies. this type of english-only thinking is what's going to keep our country backwards. it is a plus to be bilingual. i'm bilingual. my mother came to this country and she didn't speak english when she got here. she was able to become legalized, learn english and become a citizen. and now she's a business owner.
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i wouldn't be sitting here today if my mother hasn't been given the opportunity. and we're just asking for the same opportunity for everybody else. >> all right, kathy bird, thank you so much for joining us this morning. >> thank you so much, carol. >> you're welcome. up next in the "newsroom" -- >> i have to believe that you were sent here for a reason. you owe it to yourself to find out what that reason is. >> the man of steel, souperman,a jesus figure? we'll talk about that next. [ female announcer ] last day, deb.
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from my world, it means hope. >> here, it's an s. how about super. >> superman. the latest adaptation of the superman franfranchise, "man of steel" breaking $100 million for its opening weekend. cereal boxes, even burgers, maybe we'll see even a superman/jesus figure. who knows? a christian pr group is drawing on a higher power to sell the
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movie -- churches. here's cnn's erin mcpike. >> reporter: "man of steel" got a surprising boost from the pulpit. warner brothers partnered with a christian public relations firm to get pastors across the country to advanced screenings of the film. >> he sent you here for a reason. >> reporter: the marketers have also prepared an entire sermon titled "jesus: the original superhero" complete with clues from film all aimed at how superman could be an allegory for jesus. >> an ideal to strive towards. >> you can actually see exactly what some people are projecting. >> reporter: pastor quentin scott from shiloh christian community church in baltimore attended one of the screenings. >> there was an actual push to say hey, we're actually putting
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out something. >> reporter: did you take it seriously at first? >> truthfully, no. when i sat and actually looked at the movie, and started to see how it was the story of christ and the love of god was weaved into the story, i was very excited. >> what's the s stand for? >> it's not an s. from my world, it's hope. >> well, here it's an s. >> reporter: all of this may sound strange, but hollywood has long known that churches can make movie miracles occur. not just with overtly religious movies like "the passion of the christ," but also with general family-oriented fare. the formula, get pastors talking and congregations start walking right into the box office. >> you just have to decide what kind of man you want to grow up to be, clark. >> i think it's a very good thing that hollywood is paying attention to the church as a marketplace. where it gets sticky is when
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they try to manipulate the market and where it gets sticky is when the churches try to manipulate hollywood. so both of those become problematic. i think in this case, you've got a good match. >> here we have a message about superman. >> reporter: are you concerned that this studio was using you and religious groups to sell the movie? >> they're using us, but in fact, we're using them. if you give me another opportunity to talk to someone about jesus christ and i can do it because of your movie, that's a win for me. because it is about spreading the gospel. >> reporter: lots of other groups have seen connections as well, like jews. of course, superman is seen by jewish by some and the original writers are jewish, too. be sure to also add that warner brothers studios, like cnn, is owned by time warner as well.
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erin mcpike, cnn, washington. >> not every pastor in america is comfortable with superman as a jesus figure. p.j. is at dublin baptist church near columbus, ohio. >> that's right. >> you have your doubts. you said "any pastor who thinks using man of steel ministry resources as a good sunday morning strategy must have no concept of how high the stakes are, or very little confidence in the power of god's word and got's spirit." still, if a movie can persuade a kid to go to church, where's the harm? >> yeah. well, i think that's a great question, and thanks for having me on. you know, it's really about what is the goal here. what do pastors really want. and is it going to be about the bible and christ, who in and of himself is a very compelling figure. in fact, the most compelling figure of all time. or is it going to be about something just to draw people
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into the pulpit? if we want to entertain our congregants, then why not put an xbox in every row too? it's really about what's the heart of the message. th that's kind of what i'm getting at here. >> the parallels are just kind of interesting. this is just what i'm getting from certain people online who like this idea. i mean, superman is born on another planet, kryptonite, we know that. but he was sent to save his species. at the age of 33, he sacrifices himself for humanity. it sounds an awful lot like jesus. i suppose you could say here are the parallels. but there's a spiritual superman and his name is jesus? >> sure. well, and carol, like any other good allegory, it kind of runs its course after a little while.
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i've seen the movie. it's very entertaining. but it's a lot of hype for a movie that's really not that great. it's not as compelling as the real story, too. so you talk about parallels, right? and parallels, sure, there's some overtones, but superman comes from another planet to save people from who? from criminals. from folks who are out to destroy them, get them. but jesus comes to do something completely different. he actually comes to do exactly the opposite of what was expected of him. when he came, people thought he was going to be sort of a political military hero to save folks. but jesus came to do -- and this is the gospel. the gospel is that jesus came to serve us from ourselves, from our since and from the wrath of god that was on us, so it's a little bit different, and really where the parallels break down is at the crucial point in the gospel, which is that when people come to church, you know, they're there to figure out what it is that jesus has done, and
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it's not just to save them from oppressive outside political rulers, but it's to save them from their own selves. >> i take it you won't be showing the superman movie in your sunday school classes. >> well, the word of god is the most compelling narrative ever written and it's the real true power that changes and saves lives, really no reason to go to a secondary material. >> all right. thank you so much for being here. we appreciate it. >> hey, thanks, carol. i appreciate it. >> you can read more about this story on cnn's belief blog at this is it.
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the nsa chief heading to capitol hill, probably already there right now. cnn has learned that keith alexandre, general keith alexandre, the head of the nsa, is coming up with examples how the agency's programs have stopped terror plots. chief congressional correspondent dana bash is here with more. so, dana, what will he say? >> reporter: well, i was told by a congressional source, informed about what keith alexandre plans to do, that he is going to talk about two specific plots, declassify information about two specific plots that allegedly
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were helped -- that were thwarted, at least in part, by these programs. keith alexandre, the nsa director, said last week dozens of terror plots were stopped at least in part by these programs. there has been an internal debate going on since then about what they can declassify and sort of the rub has been proving to the american people these programs are worth it when it comes to civil liberties, but also continuing to product sources and methods, which are so incredibly valuable. the intelligence chairman who's holding this hearing, he's been the one pushing this administration, pushing the intelligence committee again to prove to americans that these programs are actually worth it. it's worth it for the government to gather this data about their phone records, about internet use. that's why we expect at least for him to come forward with two examples. we are going to be listening carefully, carol. we've been talking to members of
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the intelligence committee, democrats like mark udall, who say they have been briefed on a lot of these terror plots, and they just don't buy it. they don't think these programs, which they say actually infringe on americans' civil liberties too much have contributed that much to thwarting these terror plots. again we'll be listens very carefully. i'm guessing there will be some pretty tough questions from some of the skeptics on this committee about whether or not these plots really were that instrumental. >> so dana, you're going to stick around, because that house hears starts in about seven minutes. chairman rogers will give an opening statement, should be quite interesting. so you're going to still around. thank you very much, dana bash. "newsroom" will be right back.
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the boston bruins shut out the chicago blackhawks last night to take a 2-1 lead in the stanley cup finals. andy scholls is here with "the bleacher report." good morning. >> you didn't have to stay up too late to catch the end of this one. the bruins made an early night of game 3. boston took the lead in the second period on a goal from daniel paielle, and the ageless one jagr, that made it 2-0. boston goes on to win by that score. these two teams are already starting to get tired of each other. they started fighting with just
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nine seconds left to go in the game. game 4 of the series is tomorrow night in boston. it's do or die for the miami heat tonight as they host game 6 of the nba finals. san antonio is one win away from their their fifth titles. miami is trying to become -- good news for miami is that they haven't lost back-to-back games since mid-january. bad news is they went won back to back games in nearly a month. it tips off tonight at 9:00 eastern. nothing quite like about getting a foul ball, efederally if you're a kid. last night during one of the college world series, carol, look how happy she is. >> i'd be happy too like that. >> it's like me with a winning power ball ticket. this poor little boy, look she's going to catch him with an elbow. he gets fruit purchled right in the face. the poor guy.
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didn't get a baseball and doesn't have anything left to drink. not a punch, but you get what i mean. max scherzer, ten wins, 10-0 breath in the american league. he's on a roll. >> thank you, andy. next hour self"cnn newsroom" after a break. and to keep our commitments. and we've made a big commitment to america. bp supports nearly 250,000 jobs here. through all of our energy operations, we invest more in the u.s. than any other place in the world. in fact, we've invested over $55 billion here in the last five years - making bp america's largest energy investor. our commitment has never been stronger.
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might not get you off your couch, but there's not a creature on earth that can resist this. good morning. thank you so much for being with me. i'm carol costello. we begin this morning in washington where the nsa controversy is taking center stage on capitol hill. right now the head of the nsa, general keith alexandre -- well, actually in a couple minutes when he's seated, he will tell the committee that the agency's programs helped top two terror plots. it's the first time he'll speak
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publicly about how the nsa conducted the programs. cast out on nsa leaker edward snowden. chief congressional correspondent dana bash joins us now. dana, you're breaking this story about what will be said in this hearing. tell us more. >> that's right. i think we should clarify, as we've been reporting, carol, keith alexandre told congress last week that he believes dozens, at least dozens of terror plots have been thwarted, at least in part, with the help of these programs. what we'll see this morning, according to a congressional source is him reveal declassified details about two of those plots that he was talking about. now, the back story here is that leaders of the intelligence committees here, including the one who's holding this hearing now, the republican major rogers, they've been pressuring the intelligence committee to say, look, we're out there on a limb, we're defending these
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programs saying they are helping americans stay safe. we need you to declassify, because americans, many simply aren't buying it. that's really the whole purpose of having this open hearing. intelligence committees don't have that many open hearings. this is open. that's the main reason why. it will be interesting to see how far alexandre goes in giving details about that alleged thwarted plot with the help of these programs. >> absolutely. glorgeia borger is here, too. it's interesting that president obama gave a very long interview to charlie rose last night where he talked about the nsa leaks and hearings, and now this hearing. so i guess the obama administration sort of set the scene yesterday with that interview? >> i think they realize at the importance right now, carol, of starting to lift the veil on how they do this. you saw yesterday the president's plumbing in
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popularity, people don't trust him as much as they used to. just last month, i think that's down by nine points. i think they're trying to demystify this to a certainly degree and explain to the american public why the president has made the decisions that he's made. now, i think there's kind of a high bar here, because i think people don't really understand just what is this so-called fisa court that you go to when you want to object tan a search warrant? is it a rubber stamp for the administration or the national security agency to go there when they want to obtain a search warrant? how real is this court? how protected are american people, you know? what does it take to get a warrant? or this they just sort through the data and then get a warrant? so i think those are questioning that the american people, particularly younger americans want answered. we'll see if that happens today.
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it's hard to call in fisa court transparent when everything is done in secret. >> it's not. >> it's not transfaron clearly. >> there are good reasons for the fact that it's secret, obviously, but there's nobody arguing the other side in a fisa court, correct? you're just going there to obtain a search warrant, most everything is granted with rare exception, so i think there's a reason for it. i think these things need to be explained to the american people. i think what you're seeing from the administration is kind of a roll-out of this, a declassification, as dana points out as being the prime example. >> ifuls want to bring in jesslynn radek. she's a former whistle-blower. thanks for being here this morning. >> thank you. >> going back to what dana was talking about, the director will tell us about twoerror plots. if you read the blog that edward snowden put on yesterday
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courtesy of "the guardian." ask them is this the only tool that was used? in other words, what does that really prove? because if foiling those terror plots just came from the use of phone records or internet communication, then okay, but he's saying it took more than that. >> well, even if there were 100 terror plots thwarted, he's making an "ends justify the means" argument, because clearly the laws are at issue, the patriot act, and fisa do not contemplate any domestic surveillance. the fisa court is a secret court, as you pointed out, last year approved clover to 2,000 and rejected none. in my back that's textbook definition of being just a
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rubber stamp. the fact that the fisa court is reviewing this and that's been yew as the imp ra matt you are imprimatur, and finally in terms of metadata, people shouldn't be rest assured by that. you can get a lot more from the metadata than you can get from the content, i i know is counterintuitive, but the case. >> back to dana bash, soon the chairman mike rogers will make this opening statement. do you think he'll look, you know -- he knows the american people are watching this hearing. will he look out and say this program is definitely needed and the general will tell us why? >> reporter: absolutely. it's kind of ironic. he says a republican, and he has been probably one of the biggest
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defenders of the democratic president's surveillance programs. he very much believes, along with his democratic counterpart, who you will also see, dutch rubersberger, to try to explain that these are absolutely necessary, they have very much helped keep americans safe, and along the lines of what you were talking about with our guests, his argument is that richard snowden is simply not a whistle-blower, he's flat-out lied about what this program can and can't do. that's likely going to be a part of the discussion now. gloria was also saying, this is very different, even if you didn't have the shackles of classified information on you, never mind the fact of the tap dance about what they can and can't say publicly. that's why this was so important, again in a bipartisan way, to have this hearing, which
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happened very fast. it was really put together late yesterday to have them come here in open session, which is really rare, and come talk. so chairman rogers is beginning his opening statement. let's listen. >> still not working? >> oh, that's got to hurt, especially with the chief sitting there, right? i'm sure they'll get together pretty soon. dana, head of the nsa, this has to be strange for him. >> 'em people who don't great say they're pretty impressed with the way he kind of
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definitely handled himself in a couple public hearings last week, trying to explain in layman's terms what these programs are and aren't about. certainly it's interesting and tough. not too long ago the nsa was known as no such agency, didn't even admit that it exists. >> ranking member and i believe it's important to hold an open hearing to provide this house and the public with an opportunity to hear directly from you how the government is using the legal authorities that congress has provided to the executive branch since the terror attacks. i would like to recognize the hard work of the men and women in the nsa, and the rest of the intelligence community, who workday in and day out to
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disrupt threats to our national security. people in the nsa have heard a constant drumbeat of a laundry list of nefarious things they are alleged to be doing to americans. all of them wrong, the misperceptions have been great, yet they keep their heads down and keep working to keep us safe. general alexandre, please convey our thanks to your team to finishing every day, despite much misinformation about the quality of their work. thanks them for continuing to work to protect america. i want to also thanks general alexandre who has been extended as national security adviser in one way or another three different times. that's a patriot. this is a very difficult job at a very difficult time in our history. for the general to accept those extensions of his military service, to protect this nation, i think again with the misinformation out there, i want
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to thank you for that. thank you for your patriotism, thank you for continuing to serve to protect the united states. again, you have that great burden of knowing lots of classified information you cannot talk publicly about. i want you to know thank you on behalf of america for yourself to your country. the committee has been extensively briefed as part of our ongoing oversight, over the 16 elements of the intelligence community and the intelligence program. in order to fully understand collection programs, most of these briefings and hearings have taken place in classified settings, nonetheless under -- in section 702 of the foreign intelligence surveillance act are legal, court approved and subject to an extensive overjigt regime. general alexandre, we look forward to hearing what you're
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able to discuss in an open forum about the data you object tan from providers under court order, especially under the business records provisions that use, and wep. in the state of law on what privacy protections americans have in these business records. one of the frustrating parts about being a member and being a challenge is sitting -- and transparent democracy as representatives of the american people. trust the government to protect the country but that trust can -- half truths and outright lies about the way the intelligence programs are being run. one of the more damaging aspects of selectively leaking incomplete information is that it paints an inaccurate picture, fosters distrust in our government. this is particularly so when
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those of us who have taken the oath to protect information that can damage the national security if released cannot publicly provide clarifies information because it remains classified. it is at times like these where our enemies -- with our enemies within become almost as damages as our enemies on the outside. its critically important to -- it's also important, however, to be able to talk about how they programs help protect us so they continue to be reauthorize and highlight the protections and oversight of which these programs operate under. you and i have talked over the last week about the need to be able to publicly elaborate on the success stories these authorities have contributed to without jeopardizing ongoing operations. i know you'll have the opportunity to talk about several of those today. i place the utmost value in
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protecting sources and methods. that's why i've been i think so diligence in making sure that anything that's disclosed comports with the need to protect sources and methods, so that again we don't make it easier for the terrorists to do harm to the united states citizens. and i respect that. i also recognize when we are forced into the position to have to publicly discuss -- due to irresponsible criminal behavior, we also have to be care balancing the need to secrecy, i think you have struck the right balances between maintaining the public's trust by providing more examples of how these authorities have helped sdrup terrorist plots and connections. i appreciate your efforts in this regard. for these authorities to continue, they must continue to be available. without them, i fare we will return to the position where we were prior to the attacks of september 11, 2001. that would be unacceptable for
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all of us. i hop this hear -- over the past several days. before recognizing general alexandre for his opening statement, i turn the floor over to the ranking member for any statement he would like to make. we're going to step away from this, the ranks member on this committee, then we'll hear from the nsa general keith alexandre. we'll be back with much more after this.
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...and we inspected his brakes for free. -free is good. -free is very good. [ male announcer ] now get 50% off brake pads and shoes at meineke. all right. we'll take you back live to capitol hill where a house hearing is under way. soon chief of the nsa will talk about how collecting phone records and other data helped stopped two terror plots against the united states. we expect general alexandre to testify before any moment. the democrat now making his opening statement, the chairman of the committee mike rogers has already spoken. let's go to our washington studios at cnn and dana bash. it was interesting mike rogers went -- he just wrapped, i'm sorry. we're going to go back to the hearing.
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>> i will tell actual it's a privilege and honor to have served as the commander of cybercommand. as you knowed we have extraordinary people doing great work too protect this country. during the past few weeks unthorrized disclosures the debate has been fueled, as you noted by incomplete -- with also contest provided, their value to our national security and that of our allies, and the protections that are in place to preserve our privacy and civil liberties. today, we will provide additional details and text on these two programs to help inform that debade. they programs were approved by
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the add a sound legal problem that wes all work together to protect or nation and civil liberties and privacy. ironically the dock show the rigorous let mess how we failed to prevent another 9/11. it's a testament of the federal bureau of investigation, and the national security agency, working with our allies and industry partners, that we have been able to connect the dots and prevent more terrorist attacks.
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think occurred in part. some of those dots were in the united states. the intelligence community was not ability to between operatives and the u.s. following the 9/11 commission, which investigated the intelligence community's failure to detect 9/11, congress passed the p.a.t.r.i.o.t. act. section 215 as it's been interpreted and implied helps the government close that gap by enabling the detection of telephone contact between terrorists overseas and operatives within the united states, as director mueller emphasized last week during thinks testimony to the judiciary committee, if we had had section 216 in place prior to 9/11, we may have known that
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the 9/11 hijacker medaar was located in san diego and communicated with a known al qaeda safe house in yemen. in recent years, these programs, together with other intelligence have protected the use u.s. from terrorist threats to club helping the potential terrorist events over 50 times since 911. we will actually bring forward to the committee tomorrow document that the interagency that is agreed on that in a classified setting giving every one of those cases for your veal rue. as the chairman noted, if we give all those outs, we give all the secrets of how we're tracking down the terrorists as a community. too much is at risk for us and for our allies.
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i believe we have aieved the security and relative safety in a way that does not compromise the civil liberties of our citizens. we would like to make three fundamental points. first these programs are critical to the intelligence community's ability to protect our nation and allieds' security. second. these programs are limited, focused, and subject to rigorous oversight. they have distinct purposes and oversight mechanisms. we have rigorous training programs for our analysts and supervisors to understand their ability. third, the disciplined, protects the privacy and sibt liberties of the american people. we will provide important
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details about each v each of those. >> thank you, general, mr. chairman. as general alexandre said, and as the chairman and ranging members said, all of us are constantly trying to balance protecting public safety with protecting people's privacy and civil liberties in this government. >> there are statutes that are passed by congress form this is not a program that's off the books hiding away. this is part of what government puts together and discusses action statutes are passed, it is oversee by three branches in our government.
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the process occurs before, during and after the processes that we're talking about today. i want to talk a bit about how that works, what the legal framework is, and what some of the protections are that are put into it first of all, what we have seen program, is -- this is the -- that also modify fisa. you've seen one order in the newspaper that's a couple pages long that just says under that order, we're allowed to acquire metadata, telephone records. that's one of two orders. it's the smallest of the two orders. the other order, which has not been published, goes into action in great detail, what we can do with that metadata, how we can access it, how we can look through it, what we can do with it once we have looked through it and what the conditions are
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that are placed on us to make sure that we protect privacy and civil liberties and at the same time protect public safety. >> first of all, it's metadata, these are phone records, just like you would get in your own phone bill. it is the number that was dialed from, the number that was dialed too, the date and length of time. that's all we get under 215. we do not get the identify of any of the parties to this phone call. we don't get any cell site or location information to whether any of these phones were located. we don't get content, we don't listen into any calls. this has debated, up for reauthorization and reauthorized
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twice. is the way it works is -- there is an application made by the fbi under the statute to the fisa course. we calls it the fisk. they asked for and receive permission from the fisk under there to get reports that are relevant to a national security investigation they must demonstrate that it will be operated -- this is what covers intelligence gathering in the federal government. it is limited to tangible objection. these are like reports. it is dwight explicitly limited to things you could get in a --
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now, it's important to know that the prosecutors issue grand jury subpoenas all the time, and do not need any involvement of a court or really anybody else to do so. until this program, we need to get permission from the court to issue this ahead of time. so there is court involvement with the issuance but the time of reports, just documents, business records, things like that, are limited to the same types of records that we were get through a grand jury subpoena. now, the orders we get last 90 days, so we have to re-up and renew these orders every 90 deals in order to do there. there are strict controls over what we can do that's the bigger thicker order that hand been published.
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there are restrictions on who can access it in this order. it is stored in repositories at nsa that can only be accessed by a limited number of people and the people who are allowed to access it have rigorous trainings about the standards. in order to access it, there needs to be a finding that there is reasonable suspicion that you can articulate, that you can put into words that the person whose phone records you want to query is involved with some sort of terrorist organizations. they are defined. it's not everyone. they are limited in the statute. so there has to be independent evidence aside from these phone records, that the person you're targeting is involved with a terrorist organization. if that person is a citizen or lawful permanent resident, you have to have something more than
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just their own speeches, their own readings. you have to have additional evidence beyond that that cases there is reasonable articulable suspicion that these people are associated with specific terrorist organizations. now, one of the things to keep in mind is under the law, the fourth amendment does not apply to these records. there is a case quite a number of years ago by the supreme court that indicated that toll records, phone reports like this are not covered by the fourth amendment that's something you showed to the phone company. once those records are accessed under so that somebody can take
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a look at it. any of the accessing that is done is done in an auditable fax. there's a trail that both the decisions and facts that support the accessing and query is documented, the amount that was done, what was done, all of that is documented and reviewed and audited on a fairly regular basis. there are also minimization procedures that are put into place, so that any of the information that is acquired. and its use is strictly limited, and all that is set out in the terms of the court order. and if any u.s. persons are involved, there are particular restrictions on how any information concerning a u.s. person can be used in this.
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now, there's extensive oversight and compliance that's done with thinks records and with this process. every now and then there may be a mistake, a wrong phone number is hit, or a person who shouldn't have been targeted gets targeted because there's a mistake in the phone record, something like that. each of those compliance incidents have to be reported to the fisa court immediately. and we reported to congress, we reported to the intelligence committees of both houses and the judiciary committees of both houses. we also provide the intelligence and judiciary committees with
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any significant interpretations that the court makes of the 215 statute. if they make a ruling that is significant or issue an order that is significant in its interpretation, we provide those as well as the applications we made for those orders to the intelligence committee and to the judiciary committee. every 30 days, we are filing with the fisk, with the court, a report that describes how we implement this program. it includes a discussion you how we're applying the standard. it talks about the number of approved queries that we made against this database, the number of instances that the query results in containing u.s. person information that was shared outside of nsa, and all of this goes to the court. at least once every 90 days, sometimes more frequently, the department of justice, the office of the director of national intelligence action and the nsa meet to assess nsa's
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compliance with all of these requirements that are contained in the court order. separately, the department of justice meets with the inspector general for the national security agency and assesses nsa's compliance on a regular basis. once again, keeping in mind all of this is done with three branches of government involved. overside and initiate with review by multiple agencies, statutes that are paced by congress, oversight by congress and then overside by the court. is the 702 statute.
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we're going to step away. this is james cole talking about the nsa program that's been called into question by, of course, the nsa leaker edward snowden. general alexandre is expected to speak soon. he's the head of the nsa. we'll come back with much more. ♪ i'm in my work van, having lunch, next minute i'm in the back of an ambulance having a heart attack. the emts gave me bayer aspirin. it helped save my life. i was in shape, fit. i did not see it coming. my doctor recommends i take bayer aspirin to help prevent another heart attack. [ male announcer ] aspirin is not appropriate for everyone so be sure to talk to your doctor before you begin an aspirin regimen. i've lived through a massive heart attack. i don't take life for granted. see your doctor and get checked out. ♪
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all right. you're looking at a live house hearing on capitol hill, and specifically you're looking at james cole. he's a deputy attorney general. he's explaining the rules under which the nsa is allowed to collect phone numbs, information from the internet and how it's overseen, but the real star of this nsa hearing, of course, is general keith alexandre, head of the nsa, he is expected to reveal and what all the fuss is about. i want to ask peter berken bergen a question.
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what the do you think? >> there's a lot of thing -- take, for instance, the no-fly list, of which there's only a dozens people. take reinforced cockpit doors that didn't exist before 9/11. take public knowledge of the fact that al qaeda was a problem, which was largely absent before 9/11. take the fact that the cia and fbi barely talked to each other beverly 9/11. take the fact that they didn't really have an intelligence capacity. there's a laundry list of things that you can say that would have prevented 9/11. there wasn't a tsa, a dhs, there wasn't a counterterrorism center, there's not a ink isle factor that would have been a
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magic bullet. there is systemic failures that allowed this to happen. >> does the nsa have to prove that this program that collects phone number and information from the internet, does it have to prove that this in larger part than the other things you mentioned can prevent terrorists? >> yeah, we'll hear from general alexandre and hopefully he'll lay out more details than specific plots that were averted. he mentioned -- as a successful interruption of a terrorist plot. he also mentioned david headley, a chicago resident, who was planning to blow up a bomb outside a danish newspaper in 2009 that had printed cartoons with the prophet muhammad that was deemed offensive. so there may be another plot, but the fact is the assertions last week that dozens of
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terrorist plos had been averted -- certainly not in the united states. i mean, we've had only had about 40 terrorist plots in total in the united states since 9/11, that you can really point too. there, but at the end of the day, this programs was sold to the american public -- or has been sold as keeping americans safety. a, it's very nice, but i think most americans welcome a debate about this program, if it's, you know, not really preventing that many terrorist attacks, or it's at least worth a discussion worth having. >> todayena, i could swear that general alexandre said this nsa program thwarted at least 50 terror attacks and he was going to provide documentation so they could look at those cases in private. >> that's exactly what he said. he said that will happen tomorrow.
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he's going to come and plenty details to members of the intelligence k34i9ee, so we won't be able to see it, to give details on just how he thinks these programs have been so instrumental, in helping keep americans safe, which is really what these members of congress want to see. obviously politically, what they really want to see and here is what we're seeing right now, which is in public. they need some backup here. they feel that they are frankly out on a limb, that they genuinely support these programs, and we're talking again it's important to underscore in a bipartisan way, a republican chairman, are saying almost exactly the same thing, they're working very hard together, to say, look, we have been overseeing this, we believe this is right, we believe this is the proper balance of civil liberties and protecting americans, but we need to put meat on the bone, for lack of a better way to say it, to give
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them tangible understanding and proof. with two specific lots that he'll say, but there's a lot more than they can say in private and we heard from the chairman, from the ranks member, from others, that they have been incredibly concerned about talking about -- >> dana, general alexandre, the head of the n system a is speaking now. the information gathered from these programs provided the u.s. government with critical leads to help prevent over 50 potential terrorist events in more than 20 countries around the world. faa 702 contributed in over 90% of these cases. at least ten of these events included homeland-based threats. the vast majority, business records, fisa reporting contributed as well. i would also point out that there's a great partnership with the department of homeland security in those with the
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domestic nexus, but the real lead for domestic defense is the federal bureau of investigation. it's been our honor and privilege to work and turn it over to shawn. >> thank you general, thank you chairman and members of the committee for the opportunity to be here today. nsa and the fbi have a unique relationship, and one that's been invaluable since 9/11. i just want to highlight a couple of the instances. in the fall of 2009, nsa using 702 authority intercepted an e-mail from a terrorist located in pakistan. that individual was talking with an individual located inside the united states, talking about perfecting a recipe for explosives. through he was identified as nazi. the fbi followed him to new york city. later we executed search
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warrants, and nypd, and found bomb-making components in backpass. zachi lair confessed to a plot to bomb the new york zazi later confessed to a plot to bomb the new york subway. one of the co-conspirators medejun. this was the first plot since 9/11 directed from pakistan. another example, utilizing 702 authority was monitors a known extremist in yemen. this individual was in contact with an individual in the united states named liquid uazani. through individuals through a fisa that the fbi applied for
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wsh able to find a nascent plotting. uazani had been providing information to the plot. the fbi disrupted and arrested these individuals. says dade headley in the u.s. citizen living in chicago, the fbi received intelligence regarding his possible involvement, responsible for the killing of over -- also through 702 coverage of an al qaeda affiliated terrorist found that headley was working on a plot to bomb a danish office that had published the cartoon depiction of the prophet muhammad. in fact headley later confessed to personally conducting surveillance of the danish newspaper office. he and his co-conspirators were convicted of this plot. lastly, the fbi had opened an
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investigation shortly after 9/11 we did not have enough information nor did we find links to terrorism, so we shortly thereafter closed the investigation. however, the nsa, using the business record fisa tipped us off that this individual had indirect contacts with a known terrorist overseas. we were able to reopen this investigation, identify additional individuals through legal process, and were able to disrupt terrorist activity. thank you. back to you, general. >> so that's four cases total that we put out publicly. what we are in the process of doing with the interagency is looking at over 50 cases that are classified and will remain classified that will be brought to both of intel committees of the senate and the house, to all of you. those 50 cases right now have been looked at by the fbi, cia and other partners within the
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community and the national counterterrorism centers validating the points, so you know what we put in there is exactly right. i believe the numbers from those cases are something that we can publicly reveal and all publicly talk about. what we are concerned, as the chairman said, is going into more detail on how we stop some of these cases action as we are concerned it would give our adversaries a way to work around those and attack us or our allies. that would be unacceptable. side of concerns that the intentional and irresponsible release of classified information about these programs will have a long and irreversible impact on our nation's security and on that of our allies. this is information. i want to information in the foreign intelligence that we're talking about is the best counterterrorism tools that we have to go after these guys. we can't lose those capables.
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one of the issues that has repeatedly come up, how do you then protect we'll now talk about that and give you some specifics about what we do and how we do it. >> thank you, general alexander. first to remind these two complementary but distinct programs are focused on foreign intelligence. that's nsa's charge. the first program executed until section 215 of the p.a.t.r.i.o.t. act authorizes the collection of metadata only. as you heard before, it's only the time and date of the call
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and the duration of that call. this authority does not thereof allow the government to listen in on anyone's telephone call, even that of a terrorist. the information acquired under the court order from the telecommunications provider does not contain the content of any communications, what you're saying during the course of the conversation, the identities of the people who are talking or any cell phone locational information. as you know, this programs was specifically developed to allow the u.s. government to detect communications between terrorists operating outside the u.s. who are themselves communicated with potential operatives within the u.s., against highlight -- the controls on the use of this data at ♪ sa are specific, rigorous, and designed to ensure focus on counterterrorism. to that end, the metadata acquired and stored may be queries only when there's a reasonable suspicion based on specific and documented facts that an identifier like a telephone number is associated with specific foreign trifl organizations. this is formally referred to as the reasonable articulatable
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standard. during all of 2012, 12 months of 2012, we at nsa approved fewer than 300 unique numbers which were then used to initiate the query of this data set. the second program authorized until section 70 it of the act, authorizes targeting only for communication of foreigners who are themselves not within the united states for foreign intelligence purposes. we're going to break away from the hearing to talk about these terror plots that were supposedly thwarted by the nsa program. peter bergen is on the phone. so general alexandre, head of the n system a said this collection of phone numbers and other information thwarted a bomb plot on the system, a bomb plot to bomb the new york stock exchange, and also prevented an attack similar to 9/11, and then they added a fourth in there, but that took place overseas and had to do with the attacks on
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mumbai. in your estimation -- just kind of give us some insight. the director of the fbi, they've been thwarted. one was -- to disclose a serious plot, because that -- another was david headry, a chicago resident who planned to attack a newspaper. we also heard about that last week, and then heard about two other plots, one without which i couldn't -- it was not at all clear, and another one, which was the plan to attack the new york stock exchange, but there seem to be -- that's three or four plots, not dozens of attacks, as we've been led to believe. so the other 50 plots, which are
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going to replain classified and discussed with the intelligence committee, we don't know what those are, but the fact is i'm fairly certain that all of those will turn out to be plots overseas or perhaps material support cases, which tend to be vague, people sending money or -- to a terrorist organization overseas, so i think the administration has made it in a bit of a box by making larger clams that the record rely reflects, which isn't to say this programs hasn't had -- but the question is how -- and so far what we have heard today isn't very much different from what we heard last week, and the american public will have to make a judgment about whether the payoff, the relatively small number of plots averted here in this country makes sense. >> interesting.
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i want to bring back in jesselyn, a former whistle-blow whistle-blower. when you heard about these plots being thwarted, what went through your mind? >> it went through my mind that you could have thwarted such plots if they did okur through much marrower surveillance means. number two, nsa has had three weeks to get their talking points together, and their terror plots have evolved from two to dozens to 50. it's it strains credulity that we're getting the right numbers here. a number of those were domestic, maybe 25%, but in terms of checks and balances, we keep getting told about and hammered, there really are none. congress, numerous members of congress say they were misinformed or not told about the secret interpretation of section 215.
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the courts haven't been able to hear cases, because the executive branch has shut them down by asserting state secrets or lack of standing. obviously nsa has not been rigorously briefing the right people. the fisa court is sort of a red herring. it sounds like this special oversight, but really last year they approved nearly 2,000 applications brought to them and denied none. it's a rubber stamp. >> i want to get to gloria borger. in light of all that's just been said, gloria, the big sell will be to the american people and whether the american people are comfortable with this nsa program, and if they're listening to this hearing, are they? >> well, you know, carol, so far when you look at all the polls from the american people, if you ask them specifically, you know, do you like the idea that this metadata is being collected, it depends on how you ask the
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question. and people may not like the idea action but in the long run, the majority of is the american people say that they get it. if it's to thwart any kind of terror attack, i think right now what we are hearing in this hearing is -- and the government going out of fits way to sort of say -- and this is what you heard from the deputy attorney general, there is a molest here, there are protections, that when we monitor these phone calls, there's no identity, no location, and no content in those calls, and that in order to get more information, we have to go to a court and essentially go through what you would go through with a grand jury to get a subpoena for more records and more information. whether this is -- whether there is a reason for the secrecy, and as congressman rogers pointed out, he said, look, right now what we're -- >> hey, gloria, the general is
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speaking again. let's listen. >> okay. the u.s. government does not unilaterally obtain information frommed servers of u.s. companies. rather, the u.s. companies are compelled to provide these reports by u.s. law, using methods that are in strict compliance with that law. further, as the deputy attorney general noted, virtually all countries have lawful intercept programs until which they compel communication providers to share data about individuals they believe represent a threat to their societies. communications providers are required to provide programs -- the united states is not unique in its capability. the u.s., however, operates its program under the strict oversight and compliance regime that was noted above with careful oversights by the courts, congress, an the administration. in practice, u.s. companies have put energy and focus and commitment into consistently
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protecting the privacy of thafr customers around the world while meeting the obligations under the laws in the countries in which they operation. our third and final point. as americans we value our privacy and our civil liberties. americans -- as americans, we also value our security and our safety. in the 12 years since the attacks on september 11th, we have lived in relative safety and security as a nation. that security is a direct result of the intelligence community's quiet efforts to better connect the dots, and learn from the mistake that permitted those attacks to okur in 9/11. in those 12 years, we had thought long and hard about oversight and compliance and how we minimize the impact on our fellow citizens' privacy. we have created and implemented, and continue to monitor a comprehensive mission compliance program inside nsa.
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this program which was developed based on industry sgloosh hello, everyone, i'm john berman. we've been monitoring these hearings. we will go back to the hearings to get more information right after the break. let's get the ball rolling. in parks across the country, families are coming together to play, stay active, and enjoy the outdoors. and for the last four summers, coca-cola has asked america to choose its favorite park through our coca-cola parks contest. winning parks can receive a grant of up to $100,000. chpart of our goal to inspireugh more than three million people to rediscover the joy of being active this summer. see the difference all of us can make... together. uh-oguess what day it is!is?? huh...anybody? julie! hey...guess what day it is?? ah come on, i know you can hear me. mike mike mike mike mike... what day is it mike? ha ha ha ha ha ha! leslie, guess what today is?
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it's hump day. whoot whoot! ronny, how happy are folks who save hundreds of dollars switching to geico? i'd say happier than a camel on wednesday. hump day!!! yay!! get happy. get geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more. hello, everyone. i'm john berman in for that ashleigh banfield today. we have a lot going on. as always, the show's main news, plus our take on daytime justice. is the fbi about to dig up jimmy hoffa. we're on the scene outside detroit, where agents are searching underneath two concrete slabs in the middle of a field. also ahead, what happens when a crazed passenger starts screaming about national security leaks and poison on an airplane? and how did a helicopter pull off this nearly impossible rescue, a how