Today's Developments, 10/25

Military Action:

• U.S. attacks on the Taliban's southern headquarters of Kandahar hit a bus, killing at least 10 civilians in a fiery explosion, the Taliban said. Previous bombardments almost emptied Kandahar of its half-million civilians.

• U.S. jets also bombarded the area around Mazar-e-Sharif.

• Anti-Taliban fighters called on the United States to bring in ground troops and quickly liquidate Afghanistan's ruling militia.

• Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said the United States may not be able to catch terrorist Usama bin Laden, although  he predicts that the Taliban will be toppled.

•   Secretary of State Powell said he hoped the anti-terrorism war in Afghanistan can be concluded quickly -- but says the Bush administration is prepared to keep up the fight during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan if necessary.


•   Powell said he envisioned the United Nations playing a leading role in a post-Taliban Afghanistan, and Pakistan not being permitted to dominate the shaping of a new government.  The foreign minister of Saudi Arabia is due to talk to Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf on post-Taliban Afghanistan.

• Uzbekistan agreed to open ports along its southern river border so humanitarian aid can be ferried across to Afghanistan, a top U.N. official said.

• A Pakistani militant leader killed by a U.S. strike in Afghanistan after going there to help the ruling Taliban was buried as 3,000 supporters mourned and scores of police kept the peace.

 • Rear Adm. John Stufflebeem, deputy director of operations for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, warned U.S. intelligence sources indicate the Taliban might poison relief supplies for Afghanistan people and blame it on the United States.
 •   Marine helicopters retrieve an Army Black Hawk helicopter that crashed in Pakistan Saturday.

The Anthrax Scare:

• D.C. Mayor Tony Williams announced that a State Department employee at a remote mail facility in Sterling, Va., has been hospitalized with inhalation anthrax.

• An informant whose tip prompted the FBI to warn of an impending terror attack may have been speaking of the subsequent anthrax attacks that have kept the nation on edge, FBI Director Robert Mueller said.

•   Government sources say anthrax found in Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle's office may have been produced in the U.S.

•   Anthrax has been discovered in a first-floor freight elevator bank in the Hart Senate office building. A tainted letter had been sent to Daschle's office, also in the Hart Building.

•   A female employee of an electronic news organization is being treated at a suburban Washington hospital for possible anthrax. She may have been exposed to the bacteria at the U.S. Capitol.
•   President Bush says the cases of anthrax sent through the mail show America is "still under attack."

•   The Bayer Corporation says it will sell the government 100 million Cipro pills at a savings of $82 million from the original price.

•   Postal officials suggest Americans wash their hands after handling mail. Postmaster General John Potter says he can't guarantee that mail is safe from anthrax contamination.

The Home Front:

• The U.S. House overwhelmingly approved anti-terrorist legislation giving police new search powers, including the ability to secretly search homes, tap phones and track people's use of the Internet.

• A group that successfully sued on behalf of whistle-blowers to highlight nuclear safety problems made an urgent appeal to Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge to fortify American reactors against terrorist attacks.

•   Senator Bill Frist, R-Tenn., who is also a surgeon, offered a bill to provide $1.4 billion dollars for emergency readiness.

•   Survey finds Americans responding to the September eleventh attacks with increased feelings of national pride, confidence in the military and government and a renewed faith in their fellow citizens.

•   "United We Stand," the nation's newest postage stamp -- dedicated to American unity against terrorism -- will be available Thursday at post offices in Washington, D.C., and in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.


• The House also narrowly approved Republican-backed tax relief legislation that would provide a $100 billion jolt to a staggering economy.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.