Putin’s name removed from 9/11 memorial
A city in New Jersey has covered up Russian President Vladimir Putin’s name from a 9/11 memorial gifted to the American people back in 2005, due to Russia’s ongoing military offensive in Ukraine.
The Teardrop Memorial – which is officially named ‘To the Struggle Against World Terrorism’ – was given to the United States in 2005 as a gift from the Russian people to commemorate the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The monument was placed in the city of Bayonne, New Jersey after Jersey City rejected it.
Putin attended the memorial’s opening ceremony and a plaque featured the Russian president’s name for nearly two decades before it was covered up in the wake of Russia’s conflict with Ukraine last month.
According to local reports, Putin’s name was covered up with tape before “a more permanent acrylic board” was used on Monday to censor his name from the plaque.
Tom Cotter, Bayonne’s director of the Department of Public Works, said it was “unfortunate” that Putin’s name was on the monument and likened “what's happening in Ukraine right now” to “a form of terrorism.”
“But I don’t want this to be a Putin thing. I still want this to be a 9/11 monument,” he said.
Mayor Jimmy Davis dismissed removing the memorial altogether and vowed that despite the modification, “this monument is going nowhere.”
“I don't ever want to hear someone say that this monument has to come down, because they're going to have to go through me to take this monument down,” said Davis, who called Putin “probably the coldest human being I've ever met.”
It is not the first time that the memorial has elicited controversy. In previous years, critics have protested the monument for allegedly bearing a vague resemblance to female genitalia.