Anguish & Confusion

Date Submitted: 09/10/2002
Author Info: Jim (Atlanta, GA - USA) 
Occupation: Professional (Medical, legal, etc.)
Lived in NY on 9.11.01?: No
Knew someone who perished?: No

I was watching the last few minutes of Good Morning America when they broke in with a news flash of the first jet crash into the WTC. The reporting was very erratic and confusing as no one at that moment in time realized precisely what had occurred except for the reported plane collision with the WTC. My heart was racing as I began to pray that this was truly an accident only but in the back of my mind I immediately had dark thoughts of a terrorist attack. When the second plane hit the other tower it was then I knew with certainty this was not an accident but a terrorist attack.

I remember watching ABC News live broadcast of the first tower burning and saw the second plane as it flew from behind and struck the other tower.

I can still see the ball of exploding airline fuel and debris flying out from the building as it occurred.

My emotions were varied and many at that moment. I was angry that anyone could do such a thing for any reason; I was hurt and sad for the innocent victims in the planes and the buildings; I was anxious for the survivors … would they be able to get out in time ?

As the moments and days passed I sat mesmerized watching television for any scrap of information that would help me to understand this senseless act.

I became infuriated with Peter Jennings when he questioned the actions of the President in the first few hours after the attack – second guessing his absence from Washington, DC. Who was he to criticize the actions of the Secret Service and our military in their efforts to protect our President ? What gives him the right to be so demeaning ? It struck me then that our society has become so addicted to instant gratification, answers before the questions are asked – that we have become arrogant & self-serving in our actions and attitudes. And in this slight glimpse of realization I understood that our nation was being given another wakeup call. This time however, instead of a slight nudge (Oklahoma City Bombing) we were being violently shook by the shoulders and slapped into consciousness more violently than we had by the Columbine killings.

Reflecting on this I can understand, only minimally, how the terrorists hatred of our nation could grow to such a level that it manifested itself into such a horrific act of violence.

I believe God is sending us a message … change our ways or suffer in like manner the fate of other great nations long dead and non-existent. I do not believe we are wrong and the terrorists are right. This nation is still the greatest country in history and the best hope for the future of the world – bar none ! But we are fooling ourselves if we think there are no repercussions to removing prayer from schools, legalizing abortion, and condoning same-sex marriage and benefits usually associated with opposite sex relationships. In the application of “right and wrong” there are no grey areas – no room for interpretation.

In closing I pass along the following e-mail. I believe it reflects the feelings of a good percentage of patriotic Americans.

God bless you and the USA !

E-mail follows :
I sat in a movie theater watching “Schindler’s List,” asked myself, “Why didn’t the Jews fight back?”

Now I know why.

I sat in a movie theater, watching “Pearl Harbor” and asked myself, “Why weren’t we prepared?”

Now I know why.

Civilized people cannot fathom, much less predict, the actions of evil people.

On September 11, dozens of capable airplane passengers allowed themselves to be overpowered by a handful of poorly armed terrorists because they did not comprehend the depth of hatred that motivated their captors.

On September 11, thousands of innocent people were murdered because too many Americans naively reject the reality that some nations are dedicated to the dominance of others. Many political pundits, pacifists and media personnel want us to forget the carnage. They say we must focus on the bravery of the rescuers and ignore the cowardice of the killers. They implore us to understand the motivation of the perpetrators. Major television stations have announced they will assist the healing process by not replaying devastating footage of the planes crashing into the Twin Towers.

I will not be manipulated.
I will not pretend to understand.

I will not forget.

I will not forget the liberal media who abused freedom of the press to kick our country when it was vulnerable and hurting.

I will not forget that CBS anchor Dan Rather preceded President Bush’s address to the nation with the snide remark, “No matter how you feel about him, he is still our president.”

I will not forget that ABC TV anchor Peter Jennings questioned President Bush’s motives for not returning immediately to Washington, DC and commented, “We’re all pretty skeptical and cynical about Washington.”

And I will not forget that ABC’s Mark Halperin warned if reporters weren’t informed of every little detail of this war, they aren’t “likely — nor should they be expected — to show deference.”

I will not isolate myself from my fellow Americans by pretending an attack on the USS Cole in Yemen was not an attack on the United States of America.

I will not forget the Clinton administration equipped Islamic terrorists and their supporters with the world’s most sophisticated telecommunications equipment and encryption technology, thereby compromising America’s ability to trace terrorist radio, cell phone, land lines, faxes and modem communications.

I will not be appeased with pointless, quick retaliatory strikes like those perfected by the previous dministration.

I will not be comforted by “feel-good, do nothing” regulations like the silly “Have your bags been under your control?” question at the airport.

I will not be influenced by so called,”antiwar demonstrators” who exploit the right of expression to chant anti-American obscenities.

I will not forget the moral victory handed the North Vietnamese by American war protesters who reviled and spat upon the returning soldiers, airmen, sailors and Marines.

I will not be softened by the wishful thinking of pacifists who chose reassurance over reality.

I will embrace the wise words of Prime Minister Tony Blair who told Labor Party conference, “They have no moral inhibition on the slaughter of the innocent. If they could have murdered not 7,000 but 70,000, does anyone doubt they would have done so and rejoiced in it?

There is no compromise possible with such people, no meeting of minds, no point of understanding with such terror. Just a choice: defeat it or be defeated by it. And defeat it we must!”

I will force myself to:
-hear the weeping
-feel the helplessness
-imagine the terror
-sense the panic
-smell the burning flesh
-experience the loss
-remember the hatred.

I sat in a movie theater, watching “Private Ryan” and asked myself, “Where did they find the courage?”

Now I know.

We have no choice. Living without liberty is not living.

— Ed Evans, MGySgt., USMC (Ret.)

Not as lean, Not as mean, But still a Marine.
End of e-mail


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