On September 11th 2001, 9-11 Twin Towers terrorists linked to Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda Islamic extremist group hijacked four commercial passenger airplanes and carried out terrorist suicide attacks against targets across the United States.
Two planes were flown directly into New York’s World Trade Center before both towers collapsed within hours – demolishing much of lower Manhattan in their path.
A third plane hit Pentagon near Washington D.C. before another was downed near Shanksville Pennsylvania by its passengers and crew after fighting back and eventually brought down by
its crew over its passengers and crew in an intense struggle before finally coming down near Shanksville Pennsylvania as it had come back around once more before finally collapsing upon itself on its journey a final momentous assault. How many people died on 9/11
Nearly 2,996 people were killed in the 9-11 terrorist attacks.
including 19 al Qaeda members. These traumatic events were broadcast globally and left many reeling with horror. President George W. Bush responded by declaring a war on terrorism which included setting up Homeland Security as well as invading Afghanistan.
On September 11th 2001 / 9-11 Twin Towers at 8:45am on a clear Tuesday morning, an American Airlines Boeing 767 loaded with 20,000 gallons of jet fuel crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Center in New York City.
The impact produced an enormous, burning hole at around 80th floor level of this 110-story skyscraper, instantly killing hundreds and trapping many more on higher floors.
As evacuation of both towers began, television cameras broadcast live images of what initially seemed to be an unlikely accident. 18 minutes after the initial plane struck, another United Airlines Flight 175 aircraft appeared out of nowhere and made an immediate turn toward World Trade Center before hitting it near the 60th floor of South Tower.
The collision resulted in an explosive blast that scattered flaming debris over surrounding buildings and onto nearby streets below, signalling America was under attack.
The hijackers were Islamic terrorists from Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations, reported to be funded by Osama bin Laden’s al Qaeda terrorist organization as revenge against America’s support of Israel, involvement in the Persian Gulf War, and continued military presence in the Middle East.
Some terrorists had lived in the US for an extended period and taken flying lessons at American commercial flight schools; others entered in the months leading up to September 11 and served as “muscle” in their operation.
Where Did 9-11 Planes Take Off From?
19 terrorists successfully passed through security at three East Coast airports–Logan International Airport in Boston, Dulles International Airport in Washington D.C. and Newark International Airport in New Jersey–carrying box cutters and knives
then boarded four early morning flights bound for California that had enough fuel reserves for such a journey.
Once airborne, terrorists quickly commandeered each plane by taking over control from its pilots, turning ordinary passenger jets into missiles.
American Airlines Flight 77 flew low over downtown Washington before striking the west side of the Pentagon military headquarters at 9:45 a.m. as millions watched it all unfold live on television screens around the world.
Jet fuel from a Boeing 757 caused a devastating inferno, leading to part of a huge concrete building containing the U.S. Department of Defense crashing to earth and collapsing structurally.
All told, 125 military and civilian victims died at the Pentagon and 64 aboard an airliner were also fatalities.
Twin Towers Collapse
Just 15 minutes after terrorists struck at the nerve center of the U.S. military, New York witnessed another horrifying chapter when the south tower of the World Trade Center collapsed under its own weight in a cloud of dust and smoke.
Skyscraper structures designed to withstand winds exceeding 200 miles per hour and large conventional fires were insufficient to stand the immense heat generated by burning jet fuel, however.
At 10:30 a.m., the north tower of the twin World Trade Center towers collapsed. Only 18 of those present survived; most were with a group of New York Fire Department (FDNY) firefighters in Stairwell B, which remained intact; one woman made it down safely before her stairs disintegrated around her; almost 10,000 others required medical treatment, many suffering severe injuries.
How Many Lives Were Lost in the 9-11 Twin Towers Attacks?
At least 2,996 were killed during the 9/11 attacks, including 19 terrorist hijackers aboard four airplanes and citizens from 78 different nations who perished across New York, Washington D.C. and Pennsylvania.
At the World Trade Center, 2,763 were killed when two planes collided with its twin towers. This figure includes 343 firefighters and paramedics, 23 New York City police officers and 37 Port Authority police officers who were trying to complete an evacuation of the buildings to save office workers trapped on higher floors.
At the Pentagon, 189 people were killed, with 64 on American Airlines Flight 77 which collided with it and crashed. Flight 93 crashed-landed in Pennsylvania and 44 people perished there.
At 7 p.m. President George W. Bush returned from Florida where he had spent his day being transported due to security concerns and returned to the White House.
President Bush delivered a televised address at 9 pm from the Oval Office declaring,
“Terrorist attacks may jolt our buildings but cannot shake America’s foundation; their violent acts may tear steel apart but cannot break down American resolve.”
He further made clear that any response by the U.S. would make no distinction between those responsible for terrorist acts and those harboring them.
Operation Enduring Freedom, an international effort led by America to overthrow the Taliban regime in Afghanistan and dismantle Osama bin Laden’s terrorist network based there, began on October 7.
Within two months, U.S. and coalition forces had successfully removed them from operational control; however,
their war continues as U.S. and coalition forces attempt to defeat any insurgencies launched from neighboring Pakistan by Taliban fighters who still retain some operational strength there.
Osama bin Laden, the mastermind of the September 11th attacks, remained at large until May 2, 2011, when U.S. forces finally tracked and killed him at his Abbottabad, Pakistan hideout.
President Barack Obama then announced large-scale troop withdrawals from Afghanistan starting June 2011 which continued up until August 2021 when all US forces left.