Yesterday, September 11, our nation was assaulted in a vicious, well-planned and cold-blooded act of mass murder.
Many have compared these horrible acts with Pearl Harbor. Certainly, our shock, horror and anger are similar and both acts were planned with military precision.
But Pearl Harbor was an open act of war against military targets by a clearly identified aggressor. Yesterday's attacks were an assassin's strike against innocent men, women and children, chosen as victims solely because they were Americans.
We are deeply angered and properly outraged by these acts, as we were on December 7, 1941. But now is the time for calm and deliberate, thoughtful counter steps to protect our nation and to end this deadly threat.
We should take special care not to repeat the mistakes of 1942. Many Americans of Japanese ancestry were interned during the Second World War. Those interned never committed a sabotage of any sort, and finally the federal judiciary recognized that. In fact, many Japanese-Americans joined the Army and served our nation with great skill and courage. Those who served in the 442nd Regimental Combat Team in Italy and Europe were the most decorated unit in the United States Army. That should teach us to guard against unthinking stereotypes and prejudice.
We should not think that those who may look like our enemies are in fact allied or even sympathetic to those who are behind these despicable actions.
We should be working with NATO, the Arab world, our Gulf War allies and those who believe in democracy must stand with us. Those who reject our call to arms against terrorism must not receive support from us.
It's a time to act.
1st Session H.J.Res. 61/S.J.Res.22
Expressing the sense of the Congress regarding the terrorist attacks launched against the United States on September 11, 2001.
Whereas on September 11, 2001, terrorists hijacked and destroyed four civilian aircraft, crashing two of them into the towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, and a third into the Pentagon outside Washington, D.C.;
Whereas thousands of innocent Americans were killed and injured as a result of these attacks, including the passengers and crew of the four aircraft, workers in the World Trade Center and in the Pentagon, rescue workers, and bystanders;
Whereas these attacks destroyed both towers of the World Trade Center, as well as adjacent buildings, and seriously damaged the Pentagon; and
Whereas these attacks were by far the deadliest terrorist attacks ever launched against the United States, and, by targeting symbols of American strength and success, clearly were intended to intimidate our Nation and weaken its resolve: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Congress--
(1) condemns in the strongest possible terms the terrorists who planned and carried out the September 11, 2001, attacks against the United States, as well as their sponsors;
(2) extends its deepest condolences to the victims of these heinous and cowardly attacks, as well as to their families, friends, and loved ones;
(3) is certain that the people of the United States will stand united as our Nation begins the process of recovering and rebuilding in the aftermath of these tragic acts;
(4) commends the heroic actions of the rescue workers, volunteers, and State and local officials who responded to these tragic events with courage, determination, and skill;
(5) declares that these premeditated attacks struck not only at the people of the United States, but also at the symbols and structures of our economic and military strength, and that the United States is entitled to respond under international law;
(6) thanks those foreign leaders and individuals who have expressed solidarity with the United States in the aftermath of the attacks, and asks them to continue to stand with the United States in the war against international terrorism;
(7) commits to support increased resources in the war to eradicate terrorism;
(8) supports the determination of the President, in close consultation with the Congress, to punish the perpetrators of these attacks, as well as their sponsors; and
(9) declares that --
(A) when the Congress adjourns on this legislative day, it stands adjourned out of respect to the victims of the terrorist attacks; and
(B) September 12, 2001, shall be a national day of unity and mourning.