By Bernard Weiner, Co-Editor The Crisis Papers
August 29, 2006
The imminent fifth anniversary of 9/11 provides the proper moment for a good, ol’-fashioned sum-up of the past half-decade under CheneyBush, especially because so much has happened in the past 12-months:
The Bush Administration’s Katrina debacle, Iraq being sucked deeper into the civil-war vortex, Afghanistan turning once again into a major war theater, more and more military leaders speaking out about the disaster that is CheneyBush foreign policy, the defection of so many moderate conservatives from their GOP home, the plummeting of Bush’s popularity to not much more than his fundamentalist base, the revelation that Bush&Co. have been spying on citizens’ phone calls and emails without court warrants, the indictment of CheneyBush’s chief aide Scooter Libby for obstruction of justice in the case of the White House’s outing of a covert CIA agent, the “rendering” of detainees abroad for extreme torturing, etc. etc.
I’ll get to the annual list in a moment. But first let’s step back and take a deeper overview. Buckle your seat belts, here we go.
WHAT 9/11 PERMITTED BUSH TO DO
Whatever you may think of 9/11, and the extent of involvement of Bush&Co., it’s crystal-clear that the events of that tragic day were and continue to be used as an excuse for a wide variety of immoral and illegal actions by the CheneyBush Administration. The radical agenda that was barely on the public’s horizon five years ago has since become all too evident, both domestically and in terms of foreign/military policy, which is why so many traditional conservatives are abandoning the extremism of the Republican Party.…Continue reading
Conspiracy theorists insist the U.S. government, not terrorists, staged the devastating attacks
by Jonathan Curiel, Staff Writer
San Francisco Chronicle
Dylan Avery has a theory that he says casts doubts on Mark Bingham’s actions on Sept. 11, 2001. According to Avery, the San Francisco public relations executive never called his mom on a cell phone from the cabin of Flight 93, and never told her that “some of us here are going to try to do something.” Instead, says Avery, someone using a voice synthesizer — possibly a government official — called Alice Hoglan on the morning that Flight 93 — and Bingham — became part of Sept. 11 lore.
“The cell phone calls were fake — no ifs, ands or buts,” Avery says in “Loose Change,” a film he wrote and directed that’s one of the most-watched movies on the Internet, with 10 million viewers in the past year. “Until the government can prove beyond a shadow of doubt that al Qaeda was behind Sept. 11, the American people have every reason to believe otherwise.”
Avery is one of perhaps millions of Americans who believe the U.S. government — or rogue elements within it — either orchestrated the attacks or tacitly supported them for nefarious reasons.
As the five-year anniversary of the attacks approaches, the clamor of Avery and other conspiracy theorists has gotten stronger — and more widely accepted. According to a poll by Ohio University and Scripps Howard News Service, 36 percent of Americans believe that government officials “either assisted in the 9/ 11 attacks or took no action to stop the attacks because they wanted the United States to go to war in the Middle East.” Twelve percent of Americans believe a cruise missile fired by the U.S.…Continue reading
by Sibel Edmonds & Bill Weaver
National Security Whistleblowers Coalition
Published in CommonDreams.org
September 5, 2006
A wag once famously said that Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot was a play where nothing happened . . . twice. The two former co-chairmen of the 9-11 commission report, Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton, have released a new book, “Without Precedent: The Inside Story of the 9-11 Commission.” This book goes Beckett one better — it is the third act of veneer over substance, self-aggrandizement over serious analysis, and cliché over perspicacity. It is another calculated attempt by the former commissioners to place themselves in the media spotlight, and to overcome the humiliation of their widely criticized and mostly debunked report. It is a vapid and substanceless attempt to claim moral high ground and present the co-chairmen as heroes of honesty. It would be a farce, except that it has no story line, save the aggrandizement of the authors. At least they are consistent in doing nothing and proclaiming that to be a sign of their devotion to the country and the government. Beckett once said that “habit is the ballast that chains the dog to its vomit,” and by this measure the chain restraining Kean and Hamilton is a short one indeed.
By Michael Powell
September 8, 2006
He felt no shiver of doubt in those first terrible hours.
He watched the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon and assumed al-Qaeda had wreaked terrible vengeance. He listened to anchors and military experts and assumed the facts of Sept. 11, 2001, were as stated on the screen.
It was a year before David Ray Griffin, an eminent liberal theologian and philosopher, began his stroll down the path of disbelief. He wondered why Bush listened to a child’s story while the nation was attacked and how Osama bin Laden, America’s Public Enemy No. 1, escaped in the mountains of Tora Bora.
He wondered why 110-story towers crashed and military jets failed to intercept even one airliner. He read the 9/11 Commission report with a swell of anger. Contradictions were ignored and no military or civilian official was reprimanded, much less cashiered.
“To me, the report read as a cartoon.” White-haired and courtly, Griffin sits on a couch in a hotel lobby in Manhattan, unspooling words in that reasonable Presbyterian minister’s voice. “It’s a much greater stretch to accept the official conspiracy story than to consider the alternatives.”
“There was massive complicity in this attack by U.S. government operatives.”
If that feels like a skip off the cliff of established reality, more Americans are in free fall than you might guess. There are few more startling measures of American distrust of leaders than the widespread belief that the Bush administration had a hand in the attacks of Sept.…Continue reading
Venezuela’s Chavez Says U.S. May Have Played Part in 9/11 Attacks
By Peter Wilson
September 12, 2006
Sept. 12 (Bloomberg) — Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said the U.S. government may have been involved in the Sept. 11 attacks to help justify invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq.
“The theory that is gaining force is that the U.S. empire planned and conducted this terrible act against its own people to justify its aggression,” Chavez, 52, said during a ceremony broadcast on state-run Venezolana de Television.
Chavez urged American authorities to look into the theory that the World Trade Center twin towers’ collapse was caused by explosions set off after they were struck by hijacked aircraft.
“There was a series of explosions in the towers,” he said. “The theory that the towers were dynamited hasn’t been debunked.”
Chavez, an ally of Cuban President Fidel Castro, says the U.S. has plotted to assassinate or overthrow him. He frequently rails against U.S. President George W. Bush. During his weekly television program on March 19, Chavez called Bush a “coward,” “assassin,” “drunk” and “donkey.”
Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda terrorist organization has taken responsibility for the Sept. 11 attacks, which killed more than 2,900 people.
U.S. State Department spokeswoman Jan Edmonson declined to comment today on Chavez’s accusations.
“I don’t think you can print what my response is to that,” Edmonson said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Peter Wilson in Caracas at firstname.lastname@example.org
Fair Use Notice
This page contains copyrighted material, the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner.…
By Jerry Mazza, Associate Editor
September 18, 2006
On the morning of
9/11, I couldn’t watch the reading of names on NY1. Not five years in a row. I
clicked off the ritual of bereaved families, somber politicos and media
scripters and went to work on the computer. Before I knew it, it was 1 o’clock.
Something gnawed. I needed to go down to Ground Zero, at least to pay my
respects to the gone. Yet what I found was very alive. Thousands
of 9/11 Truth Movement members shouting,, “9/11 was an inside job,
9/11 was an inside job.” This interspersed with the raspy voice of Alex Jones
booming the facts of the Towers’ demise on a bullhorn. But this was no bull.
This was a whole new ballgame.
There were cordons
of cops in black and blue, white shirt officers, the brass, the suits, the
shooters with burp guns and helmets, tactical cops in caps. There were police
cars, SUVs, double-decker tourist buses crawling down Church Street, beeping
traffic streaming up it, both sides lined with protestors in front of the PATH
train entrance, the entrance to the hole, Ground Zero, visitors gawking, some
raising fists, with or against us.
But above all the
chant went on: “9/11 was an inside job, 9/11 was an inside job.” I slipped
inside the passionate crowd of protestors whose black t-shirts were lettered in
white: “Investigate 9/11.” Suddenly, that warm September sun, that cloudless
sky, that 9/11 day, felt good again.…
September 29, 2006
Listen to Segment ||
The Senate has agreed to give President Bush extraordinary power to detain and try prisoners in the so-called war on terror. The legislation strips detainees of the right to challenge their own detention and gives the President the power to detain them indefinitely. The bill also immunizes U.S. officials from prosecution for torturing detainees who the military and the CIA captured before the end of last year. We get reaction from Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Michael Ratner of the Center for Constitutional Rights.
On Capitol Hill, the Senate has agreed to give President Bush extraordinary power to detain and try prisoners in the so-called war on terror. The editors of the New York Times described the law as tyrannical. They said its passage marks a low point in American democracy and that it is our generation’s version of the Alien and Sedition Acts. The legislation strips detainees of the right to file habeas corpus petitions to challenge their own detention or treatment. It gives the president the power to indefinitely detain anyone it deems to have provided material support to anti-U.S. hostilities. Secret and coerced evidence could be used to try detainees held in U.S. military prisons. The bill also immunizes U.S. officials from prosecution for torturing detainees who the military and the CIA captured before the end of last year.
The Senate passed the measure sixty five to thirty four. Twelve Democrats joined the Republican majority.…Continue reading
There has been a great deal of discussion about the Military Commissions Act
of 2006 [.pdf], recently passed by both houses of Congress, and most of it has
to do with the provisions allowing torture of alien detainees, that is, of non-citizens
apprehended in, say, Afghanistan or Iraq, and their treatment at the hands of their American captors. Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and John Warner,
all Republicans, grandstanded for weeks over the torture provisions, then capitulated.
Another “Republican maverick,” Arlen Specter, zeroed in on the real
issue, however, when he said the bill would set us back 800 years by repealing
the habeas corpus protections against arbitrary arrest and jailings — and then went ahead and voted for it, anyway.
Liberal opposition mainly centered around the morality
— or, rather, immorality — of torture, but the debate largely ignored the ticking time-bomb at the heart of this legislation, scheduled to go off, perhaps, in tandem with some future crisis, e.g., another terrorist attack on American soil: the redefinition of the “unlawful combatant” concept that lays the foundations for this administration’s reconstruction of the gulag. Here is the new, broadened definition, as enunciated in the legislation recently passed by the House:
“The term ‘unlawful enemy combatant’ means Ã± (i) a person who has engaged in hostilities or who has purposefully and materially supported hostilities against the United States or its co-belligerents who is not a lawful enemy combatant (including a person who is part of the Taliban, al-Qaeda, or associated forces); or (ii) a person who, before, on, or after the date of the enactment of the Military Commissions Act of 2006, has been determined to be an unlawful enemy combatant by a Combatant Status Review Tribunal or another competent tribunal established under the authority of the president or the secretary of defense.”
A BUZZFLASH EDITORIAL
October 9, 2006
Dateline — Buenos Aires, Argentina
For some 30 years, the Argentine women known as the Madres (Mothers) de La
Plaza de Mayo have marched every Thursday in front of the Presidential Palace
of Argentina. They gather in memory of their children and grandchildren, who
were among the estimated 30,000 people who disappeared during “Operation
Condor.” Another 50,000 people were murdered.
(image: One of the Madres (Mothers) de la Plaza de Mayo displaying a photo of her son who was one of an estimated 30,000 “disappeared” during “Operation
photo taken on October 5, 2006)
Condor” reached its peak in the 1970s. With assistance from
the United States, and the support and knowledge of Henry Kissinger, five of
the southern cone South American nations conducted a campaign of unspeakable
torture and killing against their own citizens.
When you look at the photos carried by many of the Madres de La Plaza de Mayo,
you see middle class men in suits and ties and nicely dressed women. You see
young children with smiling faces.
What happened during Operation Condor is so horrific — all done in the name of the safety and security of “the nation” — that it is barely speakable. The torture included one of the Bush Administration’s favorite techniques — waterboarding — and many other methods. Families were forced to watch or listen to their love ones being mutilated. Friends were required to conduct torture on those that they knew.…Continue reading
By Carla Binion
October 21, 2006
Consortiumnews Editor’s Note: Many Americans are in denial about what
is happening to the United States. They don’t want to believe that a totalitarian
structure could be put in place in their own country. They don’t want to view
the various pieces of George W. Bush’s “anti-terror” system in that
broad a context. They hope that someone or something — the Supreme Court
maybe — will strike down the excesses of the Republican-controlled Congress
and the Executive Branch.
Though there are still obstacles that stand in Bush’s way — the Nov.
7 elections, for instance — America’s march down a road to a new-age totalitarianism
has advanced farther than many understand, as freelance reporter Carla Binion
argues in this disturbing guest essay:
On October 17, George W. Bush signed into law the Military Commissions Act
of 2006. This new law gives Bush power similar to that possessed by Stalin or
Hitler, and grants agencies within the Executive Branch powers similar to those
of the KGB or Gestapo.
Bush justifies this act by claiming he needs it to fight the “war on terror,”
but a number of critics, including former counterterrorism officials, have said
the administration has greatly exaggerated the threat and used illogical methods
to combat terrorism. (Examples are listed below.)
Except for MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann, few television news reporters have bothered
to mention that the Military Commissions Act has changed the U.S. justice system
and our approach to human rights. As Olbermann said of the new law on his October
17 Countdown program, the new act “does away with habeas corpus, the right
of suspected terrorists or anybody else to know why they have been imprisoned.”
Jonathan Turley, George Washington University Constitutional Law Professor,
was Olbermann’s guest.…
Panelists raise doubts over 9/11
Speakers at CU say government deceiving citizens
By John Aguilar
Monday, October 30, 2006
The idea was to turn the concept of a conspiracy theory on its head.
A panel of scientists and scholars, gathered in a classroom Sunday afternoon at the University of Colorado at Boulder, suggested to several hundred vocal supporters that the true conspiratorial types when it comes to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, are the federal government and the mainstream media.
“They pounded a script into our heads that we now know is backed by zero evidence,” said Kevin Barrett, a professor of Islamic studies at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
Barrett was one of a trio of speakers who came to CU to lay out their case that the World Trade Center towers didn’t collapse as a result of jet fuel melting and softening of the buildings’ steel structure, but rather from a deliberate demolition effort perpetrated by the United States government to justify its invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq and assert its power around the world.
“Three thousand lives were lost at the World Trade Center as a means to global domination,” Barrett said.
He characterized the 9/11 attacks as a “false flag operation” carried out by the United States with the intention of stirring up the passions and buying the allegiance of its people.
“A false flag operation is a contrived event — shocking and spectacular — used to achieve political ends, start wars and justify suppression,” he said.…Continue reading
By PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS
November 9, 2006
It only took six years for Americans to comprehend George Bush and the Republican Party and to realize that the Republicans were not leading America in any promising directions.
Exit polls and interviews with voters across the country by CNN political analyst Bill Schneider show that the November 2006 election was a vote against both Bush and the war in Iraq. Schneider reports that voters did not even know the name of the Democrats for whom they voted. Voters said: “I am going to vote Democrat, because I don’t like Bush, I don’t like the war. I want to make a statement.”
I believe that voters recognized that the peril of one-party rule is that political accountability exists no where except at the ballot box. With the Republican built and programmed electronic voting machines, even accountability at the ballot box was disappearing.
Americans realized that they had made a serious mistake giving power to one party, and they rectified it.
With Republican control of the legislative branch ended, Pentagon Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was immediately swept from power. With the troops, generals, and the service newspapers calling for Rumsfeld’s head, only the delusional warmonger, Vice President Richard Cheney, wanted to keep Rumsfeld in power.
It was a battle that Cheney lost. Cheney’s defeat is an indication that reality has elbowed its way back into Republican consciousness, pushing hubris and delusion away from the control they have exercised over political power.
The lust for unbridled power proved to be too strong a temptation for normally cautious Republicans.…Continue reading
By Sibel Edmonds
“The real rulers in Washington are invisible and exercise power from behind the scenes.”- – Justice Felix Frankfurter
It used to be the three branches – congress, the executive, and the courts – that we considered the make-up of our nation’s federal government. And some would point to the press as a possible fourth branch, due to the virtue of its influence in shaping our policies. Today, more and more people have come to view corporate and foreign lobby firms, with their preponderant clout and enormous power, as the official fourth branch of our nation’s government. Not only do I agree with them, I would even take it a step further and give it a higher status it certainly deserves.
Operating invisibly under the radar of media and public scrutiny, lobby groups and foreign agents have become the ‘epicenter’ of our government, where former statesmen and ‘dime a dozen generals’ cash in on their connections and peddle their enormous influence to the highest bidders turned clients. These groups’ activities shape our nation’s policies and determine the direction of the flow of its taxpayer driven wealth, while to them the interests of the majority are considered irrelevant, and the security of the nation is perceived as inconsequential.
Triple Cross: Journalist Peter Lance on How Bin Laden’s Master Spy Penetrated the CIA, the Green Berets and the FBI – And Why Patrick Fitzgerald Failed to Stop Him
Listen to Segment || Download
New details have emerged about how an al Qaeda spy named Ali Mohamed penetrated the CIA, the Green Berets and the FBI before the 9/11 attacks. We speak with investigative journalist Peter Lance about his new book, “Triple Cross.” [includes rush transcript]
Ali Mohamed was a member of Osama bin Laden’s inner circle who operated freely within the United States for years before 9/11. Despite being a top al Qaeda operative, he managed to become a naturalized US citizen, join the US Army, get posted to the military base where Green Berets and Delta Force train and infiltrate both the CIA and FBI. And while he was an FBI informant he smuggled bin Laden in and out of Afghanistan and helped plan the attacks on US embassies in Africa. He ended up playing a pivotal role in 9/11.
Journalist Peter Lance joins me here in our firehouse studio. He is a five-time Emmy Award-winning investigative reporter and a former ABC News correspondent. His new book is called “Triple Cross: How Bin Laden’s Master Spy Penetrated the CIA, the Green Berets and the FBI – And Why Patrick Fitzgerald Failed to Stop Him.”
* Peter Lance, five-time Emmy Award-winning investigative reporter and a former ABC News correspondent. His latest book is “Triple Cross.” His previous books include “1000 Years For Revenge” and “Cover Up.” Website: Peterlance.com
This transcript is available free of charge.…Continue reading
Send 500,000 impeachment letters to Pelosi by her first day as speaker,
While arguing about whether we should demand impeachment in another thread,
someone said there had to be a “groundswell of support” like there
was for the impeachment of Nixon and cited this article:
“More than 50,000 telegrams poured in on Capitol Hill today, so many,
Western Union was swamped. Most of them demanded impeaching Mr. Nixon.”
John Chancellor, NBC News on a Special Report on October 20, 1973
We already have more support than that. When John Conyers took Bush his petition
demanding he answer questions about the Downing Street Memo, it had 540,000 signatures, over
ten times as many as wrote about Nixon. I would bet most of those people would
write to demand impeachment of Bush, probably more.
The great thing is, now we have someone to focus this demand on who can and
possibly will act (in spite of her protests to the contrary): Nancy Pelosi.
She should have a half million signatures waiting for her her first day as
Speaker of the House.
I think she and the many of the Democrats want to do this, but to overcome
the reluctance of the DC establishment and big money interests who are afraid
their ox will be gored along with Bush & Cheney, she needs constant overwhelming
evidence of public DEMAND not just support for impeachment.
Fax or snail mail the letter below or your own variation to:
2371 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
450 Golden Gate Ave.…Continue reading
Published: Sunday, December 31, 2006
By John Briggs
Free Press Staff Writer
A Burlington group has gathered nearly enough signatures on a petition to put a ballot question before voters on Town Meeting Day urging a new investigation of the attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001.
Spokesman Marc Estrin, a Burlington writer and musician, said the group has been meeting for several months and has more than 1,200 of the roughly 1,350 signatures needed to place the matter on the ballot. The question would advise the Vermont congressional delegation to demand a new 9/11 investigation.
Estrin said Burlington would be the first city in the country to formally make such a demand.
The group includes Burlington attorney Frank Haddleton, University of Vermont physics professor Joanna Rankin, Charles Simpson, chairman of the department of sociology and criminal justice at SUNY Plattsburgh, a chemist, an engineer, a video producer and former city councilor Doug Dunbebin.
Dunbebin, a graphic designer, has created a Web site for the group that explains the weaknesses it sees in the 9/11 Commission Report of July 2004.
The city’s director of elections, Jo… Continue reading
by Michael Richardson
Most of the journalistic foundation for the 9/11 truth movement is a vast mosaic of articles, each containing one or more significant fragments, and most have been written by journalists who had no particular dedication or greater awareness of 9/11. Those who have written in depth about 9/11 have used this mosaic (and of course have been aided considerably by resources like Paul Thompson’s Complete 9/11 Timeline), but few actually do on-the-ground journalism. Peter Lance is one of the few investigative journalists who has dedicated himself to the historical thicket of 9/11. In addition to using the mosaic, he travels to interview people, develops contacts inside the key agencies, gets his hands on damning FBI 302 documents, and bothers people who deserve to be bothered. For the last four years, he has obsessed on 9/11 and many of its deep-political tendrils, producing the equivalent of dozens of rich, original articles.
Lance’s implied theory of 9/11 — that the 9/11 hijacking plot basically slipped past the greasy fingers of a corrupt and egotistical DOJ/FBI — no doubt irritates many in the movement for truth about 9/11 for whom the “inside job” theory is creed, yet he has unearthed some of the most important gems in the struggle to bring real truth and justice to 9/11. Most importantly, he has shown how the efforts of the Southern New York division of the Justice Department, since the early 90s, have been half-baked, ridiculously negligent, and at times blantantly criminal.… Continue reading
By John Briggs
Free Press Staff Writer
January 9, 2007
Burlington voters on Town Meeting Day will be the first in the country to vote
‘yes’ or ‘no’ on reopening the investigation into what happened Sept. 11, 2001.
As of Jan. 4, a local group had gathered 1,240 of the approximately 1,350 signatures
(5 percent of registered voters) required to put the question on the ballot,
and a member of the group, Burlington attorney Frank Haddleton, expressed confidence
Monday that they now have more than enough signatures.
The question would ask the Vermont congressional delegation to “demand
a new, thorough, and truly independent forensic investigation” to answer
“the many questions” the group says remain about what happened the
day planes commandeered by terrorists smashed into the World Trade Center and
In September, the council unanimously passed a resolution promising they would
honor the Vermont tradition of allowing such questions if they garner enough
signatures, “whether or not they like the questions or agree with the petitioners.”
Monday, the council agreed unanimously that they wouldn’t vote on putting the
9/11 question on the March ballot after City Attorney Joe McNeil said the September
resolution had put the council views on record and that the question would be
on the ballot if the signatures were submitted by Jan. 25.
The group said in a letter to the council that it doesn’t “advance any
particular alternative theory” about what happened Sept. 11, 2001, but
thinks the day’s aftermath, including wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, are so serious
that a new investigation is warranted “to get answers to hundreds of questions
raised by independent researchers, members of the intelligence community and
family members of 9/11 victims.”
The attacks, the letter said, have been cited as justifications for the wars,
“wiretapping, the USA PATRIOT Act, torture, indefinite detentions without
charges, and the recently passed Military Commission Act that suspends the writ
of habeas corpus.…