President Obama marked the 13th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the grounds of one of the hijackers’ targets, the Pentagon, commemorating the occasion with rhetorical flourishes that invited Americans to see themselves as fearless and ever on the up-and-up.

After paying his respects to the lives that were lost at the World Trade Center in New York City, in a field in Stonycreek Township, Pa., and at the government’s military headquarters in Arlington, Va., the president brought his focus back to 2014 by declaring, “We carry on, because as Americans we do not give in to fear,” pausing for a moment before emphatically adding, “ever.”

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Obama’s brief memorial speech was made all the more significant given the timing factor — just the night before, he had laid out his four-part plan for handling the current threat posed by the Islamic State. In a tacit acknowledgment of the present as well as the past, he characterized the 9/11 co-conspirators (and by extension, members of IS) as “small, hateful minds,” and sounded a confident note, claiming that “America stands tall and America stands proud; guided by the values that sustain us, we will only grow stronger.”

Watch Obama’s speech below (via The New York Times):

The New York Times’ coverage of the occasion also included a panoramic view of ground zero in Manhattan as it looks today — take a visual tour here.

–Posted by Kasia Anderson

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