9/11 Remarks by the President


Sept. 11, 2012 – President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama marked the eleventh anniversary of the 9/11 attacks by holding a memorial service at the Pentagon Memorial in Arlington, Va.

In his speech, the President honored those whose lives have been taken while also acknowledging the grief it caused to their families.

The attacks killed nearly 3,000 people. 2,753 people were killed in New York,  184 people were killed at the Pentagon and 40 people were killed on Flight 93.

Although the President’s speech was somber, it also resonated hope, tolerance and strength. He said that as painful as 9/11 is and will always be, no act of terrorism will shake the values and beliefs the United States stands for.

Read excerpts of the President’s remarks below:

This anniversary allows us to renew our faith that even the darkest night gives way to a brighter dawn. Today, we can come here to the Pentagon, and touch these names and kneel beside a building where a single stone still bears the scars of that fire. We can visit the field of honor in Pennsylvania and remember the heroes who made it sacred.  We can see water cascading into the footprints of the Twin Towers, and gaze up at a new tower rising above the New York skyline.


And even though we may never be able to fully lift the burden carried by those left behind, we know that somewhere, a son is growing up with his father’s eyes, and a daughter has her mother’s laugh — living reminders that those who died are with us still.


So as painful as this day is and always will be, it leaves us with a lesson that no single event can ever destroy who we are. No act of terrorism can ever change what we stand for. Instead, we recommit ourselves to the values that we believe in, holding firmly, without wavering, to the hope that we confess.


That’s the commitment that we reaffirm today. And that’s why, when the history books are written, the true legacy of 9/11 will not be one of fear or hate or division. It will be a safer world; a stronger nation; and a people more united than ever before.


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