Remember it as a day of horror, but also as a day of honor. And remember also those who have continued to answer that same call to duty since that time in so many places around the world, so that in this place, in this city -- in Boulder and elsewhere in the United States -- we can be free, we can be safe, we can live our lives.
BG Vincent K. Brooks
Army Chief of Public Affairs
September 11th Reflections
Yesterday, people throughout the U.S. and the world remembered and reflected upon September 11th. There were many tributes, memorials and events to commemorate the events of that day in 2001.
Last week, BG Vincent K. Brooks, the Army Chief of Public Affairs, shared some thoughts on the day. BG Brooks said that our nation should "reflect on the circumstances that led up to 9/11, what we faced on 9/11, and what we continue to face today."
The general is reminded of Sept. 11 every day when he gets to his office, which is about 20 steps from where the left engine of the airliner that crashed into the Pentagon hit.
Noting that the terrorists took more than 3,000 innocent lives that day, Brooks praised the courage and depth of goodwill demonstrated by Americans who "stepped up and answered what we call 'the call to duty' that day."
But on a more hopeful note, it was noted that U. S. efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq are "showing a bright glimmer of hope for people who have never known hope. Hamid Karzai is in office as the first elected president in Afghanistan's 5,000-year history. Eight million of the 10 million Afghans who registered to vote turned out at the polls for the presidential election.
"That's never happened in (the United States), an 80 percent turnout of registered voters." It says an awful lot about (the Afghan people') commitment to their future. And that light of freedom was brought to them by the commitment of our forces abroad to eliminate terrorism. "
Brooks also noted progress in Iraq, beginning with 8 million voters defying intimidation to elect a transitional authority, while Iraqi forces successfully defended all 5,200 polling places in the country against terrorist attacks.
Brooks urged the audience to visit the Defense Department's "America Supports You" Web site, which spotlights efforts around the country "to try to help those who are answering the call to duty."