US President Donald Trump on Wednesday marked the 18th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks with a moment of silence and a ceremony at the Pentagon while delivering a warning to the Taliban.
During the morning's ceremonies, Trump acknowledged a breakdown in recent peace efforts with the Taliban in Afghanistan and vowed to unleash unprecedented power should the group strike the United States again.
Trump said he called off the Camp David meeting planned for over the weekend when he learned the Taliban carried out an attack that killed a “great American soldier from Puerto Rico,” referring to a suicide bombing in Kabul last week claimed by the militant group.
“They thought they would use this attack to show strength, but what they actually showed is unrelenting weakness,” Trump said in remarks at the Pentagon, adding that the U.S. has “hit our enemy harder than they have ever been hit before” in the four days since the canceled meeting.
“If for any reason they come back to our country, we will go wherever they are and use power the likes of which the United States has never used before — and I’m not talking about nuclear power — they will never have seen anything like what will happen to them,” Trump said.
The president’s reference to the ongoing war in Afghanistan, which was triggered by the 9/11 attacks, came amid a 20 minute speech outside the Pentagon, where a hijacked plane crashed and killed 184 people nearly two decades ago.
Trump and first lady Melania Trump participated in a moment of silence on the South Lawn of the White House at 8:46 a.m. in recognition of the moment the first plane, American Airlines Flight 11, flew into the North Tower of the World Trade Center in New York City.
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