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The 9/11 Hijackers: Inside the Hamburg Cell

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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(Jul 31, 2007)
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Editorial Reviews

For years, they remained nearly invisible, a small group of dedicated men waiting for the perfect chance to strike. Then, on September 11, 2001, after five years of preparation, they took action. The men's full stories and the details of their ambitious plan have now come to light. We track the progress of this unlikely group of young men who developed from unassuming college students into religious martyrs. These men, now known as the Hamburg Cell, were responsible for the cultivation of the al-Qaeda plot code-named "the planes operation". The group's leaders were four well-educated Muslim men who shared a common belief in radical Islam. Though Mohamed Atta, Marwan al-Shehhi, Ziad Jarrah, and Ramzi Binalshibh hailed from different countries--Egypt, the United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, Yemen--a spirit of brotherhood prevailed among them. And in time, they committed to a singular purpose--to translate their religious fanaticism into catastrophic action.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Atta
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: A&E Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: July 31, 2007
  • Run Time: 50 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000P6R5MU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #175,723 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

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This was a very informative program about the 9/11 hijackers. It was interesting to hear about the lives of these men before they found radical Islam. You hear from people that knew them in Germany and ones that met them while training to be pilots in the states. Some rare video footage is shown of some of them attending meetings and even singing songs of martyrdom. All in all it's a good release.
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This is a good and detailed account of the zealots who hijacked planes and piloted them into buildings. What is missing is any attempt to explain why, except with the facile answer, they were fundamentalist Moslems. Somehow that begs the question.

Voltaire wrote that anyone who can make you believe an absurdity can make you commit an atrocity. So--how are humans made to believe an absurdity, e.g., that Jews should be killed, that shooting an abortion doctor will stop abortions, that killing infidels will secure one 75 virgins in paradise? Or that there is a paradise beyond death? Or that 75 virgins would be something I should want?

The problem with the hijackers was not merely Islam. It was fundamentalism, any variety of fundamentalism, from fascism, to communism, to christianity, to islam--and beyond. Fundamentalists or true believers are convinced that doubt and questioning are somehow wrong, sinful. But doubt is the basis of rational thought and people who think rationally do not murder 6,000,000 Jews or burn camps in Darfur or shoot up an abortion clinic or pilot a plane into the World Trade Center. Rational thinkers know that irrational acts elicit responses that are counterproductive to the acts. If, for example, one believes that abortion is immoral, then it is essential to change the mindset of those who believe otherwise--or re-examine one's premise on the chance that one might be wrong--or simply to co-exist. Otherwise, the opposition hunkers down or strikes back in proportion.

Fundamentalist Christians have done things as bad or worse than the 9/11 hijackers, though some viewers may resent this statement. This DVD does not even try to touch upon that.
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