Sunday, July 29, 2012

The United States of Amnesia pt. 1

NBC and FOX, September 11, 2001
Near Shanksville, Pennsylvania

The video and images below came from a FOX report on the crash of United Airlines Flight 93.

It's a puzzle, isn't it?  A photographer at the site that morning saw "nothing that you could distinguish that a plane had crashed there."

My luck was no better.  I couldn’t see any sections of wings or fuselage.  I couldn’t see the crumpled hulks of the plane’s engines.  I couldn’t see the severed and charred tail section of the plane lying nearby like a toppled cross of accusation.  I couldn’t see any indication of the raging fireball produced by the plane’s fuel.  I couldn’t see any drink trolleys or passenger seats or suitcases.  I couldn’t see any bodies.  I couldn’t see any evidence of a plane crash at all.

Obviously, I was wrong, just like all the reporters and witnesses.  The plane must have crashed with such force that it buried itself in that small hole and was reduced to dust.  I guess back then, I didn’t know much about plane crashes.


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The United States of Amnesia pt. 2

CNN, April 19, 1995
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, the attack on the Murrah Building

I can recall watching television coverage of the rescue effort and seeing medical workers running away from the building when other bombs were discovered.  It was terrible to imagine that a survivor in the wreckage could die because help was delayed.  It was even more terrible to think that other bombs had been set to target rescue workers.

But as it turned out, there were no other bombs.  The only bomb involved was the one that had been sitting in a truck parked in front of the building.  I guess in Oklahoma back then, the Department of Justice; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms; and the Oklahoma City bomb squad didn’t know much about bombs.


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The United States of Amnesia pt. 3

KNOP Radio, 12:30 p.m., November 22, 1963
Dallas, Texas

Seconds after the shooting, people and police officers were running to the fence on the grassy knoll at the northwest end of Dealy Plaza.  Why?  After all, the shots came from the sixth floor of a building at the northeast end of Dealy Plaza.  I guess in Texas back then, they didn’t know much about guns.