I write from
San Francisco this afternoon — very briefly, because we're on deadline.
And I am very sorry to say that the saddest news of the day for many of
us in this news division is that our longtime leader, my mentor in many
ways, Roone Arledge, died a short while ago after losing a long struggle
with cancer. He fought so hard for so long. I was thinking a moment ago
that two of his youngest correspondents (at one time ), Ted Koppel and
I, are both on the road reporting today. I am in California and Ted is
in Baghdad. We are two of the many who owe our careers to Arledge. We
learned so much from him. He was well-known to millions of Americans
because he brought so much innovation to television. At the end of
World News Tonight, we will reminisce about an exciting life.
Steve Alperin, who's in New York City, has a quick summary for the
newsletter of the other stories we intend to cover.
probably know, there is major winter storm making life extremely
difficult from Texas to Massachusetts today. We will attempt to explain
how this kind of storm — strong, but certainly not one of biblical
proportions — can manage to knock out electricity for nearly 2 million
people, most of them in the Carolinas.
There is a
public relations war going on between the United States and Iraq, and
today Saddam Hussein went on the offensive. The Iraqi leader gave a
televised address in which he asked his people to accept U.N. weapons
inspections to prove to the world that Iraq has been slandered by
American lies. Mr. Hussein called the U.S. government a debased,
criminal hegemony. David Wright is in Baghdad.
We are also
going to take a closer look tonight at why millions of Americans are
about to lose their health insurance when they need it most and least
expect it. About 25 million people in the country are retired but still
rely on their former employer for health insurance. That is an enormous,
multibillion-dollar burden for American business. As companies struggle
to deal with the cost, a lot of people are finding themselves without
coverage or with coverage they can't afford. Jackie Judd has this story.
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