Honoring September 11th: Flight 93, and a Free People

Today, eight years ago, acts of unspeakable evil were committed on American soil. Al-Qaeda terrorists killed almost 3,000 people.

Whether the effort to preserve our liberties, secure our Constitution, and protect our people is called the “Global War on Terror” or “Overseas Contingency Operations,” the result of failure is the same: more terror and death.

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Let us stop to reflect on what happened eight years ago and pray for the families of the dead, both civilian and uniformed, and the living serving on the front lines of freedom. As we do, let us also remember the nature of the attacks in far flung places like Mumbai, Islamabad, Jerusalem, Beirut, Baghdad, Kabul, and Sderot.

Lastly, be mindful and thankful for the heroic actions of a free people on Flight 93. These Americans took the initiative. They didn’t wait for government to tell them what to do. They didn’t need instructions. As a free people, comfortable with weighing their options, making decisions and taking appropriate risks, they rushed the terrorist-controlled cockpit. As a result of their actions, the fourth terrorist attack, destined for the U.S. Capitol or the White House, was brought down in rural Western Pennsylvania.

It was with Flight 93 that the American response to 9/11 began only one hour and eleven minutes after Flight 11 was crashed into the World Trade Center’s North Tower. The American counterattack was conceived by civilians who voted to rush the al-Qaeda terrorists.

They voted.

At 9:55 am passenger Todd Beamer was heard saying, “Let’s roll!” Within two minutes, the struggle was on.

As long as the spirit of a free people reigns in America, enemies of all stripes, whether terrorist organizations or nation states, will fail in their deadly and tyrannical designs.

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