19 years since 9/11 attack on America

It's the 19th anniversary of September 11, 2001, the date of the deadliest attacks on US soil since the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor in World War II.

Nearly 3,000 people died in the 9/11 attacks, which The New York Times called the "worst and most audacious terror attack in American history."

On a Tuesday morning in September 2001, the American experience with terrorism was fundamentally altered. Two thousand, nine hundred and ninety-six people were killed as the direct result of attacks in New York, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania. Thousands more, including many first responders, later lost their lives to health complications from working at or being near Ground Zero.

Nineteen years later, Americans’ ideas of what terrorism is remain tied to that morning.

A fiery blast rocks the south tower of the World Trade Centre as the hijacked United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston crashes into the building. Picture: Spencer Platt/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
The 9/11 attacks were perpetrated by al-Qaida terrorists. They resulted in nearly 18 times more deaths than America’s second most devastating terrorist attack – the Oklahoma City bombing that occurred 15 years earlier. That intense loss of life has meant that the 9/11 attacks have come to symbolize terrorism for many Americans. 

But focusing solely on Islamist extremism groups like al-Qaida when investigating, researching and developing counterterrorism policies does not necessarily align with what the numbers tell us. 

Homegrown far-right extremism also poses a persistent and lethal threat to the lives and well-being of Americans. This risk is often underestimated because of the devastating impact of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

The nation is still working to move past the tragedy, and to effectively combat the techniques and ideology of terrorism that seeks to kill and maim as many people as possible.

These photos tell the story of what happened that morning, much of which was captured on live television to a shocked nation.

-The morning of September 11, 2001, started off like any other. The Twin Towers stood tall in the Financial District, as they had for more than 30 years.

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