Twenty Years Later Have We Really Learned The Hard Lessons From 9-11 Attacks?

On September 11, 2001, al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked four planes crashing three into the Twin Towers; one into the Pentagon; whil
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Photos: Wikimedia Commons

Twenty years ago today, death descended from American skies leaving 2,977 Americans dead. The dark evil of that day is an example of the work that must be done to tackle the deadly violence which plagues our globe.

We in the world, who care, have much work to do to make this a reality.

On September 11, 2001, al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked four planes crashing two into the Twin Towers; one into the Pentagon; while brave Americans in the fourth plane averted a likely worse disaster by fighting the attackers, which led to the plane’s crashing in Pennsylvania.

Today, we’ve seen several memorials and numerous testimonials, including by politicians and past presidents. But the main question we must ask now is this: has America really learned the essential lessons from this tragedy?

Many of the politicians who’ve spoken today have often uttered their supposed agreement with the non-violent philosophy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. However, this is often when they are telling Black America how to behave when fighting against the domestic violence coming from the police.

Why don’t these same politicians use violence as a last resort when dealing in foreign affairs against our enemies “over there?”

Right after the 9-11 attacks, can we say, in good conscience, that there was a sober deliberative assessment (like Rep. Barbara Lee’s) of the actions that should be taken? No, we can’t. Immediately, what we witnessed was agreement with those crying for bloody vengeful violence. Not long after, America went to war in Afghanistan.

We’ve just ended that war. What did we really accomplished in this war which took the lives of over 200,000 humans, including 2,420 Americans?

Our leaders tell us since there hasn’t been an attack by foreign terrorists since 2001 that all those lives, and the trillions of dollars spent, was worth the sacrifice. It is truly insane for us to accept this rationale–especially, when we consider all the innocent Afghans who bore the brunt of the deaths.

Shouldn't we consider how many family members of these dead Afghans became radicalized terrorists because of our government’s military money-making killing machines? Are their lives so much more worthless than the lives of the 2,977 Americans who perished on 9-11?

Our collective actions as a nation says yes. And that is the larger problem.

There are other important questions to be asked here. Why were fifteen of the nineteen attackers, and Osama bin Laden, from Saudi Arabia–our so-called ally? When our government was training the Mujahideen (during the soviet war with Afghanistan) didn’t the Reagan White House realize these folks could one day come back and attack America?

It has been twenty years since international terrorism brought death to America. To truly honor those 2,977 Americans who were murdered we must learn hard lessons and accept uncomfortable truths not just about those maniacal murderers but about the inhumane hubris of those inside the government of America.

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