In NYC, Obama says Osama mission ‘sent a message’

May 6, 2011

By Kara Rowland-The Washington Times

NEW YORK — Visiting New York just days after the mastermind of the 2001 attack on the city was killed U.S. special forces, President Obamaon Thursday told police and firefighters the terrorist’s death is proof that American justice has a long reach.

In surprise visits to the “Pride of Midtown” firehouse, which lost 15 men in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks nearly a decade ago, and then later at the 1st Precinct police station in Lower Manhattan, Mr. Obama said the Navy SEALs who killed Osama bin Laden Sunday in Pakistan did it “in the name of your brothers that were lost.”

“What happened on Sunday, because of the courage of our military and the outstanding work of our intelligence, sent a message around the world, but also sent a message here back home that when we say we will never forget, we mean what we say,” the president told the firefighters.

He also visited with family members of victims of the attack and laid a wreath at the 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero. Along the roads his motorcade was greeted by cheering crowds.

The purpose of the visit, the White House said, was to commemorate the loss of nearly 3,000 lives a decade ago, and to try to bring a sense of “closure” now that bin Laden is dead.

Mr. Obama told the first responders that the daring raid that killed bin Laden was “directly connected to what you do every single day.”

“A lot of you continue to do extraordinarily courageous acts without a lot of fanfare,” he said at the police station. “And I know I speak for the military teams, the intelligence teams that helped get bin Laden in saying that we know the sacrifices and courage that you show as well, and that you are part of the team that helped us achieve our goal, but also help us keep our citizens safe each and every day.”

The president was accompanied by former New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, the Republican mayor at the time of the attacks who won widespread praise for his handling of the aftermath.

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