News / USA

Obama Dedicates 9/11 Museum

Sept 11 MuseumPresident Barack Obama speaks at the dedication ceremony for the National September 11 Memorial Museum on Thursday, May 15, 2014 in New York. (AP Photo/Mike Segar, Pool)
Sept 11 MuseumPresident Barack Obama speaks at the dedication ceremony for the National September 11 Memorial Museum on Thursday, May 15, 2014 in New York. (AP Photo/Mike Segar, Pool)
VOA News
President Barack Obama dedicated the National September 11 Memorial Museum in New York on Thursday, recounting the horror of the 2001 terrorist attacks that killed nearly 3,000 people.
 
NY Reporter Adam Phillips talks to Susan Yackee about the 9/11 Museum dedication
NY Reporter Adam Phillips talks to Susan Yackee about the 9/11 Museum dedicationi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X

Addressing families of the victims who gathered in the footprint of the World Trade Center for the televised ceremony, the president recalled the heroism of rescue workers who helped save thousands of people trapped in the rubble after al-Qaida hijackers crashed commercial passenger jets into the skyscrapers and the Pentagon outside Washington. Another hijacked plane crashed in Pennsylvania.

The United States is "a nation that stands tall and united and unafraid because no act of terror can match the strength or the character of our country," the president said. "At the great wall and bedrock that embrace us today, nothing can ever break us. Nothing can change who we are as Americans."

Watch related video report by VOA's Zlatica Hoke:
 
Obama Dedicates 9-11 Museumi
X
Zlatica Hoke
May 15, 2014 11:15 PM
Thirteen years after the September 11 attacks on the United States, New York City has unveiled a memorial museum documenting the destruction of the World Trade Center and honoring some 3,000 victims who perished in the collapse of the Twin Towers. At the museum dedication ceremony Thursday, U.S. President Barack Obama praised the bravery of Americans in the aftermath of the disaster. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports.

Expressing admiration for those who gave their lives to help save others, Obama cited the example of Welles Crowther, a 24 year old who led groups out of the South Tower and kept returning for others until the building collapsed, killing.

"To all those who responded with such courage ... on behalf of Michelle and myself and the American people, it is an honor for us to join in your memories, to recall and to reflect, but above all to reaffirm the true spirit of nine-eleven — love compassion, sacrifice."

Crowther's mother, Allison, watched the event with one of the people her son have saved.

"Welles believed that we are all connected as one human family, that we are here to look out for and to care for one another," she said. "This is life's most precious meaning."
 
Inside the National September 11 Memorial Museum, the last World Trade Center column to be cut away from Ground Zero is covered in graffiti messages by those who cleared the site after the attack, Ground Zero, New York City, May 15, 2014. (Adam Phillips/VInside the National September 11 Memorial Museum, the last World Trade Center column to be cut away from Ground Zero is covered in graffiti messages by those who cleared the site after the attack, Ground Zero, New York City, May 15, 2014. (Adam Phillips/V
x
Inside the National September 11 Memorial Museum, the last World Trade Center column to be cut away from Ground Zero is covered in graffiti messages by those who cleared the site after the attack, Ground Zero, New York City, May 15, 2014. (Adam Phillips/V
Inside the National September 11 Memorial Museum, the last World Trade Center column to be cut away from Ground Zero is covered in graffiti messages by those who cleared the site after the attack, Ground Zero, New York City, May 15, 2014. (Adam Phillips/V
The museum and memorial plaza, set to open to the public next week, has been years in the making. Its completion was troubled by construction delays and continuing disputes over design and whether unidentified remains of some victims of should be buried in the depths of the new structure or above ground.

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the musuem will hold meaning for all visitors, calling it a sacred marker of U.S. history destined to take its place alongside the fields of Gettysburg, the waters of Pearl Harbor and the Vietnam Veterans' memorial.

"The museum is a place where you can come to understand 9/11 through the lives of those who were killed and the lives of those who rushed here to help," Bloomberg said. "A place we come .... to honor acts of courage and compassion that saved lives and lifted spirits, the outstretched hands that rushed forward that day and in the hard weeks and months that followed."

Almost entirely underground, the museum extends to the bedrock where the steel supporting the World Trade Center was anchored.

Massive pieces of distorted steel recovered from the destroyed towers are on display along with some 10,000 artifacts from the day of the attack. There are pictures of those killed, a handwritten plea for rescue and voice recordings of people from around the world recalling where they were when they heard about the attack, and what they experienced as they watched the horror unfold on live television.

When entering and leaving the museum, visitors can look up through a glass ceiling, One World Trade Center, which scheduled to open later this year, while "The Rise of al-Qaida," a brief documentary film, can be viewed the at end of the exhibit.

One block from Thursday's ceremony, protesters under the banner of "9/11 Parents & Families of 9/11 Firefighters" decried the interment of loved ones' remains seven stories below ground, in what they call the museum's basement.

“We're not opposed to the museum, per se, with all the artifacts, and the story it is going to tell of history, but we are opposed [to] these remains being interred there," said Eileen Walsh, who lost her son, 27-year-old firefighter Michael Brennan, in the attack. "We had asked for a memorial tomb on the plaza when we found out there was going to be a plaza with the water pools. We wanted some input.”

Jim McCaffry, whose brother perished on the 78th floor of the South Tower, says he will not set foot in the museum unless the remains are moved above ground.

"Where is it acceptable that bureaucrats and politicians have more of a say in the interment of the human remains, particularly of those that died after an event such as 9-11?" he said. "They have more say than family members that loved them the most and knew them. In what society is that acceptable? I don't know."

David Ware, who was about five years old when the towers were hit, toured the memorial Thursday as part of a high school trip.

“I was in K-5 at the time, and something like this is important because so many people my age don't really have the same sense as to what happened and the same feeling of hurt and pain," he said. "This is something where our nation was attacked and this isn't just an event we can cast aside and not think about.”

Adam Phillips contributed to this report from New York City
 
  • President Obama speaks at the dedication ceremony for the National September 11 Memorial Museum saying no act of terror can match the strength and character of the United States, New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • President Obama speaks at the dedication ceremony for the National September 11 Memorial Museum, New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • Heavily armed police officers stand guard outside the World Trade Center before President Obama's arrival for the dedication ceremony of the National September 11 Memorial Museum, New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • President Obama and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg tour the destroyed Ladder 3 truck at the September 11 Memorial Museum, New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • President Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, former president Bill Clinton, and Diana Taylor tour the Memorial Hall at the National September 11 Memorial  Museum, New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • Hours before the dedication ceremony of the National September 11 Memorial Museum starts, security is tight and the mood somber, Ground Zero, New York City, May 15, 2014. (Adam Phillips/VOA)
  • People peer into the windows of the National September 11 Memorial Museum, in New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • A man looks at a picture of the original World Trade Center tower, National September 11 Memorial Museum, New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • A somber crowd watches President Obama giving a speech on a projection screen during the dedication ceremony of the National September 11 Memorial Museum, in New York City, May 15, 2014.
  • Members of the public watch a projection screen at the World Trade Center Plaza during the dedication ceremony of the National September 11 Memorial Museum, New York City, May 15, 2014.

You May Like

Tired of Waiting, South Africans Demand Change ‘Now’

With chronic poverty and lack of basic services largely fueling recent xenophobic attacks, many in Rainbow Nation say it’s time for government to act More

Challenges Ahead for China's Development Plans in Pakistan

Planned $46 billion in energy and infrastructure investments in Pakistan are aimed at transforming the country into a regional hub for trade and investment More

Audio 'Forbidden City' Revisits Little Known Era of Asian-American Entertainment

Little-known chapter of entertainment history captured in 80s documentary is revisited in new digitally remastered format and book More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Abel Ogah from: Oju Nigeria
May 15, 2014 1:31 PM
US should do more to curb global terrorism. You are the only Hope.

by: Milo Bendech
May 15, 2014 12:01 PM
The best way we honored the victims of 9/11 was to put a bullet through the head of the mastermind of the attack...then drone his henchmen into a pile of smoldering ashes. Thank you President Obama for doing where other presidents just promised

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Study: Insecticide Damaging Wild Bee Populationsi
X
April 24, 2015 10:13 PM
A popular but controversial type of insecticide is damaging important wild bee populations, according to a new study. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Study: Insecticide Damaging Wild Bee Populations

A popular but controversial type of insecticide is damaging important wild bee populations, according to a new study. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Data Servers Could Heat Private Homes

As every computer owner knows, when their machines run a complex program they get pretty hot. In fact, cooling the processors can be expensive, especially when you're dealing with huge banks of computer servers. But what if that energy could heat private homes? VOA’s George Putic reports that a Dutch energy firm aims to do just that.
Video

Video Cinema That Crosses Borders Showcased at Tribeca Film Festival

Among the nearly 100 feature length films being shown at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival in New York City are more than 20 documentaries and features with international appeal, from a film about a Congolese businessman in China, to documentaries shot in Pakistan and diaspora communities in the U.S., to a poetic look at disaffected South African youth. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video UN Confronts Threat of Young Radicals

The radicalization and recruitment of young people into Islamist extremist groups has become a growing challenge for governments worldwide. On Thursday, the U.N. Security Council heard from experts on the issue, which has become a potent threat to international peace and security. VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports.
Video

Video Growing Numbers of Turks Discover Armenian Ancestry

In a climate of improved tolerance, growing numbers of people in Turkey are discovering their grandmothers were Armenian. Hundreds of thousands of Armenians escaped the mass deportations and slaughter of the early 1900's by forced conversion to Islam. Or, Armenian children were taken in by Turkish families and assimilated. Now their stories are increasingly being heard. Dorian Jones reports from Istanbul that the revelations are viewed as an important step.
Video

Video Migrants Trek Through Western Balkans to Reach EU

Migrants from Africa and other places are finding different routes into the European Union in search of a better life. The Associated Press followed one clandestine group to document their trek through the western Balkans to Hungary. Zlatica Hoke reports that the migrants started using that route about four years ago. Since then, it has become the second-most popular path into Western Europe, after the option of sailing from North Africa to Italy.
Video

Video TIME Magazine Honors Activists, Pioneers Seen as Influential

TIME Magazine has released its list of celebrities, leaders and activists, whom it deems the world’s “most influential” in 2015. VOA's Ramon Taylor reports from New York.
Video

Video US Businesses See Cuba as New Frontier

The Obama administration's opening toward Cuba is giving U.S. companies hope they'll be able to do business in Cuba despite the continuation of the U.S. economic embargo against the communist nation. Some American companies have been able to export some products to Cuba, but the recent lifting of Cuba's terrorism designation could relax other restrictions. As VOA's Daniela Schrier reports, corporate heavy hitters are lining up to head across the Florida Straits - though experts urge caution.
Video

Video Kenya Launches Police Recruitment Drive After Terror Attacks

Kenya launched a major police recruitment drive this week as part of a large-scale effort to boost security following a recent spate of terror attacks. VOA’s Gabe Joselow reports that allegations of corruption in the process are raising old concerns about the integrity of Kenya’s security forces.
Video

Video Japan, China in Race for Asia High-Speed Rail Projects

A lucrative competition is underway in Asia for billions of dollars in high-speed rail projects. Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Malaysia Thailand and Vietnam are among the countries planning to move onto the fast track. They are negotiating with Japan and the upstart Chinese who are locked in a duel to revolutionize transportation across Asia. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok has details.
Video

Video Scientists: Mosquitoes Attracted By Our Genes

Some people always seem to get bitten by mosquitoes more than others. Now, scientists have proved that is really the case - and they say it’s all because of genes. It’s hoped the research might lead to new preventative treatments for diseases like malaria, as Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Bible Museum Coming to Washington DC

Washington is the center of American political power and also home to some of the nation’s most visited museums. A new one that will showcase the Bible has skeptics questioning the motives of its conservative Christian funders. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Armenia and Politics of Word 'Genocide'

A century ago this April, hundreds of thousands of Armenians of the Turkish Ottoman empire were deported and massacred, and their culture erased from their traditional lands. While broadly accepted by the U.N. and at least 20 countries as “genocide”, the United States and Turkey have resisted using that word to describe the atrocities that stretched from 1915 to 1923. But Armenians have never forgotten.
Video

Video Afghan First Lady Pledges No Roll Back on Women's Rights

Afghan First Lady Rula Ghani, named one of Time's 100 Most Influential, says women should take part in talks with Taliban. VOA's Rokhsar Azamee has more from Kabul.
Video

Video New Brain Mapping Techniques Could Ease Chronic Pain

From Boulder, Colorado, Shelley Schlender reports that new methods for mapping pain in the brain are providing validation for chronic pain and might someday guide better treatment.

VOA Blogs