Eighteen years ago today, terrorist attacks that stole our confidence and launched a thousand conspiracy theories rocked the world.
They put the names Al-Queda, Osama Bin Laden and the Taliban on the lips of ordinary people. Everybody became a counter-terrorism expert. Or, out of ignorance, mistrust, and fear, clamped onto stories about how none of it really happened the way “they” say it did.
We learned last week that the US President had planned to meet in secret with Taliban leaders at Camp David. He seemed surprised by their bombing in Kabul last week that killed a US soldier and 11 others and called off the talks. The Taliban responded by threatening American lives. Sadly, dealing with terrorists is a case where I believe the gun-toting hawks may have it right. Negotiations haven’t worked. These hardliners say what you want to hear while keeping their fingers crossed behind their backs.
Nothing has captured the astonishment quite as well as this 90-second piece of video. It’s the only known footage of the first plane hitting the World Trade Center. The first TV coverage began afterward, with a hole in the north tower. And we all saw when the second plane hit.