The World Trade Center is destroyed by two hijacked airliners. Another airliner slams into the Pentagon, causing chaos around the country. Thousands are feared dead as Congress and the President begin beating the drums of war. Guest: Chalmers Johnson, author of "Blowback: the costs and consequences of American Empire" All that and more on Democracy Now! in exile.
The World Trade Center is destroyed by two hijacked airliners. Another airliner slams into the Pentagon, causing chaos around the country. Thousands are feared dead as Congress and the President begin beating the drums of war. All that and more on Democracy Now! in exile. 9:01-9:06 HEADLINES 9:06-9:07 ONE MINUTE MUSIC BREAK 9:07-9:26 WORLD TRADE CENTER DESTROYED, PENTAGON DAMAGED BY HIJACKED PLANES; THOUSANDS FEARED DEAD; BUSH ADMINISTRATION AND CONGRESS BEAT DRUMS OF WAR In a series of horrific and coordinated actions, two hijacked commercial airliners on Tuesday morning crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Center, causing them to collapse into rubble minutes later. A third hijacked airliner slammed into the Pentagon, and a fourth crashed in rural Pennsylvania 80 miles from Pittsburgh. Up to 800 people are feared dead in the attack on the Pentagon, while thousands more are likely dead in the area surrounding what used to be the world trade center. The Federal Aviation Administration cancelled all flights around the country for the first time in history. Much of Washington, DC and New York shut down, and US officials effectively sealed the US-Mexico and US-Canada borders. In New York City much of downtown Manhattan was effectively sealed off to traffic. Road and bridges were also closed to permit the movement of hundreds of emergency vehicles and thousands of rescue workers, police, firemen, and national guard reserves desperately searching for survivors and trying to remove tens of thousands of tons of debris from the area. In Washington, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Henry Shelton spoke at a press conference. At 8:30 p.m. President Bush addressed the nation. TAPE: General Hugh Shelton, chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and President George Bush Award winning journalist and filmmaker John Alpert managed to reach the area of the World Trade Center during the afternoon and was there through much of the night interviewing rescue workers as they searched for survivors. GUEST: John Alpert, an Emmy award winning filmmaker and founder of Downtown Community Television, who was at ground zero for much of the night CONTACT: www.dctvny.org 9:26-9:27 ONE MINUTE MUSIC BREAK 9:27-9:46 MUSLIM AND ARAB AMERICANS FACE HARASSMENT, THREATS AS BUSH ADMINISTRATION AND CONGRESS BEAT DRUMS OF WAR In the immediate wake of the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, US officials immediately speculated that Osama Bin Ladin was likely to be found responsible. A CNN anchor said "Whenever something like this happens, you have to look to the Middle East." Fed by official and media speculation about events taking place, Muslim and Arab Americans organizations immediately reported harassing and threatening emails and phone calls directed against Muslim and Arab Americans all over the country, responses similar to those seen during the Gulf War and after the Oklahoma City bombing. Meanwhile the major networks, including CNN, scrambled to find prominent current and former government officials to fill the space in their nonstop coverage. The voices heard - and not heard on the airwaves and the networks give an early indication of how these events will be framed and of the US governments likely response to the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. GUEST: Ali Abunimah, Vice President of the Arab American Action Network CONTACT: www.abunimah.org GUEST: Norman Solomon, media critic CONTACT: www.fair.org 9:46-9:47 ONE MINUTE MUSIC BREAK 9:47-9:50 AN EYEWITNESS REPORT. Journalist Robert Knight was at the United Nations Plaza when the World Trade Center was hit, and saw the second plane which struck the South Tower. GUEST: Robert Knight, award winning journalist formerly of WBAI in New York. 9:50-9:58 BLOWBACK: THE COSTS AND CONSEQUENCES OF AMERICAN EMPIRE Reaction on Capital Hill and from Bush Administration officials was swift and angry, as government officials fairly fell over themselves to vow military retaliation against those responsible for Tuesdays attacks on the Pentagon and World Trade Center. Congressmen and women raised the disturbing specter of restrictions on civil liberties as they demanded an investigation into the military and intelligence failures they say made the attacks possible. The media and politicians overwhelmingly portrayed Tuesdays tragic events as an attack on the US because of its virtue, because the United States is a "beacon of freedom" in the words of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. But there was almost no reflection about US foreign policy, about what might have prompted someone to undertake such a desperate and catastrophic act, or about the growing resentment of US power around the world. TAPE: Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld GUEST: Chalmers Johnson, a leading scholar of Asia and US-Asian relations, and author of "Blowback: the costs and consequences of American Empire." CONTACT: www.jpri.org 9:58-9:59 OUTRO AND CREDITS