War on Terror: September 2011 Archives

While we again mourn the dead and recall the shock of 9/11/2001, we mustn't forget the path that led to 9/11 -- the Islamist preachers and philosophers who inspired the attacks, the jihadis who carried them out, and the mixture of immigration laxity and political correctness that enabled the attacks to succeed.

A few months ago, I had the pleasure of spending most of the morning with See-Dubya, a sometime guest blogger for Michelle Malkin. After breakfast, See-Dubya pointed out a number of landmarks in the Falls Church area. See-Dubya pointed out the Dar al-Hijrah mosque, where Anwar al-Awlaqi preached hatred against America and Nidal Hasan (the Ft. Hood gunman) sat under his preaching. It tells you something about this area that a restaurant named Al-Jazeera Garden could stay in business for any length of time.


(The restaurant in question is Yemeni, the name means "The Island", and it appears they've since relocated elsewhere in Falls Church under a slightly different English transliteration of the name.)

One of the landmarks See-Dubya pointed out, just a tenth of a mile away from the above photo, is a 7-Eleven convenience store on Leesburg Pike. Today, in a special appearance on MichelleMalkin.com, See-Dubya explains the connections between 9/11 and this particular 7-Eleven, a haven for day laborers less than a mile down the road from Dar al-Hijrah.

This particular 7-11 (you can see the sign, and the workers, in the background, through the monsoon) is in Falls Church, Virginia, on the Leesburg Pike, just down the road from the Dar al-Hijrah mosque. Ten years ago, a charismatic imam named Anwar al-Awlaki manned the pulpit there, and a U.S. soldier named Nidal Hasan listened to his sermons in the congregation.

In fact just a little over ten years ago a couple of worshipers from Dar al-Hijrah drove up to this particular 7-11. They weren't really interested in hiring the day laborers so much as getting someone to help them acquire forged identification. That turned out to be a fellow named Luis A. Martinez-Flores, himself an illegal immigrant, and he walked the two Arabs, Hani Hanjour and Khaled Almidhar, through the process of getting Virginia ID cards--after which they returned to this particular 7-11, withdrew $100 from the ATM, and handed it to Mr. Martinez-Flores....

Hanjour and Almidhar and three other young Arab men used those fake IDs (and three more derived from them) to board American Airlines Flight 77, hijack it, and fly it into the Pentagon.

See-Dubya writes that the 7-Eleven, still operating and in use as an unofficial day-labor center (check out Google Street View) is a monument to America's failure to recognize the connections between our lax enforcement of immigration laws and our vulnerability to terrorist attacks:

You would think the first thing that the newly-formed Department Homeland Security would have done would be to raid this particular labor market, frequented by illegal aliens and the document fraudsters that enable them to feign legitimacy, and shut it down for good. This is the site of our immigration policy's greatest, most shameful failure, after all. Of course, ten years on, it's just business as usual and the shame and failure continue unabated. There's no marker to commemorate what happened there. You'd never know anything historically significant had happened there ten years ago.

You'd have no indication at that particular 7-11 what a petty, commonplace, wretched little conspiracy was committed, and what a dreadful, monstrous crime was thereby abetted. That was where and when our self-deception about the illegal labor market and the security risks it presents caught up to us. Everyone should know this place. Everyone should vow that what happened there will never be permitted to happen again.

It's somewhat surprising that there hasn't been a civil action against the owner of this store for tolerating (if not harboring) the illegal activity that made one of the 9/11 attacks possible. For what it's worth, the Fairfax County property database lists as owner:

P O BOX 711

which suggests that it's corporate-owned, not a franchise. The last sale recorded was 12/31/1966.


The Path to 9/11, a miniseries dramatizing the events that began with the 1993 World Trade Center bombing leading to September 11, but grounded in documented facts, aired on ABC on the fifth anniversary in 2006, but despite public demand, it has never been released on DVD. According to the program's writer, Cyrus Nowrasteh, the problem is political:

The normal time frame from broadcast to DVD for miniseries and movies is approximately four months. Originally I was told by ABC that the DVD release date of Path would be in January [2007]. January came and went, and I was told June was the new release date. Then July. Now ABC's official statement is, "We have not decided on a release date at this time." No further explanation.

But privately, I was told by an ABC executive that "If Hillary weren't running for President, this wouldn't be a problem." The clear message is that ABC/Disney isn't eager to reopen the wound or feel the pressure again from politicians anxious to whitewash their legacy. They would rather just let the miniseries die a quiet death. Executive Producer Marc Platt, a well-known Hollywood Liberal, even had to finance the limited Emmy campaign himself because Disney/ABC refused to do so (which is unheard of for such a high-profile production). This passive self-censorship is just as effective as anything Joseph Stalin or Big Brother could impose; the result is the same, the curbing of free speech and creative expression, and the suppression of a viewpoint that may be an inconvenient truth for some politicians....

The issue is that corporate timidity is preventing millions of Americans from finding The Path to 9/11 on DVD - though other politically controversial movies are readily available, such as Loose Change, which argues that the Bush administration targeted American citizens for death in an elaborate and sinister plot; or Michael Moore's unabashedly biased Fahrenheit 9/11. These highly-charged movies, which don't even offer a pretense of balance, and others can be found online or in retail outlets and DVD rental stores across the country - and so they should be, just as The Path to 9/11 should be.

The documentary is being screened at a theater in Los Angeles today but is otherwise unavailable to the viewing public. (If you do some searching, however, you might find a torrent (ahem) of information about The Path to 9/11.) A documentary called Blocking the Path to 9/11 describes the pressure placed on ABC to cut certain scenes and dialogue and includes some of the deleted scenes.

Remembering 9/11: Ten years

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Take a moment to remember University of Tulsa and Memorial High School graduate Jayesh Shah, who worked on the 103rd floor of the north tower for Cantor Fitzgerald, and to pray for his family, who are there at Ground Zero for today's commemorations. This 2002 story from the Houston Chronicle tells about Jay's family and their desperate search for some hopeful word.

Links, thoughts from myself and others:

Hot Air's Allahpundit was in his downtown Manhattan apartment when the planes hit the towers. Two years ago he serialized his memories on Twitter; Lori Ziganto put them in order and posted them on her blog for posterity. [Fear not: Despite her blog's name, it is entirely safe for work.]

Gerard Vanderleun watched events unfold from across the East River in Brooklyn Heights. He had been online on a message board, posting his reflections; these are his contemporaneous notes of the attack and aftermath.

Ron Coleman was in midtown Manhattan when the planes hit. He writes of the confusion of the day and his journey back to his home in New Jersey.

Robert N. Going went to Ground Zero as a volunteer at a respite center in November 2001. He has reposted his diary of four weeks there.

Also on Robert's site: The reflections of legendary baseball player Buck O'Neil, then 90, on the first anniversary of the attacks:

America was asleep. We were all sleeping. We had seen these kinds of men before with bombs tied to their bodies, killing people in Israel and Ireland and other places. These men were heroes to their people. They were martyrs to their families. Their mothers and fathers were proud of them for killing, you understand? We all knew what was happening over there.

But that was over there. We thought it would always be over there. We were fast asleep. And what happened? We took these murderers in. We taught them how to fly. We are such a trusting country. Yes, you can see how it happened.

Here Is New York: A photographic witness to the events of 9/11 by thousands of amateur photographers. (We had the privilege of seeing this powerful exhibit in person when it was shown in Tampa in fall 2002.)

The Telegraph: 9/11: How the drama unfolded aboard Air Force One, inside the White House bunker and at the Pentagon

History Channel: Witness to 9/11: 102 minutes that changed America: Videos from eyewitnesses around New York City.

From 2010: Remembering 9/11: Where I was when I heard: My personal recollections of the day and the weeks following.

As on each previous anniversary of the September 11, 2001, jihadi attacks on America, Trinity Episcopal Church, 5th and Cincinnati, will mark the day with a choral requiem, beginning at 8:46 a.m., the time when the north tower of the World Trade Center was hit. This year, the Trinity Choir will perform Gabriel Faure's Requiem as part of the service of Holy Communion. (On September 11, 2002, Trinity was one of hundreds of venues worldwide to take part in the "Rolling Requiem," performing Mozart's Requiem in each time zone at 8:46 a.m.)

Floral Haven, 6500 S. 129th East Ave., Broken Arrow, offers a quieter remembrance:

Floral Haven will pay tribute to those who died in the terrorist attacks of 9/11 with a special remembrance on September 11, 2011. This solemn memorial will take place on the grounds of the funeral home between the main building and 129th East Avenue

This memorial remembrance will include:

  • A Bronze Memorial, honoring those who died, which will later be permanently placed in our Family Center.
  • Three panels, which will include:
    1. The names of the people killed in the World Trade Center North and South Towers, the Pentagon and on American and United Flights 11, 175, 77 and 93.
    2. A list of the First Responders who died in this tragedy.
    3. The timing of the four major events of September 11th.
    4. A list of the other nations who lost citizens in this attack
  • Eight large flags, each representing one of the distinct groups of people killed
  • A display of 2976 smaller American Flags, each bearing the name of a victim killed on September 11th.
  • A guest book to sign in remembrance
  • This memorial will be on display on September 11, 2011 for the entire day.

This will be a solemn and silent remembrance. There will be no formal program or speakers. Just as the Oklahoma City National Memorial pays a beautiful and silent tribute to those killed in the attack on the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in 1995, so will this one day remembrance pay a quiet and solemn tribute to those killed on September 11, 2001. Those attending will be invited to read the panels, walk among the flags and reflect on this attack and the lives that were so senselessly ended.

It is only right and proper that on the 10th Anniversary that we take a moment of time and reflect, not only on those who were lost, but also one how all of our lives were forever changed by this event.

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the War on Terror category from September 2011.

War on Terror: November 2010 is the previous archive.

War on Terror: December 2011 is the next archive.

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