Monday, September 11, 2006

A Moment For America

Philadelphia Daily News requests silent remembrance.

In Israel, on April 16, to mark Holocaust Memorial Day, everything stops for two minutes at 11 a.m., just as it stops at sundown the night before. The "silent devotion" freezes pedestrians, all traffic, all work. Nothing moves as people stand with their heads bowed.

Likewise, everything stops in Turkey at 9:05 a.m. for a full minute every Nov. 10 to mark the 1938 death of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the father of modern Turkey. These are solemn, national tributes.

It's too late for this year, but for next year Congress can enact an absolute, total cessation of everything for a full minute, starting at 8:46 a.m. every Sept. 11, until the war on terror is won. That won't come in our lifetime.

Each year, 8:46 a.m. on Sept. 11 should start a minute of national mourning, of national remembrance, but most especially national rededication to the momentous and unavoidable task we have before us - to defeat those who fly airplanes into buildings, blow up buses, bomb weddings, behead civilians.

It is not too much to ask Americans for one minute a year to turn off computers, stop their cars, switch off TVs, put down their Starbucks cups, stop shopping Wal-Mart, to stand silent among our fellows, to promise we will never forget - and we will triumph, whatever the cost.

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