“Never forget” is the oft repeated refrain used when talking about the attacks of 2001. Yet, it often seems an empty phrase brought out yearly for memorial services and invoked by politicians seeking to justify latest round of efforts. Despite the phrase perhaps being overused, the attacks themselves should never be forgotten as they marked a key turning point and would, arguably, lead to the birth of a much more dangerous enemy in the form of Daesh. Not since Pearl Harbour had the world’s only superpower been attacked within its domestic borders and what was so surprising was the attack was not carried out by another state but by a then little-known terrorist group.
The attack itself was carried out by just 19 men who hijacked four planes and successfully flew two into the World Trade Center in New York, one into the Pentagon and the fourth only missed another target due to the heroic actions of the passengers, who caused it to crash into a field.