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America Under Attack: Military Reservists may be Called up

Aired September 14, 2001 - 04:33   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.
JIM CLANCY, CNN ANCHOR: U.S. officials now saying that military reserve troops could be called up to help assist with the response to the national emergency. For more on how the Pentagon is responding, let's go there, where CNN's Mark Potter's standing by. Mark.

MARK POTTER, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hello, Jim. Pentagon sources say that President Bush is considering calling up as many as 50,000 military reservists to help in the disaster relief effort, and to provide relief also for National Guard pilots, who have been flying combat air missions -- air patrols, rather -- around the country. Pentagon officials cautioned us tonight, though, that this should not be seen by public as any sort of indication that a military intervention -- a military action -- is imminent.

Now, Defense Secretary, Donald Rumsfeld, said that U.S. military pilots continue to fly those combat air patrols in the Washington, D.C. -- New York City corridor, and that pilots are on standby, in what they call a 15-minute strip alert, at the 26 bases around the country.

On CNN's "LARRY KING LIVE," the Secretary said that any U.S. military response would be long range, and should not be seen as mere retaliation.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "LARRY KING LIVE")

DONALD RUMSFELD, SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: I don't think of it as retaliation. I don't think of it as punishment. I think it is self defense.

The United States of America has every right to defend itself, and that is what it is about. It is consciously saying that countries, and entities and people, who actively oppose the United States and damage our interest, by acts of violence, acts of war, are our enemies. And, they are people in organization, and entities and states that we have every right to defend ourselves against.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

POTTER: Now, here at the Pentagon, officials estimate that the death toll, here in this building, is approximately 190 people. Those killed -- that includes those killed aboard the plane, and those killed in the building mostly come from the Army and the Navy and from the civilian worker corp, associated with the Army and the Navy. About 70 bodies have been recovered here so far. As of late this afternoon about half of them had been driven over to the Dover Air Force Base Mortuary in Delaware.

Now, the recovery effort was interrupted temporarily tonight because of a fire that broke out here in the building. It flared up for a short while, before firefighters, as you can see here, went to work, and they were able to put that fire out fairly quickly. The fire in general, in this building, is under control, but there are still some hot spots that do flare up occasionally. Twenty four hours a day workers are here. There here at this hour, still going through the rubble, trying to shore up the building, looking for victims.

This afternoon the County Fire Chief said the officials thought that they had heard the pinging of a black box, but they were unable to locate it. We're looking at a live shot now of the building, and you can see that the fire is indeed out. The workers are still in there now, looking for that black box. Investigators hope that by finding the cockpit voice recorder, or the data recorder, they can put together some answers, as to how this hijacking and the attack on this building occurred.

Jim and Colleen, back to you.

CLANCEY: All right. Mark Potter, thank you for that report.

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