By Karen Middleton
Sept. 11, 2001, has been described many times over the last nine years as present generations’ “Date which will life in infamy.”
This weekend, as we are once more reminded of the grim events of that day when four full-loaded hijacked aircrafts where used as weapons of terrorism against the American people, we can’t help but count the costs and think back to what President Franklin Roosevelt called the first “date which will live in infamy,” Dec. 7, 1941.
According to a USA Today online story, the number of 9-11 deaths range from 2,786 to 2,814 in the two towers of the World Trade Center; 184 at the Pentagon and 40 in Pennsylvania. That comes to 3,038, not counting the hijackers.
The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor killed 2,117 servicemen and 57 civilians.
The attack launched the United States into World War II, and slightly less than four years later, more than 400,000 U.S. servicemen were dead and from 62.4 million to 78.9 million, both civilian and military, were dead worldwide.
The death totals, which vary from source to source, presumably include the maniac that set this worldwide carnage in motion, Adolf Hitler.
Nine years after 9-11, nearly 5,000 U.S. military personnel have died in the Global War on Terror, and the total numbers are continuing to mount for Afghanistan and Iraq, both military and civilian. Osama bin Laden, the architect of this episode of global terror remains alive, from all reliable reports.
As News Courier readers read my column, this writer will have returned from the 12th and final trip of Honor Flight Tennessee Valley, which for the past three years has transported WWII veterans free of charge to see the National World War II Memorial and other points of interest in Washington. Some 1,200 have made the one-day trip.
I am honored to have been able to accompany these brave warriors on this trip of a lifetime.
I will have asked as many of the participants as possible to offer their perspectives on the dates that will live in infamy –– while there is still time.