On September 11th 2001 at 8:46am an American Airlines Boeing 767 crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Center. It was believed to be a freak accident, until 17 minutes later when the second Boeing 767 crashed into the south tower. A third plane crashed into the Pentagon and the final plane was overtaken by passengers and crash landed in a field in Pennsylvania. It was clear that America was under attack and later established that the attack was from Saudi Arabia and several other Arab nations.
Why did it happen
The start of this conflict was in 1990 against Iraq in response to the Iraqi invasion and annexation of Kuwait. Saddam Hussein wanted oil that Kuwait had and he was going to take it by force. Iraq accused the US and Israel of encouraging Kuwait to reduce oil prices and in turn, would weaken Iraq. America’s support of Israel and its involvement in the Persian Gulf War and its continued military presence in the Middle East is what eventually led to the largest terrorist attack on US soil.
How did America react
President Bush at the time addressed the nation on September 12, 2001, and stated that “The United States of America will use all of our resources to conquer this enemy. We will rally the world. We will be patient. We’ll be focused, and we will be steadfast in our determination. This battle will take time to resolve, but make no mistake about it, we will win.” On September 20, 2001, Bush announced the War on Terror begins with al Qaeda. October 7, 2001, the war in Afghanistan begins with an airstrike on Taliban and al Qaeda training camps.
The war continues and in May of 2003 Bush declares Mission Accomplished and says that the major combat is over, but terrorist attacks were still happening all over the world.
December 2003 Saddam Hussein is captured by US soldiers and is later executed in Bagdad in 2006 for war crimes and crimes against humanity.
On May 2, 2011, over 10 years since the attack on the World Trade Center, the al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden is killed by US special forces during a raid at an Abbottabad, Pakistan compound.
How America recovered
In December of 2014, the War in Afghanistan officially ends. US and Taliban leaders worked towards an agreement for the withdrawal of the 14,000 US troops that remained in Afghanistan. This agreement was later titled the US-Taliban deal in 2020 to being peace and end the conflict that lasted from 2001-2021. America will always remember the tragic events that happened on September 11, 2001 and all that happened moving forward.
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“War on Terror Timeline”, History.com, September 9, 2022, https://www.history.com/topics/21st-century/war-on-terror-timeline
“Attack on America” History.com, September 9, 2022, https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/attack-on-america
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