The trick in the next ten years will be to win back the trust of allies (especially Pakistan), use force more sparingly, go wherever possible with the grain of Muslim sentiment instead of rubbing against it. But there can be no return to the innocence of September 10th 2001—and, sadly, no end to the vigilance.
Le choc du 11-Septembre, impossible de ne pas y revenir, dix ans après. Le recul du temps n'atténue en rien son intensité. L'effondrement des tours jumelles à New York est associé, dans l'imaginaire de tous, à une destruction radicale décidée par un ennemi invisible qui n'avait rien à négocier, qui ne souhaitait aucun échange. Quel est cet ennemi? D'où vient-il? Comment recrute-t-il? Quelles sont ses aires d'influence? Et après?
Lower Manhattan is a living symbol of civic resilience; it is evidence of how free people can triumph over fear. The neighborhood surrounding Ground Zero has become the fastest-growing in New York City. Daniel Libeskind is part of the influx. The Bronx-raised designer of the Freedom Tower was living in Berlin on 9/11: “I was determined to live in lower Manhattan. And I’m so happy because it’s really coming back to life ... It’s a kind of renaissance.”
If the story of the United States has a theme so far in the 21st century, it is surely one of resilience. To hail that spirit on the 10th anniversary of September 11, 2001, TIME revisited the people who led us, moved us and inspired us, from the morning of the attacks through the tumultuous decade that followed. These astonishing testimonies — from 40 men and women including George W. Bush, Tom Brokaw, General David Petraeus, Valerie Plame Wilson, Black Hawk helicopter pilot Tammy Duckworth, and the heroic first responders of Ground Zero — define what it means to meet adversity, and then overcome it.
Suddenly summoned to witness some thing great and horrendous, we keep fighting not to reduce it to our own smallness,” wrote John Updike ten years ago in these pages. He watched the towers fall with “the false intimacy of television,” from a tenth-floor apartment in Brooklyn Heights.
New York City is filled with children who have no reason to distinguish the eleventh from any other day in September. At some point they’ll learn, but for now, for them, what actually happened could never have happened.