September 11 Attacks (9/11)

September 11 Attacks (9/11)

The Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001

September 11 Attacks (9/11) On September 11, 2001, nineteen terrorists linked to al-Qaeda hijacked four commercial airplanes scheduled to fly from the East Coast to California. They smuggled box-cutters through security and turned the planes into weapons, flying two of them into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, and the fourth into the Pentagon military headquarters in Washington, D.C.

What Happened On September 11 Attacks (9/11)

On September 11, 2001, terrorists linked to the Islamic extremist group al Qaeda – founded by Osama bin Laden – hijacked four commercial passenger planes and used them as suicide weapons. The attacks shook the nation and changed many aspects of American government, travel and culture.

In the years before 9/11, al Qaeda had a range of funding sources and the ability to adapt its operations.

The September 11 Attacks (9/11) attack was a shock, but it should not have been. Islamist extremists had given ample warning that they intended to kill Americans indiscriminately and in large numbers.

The September 11 Attacks (9/11 were widely viewed on television. A year after the tragedy, when asked to name the most important event that had happened in their lives over the previous year, nearly 80% of Americans cited 9/11. In New York and Washington, the figure was even higher. The September 11 Attacks (9/11) attacks were a profoundly personal experience for people living in the cities directly affected by them.

September 11 Attacks (9/11) Osama Bin Laden

Osama bin Laden

On May 1, 2011, President Obama announced the death of Osama bin Laden in a raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan. The event, known as Operation Neptune Spear, ended a global manhunt that began before September 11 Attacks (9/11).

In this book, international terrorism expert Roland Jacquard paints a dramatic portrait of the world’s most-wanted terrorist and his brotherhood. He explains how his networks of fundamentalist, anti-U.S. fervor continue to function, even without bin Laden himself.

Founded al Qaeda

Using bombings to advance his extremist goals, bin Laden engineered attacks in multiple countries that killed thousands of men, women, and children. He used his wealth, fame, and charisma to attract followers and raise funds for the terrorist group he founded.

In the 1990s, as he emerged from the anti-Soviet jihad in Afghanistan. bin Laden decided to take jihad global and unify hundreds of small jihadist groups struggling against their corrupt local regimes under one umbrella. In February 1998, he issued a fatwa calling for Muslims to kill Americans wherever they find them.

He set up camp in Afghanistan with help from the Taliban. Then, in September 2001, he and his followers carried out the deadly attacks September 11 Attacks (9/11) against the United States that day. The killing of bin Laden marked the end of a decades-long manhunt.

The Planes

The first plane, American Airlines Flight 11, departed Logan Airport in Boston at 7:59 a.m. headed for Los Angeles. It had 78 crew members and passengers, not counting the five hijackers. Flight 11 struck floors 93 to 99 of the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 a.m. Seven minutes later, United Airlines Flight 175 departed from Dulles Airport outside of Washington, DC, also headed for Los Angeles. It had 61 crew members and 74 passengers, not including the five hijackers. Flight 175 hit floors 77 to 85 of the South Tower of the World Trade Center at 9:03.

10:02 A.M – The South Tower of the World Trade Center collapses. After a brief struggle, passengers onboard revolted against the hijackers. Todd Beamer, Mark Bingham and Jeremy Glick were among the passengers who led the revolt against the terrorists. Jarrah, one of the hijackers, rolled the plane back and forth to destabilize it as the revolt took place.

2018, 10,000 people had been diagnosed with September 11 Attacks (9/11)-related cancers. The September 11 Attacks (9/11) attack also reshaped American foreign policy, domestic fears and culture. For example, movies that included visual references to the destroyed towers or included scenes of hijacking or flying were postponed. For decades, Americans feared terrorism and Islamophobia increased.

The Terrorists

September 11 Attacks (9/11), 19 terrorists from the al Qaeda organization hijacked four commercial passenger planes. Two of the planes were flown into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, killing thousands of people and destroying both buildings. The third plane crashed into the Pentagon outside Washington, DC, and the fourth plane crashed in rural Pennsylvania. These attacks left an immeasurable scar on the United States and a deep sense of grief for those who lost loved ones.

The terrorists were mostly young men who had been radicalized by jihad, or holy war, against non-believers. Their plan was to kill as many civilians as possible and demonstrate that the United States was an infidel country to be avenged.

These terrorists were not from typical American families or communities, but from a wide range of countries. Terrorists were mostly in their 20s, though some were younger and others older. They had been recruited by al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden in the years leading up to the attacks. They were trained in Hamburg, Germany, and gathered in the United States for final training.

The Response

September 11 Attacks (9/11) changed Americans’ views of war and peace, of their personal safety and their fellow citizens. In the wake of the disaster, many people worked to ensure that such a surprise attack could not happen again, and air travel became much safer as terrorists were no longer able to carry bombs on commercial flights. Domestically, long-term effects include the thousands of residents who suffer from cancer and other health problems caused by toxic chemicals released at Ground Zero.

The government’s response to 9/11 also led to a fundamental change in security measures. Engineers were quick to assess the new threat and design new features for buildings to make them more resistant to attack or to survive a catastrophe such as fire. For example, the Pentagon attack revealed that thick smoke can obscure standard exit and evacuation signs, so engineers created new markings that would remain visible in a smoky building.

Intelligence agencies were able to detect some of the attackers, but they did not anticipate bin Laden’s most audacious plot: to hit New York and Washington with high jacked civilian airliners piloted by suicide bombers. The surprise attack wiped out the twin towers of the World Trade Center and damaged the Pentagon, killing 3,000 people.

September 11 Attacks (9/11) also provoked a global response, as citizens of 78 countries gathered to express shock, horror and solidarity with the victims. Many held candlelight vigils and donated money and supplies.

USACE has been evaluating its own response to 9/11, and found much of which to be proud. In particular, the Corps’ New York District employees displayed a great deal of professionalism and grit during the crisis. Many of them worked without adequate office space or supplies, and continued to perform their duties.

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