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    Default Rudy's Grand Illusion

    http://villagevoice.com/news/0635,barrett,74322,6.html

    Rudy's Grand Illusion
    What Giuliani likes to remember about 9-11—and what he actually did (or didn't do)


    by Wayne Barrett and Dan Collins
    August 29th, 2006 1:10 PM

    The day after: Giuliani tours ground zero with Schumer, Pataki, Clinton, and others.
    photo: AP/Wide World

    From the book GRAND ILLUSION: The Untold Story of Rudy Giuliani and 9/11 by Wayne Barrett and Dan Collins.
    Copyright 2006 by Wayne Barrett and Dan Collins.
    Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.

    When Rudy Giuliani looks back to September 11, he relies not upon the memory of the day itself, but on his memory of the telling of the tale, which he has recounted over and over. That is always the way for people who have lived through a complicated, high-adrenaline event. We sort it out in our minds, assigning order to the confusing rush of images. But there are invariably other realities—sights and sounds and irrefutable facts that we failed to notice at the time, or that we edit out later to give some order to the story in our own minds.

    His vision filtered by the years of retelling, Giuliani remembers an order beneath the chaos of falling debris and jumping victims. The city's emergency services were functioning as they were meant to, with him at the helm. "The line of authority is clear," he told the 9-11 Commission. "The mayor is in charge. In the same way the president of the United States is commander in chief, the mayor is in charge. That's why people elect the mayor, so they get the choice of whether they get a strong captain or a weak captain or a lieutenant or whatever." Praised for heading toward danger rather than away from it, Giuliani replied, "That was my job. I was mayor. Part of my job description was to coordinate and supervise emergencies. The agencies that were the primary responders were all agencies that worked for the mayor. We had a format for how we did it, and part of that included my being there, so that I could coordinate and make sure everybody was working together."

    Rudy Giuliani's performance on 9-11 is legendary, but for most people, the story boils down to one image: the mayor walking north from the disaster, covered with dust. Afterward, in his greatest achievement, he was able to give voice to all the things the rest of us needed and wanted to hear. He articulated our grief, shored up our confidence, and insisted on a level- headed response that gave no berth to intolerance. We resist knowing anything more—about the eight-year history of error and indifference that preceded that moment, or the toxic disengagement that followed it.

    We also actually know very little about what the mayor really did before he stood up, covered in the remnants of the World Trade Center, and began to speak to the world. Giuliani has been allowed to be his own solitary storyteller, and his unexamined 102 minutes transformed him into an international brand of public courage.

    Shortly after the second plane slammed into the twin towers, Giuliani's car pulled up slightly northeast of 7 WTC, where his extremely expensive and ultra- sophisticated Emergency Operations Center was perched high up above many large tanks of combustible fuel. Police Commissioner Bernie Kerik, who was waiting to meet him, decided it was too dangerous to bring the mayor up to the command center he had so carefully and expensively built. Instead, Kerik pointed out a nearby office building at 75 Barclay Street and said they were "taking people out and setting up a command post" there.

    "Is this going to be our main command post?" Giuliani asked Kerik in his own account of the day's events, and Kerik said yes. Then the mayor wanted to know where the fire department was set up. Kerik told him that the top chiefs had their command post two blocks away, on West Street, and the two men headed over there.

    Looking back with serene hindsight, it's easy to see what the mayor's most important mission should have been at that critical moment. He needed to make sure the proud and fractious police and fire departments were working together. The fire officials were clearly at the center of the action. Chief of Department Pete Ganci, First Deputy Commissioner Bill Feehan, and search-and-rescue chief Ray Downey had begun the day in the North Tower. Then, looking for a location with a better view of the fires, they set up an impromptu command post on the far side of the eight-lane West Street, where they would manage the total incident, working with the board that locates all department resources involved in fighting a fire.

    When Giuliani arrived at 9:20, Ganci and the chiefs told the mayor that "they had already gotten some people out above the plane," that they'd been "lucky enough to have a stairway that they could come down." Giuliani thought the chiefs were talking about a stairway in the North Tower, where, in fact, none were ever passable. But he may have misunderstood the chiefs, and they may have been talking about Stairway A in the South Tower, the single passageway to survival that, in the end, only 18 people found. Neither fire dispatch nor 911, which handled countless calls from people stuck above the South Tower fire, were ever told about an open stairway, though the chiefs apparently knew about one.

    "What should I tell people? What should I say?" Giuliani asked.

    "The message has to be: 'Get in a stairway and come down. Do not stay there,' " the mayor recalled Ganci saying. Of course, the city's emergency operators never stopped giving precisely the opposite advice.

    Kerik and Ganci talked briefly. It was the only time the two leaders of these often dueling departments would speak that day. Uncomfortable about the exposed location, Kerik then said, "Mayor, we've got to get you out of here and set up a command post." Hector Santiago, a member of Kerik's detail, heard the false alarm of a third plane over the radio and yelled, "Boss, we have to go. There's a third plane coming. We're underneath the building. We have to go." With chunks of the towers falling on West Street, Giuliani urged Ganci to move the command post. They exchanged God-bless-you's.

    Then the mayor, Kerik, Deputy Police Commissioner Garry McCarthy, and other top cops all left. The chief of the department, Joe Esposito, was on his way to the fire command post when Giuliani left. Informed by radio that the group was leaving just as he approached, Esposito, the highest-ranking uniformed officer, was also diverted to Barclay Street. Joe Dunne, the first deputy police commissioner, arrived shortly after Giuliani departed and was told to turn around and join the mayor. Deputy Mayor Joe Lhota, who also met Giuliani on Barclay and went to West Street with him, said, "There were no police officials at the command post when we got there and none when we left."

    After presiding over endless turf battles between the two proud departments, Giuliani knew how critical police-fire cooperation was, and he knew it wouldn't happen automatically. Yet in his book Leadership, Giuliani wrote: "I turned north and headed to the Police Department command post." In his 9-11 Commission testimony, he said, "I then walked up with, at this point, the police commissioner, the deputy police commissioner, and the chief of the department. I was really brought into 75 Barclay and told this would be our command post."

    The "our" was the police and the mayor. Yet the fire department was responsible for managing the city response to any fire—a series of interagency directives that Giuliani had signed only a few months earlier said so. Giuliani's role at that moment was to do everything he could to put police and fire commanders at the same post, not participate in setting up a police command post at Barclay that would be separate from Ganci's. If the mayor felt that he needed to go to Barclay—for reasons of safety or to get hard phone lines and hold a press conference—why did he bring all of the top police commanders with him? Why did he never raise the subject of a joint response while at West Street? And since Ganci said he was moving his post, why was there no discussion of a new joint location that would include some of the top police decision makers?

    Everyone agrees that a critical problem that day was that the police and fire departments could not communicate; that's one of the reasons the lack of inter- operable radios became such a focus of fury. If the top brass of the two departments were at each other's sides, they could have told each other whatever they learned from their separate radio systems. Many of the command and control issues that might have saved lives could clearly have been better dealt with had Giuliani stopped, taken a deep breath, and pushed Kerik and Ganci to fully and effectively join forces. Insisting that Kerik, McCarthy, Esposito, or Dunne stay at the incident post would have established a joint operation.

    Even Fire Commissioner Tom Von Essen, who also left West Street to join the mayor, said later: "There should be a representative from the Police Department there; there should be a high-level chief from the Fire Department there. They should be controlling the operation from that command post. That day the police did not hook up with the Fire Department. I don't know why."

    The National Institute of Standards and Technology found that "functional unified operations were diminished as a result of the two departments' command posts being separated." In fact, said NIST, there's no record that "any senior police department personnel" were assigned "to provide liaison or assist" with Ganci's incident post. The longtime head of Giuliani's emergency management office, Jerry Hauer, pointed out the most dire consequence of the split command posts: "Had there been a senior police liaison at the command post, information about what the police were observing in the air could have been relayed to the ground." He, the 9-11 Commission, and NIST agree that at a joint post, the fire chiefs would have gotten the warnings of collapse issued by police helicopters that they otherwise missed.

    Giuliani had the opportunity to make that kind of unified direction happen—and, by his own description, the obligation to make it happen—but he didn't. In his first detailed post–9-11 television interview he recalled that he "walked away" from Ganci's post "and took my people with me." But they were not just "his" people, meaning his City Hall deputies. Included in his entourage was the entire police command.

    In that same September 22 interview, Giuliani offered a different explanation for his initial decision to go to the FDNY post on West Street: "I wanted to join the Fire Department and the Police Department together at one command post, so I asked where the Fire Department command post was." He had inadvertently described what he should have done, indeed what his own protocol required him to do. But obviously, that story didn't fit the facts. So by the time he appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show on September 27, he remembered things differently. "And then when I got there," he said, "I wanted to make sure that the police department had a command post so that we could communicate with the White House, and the fire department had one so they could actually focus their attention on fighting the fire and the rescue."

    By the time he wrote Leadership in 2002, he'd come up with a detailed rationale. He said the separation of command posts was "absolutely necessary" because "the Fire Department had to lead the rescue and evacuation," while the Police Department "had to protect the rest of the city." Since the departments were "performing different tasks," he argued, they had to have different command posts. Of course, the departments have some different duties in virtually all emergencies, but that reasoning flew in the face of not only all modern understanding of how to coordinate responses to epic catastrophes, but also all the plans Giuliani'sown government had put in place. If it were true that different emergency functions required a separation of command, there would have been no rationale for a coordinating Office of Emergency Management. Everybody could just do their own thing. Unified command is now such accepted wisdom that the Department of Homeland Security requires it.

    And of course, as the mayor well knew, the police department was deeply in- volved in the rescue and evacuation on 9-11. That's why 23 cops died. Five emergency service units were sent in to climb the steps just like firefighters, as were other plainclothes and patrol cops. Kerik recounts in his book how "our ESU guys were pulling on their masks and marching off toward the buildings" just like the "brave firefighters."

    The real, and obvious, explanation for why Giuliani left things as they were at West Street was that he was as unnerved as everyone else. The fire and police departments were acting on long-held instinct by staying apart, and the mayor shied away from interfering with men who were busy making life-and-death decisions. It was as human a response as his calming and compassionate statements later that day. But it was also a mistake with consequences, and if New York and the nation actually examined Giuliani's unified-command dysfunction that day, both might be better prepared the next time. Unfortunately, admitting all this would not square with Time's salute: "When the day of infamy came, Giuliani seized it as if he had been waiting for it all his life, taking on half a dozen critical roles and performing each masterfully. Improvising on the fly, he became 'America's homeland-security boss,' as well as its 'gutsy decision-maker' and 'crisis manager.' "

    There was another reason for the Barclay command post, and Kerik hasn't been as shy as the mayor about mentioning it: security. "I was worried about the mayor and making sure we didn't put him in harm's way," he said later. Kerik's "immediate problem" was finding space "far enough removed that the mayor wasn't in danger." As sensible as protecting Giuliani was, it's a far different explanation from the mayor's rationale for the two posts.

    Whatever the mix of reasons, Giuliani has never been forced to explain, by investigators or reporters, how he squares the two-post decision with his own rules for how the police and fire departments were supposed to behave. John Farmer, the 9-11 Commission's top investigator for the city response chapter of its report, says Giuliani can't. "I don't know if he thought of it that day, but yes, it was not consistent with the protocol he established," Farmer says. "I think what he would tell you is that he thought coordination was occurring. He had Kerik with him, and the reality of these situations is that the coordination has to be not just two guys at the top; it has to be more integrated." Asked if Giuliani should be held accountable for this and other disarray that day, Farmer said, "Of course, the answer is yes. If you're the top official, you're accountable."

    The 9-11 Commission members reached conclusions similar to Farmer's, but so quietly that no one noticed. The commission report never described Giuliani's step-by-step actions that day, though it chronicles just about everyone else's, and it certainly never mentioned his role in creating two posts. But when it reached its ultimate conclusion that the fire department was not "responsible for the management of the City's response as the Mayor's directive would have required," the very next line was "the command posts were in different locations." Thus, the commission's best example of the violation of the mayor's directive was the mayor's own action.

    The National Institute of Standards and Technology added: "Unified command was hampered by the fire department and police department setting up separate command posts." It also found that the governing fire department protocol that day—issued in 1997 when Von Essen was commissioner—said that at a fire like this, "the departments act as 'one organization' and are managed as such." Instead of "several posts operating independently," the department circular provides that "the operation is directed from only one command post." Daniel Nigro, the only top fire chief at West Street to survive, said, "I think there should have been one command post. It should be run according to the incident command system, and that system puts one person in command and all the other agencies are there and they work from a single location."

    Ray Kelly, the police commissioner who preceded and followed the Giuliani years, said in an interview, "Sure, the separate command post was a violation of the protocols. The radios would have been no problem if they had been at the same command post, if they'd been face-to-face. The Office of Emergency Management was supposed to make that happen under the protocols, but Jerry Hauer wasn't there any-more. OEM had the power to direct that to happen. Giuliani had the power to direct that to happen."

    The mayor's main mission, as he has put it in repeated accounts, was to gather the information he needed to tell a television and radio audience what they should do, especially people in jeopardy. By the time he talked directly to an audience, however, both towers had collapsed, and the message Ganci asked him to give occupants was moot. The mayor was, in the end, just one more dispatcher who failed to relay useful information. He said he went to Barclay for hard phone lines, but once he got there, his most pressing concern was reaching the vice president and that went nowhere—someone's phone line went dead, although it's unclear whether it was Giuliani's or Dick Cheney's.

    Right after the Cheney call disconnected, the South Tower collapsed. No one in the police department had apparently considered how Giuliani and, by then, a very large entourage would get out of the building in an emergency. So when the tower knocked out windows and drove rubble and ash into their first-floor safe haven, the group ran through the basement until they found a way into a neighboring building and out onto the street. They walked up Broadway and then Church, finally hooking up with cameras and press, searching again for a command post, with Giuliani pointing everyone north.

    Even the mayor eventually acknowledged that it might have been a mistake that his entire 25-member inner circle, including three deputy mayors, the police, fire, and Office of Emergency Management commissioners, was marching with him on this hazardous pilgrimage, a vulnerability that hardly reflected strategic thinking. This time, Giuliani's preference for the comfort of a huge entourage had disconnected the city's management and its fighting force at a crucial moment.

    The only time this confounding management choice took the form of a critical media question was on Fox the day after Giuliani's commission testimony in 2004, when John Gibson asked Hauer's successor at OEM, Richie Sheirer, about it. Gibson referred to "the worry" about how the Giuliani entourage had operated, questioning whether it was "fortuitous" that a single "chunk of concrete" hadn't fallen "on Rudy Giuliani, you, or somebody else," causing "the whole thing" to have "fallen apart." Gibson appeared to be questioning the wisdom of the fact that "all of the leaders of the city's emergency structure got together and had this little command center that moved around." Sheirer's answer was pure bluster. "No, there was nothing fortuitous about it," he said. "It was well planned. Our succession plan for the highest levels of government, the mayor and people like me, is very well in place and embedded. That was implemented to the degree that it needed to be."

    Kerik was actually a prime example of this managerial dysfunction all morning. For the 102 minutes when the city most needed a police commissioner orchestrating an overall response with an embattled fire department, Kerik became Giuliani's body guard, just as he had been in the 1993 mayoral campaign. His own account of what he did that morning contained no indication that he was actually managing the police response to this emergency. The command center at 1 Police Plaza wasn't opened until 9:45, an hour after the attack, a decision that led the independent consultants commissioned by the Bloomberg administration, McKinsey & Company, to raise questions about why it was "underused."


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    Default Part II

    McKinsey also criticized the "number and continual movement of command posts," and the absence of any "clearly identifiable, main command post," errors associated with the top brass including Kerik, who, unlike Von Essen, is an operational chief. "Many leaders of the Department," the independent consultant found, "indicated that they operated primarily from instinct and experience during an emergency rather than according to a prioritized or structured set of objectives." Only 45 percent of the 557 cops who were surveyed by McKinsey said they "received clear instructions regarding my role on 9-11," with 34 percent saying they didn't and the rest undecided. A meager 24 percent said they were "confident" that the police department had adequate emergency plans. Remarkably, 89 percent had no training in building collapse, 84 percent had none in counterterrorism, 73 percent none in fire rescue/evacuation, and 70 percent none in bio/chem. Of the few who had training in any of these areas, less than a third found it "useful."

    The McKinsey report faulted virtually everything Kerik did that day without naming him or anyone else in top management, criticizing a "perceived lack of a strong operational leader commanding the response" and the "absence of clear command structure and direction on 9-11."

    Instead of dealing with any of these complex tactical issues on 9-11, Kerik's decisions—at 7 WTC, West Street, Barclay, and the basement—all revolved around the mayor's safety. Chris Marley, the building engineer at Barclay who guided the Giuliani group out, said, "Kerik had his arm around the mayor to protect him." Kerik was later asked what his priorities were that day and he told NPR, "Well, the first thing to do was to get the mayor out of there and get to a secure site." With Kerik, Esposito, Dunne, and McCarthy guarding him at points, Giuliani was protected by the highest-ranking detail in the history of the New York City Police Department. Yet not once did he look around and ask the question: Who's running the shop?

    "I don't know de facto who was in charge," Kelly said. "The police commissioner was the head of the organization. I don't know who was directing. I literally don't."

    Kerik was with the mayor because Giuliani wanted him to be. "I need the police and fire commissioners with me," Giuliani said when he summoned Von Essen. He also reached out to Richie Sheirer—the third member of the team who would be at his side for every 9-11 press briefing, then go with him to Giuliani Partners. All three had no real management credentials until Giuliani promoted them. Von Essen and Kerik went from the lowest ranks of their departments to the very top without ever passing a promotional exam. Giuliani had begun his mayoralty with a circle of managers, like Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and OEM's Hauer, who had track records elsewhere. He was ending it with a cult of personality. When he chose Kerik over the seasoned professional Dunne, he told reporters that the decision had come to him in a moment of personal inspiration. Not surprisingly, all Kerik could think about in a moment of great crisis was protecting the leader, even if it meant leaving a void in the department he was charged with commanding.

    Despite all these missteps, Giuliani was depicted almost immediately as the calmest man in the eye of the worst storm—decisive, self-sufficient, ironhearted. "It was so well orchestrated that you would have thought he had prepared for it forever," his lifelong secretary Beth Petrone-Hatton told Time. His own Time comments set the subsequent television interview tone: "There were times I was afraid. Everybody was. But the concentration was on. If I don't do what I have to do, everything falls apart. Something I learned a long time ago, from my father, is that the more emotional things get, the calmer you have to become to figure your way out. Those things have become a matter of instinct for me at 57 years old. I didn't have to invent them." He told CNN, "When it's an emergency, I'm very, very calm and very deliberate."

    If Giuliani had actually been doing all the things he now sees himself as having done that day—prioritizing, making strategic decisions about deployment of personnel, command centers, and communications—it would have been a superhuman performance. But actually, in those first hours, Giuliani was doing what most of us, in his place, would have done—struggling, stumbling, and even making a weighty mistake, in the case of the two command posts. His decision to try to get on the air as quickly as possible was sensible, as was his hunt for phones and, later, an alternative command center. But as unforgettable a visual as he was, roaming the canyons of Lower Manhattan, he did not do one thing in those 102 minutes that had any impact.

    And it isn't just his own story that he has hyped. Giuliani has repeatedly contended that 25,000 people were rescued, though government investigators determined that there were actually 15,000 survivors and that most of these people were able to make their own way to safety. While these facts do nothing to dim the magnificent bravery of the firefighters, police officers, and other responders who saved many lives that day, they do turn Giuliani's claim into just one more self-serving boast.

    The centerpiece of Giuliani's experience on 9-11, his dust-covered march uptown, was truly important to the city and the nation. His ordeal was not about management or even leadership—it was the sight of the mayor sharing that terrible experience with so many other fleeing New Yorkers. The symbol of the city was on the ground with his constituents, dirty and determined, conscious of the fact that there were many others who had been less fortunate. He did not have to save any lives to be important that day. Imagine how different our memories of Hurricane Katrina would be if Mayor Ray Nagin had been out in the water with the dispossessed, splashing his way toward the Convention Center.

    We rely on our leaders to behave well in such a moment, to set an example of calm and compassion. But we do not expect them to manage the intricacies of the rescue operation. For that, we hope there are men and women throughout the government who have been preparing and training just so that if a crisis comes, they can operate on instinct, yet automatically make the proper decisions. If the mayor of New York had made sure that the city's emergency headquarters was securely located and had put in place communications and command systems that worked, he would have been of greater service on 9-11—even if he had spent the whole day cowering under his desk.

    Giuliani has never acknowledged a single failing in his own performance. Yet he did nothing before September 11 to alleviate the effects of a terror attack. He embodied his city's lack of preparation on West Street that morning. And he did not do anything later that matched the moments of grace and resolve he gave us the day we needed him most. What we have left is this: At a moment when the public needed a hero, Rudy Giuliani stepped forward. When he assured New York that things would come out all right, he was blessedly believable. It was a fine thing. But it was not nearly as much as we, at the time, imagined.

    FTM-PTB

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    August 31, 2006 -- For the first time in nearly five years, city health officials released guidelines Thursday to help doctors recognize and treat September 11th related illnesses. Advocates say the recommendations are vital for thousands of rescue workers who responded to the World Trade Center attacks and now have serious medical ailments. Previously, the city's department of health issued guidelines on how to deal with post-traumatic stress disorder, substance abuse and mental abuse. The new guidelines will be mailed to all doctors practicing in New York and are available to those in other states as well.
    ALL GAVE SOME BUT SOME GAVE ALL
    NEVER FORGET 9-11-01
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    Interesting article, thanks Fred.
    September 11th - Never Forget

    I respect firefighters and emergency workers worldwide. Thank you for what you do.

    Sheri
    IACOJ CRUSTY CONVENTION CHAIR
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    RAY WAS HERE FIRST

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    September 4, 2006 -- Another 1,000 sick Ground Zero workers will join a class-action suit claiming that city negligence caused them to breathe toxic air at the World Trade Center site. "There's never been anything like this," lawyer Marc Jay Bern said. "I wouldn't be surprised if we end up filing 10,000 lawsuits." The plaintiffs' legal team said it represents 375 Ground Zero workers struck by cancer and that more than 50 others have died from WTC-related illnesses - many of them cops, firefighters and cleanup workers. Thousands of workers have respiratory illnesses brought on by toxic fumes and dust from the collapsed towers, Bern said. Manhattan federal Judge Alvin Hellerstein is expected to rule soon on whether the massive case can go forward. There are now 6,000 plaintiffs. Their lawyers argue that city and Port Authority officials failed to provide proper ventilators and masks. City lawyers insist that local governments are immune from liability in national, terror-inspired catastrophes and that the city did all it could to safeguard the workers.
    ALL GAVE SOME BUT SOME GAVE ALL
    NEVER FORGET 9-11-01
    343
    CAPT. Frank Callahan Ladder 35 *
    LT. John Ginley Engine 40
    FF. Bruce Gary Engine 40
    FF. Jimmy Giberson Ladder 35
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    Last edited by E40FDNYL35; 09-05-2006 at 06:23 AM.
    ALL GAVE SOME BUT SOME GAVE ALL
    NEVER FORGET 9-11-01
    343
    CAPT. Frank Callahan Ladder 35 *
    LT. John Ginley Engine 40
    FF. Bruce Gary Engine 40
    FF. Jimmy Giberson Ladder 35
    FF. Michael Otten Ladder 35 *
    FF. Steve Mercado Engine 40 *
    FF. Kevin Bracken Engine 40 *
    FF. Vincent Morello Ladder 35
    FF. Michael Roberts Ladder 35 *
    FF. Michael Lynch Engine 40
    FF. Michael Dauria Engine 40

    Charleston 9
    "If my job was easy a cop would be doing it."
    *******************CLICK HERE*****************

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    Documents: Feds, City Knew Of Ground Zero Toxins
    Critics: Lower Manhattan Was Reopened Despite Knowledge The Air Was Unsafe
    A CBS 2 Exclusive
    Got a World Trade Center Health Problem? Tell Us.

    Marcia Kramer
    Reporting

    (CBS) NEW YORK Stunning proof has been uncovered that the government knowingly put New Yorkers in harm's way after 9/11.

    CBS 2 News has obtained documents revealing that Lower Manhattan was reopened a few weeks following the attack even though the air was not safe.

    The two devastating memos, written by the U.S. and local governments, show they knew. They knew the toxic soup created at Ground Zero was a deadly health hazard. Yet they sent workers into the pit and people back into their homes.

    One of the memos, from the New York City health department, dated Oct. 6, 2001, noted: "The mayor's office is under pressure from building owners ... in the Red Zone to open more of the city." The memo said the Department of Environmental Protection was "uncomfortable" with opening the areas but, "The mayor's office was directing the Office of Emergency Management to open the target areas next week."

    "Not only did they know it was unsafe, they didn't heed the words of more experienced people that worked for the city and E.P.A.," said Joel Kupferman, with the group Environmental Justice Project.

    Another part of the memo noted: "The E.P.A. has been very slow to make data results available and to date has not sufficiently informed the public of air quality issues arising from this disaster."

    "Unfortunately, it doesn't surprise me," said health protestor Yuichi Tamamo. "For the last five years we've been saying air quality here has been horrible."

    It also doesn't suprise Carmen Flores, who lives in an apartment in the Baruch Houses that was engulfed in the 9/11 toxic plume. Her health has deteriorated and she has multiple medicines.

    "I feel forgotten," she said.

    Bruce Sprague, an E.P.A. official in the New York and New Jersey region during 9/11 admited to CBS 2 News the agency was finding alarming air quality readings at Ground Zero and in the surrounding areas.

    Sprague said the E.P.A. had written much more conservative health assessments, but the memos had to go to Washington. And when the White House got its hands on them, they -- according to Sprague -- softened them.

    The city health department refused to comment on the memo, but inside sources told CBS 2 News the memo is real. And its veracity is not questioned by the Environmental Justice Project's Kupferman.

    He calls it "a smoking gun."
    Proud East Coast Traditionalist.

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    Default I'm no lawyer but.......

    WHY AREN'T THESE GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS IN PRISON???


    Their lies and/or omissions have resulted in the deaths and pain/suffering of many emergency responders and citizens. Someone must be held accountable.
    Tom

    Never Forget 9-11-2001

    Stay safe out there!

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    Forum Member nyckftbl's Avatar
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    Sep 18, 2006 9:21 pm US/Eastern

    EPA: 9/11 Toxic Air Drifted Away From Ground Zero
    Experts Say Contamination Stretched At Least 1 Mile

    Marcia Kramer
    Reporting

    (CBS) NEW YORK John Sforazo was one of many construction workers who toiled at ground zero without being told the air quality was bad.

    "We feel there was no regard for any of us," Sforazo said.

    A top Environmental Protection Agency official told CBS 2 Monday Sforazo may be right. The agency's own testing showed that.

    "As late as the end of 2001 and the beginning of 2002 the experts were measuring unhealthy air a mile north of the pile at levels higher than the Kuwaiti oil field fires," said Hugh Kaufman, a senior policy analyst for the EPA.

    That means that people living and working 20 blocks north of Liberty Street could have been breathing contaminated air for months.

    But that's not all. A never made public interview by the EPA inspector general with then-EPA administrator Christie Whitman's spokeswoman, Tina Kreisher, is the smoking gun.

    "When asked whether there was a conscious effort to reassure the public, Ms. Kreisher said there was such an effort," according to the document. "This emphasis 'came from the administrator (Whitman) and the White House,'"

    "Because of her actions and those of the White House thousands of people are sick and some are dead," Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-Manhattan, said.

    Congressman Nadler was a special prosecutor appointed. Especially since other documents show Whitman was supposed to recuse herself from anything having to do with the Port Authority because she or her family owned Port Authority bonds. The Port Authority owned the World Trade Center.

    "Anything regarding air quality or anything else with regard to the World Trade Center site was at that point a conflict of interest," Rep. Nadler said.

    Added Sforazo: "We honestly feel like we are disposable refuse."
    Proud East Coast Traditionalist.

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    WASHINGTON - Proving that 9/11 responders are being killed by poisons inhaled at Ground Zero will be extremely tough - if not impossible - under a draft of guidelines being written by the federal government. The problem, the draft says, is there are not enough scientific studies - or autopsies of dead people - to make strong links. "Data does not yet exist to quantify relationships between WTC exposures and diseases causing death," says the 23-page draft released yesterday. The Daily News has exhaustively chronicled the plight of the ailing heroes of 9/11, and a recent study by the Mount Sinai Medical Center found that up to 70% of Ground Zero responders suffered health problems. A spokesman for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health emphasized the document was released to get feedback, and could change. But the report's claims that there's not enough evidence tomake conclusions about deaths of 9/11 responders alarmed people who are sure their loved ones fell ill because of their work at the World Trade Center site. "It's a typical bureaucratic way of getting out of helping people and paying medical bills," said Joseph Zadroga, the father of NYPD Detective James Zadroga, whose death was ruled a result of post-9/11 exposure by a New Jersey medical examiner. The New Jersey ruling was challenged by New York City's top medical official, Dr. Stephen Friedman, who helped draft the guidelines. "As far as I'm concerned, Dr.Friedman is a puppet of Bloombag," said Linda Zadroga, James' mother. "When my son's autopsy came back, he had glass in his lungs and pieces of human bone." The city is facing lawsuits over its 9/11 response, and The News has reported that city lawyers sat in on sessions aimed at drafting the guidelines. Sources told The News they were concerned the guidelines could become an impossible hurdle to proving a person's death is linked to the Trade Center site. Political leaders who have been demanding such guidelines were cautiously optimistic. "I hope that they strike the right balance and appropriately recognize those that may have died," said Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-Manhattan.). Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) was also concerned the guidelines would not recognize what is obvious to so many. "There is a direct correlation between exposure to the toxic air around Ground Zero and the illness and even death we are seeing now," she said. "We need to keep the focus on speeding treatment to those whose health has been affected by 9/11." In a letter to Senate leaders, Clinton insisted the Senate Health Committee write legislation to help treat sick responders. Last week, the Senate refused to vote on a bill she wrote to spend $1.9 billion on 9/11 health care. Fred Blosser, a spokesman for the occupational safety institute, said the draft shows the feds are trying to get it right, and want to hear back from experts before they do more. "I would emphasize that this is a first cut, based on our need to move the ball forward," he said.
    ALL GAVE SOME BUT SOME GAVE ALL
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    Quote Originally Posted by E40FDNYL35
    WASHINGTON - Proving that 9/11 responders are being killed by poisons inhaled at Ground Zero will be extremely tough - if not impossible - under a draft of guidelines being written by the federal government. The problem, the draft says, is there are not enough scientific studies - or autopsies of dead people - to make strong links. "Data does not yet exist to quantify relationships between WTC exposures and diseases causing death," says the 23-page draft released yesterday. The Daily News has exhaustively chronicled the plight of the ailing heroes of 9/11, and a recent study by the Mount Sinai Medical Center found that up to 70% of Ground Zero responders suffered health problems. A spokesman for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health emphasized the document was released to get feedback, and could change. But the report's claims that there's not enough evidence tomake conclusions about deaths of 9/11 responders alarmed people who are sure their loved ones fell ill because of their work at the World Trade Center site. "It's a typical bureaucratic way of getting out of helping people and paying medical bills," said Joseph Zadroga, the father of NYPD Detective James Zadroga, whose death was ruled a result of post-9/11 exposure by a New Jersey medical examiner. The New Jersey ruling was challenged by New York City's top medical official, Dr. Stephen Friedman, who helped draft the guidelines. "As far as I'm concerned, Dr.Friedman is a puppet of Bloombag," said Linda Zadroga, James' mother. "When my son's autopsy came back, he had glass in his lungs and pieces of human bone." The city is facing lawsuits over its 9/11 response, and The News has reported that city lawyers sat in on sessions aimed at drafting the guidelines. Sources told The News they were concerned the guidelines could become an impossible hurdle to proving a person's death is linked to the Trade Center site. Political leaders who have been demanding such guidelines were cautiously optimistic. "I hope that they strike the right balance and appropriately recognize those that may have died," said Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-Manhattan.). Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) was also concerned the guidelines would not recognize what is obvious to so many. "There is a direct correlation between exposure to the toxic air around Ground Zero and the illness and even death we are seeing now," she said. "We need to keep the focus on speeding treatment to those whose health has been affected by 9/11." In a letter to Senate leaders, Clinton insisted the Senate Health Committee write legislation to help treat sick responders. Last week, the Senate refused to vote on a bill she wrote to spend $1.9 billion on 9/11 health care. Fred Blosser, a spokesman for the occupational safety institute, said the draft shows the feds are trying to get it right, and want to hear back from experts before they do more. "I would emphasize that this is a first cut, based on our need to move the ball forward," he said.
    Un-fracking -believable.

    New York City Hall should be renamed the dog pound, because it is fulll of mutts
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    WASHINGTON - Rick Fowler may still be the 9/11 firefighter on welfare, but thanks to the Daily News he isn't alone anymore. New Yorkers moved by the story of a broken hero - who went from a job he loved to pleading for public assistance - are reaching out. Some of them are his former Fire Department brothers who also are struggling to cope with their grief. "When I read [about Fowler], I realized I was in the same place, I felt the same way," said Walter Torres, who retired last year from the FDNY after more than 27 years. "He was dropped through the cracks, and he deserves help." A firefighter who didn't want his name used because he's still on the job, said he recognized in himself the same rage, despair and isolation that drove Fowler to stop going to firefighters' funerals and to resign from the FDNY. "I know what he went through, to the letter," said the veteran firefighter, who also was overwhelmed by mourning 343 fallen brethren. "My dress uniform, I won't even put it on anymore. It just reminds me of death." Fowler survived under a fire truck when the north tower fell on 9/11, but lost six of his Ladder Co. 118 pals - among them his cousin and best friend. He doesn't know whether he can ever recover from the psychological effects, but he now has hope of help. "We must do everything we can to help those suffering health effects from 9/11," said Sen. Hillary Clinton, whose office learned this week that Fowler, a 13-year FDNY veteran, is entitled assistance from the FDNY's 9/11 health program.Clinton also is looking into how Fowler may be able to get back his full FDNY benefits. The 46-year-old Air Force vet came back to New York in hopes of getting those benefits after his father, retired FDNY Capt. Fred Fowler, told him about a new law granting the emergency responders of 9/11 disability retirements. But Fowler, who needs nine medications to get through his days, was denied because he had resigned rather than retired. He was sent for welfare, getting $68.50 every two weeks, and he lost even that while he was hospitalized because he'd had suicidal thoughts. He got back on welfare last week after Sen. Chuck Schumer wrote to the Department of Social Services. Schumer also is asking Social Security officials to speed up Fowler's appeal for the disability claim. "It's like night and day," Fowler said of the help he's getting. "People have been so good to me. I've heard from everyone. The best man from my wedding found me, and my godmother." And there are people who never knew him. Michael Quackenbush, a North Carolina man who lost a brother on 9/11, reached out and wrote to Gov. Pataki on Fowler's behalf. Long Islander John Feal, who lost half his foot working on The Pile, plans to write Fowler a check from a foundation he created to help 9/11 victims. "Mr. Fowler can expect anywhere from $500 to $1,000 from the Feal Good Foundation," said Feal. The leaders of another organization, Full Circle Health, were so moved they want to honor him at a banquet next month. "We just want to do something to encourage him," said the Bronx-based agency's co-president, Darcel Dillard-Sweet. "We want to show some compassion, and tell him he's not alone."
    ALL GAVE SOME BUT SOME GAVE ALL
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    September 24, 2006 -- A beloved retired firefighter who carried the body of his slain FDNY son from the World Trade Center rubble and then worked nine months to recover remains at Ground Zero now has cancer possibly linked to WTC toxins.
    Lee Ielpi, 62, a highly decorated firefighter, worked 10 to 14 hours a day amid the smoking rubble. The 26-year veteran, who lost his 29-year-old son, Jonathan, in the Twin Towers, later served as vice president of the 9/11 Victims and Families Association.

    Suffering a shortness of breath and slight swelling in his ankle, Ielpi went for a FDNY screening three months ago. He has Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia, a rare type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, which is treatable but incurable.

    "I'm too busy to dwell on it," said Ielpi, who rushes straight from chemotherapy treatments to his labor of love - the new WTC Tribute Center at Ground Zero, which he helped found.

    Ielpi's oncologist, Dr. Jonathan Kolitz, said "it's possible" the cancer was triggered by hundreds of hours of work on the hugely contaminated site.

    Ielpi was unaware until recently that 70 other WTC responders have come down with blood cancers, according to David Worby, a lawyer for 8,000 rescue and recovery workers.

    Friends are amazed at Ielpi's iron-like resilience, joking that he has more hair now than before starting his chemo.

    "I get a little tired, but it hasn't impacted me much so far," he said.

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    September 24, 2006 -- Condoleezza Rice's office gave final approval to the infamous Environmental Protection Agency press releases days after 9/11 claiming the air around Ground Zero was "safe to breathe," internal documents show.
    Now Secretary of State, Rice was then head of the National Security Council - "the final decision maker" on EPA statements about lower Manhattan air quality, the documents say.

    Scientists and lawmakers have since deemed the air rife with toxins.

    Early tests known to the EPA at the time had already found high asbestos levels, the notes say. But those results were omitted from the press releases because of "competing priorities" such as national security and "opening Wall Street," according to a report by the EPA's inspector general.

    The chief of staff for then-EPA head Christie Todd Whitman, Eileen McGinnis, told the inspector general of heated discussions, including "screaming telephone calls," about what to put in the press releases.

    The notes come from a 2003 probe into public assurances made on Sept. 16, five days after the 9/11 attacks. They tell how a White House staffer "worked with Dr. Condoleezza Rice's press secretary" on reviewing the press releases for weeks.

    Whitman said through a spokeswoman Friday that she never discussed her press releases directly with Rice. She also defended her collaboration with the White House.

    Now-retired Inspector General Nikki Tinsley told The Post her auditors tried to question the head of President Bush's Environmental Quality Council, but "he would not talk to us."

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    Quote Originally Posted by chris0871
    I wonder how many true American have to die before our government starts answering the real tough questions on what happened on 911 how 2 110 story building collapsed in under 10 secs and how all those floors turned to powder in that time if you think it was just first responders who were exposed to these toxins your in for a shock only time will tell but I believe the whole city of New York will be plagued by these toxins in the future then maybe just maybe we as Americans will make this government be held accountable .
    Please post your "conspiracy theory crap" somehere else. Anyone who is a firefighter and understands the rudimentary elements of building construction knows why the towers went down.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris0871
    The basic law of gravity can prove that those buildings came down way to fast without some outside force to help bring them down .Any high school grade physics teacher can prove this theory .The general population has a hard time with any kind of critical thinking wake up people ...

    The governments theory about what happened that day sounds more to me like a conspiracy theory ..please look at the facts again this time through the eyes of who were there..........
    And the cow jumped over the moon.....
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris0871
    The basic law of gravity can prove that those buildings came down way to fast without some outside force to help bring them down .Any high school grade physics teacher can prove this theory .The general population has a hard time with any kind of critical thinking wake up people ...

    The governments theory about what happened that day sounds more to me like a conspiracy theory ..please look at the facts again this time through the eyes of who were there..

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...ysteries&hl=en
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    Thumbs down Like Gonzo said ....

    Quote Originally Posted by chris0871
    without some outside force to help bring them down
    HELLO, Chris??? HELLLLOOO?????? HELLLLLLLLLLLLOOOOOOOOOOOOOO?? ???

    Hmmmmmmmm I guess nobody's home.

    Hey Chris, newsflash for ya .... THERE WAS AN OUTSIDE FORCE!!!!!!!!!!!! Namely, two big-*** planes filled with jet fuel, flown by a bunch of terrorists bent on murdering hundreds of thousands of Americans.

    GO AWAY!
    September 11th - Never Forget

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    Quote Originally Posted by chris0871
    why is it no one has been questioned in an open forum on these matters ?
    Have you been under a rock for the past 5 years?

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    First all, let me "educate you"...

    The airspace around NYC is not the most "protected".

    That airspace is the ADIZ (Air Defense Identifcation Zone) that surrounds Washington, DC.

    When you crash an aircraft that is predominantly made of aluminum into a building or the ground at 450 to 550 knots with a very high fuel load (remember, all of these flights were headed to LA) the resulting fireball, burning at 3000+ Farenheit, and fueled by flammable furnishings such as paper, wood paneling, plastics, carpeting, etc. coupled with the fact that the melting point of aluminum is 1200 degrees Farenheit, there isn't going to be much left of any aircraft.

    Steel begins to elongate at 1000 degrees Farenheit and fails completely around 1300 to 1400, depending on the alloy.

    The structural steel, weakened by the impact of the collision and the fires, failed, causing the weight of each floor to collapse upon each other...what firefighters call a pancake collapase (and if you were a firefighter, you would have at least a rudimentary knowledge of buidling construction...)

    That, my "freind"... coupled with the actions of 19 murderous scumbags and Al Qaeda is what destroyed the Pentagon and the WTC.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

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