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CNN Live Event/Special

America's New War: Protecting America

Aired September 26, 2001 - 17:00   ET


BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: Protecting America against further attacks: why the FBI is keeping its eye on the road and looking at who's behind the wheel.

In Afghanistan, demonstrators take aim at a symbol of America.


BETTE MIDLER, ENTERTAINER (singing): Did you ever know that you're my hero?


HEMMER: And the men and women who earn their living in the skies pause to remember the victims, their colleagues.


MIDLER (singing): ... and everything I would like to be? I can fly higher than an eagle...


HEMMER: And hello again from New York City. I'm Bill Hemmer.

It has been 15 days since terror struck this town and then rippled violently across the globe. There is plenty, unfortunately, there is plenty again to talk about tonight, but first to Atlanta and CNN's Joie Chen. The latest developments at this hour.

Joie, hello to you.

JOIE CHEN, CNN ANCHOR: Good afternoon, Bill. Let's bring our viewers up to date right now.

President Bush will call for placing armed air marshals on most U.S. commercial flights. Sources say that's just one part of his plan for making air travel for all of us safer. It also calls for a greater federal role in airport security. Mr. Bush will announce measures tomorrow in Chicago.

The FBI launches a huge nationwide records check of truck drivers who carry hazardous materials. Attorney General John Ashcroft says several individuals linked to the terrorist hijackers tried to get licenses to haul dangerous cargoes.

And Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein says he will not offer condolences to President Bush for those killed in the September 11th attacks. The Iraqi leader says to do so would be hypocritical because the United States, in his words, "is launching a war on us."

Meantime, thousands of Afghan supporters of the Taliban stormed and set fire to the deserted U.S. embassy in Kabul. The State Department says that the United States will hold Afghanistan responsible for damages. All U.S. diplomats and staff were pulled out of the country back in 1989.

Now, more about the president's plan for making air travel safer. For that here's Bill.

HEMMER: Joie, President Bush expected, as you mentioned, to announce tough new aviation security measures tomorrow. For a preview, now to Washington and CNN senior White House correspondent John King now with us.

John, what's on the plate here?

JOHN KING, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, Bill, a number of items on the plate. They deal with three major areas that have come into question regarding airline security over the past two weeks, plus a day. And we're also told, as the president puts these proposals forward, his aides are already asking the Congress to act quickly, almost immediately, for the House and the Senate to pass these proposals, and get them to the president's desk, if possible, by the end of next week.

Now as for the proposals themselves, they deal with three major areas. Let's look first at the issue of airport security screening. The president opposes, we are told by sources, a full federal takeover of those airport security checkpoints. But he does favor an increased federal law enforcement presence at those checkpoints, and very new tough federal standards, training and testing, for all airport security workers.

On the issue of air marshals, we're told Mr. Bush wants marshals on most if not all flights, at least in the short term, at least until the government is convinced the flying environment is safer.

And in the short term, the government will borrow federal agents from the FBI, from the Drug Enforcement Administration, and from the Immigration and Naturalization Service, we are told, to fill in as air marshals while those air marshals can be hired and full-time trained.

And on the other issue, one more, cockpit security, we are told the president firmly opposes one proposal we have heard in recent days to allow pilots to carry handguns. The White House is against that. Mr. Bush will back security bars and other immediate short term efforts to fortify the cockpit and also call for over the long run new fortified cockpit doors to be installed on every U.S. commercial jetliner. Also, look for national guard troops to possibly play a role here in the short term. Many in Congress believe using National Guard troops at the airport would boost passenger confidence in their safety.

Now, the president was asked about all this a short time ago at the White House. He wouldn't get into the details of his plan, and he's actually looking over the final details with top aides this afternoon. But he did promise reporters he would unveil his proposal tomorrow.


GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're going to deal with airport security tomorrow as well as other measures to try to convince the American public it is safe to fly. One of my concerns is that this terrible incident has said to many Americans, convinced many Americans to stay at home. And one of the keys to economic recovery is going to be the vital industry, the vitality of the airline industry.


KING: Mr. Bush will head to Chicago's O'Hare Airport aboard Air Force One, but we're also told that the transportation secretary, Norman Mineta, will fly commercially, hook up with Mr. Bush in Chicago, will take a commercial flight out there, symbolic gesture designed to show the flying public that airplanes are safe -- Bill.

HEMMER: Some measures, if implemented, that could affect all of us. John King in Washington.

John, thanks to you,

For more now on the president's airline security measures, Susan Coughlin is a CNN analyst and former vice chairman of the NTSB, the National Transportation Safety Board. Susan Coughlin is with us from Bozeman, Montana.

Hello to you in the American West.

Let's talk about what John King just reported. Let's take them one at a time, if we could, Susan, screening. Not a federal takeover, but indeed increased security. What is your take on what should be done at this point?

SUSAN COUGHLIN, FORMER VICE CHAIRMAN, NTSB: Bill, I think there's no question that all of us that have been looking at the events over the last two weeks understand that we have to do something different in terms of checkpoint security. And I do think that it would be appropriate for the federal government to have a role in that, but as John indicated, it's not likely that the federal government will simply take over that responsibility.

I think you will see a blending of responsibilities with the federal government involved, with airlines involved, with airports involved. But it is not strictly going to be a federal responsibility, and I think that's appropriate.

HEMMER: You know, Susan, what about air marshals? On most flights but not all. Is that something that will come and stick or come and then ebb away?

COUGHLIN: I think these are extraordinary times, Bill, as so many people have said, and they call for looking at extraordinary measures. Maybe in the long run, a sky marshal aboard every U.S. flight or every international flight is not where we end up. But there's no question that sky marshals for the immediate future are something that we should get used to seeing. And once again, I think the president is exactly right in taking that step to assure the American public that flying in the United States is safe and will become safer.

HEMMER: And Susan, on the third point, quickly here, on cockpit security, tell us what you believe is the more pressing concern right now to keep pilots safe and perhaps give them the latitude they need to keep their passengers safe.

COUGHLIN: Well, obviously, last week or two weeks ago entry into the cockpit was a major failing of the system, and so I think that the most important thing is to be sure that unauthorized persons don't enter that cockpit under any circumstances so that no matter what happens in the cabin the aircraft can be flown safely and landed safely in the event of an emergency in the back of the airplane.

HEMMER: And all these measures...

COUGHLIN: So I think doors are -- excuse me.

HEMMER: I'm sorry. I didn't mean to cut you off there.


HEMMER: Indeed, all these measures to be reviewed quite seriously in the coming days and weeks ahead.


On another matter, on another matter, the FBI is said to be increasing its look and its background checks of those people who are licensed to drive trucks that carry hazardous materials. It was reported in "The New York Times" this morning. How much do we read into this, and you, knowing that you're so no touch with the transportation system in the U.S., how much of a concern should this be at this time?

COUGHLIN: Well, obviously, when you talk about hazardous materials, there is a whole range of items that are placarded when they're carried by truck, obviously some of them more lethal than the other, if they're explosive, if they're highly toxic. Those are the ones that the federal government is probably going to zero in on rather than the array of items that you have in your kitchen sink.

So I think that they will be looking at driver's licenses, of CDLs, that have endorsements to carry hazardous materials, and developing a profile for those carriers who are carrying the more toxic materials and being sure that the employees are adequately carrying out their responsibilities, paying attention to the letter of the law, that they have manifests that accurately reflect what they're carrying.

And again, it's just one more step that we can take to be sure that we're protecting both our urban and rural areas.

HEMMER: And that report certainly raised some eyebrows today.

Susan, thank you. Susan Coughlin, formerly with the NTSB, live in Montana with us.

Also to our viewers, we want to hear what you think about the president's plan. Is there something missing that you think should be addressed? You can log on to John King in Washington, back a bit later, will answer some of your e-mails a little bit later in this broadcast here.

Also on that same topic, suppose for a moment there is a terrorist attack involving hazardous chemicals. What would happen? What could you do to protect yourself? Back to Joie now in Atlanta for more on this topic -- Joie.

CHEN: Bill, you know, all of our notions of what to expect from a terror attack were completely changed by the events of September 11th, and perhaps it is appropriate for us then to review some of the possibilities, if a terror attack should come again.

Joining us to talk further about that, from our medical unit, Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

This notion, the distinction between biological weapons, biological agents or chemical agents, can you talk to us about the distinction there?

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: It's an important point to bring up right at the beginning. People are sort of grouping a lot of these things together, biological and chemical and things like that.

Biological typically involves what are known as living infectious organisms, bacteria, things like that, or the toxins that come from those bacteria. The examples that a lot of people have heard of, Joie, anthrax, botulism toxin, all that sort of thing. Chemicals are very different. They are poisonous substances, oftentimes volatile liquids that can transfer back-and-forth between gas and liquid.

So when you've actually got them in these big tankers driving around, you know, cities and interstates and things like that, they can actually release vapors or gases or liquids. Oftentimes, those can be poisonous, and that's, I think, what a lot of the concern is now.

There are literally hundreds of different kinds of chemicals, hundreds of different chemicals that are being transported every day in these tankers and various trucks around the United States. And in fact, probably a more recent example, something we saw in Baltimore just this summer, where a big railroad line was actually transporting hydrochloric acid, chlorine, all sorts of different things.

That railroad car, as we know from July, actually did crash, releasing a lot of these substances, releasing fires that raged for several days. Luckily, no one was injured, but it certainly did raise public awareness about a lot of potential chemical hazards, chemical hazards that are actually being transported around every single day -- Joie.

CHEN: Have there ever been any accidental releases of biological agents in this country that have affected human beings?

GUPTA: Right. There has been a lot hoaxes. You know, people have talked a lot about the anthrax hoaxes. There's never actually been an accidental anthrax sort of release or small pox, a lot of the ones that come to mind.

There have been other bacteria that have been released, a case comes to mind of various zoos, things like that, but nothing that has really had a significant impact has been discussed theoretically.

CHEN: Yeah, even though they are studied in some laboratories.

GUPTA: That's right.

CHEN: Then let's talk a little bit further about the sort of things that we might experience. You mentioned that there are hundreds of chemicals being transported all across the country. There are things we think of that we know (UNINTELLIGIBLE) environment: chlorine for swimming pools which could be used in a much more harmful way or nitrogen in fertilizer, this sort of thing.

Talk to us a little bit about how these things can go from being so innocuous to things that can kill.

GUPTA: It's a good question, and they can be very scary players, and you gave two very good examples.

We talk about these chemicals possibly affecting the nervous system. I put this word tetnia after that, and what that basically means, Joie -- it's a big word -- but basically what it means is that your nervous system can actually cause your body to go into spasm. And these chemicals will actually prevent your body from relaxing. That eventually affects your diaphragm and they prevent you from breathing. So, that's how some of these chemicals act.

Some of them act by directly affecting your lungs, causing a condition pulmonary edema. Joie, your lungs actually fill up with fluid in this case, and then it's obviously again hard for you to breathe.

Examples of the first one, for example, are the pesticides, would cause, the nervous system ones. Examples of the second one are things like chlorine, mustard gas, a little less common. But certainly those two could cause pulmonary edema.

And finally reducing the amount of oxygen that your blood can actually transport, cyanide, carbon monoxide. Those sorts of things can do that final thing.

Those are the different ways that these chemicals can possibly affect you overall.

CHEN: So it seems to me that you're talking about very large concentrations in a very limited amount of space for a very limited amount of time. Then what is your best option if you should, God forbid, find yourself in a situation where you either exposed accidentally or somebody deliberately exposes a large amount of chemical to the air?

GUPTA: You know, the most important thing is don't investigate this. Run. Try to run as far away as possible.

CHEN: What about a mask or something?

GUPTA: Well, what I -- I talked to the experts about that exact question. They say don't spend your time trying to fumble with a mask, get it on, pulling it our of your bag. Run upwind. Try -- these things -- these liquids can turn to vapor and will often spread by virtue of the wind and the meteorological conditions at that time. Run upwind. Try and run away from it.

If you can get yourself to a hospital, try and get there as quickly possible. Have yourself checked to find out exactly what you're exposed to, because there are some good things to try and reduce your amount of exposure.

The first thing the doctors will actually do is make sure that you're breathing OK. They might actually put a tube into your lungs to try and breathe for you for a short time. There's also good medicines. I have a couple of examples here.

This is actually known as an antidote for most nerve agents. This is called atropine, and this is a medication that you might get if you're in the hospital after an exposure.

CHEN: But it wouldn't be something somebody could just get for themselves as a preventative, precautionary thing. I mean, you can't go to the drugstore and get your doctor to sort of prescribe this.

GUPTA: You could. If you're someone who is at high risk, if you're someone who has a high likelihood of exposure to something like a nerve agent then you could certainly get something like this. Much like people carry epinephrine around for allergies to bee stings, you could carry around a little a pouch like this -- it's a little needle -- and you could just inject yourself if you're exposed to that particular nerve agent.

But you'd have to know that you're in fact exposed to it, and that would take some degree of sophistication. These are pills that people could take if they have exposure to anthrax. You're asking about anthrax earlier, a biological hazard. And you could actually take these pills, and if you got the anthrax either through your lungs or through eating it or through your blood, these pills could help.

So there are some good measures. If you are exposed, certainly do go to the doctor.

CHEN: Absolutely. Dr. Sanjay Gupta from our medical unit, thanks very much for all that information you were able to provide to us this afternoon.

Just the possibility of terrorist chemical or biological attacks has prompted even tighter security measures in New York, where Bill is standing by now.

HEMMER: Yeah, Joie, you know, traffic coming into Manhattan on most days can be somewhat slow and tedious, but after some stepped up inspections of all types of vehicles, especially trucks, getting a bit of a closer look to the streets of Manhattan. CNN's Jason Carroll watching the traffic.

How goes it out there, Jason?

JASON CARROLL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, you know, Bill, that New Yorkers are used to bad traffic, but even veteran New Yorkers say this is the worst they've ever seen. And I want you to take a look behind me. This is a security checkpoint that's been set up here. You can see exactly what's happening.

You come through here in a van or a truck, you're going to get pulled over. The officers are going to check to see what you have inside.

We've been seeing this all morning long, and it's security checkpoints like this one that has really slowed the traffic situation and caused delays. Some drivers saying that they've had to wait as much as three hours while they waited in line to be checked by officers here.

Now, all of this in the wake of a federal investigation into terrorist activities. A number of people were arrested who had obtained or tried to obtain licenses to transport hazardous materials. As a result, New York City has increased its inspections, which has caused all of these delays.

The mayor has come out and said that he will be announcing new commuting rules for people here in the city. If you try to get into the city using any of the four major bridges on the east side, you are going to have to carpool in order to get into this city. That same rule also applies to the Lincoln Tunnel. That will go into effect tomorrow starting at 6:00 a.m. It will be in effect from 6:00 a.m. until midnight until further notice.

The mayor says he wants to see how this goes. He says he's not clear at this point how they're going to enforce these rules. For example, will they simply pull people over and turn them around? Will they issue warnings? Will they issue tickets? We're basically going to have to wait and see what's going to happen with that, Bill.

In terms of recommendations, the mayor is telling New Yorkers to use mass transit, use public transportation: use the buses, use the trains, use the subways. He says that is one of the best ways to alleviate all of the traffic congestion, Bill.

HEMMER: Congestion indeed. Jason Carroll, thank you very much on the streets of Manhattan here.

More now in the investigative front at this time. A magistrate in Virginia has denied bail for two men suspected of helping the hijackers. Herbert Villalobos is charged with helping a hijacker obtain fake identification. Mohamed Abdi is charged with forging checks. Abdi's name and number were also found inside a car registered to one of the hijackers at Dulles Airport.

The manhunt against suspected terrorists picking up momentum in Europe. Police in Spain have detained six Algerians, allegedly linking them to Osama bin Laden. The six have yet to be charged, though, but officials say they had, quote, "serious connections with international terrorism."

Also, authorities in Britain have arrested three people there. French officials saying one of those arrested is a French citizen wanted in connection with planned attacks on U.S. interests across the English Channel in France.

In Canada, a man from Yemen, who has been in custody since the attacks back on the 11th of September, appeared at an extradition hearing today. Officials say Nageeb Al-Hadi was traveling with fake passports and airline uniforms in his luggage. The FBI wants to extradite him now to Chicago. Al-Hadi is demanding an attorney.

Back here in New York City today, relatives of those who lost those in the World Trade Center attack started a very painful process.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Emptiness: How else can I say it? I have two boys and a girl, and my youngest was my girl, and she's gone. And I'll never see her again.


HEMMER: When we come back, filing for death certificates. For many, the pain has just begun.



DR. KERRY KELLY, NEW YORK FIRE DEPARTMENT: The catastrophic losses that we have suffered have created a pain so deep, because every part of our department is affected by these deaths. There are no safe havens. We have lost family at every level. It is the sense of family that will give our department the strength. But we need additional support for the fallen members and their families.


HEMMER: That's the New York Fire Department's chief of medical services, Dr. Kerry Kelly. She was testifying in Washington today on the terrible toll the events of September 11th have taken on that institution here in New York City.

Meanwhile, as you look at the smoke continuing to rise on day 15 since the attacks in lower Manhattan, CNN's Martin Savidge watching the rescue effort again today.

Martin, hello to you.


Two weeks and one day after that dreadful attack, and the search- and-recovery teams are back at it, although hope is almost nonexistent at this point of finding anybody still alive in the rubble.

We wanted to show you some of the images that have now come in from beneath the streets of New York City. Specifically, this is information video that was gathered by the New York City Metropolitan Transportation Authority, taking a look at the subway system. This is one of the huge beams that came crashing down from the World Trade Center building and actually punctured and drove through the subway tunnel that rested beneath. Part of that tunnel has now collapsed. That's in the area of the Portland Street Station. That's also where the heaviest damage has been found.

One of the things that they are surveying and looking into here, and actually have begun work on, are huge cement plugs that will block the north and south parts of that station area, because they're concerned about flooding.

As you know, the World Trade Center was built in what was called a bathtub: in essence a huge restraining wall and retaining wall that had been set up. Now, that it has been breached there is concerns about flooding and water that could seep into the rest of the subway system. That's why they have been focusing their efforts on trying to create those huge plugs down there. They say repairing will take years to do.

Now there is also new footage that has come to us from FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and their government cameras, and they have been showing us some of the imagery that is not only coming from the site -- the site activity, by the way, today was done very much with heavy equipment.

This is the Fresh Kills landfill. The landfill is also a scene where a very, very grim job is going on. Federal authorities are over there. When the material is taken away from the World Trade Center site, it is transported in barges over to Staten Island, and then as you see an army of people dressed in those white biohazard suits goes sifting through every piece of debris and every bucketful of soil. They are looking for evidence, since this is a crime investigation. They're looking for human remains.

And the official toll right now stands with over 300 bodies pulled from the rubble -- Bill.

HEMMER: Months of work still ahead. Martin Savidge, thank you from Lower Manhattan.

Today, some of the families of those missing and presumed dead started filing for the death certificates of their loved-ones, this without proof of a body. This is a critical and important process. A death certificate allows relatives to claim paychecks and life insurance benefits and gain access to checking accounts. There are bills to pay for so many.

I was down at New York's Pier 94 this morning when the first families started arriving.


HEMMER (voice-over): As they trickled into the family assistance center, one person said today was the single-hardest day of their life. Warren Fiedel would not disagree. He lost his daughter and a good part of his heart.

WARREN FIEDEL, FATHER OF VICTIM: Just emptiness, emptiness. How else can I say it? I have two boys and a girl, and my youngest was my girl, and she's gone.

HEMMER: Some say they came to start the painful process of closure, emotionally and legally. Still, others refused to believe all hope was lost. Luis Perez still prays for his sister and a miracle.

We also ran into Matt Sellitto. He lost his oldest son. But through the pain, he says, he has now found peace.

MATTHEW SELLITTO, FATHER OF VICTIM: I would love to get his body back to bring it home and put it there, but yes, I think we can pretty much say that the best that we can hope for is to find the body.

HEMMER: For three days, there will be hundreds, if not thousands, of Warren Fiedels and Matt Sillettos slowly walking toward a new and lonelier life.


HEMMER: Much lonelier indeed. For those with loved-ones lost in the World Trade Center attack, more information on how to obtain those death certificates can be found online at New York City's official Web site. The address,

From New York now to the city of Boston today, about 20,000 attended an outdoor service of remembrance, this for the crews of American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175. Both took off from Boston 15 days ago and both were used to destroy the World Trade Center.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We gather here to recognize our 22, who have touched our lives. The service of remembrance is our symbol, and the symbols are simple. Our hearts are sincere, our reverence and love is for them.




BETTE MIDLER, ENTERTAINER (singing): Did you ever know that you're my hero?



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The unknown members now with God as angels by his side must want for us to carry on, to not withdraw and hide, and so it's in their memory that we will hold so long...



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Americans, we will stand tall.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: United, we will be strong.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE (singer): ... to be an American, where at least I'll know I'm free, and I won't forget the men who died who gave that life to me. And I'm glad to stand up next to you and defend her still today, because there ain't no doubt I love this land. God bless the USA.

Bless you all. Thank you.



HEMMER: CNN's coverage of "America's new war" continues. In just a few minutes time, I also want you to know we'll have a live interview with Egypt's foreign minister in Washington on this day for a very critical meeting. Stay tuned for that coming up shortly, but first to Atlanta.

Once again here's Joie -- Joie.

CHEN: Bill, here's a quick at some of the latest developments in the new war on terrorism.

CNN has learned that President Bush will propose putting air marshals on virtually every commercial airline flight in this country. Concerned about the safety of our air travel continues to take its toll on the industry. Delta Airlines confirmed today it will cut 1,300 workers. That's about 15 percent of its schedule.

New York police have stepped up vehicle inspections, meantime, increasing backups on routes into Manhattan. And as a result, single- occupant vehicles will be banned between 6:00 a.m. and noon. And the Pentagon has called up about 600 more Naval reservists. Most are said to be law-enforcement specialists and security personnel.

Those are some of the latest developments. Now let's get more from Bill.

HEMMER: OK, Joie. I want to take our viewers overseas and show some videotape here, rather stunning pictures. Thousands of Afghans surrounding the long-abandoned U.S. embassy in Kabul, the capital city. They put in flames today.

According to Arabic language news outlets, it was set on fire during anti-American demonstrations. It is believed to be largest such protest in Afghanistan since the U.S. warned of the possibility of attack against the Taliban if it failed to turn over Osama Bin Laden. The embassy, by the way, has been empty since the late 1980s.

From across in Pakistan, CNN's Nic Robertson with more.


NIC ROBERTSON, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Venting their apparent anger at the United States, demonstrators tried tearing down the symbol of American presence in their country.

According to local reporters, thousands gathered in what they described as the biggest anti-American rally since the September 11 terror attacks. Although the embassy has been empty for almost 13 years, many youngsters and men in black turbans, the kind traditionally worn by Taliban fighters, stormed the now defunct compound, setting fire to all cars inside.

It's not clear if the demonstration was spontaneous or organized for Western eyes, but it is the first visible be sign of anti-American sentiment inside Afghanistan. In recent days, there's been an increase in anti-American rhetoric on the Taliban's National radio broadcasts, as the country's leadership prepares its people for the possibility of war. The broadcast predicts a coming conflict, what they define as a war an Islam, not terrorism.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The Americans are fighting so they can live and enjoy the material things in this life, but we are fighting so we can die in the cause of God.

ROBERTSON: Preparing for such a battle, Taliban officials have threatened to have 300,000 fighters ready for combat. But that's a figure questioned by Pakistani officials, who say the Taliban have only 12,000 to 15,000 fighters. However, a well-placed international military analyst inside Afghanistan recently told CNN the figure was closer to 30,000 to 40,000.

Many fighters, like these seen training close to the front-line a month ago, are not Taliban members. But their tribal elders are allies of the Taliban. And they'll fight on the Taliban side.

The Talibans say they owe their military firepower not only to the many tribal alliances they have, but also to weapons left behind by the Soviet army when it withdrew at the end of a 10-year occupation in 1989.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: On their way out, they left a lot of weapons like this one. This was one of the weapons the Soviets left behind. The people of Afghanistan own a lot of these weapons.

ROBERTSON: However many weapons they have, more important is how many fighters they can count on. And that will depend on how many of their tribal allies stick with them through a prolonged conflict.

Nic Robertson, CNN, Quetta, Pakistan.


HEMMER: Also a demonstration of support of the U.S. war on terrorism met with violence in Karachi, Pakistan. About a dozen people injured when attackers opened fire and then lobbed a grenade into the crowd gathering for that rally.

The demonstration, however, did go on anyway. An estimated 3,000 spilled into the streets of Karachi, the first pro-government rally in Pakistan since the attacks of 15 days ago.

Also, the U.N.'s refugee agency says it needs $252 million to fund the growing emergency on the Afghan border. Afghans by the thousands are still trying to leave, according to reports, this ahead of a possible U.S. strike.

The U.N. high commissioner for refugees fears up to a million people may try to enter Pakistan alone. The governor of Pakistan's northwest province says Pakistan will not open its border to refugees for security reasons there. Aid agencies say concern is going about a "humanitarian catastrophe."

At this time, I'm going to Washington.

CNN's Andrea Koppel, the State Department with a very important guest on this day. Andrea, hello to you.

ANDREA KOPPEL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hello, Bill. Actually, we're not at the State Department, but we are in Washington. And I'm sitting here now with the Egyptian foreign minister Ahmed Maher, who has just wrapped up meetings with both President Bush and Secretary Powell.

I want to begin actually with a question, Mr. Minister, about President Bush. There's some reports in today's newspapers that say that Egypt had some information about a possible plot to assassinate President Bush during this summer's Genoa summit. Can you can tell me about that?

AHMED MAHER, EGYPTIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: Well, this was a declaration made by Osama Bin Laden at the time, saying that he intended to assassinate some of the participants of the G-8 in Italy, using a plane full of explosives. And he did mention at the time President Bush. So this is information that President Mubarak was mentioning in his interview.

KOPPEL: And did you have any idea that it would take place the way it has in the World Trade bombings?

MAHER: Nobody thought that this would happen. And even watching it on television, it was very difficult to believe it. We did not think that they would be so reckless and so criminal as to commit this horrible crime.

KOPPEL: As you know, this administration has been actively trying to build an international coalition. I have to tell you, from listening to the comments that you made and that Secretary Powell made after your the meeting this afternoon, it doesn't sound as if Egypt is 100 percent onboard.

MAHER: We are 100 percent onboard an international consensus to fight terrorism. We have suffered from terrorism. So it only normal that, in addition to our solidarity with the United States, we be part of any effort to eradicate terrorism.

KOPPEL: So in other words, if this moves as it looks as it is to target Afghanistan, in particular the Taliban militia to get at Osama Bin Laden and his network, this is something that Egypt would support without any reservations?

MAHER: We support without any reservation any action to punish those who are responsible for this crime. And we believe that if the United States moves against the Taliban or against Afghanistan or Bin Laden, they will have a solid, good case. We trust that they will act according to what they believe in the rule of law, and any action is going to be based on evidence.

KOPPEL: Is Egypt convinced that there is enough evidence against Osama Bin Laden and his network?

MAHER: We have not seen evidence, but we trust the United States' government. KOPPEL: Do you want to see evidence?

MAHER: Well Secretary Powell said that he will have a case presented to the international world opinion. And I think he will do that.

KOPPEL: What type of evidence do you think will be necessary to convince many within the Arab world and Islamic community that in fact it was the al-Qaeda network?

MAHER: Well, I think an indication of a link between Bin Laden and what has happened in New York. There are men in Washington. There are many presumptions. And I think if these presumptions become more specific, this will constitute a good case before the international public opinion.

KOPPEL: As you know today, there were some positive developments in the Middle East, in particular, between the Israelis and the Palestinians. How important is it to maintain the support of the Arab world to have progress on this front?

MAHER: I had the opportunity to express to both the President and the Secretary, our appreciation of the efforts of the United States in order to have this meeting that took place this morning. We think the role of the United States is extremely important. And that a solution of this problem is also extremely important for the Arab world and for the peoples of Palestinian and Israel.

So I believe that action on this front is very important to consolidate the international consensus with the United States, in the same fight against terrorism, which is a danger for all of us. I think what happened in New York and Washington is not only directed against the American people. It's directed against the world at large and all those who believe in justice, in law, and in the necessity to establish peace on good and sound basis.

KOPPEL: Foreign minister Maher, now I'm afraid we're going to have to leave it, but I thank you very much for joining us.

And back to you, Bill.

HEMMER: All right, Andrea. Thank you very much. The mayor of New York City Rudy Giuliani usually makes appearance in this hour. We anticipate to have the mayor at some point very soon. And when that happens, we'll have it for you live.

In the meantime, let's get a quick time-out here. Back with more after this in New York and in Atlanta.


HEMMER: As promised, Rudy Giuliani now coming to the podium here in New York City. This is the time. A bit later than usual today, nonetheless, critical evidence, confirmation now.

MAYOR RUDY GIULIANI (R), NEW YORK: The experiment with having no single occupancy vehicles coming in on the bridges and tunnels below 62nd Street -- 63rd Street. Let me clarify, because I may have confused people before. They do not...


You got really confused? Really all confused? You're all confused? All right.

That's the least of our problems right now, being confused about traffic. The cars will be allowed to drive up and down, if they're in Manhattan. The only ban that's going to take place is on the bridges coming into Manhattan below 63rd Street. In other words, on the 59th Street Bridge or Queensbrough Bridge. We'll get both names, so there's no confusion. The Manhattan Bridge, the Williamsburg Bridge and the Brooklyn Bridge.

You have to have another person in your car. You cannot come in by yourself. Unless you're one of the exempt group. And I'll have somebody else describe the exempt group because it's a long list.

Above 63rd Street, you can have single occupancy vehicles. So that means you can come in on the Triborough Bridge that way. You can come in on the George Washington Bridge that way. You can drive within Manhattan that way.

And what did I leave out? Oh, I left out the Lincoln Tunnel. The Lincoln Tunnel also single occupancy. So Lincoln Tunnel, 59th Street Bridge, Williamsburg Bridge, Manhattan Bridge, Brooklyn Bridge requires two people or more in the car. Everything else would be one. I think I've covered them all.

Oh, and the Mid-town Tunnel needs single car. Brooklyn Battery Tunnel will be single. Right? It'd be two people in a car. Anything below 63rd Street coming into Manhattan, you need more than one person in the car. Anything above 63rd street coming into Manhattan, you can have a single person in the car. OK? And intra-Manhattan it's not relevant.

That's right. So if you live on -- if you live on 89th street and you want to drive down, you can drive all by yourself. But if you want to come through the Lincoln Tunnel, you better pick up somebody on the way in.

QUESTION: If you live on 14th Street, can you ride down 5th Avenue. Can you?

GIULIANI: Yes, yes, yes. Within Manhattan you can drive -- you can get in your car single person and drive.

Now my suggestion to you is please don't do that. I mean, if you live in Manhattan and you're going to just drive within Manhattan, this is the time to take a subway, take a bus or walk. And walk would be really good because you'd lose some weight.

QUESTION: What about...

GIULIANI: I don't mean you in particular, but in general. Pardon me?


GIULIANI: Park and rides are going to be organized. And they -- do we have a list of park and rides?

It's on the press. There's a park and ride on the press release. And if anybody needs more information, there's will list all of it. There's going to be a free Brooklyn Ferry that's running every weekday. There will be an Upper East side ferry. That's at the South Street piers. There's a ferry service for New Jersey bus drivers from Liberty State Park to the Stuyvesant Seaport.

The -- there's a 4,000 vehicle park and ride that'll be available at Shea Stadium starting tomorrow with free parking tomorrow and Friday. And then it'll be $2 thereafter if it's continued. And then people can take the seven line in or use the park and ride facility to carpools. So those are some of the areas that you can use.

Oh, and the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel is closed, except to emergency vehicles anyway. So that really isn't an issue.

QUESTION: What about the weekend? Is this going to apply Monday through Friday?

GIULIANI: So far, this is going to apply for Thursday and Friday. I don't believe we're going to need to do it for the weekend. And then, we'll assess it on tomorrow and on Friday and then see if we want to put it into effect for next week.

QUESTION: Is this a response to a particular threat, I'm thinking of a terrorist type threat?

GIULIANI: It's -- no, it's just in response to the terrible traffic conditions that we have coming over the bridges and that we need people to try to start organizing their behavior to cooperate, so we cut down on the number of cars coming over the bridges.

And it also, there are times in which we have to do more searching and more looking at vehicles. So that slows things down too. So it's not just threat. It's a combination of factors.

QUESTION: Security points that -- what people can expect say if they drive up to the 59th Street Bridge? How will they be turned back and how will that work?

GIULIANI: People should expect that they may get interrupted coming in. And just be patient. Don't feel insulted. Just be patient.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) the time. Is it 6:00 a.m. to noon or 6:00 a.m. to midnight?

GIULIANI: It's 6:00 a.m. to noon.

QUESTION: How realistic an assessment do you think you'll have for tomorrow?

GIULIANI: Just a little bit. Every will get trained on how to do it. And the real assessment will be on Friday.

QUESTION: Mr. Mayor, can you respond (OFF-MIKE) you would like to stay on?

GIULIANI: Well, I can tell is that what I'd like to do is to maintain the unity that exists in the city. And I've met -- I'm going to meet with the candidates and talk to them about something that we can agree on. Or I hope we can agree on a way in which to handle this tremendous crisis that we have.

And it's something that I would hope that the candidates would take very seriously. So I'm going to talk to them and try to come up with something that unifies the city because we have a very, very strong spirit of unity right now. And I think that it's my obligation to try to maintain it. So I can't tell what you that is until I tell them. And I've met with some of them, but not all of them yet.

QUESTION: Without being the candidate?

GIULIANI: I don't -- after I finish the conversations, I will tell you if we've succeeded in coming up with something that unifies. I hope we do.

QUESTION: Would it be fair to say that (OFF-MIKE) would basically allow you to continue being mayor for an extended period after your term expires?

GIULIANI: I'm not going to discuss it with you. I'm going to discuss it with the candidates first. And then there's time to discuss it. But I think we should try to come up with something that unifies and you're just going to have to, you know, labor under just a little less information than you would like to get.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) are your hopes then?

GIULIANI: I hope that we're going to come up with a position that we agree on, so that it unifies the city. I could tried to find another way to say that.


GIULIANI: I don't know. Pardon me?


GIULIANI: The next couple days, hopefully. Maybe in a day or so.


GIULIANI: Pardon me? No, we should come up with an agreement now. The city is in a -- is coming out of a crisis and is having to get used to living a different way. And one of the great benefits of this terrible, awful tragedy is that the city is more you unified than it ever has been before. And I want to do something that unifies the city, because I love this place. I mean, I've invested before this 7.75 years into trying to make the best city in the world.

And it then got devastated by this horrible attack. It's still best city in the world, but it's going to need a lot of help. It's going to need a lot of assistance. It's going to need a lot of unity. And it's going to need politicians who think outside the box, who think outside the old way in which we used to practice politics. So that all came to me last night, that I should start thinking that way also.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) I mean he came out on top. And he was the person (OFF-MIKE) sees two cities existing and this and that.

GIULIANI: Yes, I'm not going to -- that's -- here, once again, a terrible thing happened to us. And we can start think differently as a result of that. Which means we can everyone conduct our politics differently as a result of that. Or we can go back to the way we used to conduct our politics in the past.

And I think it's a lot better if we try to conduct our politics differently now. And things that people said before, you know, they have a right to rethink things now. They have a right to rethink things in light of a horrible, awful, unimaginable thing happening.

And frankly, I started thinking about that when I was with the two different groups of families, the fire families that went down to the World Trade Center today and the first group of civilian families that went down.

The pain and suffering that comes out of this is only beginning. There's more of it that's going to happen. And it is enormously important that we remain unified. And therefore, I'm going to see if we can all agree on an approach that allows us to handle this in the best interest of the city.

QUESTION: You said that you've come up with a position. Could that be a position other than mayor?

GIULIANI: No, I don't want a job, if that's what you mean. No, no, no. I meant an approach to how we handle this that we agree on, that makes -- there are now three candidates for mayor. We don't know which one of them is going to be the mayor.

So I'm going to present them with a proposal that as the current mayor, who has I think the best interest of the city at heart, that I think will help to unify this city. And I want to see if I can get their agreement. It has nothing to do with me. And it has to do the city.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Last question please?

QUESTION: Sheldon Silver has gone on record saying that you have approached him and other leaders involved saying that you're seeking to overturn term limits. Sheldon Silver said this on the record. Is he speaking accurately?

GIULIANI: That's a possibility. I mean, we might do that, but I'm much more hopeful that we can work out a unified approach to handling this.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) you on after December 31?

GIULIANI: Let's see if we can come up with a unified approach first. And then I'll tell what you it is.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Very last question.

GIULIANI: I should present it to them first. I've had a chance to present to one or two of them, but not to all three at this point. Don't do that. Try -- you all try to get out of what you used to do, too. Try it.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) legislation or would this be an agreement?

GIULIANI: Let's see what the agreement is. I need the opportunity to talk to them about it, but the objective is to come up with an approach that the candidates will agree with, I will agree with, and that will allow to us provide the best mechanism for getting ourselves through this, getting ourselves in a position where the city is secure, the city is safe and everything is handled seamlessly.

And I believe this will -- it is as having been mayor for the last 7.75 years, it's the best judgment that I can come up with as to the way to handle this. And also, to make the people of the city feel confident that their concerns are going to be put first and not anybody's particular desire to be in office. The three candidates or mine. Thank you.

HEMMER: Some fascinating information there by the Mayor, Rudy Giuliani. There's been widespread speculation that he may seek to extend his time as mayor, knowing that due to term limits in this city, his term now set to expire at the end of December.

Yesterday, there was a primary in this city. Right now, two Democrats will face a runoff in October. The Republican candidate won his primary.

Rudy Giuliani says he'll now approach those three men with a proposal he says to unify the city. What they is, we don't know. But again, he stated that he's invested 7 years, 7.75 years in his words, to make best city in the world.

He says he want to get people to think outside the box. And he came up with this idea last night. All this as his city of New York continues to dig itself out of the worst terror attack in history.

6,000 still missing and presumed dead. And the smoke continues to rise out of the former World Trade Center site. The mayor. Possibly more information on this later tonight and into tomorrow, Thursday.

In the meantime though, carpools encouraged in New York City. It is crowded on the streets of Manhattan. And the mayor saying, if you can take a bus or a subway or walk.

Our coverage continues with more in a moment.