Monday, September 11, 2006

The Birth of a Changed World - timeline

8:45 a.m American Airlines Flight 11 out of Boston, Massachusetts crashes into the north tower of the World Trade Center.

9:03 a.m. United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston crashes into the south tower of the World Trade Center. Both buildings are burning.

9:17 a.m. The FAA shuts down all New York City area airports.

9:21 a.m. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey orders all bridges and tunnels in the New York area closed.

9:30 a.m. President Bush, speaking in Sarasota, Florida, says the country has suffered an "apparent terrorist attack."

9:40 a.m. The FAA halts all flight operations at U.S. airports..

9:43 a.m. American Airlines Flight 77 crashes into the Pentagon, sending up a huge plume of smoke.

9:45 a.m.: The White House evacuates.

9:57 a.m.: Bush departs from Florida.

10:05 a.m. The south tower of the World Trade Center collapses.

10:10 a.m. A portion of the Pentagon collapses.

10:10 a.m. United Airlines Flight 93 crashes in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

10:13 a.m. The United Nations building evacuates.

10:22 a.m.: In Washington, the State and Justice departments are evacuated, along with the World Bank.

10:24 a.m.: The FAA reports that all inbound transatlantic aircraft flying into the United States are being diverted to Canada.

10:28 a.m.: The World Trade Center's north tower collapses.

10:45 a.m.: All federal office buildings in Washington are evacuated.

10.48 a.m.: Police confirm the plane crash in Pennsylvania.

10:54 a.m.: Israel evacuates all diplomatic missions.

10:57 a.m.: New York Gov. George Pataki closes all state government buildings.

11:02 a.m.: New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani orders an evacuation of the area south of Canal Street.

11:18 a.m.: American Airlines reports it has lost two aircraft.

11:26 a.m.: United Airlines reports that United Flight 93, has crashed in Pennsylvania. The airline also says that it is "deeply concerned" about United Flight 175.

11:59 a.m.: United Airlines confirms that Flight 175, from Boston to Los Angeles, has crashed. It hit the World Trade Center's south tower.

12:04 p.m.: Los Angeles International Airport is evacuated.

12:15 p.m: San Francisco International Airport is evacuated and shut down.

12:15 p.m.: The Immigration and Naturalization Service says U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico are on the highest state of alert, but no decision has been made about closing borders.

12:30 p.m.: The FAA says 50 flights are in U.S. airspace, but none are reporting any problems.

1:04 p.m.: Bush speaks from Barksdale AFB:

THE PRESIDENT: I want to reassure the American people that the full resources of the federal government are working to assist local authorities to save lives and to help the victims of these attacks. Make no mistake: The United States will hunt down and punish those responsible for these cowardly acts.

I've been in regular contact with the Vice President, the Secretary of Defense, the national security team and my Cabinet. We have taken all appropriate security precautions to protect the American people. Our military at home and around the world is on high alert status, and we have taken the necessary security precautions to continue the functions of your government.

We have been in touch with the leaders of Congress and with world leaders to assure them that we will do whatever is necessary to protect America and Americans.

I ask the American people to join me in saying a thanks for all the folks who have been fighting hard to rescue our fellow citizens and to join me in saying a prayer for the victims and their families.

The resolve of our great nation is being tested. But make no mistake: We will show the world that we will pass this test. God bless.

1:27 p.m.: A state of emergency is declared by the city of Washington.

1:44 p.m.: The Pentagon says five warships and two aircraft carriers will leave the U.S. Naval Station in Norfolk, Virginia, to protect the East Coast from further attack and to reduce the number of ships in port. The two carriers, the USS George Washington and the USS John F. Kennedy, are headed for the New York coast. The other ships headed to sea are frigates and guided missile destroyers capable of shooting down aircraft.

1:48 p.m.: Bush leaves Barksdale Air Force Base aboard Air Force One and flies to an Air Force base in Nebraska.

2:30 p.m.: The FAA announces there will be no U.S. commercial air traffic until noon EDT Wednesday at the earliest.

2:49 p.m.: At a news conference, Giuliani says that subway and bus service are partially restored in New York City. Asked about the number of people killed, Giuliani says, "I don't think we want to speculate about that -- more than any of us can bear."

3:55 p.m.: Karen Hughes, a White House counselor makes a statement:

MS. HUGHES: Counselor to President Bush. And I'm here to update you all on the activities of the federal government in response to this morning's attacks on our country.

As you heard from President Bush a short time ago, the federal government is acting to help local communities with search and rescue and emergency management operations, to take all appropriate precautions to protect our citizens and to identify those responsible for these despicable attacks on the American people.

While some federal buildings have been evacuated for security reasons and to protect our workers, your federal government continues to function effectively. We have a federal emergency response plan, and at President Bush's direction, we are implementing it. We began to implement it immediately after the first attack in New York this morning.

We contacted American forces and embassies throughout the world and placed them on high alert. The United States Secret Service immediately secured the President, the Vice President and the Speaker of the House, and they are all safe. They have also secured members of the national security team, the President's Cabinet and senior staff.

As you know, President Bush was in Sarasota, Florida when the first attack occurred this morning. Air Force One has now landed at Offitt Air Force Base in Omaha, Nebraska, and the President is in a secure location. He is in continuous communication with the Vice President and key members of his Cabinet and national security team.

Vice President Cheney and our National Security Advisor, Condoleezza Rice, are in a secure facility at the White House. I have just come from there. The Secretary of Transportation and other members of our White House senior staff are gathered at a command center there, and we are coordinating with other branches of our federal government.

The Secretary of Defense remains at the Pentagon, and the Secretary of State is en route back to Washington from his trip to South America.

President Bush is conducting a meeting of the National Security Council as we speak. They are meeting President Bush from his location and other members from different locations in Washington and other locations.

As many of you have been reporting, the Federal Aviation Administration ordered all airports closed, and all planes which were in the air were directed to land at the nearest airport. International flights were diverted to alternate locations outside of the United States.

Transportation Secretary Mineta has directed the Federal Aviation Administration to suspend operations until at least 12:00 noon tomorrow. So, no airline flights will operate until at least then, and until the FAA announces that operations will be resumed.

Secretary Mineta has also issued orders controlling the movement of all vessels in United States navigable waters. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has activated eight urban search and rescue task forces in New York and four of these highly-trained teams are at work here in Washington at the Pentagon.

Every federal agency has implemented continuity of operations

and four of these highly trained teams are at work in Washington at the Pentagon. Every federal agency has implemented continuity of operations plans to make sure the government continues to function effectively.

While the market is closed today because of the situation in Manhattan, the United States financial system has continued to operate. Banks have been open all day. The Federal Reserve has operated regularly and continuously.

The Department of Health and Human Services has mobilized medical personnel and supplies to provide help to local authorities who are working so diligently to respond and try to help the victims of these terrible attacks.

President Bush has committed the full resources of our intelligence and law enforcement communities to identify and bring to swift justice those responsible for these despicable attacks. The Department of Justice is setting up a hotline for families who fear that their relatives may have been victims of one of these attacks, and we will be announcing that telephone number shortly.

Our fellow citizens and our freedom came under attack today. And no one should doubt America's resolve. President Bush and all our country's leaders thank the many Americans who are helping with rescue and relief efforts. We ask our fellow Americans for your prayers for the victims, for their families, for the rescue workers, and for our country.

Thank you all very much. And we will continue to update you as information is available and confirmed.

3:55 p.m.: Giuliani now says the number of critically injured in New York City is up to 200 with 2,100 total injuries reported.

4 p.m: U.S. officials say there are "good indications" that Saudi militant Osama bin Laden, suspected of coordinating the bombings of two U.S. embassies in 1998, is involved in the attacks, based on "new and specific" information developed since the attacks.

4:06 p.m.: California Gov. Gray Davis dispatches urban search-and-rescue teams to New York.

4:10 p.m.: Building 7 of the World Trade Center complex is reported on fire.

4:20 p.m.: U.S. Sen. Bob Graham, D-Florida, chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, says he was "not surprised there was an attack (but) was surprised at the specificity." He says he was "shocked at what actually happened -- the extent of it."

4:25 p.m.: The American Stock Exchange, the Nasdaq and the New York Stock Exchange say they will remain closed Wednesday.

4:30 p.m.: The president leaves Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska aboard Air Force One to return to Washington.

5:20 p.m.: The 47-story Building 7 of the World Trade Center complex collapses.

6:10 p.m. Giuliani urges New Yorkers to stay home Wednesday if they can.

6:42 p.m.: Rumsfeld, the U.S. defense secretary, holds a news conference in the Pentagon.

Rumsfeld: This is a -- first of all, good evening. This is a tragic day for our country. Our hearts and prayers go to the injured, their families and friends.

We have taken a series of measures to prevent further attacks and to determine who is responsible. We're making every effort to take care of the injured and the casualties in the building. I'm deeply grateful for the many volunteers from the defense establishment and from the excellent units from all throughout this region. They have our deep appreciation.

We have been working closely throughout the day with President Bush, Vice President Cheney, CIA Director George Tenet, the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Dick Myers, who is currently participating in a meeting elsewhere in the building, and a great many other officials from throughout the government.

I should say we've received calls from across the world offering their sympathy and indeed their assistance in various ways.

I'm very pleased to be joined here by Chairman Carl Levin and Senator John Warner. Senator Warner called earlier today and offered his support and was kind enough to come down and has been with us. We've very recently had a discussion with the president of the United States. Chairman Hugh Shelton has just landed from Europe. Secretary of the Army Tom White, who has a responsibility for incidents like this as executive agent for the Department of Defense, is also joining me.

It's an indication that the United States government is functioning in the face of this terrible act against our country. I should add that the briefing here is taking place in the Pentagon. The Pentagon's functioning. It will be in business tomorrow.

6:54 p.m.: Bush arrives back at the White House aboard Marine One. The president earlier landed at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland with a three-fighter jet escort.

7:17 p.m.: U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft says the FBI is setting up a Web site for tips on the attacks: He also says family and friends of possible victims can leave contact information at 800-331-0075.

7:45 p.m.: The New York Police Department says that at least 78 officers are missing. The city also says that as many as half of the first 400 firefighters on the scene were killed.

8:30 p.m.: President Bush addresses the nation.

THE PRESIDENT: Good evening. Today, our fellow citizens, our way of life, our very freedom came under attack in a series of deliberate and deadly terrorist acts. The victims were in airplanes, or in their offices; secretaries, businessmen and women, military and federal workers; moms and dads, friends and neighbors. Thousands of lives were suddenly ended by evil, despicable acts of terror.

The pictures of airplanes flying into buildings, fires burning, huge structures collapsing, have filled us with disbelief, terrible sadness, and a quiet, unyielding anger. These acts of mass murder were intended to frighten our nation into chaos and retreat. But they have failed; our country is strong.

A great people has been moved to defend a great nation. Terrorist attacks can shake the foundations of our biggest buildings, but they cannot touch the foundation of America. These acts shattered steel, but they cannot dent the steel of American resolve.

America was targeted for attack because we're the brightest beacon for freedom and opportunity in the world. And no one will keep that light from shining.

Today, our nation saw evil, the very worst of human nature. And we responded with the best of America -- with the daring of our rescue workers, with the caring for strangers and neighbors who came to give blood and help in any way they could.

Immediately following the first attack, I implemented our government's emergency response plans. Our military is powerful, and it's prepared. Our emergency teams are working in New York City and Washington, D.C. to help with local rescue efforts.

Our first priority is to get help to those who have been injured, and to take every precaution to protect our citizens at home and around the world from further attacks.

The functions of our government continue without interruption. Federal agencies in Washington which had to be evacuated today are reopening for essential personnel tonight, and will be open for business tomorrow. Our financial institutions remain strong, and the American economy will be open for business, as well.

The search is underway for those who are behind these evil acts. I've directed the full resources of our intelligence and law enforcement communities to find those responsible and to bring them to justice. We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them.

I appreciate so very much the members of Congress who have joined me in strongly condemning these attacks. And on behalf of the American people, I thank the many world leaders who have called to offer their condolences and assistance.

America and our friends and allies join with all those who want peace and security in the world, and we stand together to win the war against terrorism. Tonight, I ask for your prayers for all those who grieve, for the children whose worlds have been shattered, for all whose sense of safety and security has been threatened. And I pray they will be comforted by a power greater than any of us, spoken through the ages in Psalm 23: "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me."

This is a day when all Americans from every walk of life unite in our resolve for justice and peace. America has stood down enemies before, and we will do so this time. None of us will ever forget this day. Yet, we go forward to defend freedom and all that is good and just in our world.

Thank you. Good night, and God bless America.

END 8:35 P.M. EDT


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