48 Hour Countdown

Mar 18, 2003
George Anderson

By George Anderson

In a speech to the American people last night, President Bush gave Saddam Hussein and his sons 48 hours to leave Iraq to avoid an invasion by the United States and its allies.

During his speech, Mr. Bush announced that the Department of Homeland Security had raised the terrorist alert level to orange (high). The government has taken steps to increase security around airports, waterways and other potential targets.

The President said, “Should enemies strike our country, they would be attempting to shift our attention with panic and weaken our morale with fear. In this, they would fail. No act of theirs can alter the course or shake the resolve of this country. We are a peaceful people — yet we’re not a fragile people, and we will not be intimidated by thugs and killers. If our enemies dare to strike us, they and all who have aided them, will face fearful consequences.”

Security experts have been cautioning since the September 11, 2001 attacks that terrorists may seek to strike so-called soft targets such as retail stores and other private sector businesses.

A Gallup/UBS Employee Outlook Index poll says that security has not improved since the 2001 attacks. Eighty-four percent of employees say their companies have either not upgraded security or only made minor changes since then. Only 16 percent of employees say security has improved over the past year.

Moderator’s Comment: Have retail store security measures
improved since September 11, 2001? Should stores be taking added security steps
with war appearing imminent?
Anderson – Moderator

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