In another way, though, it was not a "tragedy" in the classical sense of the term. Tragedy is a form of drama in which the great are brought to ruin through the workings of their own actions and folly, and while America is one of the world's and history's great powers, the attack of 9/11 was not our downfall, nor really brought on by our own actions or hubris. And in fact, on that day Americans demonstrated to the world some of our finest qualities.
The FDNY, police and other first responders reacted professionally and heroically. Many doctors and ordinary citizens seeing their fellows in difficulty, ran towards the danger to help. On flight 93, a group of common citizens gathered together, took a vote and decided to fight back, which we can only believe resulted in the downing of flight 93 before it could be used as a weapon against another target. Those passengers, like the Minutemen in Concord, represent the Militia of the United States, and they did what citizens of almost no other country in the history of the world do in the face of an emergency—vote and then defend themselves. The employees of Cantor Fitzgerald, carried on after suffering 2/3s casualties and reopened the bond market, again after a vote. Military organizations that take 2/3 losses seldom carry on as well. Brokers don't expect to take any losses. Thousands and thousands of people walked calmly out of the city across the bridges, without the panic we expect and see in fiction. No, America was heroic and did not fall that day.
But the events of that day are being used in the years following to bring upon a true American tragedy, the fall of the world's greatest democratic republic due to her own foolishness and actions. In the years following the heroism and victories of 9/11, we have perpetrated terrorism on ourselves, frightening—terrifying—ourselves with the specter of foreign and alien terrorists as if they could actually destroy the greatest nation on earth. And we have been destroying that nation by surrendering our most valued possessions, our freedom and the rule of law, in the name of security. And if we let this continue, the great will fall as a result of our own actions, our own flaws, our own foolishness—classic tragedy in the true sense of the word.
Three weeks after 9/11, I wrote a web page venting my anger at the portrayal of 9//11 as an American defeat (see "9-11: America Victorious"). Now, I find that I am even angrier, angry that we are working so hard to turn victory into defeat, defeat in the name of "victory" in a tragic war, defeat in revenge for a supposed "defeat" that was actually a victory, defeat caused by surrender, surrendering liberty for temporary security.
This blog is intended to not only vent that anger, but to help correct the misperceptions, the doublespeak, the lies and to fend off this entirely senseless tragedy. Join me. Cry 'Freedom". Be the Voice of Liberty.