Anniversary of 9-11 Shows Lack of American
by the White House to set the tone for the 10th anniversary of the September 11
attacks reflect an incapacity on the part of Americans
to stand together? According to reporter Wen Xian of China's
state-controlled Huanqiu, strenuous U.S. efforts to show solidarity
illustrate just the opposite.
August 30, The
New York Times revealed that the
White House has set the tone for the 10th anniversary of September 11. In
guidelines issued mainly to U.S. diplomatic missions around the world, the
White House stressed that while people from over 90 countries were killed in
the 9-11 attacks, terrorism has taken the lives of people in countries around
the world, and that tribute should be paid to victims regardless of where they live.
Another document entitled 9-11 Anniversary Planning was issued to
various federal agencies, stressing the importance of national institutions and
the U.S. government in preventing another major terrorist attack. While it is
fitting that the 9/11 victims be commemorated, this is also a reminder that
since that time, al-Qaeda and other extremist groups have attacked many places
around the world.
years ago, "9-11" not only changed the United States, but the world.
It has had a profound effect on global military affairs, economics, politics,
culture, society and many other aspects of international relations. The 10th
anniversary of 9-11 is a notable moment that will attract global attention as
people everywhere consider the event's proper meaning.
And as America is the country in which the incident occurred, the attitude of U.S.
officials is drawing particular attention.
far as how to mark this tenth anniversary, the U.S. government has had a series
of discussions and exchanges. This event differs from other "high profile"
commemorations, in that the final decision of the White House was somewhat
hesitant and reserved. Although the guidelines emphasize that the chief goal of
U.S. communications are to "present a positive, forward-looking narrative,"
behind the low-key tone is a lot of frustration and pain.
listens carefully, the assertion of U.S. officials of the need to create a
"positive, forward-looking narrative," contrasts sharply with the not-so-positive
reality. After the 9-11 incident, the U.S. launched wars in Afghanistan and
Iraq. And to this day, they are remain caught in a dilemma.
President Obama, feeling stretched to the limit and while endeavoring to end
these wars, must now consider leaving U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan. While
the two wars are accompanied by a drop in national strength and a downgrading
of U.S. credit, America's "counter-terror" strategy has opened up a Pandora's Box. More and
more of U.S. consumption can be attributed to fighting terror, and domestic
terrorists have become a new and growing concern. Even killing bin
Laden was difficult to celebrate. With the burden of two wars, the U.S. economy
has weakened. Issues arising out of the two wars like the Guantanamo Bay
detention camp remain unresolved.
10th anniversary of 9-11 is a sensitive moment. And combined with the approach
of the 2012 presidential election, the less the Obama Administration says the
better. On the day of the 9-11 anniversary, Obama has decided to travel to
Ground Zero in New York, the Pennsylvania crash site of Flight 93 and the Pentagon
to participate in related commemorative activities, but he has not prepares any
the White House has set the tone, one also senses an unpredictability and
caution. After 9-11, the U.S. government implemented a naked policy of unilateralism,
deliberately misrepresenting the facts and blindly believing in force:
"those who submit will prosper, those who resist shall perish."
After years of pondering, the Obama Administration has adjusted U.S. policy, swinging
back to multilateralism. In considering 9-11, the Obama Administration realizes that the United
States is not the only victim of terrorism, which is a foreshadowing of America's
future actions. Confronting this new reality, the Obama
Administration has warned that Americans must be prepared for another attack.
Washington's various political forces, the 10th anniversary of 9-11, so full of
vivid emotion, has quietly become a new political arena. One careless mistake
and one could lose his footing. To this end, the White House has called on
Americans to revive the solidarity that took hold after the 9-11 attacks. This
is based on a search for greater balance with political opponents, or seeking "common
ground," while expressing their differences. This demonstrates the
negative of this: "Solidarity" is precisely the spirit that
Washington most lacks.
*Wen Xian [温宪] is senior Huanqui reporter for North America
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