Terrorists attacked the United States on September 11, 2001. Almost three thousand people died. That day changed America forever.
Four American jets were hijacked on the morning of September 11, 2001. Terrorists had taken control of the planes. They planned to fly the planes into buildings. They wanted to destroy the planes and the buildings. They flew two planes into the World Trade Center towers in New York City. The first plane hit the north tower just before 9:00 AM. The next plane hit the second tower 20 minutes later. Both towers collapsed. Thousands of people were inside the towers.
More than 350 firefighters, paramedics, and police died trying to save victims in the twin towers. More than two thousand people died in the towers that day.
About one hour later, another plane crashed. This plane crashed into the Pentagon building near Washington, D.C. The Pentagon is where the leaders of the U.S. military work. Part of that building collapsed.
More than 120 people died in the Pentagon. More than 60 passengers and crew on the plane that crashed into it died, too.
A fourth jet crashed in a field in Pennsylvania. All 40 people on board died.
These four hijackings were acts of terrorism. Terrorism is when violence is used for political reasons. The terrorist organization that committed these crimes is called al-Qaeda. Al-Qaeda is a group from the Middle East. The leader of al-Qaeda was a man named Osama bin Laden.
President George W. Bush promised to find and punish the people who had planned the attacks. Twenty-six days after the attacks, the United States invaded Afghanistan. Bush wanted to destroy the Taliban. The Taliban was Afghanistan's government. They supported al-Qaeda. When the attacks happened Osama bin Laden was in Afghanistan. September 11, 2001 became known as 9-1-1.
Ten years after 9-1-1, U.S. Navy SEALs found and killed Osama bin Laden. He was in Pakistan. Although their leader died, terrorism did not stop. The United States continues to fight against terrorism.