News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

1993 World Trade Center bomber Ramzi Yousef told US officials, 'Next time we'll bring them both down,' closing scene as re-enacted in HBO 1997 docu-drama about 1993 World Trade Center bombing, 'Path to Paradise'

6/14/1997, "Bombing of the Trade Center, Simplified for a TV Audience," NY Times, Ralph Blumenthal

"The terrorists, are shown, accurately, as beneficiaries of some staggering law enforcement bungling. Ramzi Ahmed Yousef, accused of being the main bomb maker and plot mastermind, arrives at Kennedy International Airport without a visa and is allowed into the country on a promise to return for a hearing in three months. 

Later captured and now awaiting trial, he is given the sinister-and presumably apocryphal-last word: ''Next time, we'll bring them both down.''" [end of article]

(Beginning of NY Times article): "More than four years after a car bomb erupted under the World Trade Center, killing 6 people and injuring more than 1,000, the attack that brought the nightmare of terrorism to American soil is getting the full Hollywood treatment on HBO tonight. 

The made-for-television movie, at 8 P.M., follows the investigation through the eyes of a buddy team of F.B.I. investigators as they battle a law enforcement bureaucracy almost as bungle-prone as the terrorists themselves. 
As history, the film, ''Path to Paradise,'' tracks much of the riveting story as it emerged in the investigations and trials that followed the attack on Feb. 26, 1993. It even uses some of the words of Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman and other conspirators-as they were later proved to be-from secret tape recordings....
''Path to Paradise'' drew controversy this week with complaints by the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee in Washington that the movie prejudicially portrays Muslims as a menace to American society. The group called every Arab or Muslim character in the movie ''an ugly stereotype'' and said that the film would be given the group's ''Intolerance Award.'' 

HBO defended the film and said it would broadcast a statement that the movie was not intended to reflect the views of most Muslims and Arabs. 

It was unclear who actually wrote the screenplay for the television movie. HBO's publicity material on the film does not mention the writer, and the on-screen credits list Ned Curren, a name that HBO officials said is a pseudonym. No reason was given for the use of the pen name. 

Scenes in the film accurately reflect the disarray of law enforcement officials when it came to tracking potential terrorists. But as the lead F.B.I. agent, John Anticev, played by the actor Peter Gallagher, keeps reminding colleagues and viewers, it is a free country unless you do something illegal. ''Great,'' Agent Anticev says at one point. ''Freedom of religion protects a bunch of murdering fanatics.'' 

The movie diverges from reality as it glosses over the tangled relationship between the informer, Mr. Salem, and the F.B.I. team of Mr. Anticev and Agent Nancy Floyd, played by Marcia Gay Harden....Also left undetailed is the way Mr. Salem secretly taped Mr. Anticev and Ms. Floyd in backstage law enforcement strategizing that embarrassed the F.B.I. when it became public....

Also coming in for a hit (not totally undeserved) are reporters, who pop up just as the F.B.I. is about to carry out its crucial arrest of Mohammed A. Salameh, the bungler who rented the bomb-carrying van and later returned to the rental office so he could get his money back. 

Later captured and now awaiting trial, he is given the sinister -and presumably apocryphal-last word: ''Next time, we'll bring them both down.''"

"Photos: Ned Eisenberg, left, portrays F.B.I. informer Emad Salem, above, who double-crossed agents by taping their conversations, in the HBO movie ''Path to Paradise.'' (HBO); Andreas Katsulas, plays Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, whose taped words are used in the film. (HBO)" [As of 11/29/15, the photo described doesn't appear with NYT article).


Comment: "Path to Paradise" was released on VHS July 10, 2001. Commenters observe it hasn't been shown on HBO since Sept. 11, 2001, when Islamists easily finished the job they started on 2/26/1993.

"Path to Paradise-The Untold Story of the World Trade Center Bombing," [VHS] Peter Gallagher (Actor), Art Malik (Actor), Larry Williams (Director), Leslie Libman (Director) Rated: R" "VHS release date: July 10, 2001."
As of 11/29/15, the film is available on You Tube.

Text on cover of VHS release of 1997 HBO film: "No one expected a terrorist attack on US soil. Based on the terrifying true story behind the World Trade Center bombing."

Among comments at Amazon: "A wakeup call unheeded"

"10 of 10 people found the following review helpful

Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase 
"An HBO production, amazing actors, superb dialog. A bomb-making expert from Iraq attempts entry to the U.S. without a visa. He states he's leaving Iraq for political asylum in the U.S. The INS agent questions him a bit, looks over his fishy looking passport. She approaches her superior with the asylum application and urges that "he should be detained". "Jails are full. You want to take him home?" her boss retorts. The film shows just how these terrorists jumped through about any and every loophole in the system under the guise of religious freedom. Bomb-making right in the apartment. Operating right under the nose of the FBI and other law enforcement agencies. Anti-American propaganda tapes found in an apartment which, truth be told, is not against the law. And of course there was the chilling prophetic line at the end: "Next time we'll bring them both down." Absolutely worth watching again and again." Image above from

Below, closing scenes from 1997 HBO film, Ramzi Yousef in helicopter with US officials saying, "Next time we'll bring them both down."


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