The United States on Sunday celebrated the 21st anniversary of the September 11 attacks, in which President Biden expressed his determination to continue to defend the country against terrorism following the US withdrawal from Afghanistan last year.
“And 20 years after Afghanistan is over, but our commitment to prevent another attack on the United States is endless,” Biden said at a memorial ceremony at the Pentagon amid the rain. Events to honor the victims were also held in New York and elsewhere.
A memorial service will be held in New York on September 11, 2022 for the victims of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. (TBEN)
The mastermind behind the terror attacks, al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden, was assassinated by the US military in 2011. His successor Ayman al-Zawahri, also a key planner of the attacks, was incapacitated in a US drone strike in Afghanistan at the end of July this year.
“We will not rest. We will never forget. We will never give up,” Biden said, adding, “We will continue to monitor and disrupt those terrorist activities wherever we find them, wherever they are.”
On the morning of September 11, 2001, terrorists belonging to the Islamist extremist group al-Qaeda hijacked four commercial planes, deliberately crashing two into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center complex in New York City and a third into the Pentagon. in Virginia, near the US capital.
A fourth plane crashed into an empty field in Pennsylvania, about a 20-minute flight from Washington, after 40 passengers and crew on board resisted hijackers.
The terror attacks have claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people from more than 90 countries, including 24 Japanese.
Kazusada Sumiyama, 85, who lost his son Yoichi Sugiyama, a 34-year-old banker who worked in one of the World Trade Center towers, skipped his usual trip to New York for the annual ceremony this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“I would like to spend this day thinking about these 21 years,” Sumiyama, who lives in Tokyo’s Meguro neighborhood, told TBEN News.
Last year, Sumiyama released a Japanese translation of the US official report on the incident, hoping to prevent a similar attack afterwards.
The terror attacks led the United States to start a war in Afghanistan against the Al-Qaeda organization and the then-Taliban regime, which housed the group.
The conflict became the longest US war in history and the idea of removing troops from Afghanistan was widely supported by the public. But Biden came under fire as the US withdrawal gave way to the return of the Taliban to power for the first time in about 20 years and resulted in chaotic and deadly evacuation efforts for Americans and Afghans working alongside the United States. .
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