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tv   The Situation Room  CNN  June 10, 2014 2:00pm-3:29pm PDT

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report, "o.j.'s wild ride" tonight at 9:00 p.m. on cnn. that's it for "the lead". >> i'm jake tapper. i'm turning you over to wolf blitzer in "the situation room." jake, thank you very much. happening now, school shooting, shock and terror as a gunman enters a high school, opens fire and a s.w.a.t. team rushes to protect children. we're learning new details as yet another american community is torn apart by violence. don snaald sterling says no deal. the clippers' owner is working oon $1 billion lawsuit against the nba. i'll speak live with his attorney. and a laser attack which puts many at risk. i'm wolf blitzer. you're in "the situation room."
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we're learning chilling new details about an oregon high school shooting that has left one student and the gunman dead. police now revealing just a little while ago that a teacher was also injured in the incident and that the weapon used was a rifle. our cnn justice correspondent pamela brown is working all of the details for us. she's joining us. pamela, you're learning new information about the student. tell us what you have learned. >> that's right. we're learning from law enforcement forces that the student was reportedly wearing all black, including a helmet and bulletproof vest when he opened fire on the school this morning killing one of the students. it appears that he died from a self-inflicted wound. right now investigators are trying to piece together why the gunman did this. >> shots fired in the locker room. at least one person down. >> the burst of gunfire rang out shortly after 1:00 a.m.
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with more than 2800 students. >> one person is down. >> tonight police have not released a motive and began firing a semiautomatic weapon. >> i heard gunshots and then they started yelling, telling us all to get down. >> reporter: the school went on lockdown. they were told this was not a drill. outside, police and s.w.a.t. team members descend on the campus. back inside, the gunman has killed one student and shot a popular teacher. that man is expected to survive. and we're told he is the pt teacher. they are searching the gunman's home for reasons to explain a motive, something that authorities are being looking at, whether the gunman was bullied and whether the victim was targeted or just killed at
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random. still a lot of unanswered questions here, wolf. >> what a chilling story. pamela brown, thanks. joining us via skype, a student who was in the school at the time of the shooting. carol is joining us. tell us what happened, from your perspective, when the shooting happened. where were you? >> i was in a catering class that was a few halls from the main entrance of the building which then leads to the gymnasium area which is where this apparently all took place. >> what are the school authorities, teachers and everyone tell you? >> well, it was actually -- i had heard the first bell ring but the second bell, the start of first period hadn't gone through yet but luckily right as my teacher was walking into class we heard on a loud speaker that we were going into lockdown, it wasn't a drill, we needed to get inside the classrooms with the doors locked as soon as we could. >> how did the students, kara,
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react? >> everybody was scared at first bt i don't think they really realized the situation at first. we were in lockdown for a good half an hour. >> in your classroom, is that right? >> yeah, at least. it was probably more like 45 minutes. >> and so then what happened? who came in to tell you you could leave? >>. >> there was probably four s.w.a.t. team members that came into the classroom that told us that we could leave. but before that happened -- >> were you among the students who were asked to walk out single file with your hands raised high? >> yes, i was. that's how we had to exit the building. >> how scary was all of this? >> oh, it was very scary. seeing the s.w.a.t. team members as soon as we got out of the classroom made it all so real and i couldn't believe this was happening to me. >> did you have a cell phone with you? were you able to call your parents and let them know that you were okay? >> yeah. i actually was texting my mom
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while i was in the classroom under lockdown and we couldn't have anything in our hands. we had to make sure that our palms were open, no weapons in our hands. >> are you okay now, kara? >> yeah, i am. still shooken up but i'll be okay. >> thank you for sharing your experience with our viewers. let's bring in hln's law enforcement analyst mike brooks who has been watching all of this. give us your thoughts about how this went down. it sounds like there's a lot more details. the shooter was a student. the student that was killed as well. we don't know what relationship they had. >> no and we still don't know the motive. the response by law enforcement was fairly rapid there. are two school resource officers
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assigned to reynolds high school. it's the second largest high school in the state of oregon and the police chief said at the press conference that it was the two resource officers who were the first responders to this. there was question of whether he took his own life or if law enforcement shot him but pamela brown is reporting that he did take his own life but still we don't know any connection. and also, wolf, there's apparently another weapon that was recovered the search. they found the weapon on somebody who was on the school grounds during this but they say it was not connected whatsoever. >> we have just been told that during the course of the day that for gun safety, since the sandy hook shooting in december of 2012, there have been 74 school shooting incidents in the united states. we've got a graphic we're showing our viewers where they have taken place. what does this number tell you,
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mike? >> wolf, it tells me that we live in a very violent society. some of the shootings in atlanta were student on student and some were retaliation for something else that were not dealing with someone who had a bullet-resistant vest and helmet. today sounds like this shooter went into that school looking possibly for one particular student and was basically on a mission. and wolf, keep in mind, tomorrow was supposed to be the last day of school. today was finals. tomorrow was the last day. so who was the motivation, what was going on with this shooter in the last 24 to 48 hours that brought that student to go and kill another student in the gymnasium locker room. >> of those 74 incidents, we're told, since sandy hook, most of those incidents have involved a lone gunman. so what does that say? >> that says to me, is bullying one of the reasons for this?
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it seems that a lot of these shootings have been retaliatory for some reason, or someone who thought that they were wronged by another student or by a group of students. so again, it comes down -- a lot of people talk about guns but it also comes down, as we talked about a couple of weeks ago with isla vista shootings with mental health shootings. >> hold on. president obama has just commented on this deadly shooting incident in oregon. listen to what the president just said. >> people often ask me, how has it been being president and what are my -- what am i proudest of and what are my biggest disappointments and i've got 2 1/2 years left. my biggest frustration so far is the fact that this society has
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not been willing to take some basic steps to keep guns out of the hands of people can do just unbelievable damage. we're the obama society -- we're the only developed country on earth where this happens. and it happens not once a week and it's a one-day story. there's no place else like this. our leveled of gun violence are off the charts. there is no advanced developed court on earth that would put up with this. now, we have a different tradition. we have a second amendment. we have historically respected gun rights. i respect gun rights. but the idea that, for example,
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we couldn't even get a background check bill in to make sure that if you're going to buy a weapon you have to actually go through a fairly rigorous process so we know who you are, so you can't just walk up to a store and buy a semiautomatic weapon makes no sense. >> clearly frustrated. the president said since sandy hook, 77 gun incidents have occurred and the president says basically one a week. mike brooks, give me your thought. >> it comes down to access to guns. this shooter today, did he purchase that gun? most likely not. it may have been someone else. we look at sandy hook with adam lanza who clearly had mental health issues for a number of years and the guns were bought for him by his mother. there's a lot of different things that we need to look at as we move forward, wolf. >> mike brooks, thanks very much.
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we'll stay on top of this story. another shooting incident. this one in oregon. let's get to more breaking news that we're following. iraq's prime minister calls for a state of emergency as a notorious group known for brutality, too brutal for al qaeda, carries out a massive attack and freed 1,000 prisoners. people report mutilated bodies in the streets. arwa damon spent years covering the conflict in iraq. she's joining us now from london. another horrible situation but this time, arwa, iraq's second largest city is in turmoil. >> that's right, wolf. and this is beyond a disastrous situation for the iraqi government and for the security forces that clearly were unable to push back these militant fighters who carried out what is
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a very coordinated and well-planned attack. within hours, huge swaths fell to the islamic state of iraq and syria, an al qaeda splintered group so fierceless that the taliban has broken away from them. >> translator: all of them have fallen in addition to weapon caches. >> reporter: residents fled on foot. people are walking into the barron countryside. many blame the central government for failing to heed
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warning that isa was planning this. they have taken over the city of falluja which was rescued from insurgents decades ago. the u.s. once declared that it had al qaeda and iraq on the run and commanders publicly stating that iraq's security forces could maintain, quote, the security gains. many blame prime minister nuri al maliki's gournment saying that he caused the nation's sectarian to grow. after american boots left iraqi soil. a terrorist group considered more merciless and brutal than al qaeda and iraq is gaining power and control. >> arwa, the whole situation -- >> reporter: and wolf -- >> this is in mosul. it's a disaster in falluja as
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well. you've spent a lot of time in iraq but you've also spent a lot of time in syria as well covering the war there. is the civil war that we're seeing unfold in syria right now about to explode in neighboring iraq as well? >> wolf, the two are very intertwined, especially when you have territory in both of those countries and the border is very porous and it's been quite the challenge, even when u.s. troops were in iraq to try to control the flow of weapons and fighters going back and forth. the dynamic of both nations, certainly at this stage, are intertwined and you also have them not only regaining at this stage control over huge portions of mosul but very other
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provinces as well and one politician was telling me, this is a disaster of epic proportions. at this stage, no one can pretend that the government has any control over this situation. >> i know you're speaking to u.s. officials here in washington. they see a disaster unfolding in iraq and let's remember this is a country where the u.s. spent a decade with tens and thousands of troops, 4500 came home in body bags and the u.s. spent hundreds and billions and they look at you and say to you -- >> this administration's position that the u.s. did not gain enough by this invasion and that informed their decision to withdraw the troops. it wasn't worth having u.s. troops there anymore. many critics and republicans will say that had they ratified an agreement with the iraqi
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government, they would have allowed u.s. soldiers there, 10,000, perhaps that would help prevent events like this or when hu militants taking over falluja, for instance. he said that the u.s. maintains that what he describes as one of the most robust military sales relationships with the iraqis, supplying them weapons that they would need to respond to this kind of situation and as you see this unfold, that kind of relationship is not giving the iraqis the support it seems they need to thwart it off. >> jim sciutto, arwa damon, thanks. we'll stay on top of the story. just ahead, five u.s. troops killed in an apparent friendly fire incident. we're looking to see what went so horribly wrong. but up next, donald sterling says that the sale of the team
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is off. there is max blecher, donald sterling's attorney. we'll speak with him live. did you know, your eyes can lose vital nutrients as you age? [ male announcer ] that's why there's ocuvite to help replenish key eye nutrients. ocuvite has a unique formula not found in your multivitamin to help protect your eye health. ocuvite. help protect your eye health. that would be my daughter -- hi dad. she's a dietitian. and back when i wasn't eating right, she got me drinking boost. it's got a great taste, and it helps give me the nutrition i was missing. helping me stay more like me. [ female announcer ] boost complete nutritional drink has 26 essential vitamins and minerals, including calcium and vitamin d to support strong bones and 10 grams of protein to help maintain muscle. all with a delicious taste. grandpa! [ female announcer ] stay strong, stay active with boost. grandpa!
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to talk with an insurance expert about everything that comes standard with our base auto policy. and if you switch, you could save up to $423. liberty mutual insurance -- responsibility. what's your policy? sterling is now saying no to a $2 billion deal to sell his los angeles clipper as yes to a 1 billi$1 billion lawsuit again nba. let's bring in brian todd for the very latest details that are coming in. what are you learning, brian? >> the newest declaration, no deal.
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just when most of us thought the odyssey was winding down and the sale soon be final, a letter now states that i intend to keep to team. another stunning reversal. donald sterling says he's not ready to give up the clippers. he contends, again, he'll fight the nba's lifetime ban and $2.5 million fine and demand a billion dollars from the league, attorney bobby schl samini on nbc. >> the nba is a band of hypocrites. >> reporter: silver told cnn's rachel nichols he never trusted sterling regarding the sale. >> there's well-known incidents in the league when he was right there at a closing and until he signs the document, we still have a pending litigation with them. >> reporter: this is at least
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the sixth time that donald has publicly changed course making racist remarks. may 8th, you can't force someone to sell property in america. flip-flop number one, may 11th, he tells anderson cooper -- >> settling is sometimes better. >> reporter: flip-flop number two, may 28th, sterling vows to flight to the bloody end. may 30th, sterling's attorney tells cnn he doesn't want to fight with shelly. that's the bottom line. number four, that same day sterling files a suit against the nba fighting his ban, the fine, and the clippers' sale. flip-flop number five, june 3rd, after shelly sterling agrees to the sale, donald sterling says he's ready to move on. a knowledgeable source now tells cnn shelly sterling's attorneys on wednesday will ask a judge to confirm her sale in the
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clippers' sale and will say that donald is mentally incapable. they say she may be doing that to calm the nerves of the team's chosen buyer, steve ballmer. >> if i was the buyer, i would be concerned all along because there was ambiguity from the start. i've always believed that he had an argument. >> one of the argument now maybe made in court, he's not mentally incapacitated. that finding paved the way for shelly sterling to sell the clippers. today one of sterling's lawyer says he's not incapacitated. he had a diagnosis of a modest mental incapacitate. >> do you think they may consider the $2.5 million fine or the lifetime ban if he walked away and let the sale go
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through? >> there's implication that they were considering that but a spokesman says there was never talk about reducing it fine or the ban in any way. >> brian, thanks very much. let's bring in donald sterling's attorney maxwell blecher who is joining us from los angeles. thanks for joining us. are you going ahead with the $1 billion lawsuit against the nba? what would it take to drop it? >> i don't know what it would take to drop it but i've been instructed to go forward with it and that's what we intend to do. i'm not sure that i agree with your basic premise with all of these reversals. i'm his lawyer and not his rabbi and he doesn't tell me the inner most secrets that he has.
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so what i'm about to tell you is my perceptions of what went on. from day one, mr. sterling did not want to sell or leave the team. the team is part of the persona. he's very much attached to it. he's very much attached to the fan base and he did not want to sell this team. it was only under the pressure of the league confiscating the team that he agreed with shelly that she could sell the team and he would consent to it. she orchestrated the sale, not him. he was reluctant about it all of the time. and then we read on an nba -- we r read on an nba web page that if sterling sold the team -- and i'm not quoting this exactly -- but the implication was, if the team is sold to mr. ballmer, the nba would resolve all of its
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differences with mr. sterling and we understood that to mean that they were offering a truce, an olive branch, that they would rescind the branch for life and resend the fine and we could go on our way and then we find out abruptly that that understanding of what was on their website was not correct. >> so as far as you know, mr. blecher, and brian just suggested this, the nba is not rescinding anything. they want sterling to pay $2.5 million fine and they still want him banned from the nba for life. is that your understanding as well? >> correct. that's my understanding and i want to comment that i think they missed an enormous opportunity. that had they been magnamonous in victory and resend all of the
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bans and the fines, i think we probably wouldn't be having this conference today. >> so if they were watching, is it too late to come back is that what you're saying? >> i can't speak for mr. sterling but obviously it's not about the money and the $2 billion deal. it's more about the restoration of his integ brit gritty and dignity. that's what he wanted the nba to do when he said i'll get out of the league, i'll sell the team but you should do something for me. they didn't do one single thing to restore his dignity or prestige. so i think the deal fell apart because of that. that's my own personal perception. >> the nba, at least i have heard, are not very worried
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about your $1 billion lawsuit because shelly has indemnified the nba as part of the $2 billion sale to steve ballmer, she says she would pay any lawsuit requirements that the nba may have to provide to your husband. in other words, if you sue the nba, shelly sterling might have to pay whatever you might win. is that acceptable to you? >> what makes you think that that indemnity is enforceable? she owes, as the trustee of the trust, she owes donald sterling a fiduciary duty. she's also his wife and there is a serious question in my mind whether that indemnity agreement is worth the paragraph that it's written on. so i'm not paying all that much attention to it. the idea that he's suing himself strikes me as ridiculous. besides, the suit isn't as much about the money as it is about getting his name cleared.
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it's getting his name cleared. you have to recognize that the origin of this was in an illegally tape-recorded conversation between mr. sterling and his girlfriend in the living room of her home and it was illegally recorded and then exploited by the nba which could have said, look, this is an illegal tape recording. we're not going near it. but instead, they saw the opportunity to finally get rid of there sterling who had been something of a nuisance or a thorn in their side and they extorted it. >> so you're going ahead with the lawsuit. one quick question. why did he agree to go to those neurological exams? because the wife says those two independent physicians ruled him as no longer responsible for the trusts. >> well, that's what she says.
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we'll have to see what the probate court decides. >> you'll have to deal with that on a separate basis. >> at the end of the day, it strikes me as totally incredible to argue that this man, i talk to him every day, is incapable of making decisions and is mentally incompetent and i don't believe any court is going to make a finding to the contrary. >> even though two neurologists said in this report that he was incompetent? >> best opinions money can buy. those reports were directed to mrs. sterling's attorney. so guess who they thought they were working for. >> all right. so you're definitely going to go to probate court on that issue as well, right? >> yes. >> all right. max blecher, thanks very much for updating us on where this lawsuit stands and where you guys are planning to go. maxwell blecher is donald
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sterling's attorney. thank you for joining us. >> thank you for having me. my pleasure. up next, deal or no deal? and where is the donald sterling drama headed? our own don lemon and rachel nichols are standing by. and a sudden blinding light in the cockpit. laser attacks and how they are being targeted. stay with us. you're in "the situation room." so what i'm saying is, people like options.
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joining us now to breakdown what we just heard from donald sterling's attorney is rachel nichols and don lemon. you just heard maxwell blecher say that they are going to go to probate court to make sure that he is not mentally incompetent. >> right now this billion dollar lawsuit is against the nba and there's a lot of legal experts, if jeffrey toobin was here, he would say that he's not going to
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win that battle. however, if he's fighting with shelly in the courts, which he says he doesn't want it to come to that but in the past he has said everything so you can't count on anything that he says, if he does start to fight with shelly and can prove somehow that she did not have the right to declare him incompetent and sell the team on her own, then the whole thing could unravel. this is going to be very big if he turns around and makes that pivot. >> you also heard him suggest that if the nba were to walk away from the $2.5 million fine they imposed on sterling and the lifetime ban, then there could be a sale, there could be a deal. the team was sold to steve ballmer for $2 million and is that something that the nba can accept? >> you know, i don't know at this point. i'd hate to say if i were the nba, i'd do whatever i needed to do just to get rid of -- >> no. >> listen, though. >> no. >> you know where i've been.
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i was going to start off by saying, the thing you hate people to say is, i told you so. i've been telling you guys this, i do not trust the sterlings at all and when i heard brian todd's story how many times he's contradicted himself. >> the flip-flop? >> right. the flip-flop. but at this point, just because he says he wants to hold on to his dignity and integrity and wants the nba to give him back his integrity and dignity, we've known for a long time, no one can give you your integrity or dignity but yourself. he doesn't get it. if i were the nba i'd let him go and say fine, we have to do what we have to do. >> here's why they can't do it. the very reason that they want them to walk back to that ban is the reason they can't do it. that fine, that ban brands him as somebody who made racial remarks against the league, someone who damaged the league, who may be a racist, in most
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people's eyes. he wants that walked back. his lawyer says he doesn't want that on his tombstone. guess what, the reason the nba did that was to make a statement, to say we will not tolerate that in this league. if they walk back the punishment, then they are walking back their integrity. >> the punishment is i can tatay the team. >> you both have made very good points. don, you've consistently pointed out that you don't trust this guy from the beginning. you don't trust him now. we'll see what happens in the coming days. by the way, you can see rachel's exclusive interview with adam silver on her program "unguarded with rachel nichols," friday night at 10:30 p.m. and catch don tonight at 10:00 p.m. on "cnn tonight" with don lemon. turning to the political battle for 2014, a political
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primary day in five key states, south carolina and virginia. in virginia, the number two house republican eric cantor challenging his conservative principles. the house expected to pull through but there are questions about whether the race could help any potential quest to be the next house speaker should, should john boehner decide to step down. meanwhile, lindsey graham is up against six gop primary challengers. the most recent polling indicates graham is near the 50% threshold needed to avoid a runoff. up next, friendly fire is being blamed for the death of five elite troops in afghanistan. we're taking a closer look into what went so terribly wrong. and a sudden flash of light in the cockpit puts pilots and passengers in severe danger. how authorities are cracking down on this rapidly growing problem. ♪ norfolk southern what's your function? ♪
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a deadly set back for u.s. troops in afghanistan. officials now say it's a friendly fire after an air strike went awry. barbara starr has our details. barbara? >> wolf, it happened in one of the toughest places of fighting
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in afghanistan. the five u.s. special forces troops were killed on a security operation in advance of saturday's presidential runoff election. working in the often violence province, the americans ran into militants, a fire fight ensued and they called for support. an air force bomber may have accidently dropped fire on the troops. the incident is being investigated. >> we do have reason to suspect that friendly fire was the cause here. specifically, friendly fire from the air. but the issue is under investigation. >> reporter: there have been at least five major so-called friendly fire incidents since the war back in 2001. among the most well known, the 2004 death of pat tillman.
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he gave up a lucrative contract with the arizona cardinals to join the army ranger's force. he was awarded the third highest combat decoration after the army said he was killed leaving a counterattack against enemy forces. only later did the army admit he had been shot accidently by his comrades in the fire fight. now, this latest incident comes as president obama has announced u.s. troops will be leaving afghanistan. but for five american military families now, the deepest mourning. wolf? >> our hearts and prayers go out to their families as well. barbara, thanks very much. up next, blinding light directed at aircraft from the ground. there's a growing number of laser attacks putting pilots and passengers at serious risk. what authorities are doing about it. we'll have a full report. and house speaker john boehner says the trade of bowe bergdahl for five taliban
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some flash of light in the cockpit putting flights and passengers at risk. as authorities crack down, they, too, are falling prey to the dangerous laser strikes. rene marsh is looking into these problems for us. what are you finding out? >> these are the handheld lasers, they are very easy to buy, and when you see the small light, you would not think this would be capable of causing a plane crash, but authorities say
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it is quite possible and that's why the fbi is cracking down. the latest example, a florida man now facing the possibility of federal time behind bars. blinding light from below, a seminole county sheriff's helicopter and two pilots inside targeted. this is what it looked like on the receiving end of this laser attack near orlando saturday. 19-year-old trevor rango now charged with a felony. >> he said he didn't have a good explanation, but you can see in the video he was actually running around and continued to shine the laser beam at the helicopter. >> laser attacks like this are capable of disorienting and temporarily blinding pilots. >> vision itself can get washed out for a few seconds, which in and of itself can be dangerous, but there can be after images causing distortion for a number of minutes afterwards. >> it's like a camera flash going off in a pitch black car, the ultimate consequence could be a crash.
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the number of laser strikes is escalating nationwide, from a jet full of passengers landing in dallas -- >> it was blue and they were definitely trying to get us. >> to new york -- >> first officer's having vision problems. >> to a small plane in las vegas. >> it was right in my face. >> and another police helicopter, this attack in dallas last year. there's been a more than 1,000% surge since the fbi and faa started tracking laser strikes in 2005. last year, nearly 4,000 strikes were reported. that's almost 11 per day. it's estimated thousands more go unreported every year. >> regardless of whether it's a malicious act or regardless if it's an innocent act, the effect is the exactly the same to me when i get hit with the laser. >> as police crack down, the punishments are harsh. in march, a california man was slapped with a 14-year sentence for shining a laser at a police
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helicopter. in this latest case in florida, police say rango told them he didn't realize what he did was so serious. now he's learning the hard way. all right, well, we reached out to his family, but no comment. the fbi has expanded this operation to nationwide crackdown, offering rewards up to $10,000 for information leading to arrests of anyone who aims a laser at an aircraft. we should point out we don't know of any crashes caused by one of these lasers, most likely because there's usually two pilots in the cockpit, but doesn't make it any less dangerous. >> this is very dangerous, and we don't want to see anybody die as a result of this. rene, thanks very much. coming up, house speaker john boehner says american lives are at risk because of the trade of bowe bergdahl for five taliban leaders. and hillary clinton is in the middle of a massive campaign, but is she tipping her hand about a possible presidential campaign? all stations come over to mission a for a final go.
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happening now, a new warning that americans are less safe because of the prisoner swap that freed sergeant bowe bergdahl. a top u.s. official says he has no doubt lives will be lost. plus, a second brazen airport attack. taliban terrorists are shooting down, suggesting they are getting weak. and hillary clinton between the lines, did she unintentionally let her presidential plans slip during her campaign to sell books? we want to welcome our viewers in the united states and around the world. i'm wolf blitzer, you're in "the situation room." right now president obama's getting more heat than ever over the secret deal that led to the release of an american soldier, sergeant bowe bergdahl. members of congress aren't buying the administration's reasons for keeping them in the dark before the prisoner swap with the taliban, and now the house speaker is going much farther, invoking the name of
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osama bin laden, suggesting that americans may die. our chief congressional correspondent dana bash is watching what's going on up on the hill. it's pretty dramatic. >> it is, look, outrage on capitol hill goes far beyond the question of why congress wasn't notified. there's bipartisan concern about the terms of the deal that may put americans' lives at jeopardy. >> reporter: an ominous warning from the house speaker, the president risked americans' safety, releasing five taliban prisoners in exchange for bowe bergdahl. >> there is not any doubt in my mind, there are going to be costs, lives associated, lost lives associated with what came out of this. >> reporter: but john boehner couldn't try to stop the deal because congress wasn't notified. it raises the big question -- >> does this administration trust congress? >> sure. >> reporter: laughter, because many know the real answer is no. administration officials are telling lawmakers they weren't
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notified about the bergdahl prisoner swap out of fear it would leak. boehner is pushing back with a stark example, the osama bin laden raid. >> i was given a heads up several days before this happened. and so this idea that they couldn't trust us to not leak things is just not true. >> reporter: the white house argues boehner and other top lawmakers knew the basics of the bin laden plans but not the specifics. >> the speaker was not informed of precise operational details of the secret military mission. >> reporter: still, sources tell cnn the administration did actively bring top lawmakers into the fold of the bin laden plans early and often, unlike the bergdahl prisoner swap, where the administration floated the idea in late 2011, got bipartisan pushback, and never went back to congress. >> i was never briefed about a five to one swap, nor were there any names. >> reporter: other congressional sources tell cnn the administration did give congress the five taliban names under
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consideration back in 2011. in fact, perhaps fuelling administration worries about leaks, senate intelligence chairwoman dianne feinstein did confirm the discussion to a foreign policy magazine in 2012, making clear she opposed it, saying, these are major taliban figures, these are not minor people, and they will not be in the same kind of custody, maximum security custody. >> feinstein's source tells us she was approached by a reporter that already had the information endid not leak it. the way a leading democrat opposed the concept early on brings up a key difference between the bin laden raid, and that is killing the most wanted man in the planet wasn't controversial, but rescuing bergdahl in a political deal that involved releasing five taliban prisoners certainly was. >> we're getting new poll numbers showing what the american public thinks of this swap. >> generally, they are not impressed. more people in america are opposed to it than support it,
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and certainly, that is aided and fuelled, likely, by the fact that congress is not happy and there's a firestorm. >> dana, stand by. i want to expand the conversation, eli lake, kimberly dozier, they have been doing reporting for the daily beast. you are reporting the u.s. intelligence community, from the start, believe at least four of these five would eventually go back to the battlefield and try to kill americans? >> yes, that was the best assessment of the intelligence community, that these people might present a threat down the road. at the same time, what president obama faced was news that the qataris were saying the taliban was thinking about killing bowe bergdahl, time was running out, so he was weighing these two factors, do we get him out and let these five guys go and face them down the road, do we let bergdahl die in captivity? >> if the intelligence community was telling the president, secretary of defense, cia
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director, director of national intelligence, they believed four of these five would go back to the battlefield, what was their response, the counterargument to let them go, in effect? >> i think you have to look at the dates, when this is first being discussed inside the administration, it's 2011. there is still a surge in afghanistan and there are far more american troops in afghanistan at that time. president obama announced the last of the american troops will be leaving by the end of 2016. so there will be in some sense fewer targets for these taliban commanders once they rejoin the fight as they are predicted to do so, but they still present a major challenge, not to mention the propaganda victory, in the war between the afghan elected government and the taliban. >> there's going to be 10,000 u.s. troops, next year 9,800, half as many the year afterwards. that's a lot of troops. >> but the mission is going to change significantly. right now u.s. troops are involved in a lot of the kind of
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hands dirty counterterrorism mission. i think by the time the end of 2014, end of combat operations, american troops are not going to be playing the same kind of role. >> you want to weigh in? >> the counterargument to keeping them in captivity is once they are out there, they are on the battlefield, they can be taken out by u.s. drone strikes, by u.s. forces working together with afghan counterterrorism forces. on the other side of that, however, this has been a huge propaganda victory for the taliban and when you look at what was going on inside the organization, the military wing was arguing with the political wing about whether or not to negotiate peace. now the military wing has been strengthened by the fact that they kept fighting and they've got five of their top guys back. >> it's a political victory from their perspective. here's what a lot of members on the hill, you speak to them all the time, dana, are really upset about. not just republicans, but democrats like dianne feinstein,
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there may have been 70, 80, 90 officials in the obama administration, including military personnel, who may have known various aspects of what was going on. certainly, there were a bunch of officials in qatar that knew what was going on, a bunch of taliban leaders, even a bunch of network terrorists who knew what was going on. all these people knew what was going on, but the white house refused to trust someone like dianne feinstein, or carl levin, the chairman of the senate armed service committee. that's what irritates so many on the hill. >> no question about it, and when that news was given to members of the house last night, that 80 to 90 members of the administration knew and nobody in congress was told, it lit even more -- put more fuel on this fire. but i think that, you know, as i put in my piece and you have been reporting, a big part of the reason why they weren't told, it's pretty obvious, because there was bipartisan opposition to the idea. dianne feinstein, as you said,
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she certainly is a senior person, but she made very clear in a public way that she didn't like the idea, so why would the administration get pushback. >> that's why they didn't notify, because they didn't want to hear don't do it? >> my colleague, josh rogin, is the reporter that got that confirmation on the record, but i think this administration is very frustrated with what they see as a lot of leaks, not just on this, and realize in some ways there was information that said, if this gets out, it could not only blow up the negotiations, it could endanger the life of bowe bergdahl. >> leaks not just from congressional sources, from executive branch sources and tons of leaks all the time. >> this was so controversial, the fear was that people who didn't like the deal would get it out there in order to stop it. >> people in the administration didn't like the deal and there were no leaks, even though there were plenty of people inside the administration that weren't happy with it.
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guys, thanks very, very much. we're just getting the story into the "the situation room," powerful legal blow to the tenure system of public school teachers. a california judge ruling the state's laws are unconstitutional. students filed the lawsuit alleging the tenure policy keeps bad teachers in the classroom and forces out good teachers. their lawyer is calling this a monumental day for the state's public education system. the los angeles court has ordered a stay on the decision pending an appeal by the state and teachers union. just ahead, brand new statement by donald sterling. you're going to find out why he's now calling the nba, in his words, despicable monsters. and chilling new proof of a taliban threat in a place where nuclear weapons are at play. and hillary clinton tries to explain her eyebrow raising comment that she and her husband were, quote, dead broke when they left the white house.
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hillary clinton apparently is trying to choose her words more carefully today as she officially rolled out her new book, "hard choices," but even as she clarified a comment about her family's finances, another remark raised some eyebrows. let's bring in brianna keilar. what are you finding out? >> well, wolf, she already had a misstep and had to do repair work today. meantime, rand paul is hitting her hard for it today, saying, "she's going to have some surprises once she gets out of her limousine and meets the
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american people." as fans lined up outside a new york book store, waiting hours to see hillary clinton and have her sign copies of her book, she was trying to tamp down a republican uproar over her comments that she and her husband were dead broke and in debt when they left the white house. >> we had no money when we got there, and we struggled to, you know, piece together the resources for mortgages for houses, for chelsea's education. >> that aired monday on abc news. tuesday morning, clinton was on cleanup duty, telling "good morning america" she and bill were $12 million in the hole in 2000. >> it was just a reality what we faced when he got out of the white house, meant that we had to just keep working really hard. we always have, that's who we are. we're grateful we can do that, but i worry a lot about people i know personally and people in our country who don't have the same opportunities. >> thank you so much for being
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here. >> reporter: while officially mum on her presidential ambitions, clinton is kicking off a campaign-style book rollout. >> as a candidate who is already so well known, i don't think i ever said, yes, you may have known me for eight years, but i don't take anything for granted. i have to earn your support. >> reporter: and perhaps getting a little ahead of herself, saying her hard choices as secretary of state are akin to those of a higher office as she answered this question about president obama. >> if you are to run in 2016, given that you have supported him so strongly in his foreign policy, will you have to distance yourself from that? >> no, because, i mean, the reason i called this book "hard choices" is because that's what any president faces. >> reporter: and a sign she might already have her eye on a key battleground state. >> heat or spurs, texas or florida, that's tough.
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>> florida. when you pose it like that! >> when you pose it like that, because texas, as you certainly know, wolf, is not a battleground state. >> florida certainly is, as far as the democrats are concerned. stand by for a moment. i want to bring in laurie borger, our chief political analyst. on the issue of foreign policy, you covered it for four years, will she effectively be able to distance herself from the president on major foreign policy decisions? >> i think so, wolf, because if you read the book, and certainly, while she was in office, she's a little bit more hawkish than the president. certainly, she pushed for the surge in afghanistan earlier than the president, pushed for action in libya. you saw that she was a big advocate to arm the rebels and in egypt, you know, really wanted to be clear about keeping president mubarak because he was an ally. i think she comes off as being pragmatic, not the kind of visionary that the president was, but someone who can make
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those tough calls and understand all the various confluences, and i think she does come off as someone who would be very tough, but very measured on foreign policy. >> you see her changing her tone on benghazi, what happened there? >> that's right. we saw before that she was talking about, you know, i'm not in charge of -- i can't look at blueprints and figure out where a blast wall should be. well, today she talked basically about kind of looking back, maybe sort of second guessing, but she didn't really get into details, so we see i think she realized the first answer wasn't so great, she needed to fix that this morning, but i think it's hard looking at that, especially when four americans died, but not just that, chris stevens was a friend and a colleague. i mean, this was someone she knew, that she was grieving for very personally when he died, and i think on a personal level it's hard to believe she didn't go back and say, what if. she did say some of that in the book, but she hasn't really been comfortable saying it out loud. >> gloria, we are getting
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indications in the tv interviews that if she does run for president, her campaign would be different than it was in 2008. >> yeah, i see it immensely in the interviews she's done. she talks now, you know, in 2007 and 2008, the big thing for hillary clinton was, my experience. i've experienced to get the 3:00 a.m. phone call, and she felt like she had to prove her competency at that level. now, being secretary of state, she clearly has the credentials. nobody looking at hillary clinton's resume would say, by the way, this woman is not qualified. what she's doing now is running as a woman. she's talking about the sexism that she suffered as a presidential candidate, doesn't get too specific about who it was from, whether from barack obama who said you're likable enough, or john edwards who looked at her jacket and said, gee, i'm not too sure about that jacket, but she's now talking about putin. it wouldn't be the first time that a leader said something i think it's very clear that
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she's embracing that about herself and not saying, okay, don't judge me as a woman, judge me as a leader. she's saying i'm a woman and i can do this. >> in the hard cover book jacket, and we got copies, it says this in her book jacket, "by the end of her tenure, secretary of state clinton had visited 112 countries, traveled nearly 1 million miles and gained a truly global perspective on major trends reshaping the landscape of the 21st century." here's the vice president, joe biden, speaking today. >> i've traveled close to over 900,000 miles now, every single place i go, every world leader with whom i meet, if it's not the first, it's the second or third issue they raise about america's abundance of energy and the prospect that we will be energy independent and north america will become the epicenter of energy in the 21st
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century. >> i got lots of miles on the show. >> brianna? >> miles matter, wolf. i would say, though, you look at the polls, and i think a lot of people, she's in the 60s and he's not even in the teens. he's very far behind. you talk to a lot of democrats and they say, poor joe, that's what they are saying, because he's in the unique situation being a sitting vice president and she's so far ahead. >> he's not going to run if she runs. the field is frozen until hillary clinton tells people what she's going to do. i think we obviously know what she's going to do. >> we, obviously, know what she's going to do, we'll see what happens. thanks very much. please, be sure to watch hillary clinton lye on cnn, no questions will be off limits during the exclusive town hall event moderated by christiane amanpour, followed by a special edition of "the situation room" and encore presentation at 9:00 p.m. eastern. and this just coming into
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cnn, angry new statement from donald sterling explaining why he's fighting the nba and refusing to sell the l.a. clippers, among other things, sterling says he feels that the league's leadership is, quote incompetent and inexperienced. he says it's clear that the nba is using the controversy over his racist remarks to settle longstanding personal grievances against him, and he's vowing to fight what he calls these despicable monsters to protect the privacy and freedom of speech of all americans. just ahead, taliban terror. an airport under attack and bigger potential threat to the world involving nuclear weapons. geico's been helping people save money for over 75 years. they've really stood the test of time. much like these majestic rocky mountains. which must be named after the... that would be rocky the flying squirrel, mr. gecko sir. obviously! ahh come on bullwinkle, they're named after... ...first president george rockington!
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taliban fighters in pakistan appear to be making good on a new threat of full-out war, targeting security forces around the country's largest and busiest airport, not once, but now twice. our chief national correspondent has the latest on the violence and bigger danger potentially that's out there. jim? >> pakistan's leader is set to meet in the next several days to discuss response. cabinet ministers say they are considering a major military operation against taliban strongholds in the northern part of the country, effectively ending hopes of peace talks with the militants.
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one minister saying the answer of the taliban lies with the pakistani army. >> reporter: it was the second brazen attack on pakistan's largest city in just two days. pakistani taliban assaulting a security academy at karachi airport, once again shutting down pakistan's busiest air hub and sparking a massive counterterrorism response. >> should we stay in the building or go out? >> go home, immediately. >> reporter: a cnn team on the ground in karachi was whisked away just before the attackers moved in. tonight, the taliban militants are still on the run. the violent wave of attacks is a bold sign of the taliban's resurgence. only weeks ago, a split in the leadership and a massive government air campaign against their stronghold in the country's north led some to believe the taliban was weakening. these