Monday, February 7, 2011

At Ground Zero: a sham memorial

From NY Daily News, a 9/11 victim's brother writes:

At Ground Zero, a sham memorial: A victim's brother says the plans insult our history

Sunday, February 6th 2011, 4:00 AM

View of Ground Zero taken from 7 World Trade Center Sept. 2010.
View of Ground Zero taken from 7 World Trade Center Sept. 2010.

The con job at Ground Zero is not some lame memorabilia company selling fake coins. By focusing on easy targets like the National Collector's Mint, the media have missed the real fakery: the billion-dollar, 8-acre National September 11 Memorial and Museum at the World Trade Center. It is no more authentic than those infamous commemorative coins, but a lot more harmful to the memory of those who died there.

The fact is that the memorial will include nothing of the 9/11 attacks or the World Trade Center. Remember the steel remnants of the destroyed towers? Visit the "9/11 Memorial Preview Site" on Vesey St. and their images are everywhere. And though there will be an underground museum beneath the memorial that will contain physical remnants of the towers, no such artifacts will be part of the street-level memorial itself.

Remember Fritz Koenig's "The Sphere?" For 30 years, it stood on the World Trade Center plaza as a symbol of peace. It survived the 9/11 attacks and was embraced as an icon of American perseverance. However, it will not be part of the "national" 9/11 memorial. Other artifacts, such as the crushed fire trucks and flyers for the missing, will also be hidden out of sight deep in Manhattan's only subterranean museum.

The victims - these include my brother, city firefighter Capt. William F. Burke Jr. - will be identified not as victims of an attacks on America but as "lost" to causes unknown. The words "firefighter" and "police officer" won't be part of the memorial.

Everything that should remind us of the attacks will have been eliminated from the site by the time the memorial opens (partially) on the attacks' tenth anniversary. Why? As the 13-member jury that chose the memorial put it, "to protect the integrity of the design." That's right: the "integrity" of the memorial depends upon it rejecting history.

The memorial will wipe away all evidence of the attacks and replace it with trees and waterfalls. This is like covering Gettysburg with asphalt. Everything we remember 9/11 by, all that we embraced after the attacks, will be replaced with a tribute to the narcissism of elitist intellectuals, artists and politicians. What if past generations had done that at Auschwitz or Hiroshima?...

Mr Burke has much more to say HERE. No commentary from me needed, so I urge you to go read this column. Our 9/11 families deserve far better respect than this.

(H/T Diane)

No comments: