Last Sunday, a lead editorial in the Washington Post lamented the attention given to what happened in New York City on September 11, 2001, at the expense of the tragic scene on the same day in Washington, as a jet plane crashed into the west wall of the Pentagon, claiming 184 victims.
In history books, documentaries and news accounts and across popular culture, the shift toward an almost exclusive focus on the New York part of the 9/11 story has been steady and relentless. Amid hundreds of hours of programming in this week’s many television tributes, there are only nominal mentions of the Pentagon attack.
Today, the streets of New York will be cordoned off near the place known as “Ground Zero” to allow for the usual tributes by the usual suspects. Among them will be those who, for any other occasion, might be accused of loving the sound of their own voices. On the other hand, missing from the center of attention, will be the heroes of that day. The police officers and firefighters of the City of New York will not be in mass attendance. The city claims there was no room for them, so they were not invited. Nor were they invited on this day ten years ago, but they came. And those who are still with us remember nearly four hundred of their comrades who died, while trying to save the lives of thousands trapped in the twin towers of the World Trade Center.
Throughout the blogosphere today, thousands will go to the pages of their favorite would-be pundits, who will post tributes of their own. They will no doubt be sincere in so doing. But most of them can only give secondhand accounts. They were not there. I was in Washington on that day. This is my story.
Please go to MWBH for David’s story…