The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, March 01, 1993, Page 2, Image 2

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    £—=_ NEWS DIGEST aas.
Explosion will shut down
World Trade Center for a week
Businesses, banks
scramble, relocate
after explosion
NEW YORK—The World Trade
Center bomb blast will shut it down
for at least a week, officials said Sun
day as foreign banks, shippers, law
firms and other tenants scrambled to
set up shop elsewhere.
New York’sneighboring commod
ity exchanges planned to reopen Mon
day, however, under a special exemp
tion from safety officials. Butall other
businesses in the landmark 110-story
twin towers needed to relocate under
desperately short notice.
Fifty-thousand people work at the
complex which gets an average of
80,000 daily visitors. Like a vertical
city at Manhattan’s southern tip,it’s
become critical to the region’s
economy, with commercial tentacles
that extend around the globe.
The cost of the damage, reloca
tion , and lost business was impossible
to ascertain Sunday. Many businesses
spent the weekend trying to grapple
with the damage caused by Friday’s
noontime explosion in an underground
parking garage. The FBI said Sunday
a bomb caused the blast, but would
not speculate on who detonated the
bomb, or why.
The blast killed five people, in
jured more than 1,000, knocked out
the center’s emergency command
center and spewed thick black smoke
into the two towers and adjacent build
ings, including one housing five com
modity exchanges.
Stanley Brezenoff, head of the Port
Authority of New York and New Jer
sey, which operates the complex, said
the towers would stay shut more than
a week until their safety is secured and
essential services are restored.
The two skyscrapers, the world’s
second tallest buildings after
Chicago’s Sears Tower, are home to
more than 900 businesses — from
Mrs. Field’s Cookies to Dean Witter,
Discover & Co., to offices of the
world’s largest bank, Dai Ichi Kangyo
Bank of Japan.
Officials at the exchanges, critical
markets in the trade of basic resources
like oil, gold and coffee, said Sunday
they got special permission to operate
from fire, police and city agencies.
Jim Neal, general manager of the
Commodities Exchange Center, said
delay in opening the Futures Ex
change, Commodity Exchange, New
York Mercantile Exchange, Coffee
Sugar & Cocoa Exchange and Cotton
Exchange would have posod serious
“It’s critically important to the
world economy to open. The con
tracts are worth in the billions of
dollars,” Neal said.
Cult slays four agents in firefight
WACO, Texas — A gun battle
erupted Sunday as law officers tried
to arrest the leader of a heavily
armed religious cult. At least four
federal agents were killed and at
least 14 others injured.
Authorities had a warrant to
search the Branch Davidians’ com
pound for guns and explosives and
an arrest warrant for its leader,
Vernon Howell, said Les Stanford
of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco
and Firearms in Washington, D.C.
The fate of the people in the
compound was not known. Howell,
the current member of a cult that
dates back more than 50 years,
claims to be Christ.
“They came right in, paiked right
by the front door and made a frontal
assault on the building,” said John
McLemore, a KWTX-TV reporter
who witnessed the shootout.
“A couple of them were shot
when they were inside,” he said.
“They jumped out of windows and
were dragged off to the side.”
He said the building was riddled
with bullet holes.
Cult members and law officers
negotiated a cease-fire about 45
minutes after the incident began.
For the next several hours, ambu
lances and helicopters removed the
Bomb victims remembered for their respectable lives
NEW YORK—Times were good
for John DiGiovanni.
He was working hard and enjoying
his life. All things seemed possible—
even a good season for the Mets base
ball team.
“He loved that team,” recalled his
brother, Ernest DiGiovanni. “Lived
and died with them.”
Then, on Friday, John DiGiovanni
parked his car at the World Trade
DiGiovanni, 45, of suburban Val
ley Stream was among the five people
who perished when a bomb exploded
in an underground garage below the
110-story twin towers in lower Man
I’m so numb that I can’t feel anger,
Ernest DiGbvanni,
victim’s brother
-9t -
haltan. Authority, the trade center’s operator.
Also killed in the blast were Steve .
Knapp, 48, of New York; Monica L1 The FBI is blaming a bomb for the
Smith, 34, of Seaford; Robert blast and investigators logged 40'calls
Kirkpatrick, 61. of Suffem; and Wil- claiming responsibility, but Sunday it
liam Macko, in his 40s, of Bayonne, could only be speculated who did it
N.J. — all employees of the Por* and why.
Ernest DiGiovanni believes his
brother, a dental equipment sales
man, Was making a call in the area and
decided to park his car.
DiGiovanni traveled throughout the
Northeast for his work.
“He was so consumed by work,”
his brother said. “Always on the go.”
The family bought the house in
1949, two years after DiGiovanni was
bom. He went to school at Valley
Stream Central High, where he played
center field on the baseball team.
He later graduated from Hofstra
University and got married. After a
divorce, he moved back in with his
mother. Dark, fit and slender,
DiGiovanni devoted nearly all his
time to work, to a small circle of
friends — and to the Mets.
“He really had a zest for life,” his
brother said.
Ernest DiGiovanni, a film consult
ant living in Lake Ridge, Va., was
sitting in an New York restaurant
Friday night watching news reports
about the bombing when his wife
called to tell him hisbrotherwasdead.
As he rushed to care for his mother,
Ernest DiGiovanni said he was not yet
thinking about the dark forces that
took such a bright life.
“I’m so numb that I can’t feel
anger,” he said.
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Leaflets miss mark in Bosma
food supplies may miss, too
Russia agrees to provide
arms, missiles to Serbia,
Serbian-controlled areas
SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina — The
U.S. military launched a major relief effort in
besieged eastern Bosnia, dropping a million
leaflets saying airdrops of badly needed hu
manitarian aid were on the way. But Bosnian
officials said Sunday that some of the messages
missed the mark.
Local officials said resi
dents feared the bundles of
food and medicine also might
not land in the intended vil
Ham radio operators in
——— . the beleaguered eastern town
of Cerska were issuing urgent reports that rebel
Serbs had overrun seven surrounding villages.
In another development, the Observer news
paper reported in London that Russia has agreed
.* to supply $360 million worth of arms, including
sophisticated missiles, to Serbia and Serb-con
trolled areas of Bosnia and Croatia. Such an
agreement would violate a U.N. arms embargo.
The airdrop aims mostly to help Muslims
suffering from cold and hunger in enclaves
almost entirely cut off from relief for months,
but they will also provide aid for Serbs and
The aerial aid mission signals greater U.S.
involvement in the war-tom Balkans. A 19
member U.S. government teamarrived in
Zagreb, Croatia, on Sunday. It will spread out
across Bosnia to identify shortfalls in aid deliv
eries, a U.S. Embassy statement said.
U.S. officials, who said last week that the
drops could beg in as soon as Sunday, would say
only that they would probably begin in the next
day or two. They refused to be specific for fear
that the planes might be fired on.
Two giant C-130 Hercules planes returned!
early Sunday to Rhein-Main Air Base in Ger
many after releasing the leaflets at four points
over Bosnia. They flew more than 10,000 feet
above the Bosnian countryside under cover of
darkness to minimize the risk posed by Serb
anti-aircraft guns and shoulder-fired missiles.
However, officials in some of the villages
said Sunday that no leaflets had been found. If
the leaflets missed their targets, that would
illustrate the difficulty of making accurate drops
from high altitudes.
Fadil Heljic, a ham radio operator in the
eastern enclave of Zepa. said “not one” leaflet
landed on the town or 34,000 and people were
“slowly losing hope.”
“They ’re afraid that the airdrop bundles will
end the same as the leaflets,” he said by ham
radio in an interview conducted from Zagreb,
Editor Chris Hopfensperger Night News Editors Stephanie Purdy
472-1766 Mike Lewie
Managing Editor Alan Phelps Steve Smith
Assoc. News Editors Wendy Molt LortStonea
Assoc. News Editor/ Tom Maine III Art Director Scott Maurer
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