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Aired October 16, 2001 - 04:30   ET


TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: Welcome to CNN NEWSROOM, everyone. I'm Tom Haynes.

SHELLEY WALCOTT, CO-HOST: And I'm Shelley Walcott.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat agree the time is right to bring Israelis and Palestinians back to the negotiating table.

HAYNES: The two men talked on Monday, a sign of renewed diplomatic efforts since the September 11 terrorist attacks.

Our Joel Hochmuth has details on their meeting.


JOEL HOCHMUTH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): There are new calls for the establishment of a Palestinian state, this time from British Prime Minister Tony Blair. He and Palestinian President Yasser Arafat met in London Monday in another sign the West is warming up to the idea in the wake of the terrorist attacks on the U.S.

TONY BLAIR, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: The end we desire, therefore, is a just peace in which Israelis and Palestinians live side by side, each in their own state, secure and able to prosper and develop. That is the only sensible outcome, and we must seize this moment to make progress towards that end.

HOCHMUTH: Blair's comments follow statements from the Bush administration indicating U.S. support for the same idea. Experts say it's in Washington's own best interest to seek peace in the region.

JAMES RUBIN, FORMER U.S. ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE: When there is conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians, anti- Americanism rises in the Arab world. Since we want the Arab world to be supporting us on another question, the war on terrorism, it would certainly make it easier to have things quiet on the Middle East front.

HOCHMUTH: Palestinians, of course, live mainly in Gaza and the West Bank, areas occupied by Israel since the 1967 War. For more than a year now, there's been an ongoing revolt by Palestinians against the Israeli occupation. More than 800 have been killed on both sides, though the majority have been Palestinians.

Arafat used his appearance with Blair to urge Israel to resume peace talks immediately, something Israelis are refusing to do unless a complete cease-fire comes first. Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon blames Arafat for much of the violence in the Palestinian uprising.

ARIEL SHARON, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Arafat is a terrorist, we have to understand it. He is a terrorist, a hostile terrorist organization.

HOCHMUTH: Arafat denies those charges and used his appearance with Blair to distance himself from suspected terrorist Osama bin Laden who, in statements, has embraced the Palestinian cause.

YASSER ARAFAT, PRESIDENT, PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY (through translator): There can be no mix between our just cause and the objectives and methods that are unjust terrorists acts and the killing of civilians like what happened recently in the United States.

HOCHMUTH: Arafat finds himself walking a tightrope, he needs western help to negotiate a deal with Israel for a Palestinian state yet he doesn't want to alienate those Arabs who support bin Laden.

DENNIS ROSS, FORMER U.S. MIDEAST ENVOY: Yasser Arafat has always acted on the basis of what is in his own interests, and the one thing he knows right now very, very clearly is he cannot afford to be lumped in with Osama bin Laden, No. 1.

No. 2, he cannot allow the street, his street, to see Osama bin Laden as their champion.

HOCHMUTH: The last thing Arafat needs is to have even more fuel added to an already volatile situation.

For a further look into the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, we go "Behind the Headlines."

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In 1947, the United Nations adopted a resolution dividing the disputed region -- separate Jewish...


HAYNES: United States Secretary of State Colin Powell is in Pakistan to discuss the war against terrorism. He arrived in Islamabad Monday to meet with Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf. After his visit, Powell will head to India in hopes of easing tensions between the neighboring countries. They are at odds over the Kashmir region.

Andrea Koppel has more on Powell's trip.


ANDREA KOPPEL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is a trip that could hardly have been imagined a little over a month ago. The fact that it's happening now is a pretty clear signal as to just how much the relationship between the U.S. and Pakistan has changed.

Shortly before arriving in Islamabad, Secretary of State Powell had nothing but praise for General Pervez Musharraf, saying Pakistan's president had made some very bold and courageous steps in recent weeks to join an international coalition in the new war against terrorism. Such lavish praise is a deliberate attempt by Secretary Powell to boost Musharraf's standing within the international community.

The U.S. is well aware of the risks Musharraf is taking. Support for U.S. military strikes against Afghanistan is highly unpopular among Pakistan's 140 million Muslim citizens, its military and intelligence services. One sign of that, despite being warmly welcomed by the government, due to security concerns, no cameras were allowed to take pictures of Powell's arrival at the local airport.

And so Powell's mission here in Islamabad, to see what else the U.S. might do to help. Among the possibilities, Powell indicated the U.S. might resume military-to-military exchanges frozen for more than 10 years. In addition, Powell said he wanted to get Musharraf's assessment of the situation in the region, including issues like Kashmir and a post-Taliban Afghanistan.

In recent days, the Bush administration has, in Powell's words, "picked up the beat" in making plans for such a possibility. Powell said he's been in close touch with U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan and added that one of his senior aides will travel to the United Nations this week to develop ideas for an alternative government in Afghanistan.

(on camera): Long before the September 11 attacks, India had been on the fast track to improving its relations with the United States but in recent weeks has felt neglected as the U.S. seemed to focus much of its energy on winning Pakistan's support for the war against terrorism.

Andrea Koppel, CNN, Islamabad.


WALCOTT: It's been a choice that American leaders have grappled with since World War II, whether to engage in world affairs or keep isolated. Miles of ocean and land separates the U.S. from some of the world's major hotspots, but that hasn't stopped America from becoming involved in international conflicts.

With more, here's CNN political analyst Bill Schneider.

WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SR. POLITICAL ANALYST (voice-over): After World War I, the U.S. rejected the League Of Nations and withdrew into isolationism for more than 20 years -- a return to normalcy, it was called.

Nothing seemed to threaten America, not even the rise of Hitler. It took Pearl Harbor to blast the U.S. out of its complacency. After World War II, a lot of people expected the U.S. to turn inward again, but it didn't. A new threat, communism, had emerged. And farsighted leaders like Harry Truman made a firm commitment to take it on.


HARRY TRUMAN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I'm here today to report to you on the critical nature of the situation in Europe and to recommend actions...


SCHNEIDER: For more than four decades, the communist threat persisted and the U.S. remained engaged.


RONALD REAGAN, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this war.


SCHNEIDER: There were setbacks.


LYNDON JOHNSON, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We have made a national pledge to help South Vietnam defend its independence.


SCHNEIDER: But there were also new threats...


JIMMY CARTER, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: ... and from the Soviet troops now in Afghanistan...


SCHNEIDER: ... in new places...


CARTER: ... in response to the abhorrent act in Iran.


SCHNEIDER: ... that produced new calls for engagement.


CARTER: And we will not fail.



SCHNEIDER: Then, in 1991, nearly 45 years after the Cold War started, the U.S. enjoyed two great triumphs -- one in the Persian Gulf.


GEORGE H.W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: And, by God, we have kicked Vietnam syndrome once and for all.


SCHNEIDER: And the other in Moscow.


G.H.W. BUSH: The Soviet Union itself is no more.


SCHNEIDER: But Americans hardly celebrated. They were preoccupied.


G.H.W. BUSH: I'm committed to attacking our economic problems at home with the same determination we brought to winning the Cold War.


SCHNEIDER: So began a decade of withdrawal, a fantasy decade much like the 1920s, when prosperity reigned and the rest of the world seemed far away. Americans became complacent in the 1990s, obsessed by things like O.J. Simpson and Monica Lewinsky and Gary Condit. But Americans were wary of risk-taking in places like Somalia and what some called social work in places like Bosnia, especially when the U.S. did not feel threatened.


WILLIAM J. CLINTON, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: It is an extraordinary moment when there is no overriding threat to our security.


SCHNEIDER: Just a few months ago, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger published a book asking: Does America need a foreign policy? The U.S. got the answer on September 11. Once again, Americans have been blasted out of complacency. Once again, they are threatened. Once again, they are engaged.



SCHNEIDER (on camera): When the Gulf War ended, the U.S. didn't pay much attention to the consequences for the Muslim world. That gave the terrorists an issue. When the Soviets withdrew from Afghanistan, the U.S. lost interest in that country. That gave the terrorists a base.

The lesson is clear: It wasn't meddling in the world that got the U.S. in trouble, it was complacency.

Bill Schneider, CNN, Washington.



ANNOUNCER: Mike Benzen from Fulton, Missouri asks: What's being done to address security for large air freight shipping companies?

JEFF BEATTY, FORMER FBI SPECIAL AGENT: Large air freight shipping companies have some unique problems that the passenger airlines do not have. A lot of people don't know that they also carry non-revenue passengers from time to time, other professional pilots and members of other companies. I think that many of them have stopped doing so and will only gradually re-allow that to happen.

Also, the air freight carriers have got the difficult problem of not knowing what is in the cargo that they're carrying. They will be conducting a more thorough look at who's delivering the cargo to them, known customers. They are also going to take a more thorough look and perhaps do more screening, airport type screening, of the packages that go on their aircraft.

They've got their work cut out for them. They are back flying again now, but I don't think that we have seen the end of their security upgrades.


HAYNES: Anthrax reaches the U.S. Congress and spreads fear across America. A letter sent to Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle tested positive for anthrax, just the latest in a series of scares involving the bacteria. In addition, CNN has now learned that a child of an ABC News employee is also affected.

And as Rula Amin reports, some authorities are pointing fingers at Iraq, even though no evidence has been confirmed.

First though, Eileen O'Connor brings us a look at the latest developments in the anthrax investigation.


EILEEN O'CONNOR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: (voice-over): A staff member of Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle opened the letter postmarked Trenton, New Jersey at about 10:30 in the morning, discovering a powdery substance, which tested positive in preliminary tests for anthrax. DASCHLE: Well, I'm concerned deeply for my staff and I feel so badly for each of them.

O'CONNOR: The staff member who handled the mail was tested, treated, as were others present and the office immediately cordoned off.

SEN. TOM DASCHLE (D-SD), MAJORITY LEADER: There is no immediate danger for them given the fact that we were able to respond as quickly and as directly as we could.

O'CONNOR: The president echoing investigators who say they are looking at all possibilities, including domestic extremist groups but are not ruling out Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda.

GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: I wouldn't put it past him, don't we don't have hard evidence yet.

O'CONNOR: One new lead: a connection -- the letter sent to NBC anchorman Tom Brokaw was sent, like Daschle's from Trenton, New Jersey. Officials say finding the exact source of that mail is no easy task given that 650 million pieces posted nationwide each day.

TONY ESPOSITO, U.S. POSTAL INSPECTOR: The article of mail that was postmarked here in Trenton, New Jersey on September 18, along with approximately 246,000 other articles of mail was brought here from any one of possibly 46 other post offices and/or stations or branches.

O'CONNOR: New Jersey has already been a focus of investigators with evidence some of the hijackers stayed in this apartment in Patterson, New Jersey as well as links to those involved in previous terrorist attacks.

SKIP BRANDON, FORMER FBI DEPUTY ASSISTANT DIRECTOR: You have to look at it, but you can't discount the possibility that it happens to be somebody who's not related who's using Trenton as a mail drop.

O'CONNOR: There is also heightened concern among post office workers there.

ESPOSITO: At this point, we have two employees that reported to us that they had symptoms that could be construed as possibly being related to the anthrax virus.

O'CONNOR: They are being tested. A post office in Boca Raton, Florida also reported the presence of anthrax spores. Officials say they are cleaning the area and contend there's little chance of postal workers contracting the disease through closed envelopes. New York has received scores of phone calls reporting suspicious mail, some hoaxes.

BERNARD KERIK, NEW YORK POLICE COMMISSIONER: People think that it may be amusing; it may be a hoax to send someone something with baby powder or talcum powder. The people that do that will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Hoax or not. Real anthrax or not.

O'CONNOR: New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani urging people to remain calm.

MAYOR RUDOLPH GIULIANI (R), NEW YORK: And I'm going to go open some mail later and you can come with me. You can help me open it. O'CONNOR: While the anthrax letters are not inflicting large numbers as causalities, law enforcement sources say it does fit Bin Laden's goal of disrupting the U.S. government.

BRANDON: It may be that this sort of thing is really all that they can do right now. But if it their involvement, it is effective. It's certainly causing a lot of concern in the United States.

O'CONNOR (on camera): Concern that might cause more problems for an already shaky economy.

Eileen O'Connor, CNN, Washington.



RULA AMIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It seems like business as usual, the rock soft leadership marks the sixth anniversary of a referendum which gave President Saddam Hussein more than 99 percent of the vote, but behind the salute and the songs, tension.

Everyone here is aware that Iraq is back in the spotlight. An anthrax scare is running through the United States as Iraq has long been accused by the U.S. and former U.N. inspectors of trying to develop chemical weapons.

RICHARD BUTLER, FORMER U.N. WEAPONS INSPECTOR: I don't believe that the terrorist groups, al Qaeda, Osama bin Laden, could themselves make anthrax. So it would have been made by a scientist somewhere, obviously. What we've got to be certain about above all is whether it came from a country supporting these terrorists as a matter of policy such as Iraq which we know has made this stuff.

AMIN: Iraq's foreign minister denies any involvement. He says Iraq has destroyed its chemical weapons stockpile and it's not working to develop any more. Iraq denies any link to the September 11 attacks. And despite hawkish talk in Washington, it seems Baghdad is not a target in the U.S. campaign, at least not at this stage. President Bush did say, however, the U.S. is watching Iraq closely.

Iraqi officials say they are ready to confront any U.S. aggression and say they already do. They point to the U.S. and British bombing of Iraqi targets in the southern and northern no-fly zones, calling that a low scale war. The worry here is that the U.S. may turn on Baghdad to settle old scores.

(on camera): It's as if Iraq is at the eye of the hurricane where the air is calm and the sky is blue but all around it the wind is blowing very hard, and people here know very well hurricanes tend to move abruptly and without warning.

Rula Amin, CNN, Baghdad.

(END VIDEOTAPE) WALCOTT: President Bush has called for the young people of America to join in efforts to help those harmed by terrorism. Now this includes raising money for the children of Afghanistan. Many U.S. students are already doing their share as CNN's Student Bureau's Dustin Grove reports.


DUSTIN GROVE, CNN STUDENT BUREAU (voice-over): As flags fly at full staff and the September 11 tragedies fade deeper into history, support for victims, their families and the U.S. remains unwavering on college campuses on signs in dorm windows and through the actions of students like Lee Morrison, a senior at Ball State University.

LEE MORRISON, STUDENT, BALL STATE UNIVERSITY: I was talking to my hall director and we were just talking about the event, and I'm like, you know, I'd like to do something. And I thought well this might be an opportunity in which everyone can be involved and everyone could be included and this wouldn't be just a fraternity-sorority thing or this just wouldn't be residence hall thing, this would be a Ball State idea.

GROVE: So Morrison met with student leaders from across campus to gather support of all types as a university.

MORRISON: And what we wanted to do was present a united Ball State University body who fund raised and we got money together for this cause.

GROVE (on camera): From there students went to work. Donation buckets like this in every hall but not just in this hall, students also gave flashlights, canned food items and even a Bible devotional booklet.

(voice-over): At the campus radio station...

ANDY KNUTSON, WCRD RADIO: We all decided that it would be in our best interest to collect bears and stuffed animals for the kids in New York so that in case they've lost family members or are having a hard time right now, we feel that could help them out.

GROVE: Hundreds of stuffed animals, thousands of dollars, plus this banner, 50 feet long covered in written thoughts and prayers that will also go to New York, not by mail, but hand delivered by the students who took part in the drive. Students like Amanda Goveart.

AMANDA GOVEART, STUDENT, BALL STATE UNIVERSITY: This isn't just something you see on TV, this isn't -- this is reality so I had to do something and giving blood and giving money wasn't enough for me.

GROVE: Why not just send it?

GOVEART: Because it's more personal if you take it. Why not take it and show our support and say, you know what, even though we are thousands of miles away from this tragedy, we still care and we still want to show you that, you know, Ball State students do care. UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You guys sign the banner yet?


GROVE: Several small groups from a medium-sized campus working together to make a big impact when we need it most.

MORRISON: I saw something in which we became bigger than ourselves, we were united behind one cause. And I think that's one of the most important aspects is that this wasn't about me or about one organization, this was about helping others.

GROVE: Dustin Grove, CNN Student Bureau, Muncie, Indiana.,


ANNOUNCER: Teachers, make the most of CNN NEWSROOM with our free daily classroom guide to the program. There you'll find a rundown of each day's show so you choose just the program segment that fits your lesson plan. Plus there are discussion questions and activities and the guide highlights key people, places and news terms. Each day find hot links to other online resources and previews of upcoming desk segments.

It's all at this Web address where you can also sign up to have the guide automatically e-mailed directly to you each day. It's easy. It's free. It's your curriculum connection to the news. After all, the news never stops and neither does learning.

HAYNES: Few will forget where they were or what they were doing the morning of September 11. For thousands in New York City, history unfolded before their eyes. During the chaos, professional photographers and amateurs alike recorded what they saw with their cameras.

Beth Nisson reports some of their photographs are now on display near ground zero.


BETH NISSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For days, people have been crowding into this small, vacant store in New York City's Soho district to look at a treasury of images. Images of that awful morning. The awe-struck hours after. The awesome damage.

GILLES PERESS, EXHIBITION ORGANIZER; It's an archive. It's a unique archive. I don't know of anything that's ever been like this. It's about a democracy of images.

NISSON (voice-over): A democracy of images: images from a plurality of viewpoints and vantage points. Images taken by professional photographers with $1,000 Nikons, and amateurs with disposable Kodaks.

CHARLES TRAUB, EXHIBITION ORGANIZER: This may be the most photographed even into the most witnessed event in history. Everybody has a different view. And we've tried to allow that to happen here.

NISSON: Word of exhibit spread largely by mouth in the days after September 11th. Anyone who had pictures was invited to bring them or e-mail them in.

MICHAEL SHUMAN, EXHIBITION ORGANIZER: The only requirement is that all photographs must relate to event.

NISSON: Donated images are digitally scanned, printed and displayed to the walls, without labels identifying the subject or the photographer. Photos published in the "New York Times" hang near Instamatic snapshots.

The great majority of images are of the World Trade Center in the minutes and hours after the attack. Whenever people were, they got out cameras and took a picture of what they were see.

TRAUB: There were people who took pictures from rooftops in Brooklyn. People who took pictures from New Jersey. There are people who were looking out their apartment windows. It's like I was there and I want you to know I was there and I want you to know I stand in witness of this terrible event. And I think that that's why people photographed it.

NISSON: For days after the attack, it was still a reflex to pick up a camera, to somehow focus on what had happened and happened so quickly.

Those at ground zero documented the devastation. And the desperate rescue search that slowly, sadly turned in a salvage operation.

Those outside the restricted zone documented the public response, the need for news, the need for contact. The search for the missing. The search for meaning.

Since the exhibit opened September 28th, thousands of people have come to gaze at images already burned into memory. Somehow, they need to see it again.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: There's just something about having evidence that it happened and evidence of what used to be there, before this all happened.

NISSON: People are collecting that evidence. Any image here can be printed and purchased for $25. Proceeds go to World Trade Center victims. Organizers hope to make all the images available for viewing and purchase online, soon.

And everyday, more pictures are contributed, go up on the walls, go into the archive.

What do these diverse pictures tell us about the event and about ourselves?

SHUMAN: They tell us that we don't understand but that we feel we have a terrible need to understand.

NISSON: And to begin to picture the profound change in our lives, our history, our future.

Beth Nisson, CNN, New York.


HAYNES: Well just call me Rudy, that's what New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani said after receiving an honorary knighthood by Britain's Queen Elizabeth II. The mayor was named Knight Commander of Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.

WALCOTT: That's right. Now he can't be called Sir Rudy because he is not a British citizen. His Honor was bestowed the honor for -- quote -- "outstanding help and support to the bereaved British families in New York."

And that wraps up today's edition of NEWSROOM.

HAYNES: Yes, we'll see you back here tomorrow.

WALCOTT: Bye-bye.




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