Terrorist Action 11/9/2001 - Thread 6

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Some of the things I lost:

The copy of Mission to Earth: Landsat Views the World that I had since sixth grade, which inside I kept my original copy of Barry Walters' "A Better Best Top 100." Shaving cream and razors. Some battered shoes. A very very large rubber band ball. An Penguin anthology of American poetry. Some volumes of the World Book yearly supplements I never sent Dan Rhatigan. A copy of Edmund White's The Flaneur. A box of Little Debbie "enrobed" cakes, given to me by my co-worker as a joke. Two "WB! Girls" dolls named Zoe, one a smaller version of the other -- both were bought because Zoe's frizzy brown hair comically reminded me of the same aforementioned co- worker. Our collection of four Bendos that were made especially for the Haworth company. Some beach toys given to employees of the company several years ago. Some prints I bought at the National Gallery back when I was in college. Pens, one of was given to me by a principal after a trip to Australia. A cute starfish-shaped bottle opener. A half-empty bottle of Stress-B Glaceau Vitamin Water. Illustrator 9 for Dummies. A chocolate bunny. The Unrest Make Coffee Club mug Mark E. Robinson himself sold me. Two boxes of herbal tea. A canister of red pepper. The Brio Sampo Fred got me for my birthday. Original artwork for a fanzine I never bothered to finish, circa 1993, including an 8"x10" glossy of the fat, mustached guy from The Misadventures of Sheriff Lobo opening his shirt to reveal a time-bomb affixed to his chest, to which I affixed magnified photocopies of two quotes: "Whatever it is Americans are, they cannot be softly" and "'Cause I'm louder than a bomb."

Since I didn't even get a chance to enter Manhattan, apart from the aforementioned co-worker, I don't know the fate of anybody else from Mancini-Duffy. We were on the 21st and 22nd floors of 2 World Trade Center, just low enough to run down the fire stairs without much trouble, but who knows? I don't think I'm ready to know.

Michael Daddino, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Mike, I think your colleagues are going to be OK. Here's hoping.

suzy, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Mention of the Mike Daddino thread in New York Times

http://www.msn.co.uk/exredir.asp? STARTID=USATTACK_LINK6&URL=http://www.newyorktimes.com/

Go to 'News Analysis' then Related Articles then 'The Talk online'.

I hope that all of your colleagues got out.

scott, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Probably my last IL* post until tonight. Everyone known and loved accounted for, both physical and Net, back to work to make decisions on brands of cookies and multi-colored pens and other things which seem more pointless than ever. Lots to do today to make up for my "sick day" (not entirely untrue, I did get sick several times.) I just wanted to thank everyone, for so much. Without you guys I wouldn't have even known about this until much later, media- unsaturated as I am at work. The constant news updates horrified me, but they also kept me sane, because I trusted them more, (not so) oddly, than the same "two planes hit WTC" on repeat on the radio. My heart goes out to everyone there, obviously, but even moreso to everyone with loved ones far away. I could have dealt with "being there" so much better than sitting and waiting and wondering if the person you cared about more than anyone was dead. And then the crushing impotence - once you realize they're still alive - that the best you can offer them right now is words on a screen. So thank you. Again.

jess, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I still can't quite fathom what's happened in the last 24 hours. The sheer scale of the whole thing is just horrific, and I can only add my sentiments to those already expressed in hoping against hope that it doesn't turn out to be as bad as it looks. It's very easy to sit in London and urge caution and restraint, but if my wife/girlfriend/mum & dad, etc had been in the WTC, I know what I'd want Bush et al to do... but I really hope there are no kneejerk reactions.

A quick aside - have any of the news networks, commentators, etc attempted to coin a soundbite for the tragedy? eg, "The Oklahoma Bombing", "The Lockerbie Disaster", I haven't been aware of any consistency in how the events are referred to. Maybe it's just too massive to be summed up in an easy-to-remember phrase...

Andrew Williams, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

My parents just saw the article in the NY Times hard copy -- it makes everything more nauseatingly vivid than I'd want, somehow.

Michael Daddino, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Andrew: the networks here have been captioning it 'Attack on America'.

Momus, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Apparently there were talks just now of another four planes being shot down, but this may just be news rumour again. You have to look at the fact that there are a few people being pulled out alive after this, at least that's happening, and it's a miracle.
And has Colin Powell just actually declared war or just described the events as war? (They have found the hire car the hijackers left at Boston apparently and they think these people were arabs, MAYBE controlled in some way by Bin laden but if that's all they've got they can't do anything can they?

Bill, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Just read the NY Times article online and it's made me feel quite emotional, probably a delayed reaction to watching what was happening online and IRL yesterday.

Is Nude Spock definitely ok? I know he was supposes to have posted at 10am local time, nut it would be reassuring if he could check in today.

Billy Dods, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I just learned that there is a strong possibility that a really cool guy whom I used to sing with a Trinity Church in Copley Square may have been on one of the BOS-LAX flights that was hijacked. I'm not sure who to contact to find out if it was really him, but he did travel a lot for work. He also got married less than a year ago.

Dan Perry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I am very worried about my Chemistry lab partner/study mate, who works for Morgan Stanley (who inhabit a ton of floors in Tower 2). I wish that there were a list of accounted for employees on the web!

marianna, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Marianna try thisfrom MSDW website;

A call center has been established for employee-related safety concerns at 888-883-4391 or e- mail status@discoverfinancial.com.

Billy Dods, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I have also learned that the husband of an extremely good friend of ours from TFC was on one of the hijacked planes.

Dan Perry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

So I said that would be my last post until tonite, but, spinning off a post last night where I discussed the lassez faire attitude around my office yesterday early afternoon...come into work this morning and one of the first things a co-worker says to me (with being unable in print to catch the condescending inflection)..."is your girlfriend still *trauuumatized*?"

FUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUCK YOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOU.

sorry, i just had to get that out.

jess, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

One of my best friends works at Morgan Stanley, but he's normally at their midtown site. I'd feel like a jackass being part of the phone onslaught to New York, when he's probably all right. But thanks for providing the phone number. Probably I could call him at home tomorrow. Maybe I'm just afraid to call.

Frank Kogan, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Mention of the Mike Daddino thread in New York Times

This is not the kind of fame I would want for starting a net thread. Indeed, right now I'm envisioning a universe where nothing I posted had to be in such an article and Mike's name never had to come up because the article itself need not have been written. *growl*

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

And you didn't turn around and beat the shit out of them, jess? You are a stronger person than I am right now.

Ally, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

From one of my pals in NYC:

"[X] was trying to get out of Manhattan yesterday and two military planes went by. Someone freaked and the next thing you know she has to run to stop getting trampled on. I am going to try to get home through Manhattan later. Blocked it off below 14st. They ain't showing it all on the news. They still aren't giving figures of the dead but a ferry was leaving Manhattan for Jersey with bodies every 10 minutes last night. This is of course hearsay but quite reliable."

Andrew Williams, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

If you're outside the US, it's still very difficult to call in. I just managed to get through to Kate's family again, after hours and hours of trying. She's stuck at Newark airport, with a ticket to leave at 9pm tonight, but everything's dependent on whether flights are given the go-ahead.

Paul Strange, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/americas/newsid_1539000/1539464 .stm

(sorry no html knowledge at all)

at least some people are being rescued. the commentary also appears to be fairly hysteria-free, which is why i like the BBC.

katie, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I'm numb all over I bought the papers this morning which was a big mistake. all apart from the WSJ have too many pictures of things I don't want to see again.

have no clothes no passport or tix. I have no way of getting them. this is not importanat. I just want to cry.

staying with some friends one of whom is a seik (sp. I know please inform) aparently there have been several attack on seik men in brooklyn because they have beards and turbans. things could get very nasty I hope they don't

ed, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

SHIT.

i knew something like this would happen.

sp = Sikh.

katie, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Ed, it's Sikh.

Richard Tunnicliffe, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

It was a beautiful day yesterday, and the sky is still completely unmolested with planes save for the rare helicopter to Southside hospital, which is only a block away. All my life, I can remember planes in the sky. Sometimes they would roar past my house, perhaps leaving contrails if I bothered to look, but I trained myelf well to ignore them. But right now, in Bay Shore, which is where I live, the only sign of what's happened is that absence.

You couldn't see the smoke here, though honestly I haven't cared to look for smoke very hard.

Before: an uneventful train ride. If it was a normal day, I probably wouldn't have had anything to tell Mary at work, except maybe for the loud, smug jerk nattering on a cell-phone. Most likely I would've forgotten it, but I did give him a outraged stare.

After: the minute I got on the connecting train to Flatbush Avenue, there was this chubby man on the train said he just got a call from a friend saying a jet rammed into the World Trade Center.

OK, so it could be a joke. Or maybe not. I mean, I've been scarily close to lower Manhattan before -- how bizarre could an airline mishap be? I forced myself to think it wasn't terrorism. It may not even be real. While we were in the tunnel, I was standing up so I could angle myself for a good view of the Twin Towers, if necessary.

And there it was, outside and getting closer. Indisputable proof. Holy shit. Entire rows of both -- both -- buildings were smoking up. One tower seemed to be burning up towards the top while the other was more towards the middle. How the hell could BOTH buildings be on fire if only ONE plane hit the towers? I tried pointing out the window to the guy in front of me so he'd look, too, but it took the prodding of some of the other guys to follow along. Soon a sea of businessmen heads turned uncomfortably in their seats and registered shock, and then uneasy calm. I gradually stopped resisting the idea of going back home. I thought about e-mailing my mom with my Palm Pilot but I was going to enter another tunnel soon so there was no point.

I had to call my mom. I knew she'd be relieved, but we talked to each other in the morning, briefly, so she knew I was late, so she had that for comfort. Of course, this being New York, only a few phones worked. Lines weren't big, though...not yet, anyway. I had that creeping anger I get when I'm in crowds. I was wishing that the woman in front of me would JUST GET OFF THE PHONE but I soon moved back and thought you know, I can't act this way, because she might be worse off than I am. I couldn't get through anyway.

Maybe there was another phone outside. Above-ground, there was a very clear view of the towers. They were burning, but this time it was a little bigger and a little more alive than before. Or at least I suppose. The crucial memories of the buildings on fire are already fading, possibly being replaced by what I've seen on TV again and again from all angles, the biggest money shot the stag reel of modern media has ever seen. Ironically, the entrance to the Flatbush Avenue is right in front of the Williamsburg Savings Bank, a building my company designed back in the twenties. A woman was crying, but most people were just standing around. There was police and sirens for some reason. I thought at first that I should find a place to sit down and send an e-mail on my Palm. I changed my my mind and walked back -- actually ran back, jaywalking -- knowing this would mean I wouldn't be in touch. I'd like to remember what I was thinking, but I tried thinking as little as possible.

I had to wait a while before the next train to Babylon left. I was hoping the train wouldn't be filled with many people and their chatter. I just wanted to be alone. I asked a woman if I could use her cell phone; she said sure. I told my mom to try to call Dad and Fred and Dan to tell them I was alright. I made sure I wasn't facing the World Trade Center.

There were more people in Jamaica than usual for noonday, yet less than I would've imagined. I used my Palm Pilot to get some hard news. ABC.com had some vague stuff about the two planes and a fire at the Pentagon. USA Today had something over a week old about Anne Heche.

Someone was on a cell phone, hysterically giving the familiar litany of targets but adding "...and Chicago..." and nothing more. God, not Chicago. All the bases. Surely there'd be more as 9:00 reached each time zone. Maybe San Francisco and Los Angeles were next. I had to get out. Further from Jamaica...maybe it was a target, too. It was near an airport, after all. The sky would be lousy with planes on a normal day.

The streets were more crowded than I had ever seen, but then I never go to Jamaica during noon. I was looking for a TV. It only took less than a block to find one. There was a bar, and bars always have TVs.

They told me a tower collapsed. Surely they got it wrong, hyperbole, of course...no. Only one building was there. Smoke was where the other should've been. I asked for a whisky. I know nothing about alcohol so I said I didn't care which. The glass was cracked so she gave me another. I overtipped her, as I always do.

The news was boring and repetitious. It wasn't saying anything I needed to hear. Fine, the Twin Towers were on fire, I knew that already. But at least there was something I could mentally compare the rumors to. They didn't say anything about Chicago, and said little about the Pentagon at first. That was a relief. I said I worked at the World Trade Center, milking it for all the signifigance it was worth and got some sympathy, I suppose. Every time I looked back I saw a meaty-faced businessman, also coming from Jamaica, just gaping at the TV set.

They showed the second plane in footage nowhere near as pornographically vivid as I'm seeing today. There were the towers, in a state much like I saw from the train. You could see a bit of the plane from the back, a little spiky fleck disappear with a pretty red explosion following a second or two later. I know what most of these horrible Twin Towers interiors look like, so my brain filled in the line from point A to point B it went right through it went through walls windows elevators workstations chairs books files people and the friction of everything eventually stopping it before it blew up. People say with an almost tragic lack of imagination that it was like a movie, but it was more absurd than a movie, even your worst comic book Jerry Bruckheimer nightmare. Jesus. What kind of retard does something as melodramatic as fly a plane into a building that's already burning?

At first I thought it was a trick of the eye, with the smoke rising up against the vertical lines of the building fooling me into thinking that the building was actually moving, but Christ, it was no trick, it was falling down, with me, here, now, in this dark bar, miles away but close enough, with my index finger blindly caressing whiskey I shouldn't have been drinking because I was on anti- depressants that I was so glad I was on. Somebody was sobbing hysterically on the phone. I didn't want to know. I didn't think they would fall down. I thought there would be some damage, and then after a long time, recovery, no doubt with harsher security than before. Just like before.

We're headed for a fascist state.

I thought of one of my co-workers -- a firm principal I always liked. He was an Egyptian by birth, and now a naturalized citizen. I had asked him, just yesterday, to help a co-worker's daughter come up with some ideas for her essay about what it means to be an American.

Something propelled me to leave. I got out looking for another phone, thinking I'd call my parents to have them pick me up here (fat chance) and I walked for a block in a crowded street before I noticed the sizable pee stain by my crotch.

Jesus, when did that happen? I couldn't let myself care too much. I sled my carry-case towards my belly to hide it. It was almost amusing, in fact, but then I was I finding these slim humorous edges around everything. I found a phone but didn't bother.

Heading back to the Jamaica station, I had an urge to get a look. I was already woozy from the whiskey; climbing the stairs was a challenge. I had to negotiate all the shell-shocked people on platforms to the very end, where there were only a couple of construction workers, half-working, half not-working, and a businessman on a cell phone. Nobody could see it. The smoke trailed behind a set of trees.

The train came without much of a wait, so I spent much of the hour on the train, stopping from station to station, relieved that the train was getting further and further away and getting emptier and emptier. But people didn't shut up as much as I would've liked. People spin rumour in spite of themselves, and I just wanted the comfort of the official news. "There's gonna be a CRATER where those fuckers are standing!" Sure. What fucking tweezers you gonna use to find them worms, hoss? Naive people, everywhere. Those Palestinians dancing in the streets...yeah, enjoy this tinseled glory while you can, kids. It won't make one damn bit of difference in your life in the long run, other than to amplify the misery level a tiny bit.

I thought at first that I was so eeriely lucky. (My dad, who worked at 140 Broadway at the time, was on vacation the day of the first bombing back in 1993; if he was at work he told me he probably would've been at the parking garage -- ground zero -- at the time of the bombing.) I woke up late, usually I wake up around 6:15, 6:30, but I left my bed at 7:10. I briefly considered not even coming in at all, because coming in late embarrasses me more than taking a sick day off, but there I was, rushing around to make a 8:00 Bay Shore train which would get me into the World Trade Center at almost exactly 9:40, had everything gone on as normal. Had I not been such a sleepy boo, and come in the normal late time that I do -- 9:10 -- I probably wouldn't have been able to get into the building anyway.

Even after therapy and drugs, my ordinary level of paranoia assumed terrorism was inevitable. After all, I was working in a building that had been bombed before. My friend Colin, who currently works as a lawyer in the land of the Baader-Meinhof, told me just a few years ago when he visted New York: it's gonna happen. It's only a matter of time, but it's gonna happen, and when it does, America won't be ready. I think every single time I left the World Trade Center, for whatever reason, I entertained very brief thoughts about feeling safer, now that I was away from such an obvious target. I didn't like being in Penn Station at 9:00 AM. I always tried getting out of there as quickly as I could. Wherever possible, I would avoid taking trains during the thick of rush hour. It sickens me to think of all that mental energy spent on empty paranoia, and it sickens me to think I was in a sense right: all the scenarios I entertained about escaping the trauma and that's exactly what happened to me.

I may very well be lucky, but I don't think about it anymore. The relief ebbed away. I am just here.

Television changes everything. The World Trade Center was always, always on TV, and yet I never got used to having video intermediary between my eyes and the buildings-in-themselves. And now I have to face familiar scene + dirt and debris, making everything just familiar enough to be sickeningly disorienting. That's the Borders I used to buy books from, and the HSBC Bank I cashed a check in as late as last Friday. Only this time I see it being effaced in angry, billowing debris that people are running from. Those are the windows from Seven World Trade Center that used to reflect sunlight into our windows back at Two World Trade. (I should've known the stone veneer was that thin.) That pit is where I saw the Shangri-Las, Alex Chilton with the Box Tops, and Glen Branca perform, and now (even though I can't see them) there are little bits of bodies everywhere. The arcade with the ridiculous palm trees, the one with the excellent acoustics and the great lunch areas -- you can see the sky through the back now. People I knew once fed their nicotine habits in front of that shard of building. Dad took me to the top of the building when I was a kid. Not once, but twice. They filmed The Wiz there. It was once one way, and now it is another. Repeat to infinite possibilities. Of course this is the way of all flesh, but usually God gives you the luxury to ignore most changes.

Michael Daddino, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Promised a friend in NYC that I'd call her to help her through the night, but I couldn't get through. After the second attempt, I stopped trying. Realized then that the phone lines need to be left free for those who haven't been able to reach their friends/loved ones yet, not for people like us who've already made contact once in the last 24 hours. I hope she understands. Will try to be here on e-mail for her (and others) today. E-mail has been an incredible source of info and of reassurance during this time. Especially here at ILE, where I've lurked more than participating (up until now). Thank you everyone for your thoughtful replies and excellent links ...

Last night my neighbors got into yet another heated argument -- it wasn't about the disaster, but I could tell that the extra venom in their voices, the extra loud door-slams and swear-words -- that all these things were due to the anger and helplessness they felt as a result of watching, worrying and wondering ...

Please, whoever you are and wherever you are, and however you feel about the incredible tragedy that's just taken place : try to find a _constructive_ way to deal with your feelings -- PLEASE don't let your rage boil over into hatred and PLEASE don't unleash it on someone else ...

Ironically, the neighborhood kids (who were what the argument was about), were still gleefully carrying on with their war-games. It was unnerving lying on my bed with the lights off, hearing BLAM! BLAM! BLAM! I GOT YOU! YOU'RE DEAD! every few minutes out the window ...

stripey, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

When I was driving home from work (in Newington, CT, around 3:30 PM - approximately 3 hours away from NYC, nowhere near any sort of destruction), I saw kids riding their bikes around. This morning, the air seemed eerily calm. The sound of a few cars driving around, no noise from any airplanes. A few school buses driving around - I know the state & local government is back in action today; my step- mother works for the Lottery Commission.

In the office adjacent to the main entrance (where I'm @ right now), the TV is tuned to CNN, offering information and adjectives, as always. Trying to recast the same brutal facts in different, less numbing packages. I'm going to see if I can donate blood this afternoon, and then maybe catch a movie or do some frivolous shopping - just anything to give myself something else to think about, reclaim (however briefly) some semblance of stability.

David Raposa, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

If I may say -- Mike's post is worth infinitely more all the bullshit mainstream media spin in the world right now.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Best commentary I've seen yet, from Michael Klare at Hampshire College:

You would have to look for groups that are capable of highly skilled and professional operations like this. Your first thought would have to be what is called "the Afghans" -- not necessarily the Afghan government, but that group of people who volunteered to fight with the mujahedin against the Soviet army and received very sophisticated training as well as financing from the CIA. This group would include bin Laden, but there are others as well.

The actions today clearly involved dozens but not hundreds of people. A small enough group to keep their activities secret as they were plotting.

We will desperately look for targets to strike; the pressure for retaliation will be enormous. But it will be hard for us to pinpoint the responsible parties. Groups like the Afghans are stateless. You could strike the Taliban central command, but it's unlikely their top leadership authorized it. These terrorist networks are purposely not highly structured. They're like the right-wing militia types in this country. They may all show up from time to time at the same gun shows, but there is no mailing list or centralized command.

We failed to kill those responsible for the Nairobi embassy bombing when we attacked Afghanistan and the Sudan. I think our chances this time of targeting the right people will also be very slim.

These actions took a tremendous level of precision and sophistication. My guess is this group put all of its resources into this; they've shot their wad. It might inspire other groups that view the U.S. to be the Great Satan to strike, but the numbers who are capable of pulling off something like this are few.

The Palestinians are unlikely to have been involved in something like this. Their rage is directed at Israel, the enemy within their sight. And their military and political apparatus is under immense stress right now; they have their hands full at home.

People are saying this attack was unprecedented, but there have been similar attacks against U.S. targets overseas, of course, like the embassy in Nairobi, the U.S.S. Cole and the military barracks in Saudi Arabia.

This action points less to Palestine than it does to the Saudi Arabia peninsula, where there is a major U.S. military presence and where the U.S. is a powerful backer of the Saudi royal family. Among those like bin Laden who view the U.S. as the Great Satan, in their minds the U.S. military is an occupying force in a sacred land and the Saudi family is corrupt and complicit.

I'm very worried about anti-Arab and anti-Islamic hysteria. And I'm very worried it will radically alter the lives of average Americans. It will be a long time before Americans ever take a plane trip the same way or visit public spaces. The fear will lead to stepped-up security measures and an erosion of our civil liberties.

Americans will struggle with the question "Why us. I thought we were the good guys?" But for many people in the world, we are a symbol of evil and oppression. Our vast wealth and power are bound to create resentment in some quarters. We should ask ourselves what actions our government has taken over the years that have built up this resentment. Such as our close relationship with the Saudi royal family, which many in that country view as hopelessly corrupt and tyrannical. Since there is no ability to oppose the family's rule in a democratic fashion, opposition to their rule is bound to take a terroristic route.

Nitsuh, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I went to church and lit a candle, something I have never done before. I felt like I had to do something. I just couldn't spend more hours gawping at the tv screen watching those same dreadful pictures again and again. If my dad had worked for the company he works for in Britain in America, none of their offices were below the 92nd floor of the south tower, the one that came down first. And you just think, 'oh shit'.

Bill, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

FAA says air ban extended indefinitely.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Figures.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Bush: "Make no mistake, the United States will hunt down and punish those responsible for these cowardly acts."

The terrorists involved were many things, but almost by definition were not cowardly.

the pinefox, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

pentagon being re-evactuated. fires are out of control.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Taking thousands of innocent lives in a secretive attempt to make a point is cowardly.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Samantha: The point is not "secretive." The fact that we've spent decades deliberately ignoring it does not make it not exist.

And by your logic, the CIA would be the most "cowardly" organization on the face of this Earth.

Nitsuh, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Terrorists != cowardly: not cos their ideas are grate (I think the attacks a terrible atrocity), but cos they consciously threw their own lives away.

the pinefox, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I didn't understand them letting people go back to work at the Pentagon. I mean I know its a big building but its still on fire. We have rules about things like that surely. How happy would you have been to rock in to a more than smouldering building to continue filling?

Pete, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Nitsuh, thanks for that post - is there a link to this? I'd like for certain members of my family to see it, namely my brother, who sent me a hysterical e-mail this morning saying that we are at war and that we can't afford to proceed with caution, that this terrorist act is about "world domination" and if you don't think so, go live in the Middle East, etc.

I'm feeling suffocated by the hate and jingoism right now. The atmosphere in this country is going to be just like the Gulf War, when my roommate, a former punk rock mohawk kid, pasted his walls with pictures of war planes and most of my other friends didn't have any idea what was really going on and didn't give a fuck. I felt betrayed by so many people and I know it's going to happen again. I'm going to have to listen to bullshit coming out of the mouths of my co-workers and I won't be able to say anything, because anything I have to say isn't very nice and besides, they have more power than me. I hate the hysterical tabloid headlines, "America Under Attack", "Attack on America". Talking heads are not reporters anymore but cheerleaders. I'm not surprised by any of this, but it makes me sick to think it's happening all over again. I have a bad headache and I'm becoming deeply depressed. I don't want to be at work today and I can't think about anything. I just hate this country. About 90% of them would support the nuking of "A-Rabs" unquestioningly.

Kerry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Kerry -- it's on Salon ... lead in their collected reactions. Just watch out for David Horowitz.

Pinefox -- quite right; I wasn't necessarily defending their aims. Only agreeing that (a) it takes balls to attack the Pentagon under any circumstances, so the "cowardly" is perplexing, and (b) pretending that this is "senseless" and ignoring the very real political factors and motivations behind it seems deliberately ignorant and dangerous. By pretending that there are not reasons for this, we only allow for our country to take more actions that provoke the same problems in the future, when we will theoretically again plead ignorance to the situation that's affecting us.

Nitsuh, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

consciously threw their own lives away - rather than figuring out a worthwhile reason for living. Meaning that sometimes it takes more courage to live with complexities than to die for simplicities.

Frank Kogan, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Put another way: if a hurricane had done this, we would have 200 meterologists on television detailed exactly how conditions developed and why. But when it's human action, we just cry "senseless" and act completely perplexed and imagine that most of the Arab world is just insane and hateful. This seems unwise.

Nitsuh, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Kerry, don't get depressed. I have more faith in our country's intelligence than that. Those who know better have to keep a level head for the sake's of those who don't. As far as media... I would avoid the big three. All you have to do is look at their primetime programming to realize what their goals are. Most of the reporting on NPR is sober and well-executed: no tag lines or ad hoc ranting. Nitsuh, perhaps the CIA is the most cowardly group in the world.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Where are you getting the FAA info? I've been told that a decision on when to start planes again will be made later today, and passengers in Newark have been given tickets for flights leaving today. Kate has a ticket for a 9pm flight, I know that much.

This lack of information is the worst.

Paul Strange, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I think it is a natural human reaction to view something like this as senseless. Violence is senseless. Just b/c our government might have executed bad foriegn policy doesn't mean quid pro quo lower manhatten is destroyed. Fred, nice summation of courage.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"Consciously threw their own lives away" - rather than figuring out a worthwhile reason for living. Meaning that sometimes it takes more courage to live with complexities than to die for simplicities.

Do you see the gross double standard you're applying just to allow you to call terrorists "cowardly" (when surely "murderous" is enough)? A whole lot of Americans sacrificed their lives in WWII, and we consider that "courageous" and "honorable." Should they have found "worthwhile reasons for living," or can we just admit that people, no matter how extreme or indefensible their views, are not being "cowardly" when they die for things that they -- however wrongheadedly -- believe in?

Nitsuh, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I've mentioned this on the commentary thread, but I suggest reading Michael Moore's incredibly good post here.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I just worked up the nerve to call up someone I'm friendly with at Mancini-Duffy's San Francisco office. They haven't tried to account for everybody yet, but he told me the office was completely evacuated after the first plane hit -- save for two IT guys who wanted to get a closer look at the mayhem, both of whom absolutely high-tailed outta there once the second plane hit.

The guy at the SF office has *already* set up a new firm-wide e-mail system, and apparently all of the principals will be having a pow-wow today.

FYI: Macnini Duffy backs up our entire network every month on computer tape which is sent monthly to an off-site location; in addition, we have three other offices around the country, so it's not inconcievable that we can get back on our feet relatively quickly.

I still have no idea if I have a job, though, and if I still do, when I can go back to...wherever. Mancini-Duffy set up a temporary space in Midtown Manhattan after the 1993 bombing, and I assume we'll do the same this time round.

Michael Daddino, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

"to take more actions that provoke the same problems in the future": I think that's pretty much a given, sad to say. Given the nonsense Ehud Barak was talking on UK TV last night, for example.

Frank like you I think atheism is a more courageous option that the alternatives, but BOY is that a can o'worms....

As to WORLD DOMINATION, it occurs to me that (possibly) no one is actually left living of the precise org which undertook this particular attack. For from world dom, they have wiped themselves from the world (of course with countless others).

mark s, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Paul, the FAA announcement was aired on NPR (national public radio) a few moments ago. Nitsuh, I understand some of where you're coming from. However i do not think that either a. those hijackers who believed so strongly in something that they were willing to take their own lives along with scores of others or b. those who funded, assisted and encouraged these hijackers (if they exist) are courageous.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

From the AP wire:

Today: September 12, 2001 at 9:20:02 PDT

FAA Unsure When Flights Will Resume WASHINGTON- The Federal Aviation Administration continued its ban on flying Wednesday and said it wasn't sure when airline flights would resume.

FAA spokeswoman Diane Spitaliere said agency officials were deciding when to allow planes to take off.

Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport, a major airline hub, said it would not open at noon, and Delta Airlines said all of its flights would be canceled until 6 p.m. EDT, including commuter flights. Southwest Airlines said it would not fly at all Wednesday.

Another FAA spokesman, Les Dorr, said people should not expect all flights to resume normal travel, since many planes are at the wrong airports.

"I think it is fair to say there is not going to be a mass exodus of planes and passengers that have been on the ground because some of the airlines have airplanes that are literally in the wrong place to fly their schedules," Dorr said.

He declined to discuss increased security measures, but said, "Passengers should expect to have to devote more time to the check-in process."

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Nitsuh is on the money.

the pinefox, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Well said, Nitsuh.

Andy, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

We just got sent this at work.

> -----Original Message----- > From: FAST Hotline London > Sent: 12 September 2001 4:53 PM > To: London PC Users > Subject: city demonstration > Importance: High > > Arab demonstrators are heading to the City and the police have advised all > to be vigilant. > > > Richard Boast > Fast Hotline > 1414

Sounds like more pointless finger-pointing and paranoia to me.

Paul Strange, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I've been lurking here a lot and am thankful for the links, touched by the sense of community, and relieved with the level-headed discussion, but -- as well as praising the contributions of Mark, Ned, Michael among others -- I wanted to poke my head up and thank Nitsuh for everything he's said on these boards today. Well done.

scott p., Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

According to my wife, FBI agents, a SWAT team and a bomb squad descended on the Westin Hotel in Copley Square. No one knows what they're doing, but they're apparently still allowing guests into the hotel. Rumor says they're arresting someone, although I have no idea why a bomb squad is there if they're not evacuating the building.

Dan Perry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Nitsuh well said.

Wonderful Michael Moore piece - nail on the head as so often.

And thankyou so much Mr Daddino.

berbis, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Minor point (and I don't mean to carp during this interesting discussion): Don't use "Arab" as an umbrella term for groups that include Persians, Afghanis, etc. (And yesterday I was noticing that people were using "American" to mean McVeigh types as opposed to bin Laden supporters, whereas the latter may also include some U.S. citizens.)

Mark: I don't think that in itself knowing I'm an atheist tells you anything interesting about my beliefs, or tells you one way or another whether I'm complex or simpleminded. And if I believed in God that wouldn't necessarily make me simpleminded, any more than it made Aquinas, Augustine, Luther, and scores (all right, millions) of others simple-minded.

Also (while in carping mode) I notice an ambiguity in this discussion's use of the word senseless. I.e., senseless meaning the opposite of "sensible," in which case the attack does seem to have been senseless, as opposed to "senseless" meaning "without reason or cause," in which case the attack was not senseless, and thoughtful people will try to make sense of it.

Pinefox - the other Kogan says this about his situation: "As it happens, I work in the CNN building, which has to be the safest building in Washington."

And Nitsuh, I don't have nearly enough information to have an opinion on how courageous or not the terrorists were. My point is that throwing one's life away in and of itself is not necessarily courageous. I can't imagine that you don't understand this.

Frank Kogan, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

From BBC News 24 - several people arrested in Boston & Florida. Pentagon being evacuated due to spreading fire (Was it Pete who mentioned this earlier? Well predicted)

Madchen, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

My point is that throwing one's life away in and of itself is not necessarily courageous. I can't imagine that you don't understand this.

I believe that Nitsuh's point is that throwing away one's life in and of itself is not necessarily cowardly.

Dan Perry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I am ignorant: was this terrorist act primarily motivated by political or religious beliefs?

Mitch Lastnamewithheld, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I am ignorant: was this terrorist act primarily motivated by political or religious beliefs?

We don't even know who they were yet. Until that time, all bets are off.

Ned Raggett, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Mitch: well since we're not sure who commited them yet a motive is kind of hard. If it was Bin Laden's followers than I would say it's a complex mix of religious and political motivation behind it.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Palestinian celebrations: primarily political or religious?

Mitch Lastnamewithheld, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I would call those politcial. They are upset with how the US government has backed Israel.

Samantha, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

(NB. I am not trying to point fingers, stir controversy or instigate hatred. I am trying to learn more about a situation that's left me with intermittent queasiness and a fairly constant sense of dread)

Mitch Lastnamewithheld, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

My questions must seem juvenile, ignorant, rushed: I shouldn't be posting now.

Mitch Lastnamewithheld, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Mitch: probably both. Very simply paraphrasing a section of the Qu'uran, Christians and Jews should be treated with respect by Muslims, as the foundations of their religions are the same as those of Islam. However, various cultural and political slants are put on the words of the Qu'uran in different countries because of the differing ways you can read into the texts of any religion to suit your needs if necessary.

Madchen, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

News 24: FAA say categorically flights will not be resumed in the next few hours.

Graham, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Confirmation from BBC that in the past few minutes FAA has categorically stated that airports will remain closed today.

Madchen, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Has there been much made of the plane attack in Iraq? It involved US & UK fighters, from what I read. I can't remember where I read it, though - else, I'd post a link.

David Raposa, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

More on the stuff going on in Boston here. Actually, the WHDH site in general seems to have most of the breaking Boston news.

Dan Perry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I am unsatisfied with the local NPR coverage on webradio at this point. Does anyone have any recommendations for webcasts worth listening to? The big networks are inaccessible.

Kerry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

This has affected more than I would have thought possible. A simple act, probably a cold PR move, but still beautiful.

Dan Perry, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Live stream of BBC News 24 at http://news.bbc.co.uk/ (click on Live Now) and you can also listen to the world service at http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/index.shtml (click on Live News)

Madchen, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

I don't know what sources to trust, what to think, even - things I thought I knew (or perhaps hoped I wouldn't have to know) now seem terribly slipperly, terribly changed.

On television: A young woman is frantically searching for her missing fiance, tears streaming down her face, the camera shows a list of phone numbers and pieces of information she's collected. A reporter shoves a microphone in her face: "And you were to have a wedding soon?"

Would it be too much to ask for the media to refrain from gratuitous exploitation of grief at this time?

Mitch Lastnamewithheld, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

That's why I'm watching the BBC - it's slightly detatched, whereas some US channels are getting hysterical.

Madchen, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

They showed that on the BBC, and she found her fiance, thank God. Thousands haven't.

Graham, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

Also: BBC footage suggests celebrations in Arab world represent minority hardline opinion - there were pictures yesterday of Palestinians watching, apalled, on TV. They may well have been apalled in part because they are going to suffer for the actions of ultra-extremists.

Tom, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink

New thread.

Graham, Wednesday, 12 September 2001 00:00 (fifteen years ago) Permalink


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