This ol’ world is a fast- and ever-changing place, with events overtaking previous events almost daily.
So it is with the nation’s 12-year-old War on Terror, and Frontline — the award-winning PBS documentary program — steps into the updated terror war fracas with a re-airing of a September 2011 broadcast on that on-going effort. “Top Secret America,” broadcast initially to mark the 10-year anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks on Washington, D.C., and New York, will be shown again — but with a twist. It will include fresh reporting on the Boston Marathon bombing tragedy that occurred April 15.
The program will air at 9 p.m. Tuesday on KACV-TV.
“Top Secret America” is a joint effort put together by the Frontline team along with Dana Priest, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist with The Washington Post. Priest reports on the top-secret efforts the nation has launched since that terrible late-summer day in 2001 when planes flew into the World Trade Center twin towers, into the Pentagon and also into a Pennsylvania field after passengers sought to retake United Airlines Flight 93 from the terrorists who had hijacked it.
Those who were old enough to remember that terrible day can recall in vivid detail how they learned of the unfolding tragedy. Frontline, as it always does, takes us back to the immediate aftermath of that day and how President George W. Bush mobilized the military and our nation’s intelligence apparatus to begin preparing for the counterattack that would ensue in Afghanistan. Bush’s successor in the White House, President Barack Obama, has continued the fight and Frontline will give us a look inside the transition from one administration to another.
We would go to war later in Iraq. The Iraq War has ended; Saddam Hussein is dead and the country is struggling to build a free and democratic society. The Afghanistan War is coming to a close and the ultimate outcome there remains uncertain.
Osama bin Laden, the 9/11 mastermind is dead at the hands of Navy SEALs in a daring May 2011 raid, and al-Qaida is a shadow of its former self.
The war on terror continues and as the world learned to its horror on April 15, it can present itself at any time, at any place and with no warning. The Boston bombing is believed to be the work of two Chechen brothers. One of them is dead. The other is recovering from injuries sustained in gun battles with authorities who tracked them down. He’ll eventually face justice.
Frontline’s rebroadcast will add the latest element to the anti-terror war for viewers to absorb — and to learn.