Friday, my wife and I and our 87 year old neighbor Don, went to the local theatre to be among the first to see the new movie, Sully, the incredible story of the emergency landing of an airliner in the Hudson River off NYC in January, 2009. “How can you take a 90 second event and turn it into a 90 minute movie?” my friend asked.
Very, very easily. Take in the film. The basic true story is here.
Of course (I’m certain), the movie was timed to be released on the eve of the 15th anniversary of 9-11-01, even though the near-disaster actually happened in January, 2009.
I have feelings about 9-11-01. At the end of this post, I share a few personal links from that period in time. I will always have doubts about certain and substantial parts of the official narrative about what happened that awful day, though that labels me as a “conspiracy theorist” I suppose. So be it.
But what occurs to me this day in 2016 came to mind a few days ago when I found a cardboard envelope in a box, whose contents included this certificate (8 1/2×11 in original size).
Notice the signature on the certificate (Donald Rumsfeld) and the date of the form printed in the lower left corner (July 1, 2001). (Click to enlarge).
The full contents of the envelope can be viewed here: cold-war-cert-packet003
Of course, people like myself had no idea why the article appeared in the newspaper, or how this particular project came to be.
It is obvious from the documents themselves that the free certificate was publicized no later than sometime in 1999; and the certificate itself wasn’t mailed until some time in 2001 to my then mailing address…. The original website about the certificate seems no longer accessible, but there is a wikipedia entry about it.
When I revisited the envelope I remembered a working group of powerful people called the Project for a New American Century (PNAC) formed in the late 1990s.
The group as then constituted no longer officially exists, but had (my opinion) huge influence on America’s disastrous response to 9-11-01 (which continues to this day).
Many members of this select group, including Donald Rumsfeld, and Richard B. Cheney, strategized to establish permanent U.S. dominance in the world, and had very high level positions in the administration of George W. Bush, 2001-2009. PNAC was no benign committee of friends meeting for coffee every Saturday. To cement the notion that to have peace you must be stronger than the enemy…there has to be an enemy. If not a hot war, then a cold war will have to do. Keep things unsettled and people will follow some dominant leader more easily.
Their Cold War ended in December, 1991, as you’ll note, which likely was cause for concern. 9-11-01 became the magic elixir for a permanent war with an enemy….
(I happen to be a long-time member of the American Legion also – the Cuban Missile Crisis and the beginning of the Vietnam era were part of my tour of duty in the Army – and much more recently, the Legion magazine
updated talk about the Cold War, here: America at War001.)
My opinion: there remains a desperate and powerful need by powerful entities to sustain an enemy for the U.S. to fight against and, so goes the story, “win”, to borrow a phrase and “make America great again”. As we learned in the years after 9-11-01, dominance has a huge and unsustainable cost. But the idea still lives on.
The mood of the people of this country is for peace – it is simple common sense – but peacemakers have to do much more than simply demonstrate against war to have it come to pass, in a sustainable fashion.
Yes, 9-11-01 was very impactful for me. Here are three personal reflections: 1) chez-nous-wtc-2001002; 2) here; and 3) here: Post 9-11-01001.
I have never been comfortable with the official explanations about many aspects of 9-11-01 and what came after. It is not enough to be ridiculed into silence. Eight years ago my friend Dr. Michael Andregg spent a year doing what I consider a scholarly piece of work about some troubling aspects he saw with 9-11-01. You can watch it online in Rethinking 9-11 at the website, Ground Zero Minnesota. Dr. Andregg made this film for those who are open to critical thinking about an extremely important issue. I watched it again, online, in the last couple of days. It is about 54 minutes, and very well done. Take a look.
Let’s make 9-11-01 a day for peace, not for endless and never to be won war. Humanity deserves better.
(click to enlarge. Photos: Dick Bernard, late June, 1972)
Here, thanks to a long ago handout at a workshop I took in the early 70s, is a more normal reaction sequence to a crisis. As you’ll note, it is useful to allow 9-11-01 to live on and on and on. It is not healthy.
(click to enlarge)