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Terrorist Attacks on America

Reader Comments

"We must evolve for all human conflict a method that rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation.
The foundation of such a method is love."
--Martin Luther King, Jr.

(Quote submitted by reader Rochelle, Massachusetts)

We received many comments from around the world in response to the events of September 11, 2001, and the Special Issues we published. What follows is just a sample of the comments we've received, either via our Comments address or (after getting the author's permission) via the HeroTalk discussion group.

They were sorted and formatted for these pages by a good HeroicStories friend, Leo -- a reader in Washington state. Leo told his friends about the letters, saying "If you doubt that we are resilient, if you doubt that we have support from around the world, or if you doubt that real people everywhere don't share the pain of this week's events, take a few minutes and read their comments. Note, particularly, the large number of comments that came in from outside the U.S. Most of you who know me know that I don't forward much of anything other than the occasional bit of humor, and that I enjoy debunking and educating people on urban legends, virus hoaxes and chain email. This is different. I encourage you to spread this one around." Indeed, please do "spread this one around". Send the URL of this page, or the Special Issues. Jokes are fun; a renewed faith in humanity for those shaken by the events of 11 September is essential.

In addition to the comments here, if you doubt at all that the world shares our pain, visit the following site -- a collection of pictures of people around the world honoring our loss. It's incredible. http://www.dd.org/world-mourns/

  • I am a teacher in New Jersey and I started to cry when I read the comments you printed from people in other countries. North Jersey has been in turmoil for days helping out with the tragic loss in NYC. This has and will disrupt our daily lives for many months. More people travel into Manhattan every day to work than live in the entire state of Montana -- over 400,000. Almost half of these people are from New Jersey and we are really suffering as we wait for a list of people that can't be found. They are our neighbors, our friends, our children and parents. You don't know what it means to hear these kind words from people from other countries after seeing adults and children shooting guns into the air, giving the sign for victory and celebrating after this tragedy. Thank you so much for making us feel better. --Linda, New Jersey

  • I just had to write to thank the readers from other countries who wrote in support of Americans. After watching the horror unfold yesterday, we then had to see Palestians dancing in the streets in joy celebrating the horrific murder of thousands of our innocent fellow American citizens. Hearing sympathic support from other countries helps heal that wound. And my thanks to you for both your efforts in putting out an inspiring newsletter and in your volunteerism with the Red Cross. --Sally, Minnesota

  • I've just finished reading the wonderful, supportive letters from around the world. It helps ever so much to realize we are not alone. --Linda, Colorado

  • I am blessed as an American tonight. After reading the comments submitted by readers from around the globe, expressing their sympathy and support, I feel things are brighter in the world. Our own media is too busy and focused at this time to tell us what the worldwide reaction is to our tragedy (at least, I haven't seen any reports like that). It lifts my spirits to hear from other HS subscribers. --Kelley, Delaware

  • I sit and read HS with my girlfriend every chance I get because it is heartwarming and comforting to know that there are good people left in the world. After reading the comments made from other readers in various countries around the world we were moved to tears. I amazed how much support and love is out there in the world. My personal grief is lessened by the outpouring of support given by your readers. While my friends and family are safe at home, my girlfriend still has a cousin who is unnaccounted for among the WTC employees. My eternal gratitude and love goes out to those who give their support, love, prayers and admiration to America for the way we are dealing with this tragedy. I am also grateful that HS is putting out these postings and comments made by so many concerned readers because it is heart lifting to know that in the face of repugnance, ignorance and cruelty that there is so much humanity, decency, compassion and love in the world. --Todd and Sharyn, Maryland

  • I have been personally touched by the recent events in America. I lost an uncle and a great aunt at the Pentagon. I still have several friends that are unaccounted for... my heart sinks with saddness. I am sadden by the fact America has been hurt. But I honestly must say that receiving the email from HeroicStories has really helped. Hearing the great support from all over the world brings tears to my eyes, tears mixed with pride, sadness and joy. I would like to thank so very much everyone from everywhere for the kind words and respect that they send to us in America. I would like to thank my fellow Americans for joining together in such a time of sorrow. --Lesa, Maine

More of the comments we've received from our readers around the world:

  • Thank you for your message of hope today. Words can not express the sorrow I feel for those who were murdered today and their families. --Patricia, Canada

  • The Merchants Of Chaos are running rampant, and you just remind us that they are a great minority; that most of us are decent people. Thank you! --Lisa, United Kingdom

  • Today ... was unbelievable. You will survive as a nation but the thoughts of the world are with those who died and the survivors. I am sure that people all over the world will be praying for the survivors and the families of those who died. As an atheist I won't be praying but am thinking of you all and you have my sympathy. --Neil, United Kingdom

  • We're a little remote here in Perth, Western Australia, but be assured we feel the horror of these senseless acts as much as you do. --Chris, Australia

  • I know no one in the USA other than my email friends. My workplace is hushed this morning, people are murmuring in shocked groups and few can concentrate on work. Please know that our hearts and prayers are with all Americans in this grim time. Thank you for your note to HeroicStories subscribers. You are right -- the world must be strong in the face of this unspeakable evil. I will try to help by giving to our own Red Cross, who I know will be supporting their US counterparts. Know that your friends are with you, in spirit though we can't be there in person. --Anne, Australia

  • I would like to use you to relay my condolences to the American people (You are the only American site I subscribe to). You are the country I would like South Africa to aspire to be. Although you have suffered one of the most tragic days in World history I must tell you this: I am very impressed by the way you all have handled this. I wish I could be there to help but all I can do is to try and convince people here that irrespective of nationality no one deserves what you've got. God bless America --Lourens, South Africa

  • This is a small note to all Americans; I was watching CNN as the second plane crashed into the twin towers yesterday. I was so stunned that I actually didn't realise what I had just witnessed, and was horrified as the rest of this miserable tragedy unfolded. I just want to say that my prayers are with you all; I also pray that justice is swift. Condolences to all that have lost someone special. --Gary, South Africa

  • My heart goes out to those millions of people who today have been personally affected by yesterday's attacks. I have many friends in New York and Washington; like most people here, when I wasn't glued to the television, I was on the phone, fruitlessly trying to get through to check they were okay (one at least worked at the Pentagon; yesterday was the day she started jury duty.) You have our prayers and our very best wishes. I wish I could say more. --Jo, United Kingdom

  • Firstly I would like to send my heartfelt commiserations to the American Nation. You are not alone in this. I am sure I speak for a lot more than just my fellow countrymen when I say our prayers and thoughts are with you. May your pain and suffering pass onto me so you may expedite your healing process. Secondly, pray that you feel no hatred towards those who have committed this heinous crime against humanity, for this spectacle affects more than just America. --Nick, Zimbabwe

  • Like your other readers or "commentators", I also want to express my deepest sympathy to those whose loved ones perished in yesterday's unbelievable disaster. Yes, these terrorists are Cowards and worse still, they are Liars. Why not at least admit it? I have heard of the Islamic hatred against the Americans for years. Why would they hate a democratic nation? I think envy and jealousy are involved. --Eva, Scotland

  • I am working for an American pharmaceutical company in Singapore. Yesterday was the official opening of our plant but atmosphere was sombre. Our CEO who flew in from US last Tuesday, called for a moment of silence in place of a supposed celebration. Our hearts goes out to you. Our American counterparts in New Jersey extended all possible help and medication for the disaster victims. We really hope to help in other ways. Our local TV channels have been replaced with news and updates of the situation back in NYC. We have forums about the motives of the attacks. We feel for you... deeply. We hope Americans stands united and will not fall for speculations of media from unreliable sources. Do not be biased against those who are Muslims or Arabs. The same religion does not confer the same thoughts. --Lisa, Singapore

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  • America, I stand with you and we pray with you in this time of need. Know that you have friends at this end of the world who are praying for you and who are standing with you to fight this. We support you all and we cry with you and we feel your pain. We will stand together with you and fight this with you and we shall unite with you to make this bond stronger and able to fight against all evils. Although I do not know any of you, my heart goes out to you all and to the victims, families, friends, all the care workers and givers, policemen, firefighters, EMS and all who are involved. My thoughts and prayers are with you all and know that you are not alone in this. There is light at the end of the tunnel and every day is one step closer to overcoming all of this and we can do it together and with God. I pray for all of America and it's people. May God bless you all and be with you all. If I could just reach out my hand and touch each one of you I would but because I am so far away, please accept my prayers as my extended hand. God bless America and God be with you all. --Dawn, South Africa

  • Hang on. In a sense we all over the world have been attacked too. From here at this moment we can only help you with our hearts, but they are out towards your people. --Wilson, Brazil

  • So sorry for such a tragic thing to happen. United State, please be strong, you have the world to support you. Americans, you are the strongest people in the world -- emotionally, spiritually and physically. Please accept my condolences. Whoever has done this will come to a bitter end and a terrible death as what we, Singaporeans believe. I am wondering if I can donate my blood in Red Cross Singapore to help in this matter? --Lina, Singapore
Donating blood helps everywhere.
  • Thank you for HeroicStories, and for all the reminders of good that exist still in the hearts of human beings. We in Northern Ireland have been horrified and humbled by the terrible attacks this week, and we stand with you in the rubble of broken lives and families. We weep with you and are praying with you through this terrible time. --Cheryl, Ireland

  • It was Tuesday evening here in Malaysia. I was at a church friend's place for dinner, and we had just finished a game when my dad called, saying "Turn on CNN!" The eight of us watched horrified as the the 2nd tower collapsed, live, on the CNN broadcast. What started out as dinner and games ended as a prayer meeting. I'm sure similar scenes were repeated all over the world. We're praying for you, America. --Ian, Malaysia

  • Several of my friends and myself were shattered by the recent events in New York. We could not understand why something that had happened so far away could have such a profound effect on us. We have shed gallons of tears and feel a genuine fear knowing that something so terrible could happen in a civilised world. I think that this vicious act will have a long lasting effect on people in every country. A young man called up the morning radio crew on the station that I listen to -- he broke down in tears for the same reason: [wanting to know] Why has this affected me so deeply? He asked that all the people driving to work that morning turn on their headlights as a mark of respect for the dead and injured and to those risking their own lives trying to save others. The station was inundated with calls from drivers saying that headlights were being turned on all over Sydney and other callers rang in to let this guy know that he was not alone in feeling this way and that he had done a great thing with his request. Keep up the great work with HeroicStories. --Susan, Australia

  • Reader Marla, Ohio sends an item she found on the web: "We are in Zababdeh, safe and sound. We have been watching the television with disbelief and horror for the past several hours. During that time, many of our friends and neighbors here have expressed their concern and grief for the enormous tragedies today in the United States. Like us, they are stunned by the unfathomable loss, and we all wait in trepidation for the final tallies and for the outpouring of anger that will surely follow. We -- and they -- are also deeply saddened by the reports of Palestinians celebrating -- not only because of the ugliness and wrongness of that response, but also because it runs so counter to the character of the people here whom we have come to know and love. Despite our many differences (cultural, linguistic, religious, political...), we are held together by a common humanity that today shares a broken heart. Please know that the thoughts and prayers of many Palestinians are with those touched by the horror of today. As are ours. --Elizabeth and Marthame, Palestine" (from http://come.to/zababdeh)
One of the common concerns many shared with us is that of the possibility of mindless retribution against Muslim or Arab people.
  • As an Arab-American, I fear the backlash against Arabs and Muslims in the U.S. and around the world. Even though no one yet knows who is responsible for the attacks, the media is already pointing to Muslims. This is similar to the aftermath after the Oklahoma City bombing, when Arabs and Muslims came under physical and verbal attack, and many mosques in the U.S. were burned. I would have hoped that the media, government and American populace would've learned from that experience to not judge without evidence. Unfortunately, that lesson didn't seem to take hold. If you have the chance, I would appreciate it if you reminded your readers that we witnessed a terrible, unspeakable tragedy today and that we do not need to further that tragedy by categorically villifying all Arabs and Muslims. --Nabeel, California

  • Today I took the flag given to me after my father's death and hung it from my balcony. I live in a complex that is mostly Hindi/Muslum people. Given my contact with them in the 12 years I've lived in my diverse environment, I have no doubt of their sympathy and empathy. --Casey, California

  • Thank you so much Randy for pointing out in your Special Edition that we must "Relax when you see an Arab; even if Arab terrorists did this, most Arabs will be ashamed of their brothers for what happened. Hate is not the answer to the problems of the world, and it won't be the answer to this event." Already, Arab Americans are receiving threatening phone calls, and being the recipients of other such harassment. I must take issue with the media for helping this along. When they first showed scenes of jubilation on the Bank, the television journalist was careful to point out that this was happening in one street corner, but since then, we have been led to believe that such scenes are common all over the Middle East. Let us hold on to our sanity in the face of an insane act! --Violeta, Australia

  • I want to thank you for writing such a wonderful newsletter. I am deeply affected by the events this week as are so many others. However, I am concerned and upset about certain things that I have witnessed since then. Gordon in Oklahoma touched upon one when he stated, "Religion is perverted to teach hatred." Just this afternoon, I saw scenes on TV of a Muslim Mosque with broken windows and frightened people. Are we reacting to the WTC in reasonable ways? Or, are we, at heart, just as responsible for the atrocities that happen around the world on a daily basis? --Lorraine, Oregon

  • I've been watching, along with the world, all the coverage of these horrifying events. I've been talking/emailing with my family and friends, and we've all been sad, angry, confused, and frightened. I've been comforted by words from people around the world, and by the great outpouring of volunteerism in our country. But my greatest fear has been that reprisals will be made against the many innocent Muslims who live not only in the Washington DC area, but around our country and the world, and what that will lead to. Watching the local Washington DC news last night (Sept. 12), I was disturbed to see that an Islamic center out in Herndon, VA (by Dulles Airport) had been vandalized -- hate statements spray-painted all over the hallways -- and an Islamic shop in Arlington, VA had bricks with hate messages wrapped around them thrown through the windows. Then they showed the inter-faith candlelight prayer vigil at George Washington University last night. It was an inter-faith service jointly organized by the students who lead the campus Islam, Christian, and Jewish communities and attended by so many people they spilled out into the streets. The President of the university said, with tears in his eyes, "It was the most beautiful thing I've seen in the 14 years I've been President of this university. I hope it sets an example for the rest of the country." Amen, brother. --Deborah, Maryland

  • I had been reading of the threats on Arab and Muslim Americans on the news and was feeling very upset when I came to the HeroTalk website and read how all of you were reacting and it made me feel better. I also recalled how many of my American friends had written to say they were praying for the safety of Muslims in their communities, and looking for ways to help protect the Muslims from vigilantes. And I came to realize that these American terrorists are also a small minority. Yes, I call those who attack Muslims in retaliation for this terrorists, for that is what they are -- just like the Muslim terrorists who kill Christians just because they are Christians, these American terrorists attack Muslims just because they are Muslims. It is the same thing, morally. And I am glad that 99% of Americans are not like that. You 99% just have to protect the Muslims from that 1%. --Ian, Malaysia

  • I was living in Dhahran in June 1996, and remember feeling the blast that destroyed the Khobar Towers. The next day at work, the mood was somber and grim. I recall several of my Saudi coworkers expressing their condolences to me, and their dismay that "guests" in their country would be treated in such a despicable manner. This past week, I was attending a convention in San Antonio. Needless to say, everyone was shocked and horrified by the tragic events of September 11. With the airports closed, many of us were also stranded. Several of the larger companies at the convention chartered buses to take people back home -- not just their employees, but anyone who needed a way to return home -- free of charge. I was on one of those buses, and returned home last night 22 hours after we left San Antonio. This morning, the first person I saw in the office was a Tunisian who is here working on a project with our company. He too, as my Saudi friends had done 5 years before, expressed his condolences and dismay. As you have demonstrated from the emails from all over the world, goodness exists in all nations, all races, and all religions. We can take some solace that even tragedies of such magnitude cannot extinguish the good in the world. --Gary, Colorado

  • I teach a class in the psychology of religion, and have written an essay about religious aspects of the terroristic act. In it, I describe both the role of religion in motivating the act, as well as the way that people find comfort in religion as they deal with the aftermath. My hope is that it provokes people to think about things more carefully, and that it facilitates our dialogue on important issues. You may find it interesting. Its URL is: http://www.psywww.com/psyrelig/fundamental.html. --Mike, Georgia
More comments from those affected around the United States:
  • As I was driving into work today, I saw a man running at a fairly quick pace up a main street. He was in his late 20s or early 30s, tall, athletically built, with short hair and wearing a muscle t-shirt and olive running shorts. He was carrying a large American flag (the size you would see used by a color-guard at a military facility). I found it eerie, but also compelling and even reassuring. It was if the man was saying, 'We are Americans, and terrorism will not defeat us.' I flicked my high-beam headlights at him to acknowledge that I had seen and understood what he was doing. He nodded slightly and kept running at the same quick pace, with the flag fluttering in the wind proudly behind him. Perhaps the best thing we can do is not cower in our homes. --Tom & Mary, Maryland

  • As a New Yorker I'd like to thank you for the thoughts and feelings you've directed towards NYC. I used to work at the WTC and many people I know still did as this morning. Out of about 40 people, I've been able to verify that 5 still with us. I suspect that the remainder are no longer numbered among the living -- their offices were above the collision sites. The wounds of today will be a long time healing, but your very appropriate re-issue will help. HeroicStories have entertained and spiritually uplifted me on numerous occaisons. Today was no exception. --Mike, New York

  • thank you for taking the time to speak about the truly important things concerning today's events. I am here, in Brooklyn, the eastern part, as far from the trade center as you can get. the smoke from the terrorist action today split an otherwise pure blue sky. Its yellow color and acrid smell reminding you of the enormity of the tragedy, while ash rained down. New Yorkers are a tough breed. We will be ok. But it is so comforting to know that others think of us in our time of need. --Charles, New York

  • I was beginning to wonder if something was wrong with me because I don't feel an intense desire to strike back. My mother is a flight attendant who was on stand-by in NYC when the crashes happened. We didn't know where she was and it terrified us. So I do understand, down to my heart of hearts, what people are going through and why they want to react. What I don't understand is why everyone wants to see blood spilled in return? I am a "red-blooded" American who was raised in an Air Force family, growing up on various Air Force Bases. This means that I'm extremely patriotic, but I do not want to bomb places where other civilians will die. I don't expect us to close our eyes, but I do expect us to act reasonably (yes, I know they didn't). Not to re-act, but to ACT. --Julie, location not given.

  • I work at the airport in Tulsa, OK. Today, I was sitting in a meeting when representatives of a local Girl Scout group began bringing in hundreds of sack lunches for the stranded travelers that were expected to descend on the airport for the resumption of travel that didn't happen today. What a magnificent gesture by these young girls. --Jim, Oklahoma

  • My list of heroes now includes those passengers aboard the flight that crashed in Pennsylvania. Knowing the right thing to do at such a critical moment and being able to do it are beyond admirable. By all appearances, they probably saved many many more lives by their attempt to regain control of their plane. My heart goes out to them and their families, and it reminds me that courage comes forth in many different ways. --Nannette, Georgia

  • I was raised in the South (Texas, to be exact) where many locals have their own preconceived notions about yankees and New Yorkers in particular. I was raised to believe that New Yorkers were loud, crass, rude and generally mean-spirited people. After moving to Delaware, just south of Philadelphia, I decided to visit New York City for the first time. I went there with my wife, preparing to be mugged and to fear everyone I met. Imagine my surprise when practically everyone I met was warm, friendly, and quick to help out lost tourists. My opinion of New York City was transformed to be the opposite of my prejudices. I've now been back to visit on multiple occasions and have enjoyed it every time. The last trip there, my wife and I visited the top of the World Trade Center and marvelled at the view, even taking some video footage of the event. They are memories we will always treasure. It saddens my heart greatly to think that some of those warm and friendly people on the staff that worked there and we met during our visit are no longer with us. --Robert, Delaware

  • I would like to remind folks of another aspect to the rescue efforts in NYC. There are many pets trapped in homes and apartments in the area surrounding the WTC. The ASPCA has set up a base camp to help rescue and treat those animals that can be recovered. They are accepting donations. You can mail your donation by sending a check to "The ASPCA Animal Disaster Relief Fund", 424 East 92nd Street, NY NY 10128. or call (212) 876-7700 ext. 4515 or 4516. Anyone wishing to can also make a secure donation online at their website at http://www.aspca.org/. --MJ, Georgia

  • "Retaliation Tactics For Average Americans" Ever since the events that transpired on Tuesday, September 11, average folks across this great nation have overwhelmingly responded to the terrible tragedies by aiding in whatever way they could. This shows that for all of our differences we can come together, uniting as one. As of late, I've also been hearing that many other people across the USA are feeling helpless and frustrated, not knowing how they can help. To them I say, live your lives as normally as possible. Go to work, religious services, shopping, sporting events, travel and yes, fly. By doing these routine things, we will be contributing to the economy and further strengthening our nation. We'll also be standing up to the cowards who hide behind terroristic acts, showing them that America's spirit and resolve will never be broken. We can also do simple things of great importance. We can comfort a stranger, hold a child's hand, share our feelings, say a prayer. Remind the people you encounter that we are all a part of this great nation, no matter our race, creed or national origin. As Americans we should not allow ourselves to be divided or scared into any type of submission. Together, as one, we will heal and overcome this attack on the American way of life. --Ben, New Jersey
Several readers commented on both the Red Cross, and the suggestion that we all donate blood, money or time:
  • If you could please get the word out that platelets are also needed, as well as whole blood, it may help. I would also like to remind people that blood and platelets are always needed, not just when there is an emergency. If my letter can just get one or two people to donate platelets on a regular basis then this will not be a wasted effort. --David, Georgia

  • I'm glad that you are pressing for people to donate blood when they can...not now, but in a few days or weeks. I started donating blood about a year ago when a thread on your site began to talk about it. I donated a few weeks ago and then will do it again in a few weeks when my waiting period is up. You have no idea of the ramifications (positive!) your site has done. Thanks again for a little bit of comfort on this scary day. --Julie, Iowa

  • I loved your message about giving blood. I'm O-, and I was taught by my O- Grandpa that "if you want to help the world give them a piece of yourself." Your message is as true as his was and if I may, I'd like to expound upon it. If you've already given blood or can't give blood, you can still help -- volunteer to drive a blood mobile or help to keep records of those that donate. Maybe you can volunteer your time and help with the organizational skills needed to set up blood mobiles in different and easily accessible sites. You don't have to have "good clean blood" to make a difference. Please let your readers know that anyone and everyone can help. Sometimes it only takes some creativity and some time. It's not just about the blood, it's about how it gets to the people that need it. --Kelsey, Virginia

  • I am one of those Red Cross volunteers who is sent to major US disasters to assist. In particular I am a computer operations person and am about to prepare to go to NYC for the ARC disaster relief operation. Many, many thanks for your wonderful comments about our work. Working these disasters are labors of love for all of us; your acknowledgement of that love and labor is something we will we can carry with us wherever we go. --Carol, Rhode Island
One reader passed along this bit of information that may be of interest to those in the United States:

  • Two months ago on July 11 of this year, Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich proposed the the establishment of a Cabinet level Department of Peace, for the purpose of exploring peaceful, diplomatic, non-violent solutions to today's issues. After the events last Tues, this Department seems more needed than ever. For the highlights of his proposal, see http://www.house.gov/kucinich/press/pr010711a.htm. This bill, HR 2459, is currently in committee and could use co-signers from other congresspeople. There are currently 40 co-signers. We have certainly prepared for war all these years; now more than ever we need to prepare for peace, if we're to see it happen. --Judy, California
And finally, this letter, sent by Richard and Lilian in Bristol, United Kingdom, to many of their American friends:
Subject: Sympathy

So few of us can even begin to understand the reality of the macro-scale of the terrible success of the attacks on the American people and, too, on the many other nationalities, including Britain, and their results in the lasting horror and grief for so many thousands, most particularly for American families.

It has been a nightmare proved all too true, inescapable, for us so far away but so close because we have been tied to the radio news and the TV. We have had an ever decreasing difficulty in grasping the scale of human wickedness.

There have been many, many tears here, including Lilian's, in seeing the terrible TV pictures. This morning, at Richard's Probus Club meeting, we stood in silence for two minutes at its outset. This, we know, has been a pattern across the country.

Today, flags were flying at half-mast as they did on the death of President Roosevelt. Her Majesty the Queen ordered that there should be an unique recognition of our solidarity with you all. The daily Changing of the Guard outside Buckingham Palace today was marked by the unprecedented presence of the Guards' Band which played the American National Anthem in the courtyard before the thousands gathered before it, many being Americans. Here in Bristol the pictures for us were greatly moving and we ourselves stood in silence. At first there was only the music but then voices swelled with the words. There were many tears among those singing and holding their hands on their hearts. There were also shots of Brits in various despairs and the huge collection, still growing, of flowers being left by the American Embassy.

We are both deeply glad that the Queen has broken her holiday at Balmoral to return tonight to receive your Ambassador.

Tomorrow there will be a service at St Paul's Cathedral, a symbolic church for us in times of national distress and celebration. Sadly, tomorrow it is the former. The Queen and the Government will attend, as we would expect, in support of you Americans and also in recognition of us too, though in an infinitely smaller number, that this has been the highest loss of life in any terrorist attack.

Life is scarcely normal here. Our newspapers convey the unbelievable magnitude of the catastrophe. We hold on to normality in interludes between viewing the continuing horrors of the attacks, our thoughts so much with you all, and aching hearts in our inability do more than that.

--Richard and Lilian

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