Pentagon Workers Being Trained
To Use Emergency Masks
The Pentagon began training employees yesterday to use the emergency gas masks being distributed to prepare for possible chemical or biological attacks.
Some suggestions from Defense Department experts: Begin breathing through the mouthpiece before putting the hood over the head; ensure the rubber opening seals securely around the neck; take off eyeglasses.
The masks are designed to give wearers 15 to 30 minutes to flee chemical or biological contamination, and have provided protection for about an hour in testing. By the end of the week, officials expect to be handing out 500 masks a day to the 24,000 Pentagon workers and stashing hundreds of the masks in high-traffic areas such as cafeterias.
FBI, Justice Department Decried
For Application of Anti-Terror Law
The FBI has done a poor job with an anti-terrorism law that permits unprecedented levels of domestic surveillance, Senate Judiciary Committee members said.
"The lack of professionalism in applying the law has been scandalous," said Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), who wrote the committee report with Sens. Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.) and Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa). The report accuses the FBI and Justice Department of excessive secrecy, inadequate training, weak information analysis and the stifling of internal dissent in using the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, particularly in the case of Zacarias Moussaoui, the only person accused in the United States of conspiring with the Sept. 11, 2001, hijackers. It details how FBI headquarters thwarted efforts by agents in Minneapolis to obtain a FISA warrant to search Moussaoui's laptop computer and belongings before the attacks.
Justice Department spokeswoman Barbara Comstock said the department "has fully addressed the FISA problems that occurred almost entirely prior to this administration."
Republicans and Democrats Fail
To Break Nomination Stalemate
Republicans and Democrats made separate -- and equally futile -- attempts to rescue the Senate from its nearly three-week impasse over the judicial nomination of Miguel Estrada.
As the stalemate continued amid fiery rhetoric from both parties, Republicans picked up the support of a fourth Democrat, Sen. Bill Nelson (Fla.). But they remained five short of the 60 votes needed to break the Democratic filibuster against Estrada, the conservative lawyer President Bush named to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.
At least one other Democrat, Sen. Bob Graham (Fla.), who is recuperating from heart surgery and planning a bid for the party's presidential nomination, is uncommitted, according to Democrats.
Compiled from reports by staff writer
Helen Dewar and the Associated Press