(NOTE- HCdl spent years as a firefighter until he fell through a floor at a fire scene and damaged his back. This is personal for him, as well as thousands of other fire fighters and police who lost fellow members......They will never forget. On 9/11/2001 their worst nightmares as first responders and members of the fire department and police departments, came true. They understand what many have forgotten, this can and probably will happen again. How many more will be lost if we take our eye off the ball, so to speak?)
If you looked around after 11SEP01, you would see them everywhere. Bumper stickers. License plates. Hats. Tee shirts. Billboards. “We will never forget.”
America, and the world, watched in horror as the second plane hit the World Trade Center. One tower was already burning from the impact of a first jet. We were stunned. Numb. Horrified. Television networks across the broadband were showing the footage live of the burning tower as the second plane rammed into the second tower. The Pentagon was attacked by a third plane. A fourth plane went down in Pennsylvania. We were under attack.
Camera’s caught images of people, an estimated 200 people, human beings, jumping from the towers to escape the flames. Jumping to certain death. Firefighters, police, paramedics and EMT’s rushed into the buildings to try to help evacuate the people still inside.
We watched in agonized horror as the first tower collapsed, entombing those who had not made it out in the debris. The second tower followed suit, collapsing, burying people in its debris. 2,973 died and another 24 remain listed as missing. Nearly 3,000 people, gone, in the wake of a premeditated and highly staged act of hatred and aggression against our nation.
Our nation mourned. Our flags flew at half mast. Rescue workers poured in from around the globe to lend a hand in searching for survivors. My partner and I signed up on the standby list for volunteer firefighters in case we were needed. The nation grieved. The nation mourned. The nation united behind a common need to comfort each other, to find out who had done this to us, and to go after them.
Our resolve was strong in those early days. We were a nation hell bent on finding those responsible and bringing them to justice. We were at war and we knew it. The flags came out. The bumper stickers. Hats. The license plates. The banners, the buttons, the billboards; “We will never forget.”
So what has happened? We moved into Iraq, escalating our war against terrorists. Politics immediately came into play. “Why are we in Iraq? There are no terrorists in Iraq.” Pile upon pile, stack upon stack, of documented evidence shows otherwise.
Terrorists don’t recognize international borders. They don’t recognize the boundaries of one nation beside another. They don’t care. Radical Islam is their guide. Imperial Islam is their goal.
Our enemy has not surrendered, nor is our enemy dead.
Our enemy believes that there is a reward in heaven for them for dying in the fight against the Infidel. That’s you and me, amigos and amigas. Anyone who isn’t Muslim.
Our enemy isn’t ready to cut and run.
We have forgotten that which we swore, not a decade ago, that we would never forget.
We have forgotten 9-11.
The dead are buried, mourned, life has moved on.
Tell that to the families of those killed in the attacks. Tell that to the people recovering to this day from burns and other injuries they suffered that day. Tell that to the rescue workers who have fallen ill, who have died, from inhaling the poisonous air around ground zero. Tell that to the families of my 343 brother and sister firefighters from Fire Department New York, 23 New York City Police Department officers, and 37 Port Authority Police Department officers.
Tell that to the al Queda.
“We will never forget…unless we do…”
Our nation is at WAR, and we’re allowing politics to cloud our thinking. We’re allowing the left wing media to guide us into complacancy. We’re allowing quasi-communist elected officials to convince us THROUGH the media that this war is wrong. That they have changed their minds. That they shouldn’t have voted for the war. It was a mistake.
Our nation, our way of life, came under attack on that day. And it wasn’t even the first attack we had taken by this group, just the most devestating. The most costly.
And we’re ready and willing not to follow the advice of our military, our troops, whose job it is to protect our nation, who are trained to do so?
The American soldier, sailor, and Marines of today are not the same ones of the Vietnam era. Our military is all volunteer. ALL volunteer. The majority of them are highly educated. There are no high school drop out draftees in today’s modern army. Our military today is made up of highly professional men and women dedicated to a purpose.
That purpose is protecting your life.
And you as a people want to tell them that you don’t want them to do that job? To bring this to an end by taking out each and every terrorist that they can?
Those of you who support our troops, support what we’re doing, understand that there is a cause, a faction, who wishes to wipe us out, to eliminate our way of life, keep up the good work. Help us to continue to support our efforts in the fight against this BORDERLESS enemy who would see us dead or under subjegation.
To the rest of you…
Look at yourself in the mirror after you read this. If you can……..
Once and Always, an American Fighting Man
Dedicated to the 343 members of Fire Department New York lost on 11SEP01 and their families. You are not forgotten. You WILL NOT be forgotten. God bless.
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