Last week 9/11 hero William Rodriguez was back in London, speaking at the Global Peace and Unity Conference in London's Docklands. William is invited every year, and addressed an audience of thousands last Sunday.
William was the last survivor to leave the Twin Towers on 9/11. He survived being buried alive by the collapsing North Tower after he ran from the building and dived under a firetruck. After he was pulled from the rubble, miraculously with few injuries, he was immediately interviewed by CNN, before returning to help with the rescue effort. Since then, he has become a spokesperson for the families of the victims and the survivors.
William is recognised in America as a national hero. He had one of the few master keys to the WTC complex, and repeatedly re-entered the North Tower after the attacks to unlock security doors and help the firefighters rescue trapped people. For his bravery he has been recognised at the White House.
He was instrumental in lobbying for the 9/11 Enquiry and, when the commission failed to address a wide range of evidence and questions from the survivors, eyewitnesses and families, he began campaigning for a new, independent enquiry on behalf of these groups.
He now travels the world doing interviews, meeting politicians and heads of state, and recounting his amazing story of survival and hope. He also campaigns against the overt politicisation of the 9/11 tragedy, which has been used and abused by governments to justify the wars in the Middle East, the unending war of terror, and the resulting roll-back of our freedoms and civil liberties. His is an amazing story and acts as an inspiration to many people.
Over the last 2 years I've organised three national and international speaking tours for him across the UK and much of Europe – sadly not yet reaching Ireland despite reports to the contrary! – and his experience has touched thousands of people, both at the events themselves and via the extensive media coverage he has received. On this visit to London I arranged interviews for him on Sky News and Press TV.