Today we dedicate the National September 11 Memorial and Museum, this generation’s Pearl Harbor, in lower Manhattan. We should all stop and ponder where we were on that infamous day.I was doing a joint assignment at Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune with the II Marine Expeditionary Force. From the command operations center, I watched the second plane strike, and we knew it was not a coincidence. Subsequently of course, another plane struck the Pentagon near the section housing the U.S. Army G1 (Personnel) Directorate. And we shall never forget the words of Todd Beamer – “Let’s roll” — as they commandeered the fourth flight crashing it into the Pennsylvania countryside, instead of its intended target.
Years later I would retire to South Florida, the same place where Mohammad Atta and several of the conspirators had lived and purchased their airline tickets.This is a solemn day for our nation, the survivors, and the families of those Americans who lost their lives. The Ground Zero museum should be sacred ground just the same as the Pearl Harbor Memorial above the USS Arizona.
Today and every day we must not forget who and what attacked our nation: Islamic extremism. We do not need any PC diatribe. And we certainly don’t need any Muslim groups, such as CAIR (the unindicted co-conspirator in the largest Islamic terrorist funding case) attempting to censor our country. We also don’t need their willing progressive socialist enablers aiding in their pursuits.Today, let us be truthful. Today, let us resolve to never again let down our guard. Today, let us commit to ensuring the horrors inflicted by Islamic terrorism, jihadism and extremism shall be identified, confronted and defeated not only in America, but across the world.
God bless those we lost on 9-11 and let their memory fuel our commitment.