Tag Archives: September 11

Remembering Christopher Hitchens

Today marks the what would have been Christopher Hitchens’ 66th birthday. While the controversial writer lost his long battle with cancer in 2011, nearly half a decade later his legacy continues to remain a puzzle to most. To some, Hitchens was a brilliant iconoclast, fearlessly proclaiming truth and reason in a world crippled by political correctness and blind sentimentality. To others, Hitchens was a traitor who abandoned his radical roots in favor of jack-booted imperialism and  militarism. After all this time, the question remains: Who was Hitchens?

Born in Porstmouth, England, Hitchens first began his prolific career as a writer for a number of leftist magazines, eventually joining New Statesman in the early 70s, where he quickly made a name for himself as a fiery critic of the the Vietnam War. Hitchens would go on to become an acclaimed foreign correspondent, frequent contributor to The Nation and Vanity Fair, and unapologetic critic of most of the political establishment. No one- from Ronald Reagan to Bill Clinton, from Jerry Falwell to the royal family- escaped Hitchens’ unique blend of unimpeachable logic and acidic invectives. Hitchens made a name for himself in particular by viciously decrying Henry Kissinger, who he argued (not without cause) was a power-worshiping war criminal…

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9/11: Ten Years Later

I understand that there are people out there who believe that it’s
irreverent and disrespectful to refer to what happened to the World Trade Centre with an abbreviation, but the news has deemed it an acceptable term, so I have no qualms in doing so.

To further preface this post, I am a Canadian. More than that, I spent roughly half my life in Asia, so I don’t have the deep emotional connections to the event that many of you probably do. I watched the replays of the towers fall while in the Philippines, an ocean away.

I was deeply saddened and shocked by what occurred, but didn’t think much about it again until about two years ago, when I heard about what was being done with the remains of the towers. Right now there is a battleship named The USS New York, a Navy assault ship built with steel from the World Trade Centre. As a symbol it certainly holds a different viewpoint when it comes to beating swords into ploughshares.

Much more recently I stumbled upon the infographic on the right. It goes into detail about the new World Trade Centre, and the awe-inspiring ideas behind it.

The new building will be 1,776 feet, the tallest in the US. While the exact height is representative of the years of the country’s independence, I think it represents more than that. The USS New York is the remnants of a tragedy forged into a weapon. The new World Trade Centre may only be 49 feet taller than the former, but the fact that it stands that much taller communicates America’s fearlessness and audacity; if you knock it down we will rebuild it bigger.

There’s quite a bit of news all over the place about memorial services, and servicemen and servicewomen not being able to attend due to “important” people being there, but that’s for other, more well-researched articles. The point I’m trying to make is that ten years ago catastrophe occurred, and since then a nation has been trying to get back on its feet. The whole world is paying close attention to see how exactly America will choose move forward.