Posted September 11, 2020 9:28 pm by

Trump, Biden vie to show leadership on 9/11 anniversary

Flowers are placed at the 9/11 Memorial & Museum in New York on September 11, 2020, as the US commemorates the 19th anniversary of the attacks © AFP / Angela Weiss

Shanksville, United States, Sep 11 – US President Donald Trump struck a somber tone Friday on the anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks as his Democratic rival Joe Biden comforted relatives of victims — dueling bids to unite a deeply divided nation.

Nineteen years after the devastating Al-Qaeda attacks, the former vice president Biden began the day in New York for an annual event honoring the nearly 3,000 people who died in the destruction of the World Trade Center.

Trump did not attend the ceremony in his home city, sending Mike Pence in his stead. Biden and the vice president tapped elbows and chatted briefly.

The Republican president instead traveled to Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where an airliner crashed after passengers tried to wrest control of the jet from the hijackers.

Trump, Biden vie to show leadership on 9/11 anniversary

US President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump attended a ceremony commemorating the 19th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, in Shanksville, Pennsylvania © AFP / Brendan Smialowski

Trump and his wife Melania listened in silence as the names of the 40 passengers and crew killed aboard Flight 93 were read aloud — with two bells tolling after the reading of each one.

In brief prepared remarks, the incumbent — who is hoping to defeat Biden and win a second term — paid “tribute to their sacrifice” along with all those who perished in the attacks.

He also honored first responders as well as military personnel who fought to “preserve our freedom” in the subsequent wars launched under former president George W. Bush.

“We resolve to stand united as one American nation, to defend our freedoms, to uphold our values, to love our neighbors, to cherish our country…. and to never, ever forget,” Trump said.

It was a rare call for unity from a leader who normally plays political divisions to his advantage.

Biden also traveled to Shanksville — but there was no chance of the rivals crossing paths: Trump left well before the Democratic candidate and his wife Jill arrived.

– Biden connects with relatives –

Trump, Biden vie to show leadership on 9/11 anniversary

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden (R), greets Maria Fisher, 90, whose son Andrew Fisher was killed Read More…Trump, Biden vie to show leadership on 9/11 anniversary  Trump, Biden vie to show leadership on 9/11 anniversary  Trump, Biden vie to show leadership on 9/11 anniversary  Trump, Biden vie to show leadership on 9/11 anniversary