International Students Remember 9/11

By: Forrest Sanders Email
By: Forrest Sanders Email

The flags aren't flying at WKU's International Center, but the campus's out-of-country population is well represented. There are around 500 international students walking the sidewalks of Western, and today, they're reflecting back on September 11, 2001 along with the rest of the country.

"I was at home and I was watching TV when they showed the Twin Towers broken down," says Gabriel Prijatna of Indonesia.

"Everybody was in the TV room and they were asking what was happening. I mean, at that time, nobody believed this could happen," adds Haribrakash Hadial of India.

"I was very surprised and shocked and I found it unbelievable," Zhong Gen Li of China recalls.

Natalia Barahona of Colombia agrees. "I think everyone was shocked. Because New York is a big city and it's renowned throughout the world. That the Trade Center went down, it was a big deal."

"I thought this would never happen because it's such a big incident," says Shuyuan Liv of Taiwan.

"So many lives were lost, and so many Nigerians were part of it, so it was really terrible," explains Oge Anazin. "It was horrible. And we all felt it. Personally, I cried."

The students called the attacks a worldwide tragedy, and one that the entire globe reacted to in the same way.

"In all the world, we felt what happened here," says Barahona.

"It was a sad story; it was a painful one, and we pray it never happens again," says Anazin. "Never."

"I just want to say God bless America," adds Shuyuan Liv.

We also asked each student how strict airport security has become in their home country following 9/11. The students from India, Colombia, and China say that airport security is just as tight in their home countries as the United States. However, students from Nigeria, Indonesia, and Taiwan say that security is much more relaxed in their home countries and they are surprised at the extreme lengths US airports take to check passengers.

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