Tag: 9/11 anniversary

President Barack Obama Calls on Americans to Embrace Diversity on 9/11 Anniversary

FILE - In this Sept. 11, 2015 file photo, President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, and others, pause on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington as they observe a moment of silence to mark the 14th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. President Barack Obama is joining the nation in remembering the nearly 3,000 people who died in the Sept. 11 attacks 15 years ago Sunday, Sept. 11, 2016. Obama is observing the somber anniversary with a moment of silence in the White House residence at 8:46 a.m. EDT. That’s when the first of four hijacked airplanes were slammed into the north tower of New York City’s World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)
FILE – In this Sept. 11, 2015 file photo, President Barack Obama, first lady Michelle Obama, and others, pause on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington as they observe a moment of silence to mark the 14th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. President Barack Obama is joining the nation in remembering the nearly 3,000 people who died in the Sept. 11 attacks 15 years ago Sunday, Sept. 11, 2016. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik, File)

article via abcnews.go.com

President Barack Obama on Sunday marked the 15th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks by calling on Americans to embrace the nation’s character as a people drawn from every corner of the world, from every religion and from every background. He said extremist groups will never be able to defeat the United States.

Obama spoke to hundreds of service members, and relatives and survivors of the attack that occurred at the Pentagon when American Airlines Flight 77 slammed into the Defense Department’s headquarters, killing 184 people. The youngest victim was only 3 years old.

In all, about 3,000 people lost their lives that day as a result of the planes that crashed into New York City’s World Trade Center and in a Pennsylvania field.

The president said extremist organizations such as the Islamic State group and al-Qaida know they can never drive down the U.S., so they focus on trying to instill fear in hopes of getting Americans to change how they live.

“We know that our diversity, our patchwork heritage is not a weakness, it is still and always will be one of our greatest strengths,” Obama said. “This is the America that was attacked that September morning. This is the America that we must remain true to.”

Obama spoke on warm, mostly sunny morning, noting that the threat that became so evident on Sept. 11 has evolved greatly over the past 15 years. Terrorists, he said, often attempt strikes on a smaller, but still deadly scale. He specifically cited attacks in Boston, San Bernardino and Orlando as examples.

In the end, he said, the enduring memorial to those who lost their lives that day is ensuring “that we stay true to ourselves, that we stay true to what’s best in us, that we do not let others divide us.”

“How we conduct ourselves as individuals and as a nation, we have the opportunity each and every day to live up to the sacrifice of those heroes that we lost,” Obama said. Continue reading “President Barack Obama Calls on Americans to Embrace Diversity on 9/11 Anniversary”

President Barack Obama Remembers 9/11, Salutes Troops in Town Hall

President Barack Obama and First lady Michelle Obama on 9/11/15. (Photo via abcnews.go.com)
President Barack Obama and First lady Michelle Obama on 9/11/15. (Photo via abcnews.go.com)

President Barack Obama told members of the military Friday that he calls them as he sees them when it comes to the big decisions his job requires.

“When I go to bed, I go to bed easy, because I know that I’ve made the best decisions I could make,” Obama said during a 9/11 military town hall at Fort Meade near Washington, D.C.

The commander in chief took questions from service members piped in from around the world during the event designed to mark the 14th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

“On 9/11, I thought it was particularly appropriate for me to be able to address you directly, and to say thank you on behalf of the American people,” Obama told the troops.

Whether in person, via phone, video conference, or the Internet, troops asked questions ranging from the fight against the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq, to how the president and first lady Michelle Obama raise their daughters in the glare of the White House. (On that last query, the president said, “I just do what Michelle tells me to do and it seems to work out.”)

At one point, Obama says it appears to him that Syrian President Bashar Assad is inviting the Russian military into his country because he’s worried about holding onto power. The president said that the United States has warned Russia that beefing up its support for Assad is doomed to fail.

Obama also said that the United States needs to step up its responses to cyber attacks, and criticized China for some of its cyber practices.

The president chuckled when one of the troops asked him how he dealt with people “hating” and “talking smack” about him all the time.

“Not everyone is talking smack about me,” Obama said. “But there is a sizable percentage in Congress that talks smack about me, no doubt about it.”

Obama said he must own all decisions, whether it’s the operation that killed Osama bin Laden to the initial problems with the health care website, which he described as a “screw-up.”

Said Obama: “If it’s an easy question, it doesn’t get to my desk.”

In closing, the president again thanked the troops for their work in the years since 9/11.

“What you do is vital to our way of life,” Obama said. “America is strong, and it’s strong because of all of you.”

article by David Jackson via usatoday.com

President Obama Honors 9/11 Victims a Day After Announcing New Mission Against Terror

President Obama 9/11/14

WASHINGTON — A day after committing the nation to a new mission against Islamist terrorism, President Barack Obama honored the victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, 13 years after four hijacked planes plunged the United States into a decade of war against distant enemies.

Speaking before a giant American flag draped over the part of the Pentagon wall where one of those planes crashed, Mr. Obama said, “Thirteen years after small and hateful minds conspired to break us, American stands tall, and America stands proud.”

He hailed the “9/11 generation” of soldiers who served in the years after the 2001 attacks, and noted that “three months from now, our combat mission in Afghanistan will come to an end.”

For Mr. Obama, the Sept. 11 anniversary lent historic and emotional resonance to his announcement Wednesday night of a new mission against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. But it also carries a somewhat dissonant message: The president has labored to distinguish the expanded fight against ISIS from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The president on Thursday made no mention of ISIS, speaking only of challenges facing the country. But his description of a nation coping with the threat of terrorism seemed entirely relevant to what is happening now. “We carry on because as Americans, we don’t give in to fear — ever,” he said.

In some ways, this anniversary was no different than its 12 predecessors. It was filled with familiar rituals – a moment of silence, the playing of taps by an Army bugler, the assembled families of the victims, many now with children who have grown into adulthood.

Earlier on Thursday, Mr. Obama and the first lady, Michelle Obama, along with Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and his wife, Jill, took part in a solemn ceremony on the South Lawn of the White House at 8:46 a.m., when the first plane struck the World Trade Center.

Later in the day, as they do every year, Mr. and Mrs. Obama will take part in a volunteer project. The president will otherwise remain at the White House, having lunch with Mr. Biden and meeting in the afternoon with his new secretary of Health and Human Services, Sylvia Mathews Burwell.

But Mr. Obama is also certain to be immersed in the details of the military campaign against ISIS that he outlined Wednesday night in his speech to the nation. His warning about the challenges to come still hung in the air, even as he marked the anniversary of battles past.

Americans born after Sept. 11, 2001, are now teenagers, Mr. Obama noted, and he said this post-9/11 generation gave him hope that the United States would remain resilient in the face of terrorist threats.

“Generations from now, Americans will fill our parks, our stadiums, our cities,” he said. “Generations from now, Americans will still build towers that reach toward the heavens, still serve in embassies that stand for freedom around the world, still wear the uniform

“Generations from now, no matter the trial, no matter the challenge,” he said, “America will always be America.”

article by Mark Landler via nytimes.com

Obama Observes 12th Anniversary of 9/11(VIDEO)

Screen Shot 2013-09-11 at 1.52.34 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama has marked the 12th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks with a moment of silence with First Lady Michelle Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, and his wife Jill Biden today.  Obama, along with Mrs. Obama, walked out of the White House at 1246 GMT, the moment the first hijacked plane hit the World Trade Center tower in New York City.  Nearly 3,000 people were killed in the attacks that led to a long war in Afghanistan. The President went on to speak at a Sept. 11 ceremony at the Pentagon today (see video below).

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson