SARA SMITH: That so many people lost their lives here is hard enough to comprehend, but for those who come to mourn, it's made so much worse by the knowledge that they were killed not by terrorists, but by their own side -- this national day of mourning also a day of anger and betrayal.
SPOKESMAN (Translated): It's a tragedy.
SPOKESMAN ((Translated): Once again, people's lives weren't valued. Once again it was the people who lost out. The state doesn't think about people. It just thinks about itself. It's not right.
SARA SMITH: People feel hurt and confused. Their government won't tell them what really happened here.
MAN (Translated): I don't understand. This gas could have been avoided.
WOMAN (Translated): No. How could we avoid it? Tell me how. How many negotiations have we had with them? It was unavoidable what happened here.
SARA SMITH: President Putin says he was faced with a choice between a horrible tragedy in which all the hostages were killed and a horrible disgrace if he had to give in. And he firmly believes he avoided both. But the tragedy of so many hostage deaths begins to look more like the disgrace he was so desperately trying to avoid. Today he was unrepentant and after a brief moment of silence from the cabinet, he spelled out that Russia will always respond to terrorist threats by whatever means necessary
PRESIDENT VLADIMIR PUTIN (Translated): The tragedy has ended. Bearing in mind the mounting three from international terrorists, we use methods comparable to weapons of mass destruction; the general staff will be instructed to change the plans for using the armed forces. Russia will not reach any agreement with terrorists and will not yield to any source of blackmail.
SARA SMITH: Gunfire heard from inside the theater prompted the security forces to move in. Automatic fire seen from inside shows not all the terrorists had been knocked out by the gas. As troops stormed the building, none of them were wearing respirators. They had already been inoculated against the toxic gas pumped inside the theater. Later, hostages slung over soldiers' shoulders are carried out, all of them knocked unconscious by the mysterious gas. But none of the ambulances had been warned to treat the after- effects of the potentially deadly substance and hostages we saw being taken away in coaches laid out on the floor received no immediate medical attention at all. But hostages well enough to leave the hospital say they are grateful for the security force's actions.
SARA SMITH: Do you think the security forces did the right thing to use this gas?
ANDREI NAUMOV, Released Hostage: Yes, they were. Exactly right. I don't... I'm agreeing with them and want to say thanks for this gas.
SARA SMITH: But hospitals caring for patients who remain in a grave condition still don't know what kind of gas they are meant to be treating.