Rod Nordland

Stories by Rod Nordland

  • Wmds For The Taking?

    From the very start, one of the top U.S. priorities in Iraq has been the search for weapons of mass destruction. Weren't WMDs supposed to be what the war was about? Even so, no one has yet produced conclusive evidence that Iraq was maintaining a nuclear, biological or chemical (NBC) arsenal. Two very suspicious trailer rigs turned up last week in Mosul. The Pentagon called them mobile bio-labs. Maybe, but although they "looked like a duck and walked like a duck," as one U.S. officer put it, they didn't quack. The first of the huge, truck-drawn labs, intercepted at a roadblock, had been swabbed clean. The other, discovered Friday, was stripped by looters before U.S. troops found it. So far there's a lot more belli than casus.Looters outran the WMD hunters almost every time. "Once a site has been hit with a 2,000-pound bomb, then looted, there's not a lot left," says Maj. Paul Haldeman, the 101st Airborne Division's top NBC officer. In the rush to Baghdad, Coalition forces raced past...
  • 1,001 Iraqi Jokes

    For the first couple weeks after the war started, it was hard to get people to share their Saddam Hussein jokes. This land between the two rivers is the home turf of one of the oldest classics of comic literature, "A Thousand and One Arabian Nights." Scheherezade has to tell a new story every night to keep the tyrant from beheading her, and many of them are off-color, ribald and funny. ...
  • Of Hotheads And Dead Horses

    Baghdad under American occupation is like a devoted wife who is nonetheless carrying on a happy affair. She feels terrible about it, but she just can't help herself."There's an Iraqi proverb," says actor Risan Mohammed, "Whoever is sleeping with my mother, we'll call him Uncle." Iraqis are angry at Uncle Sam's troops over the continued disorder and are convinced the Americans are here to stay to pillage their vast oil wealth. At the same time they're thrilled to see the back of Saddam Hussein and enraptured by their first taste of freedom in 30 years. Former general Jay Garner, head of the Americans' reconstruction authority, keeps trotting out the same metaphor to explain the conundrum. These are people who had been locked up for years in a dark cell, and suddenly allowed out in the sun. "Now they're blinded by the light of freedom," he says. But while their eyes adjust, you can't help but feel some of them should be locked up again 'til they get over it. Or at least put their...
  • War Without End

    Yesterday, George W. Bush alighted on the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln and all but declared that the war in Iraq had ended. Today, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld showed up in Kabul and pronounced the Afghan war all but over, too.No one doubts that the United States has won both of those wars, by any reasonable reckoning. But as both the statements acknowledge, winning a war and ending it are very different matters.Bush's speech on the carrier, just before it reached its home port in California after operations in the Persian Gulf, had been widely anticipated as a formal declaration that the war was over. Instead, the farthest he could go was to say that, "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended," a fact which should have been apparent to any casual observer any time over the past two weeks. And half a world away, Rumsfeld appeared with President Hamid Karzai and had a similarly couched hedge. "We clearly have moved from major combat activity to a period of stability...
  • The Last Epitaph

    Ali Mohammed Yassim held a small scrap of brown paper torn from the corner of a paper bag in one hand, and a long-handled shovel in the other. With seven of his brothers and cousins, he had come to a rutted field just outside the yellow watchtower of what had been Iraq's most notorious prison.Another brother had a brush, one had a broom, others had shovels, too. At their feet here in the Abu Ghurayb suburb of Baghdad lay what looked like a trash pit, about 10 by 30 feet. Scraps of corrugated roofing, twisted bits of machinery, window frames, garbage, paper trash were tangled together with torn bits of clothing. "We've finally found my brother," said Yassim. "I'm 100 percent sure he's here." And with that, the men pulled scarves over their faces and began gingerly digging in hopes of finding Yassim Mohammed Yassim, who may well have been Saddam Hussein's last victim.Ali, 44, never let go of that little scrap of paper as they took turns digging; nor would he put it in his pocket. His...
  • Slow Progress

    When clocks in Iraq were moved ahead one hour on April 1, the people of Basra didn't get the message. They were too busy coping with invading British troops, a loss of power and, later, looters to make the change. Most residents barricaded themselves in their homes for a couple of weeks and hoped to survive the mayhem. Last week they started to move around Iraq's second-largest city again, but nobody was quite sure of the time.The confusion was so bad that the Brits finally declared that Basra, like Baghdad, would be on what the military calls Delta time--four hours ahead of GMT. Few people got the message, however; the clock on the minaret of the Abassayid Mosque remained an hour behind the olive-green wristwatches worn by the Desert Rats. Some Iraqis hewed to Baghdad time, others to Kuwaiti time, an hour behind. Most people kept their own time, especially workers who could leave for lunch on Baghdad time and return on "Basra time" two hours later.With the shooting now mostly over,...
  • Saddam's Victims: A Child Waits To Die

    In December, 13-year-old Ahmed Awayid suffered a relapse of his leukemia and his parents once again began making the monthly trek from An Nasiriya to Baghdad for chemotherapy. But drugs were in such short supply that Ahmed was allowed only half the usual dose.Even that didn't last long; his last scheduled visit was March 18, but with war about to begin, no one would take him and his parents on the long journey from this southern city. Throughout the war, his parents kept a vigil by his bedside, taking turns sleeping on a mat on the floor in his fourth-floor room at Saddam General Hospital in An Nasiriya. They were there through the heavy fighting that engulfed the city in the first two weeks, there when local Baath Party officials and 150 soldiers used the hospital as a hideout and there when American Delta commandos blew in the doors to rescue Pfc. Jessica Lynch. "We were scared," said his father, Mahawis Awayid, 52, "but we hardly noticed."They're still there now, waiting for...
  • The 'Abu Earless' Brigade

    They're among the saddest of the sad, in a land full of sadness. They push forward from the crowd of beggars and supplicants that gathers wherever they find foreigners, whether soldiers or journalists or aid workers.Most, like Ahmed Hussein, have no words in English, but they don't need them. Outside the HQ of the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit in An Nasiriya yesterday, Hussein only had to turn his head to show his profile, and utter a single word, "Saddam," as he pointed to the stump where his right ear used to be. He wasn't begging for money, though he had none, or asking for a bottle of water or a telephone call abroad, like so many others in a place where the water doesn't run and the phones don't work. He just wanted to tell his story.The story of Iraqi men with amputated ears is becoming a depressingly familiar one as people grow more convinced that Saddam Hussein and the Baathists will never come back. Finally, they can talk freely. This will probably not be the greatest...
  • On The Ground,'They Are Getting Their Own Back'

    At the Basra Teaching Hospital, the flow of patients spikes after dark. They come mostly in tattered orange-and-white taxis. Guards stop even the emergency cases at the gates, well away from the building. Doctors run out to meet them--to make sure they're really patients. From the roof of the ninth floor, British snipers watch through night-vision scopes, ready to shoot. Sometimes there's a sharp crack from one of their long, heavy carbines, and the pavement explodes near the feet of looters. The soldiers are trying not to kill anyone, but gangs have already rampaged through two of the --city's hospitals, including the main maternity ward.Upstairs, the medical staff beds down on cots meant for patients' families. They run to the windows every time a new fire fight breaks the quiet of a city mostly without electricity. The Iraqis aren't shooting at Coalition troops any longer; they're shooting each other, in self-defense, or to loot choice homes or businesses. More taxis show up at...
  • Basra Melee

    The crowd gathered outside the house of Muzahim Mustafa Kanan al Tamimi, the sheikh the British are appointing to take over civil administration of Basra. He's better known as Gen. Al Tamimi, a former brigadier in Saddam's army who more recently taught at the military school. When the shouting began, we thought at first the crowd was just chanting slogans against Saddam Hussein's Baathists, but they were also chanting against Sheikh Muzahim. "No no Baathists, no Muzahim."Sheik Muzahim's supporters inside the house, including some 42 tribal leaders, said the crowd were all members of a rival tribe, the al Sadouni. That's a strongly Baathist tribe, whose leader, Sadeq al Sadouni, was the top Baathist official in Basra. But were they really Sadouni? It was hard to tell. Said the sheik's cousin, Sheik Mansour Kanan, "To take a metaphorical example, when a person dies the family start fighting over his property." It was, he noted, "because of the coming of the death of our dictator."The...
  • Shaking Off Saddam

    Adnan Shaker has a tiny passport picture of himself that he's somehow managed to save during his three years in one of Saddam Hussein's prisons. It shows a handsome man in his 20s, lean and fit, with a luxurious mustache and thick black hair. Today his own three children would probably not recognize him as the same person.His hair is cropped short. Half his teeth have been knocked out, his face is battered and the eyes sunken and haunted-looking. His chest is covered with 50 separate cuts from a knife, his back has even more marks, which he says are cigarette burns. Two of his fingers were broken and deliberately bent into a permanent, contorted position and there's a hole in the middle of his palm where his torturers stabbed him and twisted the blade.Today, though, Adnan was a happy man, so happy that he could barely restrain his excitement. He was finally freed from a prison in downtown Basra, after British troops entered the city and drove the remaining defenders away. And as he...
  • The Lessons Of Basra

    As American troops roll into Baghdad this weekend, the experience of U.S. Marines and British Desert Rats and Royal Marines in Basra and vicinity may well be instructive. Even without taking Basra, they've had a good taste of what in effect amounts to urban warfare--and the results are not pretty. They've done it in a way designed to keep casualties low, encourage internal revolt and win over the locals. But it has been slow going.On Friday, British troops advanced into the actual suburbs of Basra, blasting their way into the sprawling Basra Technical Institute along a highway from the west where for the past week residents have been streaming out from and back into the city--they are not actually refugees, but rather commuters, looking for food and water. An armored battalion of Irish Guards took that bridge and forced Iraqis back deeper into the city, uncovering huge arms caches in private homes along the way. Iraqi troops, many of them in civilian clothes and others in unusual...
  • The Long Reach Of Saddam

    Welcome to the Republic of Umm Qasr. Water comes out the end of a jerry-built pipeline from Kuwait. Security is provided by the British Royal Marines. There's a deep-water port, one of the finest in the Middle East, but only one ship has called so far--and no others seem on the horizon.Electricity is nonexistent. The nights are dark and dangerous. The town's 40,000 residents are scared and angry. And this is what free Iraq consists of so far, after two weeks of war.U.S. forces are deep inside Iraq, on the verge of taking Baghdad's international airport only a dozen miles from downtown. But in their race forward, they haven't paused to pacify any territory. That task has fallen to the British commandos and other units, some 26,000 in all, along with a smattering of U.S. Marines, who control the southeastern corner of the country and the area around Basra, Iraq's second-largest city.The gateway to that area, and in a practical sense to Iraq, is the city of Umm Qasr. Officially, it's...
  • 'We're Fighting Two Wars Here'

    They began as what analysts at the time dismissed as a "toy army," a pet project of Saddam's volatile eldest son, Uday. He recruited the Saddam Fedayeen ("Martyrs for Saddam") as a special bodyguard for his father. At first, according to experts on Iraq and defectors from Saddam's inner circle, they did little more than Uday's twisted bidding---picking up girls for him to rape, beating Olympic athletes for losing games, cutting out the tongues of critics of the regime. Meanwhile Uday's younger and more reliable brother Qusay took charge of his father's most important paramilitary organizations, especially the feared Special Security Office and the elite Special Republican Guard.Uday recruited the fedayeen in orphanages and prisons, where candidates for his unique blend of psychopathy and filial devotion were plentiful. The militia grew so large that in September, 1996, Qusay took control, ostensibly after a scandal in which the Fedayeen were caught siphoning off hi-tech military...
  • Trapped In Southern Iraq

    It's Sunday and we've been spending the day trying to find where we can go safely. We're a small group of "unilaterals"--journalists not embedded with any U.S. forces--well behind the American advance, well behind the front lines. And we've discovered that anywhere we go is quite unsafe.Our morning began at Safwan, where we had camped out the night before with a detachment of British military police. We went on the road to Basra, which had been reported taken two days before, but discovered that it was blocked. In fact, one of our colleagues turned down a side road and came to an Iraqi army position. As we were heading back, we saw the usual--quite common--scenes of Iraqi prisoners being taken, surrendering to the nearest soldiers that they could find. Suddenly, a short time later, we all came under fire at one of those positions. We hid behind the vehicles while they brought their Warrior armored personnel carriers out and chased whoever it was who fired at us.A little later we...
  • A Pact With The Devil

    Zoran Djindjic showed a lot of courage, climbing alone into the armored Mercedes jeep on Admiral Geprat Street that cold October night in 2000. He was meeting the man Serbs know as Legija, "The Legionnaire" in Serbian, commander of the feared Special Operations Unit, a secret-police squad that had murdered its way from Croatia and Bosnia to Kosovo on behalf of Slobodan Milosevic. It was the eve of huge demonstrations that would bring down the hated dictator, which Djindjic was instrumental in organizing.As they drove around Belgrade's darkened streets, Legija told him a secret. Milosevic had ordered the Red Berets to crack down, he said. "Huge s--t," he called it. "The orders are extreme." Legija had decided to disobey, he said. His police would not help Milosevic stay in power. All he asked in return, as Djindjic later told it, was that the protesters refrain from attacking the police. "I promise," said Djindjic.It turned out to be a pact with the Devil, and last week it seems to...
  • Back To The Future

    It was a tumultuous decade that saw five bloody wars, the death of a nation, and the disgrace, arrest and trial of the man who was chiefly the cause of it all. Hence it was fitting, last week, that the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia came to an end not with a bang or even much of a whimper. The last act of the country's national Parliament was simply to vote through a constitutional charter dissolving the state. Many lawmakers didn't bother to attend.There were compensations. Yugoslavia's last president, Vojislav Kostunica, the popular hero who led the democratic uprising that ousted Slobodan Milosevic, found himself without a job. He's unlikely to be missed, considering that fewer than a third of his countrymen support him. Apathy runs so deep, in fact, that last December's Serbian presidential elections had to be annulled (for the second time) because a required majority of the electorate didn't turn out to vote. Not that it much mattered, since the post had become almost purely...
  • Life Abroad: You Can't Run From Terror

    Mad dogs and Englishmen aren't the only ones out in the midday sun. In hot countries the world over, if you spot a jogger on the street, you can bet he or she is almost certainly an American or a Brit. That's particularly the case in the terror belt: North and East Africa, the Mideast, South and Southeast Asia. But now, for many joggers, our steps are numbered--if not our days.Many Americans abroad have given up running--or been told they should. In Jordan recently, the authorities pre-emptively busted the Abdoun gang, a trio of terrorists who had set their sights on Americans running through their neighborhood every morning. Expats in friendly, Western-oriented Amman scoffed at first, but then terrorists killed U.S. diplomat Laurence Foley at the door of his Amman house. Now U.S. embassies have even banned their employees from running on the streets of cities well outside the terror belt. Joggers in places like Saudi Arabia and Pakistan have always had to be tough, if only to take...
  • An Old Terrorist In Iraq

    To hear Abu Abbas tell it, terrorists like Osama bin Laden give terrorists like him a bad name. Abbas, leader of a fringe Palestinian faction, has lived on the run since the 1985 hijacking of the Italian cruise ship Achille Lauro. When the latest intifada began, he quit his hiding place in Gaza for what he calls his "second homeland"--Iraq, where Saddam Hussein has made him feel welcome. NEWSWEEK interviewed him in Baghdad recently. "They say I am a terrorist. And Osama bin Laden is a terrorist. But terrorist is a very bad name to use." Abbas has now renounced violence against civilians outside of Israel. "Al Qaeda's point of view is universal violence. They want universal war; they are against everything. That is terrorism."Abbas's Palestine National Front staged a beachfront raid in Tel Aviv using inflatable boats, wrecking the peace process in 1990, and invaded Israel by hang gliders. But Abbas's followers usually took more casualties than they inflicted, and neither he nor other...
  • Iraq's Blood Drive

    Every time I arrive in Iraq, the experience is a shock. The place always seems exactly the same, only worse. More bare-faced corruption. More overblown monuments and palaces and portraits of Saddam Hussein. More gory displays of patriotic fervor. Lately, demonstrators have been painting anti-Bush banners with pints of their own blood. On Oct. 15, the day of last week's one-candidate presidential "election," thousands of voters bloodied their fingers with pins to mark the yes box for seven more years of Saddam Hussein. One old man apparently had no pin, so he used a paper clip. To draw blood he had to stab himself over and over, as the TV cameras drank up the spectacle. Such gestures were utterly voluntary, insisted Iraqi official A. K. Hashimi: "If we had told them to do that, then everyone would have voted with their blood."But not with their hearts. It has always been possible to find a few Iraqis who would criticize Saddam in private, defying the ubiquitous secret police. This...
  • Mideast: 'It Must Be Decisive'

    Rumors of preparations for a coming gulf war fall mostly into one category: "impossible to disprove." According to an Arab intelligence officer in the region, U.S. Special Forces teams are already inside Iraq, hunting Scud missiles and probing defenses. And the U.S. Army has deployed in the Mafraq governate in Jordan, ready to open a western front, according to critics in Amman. "Ludicrous," says Jordan's King Abdullah. "No comment," say the Americans. A division's worth of Abrams main battle tanks have disappeared from Europe and may have been the same ones spotted atop transport trucks in Kuwait last week. Any tanks they brought in recently, insist the Americans, were for routine exercises and would soon go back home. And so on: the next gulf war has not begun, and may still be averted, but you can already tick off the usual first casualty.The broader truth, though, is that everybody is preparing for war. American forces have stepped up exercises: three major ones are now underway...
  • Of Tribes, Trials And Tribulations

    A bizarre procession crept through the Pakistani village of Abba Khel last Wednesday evening. It was the finale of a double wedding, but it seemed more like a funeral march. The older bride, 17-year-old Wazira Khan, was weeping inconsolably. The younger, her 14-year-old cousin Tasneem Khan, had to be hauled by force from her parents' house. The two girls were on their way to consummate their marriages--Wazira to her 83-year-old great-uncle Atta Khan and Tasneem to her great-aunt's 55-year-old son, Maher Khan. Tribal custom--and a family blood feud dating back nearly half a century--gave the girls no choice. Consenting to the union was the only way the girls' families could save their fathers from being hanged.Just before dark, a detachment of district police arrived to rescue the girls. Reports of the case had reached President Pervez Musharraf, and he was determined to keep it from becoming one more international symbol of Pakistan's backwardness. Much of the countryside is...
  • Murder: No Mercy

    Two men were hanged in a remote Pakistan town last week--not rare in Pakistan, but surprising because of the protagonists. The condemned men had murdered Meena, founder of the Revolutionary Afghan Women's Association (RAWA), and two of her aides, in 1987. They would've faced life in prison, but RAWA pushed the Supreme Court to change the sentences to death. RAWA is admired in the West for its brave stand against the Taliban's abuse of women--including executions--and the group officially opposes the death penalty. It made an exception because Meena's murder was politically motivated, says a spokesperson. Afghan officials, including interim leader Hamid Karzai, pleaded for mercy. So did the Afghan consul general in Quetta: "I said, forgive them or you're just like the Taliban." But the answer was no.
  • Dutch Courage

    How's this for bravery? Seven years after the event, the Dutch government releases a report on how its soldiers failed to protect Muslims in the infamous United Nations safe haven in Bosnia known as Srebrenica. Prime Minister Wim Kok subsequently resigns, along with his government. A cabinet member at the time of Srebrenica, Kok was said to shed tears reading the report. It was an astonishing mea culpa--or was it?First, though, I have my own mea culpa. In the winter of 1996, I tracked down the survivors of one village in the Srebrenica enclave. Most were women and children deported by the Bosnian Serbs, who then killed all the men and boys they could find. At the time there was no solid evidence of this, and the Serbs hotly disputed it. So I thought if I found every family from this one village, Lehovici, and brought them together, their cumulative story would be compelling and moving proof.It was their first reunion since Srebrenica's fall, and it was about the harshest thing any...
  • The Unfinished War

    At the tail end of operation Anaconda, some American victories were a bit Pyrrhic. One platoon from the U.S. Army's 10th Mountain Division was mopping up Al Qaeda positions along a ridgeline dubbed the Whale last week when they came across a fortified bunker. They blasted the structure with antitank rockets and M-16s. They plunked grenades down "spider holes," man-size pits guarding the entrance. Manning the point, Sgt. John Wightman, 26, of Phoenix, Arizona, charged through the entrance, assault rifle blazing, and saw a figure in a white T shirt. "I blasted it, like, five times, and it kept coming at me," he said a few minutes later, as he headed out on another cave-busting patrol. "I was thinking, this motherf---er won't die." The enemy turned out to be some terrorist's underclothes, flapping on a clothesline.The question now is whether Qaeda and Taliban fighters are as resilient as their laundry. There's little doubt that two weeks of intensive airstrikes and ground combat have...
  • Dangerous Days

    In scrawled handwriting on a page torn from a reporter's notebook, the notice that went up at the conference room in Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel late last November was a cri de coeur. "Bad News. Our beloved colleague and friend is dead. Ulf Stromberg, news cameraman for TV4 Sweden was shot dead ...." ...
  • You Call This An Army?

    The Northern Alliance doesn’t seem much like a force in the middle of a war, much less one that has just conquered its country’s capital. In a home commandeered in the middle of the diplomatic quarter, Gen. Qaseem Fahim, the Northern Alliance’s defense minister and commander in chief, last week seemed strangely distant from the fall of Konduz in the north and the battle for Kandahar to the south. In fact, according to his household staff, he was still in bed at 11 a.m. on Tuesday. ...
  • Letter From Kabul: Goodbye Hotel Spinzar

    You can't expect much from a hotel in Kabul, even the city's second best, but the bloodstains on the pillowcases at the Hotel Spinzar were tough to take. We had only arrived in the capital last weekend and already we had one correspondent down with savage gastroenteritis, attached to a saline drip hung from a nail on the wall; two others freezing under dirt-encrusted blankets (their sleeping bags were left behind to lighten the travel load); and two photographers who needed a working toilet and a safe place to put their cameras, not necessarily in that order.Contract photographer Gary Knight hit the streets and after a hard two-hour search found a place that has now become home to our mini NEWSWEEK staff, for however long this goes on: House 7, Street X, in the Wazir Akhbar Khan diplomatic quarter. It was, everyone agreed, a fabulous find. The previous tenants, Arab Afghans, possibly even Al Qaeda partisans, had left it in reasonably good shape. Still, anywhere else and this would...
  • A Fine Balance

    When the United States went to war against the Taliban in Afghanistan last week, Pakistan launched a simultaneous anti-Taliban campaign as well--within its own borders. President Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan's military ruler, has made it clear he's ready to crack down on fundamentalists who try to undercut the government's support for the antiterror coalition. Last week he moved quickly to do that, placing the leaders of fundamentalist parties under house arrest, suppressing demonstrations and deporting Afghan refugees who took to the streets. All schools were closed on Friday, the Muslim holy day. Many madrasas, the religious schools that trained Afghanistan's Taliban, were shut down indefinitely. By the end of the week the military had managed to keep control in the streets. But it's clear that de-Talibanizing Pakistan--a country that has increasingly bowed to the will of a vocal fundamentalist minority in recent years--is going to be far from easy.Given the fact that he leads a...
  • Musharraf Bets On America

    As America fired the first missiles yesterday at targets within Afghanistan, Pakistani General Pervez Musharraf moved quickly to hold up his end of the operation, leaving no doubt about whose side he was on.On Sunday, Musharraf purged top military brass of hardliners: Islamist-leaning generals were either kicked upstairs or forced out. The president also appointed Gen. Eshanul Haq the new head of the country's intelligence services, InterService Intelligence (ISI), replacing Lt. General Mahmoud Ahmed, who resigned. ISI had been the architect of Pakistan's intervention in Afghanistan, the organization that groomed the Taliban and helped the regime win-and keep-power. Just last month, the hapless Mahmoud had gone to Washington to persuade the Bush administration to engage with the Taliban. It was about the worst possible mission to be pressing on the 11th of September.The military and intelligence house-cleanings are the latest in a series of bold moves by Pakistan's president. When...
  • Prejudice In Pakistan

    When I got Maj. Gen. Hamid Gul on the telephone at his home to ask if I could interview him, his reaction was guarded at first. "What's your nationality?" he asked. "American," I said. "Are you a Jew?" When I said I wasn't, he agreed to the interview. "I'm sorry to ask you that," he added. "It's just that Jews wouldn't understand what I have to say."Indeed they wouldn't, and nor would most people. General Gul's basic message is that Osama bin Laden is innocent, and that the attacks on New York and Washington were an Israeli-engineered attempt at a coup against the government of the United States. He rattled off the proof: "You must look inside. F-16s don't scramble in time, though they had 18 minutes after the first plane hit the World Trade Center. Radar gets jammed. Transponders are turned off. A flight to Los Angeles turns to Washington and is in the air for 45 minutes, and the world's most sophisticated air defense doesn't go into action. I tell you, it was a coup [attempt], and...