September 11, 2004

Just Some Photos and Stuff

Here are some jpgs that I found at

What's immediately striking about this one is that it's nearly exactly what Muhammed Atta saw as he steered the first airliner toward One World Trade Center.

Tower One is burning and, while everyone was either leaving, entering or staring awestruck, not many noticed that another plane was coming in over the harbor from the south.

The second plane finds it mark, ending all speculation about whether or not the first impact was an accident. Not even the terrorists could have saved the passengers and the people in Two World Trade Center at this point.


Nineteen summers ago I stood on the observation deck atop Tower Two. It was a smoggy day and the visibility was poor (we couldn't even see the Empire State Building), and I'd always wanted to return some day for a better view.

Visitors went to the World Trade Center to see the awesome view from the top. They'd talk on and on about it while pointing at the Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge, and any other landmarks and neighborhoods they could recognize all the way down there.

Now visitors go there and, a thousand people at a time, file by along the viewing path in silence. They look over the pit and then look up at nothing and imagine the towers as clearly as they can because seeing them again, in the here and now, not in photographs, will keep them and the people that died in them real and present and not forgotten because keeping them in mind, and in our mind's eye, keeps us focused on what we're doing and why we do it.

Some people I've run across in the past week wonder why these anniversary observances are important. I've actually heard people at supermarket check-out counters say "9/11 again?! We just gotta get over it at some point, y'know... Let it go!"

I understand the impulse to shut it out - to want to return to the salad days when Americans could safely imagine that terrorism happened only to celluloid people in strange parts of a distant netherworld.

But 3,000 people died. And, with the families that were destroyed, the fatherless and/or motherless kids, the parents who lost their sons and daughters, the friends who lost their friends, the direct victims of the events 3 years ago today number in the high tens of thousands.
And when we consider that we know darn well that their losses could have been our own -- and, as Americans and/or free people, seem like they were our own -- we remember why we fight this war even more clearly.

That's why these anniversary observances are important. The day that we forget that morning will be the day that we return to the world of September 10th: Oblivious to the threat and unprepared for what tomorrow will bring.

Never again!

Never forget!

Posted by Tuning Spork at September 11, 2004 05:07 PM

I don't think I have ever heard anybody make the point any clearer than you did. I must congratulate you for having a fine command of thought and being able to interpret into words so well.

Posted by: kermit at September 19, 2004 06:20 PM

Wow, Kermit, thank you. That's about the finest compliment I've ever received from anyone in the [strike]Blogosphere[/strike] Pajamasphere™. *blushing*

(Yeah, the "strike" html doesn't work in the comments, dagnabbit)

Posted by: Tuning Spork at September 19, 2004 06:38 PM
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