Wow. That was difficult. I didn't know what they would say at school, if anything. So I explained 9/11 to Joey today on the way to school this morning. I told him that on September 11, 2001, America was attacked. They ran airplanes into two large buildings as well as "the place where the Army lives," which killed "thousands of Americans."
I should state at this point that Joey is very patriotic. He's studying the USA in class this year. All year long actually. He understands what it means to attack America.
He then asked me who did it. This is a sensitive subject. I told him it was a group of people who hate America called Al Qaeda. I didn't say anything about Islam or the middle eastern countries, as he goes to school with a very large proportion of middle-easterners and Muslims and didn't want him to start thinking unfounded bad things about his classmates.
I asked him if he understood that this country is at war, and he said yes. I told him that was why we are at war, and I saw it click in his eyes.
Then he asked me a very difficult question. "Why did they do it?" After a brief pause all I could say to him was that Al Qaeda likes seeing Americans die.
It's also strange to think that kids who were only 10-years-old when 9/11 happened are now going over to Afghanistan to (hopefully) finish things off.