The day that everything changed

4af416d7e9966New-World13 years ago something changed in the world.

I remember arriving home (in Portugal) to have lunch and seeing the images of the attacks in the Pentagon and the World Trade Center, and I didn’t quite understand what was going on at the time (I was 11 years old). I remember having this feeling of sadness, the shivers down my spine. I understood that a lot of people died and a lot more were suffering.

As some of you know, both my Bachelor’s and my Master’s degree were in International Relations. It was almost impossible to be a student of IR and not talking about this particular event. I remember discussing how it affected the world, what changed. We analysed it, talked about it.

Unfortunately, I think it was the first time that the USA felt that it could be hit in its own territory. The feeling of being safe ended, and the war on terror started. Since then it has spread to other countries as well, however this expression hasn’t been used in a while and has been substituted for others more “friendly”. All of a sudden, terrorism was being used for almost everything, and I feel that it still is like this, at least a bit. Many wars were fought and many lives lost because of this. Are we any safer now?

This is a controversial topic, I know. And it will be for many years to come. My opinion is that many mistakes were made in past few years. But I don’t disregard the effectiveness of several decisions… What I often think is how many terrorists has this war on terror created? And how many has it destroyed? It is hard to know.

And I must say that it is one of those subjects that I honestly don’t know what to think about… What do you think? Do you feel safer now?

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36 Comments

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36 responses to “The day that everything changed

  1. This was terrifying and devastating. My auntie worked in the World Trade Centre though thank God she had taken the day off sick that day. I’m a Londoner and although the London bombings were a separate story, we had to get back on the buses and underground the following day to carry on with our lives. It was so scary being targeted so ruthlessly but I suppose at least these experiences has raised our awareness a tiny bit so we can try and make it a bit safer now. x

  2. It’s a sick-minded operation to spread fear of the unknown all over the globe. Fear of terrorism, we in the Netherlands had to deal with MH17 and it has the same structure and the same type of damage control and public relation management.

    It’s a shame how they use those attacks to get what they want. Maybe it’s the only way. Maybe its just to depopulate the human population or to keep them in a low vibrational state of being so they would not tuned in to the higher ones. The war on terrorism is just a public agenda, an exoteric one. But their private agenda, their occult/secret/hidden one, we will never know i think. Great post by the way 🙂

  3. Two points:
    1. Having worked as a financial advisor for almost four decades, my counterpart moment was the Financial Meltdown, which the U.S. had led the World into (4Q07-1Q09). With a strong academic background in economics and finance, I thought throughout that period of how interesting it must be to be a professor at a B-School. Throw-out the books, discuss current events–monetary and fiscal policy, corporate governance, a new President, etc.
    2. There is an interesting book, “When the World came to Gandor”. After the 9/11 events at WTC, the Pentagon and the pasture in Pennsylvania, where were the international flight–which had crossed the Atlantic and were low on fuel going to go? They couldn’t land in the U.S. and no major Canadian city would take them, since there might be terrorists on board.
    Gandor, in Nova Scotia, for some reason had large enough runways for the planes to land–but little in the way of accommodations. The book is a beautiful story about the hospitality of a small Canadian town and its opening up homes, churches and synagogues (perhaps mosques too) to strangers.

  4. New York City may have felt the biggest hurt of the day, but that feeling was shared across the world … after all, the majority of the world is good. Meanwhile, many dominoes have fallen since that day, all which have led to where we are today.

  5. yeseventhistoowillpass

    Excellent post! We are afraid of our shadow now…. Everyday those shipping containers come from all around the world and now the government hopes there isn’t a surprise in one of them… Wonderful

  6. Technically, the attack on Pearl Harbor Dec 07, 1941 was the first time the USA was attacked on its own soil by another nation which led to the US entering WWII. History books tell us the costs and the consequences of that war.

    That said and as many have pointed out in your comment section, the fallout of the WTC attacks on Sep 11, 2001 has changed the world. Only history will tell whether this change was for better or for worse.

    • Yes – indeed it was. But it was not an act of terrorism at the time, or at least was not considered as that. There was a war going on, and although USA only entered the war after that, they were already involved.
      What I meant was that it was the first time that an attack without any specific reason happened…An attack to install terror/fear… Sorry if I was not clear!

  7. “The Terrorists” come out of a dimension in psychology — “malignant narcissists” all! — that’s not well addressed either by their locales or remote governments. The opposed, whether in Baghdad or Dublin or Washington, don’t create them, but fascists, and this whether drawn to national or religious cause (or excuse and license), find their encouragement, which includes lack of obstruction or resistance, in some environments more than others.

    • “The Terrorists” come out of a dimension in psychology – Completely agree with that. This fear has been used for such a long time, that I think we are not able to live without getting worried about it sometimes…

      • We’re a wild species with now global communication and transportation systems. “Google” was well named, lol, and we are rightly cautious about real threat in the world now brought to our desktops and concerned with the “next world” — not heaven but here on earth the one we together influence and invent.

  8. Hello my friend,
    Thank you for stopping by my site. I hope you found something interesting to read. I’m not quite sure how you found me yet glad you did. I’m following you. I work hard not to get political on my site, that doesn’t mean I don’t have very strong views. I look at ancient history to current day issues to try to understand the how’s of general thinking. I know for sure terrorist do not represent the ideas of a country. Terrorist, bad guys with weapons, big budgets and plans for mass destruction are everywhere and have throughout history. Your degree is quite interesting and not without heated discussion. Have a great day. 🙂 M

  9. Hola, aunque soy española, seguiré el comentario en inglés, porque creo que así habrá más personas que lo entiendan directamente sin traducir.
    No matter what the events, places, dates, or causes are: war, terrorism, violence in any of it forms, or violent revolutions or fights are dreadful, and a crying shame.
    Weapons are a really profitable benefit for some people, foundations, groups or governments which for some reason or another get a lot of money out of their factoring, distribution and utilization.
    Regarding this particular and shameful event there are no beautiful words to describe it. It made some people to become aware of the vulnerability, not only for themselves, but also for all of us, and that unfortunately and shamefully includes pacifists and ecologists who live in the world.
    Which one? (I should say…)
    Is there any other world available for all of us to live in?
    Might be the time has come to change ways of generate and distribute, goods, resources, energies, ideas and justice.
    May it be not too late.
    Best regards.

  10. Tragic events – not only war and terrorism, but also natural disasters like the Japanese tsunami and the Haiti earthquake – expose our vulnerability. They show us where we’re weak and what we’re missing out. They shock us, wake us up from our trance, and show us the bitter truth. We’ve got to learn from history. Knowledge is power. Sure, we may feel unsafe. We may feel the need to keep our defences up. We may more aware; expecting the next. But isn’t that what “safety” is?

  11. That day almost destroyed my hope in mankind. I was personally terrorized. But I came back. We humans are fragile but we somehow survive. I try to remember that every year on international Peace Day.

    September 21, 2014 is a great day for inviting people to cooperate to build an arts-friendly community.

    At this season of year many of us are busy preparing for those long winter months. By the time May 2015 rolls around we’ll be ready to get out there and do something.

    Gardening? If the weather is cooperative, yes. Perhaps not in Bathurst, however. In our part of New Brunswick, Canada, Spring arrives a wee bit late and there isn’t a lot to do here in May.

    Hence the idea of Spring Garden of Artists. So we have planted the seeds of this idea and on September 21 we are asking people in the community to come together to discover more about this project and hopefully they might consider volunteering a bit of time over the fall and winter months so that by spring we will have mini-arts projects sprouting all around us.

    This idea is basically to have the whole community, businesses, organizations, individual artists, etc. devote the month of May 2015 to promote our area as an oasis of art with at least one artpiece in every store front, every bank, every business office.

    We would support and promote individual art exhibits and as many small musical venues as we can find artists to fill. Every restaurant could become a potential coffee house or piano bar for one whole month. Every church and seniors’ home could become a small concert hall. We would also hold professional music, art and craft workshops, interesting job opportunities for retired professionals, career experience for newly graduated arts students and a welcome to outside artists to explore the potential of our community.

  12. Terror is a byproduct of social, political and economic instability and injustice. It is not a location, a nation, or even a group of people. Terror cannot be defeated by boots on the ground, air strikes and weaponry. Such actions only build the power of terror. 911 resulted in the tragic death of 3,000 innocent people. The wars that followed inflicted even more and destruction on many innocent victims. Revenge is a very strong and understandable human emotion. We mourn the death of innocents and want to inflict punishment on those responsible. And so we turn to war. As a species, we should know better. Thank you for your thoughtful post.

  13. Manu Kurup

    International Relations is one of my favorite subjects and I remember constantly discussing how this incident changed the world. Good piece of writing.

  14. I believe I must correct you on a statement you made about terrorism coming to the US and then showing up in other countries

    “Unfortunately, I think it was the first time that the USA felt that it could be hit in its own territory. The feeling of being safe ended, and the war on terror started. Since then it has spread to other countries as well,”

    If I’m not mistaken; we’ve had attacks in the USA but just on a lower scale and T attacks have taken place in other countries even before I was born and I’m in my late forties. I remember a movie being made about people blowing themselves up during the seventies or it could have been the very early eighties but it’s been going on for quite some time in various forms.

    • Hi Jon, I am aware of that. What I meant, and sorry since I was not clear, is that it was the first time that the USA felt it could be hit in such a large scale. The war on terror started at that time, because despite having being attacked before, the expression ‘war on terror’ started to be used after 9/11, and it spread to other countries as well. This is what I meant, sorry if I was not clear.

  15. Pingback: Do you feel safe? | Internationally Unrelated

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