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ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES
Live From Mogadishu; Dow Down More Than 500 Points
Aired August 10, 2011 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANDERSON COOPER, ANDERSON COOPER 360, HOST: John, thanks very much. Good evening everyone. We're live tonight from Mogadishu and I wish you could see what I saw today and we'll show you some of it later on in the program. Starving parents in a hospital room whose child had just died and they didn't have the money to bury their child. Just sitting there in silence, not knowing what to do. These parents have sought shelter in refugee camps, sought shelter, sought treatment for their child in a hospital.
Children who are dying of preventable diseases and neglect being buried just steps away from their tents. Dr. Sanjay Gupta saw that today in a camp just across the border. That happened today and it happens every day here. It shouldn't happen any day but it does. According to the U.N., right now, 600,000 children are on the brink of starvation. Think about that, 600,000.
The World Food Program now has less than three weeks of food aid left. Less than three weeks. Tonight we'll talk to singer -- singer Bono about that and his perspective on that. Also, a Somali rapper joins him as well. We'll show you how you can help. 600,000 kids, we're telling their story tonight.
We begin, though, with the breaking news back home, a problem the developing world would be lucky to have but its jeopardizing a lot of futures back home, not to mention the global economy. Asian markets, right now, reacting after another massive drop on Wall Street. Another 500-plus point drop for the Dow, the market plunging then climbing mid-day, then losing all steam all afternoon.
Investors today worried about French banks becoming insolvent. They're worried about American banks too and their exposure to Europe's troubles. Bank of America and City Group each down 10% today. Some of the calls were for some kind of action in Washington for President Obama to do something. The question is what, if anything, can he do? What the Federal Reserve can do? What can Congress do?
Joining me now is Chief Business Correspondent, Ali Velshi, Senior Political Analyst, David Gergen, and in Washington, Chief White House Correspondent, Jessica Yellin. Ali, what about this? So this was all about France?
ALI VELSHI, CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Well, it's an interesting question you ask, Anderson, because the thing that triggers these sell-offs these days is not the real reason behind it but it's such a -- it's such a -- a nervous market that a rumor, an unsubstantiated rumor that S&P was going to downgrade France from its AAA rating caused a massive sell-off on France's big bank and, you know, the sell-offs on banks, as you remember, Anderson, make us think about 2008 and times gone by when banks get into trouble and we get a lending freeze.
We don't have that situation right now. What we have is a very nervous market that, again, had a very big reaction to something that wasn't even substantiated but, right now, people don't want to be caught holding the bag if there are these major sell-offs and in taking their money out to be safe they're -- they're encouraging these sell-offs.
I should tell you, though, gold, another record high, touching $1800 an ounce and the U.S. 10-year note which is how our bonds, our mortgages, are priced is down again. It cost the U.S. less money to borrow than it did on Monday and less than it did on Friday before the downgrade.
COOPER: David Gergen, as you look at this from a political perspective, what do you see?
DAVID GERGEN, SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST, CNN: Well, Anderson, I do think it's -- it's not just a rumor in Europe, there is a deeper feeling there that the Germans who were paying for Italy and Spain potential bailouts just don't have the money nor the will to go the full route and there's a real sense that eventually this European thing is going to come apart. You find that here.
But, also, Anderson, very importantly here and Jessica can speak to this, there is a growing sense that there is no one in charge that normally in a crisis there is someone who steps forward, usually the President who steps forward and you have a sense of somebody's got their hands on the wheel, knows where we're going, can help guide the ship. There's a sense right now in our politics that no one is in charge, not the President, not Ben Bernanke, there's no Walter Cronkite. There's no one here to give us that sense of reassurance.
COOPER: Just going about that, how does the White House see it?
JESSICA YELLIN, CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT, CNN: So, Anderson, the White House will never comment on the daily gyrations in the stock market. What you -- what I am hearing from Democrats who are close to the White House and officials here is this reaction to what David is talking about, this sort of clamor around town here calling on the President to take some bold action, this call for a lot of op-ed writers for the President to do something to prove that he's not weak and powerless at this point.
And the general pushback you get is that this is sort of what op- ed writers do in August, that this is sort of media hysteria in a sense of the August doldrums really and then there's too much of a reactive vibe right now in Washington and that the stock market isn't the only measure of the economy and the White House has a plan that they have been working on and are focused on and we are going to see the President out in the Heartland next week talking about jobs. He's meeting with the Fed Chairman, he's meeting with the Treasury Secretary and he's on his game and he has to do this hand in glove with Congress. That is the message I'm getting and it's the songbook they're singing from.
COOPER: Well, David, is this just a question of summer doldrums and op-ed writers?
GERGEN: No, not at all. I mean, the media is not driving this wild ride we're on in the stock market that's wiping out people's 401Ks and hurting a lot of people. I think what America is looking for now is some seriousness in Washington and, frankly, that's not going to come from some bus tour on a campaign trail for the President. I think a lot of growing number of people think he ought to get off the campaign trail, pull people together, and see if he can't get some answer, a bipartisan answer, on jobs.
COOPER: Ali, what could the President be doing? I mean, how much can a President affect, you know, not just the stock market but the economy in general?
VELSHI: Anderson, look, this is serious. There's no question that this is not normal gyrations in the stock market. And, while Jessica is right, the stock market is not the whole economy, it's the same thing with gas prices, right? They're not the whole economy but when they're way up it -- it hits people in the pocketbook. People are getting frozen by this. I think the campaigning absolutely has to stop.
In France, the government has been called back from vacation. In London, which is dealing with this rioting -- this rioting in the street, the government has come back. It kind of is unacceptable that Washington is not fully on this right now and that the President is out there giving speeches in the Heartland as he plans to. This is a crisis.
He had a meeting with Ben Bernanke today and all the White House did was release a statement to say that he had a meeting with Ben Bernanke and that they talked about jobs and the economy. Everybody is talking about jobs and the economy. We need guidance. We need a solution and we need confidence. There's an absolute lack of confidence and leadership as -- as David says, as reflected by the stock market. Remember, the stock market is all of us. It's all of our 401Ks and all of our IRAs. There needs to be some leadership here.
COOPER: And, Jessica, is there any chance they would try to get Congress back early? They're in recess for five weeks.
YELLIN: They're emphatic that that's not the move that they're going to make but it is a huge concern here and something that they continue to emphasize, Anderson, which is you can't do it alone and even if you talk to top economists who want the President to take bold action, when you press them and say, "What can the President do on his own?" Ali said it, David said it, he -- there's a limit, you know, you need Congress to -- they control the purse strings. So, with Congress out of town, the President is limited. He is not going out and making a call for some new sweeping bolder action but -- but Washington, right now, is not in a mood for some sort of compromise. You don't feel it in the air. There's not a vibe of deal making in town and with Congress gone, there isn't going to be a deal. So, bottom line is, no, no message from the White House that they're calling them back and so no bold moves right now on the horizon Anderson.
COOPER: Jessica Yellin, David Gergen, Ali Velshi thanks. Let us know if you think Congress should be called back. We're on Facebook or follow me on Twitter @AndersonCooper. I'm just tweeting some tonight. I'll try to tweet more. Bono joins us shortly to talk about what the world can do for the people here. Also, hip hop artist K'Naan, who was born here in Somalia, raised here. When we come back, a close up look at the need. We had just a stunning day today at a hospital near here. We'll show you what we saw. It's really going to open your eyes. We also visited a feeding center where gunfire erupted.
Nineteen years ago when I was here during the last famine at feeding centers -- there's just some shots going off now and people are running, you hear shooting a lot in Mogadishu. It's very difficult to know exactly where it's coming from. Dangerous and tragic times in Somalia. More on that in just a moment. First, let's check in with Isha Sesay. Isha, what are you following?
ISHA SESAY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, a massive police presence on the streets of London tonight, the government clamping down after four days of rioting. The latest on that and the chaos outside the capitol being blamed for the deaths of three young men who were trying to protect their neighborhood. That and much more when 360 continues.
COOPER: Well, we said it at the top of the program but it can't be overstated. The United Nations telling us that 600,000 children are on the brink of starvation -- 600,000. That should be a headline in every paper, every newscast, every day as long as this famine lasts, 600,000 children. Along with that headline, others follow.
The World Food Program running out of food. Refugee camps are filling up. Graveyards are overflowing. A band of Muslin extremists brutalizing the country, terrorizing the people, they have been for years. They've been preventing food aid from getting through in the south, even medical basics like childhood vaccinations. Kids are dying of measles here. They're dying of mumps, diarrhea is killing them. Starvation makes diseases back home that are barely worth a doctor's visit, makes those diseases deadly.
And, it's the fighting that turns a drought into a famine into mass starvation, a man-made catastrophe. Now, we saw it today at a feeding center here in Mogadishu, our visit punctuated by gunfire.
(VIDEO CLIP) COOPER: Nineteen years ago when I was here during the last famine at feeding centers -- there's just some shots going off now and people are running, you hear shooting a lot in Mogadishu. It's very difficult to know exactly where it's coming from but nineteen years ago at a feeding center like this they would have been using big vats of food to feed people. It wasn't a very effective way to get severely malnourished kids healthy again. Today, they use this product, it's called Plumpy Nut and it's revolutionized the way malnutrition is treated.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: It's revolutionized the way malnutrition is treated because it's -- it's very cheap, you don't need to refrigerate it, you don't need a lot of education to learn how to just give it out to your kids and so, rather than having to hospitalize large numbers of kids to give them fortified milk, they can basically just hand out this peanut paste, this Plumpy Nut, and -- and it's literally bringing kids back from the brink of death.
Now, remember, Al-Shabaab, this terrorist group, has just pulled out of Mogadishu and African Union troops, there's about 9000 of them, patrol the streets here but there are snipers and suicide bombers to still look out for. This is the capitol of the world's best known failed state. It's true now and, sadly, it's been true back nineteen years ago when I was visiting Somalia for the last famine, I was in a town called Baidoa.
COOPER: In the background you can hear AK47 shots firing right now. I'm at a feeding center run by the organization CARE. There are about 30 or 40 of these feeding centers run by different organizations all throughout the city of Baidoa. You'd almost expect there'd be pandemonium here. There's shooting in the distance, people waiting for food but there's really not. It's -- in a way, starvation seems to -- to suck the life out of you. You just sit and wait. There's nothing more you can do.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Besides the fact that I look radically older, it's amazing how much is still exactly the same here. That was Baidoa nineteen years ago. Baidoa, today, by the way, is still in the hands of Al Shabaab. Mogadishu, today, they're gone but the dangers here remain. There's hope from seeing lives saved and anger when even the best efforts fall short. You experience all these emotions, one after the other, sometimes all at once. This is what we saw today in Mogadishu at one of the biggest hospitals here that treats kids.
COOPER: There's so many kids in Mogadishu's Banadir Hospital that new arrivals are being treated in the halls. There are coughs and cries. You don't hear much complaining. That takes energy, perhaps, and there isn't much of that. Many children and their families have walked for weeks just to get here. This little boy can barely take any more steps. There's no running water, no electricity, after 20 years of fighting in Mogadishu there's not much left at all.
The country, which is the epicenter of a famine, now there's a catastrophe happening here. You would expect there would be more medicine, you would expect there'd be kids getting fortified milk or -- or getting Plumpy Nut but you don't see any of that, just mothers sitting with their kids and many of the kids end up dying.
Mothers try to keep the flies at bay, fathers soothe their sickly kids. The worry, the fear, it's the same the world over. What parent can stand it when their child is in pain? Many kids are able to bounce back. With quick intervention they gain weight day after day. For others, however, the malnutrition is too far along. CNN's Nima Elbagir introduced us to Abdullah Hasan (ph) . He lost a daughter, now his 18-month-old son is sick as well.
COOPER: You must be very worried about -- about your child. What -- how long has -- has your child been sick?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Over the last six months he's been ill, he says, but as the famine has been tightened around us, no one has been able to help us so then we came here and now we're just hopeful.
COOPER: In the corner of the room, Mohammed (ph) and his wife Rugia (ph) sit in silence. Between them we notice a small pile of cloth. It turns out it's covering the body of their son. His name was Ali. He was just 1 year old.
NIMA ELBAGIR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: They came up from the areas held by Al Shabaab and it was just so difficult to get out, it took them so long to get out that by the time they arrived there was nothing anyone could do for him. He died about two hours ago.
COOPER: So, this child has just died?
COOPER: And what will they do with him now?
ELBAGIR: They don't even have enough money to bury him, so they're just sitting here hoping that someone will come and someone, you know, in this situation nobody has any money but they're hoping that together people try and put money in together when things like this happen and they can raise the funds. Otherwise, they have no means of burying him.
COOPER: Mohammed (ph) and Rugia (ph) have already lost their two other children. Ali (ph) was the only child they had left. What will they do now?
ELBAGIR: They said they don't know. They're just going to -- for them, the most important thing is just to try and find a way to bury the child and then they're going to try and figure out what they can do from here. They have nothing. They left their entire family. They left everything in the areas they've come from and they have nothing. The only reason they took that risk was to save the baby and now the baby's dead.
COOPER: You've seen a lot -- a lot of this over the last few weeks?
ELBAGIR: Yes, I mean, Mogadishu is always difficult, Somalia is always difficult. People have been dying here for a while from the violence, the insecurity, but the famine is -- you know, the numbers here are extraordinary. The U.N.'s estimating that nearly a million are going to die if the aid pipeline isn't strengthened, if more funding doesn't come in to sustain the aid effort here.
COOPER: The aid effort is underway but for too many kids it may already be too late. They are not numbers, not statistics. They are boys and girls, names, and with parents, boys and girls who never had a fair chance at life.
Well, with me again tonight is Nima Elbagir at the refugee camp in Dadaab, Kenya. Dr. Sanjay Gupta. And, we should point out, we did help that family to bury their child, thought it was the human thing to do but, you know, there's so many others. You -- you -- you know, you want to help everybody and, yet, there's not, at times, anything you can do.
ELBAGIR: Well, you know, we keep talking about the shortfall in the funding that the U.N. is receiving and you go into the hospital and you see what that funding means to people here. Now, we were speaking to the U.N. Coordinator, Humanitarian Coordinator for Somalia, a few days ago and he said to us that the reality is that people are going to die, that's just what's going to happen here now. The issue becomes how many more people are going to die before that funding comes in, before donations step up?
COOPER: And I was just stunned, I mean, in this hospital and, Sanjay, I wish you were with us today because, I mean, in this hospital, this is a major hospital in Mogadishu, a city which has been, you know, at war for 20 years and conflict is at the epicenter of this massive global major problem in the Horn of Africa, this famine, and yet they seem to have very few supplies. I talked to the doctors. They couldn't even test people for their blood type because they just don't have the equipment. It's stunning. What are you seeing there Sanjay?
SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, it -- it's pretty similar, although in certain places it's -- it's getting a little bit better Anderson. It's -- it's tough to sort of draw generalizations of -- of this large refugee camp, as you know, you've been here and it's very big and there are different places that operate better than others but I will tell you that certain things that come into play with limited resources in a disaster situation like this.
First of all, just -- just basic triage, something that we have seen in hospitals all over the world, trying to figure out who's the most critical and who's the most likely to be saved and -- and treating those patients first. Also, keeping in mind, you know, that sometimes when someone has come in very malnourished and very dehydrated, sort of giving fluid slowly, giving food slowly can actually be better. It can make it more likely that the person will survive and also make your supplies last.
But I think, as both of you have seen today, the key is to not let people get into this level of dire straits trying to get resources, aid, food, and water to people before they become this ill.
COOPER: It's also amazing when you talk to people -- it's not just the one child who's there, it's -- you know, you say, well do you have other children, they'll say, oh yeah, I have three other children but it turns out two of them have already died or one of them has already died. It seems like so many people here have lost -- have lost children.
ELBAGIR: And they, you know, they've put so much hope on that remaining child and they risked so much and, you know, before you got here a lot of people we were speaking to were telling us these stories about -- you judge which child is sicker, which child can you risk more, which child are you more likely to save.
COOPER: So you actually have to choose at times between what child you think you can save?
ELBAGIR: Yes, especially when you're taking the risk of that journey. Some people don't have enough money to get driven up so they walk and they're carrying the children and sometimes some of those children have to be left behind to save the one that is the most savable.
COOPER: There's so much of this, Sanjay, that you're seeing with -- you're seeing the result of what's happening in southern Somalia in areas that are controlled still by Al Shabaab where they have stopped allowing inoculations. What kind of an impact -- and stopped allowing aid workers in to distribute food -- what kind of an impact do you think you're seeing, Sanjay, from the fact that they're not allowing children to be inoculated for basic things like measles?
GUPTA: Well, I mean it's -- it's intolerable what we're seeing because, I mean, as you k now, that sort of clustered like conditions, the over-crowding of these camps, if someone were to get one of these diseases that can be inoculated against, measles for example or a lot of the viral illnesses. Unfortunately, measles can spread like wildfire, quite literally, through a camp. I mean, 90% infectious contagious rate among people who are not vaccinated so you take a completely preventable problem which, by the way, is additive to everything else that you guys have been talking about, and now you've made it that much worse.
So, you know, I -- I -- getting vaccinations in here would be a huge boon toward reducing some of these preventable deaths.
COOPER: And, have -- are they finally now getting aid directly into Mogadishu here?
ELBAGIR: No, I mean, that's still part of the problem is that it costs so much money to air lift aid in which is the quickest solution and that money just isn't there yet at the moment and that feeding center that we went into today, when we were speaking to the administrator, he said that last month they saw 18,000 people and now with this Al Shabaab withdrawal from Mogadishu they're expecting to see 25,000. So, there is now competition for what little resources there are and just -- I just hope people are getting a sense of the desperation and the need -- aid just needs to get here as soon as it can.
COOPER: Yes, it's been an extraordinary day. Nima Elbagir, thanks for all your help and all of your reporting over the last several weeks. Sanjay, we're going to talk with you again. Coming up later on in this hour, many of you have reached out to us over the past few days and on Twitter asking how you can help the victims of the famine here, the kids here. You can find information online at cnn.com/impact.
Still ahead tonight, our big 360 interview with U2 front man and humanitarian Bono joins us, his two-step plan to try to help and end the famine here in Africa and save a generation.
BONA, SINGER, U2, HUMANITARIAN: This will define who we are. This -- this is a defining moment for u s. This is outrageous. This is -- this is -- it can't be happening. It must be stopped.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Also, hip hop artist K'Naan joins us as well. And, the riot in Great Britain. Police now using any means necessary to restore calm. Too little too late for one anguished father. His efforts to save his own son, a life cut short in last night's violence. That story is next.
COOPER: In Great Britain tonight, Prime Minister David Cameron is giving police new orders to stop what he calls despicable violence.
DAVID CAMERON, PRIME MINISTER, GREAT BRITAIN: Whatever resources the police need they will get, whatever tactics the police feel they need to employ they will have legal backing to do so. What -- we will do whatever is necessary to restore law and order onto our streets.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Well, so far it seems to be working. There's an eerie calm after four days of violence and rooting. The riots, of course, erupted in London on Saturday after a vigil for a black man who was shot to death in an incident involving the police. The violence quickly spread across the country. At least four people have been killed and more than 1000 jailed so far. Now, among those killed, 21- year-old Haroon Jahan of Birmingham, one of three men struck by a car early this morning while trying to protect their neighborhood. Haroon's father was near the scene, ran over to help, not knowing it was his son who was one of the victims. Imagine that. His reaction to that discovery, well, it's simply heartbreaking.
TARIQ JAHAN, FATHER OF HAROON JAHAN: Somebody from behind told me that my son was lying behind me so I started CPR on my own son. My face was covered in blood, my hands were covered in blood. Why? Why?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Meanwhile, in Manchester, take a look at this video that we found on YouTube that was shot last night. Officers chasing down a group of rioters, kids on bikes by the looks of it, and when they actually catch them one officer appears to kick one of them in the head and then beat them five times with a baton. Confronted with the footage today, Manchester police acknowledge the beatings saying, and I quote, "Police officers responding to incidents last night in Salford and Manchester were faced with extraordinary and unprecedented levels of violence being used against them. As the circumstances surrounding the footage of this particular incident are currently unknown, it is inappropriate for GMP, the Greater Manchester Police, to comment further."
CNN's Dan Rivers is in Birmingham, England, tonight. He joins us now with the latest. So, Dan, what's happening tonight?
DAN RIVERS, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, the scene here is one of calm. The scene here is one of calm thankfully after four days of the most terrible looting and violence. You can see behind me the police are out in force across the city tonight.
They are checking any vehicles that go anywhere near the town center and anyone that's looking like they could pose any kind of a challenge or problem, they are taking them out and searching them and if they feel necessary, they are arresting them.
There have been quite a lot of heightened tensions in one predominantly Asian area where those three young Pakistani-British men were mowed down by a car.
But thankfully so far the lid has been kept on those interracial tensions and so far things seem to be calm. The police operation seems to be working.
COOPER: I also saw a video of people trying to clean up after the rioters. What kind of an impact has this had in England? I mean, is there an overwhelming public perception about this? What are people saying?
RIVERS: There's a massive public backlash against this looting and against this violence that's been born out in radio shows and newspapers, on Twitter and Facebook. I think to start with people were just stunned that police seemed to have completely lost control of the situation.
And that the situation spread so virally through London and in throughout the cities like here in Birmingham. But then yesterday the police really regained control. They were much more robust in the way they were dealing with these looters.
They were cracking down very hard, zero tolerance for any kind of trouble making and I think there's a huge collective sigh of relief. The communities as well right across Britain have come out themselves to protect businesses and to stop shops being smashed.
We've seen that this evening here in Birmingham in the Asian community. There are hundreds of young men out protecting their businesses and they're saying they have absolutely no trouble with the looters.
COOPER: Yes, we'll continue to follow. Dan, appreciate the reporting. Isha Sesay is following some other stories for us tonight. She joins us now with the "360 Bulletin." Isha --
SESAY: Anderson, near reports of violence across Syria. This video reportedly shows the aftermath where security forces allegedly attack a mosque.
Today, Syria's ambassador to the U.N. compared the violence in his country to the riots to London. The deputy British ambassador to the U.N. shot back calling the comparison absurd.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PHILIP PARHAM, DEPUTY BRITISH AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: In the United Kingdom, you have a situation where the government is taking measured proportionate legal transparent steps to ensure the rule of law for its citizens.
In Syria, you have a situation where thousands of unarmed civilians are being attacked and many of them killed. That comparison made by the Syrian ambassador is ludicrous. Thank you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SESAY: The U.S. military says an air strike has killed Taliban fighters responsible for last week's deadly helicopter crash in Afghanistan. Thirty U.S. troops and eight Afghans died when the chopper was shot down. Defense officials now say 17 were Navy SEALs and not 22 as first reported.
An interstate manhunt for three Florida siblings ended in Colorado off the high speed car chase. The suspects all in their 20s shot at police before crashing. Wanted for crimes in two states they've been on the run since last week. Their pictures blasted on digital billboards.
And watch this, incredible video. A 200-foot chunk of ice breaks off a glacier in Alaska. The tourist on that boat got quite a show, but it came with some danger. Ice was flying through the air and big waves rocked the boat. A woman reportedly broke her leg. Anderson, really scary stuff.
COOPER: Incredible. Isha, thanks very much. Now let's check in with Piers Morgan to take a look at what's coming up on "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT."
PIERS MORGAN, HOST, "PIERS MORGAN TONIGHT": Thanks, Anderson. Breaking news tonight. The Asian markets are reacting to today's 520- point Dow plunge. We'll bring you the latest on that and I'll ask some of the smartest people on Wall Street what it would take to turn this around.
Is Washington getting it right on the economy or are we facing a leadership deficit plus my interview with an American guy who has a lot to say about the economy and America.
Trace Atkins, country music superstar, "Celebrity Apprentice" runner up to me and a man who didn't cut his hair since 1992. All of that and more on the top of the hour. Now back to a man who cuts his hair at least every hour, Anderson Cooper.
COOPER: Piers, thanks very much. Still ahead tonight, the children behind the staggering number. Thirty thousand Somali kids have died in the last three months. Each one had a family.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta reports from Dadaab, Kenya where the tiny graves are multiplying every single day, plus my interview with Bono and his outrage over the catastrophe that was entirely predictable and preventable.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is shocking. It is disgusting. I have seen those faces myself up close and I've seen that loss of life. It's hard to believe that this is the 21st Century.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: This is what they call an IDP camp, an internally displaced person's camp. They are not refugees. Refugees are people who leave Somalia to go to another country to seek help.
Internally displaced people are people who are Somalis who haven't left the country, but they've left their home villages in search of food and in search of safety. Many of them have left from areas controlled by El Shabab.
There are probably about 100 or so huts in this camp. They've been given plastic tarps that they can use for the outer layer of the hut to protect from the elements, the sun and just the occasional rain.
But conditions here are pretty bad. More than 100,000 internally displaced people have come just in the last few weeks and months and many more still are expected. Many of them come with children who are sick and badly malnourished, but they often don't take them to a hospital until it's too late. As we keep mentioning, the United Nations says that 600,000 Somali kids are on the brink of starvation. It's a number frankly we can't repeat enough, 600,000 kids at risk of dying. It's the reason we're here.
Parents are watching their kids die every single day, every few hours. These deaths could have been preventable. Supermodel Iman said last night in this program, an entire generation of Somalis could be lost in her home country.
She just tweeted actually that she was born in Banadir Hospital, the hospital that we were broadcasting about today where the needs are so great.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta is in Dadaab, Kenya tonight along the Somali border in what is now the world's largest refugee camp where malnutrition is colliding with disease. Take a look.
GUPTA (voice-over): The kids here will melt your heart. How old am I? 41. They impressed me with their English. So I spoke a little Somali to them and they loved it.
(on camera): Is that good?
(voice-over): Rare smiles in a place too full of heartbreak. Amin and 1-month-old daughter, Addison, came here in search of a better life fighting so hard not to starve to death. But in the end, it made little difference.
Amin lost the one thing in the world she cared about more than anything else. We are walking to her daughter's grave. They are really just piles of dirt with no name plate, no flowers, no reminders of their lives just small sticks with colored plastic trash blowing in the wind.
She says she brought her healthy baby girl here with dreams of new beginnings. But Addison died within a month. What went wrong? She started vomiting she said and then diarrhea. It wouldn't stop to days and days.
Diarrheal illness, it has been the major reason 30,000 kids have died here over the past three months. So many tiny little graves like this one.
(on camera): Part of the problem is even after you get to one of these camps, there's still not enough food here. Not enough water and there's plenty of infectious diseases. There are viral illnesses. There's also diphtheria. There's pertussis.
And I want to show you something else that's very frightening in a camp like this. This is Osmond. He's 14 years old. As you can tell he really doesn't feel well. People are concerned here that he has measles.
He had a high fever. He had the characteristic rash. He had conjunctivitis in his eyes. He never got vaccinated. He never got any sort of treatment. Measles as you know is very, very contagious. He has nowhere else to go.
(voice-over): And so hundreds of thousands more of these adorable children unvaccinated are at risk of the same fate as Amin's daughter.
(on camera): Is there anything anybody can do? It is with God.
(voice-over): It is with God. And so there's nothing else these kids can do but laugh and play surrounded by the dead.
COOPER: You have to remember so many of these kids haven't been vaccinated and haven't been inoculated in areas controlled by El Shabab. El Shabab has actually stopped allowing aid groups from vaccinating saying that these aid groups are actually trying to kill Somali kids and that it's a western plot.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta joins me now from Dadaab as well as CNN correspondent David McKenzie joins me now as well. Sanjay, the international aid groups are working hard to try to stem disease outbreaks at the camp through vaccine programs and early warning systems. Are they having an impact?
GUPTA: Well, you know, it's very hard to paint with one broad brush the entire impact. I think there are certain enclaves where there's more of an impact than others.
But the area that you just saw there in that piece, Anderson, there was several kids who likely had measles at one time or another. They had the rash. It had gone away, but they had fever and weren't feeling well.
But hadn't seen a doctor because they were too ill to go the health center and there weren't doctors actually going around seeing the patients so it's a logistical problem.
Also with regard to vaccinations, it's even more complicated than you might imagine. Children under the age of 5 are getting vaccines even at the time they check in or registration, but children over 5 for various reasons, the aid organizations have told us this aren't always getting their vaccines.
So a lot of kids you saw playing, running around, unvaccinated, they are at more risk. If you have one child with measles or one child with infectious disease, they can all become infected pretty quickly.
COOPER: David, you've been reporting on this now for weeks for this story. Have you personally -- have you been seeing it get worse and worse? Have you seen the change? DAVID MCKENZIE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Anderson, it's partly things staying the same and things changing. First time, I came here was 2006. I actually came here to cover a flood. Now it's a drought and it's actually a cycle of droughts.
What I've seen is that people are coming into these outskirts of the camp and as Sanjay reported there, they are not in a good situation. There's measles and other issues and just the elements here.
We found ourselves coughing later in the day because there's wind that I will show you video, this wind that blast through the camp with dust and dirt. It's a wind that is absolutely terrible.
It gets into people's lungs and you see adults and children coughing and lying in their tents often with sweat. They are getting help. They are getting out of Somalia where they are fleeing conflict and often they get here and the situation is not much better. It's really tragic.
COOPER: Yes, it certainly is. David, appreciate the reporting tonight. Sanjay, as well. Programming you can see more of Sanjay's reporting from Dadaab on a special edition of "Sanjay Gupta M.D." this weekend "On The Frontlines of Famine" Saturday and Sunday at 7:30 a.m. Eastern Time.
Up next, my interview with U2 front man and humanitarian, Bono and his thoughts on the crisis and who is to blame.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You can blame droughts on God, but famines are man-made. You know exactly what to do and this shouldn't be happening.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
COOPER: Welcome back. We're coming to you live from Mogadishu. You know, so many people have been sounding the alarm about what is happening here. They've been sounding the alarm for a month.
This was preventable. This was predictable. It was predicted in fact. They've known about the drought for a long time. They've known about the danger of famine here. The war here, the conflict has certainly contributed to it, but there's so much that needs to be done right now.
For weeks now, U2 front man, Bono has been sounding the alarm about the famine here. Even now we can stop. We can do something about it. Lives can be saved. Kids are going to die. There's no doubt about it in the next day or two or in the coming weeks.
But it's a question of how many kids are going to die and we can make a big impact on that. Bono has teamed up with a Somali born hip- hop artist named K'naan to urge the world to try to take action. I spoke with Bono and K'naan earlier tonight. It is tonight's big "360" interview.
COOPER: Bono, I was at a hospital today in Mogadishu. I mean, there are kids dying. Tens of thousands of children have already died in the last few weeks, last few months, many more are likely to die unless more aid and more money gets in the pipeline.
They need $2 billion. I think they have only had $1 billion actually sent so there's a big shortfall. At this hospital, which is in Mogadishu, it's a major hospital, a big children's ward, they hardly had any medicine.
They hardly had the equipment and supplies they needed to treat these children. It's stunning when you see that up close, the results of what happens when there isn't the attention and there isn't the aid.
BONO, CO-FOUNDER, ONE CAMPAIGN: It is shocking. It is disgusting. I have seen those faces myself up close. I've seen that loss of life. I saw Sanjay's report earlier today from the hospital where he explained that the World Food Program will run out of food in three weeks.
It's hard to believe that this is the 21st Century and, you know, we must not let the complexity situation absolved us from responsibility to act. That's really the message. That's why we're so pleased that you are there and CNN are there.
You have to make this a priority. You see in the Security Council people staying late at night as they should to discuss what's going on in Libya and Syria and the like because hundreds and thousands of lives are being lost there.
Here there are 12 million people over three countries. This is a huge strategic import for us in the whole horn of Africa. We need to make this a priority.
COOPER: You know, K'naan, I heard on Twitter from a lot of folks their image of Somalia I think was born in '91 and '92 the famine then and what happened with "Operation Restore Hope" when the humanitarian effort ended up getting bogged down in a hunt for a Somali warlord and U.S. troops were killed.
There's a lot of people I think who kind of feel like, you know what, we tried to help Somalia 20 years ago, why now if they're in the same situation why should people be donating money? What do you say to people about this place and about the people here and about the need for aid here?
K'NAAN, SOMALI-BORN SINGER: I think that you're right because of the images of the past, because of the famines of old. Because of the negative stories of piracy that's come out of Somalia. I think people have created a psychological fence around their hearts where Somalia is concerned.
We have to find a way to get past that. And look at the humanity of what's happening and help people who are in need of our help at this moment. We are not usually the sort of people who take the victims seat. We are people who stand up for ourselves. But it's very, very dire, dire situation.
COOPER: I guess, for me the thing, Bono, that I keep thinking about is you hear half a million children are on the brink of starvation. You hear 600,000 children on the - you know, at risk of starvation. Those numbers are so big. They almost don't seem real.
We start to think this is just a normal thing, but I feel like that should be the headline in every paper and every newscast every day while this is going on. Six hundred thousand children at risk of starvation, on the brink of starvation is a catastrophe.
BONO: Look, 30,000 of them have died in the last few months. It's true, you know, people seem to prefer watching people in the high streets of London fight policemen rather than watching children of Somalia fighting for their lives.
People watch the values, you know, stock values crumble while I think about our own sense of values tumbling because this will define who we are. This is a defining moment for us and there are lots to distract us and there are serious issues.
People's livelihoods and not to dismiss the hardships that are happening in the western world, but this is outrageous. It can't be happening. It must be stopped. It's not our intentions, it's our actions. It's not the possibilities of the United Nations or the AU, it's our priorities that define us. This is a defining moment, Anderson.
COOPER: Bono, thank you so much for being with us and K'naan as well. I know you hope to go to the refugee camp, Dadaab. I hope you make it there. Thanks for all your efforts.
BONO: Thank you. We wish you safety there and all of the crew. We really appreciate your work, Anderson. Thanks, once again. Thank you, K'naan, for your leadership. We appreciate it.
COOPER: A full interview with Bono and K'naan is about 10 minutes long. We couldn't play all of it, but go to ac360.com. Watch the full the interview. I really urge you to because there's a lot about not just addressing the short term humanitarian crisis that's happening right now, but also about addressing the long-term needs and how to make sure this thing doesn't happen in the future because there are programs, agriculture programs that are being backed in Kenya right now and Ethiopia that actually are working or mitigating the effects of the drought. But you don't see that here in Somalia. Bono talks a lot about that. Go to ac360.com to check that out. We'll be right back. More ahead.
COOPER: I never tell people how to spend their money, spend their money, but if you are interested in helping the situation here, go to cnn.com/impact for a list of organizations that are doing good work here in Somalia and all over the horn of Africa.
We're going to have more "AC 360" at 10:00 East Coast time in the United States from Mogadishu. I hope you join us for that for the latest on the situation here. Right now "PIERS MORGAN" starts.