It has been two decades since four hijacked planes crashed in New York, Washington DC and Pennsylvania, killing nearly 3,000 people and destroying countless lives. RFE / RL’s David Kofi looks at this horrific moment in the sun on Friday morning, what France responded to – and the final rift in relations between Paris and Washington.
It was noon when the first images of the bombed World Trade Center hit television screens in France. It was a wonderful September day in the French capital, as life in Paris was slowly returning to normal after the summer holidays.
Many in Paris, including me, were preparing for a happy autumn weekend. After a long Friday lunch with co-workers at the 13th Arrondissement, the owner came out of the shell.
“Have you seen it? It’s unbelievable. You have to see it,” said Ali, the Algerian-born proprietor of Cafe Albert, who introduced us to his English-speaking clients “Les Anglos” from an internet startup. But knew well. Down the road
When we followed him into the bar to see the horrible scene, another plane crashed into tower number two. It was not an accident. It was something very, very different.
It was the JFK moment of our generation.
We all know where we were when the Domino of Attacks ran on CNN. Websites crashed, phone networks crashed. And when the dust began to settle by September 10, 2001, there was a wave of distrust on the planet several times.
France stands with the United States.
The day after tomorrow , World Translated this feeling of shock into sympathy now with the headline: “We are all Americans.“We are all Americans. Flowers were laid in front of the US Embassy in Place de la Concorde, while hundreds gathered at Notre Dame Cathedral to light candles and sing The Star Spangled Banner.
While subsequent terrorist attacks have left indelible marks – from Atocha in Madrid, 7/7 in London and a few in Paris since 13 November 2015 – 9/11 is a painful example. Terrorism on a large scale.
Within a week of the attacks, then-President Jack Chirac was the first foreign head of state to meet with George W. Bush. Popularly surveyed disaster. “Ground Zero” in the helicopter
Chirac remarked: “Today it is New York that is tragically affected, but tomorrow it could be Paris, Berlin, London.”
France immediately backed him. US invasion of Afghanistan Later this year, in support of the US-led mission to overthrow the Taliban government, which had been in power for five years. Al Qaeda terrorist network A safe haven for training and planning their attacks. The mission for France was very simple: get Osama bin Laden and get rid of him. International terrorism.
The great rift in the Trans-Atlantic.
But after the initial expulsion of Bush’s French supportThe war on terror.Trans-Atlantic relations between Paris and Washington were affected when France opposed US intervention in Iraq in 2003.
One after another Passionate speech A wave of American contempt for everything spread on the streets of the French United States by French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin at the UN Security Council.
In the United States, Francophobia has taken a sharp turn. Only “Freedom Fries“Lunch was to be served in the US House of Representatives for lunch, just” freedom toast “for breakfast. French restaurants went out of business, many people were openly attacked. A massive patriotic show. In, French wine and wine were poured into open gutters with pride.
In response to this wave of anti-French sentiment, commentators in France compared the US invasion of Iraq to Adolf Hitler’s claim that the invasion Czechoslovakia And Poland There were “precautionary strikes.”
Watch and share this short-yet-incredibly revealing clip of Wesley Clark, a former four-star general in the U.S. military, on the 20th anniversary of 9/11: pic.twitter.com/YVZG6b82th.
– Human Rights Watch Watcher (queeralamode) September 9, 2021.
The rise of international jihad after 9/11
Even on the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, old battles between the two allies remain, although the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have eroded anti-French sentiment, which is stronger than ever.
Writing on September 11, 2016, then-President Francois Hollande suggested this. France was in turmoil. Continued from the US response to 9/11
“That day, we were all Americans,” Hollande posted on Facebook. He added that “the response of the US administration to these attacks … far from eliminating this threat, has extended it to a wider area.”
Hollande was sharply criticized when the Islamic State militant group rose from the ashes of defeat in Iraq and became the mastermind of terrorist attacks on French soil. 2015 attacks across Paris. In which 130 people were killed.
However, twenty years later, we can expect to recall further measurements of 9/11 in France, as Western powers failed to intervene in Afghanistan, the Taliban returned to power and Rapid rise in international terrorism Since 2001.