As the young Muslim men worked their way to their seats on each plane on that fateful morning ten years ago, no one could have guessed their intentions. Even if someone would have given warning that such a horrific plan had been hatched, few would have listened and even less would have believed. Then as now, those sounding the alarm would have been shouted down into silence, while being called racist or Islamophobe.
Some of the hijackers walked past two-year-old Christine Hanson as they made their way to their seats, knowing that they were about to end the life of this innocent. They absolutely knew they were about to kill a two-year-old little girl.
One has to ask, “How could they possibly believe Allah would be pleased?”
These so-called “warriors” did not charge heroically across a battlefield. They did not look into the eye of their enemy, while facing the glint of the bayonet. The hijackers were met by flight attendants like Sara Low, who smiled and said, “Enjoy your flight.”
After the hijackers were welcomed onto each flight they brutally attacked those, who welcomed them and took control of the planes. The hijackers mercilessly flew those planes into building using innocents as shrapnel to kill other innocents. It makes one wonder what kind of enemy encourages tactics, or would derive inspiration from the acts of murderers such as these men. Some would even dance for joy at their exploits? Make no mistake about it... it is an evil enemy, who if given the ways and means to accomplish their goals would recreate and surpass the horrors of the Holocaust.
Just as the evil of radical jihad unmasked itself on American soil on September 11th, the forces of good were also on display. Firefighters and police officers worked feverishly in a rescue effort that could hardly have been envisioned by any of them. Myriad firefighters climbed the stairs of those towers, and for 343 of them, those stairs became their stairway to heaven.
The nation witnessed the courageous calm of “New York’s Finest” as well as other agencies in their finest hour. There is one famous photo of Christopher Amorosa, of the New York Port Authority Police which is representative of the sacrifice of all those rescuers. In the photo Christopher is assisting a distraught female as he leads her out of one of the towers. His face is red and swollen and shows that he is suffering from exhaustion and injury after his multiple trips into the building.
After the victim pictured was taken to a safe location Christopher returned to the tower, when no one would have faulted him for resting. He must have sensed the incredible danger, but decided to continue in his efforts, because there were still thousands in peril. He would not return. At the end of this day many would give as much, but no one gave more than Chris Amorosa.
Miles away the passengers of United 93 were making a fateful decision. They decided as a group they would not submit passively as their plane was about to be turned into a bomb, targeting the nation’s capitol. They chose to execute a plan to, if possible, take the plane back, or at the very least thwart the attack on the capitol at the risk of their own lives.
One can imagine the rush of adrenaline that shot through the plane as passenger Todd Beamer uttered those now immortal words, “Let’s roll.” It is impossible to know exactly what transpired, but it is clear that the some of the passengers moved as a team and fought their way through the hijackers in the cabin. The plane careened as the team attempted to bash against the door of the cockpit.
The struggle to take back the plane was as desperate and epically courageous as Thermopylae. The difference is these warriors did not march to a battlefield, knowing the dangers they faced. They found themselves thrust into history and answered a call that Americans have been answering since 1776.
There was unfathomable chaos in those last moments as the passengers fought in their vain attempt to wrest control of the plane from evil incarnate. There is no way to simulate the conditions of the fight that took place as the plane careened, turned upside down and then finally plummeted to the Earth. Forty Americans gave their lives, but were successful at thwarting an attack on the American capitol in a battle fought by citizen soldiers.
It was the modern day equivalent of The Alamo.
We Will Never Forget
September 11th can never be forgotten. It was a day where radical Muslim Jihadists reminded all that evil still exists in the world. They told anyone who would listen that they are willing to kill innocent Muslims, Buddhists, Agnostics, and Christians alike... people whose only crime was to have the audacity to try to make a good life for themselves and their families in America.
This act of terror did not work, because no act of terror will ever work on Americans. There was an undeniable truth that rose out of the smoke from those towers, the Pentagon, and the disintegrated wreckage of United 93. The United States of America is a great nation, because it is home of a good and a great people.
American greatness shined as police officers and firefighters rushed to the scene in New York. It was echoed from the actions of the soldiers at the scene of the Pentagon as well as those that since joined the fight and took it to the enemy all over the world. It is has been memorialized by the actions of those ordinary citizens aboard flight 93, who did an extraordinary thing.
Throughout history there have always been and always will be those in this country willing to risk all and sometimes sacrifice all for others. The greatness comes from a people, who time and time again choose to bravely fight for what is right and good, rather than ever allow this country to cower in the face of evil.