Mic Check: 12 Years After 9/11, Al-Qaeda is Alive and Our Rights Are Gone

1. How the World Has Changed Since 9/11
 
It’s been 12 years since Al-Qaeda militants attacked the United States, killing 3,000 civilians and changing the world forever. Since then the U.S. has fought two wars in the Middle East, force fed prisoners at Guantánamo Bay, and sacrificed privacy in the name of security. Where’s all that left us? Afghanistan has become a shattered war zone and our veterans are traumatized by the memories of war. At home we’ve raised a generation of millennials who only know conflict and violated the rights of our Muslim citizens. Worst of all, Al-Qaeda still has enough power to shut down American embassies across the Middle East. It’s hard to find hope in the middle of the violence, but there are still Americans volunteering to make the world a better place.
 
10 inspiring stories from the men and women who protect our country (PolicyMic).
 
• 46 incredible photos of the decade since 9/11 (In Focus).
 
 
2. Why It’s a Really Bad Idea to Negotiate With a Crazy Dictator
 
UN talks have started to work out a deal for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to hand over his chemical weapons, but it already looks like diplomacy may be a lost cause. Russia is digging in its heels against U.S demands and Syria won’t be any easier to negotiate with. Assad has a track record of lying about chemical weapons, and Obama doesn’t have much bargaining power since Congress probably wouldn’t give him the go ahead for a military strike. You can expect Assad to draw out negotiations and then back out, leaving Obama to try to rally support for military intervention. And that’s an uphill battle: Obama doesn’t even have FLOTUS on his side.
 
• Feeling out of the loop? Get caught up on the Syria debate in 80 seconds (WaPo).
 
• This cartoon guide tells you everything you need to know about Bashar al-Assad (Slate).
 
 
3. You Won’t Believe These Shocking Stats On Domestic Violence
 
Domestic violence has become a worldwide epidemic. Case in point: a new study found a shocking percentage of Asian men have raped their partners. And domestic violence isn’t just a problem in Asia; the World Health Organization says 30% of women across the world are attacked by a partner at some point in their lives. The U.S. is no exception: 78% of sexual assaults in America are carried out by someone the victim knows. Fortunately, activists are fighting back. Crisis centers are finding new ways to fight back against domestic homicide, and Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is leading a campaign to wipe out sexual assault in the military.
 
• Apparently some journalists don’t think it’s possible to rape your girlfriend. *FACEPALM* (Slate).
 
A sexual assault survivor shares her advice on staying strong (PolicyMic).
 
What men can do to end rape (PolicyMic).
 
 
4. NYC is Going to be a Very Different City in the Not-So-Distant Future
 
New Yorkers went to the polls to pick their candidates for mayor on Tuesday, and the results came down to the wire. Democrat Bill de Blasio may have just hit the 40% of the vote he needs to avoid an Oct. 1 showdown, but the New York Board of Elections will hold a recount because of the razor-thin margin. Joe Lhota won a comfortable victory on the Republican ticket, but he’ll be a long shot for mayor. You can expect to see some major changes in New York no matter who wins the mayor’s race: The candidates have distanced themselves from Mike Bloomberg on major issues.
 
• See how New York has changed under 12 years of Bloomberg (NY Times).
 
• Anthony Weiner said goodbye to the spotlight with one defiantly raised middle finger (Twitter).
 
 
DESSERT
Meet the geeks of the frontlines of U.S. national security (Rolling Stone).
 
The one quality the world’s most inspiring billionaires have in common (HBR).
 
• Check out this fascinating map of the world’s most and least happy countries (WaPo).
 
12 photos from an artist having fun with food (NPR).
 

Thanks for reading!
Nick
 
What do you think about the topics in today’s Mic Check? Share your thoughts with me on Twitter @nicholascbaker.
 
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