Five years later, we remember September 11th with a second look at two essays from senior fellows Mark Helprin and Charles R. Kesler written, respectively, the day after and on the first anniversary of the attacks.
September 12, 2001: Mark Helprin: We Beat Hitler, We Can Vanquish This Foe Too
Security and civil defense at home and at American facilities overseas must be strengthened to the point where we are able to fight with due diligence in this war that has been brought to us now so vividly by an alien civilization that seeks our destruction. The course of such a war will bring us greater suffering than it has brought to date, and if we are to fight it as we must we will have less in material things. But if, as we have so many times before, we rise to the occasion, we will not enjoy merely the illusions of safety, victory, and honor, but those things themselves. In our history it is clear that never have they come cheap and often they have come late, but always, in the end, they come in flood, and always in the end, the decision is ours.
September 10, 2002: Charles R. Kesler: Our Fighting Faith
No one vows, "Remember 9/11." We may quietly say or wish it, but it is not a sacred oath constantly on our lips, our billboards, or our televisions. Without such a promise, however, we are prone to forget why and where we are rolling. Victory loses its luster, and its urgency, when prescinded from the reasons we are at war. How then should be commemorate September 11? Not as victims
--though we must never forget the brave and the innocent who were slaughtered --but as proud citizens, intent on vindicating our fallen comrades. The phrase 9/11 caught on in part because it coincided with 9-1-1, the well-known emergency telephone number, employed on that horrible day a year ago. But 9-1-1 is a call for help. 9/11 must be a call to arms. Let it become our battlecry: Remember 9/11.