When the Twin Towers fell in 2001, it was an event which shook the world. It was an attack on America, an attack on Western values and freedoms, and it was one of the few events in history where each one of us remembers what we were doing when we heard the news.
This world changing day, is one we teach our children and grandchildren about and an event we must never forget.
Almost every Western nation lost citizens that day, including five from Israel. More than that, Israel’s closest ally, America, suffered a devastating loss at the hands of the same enemies that threaten to destroy Israel. It has always been said, the enemies of Israel are the enemies of the West, and it is quite right then that Israel chose to commemorate the victims of 9/11 in such a special way.
The 9/11 Living Memorial Plaza is a cenotaph, or an empty tomb, located on a hill in Arazim Valley of Ramot in Jerusalem. The memorial is built on five acres of land and was built to remember and honour the victims of the September 11 attacks.
While some countries in the Middle East choose to burn flags of America, Israel instead uses the American flag as a powerful symbol. The monument takes the form of the American flag, waving and transforming into a flame at the tip, ensuring the flame of those who lost their lives will always live on in Jerusalem.
A piece of melted metal from the ruins of the Twin Towers forms part of the base on which the monument rests and a glass pane allows people to view the piece of the towers. The names of the 2,977 victims, including those of five Israelis and sixty-seven British men and women, are engraved on metal plates and placed on the circular wall. The monument is strategically located within view of Jerusalem’s main cemetery, Har HaMenuchot.
The sculpture is surrounded by a circular, crater-like plaza and reflection area tiled in stone and is one of the first major international memorials to the 9/11 attacks and the only site outside of New York to recognise the names of every victim of the attack.
This is an amazing way that Israel shows its connection with America and the connection we all have in the West of our shared values. There are many times where our nations have worked together to stop evil, and we must pray our unity grows stronger than ever before in order to face the terrors that threaten our world.
May we never forget that fateful day.
Christians United for Israel UK