Today marks the 21st anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks on the United States of America.
Like most Americans, I remember exactly where I was on September 11, 2001. I was in college, getting ready for class, when my roommate and I heard the news that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center. I remember thinking this had to have been an awful mistake, and then the feelings of horror and shock set in when we realized this was a deliberate attack on our country.
September 11th was one of the darkest days in our nation’s history. While the evil terrorists who perpetuated this attack tried to bring America to our knees, they instead awoke our unrelenting patriotism.
There are innumerable stories of American heroism on September 11th and in the days that followed. From the brave passengers on United Flight 93 who sacrificed their own lives to save countless others, to the first responders who ran toward the danger, and the volunteers who joined the search and rescue efforts at Ground Zero — the American spirit shined through the darkness of these cowardly attacks.
After September 11th, thousands of Americans answered the call to serve our country in the Global War on Terror. We built a global coalition to crush terrorist groups and their sympathizers and protect the freedom-loving world from these emerging threats. The brave Americans who served in this war successfully stopped another major terrorist attack from reaching our shores for twenty-one years. The fear we all felt in the days and weeks following September 11th eventually dissipated because we knew that brave men and women were fighting for our freedom, safety, and way of life every single day.
Twenty-one years after the September 11th terrorist attacks, and a year after the chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan, our nation faces new threats. From the Taliban’s resurgence, to Iran’s pursuit of a nuclear weapon, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and Communist China’s widespread tyrannical aspirations – America is up against a new axis of evil. But America, thanks to our brave men and women in uniform, is up to the challenge.
As we reflect on this solemn anniversary each year, one truth remains: America is the greatest country in the world because of those who stand up to defend our freedoms. We will never forget those who lost their lives on 9/11 and those who lost their lives serving in the Global War on Terror.
America’s light will never be dimmed – we will continue to be a beacon of hope and strength for all freedom-loving people around the world.