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The terrorist attack on the world twin towers

On September 11, 2001, Bush faced a crisis that would transform his presidency. That morning, four American commercial airplanes were hijacked by Islamist terrorists. Khalid Sheikh Mohammed became active in the Muslim Brotherhoodwhich he joined at age 16, and then he went to the United States to attend college, receiving a degree from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in 1986.

Afterward he traveled to Pakistan and then Afghanistan to wage jihad against the Soviet Unionwhich had launched an invasion against Afghanistan in 1979. And I think by putting his hand in the hands of bin Laden, he realized that now he stood a chance of bringing about his long awaited dream. Bush and the U. The September 11 plot demonstrated that al-Qaeda was an organization of global reach. Key parts of the September 11 plot took shape in Hamburg.

The militant put the Hamburg cell in touch with an al-Qaeda operative living in Germany who explained that it was difficult to get to Chechnya at that time because many travelers were being detained in Georgia.

The World Trade Center History

He recommended they go to Afghanistan instead. Mohammed AttaFlorida driver's license photo of Mohammed Atta. Three of the four plotters who would pilot the hijacked planes on September 11 and one of the key planners, Ramzi Binalshibh, became more radical while living in Hamburg. Some combination of perceived or real discriminationalienation, and homesickness seems to have turned them all in a more militant direction.

Atta and the other members of the Hamburg group arrived in Afghanistan in 1999 right at the moment that the September 11 plot was beginning to take shape. Bin Laden and his military commander Muhammad Atef realized that Atta and his fellow Western-educated jihadists were far better suited to lead the attacks on Washington and New York than the men they had already recruited, leading bin Laden to appoint Atta to head the operation.

The hijackers, most of whom were from Saudi Arabiaestablished themselves in the United States, many well in advance of the attacks.

9/11 Timeline

They traveled in small groups, and some of them received commercial flight training. In the early morning of August 29, 2001, Atta called Binalshibh and said he had a riddle that he was trying to solve: Putting it together, it meant that the attacks would occur on 11-9, or 11 September in most countries the day precedes the month in numeric dates, but in the United States the month precedes the day; hence, it was 9-11 in the United States.

On September 5 Binalshibh left Germany for Pakistan. Once there he sent a messenger to Afghanistan to inform bin Laden about both the day of the attack and its scope. The attacks On September 11, 2001, groups of attackers boarded four domestic aircraft at three East Coast airports, and soon after takeoff they disabled the crews, some of whom may have been stabbed with box cutters the hijackers were secreting. The hijackers then took control of the aircraft, all large and bound for the West Coast with full loads of fuel.

Most observers construed this initially to be an accident involving a small commuter plane. The second plane, United Airlines flight 175, also from Boston, struck the south tower 17 minutes later. At this point there was no doubt that the United States was under attack. Each structure was badly damaged by the impact and erupted into flames.

Office workers who were trapped above the points of impact in some cases leapt to their deaths rather than face the infernos now raging inside the towers. Minutes later the Federal Aviation Authority ordered a nationwide ground stop, and within the next hour at 10: Mohammed AttaPhotograph from a security camera at the Portland, Maine, airport showing lead hijacker Mohammed Atta passing through a security checkpoint at 5: Department of Defense The terrorist attack on the world twin towers 11 attacks: United Airlines flight 93, PennsylvaniaWreckage of United Airlines flight 93, which was crashed during the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, near Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Clouds of smoke and debris quickly filled the streets of Lower Manhattan. Office workers and residents ran in panic as they tried to outpace the billowing debris clouds. A number of other buildings adjacent to the twin towers suffered serious damage, and several subsequently fell.

Courtesy of the Prints and Photographs Division. Stock footage courtesy The WPA Film Library Rescue operations began almost immediately as the country and the world sought to come to grips with the enormity of the losses.

  • Undersecretary of Defense Douglas J;
  • The September 11 plot demonstrated that al-Qaeda was an organization of global reach.

Nearly 3,000 people had perished: Included in the total in New York City were more than 400 police officers and firefighters, who had lost their lives after rushing to the scene and into the towers. America is under attack.

Bush conferring with his chief of staff aboard Air Force One, September 11, 2001. Bush conferring with Vice Pres.

Bush addressing the country from the Oval Office on September 11, 2001. Dick Cheney talking on the phone with Pres. Standing on top of a wrecked fire truckBush grabbed a bullhorn to address the rescue workers working feverishly to find any survivors.

When one of the workers said that he could not hear what the president was saying, Bush made one of the most memorable remarks of his presidency: Secretary of State Colin Powell describing the need for responding with equanimity to the September 11 attacks, 2001.

The rest of the world hears you. And the people who knocked these buildings down will hear from all of us soon. Hundreds of thousands of people witnessed the attacks firsthand many onlookers photographed events or recorded them with video camerasand millions watched the tragedy unfold live on television.

Notices and pictures of missing persons posted on a mailbox in New York City following the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Markets afterward suffered record losses. The attacks also stranded tens of thousands of people throughout the United States, as U. The September 11 attacks were an enormous tactical success for al-Qaeda. The strikes were well coordinated and hit multiple targets in the heart of the enemy, and the attacks were magnified by being broadcast around the world to an audience of untold millions.

Not since television viewers had watched the abduction and murder of Israeli athletes during the Munich Olympics in 1972 had a massive global audience witnessed a terrorist attack unfold in real time.

September 11 attacks

If al-Qaeda had been a largely unknown organization before September 11, in the days after it became a household name. Evidence gathered by the United States soon convinced most governments that the Islamic militant group al-Qaeda was responsible for the attacks. The group had been implicated in previous terrorist strikes against Americans, and bin Laden had made numerous anti-American statements. Within months thousands of militants were killed or captured, and Taliban and al-Qaeda leaders were driven into hiding.

In addition, the U. Meanwhile, security measures within the United States were tightened considerably at such places as airportsgovernment buildings, and sports venues. Additionally, a cabinet-level Department of Homeland Security was established. Despite their success in causing widespread destruction and death, the September 11 attacks were a strategic failure for al-Qaeda. Such strikes will force the person to carry out random acts and provoke him to make serious and sometimes fatal mistakes.

Secondary menu

Instead, they prepared only for possible U. And in the wake the terrorist attack on the world twin towers the fall of the Taliban, al-Qaeda was unable to recover anything like the status it once had as a terrorist organization with considerable sway over Afghanistan. Bin Laden disastrously misjudged the possible U. Neither of these two scenarios happened. Still, it was just the beginning of what would become the longest war in U. Eventually, some 800 prisoners would be held there, although the prison population was reduced to less than 175 by the time of the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks.

In his State of the Union speech on January 29, 2002, President Bush laid out a new doctrine of preemptive war, which went well beyond the long-established principle that the United States would go to war to prevent an adversary launching an attack that imminently threatened the country.

I will not wait on events while dangers gather. I will not stand by as peril draws closer and closer. Bush identified those dangerous regimes as an "axis of evil" that included IranIraqand North Korea. Undersecretary of Defense Douglas J. Our main goal was preventing the next attack. On March 19, 2003, on the eve of the invasion of Iraq, President Bush issued the order for war: For the peace of the world and the benefit and freedom of the Iraqi people, I hereby give the order to execute Operation Iraqi Freedom.

May God bless the troops. On March 20 the American-led invasion of Iraq began. Within three weeks U. The September 11 commission and its findings In 2002 President Bush had appointed a commission to look into the September 11 attacks, and two years later it issued its final report. The CIA also did not alert the FBI about the identities of the suspected terrorists, which could have helped the bureau locate them once they were inside the United States.

According to the commission, this was the failure of not just a few employees at the CIA but a large number of CIA officers and analysts. Some 50 to 60 CIA employees read cables about the two al-Qaeda suspects without taking any action.

  1. The hijackers then took control of the aircraft, all large and bound for the West Coast with full loads of fuel. Some combination of perceived or real discrimination , alienation, and homesickness seems to have turned them all in a more militant direction.
  2. Minutes later the Federal Aviation Authority ordered a nationwide ground stop, and within the next hour at 10. Meanwhile, security measures within the United States were tightened considerably at such places as airports , government buildings, and sports venues.
  3. Instead, they prepared only for possible U. Courtesy of the Prints and Photographs Division.
  4. And I think by putting his hand in the hands of bin Laden, he realized that now he stood a chance of bringing about his long awaited dream. They traveled in small groups, and some of them received commercial flight training.

Some of those officers knew that one of the al-Qaeda suspects had a visa for the United States, and by May 2001 some knew that the other suspect had flown to Los Angeles. The soon-to-be hijackers would not have been difficult to find in California if their names had been known to law enforcement. A few weeks later Hazmi and Mihdhar were two of the hijackers on the American Airlines flight that plunged into the Pentagon.

Moussaoui, a French citizen of Moroccan descent, was attending flight school in the summer of 2001 in Minnesotawhere he attracted attention from instructors because he had little knowledge of flying and did not behave like a typical aviation student. The flight school contacted the FBI, and on August 16 Moussaoui was arrested on a visa overstay charge. Although Moussaoui was not the "20th hijacker," as was widely reported later, he had received money from one of the September 11 coordinators, Ramzi Binalshibh, and by his own account was going to take part in a second wave of al-Qaeda attacks following the assaults on New York and Washington.

Such a search would have turned up his connection to Binalshibh, according to Republican Sen. Bin Laden evaded capture, however, including in December 2001, when he was tracked by U. Barack Obamaa small team of U. Within the 8-acre 3. The memorial and plaza were designed by architects Michael Arad and Peter Walker, winners of a design competition that featured 5,201 submissions from 63 countries.

The international impact of the September 11 attacks is demonstrated along the ramp that descends into the museum by a multimedia exhibit featuring recorded reminiscences by people from 43 countries in 28 languages.