tv ABC World News With David Muir ABC April 2, 2011 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT
tonight on "world news," the air scare at 36,000 feet. the roof of that 737 ripping open right above passengers' heads. >> like an explosion. >> your ears instantly start to hurt really bad. >> tonight, passengers on board that plummeting plane texting their loved ones. now, southwest grounds nearly 80 planes and we ask, what about the other 737s flying over this country right now? is president obama about to make it official, he wants another four years but after that shellacking he took, just where are the republicans running against him? the japan crisis takes another turn. radioactive water into the pacific, how much, and we ask, is it coming here? the calorie count about to
appear on menus across this nation and stunning new findings, do those numbers really change the way our families eat? long-feared "gone with the wind," the new chapters discovered and what they reveal about that age-old love story. >> i can't think about this now. i'll go crazy if i do. good evening. it was a terrifying moment in the sky, a boeing 737 flying at 36,000 feet when part of the roof ripped off right above passengers' heads. they could see the sunlight pouring into the plane. oxygen masks dropping, just as the plane then dropped to 11,000 feet in minutes. it did land safely but tonight, southwest is now grounding 79 jets, canceling 300 flights and calling for emergency inspections. and the passengers, they're now describing the moments they began texting their loved ones from the air, fearing they would not survive the flight.
lisa stark is at reagan national airport tonight. >> reporter: good evening, david. the black boxes from this flight are now on their way back to washington and a big chunk of the plane, that section of the fuselage that broke apart, will be coming here. investigators need to take a very close look to try to figure out what went wrong and make sure no other planes are at risk. investigators today got their first look at the gaping hole that sent those on board gasping for air and the plane into a rapid descent. >> we think this is a significant event, that's why we've sent an entire go team from washington to be here. >> reporter: it was a terrifying moment at 36,000 feet when the 118 passengers on the southwest jet heard a loud bang and saw the top of the boeing 737 rip apart. >> it was crazy. it was frightening. >> sounded like an explosion. >> reporter: oxygen masks dropped. passengers struggled to put them on. >> almost passed out. your ears instantly start to hurt really bad, you feel like you're going to black out. you get really dizzy.
>> reporter: the pilots declared an emergency and immediately put the plane into a controlled dive, dropping 25,000 feet in just minutes. >> i turned on my phone and writing my husband and telling him i love him and hoping this isn't the last text i ever send. >> reporter: the jet made an emergency landing at maa milita base in yuma, arizona, and passengers gave the pilots a round of applause. could this have caused the plane to crash, this crack? >> any time a cabin opens up in a passenger airliner at 36,000 feet it's bad and potentially catastrophic. >> reporter: how catastrophic became clear after a disaster more than two decades ago on an aloha flight, a flight attendant sucked out of the plane to her death. and this is the second hole in a fuselage on a southwest jet. another one in 2009 was blamed on metal fatigue. that's something airlines are required to check for. the jet now being scrutinized was 15 years old. it's last major inspection was
over a year ago. meantime, those on board the flight finally made it to their destination late friday night. arriving in sacramento to hugs and tears and joy. a few years ago southwest paid a record $7.5 million fine for failing to inspect the fuselages on its planes but the airline says today, that the plane that had this incident and all of the ones it grounded were up to date on their inspections. david? >> lisa stark leading us off. thank you. i want to bring in john cox, airline safety expert and veteran pilot, he's flown many of these 737s. right to the gaping hole and notion of metal fatigue. what is metal fatigue? >> david, metal fatigue can come in a couple different ways. one is a type of corrosion, you could think of an aluminum can exposed to the weather. the other is due to the airplane taking off, landing, being stressed, pressurized,
depressurized, so it flexes the aluminum back and forth. >> you talk about the stress on the metal, and yet this plane was just 15 years old and flying time that's relatively middle aged. many other planes, so much older than that, flying in the skies right now. should we be concerned about those planes? >> no. the airplanes can be, that are well maintained can fly for many, many, many years. this is a very relatively young airplane, as you describe it, middle aged, i think that's one of the questions that the investigators ask. >> john, a lot of people will be flying on these 737s wondering if the roof above me is going to peel back because of this metal fatigue as well. what about all of the other 737s out there flying right now? >> they are very safe airplanes. i spent 15 years flying them. i know them very well. i have absolute confidence in them. i would fly on a 737 300 this afternoon without a second thought. >> reassuring words. john cox, thank you very much. turning to a major headline out of washington and on the surface it's no surprise, president obama is about to make it official.
he wants another four years. but there are two intriguing questions, could he be the first billion-dollar candidate? we ask, after that shellacking he tuck in the midterms, where are the republicans willing to run against him? david kerley is at the white house. >> reporter: with good news on jobs finally -- >> our economy is showing signs of real strength. >> reporter: president obama is ready to tell the country he wants to keep his job. he's expected to send an e-mail message to supporters in the next few days and file official papers announcing his re-election bid. a huge fund-raiser is already set for chicago in a week and a half. money that many expect could help make mr. obama the first billion-dollar candidate. are these republicans afraid of the billion-dollar man? >> some of them say it publicly that they are worried that they're not going to be able to compete money-wise against a president who is talking about or his campaign talking about raising a billion dollars. >> reporter: there are plenty of potential republican candidates
from donald trump to tea party favorite michelle bachmann but not one has actually said they are game. >> they don't want to spend the money or run out of gas and don't want to be a target. when you are the one candidate, who has the republican label on, everybody starts throwing darts at you. >> reporter: does it seem like it's slow motion, this cycle? you look back to this date in the last presidential cycle there were six democratic candidates and five republican candidates but no incumbent, so we went back to the last democratic incumbent, bill clinton, guess what, he filed his official papers almost to the day that barack obama is expected to file as well. >> david kerley, thank you. we turn to the disaster in the pacific. tonight, highly radioactive water is pouring into the pacific ocean from the newly discovered crack at the nuclear plant. neal karlinsky is in tokyo tonight. >> reporter: the leak is an eight-inch wide crack deep
inside this pit right next to reactor 2 and right alongside the coast. this is where officials now say highly radioactive water is spilling directly into the ocean. >> it's a catch-22 situation. on one hand they have to put as much seawater and freshwater they can to keep the core cool but because of the leak someplace it filters out and gets right into the environment. >> reporter: some has polluted the ocean with iodine 131, detected at unsafe levels at water near the reactor and in waters as far as 24 miles to the south. but no one knows what it's doing to the fish or how much has spilled. cleanup crews are racing to prevent the ocean leaks and find new places to store the toxic water on tanks and huge barges. it is a growing problem. >> the workers can't get near the places need to get near to with that highly radioactive water there. >> reporter: ge's ceo jeff immelt is on his way to japan to
meet with officials about the troubled reactor which his company designed. 23 similar reactors are in service across the united states. meanwhile, thousands of japanese and american soldiers are making one last attempt to find the more than 16,000 people still missing. "we are working as hard as we can," he says, "so we can find these people as soon as possible." so far, after scouring villages and hundreds of miles of coastline, only 28 bodies have been found. neal karlinsky, abc news, tokyo. we'll turn next to a brazen attack in afghanistan. two suicide attackers disguised as women in burqas blew themselves up at the gate outside a nato base, camp phoenix near kabul. a third attacker was shot dead, three nato service members were injured. meantime, we know more tonight about the u.n. workers targeted in afghanistan during that fury caused by the burning of the koran a half a world away by the pastor in florida.
tonight, nick schifrin with what one of the u.n. workers did to survive the attack. >> reporter: today, thousands filled kandahar city, furious over that koran burning 8,000 miles away. the police shot into the crowd, killing nine, injuring 80. brutally they prevented what happened yesterday, protesters overrunning police in northern afghanistan and murdering seven u.n. members. remarkably, one of them survived. this man, pavel, local head of the u.n., found beaten and left in a ditch. earlier, inside the compound, attackers had put a gun to his head. they'd killed his colleagues and asked him to prove he was muslim. he isn't, but he convinced them he was by reciting the koran. they beat him up but let him go. >> he knew the culture and respected the afghan religion, which is islam, but different islam, not islam of those that want to manipulate. >> reporter: protests were
ignited after fringe pastor terry jones burned a koran. he remains apologetic. >> we do not feel responsible, no. >> reporter: what's your message to someone like that? >> if he did look at me at this moment i would tell him my three colleagues died and seven altogether died, were very good people so you should be feeling guilty. >> reporter: more than 20 people have died in the protests and officials fear the anger might only get worse. nick schifrin, abc news, kabul. now to target libya and today, the u.s. ended its role flying combat missions over that country, saying that work will now be left for other nations. and there was this image on the ground from libya, one of the burned out vehicles after rebels were hit by one of those air strike intended for colonel gadhafi's forces. jeffrey kofman is in tripoli tonight. >> reporter: the bomb was meant to hit gadhafi's fighters, instead the u.s.-led coalition hit anti-gadhafi rebels today, killing at least 13, injuring many more.
but rebel forces know they need air support to confront gadhafi's better-armed troops so they are not cursing the u.s. and other coalition members. what they want is more bombs. >> we understand that collateral damage may have to take place at some times. looking at the big picture, some time we may have to bomb with an area where some innocent bystander, civilians may get hurt. >> reporter: in eastern libya a state of war. today, we crossed from tunisia into western libya where the picture is very different. we climbed aboard a government bus under the watchful eye of government minders. after all, this is gadhafi territory. as we travel to tripoli it is clear the battle is not in this part of the country. at least not yet. life here is almost normal. streets are busy, but most stores are closed. and look at the huge lines for gasoline. this, in a country that is a
major oil producer. as for the revolution here, it is rapidly morphing into a stalemate. the rebel east and gadhafi west. the bombing will continue but as of tomorrow the u.s. is pulling back, letting britain and france take the lead. but it will take much more than bombs to dislodge gadhafi, to be clear, as we drove here today, our minders wouldn't let us film, but we saw dozens of army checkpoints along the way. it is clear that gadhafi's loyalists are still very much standing guard. david? >> jeffrey kofman from libya, thank you. >> we want to bring in christiane amanpour, host of "abc's this week," good to see you. we heard jeffrey saying rebels struggle to hold on to ground they've gained, gadhafi holding on to his and the u.s. continuing to spend money. is there growing concern in washington? >> reporter: there is. you hear the worried stalemate,
and again, what is the end game? the rebels are outmatched on the ground, they have neither the training or tactics nor the command to match gadhafi's most-superior artillery, so the question is, do these rebels need to be armed? do they need to be trained, should the united states do that? is the end game to get rid of gadhafi by this military action? how to have a new libya as the u.s. is saying, and how to keep the costs down. in the two weeks since the no-fly zone went into effect the u.s. spent more than $500 million, it's handing over to nato this weekend, that should reduce its costs but the u.s. will still have a leading role in this operation, david. >> christiane, thank you. tomorrow morning on "this week" christiane's guests include president obama's former national security adviser retired general james jones. still ahead this saturday night, heading out to dinner this weekend? we already pay attention to the prices but what about when the calories are listed? surprise findings about what it's doing to the family dinner. we've long known about
berries, chocolate, to may tows. but the latest super food. this last one surprised us. >> last chapters from "gone with the wind" tonight. what do they reveal?o they reve? what's all this? big news! we have another way to help you save. oh, really? how? by bundling. if you get your homeowners and auto insurance together, we give you even more savings. ooh! big bundle. [ chuckling ] home and auto together. it's like peanut butter and jelly. oh, or like burgers and fries. or pickles and ice cream. unicorns and glitter! no? bundling to save you more. now, that's progressive! call or click today. i don't always let the worry my pipes might leak compromise what i like to do. i take care with vesicare, because i have better places to visit than just the bathroom. ( announcer ) once-daily vesicare
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what do we know so far? is it really changing the way american families eat? here's jeremy hubbard. >> reporter: super-size numbers hidden in our oversized meals but not for long. the new proposal, part of the president's health overhaul law would mandate calorie counts in large print at every big restaurant chain, convenience stores and drive-thrus and vending machines. >> this will be great way to help those people who want to cut back on calories to be able to really watch what they eat when they eat out. >> reporter: these kind of laws currently exist in just two states and nine other cities. question is, do they really work? >> if you see a huge number do you say i won't order that? >> i absolutely did that today. absolutely. there was another salad that sounded better but the calories, too much for me. >> reporter: she may be one of the few. a study in new york found no evidence that menu labeling convinced large numbers of restaurant goers to buy low calorie food. >> the people who pay the most attention it are the people who
need it the least. the opposite effect on people who most need to lose weight. what they do is look and says 800 calories, great! more calories per dollar. >> reporter: for that reason some people are actually more inclined to buy high-calorie food. not what the fda had in mind in pro potion changes at nearly half of the 600,000 eating establishments in this country. there are some exceptions, for instance movie theaters would be exempt, good thing they probably don't want to remind you that large popcorn and large regular soda can run 1600 calories, nearly an entire day's worth of food. a shockingly high number, like those hidden in so many indulgences that we've been able to ignore until now. why do movie theaters, home to such unhealthy food get a pass? because this new rule applies to businesses that get at least half their money from food sales, and movie theaters, amusement parks do not. >> ride tickets or movie tickets. back to the popcorn, without the soda?
what's the bucket of popcorn? >> 900 calories. that's a lot. >> what about people like yours truly who like to add butter? >> slather it on, that will cost you another 300 calories. 1200, more than half of what we're supposed to have, most of us, in an entire day. going to cost you. >> thank you. i think. jeremy hubbard. when we come back, what could be the latest cancer-fighting super food. i was diagnosed with copd. i could not take a deep breath i noticed i was having trouble. climbing the stairs, working in the garden, painting. my doctor suggested spiriva right then. announcer: spiriva is the only once-daily inhaled maintenance treatment for copd, which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. i love what it does. it opens up the airways. announcer: spiriva does not replace fast-acting inhalers for sudden symptoms. stop taking spiriva and call your doctor right away if your breathing suddenly worsens, your throat or tongue swells, you get hives, have vision changes or eye pain, or have problems passing urine.
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there is a group of scientists with a suggestion for sunday brunch tomorrow, pancakes with the maple syrup. the research shows that pure maple syrup is full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory chemicals like the ones found in blueberries and green tea. these so-called super foods, it's believed, may help fight cancer and heart disease. a question for you tonight, how good is your penmanship? probably a lot better than your children and grandchildren. cursive writing may disappear from school as more and more standards that don't include it. some teachers say no need for cursive writing because children use keyboards to write and text everything. actor james factor has broken his silence about his performance as co-host, of the academy wards. he was criticized by many after
last month's oscars for being too low energy. many people thought he looked like his character in "pineapple express." >> people said i was under the influence. >> why would they say that? >> i thought about it. i think i know why, because i love her, but anne hathaway is so energetic, i think the tasmanian devil would look stoned next to anne. >> of course, david letterman would know, he called himself, his own turn as co-host of the oscars in 1995, quote, lousy. still ahead, the last chapters of "gone with the wind." she needs help from me. and her medication. the exelon patch -- it releases medication continuously for twenty-four hours. she uses one exelon patch daily for the treatment of mild to moderate alzheimer's symptoms. [ female announcer ] it cannot change the course of the disease. hospitalization and rarely death have been reported in patients who wore more than one patch at a time.
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get your first full prescription free and save on refills at advaircopd.com. finally here, they were lost chapters feared "gone with the wind" but now they've been found and what they reveal tonight about that timeless classic. ♪ 75 years later that romance, the movie, still an american classic. but until now, it was believed the book it was based upon had been lost to history. but the last four chapters of margaret mitchell's original manuscript have been found in a connecticut library, in a basement storage area, hidden for decades. >> i was speechless.
a quiet went over the room when i realized what we had. >> reporter: included in those pages some of mitchell's own writin writings, some lines we'll never forget. rhett butler's final words to scarlett. >> frankly my dear, i don't give a damn. >> reporter: and unforgettable final words from the heartbroken but defiant scarlett. >> i'll think of some way to get him back. after all, tomorrow is another day. >> reporter: it's the only draft of those final chapters, those final scenes so ingrained in our movie culture. scarlett o'hara, lying on the stairs, her lover, gone with the wind. we're told that margaret mitchell's final chapters will be hand-delivered, carefully, to her hometown of atlanta. don't forget gma first thing in the morning. see you tomorrow night.
>> alan: veil phone pictures show where a airplane peeled back. the pilots would have had 10 to 20 seconds to get this oxygen masks on. it was terrifying for the 118 people on board. passengers could feel a rush of air and could see daylight through the hole that tore open an overhead compartment. the pilot made a rapid descent, causing the oxygen masks to fall. >> the oxygen masks came down, an