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

Amnesty: EU Failing Migrants, Refugees

Rights group says migrants, refugees subject to detention, extortion, beatings More

From South Africa to Vietnam, Cyclists Deliver Message Against Rhino Horns

Appalled by poaching they saw firsthand, sisters embark on tour to raise awareness in countries where rhino horn products are in demand More

Uber Wants Johannesburg Police Protection

Request follows recent protests outside ride-hailing service's Johannesburg office 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.
Getting it Done Beyond a Nuclear Deali
X
July 07, 2015 12:02 PM
If a nuclear deal is reached between Iran and world powers in Vienna, it will be a highly technical road map to be used to monitor nuclear activity in Iran for years to come to ensure Tehran does not make nuclear weapons. Equally as complicated will be dismantling international sanctions that were originally intended to be ironclad. VOA’s Heather Murdock talks to experts about the key challenges any deal will present.
Video

Video Getting it Done Beyond a Nuclear Deal

If a nuclear deal is reached between Iran and world powers in Vienna, it will be a highly technical road map to be used to monitor nuclear activity in Iran for years to come to ensure Tehran does not make nuclear weapons. Equally as complicated will be dismantling international sanctions that were originally intended to be ironclad. VOA’s Heather Murdock talks to experts about the key challenges any deal will present.
Video

Video Rice Farmers Frustrated As Drought Grips Thailand

A severe drought in Thailand is limiting the growing season of the country’s important rice crop. Farmers are blaming the government for not doing more to protect a key export. Steve Sandford reports from Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Video

Video Making Music, Fleeing Bombs: New Film on Sudan’s Internal Refugees

In 2012, Sudanese filmmaker Hajooj Kuka went to make a documentary among civil war refugees in Sudan’s Blue Nile and Nuba Mountains region. What he found surprised him: music was helping to save people from bombing raids by their own government. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more.
Video

Video 'From This Day Forward' Reveals Difficult Journey of Transgender Parent

In her documentary, "From This Day Forward", filmmaker Sharon Shattuck reveals the personal journey of her transgender father, as he told his family that he always felt he was a woman inside and decided to live as one. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.
Video

Video Floodwaters Threaten Iconic American Home

The Farnsworth House in the Midwest State of Illinois is one of the most iconic homes in America. Thousands of tourists visit the site every year. Its location near a river inspired the design of the house, but, as VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, that very location is now threatening the existence of this National Historic Landmark.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.

VOA Blogs