20 years after US Embassy bombings, ‘we are not beaten’

Twenty years ago, evil showed its terrible face in Kenya and in Tanzania. In the middle of a busy Friday morning, al-Qaeda terrorists exploded bombs outside the US Embassies here in Nairobi and in Dar es Salaam.

Their horrific attack killed close to 250 people and injured nearly 5,000. In an awful moment, the lives of thousands changed forever, as did the lives of their families and friends. We remember and mourn those who were killed, and we stand with all who were injured or touched by this brutal attack.

My wife Lori and I were in Kenya and assigned to the US Embassy when the bomb blast occurred. We saw personally the trauma and tragedy of that day and its aftermath. But we also saw the heroism, compassion, and selflessness of the Embassy staff, Kenyan citizens, and friends from countries around the world.

Our Embassy staff and many Kenyans who were nearby that tragic morning responded to the attack with immense personal courage. They worked tirelessly, taking great risks, to save lives and help the injured. Side by side, they rescued those who needed help, they retrieved the dead, and they began the process of recovery and rebuilding.

We also saw the bravery of Kenyan emergency and medical personnel and the special teams who rushed from the United States and other countries to assist. As Ambassador, I would like to express my deep, personal appreciation, and that of the United States, for the courage of so many that day.

In the moments and days that followed the blast, their heroism stands in tribute to compassion and all that is best in humanity. I want to thank, as well, all those who helped build and maintain the powerful and poignant memorial at the site of the attack. We will always remember.

As we reflect on the attack, we know that al-Qaeda had not one but three terrible goals. Their immediate purpose was to kill and destroy, but they had more in mind. They sought to divide us, to divide friends, to divide Kenya and the United States. And, they sought to undermine the values we hold dear, to destroy civilization itself and to replace it with a nightmare of oppression.

Tragically, in the years since the bombing, al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups have continued their savage assault on humanity. In far too many places across the world, they have pursued their attacks. From New York to Paris, to Bali, to Garissa, to the mall at Westgate, the terrorists have followed their murderous agenda.

But on the 20th anniversary of the attacks here in Nairobi and in Dar es Salaam, we say clearly and loudly that although we have suffered, we are not beaten. We will never let those who traffic in death and destruction defeat us. While the terrorists sought to sow fear and division, they failed. Instead, we have risen with an even stronger determination to stand together for freedom, for justice, and for peace.

On this sombre occasion, as we pause to remember those we have lost, I ask that we also reflect on what binds us together. For today, we are united as Kenyans and Americans. We are united as people. And, even as we mourn, we resolve once again to remain true to our shared values, to our unwavering friendship, and to our shared humanity. We resolve to move forward, hand in hand. We resolve to build a better, brighter future for ourselves, for our children, and for people across the world.

Imara pamoja!

(Godec is the US Ambassador to Kenya)

0 Replies to “20 years after US Embassy bombings, ‘we are not beaten’”

  1. He goes to the gym and doesn’t ask you if you would want to accompany him……No more baby what do you wanna do today or can i take you for shopping. Its the least of things that caught s the interest of a lady, so is  to men apart from having great sex there has to be somethings that keep two people together……Gal it was great for him to be with you but to him he thought that things would change and be good other than sex, for me he still find u somehow attractive but at the same time he doesn’t find u anymore attractive….If u still want to keep him stop complaining about the sex and try find some activities that he enjoys and you might enjoy and do them together but for the time been postpone sex……Good luck

  2. Relationships are tricky and unless u speak abt some issues, it may be hard to understand. One thing that women should also understand is that its not all abt sex, sex comes as an end result. For example, if the two of you are able to talk, share what the day was like, how u feel abt the other then you will find sex coming in. In the situation above, the lady should not conclude the guy is seeing someone but should look for the best opportunity/time and place to have a chat with this guy even if it means her organizing for a suprise dinner for him at a quite place and make him understand what she feels. U also need to understand that peple are different, there are those who dont like talking abt stuff so u must be careful may be he is one of them and if he is, then u need to give hime time, something may be bothering him. This can either be work related or somewomen there which he may not be willing to discuss.

    All the best

  3. Maybe you guys were so intense in those 6 months that he feels like he neglected the rest of his life, and he’s now trying to catch up. Just give him some space, while keeping the communication lines open. 

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