In the United States, the emotion remains intact to honor the victims of September 11, 21 years after the attacks

In the United States, the emotion remains intact to honor the victims of September 11, 21 years after the attacks
Flowers on the names of victims of the 9/11 terrorist attack, during the annual 9/11 memorial service, September 11, 2022, at the Manhattan Memorial Museum in New York City.

The United States honored, Sunday, September 11, the memory of the nearly 3,000 people killed during the worst attacks ever known by the country, 21 years earlier.

In New York, crowds gathered near the impressive Manhattan Memorial Museum fell silent several times for minutes of silence, marking the exact moments when the four planes hijacked by Islamist commandos crashed, and when the two towers of the World Trade Center had collapsed in a deluge of steel and dust. In the audience, Vice President Kamala Harris listened to the very long list of names of the victims.

“The grief fades a little over time, but my father’s permanent absence is still there”, said the son of Jon Leslie Albert, one of the victims of the attacks, after having read the name of his father. Another victim’s relative, calling on the political figures present to heal America’s deep divisions, said that“We shouldn’t need another tragedy to unite our nation”.

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Joe Biden at the Pentagon

On September 11, 2001, 2,977 people died in the deadliest attacks in history, committed by the jihadist organization Al-Qaeda. Two planes had struck the two towers of the World Trade Center in New York, a third had ripped open the Pentagon and a fourth, which appeared to be aimed at the Capitol or the White House, had crashed in a wooded area in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, after the Passenger Rebellion. No one on board the four planes survived.

US President Joe Biden participates in a Tribute Ceremony at the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial September 11, 2022 in Arlington, Virginia.

In Washington, Joe Biden gathered at the Pentagon. Looking solemn, one hand on his heart, he participated in a ceremony where a wreath of flowers was placed near this building where one of the hijacked planes had crashed, killing 184 people. “I know that for those who have lost someone, twenty-one years is both an eternity and such a short time”said the Democrat from the podium, under a light rain.

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Joe Biden read a message sent on September 11, 2001 by Queen Elizabeth II, who died on Thursday, to the American people. “Sorrow is the price to pay for love”had written the sovereign.

“The course of American history changed that day”, resumed the president. But what hasn’t changed is “the character of this nation”, “sacrifices, love, generosity” of which the United States is capable, he hammered. “Today is not about the past, but about the future”continued Joe Biden, calling on Americans to defend democracy, the guarantee of the freedom that the terrorists had wanted “to bury under fire, smoke and ashes”.

“Solidarity”

Jill Biden, first lady of the United States, took part in a ceremony in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. September 11th “reminds us that with courage and kindness, we can be a light in this darkness”she said, while adding that the initiatives of the passengers of Flight 93 had saved many lives, including perhaps that of her husband, then a United States senator, who was traveling to the Capitol that day.

On many professional sports grounds across the country, tributes were also paid for this symbolic date, in particular by the New York City teams.

On September 11, 2022, in New York, during the game against the Tampa Bay Rays, New York Yankees baseball player Aaron Judge wears the words “9/11” on his cleats, in reference to on the date of the attacks that took place twenty-one years ago.

Foreign officials also paid tribute to the victims of this attack which marked the whole world.

“As we remember 9/11 and the innocent lives lost, we also remember the solidarity that held us together during those dark hours”tweeted Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Beyond the terrible toll of thousands of deaths and injuries, thousands of people had died in the following years from illnesses caused by the toxic fumes from the collapse of the Twin Towers.

The World with AFP

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