San Diego Business Journal

This is not the column I intended to write. But as I type these words, the United States of America is reeling from the most vicious sneak attack it has experienced since the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor.

America has become a land under attack, and as we experience a roiling stew of emotions ranging from horror to anger, let us remember that what has occurred this date , Sept. 11, 2001 , is not done.

Whether the current series of attacks has ceased remains to be seen. Yet, undoubtedly, there will be vengeance wrought by our own forces. The dying, most certainly, has not stopped.

Let us remember and pray for all those who have perished or have been maimed by this cowardly attack. Let us do the same for the families they leave behind.

Let's also take time to remember our men and women in the armed forces. Too often we in the business community see our local military presence simply in terms of dollars and cents. But some of these young people may soon find themselves heading into harm's way. Our thoughts and prayers go with them, too.

Let's also recognize the attack has shed more than blood. This was a highly coordinated assault against the infrastructure of our country. At this moment, the United States lays almost paralyzed, its airports closed, its airlines grounded, the stock market frozen, communications in a jumble.

We have been shown our country is vulnerable. But let us remember our vulnerability exists because of the country we are , a country of freedom, and we are a successful country because of that freedom.

The deviates responsible for this attack would like nothing more than to see us abandon our most cherished national values in response to their heinous acts. We must stand tall and united in the determination not to give them that satisfaction.

That is the challenge now before us.

Hill is editor of the Business Journal.