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ANDY MARTIN /2012
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Andy Martin, in New York on 9/11, Part Two (of two parts)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
I was having brunch after church on Sunday when I started chatting with the steward in our dining room. A friend and I were planning to go on a Sunday ride and he suggested a drive along the New Jersey Palisades.
We took off and kept on driving. Eventually we were back in
Years before I had taught in
Monday I made plans to go downtown on
The phone rang Tuesday morning.
I took the elevator to the 78th floor and went out on the roof. The
By now a pattern of attacks had emerged.
I alternated between the roof and the TV. My inclination was not to head downtown right away. My first thought was to organize all of this “information” in a way that made sense.
As the reality of the
Some people have criticized Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s performance on 9/11 and thereafter. I want to be clear about my feelings: I believe Mayor Giuliani’s performance was outstanding. In a nation that could not yet contemplate the possibility of mass terrorism, and in a city that had only a “King Kong” version of total terror as a backdrop, Giuliani had his staff will be vindicated by history for their magnificent performance.
Going between the roof and the office I tried to keep matters in perspective. In the back of my mind I remembered how the Port Authority Police station was located several levels below the surface. Possibly the police station had survived?
I went downstairs for dinner. There was no food. Truck traffic had been blocked. The cook had cut up leftover bread and cheese and put out a simple spread. The staff was gone. The “island” of
Broadway was closed. Midtown was empty. People were fleeing on foot. Darkness fell and the city’s lights also went dark. I tried to ride my bike but could not get close to the
Since 9/11 I have come to interact with other lives that were changed on that day. We are still changing.
Almost every Sunday now I walk past the
Today, ten years later, only part of the
I have mixed feelings emotionally as well. My parish priests like to breast beat about “reconciliation” and “forgiveness.” In my opinion, the time for reconciliation and forgiveness is after the war is over, not while the war is going on. So I respectfully disagree with my priests. We ought to kill Al-Qaeda down to the last man, and ensure this gang of religious fanatics will never rise again. Anywhere, anyhow. And then we can forgive them and “reconcile” with the reality of evil.
We have killed people that we initially captured, held at
In reading the Washington Post over the weekend I was surprised by the negativity of the newspaper’s columnists. Some writers felt we had “lost” something in the wake of 9/11. I have the same criticism of that attitude that I have of the fundamentally decent Rep. Ron Paul who mistakenly wants to return us to an earlier, agrarian era. The world is constantly changing. Falsely accusing TSA officiers of “mauling” passengers, when no one has come up with a better way to move millions of passengers quickly, is unfair and unreasonable.
Yes, I am irritated by the endless security measures. What’s not to irritate? But I have come to accept we must trust the people we elect to exercise their best judgment. Even if we elect
People were quick to point the finger of blame after 9/11.
Former President Clinton was at fault because he didn’t “get” Osama bin Laden when he could have. But I didn’t think
On 9/11 the American people lost their innocence. “Foreign policy” was no longer foreign. Whether we liked it or not, we had been forced to join the real world.
I didn’t think that I would ever see another overseas war in my lifetime. And yet two years later I would be living in
A world that is constantly connected for good is also constantly connected for evil. The New York Police department has also come under criticism for operating a global anti-terrorism operation. Well I say, “Thank God for the NYPD.” If “competition” is good in business and economics, it is also good in politics and law enforcement. The NYPD keeps other anti-terror operators on their toes. Now that we know the extent of the potential damage evil people can inflict on the
Please forgive me if I close these columns with a “commercial” for my presidential campaign. I am not in the “top five” presidential candidates, but I am certainly in the top ten. So I am a dark horse or a long shot or whatever. But I do not think that anyone can deny my qualifications and experience for a place on the national ticket. I believe we can and should strike a proper balance between civil liberties and national security, but the balance must be slanted towards national security, not abstract principles of law.
We must avoid unnecessary wars such as the invasion of
© Copyright by Andy Martin 2011 – All Rights Reserved