[star]The American Mind[star]

September 11, 2002

I've watched a few hours

I've watched a few hours of the anniversary coverage and am dismayed. All that time there was little mention of what happened one year ago. I have yet to see the gripping, horrific footage of the two planes smashing into the World Trade Towers or both structures crumbling to the ground. Instead, there has been a constant stream of average people telling the cameras how they feel and of people crying. Such wallowing misses the entire point of remembering. Unless you knew someone who died during the attacks, this anniversary should be a renewed call to arms. One year ago, radical Islamist terrorists struck a deep and bloody blow in their war against the U.S. Their tactics were barbaric and approach nothing a civlized people would do. 3,000 people died because they happened to be Americans, and we remember them by showing vast amounts of sorrow?

President Bush got the closest to stating the current state of affairs:

This war is waged on many fronts. We've captured more than 2,000 terrorists; a larger number of killers have met their end in combat. We've seized millions in terrorist assets. We're reorganizing the federal government to protect the homeland. Yet, there's a great deal left to do. And the greatest tasks and the greatest dangers will fall to the armed forces of the United States.

I came to the Presidency with respect for all who wear America's uniform. Every day as your Commander in Chief, my respect and that of our nation has deepened. I have great confidence in every man and women who wears the uniform of the United States of America. I am proud of all who have fought on my orders, and this nation honors all who died in our cause.

Wherever our military is sent in the world, you bring hope and justice and promise of a better day. You are worthy of the traditions you represent, the uniform you wear, the ideals you serve. America is counting on you. And our confidence is well placed.

What happened to our nation on a September day set in motion the first great struggle of a new century. The enemies who struck us are determined and they are resourceful. They will not be stopped by a sense of decency or a hint of conscience -- but they will be stopped.

A greater force is amassed against them. They are opposed by freedom loving people in many lands. They are opposed by our allies who have fought bravely by our side. And as long as terrorists and dictators plot against our lives and our liberty, they will be opposed by the United States Army, Navy, Coast Guard, Air Force and Marines.

Bush will not back down. He will not allow the U.S. to be blackmailed and subdued by enemies who terrorize us and seek weapons of mass destruction. A price must be paid for the 3,000 deaths on September 11.

Now, I know what troubles me about Bruce Springsteen's The Rising. It's not the songs, nor Springsteen's focus on empathy over anger. No, my problem with the album is it came out too soon. One year after isn't enough time to capture the emotions of that awful day. It especially isn't enough time when our country has to be dedicated to winning a war. While people cry across the country, troops are rooting out al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and military planners are plotting Saddam's destruction. Now is not the time for closure because we're no where near the end of this war; this is only the beginning.

For the N.Z. Bear, we can view today through the lens of "the cult of victimhood or the brave example of the heroes on Flight 93." If we do the former, we lose "what it is to be an American."

I'll finish with a quote from Samuel Adams. During the Revolutionary War, the public was much, much closer to the war. Instead of battles overseas, British troops were quartered in the cities and moved through the countryside. Nevertheless, Adams' words ring true because Human Nature is an unchanging thing:

Contemplate the mangled bodies of your countrymen, and then say, 'What should be the reward of such sacrifices?' Bid us and our posterity bow the knee, supplicate the friendship, and plough, and sow, and reap, to glut the avarice of the men who have let loose on us the dogs of war to riot in our blood and hunt us from the face of the earth? If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude than the animating contest of freedom, go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen!

We must move past shallow sentimentality to appreciate the important time we're in. Like those brave warriors on Flight 93, any and all of us are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice. For we are Americans and that's what Americans do.

"No Time for the Mawkish"

Posted by Sean Hackbarth in at 07:22 PM | Comments (0)