As Americans take time today to look back at the horrific events of September 11th, 2001, a flood of emotions is likely to overcome many of us.
The unadulterated shock of the event is often the first such response that we recall. Americans all know where they were when they first witnessed the horror of what was occurring, and when they first realized that this was no accident. For many, the timing of the events of that fateful day put us squarely in the midst of the morning’s work, whether that be in school or in the the office. To see the abject horror on the faces of whomever was spreading the news to their colleagues was purely terrifying. To know that you, too, would soon know whatever secret this terrified friend or coworker was the harbinger of was enough to shake you to your core.
Then, after the shock came the fear. When would this stop? How many airplanes were still flying compromised? Where was the military? Why were jets not scrambled? How long could this attack last?
Of course, the anger then rose within us. We were the first Americans in six decades to witness a foreign attack of such devastation on American soil.
For the then-Mayor of New York City, this anger boiled over into an offer made to the then-President of the United States.
The former mayor of New York City, Rudy Giuliani, appeared on “Fox & Friends” Wednesday to commemorate the anniversary of the 9/11 terror attacks, and revealed what he said to then-President George W. Bush about mastermind Usama bin Laden.
“The anger was tremendous,” he said. “When I saw President Bush for the first time and he got off the helicopter… he greeted the governor and came up to me… He says to me ‘Rudy, what can I do?’ I said when you get bin Laden let me kill him — or I might have said execute him.
“I think I was thinking as a lawyer,” Giuliani continued. “I thought there’d be capital punishment and I could try the case. I had done that for two Nazis. I only had two capital cases in my career and both of them were Nazis. One had killed 7,000 people. Another had killed 12,000 people — [a] capital case is easy when it’s like that.”
Today, the emotions welling up inside of us are much different than they were 18 years ago.
Americans in 2019 find themselves grateful to the heroes that have sacrificed their lives in the pursuit of justice, both in the carcinogen-dust-filled streets of Lower Manhattan, and in the brutal deserts of Iraq, Afghanistan, and ultimately Pakistan.
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