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Remembering 9/11

At the time that I am writing this blogpost the 11th of September is only a few more days away. Since the year 2001, I have had mixed feelings every-time this infamous date turns up on the calender. Six years ago thousands of people lost their lives in and act of pure madness and religious fanaticism.

I will never forget that day, neither will the rest of the world. I was one of many who followed the whole terrifying drama live through television and the radio. When I first turned on my TV-set I could not believe what I was seeing. I saw images of the first tower ablaze. At first I thought it was some terrible accident, but I could not help but remember the WTC bombing of the nineties. I had a feeling there was more going on than ‘just’ an accident. And unfortunately this was confirmed as I saw the second plane hit. I was shocked and I immediately knew two things: 1. This is not an accident; 2. I witnessed the death of a whole lot of people live on CNN. I knew that nobody at the point of impact was going to walk away from this, neither the people on the plane itself. As it later turned out, the people trapped above the point of impact would never walk out either. I still remember the images of people jumping out of the burning floors of the towers and falling to their death. And I still remember the stories I heard of the sound they made when they hit the pavement.

Not only citizens lost their life that day, many rescue-workers lost their lives doing their job protecting and serving the public and payed the ultimate price for trying to save another persons life. To me they are heroes, every single one of them.

Since that dramatic day a war on terror is being fought to protect Americans and the rest of the free world. To save lives… But is this ‘war’ really protecting us? Has the terror stopped? Diminished? I fear not. I can understand that action is necessary, I understood the attack on Afghanistan, I understand that more security is needed. But not everything that we do is helping. Not everything that is done makes us all safer in the end.

What are the results up until now of this worldwide conflict, by some even coined as a World War? It has brought us the deaths of more Americans, more British soldiers and the death of many more innocent civilians:

The U.S. army is involved in a serious conflict in Iraq and the end is not in sight. Everyday countless people die. Not just soldiers, but also civilians. And terror grows stronger in that country by the day, feeding on a population that is defenseless, poor and ravaged by war and ethnic conflict.

It has brought us Guantanamo bay were people are being detained, often without charges. Some of them are even innocent, but still they are there. Imprisoned in conditions that do nothing but damage the image of the states abroad…and again help feed the propaganda machine of the likes of Al-Qaida and other terrorist networks. This sort of behavior helps convince young Muslims that the West (and especially the U.S.) is the enemy. On top of that, I think it ruins the ideas of democracy and freedom that the West stands for and is trying to uphold. We may never forget who we are or become something that we will later regret!

The war has also brought us human rights violations such as the ones that took place in The Abu Ghraib prison.
The atrocities that were committed according to accounts that came to light, ranged from abuse and torture to murder and rape. The acts were allegedly committed by the CIA, several government agencies and 372nd military police. If you want to know more about these horrible events, please follow this link.
Of course – this goes without mentioning – it has seriously damaged the country. Under the rule of Saddam, people were imprisoned and tortured here. And during the American presence in Iraq the prison was used for…Torture. Weird, I thought that we were there to bring democracy, and you can’t do that when you throw a few 100 years of principles out of the window.

And on top of all of this you’ve got the Patriot act, that was attacked on many occasions by organizations who are concerned with human rights or privacy. You can read up on the controversy here.
I can understand that terrorism needs to be fought, but I must admit I myself feel somewhat uneasy with this piece of legislature.

The world did change a lot the last couple of years. Sometimes I cannot help but wonder where all of this is heading.

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September 8, 2007 Posted by | politics, USA, video | Leave a comment