9/11 – The Wingnuts v. The Sheeple

RU Sirius 9/11 DebateLeft to right: Joel Schalit, Fred Burks, RU Sirius at the first live recording of The RU Sirius Show.

Those who believe that 9/11 was an inside job are wingnuts -- rank amateur investigators and their sycophantic followers. They can't tell a rumor from a piece of evidence, or a piece of evidence from conclusive proof.

Those who believe that 9/11 was not an inside job are sheeple -- brainwashed dupes who have a psychological block against accepting unpleasant facts.

As a 9/11 conspiracy agnostic, I suppose I can live with both of those characterizations. (Oh wait, I forgot -- agnostics are gutless weasels who are afraid to take a stand.)

Both sides in this hostile exchange follow their own stream of evidence. Both sides say the evidence presented by their opponents is incomplete, misconstrued, or just downright false. Primary representatives of each point of view are characterized as sleazy opportunists with suspect connections. In other words, it's pretty much like all other political debates that happen during polarized times, but a bit weirder.

The weirdness mostly comes from the pro-conspiracy side.

Early theorists focused largely on the connections that always seem to exist between powerful armed gangs with a will to power -- whether they're state-based militarists and intelligence operatives or stateless terrorists. Shadowy possible connections between the CIA and Al Qaeda via Pakistan's Secret Service, the Saudi connections (including the business connections between the Bush's and bin Landen's): all sorts of tantalizing factoids and rumors could be spotted along the guns-and-money trail.

But over the last few years, "inside job" theory has focused mostly on presumed "smoking gun" physical evidence. This has resulted in a hyper-byzantine narrative that might look something like this: Government agents replaced passenger planes with remote-controlled flying something-or-others and also planted explosives in three WTC buildings. They somehow made the explosives go off at a particular time (or maybe the exact time didn't matter), but they made certain to fell not just the two buildings hit by the remote-controlled planes but one extra building, WTC #7. Bringing down this billion dollar building was an irresistibly convenient way of getting rid of some possibly damaging records.

Meanwhile, on the same day, a little while later, the Pentagon fired a missile at itself, making sure to hit the least valued section of their five-sided building, not the one where Donald Rumsfeld was hanging out. They were prepared to claim that the missile was actually a hijacked passenger plane. The people who were supposed to have been flying on these hijacked planes were maybe all packed onto the one plane that was shot down in Pennsylvania (contrary to the report that it was brought down by a struggle between the hijackers and the hijacked) even though everybody wouldn't have fit on the plane… or who the hell knows what happened to them. The many calls from the hijacked planes, particularly the one that went down in Pennsylvania, were faked with technology.

Meanwhile, NORAD was given a "stand down" order not to scramble jets to defend against these planes, or else some conspirators made sure that they didn't scramble the jets fast enough. And all who might have been involved in, or would have known about such a thing, were reliable conspiracy members or were intimidated or bribed into keeping it all secret. Hundreds of people at various levels of the government, the sorts of people who are generally inclined towards patriotism, conspired to destroy or damage the symbols of American financial and military power. Oh, and all those who investigated the debris in the Pentagon and those who witnessed the airplane overhead were either easily tricked or sworn to secrecy. And that's just the short version.

The long version of this narrative would include not just the intentional subversion of operations against Al Qaeda; but the conscious, knowing subversion of investigations into what happened on 9/11 not just by the Bush administration but from all levels of Congress, various police-type agencies, and all who testified before investigative committees. It would also take in the false testimonies of structural engineers and other experts in physical evidence, indeed entire academic conferences were conducted simply to deceive (hmm, come to think of it, that description might apply to a few "Critical Theory" conferences I've attended). This conspiracy involved thousands of Americans from all walks of life.

And then there are a few theorists who think that no planes hit the WTC at all and that it was all done with holography. Most members of the "Truth movement" agree that those people are wingnuts!

As someone who is willing to entertain the idea that I live inside of some sort of Platonic matrix created by a cruel master-species whose general intentions occasionally leaked into the brain of Philip K. Dick, I can hang out with this narrative. But on my agnosto-meter in which everything is possible but most things are improbable, I give it about a .0001% chance of being mostly accurate.

I would give other "inside job" narratives a higher rating. I might even be willing to go up to 15% odds that some world domination-oriented US militarists within the ranks of the powerful decided that the success of rumored upcoming major terror attacks on the US would help them achieve their national and global political goals and that they did some things to increase the likelihood that the attacks would succeed. Hey, sometimes you feel like a wingnut, sometimes you don't.

The book Debunking 9/11 Myths: Why Conspiracy Theories Can't Stand Up to the Facts, published by Popular Mechanics, deals entirely with issues around physical evidence. They claim to refute the theories about explosives planted in buildings, missiles in the Pentagon and the claims that Flight 93 was shot down in Pennsylvania, among other popular conspiranoid points. They also publish testimony from people who claim that they were misunderstood or misquoted by theorists -- falsely made to sound like they were supporting the theories. Naturally, those who believe in the conspiracy theories dismiss everything in the book and everyone quoted in the book as dupes and conspirators.

On the whole, the book is pretty impressive, although it's thin and it's not footnoted (most pro-conspiracy tracts are full of footnotes, but if you follow the footnotes you might find less than you bargained for.) The editors, David Dunbar and Brian Reagan, claim to have "consulted with more than 300 experts and sources in such fields as air traffic control, aviation, civil engineering, fire fighting, and metallurgy." Many of them are listed in the back of the book. Of course, quite a few of them do work for the government, which provides all the reason required for those on the conspiracy side of the tracks to dismiss the entire book as an adjunct to the whole nefarious government operation.

A few days ago, my audio podcast, The RU Sirius Show, sponsored a live debate on the subject of "inside job" conspiracy theory. One of my goals in putting together this panel was to include a hardcore anti-conspiracy theory skeptic. I started out by contacting the editors of the Popular Mechanics book, but they made it clear they were not interested in debating the other side. This is sort of understandable. Another person who I contacted, who has written specific skeptical comments about these theories told me she wouldn't participate in any debates because she received thousands of pieces of hate mail and several death threats for her column in a left wing newspaper doubting these theories. She didn't want to deal with that sort of fanaticism.

We wound up unable to come up with a hardcore, detail-oriented conspiracy theory skeptic who was available and willing to appear. So I thought I could incorporate some of the Debunking editors' skeptical views into this piece for 10 Zen Monkeys. Debunking editor Brad Reagan expressed a willingness to answer my email questions, but only if the book publicist reviewed the questions and agreed that it was OK. He explained that they had been "sandbagged by some conspiracy theorists since the book came out." I got the queasy feeling that I would only get a response if I asked nothing but softball questions, which I didn't want to do.

I sent off my questions and the response that I got was a compromise: very brief responses to only a few of my questions, apparently intended not as interview material but to help me with my own research.

The publicist explained that Reagan was already over-scheduled, and had magazine deadlines to contend with as well. As a former magazine editor, I can understand this. Still, I must report that my over all experience with conspiracy skeptics has fortified my general impression that neither side in this exchange wants any serious discourse with anyone who doubts their views, even slightly.

Reagan did answer my most important question. The one paragraph that really leaped out at me when reading Debunking blows a pretty big hole in the theories based on the planned demolition of the World Trade Center that seem to dominate most of the conspiracy theories. It reads, "The collapses of the three World Trade Center buildings are among the most extensively studied structural failures in American history. In the five years since 9/11, they have been the subject of lengthy investigations and engineering school symposiums, together involving hundreds of experts from academia and private industry, as well as the government."

I asked Reagan if he could substantiate these claims or provide us with some links that could help us to do so. He sent along the following message, including links: "The American Society of Civil Engineers website has a research library. Search under 'World Trade Center' and you will find numerous papers studying the collapse of the buildings. This link describes the range of experts participating in the NIST investigation. On another site, The Bazant paper is especially instructive. He is one of the world's leading civil engineers."

I'll suggest that those who are in search of The Truth" in this matter would do well to read Debunking with an open mind, and to also follow the leads Mr. Reagan has provided. I would also suggest that those who dismiss all possibilities of government collusion would not be harmed if they admitted to themselves that relegating some of the well-documented fuckups and fiascoes of the American security establishment to incompetence does sometimes seem to stretch the boundaries of credulity.

For example, one of the weaker parts of Debunking is the section where they explain that America was not prepared to defend itself against an attack by hijacked airliners because we'd never dealt with that situation before. But even such mainstream, quasi-Republicanist fare as the recent ABC docudrama The Path to 9/11 showed how, for months, the authorities were getting all kinds of warnings and chatter about "airplanes" and "hijackings" and "a major terrorist attack against the US," and that they were watching suspects who were attending flight schools. And beyond that, this very same TV special echoed the little discussed fact that the revelations about Al Qaeda's plans to use planes to attack the US go back to 1996 with news about "Project Bojinka" and, of course, that the World Trade Center had been targeted before, ad infinitum. Can we really chalk all that up to the glacial pace of government bureaucracy? Definitely maybe, but it does give one pause (or it should).

We live, obviously, in paranoid times. People are quick to conclude that the discursive other -- the person with the opposite point of view -- is "the enemy." And enemies need to be defended against, not learned from. (Actually, one should learn from one's enemies, but I'll leave the Sun Tzu for another occasion.) Thus we see less and less real discourse, not just in terms of the facts and repercussions of 9/11 but across the political board. Maybe we should just split into memetic tribes and have it out in a shooting war. But color me an eternal optimist. I'd like to think that there is still space in public discourse for agnosticism; for uncertainty; and for considering the ideas of the other.

20 thoughts to “9/11 – The Wingnuts v. The Sheeple”

  1. We live in an age of conspiratorial conjecture, and many times that speculation seems to describe the chaotic events we have encountered rather well. However, facts are facts, and if you look at all of the truths collectively, any conspiratorial farce begins to falter. A nefarious cult of “insiders”? did not kill 3000 innocent people for malign ends, dropping two of our biggest financial buildings, badly damaging our pentagon, and putting the country in perilous economic danger. I’m sorry, but our government is too much of a cluster fuck to pull off an organized calamity of such monumental proportions. These conspiracy theorists are the same yahoos saying that our government blew up the dikes after hurricane Katrina, conspired to keep the poor black man down, and used the Haarp project to steer Katrina into the gulf to drive up oil prices. Come on! Our government is not that good! It was obvious to me that the Katrina episode was an expression of local, state, and national governmental incompetence, nothing more, nothing less. Let me ask everyone a question: How could our completely disorganized government, which couldn’t handle a hurricane crisis, pull off 9-11 with such finesse? I’m here to say, even if they were trying to pull it off, they couldn’t do it, because of the incompetence that rules in the corridors of Washington.

    If you’re after the complete truth, you never close the deal on any hypothesis, are always open to new truth, and are willing to update your theory, despite how much the facts sets you back. But these morons are not operating with such impeccable qualities. No matter how much you smear their face in the fact that we were attacked by a group of fanatical religious zealots willing to die for their beliefs, they can never see the facts in bold letters staring them in the face. Wait, if you think about it, the conspiracy theorists and the terrorists are very similar cognitively, they both are allowing fantasy to dictate their reality. Face the facts folks, 9-11 actually happened very similar to the official story! Deal with it!

    Sure, there are some questions I have that remain unanswered, for instance the 600% increase in put-options on American and United Airlines three days prior. A put-option, for anyone interested, is basically a bet that the prices are going to fall through the floor, and you are locking into a higher selling price. Also, we were running War games the morning of 9-11-2001 simulating a jetliner crashing into one of our buildings. However, when looking at all the facts, it is obvious these conspiracies don’t hold any water. We were attacked, plain and simple!

    People find believing in such a preposterous yarn gives meaning to their pathetic existence, and it gives them a myth to deal with their disintegrating reality which is coming unglued at the seams. It gives them a handle onto this chaotic existence, which to them is, obviously, overwhelming. And before everyone jumps on me, this is no right-wing spin, for I believe both wings of this pathological bird are screwed. As I think a song goes, “I ain’t no right winger; I ain’t no left-winger; I’m the middle finger!”?

  2. The 9/11 commission investigated those airline put options and found no cause for alarm. They were unusual only in the context of what happened on 9/11, but not unexplained or unanswered:

    “A single U.S.-based institutional investor with no conceivable ties to al Qaeda purchased 95 percent of the UAL puts on September 6 as part of a trading strategy that also included buying 115,000 shares of American on September 10…

    Similarly, much of the seemingly suspicious trading in American on September 10th was traced to a specific U.S.-based options trading newsletter, faxed to its subscribers on Sunday, September 9, which recommended these trades”.

    I don’t recall actually finding any corroborating reports that indicate that 9/11 wargames involved crashing jetliners into buildings. One such exercise is referenced in the Vanity Fair “NORAD tapes” article:

    The day’s exercise was designed to run a range of scenarios, including a “traditional” simulated hijack in which politically motivated perpetrators commandeer an aircraft, land on a Cuba-like island, and seek asylum.

    But military and security operations being what they are, all manner of organizations across the country could have and probably were running all sorts of exercises and war games, and if one of them involved an “airliner crashing into a building,” you still have to accept that there is room for coincidence on any day of the week.

  3. i just wanna say one thing about the “government is too dumb” argument. it’s beside the point. i’m not saying it was an inside job, but i will say that it’s not “the government” per se that would have done it.

    government “bureaucracy” is inept, that is true. that doesn’t mean there aren’t highly focused, highly competent, very powerful factions within the government, acting on their own agendas, and doing so very well.

    just look at the stuff the US “government” has gotten away with in the past. then think of how intelligent and driven Dick Cheney is.

    it’s plausible, is all i’m saying.

  4. “One of my goals in putting together this panel was to include a hardcore anti-conspiracy theory skeptic. I started out by contacting the editors of the Popular Mechanics book, but they made it clear they were not interested in debating the other side.”

    They must’ve changed their minds, because they did engage in a debate sponsored by Democracy Now with the two producers of Loose Change, the most popular piece of pro-conspiracy rhetoric.


  5. Toby & Fling:

    I figured I was guilty of stating misinformation that got filtered through to me by some Nut Job Sites. I’m glad that put-option occurence was properly understood. Like I said, Facts are Facts, and they are incontrovertible. Also, I was just stating some questions that remained unanswered in my head, but thank you Toby; they are now satisfactorily addressed. Indeed, coincidence! I is obvious we were attacked, plain and simple!

    I agree there are some extremely focused individuals in our government who might be able to pull this off. However, the logistical nightmare in trying to conduct such a widespread calamity would, seems to me, be very difficult, if not nearly impossible. My point is when too many incompetent people are involved in any edeavor it becomes a joke. And that is under the complete cloak of secrecy that must remain secret. I’m sorry, but I don’t buy it.

  6. In addition to these conspiracy theories using shoddy arguments about physical evidence (as thoroughly debunked by the Popular Mechanics book), all the theories fail the tests of Occam’s Razor and common sense.

    Assuming some secret government faction wanted to fake a terror attack by blowing up the WTC with explosives and shooting a missile at the Pentagon, why bother with airline hijackings? Why not just blow up the buildings and fire the missile and blame it on the terrorists? It would kill more people (because nobody would have time to evacuate from the WTC), there’s a lot less that could go wrong, and the conspiracy types would have a lot less to pick at. The totality of events simply makes no sense as an “inside job.”

    This is the same problem I have with JFK conspiracies: assuming there was a vast conspiracy inside the government to kill him, why bother complicating things by hiring some unstable loon for a sniper attack, plus the other gunmen on the Grassy Knoll? Why not just slip poison into JFK’s morning coffee? They’re going to cover up the autopsy anyway, right? “Sudden heart attack, such a tragedy, nothing to see here.” Why rely on the marksmanship and future silence of a gang of gunmen? When I asked that of JFK conspiracy types on a BBS years ago, the only answer I got was: “They wanted to send a message.” Right: a secret government conspiracy that wants to kill a president can’t just do it in secret, they have create a large, complex plan to commit a murder in public to “send a message”? Sure, that makes sense….

  7. hello lovely people! again, i’m not coming down on one side or another yet, but…

    Assuming some secret government faction wanted to fake a terror attack by blowing up the WTC with explosives and shooting a missile at the Pentagon, why bother with airline hijackings?

    because! they had to frame it so it fits the profile of Middle Eastern militants and their methods. and it had to be HUGE, to justify the current adventurism.

    intelligence was everywhere about al qaeda’s intent to use this method, so Cheney orchestrated accordingly.

    i’m just sayin’ is all.

  8. They must’ve changed their minds, because they did engage in a debate sponsored by Democracy Now with the two producers of Loose Change, the most popular piece of pro-conspiracy rhetoric.

    Dammit! Brad Reagan indeed just let me know about that.

    But my basic point still stands. They may talk to each other on Democracy Now but they talk passed each other. Of course, it was supposed to be a debate, I understand that. And sometimes one should reach a conclusion and stand by it, I understand that too. But we are encouraged by the “right v. left” punditocracy and political enviroment to think that we have to mock up a definite opinion on everything, when the fact is most of us are incompletely informed and lack expertise in many areas.

    In the future, everybody will act like a politician for 15 minutes

  9. I am beginning to believe that agnostic means patiently waiting for the truth to reveal itself. Thank you for your work.

  10. I’m not trying to diss Cheney, but the man can’t even shoot the birds he’s hunting for and shoots his friend instead. How did Cheney manage to orchestrate it all? I’m with RU on this; I’m trying to remain an agnostic about it all. Do I know 100% the absolute truth? Well, no, but the evidence we have would suggest there was no “inside job.”

    I saw “United 93” a couple months back, and after the movie I made some postings to some message groups I’m in describing how heroic these people were and how much pain the victim’s families must have been in. I got so much “Hate” mail from countless “Wingnuts” telling me how stupid I was, and I didn’t see the forest through the trees. Consequently, I had to quit many of the groups because the people were so vile and detestable, so full of hate!

    They all stick together in their paranoid “Hate America” countenance. My only reaction them to them is to ask, “why couldn’t the terrorists take out their whining, annoying selves instead?”

  11. Pentagon fired a missile at itself, making sure to hit the least valued section of their five-sided building

    It is my impression that organizations have a difficult time keeping secrets. There is always someone who eventually decides to tell what they know. Granted an organization like the CIA would maintain a strict policy of secrecy within its ranks. But in the case of 9/11, there are just too many credible witnesses that refute the various conspiracy theories. I remember watching what was happening that day on television while the broadcast media reported on what was happening over Washington D.C., when the third hijacked plane crashed into the pentagon. According to one conspiracy theory a missile hit the pentagon, but the people the media interviewed say otherwise. Are these people who actually saw the plane crash into the pentagon in on the conspiracy too? That’s a lot of people to have control of even for the CIA or some other nebulous organization. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy a good conspiracy theory. I like participating in different perspectives on reality, but this one isn’t one of them.

    I wasn’t sure how to get the orange bar and red font in the portion of the previous message, please advise thank you.

  12. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy a good conspiracy theory. I like
    participating in different perspectives on reality, but this one isn’t
    one of them.

    I like them too! But they are usually full of crap… No, there was no “inside job,” and the Freemasons don’t control the world either. But people have a need to feel scared and believe there are sinister groups trying to control all of us. As I stated earlier, it gives their pathetic grasp on reality some meaning and definition. Instead of people looking at conspiracy theory as a humorous form of fiction describing our reality, they buy into it hook, line, and sinker!!! What’s funny is these “Wingnuts” think they are right and were the dupes. It doesn’t matter what evidence is presented to them; they will find a way to fit it within their conspiratorial designs

  13. because! they had to frame it so it fits the profile of Middle Eastern militants and their methods. and it had to be HUGE, to justify the current adventurism.

    But fling!, just blowing up the WTC with explosives does fit the Muslim terrorist profile, because they tried to do just that in 1993, remember? Had they been successful, they would have knocked down both towers in a matter of minutes and killed 16,000-18,000 people, because there would have been no time to evacuate. I submit that would count as “HUGE.”

    Terrorists have also been known to fire missiles, so a missile attack on the Pentagon attack also easily fits the Muslim terror attack “frame.” So in my “insider attack” scenarios, the WTC attack would have been hugely more destructive, and both would have been far simpler: no fake hijackings to coordinate, and where did the plane that “supposedly” hit the Pentagon disappear to, anyway?

  14. But fling!, just blowing up the WTC with explosives does fit the Muslim terrorist profile, because they tried to do just that in 1993, remember?

    hey, this is a fun thought experiment. continuing…

    let’s subtract the “controlled demolition” part of the insider timeline. in that case, i’m not sure it WOULD be easier to stage a missile attack. where would the missile be fired from? how would it reach its point of launch undetected? is a missile really gonna bring down the WTC? (i’m not convinced the buildings falling were part of evil-Cheney’s plan, to be honest.)

    just crashing a couple of planes filled with people into symbolic buildings is pretty simple and straightforward, especially for someone in Cheney’s position who can, say, have his pax-Americana military brethren be sure to hold jetliner hijacking wargames the same day, give stand down orders regarding real hijacked planes, etc.

    and away we go!

  15. It’s unfortunate that you appear to hang your hat mostly on the Popular Mechanics stuff.
    I like to look at people’s motives for writing what they did.
    This was obviously written in order to support the government’s conspiracy theory about 19 hijackers who could’t fly jets, managing to get aboard aircraft undetected, and managing to not appear on a passenger list, acheiving flying manoevres beyond the limits of the plane, hitting three out of four targets from 30.000 feet unaided by air traffic control, and then seven of them surviving.
    Why would Popular Mechanics wish to attempt to support such a story?
    Is it possibly due to their ownership, Hearst Publications, who are partly responsible for the omissions and assumptions in the mass media related to 9/11 since the start of the event? How could Popular Mechanics be considered an objective source of material. They were obviously biased before they stsrted. They set up straw arguments, and then debunk them, but carefully omit most of the evidence available in the web sites of the 9/11 truth movement.
    I have to admit to being biased against the government’s theory, because I still haven’t come across a logical explanation of how it could possibly have happened like that, and I’ve been looking for five years.

    May I take this opportunity of wishing you all success with your new site


  16. has everyone forgotten how all 3 buildings in new york fell? collapsing straight down? im not saying all of these nuts are right on everything they say(on either side) but the way the buildings fell is suspicious and i think more focus is needed in this whole mess, nobody seems to really know what happened the government really has not been clear on a lot of issues since 9/11 and people are taking a little bit of information and twisting it with their fears. but at the same time thare are alot of unawnsered questions.

    just seems like a big mess to me

  17. I find the “government is too incompetent” argument to be weak, especially in light of the official story. If the CIA, military intelligence, or what-have-you isn’t competent enough to pull 9-11 off, how are a bunch of rag-tags trained in some armpit of Afghanistan supposed to have done it?

    We have a measure of government competence, and we have a measure of their willingness to fake attacks on the public in the name of nationalism, empire, or profit of the war machine. Consider Operation Northwoods, the goading of the Japanese into attacking Pearl Harbor, or the Gulf of Tonkin.

    We also have a measure of the “terrorist’s” competence. They were terrible pilots, as per their Flight School instructors. Even their willingness to die for their cause is in doubt; if they were devout enough Muslims to die, they should have been devout enough to refrain from booze and strip clubs.

    If a faction within the US government, such as the Neo-Cons (read PNAC sometime for motive), wanted to pull their own version of Operation Northwoods to get the public behind the invasion of Afghanistan (and later Iraq), how would they do it? They’d gather their pawns (Al Queda) and put them through the motions of prepping for the attack. They’d send them to American flight schools, where the paper trail would record their “training.” The patsies would be protected from investigation, and coddled through airport security. The date of the attack is matched on a day with terrorist games, to maximize confusion and increase the likelihood of success. The planes are taken over and sent into their targets. Who was at the controls? Not the unskilled patsies. This was accomplished with either incredibly skilled, unaccounted for, suicidal pilots, or via the Global Hawk remote control system.

    The Towers were brought down with explosives. This was done to guarantee a greater degree of damage and loss of life. Without a serious “attack,”? the cause for expansionist war is missing. Show an example where a steel-frame skyscraper has collapsed into its own footprint, at near free-fall speeds, without demolition. There is no such example. However, these types of buildings have been entirely gutted by fire, burning all the way down to the frame – without collapse.

    Flight 93’s debris came down over an area of 6 miles. This is in accordance with a mid-flight explosion. Either those in control of the plane set off an on-board bomb, or the plane was shot down. If the plane was shot down (presumably, by responding military aircraft), the White House wouldn’t lose anything by admitting this – it would have been a legitimate act of defense. An on-board bomb makes far more sense, whether or not the plane was controlled in the cockpit or via remote. On-site “terrorists,”? in danger of losing the plane, have motive to take it down. So, too, would “remote handlers,” afraid of the passengers discovering no pilot, and communicating this to others.

    Which is more far-fetched?

    Unskilled, lapsing Muslim terrorists, blithely waltzing through airport security unhindered? Who coincidently picked the same day for their attack that the government had scheduled similar training scenarios? Terrible pilots pulling off impressive natigation and maneuvers, without outside guidance? The unprecedented, neat collapse of 3 skyscrapers due to aircraft impact and fire, when 1 of the buildings was struck by no aircraft? Flight 93’s debris landing up to 6 miles away from a nosedive crash?

    Or a government willing to lie to its own people (check), to start was of aggression (check), and even kill its own citizens (check)? The existence of military technology to remote control aircraft (check). Building collapses in accordance with controlled demolitions (check)?

    Stranger and stranger, indeed.

  18. One of the things that helped me to think about 9/11 is to look at it as a criminal investigator would. In other words, who had the motive, the means, and who benefitted from the crime?

    First, “al Queda”:

    Motive: Because “they hate our freedom”. Okaaaaay, that’s a little vague, but I suppose it’s within the realm of possibility.

    Means: Ordinarily, the answer would be no. Unless they had insider knowledge, there isn’t any way they would have known there were multiple classified wargames occuring on the morning of 9/11 that involved hikacked airliners. They also would not have known that only a handful of military warplanes were guarding the entire east coast of the U.S.. In addition, the alleged hijackers weren’t qualified to fly passenger jumbo jets, they wouldn’t have been able to facilitate the removal of evidence from the WTC site, etc. etc. etc.

    Did they benefit from the crime? It would seem the answer is no. Their haven in Afghanistan has been disrupted, many of their leaders have been captured or killed, their accounts have been frozen, America is still standing, and the rest of them are being hunted around the world.

    Now, the NeoCons:

    Motive? You bet. It’s all spelled out rather clearly in the Project For A New American Century: Take advantage of a “new Pearl Harbor” to launch wars of aggression in the Middle East.

    Means? Yep. Members of PNAC were in several key positions of power in the White House and the Pentagon in the 9 months leading up to 9/11. None of them have ever been reprimanded for the “intelligence failure” that allegedly occured that day.

    Did they benefit? Absolutely. They got their pre-planned wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and now they’re beating the drums to attack Iran. They also got their “Patriot Act” and other curtailments of civil liberties. They got their “Department of Homeland Security”. None of these would have been possible without 9/11.

  19. In the interest of furthering the discussion and allowing more viewpoints into the mix:


    I, myself, would love to see the reaction to that article. It does get very “frothing-at-the-mouth” at the end — the “All of them have at least one thing in common — they’re human; and humans are idiots.” comment just makes my head shake in shame– but nonetheless, the writer does bring up some much more valid points than I felt you had, Mr. Sirius. And backed up with links and annotations.

Comments are closed.