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Inside the Bloodshed in Tripoli; Inside Gadhafi's Regime; Crisis in Libya

Aired February 25, 2011 - 23:00   ET



ANDERSON COOPER, HOST: Good evening, everyone.

Tonight in Tripoli, families are once again hiding in their homes as gunmen rule the streets and the dictator, Moammar Gadhafi, and his sons continue to oversee the killing of unarmed protesters and continue to lie about what they are doing right now.

Gadhafi today telling Libyans they should be singing and dancing in the streets. Well, I want to show you what his people are really doing in the streets and what's being done to them in those streets as protests swept Tripoli today. The Gadhafi regime, which claims it would never kill its own people, is killing its own people. Again, more died today; more will likely die tomorrow.

By all accounts, what we are witnessing, what we are watching, what Gadhafi and his henchmen are doing, is wholesale butchery. Take a look at what happened today. People leaving Friday prayers at a mosque in Tripoli were attacked. The call had gone out to protest after prayers, but government forces were there, waiting with weapons.





COOPER: The firing -- the firing goes on and on. Troops shooting not to warn or wound, we are told, but to kill. You'll hear shortly from a protester who was there in that crowd. There is also new video coming in by the hour, just now we just discovered some footage. We don't know the precise location, but we do know it was taken today, just as the person who took it was hit.

We don't know what happened to the person taking those images. We have no reliable casualty figures either from that incident or many others across Tripoli. The terrible truth is we simply do not know and we do not know what happens to the people in these video clips. To the badly wounded protesters like this man here or elsewhere in this -- to this injured mercenary, this is a remarkable moment, though. You see a mercenary apparently a foreigner in camouflage, the man on top of him, apparently shielding him, covering him with his body; he and a small circle of protesters protecting this mercenary from the angry mob. Protecting a man who just moments before was apparently roaming the streets with orders to kill.

"Keeping Them Honest", orders from the man who showed up today in Tripoli's Green Square with his henchmen and promised to open up his arsenals and turn Libya into a red flame.


MOAMMA GADHAFI, LIBYAN LEADER (through translator): We are prepared to break any aggression by the people, the armed people. And the time will come when all the ammunition warehouses will be open for the people to defend the country. I came here in order to greet you, greet your courage, and I tell you to repel them.

Moammar Gadhafi is not a president, neither a king nor a head of state. Neither any high position but the people love him, because we are the glory, the dignity.

Look, America, look. Look to the Libyan people. This is Moammar Gadhafi among the Libyan people, among the masses of the Libyan people.


COOPER: He speaks about himself in the third person. That was Gadhafi defiant. There was also Gadhafi the clown.


GADHAFI (through translator): Here, youth, take your liberty everywhere, in the streets. Dance, sing, live with dignity. Live with high morals. Moammar Gadhafi is one of you. Dance. Dance and sing and be happy.


COOPER: Dance and sing and be happy. A killer promises to open up his arsenal to crush dissent.

Dance and sing and be happy, he says. He hires outsiders to turn streets into killing grounds and he tells his people to dance and sing and be happy. We hear gunfire echoing throughout the night, and we are told he -- he says that the people should dance and sing and be happy.

It's not just the father spreading lies and threats. It's the son as well, today. His name is Seif, and for years he's travelled in the West in slick suits, giving speeches and shaking hands with dignitaries and well-known singers, pretending to be a man of civilization and reform. He's cast his lot with his father now, and claims everything is normal. Take a look at this new interview he did, the son did, with CNN Turk. Seif first caught by a photographer with a smile and a wink right to the camera.

I got to tell you, when we first saw that, we couldn't believe it. There's blood in the streets but after years of living and feasting on millions in oil money, being protected and pampered, this man is cocky and smug as ever. We don't know what is going on in his head but his words are defiant and disastrous.


SEIF AL-ISLAM GADHAFI, MOAMMAR GADHAFI'S SON: We have Plan A, Plan B, Plan C. Plan A, is to live and die in Libya. Plan B, is to live and die in Libya. Plan C is to live and die in Libya.


COOPER: He continued to blame outside -- outside terrorists for the uprisings. And most shocking of all, he said the regime would never kill its own people. He lies and he smiles and he winks.

Global pressure is starting to build today. There's no doubt about that. The hope is it's the beginning of the end. The fear is what Gadhafi might do between now and then.

And just in case there is anyone listening tonight who might believe the Gadhafis when they say they would never kill their own people, although I find it hard to believe anybody would believe it at this point. Tonight, another voice, more proof, a man who says he saw people die today on the streets of Tripoli after Friday prayers.


COOPER: What happened when you left -- what happened after mosque today?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: People were in groups walking down the streets. The military came and they -- and they tried to shoot at people. And they -- they weren't -- they weren't shooting to scare people off, they were shooting to kill. They killed people in front of my eyes, children, old men.

COOPER: You saw people dying?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, I saw -- I've seen people dying.

COOPER: Who was doing the shooting?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Military, military people. They call them revolutionary committees.


COOPER: Were they Special Forces -- UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No.

COOPER: Yes, it wasn't Special Forces it was revolutionary committees?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. It was revolutionary committees. They had AK-47s and they were shooting at people and people were armless. We thought -- we thought of throwing rocks at them. We had six rocks -- people had knives and they were shooting with machine guns.

COOPER: What was it like for you to see this?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was very, very -- I -- I couldn't -- I couldn't believe this. People were running off all the -- in every direction. We want the -- we want the United Nations and the United States to -- to get to the -- to have a no-fly zone over Libya. That's what we want to do.

We don't want any military intervention in Libya. We want -- we don't want them in our country. We can do this on our own.

I know that the United -- the United States doesn't give a damn about us. I know that the United States, all they care about is the oil, oil prices going up. And I know that all they care is about the oil.

I just want them to help these people. They are dying every day. And they are armless. They don't have weapons.

COOPER: And you feel a no-fly zone would help you on the ground?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, no-fly zone, because he would not be able to use -- to use planes. He would not be able to shoot us from the skies. Because he can -- he can -- he can destroy the whole city in just minutes with -- with airplanes. Pilots have landed in Malta. They have -- they have asked pilots to strike the city, but they refuse, because they couldn't strike their own people. So they landed their planes in Malta.

So he's -- so he's running out of options. People are trying, people -- more people are joining the revolution every day, military officers, generals in the army are supporting the people. He's losing -- he's losing his best supporters. It's only a matter of time.

COOPER: Thank you for talking to us. I know it's a great risk. We'll continue to talk with you in the days ahead. Thank you.


COOPER: I want to bring in Ben Wedeman now in Libya, foreign affairs correspondent Jill Dougherty and Professor Fouad Ajami of Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies as well as the Hoover Institution.

Ben, we've seen these remarkable crowds today in Benghazi where you are, rallying in support of people in Tripoli because because as we've heard from the people in Tripoli it is another story all together. Are -- are people in Benghazi in close contact with people in Tripoli? And can they do anything to influence events on the ground there?

BEN WEDEMAN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Very close contact. Well, they're in very close contact. In fact, people are constantly handing me phones of their relatives in Tripoli to talk to them, to gather information.

So the cell phones work. So you can actually get in contact with Tripoli very easily. They're doing what they can here. In fact, we're hearing that there is a move to put together some sort of force that might be able to go help -- help the people of Tripoli in fighting back against the regime.

But the problem is that whereas the regime in Tripoli has airplanes, tanks, Armored Personnel Carriers and helicopters, there's very little in the way of heavy machinery, heavy weaponry that could be used against those forces here. It's mostly RPGs, AK-47s, some surface-to-air missiles but not the kind of weaponry they would need to really bring down the regime.

And also, it's a very long way. It's more than a thousand kilometers between Benghazi and Tripoli.

COOPER: That was going to be my next question. So if it's a thousand kilometers and some forces moving toward Tripoli, I'm assuming the Gadhafi regime would have an advance notice of that and have -- have an opportunity to -- to attack anyone on that road.

WEDEMAN: Yes. And let's not forget that right smack dab in the middle of that is the city of Sirt on the Mediterranean coast, which is Gadhafi-controlled territory. We have seen that gradually the cities along the coast have fallen to the anti-Gadhafi forces, but there is a long stretch of very thinly populated territory that divides Eastern from western Libya.

COOPER: Jill, tonight President Obama signed an executive order on sanctions which targets the Gadhafi government while protecting the assets that belong to the people of Libya. That's a quote. How is that supposed to work?

JILL DOUGHERTY, CNN FOREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT: You know, we just got a briefing a few moments ago from treasury official Stuart Levey. And essentially any of the assets that are held first by the regime and the regime includes, and they specifically were named here, Moammar Gadhafi and four of his children, any assets that are held in U.S. financial institutions or U.S.-controlled financial institutions anywhere in the world are frozen.

So, again, it has to do with the regime and then also the government; assets by the Central Bank and that Sovereign Wealth Fund, that's where all the oil money goes, that is all frozen. It's held in those institutions and then it will be eventually returned, they say, to the Libyan people.

We asked how much money is there? And they didn't say specifically, but they said it is substantial sums by any account.

COOPER: Fouad, the sanctions make any difference whatsoever to what's happened in Tripoli?

FOUAD AJAMI, PROFESSOR, JOHNS HOPKINS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED INTERNATIONAL STUDIES & HOOVER INSTITUTION: No, we've seen this movie before about the sanctions. I mean, we must remember, that Gadhafi endured a generation, 15 years or so of sanctions.

We also have another case of sanctions, which our viewers will remember very well, which is Saddam Hussein, who endured sanctions from 1991 to 2003, when President George W. Bush decapitated his regime.

The sanctions never worked. Anyone with money, anyone with a huge amount of money as Gadhafi does, can break these sanctions; can bust them with -- with great ease.

And one thing we know about the sanctions, to pass sanctions and if you bring the sanctions particularly if you come to the Security Council and do a round of sanctions in the Security Council, well, there you need the Russians and the Chinese. And the only kinds of resolutions and provisions that would pass in the United Nations are -- are really mild.

These sanctions really don't -- this is not what this conflict now is about. It's a fight between -- it's a tale of two cities, if you will. Tripoli is fighting for its life, Benghazi is a relatively free city. And this fight between the new Libya, living on hope now, and the old Libya, living on terror, is a fight to the finish and the sanctions really don't apply to it.

COOPER: And you know, I was sitting there watching Gadhafi's son, Seif, who I guess is the most presentable of all the thuggish sons and the most sort of westernized and the most polished, and -- and who does try to represent himself and has for years tried to represent to the world as the new Libya.

But -- but he is as thuggish in the end, Fouad, as -- as the representatives of the old regime.

AJAMI: Well, I think these -- these people, the House of Gadhafi, they've crossed the Rubicon. It's over for them. They now live in a different world. There are no more meetings for them in New York with the Glitterati (ph). They can't come to universities and -- and -- and be wined and dined.

This is -- this is over. They are now fighting for their dominion and the only primitive way they know. And if you allow me, in many ways I think of this fight -- I've been thinking about this in the last few days. There was -- this is a kind of -- this is almost the Spanish civil war in the '30s. This is the Spanish civil war with Gadhafi playing the role of Franco, and a free country, a liberal country, a humane country facing the guns of a very brutal regime, willing to kill its own people to survive.

COOPER: And -- and do you think he is able to hold on for a long time or do you think -- are we talking days?

AJAMI: Well, you know, I don't know. I -- I think this is -- this is a question that one really can't -- can't answer with any confidence. You can see that all the -- the assets of the regime are collapsing around him. You can see his diplomats quitting on him.

And we don't know what he will decide. I think sometimes we romanticize these guys, like Saddam, like Gadhafi. We take them at their word. When they say I fight to the finish, I will die on the soil of my own country.

We all remember that amazing scene when our forces flushed out Saddam from his spider hole and he came out without firing a shot. And he came out saying I'm Saddam Hussein, I'm the President of Iraq and I'm willing to negotiate.

The same may be true of Gadhafi and his -- and his children. These are not people bred to fight and die. You never fight and die if you have massive accounts and bank accounts overseas. You go back -- you go and unite with the -- with the funds and the wealth you -- you -- you plundered.

COOPER: All right, we're going to have more with Ben and Jill and Fouad in a moment.

A quick reminder, the live chat is up and running right now at

Up next: Horror stories from Americans who finally got out of Libya. Remember, they were stuck on that ferry. A nightmarish wait, day and night on that ferry in Tripoli harbor, guns crackling all around them. You'll hear directly from them.

And later, inside Gadhafi's mind as close as we can get: rare perspective from a man who was by his side for years, worked as a translator for Gadhafi. I talked to him about what that was like and how he says he was constantly living in fear.

We'll also talk to a former CIA officer with sources in the intelligence community in Libya and he'll tell us what he is hearing from them.


COOPER: We spoke about sanctions before the break. The -- the White House tonight, blocking access to Libyan assets in America and before putting out that executive order, the White House signaled the possibility of tougher measures to come.


JAY CARNEY, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: There are no options we're taking off the table. But what we're focused on are the options that we can take to affect the situation in the near term. And we would like to see the kind of concerted, broad-based international action that can compel the Libyan government to cease and desist from the kind of actions it's taking against its own people.


COOPER: Now, one thing we've -- we've heard constantly from Libyans that we've spoken to in Tripoli is that they said they'd like a no-fly zone over their country to prevent Gadhafi from using helicopter gunships or fighter jets against them or bringing in more foreign mercenaries -- more foreign mercenaries into Libya.

The woman who we spoke to last night, trapped in her apartment for more than five days, she's especially impassioned about it.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The only way something can happen is to put the right kind of action, the right kind of movement and the first step, make Libya no-fly zone. If you make Libya no-fly zone, no more mercenaries can come in.


COOPER: By the way, we did speak to her today. She didn't want to speak again tonight just for -- out of security concerns. But she says she is doing OK under the circumstances.

"We are dying", though, she went on to say, "and there needs to be action".

I spoke tonight with a retired Four-Star General Wesley Clark, a former NATO Supreme Allied Commander and asked him if a no-fly zone was a possibility.


COOPER: General Clark, I -- I talked to a woman last night in Tripoli who was desperate, begging the world for some -- to -- for some sort of action and she was saying a no-fly zone. Is that a possibility?

GEN. WESLEY CLARK, FORMER NATO SUPREME ALLIED COMMANDER: Yes, a no-fly zone is a possibility, although the latest word that I received through press reports was that the French are opposed to the no-fly zone. That will have to be hashed out in NATO. But it is a possibility.

COOPER: In terms of action that could be taken to -- I mean, military action or other sort of action, what do you see? What the -- what are the possibilities?

CLARK: Well, you know, first of all, you've got to have a basis for it. So some kind of a humanitarian resolution, acting under Chapter 7 of the United Nations gives a legal basis for it. Then you have to determine what's the object of the action; presumably it's to alleviate humanitarian suffering.

So where there's a food crisis, you could insert troops, you could deliver supplies, you could take you airfields and so forth. If it becomes more pointed at going against these mercenaries who are in there and actually intervening in the violence, then it's a different matter and you have different sets of objectives and different forces.

COOPER: It -- it would seem though, that this is the time that the U.S. would be trying to communicate via whether intelligence connections or other countries to that inner circle of Gadhafi and essentially saying look, the time is now to -- to get off the fence and -- and take this guy out or remove him somehow from power.

CLARK: I'm sure that's being done. I would be surprised if lots of messages haven't been delivered pointedly as well as by the message delivered by all of the international outcry in the coming together of international institutions.

COOPER: The other question is what comes after Gadhafi? And I guess if the U.S. took a very hands-on military role in removing him, then all of a sudden the U.S. somehow is expected to play some sort of a role in what comes next. And I don't think that's a role the U.S. really wants to be in.

CLARK: I think that's exactly right. It's not -- this is not Iraq. It's -- but it is six and a half million people. It's a big country. It's spread out. It's a Libyan problem essentially.

But right now we're in this terrible quandary because there is violence. His mercenaries have I think a very limited half life in this situation. People are still outraged and protesters are converging on Tripoli it seems. And I think we'll see something decisive in the near future.

COOPER: You -- you think the clock is ticking? You think, I mean, you don't think this can drag on for -- for weeks?

CLARK: I don't think it's -- no, I don't think it can drag on for weeks because Gadhafi doesn't have that kind of staying power. First of all, the sanctions in the international outcry will chill all his relations with any -- even with the African countries where he's purchased so much support.

Secondly, there -- there's enough anger in the hearts of the Libyan people directed against Gadhafi's regime that he's lost legitimacy. So bit by bit, the elements of -- of the police and the army and the mercenaries, they'll be looking for their own way out.

COOPER: General Wesley Clark, I appreciate it. Thank you.

CLARK: Thank you, Anderson.


COOPER: Well, coming up, the future of Libya with or without Gadhafi, what that might be like. We'll talk again with Professor Fouad Ajami, Jill Dougherty and Ben Wedeman in Benghazi.

Plus, new insights into Gadhafi's regime: I'm going to talk with a former insider, his former translator. More than 30 years ago, he took part in a plot to overthrow Gadhafi. He was exposed. He had to flee the country. I'll talk also with former CIA officer with sources close to Libyan intelligence.


COOPER: Well, the crisis in Libya is getting bloodier by the minute. The U.N. Secretary General says more than 1,000 people have been killed in the unrest. Now, here's where things stand tonight on the ground. The red dots mark cities liberated by anti-government forces: in the east, Tobruk, Benghazi and Mizrata.

In the west around Tripoli, anti-government forces say they've also taken control of Az Zintan, Zawiya, and Brega. We don't have reporters on the ground there.

Tripoli marked by the green dot remains under Gadhafi's control. And with the opposition closing in, Gadhafi appears to be digging in.

One American evacuee told CNN he saw carnage in Tripoli. Here's what he described, quote, "The army was using heavy machine guns and automatic rifles against little kids that were carrying nothing more than pebbles."

"Little kids", he said. I want to play again for you what -- what Gadhafi said today in Tripoli's Green Square. Listen.


M. GADHAFI (through translator): We are prepared to break any aggression by the people, the armed people and the time will come when all the ammunition warehouses will be open for the people to defend the country.


COOPER: How brutal will the end game get and what will it take to stop Gadhafi? I spoke earlier to Bob Baer, intelligence columnist for and the author of "The Company We Keep: a husband and wife true-life spy story". He's a former CIA officer.

And also I spoke with Professor Abubaker Saad (ph), a former Gadhafi aide and now a history professor at Western Connecticut State University. In the late '70s, he took part in a plot to overthrow Gadhafi. The plot was discovered and the planed coup foiled, forcing Professor Saad him to flee Libya.

Here's what I talked to him and Bob Baer about earlier.


COOPER: Bob, what are Gadhafi's military capabilities at this point?

BOB BAER, FORMER CIA OFFICER: He is reduced to about 5,000 soldiers, regular soldiers. He has a large number of civilians. He's handed out arms to them, mercenaries, mainly from Chad and Niger. But regular armed forces isn't much; about 5,000 -- about a division.

COOPER: He has Special Forces which are controlled by one of his sons, right?

BAER: Khamis controls the 32nd battalion. It's an elite battalion, mainly made up of his tribe and loyalists. But it's nothing compared to the forces he's facing in terms of the regular army, about 45,000 and these large number of protesters.

COOPER: Professor Saad, does he trust his own military around him?

ABUBAKER SAAD, PROFESSOR, WESTERN CONNECTICUT STATE UNIVERSITY: No. He never did. Even when I was -- from the very beginning, since he came to power, you have to remember the first coup, first attempted coup against him happened only one year after he took over power.

COOPER: And so professor, you actually were involved in an attempted coup against him, that his intelligence services reportedly intercepted before it happened. How effective are his intelligence services?

SAAD: His intelligence services were very effective in past years. But in recent years, they began to deteriorate a little bit because of the fact that he favored his militia and his security forces over the military.

You have to remember what Bob was saying, he doesn't have control over the military. And even the military that he has, even the ones who defected, really they were not trusted by him and they were not armed and trained as well as his security forces.

I mean I tell you an example that when I was working for him, one of the -- one of the officers actually confided in me once, and he was with the rank of a major. He said that -- I am carrying a pistol, I am carrying a rifle. And he said, I don't have ammunition on me.

COOPER: He didn't want people around him to have bullets in their weapons.

SAAD: Exactly. Exactly, Anderson. He doesn't -- he didn't trust the military. So he really cut them short all the time because he was afraid that they might take him over and remove him from power.

COOPER: Bob, when you look at how dictators like this often end up and get taken out, I was thinking about Kabila in the Congo, shot by somebody within his own inner circle. How do you see this playing out, do you think that's the most likely scenario for Gadhafi?

BAER: What I heard early this morning was that Gadhafi may go only a couple more days before he has to leave Tripoli. This is what the inner circle is saying. They said he can't hold on much longer.

COOPER: Where are you hearing this? You talked to somebody inside? BAER: Yes, yes, from Libyan intelligence who I've known for 25 years. You know, I can't tell you whether they're passing out disinformation, but he says that Gadhafi has completely lost his mind. The inner circle is afraid that he's starting -- going to use artillery on the cities, these rocket launchers that fire about 36 rockets. He's capable of anything.

They're also telling me that he released from prison 110 fundamentalists, Islamic fundamentalists and given them arms and what he's told them to do is attack foreigners. Now, we know that he's come out and said al Qaeda is taking over this rebellion. The fact is that he's hoping that the West turns to him and says we'll help you stop this. But of course, it's not going to work.

COOPER: Professor, when you saw him speak today, and when we've seen him speak the last couple of days, you know him, you used to translate what he would say. What did you see when you saw that man, how did he seem to you?

SAAD: I've been observing him very closely, and I'm trying to read the signals from his face, from his hand gestures. This is a desperate man who is willing to go down with everybody else. He's not going to go down by himself.

COOPER: Bob, how do you see this playing out? And what should viewers -- what should we be watching for over the next 24, 48 hours?

BAER: People inside the inner circle are hoping that there's somebody from outside will come in and intervene. And you know, the best thing that could happen if he were assassinated at this point. I see a spasm of violence in the retaking of Tripoli. I think he's capable of killing a lot of people before he's finally forced out.

This administration is going to be faced with the dilemma. Do we intervene if foreign hostages are taken? Do we intervene? Do we have enough troops? I see it getting a lot worse.

COOPER: Professor, when we look at Gadhafi speak, I mean any outsider will say this guy, whether he's crazy or not, he certainly seems nonsensical and ridiculous and, you know, rambling and incoherent. When you were actually -- I mean when people were actually working for him, and I know you tried to have a coup against him and ultimately had to flee the country for your life, but I mean, did you see him as ridiculous then? Were you just scared of him? What did the people around him, how would you talk about him?

SAAD: Everybody was afraid. It is the element of fear, because he was very brutal from the very beginning, with anybody who opposed him. Especially -- and his brutality really began to manifest itself very clearly and everybody in Libya began to notice it, particularly those of us who were working for him and we were close to him.

It just started with his green book, publishing of his green book, what he called the Green Marsh over Libya, which is basically to destroy every Libyan institution -- political, social, economic, whatever it is -- and then everything fits in his regime. He did that in 1973. That's where really most of the Libyans began to turn away from him completely. Before that, it was mainly the east.

The east never accepted him. The day he took over power, the east never accepted him.

COOPER: Bob, at this point, from an intelligence perspective, I would assume that the U.S. would be trying to contact, and I don't know what other kind of relations they have with the inner circle or others in the intelligence field inside Tripoli right now. But I would assume they would be trying to contact them and sending them very clear messages, you've got to take action against this man, and you have to do that now.

BAER: Oh, I think absolutely. The United States and the CIA has had connections with Libya after Lockerbie was settled. It was a very close connection and I'm sure right now that this administration is sending messages, "Cease and desist. Otherwise we're going to do something."

COOPER: Bob Baer, appreciate your expertise, and Professor Saad as well. Thank you so much.

Still ahead tonight: Gadhafi, not backing down; his threats only getting worse. Our panel weighs in on where this crisis is headed next. We'll talk to Fouad Ajami and Ben Wedeman in Benghazi and Jill Dougherty.

Isha Sesay has tonight's other headlines -- Isha.

ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, when we come back, I'll have the latest on the first court appearance of that young Saudi national arrested on terror-related charges. The 20-year-old man is facing a charge of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. We now know how he intends to plea.

That and much more, just ahead.


COOPER: Right before we went on air, we got a video off of Facebook, a new video shot today. We don't know the exact location of it, but it appears to show the camera person who took this video, it seems as if they got shot. Let's watch.




COOPER: Again, we can't confirm what happened to that person nor their condition at this point. Over and over when you talk to people in Tripoli or Benghazi, it's not religion they speak of or political ideology. They speak of simply wanting a normal life.

(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I just want to be a voice to be heard. I want people to know that we are -- we are here in Libya, we want freedom, we want democracy, and we don't want Gadhafi.


COOPER: One of the protesters in Tripoli tonight.

Let's bring back in Ben Wedeman who is in Benghazi, Jill Dougherty and Fouad Ajami, as well.

Fouad, I mean as you watch a video like that, again, you hear these voices, what -- and as we go into this weekend, what are you going to be watching for in the hours and the days ahead?

AJAMI: Well, you know, I was watching Ben Wedeman today and something happened. There was an image in a way that captured for me what this fight was about. There was Ben Wedeman facing the camera and behind him this mass of people in Benghazi.

Now remember, this is not Egypt. This is a very sparsely populated country, a huge country. But there was this big crowd in Benghazi. Behind them was the roiling sea on a stormy day. I thought, here I've seen a metaphor for this.

These people will have to win or will have to die and submit to Moammar Gadhafi. And indeed, what they are telling us from Benghazi, what the crowd or the people are saying is, either we win or we will die.

In fact, what he has in store for them is a new period of servitude if he were to prevail. So I think they will fight. And I think they understand that for the most part, they are on their own.

And we have to understand here as Americans, that President Obama does not want to take ownership of this issue. In fact, when he talks about multilateral solutions, he's been very clear and very honest, I think, in his own way that he doesn't want to do much about Libya.

I think there's something odd about our president, and it's something that a colleague of mine has pointed out, the great literally editor of "The New Republic", Leon Wieseltier. He says, in fact, President Obama is really convinced that American imperialism is a problem; that any intervention in the Middle East would be seen as a deed of imperialism.

I happen to disagree with him. I happen to believe in humanitarian intervention. But that's the call that has come from the White House.

COOPER: Ben, when you talk to people in Benghazi, do they talk about hopes for some sort of military intervention by outside powers?

WEDEMAN: Some people do. Some people think that's the only salvation for them in this situation. Many of them would like to see the imposition of a no-fly zone. But publicly, really what you're hearing is they don't want any foreign intervention, any military intervention. In fact, the city council of Benghazi met this evening, and they voted unanimously against any form of foreign intervention, military or otherwise.

The public stance is, they're going to fight this man, this dictator, and they're going to fight him alone, and they're hoping they're going to win, because otherwise things could get very bad here -- Anderson.

COOPER: And Ben, in terms of oil production, the east is vitally important. How much control do they have over the oil in the east in anti-Gadhafi territory now?

WEDEMAN: Well, in the Eastern part of the country, they have complete control over that oil. And there is a lot of pressure to completely cut it off. But I spoke with somebody in the committee that runs Benghazi, and they said that just to strangle -- just to cut off the flow of funds to the government of Tripoli, they would be more than happy to completely cut it off.

But technically, it's a problem. Some of these pipelines are so old, that if you stop pumping, they quickly become blocked with wax from the residue of the oil. So they have to maintain a certain level of production. But our understanding is that the workers in those oil fields and the engineers along the pipeline are fully in support of the anti-Gadhafi forces -- Anderson.

COOPER: Jill, what are you hearing about the next steps in terms of the administration? Are there next steps?

DOUGHERTY: Well, there are. But it's really because of the unpredictability of the situation they have a really wide panoply of things that they could do. I mean, we've been talking about the sanctions and one reason for the sanctions is not only to hit Gadhafi and hit members of his government, but try to peel away members of the government who realize that they could end up having their livelihood or their lives affected very strongly by these sanctions. So in other words, isolate them from him.

Then also they're talking about using intelligence, U.S. intelligence to monitor exactly what's going on in there.

And then finally, we're reminded constantly by the officials here that the military is involved in this, in all of the planning. So I think you'd have to say that they don't obviously want to take military action. But that is part of the planning too.

And significantly Jay Carney said today that it's not the end point, that there could be more. And that they are building a case against Gadhafi. And that could mean taking him to the ICC, you know, the International Criminal Court.

COOPER: Right.

DOUGHERTY: There are a lot of different things --

COOPER: Fouad, I was reading some of Tom Friedman stuff from years ago. He was writing about sort of a sense of shame in the Arab world. I remember you saying that you think shame has quit the Arab lands now. What do you mean by that?

AJAMI: You're absolutely right. I mean when you look at the Arab world today, you know, I have this very simple dichotomy of cultures; they're either guilt cultures or shame cultures. The Arab world, all this traditional Arab society had this element of shame. You could shame a ruler, you could shame Hosni Mubarak, you could shame someone, even like (INAUDIBLE).

But shame quit the Arab land. Arabs came to see a world without limits. These rulers could do anything. Look at this republic of farce and cruelty, both farce and cruelty that this man, Moammar Gadhafi and his children have imposed on these poor people. They captured them 42 years ago. They won them, so to speak. And they do all kinds of things without shame.

And I think this is the dilemma of the Arab world today. I've pointed this out in an earlier discussion with you, Anderson. We were talking about the Africans have had missions of rescue for African people who were trapped and who had terrible regimes. The Arabs haven't. And it's this element of shame that we need to see in the Arab world again.

COOPER: Fouad, again, I appreciate you being with us all week as you have been. Jill and Ben, please stay safe.

A lot more happening in the world tonight. A man arrested in Texas for allegedly attempting to build a weapon of mass destruction was in court today. Details from inside the courtroom ahead.

And a crucial move in the budget battle in Wisconsin, one that's not getting support from the protesters who have been gathered at the state capital.


COOPER: Checking other headlines tonight. Isha Sesay joins us with a "360 News and Business Bulletin" -- Isha.

SESAY: Anderson, the Saudi national who was in the United States on a student visa is planning to plead not guilty to a federal charge of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. Twenty-year-old Khalid Ali Aldawsari was in court today. He allegedly bought chemicals and other explosive equipment and researched targets, including the home of former President George W. Bush.

The Wisconsin state assembly today passed a controversial budget bill that thousands had been protesting. The bill changes benefits and limits collective bargaining rights for teachers and most state workers. The bill still has to pass the state senate where it faces a tough fight. Stocks closed higher today, but fear over Libya and oil made it the worst week for the market since November. The Dow was up 52 points, ending the week at 12,130.

And Anderson, after Charlie Sheen went on yet another radio rant, production on "Two-and-a-Half Men" has been canceled for the rest of the season. Sheen told "The Alex Jones Radio Show" that he's going to make movies with superstars instead of, quote, "working with idiots" -- the irony.

COOPER: Yes, if the guy wasn't on a coke binge when he made that rant, he's a complete jerk. He's a jerk either way, but if that wasn't the ravings of someone who was high, then there's no excuse because what he said was unbelievable. I don't know if you heard that rant.

SESAY: Yes, I did.



COOPER: Coming up, a woman in Kenya who thought that AIDS was a punishment from God. Her belief changed when she, herself, was diagnosed HIV positive. And what she did next is why she's this week's CNN hero. That's next.


COOPER: Now the remarkable story of this week's CNN hero. Patricia Sawo lives in Kenya. She used to believe that AIDS was a punishment from God. That was before she, herself, was diagnosed HIV positive. Now she's on a crusade to end the stigma of HIV.

Here's her story.


PATRICIA SAWO, CHURCH LEADER: Back in 1990s I believed that AIDS was a punishment from God. When I personally tested HIV positive, it was like, oh, my God, how could this happen to me?

I fasted and prayed for years hoping that I would be healed. When I went public, I lost my job. My husband lost his job. The landlord wanted us out of his house. The stigma was terrible -- I realized that I had been wrong.

My name is Patricia Sawo. My mission is to change people's attitude about HIV.

All that you need is accurate, correct information.

As church leaders we need to shape out the people; HIV, is not a moral issue, it is a viral.

I do a lot of counseling. When I'm helping somebody else, who is HIV positive, I want them to know that you can rise above this.

The 48 children at the center, most of them saw their parents dying of AIDS. My HIV status brings some kind of a bond that provides that motherly love and all of their basic needs.

HIV is making me a better person. We want to be there for people so if we have it, we share it out.

It's what I want to do, because it's what I'm meant to do. God has his own ways of healing, so for me, I'm healed.


COOPER: Remember CNN Heroes are chosen from people you tell us about. To nominate someone you know who's making a big difference in their community go to

That does it for 360. Thanks for watching.

"PIERS MORGAN" starts now.

I'll see you Monday.