Aired November 9, 2001 - 04:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
TOM HAYNES, CO-HOST: Welcome to NEWSROOM for Friday, everyone. I'm Tom Haynes.
SUSAN FREIDMAN, CO-HOST: And I'm Susan Freidman. Here's what's coming up for your Friday Newsroom.
U.S. President Bush tries to raise the spirits and awareness of a home front shaken by terror warnings and anthrax infections. Thursday, Mr. Bush met with the leaders of Brazil and Ireland. His intentions, to rally support and urge patience.
HAYNES: After wrapping up those meetings, President Bush headed to Atlanta for a meeting with scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The topic of conversation there, the anthrax crisis.
During a nationally televised address from Atlanta, Mr. Bush gave the American people a progress report on the war against terrorism, plus some positive steps that everybody can take to help out.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Many ask, "What can I do to help in our fight?" The answer is simple. All of us can become a September the 11th volunteer by making a commitment to service in our own communities. So you can serve your country by tutoring or mentoring a child, comforting the afflicted, housing those in need of shelter and a home.
You can participate in your neighborhood watch or crime stoppers. You can become a volunteer in a hospital or emergency medical, fire or rescue unit. You can support our troops in the field and, just as importantly, support their families here at home by becoming active in the USO or groups in communities near our military installations.
We also will encourage service to country by creating new opportunities within the AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs for public safety and public health efforts.
We'll ask state and local officials to create a new modern civil defense service, similar to local volunteer fire departments, to respond to local emergencies when the manpower of governments is stretched thin.
We will find ways to train and mobile more volunteers to help when rescue and health emergencies arise.
Americans have a lot to offer, so I've created a task force to develop additional ways people can get directly involved in this war effort, by making our homes and neighborhoods and schools and workplaces safer.
And I call on all Americans to serve by bettering our communities and thereby defy and defeat the terrorists.
Our great nation -- national challenge is to hunt down the terrorists and strengthen our protection against future attacks. Our great national opportunity is to preserve forever the good that has resulted. Through this tragedy, we are renewing and reclaiming our strong American values.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HAYNES: Well, the war on terrorism comes with a high price tag. Soon after the September 11 attacks, Congress approved $40 billion in emergency funding. Yesterday, the U.S. Postal Service asked Congress for $5 billion to help it stay afloat and offset expenses that it's had since the attacks. Meantime, Congress members are at odds over how to stimulate the sagging economy.
So how does it all add up, well, as Brooks Jackson explains now, the cost may not be easy to count.
BROOKS JACKSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Ambassador Bridge between Canada and the U.S., before September 11, trucks used to breeze through here. Now every truck is inspected and U.S. bound trucks are delayed an average of one to two hours. Those delays come at a price.
STEPHEN RUSSEL, CEO, CELADON TRUCKING: The cost is roughly $40 at today's level of delays. That's comprised of driver pay, it's comprised of fuel that the truck consumes while it's idling or moving at a -- at a snail's pace, and of course some factor for the cost of the tractor itself.
JACKSON: Customs officials say more than seven million trucks crossed the Canadian border into the U.S. last year. At $40 a truck, that's $280 million a year in added cost from idled drivers and wasted diesel fuel. Who's going to pay, ultimately consumers.
(on camera): And that's just one of the hidden costs of terrorism. The hardening of America, like the construction of these new security barriers around the Capitol, is draining away money, making America safer but also making its economy less efficient.
(voice-over): Manufacturers of prefabricated concrete barriers report record orders, literally miles of them, at $20 a foot. Resources spent producing these can't go to new factories or hospitals or homes. Businesses are spending more resources on thousands of new guards, and experts say many companies also will be shelling out for expensive surveillance cameras and high-tech identification badges. The total cost is hard to estimate.
GENERAL BOB DISNEY (RET.), AMER. SOC. OF INDUSTRIAL SECURITY: But it's not cheap -- it's not cheap. We're not -- we're not talking about, you know, $5 or $10 or $15 per employee or per square foot, I mean we're talking considerably more than that.
JACKSON: Security was already a $53 billion industry before September 11, a 50 percent increase would add more than $26 billion a year to America's cost of doing business without any increase in production of consumer goods or services. And some costs are invisible, like higher costs for insuring property and business against future attacks.
ROBERT HARTWIG, INSURANCE INFORMATION INST.: In the aftermath of September 11, the incremental cost for insurance is likely to be an additional 15 percent for many types of coverages purchased by businesses. That translates into approximately 20 billion additional dollars.
JACKSON: And that's just the added cost of premiums paid to insurance companies. Add in the cost of big companies that insure themselves and the total could reach $40 billion next year alone. The list goes on, half a billion dollars is being spent to produce smallpox vaccine that may never be used, money that won't be spent for other medicine.
The costs ripple through. The $2.5 billion cost of irradiating mail to kill bacteria will be borne by the public either through taxes or higher postage rates. A host of new costs, experts say, are not optional.
DISNEY: These are certainly hidden costs. I mean these weren't there before 9-11, and we're going to have to get used to this because this is the way we're going to have to operate.
JACKSON (on camera): Higher costs and less efficiency mean a less productive economy and slower growth in the U.S. standard of living, the hidden cost of terrorism.
Brooks Jackson, CNN, Washington.
HAYNES: Presidents from Kennedy to Clinton have counted on and courted Hollywood for support. It's been a bit different with President Bush, though, until now. Members of the president's administration are meeting with Hollywood executives to see how they can help with the war on terrorism.
CNN's Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider has been researching the changing relationship between Hollywood and the Bush White House.
WILLIAM SCHNEIDER, CNN SR. POLITICAL ANALYST (voice-over): In the 1940s, the norm for Hollywood movies was inspiring, uplifting, even rousing.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "CASABLANCA")
HUMPHREY BOGART: I'll say. I'm waiting for a lady.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHNEIDER: By the 1990s, cynicism had become the norm. Movies exploited sexual degradation and images of mass destruction, for entertainment value. The corruption of popular culture became a political issue for both parties.
SEN. JOE LIEBERMAN (D), CONNECTICUT: Are we sitting back, if you will, like couch potatoes, and watching the systematic elimination of all the lines that separate the acceptable from the unacceptable in our culture?
SCHNEIDER: On September 11th, that line was dramatically restored. Terrorism and mass murder became unacceptable as entertainment. At least 45 films were altered, canceled or had release dates changed, because of September 11th, including "Collateral Damage," an $80 million action blockbuster, in which Arnold Schwarzenegger avenges his family's murder by terrorists.
A few weeks ago, two mid-level White House staffers met with a group of Hollywood executives. The agenda wasn't clear and nothing much came of it. On Sunday, another meeting will take place in Beverly Hills, with big power players in Hollywood and Washington, like senior White House adviser Karl Rove, and Paramount Pictures studio chief, Sherry Lansing.
The agenda: how Hollywood can support the nation's cause. Like during World War II, when the movie industry produced documentaries on why we fight.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "WHY WE FIGHT")
ANNOUNCER: This is a film about victory and defeat.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHNEIDER: Why the sudden urgency of enlisting Hollywood? Because the administration is worried about wavering support for the war, particularly overseas, where the image of the U.S. promoted by Hollywood has been less than inspiring.
What does Hollywood hope to get out of all this?
ROBERT ZEMECKIS, DIRECTOR: They want me to do a propaganda movie, I'm down for that. Yeah, I'll do the "Why We Fight" series. That would be fun.
SCHNEIDER: Fun? No. More than that. How about redemption?
(on camera): Sources tell CNN that the Bush administration has built a relationship of respect with Hollywood. For instance, the invitation calls Sunday's event -- quote -- "a private, confidential, working meeting of senior administration officials and entertainment industry principles only." People who can green light movies, and people who can green light wars.
Bill Schneider, CNN, Washington.
FREIDMAN: The Taliban have diplomatic relations with only one country, Pakistan, but that relationship is growing shakier by the day. Thursday, Pakistan asked the Taliban rulers of Afghanistan to close their consulate in Karachi. The move comes one day after Pakistan warned the Taliban ambassador to stop speaking against other countries during media interviews. Still, Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf says he has no intention of breaking diplomatic ties with the Taliban.
CNN's John Vause has the complete story on what's happening between the two countries.
JOHN VAUSE, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): The Taliban embassy in Islamabad, one of the frontlines in the other war, the propaganda war.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A global dictatorship is being unleashed by America.
VAUSE: When the Taliban have called a press conference, which has been most days, about 40 TV cameras, dozens of reporters gather on the embassy's front lawn -- a world stage for the Taliban ambassador.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: American planes targeted civilian houses in Kabul.
VAUSE: With claims no one can verify of mounting civilian casualties.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: So far, 1,000 of innocent civilian have been killed.
IFFAT MALIK, POLITICAL ANALYST: Of course they exaggerate. I mean, they need to be allowed to say whatever they will and people can judge for themselves whether they think they are exaggerating or not.
VAUSE: But the Taliban ambassador has been called to the Pakistani foreign office and told to tone it down. Government officials here have cited the so-called third country rule.
AZIZ KHAN, PAKISTAN FOREIGN OFFICE: This is an international rule which is observed by all countries and as such he was reminded of that, that in his press conferences, any statement against a third country should not be made.
VAUSE (on camera): To put it simply, the third country rule means one government -- in this case Afghanistan -- should not use its embassy in another country -- here in Pakistan -- to criticize another country, the United States.
(voice-over): Pakistan's foreign office refused to say that it acted on behalf of the U.S. But it is clear Washington has been more than unhappy for some time with the rhetoric coming from the Taliban embassy. Today, there was no press conference. The ambassador, we were told, was not feeling well.
John Vause, CNN, Islamabad, Pakistan.
HAYNES: Well like Pakistan, Saudi Arabia has also condemned the terrorist attacks in the U.S. Saudi cooperation is considered vital to the war against terrorism. In fact, after the September 11 attacks, Washington persuaded the nation to cut ties with the Taliban.
Our Joel Hochmuth brings us an in-depth look at Saudi Arabia and its significance in America's new war.
JOEL HOCHMUTH, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Saudi Arabia is a U.S. ally at the center of a heated debate about its role. Concerns persist that the country is not doing all it can to support the U.S.- led fight against terrorist targets in Afghanistan. U.S. officials continue to stress that's just not true.
COLIN POWELL, U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE: The Saudis are very much a participating member of this coalition, they have responded to every request we have put before them. In recent days, you've seen further evidence of that as they have taken action to stop financial flows. So we're very pleased with the response we have received from the Saudi Arabian government, and I'm sure there will be more areas of cooperation that we'll be discussing with them in the near future.
HOCHMUTH: Over the years, the U.S.-Saudi relationship has been nurtured perhaps more by necessity than genuine friendship. Culturally, the two nations have relatively little in common. All of its estimated 21 million citizens are Muslims. While this is not Afghanistan, it is still a strict society. Women are allowed to go to school and work but aren't allowed to drive.
Since 1932, Saudi Arabia has been a monarchy under the al-Saud ruling family. About the size of France and Germany combined, Saudi Arabia is a largely barren land, but under all this sand lie the largest known petroleum deposits in the world.
By the early 1970s, the U.S. had grown so dependent on that oil there was a crisis when Saudi Arabia temporarily cut off exports in response to the Arab-Israeli war. By the 1980s, the hurt feelings were long gone. The U.S. and Saudi Arabia shared a deep distrust of the Soviet Union. In an alliance worked out by President Reagan and King Fahd, the U.S. protected Saudi Arabia in exchange for access to Saudi oil.
Then in 1990, there was another common enemy, Iraq's Saddam Hussein. When his forces overran Kuwait, Saudi Arabia feared it could be next. It rolled out the red carpet for American troops and provided the staging area for the counterattack, the Persian Gulf War. Saudi Arabia even chipped in its own arms and military personnel. That help infuriated Osama bin laden, then a Saudi citizen and some of the wealthy family. After he was named a suspect in various acts of terror during the 1990s, Saudi Arabia stripped him of his citizenship and seized his assets.
Now the two countries are united in the fight against the Taliban, to a point. While the Saudis have condemned the terrorist attacks in the U.S. and are supporting the campaign in Afghanistan, they have not authorized U.S. planes to take off from Prince Sultan air base.
There are reports of growing dissatisfaction among the Saudi people toward the ruling family, still headed in name by King Fahd, though he is in failing health. Average annual income has fallen to about $8,000 per person, a drop of about two-thirds in just a generation despite the country's oil riches. Some say that's helping to fuel a growing fundamentalist movement. After all, 15 of the 19 suspected hijackers were from Saudi Arabia.
SEYMOUR HERSH, JOURNALIST: The reality is and whether we like it or not, this is a country in a lot of trouble with a lot of opposition and a lot of dissent and a lot of unhappy people who do not get the benefit.
ADEL AL-JUBAIR, SAUDI FOREIGN POLICY ADVISOR: People have been predicting the demise of Saudi Arabia for the past 60 or 70 years. Every decade we have a new flavor of the decade. First, it's we're too backwards, then we're too poor, then we're too wealthy, then we don't have enough people, then we have too many people, then we have economic problems, then we're too religious, then we're not religious enough. The only constant in all of this is all of them have been wrong.
HOCHMUTH: The U.S. is hoping he's right. If Saudi Arabia falls to Islamic extremists, the U.S. would not only lose a key ally, it might gain a new enemy.
FREIDMAN: Charity swung into action after the September 11 terrorist attacks raising more than $1 billion. But now questions are being raised about where and how much of that money is being distributed. Earlier this week, a congressional panel reviewed the practices of charities since September 11.
Hillary Lane looks at how some organizations are fulfilling their promises.
HILLARY LANE, CNNfn CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Within four hours of the attacks on the World Trade Center, AmeriCares had sent the first of its many fleets of helicopters to the site, stocked with emergency supplies and medical professionals. The charity's mission, paid for by donors.
JIM FORBES, AMERICARES: What they expect from us is our knowledge on how to reach out during periods of emergencies.
LANE: A put-your-money-where-your-mouth-is approach. That's successfully distributed nearly $3 billion to 137 different countries over the past two decades. Chief financial officer Jim Forbes says the relief effort in the weeks after the September 11 attacks is the most complex he's ever seen. But when it comes to meeting AmeriCares' criteria for giving, it was a bullseye.
FORBES: 10 for needs, what is the medical need, the sense of need to bring some help and hope? Number 10 for surety of delivery, what is the surety that it will get to the people that need it? And the third would be for the bang for the donor's buck.
LANE: Straightforward and simple, the way donors say they want it when they give to a specific cause. And they've given $1.2 billion to date. So much, say the victims' families, where is it?
ELIOT SPITZER, New York ATTORNEY GENERAL: When people were writing their checks for $100, $200 or $10,000 and sending them in, response to the PSAs that the Red Cross was running, they believed victims were going to get that money.
LANE (on camera): Each of the nearly 200 charities involved in raising money for this effort has its own mission and its own criteria for determining who gets the money and how much. Most we spoke with agreed on two main objectives: to respect donors' wishes for how their money is spent, and to provide services in the most timely, effective and cost conscious way possible.
(voice-over): Charities must report revenues and disbursements to the I.R.S., plus file registration forms and annual financial documents in any states where they raise money. But once the funds are in hand, it's up to the charity to decide how to allocate them. And there's no formula.
ART TAYLOR, BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU: Now it's time for the charities to be equally forthcoming with information on a real-time basis about what they're doing with those resources and how they're serving the needs of these victims.
LANE: Groups like the Robin Hood Foundation, which is in charge of dispersing the $30 million raised at the concert for New York City, leaves those decisions up to its senior program staff, social workers and career philanthropists. The foundation's board has set up a special committee to supervise.
Some groups write new criteria for each different fund, such as the United Way September 11 Fund. It passes the donations to frontline groups, which in turn, assist individuals. On October 15, the United Way established a special board to review proposals and set guidelines. In an effort to move money where it's needed as quickly as possible, older groups, such as the Community Service Society of New York City and the Red Cross, allow individual case workers, many of them volunteers, to write vouchers and make disbursements.
Those decisions are approved by a manager. New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani just announced that he would help speed up the process, too, with the Twin Towers Fund, supporting the families of firefighters and police officers who died in the attack.
RUDY GIULIANI, MAYOR, NEW YORK: We're going to distribute immediately half of it, so that each family -- certainly each family that has children, will be getting a check for at least $100,000.
LANE: The rest will be held back, because as most charities learned from the Oklahoma City bombing, the giving slows over time, but the needs don't go away.
Hillary Lane for CNN, New York.
HAYNES: Apparently the saying "time heals all wounds" doesn't apply on the campus of one Atlanta high school. The terrorist attacks on American may have happened nearly two months ago, but I found a pretty eager and caring bunch of students still responding to those horrific events. And they're not only giving from their hearts, they're giving from their wallets as well.
HAYNES (voice-over): On the campus of McEachern High School in suburban Atlanta, the events of September 11 still hit home. More than a month after the attacks, students line up inside the school gym for the opportunity to give a little something of themselves.
ANDREW CARTER, AGE 17: I guess as kids we know that there's always a need. And it doesn't matter how much we give, there's always going to be a need and that just hit us the hardest that September 11.
HAYNES: Since the attacks, the Red Cross reported a dramatic increase in blood donations, up to 2,500 units a day. That number has dropped by more than half, so the agency welcomes the enthusiasm of these students.
LEE AUSTIN, AMERICAN RED CROSS: This is the first opportunity they've had to donate since September the 11th, and they're just very excited about it.
KATHERINE WESLEY, AGE 17: It just makes me feel good. Made me -- makes me feel like I can do something even though I'm only 17 and I live in Atlanta, and it just makes me feel really good.
HAYNES: Barbara Beyke is a teacher who used to attend McEachern herself.
BARBARA BEYKE, TEACHER: They keep coming to me and saying please, please get me in and they're just showing up in mass. It's great that they're actually caring enough about what's going on in the community.
HAYNES: So caring that McEachern students have also raised $10,000 for relief efforts in New York, an amount matched by the school's Board of Trustees.
MEGAN JOINER, AGE 18: I know there's people up there like in New York, you know, helping out where it happened, and you know, you felt like we were here and we couldn't do anything to help them but this is a way that you can help.
BEYKE: They know that they have a lot to be thankful for. They're worried about the others who've been hit and they know that it could have just as easily been them.
FREIDMAN: Now, we want to follow up on a story we brought you last month. For seven years, Abul Khalili has returned to his native Afghanistan to distribute humanitarian aid. He does this without help from any organization or government agency. On September 21, he left on another mission. For more than a month, his worried family in California awaited word from Abul. The call came this week.
Thelma Gutierrez has the story.
THELMA GUTIERREZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For 14-year- old Zohra Khalili, the days are long.
ZOHRA KHALILI: While he's gone, there are so many things that go on in my mind.
GUTIERREZ: She hasn't seen her father, Abul, in more than a month.
ZOHRA KHALILI: I go through so much pressure and stress thinking about where he is and how he is.
GUTIERREZ (on camera): Abul Khalili has traveled from Los Angeles to Afghanistan on relief missions since the earthquake there in 1998. On September 21, his family says he went again, with two California humanitarian organizations.
(voice-over): Since that time, his wife and daughter have not heard from him. All they know is that bombs are raining down on Afghanistan and he is there.
ZOHRA KHALILI: It really worried me how he's going to get through this?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A truck load of wheat for refugees who have barely eaten in months.
GUTIERREZ: We showed Zarmina and Zohra a recent CNN story.
ZARMINA KHALILI: That's him.
GUTIERREZ: And they were able to see Abul on TV, in a refugee camp with fellow relief worker Dr. Ed Artis.
DR. ED ARTIS, RELIEF WORKER: Do you see all these faces? That's what we work for. We can have an impact here; as I said if you save one life, it's worth it.
GUTIERREZ: By coincidence, Abul and Dr. Artis were traveling together in Afghanistan and were featured in a CNN report on refugees. They are happy to see him, but their happiness is fleeting.
ZARMINA KHALILI: I saw the children. They're injured, and it tears up my heart into pieces.
GUTIERREZ: Each day, they wait for a chance to talk.
ZOHRA KHALILI: The first ring, I just with excitement. I run to the phone.
GUTIERREZ: Abul is finally able to call home on the satellite phone.
ZOHRA KHALILI: Dad?
ABUL KHALILI: How are you, darling?
ZOHRA KHALILI: I'm good.
GUTIERREZ: Zarmina arranges for us to be there when he calls.
ZOHRA KHALILI: Everybody missed you.
A. KHALILI: Yes, I missed you too.
GUTIERREZ: He tells his family the refugees need more tents, that it is cold, and conditions are bad -- that soon, he and the other relief workers will soon head to Mazar-e-Sharif. Nearby, there has been heavy bombing.
ZARMINA KHALILI: He said that the ground was shaking so hard it was like an earthquake.
ZOHRA KHALILI: Are you afraid?
A. KHALILI: No. That's my duty, to not be afraid.
GUTIERREZ (on camera): Do you ever feel like saying no, it's time to come home, I don't want you to go there?
ZARMINA KHALILI: No. I want him to go there and help the people. And the children. I want will never tell him don't go. GUTIERREZ (voice-over): They say it's his duty, and they're proud, but that doesn't make the good-byes any easier.
ZOHRA KHALILI: I want to say that I love you, and I hope you come back, and I pray for you.
A. KHALILI: Thank you very much. Thank you.
ZOHRA KHALILI: You're welcome. Bye.
A. KHALILI: Bye.
GUTIERREZ: Thelma Gutierrez, CNN, Los Angeles.
FREIDMAN: Finally, the winds of change are blowing and they are swirling around CNN NEWSROOM.
HAYNES: That's right, today marks my last day as one of the show's regular anchors. I've been asked to join a new venture at CNN called Quick Cast. It's a revolutionary way to deliver news and information over the Internet. And I can't tell you what a privilege it's been to come into your classrooms every day to tell you about what's happening around the world. Information actually is a powerful tool, and it may be cliche, but knowledge is power after all.
FREIDMAN: That's right, Tom, knowledge is power. And we wish you only the best in your new endeavor.
HAYNES: Thanks a lot, Susan.
And thank you, our audience, for the opportunity. I've enjoyed all my time with you.
And on that note, we wrap up CNN NEWSROOM for Friday. Have a great weekend everyone. I'm Tom Haynes.
FREIDMAN: And I'm Susan Freidman. Thanks for watching. I'll see you next week.
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