Eight years ago, the world was thrown into unprecedented shock when Al Qaida terrorists flew hijacked aircraft into New York City’s World Trade Centre twin towers and the Pentagon, killing thousands in the process and ringing in fundamental changes in aviation security.
A global coalition emerged promptly to stand with America, aimed to eradicate the terrorists’ training ground in Afghanistan, and their Taliban backers’ criminal regime was overthrown within a short time.
Yet, Osama bin Laden, wanted dead or alive, is still at large after 8 years, largely attributed to the fact that the very coalition brought together by the events of 9/11 took its eyes off the prize and split, when the US administration together with the UK and a few others decided to turn their attention to Iraq, under false pretences as is now known, instead of finishing the job in Afghanistan’s mountains where the real enemy was digging in.
Meanwhile, the next generation of Taliban is giving battle again in Afghanistan, Pakistan has been drawn into the melee and Bin Laden still eludes justice.
I recently watched an old film, and when the twin towers appeared in the background, cold anger once again swelled up in me. On this anniversary we ought to remember the victims and their surviving friends and relatives in our prayers, but the best way to honor them is by redoubling efforts to root out the old and the new generation of terrorists, who continue to roam the mountains of Afghanistan and Pakistan, the mountains of Yemen, the jungles of the Philippines and Indonesia and wherever else they find safe haven, shelter and training grounds – including Somalia.
Security services around the world have since the infamous 9/11 prevented many attacks but the setbacks suffered through the train and bus bombings in Spain and the UK, and many other places since then, are a constant reminder that our all safety and security is still under threat, until the terrorists are defeated and the root causes of their misguided criminal campaigns are taken care of.
Meanwhile, my prayers go out for the victims and all those affected by the losses caused on the 11th September of 2001.