No matter what your opinion about the war may be, you either agree with the president's actions, or you don't.
That was what we found last night as we talked with folks immediately following the president's speech.
At the Pine Room in the Hotel Roanoke customers listened intently as the president addressed the nation and those we spoke with afterward were either supportive or against the president's stance.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 20:54:30 20:56:10]
[IN Q=I AGREE]
((DALE MATUSEVICH: I AGREE WITH GOING IN, I WISH WE DIDN'T HAVE TO AND YOU KNOW I PRAY FOR ALL THE FOLKS OVER THERE THAT WILL BE GOING AND FIGHTING FOR EVERYTHING.))
((SUE RICE: I THINK THERE ARE MORE SOPHISTICATED WAYS TO DEAL WITH A VERY COMPLEX PROBLEM AND I'M NOT SURE THE PRESIDENT HAS TACKLED THAT PROBLEM IN A WAY THAT WOULD BE BEST FOR ALL OF US.))
[SUPER=01-Dale Matusevich; :00]
[SUPER=01-Sue Rice; :10]
[OUT Q=FOR ALL OF US.]
Sue Rice says she wasn't surprised by the president's 48 hour deadline for Saddam and his sons to vacate Iraq-- while others said they expected the president to allot a little more time.
Some Gulf War veterans say they believe this war will be more drawn-out and more dangerous than the last.
Chuck Hedge was 19 when he was sent to the Gulf in 1990.
He was part of a Roanoke-based group of Marine reservists sent to disarm landmines in Kuwait.
They were all surprised by how fast Saddam's army surrendered.
Four months later, the reservists were back in Roanoke for a heroes' welcome.
Hedge says this time, he expects the battle to be longer and tougher.
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[IN Q=That's going to be]
((CHUCK HEDGE: THAT'S GOING TO BE THE BIGGEST DIFFERENCE. YOU'RE KNOCKING THEM OUT OF THEIR HOUSE NOW INSTEAD OF THEIR NEIGHBOR'S HOUSE AND IT'S THEIR LAND AND THEIR HOMES AND THEY'RE GOING TO FIGHT HARD.))
[SUPER=01-Chuck Hedge/Gulf War Veteran;]
[OUT Q=to fight hard.]
Salem Police Chief Jim Bryant helped lead the reserve unit into Kuwait... and brought all his men home safely.
He says this time, troops could face additional dangers of urban warfare and chemical and biological weapons from Saddam Hussein's army.
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[IN Q=Debate's not]
((JIM BRYANT/GULF WAR VETERAN; DEBATE'S NOT GOING TO SOLVE THE PROBLEM. HE NEEDS TO DISARM, HE NEEDS TO SHOW THAT HE'S DISARMED AND IF HE DOESN'T DO IT, WE NEED TO GO IN AND TAKE OUT THE PROBLEM.))
[SUPER=01-Jim Bryant/Gulf War Veteran;]
[OUT Q=the problem.]
Members of Company B's 4th Combat Engineer Battalion had their 10 year reunion two years ago and say they remain close.
Roanoke police are investigating a suspicious death on Orange Avenue.
Officers found a man dead in a parking lot near the Earl (shibe) Scheib Paint and Body Shop around ten last night.
The medical examiner was called to the scene and police are still working to confirm the man's identity.
They have not said how the man may have died.
[TAKE CRIMELINE FS]
They ask anyone who may have information to call Crimeline at 344-8500.
Virginia State Police say a recent drug bust is a reminder that Interstate 95 isn't the ONLY Virginia highway used for smuggling.
Officials say this tractor-trailer was traveling north on Interstate 81 near Troutville Saturday night, when the driver attempted to avoid the weigh scales by cutting across the median.
Police pulled the truck over and searched it after finding several safety violations, and almost 17-thousand dollars in cash.
The trailer was not just carrying tomatoes, but also 480-pounds of marijuana.
74-year old Manuel Corey and his son, 43-year old Ralph Corey, both of Rhode Island, are charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute, as well as Illegal Transportation of Narcotics into the Commonwealth.
Student organizations at Virginia Tech are telling the university's board of visitors to reconsider the affirmative action issue, or face legal consequences.
Virginia Tech's Student Government Association says it's started a petition encouraging the board to revisit the affirmative action issue and have it heard in an open forum.
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[IN Q=AND THIS IS]
((15:00 AND THIS IS PURSUANT TO ARTICLE ONE, SECTION TWO, PARAGRAPH ONE THAT ALLOWS THREE MEMBERS OF THE BOARD TO AGREE TO CALL ANOTHER MEETING. THAT'S ALL IT TAKES IS JUST THREE TO SAY WE NEED TO REVISIT THIS ISSUE 15:10))
[SUPER=01-Miles Hogue/SGA President Pro-Tem; ]
[OUT Q=REVISIT THIS ISSUE]
During a closed meeting LAST Monday, the board voted to eliminate affirmative action from its admissions and hiring processes.
Board of visitors rector, John (Rock-uh-vitch) Rocovich says the board was just trying to do the right thing... and that it treats people fairly according to state laws.
Rocovich says the board would only revisit the issue if those laws were changed.
Governor Mark Warner has raised Virginia's threat level to orange, or high alert, in response to similar action by federal officials.
Warner's also ordered state agencies to begin implementing plans that were developed last year in the event of war with Iraq.
He adds that he's been briefed over the past several weeks about Virginia's readiness in case there are retaliatory terrorist attacks.
If President Bush calls for military action against Iraq, Warner says he will ive his support to the troops.
The governor says Virginia's first responsibility is to the young men and women in combat should the U-S declare war.
[IN Q=I HAD BEEN HOPEFUL]
((GOVERNOR MARK WARNER: I HAD BEEN HOPEFUL AS I THINK MOST AMERICANS ARE THAT WE COULD HAVE GARNERED MORE INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT FOR OUR EFFORT. BECAUSE IT WILL NOT ONLY BE THE QUESTION OF THE WAR BUT THE RECONSTRUCTION OF IRAQ. BUT SHOULD THE PRESIDENT TAKE US TO WAR I'M GOING TO JOIN EVERY OTHER AMERICAN IN BEING VERY SUPPORTIVE OF OUR TROOPS IN THEIR EFFORT.))
[OUT Q=OUR TROOPS IN THEIR EFFORT.]
The governor says if fighting begins, he remains hopeful that it will be a short war.
Warner also says that a war will likely harm the state economically because so many military personnel are stationed in Virginia.
The snow this winter may have caused some area students to loose vacation time, but as a result, students in one county may not have to wory about final exams.
Bedford County has missed a total of 17 days to weather and administrators say students need to worry more about preparing for their S-O-L testing than their final exams.
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[IN Q=It's not so]
((JAMES BLEVINS/BEDFORD CO. SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT: IT'S NOT SO MUCH DEALING WITH ACCREDITATION OF THE SCHOOL, THEN IT IS THE STUDENTS HAVING TO HAVE THESE VERIFIED CREDITS TO GRADUATE. TO ME IT'S MORE IMPORTANT TO HAVE THOSE STUDENTS ARE ABLE TO TAKE THOSE VERIFIED CREDITS, TO RECEIVE THOSE VERIFIED CREDITS THAT THEY NEED TO GRADUATE.))
[SUPER=01-James Blevins/Bedford Co. School Superintendent]
[OUT Q=need to graduate.]
The school board will decide whether to eliminate exams at its March 27th meeting.