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Special Project

Special Project
From the 8th Annual Shorty Impact Awards

Operation: Tradebom

Entered in Podcast


Operation: Tradebom was created to offer a deeper understanding of the 1993 bombing of The World Trade Center - from United States foreign policy that rippled through time to a 1200 pound ammonium nitrate bomb driven into the garage beneath the North Tower of The World Trade Center. The ignition of that bomb metastasized into larger terrorist plots around the world, landing on 9/11, which became our country’s rationale for sending troops to invade Iraq, claiming thousands, if not millions of more lives. How foreign terrorism

arrived on American soil may be the most important story we tell ourselves because understanding these events explains America’s challenges on the world stage even today. We can’t see clearly the roots of our current world order - endless cycles of violence, division, anger and distrust - without a deeper understanding of that critical moment in our history.


Strategy and Execution

We didn’t want to tell the story as it had been told before - in the context of blame, recriminations and anger. We wanted to illustrate the impact of all these terrible events on a personal level. When we dug into the story of the 1993 bombing, we found people who had lived through extreme circumstances. This humanity was something we discussed a lot in the making of Operation: Tradebom. As we strived to recreate a past world for our listener, we put ourselves in the shoes of our subjects and we walked through their lives without

hindsight or judgment. This became one of our most important goals - to dispel the conspiracy theories, let go of the blame and reveal the truth of an often cruel and confusing reality.



When we asked young people if they knew of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, many did not. Those who did, saw it as disconnected from other events. Nor did they have an idea of how the perpetrators of that attack were connected to 9/11 and other terrorist plots around the world. For many, September 11, 2001 erased February 26th, 1993. So, we decided to paint a broad picture. And to tell this story in a way that we believed would peak interest - with two feet planted firmly on the ground, in a medium that invited immersion and intimacy.


We did this by seeking out people who were there when it went down and asking them to travel back in time and tell their stories as they had experienced them. We used narration sparingly to describe events. This offered our listeners the experience of looking over the shoulders of our subjects. By talking to victims, investigators, family members of the perpetrators, corresponding with imprisoned terrorists, reading through thousands of pages of interrogation and trial transcripts, congressional hearings and personal letters, we found personal stories of grief, sadness and loss.



Entrant Company / Organization Name

Apple TV+ : Podcast, Anikka Sellz


Entry Credits