Article Overview:    I couldn't stomach watching the 9/11 Panel rake over the dead bodies of the 2,749 victims of September 11, 2001, in an attempt to fault find rather than fact find answers that may help the City of New York better prepare for the next attack or disaster.   But when I did, the next day, pick up the New York Post, I was reminded of how the Beast of Terror loves to eat the flesh of the dead, and how politicians will stuff their heads into the decaying bodies of the innocent to acquire recognition, however ugly that recognition might be.   Find out what I think.  For I was there that day.  I know who saved my life.


Thursday, May 20, 2004—Ground Zero Plus 981
Why I Couldn't Watch
The 9/11 Inquisition

Cliff McKenzie

 GROUND ZER0, New York, N.Y.--May 20, 2004 -- Last night I dialed up the video clip of Nick Berg's beheading.
       It was a horrible mistake.
       I felt like puking.  It was the most horrid thing I'd seen in recent years, if not ranking with the most horrible memories I have.

Nick Berg with his captors prior to his beheading

      It was pornographic, to say the least--the ugly exhibition of human depravity, of the twisted nature of those who seek power at all expense.
      The 9/11 hearings ranked in the same category.
      Power hungry politicians seeking sound bites attacked the past, smearing the brave and courageous of a unfathomable sneak attack by a most unlikely enemy with fecal diatribes of incompetence, creating a fog that suggested they might be in collaboration with the terrorists because "they" caused the deaths of many due to their mistakes, their unpreparedness for the most bizarre incident in recent American history.
       The fact that 25,000 people escaped the wrath of death didn't flag the headlines of their comments.    McArtheyistic blowhearts like John Lehman, a commission member, called the event a "scandal" and "not worthy of the boy scouts, let alone this great city."  He and others fed on the carrion of the victims, like vultures bobbing their naked heads up and down to rip the last vestiges of flesh from the bleaching bones of the memories of those 2,749 recorded deaths caused by the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack

The hecklers influenced by the Beast of Terror sounded out at the  panel hearings

      I thought about the panel in the same light I thought about the terrorists who lined up in a photo op behind kneeling Nick Berg, basking in the glory of their evisceration of his life.
      There was little difference between my feelings for the panel and my feelings toward the terrorists slicing off Nick's head as his body writhed and jerked, his hands and arms bound, helpless as they sawed off his head and then held it gloriously up to the camera.
       Unable to watch the hearings on television, I was compelled to pick up a copy of the Daily News yesterday.  It's headlines screamed out about the 25,000 who were saved that day.   That was the bigger news.
       I wondered why the 9/11 commission didn't boast about the nearly 20,000 killed each year by drunk drivers, a far worse degree of negligence than 2,749 pulverized to death by a bizarre unpredictable terrorist attack.
      Of course, these same political vultures feeding off the bodies of the dead for their own notoriety, would be the first to claim that everyone knew or should have known that terrorists were about to hijack a fleet of planes and fly them into American icons of power and strength.   That is the mode today, to carve up the body of American confidence and expose its diseases to the world, without fair and just balance.
       I have a special interest in these comments.  I was there that day, at Ground Zero.  And the police and firefighters helped save my life and the lives of hundreds of others who were witnessing the horror of the burning buildings.

I was there that day..........

       I was standing a few blocks from the burning South Tower, craning my neck up in stunned horror watching people leaping from the burning icon that spired up nearly a quarter mile into Heavens underbelly.
       The police were holding us back.  Suddenly, they shouted at us to run.   They drove us like cattle up a narrow street.  We stumbled back, our eyes magnetized to the unfolding black and orange flames shooting out, swirling in a vortex around the building like a great demonic halo.
       Then, the earth heaved.   I lost my balance as a great roar, unlike anything I had known, ravaged the bowels of earth.  It was as though some beast was erupting from the subways and sewers, bursting out of a embryo of bilious amniotic fluids, a final gestation of hate of ugliness birthing from the recesses of the primordial ooze from which we all came.
       Suddenly debris shot everywhere.   Chunks of steel and concrete hurled through the air.  A giant fist of pulverized ash slammed toward us.   I peered down the street and saw a policeman running as though the Grim Reaper was on his heels.  His arms pumped and his feet were barely touching the ground as he hurled himself as fast as humanely possible to escape the wrath of the Beast bearing down on him.
       I grabbed three women next to me and shoved them against the wall, holding them so they would be protected by the bricks of the building.    Then the cloud of blackened ash choked us.   We gagged and coughed.  I waited for some biochemical agent to end my life, assured that some creature had exploded some deadly poison, and prayed that my death would come fast, that I wouldn't writhe and convulse as the life was driven out of me.
      I thought of my wife, children, grandchildren.   "Try to think of something beautiful," I gasped to the women next to me who were sobbing:  "We're all gonna die!  We're all gonna die!"    I repeated, if not for their sake, then for mine:  "Think of something beautiful."

Rudy Giuliani offered a tough defense to the 9/11 Panel and beseeched the members extend compassion rather than pin blame

        Maybe that's part of the reason I felt the revulsion about the 9/11 hearings.   The beautiful part of that day was the saving of lives, 25,000 of them!
      That message was overshadowed by the political, critical lambasting of the 9/11 panel who, seeking headlines, castigated the glory of those who fought to keep others alive that day, many of whom died in the process.
      Then I thought of my daughter, a federal special agent who works undercover for one of the nation's most aggressive law enforcement agencies.    After work, she went down nightly and dug through the debris in search of bodies, hoping to find trapped victims.  She found human body parts.   One, the scalp of a victim.  I thought of her and all her friends and comrades who prayed and dug and prayed and dug in hopes that they might save someone.
      But the Beast of Terror was thorough that day.   He now chortles that his mission was successful even in the aftermath, for the Beast lives in the critics' words.
      Despite my revulsion at the hearings, I am glad I live in a free and democratic society where men and women can make fools of themselves in an attempt to seem like Sentinels of Vigilance.  
      I trust the public to recognize those self-serving Voices that try desperately to fault-find rather than fact-find, whose primary mission is to foul the soil and souls of those who bravely and courageously died at Ground Zero to save tens of thousands of others.

Committee Members were in the armchair of Complacency seduced by the Beast of Terror

     The pain of the hearings goes far beyond myself.   For the 2,749 Sentinels of Vigilance who hover over Ground Zero, they shield their eyes in shame that the living would castigate the efforts of those who saved so many.    Instead of speaking of our faults alone, the commission should be pointing fingers at itself.   Vigilance starts with the individual, not the government.
      When bold men and women accept the duty first of being a Sentinel of Vigilance, they will find it hard to throw rocks at those whom they hope will deflect their own negligence as public servants. 
      Where was John Lehman ringing the bells of warning prior to 9/11?  He was sitting in the armchair of Complacency, waiting to leap up and point fingers.
      But he forgot that when he points one finger, three others point back at him.
      Will he look in his own mirror?
      Perhaps not, for the reflection he sees won't be a Sentinel of Vigilance, it will be a vulture, a Beast of Terror's sidekick.  

May 19--Conversation With God Re: Torture, Maiming et al

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