Monday, September 11, 2006

September 11, 2001

I would be amis if I didn't at least address today's five year anniversary, at least in passing. The event, I've been told, is one of the most important in the history of this country. In the previous, analog version of this blog, I had this first person account, five years ago:

The absolute horror of these incidents are unmeasurable, not just from the human tragedy or the size of the tragedy, but from the terror involved.

We are scared...

There is a surreal horror to the whole thing...
Now, I'm a big fan of history; I believe that it's what got us where we are today. I also believe (and this was drummed into me from 10th grade) that things like battles and wars are incidental to history. The battle is not as important as how it affects the war; the war is not as important as what led up to it or follow it. Saratoga was important, but only because it was incidental to the creation of the United States and what followed. Gettysburg was important, but only because it advanced the cause of the North. What was more important was how we got to these places. Battles and Wars are just extra-juridical expressions of an idea; it is the idea compelled the battle and the counterreaction thereto that are more important.

So too is September 11th: what is important is what brought us to that point and what we did afterwards. And so we must ask ourselves: at the anniversary of this crux of history, how did we get there and how did that affect where we are now?

I think this is a question that will only be answered with more than five years of hindsight.

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