How we learned all the wrong lessons from 9/11

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This is another piece for the The Guardian. I hope you find it worthwhile:

I was in New York City 15 years ago, when the United States suffered the worst terrorist attack of its history. I remember that horrible day as vividly as if it were yesterday. September 11 was a Tuesday bright with sunshine, which meant that you could easily see the plumes of smoke and ash as they enveloped downtown after the attacks. It didn’t take long for countless handmade posters to appear on poles and walls around the city, urgently and tragically asking about the whereabouts of people who had suddenly gone missing. The unmistakable smell of burning hung in the air for weeks. It seemed like everyone, myself included, was in shock, and we were all mourning the dead.

But these were anxious times, too. I recall the sense of dismay I felt that morning when watching the first plane hit and how that morphed, when the second plane came less than twenty minutes later, into a gut-wrenching realization that this was no accident. If the terrorists turned out to be Muslim, I thought at the time, the future could become very difficult for Muslims in the United States.

You can read the whole article here.

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