Major Developments: Monday, September 17


• As expected, stocks plummeted in the first day of post-attack trading. The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 684 points, or just over 7 percent, below the 9,000 mark for the first time in two and a half years. The Nasdaq composite index dropped 115.66 points, or 6.82 percent, to 1,579.71 after hitting its lowest point since mid-October 1998, and the broader Standard & Poor's 500 Index fell 53.6 points, or 4.91 percent, to 1,038.94.

• Before trading resumed, the Federal Reserve cut a key interest rate by one-half point to three percent, in hopes of keeping the U.S. economy from falling into a recession. Central Banks in Europe and Canada followed suit.

• People who work in the Wall Street and World Trade Center areas are going to work by ferry service via Brooklyn. Streets in the area are closed to vehicles and subway service is disrupted. Telephone and electric service remains spotty.

• The International Monetary Fund and World Bank have cancelled annual meetings planned for later this month.

• The Post Office is again accepting foreign mail. But expect delays. No cargo or mail is allowed in passenger aircraft holds. No word when that ban might be lifted.

• Germany's stock market regulating agency is looking into claims of suspicious short selling ahead of the attacks. There have been remors that Osama bin Laden may have tried to profit from stock trading ahead of the attacks.


• The Taliban's supreme leader Mullah Mohammed Omar said that he will let a council of Islamic clerics decide whether to hand over terror suspect Usama bin Laden to the U.S. Afghanistan's rulers have closed the country's airspace and say they're strengthening defenses, presumably in preparation for a U-S military strike.

• Pakistan virtually shut down its 1,500-mile border with Afghanistan today, ordering a halt to traffic and trade and sent a delegation to Afghanistan to demand that the Taliban hand over Bin Laden.

• The State Department confirmed that they are evacuating "non-emergency personnel" from U.S. missions in Pakistan.

• Reuters news service quotes Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak Monday as saying that it is too early to talk of an international alliance against "terrorism" and that the United States should think twice before taking military action that would kill innocent civilians.

• British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s office announced Monday that he will travel to the United States Thursday for talks with President Bush in the wake of last week's terror attacks.


• President Bush visited a mosque at the Washington Islamic Center to try to reassure the nation's Muslims. Bush said, "Islam is peace. These terrorists don't represent peace." But Muslim Americans say they've been targets all week.

• President Bush says he wants Osama bin Laden "dead or alive." During a visit to the Pentagon, he vowed the military will "defend freedom at any cost."

• President Bush was on hand to greet people as they returned to work at the Old Executive Office Building. The president says the best way to fight terrorism is to not let terrorism intimidate America. And he says that despite the trauma of last week's attacks, Americans have jobs to do.

• Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says the United States will have to use unconventional military methods in its battle against terrorism. Commanders of elite airborne and assault troops have sent out orders alerting troops to potential changes of mission and movements that could come on short notice.

• Nation of Islam Leader Louis Farrakhan is denouncing the attacks on behalf of American Muslims. He says Americans "are justly angry." He also agrees there must be "an appropriate response" from President Bush, but questions both the talk of war, and U.S. foreign policy.

• Attorney General John Ashcroft asked Congress to enact new anti-terrorism laws, including expanded wiretap authority and and stiffer penalties for those who harbor terrorists.

The Investigation:

• Federal authorities are investigating whether a suspected terrorist toured Logan International Airport's control tower three days before the attacks.

• Two more people have been arrested by federal authorities as material witnesses in the case, bring the total number of arrests to four.

The Victims:

• At least 201 people are confirmed dead from the World Trade Center, with 135 identified.

• Missing in New York: 4,957.

• Officials estimate 188 died in the Pentagon attack; of those, 124 were in the building. More than 95 bodies are recovered, two of those have been identified.

• 266 people were on the four hijacked planes. None survived.

• Rescue workers reached an underground rail station beneath the World Trade Center last night, but found no survivors.

• Relatives and friends of those who died when a hijacked plane crashed in Pennsylvania are visting the crash site today. Governor Tom Ridge and other officials will attend a memorial service at the site this afternoon.

• The television networks are considering a telethon this Friday night to raise money for relief and recovery. It would be carried on as many broadcast and cable networks as possible.

Air Travel:

• Attorney General John Ashcroft says the Justice Department is putting law enforcement officers in the air to prevent attacks. Ashcroft and FBI Director Robert Mueller announced that law enforcement officers will be put on airplanes "to ensure aircraft passenger safety." The officers, assigned to the FAA, are called "air marshals."

• People have been canceling their travel plans in droves. Experts say fear about flying could send the worldwide tourism business into its worst crisis ever. The stocks of major airlines and travel-related companies took a big hit when trading resumed, some dropping as much as 40 percent Monday.

• The nation's airlines are expected to seek a government bailout in the wake of the attacks, $10-20 billion in aid, and a government takeover of insurance liability on claims related to the attacks.

• An American Airlines executive says an announcement of "significant" staff reductions will likely be announced at mid-week.

• Delta Air Lines expects to operate with a 20 percent reduction this week.

• Virgin Atlantic Airways will cut service by 20 percent and cut about 12-hundred jobs beginning in October.

• US Airways said it would cut 11,000 jobs, or about 24 percent of its work force, and reduce service by about 20 percent.

• Washington-Reagan National Airport remains closed to commercial flights. Officials say security concerns about the airport's proximity to national landmarks in Washington justify keeping it closed. The airport is open to military jets, but all planes must take off southbound and fly away from downtown Washington.


• Baseball: Major League Baseball will resume today with National League teams taking the field. American League teams return Tuesday.

• Football: Although no final decision has been made, the NFL is leaning toward trying to play a full 16-game regular season. The players association is considering having players donate one game's paycheck to victims of the attack.

• Golf: The 34th Ryder Cup golf tournament has been postponed for one year. The matches were due to be played the final weekend of September.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.