“9/11 was a horrible and shocking event. I can’t believe it has been a decade since it occurred. I thought it would be prudent to reflect on my impression and memory of what happened on 11th September 2001.” – Ben
I remember my mother waking me up in a bit of panic. She is American and all I can recall her saying was “you have to come see the news” – she couldn’t even explain what was happening at that point. I saw the video footage of the planes hitting the towers and I thought it was a trailer for some new movie. It took a few seconds to realise that this wasn’t some Hollywood special effect – but happening in real life. I think that’ll be a comment impression. It took me the rest of the day to come to grips with the horror that had happened. The sheer amount of death and destruction is something you can’t really process quickly. Sad stories would later come out about people jumping (like ‘the falling man‘) rather than burn, all the amazingly brave and heroic firefighters and police that died trying to save people. It’s all really sickening.
My most vivid impression.
I remember standing on the train platform in Sydney waiting to go into school and no one talking. If people were talking, it was a very hushed conversation about what had happened. Everyone was in shock. Everyone was wondering what was going to happen next.
The rest of that day.
I was at school talking about what had happened and I recall everyone believing that America would be going to war over this. I was really impressed with how the USA responded to the attacks – it unified in pride and support. On the other hand, I think the global backlash on Muslims has been unfair. It is never fair to condemn an entire group of people for the actions of a small percentage who are extremists. It’s sad that some people in this world are still racist. I also think it’s pathetic for anyone to say “They [Americans] deserved it”. The people that were killed, the office workers, the airline passengers, were not guilty of anything.
Stuck in the USA.
My dad was actually in Chicago when it happaned. He was staying in a hotel that was directly opposite the Sears tower and remembers SWAT teams storming the area to check for terrorist activity. The entire US airspace was shut down – which is called SCATANA and has only ever happened once in history. Like a lot of people, he was stranded in continental USA and trying to get back home to Australia and couldn’t work out how. They had a rather clever idea – hire a bus and drive to Canada and try and get a flight out. He managed to reach Canada and when he got wind of a rumour that LAX would be opening to allow outbound international flights, he got there and flew home.
The post-9/11 world
I think everyone will agree that it is a different world post-911. The most obvious effect is how painful airline security is now – but everyone respects why that is the case. It’s sad that these attacks continue around the world. I was actually in England in 2005 during the London Bombings. It was sad that even Australia has been effected with the Bali Bombings. Thankfully there hasn’t been any terrorist attacks on Aussie soil (*knocks on wood*). It would be a pretty sad event considering how multicultural Australia is – that and Australia really isn’t the enemy of anyone.
“I hope my ranting hasn’t offended anyone. I just wanted to share my thoughts on this.” – Ben