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US remembers those who ‘fought back’ on 9/11

September 12, 2018

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NEW YORK: People at the World Trade Centre Oculus wait as the retractable skylight is opened on Tuesday during a commemoration ceremony for the victims of the terrorist attacks of Sept 11, 2001. The skylight, which gives a view of One World Trade, is only opened on September 11.—AFP
NEW YORK: People at the World Trade Centre Oculus wait as the retractable skylight is opened on Tuesday during a commemoration ceremony for the victims of the terrorist attacks of Sept 11, 2001. The skylight, which gives a view of One World Trade, is only opened on September 11.—AFP

SHANKSVILLE: Presid­ent Donald Trump paid tribute on Tuesday to the “heroes” who fought back against hijackers on Sept 11, 2001, vowing America would never flinch in the face of evil and that he would do whatever it takes to keep the country safe.

Under a grey sky in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, Trump praised the courage of the 40 men and women aboard Flight 93 who rushed the four hijackers who had diverted the plane and were targeting Washington. “The passengers and crew members came together, took a vote and they decided to act,” Trump said.

“They attacked the enemy. They fought until the very end. And they stopped the forces of terror and defeated this wicked, horrible evil plan.” He said the “brave patriots turned the tide on our nation’s enemies and joined the immortal ranks of American heroes”.

After calling their loved ones to say final farewells, many passengers aboard Flight 93 are believed to have charged the hijackers and prevented it from striking the US capital. The plane crashed into a field in the rural Pennsylvanian town, where a permanent memorial called the “Tower of Voices” has been erected.

“This memorial is now a message to the world. America will never, ever submit to tyranny,” Trump said, noting that nearly 5.5 million Americans have joined the US military since 9/11. “As commander-in-chief, I will always do everything in my power to prevent terrorists from striking American soil,” the president added, while also paying tribute to the nearly 7,000 US service members who have been killed “facing down the menace of radical Islamic terrorism”.

Published in Dawn, September 12th, 2018