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America's New War

Aired October 1, 2001 - 22:00   ET


AARON BROWN, CNN ANCHOR: We'll spend most the hour taking a look at the possibilities of biological or chemical attacks. We'll talk with leading authorities on preventing them and trying to analyze how well prepared the country is. We'll also look at how security has changed for the Salt Lake City Olympics, which begin in February. And to make us all feel better, and we may need it, we'll talk to psychiatrist and member of Congress, Jim McDermott at the end of the hour about post-traumatic stress and how to deal with it.

All that is coming up, and here is where we start. It's been three long weeks we've been living with all of this, the terrorist attack on the country. For reasons that defy explanation, I still expect to see the Trade Center when I wander up on the roof of this building, as if it was some very long dream. It's not that, of course. It remains a nightmare, and each day seems to bring new concerns and new fears, which make returning to normal more a slogan than a reality.

Today Mayor Rudolph Giuliani became the first mayor in a half a century to address the United Nations General Assembly. Not long ago, Giuliani was battling the U.N. over parking tickets. Hard to believe, considering the battle that he is waging now.


MAYOR RUDY GIULIANI (R), NEW YORK: Look at that destruction, that massive, senseless, cruel loss of human life. And then I ask you to look in your hearts and recognize that there is no room for neutrality on the issue of terrorism.


BROWN: Less than two miles away, more than 100 Congressman and women bear witness to that cruel loss. House Minority Leader Dick Gephardt describing it as "the face of evil."

We have seen countless flags emerge since September 11th, an inspiring show of patriotism, but we hate to see them this way, draped over bodies pulled today from the rubble, likely the bodies of police or firefighters. The workers give the process a solemn dignity in the landscape of evil destruction.

And in Washington, President Bush thanked the workers at FEMA who helped organize the recovery, and normally deal with natural rather than deliberate disasters. He said $6 million in suspicious assets have now been seized. The estimated cost of waging the September 11th attack, about $200,000.

A quick update at the top and the latest developments today. Congressional leaders are close to an agreement on an anti-terrorism bill that would give law enforcement more power. But it does not include the most controversial request, the power to hold noncitizens indefinitely, if prosecutors believe they may still pose a terrorist threat.

Sources say the president has now signed off on a plan to reopen Washington's National Airport. The decision will be announced as early as tomorrow.

And the USS Kitty Hawk left Japan bound for the Indian Ocean, according to Pentagon sources. Mr. Bush today said our military is ready to fight America's new war, whatever that war turns out to be.

In the days following the September 11th attack, the nation rushed to buy flags. Now Americans are rushing to buy gas masks and begging their doctors for antibiotics. Tonight, a reality check on what we really have to fear -- if we have to fear it. Is a biological or chemical or nuclear attack next, and if so, is the country ready?

We always say at this point we don't want to be an alarmist, which of course means we're about to say something really alarming. It is of some comfort that most experts say a chemical or biological attack would be extremely difficult to pull off. But then again, they might have said that about hijacking four planes and slamming them into three landmark buildings. Clearly, the terrorists were possessed with an evil imagination, and they have forced us to have one as well.

So we begin with a look at the threat of a biological attack, a technique that goes back to the Middle Ages. A virus causing great concern killed at least 300 million people in the 20th century. That was smallpox. Here's CNN medical correspondent Rhonda Rowland.


RHONDA ROWLAND, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A scene from the last real war the United States fought against smallpox. The year, 1947. More than six million New Yorkers lined up to be vaccinated against the deadly virus after an infected tourist was diagnosed with the disease. What could have been a devastating epidemic ended with only 11 cases and two deaths, a public health triumph.

A global vaccination program eradicated smallpox from the planet in 1977. The man who was in charge of that campaign is Dr. D.A. Henderson. Now he's assessing the risk of smallpox being used as a weapon of terror.

DR. D.A. HENDERSON, HOPKINS CENTER FOR CIVILIAN BIODEFENSE: This is a possibility, but we still believe that this is an unlikely possibility. That is, there's the risk that this is going to happen, that somebody is going to be able to pull this off, is small. But it's there. It's not zero. DR. TARA O'TOOLE, HOPKINS CENTER FOR CIVILIAN BIODEFENSE: The speculation is that it would be released into the air as an aerosol, possibly from an airplane or perhaps in a closed room. People would then breathe it in.

HENDERSON: You couldn't smell it, you couldn't see it. You wouldn't know that it was there.

ROWLAND: Those infected would feel absolutely nothing for about 12 days. Then, symptoms begin to appear.

O'TOOLE: The initial symptoms are very similar to flu: fever, backache, muscle aches. After about three days of those symptoms, you start developing a rash.

HENDERSON: People are contagious once the rash begins. From the very first stage of rash, the individual can spread it.

O'TOOLE: You can spread the disease to people who are in your immediate vicinity, six feet or so away. The rash is very painful, usually causes scarring for life. Some people go blind, and about 30 percent of those who get smallpox die.

ROWLAND: Smallpox is not as contagious as the flu or measles, but it's contagious enough to spread quickly. Health experts estimate, based on past outbreaks in Europe, each smallpox victim could spread the virus to at least 10 others, and that's a conservative figure. So, if 50 people were infected in a biological attack, two weeks later, 500 people would be infected., and two weeks after that, 5,000 people.

But a recent simulated exercise, called Dark Winter, of a fictional biological attack with smallpox on three U.S. cities, found three months after the attack, the virus spread to 25 states and 15 countries, killing one million people.

HENDERSON: There are those who have said, well, this is an extreme example of what might happen, that it's a worst case scenario. I wish I could say that, but I can't.

ROWLAND: In real life, to contain an epidemic of smallpox, it would take an alert physician to identify the biological attack early on.

DR. NICKI PESIK, EMERGENCY PHYSICIAN: When they get the rash, that would start to send up red flags. Unfortunately, most physicians in this country have never seen a case of smallpox, and in the first couple of days it will look very similar to chicken pox.

HENDERSON: There are problems here in a number of areas where the doctors in, let's say, emergency rooms or in private practice do not usually think of calling immediately to the public health authorities in their area to say, "I've got a couple of cases that look very strange to me. I don't know what they are, I would like your help." ROWLAND (on camera): If there is encouraging news on the level of U.S. preparedness, it is this: Experts say the United States is far better able to identify a biological agent than it was just two years ago. That's when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention launched a network of 50 specialized laboratories across the country. Specimens taken from patients would be shipped to one of these labs for state-of-the-art analysis. So once suspicions are raised, a biological attack could be identified within 24 hours.

(voice-over): A smallpox vaccine can stop the disease in its tracks, if given within three to five days of being exposed to the virus.

O'TOOLE: No one under the age of 30 has been vaccinated. Those of us who are older than that were probably vaccinated at least once, maybe more often. And over time the immunity wanes.

ROWLAND: The United States has a 25-year-old stockpile of smallpox vaccine. The problem, it's dwindled to about 15 million doses. Another 40 million are on order. The nation's top health leader has said production of the vaccines will be sped up by two years and be ready in 2002.

HENDERSON: We see the potential for emergency supplies being turned out very quickly. We see certain measures we can take to stretch the vaccine's supply effectively in an emergency, so we're feeling at this time much more confident about our vaccine supply than we were even a week ago.

ROWLAND: To fight a biological attack, America has learned that, just like in New York City in 1947, its only defense is a rapid early- warning system and plenty of vaccines.

Rhonda Rowland, CNN, Atlanta.


BROWN: As you just heard, smallpox kills about 30 percent of those people who contract it. Anthrax is even more deadly, killing 90 percent of its victims. And the latest "Newsweek" magazine is reporting that operatives of Osama bin Laden's terror network tried to obtain anthrax in Eastern Europe, apparently without success.

A look now at anthrax, from CNN's Dr. Sanjay Gupta.


SANJAY GUPTA, CNN MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): It is only a few microns in size, doesn't require many nutrients, and has the capability to kill millions. It is common only in animals, but now the world is learning the effect anthrax can have on humans.

(on camera): First, it is grown in a laboratory. It would then be weaponized, that is, dried or ground into particles small enough to float on air. The aim: to reach as many people as possible, perhaps through a car or a truck driving around the city, spewing the deadly germ in its wake.

(voice-over): Or maybe a crop duster. Any method to get it into the air. Then into people's lungs, where it passes through tissue called alveoli.

O'TOOLE: The spore gets inhaled into the bottom of the lungs. It then moves to the lymph nodes in the chest. And as a result of reasons we don't understand, at some point that spore germinates. It starts multiplying. It enters the bloodstream, and the usual reactions of the immune system and septic shock ensue.

GUPTA: Those spores can enter the body in three ways: they can be swallowed, they can infect the skin. And the most deadly way: they can be inhaled. The symptoms at first are like the flu, including fevers, chills and weakness. The victim may get better for a while, but then will most certainly get worse.

Over the next one to six days, serious breathing problems and shock can occur. The world has learned from past mistakes inhaled anthrax is usually fatal.

O'TOOLE: We know, for example, of an accidental release of anthrax from a Soviet production plant in the Urals. And that resulted in about 65 fatalities. But a very tiny amount of this anthrax powder escaped from the plant in the middle of the night, as a result of someone forgetting to replace an air filter, and it killed people and animals many kilometers downwind.

GUPTA: In animal and laboratory tests, the antibiotic ciprofloxacin worked well in controlling symptoms and preventing deaths.

O'TOOLE: If you treat people very early, preferably before they get symptoms, you can you save them from anthrax.

GUPTA: But many doctors worry that patients might think they have anthrax when it may just be the flu, and react by unnecessarily taking the antibiotic.

There is also a vaccine for anthrax. It's about 93 percent effective. The CDC recommends it for soldiers, some farm workers and others who might be exposed to anthrax. It takes 18 months to complete the series of shots.

Justified fear or needless panic? The answer probable lies somewhere in between. Regardless, the decision whether to be vaccinated or to always carry ciprofloxacin is a personal choice. Experts do agree, however, the only truly reliable prevention is to stop such attacks before they come.

Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, reporting.


BROWN: We'll try and sort through this question of justified fear or fear mongering. We'll talk with three authorities on weapons of mass destruction when we come back.


BROWN: Joining us now to talk about the threat of biological or chemical attack, Ken Alibek is in Washington tonight. He developed biological weapons for the Soviet Union for 20 years, until he defected in 1992.

Also in Washington, Javed Ali, the author of "Jane's chemical Biological Defense Guidebook."

And in Denver tonight, Dr. Stephen Cantrill, associate director of emergency medicine at the Denver Health Medical Center. Doctor Cantrill was involved in a mock attack called "Operation Top Off. " He says it showed how unprepared many hospitals are for a big attack.

Welcome to all of you. Mr. Alibek, you seem like a reasonable place in start. How doable is one of these attacks? Can it actually happen?

KEN ALIBEK, FORMER SOVIET SCIENTIST: You know, if we talk about biological weapons, what we need to keep in mind. There are not just smallpox and anthrax. There are many different agents. And if we talk about the possible terrorism events, the possible use of biological weapons deployed here in the United States, I wouldn't say it's something that could happen either today or tomorrow, but we definitely need to keep in mind that it could happen in the future.

BROWN: And, Mr. Ali, if you agree with that, what is the limitation? Why is it unlikely to happen today or tomorrow?

JAVED ALI, "JANE'S CHEMICAL-BIO DEFENSE GUIDE": Well, in order to sort of evaluate the state of the threat today or in even in the future, we have to look at what history has shown us in the past. And when I mean history, I mean even recent history, going back into the '80s and '90s. There have been attempts by both terrorist organizations and other non-state actors, if you will, to acquire, develop, produce, even attempts to employ biological agents.

And to date, as much as we know in the public record, or what has been publicly declared, none of those attempt have been successful, going up until the actual point of weaponization and release and employment. So there are a number of serious technical and scientific hurdles that would have to be overcome by any non-state actor, or even state actor that would be interested in using biological weapons.

Again, up until now some of those hurdles haven't been the met. That's not to say that those couldn't be met in the future.

BROWN: Let me try and shorthand this if I can. Is it that it's easier to get the chemical or the biological weapon than it is to deliver it?

ALI: In a nutshell. I mean, producing an agent is definitely within the realm of possibilities, but as Ken was talking about, that there are -- within the general specter of biological terrorism -- there are different biological agents and different categories of agents. And each particular category, and even within that, each particular agent within each category has its own unique properties and characteristics.

So there are challenges associated at every stage along the way, from simply trying to produce the agent in a suitable form or in the right amount of material, to then actually putting it into a weapons system, ensuring that it's stable, in some kind of form, and then putting that weapon system on target.

So again, all those hurdles -- there are a number of hurdles that have to be met at every stage along the way.

BROWN: We'll come back in just a second. Dr. Cantrill, with those -- with that in mind, where are we, in terms of either preventing illness or treating illness, once it happens?

DR. STEPHEN CANTRILL, DENVER HEALTH MEDICAL CENTER: Well, I think we're much better off than we were several years ago. We've made great strides, in terms of our preparedness. But there are still components of our health care system that I think are quite vulnerable. By and large, metropolitan hospitals have little or no search capacity. That is, they cannot deal well with a sudden increase in their patient volume.

I think access to antibiotics, while much better now, especially with the CDC's push packages that they have available, and they can be called in in 12 to 24 hours -- that's certainly a plus. But I think regionally there are still some concerns about what are we going to do for the first 24 hours to treat these patients?

And I think awareness amongst the medical community is a very important issue. Up until this time, there hasn't been a lot of interest in learning about the signs and symptoms of different presentations of potential biological agents. Hopefully there will be more interest now.

BROWN: If there were, Dr. Cantrill, some sort of mass attack with this, how would the system actually deliver the drugs to keep people from dies? I mean, it's one thing to get the drugs to Denver or New York or wherever, but somehow you've got to get them to the people who are affected.

CANTRILL: That's correct, and that's a real challenge. Fortunately, there's ongoing research now on the best logistical fashion to use to dispense drugs to millions of people within a short period of time. We, during Operation Topoff, set up a demonstration point of distribution and we found that in fact we could not get many doses out to many patients, and it took a lot of manpower. So I think people will be trying different ideas, and I know currently there are a few grants that have been issued to study this issue.

BROWN: Mr. Alibek, let me go back to your other life, those years before you defected. What was plan? What was the idea? What were you trying to come up with? ALIBEK: The Soviet Union has established its offensive biological weapons program many years ago in the late '20s. But in the Soviet Union, this program was not a terrorist program. The Soviet Union didn't mean to use these weapons as terrorist means to conduct wars. A major, let me say, idea, was to develop a real means to conduct wars.

That country was capable to establish one of the most sophisticated, one of the most powerful biological weapons program the world ever created. This program included research and production of many viruses and bacterial agents. For example, when we talk now about smallpox or anthrax, I'm really concerned, in my opinion, we, let me say, underestimate this problem. Because there are many different agents could be used in biological weapons.

And specifically, using the Soviet Union's example, we can say for example, bacterial agents like anthrax, plague, brucellosis, glanditis, viral agents like smallpox, Ebola, some (UNINTELLIGIBLE) fevers. Unfortunately, the number of biological agents that could be used in biological weapons is very high.

Even more, if I may, there is another problem. When we discuss whether or not it's difficult to deploy biological weapons, what I'd like to say, we shouldn't disarm ourselves, saying it's very difficult, because there are many difficult techniques to deploy biological weapons. And in this specific case, what I'd like to say, it's not just deployment -- some deployment using dry or liquid biological weapons in the form of aerosol form. Unfortunately, there are some others.

BROWN: Sir, let me stop you there. All of you, thank you for getting us started in a conversation that obviously has some miles to go. But thank you for joining us tonight.

Still ahead from us tonight, a nation scarred by the images of September 11th. We'll be talking later with congressman and psychiatrist Jim McDermott.

And a very different kind of practice going on at the winter Olympic park in Salt Lake City: protecting the winter games from a terrorist attack. This "Special Report" continues in a moment.


BROWN: A month ago a story on security for winter Olympics in Salt Lake City would have been sort of interesting. Tonight you may be glad to have a few more months -- the games don't start until February -- to rethink the security plan.

Those of us old enough to remember Munich know what a tantalizing target the Olympics are for terrorists seeking to take some lives and gain attention. There would have been concern about that before September 11th. Imagine what those concerns are now. Here is CNN correspondent Mike Boettcher.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE) MIKE BOETTCHER, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Practice, practice, practice. In the mountains outside of Salt Lake City, Utah, the 2002 winter Olympic park seems insulated, a world away from the harsh realities of September 11th.

But inside Utah's Olympic Safety Command, there is a new sense of urgency: that the global spotlight of the Games could draw unimaginable terror to this international symbol of peace and goodwill.

ROBERT FLOWERS, UTAH OLYMPIC PUBLIC SAFETY: We never thought about it as a hard core possibility until September the 11th.

BOETTCHER: Commissioner Robert Flowers heads up the Utah Olympic Safety Command, that is responsible for coordinating the resources of some 24 federal, state and local agencies, including the FBI, FAA and, for the first time, the Secret Service.

FLOWERS: We're going to go back and look at some of the training that we've done, make sure that we can do what we think we can do.

BOETTCHER: Terror is no stranger to the Olympics, of course. In 1972, Palestinian terrorists took Israeli athletes hostage, then later killed them. In 1996, a bomb in Atlanta's Centennial Park killed one, wounded more than 100 others.

So, even before September 11th, the public safety command was already preparing for a variety of scenarios, including chemical, biological, even radioactive weapons.

Add suicide bombers to the list of concerns.

FLOWERS: I believe when you look at what's occurred, when you have somebody who's very committed, it can be a very daunting task to keep something like that from occurring.

BOETTCHER: So there will be more federal agents to guard Olympic venues, and more of the military above and beyond the 1,400 troops originally expected. The federal government has already contributed $200 million for the Olympics, and organizers are asking Washington for millions more to cover the added security costs.

MITT ROMNEY, SALT LAKE CITY ORGANIZING COMMITTEE: I don't think anyone is concerned about seeing too much security in this country these days.

BOETTCHER: Mitt Romney is president of the Salt Lake Olympic Committee.

ROMNEY: I think we all want to know that everything we're doing, particularly in a public venue, is safe and sound.

BOETTCHER: For athletes like Olympic hopeful Jim Shea, concerns about safety are tempered by a desire to win.

ANNOUNCER: Hey, we may as well call this new track Shea Stadium. BOETTCHER: Shea says most of the athletes he's talked to are more focused on competition. Like him, they're used to taking risks. A world champion member of the U.S. Skeleton team, Shea regularly hurtles headfirst down a mountain at 80 miles an hour.

JIM SHEA, U.S. OLYMPIC HOPEFUL: I'm not concerned with my safety. I mean, you know, I'm American. Americans don't run around scared.

I think that's the attitude of a lot of other athletes, you know. They've been training their whole life to do this, and they want to do it.

BOETTCHER: Open-air venues like those involving Shea's Skeleton competition pose a particular challenge.

ROMNEY: If somebody wants to sneak in off the back of a mountain, they're going to have to tromp through a lot of snow and they're going to be pretty visible. All of our venues have secure perimeters. Now, I won't go into the details of what that means, but there's not some place you can come walking in off of a mountain and get into an Olympic venue.

BOETTCHER: Ever since Munich, Olympic organizers have played out a what if exercise. What if a plane tried to crash into the stadium where opening and closing ceremonies are held? Salt Lake City's answer begins with a no-fly zone, that backed up by force.

New plans are going in place, from protecting the water supply against poisoning, to tighter scrutiny of visas for athletes.

But Commissioner Flowers is coy about other tactics, such as using police snipers to guard the games.

FLOWERS: We have it all.

BOETTCHER: Flowers says nothing is off the table. There will be a security zone around part of downtown Salt Lake City. The aim, to avoid a repeat of Atlanta.

MITT ROMNEY: In the games in Atlanta, they had a central plaza, where people gathered for celebrations. It was called centennial park. And the decision was made not to have it have a fenced perimeter with magnetometers and bag checks and high security.

And we've made a very different decision. We've decided that we're going to take a nine block area of downtown, surround it entirely with fencing, have entrances only through magnetometers, with bag checks, and with security personnel extensively through that area.

BOETTCHER: The international Olympic committee is expressing confidence in Salt Lake security plans. But the IOC is also taking extraordinary steps, granting its president the power to cancel the games.

For now, Olympic athletes are still training. Fans still cheering them on. And preparations for the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake are still moving full speed ahead.

Mitt Romney says he wants athletes and fans to come and to have fun.

ROMNEY: These games must go forward. They recognize the preeminence of humanity and civilization. And they're also an affirmation of those things to the world. I think the games are more critical for America and the world than ever before.

BOETTCHER: And if the Salt Lake City games do come off without incident, this could lend momentum to an idea that's already gaining support, to hold the 2012 summer games in New York City.

Mike Boettcher, CNN, reporting.


BROWN: In a moment, we'll talk with the man in charge of making those Olympics games safe. And we'll also talk with a security consultant, who warned of an attack on the last Olympics to be held in the United States. We'll talk to them both in a moment.


BROWN: Joining us now to talk about security at the upcoming Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah tonight, Robert Flowers, who you met earlier. Mr. Flowers heads the Utah Olympic Safety Command. And Jeff Beatty, here in New York. Jeff is the president of Total Security Services International. His company does security training for large sporting events, including the Super Bowl. And in 1996, the Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta.

Mr. Flowers, let me begin with you if I may. How soon after the attack on September 11th did you call your staff together and say, "We got to rethink this a bit?"

FLOWERS: We started immediately. We actually started that evening and have been going almost 20 hours a day since then.

BROWN: And what has changed, other than I assume, it's big or more expensive? Can you talk about what specifically you've changed?

FLOWERS: Well, we looked at our plan in a sense of adding some depth and breadth to our planning, in a sense that we needed to look at our delivery system products and how secure our outside of our venues are and our command and control and our ability to respond to a large event, completely do what our plan says we could do.

BROWN: Mr. Beatty, let me turn to you for a second. One assumes, when you plan security for these things, you plan to prevent whatever can happen. So how you can plan more to prevent whatever can happen in this sense? How do you make it bigger than it was?

FLOWERS: Well...

BROWN: Hang on, Mr. Flowers. Hang on one second. Let me come to you first. Let me go to Mr. Beatty first. We'll get to you. Hang on.

JEFF BEATTY, PRESIDENT, TOTAL SECURITY SERVICES INT'L: Well, I think that first of all, all your security planning is dictated by the perceived threat. And our conceptual set of what the perceived threat was altered dramatically on September 11.

Before people were looking at groups of two, four terrorists, maybe a few more. And now you have to consider that maybe there were 20 or more terrorists that came together on one day, well coordinated to conduct an operation. And that certainly complicates the problem for Mr. Flowers.

BROWN: And Mr. Flowers, you were going to say?

FLOWERS: Well, he's absolutely right on point with that. We had to go back and reassess the probabilities and possibilities of things and go back and do another threat assessment and do up our response to that threat assessment. So what he's saying is exactly true. That was our process.

BROWN: Anything particular about Salt Lake City that makes it either easier or harder to pull off an attack?

FLOWERS: Well, we've always thought about we're going to have winter here. So you talk about large groups of people out in the open. So we've looked at that as a plus in our favor. Plus in Utah, you know, there's a lot of debate right now about the chemical and biological. In the state of Utah since 1989, we spent over $50 million dollars readying ourselves for an event like this because of our chemical stockpiles and our western desert. So we feel very good about that aspect of our plan, too. That seems to be something that people are very concerned with right now.

BROWN: Jeff, when you look at this, and Mr. Flowers hasn't asked you for advice as far as I know, but -- and perhaps doesn't need it, but if he were asking, is there -- are there one or two things you would specifically say make sure you -- fill in the blank?

BEATTY: You know, all I can say is I think that they just need to do more of the same. You have to leave no stopping unturned. I think that, you know, the Olympic experience in Atlanta, what happened there, really didn't need to happen.

I think what was short were some rehearsals. If we had rehearsed the most simple of threats to the Olympic park, a bomb threat, we would have found out that in fact the Olympic park wasn't in the 911 system. It hadn't been put into the dispatch system. That's kind of, the type of mission that we learn from. You know?

BROWN: It's not all big. I mean, I don't mean suggest that's mundane, but it's sort of mundane to think that it's a phone call is the difference.

BEATTY: Well, terrorists do rehearsals and casing activity before any operation. I mean, the bomber was not in the Olympic park for the first time that night. He was in there before. BROWN: Yes.

BEATTY: And they'll do rehearsals to test reaction of law enforcement officials. But law enforcement officials, too, will be doing rehearsals, to make sure that their plans work. You can't put the plan out there and not test it.

BROWN: Mr. Flowers, I assume that whatever rehearsals you do will be a lot more intense, both in how plan them and how the participants will perceive them because of what happened on September 11.

FLOWERS: Absolutely. We have been rehearsing our plan. That's one of the things we took away from Atlanta. They've been very generous with their advice. And we've taken that advice. We are also planning now to rehearse gearing up our plan and responding to -- gearing up our responses on a little larger scale and practice our communications. And exactly what he's talking about are the things that we're doing right now.

BROWN: How much if it will we see and how much of it will be hidden?

FLOWERS: I get asked that a lot. And you're going to have a comfortable presence, a lot like what you're seeing in our airports now with our military, our National Guard involved in that. I think people are expecting that we're comfortable with that now. There's an issue about will the games take on a military look? And the answer is no.

BROWN: You were about to jump in.

BEATTY: Well, I was going to say that I think that Salt Lake City will certainly benefit from not being in any form of denial. You know, I mean, Atlanta is one of the most hospital cities on the face of the planet.


BEATTY: And I don't think they want it to believe that it could happen. And I think that you have to say to yourself, like in the Atlanta scenario when airport-type screening was the right course of action for the 50 sporting events, the Olympic village, the Olympic stadium, why was it not the right course of action for perhaps the most visible focal point of Olympic activity?

You know, you have to have a high standard of security and apply it uniformly, otherwise you're going to create an opportunity and you are going to, in fact, channel the threat to that opportunity.

BROWN: Mr. Flowers, let me give 10 seconds and the last word. And I really mean this question seriously. Are you sleeping at night these days?

FLOWERS: We're not getting a whole lot of sleep out here, but we feel very good about what we're doing. BROWN: And we wish you nothing, but good success up there. It's a great town, Salt Lake. We wish you nothing but good luck. Thank you both for joining us tonight.

If you're not stressed out at this point, I'm surprised. We'll talk to a psychiatrist when we come back.


BROWN: Well, we've wondered for three weeks now how all of this is going to affect the country emotionally. The pictures have been seen so many times. So many feelings have been churned up. We're joined now by Democratic representative Jim Mcdermott of Washington. But in this case, it is not his political role that we seek.

Representative McDermott is the only psychiatrist in Congress that I know of. He says the nation is facing a collective case of post-traumatic stress. And we don't argue that.

Congressman, it's nice to see you again.

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT (D), WASHINGTON: It's good to see you.

BROWN: When you're out in Seattle talking to your constituents, are they stressed out 3,000 miles from where this took place?

MCDERMOTT: Yes, you hear same things there, maybe not as intense as would in New York, where people have actually lost people. But everybody saw it in real time, not only the building being hit, but then the buildings collapsing.

And they saw it over and over again. And it's burned into their consciousness in a way that they can't get it out of their thinking.

BROWN: Someone said to me today, someone called me and said you people are showing the ground zero too often. It's depressing people. And we had one of those media arguments about what our role is.

But you think just seeing that image, forget the planes, which are shocking and sickening enough, but just seeing the ground zero, the workers, the rest is also weighing on people?

MCDERMOTT: Well, I made the recommendation to my fellow caucus members that they go home and tell people to stop showing kids that kind of stuff. They don't need it. It makes them worried about where their parents are when they fly and all these kinds of things.

So I don't know whether adults -- I'm not into censoring the news as you see it, but I do think that for children particularly, getting that stuff out of their visual daily life is really an important thing to do.

BROWN: How do we as a country or how do we as individuals, I'm not sure countries can deal with this, how do we individuals deal with this? Talk about it?

MCDERMOTT: Yes. It's the only way.

You know, I was a Navy psychiatrist during the Vietnam War. And I saw these kids coming back and I sat and talked with them about the horrible things that they'd been through. And they just have to keep talking about it and keep talking about it.

Some people get over rather quickly. Other people, it's a prolonged process. And I think that you see irritability. You see sleep deprivation. You see flashbacks. You see all kinds of, sort of, thinking about when you don't want to be thinking about it. It just comes breaking into your mind.

The only way that gets worked out is by talking to people. I was flying out, talking to a flight attendant, who left her 11-year-old daughter. And they had a big discussion about whether the plane was going to crash before this woman got on the plane. And that's going on everywhere in the country.

BROWN: You know, I think because I've spend time in Oklahoma City after the attack there, one of the things I thought a lot about is survivor's guilt, people who did get out of the building or rescue workers that did survive.

We know that those are real psychological disorders, I think probably the right word, this guilt they feel. How do they deal with it?

MCDERMOTT: Well, in the same way. I saw people in Vietnam who were medics, who saw their company or their platoon held down and killed all over the place. And because of the gunfire, couldn't go out there. And they felt terribly guilty.

There are lots of that kind -- I mean, they had a bigger dose than somebody who's somewhat more removed from it, but it affects all of us because we could identify with the people who were in that building.

And they're just ordinary folks, left their kids at the daycare, went to work, thinking this is another workday. And we can imagine the same happening to us. So it's easy to slip into seeing it as something that we -- could happen to us.

Before that, we could always say, "Well, it's happening somewhere else in the world. It won't ever get to me." But now, we've had that sort of security shield shattered.

BROWN: You know, this is more policy I guess, we as a country have never dealt with emotional problems in the same way we've dealt classic medical problems. Do you think that the services are there and available to people? And you're talking about a large chunk of the country really, who may need them now?

MCDERMOTT: No. In fact, I just was on a walk for mental health in Seattle on Sunday because there's not parity between mental health and physical illness. We somehow think that with mental health stuff, you just should kind of pull yourself together and do it yourself.

But in fact, it's something that sometimes you need little bit of help with. And really, the -- most people's insurance policies don't cover it. There aren't enough clinics. And we're going to have a major problem in schools and in workplaces in this country because of this. It won't be everybody, but it's going to affect enough people that we're going have to look at changing our laws.

BROWN: Congressman, it's always good to see you. It's been a long time since we've talked. Congressman Jim Mcdermott of the state of Washington, joining us to talk about psychological problems here.

We'll talk to another congressman who visited ground zero when we come back in just a moment.


BROWN: Before September 11, one of Mayor Giuliani's favorite whipping boys was the New York-based Diplomatic Corps. Seems those diplomats get lots of parking tickets they don't pay. And more than once, the State Department had to mediate.

That battle made the mayor's appearance before the U.N. General Assembly this morning not just interesting and a piece of history, but absolutely delicious. Here's a bit of the speech.


GIULIANI: The United Nations must hold accountable any country that supports or condones terrorism. Otherwise, you will fail in your primary mission as peacekeeper.

It must ostracize any nation that supports terrorism. It must isolate any nation that remains neutral in the fight against terrorism. Now is the time in the words of your charter, the United Nations' charter, to unite our strength, to maintain international peace and security. This is not a time for further study or vague directives. The evidence of terrorism's brutality and inhumanity of its contempt for life and the concept of peace is lying beneath the rubble of the World Trade Center, less than two miles from where we meet today.

Look at that destruction, that massive senseless cruel loss of human life. And then I ask you to look in your hearts and recognize that there is no room for neutrality on the issue of terrorism.

You are either with civilization or with terrorists. Each of you sitting in this room is here because of your country's commitment to being part of the family of nations. We need to unite now as a family as never before, across all of our differences, in recognition of the fact that the United Nations stands for the proposition that human beings have more in common than divide us.


BROWN: Shortly after that speech, the mayor led a delegation of congressman and women to ground zero. In that group, Republican Congressman Adam Putnam of Florida. And Congressman Putnam is with us in Washington.

And congressman, as we look at some of this, as your colleagues were standing there, what was the mood?

REP. ADAM PUTNAM (R), FLORIDA: Well, everyone was just overwhelmed with the enormity of the destruction. The debris field covers 25 acres. In my district, the height of the rubble was taller than most any building still standing in my district.

There 20 funerals for firefighters in one day this past weekend. The destruction just overwhelms the members of Congress, whose only vision had been through the media. And the pictures just don't do it justice.

BROWN: Congressman, and just keep your eye on the monitor, if you can, while we talk here. It was -- everybody comes away with a sense that it was bigger than they imagined. Was it also in a sense worse than you imagined? That is to say, a much more jangled mess than you could have conceived of?

PUTNAM: It really is. You have no concept of how these massive pieces of iron and steel are twisted, as if they were aluminum foil. And the collateral destruction of hotels and office buildings blocks away that have every window on that side of the building blown out.

It is an unbelievable destructive force that swept through that area, that the force of which is incomprehensible unless you can see it.

BROWN: As we watch the pictures, Congressman, do you think your constituents have a different view of New York than they had three weeks ago?

PUTNAM: Well, I think they have, in an ironic way, a more positive view of New Yorkers in the way that they reached out to help their fellow man. New York is a city that did not previously have a reputation as being a very hospitable or friendly, warm city.

And yet, you saw shopkeepers opening up all of their inventory to unload water and snacks on the victims fleeing the rubble. And so, there is a much more closeknit sense about our nation. There is less a sense of northerners and southerners, of easterners, and westerners. We are all one America now, bound together by tragedy.

BROWN: Have about 30, 40 seconds here. Did you leave sad, angry, both or some other emotion I haven't thought of yet?

PUTNAM: Well, again, overwhelmed by the destruction and more resolute than ever that we will rebuild New York with the help of entire nation. And we will redouble our efforts, our steadfast efforts to hunt the world over to find the people who had any part whatsoever in planning this, harboring those who planned this or had anything to do with these terrorist organizations.

BROWN: Congressman, five seconds here. I'm sure you're tired of answering this, but I know people are thinking it. How old are you?

PUTNAM: Well, I'm over the hill now. I'm 27, but I was 26 when I was elected.

BROWN: Unbelievable. Thanks for joining us very much. Nice to meet you. 26. We'll take you back to ground zero. These are live pictures. And this CNN special report will continue in just a moment.




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