- Making News: American Hostage Paul Johnson Reportedly Beheaded
US hostage Paul Johnson, the Lockheed Martin worker captured Saturday in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, reportedly has been beheaded. That report comes from Arab news outlets al Arabiya and al Jazeera. Youssef Ibrahim, former New York Times reporter and former senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, reports on the hard-liner's demands, capabilities and disturbing integration into society.
- Reporter's Notebook: The Order to Shoot Down 9-11 Passenger Jets
The chain of command for authorizing the use of force goes from the President to the Defense Secretary, to military commanders, but does not include the Vice President. Yet, the 9-11 Commission reports that upon learning hijacked civilian jets were heading toward Washington, the Vice President authorized military aircraft to shoot them down. Dick Cheney says his order was based on a prior phone conversation with President Bush. Esther Schrader is reporting the story for the Los Angeles Times.
Technology and Human Error
Yesterday, the 9-11 Commission presented a grim picture of failure, both technological and human. Despite the world-s most sophisticated intelligence systems, the US failed to prevent September 11 and made crucial mistakes about Iraq-s weapons of mass destruction. The Los Angeles Times has reported that weapons inspectors were sent to find missile silos based on the reading of satellite photographs. What the inspectors found were chicken coops. Was it too much reliance on high technology or human error? Warren Olney hears about entrenched preconceptions, sheer arrogance, and the desire to please the boss from experts in terrorism, technology and risk management.