Today In History: 9/11


Brandon Ahn, Writer

On this day in history, 19 men affiliated with the terrorist organization known as al-Qaeda hijacked American Airlines Flight 11, American Airlines 77, United 175, and United 93. Three of these planes would go onto fly into buildings that were seen as significant symbols of America. This single event would bring changes to aviation with more security measures, as well as rally the nation in a call for vengeance that would result in two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Between 6:45 and 7:00 AM, five hijackers checked in at Logan International Airport and boarded American Airlines Flight 11. The plane took off on schedule at 8:00 AM and was the first to be hijacked at around 8:14. According to The 9/11 Commission, one of the hijackers sent out a transmission saying: “Everything will be okay. If you try to make any moves, you’ll endanger yourself and the airplane. Just stay quiet.”

Flight 11 eventually crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 AM.  United Airlines Flight 175 was slightly delayed and was the second plane to be hijacked at between 8:42 and 8:46 AM.  The plane hit the South Tower of the World Trade Center at 9:03 AM.  American Airlines Flight 77 took off at 8:20 AM after a delay and was hijacked between 8:51 and 8:54. Roughly 40 minutes later Flight 77 hit the Pentagon at 9:37 AM. United Airlines Flight 93 was the last plane to take off after a delay due to the heavy air traffic at the time. United 93 took off 25 minutes late at 8:42 AM and was hijacked at 9:28 AM. United 93 was unique in that it took an unusually long time to hijack and the passengers had learned about the previous hijackings. The passengers started a revolt and at 10:17 AM United 93 crashed into in empty field in Pennsylvania.

Ever since those attacks, new safety measures have been implemented to try and curb future attacks. These measures include more security, an increased presence in air marshals, and increased cooperation with intelligence. However, the immediate effects of 9/11 attacks would be a cry of vengeance across the U.S. and a revival of patriotism. These events would be used to justify two shaky wars in Afghanistan and Iraq which would go on to further entangle the US in Middle Eastern affairs.