Patterico's Pontifications


Recollections of 9/11

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:44 pm

See if you share my reaction reading these excerpts from a Blaze article, containing quotations from some of the staff there about their memories of 9/11:

Jason Howerton, Deputy Managing Editor

Like millions of Americans, I remember exactly where I was when I saw the first images of the 9/11 World Trade Center terror attack. Though I first learned of the attack from my middle school teachers, it wasn’t until I returned home and turned on the TV that I was exposed to the images that, unbeknownst to me at the time, would be forever seared into my mind.

. . . .

Jon Street, Assistant Editor

Fourteen years ago this morning, I sat in sixth grade science class having little idea of what the World Trade Center even was, much less the Pentagon.

. . . .

Erica Ritz, Assistant Editor

9/11 profoundly changed all of our lives. I was just 11 years old and living in Minnesota at the time, and to be honest, I didn’t even know what the twin towers were. But I knew what the coordinated crashes meant — we were under attack.

. . . .

Liz Klimas, Science, Health and Tech Editor

I’ll admit it. I played hooky on Sept. 11, 2001. Instead of sitting at my high school desk awaiting what was most likely a lesson in the difference between mitosis and meiosis (didn’t everyone’s science teacher hammer than one into their brains?), I had decided earlier that morning that I didn’t feel quite 100 percent to head to class and somehow convinced my mother to agree.

I realized something reading these excerpts.

I’m old. Or at least, a lot older than I was in 2001.

Our daughter was around on September 11, 2001. Our son wasn’t born yet. As they replayed the footage of that second plane crashing into the South Tower, our daughter — then 19 months old — pointed at the TV and smiled and said: “AIRpane!!” She had recently learned the word and delighted in pointing one out every time she saw one.

She’s now a sophomore in high school.

For a remembrance from someone more my age, I recommend this post from Dan McLaughlin, the Baseball Crank. I met him in NYC some time back, but I don’t think I realized he had narrowly missed being in the North Tower when that first plane hit. And there is always Allahpundit’s set of Twitter recollections, which I read again today.

Soon enough, we’ll be reading recollections from bloggers and editors who weren’t alive that day, but remember what their mom and dad told them about it.

And so it goes.

Rick Perry: A True Gentleman Bows Out

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:28 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Former Gov. Rick Perry is the first GOP candidate to step down from the 2016 presidential campaign. His campaign reportedly ran out of money and he never really moved beyond 1 percent in the polls. Today, in a speech announcing his decision, he reaffirmed his faith and emphasized that he leaves the campaign with no regrets:

When I gave my life to Christ, I said, “your ways are greater than my ways. Your will superior to mine.”

Today I submit that His will remains a mystery, but some things have become clear.

That is why today I am suspending my campaign for the presidency of the United States.

We have a tremendous field – the best in a generation – so I step aside knowing our party is in good hands, and as long as we listen to the grassroots, the cause of conservatism will be too.

I share this news with no regrets. It has been a privilege and an honor to travel this country, to speak with the American people about their hopes and dreams, to see a sense of optimism prevalent despite a season of cynical politics.

And as I approach the next chapter in life, I do so with the love of my life by my side, Anita Perry. We have our house in the country, we have two beautiful children and two adorable grandchildren, four dogs, and the best sunset from our front porch that you could ever imagine.

Life is good. And I am a blessed man.

Perry is an old-fashioned, true and honorable gentleman who wants the best for America and has held onto to his vision of what it would take to achieve that goal. Unfortunately the timing just hasn’t been right for Perry, both in 2012 and today.

I wish this true patriot the very best. I hope he will continue in public service working to advance conservatism and American ideals.

I am posting a bit more of the eloquent and moving talk he gave today. Read the whole thing. It’s worth it.

46 years ago I spent a summer in Festus, Missouri. I went door to door, selling Bibles. It was then that I learned what it was like to remain optimistic in the face of rejection, especially when I knew the power of the message I was selling.

It was good preparation for life in politics.

For me, this life has been a dream.

I came from a place called Paint Creek. Too small to be called a town, too remote to be found on a map, it was the center of my universe.

We had an outhouse, and mom bathed us in a number two washtub on the porch. We farmed vast fields of cotton, and attended the Paint Creek Rural School. I was a six-man football player, a proud member of Boy Scout Troop 48, and an Eagle Scout.

I experienced the bonds of family, the power of community, the meaning of faith. And I learned the high calling we have as Americans to protect freedom.

It was for freedom that I wore the uniform of the United States Air Force. I flew C-130 aircraft all across the globe. I lived in places like Saudi Arabia and Turkey. I learned how special it is to be an American.

Later I would become a state representative, ag commissioner, lieutenant governor, and eventually governor of the world’s 12th largest economy.

I would truly live the motto of the Paint Creek Rural School: “no dream to tall for a school so small.”

I continue to draw inspiration from a trip I took with my father fifteen years ago.

Dad and I went back to his old air base in England for his first visit in 55 years. Then we crossed the channel and visited the American cemetery that overlooks the bluffs at Omaha beach. That flight across the channel he had taken 35 times previously, as a tailgunner on a B-17.

On that peaceful, wind-swept setting, there lie 9,000 graves, including 45 pairs of brothers, 33 of whom are buried side by side, a father and a son, two sons of a president. They all traded their future for ours in a final act of loving sacrifice.

In that American Cemetery, it is no accident each headstone faces west: west over the Atlantic, towards the nation they defended, the nation they loved, the nation they would never come home to.

It struck me as I stood in the midst of those heroes that they look upon us in silent judgment. And that we must ask ourselves: are we worthy of their sacrifice?

America could use a whole lot more Rick Perrys.


Hamid Karzai: Al Qaeda a “Myth”

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:30 am

As we remember the events of September 11, 2001, let us also remember that, according to Hamid Karzai, it wasn’t Al Qaeda’s fault:

Hamid Karzai, the former president of Afghanistan, has questioned the existence of al-Qaida, and denied that the 9/11 terror attacks which killed nearly 3,000 people were planned in Afghanistan.

On the eve of the anniversary of the 2001 attacks, Karzai, who left office last year after 12 years, used an interview with al Jazeera to express his doubt that the terrorist group led by the late Osama bin Laden was responsible for the operation which prompted the invasion of Afghanistan.

“I don’t know if al-Qaida existed and I don’t know if they exist,” said Karzai. “I have not seen them and I’ve not had any report about them, any report that would indicate that al-Qaida is operating in Afghanistan. It is for me a myth […] For us, they don’t exist.”

I have listened to consistent anti-war types who say: hey, Afghanistan simply asked for evidence of who was behind 9/11, and we refused to provide it.

If I have learned one thing in my life, it is this: you cannot persuade people who cannot be persuaded.

This is the mindset we were facing. No matter how overwhelming our proof, it would have been rejected as insufficient. Karzai’s little rant simply reinforces that obvious point.

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