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CSpan Friday: 9/11 and American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out

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On Friday, November 24 at 4:00 pm and Saturday, November 25 at 3:30 am and at 10:00 pm

9/11 and American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out
David Ray Griffin, Peter Dale Scott, Peter Phillips, Kevin Ryan, Ray McGovern

Description: Editors and contributors to the book, “9/11 and American Empire,” assess the Bush administration’s responsibility for the attacks on 9/11, arguing that key administration officials either purposefully ignored the threats leading up to the attacks or were complicit in the planning them. The panelists say that the administration has used the attacks to enact long established plans to expand American empire. The participants are: David Ray Griffin (co-editor/contributor), Peter Dale Scott (co-editor/contributor), Peter Phillips (contributor) and Kevin Ryan (contributor). Former CIA analyst Ray McGovern moderates the discussion. The event was hosted by Berkeley, California-based Pacifica radio station KPFA (www.kpfa.org).

Author Bio: David Ray Griffin, professor emeritus of philosophy and theology at the Claremont School of Theology, is the author of “The New Pearl Harbor” and “The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions.” Peter Dale Scott, former Canadian diplomat and former professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley, is the author of “Deep Politics and the Death of JFK” and “Drugs, Oil, and War.” Peter Phillips, professor of sociology at Sonoma State University and director of the Project Censored media research program, is most recently the co-editor of “Censored 2007: The Top 25 Censored Stories” and “Impeach the President: The Case Against Bush and Cheney.” Kevin Ryan is a former site manager with Environmental Health Laboratories.…

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The Highjacking of a Nation: Part 1: The Foreign Agent Factor

November 15, 2006

THE HIGHJACKING OF A NATION
Part 1: The Foreign Agent Factor

By Sibel Edmonds

part II can be read here on 911truth.org, or here at Sibel’s site.

In his farewell address in 1796, George Washington warned that America must be constantly awake against “the insidious wiles of foreign influence…since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government.”

Today, foreign influence, that most baneful foe of our republican government, has its tentacles entrenched in almost all major decision making and policy producing bodies of the U.S. government machine. It does so not secretly, since its self-serving activities are advocated and legitimized by highly positioned parties that reap the benefits that come in the form of financial gain and positions of power.

Foreign governments and foreign-owned private interests have long sought to influence U.S. public policy. Several have accomplished this goal; those who are able and willing to pay what it takes. Those who buy themselves a few strategic middlemen, commonly known as pimps, while in DC circles referred to as foreign registered agents and lobbyists, who facilitate and bring about desired transactions. These successful foreign entities have mastered the art of ‘covering all the bases’ when it comes to buying influence in Washington DC. They have the required recipe down pat: get yourself a few ‘Dime a Dozen Generals,’ bid high in the ‘former statesmen lobby auction’, and put in your pocket one or two ‘ex-congressmen turned lobbyists’ who know the ropes when it comes to pocketing a few dozen who still serve.…

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Bush’s Absolute Power Grab

By Carla Binion
October 21, 2006
Consortiumnews.com

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.…

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Former CIA Officer Robert Steele Reviews Tarpley’s ‘Synthetic Terror’

Among Hundreds of Books, The Strongest Approach to Truth

October 7, 2006
Reviewer: Robert D. Steele (Oakton, VA United States)

Original at Amazon

Cover image of Synthetic Terror It is with great sadness that I conclude that this book is the strongest of the 770+ books I have reviewed here at Amazon, almost all non-fiction. I am forced to conclude that 9/11 was at a minimum allowed to happen as a pretext for war (see my review of Jim Bamford’s “Pretext for War”), and I am forced to conclude that there is sufficient evidence to indict (not necessarily convict) Dick Cheney, Karl Rove and others of a neo-conservative neo-Nazi coup d’etat and kick-off of the clash of civilizations (see my review of “Crossing the Rubicon” as well as “State of Denial”). Most fascinatingly, the author links Samuel Huntington, author of “Clash of Civilizations” with Leo Strauss, the connecting rod between Nazi fascists and the neo-cons.

This is, without question, the most important modern reference on state-sponsored terrorism, and also the reference that most pointedly suggests that select rogue elements within the US Government, most likely led by Dick Cheney with the assistance of George Tenet, Buzzy Kronguard, and others close to the Wall Street gangs, are the most guilty of state-sponsored terrorism.

The author draws on historical examples of US fabrication of threats (e.g. the bombing of the USS Maine in Havana Harbor) and many others (Jim Bamford publicized Operation Northwoods). It is an undeniable fact that the U.S. Government has been willing to kill its own citizens and fabricate attacks as part of moving the public.…

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Documents: CIA Warned of Plane Bomb Plot

BY ANDREW O. SELSKY

October 10, 2006

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) – An anti-Castro militant now in a Texas jail warned the CIA months before the 1976 bombing of a Cuban airliner that fellow exiles were planning such an attack, according to a newly released U.S. government document.

The document shows that Luis Posada Carriles – who had worked for the CIA but was cut off by the agency earlier that year – was secretly telling the CIA that his fellow far-right Cuban exiles opposed to Fidel Castro’s communist government were plotting to bring down a commercial jet.

The document does not say what the CIA did with Posada’s tip. A CIA spokesman said he had no comment on Monday, a federal holiday.

The CIA had extensive contacts with anti-Castro militants and trained some of them, but has denied involvement in the bombing.

The documents were posted online Thursday by the National Security Archive, an independent research institute at George Washington University that seeks to declassify government files through the Freedom of Information Act.

The Cubana Airlines plane, on a flight from Venezuela to Cuba, blew up shortly after taking off from a stopover in Barbados on Oct. 6, 1976, killing all 73 aboard, including Cuba’s Olympic fencing team.

The bombing remains an open wound in Cuba. Weeping relatives of the victims met in a Havana cemetery on Friday, the 30th anniversary of the bombing. They demanded that Posada – who is now 78 and in a Texas detention… Continue reading

Public’s Right To Know – Declassification and Release of Documents

Statement Regarding al Qaeda Threats
by Patty Casazza, Monica Gabrielle, Mindy Kleinberg, and Lorie Van Auken

Astonishingly, five years post 9/11 the public is made aware about an urgent July 10, 2001 meeting that took place between former CIA Director George Tenet and then, National Security Advisor, Condoleezza Rice. This information comes
from Bob Woodward’s newly released book, “State of Denial”.

Despite this Administration’s rhetoric that they had “no warnings” leading up to 9/11, it has become abundantly clear, that key Administration officials were made aware of the vast array of Al Qaeda threats and warnings that existed in years prior, and more importantly, in the weeks leading up to September 11, 2001.
 

Editor’s Note:
Four 9/11 widows, known to the 9/11 truth movement as The Jersey Girls, have posted an online petition demanding release of documents pertaining to the July 10, 2001 meeting between Tenet and Rice, as well as redacted information from the congressional Joint Inquiry and the CIA Inspector General

 

When we add the July 10, 2001 meeting to the plethora of other clear warnings that our government had, a very concise view of the al Qaeda threat emerges. Those other warnings include, but are not limited to:

* Warnings from leaders of other nations and foreign intelligence apparatus’ of terrorist threats

* June 30, 2001 Senior Executive Intelligence Briefing (SEIB) entitled “bin Laden Threats Are Real”

* The threat of President Bush’s assassination at the G-8 Summit by al Qaeda in July of 2001… Continue reading

Torture, Murder, Bush, Kissinger and The Mothers of the Disappeared in Argentina: America on the Brink of Horror

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.

MotherofDisappeared1(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
Condor.” BuzzFlash
photo taken on October 5, 2006)

Operation
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.…

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Condi’s 9/11 Foreknowledge Denial Follies

Rice Loyalist Headed 9/11 Commission Probes

by 9.11 Blogger
WNY Media Network

Bob Woodward’s State of Denial provides evidence of the politicization of the 9/11 Commission’s investigative process, conclusions, and certain omissions from its report, as well as then national security advisor Condoleezza Rice’s likely role in burying unflattering, damning evidence through the appointment of Bush/Rice loyalist Philip Zelikow as the Commissions’ chief investigator and Zelikow’s reward (perhaps) of a top senior-level position in the State Department, which Rice now heads. First, some background.

One of the burning questions in newspapers, cable TV news, and blogs is why the 9/11 Commission report did not mention the July 10, 2001 meeting called by then-CIA Director George J. Tenet and his counterterrorism chief, J. Cofer Black, with then-national security adviser Condoleezza Rice. Tenet and Black hoped to impress on Rice the compelling need to act immediately against bin Laden because there was “a huge volume of data” suggesting strongly that a major attack was imminent.

“But both men came away from the meeting feeling that Ms. Rice had not taken the warnings seriously,” writes Woodward.

The July 10 meeting between Tenet, Black and Rice went unmentioned in the various reports of investigations into the Sept. 11 attacks, but it stood out in the minds of Tenet and Black as the starkest warning they had given the White House on bin Laden and al-Qaeda. Though the investigators had access to all the paperwork on the meeting, Black felt there were things the commissions wanted to know about and things they didn’t want to know about.…

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“A Total Rollback Of Everything This Country Has Stood For”

September 29, 2006
Listen to Segment ||

 

Watch 128k stream Watch 256k stream

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.…

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Sources: August Terror Plot is a ‘Fiction’ Underscoring Police Failures

British Army expert casts doubt on ‘liquid explosives’ threat, Al Qaeda network in UK Identified

Filed by Nafeez Ahmed
rawstory.com
09/18/2006

Lieutenant-Colonel (ret.) Nigel Wylde, a former senior British Army Intelligence Officer, has suggested that the police and government story about the “terror plot” revealed on 10th August was part of a “pattern of lies and deceit.”

British and American government officials have described the operation which resulting in the arrest of 24 mostly British Muslim suspects, as a resounding success. Thirteen of the suspects have been charged, and two released without charges.

According to security sources, the terror suspects were planning to board up to ten civilian airliners and detonate highly volatile liquid explosives on the planes in a spectacular terrorist operation. The liquid explosives — either TATP (Triacetone Triperoxide), DADP (diacetone diperoxide) or the less sensitive HMTD (hexamethylene triperoxide diamine) — were reportedly to be made on board the planes by mixing sports drinks with a peroxide-based household gel and then be detonated using an MP3 player or mobile phone.

But Lt. Col. Wylde, who was awarded the Queen’s Gallantry Medal for his command of the Belfast Explosive Ordnance Disposal Unit in 1974, described this scenario as a “fiction.” Creating liquid explosives is a “highly dangerous and sophisticated task,” he states, one that requires not only significant chemical expertise but also appropriate equipment.

Terror plot scenario “untenable”

“The idea that these people could sit in the plane toilet and simply mix together these normal household fluids to create a high explosive capable of blowing up the entire aircraft is untenable,” said Lt.…

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Taking to the Streets on 9/11

By Jerry Mazza, Associate Editor
Online Journal

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.…

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Democracy Now! 9/11 Debate

Loose Change Filmmakers vs. Popular Mechanics Editors of “Debunking 9/11 Myths”

Democracynow.org
Monday, September 11th, 2006

September 11, 2001 – five years after the attacks many people are asking questions about what happened on that day in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania. Websites, articles, books and documentaries have put forward a variety of alternate theories to the government’s account of what happened. The most popular of these is a documentary called “Loose Change.” Now, a book dealing with many of these theories has just been published by the magazine Popular Mechanics, it’s called “Debunking 9/11 Myths: Why Conspiracy Theories Can’t Stand Up to the Facts.” In a Democracy Now! national broadcast exclusive, we host a debate between the filmmakers of Loose Change and the editors of Popular Mechanics on 9/11.

 

Editor’s Note:
Considering Popular Mechanics trotted out its heaviest editorial guns to attack the assertions made in the movie, Loose Change, its young director and researcher defend their major points quite effectively and persuasively. It is interesting to note PM’s repeated contention that immediate testimony from first responders and witnesses on the day of the attack should be ignored or discounted in favor of “expert” opinions and “official” analyses appearing months or years later. We think that may be engineer speak for Groucho Marx’s classic defense, “Who you gonna believe? Me, or your lying eyes?”

 

Democracy Now! 9/11 Debate

 


Amy Goodman: Today, a debate about 9/11.… Continue reading

The Disbelievers

By Michael Powell

Washington Post

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.”

Such as?

“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.…

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The Conspiracy to Rewrite 9/11

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.…

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Twenty Things We Now Know Five Years After 9/11

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.

Editor’s Note: Excellent review of the downstream consequences — intended and otherwise — of the September 11 attacks.

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.…

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9/11 and American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out

New book: 9/11 and American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out

Edited by David Ray Griffin and Peter Dale Scott
Olive Branch Press (Interlink Books)

Pre-pub Review (more follow…)
“This is the most important book of our time. Distinguished national and international scientists and scholars present massive evidence that The 9/11 Commission Report is a hoax and that the 9/11 “terrorist attack” has been manipulated to serve a hegemonic agenda in the Middle East. The book’s call for a truly independent panel of experts to be empowered to bring out the true facts must be heeded or Americans will never again live under accountable government.” — Paul Craig Roberts, Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury during the Reagan administration
 

Editor’s Note:
Truth activists can celebrate Thanksgiving astonishingly early this year given the precocious wealth of resources now hitting theaters and book shops across the land. Each new work seems to open another frontier and spread truth to a fresh audience. The relentless Dr. Griffin deserves great credit for many of these sallies, and now he has teamed with eminent diplomat/scholar Dr. Peter Dale Scott to catalyze and edit this latest tour de force. This anthology addresses the crimes of 9/11 from a rare altitude of intelligence in ten authoritative voices, and examines their premeditation and abuse as an empire ordaining event. Whenever you encounter 9/11 truth resistance in bright but wingnut-traumatized friends, this book is the antidote to offer.

 

CONTENTS
1. 9/11, the American Empire, and Common Moral Norms
David… Continue reading

World Trade Center Premieres, 9-11 Truth Movement Responds

by Carol Brouillet

Image of Grand Lake Theater Marquee

God bless the Grand Lake spirit.

Oliver Stone’s films have deeply touched many people’s lives, including my own. His film, JFK, prompted me to research the CIA and catalyzed my activism. I wrote to Stone twice, when we were working on one of the first American 9/11 truth documentaries, and later when I heard that he was making a film about 9/11. I sent him materials, books, documentaries about 9/11, and encouraged him to tell William Rodriguez’s story. Rodriguez worked in the North Tower and rescued many people, miraculously he lived through the experience. He also heard explosions before the first plane crashed, and witnessed the injuries that those explosions caused. I thought that Rodriguez’s story deeply challenged the official narrative of 9/11, and could wake people up to the reality that “9/11 was an Inside Job,” perhaps the biggest “psychological operation” of all times.

Stone’s film, rather than casting light on the “defining event” of the century, retraumatizes the viewer, plunging them into an abyss of pain and suffering, into the dark and oblivious to the who, how, why, what, of the attacks. 9/11 has become the foundation stone used to terrify the American people and the world into supporting a “bogus war on terrorism,” the dismantling of the Bill of Rights, the Constitution, and has put the world back into the Dark Ages, pre-Magna Carta. The Administration asserts its power to kill, torture, assassinate anyone they label to be a “terrorist” and deem to be a threat to the “National Security State.”

Stone’s film centers on the narrative of two Port Authority police officers, trapped in the rubble, who are found by a Christian, who feels called by God to join the rescue efforts, and who signed up later for duty in Iraq to avenge his country.…

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Stop Belittling the Theories About September 11

by Bill Christison
August 14, 2006
DissidentVoice.com

However horrendous the crimes of two of the world’s great liars and terrorists in Gaza and Lebanon, it is imperative that we not let the deeds of Ehud Olmert and George W. Bush distract us from another recent event.

The U.S. alliance with Israel and the power of the lobby that lets Israel so easily influence U.S. foreign policy have been major factors in allowing the monstrous slaughter of innocent civilians in Gaza and Lebanon. What is happening in these lands may also encourage Olmert and Bush to start new hostilities in Syria and heavy, possibly nuclear, bombings in Iran — and this entire mess of neocon pottage may lead to a new World War and clashes of civilizations and religious fundamentalisms that these two wretched politicians seem quite literally to want to impose on the rest of us. It’s a tough case to make that anything else going on in the world — anywhere — could possibly be of equal importance.

But on July 29 and 30, and then again on August 1, something else happened that increasing numbers of people believe is of equal importance. On these dates C-SPAN rebroadcast a panel discussion, held originally in late June, sponsored by an organization called the American Scholars’ Symposium to discuss what really happened on September 11, 2001. Held in Los Angeles, the meeting lasted two days, and the C-SPAN rebroadcast covered one almost two-hour wrap-up session. The meeting was attended by 1,200 people interested in hearing something other than the official story of 9/11.…

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