Advertisement
This site uses cookies to improve your experience and to provide services and advertising. By continuing to browse, you agree to the use of cookies described in our Cookies Policy. You may change your settings at any time but this may impact on the functionality of the site. To learn more see our Cookies Policy.
OK
#Open journalism No news is bad news

Your contributions will help us continue to deliver the stories that are important to you

Support The Journal
Dublin: 11 °C Wednesday 8 July, 2020

#World Trade Centre

# world-trade-centre - Friday 2 September, 2011

9/11 firefighters have higher risk of contracting cancer

A new study by British medical journal The Lancet shows that firefighters who worked at ground zero following the terrorist attacks are more likely than others to contract cancer.

# world-trade-centre - Monday 22 August, 2011

Gallery: Powerful new photos show aftermath of 9/11 attacks September 11 This post contains images

Gallery: Powerful new photos show aftermath of 9/11 attacks

Photographer Nicola McClean was in New York as the twin towers fell – and these previously unseen images show the devastation.

# world-trade-centre - Saturday 13 August, 2011

Column: Why conspiracy theories are still alive, ten years after 9/11

As the tenth anniversary of the attack approaches, Tamara Lush explores why many still believe it was an inside job.

# world-trade-centre - Thursday 21 July, 2011

Texas man executed despite shooting victim campaigning for his clemency

Mark Stroman was on death row following two murders in the aftermath of 9/11. One of those who survived his attacks campaigned for his release.

# world-trade-centre - Wednesday 20 July, 2011

Daily Fix: Wednesday

In today’s Fix: the government promises no more public sector pay cuts; Serbian authorities arrest fugitive Goran Hadzic; and one blogger’s marriage advice – “when you marry, you should marry a Chinese woman”.

Survivors of 9/11 banned from memorial service to victims

A ceremony marking ten years since the attacks will be reserved for victims’ relatives only, survivors have been told.

# world-trade-centre - Thursday 5 May, 2011

Barack Obama to visit Ground Zero to remember 9/11 victims

The president will lay wreath at the the former site of the World Trade Centre but will not be making a speech. It comes as he announced that photos of Osama Bin Laden will not be released.

# world-trade-centre - Monday 2 May, 2011

In numbers: Bin Laden, September 11, and the War on Terror

3,520 days between the September 11 attacks and bin Laden’s death – with up to a million civilian deaths in between.

# world-trade-centre - Monday 7 March, 2011

Unseen aerial footage emerges of 9/11 attacks 9/11 This post contains videos

Unseen aerial footage emerges of 9/11 attacks

Video posted online shows aerial footage taken by the NYPD after planes struck the World Trade Centre in the infamous 11 September 2001 attacks.

# world-trade-centre - Thursday 16 September, 2010

Twin Towers memorial traps thousands of birds - video

Birds stunned by columns of light while flying above Manhattan.

# world-trade-centre - Monday 23 August, 2010

DEMONSTRATORS protesting against the proposed construction of a community centre that would include a mosque two blocks from the former site of the World Trade Centre have rounded on a black passer-by assuming him to be a supporter of the project.

This YouTube footage shows a black man passing by the site of a protest before being accosted by some of the demonstrators, while they shouted, ‘No Mosque Here’.

The unidentified man is later seen to attest: “[They] assumed I was an enemy of some sort. They didn’t ask my opinion, they didn’t ask who I was. I want no toruble, wanted no trouble.”

The man then confirmed he was not Muslim, but seemed to be on the verge of declaring his support for the project before being asked to move along as policemen tried to disperse the crowd.

# world-trade-centre - Thursday 19 August, 2010

THERE ARE TWO GENERAL schools of thought regarding the plans to open a mosque in a building two blocks away from the former site of the World Trade Centre.

There are those who still feel the traumas of the September 11 terrorist attacks. They say that the idea of opening a place of devotion to Islam – the same faith whose fundamentalist adherents were responsible for 2,976 civilian deaths – is an affront to those who lost their lives, or their loves, on 9/11.

Then there are those, including President Obama, who say that the United States itself is founded on pluralism: the idea that a single society can exist in spite of – and can indeed defend – a multitude of faiths and belief systems.

In between, however, there is a third group: the Muslim community of Manhattan that simply asks for a place to pray.

An unpopular population

“You know how many Muslims are in this area?,” asks Saad Madaha from Ghana, who prays in a mosque only four blocks from Ground Zero, in a basement beneath a nightclub.

“I would like to see a mosque that looks more like a mosque. I would like to go and pray and have full concentration in my prayers and not have music bashing me in my head.”

Madaha, in that case, is presumably not all that impressed with the plans for the proposed Corboda Centre, which will occupy a disused coat factory on Park Place. The glass-and-steel tower will not look much like a mosque at all: in fact, it won’t even have a crescent moon on its roof.

Some of his fellow Muslims, however, can understand why Governor David Paterson, among others, wants to move the new place of worship to a location with slightly less emotional baggage.

[caption id="attachment_12974" align="alignnone" width="544" caption="Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf is the man behind the 'Cordoba House Initiative' that has drawn such controversy. Photo: Craig Ruttle/AP"]Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf is the man behind the 'Cordoba House Initiative' that has drawn such controversy. Photo: Craig Ruttle/AP[/caption]

“We need mosques, but anywhere but Ground Zero. It’s going to be a problem all the time,” said Sheikh Hossein, 42, from Bangladesh. ”We want to pray peacefully. I don’t want to pray and fight somebody else over the location.

“If this mosque is built here, every time there is terrorism, they are going to blame us.”

But while Hossein’s logic is also sound, Madaha say relocation would be an insult, saying an victory won by the mosque’s opponents would be “a slap on religion”.

A central focal point for a dispersed community

Another factor that muddies the waters is the fact that many New York Muslims simply don’t have the time or habit of worshipping in their own neighbourhoods, and are required to fit their prayer around their working schedules.

A downtown site in Manhattan suits their needs, therefore, because it’s well serviced by public transport and is in the heart of the financial district that employs so many Muslims.

Obama says he has “no regrets” about taking a controversial stance on the project, which has threatened to become a major issue in November’s mid-term elections which could see his Democratic party lose control of Congress to the Republicans.

Before that, however, there is a more pressing issue: the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and a protest arranged for that date, part-organised and to be attended by the families of people killed at the World Trade Centre.

The Muslim community – who will also hold an event of some sort, with the details yet to be discussed – is worried that the event may turn violent, particularly with the anniversary coming at the end of the holy month of Ramadan.

But it seems that no matter what the outcome, there is no way to please everyone. If the mosque is opened, it will almost certainly become a target for sectarian hatred; Obama will face dissent in November’s polls and beyond, and even some of its worshippers will not appreciate the ‘un-Mosque-ish’ look of the building.

If it does not happen, then the Islamic community of New York and beyond will have reason to feel marginalised and victimised in revenge for attacks they condemn and had no part to play in.

Proof, perhaps, that the work of the terrorists has been successful in removing a little of the freedom from the Land of the Free.

# world-trade-centre - Wednesday 4 August, 2010

NEW YORK’S Landmarks Preservation Commission has given the green light to plans to build a multi-storey mosque just around the corner from the site of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre.

Opponents of the building believed the $100m mosque – which will stand over 13 storeys – was an insensitive monument to the deaths of almost 3,000 people killed when two planes flew into the ‘twin towers’ of the centre.

But the mosque was approved after the city’s mayor, Michael Bloomberg, said that Muslim religious freedom had to be respected.

The mayor had been opposed by fellow Republicans Newt Gingrich, who labelled it an “act of triumphalism”, and Sarah Palin who called it “a stab in the heart of the families of the innocent victims” of September 11.

Opponents had appealed to the Commission to declare the site a landmark so as to protect it from non-municipal use, but it voted unanimously that the building – a disused former coat factory – was not considered important enough to merit the status.

Backers of the scheme, however, believe it would help to promote tolerance and that the Cordoba House mosque would ultimately become a symbol of good inter-faith relations within America.

The commission’s hearings had seen significant public protests, with protestors holding signs that claimed Islam “builds mosques at the sites of their conquests and victories” and “Don’t glorify murders of 3,000 – no 9/11 victory mosque”.

The developer behind the project welcomed the ruling and said the mosque would be similar to the famous 92nd Street Y, a mainly Jewish organisation open to all regardless of their religion.