Remembering What They Did

New York City firefighter and police officer salute at interfaith memorial service at "Prayer for America" in Yankee Stadium, for victims of September 11 terrorist attacks, New York City, 9-23-01 AP (file)

Last week was a time to look back, this week we begin to look forward. Last week we remembered the innocent who died on 9/11 and the heroic acts of so Americans in the days and months after the attack. Now we begin to look forward and contemplate the next steps in the war on terrorism.

And as we do, what continues to nag me is the realization that, one year after that attack, we still don't know for sure why these people did what they did. All we know is that they hate us.

Hitler was trying to rule the world; at least we knew that. What were these people hoping to accomplish? We can't really say.

Which is why resolving this is going to take a while, and where it leads, whether there is a connection to Saddam Hussein, we do not yet know.

But as we saw in the scenes of 9/11 replayed, we understood these are questions that must be answered and that this must be dealt with, because the one thing we know for certain is what they did.

I heard some say there was too much coverage, but I believe we needed to look back. We can never put 9/11 behind us and move on. We can never let the passing of time soften the memory of those scenes. They must remain vivid and be the driving force behind our resolve to see justice is done.

That won't be easy, but we must remember that the attacks did not weaken us; they made us stronger. Our system of government remains the model for the rest of the world. We took a heavy blow, but we're winning this war, and we shall continue to win if we just remember what they did.

  • Bootie Cosgrove-Mather

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