By Stephen C. Webster
May 13, 2009
Much of the material cited in the 9/11 Commission’s findings was derived from terror war detainees during brutal CIA interrogations authorized by the Bush administration, according to a Wednesday report.
“More than one-quarter of all footnotes in the 9/11 Report refer to CIA interrogations of al Qaeda operatives subjected to the now-controversial interrogation techniques,” writes former NBC producer Robert Windrem in The Daily Beast. “In fact, information derived from the interrogations was central to the 9/11 Report’s most critical chapters, those on the planning and execution of the attacks.”
“… [Information] derived from the interrogations is central to the Report’s most critical chapters, those on the planning and execution of the attacks,” reported NBC. “The analysis also shows – and agency and commission staffers concur – there was a separate, second round of interrogations in early 2004, done specifically to answer new questions from the Commission.
“9/11 Commission staffers say they ‘guessed’ but did not know for certain that harsh techniques had been used, and they were concerned that the techniques had affected the operatives’ credibility. At least four of the operatives whose interrogation figured in the 9/11 Commission Report have claimed that they told interrogators critical information as a way to stop being ‘tortured.’ The claims came during their hearings last spring at the U.S. military facility in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.”
“Commission executive director Philip Zelikow (later counselor to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice) admitted, ‘We were not aware,… Continue reading
Should the members of the 9/11 Presidential Commission not have been informed
that two of the “key witnesses” upon whom their report was based
had provided the information critical to the report’s conclusions only
after being waterboarded a total of 266 times? … In short, the basic narrative
of the origins and conduct of the 9/11 attack that so fundamentally perverted
American politics relied on cherry-picked information that the White House and
its operative in the field chose to release to the commission.
May 12, 2009
By Robert Scheer
Nancy Pelosi is no Dick Cheney, nor a George W. Bush. She was neither the author
of a systematic policy of torture nor has she been, like Cheney and most top
Republicans in Congress, an enduring apologist for its practice. It is a nonsensical
distraction to place her failure to speak out courageously as a critic of the
Bush policies on the same level as those who engineered one of the most shameful
debacles in U.S. history.
But what she, and anyone else who went along with this evil, as lackadaisically
as she now claims, should be confronted with are the serious implications of
their passive acquiescence. Why did she not speak up, or if it were a matter
of a lack of reliable information, demand an accounting from the executive branch,
as befits a leader of the loyal opposition in Congress?
If the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, and later House
Democratic leader, lacked the authority to… Continue reading
May 11, 2009
The Red Cross is the organization charged with deciding what is torture and
The International Committee of the Red Cross interviewed Khalid Shaikh Mohammed
– the alleged 9/11 mastermind – at Guantánamo Bay.
Here’s what KSM
told the Red Cross (see below for more from a review of this report):
During the harshest period of my interrogation I gave a lot of false information
in order to satisfy what I believed the interrogators wished to hear in order
to make the ill-treatment stop. I later told the interrogators that their
methods were stupid and counterproductive. I’m sure that the false information
I was forced to invent in order to make the ill-treatment stop wasted a lot
of their time and led to several false red-alerts being placed in the U.S.
Straight from the horse’s mouth:
* Torture doesn’t work; and
* The 9/11 Commission report was based on worthless
confessions extracted by torture (and, as I’ve previously discussed, the
witness who fingered Khalid Shaikh Mohammed as the mastermind of 9/11 was himself
rom The New
York Review of Books , a very extensive article with much more important
information about the ICRC Report:
…There is a reverse side, of course, to the “ticking bomb” and
torture: pain and ill-treatment, by creating an unbearable pressure on the detainee
to say something, anything, to make the pain stop, increase the likelihood that
he will fabricate stories, and waste time, or worse.…
by Ken Jenkins
How many times has this happened to you? You are explaining to someone some of the rational, logical reasons why the official story of 9/11 can’t be true, perhaps explaining how WTC 7 fell in the exact manner of a professionally planned controlled demolition — a job which would typically take weeks to prepare — when out comes a ‘thought stopper’ phrase like:
“That’s just another conspiracy theory !” or …
“Do you also believe in Big Foot and tin foil hats?”
Or perhaps the person gets angry and/or agitated. Facts no longer matter at that point, and you can tell the person does not want to hear any more. For example, the following response came from someone after they were given a 20-minute summary of 9/11 Truth information:
“I wouldn’t believe that, even if it were true!”
That reaction defies all logic and reason. But it clearly illustrates just how irrational some peoples’ defenses can be. Here are a few more honest responses/defenses:
“As long as my wife and kids are fine and we can live the life style we have, the truth is, I don’t really care what happened on 9/11.” “I would not want to live in a world where such a thing could be true.” “You can’t expect someone to listen to information that turns their world upside down.” “I’m not sure I want to know. If this is true, then up would be down and down would be up. My life would… Continue reading
April 27, 2009
History Commons Groups
A recently released 9/11 Commission memo highlights the role of government
“minders” who accompanied witnesses interviewed by the commission.
It was added to the National Archives’ files at the start of the year
and discovered there by History Commons contributor paxvector.
The memo, entitled “Executive Branch Minders’ Intimidation of Witnesses,”
The memo was drafted by three staffers on the commission’s Team 2, which
reviewed the overall structure of the US intelligence community. One of the
drafters was Kevin Scheid, a senior staffer who led the team. His co-writers
were Lorry Fenner, an air force intelligence officer, and lawyer Gordon Lederman.
The complaint was sent to the commission’s counsels, Daniel Marcus and
Steve Dunne, in October 2003, about halfway through the commission’s 19-month
The memo makes clear that the problems were not occurring only with witnesses
talking to Team 2, but also in “other teams’ interviews.”
A hand-written note on a draft of the memo says, “not one agency or minder
— also where we’ve sat in on other Teams’ interviews.”
According… Continue reading
April 21, 2009
by George Washington
5 hours after the 9/11 attacks, Donald Rumsfeld said “my interest is to hit Saddam”.
And at 2:40 p.m. on September 11th, in a memorandum of discussions between top administration officials, several lines below the statement “judge whether good enough [to] hit S.H. [that is, Saddam Hussein] at same time”, is the statement “Hard to get a good case.” In other words, top officials knew that there wasn’t a good case that Hussein was behind 9/11, but they wanted to use the 9/11 attacks as an excuse to justify war with Iraq anyway.
And yet, the government knew that Al Qaeda and Iraq were not linked. For example, “Ten days after the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, President Bush was told in a highly classified briefing that the U.S. intelligence community had no evidence linking the Iraqi regime of Saddam Hussein to the [9/11] attacks and that there was scant credible evidence that Iraq had any significant collaborative ties with Al Qaeda”.
And a Defense Intelligence Terrorism Summary issued in February 2002 by the United States Defense Intelligence Agency cast significant doubt on the possibility of a Saddam Hussein-al-Qaeda conspiracy.
By Peter Duveen
PETER’S NEW YORK, Saturday, April 18, 2009–U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer
(D-NY) said yesterday that while he was positively disposed toward a new investigation
into the events of 9-11, his support for such a probe would depend on the form
it would take.
Schumer, who was attending the launch of the Tour of the Battenkill annual
bicycle races in Cambridge, New York, responded to a question regarding efforts
in New York City to establish a new 9-11 investigation.
"I think it’s not a bad idea," Schumer said. "You know, you’ve
got to do it in a good way, but yes, I’d be for it."
Schumer qualified his remarks by noting that his support would depend upon
the manner in which the investigation was structured. "I’d have to see
the parameters of the investigation and all that," he said. He briefly
mentioned "finding body parts," which may have referred to the discovery
in 2006 that the roof of the Deutsche Bank building near the former site of
the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center was strewn with human remains from
A report sponsored by the National Institute of Standards and Technology maintains
that the Twin Towers were brought down entirely due to fire and mechanical damage
from the two airliners that collided with them on 9-11. A similar report by
the same government agency asserts that the sudden and rapid collapse that same
afternoon of a third office tower, the 47-story Building 7, was caused… Continue reading
By Christopher Beam
April 8, 2009
In the new season of the FX drama Rescue Me, firefighter Franco Rivera espouses the belief that 9/11 was “an inside job.” According to a Sunday New York Times article, the show’s writers added this assertion because actor Daniel Sunjata is a “truther”; but the real firefighters on set–who work as script advisers–were offended by his allegations. This got the Explainer wondering: Do any firefighters believe in 9/11 conspiracy theories?
Yes. There’s no evidence that firefighters buy into 9/11 conspiracy theories at higher rates than the rest of the population. (A 2007 Zogby poll found that 26 percent of Americans believe the government “let it happen.” A 2006 Scripps-Howard poll found it was more than a third.) But some firemen do believe the government was behind 9/11 and use their status as first responders to draw attention to their statements.
The most common conspiracy theory held by firefighters is that the Twin Towers–as well as a third building, 7 World Trade Center–collapsed not because planes crashed into them but due to a “controlled demolition.” On Sept. 11, an NBC reporter quoted New York Fire Department Chief of Safety Albert Turi as saying he believed there were explosives planted in one of the towers. After the attacks, the New York Fire Department interviewed firefighters to create an oral history of 9/11. These tapes–which were not released until 2005–contain numerous references to… Continue reading
The bipartisan panel that investigated the terrorist attacks was widely praised.
But did its final report rely on suspect information?
From the magazine issue dated Mar 23, 2009
Powerful Democrats on Capitol Hill are clamoring for creation of a bipartisan
“9/11 style” commission to investigate the legality of the Bush administration’s
antiterrorism tactics–especially its use of harsh interrogation techniques.
President Obama has been notably cool to the idea. But the case for a “truth”
commission was bolstered by the disclosure this month that the CIA had destroyed
92 videotapes of the interrogations and confinement of Al Qaeda suspects. A
dozen showed the use of “enhanced” techniques routinely described
by human-rights groups as torture.
Lawmakers say the obvious model for such an inquiry would be the 9/11 Commission–an
independent bipartisan body praised for its authoritative account of the attacks.
But as a reporter who covered the commission from start to finish and later
wrote a history of its investigation, I wonder if Congress understands the deep
irony of establishing a “new 9/11 Commission” on these issues. Former
commission investigators have acknowledged to me over the past year that the
panel had a serious blind spot on questions about torture.
The commission appears to have ignored obvious clues throughout 2003 and 2004
that its account of the 9/11 plot and Al Qaeda’s history relied heavily on information
obtained from detainees who had been subjected to torture, or something not
far from it.
The panel raised no public protest over… Continue reading
by Mickey S. Huff and Paul W. Rea
They say goldfish have no memory
I guess their lives are much like mine
and the little plastic castle
is a surprise every time
and it’s hard to say if they’re happy
but they don’t seem much to mind.
–Ani DiFranco, Little Plastic Castles
For the past eight years, American culture has seen an outburst of media-driven mythmaking. Corporate mainstream media organizations, the pundits they sponsor, and politicians from both major parties have formed a new contextual chorus singing the same refrain: “On September 11th, 2001, everything changed.” From cable TV to AM radio, from the blogosphere to the town-hall meeting, Americans repeatedly hear that “this is a post-9/11 world.”
Although there is some truth to this platitude of pivotal change, independently minded citizens may also wonder whether such mass media messages have become self-fulfilling prophecies. This provides an interesting point of debate about what has or has not changed in America since 9/11.
This chapter concerns itself with the ongoing phenomena of media mythmaking and how, like many Americans surmised just after 9/11, everything has not changed. 1 Corporate mainstream media have resurrected powerful myths from America’s past to shape public perception in the present. Through the prism of 9/11, one can see how the corporate mass media are in fact doing more mythmaking than news reporting. Here, the authors will examine central historic American myths the corporate media and even much of the alternative independent media have extended into the… Continue reading
February 24, 2009 – An alliance of doctors, dentists, nurses, therapists,
researchers, and other medical professionals today announced the formation of
Medical Professionals for 9/11 Truth and its petition calling for a new investigation
into the events of 9/11. The group’s website is at http://MP911Truth.org.
“As medical professionals, we are dedicated to the service of humanity; to
alleviating suffering, to improving health, preventing disease, and to preserving
life,” said co-founder Jonathan Weisbuch, MD, MPH. “We are horrified by the
terrorist acts of 9/11 and the senseless suffering and loss of life resulting
“However,” he continued, “as medical professionals, we are trained in science
and logical reasoning. We are appalled by the lack of scientific rigor and the
substantial omissions and blatant distortions in the official account of 9/11
as embodied in the 9/11 Commission Report and related government documents.”
Dr. Weisbuch is a prominent public health physician and administrator and
previously served as the Chief Health Officer for the States of Wyoming and
North Dakota, as well as Los Angeles County, CA, and Maricopa County, AZ (Phoenix,
Co-founder Barry Komisaruk, PhD, added, “The official account of the events
of 9/11 is so riddled with contradiction and implausibility that an objective
re-examination is necessary to set the record straight. We need to know who
was really behind the events and bring them to justice to prevent them from
striking again. We can no longer afford to allow our government to use deadly
force in our name… Continue reading
February 7, 2009
George Washington’s Blog
Counter-terrorism experts presumably have some insight into terrorism, right?
In fact, numerous high-level counter-terrorism experts question the government’s investigation of – and explanation for – 9/11.
“The best I could say about it is they really botched the job by not really going into the real failures. … At worst, I think the 9/11 Commission Report is treasonous.”
The idea of such an attack was well known [and] had been
wargamed as a possibility in exercises before September 11.
- Professor John Arquilla of the Naval Postgraduate
School, Monterey, California
In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks, senior U.S. government and military officials repeatedly claimed that what happened that day was unexpected. In May 2002, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said, “I don’t think anybody could have predicted that these people would take an airplane and slam it into the World Trade Center, take another one and slam it into the Pentagon; that they would try to use an airplane as a missile, a hijacked airplane as a missile.”  Two years later, President Bush stated, “Nobody in our government, at least, and I don’t think the prior government, could envision flying airplanes into buildings on such a massive scale.”  General Ralph Eberhart, the commander of NORAD on September 11, said, “Regrettably, the tragic events of 9/11 were never anticipated or exercised.” 
Yet these claims were untrue. Not only had the U.S. military and other government agencies discussed the possibility of such attacks, they also conducted numerous training exercises in the year or two before September 11 based around scenarios remarkably similar to what occurred on 9/11. As John Arquilla, a professor of defense analysis at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California, said, “No one knew specifically that 20 people would hijack four airliners and use them for suicide attacks… Continue reading
January 17, 2009
DC 911Truth has produced an attractive new brochure to be distributed at the
Obama Inauguration and surrounding events. On the cover, President Obama is
asked to “help America learn the truth about 9/11,” but the interior
aimed at general audiences who may not be aware of problems with the
official account, or who may be quick to dismiss any questions as conspiracy
In a concise and straightforward way, the brochure presents the many facts
that challenge the 9/11 Commission Report (including doubts expressed by
Co-Chairs Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton themselves), as well as
contradictions in the accepted narrative about air defense, the alleged
hijackers, the destruction of the World Trade Center, and the anthrax
attacks. Only statements that could be verified in mainstream news sources
were included and carefully footnoted, so as to maximize the credibility of
At the end, readers are asked to face a difficult reality: 9/11 could not
have occurred without high-level complicity from inside the U.S. government.
They are urged to learn the truth and tell others-especially the media and Congress-with the goal of opening a new, truly independent investigation.
The brochure can be downloaded and printed on the front and back of a letter-size sheet of paper (8.5 x 11in.), folded and distributed by mail or as a handout.
The DC Truth group considers this brochure an effective communication tool and will soon release another version not geared to the Obama Inauguration.
January 14, 2009
Posted at History Commons Groups
The National Archives today released a set of records the 9/11 Commission gave it. It did so today because the commission told it it had to wait until 2009 to do so, presumably on the off chance that people would have forgotten about it all by then. The records are in two groups, Memorandums for the Record (MFR), which are available online, and other
records, which are not available online.
Editor’s Note: The National Archives 9/11 Commission Records URL’s have been updated.
Kevin Fenton, who wrote this blog entry today, is one of the great researchers working with Paul Thompson and so many other fine people at HistoryCommons.org (formerly known to most of us as CooperativeResearch.org) to document our history. Not just about 9/11, but about aspects of our lives so appallingly rewritten by media and textbooks. The work underway at HistoryCommons is absolutely invaluable, and we encourage readers to get involved and otherwise support that work.
I have been trawling through the ones that are available online and I have learned a few things of interest.
(1) Stacks of the MFR are not actually available. Either they have not been reviewed yet (pending), or have been withdrawn because they are very classified, or they have been made available, but have had the bejesus redacted out of them.
From The National Archives Legislative Branch – The Center for Legislative Archives
January 14, 2009
The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, known as the 9/11 Commission, was an independent, bipartisan commission created by Congress. The Commission’s mandate was to provide a “full and complete accounting” of the attacks of September 11, 2001 and to provide recommendations as to how to prevent such attacks in the future. The Commission, extant from 2003 – 2004, held hearings, conducted interviews, and produced a report.
When the 9/11 Commission closed on August 21, 2004, it transferred legal custody of its records to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). The Commission encouraged the release of its records to the fullest extent possible in January 2009. Because the Commission was part of the legislative branch its records are not subject to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
Approximately 35% of the Commission’s archived textual records are now publicly available. Due to the collection’s volume and the large percentage of national security classified files, NARA staff was unable to process the entire collection by January 2009. Review and processing focused on the portion of the collection that contains unique documents created by the Commission and those that reveal the most about the scope of the investigation and the internal workings of the Commission and its staff.Continue reading
Stephen C. Webster
A career Army officer who survived the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, claims that no evacuation was ordered inside the Pentagon, despite flight controllers calling in warnings of approaching hijacked aircraft nearly 20 minutes before the building was struck.
According to a time-line of the attacks, the Federal Aviation Administration notified NORAD that American Airlines Flight 77 had been hijacked at 9:24 a.m. The Pentagon was not struck until 9:43 a.m.
On behalf of retired Army officer April Gallop, California attorney William Veale has filed a civil suit against former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, Vice President Dick Cheney and former US Air Force General Richard Myers, who was acting chairman of the joint chiefs on 9/11. It alleges they engaged in conspiracy to facilitate the terrorist attacks and purposefully failed to warn those inside the Pentagon, contributing to injuries she and her two-month-old son incurred.
“The ex-G.I. plaintiff alleges she has been denied government support since then, because she raised ‘painful questions’ about the inexplicable failure of military defenses at the Pentagon that day, and especially the failure of officials to warn and evacuate the occupants of the building when they knew the attack was imminent” said Veale in a media advisory.
Gallop also says she heard two loud explosions, and does not believe that a Boeing 757 hit the building. Her son sustained a serious brain injury, and Gallop herself was knocked unconscious after the roof collapsed onto her office.
The suit also named… Continue reading
In this supplement to The NORAD Papers , I shine the spotlight on The 9/11 Commission Report’s assessment of NORAD in relation to the defense organization’s “air sovereignty” mission on 9/11. To accomplish this task, I compare the report’s view of NORAD’s air sovereignty capabilities before and on 9/11 with that of the historical record as provided by articles published before September 11, 2001.
The 9/11 Commission Report is correct when it affirms that, “NORAD is a binational command established in 1958 between the United States and Canada. Its mission was, and is, to defend the airspace of North America and protect the continent. That mission does not distinguish between internal and external threats…;” 1 The report becomes addled however when it explains NORAD’s seemingly poor performance on 9/11, “…;but because NORAD was created to counter the Soviet threat, it came to define its job as defending against external attacks [see Addendum].” 2
The statement that NORAD “define[ed] its job as defending against external attacks” 3 due to the Soviet threat, and that is why NORAD was taken off-guard on 9/11 is nonsensical on its face. The Soviet threat was the reason that NORAD was mandated to provide “surveillance and control of the airspace of Canada and the United States” in the first place. Soviet bombers, missiles or other aerospace vehicles breaching North American borders was just as much of a concern to the political leadership of North America, if not more of a concern, than Soviet bombers, missiles… Continue reading