Never, NEVER Forget.
President Bush led a moment of silence:
The ceremony on the South Lawn will occur at 8:46 a.m., the time that terrorists flew the first commercial jetliner into one of the Twin Towers of World Trade Center. The second plane crashed into the other tower at 9:03 a.m.
Bush will then head to the Pentagon in Washington to dedicate a memorial to each life lost when American Airlines Flight 77 hit that building…..in the third strike that morning.
……(Senator) McCain also was scheduled to attend the service in Shanksville for the 40 people killed there aboard United Airlines Flight 93.
The Pentagon Memorial will be dedicated tonight:
Flight 93 will be memorialized today in Shanksville.
“Are you guys ready? Let’s roll!”
That’s how Todd Beamer lived.
And that’s how he died, helping to lead a takeover by passengers on United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed Tuesday in Somerset County. It was the fourth plane to go down in last week’s terrorist attacks.
Beamer, an Oracle Inc. executive from Hightstown, N.J., and others are being credited with foiling hijackers bent on crashing the Boeing 757 into what authorities say might have been a second target in Washington, D.C., possibly the Capitol or the White House.
Flight 93 had left Newark, N.J., at 8 a.m. Tuesday, bound for San Francisco.
“That’s Todd,” his wife, Lisa, said yesterday of the “Let’s roll!” command, which he made over the plane’s in-flight telephone. A GTE supervisor talked with him for about 13 minutes before the plane crashed.
……Beamer, 32, told the GTE supervisor, Lisa D. Jefferson, that he and others on the plane had decided they would not be pawns in the hijackers’ suicidal plot.
Jefferson told him about the other hijackings and Beamer made her promise to call his wife and their two boys, David, 3, and Andrew, 1.
Beamer’s call connected at 9:45 a.m. He told Jefferson there were three hijackers, armed with knives. He did not know their nationalities or their intentions.
One of the men had what appeared to be a bomb tied to his midsection with a red belt.
Beamer said he could account for 37 of the plane’s 38 passengers. The hijackers had forced 27 of them into the first-class compartment near the front.
Beamer, nine other passengers and five flight attendants were ordered to sit on the floor in the rear of the plane.
He did not know the whereabouts of the pilot, copilot and the remaining passenger. He said a flight attendant had told him the pilot and copilot had been forced from the cockpit and may have been wounded.
Two of the hijackers were in the cockpit with the door locked behind them. The man with the bomb stayed in the back of the plane, near Beamer’s group.
With him were others who placed cell-phone calls from the plane, Jeffery Glick, 31, a sales manager for a technology firm, Thomas Burnett Jr., 38, a California businessman, and Mark Bingham, 31, a former college rugby player from California. Beamer mentioned Glick by his first name in the call to Jefferson, Lisa Beamer said.
Toward the end of his conversation with Jefferson, Beamer said the plane appeared to have changed directions a few times. Later, it would be determined that it had flown west from Newark to near Cleveland, then turned back to the southeast toward Pittsburgh.
……Beamer then told Jefferson that he and the others had decided to “jump on” the hijacker wearing the bomb.
Jefferson could hear shouts and commotion and then Beamer asked her to pray with him. They recited the 23rd Psalm.
He got Jefferson to promise that she would call his family, then dropped the phone, leaving the line open.
That’s when Jefferson heard what Lisa Beamer believes were her husband’s last words: “Let’s roll.”
Then there was silence. Jefferson hung up at 10 a.m. EST, realizing that the plane had gone down. Officials said it crashed at 9:58 a.m.
The film “Flight 93”, (2006) directed by Peter Markle, gives a powerful, accurate account of the events and probably comes closer than any other conjecture as to what happened on board that plane. It is very hard to watch. Michael Moore needs to have his lard ass duct-taped to a chair and forced to watch it, over and over.
For the brave Soldiers still on the frontlines and those about to deploy, 9/11 is never far from their thoughts:
“There’s no place in the world for terrorists, not in Iraq, not in Afghanistan, not in New York City, not in Washington, D.C.”
Capt. Jennifer Bowersox, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, Fort Hood, Texas
FORT IRWIN — Sgt. Desion Fulks watched the World Trade Center towers come down on television from Fort Rucker, Ala. He re-enlisted three weeks later.
Capt. Joseph Mason, a reservist at the time, immediately volunteered for combat duty after watching what happened in New York and Washington, D.C. He deployed to Iraq two years later with the first wave a troops.
“I was sitting at home, looking at the television, seeing the carnage of the Pentagon and the Trade towers, and I felt I had to do something,” he said.
Both men, and about 5,000 other Soldiers with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team of the 1st Cavalry Division from Fort Hood, Texas begin training at Fort Irwin on Thursday, the seven-year anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and one other commercial jet. Many of the soldiers, who will deploy to Iraq at the end of December, said the images of Sept. 11, 2001 still flash through their minds.
“I will never forget what happened on 9/11,” said Sgt. 1st Class Mark Linares. “It’s been so long since 9/11, but it is still in my mind like it was yesterday.”
Linares, who was with the 82nd Airborne Division when the attacks occurred and knew he would be one of the first Soldiers on the ground where ever they had to go. Some Soldiers in the 82nd Airborne were in Afghanistan the next month. Capt. Jennifer Bowersox was part of a unit that went to Kuwait when the ground war in Iraq began in 2003. She said then Soldiers talked about Sept. 11 as their reason, and they still talk about it today.
“It must be on every Soldier’s mind. It’s certainly on mine,” she said. “You’re wearing the American flag on your sleeve. You’re thinking this happened in my nation, and we can never allow it to happen in the United States again.”
When the Soldiers deploy to Iraq in December, they will see different conditions than the Soldiers who first went to Iraq. Spc. Shantel Davis said the brigade’s mission this tour is to provide security for the Iraqis as they struggle to take control of their country.
Fulks, who said he has young nieces and nephews who want to enlist, said he wants to go to finish the job in Iraq so his family does not have to. Mason said the passion he felt when he first volunteered right after Sept. 11 is still there. And as the war lengthens, it grows.
“I also focus on the lives and the sacrifices of our fellow Soldiers and people that I have known, fought with and bled with in combat,” he said.
It’s damned important that we remember not just the heinous attacks on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and the one thwarted by brave people over a field in Shanksville, Pa., but resolve that it never happens again.
You’d have thought that Pearl Harbor taught us a lesson, but 60 years had passed, memories faded, and complacency set in.
Our borders leak like sieves, our immigration policies are lax, and we have slid back into complacency.
The gutless refusal of the TSA and DHS to profile at our airports and scrutinize the muslim organizations in America, will probably result in another catastrophic attack. I hope for the sake of my country that I am wrong, but I don’t think so.
The good new is, we have eviscerated Al Qaeda, the Taliban, and stopped more attacks from happening in the U.S.:
The following is a list of known terror plots thwarted by the U.S. government since Sept. 11, 2001.
• December 2001, Richard Reid: British citizen attempted to ignite shoe bomb on flight from Paris to Miami.
• May 2002, Jose Padilla: American citizen accused of seeking radioactive-laced “dirty bomb” to use in an attack against Amrica. Padilla was convicted of conspiracy in August, 2007.
• September 2002, Lackawanna Six: American citizens of Yemeni origin convicted of supporting Al Qaeda after attending jihadist camp in Pakistan. Five of six were from Lackawanna, N.Y.
• May 2003, Iyman Faris: American citizen charged with plotting to use blowtorches to collapse the Brooklyn Bridge.
• June 2003, Virginia Jihad Network: Eleven men from Alexandria, Va., trained for jihad against American soldiers, convicted of violating the Neutrality Act, conspiracy.
• August 2004, Dhiren Barot: Indian-born leader of terror cell plotted bombings on financial centers (see additional images).
• August 2004, James Elshafay and Shahawar Matin Siraj: Sought to plant bomb at New York’s Penn Station during the Republican National Convention.
• August 2004, Yassin Aref and Mohammed Hossain: Plotted to assassinate a Pakistani diplomat on American soil.
• June 2005, Father and son Umer Hayat and Hamid Hayat: Son convicted of attending terrorist training camp in Pakistan; father convicted of customs violation.
• August 2005, Kevin James, Levar Haley Washington, Gregory Vernon Patterson and Hammad Riaz Samana: Los Angeles homegrown terrorists who plotted to attack National Guard, LAX, two synagogues and Israeli consulate.
• December 2005, Michael Reynolds: Plotted to blow up natural gas refinery in Wyoming, the Transcontinental Pipeline, and a refinery in New Jersey. Reynolds was sentenced to 30 years in prison.
• February 2006, Mohammad Zaki Amawi, Marwan Othman El-Hindi and Zand Wassim Mazloum: Accused of providing material support to terrorists, making bombs for use in Iraq.
• April 2006, Syed Haris Ahmed and Ehsanul Islam Sadequee: Cased and videotaped the Capitol and World Bank for a terrorist organization.
• June 2006, Narseal Batiste, Patrick Abraham, Stanley Grant Phanor, Naudimar Herrera, Burson Augustin, Lyglenson Lemorin, and Rotschild Augstine: Accused of plotting to blow up the Sears Tower.
• July 2006, Assem Hammoud: Accused of plotting to bomb New York City train tunnels.
• August 2006, Liquid Explosives Plot: Thwarted plot to explode ten airliners over the United States.
• March 2007, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed: Mastermind of Sept. 11 and author of numerous plots confessed in court in March 2007 to planning to destroy skyscrapers in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.
• May 2007, Fort Dix Plot: Six men accused of plotting to attack Fort Dix Army base in New Jersey. The plan included attacking and killing soldiers using assault rifles and grenades.
• June 2007, JFK Plot: Four men are accused of plotting to blow up fuel arteries that run through residential neighborhoods at JFK Airport in New York.
• September 2007, German authorities disrupt a terrorist cell that was planning attacks on military installations and facilities used by Americans in Germany. The Germans arrested three suspected members of the Islamic Jihad Union, a group that has links to Al Qaeda and supports Al Qaeda’s global jihadist agenda.
The problem is–and this cannot be stressed enough–is that the enemy has patience. They understand us better than we understand them. They will continue to exploit our openness and unwillingness to completely destroy the Islamic nation-states who breed, fund, train, and indoctrinate their terrorist spawns.
Unless or until we are willing to reciprocate with the same brutality, they will be back. Til then, this war ain’t over by a long shot.
That is a cold, hard fact.