It's possible that it always was just a political playing piece.
And yet, playing piece or not, real people were affected. Real people died. On this day, instead of the overblown and dramatic reminiscences offered by so many, I prefer the simple and not even so-very-tragic memories of someone just living in the city at the time:
I remember going into the nearby grocery store. It was packed with people and absolutely silent. No one was talking and no cell phones ringing because all phones were down. No carts or hand baskets were available; people were packing groceries into empty shipping boxes and pushing them around the store with their feet because they were so overloaded with essentials. Someone dropped a jar of spaghetti sauce and it exploded with a loud, glass crunching boom….and everyone froze like deer in the headlights. I remember seeing one guy buying only fresh fruit and yogurt; that seemed like an odd strategy to me. When I got home one of my neighbors asked why I was buying so many groceries. I said, “because we are on an island.” That changed the look on his face and he walked away.
You can find the entire blog post here.