Various thoughts on 9/11

September 12, 2006 at 1:37 am (Personal, The United States, The West)

Today is the fifth anniversary of the attack on September 11, 2001 on The United States. Although December 7 is considered to be the “Day of Infamy” (thanks to President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s marvelous and moving rhetorical flourish on December 8, 1941), there can be no doubt that September 11, 2001, will forever be remembered as the true day of infamy in the minds of Americans for many generations to come.

I make it a point not to think too much about the events of that day. Doing so makes me depressed, angry, enraged, hate-filled, and otherwise in a very negative state. I do often think of the ramifications of the events of that day – how can one not? – but the events themselves I hesitate to dwell on.

As outraged as America was (and, to a degree, remains) by the attack of the Japanese Empire on December 7, 1941, we have much more right to be – and, indeed, are obligated to be – outraged beyond words or expression by the attack of September 11, 2001. The acts of the Japanese Empire were acts of war; they were acts by one military force against another military force. Never in the history of humanity has such an abominable attack occurred as what happened on September 11, 2001. Islamist militants did not use their own military equipment or forces; they did not use their own soldiers. They used American passenger planes, planes with civilians, to attack two civilian targets, one military target, and another unspecified target.

September 11, 2001, was a day of heroes. A day, however, when these heroes perished. Heroes brought down United Airlines Flight 93 so that it would not attack whatever target the Islamist militants had targeted. Heroes rushed into The Twin Towers to save whomever they could, only to perish themselves when The Twin Towers collapsed. Heroes lined up to give blood, donate goods and money, and to support their fellow countrypeople in this day of horror. There are so many heroes, heroes for so many reasons and in so many ways, that it is impossible to recount it all.

September 11, 2001, was also a day of great sorrow. So many innocent lives were snuffed out in a matter of hours. No one expected this. When I think what it must have been like to have been at work, another normal workday, or dining in a restaurant, another meal to be enjoyed, or having just arrived at one’s station, another day on duty, or flying to one’s destination, another normal flight, only to perish suddenly and without any warning – it fills my heart and soul with a sadness that goes so deep.

With so much sadness at the loss of so many heroes and innocent lives, how can one not be enraged? How can one not feel anger towards those who did this?

These attacks were all illegitimate. Some might say that the attack against the Pentagon could have been legitimate. After all, the Pentagon is a military target, no? That attack was still illegitimate. First of all, that attack used a civilian passenger aircraft. Any attack using such a means is illegitimate regardless of the target. Furthermore, all terrorist organizations are illegitimate. Whether attacking The Twin Towers or USS Cole or the Khobar Tower or embassies of The United States, all of their attacks are illegitimate and abominable. I reject completely and entirely any attempt to “understand” how we brought this on ourselves, how we are responsible, how we ought to “understand” the complaint of the attackers and their supporters.

Are we safer now? In a way, perhaps yes. The governments of The United States and The United Kingdom, with the help of foreign allies, have proven to be dedicated to preventing more terrorist attacks. Armed with laws that make relevant agencies more robust and effective, they are monitoring terrorist entities and cracking down on them. But in another way, perhaps not. Terrorists are just as adamant to hurt us. Al-Qaa’idah may have been disrupted, but the ideology that led people to such horrid and abominable acts has only grown stronger. Remember, they view their successful attacks as not only signs of success and potential to be successful in the future but as proof of – Heaven forfend! – God’s favor with them. This ony encourages them and makes them stronger. (Of course, how we have attacked and destroyed so many terrorist entities abroad and at home demonstrates that if God has chosen a side, it is with us.)

What alarms me, however, is that after all these years, the people of The United States have yet to realize how threatened they are from forced outside and inside The Republic. I hope their awareness will expand.

And I end this post by expressing my thanks to all who have passed by this humble abode of my thoughts. September 11, 2001, also taught me to be thankful every day for the people around me. There’s no knowing what joys or sorrows tomorrow will bring. So, say “I love you” to those whom you love. There are many thousands who can no longer say “I love you” or have it said to them.

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2 Comments

  1. Dex said,

    Well said, sir.

  2. Serik said,

    Again,

    Excellent Post

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