Sunday, September 05, 2010

Discovery: "9/11: After the Towers Fell"

On Sunday Sept. 5, 2010, the Discovery Channel aired “9/11: After the Towers Fell”, a new one hour documentary of the rescue work to save victims trapped in “The Pile”, the seven-story mountain of debris at ground zero. The best link for the show is here.

A high school principal faces the loss of her younger sister at Cantor –Fitzgerald (while leading the students to safety in other boroughs), and a firefighter doesn’t know if his brother survived. Firemen carry equipment that makes high pitched beeps from debris to help locate them. One man is rescued when found. People keep getting delayed voicemails from people in the towers for two days.

The documentary echoes Oliver Stone’s 2006 film for Paramount, “World Trade Center”, which I saw and found rather painful to watch.

The Discovery Channel followed this show with a one hour “Secrets of the Secret Service”. The show described the expensive armor that a Utah company can provide for limos of the president or of corporate executives, and a company in Colombia makes not only bulletproof suits but even polo shirts. I doubt anyone wears them in discos. Read Thomas Carlyle's "Sartor Resartus".

The documentary discussed how the Secret Service changed after the 1963 JFK assassination and also the 1981 attempt on Reagan. The Secret Service has always been pretty active on USA Jobs, and the show would have done well to go into the requirements for employment.

The film also covered the attempts on Gerald Ford. The Secret Service had interviewed Sara Moore before and thought she was not dangerous. A gay man, Oliver Sipple and former Marine, stopped the attempt (not covered in the film), sometimes mentioned in the "don't ask don't tell" debate.

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