Look, Ma, #2. We've calculated our own qibla direction for the unfortunately named "Crescent of Embrace" at the heart of the Flight 93 Memorial design dispute. Technical note: We got the latitude and longitude for Shanksville here and then plugged in the numbers and calculated the direction of Mecca from the Pennsylvania site here. Then we overlaid the qibla diabram onto the memorial plan.
Thanks to reader Voice of Reason of Politicalities in the comments to our previous post, we were able to figure out for ourselves the qibla direction (towards Mecca) that had so dazzled Wretchard of The Belmont Club when he discovered that a line running through the center of the circle of which the "Crescent of Embrace" is a part, perpendicular to a line drawn between the bitter endpoints of the "Crescent," coincided with the qibla direction from the Shanksville, Pennsylvania site. See this image for what Voice of Reason describes as "an azimuthal equidistant projection of the globe centered on the Flight 93 crash site."
Very interesting, although even if you buy the premise of artistic intent, the "Crescent" would appear to be facing away from rather than toward Mecca. We'd love to hear what the landscape architect Warren T. Byrd, Jr., thinks about it all, but so far he hasn't gotten back to us, and as Michelle Malkin noted earlier, the collaborating architect will be unavailable till next week. Not surprisingly, the comments are running heavily in favor of conspiracy from an overwhelming majority of readers who arrived here via links from Scott Johnson of PowerLine and Michelle, both of whom view the "Crescent of Embrace," with its Islamicist connotations, as an inappropriate symbol -- whether intentional or not on the part of the designers -- for a memorial to the heroes of Flight 93. Like most of their fans, they favor scrapping the design and starting over.