Portside Readers' Reflections of 9/11
* Gregory Williams
* Roberto Pizarro
* Andrea Palmer
* Greg King
* Lois Ross
* David Gilbert
* Joseph Maizlish
Don't forget the other terrorist 9/11: 9/11/1973 the arial
bombing of the presidential palace and assassination of
elected president Salvador Allende by the CIA organized
coup. I hope you include a good piece on that. Or the mass
murder of millions of Vietnamese. Americans are so self-
It is a pity that Portside use, consciously or
unconsciously, the same technique that the right wing media
use - that is to say - "bad memory, selective memory or
ignoring" the ignominy of 11th September 1973. I do not
think that I need to submit any information as there is a
mountain of evidence, now declassified, in the Library of
Congress regarding Nixon, Kissinger, ITT, CIA, etc.
interferrence in Chile and in additon in Nicaragua, El
Salvador, Cyprus, etc, etc.
From a Chilean member of the Portside Community
The best thing that happened for me after the horror of
Sept. 11 was hearing a woman who lost her husband speak.
She was a member of Not in Our Name. Too bad the world did
not listen to her and others like her. So many lives would
have been saved. I am sorry that the organization has been
dissolved. From Wikipedia: Not in Our Name (NION) was a
United States organization founded on March 23, 2002 to
protest the U.S. government's course in the wake of the
September 11, 2001 attacks; it disbanded on March 31, 2008
I think the terrorist attacks on September 11th were allowed
to happen. I believe they had intelligence leading to
Mohammad Atta et al. There is the fact that fighters were
held on the ground after those planes left their flight
paths. Normal practice would have been for those fighters
to shadow the commercial aircraft.
I think Washington sacrificed those 3,000 lives to build a
case for Homeland Security and the War on Terror.
Neoconservatives had their eyes on an expanded imperial
policy for some time.
Since Homeland Security and the War on Terror, there have
been increasing assaults on the Constitution. I don't
recognize the country now. Warrantless wiretraps,
indefinite imprisonment,kidnapping and shipping people to
"black sites," assassination of American citizens abroad
contradict the Civics class picture. I know that wasn't
real. The reality has always been different from the
promise. But it was the promise of America that seemed
real: "All Men Are Created Equal," "Equal Justice Under Law"
-- these were ideals which, with the Voting Rights Act, the
Civil Rights Act, Head Start, WIC, seemed within reach.
Now we are becoming more unequal than ever, with vast
disaparities of wealth. The promise of America was more
illusory than real, but now it is becoming a joke.
We have to reverse this. We have to rebuild the union
movement and other progressive movements.
Sept. 11th had a shock impact on New York City. I witnessed
the smoking towers from 2nd Avenue where I live and for days
couldn't believe what had happened. All traffic was
stopped. I saw pictures of the people who worked there
posted on bldgs. in my neighborhood asking for people to let
relatives and friends know if they had seen their beloveds,
not wanting to believe that they might be gone forever. I
myself stayed indoors for days because the air was filled
with the smell of burning fuel; I watched the TV constantly.
It was a great tragedy.
Other countries were also shocked. I think they thought
that the US was inpenetrable. With all our nuclear weapons
and our measures of security who could think that the plan
to blow up the World Trade Center and the White House in
Washington could be attacked and carried out.
Some people thought about what our country did to other
countries through our wars in Vietnam, Afghanistan, Korea
and felt that the rebels wanted to show the US that they too
could have lives lost.
The peace movement was forever forgotten about because the
US felt that it had to stop terrorism and that war against
those people was the only way.
People lives were forever changed. Look at all the security
measures now. When I go to the museum my pocketbook has to
be inspected as if I am a terrorist. When I go to the
airport, I have to take off my shoes and have my pockets
emptied. On the subway an announcement is made, " if you
see something, say something." This is the age of
The arrival of the 10th anniversary to the collapse of the
World Trade Center buildings should be a time to reopen the
investigation as to why the buildings fell down so quickly.
Numerous engineers and scientists have questioned the
validity of such a pristine fall. The relatives of the
people who perished in this conflagration deserve a through
explanation of what happened and who was actually
All Americans mourn and remember the people who lost their
lives, and we should be given the correct information as to
the cause, and responsibility for the buildings collapse.
Anything less is an insult to both the living and dead.
Recalling 9-11 apprehensions
Soon after the attacks I was at the L.A. HQ of the Red
Cross, serving as a Disaster Mental Health specialist
supporting those answering phones from a concerned,
compassionate, and distraught public seeking information and
offering donations. On the basement walls were TV sets.
"America's New War" was the title permanently displayed
under one network's programming. I was horrified and afraid.
Is this to be our official model for processing the event?
What of allowing our natural grief over lost lives and lost
sense of security to run its course? Were we as a society
so intolerant of such feelings that we had to channel the
grief into illusion of power and strength, replace the sense
of vulnerability with the noise of violence? That was the
prospect, and to a large extent, it has become the reality,
compounding the losses and the tragedy.
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