Monday 26th September 2022

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“9-11 Again”

September 18, 2022 Frontpage No Comments

By BARBARA SIMPSON

These last few days have been filled with news of such import that for anyone with a heart, it’s simply overwhelming. Part of the news comes from across the ocean, with the death of 96-year-old Queen Elizabeth II. The other, from our side of the ocean, is the 21st anniversary of the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center in New York City.
The emotion involved in those events — both filled with death and heartache — are enough to tear a normal person apart. Media are filled with news, pictures, and commentary concerning the Queen, which is to be expected of a monarch who has been in the public eye for decades. The reports of her life and the reaction of her family are being covered with great detail and will continue long after her funeral on September 19.
The anniversary of 9/11 is another issue, and I will tell you, I am not happy with much of what I have heard and seen. Consider — I live in the notoriously liberal San Francisco area and media here disappointed me. You can forget local radio — news and talk. Then take my local newspaper — the Eastbay Times. It used to be a conservative paper — no more!
On the Sunday edition of the paper, 9-11-22, there was less than 1-inch mention in a small column on page 2, upper right corner but no further mention of the 9/11 attack, until you got to page B-15. Yes, that was a full-page accounting of what happened, and it was a nice presentation of the details of the attack, but really, page B-15! Talk about burying the story!
I don’t know why that is the case. What happened to the newsworthiness of the event? Where are the editors who have a sense of their job — to bring us the news, to focus on newsworthy events, and to give us perspective? It appears those editors don’t exist, and their bosses don’t seem to care.
What concerns me is that because of the passage of time, there are too many Americans who don’t realize that the destruction of the World Trade Center towers was in fact, an act of Islamic terrorism against us. The United States.
I know that’s not politically correct to say these days, but is it is the truth. Many Americans have become so politically correct that they refuse to say anything negative about Islam or Islamic terrorists. They pretend that they don’t exist and that they are not a threat to the United States. In my opinion, they are fools and because of that, they are themselves a threat to our country.
It is a fact that the 19 hijackers were part of al-Qaeda, a militant Islamist group. Fifteen were Saudi Arabians, two from the United Arab Emirates, and one each from Lebanon and Egypt. Their elaborate plan involved the hijacking of 4 U.S. planes – – American Flights 11 and 77, and United Flights 175 and 93.
They deliberately flew the planes into the two Trade Center Towers and the Pentagon. Two planes went into the two towers, one into the Pentagon and the fourth, which was headed to the White House, crashed in a field in Shanksville, PA.
It was a bloody chaos. There were nearly 3,000 fatalities and more than 25,000 injuries. The towers were destroyed and property and infrastructure damage totaled more than $10 billion.
It was the single deadliest incident for firefighters, 340, and for law enforcement officers, 72. Three thousand children lost a parent in the destruction. The brokerage Cantor Fitzgerald lost 658 of its employees in the disaster, the largest number from one firm in the towers.
Genelle Guzman, who was rescued from the 64th floor of the North Tower, was the last of 18 people trapped in the rubble to be found alive. It is known that a number of people jumped from the towers rather than be killed in the fire and collapse. One photograph of a man, upside down, falling to his death, sticks in my mind. I can’t forget it. No one knows who he was.
The search for survivors was intensive and the debris they faced was massive. Thousands of construction workers, first responders and volunteers joined to move debris to search for victims. Later they were joined by searchers assigned by the city. They all were hampered by the fact that fires continued to burn in the debris and that hundreds of crushed cars, fire engines, and trucks were buried in the rubble. They were confronted with at least 1.8-million tons of debris.
Because the area around the towers was also residential, at least 37,000 people were displaced from their homes. Volunteers helped with serving meals at St. Paul’s Chapel and joined with organizations like the Salvation Army, the Red Cross, and others to help with survivors by operating relief centers.
In the aftermath, both the air and the water in that part of New York were tested to be certain that they would be safe for residents.
The cleanup took months but finally it was completed. A permanent memorial was constructed where the towers once stood. It consists of two waterfalls cascading into reflecting pools and the names of the victims of the attack are etched in bronze around the edges of the pools. Every year, on the anniversary of the attack, the names of the victims are read aloud in memoriam.New York City continues the memorials of what happened that September 11, but that isn’t necessarily the case across the country.
I’m concerned that many are forgetting what happened. I believe that’s tragic and dangerous. I have no doubt that terrorists who DO exist and who DO want to hurt the United States are watching us. If they think we are forgetting 9/11, it would please them and set us up for more danger.
As time passes, it’s important that Americans not forget that this attack on the World Trade Center was the deadliest terrorist attack in human history. It could happen again.
We must remember that, and we must remember who was behind it.
Never forget and be prepared.

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