This video was shown as a "Tribute to 9/11" during the Republican National Convention tonight. For what purpose, who knows. It seems pretty obvious that the RNC was hoping to exploit our fears of terrorism and turn them into votes (if Giuliani's constant "9/11 9/11 9/11" wasn't making it clear enough).
This is repugnant. Disgusting. Repulsive. I could go on and on with synonyms, but you get the point.
Here's the video. The first 2:52 is the supposed "tribute," and then Keith Olbermann's response:
"Ah, I'm sorry, it's necessary to say this and I wanted to separate myself from the others on the air about this. If at this late date any television network had of its own accord shown that much videotape and that much graphic videotape of 9/11, and I speak as somebody who lost a few friends there, it - we - would be rightly, uh, eviscerated at all quarters, perhaps by the Republican party itself, for exploiting the memories of the dead and perhaps even for trying to evoke that pain again. Uh, if you reacted to that videotape the way I did, I apologize, uh, it is a subject of great pain for many of us still, and was probably not appropriate to be shown."
From the YouTube description:
This "tribute" which served to only throw fear into the political discourse and frighten voters was shown at the 2008 Republican National Convention. Keith Olbermann spoke for many of us at the sickening images used for political gain.
From the Boston Globe blog:
One of the most enduring taboos in American politics, the airing of graphic images from the September 11 attacks in a partisan context, died today. It was nearly seven years old.
The informal prohibition, which had been occasionally threatened by political ads in recent years, was pronounced dead at approximately 7:40 CST, when a video aired before delegates at the Republican National Convention included slow-motion footage of a plane striking the World Trade Center, the towers' subsequent collapse, and smoke emerging from the Pentagon.
The September 11 precedent was one of the few surviving campaign-season taboos. It is survived by direct comparisons of one's opponents to Hitler.