WASHINGTON – 21 years ago, our nation was shocked by the tragedy of 9/11, an act that led to even more tragedy in the form of 20 long years of war in Iraq and Afghanistan. On this anniversary, Common Defense remembers those who lost their lives 21 years ago today and all those lost during 20 years of war. To honor them and those who fought alongside us, Congress must pass the Afghan Adjustment Act.
Common Defense Executive Director Jose Vasquez released the following statement:
“Today is a day to honor and remember the countless victims of 9/11 and the 20-year war that followed. Only a few events in our life change the world as we know it, and September 11, 2001 was one of those days. Today, Common Defense honors the memories of our family, friends, colleagues, and comrades we lost during 9/11 and the subsequent war, including emergency response crews, firefighters, police officers, medical staff, military service members and Afghan allies.
“With our remembrance of these tragic attacks, we must also remember the foreign policy failure that cost the lives of many who served abroad, both our own troops and the courageous Afghan allies who fought beside us until the end as well as innocent civilians across a war-torn country. After 20 years, the war in Afghanistan thankfully concluded, but over a year later, our responsibilities to our allies have yet to be fulfilled. Last month a bipartisan coalition in the Senate and in the House of Representatives introduced the Afghan Adjustment Act to support those who risked their lives for our troops and fled the country following the end of the war, some of whom fought alongside the veterans of Common Defense. We commend our elected leaders who introduced this bill and urge Congress to pass this legislation as soon as possible to make good on our promise to our allies.
“As the nation pauses to remember, we must also look forward. If we want to honor the memory of those we lost, then we must support those who supported – and often saved – us. The Afghan Adjustment Act is the first step in amending our past and moves us closer to our vision of a world where liberty and justice truly is for all, at home and abroad. ”