Spencer Platt/Getty Images
A fiery blasts rocks the World Trade Center after being hit by two planes September 11, 2001 in New York City.
On September 11, 2001, four coordinated terrorist attacks against the United States forever changed the course of history. Four passenger airliners were hijacked by 19 al-Qaeda terrorists with the intention of flying them into landmark buildings.
American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175 were flown into the North and South towers of the World Trade Center complex in New York City. American Airlines Flight 77 was crashed into the Pentagon in Arlington County, Virginia. United Airlines Flight 93 was headed toward Washington, D.C., but was crashed into a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania after passengers overtook the hijackers. It is believed the intended target of Flight 93 was either the White House or the Capitol Building. The attacks claimed the lives of 2,996 people, including the 19 terrorists.
Honor their victims today with these photos:
Justin Lane-Pool/Getty ImagesRobert Peraza, who lost his son Robert David Peraza, pauses at his son’s name at the North Pool of the 9/11 Memorial during tenth anniversary ceremonies at the site of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2011, in New York City.
BETH A. KEISER/AFP/Getty ImagesRescue workers continue their search as smoke rises from the rubble of the World Trade Center.
Craig Allen/Getty ImagesSmoke pours from the World Trade Center after being hit by two planes September 11, 2001 In New York City.
Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty ImagesA survivor sits outside the World Trade Center after two planes hit the building September 11, 2001 in New York City.
Spencer Platt/Getty ImagesHijacked United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston crashes into the south tower of the World Trade Center and explodes at 9:03 a.m. on September 11, 2001 in New York City.
Mario Tama/Getty ImagesA firefighter breaks down after the World Trade Center buildings collapsed September 11, 2001 after two hijacked airplanes slammed into the twin towers in a terrorist attack.
GettyThe al-Qaeda terrorists who carried out the attacks.
GettyA fireman works in front of the debris of the World Trade Center towers.
Mark Wilson/Getty ImagesU.S. President George W. Bush sits at his desk in the Oval Office after addressing the nation about the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, D.C.
Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty ImagesPolicemen and firemen run away from the huge dust cloud caused as the World Trade Center’s Tower One collapses after terrorists crashed two hijacked planes into the twin towers, September 11, 2001 in New York City.
A man runs from a cloud of smoke.
Jose Jimenez/Primera Hora/Getty ImagesA person falls to their death from the World Trade Center after two planes hit the Twin Towers September 11, 2001 in New York City.
Alex Wong/Getty ImagesSmoke comes out from the west wing of the Pentagon building September 11, 2001 in Arlington, Va., after a plane crashed into the building and set off a huge explosion.
Spencer Platt/Getty ImagesA fiery blasts rocks the World Trade Center after being hit by two planes September 11, 2001 in New York City.
GettyPeople stand and watch fire consume the World Trade Center towers.
Mario Tama/Getty ImagesPeople walk in the street in the area where the World Trade Center buildings collapsed September 11, 2001 after two airplanes slammed into the twin towers.
Today is the 16th anniversary of September 11. On this day nearly a decade-and-a-half ago, Islamist militants carried out 4 coordinated attacks on American soil. Honor their victims today with these photos.