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Fifth Anniversary of 9/11, People Still Pondering

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by Evan Storey

As the five-year anniversary approaches, instead of allowing the networks to saturate your mind with visuals of the twin towers tumbling yet again, do yourself a favor: think about it. Whether or not that Tuesday morning affected you directly, the attacks on the WTC and the Pentagon undeniably changed...something.

The Economist purports (subscription required) that September 11th was a turning point:

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It stands to reason that 19 men cannot change history. But they did. Five years and two American-led wars later, the world created by the September 11th hijackers is a darker place than almost anyone predicted at the start of the new century.

Nevertheless, another renowned magazine of global affairs, Foreign Policy, suggests otherwise:

If you look closely at the trend lines since 9/11, what is remarkable is how little the world has changed. The issues of the day that we were debating on that morning in September are largely the same…and, five years later, the United States’ foreign policy is marked by no greater strategic clarity than it had on Sept.10, 2001.

Neither of these publications is known as being anything but objective and thorough, yet they both put forward strikingly different views. What this helps to reinforce is simply that the 9/11 attacks mean very different things for every different person.

They are continually used as justification for Prez Bush and his cohorts' adventures. They are still used to help us fear everything, including fear itself. And they are also ironically alluded to in hopes of resonating a sense of American unity and superiority. But how much has Los Angeles changed? Has the West Coast even changed at all? How much have you changed? How much are you thinking?

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