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Newsroom/World View

NEWSROOM for March 15, 2001

Aired March 15, 2001 - 4:30 a.m. ET


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

SHELLEY WALCOTT, CO-HOST: It's Thursday, March 15. Welcome. I'm Shelley Walcott. Here's what's ahead.

In today's news, the global village faces a crisis as it tries to contain a highly contagious animal disease.

Then, in "Science Desk," techies strut their stuff at a computer conference. But the latest wave of computerware isn't aimed at civilians.

On to "Worldview" and presidential libraries. A look at how they're set up and how they're run.

And in "Chronicle," the U.S. military. Today we're flying high with the Air Force.

European livestock farmers watch and worry as the highly contagious foot-and-mouth disease spreads. The outbreak could be economically devastating for France, which faces worldwide bans on its meat and dairy products.

For the past several weeks, Britain has been battling a severe outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease. Now cases of the disease are surfacing in France and Argentina. Globalization or modern-day increases in international trade, especially the trade of animals and animal products, puts all countries at risk of an outbreak.

To decrease that risk, the United States and several other countries are taking fast and drastic measures. Besides enforcing bans on animals and animal products from the European Union, governments around the world are placing restrictions on travelers -- something we'll discuss more later.

Italy, meanwhile, announced Wednesday that a suspected case of foot-and-mouth disease was just a false alarm. But in the grand scope of things, that provides little relief to the European farming community. The disease is so infectious it can be transmitted by the wind and carried on clothes and vehicles to new hosts, making it that much harder to contain.

Foot-and-mouth disease poses no threat to people. However, humans can transmit it. United States airports are on high alert to watch what international travelers bring into the country.

Tom Mintier reports on how the disease and the restrictions enforced to prevent its spread are affecting the travel industry in Britain.


TOM MINTIER, CNN LONDON BUREAU CHIEF (voice-over): Tourism in Britain is taking a beating. The signs are everywhere: footpaths closed and hotels have plenty of vacancies. There is no foot-and- mouth disease in Windermere, but the tourists are canceling reservations, and the streets are nearly empty.

IAN STEPHENS, CUMBRIA TOURIST BOARD: This could have a long-term effect: to rebuild the confidence in the rural tourism product will take a number of years.

MINTIER: Some hotels in the Lake District have offered free rooms if you have dinner or breakfast at the hotel. This 13-room bed and breakfast cut the rates, but only one room is occupied. There are predictions that unless foot-and-mouth goes away quickly, many tourist-related businesses will go under.

The Lindeth Howe Hotel is one of the larger ones in Windermere. It was just renovated and had 21 new bedrooms added.

But these days, few come to tea or stay overnight. The owners of the hotel say occupancy is less than half what it should be. So far, the bank holding the mortgage is understanding.

JOHN TISCORNIA, LINDETH HOWE HOTEL: We've got to review it on a week-to-week basis and keep talking to the bank and see what they've got to say. I think we can hold out for four or five months.

MINTIER: But this is the start of high season. The spring flowers are in bloom, but few here to see them.

Boat operators are doing well. With walking off of the tourist menu, some have taken to this region's pristine lakes.

JIM FLEMING, WINDERMERE LAKE CRUISERS: All the people who've wanted to go walking have resigned themselves to the fact that they're not able to do that, but they've made the best of it.

MINTIER: These British tourists knew about foot-and-mouth and the restrictions but came anyway.

BARBERA PEARMAN, BRITISH TOURIST: We came with an organized tour, so you know what's allowed and what's not allowed. But if you came up on your own, made the trip on your own by car -- like if we had done -- we would have probably said, no, we're getting off.

BRIAN CALLIGHAN, BRITISH TOURIST: Certainly enjoying ourselves, and the weather has made a jolly difference as well.

MINTIER: While horses cannot get foot-and-mouth, they can spread the virus, so horse riding is banned. There are 40 horses here at Lakeland Equestrian, confined to the stables and the jumping ring -- and no customers.

JAMES OAKTON, HORSE TRAINER: The costs don't stop. You know, they're not taking clients out and earning money. They're still eating food, and you've still got to pay staff to look after them. And the costs are horrendous.

MINTIER (on camera): Just about every sector of the tourism industry here has been drastically affected, from a place to walk, to ride, or even to sleep. The people here are now worried about the future, fearing that their reputation as a destination has been irreparably harmed.

Tom Mintier, CNN, Cumbria County, England.


WALCOTT: The United States government is urging American travelers take extra precautions to avoid bringing foot-and-mouth disease to this side of the Atlantic. The U.S. has already placed a ban on European animals and animal products.

Peter Viles has more on the economic impact the disease is having on businesses and consumers.


PETER VILES, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Unlike mad cow disease, the newest threat from Europe, foot-and-mouth disease, poses no health risk to humans. But it can be fatal to livestock and can spread so easily that it now threatens the meat supply in Europe.

DANIEL BASSE, COMMODITIES ANALYST, AGRESOURCE: The disease is so contagious, it's thought to be able to travel 300 miles through the air and still cause an infection. And so we have to be very careful. This does seem to be a very virulent strain.

VILES: The U.S. Department of Agriculture, taking no chances, has banned pork and pork products from the European Union, as well as unpasteurized milk products and beef from Argentina. Not covered by the ban: cooked and cured meats, pate, butter and hard cheeses.

The United States had already banned European beef because of the mad cow scare, so the main impact of the new ban is in the pork market.

NICHOLAS GIORDANO, NATL. PORK PRODUCERS COUNCIL: Yes, it could impact prices. I'd say the product most likely to be impacted would be ribs. But, again, we don't do a lot of importing so it would be modest. Under no circumstances would we have a product shortage in the U.S., even if this spread to all the EU nations.

VILES: Fearing tourists may bring the disease into the United States, the government is stepping up inspections at airports...


ANNOUNCER: But if you bring back fresh fruit, meat, a plant, bird or animal...


VILES: ... and plans to run public service announcements urging Americans not to bring fruits or pets into the country from Europe.

(on camera): So at this point, agriculture experts consider it very unlikely that the disease will spread to the United States, and thus unlikely that it will cause a noticeable spike in meat prices.

Peter Viles, CNN Financial News, New York.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A CNN viewer wants to know, what is globalization?

KITTY PILGRIM, CNN CORRESPONDENT: The word globalization turns up more and more in our stories and in our broadcasts now. Globalization is the collective efforts of commerce, greater investment in developing countries, the collapse of unviable economic models, and the transfer of technologies.

It is true, in some respects, globalization has failed. The technology gap between the haves and have-nots is wider. But globalization did not create the income gap. Free trade, open financial markets will not close it, nor will the Internet. But now talk of an economic slowdown has put renewed hope that globalization will spread the benefits more evenly around the world.

And from this, we can count on progress.


WALCOTT: Computers have come a long way in their brief history. The first all-purpose, electronic digital computer was developed in the 1940s and used thousands of vacuum tubes. In fact, it was so big it took up 1,000 square feet of floor space. That's more than some apartments or small homes.

Thanks to microprocessors and other technology, computers today are much smaller and are seemingly everywhere, and have transformed the way we live.

As Ann Kellan tells us, they may even revolutionize fashion -- on the street and on the battlefield.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: If you'll turn around, Ron, for us. ANN KELLAN, CNN SCIENCE CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This could be the look of the modern Army. Strapped to the belt, each soldier would be equipped with a full-powered computer and a two-way radio with a GPS locator and connections to a military network. There's an antenna, monitors, one notebook-size, the other much smaller.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're going to see that this actually fits on his helmet and drops down.

KELLAN: Designers say even though it adds 16 pounds, this will help soldiers spot each other in the field, communicate and get a better handle on the enemy's positions during battle.

From slick keyboards worn on the wrist to homemade versions, this international symposium of wearable computers focuses on workers of all kinds, both military and civilians. This bar code scanner by Symbol, strapped to the wrist, reads that code from a distance.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: So if you're driving around in a forklift, you don't have to get off and do a lot of tedious things. You just scan and keep going.

KELLAN: A heads-up display on this helmet made by Liteye lets a pilot check controls, at the same time keeping one eye on the sky. And this helmet, monitor and camera can show someone miles away what's on your computer screen.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I see what I'm looking at in my camera, but I am also sending it to the other person on the other end of my video conference.

KELLAN: One eye on the monitor, one eye on the real world may be natural for these techies, but it takes getting used to.

(on camera): So wouldn't you be distracted by this? I would be looking at the monitor the whole time. You have to think to look at the real world.

(voice-over): You'll see all kinds of wearable gadgets, some bulky, some streamlined, and some you can barely see, like this computer screen projected in the middle of these eyeglasses.

THAD STARNER, GEORGIA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY: Eventually people will realize that it's much more comfortable and better for your eyes, better ergonomically to wear your computer than to be sitting at a desk all day, sitting there typing away.

KELLAN: Manufacturers still have to make sure these gadgets are compatible with each other before consumers start sporting the look. Until then, Levis offers $1,000 jackets and vests ready now with an MP3 music player, cell phone, remote control and headphones in the collar.

JONNY FARRINGDON, PHILIPS ELECTRONICS: Someone rings you up, you don't need to touch anything. It turns the MP3 player off, answers the call, same step headphones, the microphone in the collar. You don't speak into the collar like a secret agent.

KELLAN: Remove the gadgets before washing, then plug it back together again.

Ann Kellan, CNN, Atlanta.


WALCOTT: In "Worldview," some monumental stories. We'll check out presidential libraries in the United States, monuments to leaders living and gone. And later, a legacy of a different sort. We'll learn about a memorial to Japanese veterans. But first we begin in a region where struggles over land are causing conflict and controversy.

RUDI BAKHTIAR, CO-HOST: Now to the Middle East, to the southwest corner of the ancient Fertile Crescent, Israel, home to some of the oldest known evidence of agriculture and primitive life. Israel has also inherited conflicts older than the country itself, conflicts between the Arabs and Israelis who had migrated to the region.

Israel was declared an independent nation in 1948, a move that angered the Arabs in the region and led to invasions by surrounding Arab countries. But in the fighting that ensued, Israel was able to take more territory and expand its borders. And as it gained more Arab land, it also gained an angry Arab population.

Over the years, fighting has continued, especially over areas such as Gaza and the West Bank, territories that are home to more than 1 million Palestinian Arabs.

Ben Wedeman has more from Gaza.


BEN WEDEMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Saadiya Abdin (ph) used to live over there in a house shaded by palm trees. But she and her family don't live there anymore. Her house, the palm trees, are gone.

(on camera): This is all that remains of the home of the Abdin family. Their home and five others behind me were bulldozed, along with their fields and almost everything they own.

(voice-over): In December, Israeli bulldozers came in the middle of the night, demolished the houses and uprooted the trees following violence in the area. An Israeli army spokesman says the houses and trees were removed to prevent attacks on a nearby position guarding the Jewish settlement of Gush Qatif. The spokesman said the operation was carried out at night and without notice to minimize the risk to their soldiers.

Showing us what she managed to retrieve from her house, Sadia says she and her family had no warning. "They didn't give us a minute to clear out," she says.

They now live in tents, scant shelter on damp winter nights. Fourteen people sleep on this tent alone. The cooking, the washing, everything is done here.

Since their homes were destroyed, the Abdins have been on their own.

"The United Nations didn't help us," says Samiha Abdin (ph). "The Palestinian Authority did nothing. They didn't left a finger."

Sadia claims Palestinian gunmen never used her house to fire at the Israelis.

"The Israelis have no morals," says Sadia. "How can they come and bulldoze people in the middle of the night? What kind of peace is this?"

In this wasteland, anger and resentment have found fertile ground.

Ben Wedeman, CNN, Al Qarara in Central Gaza.


WALCOTT: For one group of Americans in particular, World War II was a time of turmoil. While many Japanese Americans were going off to war in service of their new country, thousands of others were being rounded up into detention camps. An estimated 120,000, half of them children, were sent to 10 camps scattered around the western U.S. simply because of their race.

The U.S. government called it a "military necessity" to prevent acts of sabotage and espionage, though there was never any proof that any Japanese American was involved is such activity. The roundup began in March 1942, 59 years ago.

Now, a new monument in Washington, D.C. is shining light on those dark days.

As Kathleen Koch reports, it stirs up mixed emotions.



NARRATOR: Here, over tough terrain in the Vosges forest of France...


KATHLEEN KOCH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Honored as war heroes...


NARRATOR: There are 3,600 purple hearts in this outfit.


KOCH: ... locked up as security risks.

CHERRY TSUTSUMIDA, INTERNMENT CAMP SURVIVOR: We were told that we could carry two bags. We could carry one tin plate and silverware, no knives.

KOCH: More than 33,000 Japanese-American soldiers fought in World War II, while 120,000 Japanese-American civilians were held in desolate U.S. internment camps. Their dual stories of pride and prejudice are told in the new Japanese-American Memorial. Etched into one wall, the names of the 10 camps where families like Cherry Tsutsumida's were held for up to four years.

TSUTSUMIDA: We arrived in the middle of the night and the place was very, very dusty and dry because this was Arizona. We really didn't understand why this was happening to us.

KOCH: Engraved in another section, the names of the more than 800 Japanese-Americans killed in combat, some buddies of Joe Ichiuji, who, like him, volunteered from the internment camps.

JOE ICHIUJI, WORLD WAR II VETERAN: I did not want to give up this opportunity to show that I was a loyal American citizen. I wanted to fight for this country.

KOCH: And fight they did, in Italy and France, in some of the bloodiest battles of the war. They emerged the most decorated combat unit in American history.


HARRY S. TRUMAN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: You fought not only the enemy, but you fought prejudice, and you won.


KOCH: After more than 40 years, the U.S. admitted the internment camps had been a mistake, apologized and paid reparations. Some like Secretary Norman Mineta, who spent part of his childhood in the camps, say the memorial, too, is payment of a long overdue debt.

NORMAN MINETA, TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY: To me, this memorial is an ongoing act of redemption, I guess you might say, by the government.

KOCH: At the memorial, struggling to break their barbed wire bonds, are two cranes, Asian symbols of prosperity and hope, and a bell to ring for contemplation.

TSUTSUMIDA: People could come and say, my goodness, did this happen? And, my goodness, this must never happen again.

Kathleen Koch, for CNN, Washington.


WALCOTT: A quick footnote on Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta. He was the first Asian American to serve in a presidential Cabinet. He served as secretary of commerce in the Democratic Clinton administration. Now he's serving a Republican president, George W. Bush.

As you learned, Mineta was interned by the U.S. government during World War II. He's played an active role in the U.S. government, serving as a former Democratic congressman for California, during which time he was instrumental in the passage of the Civil Liberties Act of 1988, which fostered an official apology to the surviving Japanese Americans interned during the war. And he was also the first Asian-American mayor of a metropolitan U.S. city, San Jose, California.

TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: Every American president has some sort of monument or museum. Some of them even have presidential libraries, which are considered part of the presidential library system run by the National Archives and Records Administration.

Former President Clinton is moving ahead with plans to build his own presidential library and museum, but not without controversy. Upon leaving office, Mr. Clinton issued a presidential pardon to billionaire financier Marc Rich. The pardon ignited a firestorm because of his status as an international fugitive. It seems the former wife of the pardoned financier, Denise Rich, pledged a large amount of money to the Clinton Presidential Library Fund, according to her attorney.

Fred Katayama looks at how presidential libraries are set up and how they're run.


FRED KATAYAMA, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Bill Clinton can use an enormous sum. As with his private office, Mr. Clinton plans to build a pricey library and museum on 27 acres, one that costs more than that of Richard Nixon's, Gerald Ford's and Jimmy Carter's combined even though it's in lower-priced Little Rock, Arkansas.

Clinton's building, which will house a policy center and foundation as well, is estimated to cost $100 million, more than double that of Carter's when adjusted for inflation, triple that of Nixon's and quadruple that of Ford's.

STEPHEN HESS, BROOKINGS INSTITUTION: Clinton is one of those people that I think people are going to be terribly interested in for a very long time. In fact, In think they're going to be more interested in Bill Clinton than they are interested in the Clinton presidency.

The tradition of the presidential library dates back to 1939, when Franklin Delano Roosevelt's library was created as part of the National Archives.

The rules are simple. Presidents set up a foundation to raise money for the library. MARTIN ELZY, ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, CARTER LIBRARY: It was decided that the -- in the Presidential Libraries Act of 1955 provided that the president would give his material to the government, but he would also give the building. And the government then could accept the building and the material to be housed there, and the federal government would then run the institution.

KATAYAMA: The government spends more than $13 million a year to run the libraries.

(on camera): The libraries have had their share of noteworthy donors. Aga Hassan Abedi, the founder of the infamous Bank of Credit and Commerce International, contributed to Carter's library. Industrialist Armand Hammer helped pay for Nixon's. And now possibly Denise Rich for Clinton.

Fred Katayama, CNN Financial News, Washington.


WALCOTT: We continue our special look inside the U.S. military in "Chronicle." Today, we focus on the U.S. Air Force. When you think of the Air Force, the first thing that probably comes to mind is, well, airplanes. But the Air Force is about much more than just planes. It's involved in aspects of your life you may have never even considered.

Our Tom Haynes reports.


HAYNES (voice-over): We live in a world...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: 1082, that was a south two vector, correct?

HAYNES: ... of fast-paced communication.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This is Jillian in Atlanta. Can you hear me?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It will be a Texas call.

HAYNES: One that's connected by a complex web of technology. Much of that technology depends on the use of satellites, which relay information instantaneously around the world. We use satellites for things like banking, telecommunications...

AOL COMPUTER VOICE: You've got mail.

HAYNES: ... entertainment, weather information...


ORELON SIDNEY, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Look out in space. Here's the low-pressure storm.


HAYNES: ... navigation, and military operations.

The idea of a satellite orbiting the Earth was first imaged in the late 1600s. Sir Isaac Newton thought that if he could shoot an object high enough, it would orbit the Earth just like the moon. Nearly three centuries later, the first man-made satellite was launched.

Today, there are over 600 active satellites in space operated by 32 countries. In the United States, satellite technology is a billion-dollar industry...

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One, zero, liftoff.

HAYNES: ... with companies paying big money to have satellites built and launched into space.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Ignited and burning.

HAYNES: At Vandenberg Air Force Base in Lompoc, California, they not only launch satellites, but they train the next generation of satellite operators.

MAJ. JOHN CHERRY, DIR., PUBLIC AFFAIRS: We train young people 18, 19, 20 years old to operate these multibillion-dollar systems. And then we actually give them the joystick to let them operate these systems in a real-world environment.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We're going to talk now a little bit about what's known as a satellite ground track or ground trace.

HAYNES: In this class, young Air Force recruits learn the importance of driving a satellite once it reaches orbit.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's going to carve out a particular path along the globe.

HAYNES: Soon they will be the ones communicating with satellites, making sure they're working properly, and in the correct orbit.

MICHAEL EICKHOFF, AIRMAN: I didn't even know there was a space field in the Air Force until I went down to pick my job or whatever. I just wanted to fly airplanes, actually.

BETHANY ANDERSON, AIRMAN: I always wanted to do something productive with my life. And being at this age and doing something this big, it makes me feel really good.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, the point at which it crosses the equator...

HAYNES: Once they finish training at Vandenberg, the Air Force dispatches new operators to one of several space monitoring stations across the U.S. At Schriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, one of the main missions is to track global positioning satellites.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Anything you do these days mostly used our system as far as navigation or travel or even your commercial airliners are using this system.

HAYNES: Justin Banker (ph) came here from his training at Vandenberg a little more than a year ago. Training at Vandenberg can take you to one of many satellite operating facilities.

You could be sent here, the 20th Space Surveillance Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida. This is where young airmen track satellites and other man-made objects in space.

LT. COL. AL KEMMET, COMMANDER: We're the ones that keep the headlights on to make sure that the satellites don't run into each other, debris does not run into a satellite and take it out.

HAYNES: Think of it this way. If an object in space even as small as a thumbtack or a nail hits a satellite traveling 17,000 miles an hour, there's a good chance the satellite will be destroyed. Add the human element with astronauts aboard the space shuttle and the need for these space trackers becomes that much more important.

JULIAN WHITE, AIRMAN: This is where it's going to come into our coverage.

HAYNES: Twenty-year-old Julian White got his training at Vandenberg as well. He says since he's become a space tracker in Florida, he's come a long way.

WHITE: I think its a great opportunity for me to do what I'm doing now. I know a lot of my friends aren't doing anything like this back home.


WALCOTT: That's great.

That wraps up today's show. We'll see you back here tomorrow. Bye bye.



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