"If only." Those are the verbal crutches America must discard in a post-9/11 world.
If only the State Department hadn't been so sloppy in issuing visas to the 9/11 hijackers. If only police and state troopers had been able to check the immigration status of the hijackers who were pulled over for speeding before the attacks. If only universities had been more diligent in monitoring the hijackers' whereabouts. If only the feds had listened to alert agents' recommendations to profile young Arab students in our flight schools. If only someone, anyone, had said something when they saw the suspicious behavior of the jihadists on dry runs.
We have borne the bloody costs of coulda-woulda-shoulda. Nearly 3,000 dead. The World Trade Center in ruins. The Pentagon on fire. The fields at Shanksville, Pa., scarred. Six years later, we can no longer afford hindsight heavy breathing. Memory must guide action. And action must be taken without apology.
Zogby released a poll for the sixth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks showing that "77 percent of those living in the East and 46 percent of those living in the West -- 61 percent overall -- said they think about the attacks at least weekly. Eighty-one percent -- 90 percent in the East and 75 percent in the West -- said the attacks were the most significant historical events of their lives."
That's good news. But remembrance without resistance to jihad and its enablers is a recipe for another 9/11. Not every American wears a military uniform. Every American, however, has a role to play in protecting our homeland -- not just from Muslim terrorists, but from their financiers, their public relations machine, their sharia-pimping activists, the anti-war goons, the civil liberties absolutists, and the academic apologists for our enemies.
Earlier this year, jihadist enablers attempted to intimidate citizen whistleblowers who said something about the suspicious behavior of six imams on a US Airways flight in Minneapolis/St. Paul. The legal battle to protect ordinary Americans from such lawsuits gave rise to the John Doe movement. Pro bono lawyers and GOP members of Congress stepped up to provide protection. And Americans across the country expressed solidarity with the airline passengers targeted by the Council on American-Islamic Relations and its ilk.