By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Sept. 11, 2001, a team of Muslim terrorist operatives led by Muhammed Atta with the al Qaeda organizations launched a series of attacks on New York City’s World Trade Center, the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol. Three of the four attacks were successful. The passengers of United Airlines Flight 93 however made a valiant attempt to retake their airplane. The terrorists crashed the plane into farmland in Pennsylvania to prevent the passengers from succeeding in that effort. The passengers of flight 93 likely saved the lives of hundreds of Americans on the ground. When the WTC towers collapsed nearly 3,000 Americans lay dead, including over 200 New York City Firemen and 77 police officers. The nation was shocked by that day’s events and many remember this day every year.
Many Alabama leaders commented on this unofficial day of national remembrance.
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said, “Let us never forget the events of September 11, 2001, but let us also never forget the resilience of the United States. The strength of our nation comes from our people.”
U.S. Rep. Martha Roby, R-Montgomery, said, “On today’s anniversary of September 11, 2001, let us remember those we lost on that terrible day. May we never forget the bravery shown during that time of unspeakable tragedy.”
U.S. Rep. Gary Palmer, R-Hoover, said, “Sixteen years ago today we witnessed one of the darkest days in US history. A terrorist attack against innocent civilians that resulted in the loss of almost 3,000 lives. Earlier this year, Ann and I visited Ground Zero in New York City and walked around the memorial looking at the names of those who were lost that day in the World Trade Towers. It was a somber and moving reminder that each name represented a loved one…a son or daughter, a husband or wife, a brother or sister…a family. Today we remember those who were lost and those who have given their lives in defense of our freedom since that day, including the 106 Alabama servicemen and women. On this day we also take great pride and great hope in the strength of our nation and our ability to come together in times of tragedy to help one another and to stand together in defense of our freedom.”
Republican U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore said, “Today, we remember one of the darkest days in our nation’s history. Thousands of innocent Americans lost their lives on 9/11 and many more have lost their lives since, fighting radical Islamic terrorism around the world. As a nation, we lost so much that September day. But what we gained was a reminder that through it all – even when facing down evil itself – American perseverance, courage, patriotism, and spirit will always prevail.”
U.S. Sen. Luther Strange, R-Ala., said, “The shock and pain of the 9/11 attacks are as vivid today as they were sixteen years ago, and each of us remembers where we were at that moment when the world changed. For America, it marks a time of collective mourning, national unity, and strengthened resolve. For a generation of brave men and women in uniform, it began a chapter of uncommon bravery and sacrifice in the face of senseless terrorism. Today, and every day, let us hold close the memory of those who fell in that first battle of the war against terror, and together resolve: never again.”
Strange and Moore will be on the ballot in a Republican Party Primary runoff on September 26 for the Senate seat vacated by Jeff Sessions, who is now U.S. Attorney General.
U.S. Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Saks, said, “September 11th was a dark day for our country with the deadly terrorist attacks in 2001 and the attack in Benghazi in 2012. We will never forget and I hope folks across East Alabama will say a special prayer for our country and the families that lost loved ones. May God continue to bless the United States of America.”
U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Huntsville, said, “On this day sixteen years ago, America showed the world our strength. When we needed to most, Americans banded together and united against forces that aimed to destroy our way of life. We will #NeverForget the souls lost that day and we honor those who have given their lives since defending our country by preserving their memory.”
U.S. Rep. Robert Aderholt, R-Haleyville, said, “It was a dark day on a clear September morning 16 years ago. Let’s never forget those who died, those who lost loved ones and those who sacrificed unselfishly for our country.”
U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell, D-Selma, said, “We must never forget the atrocities of the attack on our country on September 11, 2001. Today is a day to mourn those we lost on 9/11 and to remember the first responders who faced the attack that day. We are a nation which will not be broken by terrorism.”
U.S. Rep. Bradley Byrne, R-Montrose, said, “September 11, 2001 forever changed the United States and the world. Today, we reflect on the lives lost and remember the brave first responders who defied human nature and ran into the fire. In the days following the attacks, we saw national unity like never before. May we channel that sense of pride and unity today and every day.”
President Donald Trump said in a remembrance ceremony at the Pentagon, “For the families with us on this anniversary, we know that not a single day goes by when you don’t think about the loved ones stolen from your life. Today, our entire nation grieves with you and with every family of those 2,977 innocent souls who were murdered by terrorists 16 years ago.”
Trump said, “We can honor their sacrifice by pledging our resolve to do whatever we must to keep our people safe. On that day, not only did the world change, but we all changed. Our eyes were opened to the depths of the evil we face. But in that hour of darkness, we also came together with renewed purpose. Our differences never looked so small, our common bonds never felt so strong.” Trump said, “That September morning, each of those brave Americans died as they had lived: as heroes doing their duty and protecting us and our country. We mourn them, we honor them, and we pledge to never, ever forget them.”