Friday, September 08, 2006

ABC's "The Path to 9/11"

On Sunday, September 10, 2006 at 8 p.m., and on Monday, September 11, 2006 at 8 p.m., ABC will air dramatizations of events detailed in The 9/11 Commission Report and other sources. This event will air, with limited commercial interruption. Per ABC, both nights will highlight the following:

Night One - September 11, 2001. Teams of terrorist hijackers board four American airliners and take control of the cockpits. Passengers and flight controllers quickly learn something is terribly wrong.

February 1993. On a similarly ordinary day, New York is stunned by a deadly bombing at the World Trade Center. The discovery of a traceable van part at the site leads to the arrest of one of the conspirators, and he is linked to a mosque led by the Blind Sheikh, a radical cleric. A valuable FBI informant helps bring down the cleric and his cell. A manhunt for elusive WTC bomber Ramzi Yousef ensues, and he narrowly escapes capture in Pakistan, where he is linked to the attempted assassination of Benazir Bhutto. Yousef travels to the Philippines, where he tests an innovative small bomb that kills a flight passenger and comes close to bringing down the plane as well. He's almost captured again when a fire at his bomb-making lab exposes to Manila police his plot involving the simultaneous bombings of a dozen airliners.

Yousef is finally brought down when an informant in Pakistan tips off a team of agents working in coordination with FBI counterterrorism expert John O'Neill. Yousef's trail leads them to a rebel named Usama bin Laden.

In 1998, journalist John Miller's interview with bin Laden is broadcast, and O'Neill and others in Washington are alarmed by the al Qaeda leader's fatwa against the U.S. CIA field agent "Kirk" contacts bin Laden's primary opposition, General Massoud of Afghanistan's Northern Alliance, and they concoct a plan to capture bin Laden and bring him to the U.S. to face justice. The plan is never approved for action, but the simultaneous bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa push the Administration to respond with an ineffective missile strike that some think merely elevates bin Laden's stature in the Muslim world. Arrests of al Qaeda operatives at the Canadian-U.S. border and in New York on the eve of the millennium provide further evidence that Muslim extremists are bringing their holy war to America.

Night Two - The October 2000 bombing of the USS Cole sends O'Neill and his team to Yemen, where he runs afoul of the U.S. Ambassador, who tries to have O'Neill recalled to the States. The investigation in Yemen stalls, but the White House, confident bin Laden is behind the attack, continues to debate how to stop him.

In 2001, counterterrorism czar Richard Clarke's warnings about bin Laden are downplayed, as is an FBI agent's warning to his superiors that some suspicious individuals are learning to fly jet aircraft. O'Neill butts heads with the CIA over their lack of shared information, and while intelligence agencies squabble, al Qaeda terrorists, under the radar, continue with their hijacking plot.

O'Neill, his career stalled by an incident wherein he lost his laptop, and tired of the bureaucracy, retires from the FBI in August and takes over security at the WTC. Shortly thereafter, the Northern Alliance's Massoud, who had pressed the U.S. for assistance against the Taliban and warned that bin Laden might strike, is assassinated by al Qaeda agents. Two days later comes September 11, and O'Neill dies bravely, along with thousands of others, in an attack by the enemy he had devoted his career to thwarting.

In the aftermath, the 9/11 Commission is formed to study the events leading up to that fateful day and to form recommendations to confront the threat of terrorism.

Onemargaret's comments: Again, this particlar post does not relate to soap operas but I felt compelled to address the details surrounding this upcoming sega, which highlights the graphic details leading up to and surrounding the horrible deaths of thousands of innocent people. Not to mention the affect that all this will, undoubtedly, have on the surviving family, friends, and co-workers. I understand that people have a right to know but reliving all this misery with pictures is unbearable. Even though I did not lose anyone in this horror, I still cringe when I see pictures of all those people. I still remember the exact day it happened, what I was doing, who I was with, and where I worked at the time. Even though it has been five years, all those memories are still edged in my mind, as if it happened just yesterday. And to make matters worse, Former President Bill Clinton may be blamed for it all. I mean, what is the world coming to when we have to keeping reliving such terrible events via movies (remember, Flight 93), documentaries, a miniseries (yes, they're calling this a miniseries), etc. Seems like somebody is capitalizing here. This is just too much!

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