From Publishers Weekly
The terrorist attacks of 9/11 provided Rudy Giuliani with a Churchillian political opportunity: while Bush was whisked away by the Secret Service, Giuliani seized the moment, striding stalwartly along ruined streets, an image which may well propel him to the White House. Barrett and Collins' investigation proves an illuminating counterpoint to Giuliani's unofficial christening as "America's Mayor," highlighting the critical errors Guiliani made before, during and after the attack. According to the authors, that memorable image-Rudy among the ruins-hides a multitude of sins: in the event of a terrorist attack, Giuliani should have been directing police, fire and emergency services from the city's high-tech underground emergency management center; unfortunately, Giuliani had insisted that that secure center be located at the World Trade Center. Political infighting between police and fire departments went unchecked, preventing coordination between first responders, and Giuliani's rush to return New York to business as usual (fearing that Wall Street might relocate) may have seriously impaired the health of returning workers and residents. The Giuliani who emerges from these pages-shrewd, calculating, indomitable-remains an impressive figure, but one that will give voters pause. Barrett and Collins provide a critique of one of the lions of 9/11, proving that serious investigation and old-fashioned muckraking are still powerful and necessary weapons.
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With a political career sinking under the weight of marital scandal and health concerns, Giuliani saw his personal fortunes rise when he showed leadership after the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center. But journalists Barrett and Collins take issue with the new heroic image of the former New York mayor and possible presidential candidate. This absorbing and detailed investigation examines the day of the attack (when the fire and police departments were in their usual contentious mode), the lessons that were not learned from the 1993 attack on the World Trade Center, and the political aftermath of 9/11 for New York and Giuliani. Despite his much-vaunted leadership and talk of his prescience to develop a response team after the 1993 attack, Barrett and Collins maintain that Giuliani failed New Yorkers in myriad ways, including an ill-advised attempt to lobby to change city election laws to leave him in place as mayor and concealing environmental reports on Ground Zero. Given the status Giuliani has attained since 9/11, this controversial book will be in demand. Vanessa BushCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved