Terror attacks of 11 September 2001 on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon

The 11 September attacks (also referred to as 9/11) were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda against sites in the United States on the morning of Tuesday, 11 September 2001. The attacks killed 2,996 people, injured over 6,000 others and caused at least $10 billion in infrastructure and property damage. Additional people died of incident-related cancer and respiratory diseases in the months and years following the attacks.


9/11 Could Have Been Prevented, by Sheldon Richman, 21 Apr 2004
Counters the claim that Islamists hate the U.S. because Americans love freedom
"The question now is, when will the American people understand? The crimes of 9/11 should have focused attention on the policies that made Arabs willing to commit such heinous acts here. ... The horrors at the World Trade Center could not have been prevented by actions taken between January 20 and September 11, 2001. The real issue is whether they could have been prevented had U.S. administrations followed the noninterventionist advice of the Founding Fathers."
Related Topic: Foreign Entanglements
Americans Have Lost Their Country, by Paul Craig Roberts, 1 Mar 2007
Discusses the neoconservatives in the George W. Bush administration and the rationale for their actions furthering wars in the Middle East
"Initially, the 9/11 attack was blamed on Osama bin Laden, but after an American puppet was installed in Afghanistan, the blame for 9/11 was shifted to Iraq's Saddam Hussein, who was said to have weapons of mass destruction that would be used against America. ... Neoconservatives had called for 'a new Pearl Harbor,' and 9/11 provided the propaganda event needed in order to stampede the public and Congress into war."
Another Meaning To September 11th, by Butler Shaffer, 19 Sep 2001
"The terrifying events of September 11th provided perhaps the most chilling evidence of the failure of the political model. After having trillions of dollars siphoned from our incomes to pay for the most powerful and sophisticated weaponry known to mankind; after years of having our persons and baggage subjected to searches at airports ..."
Related Topic: Personal Responsibility
Do Hadithans Hate Us for Our Freedoms?, by Jacob Hornberger, 2 Jun 2006
"Immediately after the 9/11 attacks, U.S. officials announced that the terrorists were motivated by anger and hatred for American 'freedoms and values.' In other words, the terrorists hated the First Amendment and rock and roll and, therefore, decided to attack our country."
Related Topic: Haditha Massacre
Foreword to A Foreign Policy of Freedom by Ron Paul, by Lew Rockwell, Mises Daily, 15 Mar 2007
Examines the historical precedents for the Paulian view that American foreign and domestic policy both be conducted in the same non-interventionist manner
"Then 9-11 happened, and the great excuse for Leviathan again entered the picture. Never mind that, as Congressman Paul pointed out, the crime of 9-11 was motivated by retribution against ten years of killer US sanctions against Iraq, US troops on Muslim holy lands, and US subsidies for Palestinian occupation. No, the American Right bought into the same farce that led them to support the Cold War: Islamic fanaticism is a unique evil unlike anything we've ever seen, so we have to put up with Leviathan (again!) for the duration. Well, Ron Paul didn't buy into it. "
Freedom, Security, and the Roots of Terrorism against the United States, by Richard Ebeling, Future of Freedom, Oct 2001
Reflections on the 11 September attacks a few weeks after, discusses the reasons for the terrorist attacks and proposes certain measures to deal with the situation
"Emotion is a powerful element in the human being. A very small number of Americans and Europeans called for blood, even innocent blood if it resulted in the death of some of the terrorists and their accomplices in the process. But most of the Europeans and Americans suggested greater caution before military action was undertaken to determine whether it might not set in motion a series of consequences that would lead to even greater disaster. There was a general agreement that there was no clear-cut and simple answer or solution to ensure justice in the face of this terrible tragedy."
Government the Exploiter, Not Protector, by Sheldon Richman, 14 Jul 2006
Argues that, contrary to popular belief, the primary goal of government is not to protect the citizens but rather to exploit them though taxes and a system of privileges
"U.S. intervention ... has been portrayed as necessary for national security, but in fact has been part of the system of privilege that harms most Americans. That system brought the blowback of September 11, 2001. But instead of people's getting wise to the game, 9/11 only reinforced it by furnishing a pretext for even more government power, intrusion, and exploitation."
Related Topic: Government
How It All Began, by Charley Reese, 15 Jan 2007
"It all began with one faulty premise. The attack on the World Trade Center was carried out by a single organization, al-Qaida. Hamas had not attacked us; Islamic Jihad had not attacked us; the Taliban had not attacked us; the guerrillas in the Philippines, Somalia, Colombia and wherever else in the world they exist had not attacked us."
Related Topic: Terrorism
Improve the CIA? Better to abolish it, by Chalmers Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle, 22 Feb 2004
Lists countries where the CIA conducted subversive operations and recommends abolishing the agency.
"These operations have generated numerous terrorist attacks and other forms of retaliation -- what the CIA calls "blowback" -- against the United States by peoples on the receiving end. Because covert operations are secret from the people of the United States (if not their targets), when retaliation hits, as it did so spectacularly on Sept. 11, 2001, Americans do not have the information to put it into context or understand it."
Iraqi Sanctions: Were They Worth It?, by Sheldon Richman, Future of Freedom, Jan 2004
Analyzes the sanctions imposed on Iraq during the 1990's, and Madeleine Albright's attempt to recant, in her memoirs, on her statement that the sanctions were "worth it"
"Albright now writes that her answer to Stahl was 'crazy' and that she regretted it 'as soon as [she] had spoken.' Yet she did not take back her words between 1996 and September 11, 2001. ... in a speech ... shortly after 9/11 she 'quietly' expressed regret for her statement, claiming it had been taken out of context. (She does not make that point in her book.) But neither her office nor the Clinton administration issued a prominent retraction to the American people or the world. ... We can be sure of one thing: word of her original response spread throughout the Arab world. Maybe even among some of the 9/11 terrorists."
Related Topics: Ethics, Iraq
Killing Iraqi Children, by Jacob Hornberger, 19 Jun 2006
Comments on a Detroit News editorial condoning the bombing, rather than the arrest and prosecution, of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and the "collateral" death of a five-year old girl
"The attack on Iraq was akin to, say, attacking Bolivia or Uruguay or Mongolia, after 9/11. Those countries also had nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks and so it would have been illegal and immoral for President Bush to have ordered an invasion and occupation of those countries as well. To belabor the obvious, the fact that some people attacked the United States on 9/11 didn't give the United States the right to attack countries that didn't have anything to do with the 9/11 attacks."
September 11 and the Anti-Capitalistic Mentality: An Interview with Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr, by Lew Rockwell, Myles Kantor, FrontPage Magazine, 12 Mar 2002
The 9/11 Servility Reflex, by James Bovard, Future of Freedom, Dec 2007
Discusses how the general American public reacted after the 9/11 attacks and how the 9/11 Commission and the mainstream media helped reinforce that reaction
"The naive response to politicians triumphed in the weeks after the 9/11 attacks. By the end of September 2001, almost two-thirds of Americans said they 'trust the government in Washington to do what is right' either 'just about always' or 'most of the time.' Amazingly, the attacks even boosted Americans' confidence that government would protect them against terrorists."
Related Topics: George W. Bush, Government
The Case for Optimism, by Butler Shaffer, 19 Oct 2001
Relates the change in people's behavior after the September 2001 attacks, some standing up for principle whereas others were following the herd
"n the aftermath of the WTC attack, as well as the government's attack on our liberties, I have had occasion to learn a great deal about people I have regarded as my friends, . . . most of it quite favorable, some not so favorable. As I told one of my colleagues who could not understand my unwillingness to join in the war fervor, I do not take kindly to people whose sense of patriotism consists in helping to create an environment that threatens the lives of my family!"
Related Topics: Individual Liberty, Terrorism
The Critical Dilemma Facing Pro-War Libertarians, by Jacob Hornberger, 14 Feb 2007
Discusses the contradictions faced by U.S. libertarians and conservatives who endorsed or encouraged imperial and interventionist foreign policies
"The 9/11 attacks exposed a major fault line in the libertarian movement. On one side of the divide were those libertarians who contended that the 9/11 attacks were a direct consequence of U.S. foreign policy, specifically the bad things that the federal government had done to people overseas ... On the other side of the divide were those libertarians who ... aligned themselves with conservatives. Viewing the attacks as an act of war, they favored giving the president full authority to wage the global war on terror."
The Endless War on Terrorism, by Jacob Hornberger, 1 Sep 2004
Reflects on President George W. Bush response ("I don't think we can it") when asked about the War on Terror
"Thus, the 9/11 attacks, the argument goes, were instead motivated by hatred of America's 'freedom and values,' i.e., the First Amendment, religious freedom, Wal-Mart, and rock and roll, not by the loss of their loved ones at the hands of the U.S. government. How logical is that? Answer: It's not logical at all. The truth is that foreigners hurt just as deeply when their loved ones and countrymen are killed as Americans do."
Why Are We Afraid To Be Free?, by Butler Shaffer, 27 Nov 2001
Examines the question of how to bring about freedom in individuals' lives, discussing how government influences people to be in conflicted states and how one must look within oneself and act accordingly to begin to be "free"
"Echoing the mantras of various government officials, 71% of persons alleged to have been polled expressed support for the 'assassination' of Osama bin Laden, rather than a public trial. A trial might, after all, reveal that bin Laden had no involvement with the September 11th attacks, and to simply assassinate the man would save the Bush Administration untold embarrassment. Like any lynch mob, those who have whooped themselves into a mass-minded frenzy don't wish their prejudices confused by factual disputes!"
Will the Democrats Become Part of the Problem?, by Paul Craig Roberts, 10 Nov 2006
Discusses the outcome of the 2006 U.S. mid-term elections and offers recommendations primarily for congressional Democrats
"The 9/11 Commission Report has too many problems and shortcomings to be believable. Recent polls show that 36 percent of the American people do not believe the report. Such a deficient report is unacceptable. 9/11 became the excuse for the neoconservative Bush regime to launch illegal wars of aggression in the Middle East. The 9/11 Commission Report is nothing but a public relations justification for the 'war on terror,' which in truth is a war on American liberty."

Cartoons and Comic Strips

A Nation Remembers III, by Mark Fiore, 8 Sep 2004
It's Because of 9/11!, by Joel Pett, Lexington Herald-Leader, 20 Jun 2006
Tonight, Kiddies, My Story About Iraq ..., by Tony Auth, 30 Jun 2005
We Must Stay the Course in Iraq, by Stuart Carlson, 29 Jun 2005
What might have happened on Sept. 11 if this were truly The Land of the Free, by Scott Bieser, 2001


Fahrenheit 9/11, by Michael Moore (Director), 2004
Best Picture, 2004 Cannes Film Festival


The Cato Institute at 40, by Trevor Burrus, Peter Goettler, Aaron Ross Powell, 10 Mar 2017
Interview with Peter Goettler, President and CEO of the Cato Institute since March 2015
"The building I was in was the closest one to Ground Zero that actually wasn't structurally damaged in the attack. ... And, David [Boaz], we both talked about the concern about terrorism. David also mentioned being very concerned about what was going to happen to civil liberties in the United States in the wake of the attack. At the time I thought, 'Man, that's just not even in my frame of reference.' Boy, looking back on it, it was quite a prescient comment or prescient concern because when you think of the way our country has changed in the last 15, 16 years since the attack, clearly there's been much higher risk profile for civil liberties of all types. "

The introductory paragraph uses material from the Wikipedia article "September 11 attacks" as of 19 Nov 2018, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.