September 11th commentary.
Comments on September 11th, 20 years later.

On September 11,  2001,  I was on my way to a meeting at the Federal Building in Cincinnati.  My son called me on my cell phone, telling me that something happened in New York at the World Trade Center and it was on TV. I called an old friend that worked at the World Trade Center,  and he was on his way to work after dropping his daughter at daycare.  He told me he was going to his office,  but there was a lot going on.  I watched the event on TV in the Federal Building,  as most of the building was evacuated (like all Federal properties) except for the one office (FBI) that I was in.

Many of us recall where we were that morning.  The friend I called died that morning and never returned home. 

 For us Jews,  terrorism is not something new.  Years before in Israel,  I was at the site of a total of 3 terrorist attacks over an 8 year period, and that is just my personal experience.  

But the wider world still does not get it, and even after 3000 Americans died on 9/11,  Americans act as if this is a long forgotten event with no lessons to learn.

Terrorism is not war.  Terrorism is a political act,  designed to instill fear in an innocent civilian population to get some political advantage.  As with any other kind of intentionally violent behavior,  if people pander to it,  by allowing terrorists to get what they want,  in any form,  to any degree,  there will be more terrorism, not less.

And terrorism can be with guns,  with explosives,   with airplanes (as we know from 9/11), and sometimes by threats of dire consequences for dissent as we see in Fascist regimes – or in the US and Europe today where people are punished for things they have said or done even years ago.

So,  has anything been learned from 9/11?   History should be a learning tool, not a weapon,  but it seems to me that nothing at all has been learned.   

And it seems to me that the Terrorists are winning.

The Taliban rules in Afghanistan.   The author of the Munich Olympics is head of the Palestine Authority in Ramallah,  Iranian Mullahs run Iran and threaten the region.   Kidnappers,  Hostage takers,  murderers,  terrorists,  welcomed to meet with Presidents and Prime Ministers.   The Taliban are called @helpful and responsible by Jan Psaki on behalf of Biden while they hold American hostages,  allow Taliban troops to rape and kill and beat women,  and behead dissenters.  

We should —  on 9/11,  seriously ask why — and ask why we tolerate politicians that pander to terrorists.



Reuven Efraim


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