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The world was shaken by the devastation that unfolded after terrorist attack on the September 11, 2001. On the 20th anniversary of the gut-wrenching tragedy, Maxar Technologies shared satellite images showing the havoc wreaked by attackers at three different locations in the United States.

Images captured by IKONOS, the only high-resolution commercial satellite on orbit in 2001, show the aftermath of attacks planned and executed by Al-Qaeda. The terrorist attack saw four US passenger jets hijacked by terrorists.

Two jets were flown into Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York. One of the satellite images shows smoke rising above the debris at ‘ground zero’ after the attack. Another image show the extent of destruction as smoke cleared.

IKONOS captured this image of smoke rising above ground zero in New York on September 12, 2001. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)
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IKONOS captured this image of smoke rising above ground zero in New York on September 12, 2001. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)
The destruction at ground zero can be seen more clearly in this IKONOS image from September 15, 2001 as most of the smoke was gone. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)
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The destruction at ground zero can be seen more clearly in this IKONOS image from September 15, 2001 as most of the smoke was gone. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)

Hijackers crashed another plane into the west wing of Pentagon, located just outside Washington DC.

IKONOS image of Pentagon taken on September 15, 2001 show the damage to the left side of the building. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)
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IKONOS image of Pentagon taken on September 15, 2001 show the damage to the left side of the building. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)

The fourth plane crashed into a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania after the passenger took over the plane and prevented another target from being hit.

IKONOS took this image on September 13, 2001, of the field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania where the fourth plane crashed. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)
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IKONOS took this image on September 13, 2001, of the field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania where the fourth plane crashed. (Photo credit: Maxar Technologies)

Earlier today, President Joe Biden visited each of the the three attack sites, to honour the victims of the dastardly attacks. US presidents often travel to one of the three sites on the 9/11 anniversary but it is unusual to visit all three of them on the same day.

Last week, President Biden had ordered the Department of Justice to review documents from the FBI probe into the attacks for declassification and release. This decision came after many families of 9/11 victims asked Biden last month to skip 20-year memorial events unless he declassified documents they contend will show Saudi Arabian leaders supported the attacks.

The 20th anniversary of 9/11 attacks come days after the US completely withdraw its troops from Afghanistan, ending the ‘forever war’. The US had launched its campaign in the after the September 11 attacks to root out Al-Qaeda. The outfit's founder Osama bin Laden was killed by US forces in May 2011.

Biden's withdrawal of U.S. troops in August, months after a deadline set by his Republican predecessor, Donald Trump, and the resulting rapid fall of the country to the Taliban has drawn criticism from members of both political parties.

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