Twenty years later we are still learning lessons from 9/11

| 16 Sep 2021 | 11:39

    The commemoration of the September 11 attack on the United States comes at an auspicious moment in our nation’s history.

    Today we honor the nearly 3,000 people who died at the hands of terrorist on that late summer day and we mourn the great, imponderable loss to the families. We honor heroes who gave their lives to save others.

    But 9/11 is not just a remembrance – it is an annual warning.

    It says to us that the world is a dangerous place, teeming with people who hate America and all we stand for – hope, freedom, personal choices and more. It also says we must forever be vigilant against terrorism wherever it is spawned.

    That message seemed to have gotten lost at the White House last month as the Biden Administration dramatically bungled the exit from Afghanistan.

    Whether we should have abandoned Afghanistan or not is a debate for foreign policy experts, the U.S. military and the soldiers who served in Afghanistan.

    Regardless of the choice that was made, the USA should not have turned the Afghan exit into a worldwide victory for jihadists and an embarrassment for our country. We should not have abandoned a military air base and left behind billions of dollars of weapons that terrorists will use to kill Americans and our allies. And most assuredly, we should have not so have bungled the exit so badly that it cost the lives of 13 servicemen and women and hundreds of Afghan citizens.

    It is apparent that the White House Afghan exit strategy was run by the P.R. department whose slavish desire to meet a self-imposed deadline overran the concern for the safety of American soldiers.

    The deaths of those 13 soldiers hangs over today’s 9/11 commemoration as more families have reason to mourn the loss of loved ones to terrorists.

    The pain of today is heightened by a federal administration that thinks the U.S. can bargain with terrorists – and actually trust them. That kind of foolishness will only result in the loss of more American lives.

    We should be able to trust that our federal government will protect us. That’s hard to say today as we witness sobbing families lamenting their losses - again.

    Obviously, there are still lessons to be learned from 9/11. Let’s hope that our President and his advisors will learn them quickly.

    May God bless all the families who lost love ones to terror.

    BettyLou DeCroce

    NJ Assemblywoman