tv The Situation Room With Wolf Blitzer CNN August 5, 2009 6:23pm-7:00pm EDT
on. doctors hope this megatransplants will encourage other african-americans to donate kidneys. they are more in need of kidneys than whites, yet there are fewer donors that match them. they have highly active immune systems that make them more likely to reject kidneys. >> the real heroes are the donors. any given donor may enable or allow other people to be transplanted. >> now, there is some controversy around this, suzanne. there is no question more donors are needed. there is concern that perhaps donors will be coerced into giving a kidney and all the screening systems that are set up to make sure that doesn't happen, there are worries that those screening systems are not perfect. suzanne? >> democrats are getting an earful from angry constituents who fear that health care will be ruined instead of reformed. what is all this shouting about? is it real? their nightmare in north korea is over. a painful rea judgment is just
beginning. the trauma laura ling and euna lee may face now. see it for yourself at length, the raw emotion when those two freed american journalists return home and the shock that is still sinking in. >> we were taken to a location and when we walked in through the doors, we saw standing before us president bill clinton. and make it happen. i'm janet long and i formed my toffee company through legalzoom. i never really thought i would make money doing what i love. robert shapiro: we created legalzoom to help people start their business and launch their dreams. go to legalzoom.com today and make your business dream a reality. at legalzoom.com we put the law on your side. you know why i sell tools? tools are uncomplicated?
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>> to our loved ones, friends, colleagues and to the complete strangers with the kindest of hearts who showed us so much love and sent us so many positive thoughts and energy, we thank you. we could feel your love all the way in north korea. it is what kept us going in the darkest of hours. it is what sustained our faith that we would come home. >> to the thousands upon thousands of people who have held laura and euna in their prayers, who have written letters and called and sent e-mails, we are very, very grateful. >> the past 140 days have been the most difficult, heart-wrenching time of our lives. we are very grateful that we were granted amnesty by the
government of north korea. we are so happy to be home. thirty hours ago, euna lee and i were prisoners in north korea. we feared that at any moment, we could be sent to a hard labor camp. then, suddenly, we were told that we were going to a meeting. we were taken to a location. when we walked in throughout doors, we saw standing before us president bill clinton. >> they really put their hearts in this. it speaks well of our country that when two american sit zeps are in harm's way, that so many people would just put things aside and just go to work to make sure that this has had a
happy ending. we are so grateful. >> we knew instantly in our hearts that the nightmare of our lives was finally coming to an end. and now we stand here home and free. >> well, amid the tears and joy, getting over the shock of captivity will not be easy for the freed journalists. "the situation room" is taking you indeath -depth on this stor. brian todd is joining me. >> experts say it is a very uneven emotional ride after the crowds dispalt and the excite dies down. this part is pretty basic, an emotional embrace between euna lee and her 4-year-old daughter and a comment from lee's colleague about what they want to do next. >> we are so anxious right now
to be able to spend some quiet, private time getting reacquainted with our families. thank you so much. >> reporter: that, experts say, is when the difficult work begins. lisa van susteren is a psychiatrist who has dealt with sensitive family reunions. >> reporter: is there a point when it is most difficult a week or a week after the reunion when all the cameras and people are gone and you turn to your child and say, what now? >> well, yes, because all of the attention, when you come back, is a big distraction. once that is pulled out of the picture, you really are faced again. you and the person you were married to or you have been with all these years and had children with and now you got to kind of face the reality of what do we got going forward? who am i? what is my career? am i going back to my old job?
am i now a person on a mission? have i been transformed by this experience? and my spouse hasn't been transformed? >> divorce is common among couples in these situations. mark gonzalez and keith stancele were held captive by rebels. in the year since their release, they have gone through divorces. gonzalez says he also suffered an initial physical reaction after his first family encounter, a meeting with his father, he had a migraine. >> it was the emotion, the joy that i felt, the rush that i felt to cover so much lost time in such a short amount of time now. it was something that was difficult to deal with. >> reporter: there seems to be no set formula for rea judgment. after being in prison in iran, the scholar arrived on thursday and returned to work the following monday. >> i had to prove to myself that my jailers did not break my
spirit or my will. i had to prove that it was the old me. >> reporter: she says, the families have to be flexible. families that do well are those that take the cues from the returning person and go at their peace. suzanne? >> what about military families? is their situation different? >> yes, she says some of the rea judgments for them are obvious. if the returning soldier has an injury or ptsd. they are no longer a crucial member of a team dealing with a life or death situation. many of them struggle with that and their families do too. the health care reform battle moves from congress to communities across the united states. town hall meetings on the issue are growing angrier. is the outrage real?
obama isn't making headway selling health care to the american people. the public is split with 50% supporting and 45% opposing. those numbers are virtually unchanged since back in june. this helps explain why. the cnn opinion research corporation poll shows that 83% of americans are satisfied with the health care they now have. 74% say they are satisfied with the health insurance they have. opponents of health care reform are making their opinions heard loud and clear. we have seen some town hall meetings turn into some shouting matches. let's bring in the best political team on television. jessica yellin is going to kick things off. >> you know, usually, politicians have to beg to get the media at their local town hall meetings during the august recess. not these days. we are all paying attention, because those rousing critics of the democrat's health care plan are disrupting events. officials in washington are at
war over who the critics are. the white house has said the protests are organized and manufactured, not organic. the dnc is calling them mobs and has even launched this ad. let's listen. >> the goal, to destroy president obama and stop the change americans voted for overwhelmingly in november. >> it will break him. >> i hope he fails. >> reporter: this mob activity is straight from the playbook of high-level republican political operatives. they have no plan for moving our country forward. so they have called out the mob. >> and on the white house blog, they are asking supporters to send in tips when they hear so-called fishy claims about the health care reform effort. no surprise, the republicans are taking offense. house minority leader, john boehner, says the democrats are in denial because the protests are real. michael steele sees a more sinister motive.
john core nnen is accusing the white house of monitoring the speech and is asking president obama to cease and desist. are these protests spontaneous or organized? does it really matter? >> let's kick it off. let's start with gloria borger. >> the answer is, yes, some of them are real and some of them are manufactured. look, you have conservative groups out there, suzanne, who are against health care reform. they have learned it is very easy to organize groups via the internet and they have told people to go to places and to disrupt meetings. however, you also have some folks who really want to have a serious discussion about health care reform because they are worried about it. they are worried that they may lose their health insurance or whatever their concerns are. i think the ones we are paying attention to are the ones where you have the hecklers and the people who are disrupting any kind of real and protuductive
conversation. >> david? >> i think it is a completely real distinction. leaders invite people to come out to events. sometimes they come. sometimes they don't. they come when you have something exciting and important to them. that's real. you say, how do you meet the white house criteria for a real event. that said, i think that dnc ad is one of the worst things, one of the most foolish things i have seen. you do not get very far involved by insulting the customers. people come out and do not become a mob by virtue of the fact they disagree with you. >> i agree that people are invited to town halls and if people show up who are against what you are doing, that's a normal part of politics if people feel strongly enough to drive there and come to a meeting. what does not normally go with the territory is to be disruptive, to drowned it out
and create a media event that will be covered so that suddenly, we get three are o four or five of these democratic events being disrupted. that, it seems to me is likely to have organizational roots. there probably are people trying to stir that up. >> what the white house is sort of hoping for is a backlash, the kind of backlash you saw when those folks appeared at the mccain/palin rallies and called obama all kinds of names. finally, john mccain had to say, enough of this. their sense is that it turns into the mob. people who want a real discussion are going to react. >> do you think the dnc is concerned that they are calling these protests angry mobs? do you think that indicates some level of fear or frustration that their message isn't getting out? >> you don't say something as unwise as that when you are using your best reason. you don't use your best reason when you are feeling confident and sharp. so, yes, something must be
getting to them. the core problem they have, one other number. is it mostly to help you or other people? 2-1, americans are saying, they think it will mostly help other people. americans are pretty generous but not generous enough to give away their health insurance. >> we are going to deal a little more on the other end of the break. we will do more afterwards. it was like old time for bill clinton, a cheering crowd, a diplomatic challenge and the glory that followed. what will the former president do for an encore? and, do you think too many americans are taking antidepressants, jack cafferty is standing by with your e-mail. if you get side-lined from work. insuring your family's ifs can be hard to figure out. so metlife removed the guesswork, by combining the most essential insurances, term life and disability, in one surprisingly affordable package.
election season talk about whether former president bill clinton could ever reclaim his legacy after some ugly skirmishes with the obama campaign. what a difference a year makes watching clinton's return with the two americans today. it is hard to remember the bitterness of the election season when back then reporters asked then candidate obama if the former president was getting to him. today, president obama gave clinton props in an interview with nbc. the main message i wanted to send in was thank you on behalf of obviously the families but also the american people for resolving what was a humanitarian ordeal. i think president clinton showed that his service to this country continues. >> and there is no surprise that there is no tons of speculation, suzanne, about whether the clinton mission to north korea could be just beginning. will we see more of clinton, the good will diplomate.
the state department spokesman says that's entering the world of speculation, which is a classic d.c. dodge. question is, does this trip put clinton's election season headlines behind him and will he become the roving peacemaker of the obama presidency? >> great question. let's start with david fromm. >> i think this is a true emergency. i don't think you build patterns on emergencies. the question i would like to know is that at what point does barack obama sit down and say, tell me about that centrist pivot you took two years in? how do i do that? >> the first year of the obama administration is looking like the clinton year. maybe it is time for that. >> the real question i have is in bill clinton's 3 1/2 hours of meetings over there, they didn't just talk about these two journalists. they talked about a lt of other things. i want to know what bill clinton is going to do in the debrief over at the national security agency? >> that's what the white house would like to know too. i talked to people at the white
house today. i must tell you, suzanne, that they feel very differently than the way the clinton white house felt when jimmy carter went to north korea in the early clinton presidency when people at the white house were very uneasy and had a lot tension with carter. these folks think he handled it just write. this was closely coordinated about the nsc. they didn't know until late last week that they had the opportunity to go there. they have been working on this for a long time. they are now waiting for the debrief. they have had a quick readout. they haven't had the serious readout. >> the interesting thing is hillary clinton's role in all of this. it was clear from my reporting that she was suggesting other people to go, including al gore. but they didn't want -- they didn't want other people and then -- then it was jones who spoke directly with president clinton. >> did you guys notice -- did
you notice the pictures of gore and clinton together? it was almost like a bear hug, the two of them. they seemed really genuine moment of closeness, these two, after some hard times between them. president clinton didn't deliver the election to gore but he delivered these journalists, these two seeing kind of a new relationship between the two of them. >> hard to know. >> i think it's too early to tell, but i think it's important to understand, that these two journalists, obviously, worked for al gore. he's been trying very hard to get this done. and now here bill clinton goes and spends a couple days going to get them back, and i think he was deeply grateful for that. i was once in a situation with u.s. news where we had a journalist seized in moscow. and when you have one of your own seized, you do everything you can to get back, and you're thankful in everybody who comes to the aid. so this is a big, big thing,
personally for al gore, and i'm not at all surprised he hugged bill clinton and thanked him for it. >> no, and i think, it's genuine, whether it's going to bring them back any closer in the long-term, who knows, but i would presume they're a lot closer now than they were a year ago. >> all right. got to leave it there. gloria borger, david frum, david gergen, and of course, jessica yellin, thanks so much for being with us. jack cafferty joining us again. >> what does it mean, suzanne, that the u.s. of antidepressants in this country has doubled in the last ten years. one in ten americans on them now. sam says it means the drug company's business models are working. teresa in montana, considering what this country's been through in the past decade, i'm surprised that more of us aren't on the happy pills. lily marlene in hawaii, as a person who's been on antidepressants and in therapy for over 20 years, i can say the drugs have become more effective and have fewer side effects. mixing them with therapy has proved to be a life-saving method method for me. we're talking about someone who becomes suicidal if i'm off the
medications for three weeks. ike in atlanta says, it goes to show the problem with health care in america. doctors have to prescribe these drugs because they don't want to be sued for not doing so, even if the patient doesn't need them. the companies are happy because they make money. insurance covers it because they too make money. and the patient, he doesn't know any better. most people on antidepressants don't need them. it's all a scam. h. writes, i've taken antidepressants off and on for after 30 years after suffering postpartum depression. i talked about my feelings to psychiatrists until we were all blue in the face, but nothing has helped except medication. i've led a normal, productive life thanks to these meds. i know they're overprescribed, but for some of us, they are a lifesaver. matthew says it means we should not allow pharmaceutical companies to advertise. let the doctors tell us what we need, not those who are just trying to make a product. and thaddeus in milwaukee says, it means 10% of us are nuts. i thought the number would be much higher. if you didn't see your e-mail here, go to my blog at
cnn.com/caffertyfile and look for yours there. it's been a pleasure working with you the last three days. >> absolutely. >> we'll do it again soon. >> wolf will take more time off, we think. thanks, jack. in a day full of emotion, it's one part of the story almost guaranteed to tug at yard heart. a freed american journalist reunited with her 4-year-old daughter. but first, we want to bring in lou dobbs for "lou dobbs tonight." what are you working on? >> at the top of the hour, complete coverage of the obama administration's role in the release of those two american journalists from north korea. concerns tonight that the release may make north korea even more defiant over its nuclear weapons program. also, the white house and democratic party lashing out at the rising number of americans who are criticizing the president's health care proposals. that battle can turn into a summer of discontent. we'll examine that in our face-off debate tonight. members of congress facing new charges of hypocrisy. spending $200 million on brand-new private airplanes for
themselves, months after blasting those car company executives for using corporate jets. we'll have that special report, all the day's news, and much more at the top of the hour. please join us. suzanne, back to you. >> thank you, lou. plus, after the quick break, new swine flu fears, just one of today's hot shots. some people like to pretend... a flood could never happen to them... and that their homeowners insurance... protects them. it doesn't. stop pretending. it can happen to you. protect your home with flood insurance. call the number on your screen... for your free brochure.
here's a look at hot shots. in india, a child wearing a mask is carried as she waits to be tested for swine flu. in cincinnati, police and fire crews worked together to clean up a white substance flowing out of the sewers. in russia, president dmitry medvedev visits a bakery. and in london, the director of a new show, "walking with dinosaurs" poses for a picture before opening night. this hour's hot shots, pictures worth a thousand words. the ordeal of two american journalists held for five months in north korea was wrenching for their families, and perhaps most difficult for the 4-year-old daughter of euna lee. cnn jeanne moos takes a most unusual look. >> reporter: getting a ride from dad, who himself was shaking with nervous energy, peering like a deer in the headlights at
humongous hangar doors that you're told is carrying your mother. >> what really strikes me, is just watching that little girl. >> reporter: the women coming home were the news, but the kid meeting her mom was the star. >> their adorable, 4-year-old daughter, hanna. >> reporter: adorable hanna, swept up by her mom, smothered with hugs, three-way hugs, four-way hugs, her hair kas reed while she played with her mom's ponytail. where did she think she was? >> did you tell her she was at work? >> yeah. >> reporter: instead of clinging to a purple unicorn in her mom's absence, suddenly mom was there to cling to. >> hannah sort of sell says it doesn't she? >> i just wanted to cry seeing euna see her daughter. >> reporter: they nuzzled, they rocked, she whispered.
did she some day she was smiled upon by former president clinton? she used to draw pictures starring her mother. but while her mom was away, she drew this. >> she drew a picture and i was the center and it was just her and i. she didn't include her mother, which really made me sad. >> reporter: looking at from a kid's eye view, what is going through the head of a 4-year-old whose mother has disappeared for 4 1/2 months. we asked a child psychologist. >> you have a lot of ambivalence, you've been terrified they might not come back, you've been angry they've been away. >> we could feel your love all the way -- >> when hannah's mom was away -- >> she was like, will mommy will be home in a couple days, or, i'll do this when mommy gets here. >> reporter: she's here, forehead to forehead, cheek to cheek. jeanne moos, cnn, new york.