Jasper was 16 on September 11th, 2001 and like many of the authors of this blog, he was in school when he first heard of the attacks.

At the time, he wasn’t very interested in the United States so he didn’t really understand the significance of landmarks such as the World Trade Centers and the Pentagon. He did know that the United States had military bases in the Middle East and thought that perhaps this was retaliation for a perceived occupation. While the Dutch government and media condemned the attacks, he remembers seeing young Moroccans celebrating after the attacks.

Jasper says he didn’t notice the same changes in the media structure and programming that I told him I saw in the United States. He believes there were more “hero” stories aired because people were tired of hearing all the negative news and wanted to hear stories about people they could be proud of. He also thinks 9/11 was the ultimate challenge to Fukuyama and The End of History because although the Cold War had ended, there were other groups willing to challenged the West.

An interesting note is that when I told Jasper that our first assignment was going to be on 9/11, he asked me if our class was focusing on Jihadi terrorism or any other forms. I feel like many Americans don’t think of anything else when they hear the word terrorist and was surprised that Jasper had known or suspected this.