tv Caught on Camera MSNBC September 15, 2013 2:00pm-3:01pm PDT
and helps plan for your retirement. talk to a pnc investments financial advisor today. ♪ now an msnbc special event. anchor rachel maddow. richard engel draws from a decade on the front lines on the war on terror. today they examine what america has done for national security since 9/11. to itself. and the world. >> the u.s. military's largest building project since the pentagon in fairfax county,
virginia. the national geospatial intelligence agency. taxpayer owned. our department of homeland security headquarters. a $3.4 billion refit of a former washington, d.c., mental hospital. also our national counterterrorism center. our giant use intelligence analysis facility. our national reconnaissance office. "the washington post" this year calculated that since 9/11 we have built enough new american national security office space to fill 22 u.s. capitols. that's just what's set aside for top secret intelligence work. there's also the military bases. closing them in saudi arabia. opening them in afghanistan and iraq. expanding them all over central asia. of course, there's the prisons, too. when the pentagon was hit on september 11th, 2001, nearly a third of the usable office space in that, the largest office building in the world, was damaged. by the impact of the hijacked plane, by the fire that burned thereafter. the pentagon was completely
rebuilt less than one year after the 9/11 attack. understanding how we were changed by 9/11 takes some analysis and some understanding. some of it is just physical. some of it you can just see. thinking about how we have changed since 9/11, it's almost like the more granular, the more specific, the more physical you get, the more you understand about what has happened. we tend to think about 9/11 as having an address. as being lower manhattan. as being the pentagon. being shanksville, pennsylvania. it has physically changed the world we're in. >> it's really very physical. some people think about the war on terrorism as a concept. i've lived in these places for the last ten years. there are new bases. there are new national security infrastructure that has been created. and since 9/11, u.s. foreign policy, domestic policy to a degree, has really been driven by fear. >> is it a disconnect between the understandable desire to prevent another 9/11, to keep us safe from something like that ever happening again, is it a disconnect from that desire to be safe and what would actually
make us safe? did we outfit national security in a way that made us feel better but didn't make us safer? >> al qaeda has been decimated. a lot of the al qaeda leaders including bin laden are dead. but are we safer as a nation? look at the money that was spent. money being spent is a real threat. if you accumulate debt, debts are what bring down empires. >> it's a difference between safety and strength. >> well put. >> if you can be provoked into reacting in a way that prevents something like that from happening again, but that also causes you to spend yourself into weakness, or to make yourself weak in other ways, or to remove the things about you that made you a desirable and proud place in the first place. >> if you swing wildly at something and you've exhausted yourself, did they get you to compromise on your national, your strategic strength in order to react to them? maybe you have. then look what the impact has had on the real people fighting this war. the military, for example.
this has been a generation. a generation has come that has been defined by the wars in iraq. the wars in afghanistan. the men, the women, their families, these two wars have been all consuming. deployment after deployment. that also has a toll. since 9/11, more than 2 million american troops have been deployed. to afghanistan and iraq. on the upside, america's armed forces have probably never been more combat ready and more experienced. >> 240 is down. >> but these were not training exercises. the costs have been heavy. nearly 6,500 troops killed. almost ten times that many wounded. and were the thousands of patrols and gunfights necessary to keep america safe? what did they really accomplish?
may 2010 in the argonaut valley in southern afghanistan. it's rich farmland. it's also a taliban stronghold. charlie company, second of the 508 lives on a tiny base called combat outpost nolan. the base is a walled adobe farmhouse. it's home to about 150 soldiers from the 82nd airborne division. they patrol the fields. but it's so dangerous, the soldiers climb over mud walls because the main trails are seeded with ieds. >> make sure you get security down in this intersection. >> reporter: sergeant louis loft from akron, ohio, is often the point man on patrol. he volunteers for the highly risky job. because he's up front, if there's an ied in the ground, he'll most likely see it first. or step on it. >> i really don't think about
it. you know, it's just our job. you know, get -- you know, get done what needs to get done. i try not to think about, you know, what's going to happen, you know, if i step on an ied or something. or landmine or whatever. you know, just don't really think about it. >> reporter: loftus is a two-time combat veteran with a previous tour in afghanistan. he's only 23. and the young man is in love with a girl back home named dierdre. back home loftus looks at the photographs waiting for the day they'll get marry. there are many months to go before loftus is home and many risks. one of his friends was just killed by an ied. the stress and pent up emotion come pouring out. >> right now, i'm kind of numb to it. to be honest, i just don't
really feel much. i pray for his family. i pray for his soul that, you know -- yeah. i try not to think about it. because when you think about it, then i get like this. it's not -- you know, i don't -- yeah. so, yeah, you know. everyone deals with it their way. i try to hide it. i try not to think about it because i got to stay 100%. i got to keep a good example in front of the other soldiers. i'm sorry. >> reporter: the next day loftus and the other troops walk to a memorial for the soldier killed by the ied.
and pay their final respects. then they make a somber march back to base. as soon as they enter the gate, the taliban attack. >> get me up there, get me up there! >> reporter: the ambush is timed to catch the troops off guard. soldiers rush to the roof of the outpost and fire back. from here, they have the best view. the best chance of keeping the taliban from storming the base. the taliban fire an rpg at a guard tower on the roof. >> this place is under heavy attack. already one soldier has been severely injured. the injured soldier is down, out of the fight. but other soldiers on the roof keep fighting. even though several of them are also injured. and dazed. 20 pal btaliban fighters are soe
the troops have to launch small mortars nearly straight up. practically firing on top of themselves. ammunition is running low. and it's worse than anyone first thought. as the battle rages, the soldiers find two more americans, both severely wounded. under fire, the soldiers load the injured men on to stretchers. and carry them off the roof. with so many men hurt, loftus moves in. he takes up a machine gun and lays down suppressive fire. after 30 minutes, the fighting stops. a medevac helicopter ferries away the wounded. the americans have won the day. but why? for nearly a decade, there have been fights like this one repeated in iraq's fallujah and
sadr city. countless other iraqi and afghan towns the soldiers had never heard of before they deployed. but they know them now. and the battles stay with the troops. coming up -- >> if you asked me right now if i could sign a dotted line, say get everyone out of afghanistan, i wouldn't hesitate. i would say it's not worth one more soldier getting killed. >> reflecting on the costs of war while adjusting to life back home. to work together. the timing, the actions, the reactions. everything has to synch up. my expenses are no different. receipt match from american express synchronizes your business expenses. just shoot your business card receipts and they're automatically matched up with the charges on your online statement. i'm john kaplan and i'm a member of a synchronized world. this is what membership is. this is what membership does.
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yeah, every one. see these? i don't think these have been washed since i was over there. >> loftus is settling into his new life. >> how are you? sfwl good to see you. >> good to see you. it's bb a long time. >> he calms his service the greatest accomplishment of his life. >> i loved being in afghanistan. that probably sounds funny, but, you know, it was such a good experience, and i fought for my country, and i'm proud of what i did. i'm proud of the guys i fought with and the people i met. and that is going to be part of me forever. >> but loftus has doubts about the mission. he was sent to protect people in the argandah, but they wouldn't cooperate. >> the average 45-year-old male in the argandah river valley doesn't want to talk to us, doesn't want to look at us. some of us feel like it's like we're bait. we're just walking around until we get shot. it's like, really, what are we doing? if you asked me right now if i could sign on a dotted line and get everyone out of afghanistan, i wouldn't hesitate. i would say it's not worth one more soldier getting killed.
if you asked me right this second, sign this paper, we'll bring them all home, i would do it without hesitation, you know? but i also feel that what i did wasn't a waste. i'm just saying that maybe it's time, let's get our guys home, you know. >> the white house says that afghanistan is no longer an al qaeda sanctuary, and that it has a plan to stabilize the afghan government and bring the troops home. but at least afghanistan was linked to 9/11. the taliban did host osama bin laden. invading iraq, on the other hand, had nothing to do with 9/11, despite claim after claim by the white house that it did. >> the liberation of iraq is a crucial advance in the campaign against terror. we have removed an ally of al qaeda. and cut off a source of terrorist funding. >> for some of those hunting bin laden, like the cia's hank crumpton, now retired, iraq remains a head snap.
many at the cia never believed in the link between saddam hussein and 9/11. >> the majority of the people in the u.s. thought that iraq had some responsibility for 9/11 which was not the case at all. in fact, if you look at saddam hussein, he was a secular despot. he was a tyrant. and he saw al qaeda not as an ally, but as a threat. >> did you feel pressure to come up with intelligence that fit this narrative that iraq was somehow working with al qaeda? >> no. i do recall -- this was in the spring of 2001, a query that came from the white house, about the alliance between saddam hussein and al qaeda. and i remember at the time that that sounded so absurd. and i remembered speaking with an analyst about it, and dismissing it out of hand. >> when this memo came down, saying give us some intelligence or what do you know about this
alliance between saddam and al qaeda, your response was basically, what alliance? >> exactly. >> nbc terrorism analyst mike sheehan has served as the state department's director of counterterrorism. >> i can think of a good dozen reasons why saddam hussein should have been kicked out of iraq. dating back to all of the atrocities he's conducted in the region against his own population. nevertheless, in my view, as a terrorism expert, i did not feel there was a justification in terms of counterterrorism to invade iraq. >> the united states sent 2 million troops to war, but in the end, osama bin laden was killed by 23 american commandos acting on intelligence provided by the cia. and bin laden was killed in pakistan, where troops were not sent in large numbers. nineteen men attacked america on 9/11. twenty-three americans killed bin laden. but in between, more than 6,000 troops would die and well over $1 trillion spent.
>> we have basically doubled our defense budget in the last 10 years because 19 al qaeda operatives with box cutters hijacked planes and attacked our homeland. i think we could have been much more nuanced and specific and precise in our defense response, whether it's measured in budget or lives. >> doubled our defense budget because 19 people with box cutters attacked us. >> right. >> so this was a major overreaction, in your estimation? >> yeah, i think so. particularly if you look at iraq. >> when you add up everything that has happened, all the money that was spent, all the lives that were lost, and the things that were ignored, do you think the activities of the last ten years have made the u.s. safer, a lot safer, a little bit safer? not safer at all? >> i think our homeland is safer because of our efforts against al qaeda in particular. but i think that overall as a
nation, we may be weaker. and that is because of the debt. in part because of money that we have spent in iraq and afghanistan, money that i don't think we need to spend, not to that degree. >> terrorism is an instrument of the weak. terrorism is an instrument of a weak group, al qaeda. this is a very weak organization. but it uses terror to try to attack our psyche. and if we overreact to terrorism attacks, we empower them. we embolden them. we amplify their power, and we fall into their strategy, which is to create fear in our hearts. >> a strategy of turning america into a nation driven and perhaps misguided by fear. the united states hasn't been attacked again since 9/11, but at a huge and, some argue, unnecessary cost in battles fought and lives lost.
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nationally, the investment that we have made in war fighting since 9/11, the investment that we have made in the intelligence apparatus and the whole national security state getting so much bigger than it was, that's money and investment that we made in that direction that we couldn't make in some other direction. that we didn't make in infrastructure, energy, education or health care. whatever you have. >> at the end of the day, bin laden and the top leaders from al qaeda were killed by institutions that existed before 9/11. they were killed by the cia. they were killed by the military. they were killed by military special operations. >> the argument, though, from those who have defended the massive expansion, particularly in intelligence and in top secret work say, you know, you can complain all you want about it, but there hasn't been another 9/11. and so that proves it was worth it. >> well, there hasn't been
another 9/11, and that proves that certain things work. but that doesn't prove that the whole apparatus works. and it doesn't prove that, well, you can just keep adding more and more security. and there's also a real danger here that it's hard to take it away. and i think that's why it continues to grow, because any politician or anyone who says, well, we need to dial some of this back, suddenly is accused of being soft on terrorism. >> in the years since 9/11, we've gotten used to hearing political leaders assert that we have not been hit again. >> there has not been another attack on the united states. and that's not an accident. >> it's a neutralizing rejoinder to any criticism of post-9/11 counterterrorism measures. or policy of any kind justified as counterterrorism. no matter what you think of what we've done, there hasn't been another 9/11. it's true, there hasn't been. there's been nothing of that magnitude in ten years. but the united states has been
targeted in the past ten years over and over again. one week after the september 11 attacks, the anthrax mailings to senators' offices, media outlets, and some apparently random civilians, 17 people are infected, five die. three months after september 11, the so-called shoe bomber, al qaeda member richard reid, a british citizen, tries to blow up a u.s.-bound flight from paris, using high explosives hidden in his shoes. fellow passengers and flight attendants stop him, and reid is sentenced to life in prison. overseas in 2006, scotland yard arrests 21 men planning to kill thousands by detonating bombs on up to 10 trans-atlantic flights from britain to the united states. >> this was intended to be mass murder on an unimaginable scale. >> back on u.s. soil, in 2009, najibullah zazi is arrested by the fbi for a plot to carry out
multiple bombings in the new york city subway system. zazi had received terror training in an al qaeda camp. he pleads guilty. later that year, on christmas day, umar farouk abdulmutallab unsuccessfully attempts to detonate plastic explosives hidden in his underwear on a flight from amsterdam to detroit. he's apprehended, pleads guilty, and is sentenced to life in prison. times square, the heart of new york city -- in 2010, 30-year-old pakistani american faisal shahzad attempts to detonate an improvised bomb inside his parked nissan pathfinder. the crude device fails to explode and shahzad was apprehended days later. one attack is successful and causes multiple u.s. casualties, the largest u.s. military facility in the world, ft. hood in texas, is the site of a mass shooting by u.s. army psychiatrist, nidal malik hasan, a u.s. citizen. in touch with al qaeda linked clerics online but not formally
linked to any terrorist groups, hasan kills 13 u.s. army personnel and wounds 29 others before he himself is shot and paralyzed by military police. but the most deadly post-9/11 terrorist attacks take place oversaes. bali in october 2002. 202 people killed. madrid in march 2004, 191 people killed. beslan in russia, 334 people killed, including 186 children. london, july 2005, 52 people killed. mumbai, november 2008, 164 people killed. none of these major post-9/11 attacks was directly linked to al qaeda. that is if inspiration doesn't count as a link. but one alleged plot to carry out coordinated attacks in the u.k., france, and germany, a plot thought to have been ordered by osama bin laden himself, is foiled in september 2010. it's discovered through international intelligence sharing. in the face of continued real
threats, it's also true that some of the supposedly thwarted terrorist attacks post-9/11 essentially were symptoms created by the cure, plots that arguably would never have come into being without counterterrorism law enforcement themselves suggesting targets, providing means, facilitating aspiring terrorists acts of furtherance that they would not have achieved on their own but for which they could be prosecuted. in 2009, after back-to-back mistrials, five men from liberty city, one of miami's poorest neighborhoods, are convicted on terror-related charges after trying to team up with al qaeda, even though they seemed to have no clue how to do that. their only contact with al qaeda is with the government informant pretending to be associated with the group. they claim entrapment. it's a defense that has never worked in a terror-related case since 9/11. later that same year, federal officers again pose as members of a terrorist sleeper cell.
they provide 19-year-old hosam smadi of dallas, texas, with what he thinks are chemicals to build a bomb. smadi attempts to detonate the fake bomb in the basement garage of a dallas skyscraper. in 2010, smadi pleads guilty to attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. he is sentenced to 24 years in prison. as hyper-funded counterterrorism law enforcement reaches as far as possible and then some to find and disrupt and in some cases conjure terrorist plots, the newly created department of homeland security, a department consolidating 22 previous agencies representing the largest increase in the size of the federal government since world war ii, is a product of the 9/11 commission's findings. and as the federal government grows in response to 9/11, so does a government-funded security gravy train. getting yourself listed in the national asset database of terror targets becomes a way to attract government funding. auditors of the national asset database find more than 1,300
casinos, more than 160 water parks, nearly 160 cruise ships, nearly 250 jails, more than 700 mortuaries, nearly 600 nursing homes. also listed as targets of terror, old mcdonald's petting zoo near huntsville, alabama. the mule day parade held in columbia, tennessee, to celebrate mules. and the amish country popcorn factory in berne, indiana. in fact, the state of indiana listed nearly 9,000 potential terrorism targets. that's 50% more than the state of new york, more than twice as many as california. five years after 9/11, by the government's own very political figuring, the hoosier state is the most target rich state in the nation. if any rational sense of proportion in identifying terrorism targets had been sacrificed to politics and simple greed, there may have been no hope from the beginning for a sense of proportion in
identifying real potential terrorists and terrorist tactics. coming up, america's collateral damage in our own war on terror. >> it was the darkest, most harrowing ordeal myself or my family ever had to experience. thank you orville and wilbur... ...amelia... neil and buzz: for teaching us that you can't create the future... by clinging to the past. and with that: you're history. instead of looking behind... delta is looking beyond. 80 thousand of us investing billions... in everything from the best experiences below... to the finest comforts above. we're not simply saluting history... we're making it. like, scoring the perfect table? ♪ or getting a better seat? ♪
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i'm milissa rehberger. it is raining again in colorado. flash flood warnings are in effect. five people are confirmed did after days of historic flooding. today's bad weather grounded rescue helicopters. officials say more than 1,000 people are waiting to be evacuated from the flood zone. hundreds are unaccounted for. tomorrower top white house economic aid larry summers has withdrawn his name for consideration to succeed ben bernanke as federal reserve chairman. now back to our program.
the perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks were airline passengers, armed with weapons that were legal to bring onboard those planes. their travel history, their radical ties, their training, their dry runs, all red flags. but ones that had not signaled the system enough to stop them before the attack. what would the next red flags look like? and how would we find them? the lasting impact on daily life legacy of 9/11 for most americans is a new normal, a new normal of intrusion. the sacrifice of some privacy and some civil liberties, and in some cases our dignity, in the name of national security. in november 2001, president bush signs a law creating the transportation security administration. the new mega-agency, the department of homeland security, would preside over air travel safety now. not the department of transportation. bag and suitcase contents scrutinized, shoes off, jackets off, luggage locks and lighters
gone. liquids limited to tiny containers. laptops out of their bags, explosive detecting swabs, metal detectors like we used to have but also puffer machines and body scans -- and really detailed body scans. intrusion. intrusion by means the public at least knows about, but also intrusion by means kept secret. despite federal laws limiting the national security agency to collecting only foreign communications, in 2002, president bush signs an order expanding warrantless eavesdropping on u.s. citizens within the united states. that directive remained secret until "the new york times" exposes it in 2005. a year later, the program is ruled unconstitutional by a federal judge. but the government appeals the decision, and wins. bank accounts, credit cards, e-mail, phone calls, business records, library records -- all subject to government inspection in new and often secret ways.
the around the law extraordinary intrusion powers previously reserved for america's spies abroad, for the black arts of the intelligence world, are now put in the hands of law enforcement. the uniting and strengthening america by providing appropriate tools required to intercept and obstruct terrorism act of 2001, better known as the usa patriot act, tears down many of the walls constructed over the years between law enforcement and spying, walls designed to protect american citizens from being spied on by our own government, walls designed ultimately to protect the presumption of innocence. walls that came tumbling down on brandon mayfield. when did you first have a sense that you and your family might have been subject to direct surveillance by the government? >> there were footprints on the floor that were bigger than any shoe size that we had. so we could only surmise that
somebody had been in the house. >> mayfield and his wife, mona, were leading a quiet suburban life with their children outside of portland, oregon. but in may 2004, after weeks of what was clumsily intended to be secret government search and surveillance, federal authorities come knocking on mayfield's door. >> i said, if you have any questions to ask me, put them to me in writing. and i could tell right away that wasn't going to make them go away. >> in march 2004, a terrorist attack on trains in madrid, spain, had killed 191 people. spanish police found a fingerprint near the scene on a bag of detonators. they sent a photocopy of that print to the fbi. the fbi decided that that fingerprint matched brandon mayfield. >> they started actually physically, forcibly making their way into my office. they proceeded to forcibly handcuff me. >> while you were being taken into custody at your office, were they also at your house? >> they had a search warrant at
my house. my wife was home. they had insinuated that i was a terrorist. >> meanwhile, you had been taken sbo custody. did your family know where you were? >> with federal prosecutors pledging to achieve a conviction, mayfield's legal team grows more concerned about his status. >> i was arrested under the material witness statute, created to protect witnesses. but the attorney general's office just flipped it on its head after 9/11, and started using it as an investigative tool. in other words, to detain somebody without rights, without probable cause as they continue to gather more information. >> you were never charged with anything, though? >> i was never charged at that point. >> had you ever been to spain? >> no. >> do you speak spanish? >> no. my daughter does. and at the time that they were pouring through records in our house and documents, they found some of my daughter's spanish homework. >> to be clear, though, when they say they confiscated spanish language materials from your house, that was your daughter's spanish homework? >> yes. >> as mayfield's legal team
prepares his defense, they also learn what else had been used to justify his arrest beyond that latent fingerprint. >> virtually everything that was cited as a reason to arrest me, had to do with my being a muslim or associating with muslims. i was married to mona mayfield, aka mohammad, an egyptian national. i attended a local mosque. one can only surmise one of the main reasons why they arrested me is because i was muslim. and there was this insinuation that somehow being a muslim meant that you are a criminal element. >> declaring his innocence, mayfield is incarcerated for two weeks on 24-hour lockdown and under constant surveillance. with federal agents claiming a match on the fingerprint, despite major doubts by spanish authorities, a federal judge rules in favor of temporarily releasing mayfield. false id happens in law enforcement.
it always has. post-9/11 with the powers of the patriot act and some of the other expanded powers that the government took, did false id become a more dangerous thing? >> there are certain rights that were demanded by the people and guaranteed to us. and one of those is the fourth amendment to privacy, which essentially says you're to be free against unreasonable searches and seizures, and no warrant shall be issued but upon probable cause, particularly describing the place, person or thing to be seized. and it is seriously under attack. >> prior to the patriot act of 2001, guidelines for search and surveillance are spelled out by the foreign intelligence surveillance act of 1978. it allows for secret surveillance only to gather foreign intelligence. >> the patriot act amended that, and it seemed like a slight, innocuous change. but it said you could get a secret warrant to do a secret search so long as the significant purpose was to gain foreign intelligence. the wall that was breached is
the one that undermines you and i, americans' rights. >> ultimately, the case is dismissed against brandon mayfield, who later sues the federal government. his legal challenge of the patriot act is dismissed. but federal authorities do issue two formal apologies, and mayfield is eventually awarded a monetary settlement. >> i grew up in kansas, so a handshake and an apology mean something to me. >> you reflect on what this decade has been like, how would you describe the overall experience? >> it was the darkest, most harrowing ordeal on myself or my family ever had to experience. to quote benjamin franklin, "those who would give up liberty for security will lose both and deserve neither." coming up, the business of warning america. >> folks, these are terrorists. they come kill your kids. with the spark cash card from capital one...
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the war on terrorism conceptually is a hard idea, because terrorism is a tactic. but as we know, it has translated into real war in iraq and afghanistan and in other countries around the globe. it has also translated into a sort of war footing, war mentality domestically, even in terms of our law enforcement. >> it hasn't just stayed in iraq or afghanistan or pakistan. it has come back to the united states. the same idea of us versus them, that we're looking on patrol for terrorists, has come back to domestic american policing as well. and who's giving the training that police officers in the united states are receiving? there is an entire circuit of experts hired with national security money who are being
paid to train the police force, train the military, and some of these people have ideas that are a little bit extreme. it's mardi gras, march 2011, in mobile, alabama. 100,000 people line the avenues to see the floats and the parade. for the local police, it's a big event. >> we have more going on today than we will any other day of the year. >> but even in small american cities, 9/11 has changed the way police operate, think, and who's training them. the cops know how to handle mardi gras. but they don't know much about terrorism. so the mobile police department is bringing in an expert from out of town to teach them. >> y'all listen to me. it's a mean old world. i don't have to tell you, you're cops. >> he is a retired army lieutenant colonel named dave grossman. >> what's your plan?
>> a colorful speaker with high energy. >> like, whoa, what was that? >> grossman theatrically tears his notes. >> you will read 100 military manuals. >> he wants to get his audience's attention for what he believes is the most important message in america today. >> we've had all the warning in the world. >> 9/11 was just the beginning. >> folks, these are terrorists. they don't piss in your water. they don't sprinkle doo doo over your skies. they kill your kids. >> we turn to the tragic events of the past 24 hours in russia. >> one of grossman's main theories is that al qaeda will carry out simultaneous attacks on american children. he says the horrific attack in beslan, russia, in 2004 was a trial run for america. more than 300 hostages, many of them children, were killed when militants took over the russian primary school.
>> i pray that i'm wrong with all my heart. i fear some dark morning across america, not once but multiple times across america, cops will pull up behind the school bus parked on the shoulder of a country road. they'll walk on the school bus to find every kid dead. it will destroy our way of life. >> grossman says local police and all americans must be armed and ready for commando-style battles when terrorists hit schools in small town usa. >> absolutely serious, every cop here in america needs a smoke grenade. >> to be safer, grossman also wants schools to have armed guards, classroom doors locked and teachers armed to shoot terrorists. >> and folks, we've had armed teachers at american schools for over a decade. the state of utah has been doing it for over a decade. it's a county by county thing. the sheriffs are making the calls. one sheriff in utah brought me out to train his whole county. >> the police in mobile are captivated by grossman's talk. >> i've been in law enforcement 25 years.
this is the best training i've had in 25 years of law enforcement. >> he's brought us back to the basics of always being aware that you never know when somet happen but you got to be prepared. >> keep your mind opened. >> grossman is one of america's most prolific speakers. 300 days of lectures a year. he's taught police, in all 50 states, the coast guard, even the u.s. forest service. grossman is not afringe radical. his book "on killing" one critical acclaim in the 1990's for exploring the describe logical affects of war and it's required reading by the u.s. marine corps and he's invited to some of the military's most high-profile places. at fort leavenworth, kansas, in january of 2011 welcome grossman draws a crowd of about 1,000 officers at the army's command
and general staff. >> how you doing, y'all. >> reporter: the army considers grossman who once taught as west point, an expert in resilience, a bulz ward in the military who after a decade of war is spending millions on prevention and suicide prevention programs. >> so much effort to building people physically for years. >> we haven't put the same amount of effort into building our soldiers mentally and emotionally. >> reporter: but grossman thinks america's last decade of wars has made the military stronger. most of these officers served in iraq or afghanistan. he tells them, the threat of posttraumatic stress disorder is exaggerated by the media into we're calling everybody with ptsd, they say symptoms of ptsd. that's like saying somebody five pounds of overweight has symptom of obesity. >> reporter: grossman talked to the officer's families on how
they must be on the lookout for terrorists coming to their children's schools while their spourss are deployed. >> between the bombs, the parking lots, the killers in the school, it's entirely possible to kill 200, 300, 400 kids in an hour schools tomorrow morning, god forbid. >> it's important for me to know the realitiless of what it is that i do and the threats that are out there. >> it helps me need job better and to support him in what he does. >> reporter: for grossman and a living. he's paid about $4,000 per lecture and sells his books. but some of the officers at leavenworth aren't convinced. >> he's definitely as in the interest of selling books. >> he has two, almost kind of conflicting interests it seems. he doesn't want to better us but he's got a product he's selling. >> reporter: that product is something the military and police departments across america are willing to buy. >> whether you're on duty or off duty always be prepared.
>> so you don't think it's scare tactics? >> no. >> always be ready for the worse? >> some of the things he talks about lock ing the doors and armed guards at school. that's not the kind of childhood you had? is that the kind of childhood you think we should have? >> i'm not saying whether we should or shouldn't but the reality it is, it's here. times have changed and it's a new game. >> what are you training people for? what are you training them to do? >> mental preparation for combat. >> since 9/11, there's been an industry that's been born of security consultants and experts and trainers and lecturers and you are part of that. >> what you're seeing is a nation that's preparing itself for the threat and the possibilities. gun purchases across america just exploded. concealed carry permits have taken over. >> and that is a good thing, you
think? >> well, the voters think it is. >> reporter: grossman insists, america's future depends on how each citizen prepares for the threat. >> do you ever worry that these local police officers are going to go out and be looking for terrorists in every small town? and pulling people over and looking them up and down and saying, is this a terrorist? >> we're not seeing people's rights been trampled or individuals who are being, use. you must be on alert to that. life is all about balance. >> you fervently do not believe that you're a fear mongerer but you say you want to teach people to use fear as a weapon? >> the gift of fear. to be aware of the potential for threat. and to take action to deal with that. that's the healthy path. >> reporter: oppose it or embrace it, grossman's message
is popular and he's expanding beyond schools, the military and police departments and is changing major corporations to be on the lookout for terrorists. >> the wounds of 9/11 are still fresh to us as a nation and we're still both alert and concerned about the prospect that there will be another 9/11. that feeling has not changed at all. but what have we learned in ten years about what works and what doesn't work toward keeping us safe? >> well what works, it seems, is small, focused, pin point type of operations, whether they're against nuclear weapons or whether they're on a city level like in new york or whether it's like the cia hit teams and military hit teams that went and killed bin laden. that kind of thing works. what doesn't work is -- a vague conceptual battle that we're going to send in military divisions to spread democracy and fight a war against an ideology with soldiers. that kind of thing didn't work,
doesn't work and may have made our country less safe. >> the decision that america would wage pre-emptive war twhab we would not allow threats to materialize and we would act military land call ourselves justified in doing so before a threat materialized that's resulted in ten years of constant warfare and more ahead. >> preemption is good if you're trying to stop a dirty bomb attack or a specific threat. preemption is not good when you're talking about invading a country and establishing foreign bases with unknown consequences. >> something that, almost by definition, you can't control or say how it's going to end up. >> a lot of al qaeda people were killed but they weren't killed pi the conventional wars that were launched in the name of al qaeda. the global war on terrorism was, in many ways, a global war on fear. how do you fight against terrorism. it's like fighting against evil but in doing it we allowed ourselves as a nation to become terrorized.