The intentions of this blog being what they are, it would be absolutely negligent of me not to remark on the tragedy eight years ago.
The 9/11 attacks are a substantial historical benchmark in the United States and in many other parts of the world. They have had social, cultural, and political implications everywhere in part because of the nature of the attacks themselves, but also because some of the world-changing events that have followed.
So we say "Never Forget" in remembrance of 9/11, but what are we pledged never to forget?
3,017 people died or are presumed dead in the 9/11 attacks themselves. We will never forget them.
More than 4,000 troops have been killed in "War on Terror" operations in Iraq and Afghanistan since 9/11. We should never forget them either.
Other actions in the "War on Terror", either by troops or terrorists, have cost an estimated 62,006 people their lives as well. If the "War on Terror" is a direct response to the 9/11 attacks, perhaps we should not forget them either.
I've tried to filter my thoughts about 9/11 through the three personae I attempt to use in this blog in remembrance of all of these that have lost their lives as a result, and as an exercise in developing my own thoughts about the attributes of each character.
The Soldier is ashamed of 9/11. It is the Soldier's duty to protect the people from attackers who would harm the innocent. The soldier would trade his life for any of the civilians who died at the World Trade Center. Many Soldiers died at the Pentagon in the act of serving their country on duty. The Soldier's loyalty is to his comrades-in-arms and the people he protects. The Soldier never forgets because he refuses to let any more harm come to the people he is pledged to defend.
The Citizen demands answers for the attacks on 9/11. It is the Citizen's duty to ensure that the government is prepared to provide for the defense the country, and to demand that a proper course of action be taken to prevent an attack from happening again. The 9/11 commission investigated and made a report documenting the events of 9/11 and making recommendations for ensuring the future defense of the United States. The Citizen watches his leadership and does his part to contribute to the well-being of the nation, any way he can. The Citizen never forgets because his memory will serve as the motivation to demand answers from his leaders and ensure that they perform their task of defending the state.
The Human Being weeps for those who were killed in the attacks, and for every person who was killed on their behalf in retribution. The Human Being weeps for the humiliations and torture performed in prisons and detention centers in the name of justice or in the name of self-preservation or defense. The Human Being's duty is compassion for his fellow man and taking care to preserve their rights to life and freedom, as the Human Being enjoys naturally. The Human Being never forgets, because the death of another man should be the thing that affects him the most, and the torture of another man, or restriction of his natural rights is suffering almost unbearable to observe.
I won't forget 9/11.
9/11 is one of the reasons I do what I do, and one of the reasons I write here in this diary.