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Memories of 9-11 should never fade

first_imgAs the nation this week marked the anniversary of the worst terrorist attacks in our history, some Americans are starting to feel distant from the event and no longer overly interested in marking its importance. Six years with no attacks on our soil has helped some forget the horror of that day. Apparently, some people suffer from Sept. 11 “fatigue.” A Massachusetts nurse was quoted as saying: “I may sound callous, but doesn’t grieving have a shelf life? We’re very sorry and mournful that people died, but there are living people. Let’s wind it down.” Let’s not. While marking the day may be no longer popular with everyone, the terrorist incursion on Sept. 11, 2001, is responsible for where we are today – in Iraq (whatever one’s views on the war); in assessing ongoing terrorist threats; in heightened security at our airports and public buildings; and in the ongoing debate about how to fight terrorism and protect civil liberties at the same time. We must not forget that dark day. It is worth remembering the nearly 3,000 people killed in the attacks and that terrorists want to strike again. We also must remember that Osama bin Laden continues to evade justice. If anything, we must remind ourselves to not be complacent. Last week’s foiled plots in Germany and Denmark remind us that the threats are still very real. Two of the three men arrested in Germany for allegedly planning to bomb targets, including the U.S. Ramstein Air Base, were German nationals who had trained in camps inside remote areas of Pakistan. In a video released over the weekend, bin Laden called on Americans to embrace Islam. Terrorism analysts said the tape was intended to show that bin Laden is still alive and continuing his campaign against the West. President Bush called it a “reminder about the dangerous world in which we live.” It’s true. We live in a dangerous world, but we cannot live in fear or be consumed by the politics of fear. Nor can we live in denial. Al-Qaida leaders continue to plot against the United States from bases inside Pakistan. “Al-Qaida is focusing on targets that would produce mass casualties, dramatic destruction and significant economic aftershocks,” CIA director Michael Hayden said. “Al-Qaida’s success with planting operatives in this country is less certain.” Six years after 9-11, our armed forces are stretched thin in Iraq, and the world is very unsettled. Numerous plots spanning the globe have been foiled, but Spain, Great Britain and other countries have suffered deadly attacks. The United States remains a target. That’s why we must never forget Sept. 11.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more