CNN Student News April 24, 2015

CNN Student News April 24, 2015


A tragic ending to a U.S. terrorism operation
leads of CNN STUDENT NEWS today. An American named Warren Weinstein and an
Italian named Giovanni Lo Porto had been held hostage for years by the al Qaeda terrorist
group. The U.S. government announced yesterday that an American operation in January accidentally
killed the two hostages at an Al Qaeda compound in Pakistan. Some U.S. officials said it was a U.S. drone
strike that also killed an American who had become a leader in al Qaeda. Here, they had intelligence indicating that
this was an al Qaeda compound, but they did know that you had an American and an Italian
hostage there. This is the intense difficulty of doing this
and we`ve seen risks taken by this administration. Some of those risks have worked out. The — you`ll
remember, with the bin Laden raid, famously, the president was told there was 50 percent
certainty (ph) that all — that bin Laden was there. They went in, they found him, they killed
him. And here`s one with just a — just the — the worst in — in collateral damage, you
know, that totally soulless term that is used in strikes like this. This is really a worst
case scenario here. And I think, you know, the president clearly
felt the need to get it out and get it out in public. It is a cruel and bitter truth that in the
fog of war generally and our fight against terrorists specifically, mistakes can occur. As president and as commander-in-chief, I
take full responsibility for all our counterterrorism operations, including the one that inadvertently
took the lives of Warren and Giovanni. In response to the announcement, a legal director
with the American Civil Liberties Union said, “The U.S. quite literally didn`t know who
it was killing.” Warren Weinstein`s wife issued a statement
saying her family was devastated by the news. She said they were hopeful that the U.S. and
Pakistani governments would have done everything possible to secure Weinstein`s release and
that no words do justice to the disappointment and heartbreak they`re going through. She also said the ultimate responsibility
was borne by those who took her husband captive. The European Union is tripling the amount
of money it spends on search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean. There`s a crisis there
involving migrants trying to find asylum, refuge in a stable European country. They`re set afloat on often rickety or overloaded
boats. The BBC reports that this year alone, more than 35,000 people are believed to have
traveled from Africa to Europe. More than 1,700 of them have died while trying. So where are these people coming from? Well, a lot of these migrants are coming from
failed states, countries that simply are under nobody`s control, where there`s failed government,
where there`s rampant corruption. A lot of these people are coming also from
parts of the world that are increasingly falling under the control of radical Islamist factions,
places like Syria, Nigeria, mali. And a lot of people, as well, are simply fleeing from
countries where there is absolute rampant poverty. Why are they trying to get to Europe? The answer there really is quite simple. The
European Union is, for these migrants, the promised land. What about the people who are bringing them
here? It is very much a question of supply and demand
on the one hand, migrants desperate to make their way to Europe; and on the other hand,
a number of unscrupulous characters ready to make a fast buck off trying to shuttle
them from Point A to Point B. A lot of the migrants right now are being funneled there
was Libya, another failed state, and then when the migrants arrive, they`re charging
them thousands of dollars to put them in rust bucket vessels and set them afloat in the
Mediterranean. And that is a business, to the human traffickers, that is worth millions
of dollars. The U.S. Senate has given advice and consent.
Yesterday, it voted 56-43 to confirm President Obama`s nominee for attorney general. Her
name is Loretta Lynch. She`s the first female African-American attorney general in U.S.
history. She replaces Eric Holder as the country`s top legal officer. Lynch has served as U.S. attorney for the
Eastern District of New York. She reportedly has a good relationship with law enforcement.
And one issue she`ll be addressing involves strained relations between some police forces
and the communities they serve. Criminal justice reform and terrorism are
other challenges for Attorney General Lynch. Gray water treatment is how some Californians
are dealing with their state`s historic drought. A new system can add thousands to the cost
of a new home. But what it does is take the water from sinks,
showers or washing machines, it filters it and then it recycles it to water a lawn. It`s
one creative solution as parts of California get more and more parched. In an average year, our snow depth at this
location would, at this time of year, would be around five, five and a half feet. OK, so that`s — I`m 5`5,” so basically my
height? Your height. This is where we should be? That`s correct. We are high up in the Sierra Nevada Mountains,
where you`ll find one of California`s greatest resources. This is the snowpack. The snowpack is basically nature`s version
of water storage in the form of snow since the state gets most of its precipitation in
the winter. Then from April through July, those warmer
temperatures cause the snow to melt in runoff and replenishes The Golden State`s reservoirs
before the typically dry summer and fall. The problem is California is in the midst
of an historic, multi-year drought. This is, by far, the lowest snowpack on record.
You know, it provides somewhere upwards of a third to two thirds of the water supply
that we depend upon. I`m standing at the eastern gateway to Yosemite.
This is the Tioga Pass. And as you can see, we`re almost 10,000 feet up. And at this time
of year, in 2011, both of these buildings were completely covered in snow. You can see
right now, it`s not anywhere near that. This is what we would use to measure the depth
of the snow and then, more importantly, the water content. This is last year`s measurement. This yellow tape? Yellow tape. The black is the 1977 measurement
that generally was the lowest on record before this year. And at the very bottom is this
year`s measurement. This year`s measurement is almost nothing.
That`s like… About four inches. And you`re right, it is
virtually nothing. We`ve had a longer drought than this in California? We have. In general, they`ve lasted five years.
But this one is very severe because of such an abnormally low snowpack. It`s time for the Roll Call. Someone Tweeted
me that I shouldn`t shout that out, but it`s just not the same as saying Roll Call. See, we`re excited. The Bearcats are watching
today. They`re at Bridgeport High School in Bridgeport, Michigan. From Salt Lake City, the capital of Utah,
we`ve got The Warriors of Northwest Middle School. And in Chungcheong, South Korea, hello to
everyone at Hwasung Middle School. Thanks for your requests at our Web site. It has been 25 years since the Hubble space
telescope was put into orbit. It was named for Edwin Hubble, an American astronomer.
And like some of the planets it`s photographed, the telescope got off to a rocky start. At first, its mirror was the wrong shape and
it had problems with its solar arrays and gyroscopes. Its first images were fuzzy. Multiple
spacewalks were needed to fix it. Once it got going, though, the Hubble, at
a cost of $2.5 billion, captured some of the most spectacular photographs of the universe,
vastly changing the field of astronomy. Scientists plan to replace it with a more
powerful device, the $8.7 billion James Webb space telescope in 2018. Before We Go There`s frogger, Michigan J. Frog, the celebrated
jumping frog of Calaveras County. But arguably, the most famous frog is Kermit. Well, check out his newly discovered look-alike.
Found in Costa Rica, it`s only about a couple of centimeters long, but it doesn`t exactly
have a short name — Diane`s Bare-hearted Glassfrog. Diane is the name of the mother
of the scientist who described it. And bare hearted is for its transparent underside,
which lets you see its heart. Not every frog story is that riveting. If
Geico has a gecko, Cheetos has a cheetah and the Muppets have Kermit, maybe this frog could
hop in for Croaka Cola. That would be unforgettable. And you know I`m not amphibin about it. CNN STUDENT NEWS is jumping into the weekend. Fridays are awesome.

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