A global network of human rights museums is urging the International Freedom Center to downplay America in its exhibits and programs at Ground Zero, the Daily News has learned.And the New York Times continues to attack Debra Burlingame who first brought to light the anti-Americanism at the IFC and The Drawing Center. Yet, it is the IFC itself that seeks to minimize the role of the US at the site of the worst terrorist attack in world history that resulted in the murder of nearly 3,000 Americans. Outrageous doesn't begin to cut it.
The outrageous request is the latest controversy to torment the Freedom Center, whose leaders have tried to dispel the perception that it would be a home for America bashers.
"Don't feature America first," the IFC has been advised by the consortium of 14 "museums of conscience" that quietly has been consulting with the Freedom Center for the past two years over plans for the hallowed site. "Think internationally, where America is one of the many nations of the world."
Those words rang hollow with some 9/11 family members.
"I can't think of a greater insult than to invite museums from other countries of the world to come and exploit what should be America's memorial," said Jack Lynch, who helped carry the body of his firefighter son Michael, 30, out of the rubble.
Reprehensible. Vile. Disgusting.
"But what happened after 9/11 - with restrictions placed on human rights and the cycle of revenge and the allegations of human rights abuses in prisons - must also be explored," Ali said in a call from London.Enter the moral equivalence. Terrorists held in captivity because they were captured on the battlefield are somehow accorded equivalent status with innocents minding their own business while at work in the Twin Towers or flying on the planes.
And I can think of no worse violation of human rights than having Islamic terrorists hijack planes, crash them into buildings without the slightest bit of warning, and pulverize thousands of people so that absolutely nothing remains that can be identified as a person.
The NY Daily News, which isn't exactly a right-wing paper by any stretch of the imagination, calls the IFC onto the carpet for this inane behavior.
The IFC's organizers have also cited plans to host exhibitions by members of the International Coalition of Historic Site Museums of Conscience as a reason why the Freedom Center would be a perfect fit for the hallowed ground where 2,749 people were murdered. To which we can only say that IFC leaders Tom Bernstein and Richard Tofel must be nuts. The advice the coalition gave them is neither inspirational nor practical. It is pure anti-American hogwash.
The coalition's wisdom, as spelled out in its 2004 annual report, begins by expressing concern about how religious Muslims would view the Freedom Center and climaxes by offering Bernstein, Tofel & Co. an offensive prescription: "Don't put America first." The coalition also worries that "the average Bangladeshi" feels "his/her human rights have been violated by the U.S." Come again? Exhibits on what amounts to a mass grave of slaughtered Americans will be decided by what the average Bangladeshi feels? Not bloody likely.