About 3,000 people died in a horrible fashion, because some group of nuts (that, sadly, we apparently mostly organized) decided that if America was screwing them over, every American was an enemy.
By simple headcount, that's 18 times worse than 6 years earlier, when a nut named Timothy McVeigh decided that if the IRS was screwing people over, every worker for the IRS (and their children in daycare) was an enemy. After all, he only killed 168 people. Since the building wasn't that tall, and didn't collapse, the other 800 were only injured.
It's an evil form of thinking, but one that we humans easily fall into. After all, it seems a good part of the country has decided that since some muslims attacked us, all muslims must be our enemy.
There is so much to say here. The years since 9/11 have been increasingly surreal.
It came to light that the CIA and FBI had ample advance warning that something was going on, but didn't act. To all appearances, they simply didn't have enough people sifting through the mountains of data they already had - data which was already sufficient to stop the attack.
So our response was to give up largely all our personal privacy, so they could gather more data.
We almost immediately retaliated against Afghanistan, where Bin Laden was headquartered. We had reason.
But rather than finish the job there - we're still bogged down, and we've never caught Bin Laden - our president guts the information processing portions of our intelligence agencies in order to spin a set of very transparent lies, all to justify a simultaneous attack on Iraq.
If you believed for a second that Iraq had anything to do with Al Qaeda, you're a fool. If you believed for more than 10 minutes that they were a huge danger because of WMDs, you're a fool. And if you think that we were there to liberate the Iraqis from the dictator we helped install, well...
In 1939, the Germans wanted an excuse to invade Poland. Their excuse was the mistreatment of ethnic Germans in the Sudetenland. Read up on it sometime. Hitler would make a demand for the rights and protection of "his people" from the Polish government. The Polish government would say "OK." Hitler would then make a more ridiculous demand.
The cycle continued until the Germans basically just invaded without an excuse, to "protect themselves and their people." After the end of WWII, one of the results was that launching a preemptive attack on a country was labeled a war crime by the Allies. It was, I believe, one of the criminal charges brought in the Nuremberg trials.
Watching BushCo gear up to attacking Iraq was an eerie piece of deja vu, as Saddam became increasingly more cooperative, and our administration became increasingly belligerent. He finally opened the whole country to UN arms inspectors - and we made sure to attack before they could finish their job.
It was quite obvious that we didn't want to hear that report.
We launched our preemptive strike. So guess what? Our administration? War criminals. No ifs, ands, or buts. If anyone ever manages to drag one of them into The Hague, the judges will convict. It's usually life in prison - they're not barbarians over there.
It's still not clear why we attacked that country. The most likely reason seems to be that Bush is surrounded by neocons, and they all lap up anything given out by the PNAC. Trying to finish his daddy's war was likely only secondary.
Combating Terror? Not so much. As would have been obvious to anyone with half a brain, we've created more disenfranchised Middle Eastern muslims.
There's so much more. The TSA, their no-fly list, and all the other completely ineffective hoops we make airline passengers jump through. Stuff that wouldn't stop a terrorist for a minute, but make regular flying hell - all proof that (1) the terrorists have won and (2) scheiss, are we a bunch of pussies.
Quite apart from the simple fact that it's closing the barn door after the cows have gotten out. Large technological civilizations are open to attack. Cities are open to attack. It's a fact of life. Get used to it.
Terrorists may be fanatics, but that doesn't mean they're stupid. The next attack, if and when it comes, won't use airplanes.
Not that that's a reason to walk around, jumping every time you see someone with swarthy skin and a beard. Try for some perspective. 3,000 people died on 9/11. It's a terrible, tragic loss.
But then, most of us get into cars every day. 37,000 people die every year in car crashes across the US. Those are terrible, tragic losses, too.
Any correction of my facts, such as they are, would be completely welcome. In the meantime, I've got a life to go live.