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Gensler, D. Goldman, D.S. Goldman, D. Gordon, R.M. Prince, R. Rosenbach, N. (2002). Voices from New York: September 11, 2001. Contemp. Psychoanal., 38(1):77-99.

(2002). Contemporary Psychoanalysis, 38(1):77-99

Voices from New York: September 11, 2001

Daniel Gensler, Ph.D., Deberah S. Goldman, Ph.D., Dodi Goldman, Ph.D., Robert M. Gordon, Psy.D, Robert Prince, Ph.D. and Nancy Rosenbach, Ph.D.

A week After the horrific assault on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, a group of analysts gathered to support each other and share their impressions of how the events were affecting their patients and themselves. The material below consists of a partial sampling of some of the thoughts and clinical material raised during the meeting. The material is purposely being presented in relatively raw form. No attempt is made to construct an argument, draw generalizations, or theorize. Rather, we offer the readers a snapshot of what was foremost on the participants' minds during those dreadful days and the types of clinical encounters in which they were engaged. These are the highly individual yet overlapping voices of six clinicians who explicitly acknowledge that they cannot see the forest for the trees.

Dodi Goldman, Ph.D.

The attack on the World Trade Center was neither a disaster nor a tragedy. It was an atrocity perpetrated by fellow human beings who lived among their victims. The profound absence of empathy and the presence of deliberate intent to kill and be killed pose a challenge for which there is no obvious solution. The perpetrators were in no way cowards. They appear to have been men blinded by conviction.

Part of my initial reaction was a shameful thought. Before relocating to the U.S. in 1988, I lived in Israel on the Lebanese border. We had suffered a direct terrorist attack in 1979. Numerous additional attacks were thwarted. My children spent many nights in bomb shelters because of shelling from across the border. While in the army, my patrol jeep was ambushed. When I moved to the United States, I thought I had put all that behind.

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