the Attack

From: Michael Wiik (
Date: Wed Sep 19 2001 - 13:56:54 MDT

When I said before that this was gonna be up-close and personal violence
in your living room, I hope people understood I was referring to the
network news. But it's gonna be more than that. I think we can expect
survivor and family stories for years, in magazines, the paper, talk
shows. People are gonna be hitting each with chairs about this on the
sleazy talk shows. It's gonna be love, hate, loyalty, jealousy, faith,
doubt, etc etc etc. And it's gonna go on for a long time. And we are
gonna see that airplane slamming into that building again and again and
again and again and again.

Sometimes folks are gonna break down and cry for no apparent reason at
all. Expect to see this a lot on TV and in the street in the coming

And it's gonna be called the Attack. Not 911. Not the terror-bombing of
WTC (we've had two of those, now). Not the Attack on America or some
media shit like that. Whatever the media names it, in day to day
conversation it'll be the Attack. These things happened before the
Attack. These things happened after the Attack. Oh yeah, I knew her
before the Attack. I met him after the Attack. Yeah, but that was
pre-Attack. The post-Attack society.

World War II is a big name for a big war. A long process, carried out
orderly. Battles. Campaigns. Thousands of tanks and airplanes. National
efforts. Decades ago. Same with any other major killing field that
people date history from (adjusting for period, of course). Everything
now happened after Waterloo. But many things now happened before the

The Attack is immediate. It stays with people. It's a constant reminder
that hate now travels as immediately as information. And depending on
what we do and say now, maybe it could always be called the Attack.
Which would be much better than calling it the First Attack. Then we'd
start talking about the Second Attack. The Third Attack. That Last
Attack. The Attack last week. And after we lose count then we might as
well call it a World War.


Michael Wiik
Messagenet Communications Research
Washington DC Area Internet and WWW Consultants

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