Tuesday, June 7, 2005


HatTip to Power Line. Definitely read in the WSJ. The post from Power Line was good, so no need to sweat a bit more:

...deeply disturbing column in the WSJ by Debra Burlingame, sister of the 9/11 pilot whose plane was flown into the Pentagon. Burlingame explains how, through the efforts of American leftists, the World Trade Center memorial is set to become a didactic lecture on the meaning of liberty in a post-9/11 world that will include a healthy dose of America bashing.

This is so outrageous that I don't trust myself to comment, so permit me to rely on Burlingame:

The so-called lessons of September 11 should not be force-fed by ideologues hoping to use the memorial site as nothing more than a powerful visual aid to promote their agenda. Instead of exhibits and symposiums about Internationalism and Global Policy we should hear the story of the courageous young firefighter whose body, cut in half, was found with his legs entwined around the body of a woman. Recovery personnel concluded that because of their positions, the young firefighter was carrying her.

The people who visit Ground Zero in five years will come because they want to pay their respects at the place where heroes died. They will come because they want to remember what they saw that day, because they want a personal connection, to touch the place that touched them, the place that rallied the nation and changed their lives forever. I would wager that, if given a choice, they would rather walk through that dusty hanger at JFK Airport where 1,000 World Trade Center artifacts are stored than be herded through the International Freedom Center's multi-million dollar insult.

Ground Zero has been stolen, right from under our noses. How do we get it back?
(full article)

UPDATE: Definitely read it, blog about it, talk about it, and maybe write your representatives on the Hill. This is tragic for all the lives lost if the truth is hidden by Tom Bernstein. Some more:

The public will be confused at first, and then feel hoodwinked and betrayed. Where, they will ask, do we go to see the September 11 Memorial? The World Trade Center Memorial Foundation will have erected a building whose only connection to September 11 is a strained, intellectual one. While the IFC is getting 300,000 square feet of space to teach us how to think about liberty, the actual Memorial Center on the opposite corner of the site will get a meager 50,000 square feet to exhibit its 9/11 artifacts, all out of sight and underground. Most of the cherished objects which were salvaged from Ground Zero in those first traumatic months will never return to the site. There is simply no room. But the International Freedom Center will have ample space to present us with exhibits about Chinese dissidents and Chilean refugees. These are important subjects, but for somewhere -- anywhere -- else, not the site of the worst attack on American soil in the history of the republic.

More disturbing, the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. is handing over millions of federal dollars and the keys to that building to some of the very same people who consider the post-9/11 provisions of the Patriot Act more dangerous than the terrorists that they were enacted to apprehend -- people whose inflammatory claims of a deliberate torture policy at Guantanamo Bay are undermining this country's efforts to foster freedom elsewhere in the world.

The driving force behind the IFC is Tom Bernstein, the dynamic co-founder of the Chelsea Piers Sports and Entertainment Complex who made a fortune financing Hollywood movies. But his capital ventures appear to have funded his true calling, the pro bono work he has done his entire adult life -- as an activist lawyer in the human rights movement. He has been a proud member of Human Rights First since it was founded -- as the Lawyers Committee for Human Rights -- 27 years ago, and has served as its president for the last 12.

The public has a right to know that it was Mr. Bernstein's organization, joined by the American Civil Liberties Union, that filed a lawsuit three months ago against Donald Rumsfeld on behalf of detainees in Iraq and Afghanistan. It was Human Rights First that filed an amicus brief on behalf of alleged "dirty bomber" Jose Padilla, an American citizen who the Justice Department believes is an al Qaeda recruit. It was Human Rights First that has called for a 9/11-style commission to investigate the alleged torture of detainees, complete with budget authority, subpoena power and the ability to demand that witnesses testify under oath.

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