tv K Pres. Biden Speaks at 911 Remembrance Ceremony at Pentagon CSPAN September 11, 2022 2:03pm-3:13pm EDT
>> the president of the united states accompanied by the secretary of defense lloyd austin. the chairman of the joint chief of staff, mark milley, and they chaplain of the military district of washington. ♪ >> please remain standing for the national anthem performed by the band directed by the kernel and the joint chorus directed by lt. col. randall patel.
>> i invite you to pray with me on this solemn occasion. mighty god, we thank you for your love and your grace. thank you for being here with us today in your mighty name, amen. ladies and gentlemen, i invite you to enjoy a moment of silence with us as we remember our fallen. 21 years ago today, in this very place.
women, and children in the name of their warped ideologies. it started out as a normal day here at the pentagon, it changed at 0937 hours. on the sacred ground were we now stand, americans were viciously slaughtered, 125 in the pentagon and 79 passengers and crew on flight 77. they ranged in age from three-71 years old. the families of those killed and our entire nation will remember the pain of this day. it was not an attack on the passengers and crew aboard the aircraft, not just an attack on new york city or washington dc
or pennsylvania. it was an attack on our nation as a whole. the freedom of this nation. an attack on who we are, and what we represent. the terrorists believed they could destroy us. destroy our values. the values that died this nation. terror will never destroy us. it will never destroy the ideas that is america. the idea that we are all americans, regardless of where we came from or what our last name is. regardless of the caller of our skin or the -- color of our skin , male or female, this was an attack on all of us. because we are born free and
equal. that freedom is worth fighting for. since 9/11, that is what 3 million of us did. we wore the cloth of our nation. we deployed to engage the enemy of our country to protect and defend the principles that came under attack this day 21 years ago. each of you sacrificed to defend our country and its values. each of you did your duty. each of you deserves our nation's eternal gratitude. on this day, we gather here to honor the fallen of 9/11. to remember and reflect and reaffirm our resolve. to support, and defend the idea and reality that is america. but which those brave souls gave
their last full measure of devotion. hate and terror will never destroy the strength of america. the ideas that are foundation and the values of the pillars of this great nation. it is my honor to introduce the secretary of defense, the honorable lloyd james austin the third. >> thank you. mr. president, ladies and gentlemen, thank you all for being here. it is indeed an honor to be joined by family members of the fallen, survivors, and first responders. to those whose loved ones were so crudely taken, i would offer
my deepest condolences. so does the entire department of defense. we know that these moments of tribute are not easy. note know the resilience that you have shown over these long years. it gives us all strength. thank you. today we stand together to remember a day of horror and loss. a day where terrorists murdered 2977 innocent souls. including 184 people here at the pentagon. we also remember a day of monumental courage and capacity.
a day or people responded to people and fanaticism with goodness and generosity. a day that called forth the terrorism that dwells in americans across this land. many of those acts of bravery happened right where we are standing. our colleagues at the pentagon wrist did pop own safety to rescue their teammates. they moved rubble with their bare hands. they cleaned wounds with bottled water. they used damp t-shirts as facemasks to shield against the smoke so that they could keep on helping a little longer. one woman was going across the second floor trying to escape. she came across a coworker who
had been in the same conference room when the plane hit. as a coworker did not think she could keep on going. get on my back, the woman said. i will carry you. she did. she got them both to safety. get all my back, -- it on my back, and i will carry you. that is the spirit of the people in this building and those who responded on the scene. they showed compassion, courage, and common purpose. in the days and months after the attack, ordinary americans volunteered in an extraordinary way to help however they could. including millions who raise their hands to serve in the u.s. military. today, i want to thank our men and women in uniform as well as
the families who make their service possible. your sacrifices ensure that america always stands by our freedoms and our citizens. just over one year ago, america's war in afghanistan came to an end. we continue our relentless focus on combating terrorist threats to our nation. earlier this summer at the united states delivered justice to the leader of al qaeda. make no mistake, america's determination to keep our country safe will never waver. neither will america's determination to bring justice to those who attacked our citizens. surrounding us today are 184
steel benches. each bearing the name of a person murdered in the attack on the pentagon. every night, 184 lights come on, lining up each bench. just as the people who they honor went up the lives of those who loved them. those lights remind us on our darkest days, the american spirit still shines. if shines through the bravery of our first responders -- it shines through the bravery of our first responders. the bravery of the heartbroken, it shines through the valor of our troops. it shines through the sacrifice of all of those who step up to defend the united states. today, let us renew our dedication to facing the test of
tomorrow as our heroes did. with compassion for one another, with love for our great republic , and with devotion to our democracy. we will always remember. we will always stand guard over this democracy. we will always seek to be worthy of those who we lost. as president biden has said, from the deepest depth of our worst crises, we have risen to our tower heights. ladies and gentlemen, our president deeply cares about the men and women of the united states military. our president believes in our strength. it guides us in times of trial
and in the resilience of the american spirit. even at moments of great challenge. ladies and gentlemen, it is my honor to introduce the president of the united states. >> to all of the families and loved ones who still feel the ache that missing piece of your soul, i am honored to be here with you once more to share this solemn right of remembrance. reflect on all that was lost in the fire and ash on that terrible september morning.
we all find ourselves able to respond. 21 years ago, we still kept our promise. never forget. we will keep the memory of all of those precious lives stolen from us. 2977 at ground zero in new york, pennsylvania, 184 of them here at the pentagon. i know through those of you who have lost someone, 21 years is a lifetime and no time at all. it was good to remember, these memories help us heal. it can also put up the hurt, take us back to that moment when the grief was so raw. you think of everything, everything they could have done if they had a little bit more
time. experiences you missed together, dreams, they never got to fulfill or realize. i remember a message sent to the american people from when elizabeth -- queen elizabeth on 9/11. her ambassador read a prayer in st. thomas church in new york where she reminded us grief is the price we pay for love. grief is the price we pay for love. that is the grief you have all experienced. on this day, when it feels so great, we are holding all of you close to our hearts. terror struck us that brilliant blue morning, the air filled with smoke and then came the
sirens and the stories. stories of those we lost, of incredible heroism from the terrible day. the american story, the american history itself changed that day. what we did change, what we will not change, what we cannot change, never will, is the character of this nation that the terrorists thought they could wound. what is that character? the character of sacrifice and love. generosity and grace, strength and resilience. the crucible of 9/11 and the days and months that followed, we saw what stuff america is made of. think of all of your loved ones, particularly those on that flight. ordinary citizens who said we
will not let this stand. risked and lost their lives and so other people would not die. firefighters who stood on the pile from months amid the twisted steel and broken concrete slabs, breathing the toxins of ash that damage their health. refusing to stop the search through the destruction. they never stopped. they would not. we learned about the extraordinary courage and resolve as i said for the passengers on board flight 93 who understood that they were living -- there were in the open of a new war and chose to fight back. not professionals, fight back,
sacrificing themselves. refusing to let their plane used as a weapon against even more innocents. here at the pentagon who is the scene of a terrorist attack and the command center for our response to protect the american people. so many heroes were made here. so many of your loved ones were those heroes. it began almost immediately. civilians and service members, leaping into action as the walls collapsed and the roof began to crumble. they raced into the breach between the fourth and fifth corridor's. an impact created by the fire raised twice the height of this building. i remember, i was walking up to my office and i could see the smoke and flames.
they were heroes. they went back into those soaring flames to save their teammates. firefighters battled blazes of jet fuel long into the night. pushing past rounds of exhaustion. pentagon staff showed up to work on the 12th, more determined than ever to keep their country secure. they said when i was up at 9/11, we will follow them to the gates of hell to be sure that they are not able to continue. millions of young men and women from across the nation responded to 9/11 with courage and resolve. signing up to defend our constitution and join the greatest fighting force in the history of the world. in the years since 9/11, hundreds of thousands of american troops served in
afghanistan and iraq and so many other places to deny terrorists a safe haven and protect the american people. our veterans, our gold star families, all of the caregivers and loved ones who sacrificed so much for our nation, we owe you. we owe you an incredible, incredible debt. a debt that can never be repaid but will never fail to meet the sacred obligation to you. and to never, ever, ever forget all that has changed over the last 21 years. the enduring resolve of the american people to defend ourselves against those who would seek us harm and deliver justice to those responsible for
the attacks against our people has never once faltered. it took 10 years to hunt down and kill osama bin laden, but we did. this summer, i authorized a successful strike on the man who bin laden was the leader of al qaeda. we will not rest. we will never forget. we will never give up. and now he can never again threaten the american people. 20 years after afghanistan is over. our intelligence, defense and counterterrorism professionals, and the building behind me and across the government, continue their vigilance against terrorist threats that have evolved and spread to new regions of the world. we will continue to monitor and disrupt terrorist activities wherever we find them, wherever
they exist, and we will never hesitate to do what is necessary to defend the american people. what was destroyed, we have repaired. what was threatened, we fortified. what was attacked, the indomitable spirit has never wavered. we raised monuments and memorials to the citizens whose blood sacrificed on these grounds and in shanksville and ground zero to keep touch of the memory, to keep it bright throughout the decades that come. when future generations come here to sit in the shade of the maple trees that shelter the memorial grown tall and strong with passing years, they will find the names of patriots. they will feel the connection that will come to pass september 11, 2001, and how our country was forever changed.
i hope that they will think about all those heroes. ordinary americans responding in extraordinary and unexpected ways. i hope we will remember amidst these dark days we dug deep, we cared for each other, and we came together. you know, we regained the light by reaching out to one another and finding something all too rare, a true sense of national unity. to me, that is the greatest lesson of september 11. not that we will never again face a setback. but in a moment of great unity we also had to face down the worst impulses, fear, violence,
recrimination against muslim americans as well as americans of middle eastern heritage. the push and pull of all that makes us human. there is a nation that cannot accomplish, there is nothing this nation cannot accomplish, when we stand together and defend with all our hearts that what makes us unique in the world -- our democracy. we are not only a nation based on principles but based on an idea. we are the most unique nation in the world. an idea that everyone is created equal and should be treated equally throughout their lives. we do not always live up to it. that is what makes us strong. that is what makes us who we are. that is what those hijackers
most hoped to destroy when they targeted our buildings and our people. they failed. no terrorist could touch the wellspring of american power. it is up to all of us to keep it safe on behalf of all those we lost 21 years ago. on behalf of those who have given their souls to the cause of this nation every day since. that is a job for all of us. it is not enough to gather and remember each september 11 those we lost two decades ago. on this day it is not about the past, it is about the future. we have an obligation, a duty, a responsibility to defend, preserve and protect our democracy. the very democracy that guarantees the right to freedom that those terrorists on 9/11 sought to bury in the burning fire and smoke ash. that takes commitment on the
part of all of us. dedication, hard work, every day, the american democracy depends on the habits of the heart, we the people. that is how our constitution -- we the people. the habits of the hearts of we the people. it is not enough to stand up to democracy once a year or every now and then. something we have to do every single day. this is a day not only to remember but a day of renewal and resolve for each and every american. our devotion to this country, the principles it embodies, to our democracy, that is who we owe those remembered today. that is what we owe one another and that is what we owe future
generations to come. i have no doubt we will do this. we will meet this significant responsibility. we will secure our democracy together as one america, the united states of america. that is who we are. that is who your loved ones were and why they gave so much. thank you. may god bless you all and may god honor the members of the military we lost and all those we lost here on 9/11. may god protect our troops. >> ladies and gentlemen, please stand for the singing of "god bless america."
>> ♪ god bless america, land that i love ♪ ♪ stand beside her and guide her ♪ ♪ through the night with the light from above ♪ ♪ from the mountains to the prairies ♪ ♪ to the oceans white with foam ♪ ♪ god bless america, my home sweet home ♪ ♪ from the mountains to the prairies ♪ ♪ to the oceans white with foam ♪ ♪ god bless america, my home sweet home ♪ ♪ god bless america, my home
sweet home ♪ ♪ ♪ >> can we pray together before we leave? almighty and sovereign god, i do believe america is a beautiful place. and god, that you are here with us. you shower down not just rain from heaven above, but you shower down upon us love, mercy, forgiveness, and that amazing grace that we sing about. now as we exchange this hallowed ground, this place for the road ahead and all that life brings
our way, god, provide peace for those that grieve the loss of someone close or someone dear to their heart. help us all to walk worthy of your presence and your protection. the very blessings for which we ask once again today. you know our hearts and our desire, our hope that we can all live in peace. god, be with our service members and all of our civil servants. protect them as they stand with courage and determination in harm's way around the globe. give us peace that only comes from you in your holy name and the power of your holy spirit, i pray. amen. >> ladies and gentlemen, this concludes today's ceremony.