A decade and one-half ago, our country suffered a blow against its perceived impregnable foundation as planes, downed into buildings and fields, struck into our hearts with the force of lightning. They felled us to our knees, broken and desperate.
The fires that melted steel and brought down buildings also lit our souls aflame and forced us into a war that we still fight today. We remain engaged in that long war, again testing whether our nation can long endure.
Our cities and buildings on that Tuesday in September were not the first battlefields of this war, but they are the ones onto which we imbue our collective grief. While it is fitting and proper that we should do this, we should also remember those who perished in far-away lands, or in attacks that preceded and followed that dark September day.
The world should never forget what happened here on that day. Nor should we cease to remain steadfastly dedicated to the task that remains before us: to defend the government and way of life under which we have so gratefully lived over the course of these more than two centuries.
Some will question why we engage an enemy so driven by religious fervor and fanaticism. Others still doubt our motives and justifications in this long war. And yet, it is every year on this 11th day of September that we all must remember why we fight, and will continue to do so until those dark forces of hate and radicalism lie prostrate, defeated before us.
For no force under God can ever keep this great nation on its knees. We will always rise up again and bring woe unto those who stand before us as enemies.