Honoring How 9/11 Touches Us All
It wasn't that long ago that we were in the office, classroom, or on the road later morning on September 11th, 2001. A mere 19 years after one of the worst atrocities even taken place on American soil, there are still countless people who were directly or indirectly impacted by such a horrific event.
Flights and travel would never be the same. For some people, going to New York city or living in New York City would never be the same. Then for the countless Warriors who went around the world in the subsequent wars, their lives and families would never be the same.
The lasting impact from these events makes us utter the phrase: never forget.
How much has been allocated to the wars since 9/11? According to FAS.org, a total of $1.55 trillion.
On average, it is estimated that over half of these people were under 30 and married. Half also had children at the time of deployment. What kind of sacrifice to leave your spouse and children!
The kamikaze terrorists forever altered the geopolitical landscape. The people who lost their Uncle, cousins, siblings, and any other relation had to deal with the sudden, tragic loss that results in an internal tattoo against the heart.
It isn't something that was able to be dealt with quickly: the wars went on so long that people even being born after 9/11 were able to enlist.
Now it is the children of the 9/11 era who have the chance to alter history. Now it is this cohort's time to be able to vote -- some perhaps for the first time.
Ali Soufan is a former FBI agent who has been outspoken on the tactics used to uncover valuable information.
"For me, it has the feeling that it just happened yesterday," Soufan told NPR in an interview.
Soufan explained that building rapport with suspected terrorists was the most effective way to obtain the information -- rather than through torture.
It is estimated that nearly 3,000 people lost their lives on 9/11 and over 25,000 were injured.
If we compare that to the current war that America is facing against an invisible enemy, the coronavirus, it is estimated that nearly 192,000 Americans have died. That would be the horrific events of 9/11 64 straight days. And there is no end in sight for the current war; most are hopefully optimistic that a vaccine will help America get back on track even as other countries around the world are living in a new paradigm-shifted world thanks to the adherence and respect of science.
This certainly in no way diminishes the utter destruction, chaos, and trauma caused by 9/11 and the ensuing years that our brave men and women of the Armed Forces have spent around the world following a war-time leader. It does put into perspective the extreme scale to which this current war is taking place; September 11 has been associated with National Suicide Awareness Day.
There have been many stories on how 9/11 was able to bring America closer together than ever before: people were wearing NYPD shirts, more American flags were flying than in recent memory, and it seemed as though Americans truly acted with a little more empathy knowing that one way or another, we were all impacted.
The similarities with 9/11 and coronavirus extend further with the "epicenter" of both starting in the amazing New York City.
Many people, including allies around the world, have been displeased with the reaction to 9/11. The president at the time of 9/11, Mr. George W. Bush, who had a 90% approval rating after the horrific events, has expressed he is not backing the current President, although the reports have not been confirmed by the spokesperson of the former President.
No matter how we decide to do so -- whether it is coming together as a divided country today, offering positive thoughts to friends, or condolences to someone who was directly impacted -- let us honor this day and learn from its invaluable, heart-wrenching teaching.