Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Lessons From 9/11 Incidents

The US and International media have carried overwhelming reports related to the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. It seems that other major incidents happened in the past 10 years have all been pushed aside.
Striking Visual Effects
I still remember 10 years ago, in the morning after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, all TV channels had repeatedly replayed the scenes of the fierce flame of the burning twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York after the hijacked planes crashed into the building, and the panic and fearful crowd fleeing for their lives. Those scenes had created enormously striking visual effects. Those scenes are still vivid in the minds of those who had not experienced the incident personally.
War on Terror
The 9/11 incident was a tragedy and the ensuing developments after the terrorist attacks have brought about more far-reaching impacts to the world. Following the attacks, President George W. Bush declared a war on terror. The US troops first launched their hunt for Osama Bin Laden, the mastermind of the attacks in Afghanistan; and subsequently started a war in Iraq with weapons of mass destruction. But it was immediately exposed that their military actions were a fa├žade.
At the battlegrounds in Iraq and Afghanistan, 6,000 US troops were killed. However, according to a conservative estimate, at least 200,000 civilians of Iraq and Afghanistan lost their lives in this war. The Americans may defend themselves by claiming that they did not kill these people. But as the invaders, the United States had failed to protect local civilians, leaving them at the mercy of local rebels or extremist groups.
Although Washington claims that the United States is safer today, the country has paid a grievous price over the past one decade. The United States is no longer the only dominant power -- economically, militarily, and morally -- that leads the world. The freedom enjoyed by the Americans -- something they always take pride in -- has been corroded gradually.
Civilian Casualties
The biggest destructive power after the 9/11 is no other than the growing fear and hatred. In 2005, after the terrorist attacks in London, the British police shot dead an overstayed Brazilian man Jean Charles de Menezes by accident. Having witnessed the civilian casualties caused by the US troops' bombings, an Afghanistan said with righteous indignation that "I also wish to launch a suicide bombing". In Norway, Anders Behring Breivik launched his mass killing spree because of his hatred against Muslim immigrants.
German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche once said: "Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster. And if you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you." This quote should serve a reminder to us, especially in the light of the current international state of affairs.

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