On the morning of September 11, 2001, 19 men of the terrorist group Al-Qaeda, hijacked four airliners and crashed them into specified American targets. Of the four planes, one crashed into the Pentagon in Washington DC, one crashed into the a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, and the last two were flown into the World Trade Centre in New York City. A total of 2,977 people were killed . The 9/11 event was a particularly criminal and inhuman act along a continuum of anti-american attacks that gave birth to a war and brought about everyday sociological changes for Americans. 9/11 has left a scar in many families which has yet to be healed, fifteen years later.
Mr Blake Weir, my interviewee was only a Junior in high school, 16 years of age. He was about to be let out of class when a teacher across the hall came into the class and said a plane just flew into the World Trade Centre. He says he had no context about the situation in that period of time, he could not understand what was going on. By the time he arrived for his next class the following period, he says he was informed that a second plane had been flown into the buildings. In that moment, he and the rest of his class watched the replays of the tragedy still confused as to what, why and how this event had happened. He said he was friends with several students who were of Saudi and Pakistani descent. They were segregated by nationality, meaning the middle easterners were separated from the Americans. Apart from this, they were subjected to hate and became victims of bullying due to the actions of Al-Quaeda. Mr. Weir felt inclined to make the point to them that he would stick up for the regardless of the circumstances.
9/11 brought many repercussions as it relates to foreign conflict. Mr Weir mentions a family friend of his, who recently graduated from the US military. He spoke about the irony in the fact that his friend may be deployed in the Middle East as a result of the 9/11 terrorist attack he witnessed fifteen years ago as a teenager.
In his final remakes he spoke about the comparison between his exposure to terrorism versus that of the people living in Palestine and Israel where terrorism is a daily threat.
“…for 16 years of my life I have never come into immediate interactions with that…it was a total game changer in that regard.”
Also, 9/11, in particular has left a mark on many lives of people who were around at that time and people who merely witnessed the event unfold on the television. This event has changed many policies such as airport security and moreover is one of the more formative events that has occurred in the last 20 years.
“…its realistic that in his time, he will be deployed in the middle east and knowing that some element of his deployment is because of something that happened fifteen years ago…”
“…anyone who was old enough…and understands the gravity of the event probably remembers where they were then…”