An introduction to the 2000s
Thankfully, the warning that the end of civilization was upon us was a false alarm. Nonetheless, the decade got off to a bumpy, nervous start—and in many ways, things never quite simmered down. Americans optimistically envisioned the 2000s as a time of hope and boundless prosperity. That all changed on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001.
This event was arguably the decade’s defining moment. Without warning, three simultaneous terrorist attacks from the friendly skies crippled the nation and shocked the world. The aftermath of 9/11, as it came to be known, impacted the 2000s with war in Iraq, another conflict in Afghanistan, terror alerts, economic turbulence and intensified political bipartisanship at home.