Saturday 10 December 2016

Shock and awe of 9/11 are still with us as US on brink again

Published 10/09/2013 | 05:00

The World Trade Centre in flames on September 11, 2001
The World Trade Centre in flames on September 11, 2001

Tomorrow is the 12th anniversary of 9/11, the events that changed America forever and began a new narrative in world affairs which is still playing out.

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A dramatic cast of characters has loomed large in the 'perpetual Somme' waged since then. Osama bin Laden and al-Qa'ida; the Taliban, Saddam Hussein and Gaddafi are gone or vanquished.

The 'Arab Spring', ostensibly a popular revolution against despotic regimes has been a mixed blessing with uncertain outcomes. Egypt is in turmoil. Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad's alleged use of chemical weapons on August 21 against civilians and armed opposition forces, and the potential response of western powers, is just the latest episode in a long-running saga flowing from that terrible day.

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