Thirteen years have past - and yet, the images, the sounds, the tragedy of September 11 still is so vivid, so real. As the sun rises on our Republic once more, thirteen years seems so far, yet so near. The memories are unshakable - the pain still very real, and for many, still very raw. Thirteen years ago, pathetic hateful small men stabbed our nation right in the heart. They hoped to instill fear, they sought to destroy the values and way of life we hold dear.
They failed. For while our heads were bloodied, they were unbowed. They can take our blood - but they will never take our unconquerable soul.
Despite their best efforts, our Republic still stands. The lantern of liberty burns brighter now than ever before - for while today marks not just a great national tragedy, a deep wound in our nation's soul which will never be forgotten or healed, it marks the rebirth of our nation, conceived not just in liberty, but in the belief that our Republic was worth defending - that our Republic was worthy of the great challenge we have undertaken - to conquer the fear that small cowardly men seek to instill - to persist in the face of hatred of our way of life - to ensure that the promise of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness does not fade.
Whether it was at Lexington Green, Fort McHenry, Little Round Top, Pearl Harbor, or in the sunny skies over the eastern seaboard on September 11, our Republic has always answered the call - we have always met the challenge and ensured that these United States of America shall endure.
We will continue to persevere to the great cause laid before us now: the continued existence of our Republic and our way-of-life. That is the challenge that September 11 represents: those who threaten us with terror seek not political concessions nor pecuniary gain. Instead, they are motivated by a hatred of everything our Constitution represents; they seek the total and complete destruction of the United States of America, of our grand Republic, of our way-of-life, of the dream that all men are created equal.
Thirteen years, we are still here. Challenged by those who seek the annihilation of everything our Republic stands for, we have not only refused to bow, but we have lit the light of liberty even brighter. So, while we take time to remember the innocent loss of so many lives, let us re-dedicate ourselves to the great task remaining before us: that those beloved innocents are not forgotten, that fear does not rule, that we protect our way-of-life, that the cause of liberty shall not be extinguished by hatred, and that those small-minded cowards who seek to rule by fear know this - that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and success of liberty.
We have been bloodied, but we are unbowed. We will endure.
GOD BLESS AMERICA