Thursday, September 08, 2011

Tom Engelhardt: "Tear Down the Freedom Tower" @ Tom Dispatch

I'm sick of it, aren't you?

The endless announcements of "ceremonies" and "remembrances" ritualized over countless "memorials" for 9/11. Sometimes while staring at all the "news coverage" of this tired worn-out excuse for nationalistic mass delusions I hear distant undertakers, priests and bankers clapping their hands in glee from some room behind an altar.

There was a time when the pain was so massive that people wanted to forget; the hunger and hardships of the Great Depression, wars so bloody that whole generations were wasted, killed, maimed and ruined till they died off, leaving a fresh new generation cleaned of that memory with fresh energetic faces toward a bright future with happiness and tranquility ahead.

We've been had, conned, hoodwinked again.

Let’s bag it.

I’m talking about the tenth anniversary ceremonies for 9/11, and everything that goes with them: the solemn reading of the names of the dead, the tolling of bells, the honoring of first responders, the gathering of presidents, the dedication of the new memorial, the moments of silence. The works.

Let’s just can it all. Shut down Ground Zero. Lock out the tourists. Close “Reflecting Absence,” the memorial built in the “footprints” of the former towers with its grove of trees, giant pools, and multiple waterfalls before it can be unveiled this Sunday. Discontinue work on the underground National September 11 Museum due to open in 2012. Tear down the Freedom Tower (redubbed 1 World Trade Center after our “freedom” wars went awry), 102 stories of “the most expensive skyscraper ever constructed in the United States.” (Estimated price tag: $3.3 billion.) Eliminate that still-being-constructed, hubris-filled 1,776 feet of building, planned in the heyday of George W. Bush and soaring into the Manhattan sky like a nyaah-nyaah invitation to future terrorists. Dismantle the other three office towers being built there as part of an $11 billion government-sponsored construction program. Let’s get rid of it all. If we had wanted a memorial to 9/11, it would have been more appropriate to leave one of the giant shards of broken tower there untouched. ...

Read more at Tom's Dispatch.

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