Opinion | Morgan Liddick: Muslim Brotherhood has growing influence in the United States
On Your Right
Eighteen years ago tomorrow, 19 men hijacked four U.S. jetliners as they left three East Coast airports. They were all on cross-country flights, so they were laden with fuel, which made them very effective flying bombs. At 8:46 a.m. Eastern time, American Airlines Flight 11 struck the north tower of the World Trade Center in New York. We all know what happened next.
At 9:03 a.m., United Airlines Flight 175 struck the south tower of the World Trade Center. At 9:37 a.m. American Airlines Flight 77 struck the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia, with devastation similar to that in New York. At 9:59 a.m. the south tower of World Trade Center fell to the ground in about 10 seconds, spewing out clouds of toxic dust and fumes that covered downtown Manhattan. Half an hour later, the north tower collapsed, adding to the poisonous miasma and obscuring the sun. Finally, at 10:03 a.m. United Airlines Flight 93, apparently bound for a suicide attack on the White House, crashed in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Its passengers, alerted to the earlier crashes, fought against their hijackers and prevented the attack at the cost of their lives.
Not counting the 19 hijackers, 2,977 people from many nations died in these three attacks. Six years later, more than 40% of them remain unidentified. Though improvements in DNA identification techniques have resulted in a few more names, that percentage remains more or less the same today. Additionally, thousands of first responders and everyday citizens who worked in the witches’ brew of toxic air have developed debilitating and, ultimately, fatal cancers and lung diseases. Dozens have been so easily traced directly to the 9/11 attacks that they have been classified homicides.
In 1941, when Japan struck what it thought would be a knockout blow against the U.S. Navy at Pearl Harbor, it destroyed a lot of military equipment. It also killed more than 2,400 U.S. military personnel and civilians, and wounded more than 1,000 more. But far from knocking us out of what was shaping up to be World War II, it did exactly what the attack’s architect, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, feared it would: It filled us with cold fury and concentrated everything about us — our industry, our inventiveness, our grit and wit, and our entire population — into a single, terrible purpose to grind the Axis powers into dust and toss it into a high wind. In a few years, we and our allies had done just that, and thank God for it.
The 9/11 attacks were designed by Osama bin Laden and undertaken by Al Qaeda, an organization he developed while working with those fighting the Russian occupation of Afghanistan.
Those among us prone to hand-wringing and self-flagellation should remember that bin Laden and his associate in terror — Ayman al-Zawahiri, the chief of the Egyptian jihad organization — had issued a fatwa, or a religious finding, three years earlier, saying in part, “… to kill the Americans and their allies civilians and military — is an individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to do it …” Like their Islamist brothers and forebears, like the Muslim Brotherhood, like many across the modern Middle East, they saw the region’s brokenness and relative backwardness as the doing of others, who must be punished for their effrontery against God’s chosen — America foremost among them. There is no false modesty here, no second-guessing and no self-doubt. Instead there is hatred, and it is pointed right at you. Sept. 11, 2001, was their greatest achievement to date, but they are not done. Not by a long chalk.
Iranian leaders and their mobs spout “Death to America” about as often as U.S. politicians say “good morning.” The Muslim Brotherhood, which coughed up a short-term president of Egypt, regularly denies the Holocaust, calls for the elimination of Israel and is viciously anti-American. According to a politically incorrect 2015 report by the British government, they regard both “the West” and more liberal Muslims as hopelessly decadent and immoral. And they have growing influence in the United States. So the problem is metamorphosing, drawing closer and becoming more acute, not diminishing.
Food for thought tomorrow, when we are all once again reminded of the intentions of Islamic extremism, and once again vow we will “never forget.”
Morgan Liddick’s column “On Your Right” publishes Tuesdays in the Summit Daily News. Liddick spent 27 years working for the U.S. Foreign Service, primarily living abroad. He also spent 12 years teaching U.S. history and Western civilization at community colleges in Colorado and Texas. He lived in Summit County as recently as 2015. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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