Donald Trump marked his first 9/11 anniversary as president Monday, celebrating the flag and the values it stands for while warning would-be terrorists of the nation's resolve.
"America does not bend. We do not waver and we will never ever yield," Trump said, speaking solemnly and defiantly at the Pentagon, one of three sites targeted in the 2001 attacks.
"Our values will endure. Our people will thrive. Our nation will prevail and the memory of our loved ones will never ever die."
Trump, a native New Yorker and real estate magnate, identifies strongly with the Twin Towers that were destroyed that day and the people who were killed, wounded and frightened as they fell. He speaks regularly about the threat posed by terrorists.
At the Pentagon, Trump also spoke of "every hero who keeps us safe and free" and the sacrifice of first responders and soldiers.
During Monday's observance, he and First Lady Melania Trump laid a large white wreath at the Pentagon's memorial wall. They were joined by Defense Secretary James Mattis and General Joseph F. Dunford, Jr., the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
But his words were more about resistance than pity.
"Terrorists tried to break our resolve," he said. "It's not going to happen. But where they left a mark in rubble, Americans bravely raised the stars and stripes."