Eight years ago, an atrocity against civilization was committed. The events of that day were not merely attacks against the United States, or Western culture, or any of the other fashionable excuses. They were attacks against civilization itself, examples of an ideology steeped in barbarism.
Eight years later, and we have returned to a sense of complacency. The horrors of that day have become less visceral with age. We have, in some sense, fogotten the lessons we learned that terrible day. We have slipped back into the mentality of pre-9/11 America, when shark attacks and Gary Condit were more important than the barbarians at our gates.
We cannot be so complacent. Despite our best efforts, many of those responsible for these inhuman acts are still at large. Afghanistan is still threatened by the Taliban. Pakistan, a country possessing nuclear arms, still has the sword of Damocles over its head as the lawless frontiers continue to incubate terror.
The events of that day eight years ago changed our world. We owe it to those who died to never forget, and never allow this kind of barbarism to reign free again. The long war has not ended. Eight years ago, a city of millions mourned the loss of 3,000. The next attack could see it the other way around. We cannot bear that cost. We must be unflinching in our defense of our values and unyielding in our determination to fight groups like al-Qaeda.
We must never forget what happened eight years ago, or it will happen again.