As I mentioned in the last post, over 2 million people die in the US each year. Something on the order of 23 million have perished in various ways in the last decade.
However, it is the 3000 or so that perished ten years ago today that get the press. One one hand, it seems a bit... obsessive... to focus on this quartet of terror attacks.
That being said, those were preventable deaths without good reason, and the underlying cause of those attacks aren't quite dead yet. EJ Dionne would like to leave 9/11 behind, but there is still a block of Islamic militants who want to have their theo-ideological view imposed on the world, by force if needed. That grouping has been crippled somewhat in the last decade, but it is far from dead.
The "war on terror" is unwinnable, since you can't kill off a concept, but one can work on making militant Islam unattractive and work on keeping violence from happening in its name. The "Arab Spring" that is quickly shifting though into fall shows some promise for giving alternatives to radicalism, but also gives the scary prospect of a militant Islamic party from grabbing hold in one of the newly-freed companies.
However, just because it is on its heels doesn't mean that the effort stops. We've had a "war on poverty" for the better part of a half-century and poverty is still with us, albeit in less toxic forms than in the past. Even in poor-unfriendly places like Texas, a safety net is still in place to look after the needy, far better than before another guy from Texas took a whack at helping the least of these in the mid-60s.
We'll need to keep up discouraging radical versions of Islam (or any other religion, including a few millita groups with Christian trappings) for the long haul, just as we need to keep looking after the needy. Neither will fully go away, but we need to keep whacking at it.