national geographic

Television takes on 9/11 amid its 10th anniversary

Networks are betting that Americans are ready to tackle the enormity of Sept. 11 with a range of dramas and documentaries.
August 14, 2011|By Steven Zeitchik, Los Angeles Times

Every once in a while, a fire truck will pass by Rudolph Giuliani's window, and the former New York mayor will flash back to that dreadful day when he had to drop everything and rush to ground zero. "It's just hard to hear it and not react," he said in an interview. "I don't know if that will ever change — some things will always trigger the memories."

Those memories were formed on Sept. 11, 2001, when the New York mayor was the sure hand steadying a rattled city. This time, though, he's the one doing the triggering: Giuliani is one of several leaders featured in "9/11: Day That Changed the World," a new Smithsonian Channel retrospective that chronicles the day from the point of view of those in power, using both archival footage and recent interviews. (Former Vice President Dick Cheney, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and New York fire chief Thomas von Essen are also interviewed.)

Exchange of emails (March 2009) with Robert Erickson, producer of the National Geographic special on 9/11

A special on 9/11 has just been shown on the National Geographic Channel, produced by Robert Erickson. Robert also conducted interviews with me and others. In March 2009, Prof. David Ray Griffin and I and Gregg Roberts exchanged emails with Robert Erickson which demonstrate our efforts to get Mr. Erickson and his team to be accurate and fair in their treatment of our scientific work regarding 9/11 – particularly the evidence for the use of explosives in the World Trade Center destruction. For the record, then, I have pulled together our exchanges of emails.

Robert Erickson, emailed David Ray Griffin on 3/27/09:
"if Jones is surprised that we just placed bags of thermite around the column...what else would Jones have suggested? "

I was informed of the question above and I responded on 3/28/09 as follows:

Robert,

Bags of commercial thermite set against a steel column -- what a pathetic "experiment." Not anywhere close to representing my views, as you must know, from our discussion about the red/gray chips and the crucial distinction between ordinary thermite and super-thermite! What a terrible and unfair straw-man joke you are evidently trying to pull.

Sadly, no indigenous large-breasted women to be found ...

Well, I just got back from a trip to Beverly Hills to be interviewed for a National Geographic documentary that will be airing in 2009. The topics discussed by them were the usual; the WTC collapse, the Pentagon, Flight 93. After those were covered I brought up Sibel Edmonds, what happened to Barry Jennings, the wargames, and finally, the family members and the Bush Administration's stonewalling of the investigation in the first place.

I will say this ... the crew at Creative Differences were the coolest and most level-headed bunch I've been interviewed by so far. They took the time to actually listen to my answers, and the main producer was not interested in mining sound bites from me or forcing me into a corner. When I asked to discuss certain things, he gladly accepted. When I told him that Sibel Edmonds was the most gagged woman in history and that she's willing to share her classified information on a national platform such as CNN, FOX, MSNBC, or, say, National Geographic, their interest was peaked. And I was invited out for drinks later that night.

So ... we might be pleasantly surprised by the results. We might not be. Time will tell.