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Aired December 20, 2001 - 04:30   ET


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

SUSAN FREIDMAN, CO-HOST: Welcome to CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Susan Freidman.

MICHAEL MCMANUS, CO-HOST: And I'm Michael McManus.

The U.S. and anti-Taliban forces are clearing caves one by one in the rugged Tora Bora region of Afghanistan. Many of them are stocked with weapons that al Qaeda fighters didn't have a chance to use. CNN has an exclusive look at one cave complex near Kandahar. This cave you're looking at is believed to have been used as a hideout by Osama bin Laden. The Taliban and al Qaeda were chased from Kandahar several weeks ago, and they fled the Tora Bora region last week. But the manhunt for al Qaeda continues.


DONALD RUMSFELD, U.S. DEFENSE SECRETARY: I would think that it would be a mistake to say that the al Qaeda is finished in Afghanistan at this stage. They certainly aren't functioning well. They're running and they're hiding and they're having difficulty communicating with each other. But a large number of them seem to behave in a fanatical way, and I suspect that we'll hear more of them.


FREIDMAN: An apparent revolt by captured al Qaeda fighters has left more than a dozen people dead. The incident happened Wednesday near Peshawar, Pakistan. Local officials say the prisoners took over a bus, grabbed guns and opened fire.

The Pentagon says Pakistan has managed to capture hundreds of fighters who fled Afghanistan. The question now is could Osama bin Laden make it into Pakistan or is he already there?

CNN's David Ensor looks at that possibility.


DAVID ENSOR, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Tensions are high along the Pakistani border, after a group of about 100 mostly Arab al Qaeda fighters arrested trying to leave Afghanistan staged a revolt and a shoot-out with Pakistani security forces.

RASHIO QURESHI, MAJOR GENERAL, PAKISTANI ARMY SPOKESMAN: One civilian and five security personnel died. And six to seven of these non-Afghan fighters were also killed.

ENSOR: At the Chaman border crossing, guards man their heavy guns and incoming vehicles are carefully checked, as seven battalions, thousands of additional Pakistani troops are aided by intelligence officers on the ground and U.S. aircraft overhead, searching for additional al Qaeda stragglers, who might try to slip into Pakistan after their defeat in nearby Tora Bora.

DONALD RUMSFELD, DEFENSE SECRETARY: The Pakistani army is doing a good job along the border of Afghanistan. They have captured a very large number, hundreds.

COLIN POWELL, SECRETARY OF STATE: We could not have asked for better support from the Pakistani government than we have been receiving.

ENSOR: Top of the most wanted list, of course, is Osama bin Laden. Pakistan's long border with Afghanistan could be crossed by the terrorist leader, analysts say, but he would not likely be safe there for long:

RICK INDERFURTH, FMR. ASST. SEC. OF STATE: First of all, he's six foot five inches tall. It's going to be very difficult for him to blend in. He's also a recognizable figure, even if he shaves off his beard. So I think that at some point, if he has gone over to Pakistan, somebody will spot him and turn him in.

AHMED RASHID, AUTHOR, "TALIBAN": I think they will immediately turn him over to the United States. I think nobody in Pakistan wants to hold onto bin Laden, you know, or to open up any kind of trial of bin Laden on Pakistani soil, certainly, because it would just open up a can of worms.

ENSOR (on camera): Though there are bin Laden sympathizers in the tribal areas along the Pakistani-Afghan border, both U.S. and Pakistani officials argue that most Pakistanis would like to see an end to al Qaeda. And then there is that $25 million reward. So most analysts argue that despite the defeat in Tora Bora, bin Laden would likely survive a little longer, if he remains in the caves and mountains on the Afghan side.

David Ensor, CNN, Washington.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Several weeks ago while the Taliban still controlled most of the country, Hamid Karzai was on a secret and dangerous mission in southern Afghanistan. The 44-year-old exiled Afghan leader snuck back into his native land in mid-October to organize opposition to the Taliban. He went from village to village speaking with tribal elders to gain support to convene a Loya Jirga, a gathering of tribal leaders who have traditionally chosen Afghanistan's leaders.

Not only did Karzai have political motivation to see the Taliban ousted, he also had personal motivation. He was the former deputy foreign minister in the Afghan government that was overthrown in 1994 by the Taliban. And his father, a former senator, is believed to have been assassinated two years ago also by the Taliban.

In his quest to organize the Loya Jirga, Karzai narrowly escaped capture by the Taliban. Another Pashtun opposition leader, Abdul Haq, was on a similar mission but was captured and executed by the Taliban forces.

While in exile in Pakistan, Karzai remained chief of the Popolzai tribe in southern Afghanistan. He is well educated and speaks fluent English.

When the Taliban first took control of the country, Karzai initially supported them, but he grew suspicious of the movement as he saw it being infiltrated and controlled by non-Afghans. In recent weeks as the Taliban fled Kabul and moved south, Karzai mobilized his forces and sought a diplomatic withdrawal of the last Taliban stronghold in Kandahar.

Karzai is from Kandahar and is seen as perhaps the best hope to lead an interim government because he's a powerful Pashtun tribal leader and an ally of the former Afghan king. The other tribal leaders who convened in Germany agree.


MCMANUS: For years, Afghanistan has been ruled by regimes, tribes and warlords, all taking different pieces of land with no clear-cut rules or governing body. That's about to change this weekend when new leadership takes control of the war-battered country.

Two reports now from two different continents on the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.


HARRIS WHITBECK, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Afghanistan's foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah helps his family off the plane that brought them back to the country after months of living abroad. He feels his country is now relatively safe even for his small children. Returning from conversations with U.N. and British officials in London, Abdullah says a multinational security force will soon be in place with enough manpower to make his country even safer.

ABDULLAH ABDULLAH, N. ALLIANCE FOREIGN MINISTER: I think a reasonable number has been discussed which we are satisfied with.

WHITBECK: Bagram Air Base near Kabul is being readied for the arrival of those troops estimated to be at around 3,000 from several countries. SGT. MAJ. RAYMOND CORDELL, U.S. ARMED FORCES SPOKESMAN: Absolutely. They will be landing right here. My understanding is, this is probably the major operating runway for probably about 200 miles.

WHITBECK: U.S. and British troops are running the airfield where military transport planes are already operating.

(on camera): With the political will in place and the logistical problems of moving thousands of troops in, well under way to being resolved, it's only a matter of days before the multi-national security force arrives in the country.

(voice-over): Afghan sources told CNN deployment should be well under way by this weekend, when the new government will be installed. The new foreign minister says it is one more step towards the stabilization of his country.

ABDULLAH: Of course, there will be still challenges ahead of us, security and otherwise, but I think it will be -- everybody is trying to implement the agreement which made in Bonn and implemented successfully and without (UNINTELLIGIBLE) .

WHITBECK: If that happens, Afghanistan might finally be on its way to ending its cycle of war.

Harris Whitbeck, CNN, Bagrham Air Base, Afghanistan.



ANDREA KOPPEL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): For Sharif Fayez (ph), a final dinner with his family in Ashburn, Virginia, before returning home to Kabul, Afghanistan to start rebuilding.

SHARIF FAYEZ, AFGHAN MINISTER OF HIGHER EDUCATION: I'm going back to Afghanistan with a dream. With a vision. And with a lot of hope. And with confidence that the United States will not abandon us.

KOPPEL: Almost 20 years ago, Fayez, then a young professor at Kabul University, his wife, and their two children, fled the communist government in Afghanistan for the freedom of the United States. He's since made his living in the U.S. as a writer and translator. Now he has been appointed of minister of higher education in Afghanistan's interim government.

FAYEZ: We don't have any textbooks. There is no library in Afghanistan. There are some universities which exist only in names, not in realities. There are no buildings. It is just like I'm on the surface of the moon, and I'm asked to build a palace.


KOPPEL: A palace is exactly where Kadir Amirya used to work, as a tutor to the sons of Zahir Shah, then the king of Afghanistan. In the almost three decades since Amirya and his wife moved to the U.S., six different governments have ruled. And each, in its own way, have destroyed the country he loves.

AMIRYA: It hurts me. I can't explain it. I'm sorry. Because the people didn't deserve that. And I know that we all, from here, we wanted to help. But we couldn't. I'm sorry.

KOPPEL: To help ease the pain, Amirya says he spent all his free time working to liberate Afghanistan. And now he plans to use his experience as a professor of international law at George Washington University to develop Afghanistan's new legal system.

AMIRYA: The development of political institutions, such as parliament, senate, house of representatives, an independent judiciary.

KOPPEL: For the time being, Amirya says he must wait until other Afghan legal scholars have been selected, before his job in Afghanistan can begin.

But Sharif Fayez's mission has begun, and he says he's prepared to face resistance.

FAYEZ: There will also be some elements, I think, in the new government which will probably oppose our vision.

KOPPEL: Unsure how long he'll be in Afghanistan, where he'll live there, or even how much he will be paid, Fayez quit his job in Virginia and boarded a plane for Kabul Tuesday to begin a new chapter, not only in his own life, but his country's.

Andrea Koppel, CNN, Washington.


MCMANUS: The U.S. invaded Afghanistan in response to the terror that took place on its own soil. Now the Taliban have all but been overthrown and al Qaeda is on the run. For the most part, the U.S. military mission is winding down.

Sheila MacVicar now on a British-led 21-nation force which will soon be given the task of helping maintain the peace.


SHEILAH MACVICAR, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): At Baghram Airfield, outside Kabul, the British forces already in place are getting ready. When the 3,000 to 5,000 members of the International Security Assistance Force do deploy, it will be through this base. And there's lots of work to be done and plenty of unexploded ordnance.

MAJ. DUNCAN DEWAR, BRITISH ROYAL MARINE COMMANDO: The area itself is also heavily mined around there. And so, we did an amount of initial clearance so that we could improve that security of the area. MACVICAR: 21 nations have offered troops to what will be a British-led mission. The force will be based around Kabul, still bristling with the weaponry of what amounts to the private armies of various warlords and factions.

These military forces are supposed to withdraw from the streets and retreat into barracks. British defense sources say the international force will carry only light arms, and travel in unarmored vehicles. Back up and heavier protection will be provided by the U.S.

Announcing Britain's role on Wednesday afternoon, the Secretary of Defense said the purpose was to assist Afghans, not impose authority.

GEOFF HOON, BRITISH DEFENSE MINISTER: International security assistance force is a reflection of the strong international support for the reconstruction of Afghanistan. We'll go to Kabul with the backing of the wider international community.

MACVICAR: But it does not yet have the backing of the new Afghan government.

HAMID KARZAI, INTERIM AFGHAN LEADER DESIGNATE: New negotiations are taking place. And within those new negotiations that have already been conducted by the minister of defense, we will have a formula for the conduct of the force that is arriving.

MACVICAR: Any agreement with the Afghans is, at best, days away. One example of the problems faced by negotiators: there is no word in the local language that means "patrol." And so far, no common understanding of what the international force should do.

Sheila Macvicar, CNN, London.



ANNOUNCER: Lynette Laffea, from Golden, Colorado, asks, "What role will women have in the formation of a new Afghanistan government?"

HASSINA SHERIAN SAMAD, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, AID AFGHANISTAN: Thank you for your question, Lynette. Women will be involved in the future government of Afghanistan. As we're seeing already in the formation of the new government, there are two women ministers.

One of them, who has been in Afghanistan for the past 24 years, is Gen. Suhaila, who is a military general as well as a doctor who has been running a hospital in Afghanistan.

The second woman, who is Sima Samar, has been involved in running hospitals, schools, and other projects for refugee women for the past 20 years. There is already involvement of women in the formation of the government of Afghanistan.


FREIDMAN: His paintings stand among the most visible images of 20th century America. The art of Norman Rockwell depicts comforting scenes from a different time in the United States but evokes a spirit that remains relevant.

As CNN's Phil Hirschkorn reports, people are taking a fresh look at his work.


PHIL HIRSCHKORN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Norman Rockwell said the commonplace was his richest subject and that's what he painted again and again, families on vacation, men at work, girls growing up. His work captured a more innocent time, a bygone America of soda fountains and barbershop musicians.

(on camera): A lot of what we see in Rockwell's paintings are iconic images of America and Americans, but aren't these images in a large way idealized...


HIRSCHKORN: ... versions of Americans...

GREENE: They are.

HIRSCHKORN: ... and what the country's all about?

GREENE: He focused on things that were very much part of American daily experience. But then I think he put a very positive spin on them in a way that he himself said he painted America the way he would have like -- have liked everything to have been.

HIRSCHKORN (voice-over): What Rockwell clearly liked were children before they lost their innocence, Boy Scouts or simply boys being mischievous. He was known as the people's painter. Many of his paintings really posters, frequently magazine covers, most often for the "Saturday Evening Post," once the most widely read U.S. weekly.

GREENE: Rockwell was an illustrator. That was his job, his career. So while he made these paintings, they were always paintings that were made for -- to be transferred into a mass produced image whether it was a Boy Scout calendar or the "Saturday Evening Post."

HIRSCHKORN: All 322 of his "Post" covers are on display at New York's Guggenheim Museum, the last stop of a two-year U.S. tour for this retrospective from Atlanta to Washington to here.

Rockwell's first illustrating job was at 17. He would paint every day at his homes in upstate New York and then in Massachusetts. But at times, he ran out of ideas and made fun of his own creative block. Portraits were Rockwell's specialty. He used real people, often neighbors, as models. Other times, he looked to the highest office in the land.

HIRSCHKORN (on camera): And in a sense, Rockwell is really the first pop artist.

GREENE: I think you could say that in -- on a certain level, yes, he definitely is. He's doing popular imagery for mass produced kinds of products so -- and he's also addressing popular culture.

HIRSCHKORN (voice-over): A pre-television culture when modern art was becoming abstract. Rockwell was never the art critic's darling. His work sometimes seemed too sentimental, openly patriotic. A series on American freedoms spurred the public to buy World War II bonds, and he highlighted women's contributions, Rosie the Riveter filling jobs abandoned by men.

GREENE: But when I started working on this exhibition several years ago, I looked at these pictures with different eyes. They were -- they were more about nostalgia. And now, yes, they're about nostalgia, but suddenly you can start to see more what they would have meant for the people then because we are again sending people away to war.

HIRSCHKORN: As times went a changing in America, Rockwell's style stayed the same, but his subject matter did address the most divisive issue of the day, integration.

(on camera): When you get to the 1960s, what is Rockwell trying to say about civil rights?

GREENE: He is very much in support of the civil rights movement, and he's trying to bring it to the forefront for Americans much in the same way that everyone saw the "Saturday Evening Post." I think his way of presenting that material might -- I would imagine made it easier for some people who might not have been as receptive to those subjects and topics.

HIRSCHKORN (voice-over): Rockwell died in 1978. His work is now getting another look as a genuine illustration of the American spirit.

GREENE: There's narrative. People can see recognizable imagery and they can recognize themselves or a version of themselves in these pictures and that is what they respond to.

HIRSCHKORN: Phil Hirschkorn, CNN NEWSROOM, New York City.


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.

FREIDMAN: You probably couldn't find two more different groups than American teens and teens in Afghanistan.

The two groups are learning more about each other, though, thanks to a collaboration between CNN and MTV News and a little help from our Jason Bellini.


UNIDENTIFIED AMERICAN FEMALE: So what I'm really curious about is exactly what your stereotype is or what your feelings are on American teenagers and American youth today.

JASON BELLINI, CNN CORRESPONDENT (on camera): What do you know about America.

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN MALE: How well in car, everyone have a car, but we don't have a car even.

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN MALE: We don't have a bicycle now.

BELLINI: What's that?

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN MALE: Just happy to have a bicycle to go. In America, all the peoples have car, but in Afghanistan, we don't have a bicycle.

BELLINI: My sense is that a lot of Afghan teenagers are a bit jealous of American teenagers. American teens, they believe, can go off and do whatever they want, they don't have as many rules imposed upon them by their parents. They're also very jealous of American teenagers, get this, because American teens get to go to school. They wish they could go to school, particularly the girls.

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN FEMALE (through translator): They can go to school. They can get an education. We haven't got a situation that's comfortable enough for us to go to school. Maybe in a few months I'll also be able to go to school here in our country.

UNIDENTIFIED AMERICAN MALE: What do you think the major difference is between the way that your society lives and the way the American society lives?

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN FEMALE (through translator): In the United States, teenagers can say anything to their families and their family is wrong. But here in Afghanistan, girls and boys don't have a right to say anything to our families.

For example, we haven't got a right to get married by ourselves. During the Taliban regime, some girls were married off to Taliban members even though they didn't like them. UNIDENTIFIED AMERICAN FEMALE: Are you open to American involvement? How do you feel about America?

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN MALE: They want to come in our country to resolve in our country.

BELLINI: So you think America wants to help you?


BELLINI: Are you angry at America for bombing your country?

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN MALE: No, no, we are happy.

BELLINI: You're happy, why?

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN MALE: Because it's not against Afghan people. It's against the terrorist people for Osama bin Laden and his band.

UNIDENTIFIED AFGHAN FEMALE: If they bring peace in our country it's good. We like them. That they come in our country and bring peace.


MCMANUS: No doubt security has been stepped up across the nation since September 11. But in many schools, students have been dealing with heightened security for quite some time.

FREIDMAN: And while September 11 has brought many students together to think in terms of resolving differences peacefully, there is still work to be done as Seema Mathur reports.


SEEMA MATHUR, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Cameras, security guards, metal detectors. For years schools in the U.S. have lived with a constant fear of violence.

SAGER PATEL, STUDENT: When after the Columbine shooting happened, I was like afraid of -- I had like nightmares a couple of nights in a row and that I always afraid that it'd happen here.


MATHUR: This, an attempt to deglamorize violence.


MATHUR: This concert is actually a school assembly. Teachers at this Atlanta area middle school were looking for a unique way to send a message to kids.

DR. BARBARA BLASCH, TEACHER: We have many students that are on the verge of violence here. TOM WOODCOCK, RAGE AGAINST DESTRUCTION: Is that who I'm looking at out here today?

MATHUR: Tom Woodcock is the driving force behind this traveling revue called Rage Against Destruction. He's convinced that violence can be prevented if kids hear the message in a way that's in tune with the way they talk.


MATHUR: So in between the music and lights, Woodcock slips in a few messages.

WOODCOCK: And those of you that take the opportunity to just pick on people all the time and bully people, let me tell you, this is a dangerous time to be doing that, man, because you're hurting people's feelings and those people are getting upset and they're wanting to take that back out on you.

MATHUR: The goal is to prevent incidents like the recent Columbine-type plot in Massachusetts where some students were arrested on charges of planning to kill other students and teachers.

WOODCOCK: And that school is safe today because a student had the courage and the guts to say something.

MATHUR: Woodcock also shared another example, an e-mail sent to him by a student who stopped another shooting plot.

WOODCOCK: Basically shooting some Muslim students. And that student after our assembly decided to confront the student that was going to do the shooting, told the student's uncle, who is a policeman. They went in -- they went in the young man's room and found a gun in the mattress.

MATHUR: Many students seem to recognize the serious nature of the message.

PATEL: I thought the program was a great way to keep kids from violent acts. It was like it got everybody in the mood to listen in.

VICTORIA LEE, STUDENT: They actually reached out to us. They weren't judging us, and I think that was really important.

STEPHANIE SINGER, RAGE AGAINST DESTRUCTION: The whole program, yes, it really targets on the student as an individual that they don't have to do what the peer pressure says to do, the popular thing at the -- at the moment of violence, that they can be themselves, they can be popular while they are themselves.

MATHUR: Some surveys say that 40 percent of school violence happens because of peer pressure or a need to feel accepted.

(on camera): And what this group Rage Against Destruction is trying to do is convince these kids that it's cooler to be on their side than on the side of violence. (voice-over): A message teachers welcome.

BLASCH: It's a way that tomorrow or a week from now we can say do you remember the message we all heard? Do you remember what they said? What is it that we can do now?


MATHUR: Steps towards reducing fear and maybe the need for cameras and guards that have become commonplace at school.

Seema Mathur, CNN, Atlanta.


FREIDMAN: Finally, a unique message of hope from Massachusetts students. They made a special American flag, a tribute out of tile.

MCMANUS: More than 40,000 tiles were given to students across the Commonwealth. They wrote messages on them. And when put together, it created, well, this flag. It will travel to New York City, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania.

Have a great day. We'll see you tomorrow.

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