00:00 / 00:00
CNN 10 - April 17, 2019


History of Notre Dame Cathedral; Experience of Running for U.S. President; Lightning Hit`s the Birds Khalifa in Dubai

Aired April 17, 2019 - 04:00:00 ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN 10 ANCHOR: With the fire out in Notre Dame, French officials and historians are combing through the cathedral to take stock of what`s left. There was a lot saved. The two towers and facade at the front, what many people envision when they think of Notre Dame, they`re still standing. A Paris city hall spokesperson says the cathedrals most significant treasures were saved including what Notre Dame calls its most precious and venerated relic. A crown of thorns which many believe is the crown of thorns that was placed on the head of Jesus Christ.

The chaplain of the Paris fire service is being called a hero for rescuing that and other artifacts and the cathedrals great organ is safe. Scores of the relics that survived were taken to the Louvre Museum, what was lost the cathedral`s spire, large parts of its roof and it`s ancient vaulted ceiling. The central part of the building was damaged. The Paris Fire Brigade says it`s not known yet what caused the fire. A French government spokesman says it could be months before the full scope of the damage is known and a restoration expert expects it will take 10 to 15 years to fully rebuild Notre Dame.

The Vatican has offered its technical expertise in restoring the medieval catholic church and as far as funding goes, French philanthropists and businesses have pledged more than $700 million in donations to restore the cathedral. That gives you one sense about what Notre Dame means to France.

Here`s another. Victor Hugo`s novel, "The Hunchback of Notre Dame" became the best selling book on Amazon France shortly after the fire took place.

A different edition of the same novel was the second best selling book, for a third sense of the building`s significance here`s CNN`s Phil Black.


PHIL BLACK, CNN CORRESPONDENT: How do you measure the profound value of one old building to a nation or to the world? Perhaps when people stop in the street to weep and pray because of its partial destruction, when the French president openly shares that grief.


BLACK: And efforts to save it are broadcast everywhere. Notre Dame is among the most famous of famous buildings, 13 million people visit it every year. Countless more stand before it, tilt their heads up and gaze at the extraordinary vertical scale. The vast rose windows and the many ornate sculptures guarding its exterior. Gargoyles, saints and angels, all the features that make it a masterpiece of the Gothic style but few visitors saw this.


BLACK: A 2018 special broadcast by local network France Deux (ph) showed these images, the centuries old woodwork supporting the roof. There`s so much oak here its known as the forest of Notre Dame. The same timber structures that would just a few months later feed a fire that threatened to destroy the whole cathedral. Notre Dame, Our Lady of Paris has stood since the 1200s`. A building in constant evolution as artists and craftsmen altered and repaired the structure and its decorations. The towering timber spire now a loss to the flames was added in the 1800s`.

Often a symbol and reflection of French political power, the cathedral was vandalized through the French Revolution while Napoleon Bonaparte used it to reinstate monarchic rule with his coronation as Emperor. Later, French Republican leaders, the nations presidents were honored here too. This service was for military hero and statesman Charles de Gaulle. Notre Dame survived the violence and the occupation of war. More recently terrorist attacks in Paris saw it become a focus for the nations grief.

An inspiration for artists across many art forms, none more important than Victor Hugo`s novel published in English as "The Hunchback of Notre Dame".

Before the flames, time and weather were the cathedrals determined and powerful enemies. Desperately needed restoration work was already underway. Now saving Notre Dame has become a critical goal for all of France. In a place famed for beautiful, old buildings one stood above all others as an icon of the nation`s story and the French people are not ready to let it go. Phil Black, CNN, London.


AZUZ: The next U.S. presidential election is more than a year and a half away so why would we address it this far out? Because 20 candidates already have. U.S. President Donald Trump, a Republican, has filed his reelection paperwork. He did it the day he was sworn into the presidency.

In recent months, one Republican and 18 Democrats have officially announced they`re challenging President Trump for the job and there are several other Democrats who are thinking about joining the race. This all culminates in the presidential election on November 3rd, 2020 and along the way voters, events, travel and a lot of money all come into play.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You want to run for president. Being president makes you the single most powerful person, man or woman, in the world but it`s also a multiyear commitment that forces you to give up your personal life and any since of privacy. And then about half the country`s going to hate you no matter what you do. The Constitution has only three requirements, natural born citizen, at least 35 years old, 14 years residing in the United States but there`s so much more to it. First, there`s the primary process. Since only Republicans or Democrats are seen as serious candidates you have to choose a party and get popular in that party.

An inspirational biography helps. Maybe some years as governor or Senator, although even a few mayors think they`re ready this year and a Congressman who lost a Senate race. Might now matter since the current president had zero government experience when he ran. You spend nearly a year bouncing back and forth from Iowa to New Hampshire to South Carolina to Nevada. If you`re not with voters, you`re raising money and raising money and raising money. It takes millions to mount a serious bid and you can only raise $2,700 per donor for the primary and $2,700 per donor for the general election. If you get that far.

Hillary Clinton raised and spent almost $1 billion losing to Donald Trump. He raised much less. The primaries are expensive too. Bernie Sanders spent $222 million on his 2016 primary loss. Why is it so expensive? You`ve got to have an army of staffers and volunteers. You have to buy TV ads, internet ads. In the general election, you`re going to spend every waking hour in Pennsylvania, Florida, Michigan, maybe Ohio, Colorado.

If you want to win, you should probably visit Wisconsin. There are debates and town halls and interview after interview after interview. And then if you win, you get to be president. It means you live above the office. You get to try to work with Congress to get something done. Oh, and you`re going to have to start running for reelection on day one.


AZUZ: 10 Second Trivia. Before the U.S. Air Force became an independent branch of the military, under which branch was it organized? Army, Navy, Coast Guard, or Marines Corps. The U.S. Air Force started as the Aeronautical Division of the U.S. Army`s Signal Corps.



AZUZ: Dubai United Arab Emirates is a desert so there`s not much rain but when there is and its accompanied by thunder, the Birds Khalifa the world`s tallest building becomes a lightening rod. The massive jolts of electricity were diverted down to earth. Nobody was hurt but plenty of people shared video and pictures including Dubai`s Crown Prince.

It`s not just "lightful". It`s "delightful". An illuminating jolt that brings both "felicity" and "electricity". It "sparks" conversation and concern. It draws both a crowd and a "cloud". It`s a "power trip" that trips "power transforming transformers" and bring a "shock" to all who see it. I`m Carl Azuz, "lighting" up another edition of CNN 10.