CBS' 9-11 Moved Me
March 12, 2002
Did you happen to watch the two-hour special called "9-11" on CBS on Sunday night?
Nielsen estimates that 39 million households, which was one-third of all television sets in America, watched the documentary on the World Trade Center attacks. In fact, in New York City, over half of the television viewers watched "9-11."
If for some reason you did not see "9-11," then you missed a very powerful portrayal of the day of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center towers.
This documentary evoked many memories of September 11th and showed us some things that were happening at what would be known as 'Ground Zero' that we have not seen or heard before.
"9-11" was filmed by two French brothers, Jules and Gedeon Naudet, who were actually working on a documentary about New York City firefighters when the first plane crashed into the first World Trade Center tower.
The two filmmakers instinctively kept filming the events of that day as they were given permission to follow the firefighters into the World Trade Center towers.
These filmmakers had no idea that their work would become the last video documentation from inside the World Trade Center towers before the buildings collapsed on that tragic day in American history.
"9-11" was filled with many haunting images, including hearing the extremely loud thumping sound made when people jumped out of the windows of the World Trade Center to escape. Every time I heard that sound, it sent chills up and down my spine!
The fear that was so evident in people's faces reminded me of how scary that day was in New York City. Paranoia set in even in the firefighters, who were spreading rumors about a possible third plane that was on its way to the World Trade Center towers.
However, mass confusion and uncertainty did not deter these firefighters who valiantly served that day. The courage of the firefighters and their willingness to put their lives on the line to save the people trapped inside the building was vividly captured in this documentary.
I have even greater respect for firefighters, policemen and other public servants all across America now. Nextel, who was the only corporate sponsor of "9-11," created very tasteful commercials applauding these people for their service to our country. It should make us all more appreciative of the sacrifices our local firefighters and policemen make to protect us!
Although some of the families of the victims of the terrorist attacks did not want CBS to air this special because the memories of that day are still so fresh, I think it was a timely reminder for all Americans of the severity of what happened on that day that we should never forget.
Our memories are so short, though, that we sometimes forget how serious this really was. "9-11" brought back the reality of that day in all of us! Thank you CBS for giving Americans a chance to see what was happening from the perspective of the firefighters.
If you watced the entire documentary and didn't feel the emotion of the firefighters as they risked their lives without fear, then you have become totally detached from reality.
CBS only has one more opportunity contractually to show "9-11" to television audiences. If you missed it the first time, then don't miss it again!
Watch it and you'll feel like you were in the World Trade Center tower in New York City on September 11, 2001.