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Newsroom/World View

NEWSROOM for September 26, 2000

Aired September 26, 2000 - 4:30 a.m. ET


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

TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: Welcome to the program, everybody. I'm Tom Haynes back with your Tuesday NEWSROOM. Here's what's coming up.

The aftermath of the Yugoslav election tops today's news.

Up next, get the facts about fat in "Health Desk."


C. EVERETT KOOP, SHAPE UP AMERICA: It is my sincere hope that we will totally displace the American obsession with weight with a clear- headed understanding of healthy body fat.


HAYNES: Speaking of fat, we get fed Aussie-style in "Worldview."

Then we end up in college, checking out the future of higher learning.


WATSON: This year for the first time, I tried using CD-ROM textbooks in a calculus course and it worked out rather well.


HAYNES: The world is watching Yugoslavia today as votes are counted in the race for president. This is a big election for the people of Yugoslavia. They will determine the future of a region trying to recover from years of violence and ethnic conflict. And while there are no results yet from yesterday's election, Western governments predict defeat for Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic.

In 1990, Europe's communist governments began to dissolve, and Yugoslavia's Communist Party voted to end its monopoly rule. The six Yugoslav republics held their first multiparty elections that same year. Non-communist parties won the majority of parliamentary seats in four of the republics.

In 1991, Croatia, Slovenia and Macedonia all declared independence. But it wasn't long before ethnic Serbs in Croatia rebelled and seized one-third of the region. In 1992, the people of Bosnia-Herzegovina voted for independence and President Slobodan Milosevic's troops began a policy of ethnic cleansing in what became known as the Bosnian War.

Also in 1992, the province of Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority voted to secede from Serbia and Yugoslavia and merge with Albania. Milosevic dispatched troops to Kosovo in a bid to reassert control over areas held by the KLA, The Kosovo Liberation Army. Waves of refugees fled the province as the Serb offensive gathered momentum.

In October, 1998, NATO allies authorized airstrikes against Serb military targets. After months of fruitless negotiations, NATO began months of airstrikes against Yugoslavia in March of last year. In May, Yugoslav and NATO generals signed an agreement on the withdrawal of Serb troops from Kosovo.

Since Slobodan Milosevic took control 13 years ago, stability has been shaky at best. Now he faces a serious challenge from a political dark horse. The question is, if Milosevic is defeated, will he go quietly?

We begin our coverage with Christiane Amanpour.


CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Even before the final results were in, reaction from European capitals was swift and harsh.

ROBIN COOK, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: Today, Milosevic is a beaten, broken-backed president. We knew he was preparing to rig the results, but the scale of his defeat is too great for even him to fix it.

AMANPOUR: The British foreign secretary, Robin Cook, says that all available evidence shows that Serbian voters have rejected President Slobodan Milosevic by a massive margin, even in his own home town.

The Council of Europe says the vote was flawed even before the polls opened. Indeed, Milosevic altered the constitution just to run again, and banned independent election monitors from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. On Monday, the OSCE said claims of victory by Milosevic's people are not credible.

Indeed, there is a sense that Serbia has taken a dramatic new turn, something that Milosevic's traditional ally Russia acknowledges, according to Gerhard Schroeder, the German chancellor who was in Moscow for a meeting with the Russian president, Vladimir Putin.

"We agreed that it looks as though Serbia and Yugoslavia have decided in favor of democracy," says Schroeder.

European leaders believe that Milosevic's main opponent, Vojislav Kostunica, should be able to claim a clear victory, but they also believe that Milosevic will be true to form and try to cling to power. Throughout the campaign, opposition candidates have been harassed, arrested and denied proper access to the media.

Robin Cook paid tribute to the heavy voter turnout.

COOK: Milosevic did everything he could to intimidate, to bully, and to silence the opposition. This morning I want to congratulate the people of Serbia on refusing to be bullied out of using their democratic vote.

AMANPOUR: Cook called on the Yugoslav president to get out of the way and release his people from the prison that he's made of Serbia.



ANDREA KOPPEL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Even before a single vote was cast, the Clinton administration had already made clear President Slobodan Milosevic could not win in a free and fair election. Now that they're over, the U.S. is wasting no time writing his political obituary.

RICHARD BOUCHER, U.S. STATE DEPT. SPOKESMAN: What we can say is, from the results that we've seen so far, it does look like the opposition is on its way to a convincing victory.

KOPPEL: But hedging its bet, the U.S. has not recognized main opposition candidate Vojislav Kostunica as the new Yugoslav president. And a second round of elections next month still seems possible. Even so, the U.S. believes, if nothing else, this round of voting spelled the beginning of the end of Slobodan Milosevic.

BOUCHER: What is clear is that things have changed in Belgrade. Things have changed in Yugoslavia. The Yugoslav people have had a chance to stand up and say what they want.

KOPPEL: The question the U.S. appears most reluctant to answer is what, beyond keeping sanctions in place, it would be prepared to do if President Milosevic loses the next round and still refuses to go. Those who know him well say Mr. Milosevic will do anything to stay in power.

MILAN PANIC, FMR. YUGOSLAV PRIME MINISTER: Milosevic's style is known. He will create a problem. The one which disturbs me the most, that he will probably use police and army to attack the people.

KOPPEL (on camera): The Clinton administration, meanwhile, is counting on the opposition to rise up against Mr. Milosevic if he doesn't concede defeat. A lot of tough talk perhaps, but little hard evidence that what Washington claims has happened and wants to happen will.

Andrea Koppel, CNN, the State Department.


HAYNES: Today's "Health Desk" looks at body fat levels. Now, there are two types of body fat: essential fat and storage fat. Essential fat is necessary for normal, healthy functioning. It's stored in small amounts in your bone marrow, organs, central nervous system, and muscle. Storage fat, on the other hand, accumulates beneath your skin in specific areas of your body and in your muscles.

Storage fat can play a protective role, but most of it is expendable. Experts say storage fat's important to monitor your body fat percentage. It gives you a better measure of fitness than weight alone. It keeps you from being misclassified since regular scales can label you overweight even if you're not overfat, or as normal weight even if you have too much body fat. It also helps you identify fad diets that promote water and muscle loss rather than fat loss.

Gary Nurenberg tells us all how it's done.


GARY NURENBERG, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): You don't have to look far for evidence that 55 percent of American adults are overweight. Now, a new study concludes the best way to determine whether you have a healthy weight is to measure your percentage of body fat.

KOOP: It is my sincere hope that we will totally displace the American obsession with weight with a clear-headed understanding of healthy body fat.

NURENBERG: Koop's organization, Shape Up America, has posted tables for healthy body fat levels at its Web site.

(on camera): Many of us try to hide it under clothing, but one of the best ways to determine your body fat index is to have someone literally measure your flab.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is a skin caliper. This is one of the easier methods.

NURENBERG: Karim Brittain (ph) is a fitness instructor who does this all the time.

BRITTAIN: This is where most Americans carry most of their fat.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: These scales are designed to be used by the consumer at home.

NURENBERG: Another method is the scale I tried that sends electronic impulses through your body to determine body fat percentage. Cost: $50 to $100.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You are at 24.1 percent, which is right inside the healthy range.

NURENBERG: Most Americans don't know their percentage of body fat. Even many of the health-conscious are unaware.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm not so sure that everyone's aware of their body fat.

NURENBERG: Skeptics may say fat chance, but Koop hopes more Americans will become aware of their body fat percentages and then do something to bring them within healthy levels.

Gary Nurenberg for CNN, Washington.


HAYNES: Well, you just learned all about body fat. And coming up, we'll get those taste buds working again as we visit various restaurants in Australia. Ever consider eating shark lips? That may sound disgusting, but apparently it's a delicacy. Then from delicacies to the delicate balance of nature, we'll find out all about forests around the world. But first, we head back to the Land Down Under.

SHELLEY WALCOTT, CO-HOST: Australia was once a group of British colonies and most of the people there are of British ancestry. They've held onto a lot of British customs, like driving on the left side of the road. English is the official language of Australia. In both countries, an elevator is called a lift, an automobile trunk is a boot, and gasoline is petrol.

In Australia, as in England, hot tea is a favorite beverage. And Australia's cuisine is a reflection of many cultures. Chefs combine local ingredients with international cooking styles to create what's described as modern Australian or "Mod Oz".

Far from the wild bush and the outback, sleek modern restaurants in Australia are world class in dining and decor. There's a passion to create a cuisine that's internationally diverse, yet uniquely Australian, as Carolyn O'Neil explains.


CAROLYN O'NEIL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Throwing a few shrimp on the barbie may be the popular stereotype of cooking Down Under, but inventive chefs here have been busy creating a new definition of Australian cuisine.

NEIL PERRY, ROCKPOOL: I think what sort of knocks people out is the kind of vibrance and the freshness and the ease at which we put things together.

O'NEIL: At Neil Perry's Rockpool in Sydney, the menu is as sleek as the surroundings. Asian noodle salad with Australian abalone is flavored with truffle oil, ginger and scallion. More Asian influence, omelets are seasoned with Thai fish sauce and crispy fried in a hot wok. A nation of palates yearning for flavors beyond their British roots found inspiration when Asian immigrants brought their cultures and cuisines.

KAHN DANIS, ROCKPOOL: We eat their food all the time and we're inspired by their food, and hopefully we do them justice.

O'NEIL: At Sailors Thai in Sydney, the menu salutes the flavors of Thailand, a tasty testament that Australian food has come a long way.

DAVID THOMPSON, SAILORS THAI: Apart from a few good country cooks and a few rare exceptions, it was, in fact, a culinary wasteland.

O'NEIL: Chef David Thompson is such an authority on traditional Thai cooking that the Thai government has asked him to teach chefs in Bangkok. Here in Sydney, dishes such as jasmine tea smoked perch with a green mango chili salad reflect his passion.

THOMPSON: There's been an excitement of discovery, almost a gawkish enthusiasm as one discovers new ingredients and how to toy and tinker and technique with them.

HELEN GREENWOOD, "THE SYDNEY MORNING HERALD": Australian cooking generally has strong roots in French technique, a little bit of a nod, maybe, to our British heritage now and then with a bit of steak or something or a steak and kidney pie. But generally it is a mixture of the Asian, of the Italian, the Greek and other influences.

O'NEIL (on camera): And while chefs in Australia are certainly serious about their cuisine, this is a country with a refreshing sense of humor. For instance, at one of the top restaurants in Sydney, M.G. Garage, the dining room is decorated with M.G. sports cars and, yes, they are for sale.

(voice-over): This unique pairing of precision performance is a partnership between an M.G. dealership and Greek-born chef Janni Kyritsis.

JANNI KYRITSIS, M.G. GARAGE RESTAURANT: I'm ready for the ovens.

O'NEIL: This electrician turned culinary pro illuminates multinational marriages. Here, Australian beef with Mediterranean olives is wrapped in an English style dumpling, served with stir fried spinach and topped with a French Madeira sauce.

KYRITSIS: All that is cooked by a Greek that used to be an electrician. So you can't find any combination like that anywhere in the world, and that's part of Australian cooking.

O'NEIL: The real recipe secret, chefs say, is the great fresh produce in Australia. And below the famous surf, seafood is abundant and unusual. balmain bugs, sort of like lobster, show up on menus. And as Chef Cheong Liew of the Adelaide Hilton demonstrates, specialty ingredients such as shark lips are found in local markets. After they're steamed, he serves them with scallops and braised vegetables.

CHEONG LIEW, THE GRANGE RESTAURANT: I can't even figure out the menu because everybody comes in and asks, I'll have the shark lips.

O'NEIL: So as attention turns to Australia, visitors will find a nation already serving a world of flavors on its plates.

Carolyn O'Neil, CNN, Sydney.


WALCOTT: We'll have more on the Land Down Under tomorrow when we take a ride to the outback to explore monuments which are both landmarks and legends.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With aboriginal people, if I will say, look at Chamber's Pillar, you look at Chamber's Pillar and you think it's just a rock, OK? But if you're an aboriginal person, it's a living thing. And to them it's all their religion and culture and everything all in one.


WALCOTT: That's tomorrow right here on CNN NEWSROOM.

RUDI BAKHTIAR, CO-HOST: You've probably heard the old query, if a tree falls in the forest and there's no one there to hear it, does it actually make a noise? Well, it has an impact even if no one's around because forests hold great importance for their economic value, their environmental value and their enjoyment value. Around the globe, agriculture and industry are taking a toll on forests. It's called deforestation, the destruction and degrading of forests.

And in many parts of the world, it's an increasing concern, as Natalie Pawelski reports.


NATALIE PAWELSKI, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Forests are about more than trees. Forests are believed to be home to about half of Earth's species. And even for those of us who don't live there, they help clean air and water, conserve and enrich soil, and regulate the planet's climate. And for a lot of people, forests are a place to play, to get away from civilization.

But civilization needs trees for lumber, pulp and fuel. Global consumption of wood and paper continues to rise.

TOM GARDNER-OUTLAW, POPULATION ACTION INTERNATIONAL: The problem is, as the forest area begins to decrease and reach critically low levels, environmental processes begin to collapse, soil erosion begins to increase, the amount of species that inhabit the forest begin to disappear, the productivity of land begins to decrease.

PAWELSKI: Of Earth's original forest cover, almost half is gone, chopped down to provide fuel, shelter and farmland for a growing human population.

Some forests have grown back. For example, in the northeastern United States, woods once cleared for farm fields are once again standing tall, since American agriculture has long since moved west. And in many countries, trees are planted and cut on giant plantations.

But of all the vast forests that originally covered much of the Earth, only about one-fifth is still intact in large tracts of never- logged forests, the kind of diverse, vibrant habitat environmentalists prize.

If logging continues at the rate it's going, researchers say, almost all of those big mint-condition forests could disappear within the next 50 to 60 years.

Perhaps the most famous ancient forest, the Amazon rainforest, is also one of the most endangered.

NIGEL SIZER, WORLD RESOURCES INSTITUTE: It's far and away the largest stretch of tropical forest anywhere in the world, and it is also disappearing at an alarming rate.

PAWELSKI: Satellite images show logging roads cutting up the rainforests, opening up what was once inaccessible land.

GARDNER-OUTLAW: They then clear the remaining land of trees by burning them, and they begin to plant crops. The problem, of course, with that is, once that land is settled as crop land, it rarely, if ever, returns to its former glory as a forest.

PAWELSKI: The same pattern repeats around the world as two football fields worth of tropical rainforests disappear every second.

SIZER: It costs money to protect an area of forest. And if you also have people who are desperate for education, and desperate for health care, it's very difficult for a government like that to allocate cash to also conserve those resources.

PAWELSKI: In rich countries, too, the value of trees often outweighs the value of forests. Take Canada, home to about one-fourth of the world's untouched forests for now.

SIZER: It's the largest logging industry in the world. The government subsidizes that industry to the tune of several billion dollars a year. And it's probably one of the sites where there is the most conflict between environmental groups and the industry anywhere in the world at the moment.

PAWELSKI: It's a different story for Earth's single largest stretch of undisturbed forest in Russia's northern reaches.

SIZER: Much of it is, at the moment, completely inaccessible, and therefore likely to be there for a long, long time.

PAWELSKI (on camera): In more accessible forests, conservation efforts are cropping up around the globe. Some examples: Six nations in Central America are working together to preserve a broad swathe of virgin forest that runs the length of the region. China, after suffering devastating floods, blamed in part on deforestation, has replanted an area the size of Costa Rica. (voice-over): And in the United States, the world's biggest single seller of lumber, Home Depot, says it will rid its shelves of products made with wood from endangered forests.

SUZANNE APPLE, HOME DEPOT: If we want to be in business in 20 years with aisles full of lumber, then we need to make sure that we're all being responsible in how we grow and harvest trees.

PAWELSKI: Making sure there's enough wood cut to serve a growing number of people, and enough wood left standing to serve an increasingly pressured planet, that will be a challenge taking care of the forests and the trees.

Natalie Pawelski, CNN.


HAYNES: Forty-two days until the presidential election. Our daily tracking poll shows Bush on an upswing. Though the race is still neck-and-neck, Bush now leads Gore by 3 points in the CNN/"USA Today"/Gallup survey of likely voters.

On Monday, President Clinton was in New Mexico where recent polls show a close race. He was there to muster up support for his party. Why New Mexico?

Pat Neal explains.


PAT NEAL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): New Mexico was claimed by Spanish conquistadors looking for gold back in the 1500s, and ceded by Mexico to the U.S. in the 1800s. Now it's a battleground again.

CHRIS GARCIA, UNIVERSITY OF NEW MEXICO: The race in New Mexico is extremely tight. The candidates are neck-and-neck and have been so for several months.

NEAL: Both Al Gore and George W. Bush are trying to lasso the state's five electoral votes, which could be critical in a tight race.

DIANE DENISH, CHAIRWOMAN, NEW MEXICO DEMOCRATIC PARTY: This is the most intense I've seen an effort to win this state in the presidential column since about 1984.

NEAL: Plus, it has a history of picking winners.

(on camera): New Mexico is considered a bellwether state, having accurately selected the president every time, except for one, since it joined the Union back in 1912.

NEAL (voice-over): To win here, a candidate must seize the state's cultural diversity, celebrated at the annual state fair in Albuquerque. Hispanics total about 40 percent of the state's population.

Anitra Atler (ph) says Gore's in step with her.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Education is big, especially New Mexico being so low in teacher pay and, you know, other issues, health issues, and medical coverage for families.

NEAL: Hispanics historically vote Democratic here, keeping the state from being a Republican stronghold like much of the West. But Bush has shown he's in tune with them.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He's got the right answers for what I'm after, you know, when it comes to what I believe in.

NEAL: The candidates also need to win over women. Many are still undecided, like Lily Montoyo (ph).

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm waiting until they debate, so right now I'm undecided.

NEAL: And like the rides along the state fair midway, this state tends to swing wildly.

GARCIA: The state is very balanced in its voting patterns between Democrats and Republicans, and has been so for a long time.

NEAL: Bush's base is in Albuquerque while Gore's strength comes from the artsy area of Santa Fe.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I'm out with the Democratic Party.

NEAL: The campaigns say the difference may be made in the footwork. Every day, Democratic volunteers walk the Santa Fe precincts to ensure Gore supporters go to the polls and vote.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're out campaigning for Governor Bush.


NEAL: But Bush followers are also targeting Santa Fe, looking for converts.




NEAL: Both sides have poured about $250,000 each in ad buys here in the past month.


VICE PRES. AL GORE (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: We need a patients' bill of rights.

(END VIDEO CLIP) NEAL: There's no escaping this tight race even at the state fair.


NEAL: Both campaigns say, in a tight competition, the race for New Mexico will go down to the line.

Pat Neal, CNN, Albuquerque.


HAYNES: That's a new way of looking at politics.

Well, you've no doubt heard the expression, the only constant is change. It's certainly true in cyberspace. In the pre-Internet era, people found most information on paper -- newspapers, maps, and even encyclopedias. Well, that information now can be found electronically and is becoming more accessible each day. What could this mean for the classroom?

CNN's Student Bureau explains.


LEAH VERMEER, CNN STUDENT BUREAU (voice-over): Textbooks are becoming less and less significant as electronic media becomes more prevalent. Some believe that this alteration should be minor, incorporating CD-ROMS and the Internet with the current methods of learning. Others strongly encourage dramatic reforms.

LOU ZULI, MICROSOFT SYSTEM ENGINEER: Textbooks will not go away but, they need to.

CHRIS WATSON, TEACHER: This year for the first time, I tried using CD-ROM textbooks in a calculus course and it worked out rather well.

MATT NICKESON, AGE 18: And it shows you all the problems that you need to do, just like a regular textbook, but it's also got all the answers and the solutions used to get those answers, so it's almost like having a little teacher inside there for you that helps you out.

WATSON: I find that my students are much more receptive to looking at information on one of these computers than they are to opening a book and taking it home.

VERMEER (on camera): Many schools are using CD-ROMS and distance learning courses along with textbooks. But some people do not see completely replacing them as a feasible option.

(voice-over): Mary Russick sells textbooks to school systems in West Central Florida. She does not foresee a dramatic change in the future. MARY RUSSICK, GLENCOE MCGRAW-HILL PUBLISHING CO.: I don't see electronic media replacing textbooks, I see it being used in conjunction with a text program.

VERMEER: School boards across the country are taking it one day at a time, incorporating more electronic media into the classroom every day.

JUDY AMBLER, INSTRUCTIONAL TECHNOLOGY, PINELLAS COUNTY SCHOOLS: What we're trying to do at this point is add extra things to our textbooks that we currently have, so we're buying a lot of our textbooks adoptions with CD-ROMS and various software that go along with them.

VERMEER: Publishing is a $20 billion industry, with e-books accounting for less than 1 percent. However, Microsoft predicts that by the year 2020, 90 percent of books sold will be electronic.

Leah Vermeer, CNN Student Bureau, St. Petersburg, Florida.


HAYNES: All right, nice job, Leah.

Hey, students and teachers, if you'd like to learn more about CNN's Student Bureau, you can head for this Web site or call the number there on your screen.


CNN Student Bureau



Meantime, we've got to head on out of here. We'll see you back tomorrow. Take care, everybody.



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