The attacks of September 11, 2001, reshaped the face of the nation and the course of history. Our lives and the lives of those to come — not just here in New York or the United States, but around the globe — have changed forever.
The date, September 11, will forever evoke recollections of unimaginable tragedy, of lives callously lost and brutally cut short and of unspeakable horror and sorrow in the hearts and minds of all of us. We must never forget the depths of inhumanity to which terrorist fanatics are willing to sink in the name of their depraved cause as they seek to destroy the very principles of freedom and democracy on which this great nation was founded.
That is why each and every September 11, we as Americans pay tribute to those who lost their lives that fateful day. We gather in unity and dignity to honor the freedoms that we have fought for in the past, the freedoms our loved ones have died for, and those freedoms that we continue to fight for today.
Remembering that day is not a choice but our solemn obligation — on September 11, 2001, there were 2,749 heroes lost; seven buildings destroyed and, with their collapse, 30 million square feet of commercial office space was lost or damaged; 60,000 jobs disappeared; 65,000 commuters were dislocated by the destruction; five subway lines and 12 subway stations were affected or closed; and 1.6 million tons of smoking debris filled the World Trade Center site.
As you recall September 11, always remember that we were attacked not for what we do wrong but for what we do right. Remember the spirit of that day — the day America showed what makes us a great people and a great nation; the day the true character of our nation triumphed over unspeakable evil; the day that freedom and democracy prevailed yet again over oppression and tyranny.
By By George Pataki/ CNN
For more information about 9/11 Tribute Center please visit http://911tributemuseum.org/