Author Topic: 9/11 thread  (Read 23683 times)

Debra

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9/11 thread
« on: September 11, 2006, 08:56:21 AM »
If you have articles, thoughts, rants, rememberances of the day this is the place.
“Damaged people are dangerous. They know they can survive.” —  Josephine Hart

Herr Magoo

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9/11 thread
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2006, 09:10:45 AM »
I remember a friend, calling me at work, to tell me to get to a television because a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center, and in my mind's eye, I pictured a little Cessna two-seater.

I remember spending a lot of the day asking people what's happening, or relaying what little I knew to people who knew less.

I remember watching the news that night and wondering if our pizza would be free, because everyone's ordering pizza and watching the news.

I remember Mrs. Magoo remarking that nothing would ever be the same again.
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skdadl

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9/11 thread
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2006, 09:16:08 AM »
It was a beautiful late summer morning in September, cloudless blue skies, clear and warm.

Everyone always starts that way. The 9/11 commish started that way. It was a beautiful morning.

Toedancer

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« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2006, 09:20:23 AM »
But it was a beautiful morning. I was at Queen St. Detox to run a group.
Didn't do group, let everyone watch the events unfold and I remember thinking "maybe this might straighten some of them out, go to rehab, go home to their kids and be great caring dads'. I know, dumb. Optomistic tho.
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gunnar gunnarson

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« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2006, 09:21:33 AM »
Is it just me, or is anyone else sick of seeing it treated like a seminal, world-defining tragedy?  Or used as whacking material for Bushco and PNAC's imperial fantasies?  America is not the only nation in the history of the planet to have suffered.

Grump, grump, grump.

brebis noire

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« Reply #5 on: September 11, 2006, 09:23:06 AM »
Quote
It was a beautiful late summer morning in September, cloudless blue skies, clear and warm. Everyone always starts that way. The 9/11 commish started that way. It was a beautiful morning.  



That is my first memory, too. A lot like today in fact, except warmer, and not as foggy in the early morning.

I had just turned off the TV around 8:30, had been watching the show with Diane Sawyer, so I missed the immediate coverage. I went outside to paint, then saw my SO come running across the field from the neighbour's house to tell me to turn the TV back on because planes had crashed. At that moment, I was absolutely sure he was trying to pull a very elaborate prank on me, though I couldn't figure out why he'd do that.

Toedancer

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« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2006, 09:26:01 AM »
After seeing how the first responders were treated, how they are still being treated by their city/state/country, I will never look at it the same way ever again. I am appalled and disgusted.

They're all so full of shit, covering their entitlement asses, they can go straight to hell!
"Democracy is not the law of the majority, it's the protection of the minority." -Albert Camus 1913-1960

lagatta

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« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2006, 09:26:39 AM »
Gunnar, it is more the instrumentalisation that bothers me.

On the contrary, what happened a short flight from where I live to a bunch of people working in an office building should make us more keenly aware that it is just as horrible when it happens to people in Baghdad - or Afghanistan - or so many places that aren't even in the public view (Congo, etc...).

Remember that the 11th of September 1973 was also the date of Pinochet's coup in Chile.

As for the day, it was much warmer - today is also a beautiful September day, but one that seems like early autumn, not late summer. (Hope it will warm up, grumble grumble - I ache all over).

I am going to write to a friend in NYC today - he often worked at the WTC - one of his clients was located there.  And yes, I've spoken to my Chilean friends about the coup. This NYC friend lived in Argentina for some time; he is certainly aware of the other 9/11 as well.
" Eure \'Ordnung\' ist auf Sand gebaut. Die Revolution wird sich morgen schon \'rasselnd wieder in die Höhe richten\' und zu eurem Schrecken mit Posaunenklang verkünden: \'Ich war, ich bin, ich werde sein!\' "
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gunnar gunnarson

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« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2006, 10:16:28 AM »
That's one of the points I was trying to make, lagatta, albeit in my own stumbling curmudgeonly inadequately caffeinated way.  

None of the people in the twin towers deserved to die the way they did.  But then neither did Pinochet's victims, or the people murdered by the contras, or any of the victims of El Salvador's death squads, or those in Guatemala, or Argentina, or Honduras, or Colombia, or Beirut, or the Shah's Iran, or any of the other places the United States has decided to meddle, either directly or through proxies.  Of course, they're just brown people, so who gives a shit?  Prolly all America-haters too.

skdadl

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9/11 thread
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2006, 10:30:15 AM »
"Instrumentalization" is a good word, better than my "sentimentalization," although that happened too.

I do think it is hard for people not to react intensely to something that so many watched, experienced at only a couple of removes, minute by minute, and also something that approximated torture for most victims. I mean, it is a good thing about humans, imho, that they start trying to imagine at once what those people standing at the windows must have been going through, and reacting with horror. The images from New York just made that so much more possible for most people than it usually is.

But I agree with lagatta and gunnar that if that empathy has any good purpose, it should be to enlarge our feelings for the huge numbers of victims elsewhere, to make it easier for people to feel the horror of living with air attacks every night or of facing strong-armed torturers and murderers.

John Doyle has an interesting column in the Globe review section today, reminding us that it was so commonly said right after 9/11 that it would be the end of cultural trivialization and superficiality -- and yet just the opposite happened, at least on TV.

I suppose that had something to do with the widespread cultural-defensive mode that many Americans went into? Spend in defiance; fritter away in defiance -- something like that?

beluga2

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« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2006, 10:46:42 AM »
Quote from: Herr Magoo
I remember a friend, calling me at work, to tell me to get to a television because a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center, and in my mind's eye, I pictured a little Cessna two-seater.


Me too, when my mother called me and woke me out of a dead sleep with the news. When she said no, they were fully loaded passenger jets, my jaw hit the floor. I hung up and turned on my radio just in time to hear them announce the collapse of the first tower, at which point my mind just turned to mush.

I must have been one of the last people on earth to actually see the images, though. My TV was disconnected as I was just in the process of moving, and my job kept me away from a TV all day, so all I could do was listen to the radio and try for the life of me to imagine what the collapse of two 110-story buildings could possibly look like. It wasn't 'til I got to my parents' place that evening that I actually saw it replayed, over and over again.

I did see the effects of the attack directly, though. I happened to be in south Vancouver, looking out over the airport, and I saw plane after plane after plane coming in to land, one every few seconds, including all kinds of exotic airlines that normally would never be seen in Vancouver. It was eerie, seeing with my own eyes the results of a calamity 3000 miles away.

I had trouble sleeping all that week. Not just the horror of the event, but the anticipatory horror of what the US reaction would entail. The first words I blurted out to myself after hanging up on my mother that morning proved prescient: "Brown people are going to die because of this!" And they have. :(

lagatta

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« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2006, 10:52:01 AM »
I thought Simon Jenkins' commentary in the Guardian was one of the best:
Quote
The weekend's 9/11 horror-fest will do Osama bin Laden's work for him
This repetitious publicity glorifies terrorism as a weapon of war, scaring us far more than the original explosions did

Turn on the radio this week and a ghoulish voice from the bowels of the former World Trade Centre seeks to curdle your blood and chill your bones. It is yet another BBC trailer evoking the horror of the twin towers and the monster of evil, Osama bin Laden. The corporation is desperate to outdo other media outlets in their commemorations of the fifth anniversary of 9/11. They include movies by Oliver Stone and Paul Greengrass, and American and British 9/11 specials from stars such as Harvey Keitel and Kevin Costner called The Millionaire Widows, The Miracle of Staircase B, On Native Soil and numerous variants on twin towers. There are comic strips and videos and where-was-I-then memoirs. The weekend is to be wall-to-wall 9/11. Not glorifying terrorism? You must be joking.


http://www.guardian.co.uk/alqaida/story ... 07,00.html
" Eure \'Ordnung\' ist auf Sand gebaut. Die Revolution wird sich morgen schon \'rasselnd wieder in die Höhe richten\' und zu eurem Schrecken mit Posaunenklang verkünden: \'Ich war, ich bin, ich werde sein!\' "
Rosa Luxemburg

Herr Magoo

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« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2006, 11:12:37 AM »
I wonder if proximity might have any bearing on this.

Like, North Americans being most interested in what goes on in North America, South Americans being most interested in South American events, and so on, rather than some inchoate "hatred of the brown races"?

I've heard it suggested that one of the reasons why some Middle Eastern countries have a loosey-goosey understanding of the Holocaust is because it's quite simply not a part of their local history.  And yet, I'll bet they mourn things we have no idea even happened.

The extreme example of this would be people you know or knew.  Why get all teary over Grandpa dying when a bus went over a cliff in India and 80 people died?  If the death of one old man means more to you, is that because you don't care about brown people?  Or that neighbour.  Or the kid your kid went to school with, or that person from your old home town or whatever... is it wrong to spend more time contemplating these deaths than the 80 Indians?
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lagatta

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« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2006, 11:21:55 AM »
Magoo, I don' t think it is necessarily a case of "brown people" (NYC being what it is, there were certainly a lot of various shades of "brown" - and black - people murdered at WTC), but there is a question of cultural proximity.

Confess I'd probably have more cultural proximity to urbanites of European culture in Argentina and Chile at the other end of America than to Mayan peasants in Guatemala.  For that reason I think the massacres in the "advanced" Southern Cone countries had more impact, though more people were probably killed in Guatemala.

But the objective for internationalists is to try to overcome those cultural blinders - while recognising that it is difficult. I've interpreted at conferences where the participants came from widely different origins, and it wasn't always easy to understand one another.
" Eure \'Ordnung\' ist auf Sand gebaut. Die Revolution wird sich morgen schon \'rasselnd wieder in die Höhe richten\' und zu eurem Schrecken mit Posaunenklang verkünden: \'Ich war, ich bin, ich werde sein!\' "
Rosa Luxemburg

Sleeping Sun

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« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2006, 11:27:12 AM »
Quote from: beluga2
I must have been one of the last people on earth to actually see the images, though.


Nope, I'm sure I've got you beat there.  Mr. Sun and I were in Minnesota at the time on a long (200 mile) hiking trip.  I remember the weather being beautiful, hinking along Lake Superior, the trees just turning, the cool crisp mornings and sunny afternoons, the easy terrain that we just flew over.  We made it into a small small town on the 14th for one of our scheduled days off.  Time to shower, sleep in a bed, do laundry, pick up our resupply box, etc.  As we walked into town, we noticed all the lawn flags were at half mast, and we were trying to figure out what possible national day of mourning it might be.  After we checked into the motel, we noticed a newspaper.  The headline screamed 'America at WAR!', and we just sort of looked at each other and let out a mutual 'What.  The.  Fuck?'.  It's a very surreal feeling.  You take off for a few weeks of enjoying nature and the strength of your own body, and the world goes apeshit in your absence.  

One thing we noticed as we continued our trip is that many Americian hikers and townspeople we came across were overly freindly.  They apologied for Bush forgetting to thank Canada in one of his speeches, and went out of their way to assure us they thought of us as allies, and how they were so happy we were staying there and continuing our trip.

Definitely a unique hiking experience.

 

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