Leftist writer, Todd Fine, is outraged that the 9/11 Memorial Museum at Ground Zero will make references to “Islamic terrorism”


The Rhetoric of “Islamic Terrorism” and the September 11th Memorial Museum. Despite his Jewish-sounding name, Todd Fine seems to have more than a casual association with several Arab Muslim projects.


Founder, Project Khalid

Todd Fine did a piece for Huffpo entitled Congress Should Pass Resolution Celebrating Arab-American Literature. Todd Fine is a co-founder of the Save Washington Street effort and is founder and director of Project Khalid, a campaign to celebrate the centennial of the first Arab-American novel and to advance author Ameen Rihani’s reputation as an important Arab-American figure.

Facebook page

Rhetoric of Islamic Terrorism  Scheduled to open on May 21, thirteen years after the attacks, the September 11 Memorial Museum at the World Trade Center site promises to become one of the most visited and influential cultural institutions in the United States. Although built with around 1 billion dollars in federal grants and other government support, the memorial operates as a private foundation, immune from public input on its exhibition content.


The curatorial team made numerous politically-charged decisions in the design of the museum’s permanent exhibition, and one of the most sensitive, and likely subject to substantial international scrutiny, will be the characterization of Islam in relation to the ideology of al-Qaeda.


Islam is the religion of nearly one-fourth of the world’s population, and tying the beliefs of 1.6 billion people to the actions of a small group would be highly reckless in such a prominent setting.


Therefore, I was alarmed to discover that the museum has indeed chosen to conflate terrorism and religion, with their advance materials using the highly problematic term “Islamic terrorism.”


In a section that addresses terrorist attacks before September 11, their website states that the bombing of the USS Cole in Yemen in 2000 “had a significant impact on America’s view of the threat of Islamic terrorism.”

Leading scholars like Mark Juergensmeyer and Richard Jackson, who study the religious motivation of groups such as al-Qaeda, condemn the use of the phrase “Islamic terrorism” as sloppy and simplistic. Even if self-proclaimed Muslims are responsible for a particular violent act defined as terrorism, this does not make the action “Islamic” in any logical sense.


(Muslim convert) John Brennan, President Obama’s former counterterrorism advisor and the current Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, argued in 2010 that “Islamic terrorism” should be banned from White House communications completely.


He suggested that “describing our enemy in religious terms would lend credence to the lie propagated by al-Qaeda and its affiliates to justify terrorism, that the United States is somehow at war against Islam…. After all, Islam, like so many faiths, is part of America.”


Defining terrorism in religious terms repeats in other places in the museum’sadvance materials, as al-Qaeda is described as an “Islamist extremist” group. Although used by some scholars, “Islamist” is an extremely vague term that is deployed almost exclusively in Western and non-Islamic countries.


It purports to define a modern ideology that finds political guidance in religion. For classifying groups in practice, however, the term is often meaningless and misleading because Islam has had extensive political content since its origination, and almost all religions have deep political implications.


Even if “Islamist” is defined to match the specific ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood, the term is not especially useful for al-Qaeda since its political objectives are quite challenging to define in a conventional sense, especially in relationship to government and the state.


The museum’s materials also define an “Islamist extremist” as an individual who “believe[s] violence is acceptable to achieve these [Islamist] ends,” yet almost any political ideology can justify violence without needing necessarily to be considered “extreme.”


Describing the American revolutionaries, who themselves deployed violence, as “democratic extremists” would not be considered a particularly useful classification. The term “extremist” is largely a pejorative; it has no direct connection with the types of violence defined as “terrorism.”


In practice, for the streams of millions of tourists visiting the museum, any possible subtlely to the definitions of “Islamic terrorism” and “Islamist terrorism” may not be effectively communicated, and the use of the terminology will serve only to further darken perceptions of Islam and create greater division and distrust.


The extent to which the permanent exhibition itself will reflect the problematic terminology of the museum’s existing materials is unknown because, even as it opens in six weeks, the 9/11 Memorial has not invited the leading Arab-American and Muslim-American organizations to receive advance tours, despite repeated prompting.


For constituencies with serious anxieties and concerns about the museum’s content and essential message, the exhibition will be a complete surprise, a risky proposition given that a single inaccuracy or controversial statement could generate deep offense and possible global protest. With tens of millions likely to visit as the museum inevitably becomes a core American institution, inaccuracies might distort the broader culture for decades to come.


Rather than seek to generalize about so-called “Islamic terrorism,” the 9/11 Memorial would be better suited to describe the events as they occurred and to create a calm, peaceful place for the families of the victims to visit and to mourn.


While the individuals responsible for the attacks should certainly be identified and condemned, as a culture, it would be healthier for us to use this museum to try to find a basis for international understanding and peace that could overcome the hatreds that produce such antagonism, even if this requires deep and careful exploration of decades of history and the avoidance of hasty generalization.


We might even argue that, since widely-expressed stereotypes and hatreds have led to crimes like the massacre at the Sikh Temple in Wisconsin, the museum has an affirmative obligation to humanize Arabs, South Asians, and Muslims.



CAIR is spitting nails over leading counterjihadist Tom Trento’s speech at a 9/11 ceremony, accusing him of turning it into an “anti-Islam hate fest”

Tom WNN 1470amFrom a CAIR Press Release: “Anti-Muslim extremists took over a public event in Venice, Florida, marking the anniversary of the 9/11 Muslim terror attacks and spewed ‘Islamophobic’ rhetoric in the presence of law enforcement authorities, public officials and schoolchildren. One speaker, Tom Trento of the ‘hate’ group The United West, told the audience: I’m not talking about radical Islam or moderate Islam. I’m talking about Islam. Their goal is to get all of us to convert to Islam. And they won’t stop until we do.’”


READ FULL STORY What was billed as a 9/11 memorial service took on elements of an anti-Islamic rally Wednesday, including a lengthy speech by the leader of what has been labeled (by the Southern Poverty Law Center – an American Communist group) an “anti-Muslim hate group.” A 9/11 memorial service held at Patriots Park today included several speakers who used the podium to denounce Islam and criticize the Obama administration for failing to recognize the threat posed by Islam.


An audience of about 500 people, including schoolchildren, gathered at Patriots Park at 10 a.m. to hear remarks by city officials, law enforcement and family members of those who died on 9/11 and the ongoing fight against terrorism. But three other speakers used the podium to criticize Islam and the policies of President Obama, taking city officials by surprise, including Venice Mayor John Holic, who called the message “extreme.”

One speaker was Tom Trento, who heads an organization called The United West, which says its mission is to defend “Western Civilization against Shariah Islam.” The United West is based in Lake Mary and is classified as an “anti-Muslim hate group” by the (Far Left Communist ) Southern Poverty Law Center.


Trento, whose speech (video below) lasted for nearly 30 minutes, told the audience: “I’m not talking about radical Islam or moderate Islam. I’m talking about all Islam. Their goal is to get every single one of us to convert to Islam. And they won’t stop until we do.”

Mayor Holic stressed that the event was not city-planned and that an organization called Salt of the Earth had rented out the park and organized the event. ”He had some pretty extreme points of view,” Holic said of Trento. “I guess pretty extreme is underplaying it a little bit.” (To leftists, the truth about Islam is considered “extreme”)

Holic said neither he nor any other city officials left during the political and anti-Islam remarks. ”Out of respect for the day and the meaning for the day, I don’t think it would have been proper for any of our people to leave and walk away,” Holic said. Holic added that in the future he will scrutinize the backgrounds and views of speakers before he attends such an event. (dhimmi)

Tom is a good friend of Col Allen West 


Some in the crowd cheered when anti-Islam remarks were made, which troubled Maj. Michael Dubrule of the U.S. Marine Corps, who was overseeing a group of Venice Middle School young Marines at the event. (How did they manage to find an Obama Marine for this event?)

“I talked to (the students) about the fact that it’s a free country,” Dubrule said. “And when people are asked to speak, they sometimes have personal agendas that don’t always reflect what we’re here to do.” (What you’re there to do, Marine, is teach those kids that Muslim terrorists did this to America…and they’d like to do it again)

Gene Sweeney, who is head of the group Salt of the Earth, organized Wednesday’s event. He defended the statements made by Trento and other speakers. ”People are overly politically correct,” Sweeney said. “If people want to remain in self-imposed ignorance, they can all hold hands and sing ‘Kum Ba Yah’ together.” Sweeney added that Venice residents have a special obligation to seek understanding of 9/11 since several hijackers and plotters lived and trained in Venice.

You can see and hear Tom and his regular co-host, CJ, everyday at TrentoVision.com as well as on radio in Florida, MONDAY-FRIDAY, 5 – 6 PM. Click on the TrentoVision banner ad in the sidebar or click here: http://www.trentovision.tv


Much of the program was a standard memorial ceremony, in which speakers, including Venice Police Chief Tom McNulty, who was a detective in New York on 9/11, shared reflections of the terrorist attacks. ”Their mission failed,” McNulty said of the terrorists. “We stood together, we faced the fight, and we said never again.”

But as some city officials and family members of those killed on 9/11 and in the ongoing war against terrorism finished speaking, the event became charged with anti-Islam messages, as well as harsh criticism of President Obama. Members of The United West handed out books warning of the threat to America and DVDs titled “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War against the West.” One woman held a large “Impeach Obama” sign on a totem.

Mark Potok, a senior fellow (and radical leftist) with the Southern Poverty Law Center, said that while thousands of groups in the United States are critical of Islam, few are as vicious in their criticisms as the United West. (BNI is also on the SPLC list of leading anti-Muslim ‘hate’ groups) “They are a vicious, conspiracy-minded, Muslim-bashing group,” Potok said.


Trento told the audience that the Obama administration failed to realize the threat posed by Islam, and the administration was too worried about being “politically correct” to target America’s enemies in the Muslim world.

When asked about why he made political statements at the memorial ceremony, Trento said he felt it was an obligation.”Being apolitical is an artificial way of looking at life,” Trento said. He added that if he had a conversation with a Muslim, “I would ask  them, is your allegiance to the United States of America or to Islam? If they’re being honest, they’ll say Islam.”

Watch Tom’s controversial talk condemned by the Southern Poverty Law Center



Banned by the U.S. media, this should be required viewing for every adult and child over 12.

It is estimated that at least 200 people jumped to their deaths, far more than can be seen in the photographs taken that morning. The jumping started shortly after the first jet hit at 8:46 a.m. People jumped continuously during the 102 minutes that the north tower stood. It took just 10 seconds to fall but it wasn’t fast enough for the victims to lose consciousness before they hit the ground.

Below is the LiveLeak version in case the Youtube version gets taken down:


FDNY first responders on hearing people jumping to their deaths from the top of the towers.



A tribute to the unsung canine heroes of 9/11.

NY POST  She was a 3-year-old golden-haired beauty when she got the call to respond to her first disaster. Now, stiffer, slower and a bit gray, 13-year-old Bretagne is one of just a handful of World Trade Center rescue dogs still alive.

“We arrived on 9/12 and started working right away,” said Bretagne’s handler, Denise Corliss, a search-and-rescue volunteer with the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Bretagne had spent more than a year learning how to find survivors in concrete rubble, but her Cypress, Texas, training site was nothing like Ground Zero.

She clambered up ladders to get on top of the huge debris piles, padded across broken glass and twisted steel beams, wiggled into small spaces and crawled into dark holes, all the while sniffing through mounds of pulverized concrete searching for clues that would lead her to survivors. Like all the rescue dogs, she worked without a leash or a collar.

The dogs also didn’t wear protective booties, despite the crushed glass everywhere — they needed their claws for traction. Every night, she was given a decontamination bath. Her eyes, ears and mouth were rinsed out, and her abraded paw pads gently cleaned.

“It was her first mission, but she worked it like a pro. She didn’t get cut up or fall or get hurt,” said Corliss. But Bretagne had a couple of near misses. One day, sniffing along an elevated steel beam, she lost her footing.

“It was real wet because the fires were still smoldering and the water spray was everywhere,” Corliss recalled. “She just kind of slipped, but she used her paws to pull herself back up and kept on going. That was the only time I was a little unsettled.”

Bretagne was also a magnet for distraught firefighters searching the site for fallen comrades.

“A lot of times, firefighters would come by and pet her, talk to her and tell her stories,” said Corliss. One firefighter bonded so closely with Bretagne that he recognized her years later at a 9/11 memorial.

The gregarious golden retriever has seen several national disasters since 9/11 — she responded to hurricanes Katrina and Rita, going into flooded areas to find those unable to evacuate. She’s retired now, but has a hard time accepting it, said Corliss.

When Corliss heads out with her new search dog, Aid’n, Bretagne always wants to go along. “I bring her to the training site sometimes and let her run a few drills — she’s still got it,” said the proud handler.

Like Bretagne, the majority of 100 or so FEMA dogs sent to Ground Zero stayed only about 10 days.

Thirty-three NYPD K-9 dogs took over recovery operations — sniffing the rubble for remains — for eight months. All of those dogs have since died. The last one, Charlie, a longtime K-9 unit member, passed in January, just a few months shy of his 13th birthday.

All told, about 300 dogs contributed to the rescue and long-term recovery effort at Ground Zero, said Roy Gross, a Suffolk County SPCA agent who ran the mobile hospital that cared for the animals.

“Besides the FEMA and NYPD dogs, you had therapy dogs, brought in to help the rescue searchers, and dozens of volunteers who showed up at the site with their dogs, too,” said Gross.

A decade later, the vast majority of all the 9/11 dogs are gone, according to the book “Dog Heroes of 9/11,” which tracks the canines who worked at Ground Zero and the Pentagon. Only about 14 of the original FEMA dogs are still alive — including Kaiser, 12, a German shepherd from Indianapolis, and Tuff, 12, from Ashland, Mo.

Kaiser was bused to Ground Zero with his handler, Tony Zintsmaster, and arrived late at night on 9/11. He was immediately assigned to the 12-hour night shift.

As he climbed down from the pile on the morning of his second day, he badly sliced his right front carpal pad, probably on a sharp piece of steel, said Zintsmaster.

“There was no vet there yet, this was early on the 13th, so we found a medical-team doctor who stitched him up. Later, some vets arrived, and we got him bandaged and wrapped, and he was back to work that night.”

The smoky, smoldering pile was especially difficult to navigate after dark, but Kaiser relished the challenge. In the daytime, the dog would de-stress with a visit to the free massage and acupuncture table set up for first responders by the School of Oriental Medicine. Kaiser particularly liked getting acupuncture, said Zintsmaster.

Off the pile, his ebullient personality was a soothing balm to grieving responders. Early one morning, a firefighter walked up to Kaiser, knelt down and hugged him for a long time, in silence. Then he stood up and walked away, said Zintsmaster. Another time, a group of four firefighters decided the hot and thirsty German shepherd needed a drink.

“So one firefighter cups his hands together and two others are trying to pour water into his hands so Kaiser can lap it up, and meanwhile, the other one’s saying that Kaiser’s dirty, so that firefighter starts cleaning and rubbing his back and his muzzle. Kaiser’s real social, so he loved the attention and it was OK — it was what [the firefighters] needed,” said Zintsmaster.

Kaiser, a “live-find” dog, never gave the alert to indicate he had located a survivor during his 10 days at Ground Zero. But several times, he expressed interest in a scent he’d picked up.

“His training was good. He didn’t alert, which meant whatever he smelled wasn’t alive, but he reacted enough so that I’d know to bring over a cadaver dog,” his trainer said. “It’s always hard when you don’t find survivors.”

The hardworking German shepherd, who will be 13 in October, just retired last year. He’s in good shape, but no longer has the endurance for fieldwork, Zintsmaster said.

Some of the 9/11 rescue dogs have been incredibly long-lived. Tara, from Ipswich, Mass., got to Ground Zero the night of the disaster and stayed eight days. She was one of the oldest survivors, until she died last year at age 16.



9/11: United flight 93 was forced down in Shanksville, Pennsylvania

This is the flight that was headed to either the Capitol Building or the White House. Several brave passengers, who had learned of their fate from home via sky phones, broke into the cockpit, fought with the hijackers, who then crashed the plane into a field in Pennsylvania before it could reach its target in Washington DC.  “Let’s Roll!” shouted passenger, Todd Beamer, as they stormed the cockpit!”


Lorne Lyles recalls phone call he got from his wife, CeeCee, who was a flight attendant on United 93

CeCe Lyles’ phone message

Mark Bingham’s call to his mother from Flight 93

Eye Witnesses

Tragedy and Bravery