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tv   Nightline  ABC  April 3, 2013 12:35am-1:05am PDT

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inside the fast food revolution that's got customers salivating. >> can i get the same thing? >> and critics saying not so fast. we take you inside the raging war of syria. heart brenching exclusi iwrench at a trauma clinic where a 12-year-old is fighting to say lives. and behind the singers behind "if i die young." we go to the band perry.
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from new york city, this is "nightline" with cynthia mcfadden. >> thanks for ginning us.
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drive through any major thoroughfair in america and you'll find a taco bell. in a country fuelled by classic cuisine, we take a look at an american company causing quite a stir. >> reporter: they could be screaming for a boy band, but instead they're screaming for all things, a taco. >> i want it! >> cool ranch. >> cool ranch. >> jimmy: that's right, cool ranch doritos. taco bell's transformation of the traditional taco, and if they have any say in it, the entire fast food industry. how did that concept come about? >> that's the story everyone's wanted to know. how it started was a few years ago, we were about to turn 15 so i said you know what i want? i want to reinvent the taco.
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if you think about the taco, it hasn't changed in 50 years. it's corn, yellow and formed in the change of a taco. there's been innovation in buns and burgers and everyone else. but no innovation in tacos. i told the team, let's reinvent the taco. >> a uniquely american delicacies. >> i'm an australian guy selling mexican food to americans. >> reporter: when jed creed joined taco bell -- >> what do you think the perception of taco bell was -- >> cheap, low quality. that's the perception. i hope we've done an amazing job of turning it around. >> reporter: he led us inside for a rare look attack co bell headquarters in irvine, california. why do you love taco bell? >> the people. everyone is a family. >> hello. >> reporter: he's tried to make the place feel more like a dot-com start-up. a game room and a sta state-of-the-art gym and a $6.8 billion a year fast food giant.
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glenn bell, hence the name taco bell, probably never imagined a neon orange taco shell when he built the first taco bell restaurant in the early 1960s. back then, few americans had heard of tacos. even today, taco bell is the only chain selling mexican cuisine. 1 million doritos locos tacos per day. how do you do it? >> you do it because it's a very simple idea. doritos on the outside with the classic taste of a taco on the inside. >> frito lays even announced this week that they now have a doritos chip inspired by the taco. but as taco bell has risen to be the sixth largest fast food chain in america, it faces a familiar criticism, that it's contributing to the nay nation's obesity problem. how much fat is in it? how many calories is in a taco? >> it's quite low. i think it's less than 200 calories in a taco.
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but the great thing about taco bell is you've got choice, right? we're very conscious about giving people choice. but it's up to the people for the people to make the choice. i can't force them to eat whatever i put on my menu. we' taken 1.5 pounds of sodium out of our products in the last two years and really told nobody. and the reason we've told nobody because people is worried it's not going to taste as good. >> cutting back by 10% or 15% is almost inconsequential to the flavor pro-vile of the product, they were adding so much to begin with. >> reporter: the author of the new book "salt, sugar fat" spent three years researching the big food companies. he knows firsthand how hard companies work to make a product that will make you crave more. >> they haven't diminished the allure of the product. if the fat and the sugar in products. while they're reducing the salt, they sure haven't reduced the sugar and the fat. and people are still lured to snack foods that are heavy in the calorie thing, the sugar and
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the fat. that's the issue when it comes to -- when it comes to obesity. >> reporter: but creed insists taco bell isn't ignoring the growing obesity epidemic. >> share these beautiful ingredients with the world. >> we introduced the cantina bell. lorraine garcia is an amazing chef and she inspired us to create the cantina line. >> jimmy: taco bell isn't alone in pursuing healthier options. mcdobldnald's and burger king or salads and wraps. and at kfc, they offer grilled chicken along the fried version. each new menu item now comes with a side of social media marketing, using facebook and twitter to create a buzz. >> okay, folk, here's a doozy. >> when the tiny town of bethel, alaska was convinced they would
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be getting a taco bell. just so they wouldn't be disappointed, they flew in a truck of tacos. >> i think they're going to have to hire 100,000 more people. >> reporter: just because of this taco? >> this taco creates growth. we think we can go from 6,000 to 8,000. we think we can double the size of taco bell. >> reporter: double? >> from a $7 billion to a $14 billion brand. >> reporter: a part of that growth is customer service. welcome to taco bell, can i take y your order? employees are expected to fill orders in under 65 seconds. i managed to feed some hungry customers. >> there you go. enjoy your meal. what do you think? is it good? do you think i could work here full time? do you think mixing doritos with
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tacos actually works? >> i never would have thought it before. but it's actually pretty dang good. >> reporter: pretty good indeed. we're thinking outside the bun. >> our thanks to john for that. and next in the battle ravaged city in syria, meet the children who work as medics saving the lives of others as they struggle to keep their own.
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. the innocence of childhood is a gift, a sort of magic bliss never again felt even in the sweetest moments of adult life. but in this city in syria, innocence is lost forever, especially when the medic is 12. the video you're about to see was shot by german filmmaker who has traveled extensively in syria. some of the images are disturbing. >> reporter: mohammed is just 12 years old. he's been working in this makeshift clinic for four months. the clinic is housed in an old shopping mall. it's busy and bloody. the main trauma center in this rebel-held part of town. with time it has become easy, he says. in the beginning when i saw blood, i would shiver and be
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frightened. but now i see blood like water. the son of a mechanic, mohammed started coming here with his father who now manages the clinic's pharmacy. the long days and nights, he says, are his way of serving god. and his people. the wounded are rushed in, many of them children who lie wherever there's space. screaming out in pain. in a room next door, a nurse tells a boy that god gives and god takes away. his relative is dead. inconsolable he cries out to bad. >> alas ooh lallah! >> his friend yousef is tenderly taking care of a rebel fighter. two years of civil war have left few innocence and not enough doctors. alepo is an ancient city. it has seen some of the fiercest fighting and is now divided
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between rebel fighters and government troops. their clashes on the ground are fierce as the government jets rain down rockets from above. food is so scarce that children pick through mounds of garbage for scraps as others line up for water. coming to their aid, an islamist charity linked to radical jihadist fighter, winning hearts and minds with much needed clothes and bread. >> one, two, three, four, seven. >> the government schools have long been closed. an islamic group has also taken them over, focusing on studies of recitation s of the koran. during moments of quiet, alepo's youth try to shut out the war around them, jumping rope, shooting marbles, playing foos ball, all within feet of spent artillery shells. but even in the quiet, there are constant reminders of the brutality of this war.
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in a river that runs through the city, residents go fishing. not for fish, but for the corpses of friends and relatives summarily executed by government forces. so far 190 have been sent downstream. on this day, four, including a child, are pulled from the river. bloated, their hands tied behind their backs. they're gently lifted up into a pickup truck and taken away for burial. back in the clinic, mohammed runs around, getting supplies and attending to patients. he talks about a particularly bloody day. the injured started streaming in. we couldn't keep up, he said. some had no faces. some had large parts of their bodies missing. we kept going until 5:00 in the morning. he knows that tragedy lurks around every corner -- a warning what you're about to see is very disturbing. three days after this video of a smiling yousef was filmed, he
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was brought into his own clinic, dead from shrapnel wounds. 70,000 people have now died in this war. soldiers, rebel fighter, and innocent civilians. it has become a messy, sectarian proxy war for more than a dozen countries, including the united states and iran. children like mohammed are simply caught in the middle of this war, which has no end in sight. he goes about his duties and even if he manages to survive, his childhood and those of millions of others are lost forever. for "nightline" i'm alex marquardt in london. depend silhouette for charity? right now? under this? why not? for charity? now's the perfect time, cause with soft fabric and waistband, the best protection looks, fits and feels just like underwear.
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nothing spells music superstardom like a talented group of singing siblings. the jackson five, oasis, the jonas brothers. and now the band perry joins the rank of red hot clan bands. the perrys sat down with abc's amy robach and discussed their long road to family fame with tonight's "on the town." >> reporter: this is family time for the perrys of greenville, tennessee. makeup artists, a band and a room full of cameras. because reid, kimberly and neil are no longer just any family. they're the sister and brothers that make up the band perry. but if that band doesn't ring a bell, the song probably will. ♪ lay me down on a bed of roses ♪ ♪ sing me the river
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at dawn ♪ ♪ send me away with the words of a love song ♪ >> i have two daughters 6 and 10. they know every word to that song. and i hear it over and over. i was so excited. >> i'm sorry. >> reporter: you wrote that correct? >> i have. i have so many mothers say i don't know that i like my sids knowing that song. but it's about making the most of every moment that we're here. >> reporter: words to live by as this trio rides high on two grammy wins, a stream of country music awards and a growing list of hit songs all in under three years. ♪ >> you all come in. >> "nightline" went on the road as the band went back to their hometown of greenville, tennessee.
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>> we've been playing shows pretty much almost every single day. >> reporter: on this rainy night, they're headed home to give a free concert for the release of their second album "pioneer." you've been at it for a very long time. and i'm sure you've had plenty of doors slammed in your face. a lot of nos. how did you get to that point? >> you just outlast the process. i think that's one of the great things about being a family band. we know how to pick each other up whenever we're feeling down. >> reporter: it's been some ride for kimberly, neil and reid. thee kids who didn't show much interest in music until their teens. but even mom and dad could see there was no turning back. >> a lot of parents would hear, oh, my gosh, my kids want to get into show business? were they supportive? >> being the' oldest, i was the first making a decision about college. i said look, i've got to have something to fall back on. i needed to have a plan b. they looked at me and said hey,
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if you have something to fall back on, you're going to fall back on it at some point, so we're not going to let you have a plan b. >> instead their dad, a doctor, learned everything he could about the music business, booking them in small clubs and figuring out how to get them in front of important people in nashville. mom took on the role of stylist and just about everything else. >> she drove the bus early on. and dad set up all the gear. >> the motor home. it was not a bus. ♪ she's the sky that holds the clouds ♪ ♪ she's the lady of house >> we actually wrote a song for our mother called "mother like mine." >> if the world had mothers like ours ♪ >> reporter: back in greenville, the fans are camped out early on the morning of the concert. >> they are a very big deal and they haven't forgotten us. we're proud of them. >> we're little and this is huge. >> just really good kids.
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>> reporter: what it's it like to be on that stage. 25,000 people? >> well, we did -- >> >> jimmy: more than your entire town, right? >> my goodness, this is the business crowd i think we've ever played for. there's people all the way in the back down main street. how you all doing back there? my goodness. >> we really didn't even see the crowd until we walked on stage. it was a great moment to see everyone come out. ♪ mother always told me that i should play nice ♪ >> our record is called "pioneer." i believe part of that pioneering spirit is about big things happening in small places. we are perfect examples of talent that was just sort of sitting in a small town and enjoying the atmosphere and being inspired by a small town. >> we are the band perry. and this is our hometown greenville, tennessee!
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>> reporter: is there any room for a personal life in this lifestyle? >> there will be a time for that. you know, this is such a blessing, a charmed season for us to just really buckle down and work hard. i mean, we've worked towards this moment to be on these stages for over a decade now. so i think we certainly even share that commitment to making the most of this moment. all those other moments will happen when they're meant to. >> reporter: for "nightline." i'm amy robach in new york. >> the band perry's latest album "pioneer" was released today. it's time now for "tonight's closing arguments." samoa air announces it will begin charging passengers for their weight. the company says the more passengers weigh, the more it costs to fly them to their destinations. so what do you think? is samoa's policy sensible or dis-christmas tear? weigh in or tweet us.
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thanks for watching abc news. "good morning america" will be right here in the morning. good night, america. ♪ ♪ if loving you is wrong ♪ i don't wanna be right [ record scratch ] what?! it's not bad for you. it just tastes that way. [ female announcer ] honey nut cheerios cereal -- heart-healthy, whole grain oats. you can't go wrong loving it. bee happy. bee healthy. with clusts of flakes and o's. oh, ho ho... it's the honey sweetness. i...i mean, you...love.

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