Posted on June 10, 2005

Key Congressman Angered by Broad-Based Ground Zero Plans

William Murphy, Newsday (New York), June 10

Reported plans for the Freedom Center at the Ground Zero memorial site have divided the families of 9/11 victims and angered one key congressman who attacks it for failing to focus on those who died in the terror attacks.

Plans for a broad-based center that would deal with freedom on an international level, including the Soviet gulag and the Holocaust, are inappropriate, U.S. Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford) said in an interview.

“Gettysburg should be about Gettysburg, and a 9/11 memorial should be about 9/11,” King said after reading in a newspaper about plans for the site.

A controversy about the site began to build Tuesday, when the Wall Street Journal printed an op-ed piece critical of the International Freedom Center’s plan for exhibits on American Indian genocide, Jim Crow lynchings in the South, the dissident movement in China and Chilean refugees, among others.

The article was written by Debra Burlingame, whose brother, Thomas Burlingame, was the pilot of the American Airlines Flight 11 that crashed into the Pentagon on 9/11.

“Ground Zero has been stolen, right from under our noses,” she wrote. “How do we get it back?”