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Newsroom/World View

NEWSROOM for June 8, 2000

Aired June 8, 2000 - 4:30 a.m. ET


ANNOUNCER: Seen in classrooms the world over, this is CNN NEWSROOM.

TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: To our viewers around the world, welcome to CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Tom Haynes.

Speaking of around the world, you're back from doing a little globe trotting.

RUDI BAKHTIAR, CO-HOST: Europe was fabulous.

HAYNES: Welcome back.

BAKHTIAR: Glad to be back. And here's what's coming up.

HAYNES: In today's top story, Microsoft faces a breakup: How a U.S. federal judge put a bug in the software giant's future.

BAKHTIAR: Next, in our "Science Desk," the human genome: Why scientists say this blueprint to the body could dramatically change the face of medicine.


CRAIG VENTER, CELERA GENOMICS: It's going to be a real drive for new discoveries, new biology, links between genetics and disease, causes of disease.


HAYNES: Then, in "Worldview," an emotional reunion. Female veterans of the Vietnam War gather in Ho Chi Minh City.


VO THI HUONG, VIETNAM VETERAN (through translator): Oh my God, a lot of weapons. From 1969 to 1972, I was jailed when someone informed on me. I was jailed for three years and tortured terribly.


BAKHTIAR: And in "Chronicle," turning the tables on an emergency call. We'll have the 411 on why 911 could soon be calling you.


PREM BROWN, BOULDER, COLORADO RESIDENT: If it was like a really bad thing happening, then it might save somebody's life someday.


BAKHTIAR: In today's news, a U.S. federal judge orders Microsoft to split into two smaller companies, calling the software giant "untrustworthy in the past." Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's ruling comes two months after he concluded Microsoft violated U.S. antitrust laws. He says the company used illegal methods to protect its monopoly in computer operating systems, and unfairly stifled competition.

In a monopoly, a single company controls the supply of a product or service for which buyers cannot easily find a substitute. You can find more in-depth background on the Microsoft case in Tuesday's show.

Well, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates plans an appeal. But if the order stands to split Microsoft, it would be the largest court-ordered breakup since the dismantling of telephone giant AT&T in 1984.

Charles Bierbauer reports.


CHARLES BIERBAUER, CNN SR. WASHINGTON CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): "Microsoft," Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson said, "could have expected this." His order would sever the Windows operating system that gave Microsoft its monopolistic power from the software applications, such as Microsoft Office and the Internet Explorer browser that Microsoft bundled into Windows in the hope of excluding competing Net browsers. The new Windows company would be permitted to install Internet Explorer for those customers who want it, but Windows would not own it.

JOEL KLEIN, U.S. ASST. ATTORNEY GENERAL: After the divestiture, I expect both companies will be vibrant, strong and successful firms.

BIERBAUER: Microsoft will also have to change its behavior: No more bundling requirements to get its software, no special pricing deals between competing manufactures. Judge Jackson said he'd reluctantly concluded: "A structural remedy has become imperative. Microsoft, as it presently organized and led, is unwilling to accept the notion that it broke the law."

Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said perhaps he'd made one mistake during the lengthy trial.

BILL GATES, CHAIRMAN, MICROSOFT: Perhaps I should have taken the opportunity to go in person and talk about this industry, you know, what it's meant in terms of empowering people, what it's meant in terms of a business model that works more effectively for consumers.

BIERBAUER: Judge Jackson gave Microsoft four months to submit a plan dividing the company, 60 days for the Justice Department to register any objections, 30 days for Microsoft to respond. The plan itself should accomplish all he's asking in one year, subject, of course, to further appeals.

GATES: I believe very strongly that today is the first day of the rest of this case.

BIERBAUER: And perhaps a new dispute. Microsoft wants to take the case next to the circuit court of appeals. Justice wants to expedite the appeal to the Supreme Court, as the law permits in major antitrust cases.

(on camera): Even if the Microsoft appeal goes on the Supreme Court docket, the earliest it could be argued is near the end of this year.

Charles Bierbauer, CNN, Washington.


BAKHTIAR: With talk of yesterday's ruling and all the legal maneuvers involved, one question still remains: What would the breakup of Microsoft mean for the average computer user? For answers, here's technology correspondent Rick Lockridge.


GATES: The PCs have been coming down in price, the variety of software that's out there, the phenomenon of the Internet -- that's what you get when you a allow company to innovate.

RICK LOCKRIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Bill Gates says consumers should be very worried about the effects of breaking up his company. But just what would Windows PC users stand to lose?

GARY BEACH, PUBLISHER, "CIO" MAGAZINE: Consumers do not want to see Microsoft split in two.

LOCKRIDGE: "CIO" magazine's Gary Beach says he agrees with Bill Gates that a fractured Microsoft might make fractured software, programs that no longer work well together.

BEACH: You might be in Japan and you'll receive a Word document from a colleague in the United States five years from now, and it might not work.

LOCKRIDGE: But if slicing Microsoft in two opens a gap for new competitors, won't the Department of Justice be able to say it did the right thing for consumers?

KLEIN: Customers, consumers in a free and competitive marketplace will decide for themselves what software they want to purchase.

LOCKRIDGE: By monopolizing the desktop PC industry, Microsoft made it possible for millions of computers to work together smoothly, and now the company wants to create a single standard for the Web with its next-generation Windows services.

GATES: There's no doubt this is the -- an industry sitting on the verge of unbelievable opportunity.

LOCKRIDGE: But can Microsoft be as effective, as aggressive as it would like to be with the Feds hovering and the threat of a breakup more real than ever? And what of the company's image? Will the best and brightest want to continue to go to work for a company that's been labeled a harmful monopoly, a company that may not even stay in one piece?

BEACH: Fewer, rather than more smart people are going to want to work for that company in the future.

LOCKRIDGE: The government's goal all along has been to weaken Microsoft just enough to let competitors in the door. But when a company's products run 90 percent of the world's personal computers, how weak can you afford to make it? That's Microsoft's question, but consumers also await an answer.

Rick Lockridge, CNN, Washington.


HAYNES: Hey, have you ever been on that ride "Body Wars" at Walt Disney World -- you know, the one that sends you through the human body? You see all kinds of stuff along the way: blood vessels, arteries, organs. You even get pumped right through the human heart.

Well, today we talk about a microscopic part of the body called chromosomes. They are thread-like parts of cells that carry important hereditary information in the form of genes. Humans have 23 pairs of chromosomes, a sequence that makes up the entire human genome. Scientists are itching to map that sequence to glean important information that could dramatically change medicine as we know it.

Ann Kellan reports.


ANN KELLAN, CNN SCIENCE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): If each of the 23 pairs of chromosomes that make up the human body were chapters in a human recipe book, two would be complete, with scientists just months away with finishing the rest of the book.

FRANCIS COLLINS, DIR., NATIONAL HUMAN GENOME INSTITUTE: So as of right now, 85 percent of the human genome has been sequenced in either finished form or working draft form by this international consortium. So we're very far along.

KELLAN: What that means: Scientists are close to knowing the entire sequence of chemicals within our cells that determine everything from the color of our hair, our athletic ability to the diseases we're prone to get.

VENTER: It's going to be a real drive for new discoveries, new biology, links between genetics and disease, causes of disease.

KELLAN: Already doctors have pinpointed certain genes to improve the treatments or diagnosis of colon cancer, diabetes, cystic fibrosis and breast cancer. This is just the beginning. But it will take more than an instruction book of chemical sequences to cure diseases.

COLLINS: On top of that, of course, the sequence has to be understood. And putting the effort into reading this script is going to involve a much larger group of researchers. Fortunately, they all have access to the information, so they've already started this process.

KELLAN (on camera): Knowing how genes interact with each other and how they're turned on and off are areas scientists still need to understand. And there's another key challenge: understanding the subtle differences in genes that differentiate you from me.

(voice-over): For example, scientists have already isolated a gene that determines how our bodies will react to certain drugs. What's the right dose for one person could be an overdose to another.

VENTER: But understanding the individual genetic differences between all of us is going to be very key for you, for me, for all of us in the future for understanding our own risk for different diseases.

KELLAN: Scientists say all this could take years, even decades, to fully understand how this instruction book works.

Ann Kellan, CNN, Atlanta.


HAYNES: And today, storms are brewing on the sun. Scientists are on the lookout for major eruptions on the sun's surface that could affect us here on Earth.


MIKE BOETTCHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Ninety-three- million miles away, a storm of sorts erupts, caught on camera by an orbiting satellite. It dwarfs anything in the normal human experience. The solar wind in this version of a space hurricane blows at 2 million miles per hour as it leaves the sun. And its version of precipitation, charged solar particles, will hit Earth's outer atmosphere Thursday night.

DR. GEORGE WITHBROE, NASA SOLAR SCIENTIST: To produce one of those events on the sun is about a billion megatons of TNT equivalent. So these are big explosions. But you have to remember the sun is 93 million miles away so it doesn't -- no danger to Earth.

BOETTCHER: The sun is reaching the height of its recurring 11- year storm cycle. And this week's solar eruption, depicted in this NASA animation, is being watched closely by solar scientists, with good reason. Even with Earth's protective magnetic field, major solar storms, like the one approaching, can be disruptive.

WITHBROE: What it does is it creates charged particles in the magnetic field which can affect satellites and produce aurora -- you know, Northern Lights and Southern Lights -- and it can produce currents in power lines, which sometimes can affect power grids.

BOETTCHER: A strong 1989 solar storm blacked out parts of Quebec and the Northeastern United States. Since then, many utilities have taken steps to shield vulnerable systems. Just how well will be tested Thursday night.

Mike Boettcher, CNN, Atlanta.


BAKHTIAR: In "Worldview," our venue once again is Vietnam. This time we see history through the eyes of friends and family left behind. And we hear from women, some widows, others veterans of a long and costly war. They are also voices who chronicle the conflict and its legacy.

SHELLEY WALCOTT, CO-HOST: This week on "Worldview," a closer look at the legacy of the Vietnam War. Twenty-five years after the end of the war, the United States is still trying to account for more than 2,000 Americans missing in action. "Missing in action" is the term the U.S. government uses when it's unable to confirm whether a missing soldier is alive or dead. Some U.S. families say their government should try harder to get to the bottom of the fate of their loved ones.

Jamie McIntyre has more.


JAMIE MCINTYRE, CNN MILITARY AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): In a remote rice paddy 20 miles from Hanoi, a handful of Americans, helped by hundreds of Vietnamese villagers, painstakingly sift mud, trying to confirm the death of a U.S. pilot lost at the height of the Vietnam War.

PETTY OFC. CLINT MCELHINEY, U.S. NAVY: Even though there's a small possibility of us finding his body, I mean, I still agree with us doing this. That's the reason I volunteered for this in the first place.

MCINTYRE: The excavation has yielded several bags of plane wreckage, mostly fragments from an F-4 Phantom, the kind of plane Navy Commander Richard Rich was flying when he was shot down in 1967.

Now, 33 years later, workers have also found bone fragments that, if identified by DNA testing, could finally close the case.

CHRIS RICH, MISSING AVIATOR'S SON: In 1997, my dad's case was closed. They found the crash site, they interviewed the witnesses and said, we don't have to do anything anymore. MCINTYRE: Chris Rich was only 4 when he lost his dad. He says it took a letter-writing campaign to reopen his father's case. And then Defense Secretary William Cohen went to the crash site during his historic visit to Vietnam.

RICH: I just thought at the time that it was, you know, a PR thing for them: see, we are trying all we can do. But it turned out, on the other side, that it's helped us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Capt. Peter P. Collaroda (ph).

MCINTYRE: After a peace accord was signed in 1973, Vietnam returned 591 American prisoners in what the United States called "Operation Homecoming."


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'd like to thank everybody for the warm welcome we've gotten all the way across. And it's great to be back home with Marge.


MCINTYRE: In the years since, more than 550 more Americans were accounted for, but none has ever been found alive.

One thing has changed in recent years: Now eager for Western investment, Vietnam has become a willing partner in resolving unsolved cases.

DENNIS DANIELSON, CENTRAL IDENTIFICATION LAB, HAWAII: It's an excellent cooperation. You know, it's a different culture and we have our ways of doing thing differently, but it's an excellent cooperation.

MCINTYRE: For the men and women of Task Force Full Accounting, it is both a debt of honor and a labor of love.

MASTER SGT. MARK MITCHELL, U.S. AIR FORCE: I feel good about it because he gave it all, and they're giving it all to bring him back.

MCINTYRE (on camera): The recovery of remains from the Vietnam War is still the highest U.S. priority and forms the backbone of the U.S.-Vietnamese military relationship. There are still more than 2,000 Americans unaccounted for in Southeast Asia, including more than 1,500 here in Vietnam.

Jamie McIntyre, CNN, Dong Phu, Vietnam.


ANDY JORDAN, CO-HOST: Perhaps the most striking image of the Vietnam War in the U.S. is the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. Built in 1982, it serves as a lasting monument to the sacrifice of American military personnel during one of the nation's least popular wars. Etched into the two granite walls are the names of the more than 58,000 men and women killed or missing in action. Each of those names, of course, represents thousands of loved ones left behind to grieve. Among them, the widows whose wrenching stories are now told in a new movie.

Jennifer Auther has the story.


JENNIFER AUTHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): What about the wives, the women who received "regret to inform" letters during the Vietnam War?

BARBARA SONNEBORN, DIRECTOR, "REGRET TO INFORM": For years I tried to put the war behind me. One morning, the 20th anniversary of his death, I woke up and I knew I had to go to Vietnam.

AUTHER: Barbara Sonneborn followed her heart. She went to Southeast Asia to stand where her first husband, Jeff Gurvitz, died. She made a film featuring widows from all sides of the Vietnam War.

Xuan Nguyen is from South Vietnam. Her first husband fought and died in 1972 alongside U.S. soldiers.

XUAN NGUYEN, WAR WIDOW: The U.S. government declared the end of the war in 1975. It wasn't over for me. The war is going on within. This time, I fought this war alone for survival, for raising my son.

AUTHER: Speaking out is healing for widows such as Lula Bia from the Navajo nation in Arizona. Bia says she was ashamed to carry her pain for so long. It's been more than 31 years since her husband, Michael Bia Sr., was killed.

LULA BIA, WAR WIDOW: I only got three letters. And in the letters, he just wrote about the weather and the food and how the other people looked like us, but he refused to write about anything else. That made me wonder what -- exactly what was going on there.

AUTHER: Lula Bia learned some of what was going on from pediatrician Nguyen Thi My Hien, from what was formerly North Vietnam. Like Bia, Dr. Nguyen was widowed with an infant son to raise by herself.

DR. NGUYEN THI MY HIEN, WAR WIDOW (through translator): My desire is there is no more war in the world.

AUTHER: It is for this reason Dr. Nguyen left her work with children suffering from the affects of agent orange for a five-city tour of the U.S. last January. She told her story to high school students in Los Angeles. She then flew to Washington to honor soldiers named on the Vietnam Memorial Wall. She cried with and consoled other widows like Norma Banks of Vallejo, California. Michael Banks came home, but with flashbacks of killing people.

NORMA BANKS, WIDOW: That bothered him a lot. It's like whatever it took for him to get home, that was what was on his mind. Whatever it took, he was coming home. AUTHER: Banks married her husband two years after he returned from Vietnam, she says, only to watch him die slowly from the affects of agent orange. Each of these women credits Barbara Sonneborn for declaring war itself the enemy.

SONNEBORN: The best possible outcome for this film would be to change the way people think about war.

AUTHER (on camera): Sonneborn has opened a Web site,, with the hope that women can become an unprecedented force for peace. She is also planning a second trip to Vietnam so that more U.S. widows can connect with the place that forever changed their hearts and their lives.

Jennifer Auther, CNN, Los Angeles.


BAKHTIAR: The mere mention of Vietnam conjures up images of a war which left deep and lasting scars on those who fought it. Now, 25 years later, for the first time, the Vietnam government is honoring the women who fought on behalf of the Viet Cong.

Chris Riker takes us to a poignant scene in Ho Chi Minh City, where those known as the "long haired army" were honored.


CHRIS RIKER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It was an emotional reunion. For the first time since the war ended almost 25 years ago, 300 Vietnamese women veterans gathered on the grounds of the former presidential palace in Saigon, now called Ho Chi Minh City.

In their combat pajamas and checked scarves, the women marched in single file at the place where communist troops accepted the surrender. It's the first time these women have been publicly honored by Vietnam's government. But for some veterans, the event brought back painful memories.

HUONG (through translator): Oh my God, a lot of weapons. From 1969 to 1972, I was jailed when someone informed on me. I was jailed for three years and tortured terribly.

RIKER: From the early years of the war, the "long-haired army" was instrumental in the Viet Cong insurgency in U.S.-backed South Vietnam. They rallied in the streets, fought hand-to-hand combat, and risked their lives supplying munitions and food to the underground Viet Cong. The passage of time has done little to blunt some memories.

NGUYEN THI KIM DUNG, VIETNAM VETERAN (through translator): We had gone by boat and were planning to storm a South Vietnamese military post, but the enemy attacked us first. There was lots of heavy artillery fire from the nearby American base and we suffered very heavy losses. Our casualties numbered about 100 people, of which 50 died -- all women. RIKER: In a symbolic gesture, the women made a trip to the Cu Chi Tunnels just outside Ho Chi Minh City. Here, they climbed in and out of the maze of underground bunkers and supply tunnels that had, in wartime, snaked up to a U.S. military base. It had been the scene of intense fighting between U.S. troops and Viet Cong guerrillas.

Some vets feel the military triumph has not been matched by economic success.

HUYNH THI DINN, VIETNAM VETERAN (through translator): When I see my country as it is today, I know that I am ready to die. We achieved what we fought for, only I would like to live a little bit longer just to see the success that our sons and grandsons will achieve in the future.

RIKER: Chris Riker, CNN.


ANNOUNCER: You're watching CNN NEWSROOM, seen in schools around the world, because learning never stops, and neither does the news.

HAYNES: It is probably one of the most well-known facts here in the United States: If you're in trouble, dial 911. In 1968, telephone company AT&T announced it would establish an emergency code throughout the U.S. The number 911 was chosen because it's brief, easy to remember, and can be dialed quickly. Since then, 911 has been designated as the universal emergency number for citizens throughout the country. And now, in places such as Boulder, Colorado, residents soon could be getting a call from 911.

Here's Student Bureau reporter Randy Barber.


RANDY BARBER, CNN STUDENT BUREAU (voice-over): The next time the phone rings, it might be the police on the line. The Emergency Preparedness Network, better known as Reverse 911, is designed to warn people if an emergency is in their area, including floods, tornadoes and even riots.

(on camera): It might seem calm and peaceful here, but three inches of rain upstream could make this a raging river, not giving much warning here in Boulder.

(voice-over): For years, Boulder has had sirens to warn people, but they work best outside. Police still had to go door-to-door to warn people of danger.

LARRY STERN, BOULDER COUNTY OFFICE OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT: The problem with that is sometimes you have to spend a lot of time at a house convincing somebody. We -- it's our philosophy we're never going to drag anybody out of their house, we're just going to inform them.

BARBER: With the new system, the person who picks up the phone will get a short, concise message telling them exactly what to do. Plus, the system actually documents which house has listened to the message, and even who hung up, ensuring as many people as possible are informed.

Even with the new system, they'll continue to use the sirens and other methods.

STERN: We know that you have to be notified two or three different times of an event, unless you're right in the middle of it, before you believe it. But if people hear it three or four different ways, they're probably going to believe something's happening.

BARBER: The system uses telephone company lists, so it's up to date and includes private numbers. But some residents still worry not everyone will get the message.

BROWN: Most of the time, people will just leave it on -- their answering machine would pick up. But if it was, like, a really bad thing happening, then it might save somebody's life someday.

BARBER: Boulder County hopes it will do just that.

Randy Barber, CNN Student Bureau, Boulder, Colorado.


BAKHTIAR: Also in "Chronicle," cigarette maker Philip Morris is voluntarily pulling its ads from more than 40 magazines that attract young readers. Philip Morris is the world's biggest tobacco company and one of the leading advertisers in the United States. The move comes as Morris and other cigarette makers prepare to defend themselves in the punitive damage phase of a multibillion-dollar lawsuit. It was filed on behalf of at least 300,000 sick Florida smokers.

Here are some facts on teen smoking: Almost 20 percent of U.S. teens smoke cigarettes. In fact, one million teens start smoking each year.

Deborah Feyerick has more on why Philip Morris is trying to butt out of the teen market.


DEBORAH FEYERICK, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Teenagers will no longer see the Marlboro man in their favorite magazines. Philip Morris is pulling its ads from 42 publications, including "People," "Newsweek," and "Rolling Stone."

BILL CORR, CAMPAIGN FOR TOBACCO-FREE KIDS: This action by Philip Morris ought to create a new standard, set a new bar, for stopping targeting of children through these magazines.

FEYERICK: The move affects magazines with two million or more readers under 18, and those with teen readership of more than 15 percent. The reason, says Philip Morris, is its "ongoing commitment to reduce the profile of tobacco advertising in this country." The company has already taken down billboards and is running TV ads like this one:


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I don't need to smoke to prove myself.


FEYERICK: Advertising insiders say the company, under heavy legal fire, is trying to ease the pressure.

SCOTT DONATON, EDITOR, "ADVERTISING AGE": If Philip Morris didn't stand to lose as much as it does through lawsuits and through legislative action, it would be doubling and tripling its magazine budget. So, the truth is, this move is all about taking the heat off.

FEYERICK (on camera): Pulling the ads will mean more than $100 million in lost revenue for the magazines. Experts say Philip Morris will likely make up part of the loss with ads from its subsidiaries Kraft and Miller.

(voice-over): Magazines are not closing the door to future cigarette ads. "People" magazine, a sister company of CNN, released this statement: "When they wish to think about ways to advertise exclusively to "People"'s adult readers, we'd be happy to work with them."

As class let out at Martin Luther King Jr. High School in Manhattan, students said it's not cigarette ads in magazines that influence them, it's:





UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We want to try to fit in with certain groups so we decide that, oh, he's smoking so let's go smoke with that person.

FEYERICK: The nation's second largest cigarette maker, R.J. Reynolds, says it will resist peer pressure. It has no plans to follow Philip Morris's lead.

Deborah Feyerick, CNN, New York.


BAKHTIAR: And that wraps it up for us here on NEWSROOM.

HAYNES: That's right. We'll see you right back here tomorrow. Take care. BAKHTIAR: Bye.



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