On Sept. 11, 2001, Islamic terrorists from a group called al-Qaeda crashed commercial airplanes into the “Twin Towers” of New York City’s World Trade Center, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., and a field in rural Pennsylvania. More than 3,000 people died.

This was the most violent attack on the United States since Pearl Harbor in 1941, and the deadliest terrorist attack in U.S. history. The attacks were so shocking they are known by their date alone: 9/11. President George W. Bush made national defense and counterterrorism a priority after the attacks.

commercial
Adjective

having to do with the buying and selling of goods and services.

Islam
Noun

religion based on the words and philosophy of the prophet Mohammed.

Pentagon
Noun

(Arlington, Virginia) huge office building that is the headquarters of the U.S. Department of Defense.

rural
Adjective

having to do with country life, or areas with few residents.

terrorist
Adjective

having to do with the use of non-military violence and/or threats of violence to achieve or advocate political change.

World Trade Center
Noun

office building complex in lower Manhattan, New York, dominated by the Twin Towers until terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, destroyed them.

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