A number of unknown students at the Santa Barbara campus of the University of California started off the new school year this past weekend with posters proclaiming that Jews were responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
“911 was an outside job,” reads the flier that featured a large, blue Star of David. The leaflet asks every student to “educate yourself” by visiting websites claiming that Israel was behind the Al Qaeda terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people., including hundreds of Jews.
It also suggested that people search Google for subjects such as “9/11 Was Mossad.”
Rabbi Evan Goodman, executive director of the Hillel branch on campus, wrote in a blog post that a Muslim student leader alerted him to the fliers, of which approximately 5-10 were distributed.
He added that Hillel and university staff, along with some students, took down the fliers.
It’s been 13 years since I slammed my transmission into overdrive, popped the flashing red light onto the roof of my car and went barreling down half-empty streets in Brooklyn towards Manhattan.
Beside me were a sheaf of papers bearing photos of a girl I didn’t know, who was working in an office on the 105th floor of the World Trade Center. “Maybe someone has seen her,” her terrified parents said. A colleague handed half of the stack to me before getting into his own car to head down the same road.
We both knew it was a long shot but neither of us realized just how long a shot it was. In fact, it was no shot at all. No one ever came out of that pile of busted concrete and twisted metal alive. I know, because I was there.
Too old already to be a firefighter (which I was in younger days), back then I was a volunteer fire chaplain. But I was on my way to work at a local mental health clinic that morning, since I am also a trauma therapist and ADHD specialist in my “other life.” I was listening to the radio in my car when the DJ interrupted the music to make “a special announcement.” Annoying, I thought idly.
A plane had slammed into the World Trade Center, he said. Details to follow. Weird, I thought. “Radar screwed up? Pilot lost control of the plane?” I started to run through the list in my mind. Meanwhile the DJ was doing the same thing on the air with a second person who had joined him on commentary.
That’s ominous, I reflected. Having lived five years in Israel in my younger years, all my red flags went up the more I thought about it.
And then a plane hit the second tower. That’s when I knew this was no accident.
By the time I reached the clinic, patients were calling in to cancel and the secretary had a small television on, with live coverage showing what had happened. “That’s a terror attack,” I muttered, and disappeared into my office. The next call was to the volunteer fire and rescue team coordinator. I saw two patients and the clinic closed early. A sigh of relief and I raced to pick up the flyers: “Have you seen this girl?”
I flashed an ID in order to get into the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel, which was blocked off to everyone. Cops were everywhere. “A bit late, no?” I grumbled, whizzing into the tunnel. It opened up into a smoke-filled nightmare.
I couldn’t park anywhere near the site. In fact, I couldn’t FIND the site. The World Trade Center had disappeared. The entire area was wrapped in a thick grey haze for dozens of blocks in each direction. It was impossible to see beyond a foot or two. The Liberty One building was not stable — it was swaying in the breeze.
I finally found a spot about half a mile away. It was still smoky in that area, but at least I could see the address, which I’ve since blocked from my mind. There’s a lot I’ve blocked, in fact, but what I have never been able to block out is the stink that hit as soon as I got closer to Ground Zero.
There is no mistaking that smell.
When I was a child, my Sunday School held a special assembly to educate the students in Grades 4 and up about the Holocaust. On that day we were shown the film, “Let My People Go,” a documentary of the atrocities committed by the Nazis against the Jews. It included a full description by concentration camp survivors of the crematoria and accompanying photos.
Al-Sakinah, a website by run the Saudi Arabian government, posted an article marking the 12th anniversary of the September 11 attacks which claimed that the U.S. “played a central role in transforming terror into a global [phenomenon],” according to the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI).
“This strategy allows [the U.S.] to redraw the map of the Arab countries… and to sow religious and sectarian war that enables it to control the future of the peoples and their states,” the article stated.
Around the world, jihadi extremists used the anniversary to praise the 9/11 attacks on social media and other online forums. “Manhattan, a fragment of hell, the stronghold of usury, was vaporized… the blood spilled, flesh was blown all over… [when] the arrogance [of the Americans] collapsed and retreated,” one poem read, according to MEMRI.
“Osama the lion… His position is firmly situated in a paradise,” one Facebook poster wrote next to a photo of the burning World Trade Center.
New York City police Wednesday removed a 255-pound part of a wing of as Boeing jet, one of the two planes Al Qaeda-linked terrorists hijacked on September 11, 2001 and flew into the World Trade Center Twin Towers in the most disastrous terrorist attack in the world.
The wing was wedged behind a building at the Park Place site where a high-rise mosque and Muslim community center is to be built. The reminder of the horrendous attack was discovered only last Friday by surveyors, but officials have determined that were no human remains at the site.
It still is mystery of how the huge part could have remained undetected for more than 11 years.
The five-foot part of the wing, originally thought to have been the plane’s landing gear, was removed with a pulley system
“It’s a piece of history and we tried to preserve it as best we could,” said Deputy Chief William Aubry of the Forensic Investigation Division.
“It’s a pretty eerie feeling knowing that we’re here 11 years later removing the part,” Aubry said. “I think we all feel a sense of emotion.”
The wing was brought to a police facility was duly recorded and taken into storage.
No one has decided what to do with the remnant.
Perhaps it will be placed in a 9/11 museum.
Or maybe it will be displayed in a public square.
Then again, perhaps the Islamic Culture Center could exhibit it at the entrance to the grand mosque that is to be built.
It would serve as a reminder, however one wants to be reminded.
Police are questioning a Saudi Arabian national for the terrorist attack on the Boston Marathon that killed at least three people, one of them an eight-year-old boy, and wounded 140 others Monday. More than a dozen are in critical condition, an indication that the death toll may rise. The bombs were packed with ball bearings, designed to cause maximum physical damage. Victims lost dozens of limbs in the twin bombings.
The suspect is 20 years old, in the United States on a students’ visa, and is under guard at the Boston hospital where he is being treated for severe burns. He was detained approximately two hours after the bombing at the finish line. CBS News reported that Boston police have a video of a man bringing multiple backpacks to the location of the blast.
Boston police Tuesday morning searched an apartment in a Boston suburb as part of the investigation.
However, Boston Police Commissioner Edward Davis insisted, “There is no suspect. There are people we’re talking to.”
President Barack Obama was unable to utter the word “terror” in his initial reaction to the bombings, as if doing so would be an admission that the United States is so secure that it is unthinkable that terrorists could operate in the country.
Sometimes it seems the government wears a proud suit of armor in la-la land, re-living a 1950s cover of the Saturday Evening Post, an exterior that lulls people into thinking that there are no rotten apples in the American pie.
The president indeed had to be careful not label the attack “terror” before being sure. “We still do not know who did this or why. And people shouldn’t jump to conclusions before we have all the facts,” Obama said. “But make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this, and we will find out who did this; we’ll find out why they did this.”
It will take a thorough investigation to find out what ever every person not in a State Dept. straight jacket knows – the terrorist or terrorists who carried out the attack want to destroy the United States.
The White House later stated that the attack was “an act of terror.” It took an hour to put aside the possibility that a mentally ill person blew up peoples; limbs. It too an hour to discard the original report that a gas line had accidentally burst.
American media, remaining politically correct not to insult Islam and inflame Muslim anger, God forbid, have not reminded citizens that Saudi Arabian radical Islamic fundamentalists were involved in the 9/11 attacks.
A total of five bombs were found in the Boston area, including one that exploded at the John F. Kennedy library, causing no injuries.
The timing of the attack, coincidental or not with “Patriot’s Day,” underlines the motives of the international terrorist campaign against the non-Muslim West.
But the official thinking, such it is called, is that everything is just fine while Rome, make that Washington, is burning.
”Federal officials tonight say there is no reason to think that this is part of any larger threat,” NBC reported. “At this point they believe it is confined to Boston, but a meeting tonight will decide whether any kind of national alert will be sent out.”
Tactically, the attack very likely was not part of a “larger threat”, just an “isolated” incident, just like the 1993 bomb in the basement of the World Trade Center, killing six people and wounding more than 1,000 others;
And just like the “isolated incident” in Oklahoma Cavity in 1995, when a car bomb killed 168 people;
And just like the 9/11 attacks; and just like the 2012 car bomb that was discovered in Times Square but failed to detonate’
And just like the isolated bombs placed in 2010 on two cargo planes bound from Yemen to the United States;
And just like the 2011 pipe bomb that was discovered along the route of the Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial march in Spokane, Wash.
Officials are well aware that there is a worldwide of terror. They know very well that the attacks on the Boston Marathon are not “isolated” incidents.
But it is more important for officials, from the president on down, to maintain a mood of calm, to show Americans they are in control.
The New York Port Authority showed off on Tuesday the view from what will be the new World Trade Center, one day after potential remains of 9/11 victims were found.
“We would like to see the other 40 percent of the families who have never recovered anything to at least someday have a piece of their loved one,” the Associated Press was told by Jim Riches, whose firefighter son was killed in the terrorist attack.
The death toll from the twin suicide airplane attacks was 2,750, but only 1.634 people have been identified.
Dozens of truckloads of debris from Ground Zero still are being sifted after they are transported to a Staten Island site.
Several relatives of victims have sued New York City for transferring the debris, which may include ashes of victims that families would want to bury in a cemetery.
The Port Authority’s mind is on a new skyscraper, dubbed as One World Observatory.
It will be a major tourist attraction but also will become a prime target for terrorists.
Tuesday’s media briefing showed off the view from the Observatory, to be opened in 2015.
Dave Checketts, CEO of the Legends sport and entertainment company that is developing the center, said, “In one of the most important buildings in the world, we’ll bring back the most important view in the world. The top of this rising phoenix — a three-story observatory — will restore another aspect of the World Trade Center Towers: their phenomenal views.”
A high-speed elevator ride will whisk visitors in one minute visitors to the 102th floor, where a video presentation will relate the history of the site, including the 2001 terrorist attacks.
The 104-story skyscraper is being constructed in the northwest corner of the 16-acre World Trade Center site, occupying the location where the original eight-story 6 World Trade Center once stood.