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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL

Rally to Show Support for U.S. Troops

Aired March 30, 2003 - 02:53   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: In a small southern town, a rally that came from the heart, the heart of people who know lots of people in Iraq.
CNN's Brian Cabell reports from Hinesville, Georgia, where almost everyone knows someone in Iraq.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRIAN CABELL, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): There weren't tens of thousands demonstrating here in Hinesville. There weren't massive arrests. No, the demonstrators here total may be 500, but look at them: almost all soldiers' wives and children with a very personal interest in what's happening in Iraq.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We have loved ones over there that are going through things that we can't even imagine, and it's just -- it's heart-wrenching.

CABELL: Hinesville is home to Fort Stewart. The 3rd Infantry Division is based here. But virtually all of the division, about 17,000-solder strong, is now fighting its way toward Baghdad. Already at least six soldiers from Fort Stewart have been killed in Iraq.

Life in Hinesville has been somber lately, not much to do but watch TV, wait for good news, pray you don't get bad news, and at least on this day face away your fears loudly with others who share your predicament.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: The smiles on the wives' faces have been really a good thing to see, because I know a lot of them have been really scared and nervous. And bringing together like this is really making them feel better.

CABELL: It's a rare respite for them, from the often troubling news from the battlefields of Iraq, and from the streets of some this nation's largest cities where thousands of Americans are demonstrating against the war.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Protesting time is over. It's time to just go ahead and start supporting the troops.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I love you, daddy! We miss you!

CABELL: A simple message from this small Army town in eastern Georgia: We miss you, we love you, we want you home as soon as you finish your work on the battlefield. Brian Cabell, CNN, Fort Stewart, Georgia.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

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