This year's the first year since the 9/11 attacks that remembrances have fallen on a Tuesday. Today's recollections of the terror will be more intimate.
Where were you when you heard the news?
I was at the office, and my colleague told me that the WTC had been hit. I first saw images of the horror at the Washington Post online (the only newspaper I could find whose server wasn't overloaded). I went home at lunch to take in the grisly scenes. My jaw dropped at the cold, clear images of the planes penetrating the buildings. My God, the humanity...
It took days for things to sink in completely. I read the papers voraciously to learn how something like this could happen.
I took my son to Ground Zero this summer on our vacation to New York City. It's the first time I've been to the World Trade Center site. Being there gives one an immediacy to the scale of loss. The sky is empty there in Lower Manhattan - the destruction of the towers has left a hole in that space, but it continues to be filled by the goodness of Americans in their mourning of the losses.
My blessings go out to all of those who lost loved ones that day.
My thanks go out to all of those now taking the war to the terrorists around the world. It will be a long campaign, but I've never once questioned whether our efforts were noble and worthwhile.
Update: In her essay today, Debra Burlingame frowns on the use of "lost" in describing the victims of the attacks:
Our fellow human beings were not "lost" in 1993 or on 9/11. They were torn to pieces. We must not give the enemy any quarter. We must confront the reality of their acts.
I'll keep this point in mind for future remembrances.