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tv   ABC World News Saturday  ABC  May 22, 2010 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT

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tonight on "world news," airline disaster. a passenger jet tries to land too far down a runway and veers over a cliff. amid the flames, survivors. coming ashore, day 33, and our correspondent reports tonight from a gulf coast beach covered in oil. making history, the 13-year-old american boy who said, mom, i'm calling from the top of the world. that mom here tonight. partners in crime. bonnie and clyde made famous by hollywood. this evening the real-life crime scene revealed for the first time. and a league of her own. the female baseball player who inspired that movie and an entire nation tonight remembered. good evening on this saturday night. now comes word it was an airport
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that many had feared was a disaster waiting to happen. tonight one official in india has said "our worst fears have come true." an air india jetliner landing too far down a runway built on a hilltop in southwest india and then plunging over a cliff bursting into flames. 158 people died, but incredibly tonight there are survivors, and we begin here with abc's jim sciutto. >> reporter: tonight investigators are struggling to understand what caused an uneventful flight from dubai to mangalore, india, to turn suddenly into a death trap. firefighters in villages raced down a hillside to reach the injured but fire engulfed the fuselage and most of the 166 passengers and crew. but eight survivors managed to escape just before the jet burst into flames. "as we landed, the flight went out of control" said one survivor. "within seconds there was fire and smoke all around. i couldn't even breathe." he escaped through
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a broken window, but after a few minutes, there were no more survivors to be found. a child pulled from the wreckage covered in flame retardant foam later died in the hospital. victims' relatives who had been waiting at the airport stood near the wreckage in tears. mangalore's airport is on top of a hill making for a difficult approach. witnesses say air india express flight 812 approached from a high angle and landed halfway down the runway. the plane then veered off course, struck a concrete navigation tower losing a wing and careened down a hillside. >> the plane was in contact with the atc and had not reported any kind of shortcoming, technical or otherwise. >> reporter: most of the passengers were indian workers on a rare visit home from dubai, a terrible end to what had been a hopeful journey. indian officials say the conditions at the time of the landing were virtually ideal.
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visibility of several miles, low winds and no rain, which is already drawing attention there both to the airport, the difficulty of the landing and, david, to the pilot's decisions as well. >> all right, jim sciutto, thanks very much. >> we want to continue on this with our aviation expert john nance, a pilot himself and, john, we wanted to turn back to that animation we saw in jim's report of the plane landing on the runway so far down the runway. you have a looked at this before. pilots trying to salvage landings that look, well, unsalvageable. what do you make of it? >> we've seen this too much. it's a natural tendency to want to salvage a landing that looks like it's getting bad and unfortunately we have this happen too many times. a judgment is really 90% of the battle, and the judgment should be to go around. >> when you look at these pictures of the runway and cliff at the very end of the runway, a lot of people are going to be wondering why do we build a runway there in the first place? >> david, sometimes that's the only place to build them. we have examples of that in ketchikan, alaska,
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billings, montana, farmington, new mexico and things like that you just don't have much margin, however, you can build some margin in. where you don't have a margin you have a margin for disaster and that's where we were here. >> john, i'm always struck with the images of the survivors, passengers who were able to walk away from the crashes. just a week ago there was the boy that returned home from the netherlands. what is it about the physiology that allows passengers to survive these catastrophic crashes? >> it's amazing. we're both so fragile and so tough at the same time and human intent to survive is very great. but these are survivable crashes when they're on the ground, and, unfortunately, this fire, if it hadn't have had a fire, we would have gotten a lot more people out of it. >> john nance, tonight, thank you. we'll turn now to the gulf coast this evening where for weeks now we have been bracing for the picture our correspondent discovered today. oil now stretching along an entire beach. it is now day 33 of this huge oil spill, and look at this tonight. a live picture of a beach from grand isle, louisiana, and there it is, the oil everywhere.
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ryan owens, part of the team covering this from the very beginning, and, ryan, you said even you were struck by what you found. >> reporter: this is devastating for a lot of people, david, i think because it's taken so long for the oil to show up, people lulled themselves into thinking it wasn't and today just take a look in the water here. this is really unbelievable to watch as the tide comes in. it is literally brown and red and this stuff is everywhere as far as the eye can see. i put on these gloves so i could give you some sense of what this stuff is like because we've been talking about the sheen, that thin layer for a couple of weeks now. this is anything but. look at this oil, and everybody knows much more of this is on the way. sunrise over grand isle, louisiana. this beauty is deceiving. as first light reveals the beach here is covered with the oil everyone has been dreading for more than a month. >> it's pretty disgusting actually. >> very discouraging. >> reporter: don and paulette dufrain have smelled the oil for
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days. this weekend it showed up. did you imagine the oil would come literally washing up to your doorstep here? >> no. >> no, i thought they'd be able to get a handle of it and stop it before now. >> reporter: but no one did. so this weekend cleanup crews armed with scoopers no more sophisticated than you'd find in a backyard pool shovel away the sludge. the beaches here are deserted except for the occasional team, no doubt aware that every drop they clean up will be replaced by more for countless days to come. >> grand isle is a fishing community. it's -- and if you can't fish, i don't know how grand isle can survive. >> reporter: in nearby plaquemines parish, oil continues to pour into marshes that most concede can never be cleaned. some fragile wetlands still haven't been touched, but the parish president says it's only a matter of time. >> shame on them. shame on them. shame on the coast guard, bp, the corps, all of them.
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>> if somebody can clean it up, maybe we can get back to our way of life, but they need to do something to try to help this. if not, it could be -- >> hurricane is an act of mother nature and god. this is different, this is manmade totally. >> reporter: it is starting to sound like a broken record, but there is yet another setback for bp tonight. this weekend they were hoping to try their latest attempt to shut down that well to actually pump some concrete and mud into it. now, david, they say they can't do that until tuesday at the very earliest. >> a broken record but powerful new pictures there behind you. ryan, thank you. now to the political storm brewing after a champion of the tea party, rand paul, won kentucky's primary this week. there was a protest over paul's recent comments about the civil rights act of 1964 and then just yesterday telling "good morning america" here that president obama has been too hard on bp for that oil spill. >> i think it's part of his sort of blame game society in the sense that it's always got to be someone's fault instead of the fact that maybe sometimes
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accidents happen. >> and with comments like those causing a controversy this week, we thought we'd check in with jake tapper in our washington newsroom preparing for tomorrow morning's "this week." jake, i'm curious from what you're hearing inside the republican party. are they embracing him or are they watching him from a distance? >> reporter: they are embracing him. this is after all kentucky. rand paul is still heavily favored to win in november. but privately, of course, there is some hand-wringing about these comments as one republican senator was quoted saying rand paul needs to learn the difference between a philosophical discussion at 2 a.m. in college and being a united states senator. for now, however, of course, they're sticking by him. >> and, jake, on the other side of the aisle, the democratic nominee in connecticut, richard blumenthal and questions about his vietnam service, whether he misrepresented it. how does he move forward now that he captured the nomination? >> reporter: his party, democrats, are circling the wagon attacking "the new york times" that broke the story and had another story on top of that
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on top of other comments blumenthal has made and hoping that blumenthal's decades of service in connecticut as attorney general will enable him to weather the storm but, of course, it is still possible that the party might ultimately decide to go in another direction if blumenthal becomes too damaged to win in november. >> all right. jake tapper, good to have you here. tomorrow morning on "this week," jake will have more on this this when he's joined by leaders of both parties. another political race and could be a case of deja vu. we learned that new york attorney general andrew cuomo will now run for the position once held by his father. online and then in person cuomo says he is running for governor. his father mario served three terms in that role and often with his son andrew part of the family standing with him. we'll turn now to new talk on national security today. president obama delivering the commencement address at west point detailed a huge shift in strategy stressing the need for diplomacy and alliances over what some have called the go it alone approach of his predecessor, president george w. bush.
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>> america has not succeeded by stepping out of the currents of cooperation. we have succeeded by steering those currents in the direction of liberty and justice so nations thrive by meeting their responsibilities and face consequences when they don't. >> and one other note from west point tonight, the top two graduates, the class valedictorian and the number one cadet, both women for the first time in west point history. and many of those graduates are, of course, now headed for afghanistan where just today we learned of another brazen attack. insurgents firing rockets and mortars tried to storm nato's biggest base in southern afghanistan. the third major attack on a nato installation just this week. several coalition troops were wounded. it was a bittersweet homecoming today for the mothers of those three young americans jailed in iran. the mothers are now back home while their children remain in a tehran prison. linsey davis is at kennedy airport here in new york where those mothers, i understand, just landed. linsey, how were they. >> reporter: david, it was quite a touching scene inside. we saw more tears today as the
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mothers on one hand were expressing gratitude as they got to visit with their kids but on the other disappointment that they weren't able to bring them home. one of the hikers' brothers was on hand to greet them just a short time ago. as you can imagine, they were exhausted and overwhelmed. this after an emotional 72 hours when they finally got the moments they had waited for more than nine months for, the chance to hold and talk with their kids who are being detained in iran in prison. >> it's almost more than we can bear. our greatest hope was to bring our children home with us. >> reporter: yes. >> any word from the state department on what it's doing to help the mothers? >> reporter: the state department hasn't said specifically what they plan to do other than they continue to call on the government of iran to release them on humanitarian grounds. >> all right, linsey davis on another emotional day for those mothers. thank you very much. we do have a death to report here tonight.
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a woman who was truly in a league of her own. >> here's the pitch. >> oh. >> reporter: she was an inspiration for the character in the film about the women's pro baseball league, "a lying of their own" dorothy "dottie" kamenshek was perhaps the greatest female baseball player ever while male players fought in world war ii. she was so good she was asked to play on a men's minor league team but she declined. years later she was a consultant for that famous movie actually on set teaching the actresses how to turn a double play. >> oh. >> out. >> dorothy kamenshek was 84. >> teaching then the double play. and still ahead here on "world news," this saturday night, the secrets to starting over. the stunning number of americans who turn the crushing moment they learned they lost their job into a huge opportunity. what's turning no a real flash point. should your child heading off to college have to turn over their
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dna? and we've seen the hollywood version. tonight your first look at the real-life images of bonnie and clyde now being circulated. hey can i play with the toys ? sure, but let me get a little information first. for broccoli, say one. for toys, say two. toys ! the system can't process your response at this time. what ? please call back between 8 and 5 central standard time. he's in control. goodbye. even kids know it's wrong to give someone the run around. at ally bank you never have to deal with an endless automated system. you can talk to a real person 24/7. it's just the right thing to do. the middle of this special moment and i need to run off to the bathroom. i'm fed up with always having to put my bladder's needs ahead of my daughter.
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a census taker mayau has come knocking on your door, to collect your answers. opening your door can open doors to other things in your community, like better education. open your door to your census taker. we can't move forward until you give your answers back. bolt that burrito. no matter what life throws at you, you can take the heat. until it turns into... heartburn. good thing you've got what it takes to beat that heat, too. zantac. it's strong, just one pill can knock out the burn. it's fast, the speed you need for heartburn relief. and it lasts, up to 12 hours. so let them turn up the heat. you can stop that heartburn cold: (sssssssss!!!) zantac. we learned today that aig is now off the hook. there will be no criminal charges against executives at the insurance giant accused of misleading investors. aig, as you'll remember, got a $200 billion bailout from
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taxpayers. the financial meltdown has wiped out more than 8 million jobs in this country and this week here we took note of a stunning number of americans who took that moment they lost their jobs and then reinvented themselves. from the depths of this recession, a portrait of americans boldly and bravely setting out on their own creating 558,000 new businesses a month, and one of those success stories we found right in the battered town of jackson, michigan. for ten years dan ross proudly worked in the lab at pfizer and then this headline, pfizer stuns michigan. the plant shuts down and for dan came the excruciating question, should i stay here in a town with nearly the highest unemployment rate in the nation? do i gamble with my life savings? he would take the gamble opening his own lab, but for months with his own small team, the bills would mount, and just this week he told us they've turned the corner and turned a profit. >> i've had two days off this year. we've already done more business in 2010 than we did in all of 2009.
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>> reporter: the number of new mail entrepreneurs is up. women up too. minority, african-americans also on the rise. and this around the corner is corporate headquarters. >> yes. >> reporter: tucked in the corner of this brooklyn loft, another reinvention. this is where the ceo is? >> yes, it is. >> reporter: saudia spent a decade in the movie business promoting movies like "my big fat greek wedding" but not in the script was the day her entire department got laid off. >> it was that, you know, do i take the safe route or do i really venture out. >> reporter: she described the anxiety, the fear and then the answer from the example set by her late grandmother that determined woman from jamaica who would rise at 5 a.m. to clean for a living. and that was what saudia set out to do, starting her own eco-friendly cleaning company making homes cleaner and greener. how many clients? >> we have about 600. >> reporter: who knew? >> who knew. >> reporter: her goal, to leave no footprint behind while firmly
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tonight there is a real debate brewing over a question facing the freshmen who are going to the university of california at berkeley fall. the school has asked them to turn over their dna. david wright on this newest flash point tonight. >> reporter: every year u.c. berkeley sends all freshmen the title of one book to read over the summer to spark a conversation, but this year incoming students will get a decidedly different assignment. >> they'll get a swab like a giant q-tip. >> reporter: the new students are invited to send berkeley a dna sample. >> we thought since this is a scientific issue and it's a personal issue, we would better engage our students if we actually involve them in an experiment. >> reporter: on a campus where protest is part of the dna, already there's no shortage of strong views. >> i think it's a huge invasion of privacy. actually. >> i think it's a little scary. >> reporter: skeptics worry about the future imagined in sci-fi movies like "gattica."
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>> or a single hair determines where you can work, who you should marry, what you're capable of achieving. >> reporter: berkeley insists the test is voluntary. the results, anonymous, and that the samples will be destroyed. they're only testing for genes that control the body's ability to process dairy product, leafy vegetables and alcohol. >> every student should eat leafy vegetables, make sure they take some folic acid and stay away from binge drinking. they don't need gene tests to tell them that. >> reporter: but school officials insist that's not the point. >> this technology is coming. it's already in place in medicine. >> reporter: the idea, administrators say, is to spark a conversation, a scientific and ethical debate and mission accomplished. david wright, abc news, lange. >> we'd love to know what you think. weigh in at abcnews.com.
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it was 76 years ago tonight, partners in crime, bonnie and clyde died in a spectacular volley of gunfire and now we're learning of new images just now being widely circulated of the duo and of the final crime scene left behind. >> if everybody would just take it easy, nobody will get hurt. >> reporter: they carried on a legendary crime spree as on the big screen in this 1967 movie. bonnie parker and clyde burrow were two texas kids looking for thrills robbing banks during the depression. dallas sheriffs pursued them for years and images from the city archives widely circulated we see a baby face clyde at his first mug shot just 17 years old. opinions have long differed on bonnie's role but it is believed that they killed nine policemen in a dozen or so robberies and played cat and mouse until they were ambushed in louisiana and died in a hail of bullets that riddled their car and deafened the cops for hours afterwards they wanted to be buried side by side but bonnie's family wouldn't have it. they remain some of the most
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fascinating gangsters that ever lived. some extraordinary images just released. see them right at our win site. when we come back here tonight, the 13-year-old on top of mt. everest and the mother he called first. and play with th. it means the world to me. problem is, i pay for it with the pain. the doctor diagnosed that i have arthritis undernath my kneecap. a real sharp, strong sensation. it aches. when i feel the pain coming on, go take two aleve. works fast, kicks in, and it lets me keep up with my kids. i want to teach them the value of family. i'm very proud of both of my sons. i couldn't ask for better. [ male announcer ] we call it the american renewal. because we believe in the strength of american businesses. ♪ ge capital understands what small businesses need to grow and create jobs. today, over 300,000 businesses rely on ge capital for the critical financing they need
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13-year-old american boy who has now made it to the top of mt. everest and rewrote history doing it. and who de call first? appropriately enough his mother who i spoke with here just a short time ago. >> he called from the summit. it was great. >> he called you from the summit. and what did he say >> he called. he said, mom, i'm calling you from the top of the world, and it was amazing. words aren't even enough. >> reporter: just 13, jordan romera is the youngest climber ever to make it to the top of mt. everest. tonight he's partway down now just below 25,000 feet, enough for his mother to exhale. but she's sort of been trained for this too. after all, jordan climbed mt. kilimanjaro when he was just 10. it's sort of like the boy who brings home the "a" pluses on the report card but this is "a" plus plus. right? >> it's extraordinary from an extraordinary kid. >> we wondered what does a mother say when her young son says mt. everest is next. >> when he first told me about it, of course, like any other parent, i'm thinking, whoa, i'm a little nervous about that, mt.
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everest. but it's just the next logical step for him. >> and when does mom get to see him again? >> not soon enough. not soon enough i think in about ten days i'm hoping but not soon enough. >> well, congratulations to you and give jordan a big high-five when he makes it home. >> hugs, first, kisses and then a high-five. >> hugs, kisses and then the hi high-five. by the way, we've been given exclusive access to it and elizabeth vargas is working on it on an upcoming "20/20." i'm david muir. good night. ♪
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