As we approach the tenth anniversary of 9/11, reports have surfaced of Al Qaeda attacks being planned on the U.S. for this Sunday.
American spy networks have intercepted communications from an al Qaeda operative in Pakistan indicating plans for a terrorist strike in New York or Washington, according to a senior U.S. official.
The communications come from a source who has provided accurate information in the past, the official said, prompting intelligence officials to sift through communications from other al Qaeda cells.
No other corroborating evidence of an attack has been uncovered, the official added.
But the information indicates the plan — thought to involve a vehicle-borne explosive device — is meant to coincide with the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks.
NFL action returns on Sunday, as the 2011 season will be a part of the national backdrop as citizens everywhere observe the NFL has announced:
The games and broadcasts will unite fans to recognize those who lost their lives, honor the families who lost loved ones, and salute the American spirit, the early responders on 9/11, and other heroes that contributed to the nation’s recovery.
All games in each of the broadcast windows (1 p.m., 4:15 p.m. and Sunday Night Football) will feature a special video introduction followed by performances of “Taps” from near the sites of the attacks, and moments of silence. For the 1 p.m. games, “Taps” will be performed in Shanksville, PA while the 4:15 p.m. games will feature a rendition from Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA. The Sunday night game will include a performance from Hoboken, N.J., looking across the Hudson River to Ground Zero. Coaches, players and local first responders and other heroes will come together to hold field-length American flags for the playing of the National Anthem prior to each game.
Players, coaches and sideline personnel will wear a special NFL 9/11 ribbon as a patch or pin on their uniforms and sideline apparel. All stadiums hosting games on September 11 will feature the ribbon logo on the field. The National Football League and the NFL Players Association will contribute $1 million to three memorials and two charities related to the events of September 11, 2001.
The NFL and NFLPA will contribute $500,000 to the 9/11 Museum & Memorial in Lower Manhattan, and $250,000 to be divided between the Flight 93 National Memorial in Shanksville, PA and the Pentagon Memorial Fund in Washington, D.C.
In addition, the NFL and NFLPA will donate all proceeds from the sale of auction items from games played on Sunday, September 11. These items, which fans can bid on at the NFL’s webpage, will include game-worn autographed player jerseys, coaches and player hats, and commemorative game coins used during those games.
NFL Auction proceeds will be divided equally between Tuesday’s Children and MyGoodDeed. Tuesday’s Children is a leading organization providing support and services to those who lost a loved one on 9/11, as well as to rescue and recovery workers who responded to the events. As the principle organizer of the September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance, MyGoodDeed is providing a positive, forward-looking way for Americans to honor and remember 9/11 victims, survivors, and first-responders.
NFL Auction proceeds from 9/11/11 are expected to total at least $250,000. Including the $750,000 in charitable donations to the national 9/11 memorials, total NFL-NFLPA donations will reach $1 million.
Paul M. Banks is CEO of The Sports Bank.net, an official Google News site that generates millions of unique visitors. He’s also a regular contributor to Chicago Now, Walter Football.com, Yardbarker, and Fox Sports
He does regular weekly radio spots in Chicago and Cleveland and has appeared on live shows all across the world from Houston to New Zealand. You can follow him on Twitter
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