September 11, 2001: American Nationalism
Howard Zinn on September 11, 2001
"Nine months into his presidency (George W. Bush), on September 11, 2001, a cataclysmic event pushed all other issues into the background. Hijackers on three different planes flew the huge jets, loaded with fuel, into the twin towers of the World Trade Center in downtown New York, and into one side of the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. As Americans all over the country watched, horrified, they saw on their television screens the towers collapse in an inferno of concrete and metal, burying thousands of workers and hundreds of firemen and policemen who had gone to their rescue.
"It was an unprecedented assault against enormous symbols (the World Trade Center representing "free" trade and the Pentagon representing U.S. imperialism and dominance) of American wealth and power, undertaken by 19 men from the Middle East, most of them from Saudi Arabia. They were willing to die in order to deliver a deadly blow against what they clearly saw as their enemy, a superpower (hegemony) that had thought itself invulnerable.
"...It should have been obvious to Bush and his advisors that terrorism could not be defeated by force. The historical evidence was easily available." -- Howard Zinn (A People's History of the United States, p.677-678).