Americans across the United States and people around the world took time to remember the September 11 terrorist attacks which occurred nine years ago this past Saturday.
President Obama attended a memorial service at the Pentagon. Speaking to the crowd, which included family members of the victims, he said, “The perpetrators of this evil act didn’t simply attack America, they attacked the very idea of America itself.” He added, “The highest honor we can pay those we lost — indeed, our greatest weapon in this ongoing war — is to do what our adversaries fear the most: to stay true to who we are, as Americans.”
President Obama also called on Americans to unite and to continue to practice the religious tolerance upon which the United States was founded. Speaking about religious radicals he said, “They may seek to spark conflict between different faiths, but as Americans we are not — and never will be — at war with Islam,” Obama said. “It was not a religion that attacked us that September day; it was al-Qaeda.”
Obama also said, “We champion the rights of every American, including the right to worship as one chooses.”
For her part, Michelle Obama joined former First Lady Laura Bush in Pennsylvania at the crash site of United Airlines Flight 93, a plane also hijacked that day. “May the memory of those who gave their lives here continue to be an inspiration to you and an inspiration to all of America,” Mrs. Obama told the crowd.