“And prepare against them whatever you are able of power and of steeds of war by which you may terrify the enemy of Allah and your enemy and others besides them whom you do not know [but] whom Allah knows. And whatever you spend in the cause of Allah will be fully repaid to you, and you will not be wronged.” Sura 8:60
Sixteen years ago, I never knew about Islam.
It was a crisp, sunny, autumn day in New York. The leaves were just starting to change, and the sky had a blue color only seen in parts of the Northeast in the fall. It was my first day of vacation, as my husband and I always took that week to go wilderness camping in the Adirondack Mountains. As usual, the television was on in the background, as I packed for the trip. Just as I was headed out the door to grocery shop, I heard “this is a special report”, which as a police officer, always caught my attention. I turned to watch a story that like millions of Americans also tuned in to Good Morning America, would never ever forget. An airplane had just flown into a sky scraper in Manhattan. My first thought was how could they ever fight such a fire so many floors up, and how tragic this accident was. Thinking it was just that, an accident, I continued on my way to the store, praying for the people on that flight, and for the first responders, as it was a difficult call not only logistically, but mentally and physically.
I hurriedly picked up what was needed, and as I was checking out, I mentioned the accident to the cashier. Her reaction was like many others I had told throughout the store,what a tragedy, and what could have happened to the pilot? I rushed back home and as I entered my apartment building I could hear the muffled screams coming from not just my television, but others that were on in the building. Once inside, the scene on television had shifted from the reporting of an airplane crash to chaos, and despair as people fled down the narrow streets, screaming as to what they apparently had witnessed. Another airliner crashing through the second of what we now know was the World Trade Center. The report suddenly switched to an anchor at the Pentagon, as another airplane crashed there. It seemed surreal, and at the same time, disbelief as to what was happening. Would another plane go down, and there it was…in a field in Pennsylvania.
The remainder of the day, we were glued to the television,as well as the telephone calling relatives across the country to make sure no one was flying that day. For reasons, we still cannot understand, we decided to continue our vacation to the mountains. Once there, we were completely out of touch with what was happening, as were the local residents and tourists. What were we thinking? After spending one long, restless night, we decided to get home.
Once home, I called my station to put my name on the list to go whenever the call for additional police agencies would come. I cancelled vacation and returned to work. I remember how different it was. Crime seemed irrelevant, as everyone was in shock. Who was responsible for this, and why? Have you ever noticed when outside, even when it is utterly quiet, there still is noise from airplanes somewhere in the sky? Not then. All flights across the country had been suspended, and the silence was deafening. The air just hung.. silent.
Several months later, a seminar for law enforcement was being offered by two detectives from NYC on “terrorism”. Lou Savelli and Pete Caram changed my life forever. I now had the answer to why those airplanes were hijacked and flown into buildings. Islam. I know now.
Sixteen years ago, 19 Muslim men brought America to its knees, following exactly what their prophet Muhammad instructed them to do. Strike terror into the heart of the disbeliever. That doctrine hasn’t changed, neither have the Muslims that adhere to it. To them, Islam is unchangeable, universal, and superior. There is only one Quran, and one prophet, the same prophet and Quran that urges to kill the non believer, hence the attack on 9/11.
With the backlash that occurred to the Muslim community, came their realization that violence would not help further their agenda, but harm it. That agenda is a monumental religious obligation every Muslim must perform, to bring the world into the fold of Islam. Becoming a victim as a result of that backlash would be their ticket for success. After all, victims are always embraced and defended, especially ones that claim to be pious.
Sixteen years later. We didn’t learn a thing, but the enemy did..kill them with kindness, and it’s working.