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An eager school boy gets his first experience in using war ration book two. With many parents engaged in war work, children were taught point rationing to help the family. Photo: Library of Congress

Television news reports of terrorist attacks air on September 11, 2001. At left, Akiba Wells, center, a phlebotomist at LifeSource Blood Service in Chicago, draws blood from Ariel Hantin. Blood service centers around the nation were filled with a steady stream of volunteers responding to the WTC and Pentagon attacks. Photo: AP/Ted S. Warren



The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor served as a starting gun for U.S. involvement in the Second World War. The 9/11 attacks prompted a war on terrorism. These two wars meant profoundly different things in the lives of ordinary Americans.

"I know George Bush has said we're at war and we must be careful and observant and everything like that. But, you know, there's really nothing to do." — Writer Elizabeth Spencer

Short Audio Reactions (Real Audio)
1941: We are Mad Unidentified man, Arizona (1:28)
2001: Former Cadet Bryent Vessey, Naples American School, Naples, Italy (1:02)

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