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9/11 Anniversary Tag

While we take time this day to remember each in our own way 9/11, we should note that this is also the fourth anniversary of the Benghazi attack that left four Americans dead:  Christopher Stevens, an American ambassador; Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty, former Navy SEALS; Sean Smith, an embassy aide.

Each anniversary of the 9/11 attack it's important for me to learn something new when researching a post. In past years I've learned of the recording that Melissa Harrington Hughes left on her home answering machine for her husband, 9/11/01 and Memory: And I located a recording of the chirping sound of PASS devices I remembered so well, each one representing the death of a first responder, I never have been able to erase that sound from my memory:

Sometimes the most interesting and moving stories are the ones I stumble upon. Like the Bus No. 37 bombing memorial in Haifa, Israel, that I wrote up last May. A similar thing happened to me last Friday, when I was in Park Slope, Brooklyn. I wanted to see the Park Slope Co-op, the scene of a well-known unsuccessful anti-Israel boycott attempt a few years ago. (The efforts continue.) Next to the Co-Op, is a memorial to NY Fire Department Squad 1 members who died in the 9/11 attack. FDNY Squad 1 Station and Food Coop I knew that hundreds of firemen died that day, but I didn't know about Squad 1, a Special Operations Unit that responds to emergencies throughout NYC.  According to its Facebook page:

On 9/11's 10th anniversary I wrote a post that contained this observation:
For those of us who were grownups when 9/11 happened, it’s also been transmuted—not to something that was always there, but to something that’s been incorporated into our view of the world. We’ve all done that differently. But for us, the shock and surprise and horror reoccurs (to a somewhat diminished extent, of course; there’s no shock like the first shock) whenever we see the footage, or when we think—really really think, without the protective shield of familiarity—of what actually happened on that day.
I believe that, in the four years that have passed since I wrote those words, 9/11 has been transmuted into something that was always there, something that no longer surprises. And although I haven't watched any footage today of the attack, I think there is less shock and no surprise. The reason for that is that a great deal has happened since I wrote those words four years ago. Since then, although we had responded in Afghanistan to 9/11 and then to Saddam Hussein's defiance of nuclear weapons inspections in Iraq, the Obama administration has purposely wiped out those gains, particularly in Iraq. When I wrote that 10-year anniversary piece in September of 2011, the US was poised on the brink of Obama's complete withdrawal from Iraq, which he was determined to accomplish against the opinion and advice of every military adviser. In the four years since that withdrawal, ISIS has risen up in the vacuum that was left, and it has wreaked horrors on civilian populations, barbarities that are of enormous scale and magnitude even compared to 9/11 and which have reverberated around the world with images of sadistic violence. Does anyone doubt for a single moment that the killers would wreak a thousand, ten thousand, a hundred thousand 9/11s on us if they could?

A new memorial center has been created in Shanksville, Pennsylvania to honor the people on United Airlines Flight 93 which crashed in a field on September 11th when passengers fought back against the terrorists. Here's an Associated Press report via FOX News:
Flight 93 memorial visitor center is dedicated A new visitor center has been dedicated on a Pennsylvania hill overlooking the site where United Airlines Flight 93 came down during the 9/11 attacks. The visitor center is at the Flight 93 National Memorial near Shanksville. It uses photos, video, artifacts and interactive displays to tell the story of how passengers and crew fought to regain control of the plane. The hijackers are believed to have wanted to crash it into the U.S. Capitol. An outdoor platform offers a commanding view of the crash site where 33 passengers and seven crew members were killed. U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell said at Thursday's dedication that the center captures "the real honor of the 40 and what they did."

At 8:46 a.m. in New York on September 11, 2001, the first airplane hit the World Trade Center North Tower. I was at my desk in Providence, RI, when I heard the first reports of a "small plane" hitting the World Trade Center. Seemed odd, but not out of the realm of possibility. Morning news shows interrupted coverage as the murky facts began to emerge. Slowly, it became clear it was no accident, as the South Tower also was hit (at 31:20 of video below). And then the Pentagon was hit And then the unthinkable, the Towers collapsed:

Last year on September 11 Mandy had a wonderful and moving post. Thanks to David for reminding me of it. Here is the post, excerpted, click on the link for the full original post:

Remembering September 11th and the importance of loved ones and endurance

Posted by   Wednesday, September 11, 2013 at 9:30am The morning of September 11th, 2001, I was sitting in my office at a prior job, admiring the beautiful blue sky outside my window, when my phone rang. “I can’t reach your brother anymore. His phone cut off. He was running and his phone just died,” my mother cried on the other end. For a moment, I had no idea why she was upset or what she was talking about.  But then another line rang and a friend’s voice, equally upset, screamed to me, “They’re flying planes into buildings where your brother is.” I sat stunned for a minute, paralyzed with fear and dread.  I opened my office door and there was an eerie feeling in the air.  It was noisy, yet quiet and somber at the same time....


For my thoughts, see my post last year, 9/11/01 and Memory This audio still is what I remember the most.  We can add Melissa Harrington Hughes to our memory, along with Johnny “Mike” Spann, Cpl Jonathan Daniel Porto, U.S. Army, Spc. Dennis Weichel and Lt. Roslyn Schulte....

Paul Krugman has a shameful column today, shameful even by Krugman standards. Is it just me, or are the 9/11 commemorations oddly subdued? Actually, I don’t think it’s me, and it’s not really that odd. What happened after 9/11 — and I think even people on the right...

Memory is a strange thing. There are many things I remember about the attacks on 9/11/01:  The first announcement when I was at my desk in Providence that a "small plane" had hit the World Trade Center, the announcement of a second "small plane" and then...