PBS Provides Comprehensive 9/11 Programming Across Iconic Series

Posted by PBS Publicity on


Arlington, VA - In commemoration of the fifth anniversary of September 11, PBS presents a series of reflective, compelling and thought-provoking programs that examine the dramatic and lasting impact of 9/11 on America while also exploring the U.S.-led global war on terror.

In addition to a special broadcast the evening of September 11 of AMERICA REBUILDS II: RETURN TO GROUND ZERO (9:00 p.m. ET, check local listings), NOVA and FRONTLINE, two of PBS' most celebrated and iconic series paired on Tuesday nights, will air shows related to 9/11 this September and October.

"We're proud to offer such a wide range of shows exploring the impact of 9/11 on the fifth anniversary of that terrible event," said John F. Wilson, Sr. Vice President, PBS programming. "NOVA and FRONTLINE stand apart for their insightful treatment of any topic, but especially for their body of work around 9/11 and global terrorism."

In addition to new programming scheduled for this fall, PBS Home Video and Paramount Home Entertainment have released earlier FRONTLINE programming that deals with issues related to September 11th. The Al Qaeda Files, as the box set is called, includes: "Hunting bin Laden" (2000), "Looking for Answers" (2001), "The Man Who Knew" (2002), "In Search of Al Qaeda" (2002), "Chasing the Sleeper Cell" (2003), "Son of Al Qaeda" (2004) and "Al Qaeda's New Front" (2005).

A summary of this fall's 9/11 programming follows:

Tuesday, September 5, 2006, 8:00-9:00 p.m. ET (check local listings)
Following up on its Emmy Award-winning documentary, "Why The Towers Fell," NOVA probes the conclusions of the official engineering investigation into the World Trade Center's collapse on 9/11, with updated analysis of the devastating attack and how subsequent knowledge gained will shape skyscrapers of the future. Yet, is it practical or even possible to construct invincible buildings? This gripping film features candid interviews with leading building and safety experts, investigators, architects and engineers, including Leslie Robertson, lead structural engineer of the original World Trade Center and Shanghai's new World Financial Center, evacuation specialist Jake Pauls and more. From the hallways of the newly erected World Trade Center 7 in New York, to China, where the world's tallest building is midway towards completion, NOVA explores the complex challenges of "Building on Ground Zero." Executive producer: Larry Klein. Senior executive producer, NOVA: Paula S. Apsell.

Monday, September 11, 2006, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET (check local listings)
Four years after AMERICA REBUILDS: A YEAR AT GROUND ZERO, the ambitious plans for healing the wound in lower Manhattan have been slowed by grief and uncertainty. A new temporary station for the PATH rail system has been rebuilt for the nearly 70,000 who make the daily commute to lower Manhattan; and 7 World Trade Center, built by Ground Zero's leaseholder and real estate developer Larry Silverstein, has opened, and the first tenants have moved in. However, the ambitious 1,776 foot Freedom Tower has barely begun, and Michael Arad's memorial, as planned, has been vociferously criticized by some victims' families. Other victims' family members have found healing in helping visitors to Ground Zero make sense of the site by giving tours and explaining what happened in New York that terrible day five years ago.
Actress Mariska Hargitay ("Law & Order: SVU") narrates. Executive producer: Ken Mandel.

Tuesday, October 3, 2006, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET (check local listings)
FRONTLINE reports from the lawless Pakistani tribal areas along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border and reveals how the area has fallen under the control of a resurgent Taliban militia, which uses it as a launching pad for attacks on U.S. and coalition forces in Afghanistan. Despite the presence of more than 70,000 Pakistani troops, the Taliban has claimed two tribal agencies, North and South Waziristan, as Taliban republics. The area, off limits to U.S. troops by agreement with Pakistan's president and long suspected of harboring Osama bin Laden and his deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri, is now a failed state. President Pervez Musharraf tells FRONTLINE reporter Martin Smith that Pakistan's strategy, which includes cash payments to militants who lay down their arms, has clearly failed. In a region little understood because it is off limits to most observers, FRONTLINE investigates a secret front in the war on terror.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET (check local listings)
Five years after the attacks on 9/11 and the massive, multibillion- dollar reorganization of government agencies which followed, Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter Lowell Bergman investigates the domestic counterterrorism effort and asks whether we are any better prepared to prevent another catastrophic attack. Relying on previously undisclosed documents and through interviews with high-level sources from the FBI, Department of Defense and Department of Homeland Security, Bergman reveals ongoing interagency rivalry as well as troubling flaws in intelligence operations, issues that not only raise questions about what we actually know about the "enemy," but also about whether we have heightened our vulnerability to other threats.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006, 9:00-10:00 p.m. ET (check local listings)
In the aftermath of the fall of Saddam Hussein, a group of Americans led by Ambassador L. Paul Bremer III set off to Baghdad to build a new nation and establish democracy in the Arab Middle East. One year later, with Bremer forced to secretly exit what some have called "the most dangerous place on earth," the group left behind lawlessness, insurgency, economic collapse, death, destruction and much of their idealism. Three years later, as the U.S. continues to look for an exit strategy, the government the Americans helped create and the infrastructure they designed are being tested. FRONTLINE follows the early efforts and ideals of this group as they tried to seize control and disband the Iraqi police, army and Baathist government,  and how they became hardened along the way to the realities of postwar Iraq. "The Lost Year in Iraq" is based on numerous first-person interviews and extensive documentation from the FRONTLINE team that produced "Rumsfeld's War," "The Torture Question" and "The Dark Side."

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