By Paul Craig Roberts
March 30, 2007
Professor David Ray Griffin is the nemesis of the official 9/11
conspiracy theory. In his latest book, Debunking 9/11 Debunking, Griffin
destroys the credibility of the National Institute of Standards and
Technology (NIST) and Popular Mechanics reports, annihilates his
critics, and proves himself to be a better scientist and engineer than
the defenders of the official story.
Griffin’s book is 385 pages divided into four chapters and containing
1,209 footnotes. Without question, the book is the most thorough
presentation and examination of all known facts about the 9/11 attacks.
Griffin is a person who is sensitive to evidence, logic, and scientific
reasoning. There is no counterpart on the official side of the story who
is as fully informed on all aspects of the attacks as Griffin.
At the outset, Griffin points out that the reader’s choice is between
two conspiracy theories: One is that Muslim fanatics, who were not
qualified to fly airplanes, defeated the security apparatus of the US
and succeeded in three out of four attacks using passenger jets as
weapons. The other is that security failed across the board, not merely
partially but totally, because of complicity of some part of the US
Griffin points out that there has been no independent investigation of
9/11. What we have are a report by a political commission headed by Bush
administration factotum Philip Zelikow, a NIST report produced by the
Bush administration’s Department of Commerce, and a journalistic account
produced by Popular Mechanics.…
Terrorized by ‘War on Terror’: How a Three-Word Mantra Has Undermined America
By Zbigniew Brzezinski
Sunday, March 25, 2007
The “war on terror” has created a culture of fear in America. The Bush administration’s elevation of these three words into a national mantra since the horrific events of 9/11 has had a pernicious impact on American democracy, on America’s psyche and on U.S. standing in the world. Using this phrase has actually undermined our ability to effectively confront the real challenges we face from fanatics who may use terrorism against us.
The damage these three words have done — a classic self-inflicted wound — is infinitely greater than any wild dreams entertained by the fanatical perpetrators of the 9/11 attacks when they were plotting against us in distant Afghan caves. The phrase itself is meaningless. It defines neither a geographic context nor our presumed enemies. Terrorism is not an enemy but a technique of warfare — political intimidation through the killing of unarmed non-combatants.
But the little secret here may be that the vagueness of the phrase was deliberately (or instinctively) calculated by its sponsors. Constant reference to a “war on terror” did accomplish one major objective: It stimulated the emergence of a culture of fear. Fear obscures reason, intensifies emotions and makes it easier for demagogic politicians to mobilize the public on behalf of the policies they want to pursue. The war of choice in Iraq could never have gained the congressional support it got without the psychological linkage between the shock of 9/11 and the postulated existence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.…Continue reading
By David Ray Griffin
My purpose in publishing this essay is to introduce a perspective, relevant to the debates about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the impeachment of President Bush and Vice President Cheney, that thus far has not been part of the public discussion.
One way to understand the effect of 9/11, in most general terms, is to see that it allowed the agenda developed in the 1990s by neoconservatives—often called simply “neocons”—to be implemented. There is agreement on this point across the political spectrum. From the right, for example, Stefan Halper and Jonathan Clarke say that 9/11 allowed the “preexisting ideological agenda” of the neoconservatives to be “taken off the shelf . . . and relabeled as the response to terror.”1 Stephen Sniegoski, writing from the left, says that “it was only the traumatic effects of the 9/11 terrorism that enabled the agenda of the neocons to become the policy of the United States of America.”2
What was this agenda? It was, in essence, that the United States should use its military supremacy to establish an empire that includes the whole world–a global Pax Americana. Three major means to this end were suggested. One of these was to make U.S. military supremacy over other nations even greater, so that it would be completely beyond challenge. This goal was to be achieved by increasing the money devoted to military purposes, then using this money to complete the “revolution in military affairs” made possible by… Continue reading
By Sander Hicks
In defense of the “9/11 truth movement.”
[Alternet] Editor’s note: The role of the alternative press is to offer perspectives that the commercial media won’t touch. Having run a number of articles critical of the “9/11 Truth Movement” by Matt Taibbi , Joshua Holland , Matthew Rothschild and others, we asked Sander Hicks, a prominent voice within the movement, to share his perspective. For more of Sanders’ views, see his book ” The Big Wedding: 9/11, The Whistle-Blowers, and the Cover-Up .”
No matter what you believe about who was responsible for 9/11, and how it went down, we’re all amazed at how much political capital the events of that day produced for this administration: A bipartisan consensus on torture; an era of permanent war; detentions without trial; “no fly” lists for activists; the Bill of Rights gone with the wind, and a cowed professional media willing to self-censor and suppress pertinent information. The 9/11 “America Attacked” story has distracted us from the natural outrage we should feel over illegal wiretaps, stolen elections, hundreds of billions of dollars missing at the Pentagon, war profiteering, Enron and Cheney’s secret energy policy.
But with Bush’s popularity… Continue reading
by Abid Ullah Jan
General Pervez Musharraf has partially admitted to some facts in his book. For example he admitted that Omar Saeed Sheikh, who was trapped in the case of kidnapping and murder of American journalist Daniel Pearl, was actually the British secret Agency MI6′s agent and had executed certain missions on their behest before coming to Pakistan and visiting Afghanistan to meet Osama and Mullah Omar.
What General Musharraf tries to evade here is the role Omar Saeed Sheikh has played for the ISI, and more importantly the role he knowingly or unknowingly played in part of the complex operation 9/11. Omar Saeed Sheikh was used to frame the Taliban and particularly Arabs in Afghanistan or the impending 9/11 tragedy.
A fascinating piece from Media Monitors Network. Abid Ullah Jan also has a new book that looks promising. In addition to Musharraf’s tipping of his hand about Saeed Sheikh, Pakistan’s PM also has confirmed reports that then-Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage — in a conversation with ISI Chief Gen. Mahmood Ahmed, no less — threatened to bomb Pakistan “back to the stone age” if they did not cooperate with the U.S. after 9/11. One could assume that such a threat could not have been made without significant basis.
See also Devlin Buckley’s excellent overview of this subject.
by Michael Keefer
December 4, 2006
The first thing to say by way of preliminaries (and I’d better get it in quickly before someone suggests that I’ve turned up late or over-weight for a pre-match weighing-in) is that I’m not overjoyed with the pugilistic metaphor of my title.
But some sort of response to the volley of attacks on 9/11 researchers and activists with which the Counterpunch website marked the fifth anniversary of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 seems called for.
Michael Keefer strikes just the right tone in responding to Alexander Cockburn’s attempt to banish “conspiracy nuts” from the kingdom of the left.Keefer accounts for Cockburn’s hostility to conspiracy by locating him in the “class of academics and public intellectuals, for whom a migration of power into military, deep-political, and corporate-media hands may…. be difficult to acknowledge.” We’d add that when those intellectuals are wedded to a brand of analysis that cannot satisfactorily account for what they see transpiring before their eyes, that difficulty is only magnified.
Slowly but surely, the academic left is coming to understand that the deep politics paradigm offers the most promising analytic tools for understanding the dynamics of geopolitical struggle. Don’t be surprised by the discomfort associated with the paradigm shift to continue to produce rhetorically overheated, but substantively lacking, complaints like Cockburn’s for quite some time. But really, that’s his problem.
Counterpunch co-editor Alexander Cockburn set the tone of these pieces with an article describing theologian and ethicist David Ray Griffin, the author of The New Pearl Harbor (2004) and of The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions (2005), as a “high priest” of the “conspiracy nuts””whom Cockburn denounces as cultists who “disdain all answers but their own,” who “seize on coincidences and force them into sequences they deem to be logical and significant,” and who “pounce on imagined clues in documents and photos, [".] contemptuously brush[ing] aside” evidence that contradicts their own “whimsical” treatment of “eyewitness testimony and forensic evidence.”
It’s a characteristically forceful performance, if at times slipshod. One small sign of carelessness may be the manner in which Cockburn slides from calling 9/11 skeptics a “coven” to comparing them, a few sentences later, to “mad Inquisitors” torturing the data (as the old joke goes about economists) until the data confess.” Readers brought up to think that the victims and perpetrators of witch-crazes have not customarily been the same people may find this unintentionally amusing.
Despite the sometimes distinctly nasty tone of this polemic, the idea of exchanging even metaphorical blows with Cockburn and his colleagues is unappealing. The overall quality of the essays that he and Jeffrey St. Clair publish in Counterpunch makes it easy on most days of the week to agree with Out of Bounds Magazine‘s description of it (trumpeted on Counterpunch‘s masthead) as “America’s best political newsletter.” And I’ve admired Cockburn’s own political essays for many years: he’s written movingly, sometimes brilliantly, on a wide range of subjects1 even if his flashes of brilliance sometimes alternate with breathtaking pratfalls: among them his dismissal, as recently as March 2001, of the evidence for global warming; his scoffing, in November 2004, at the rapidly gathering indications that the US presidential election of 2004 had been stolen; and a year later, his mockery of the well-established theory of peak oil and his adherence to the genuinely daft notion that the earth produces limitless quantities of abiotic oil.2 One can forgive a journalist’s slender grasp of the rudiments of scientific understanding. But given his self-appointed role as defender of the progressive left against a horde of fools, It’s dismaying to find him sliding as frequently as he does into positions that seem not just quirky but (dare I say it) unprogressive. 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.
November 15, 2006
THE HIGHJACKING OF A NATION
Part 1: The Foreign Agent Factor
By Sibel Edmonds
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.…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 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.…
Sam Gardiner and David Kay to Testify
Oct 10, 2006
Congressman Kucinich will lead a briefing Wednesday on Iran. Kucinich wants to find out what the Bush Administration plans for Iran, and what actions are already underway.
Testifying will be retired Air Force Colonel Sam Gardiner, author of The End of the Summer of Diplomacy. Gardiner is convinced that the US has been executing military operations inside Iran for at least 18 months. On September 18, Gardiner told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, “The evidence is overwhelming … From both the Iranians, Americans, and from congressional sources.”
Also testifying will be David Kay, former UN nuclear weapons inspector. Kay headed the team searching for WMD in Iraq throughout 2003, but resigned on January 24, saying he did not believe Iraq possessed large stockpiles of chemical or biological weapons.
The hearing will be held October 11 at 10 a.m. in Room 2154 of the Rayburn House Office Building.
Watch for more about this briefing on our forum.
September 26, 2006 6:56 pm ET
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 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
Will the Democrats Be Ready for Rove’s 2006 October Fright Fest?
August 24, 2006
Everyone knows it’s coming.
Rove doesn’t deviate from his playbook; and it’s his third time around with this one.
So what’s going to the terrorist fright just before the election? Will Osama be taken out of deep freeze? Will a videotape suddenly be “found” in which Osama declares that he wants a Democratic Congress? Will a terrorist cell be broken up the week before the election, allegedly plotting to fly planes into 12 American cities and bomb the Super Bowl with Weapons of Mass Destruction that Saddam gave them from his cell in Iraq?
Who knows exactly what it will be, but we know it will be some extraordinary fright fest.
The only fuel the GOP has left to run on is fear, otherwise their car will sputter to a stop on a country road with no gasoline station in sight.
So the Dems know they are going to get another round of terrorist scares – and this one is going to be quite imaginative, you can be sure.
The question is: Who, if anyone, in the Democratic Party is thinking how to pre-empt the upcoming Rovian plan to terrorize America into voting Republican (for the third campaign cycle of voting by fear)?
Because if we go through another election where the Dems act all shocked when Rove pulls the same bogeyman stunt all over again, the Dems will lose.
Have they learned by now that the Busheviks will do anything, even if it jeopardizes national security, to play the terror card?…Continue reading
By Paul Craig Roberts
“Information Clearing House” — – I received a number of intelligent responses from readers of my August 14 column, “Gullible Americans,” The letters deserve a reply. Moreover, some contain important points that should be shared with a wider audience. Pundits such as myself are not the only people who have interesting things to say. Considering the number of letters and the time it would require to respond individually, I am replying instead in this column.
Most readers from whom I heard understand the difference between loyalty to country and loyalty to a government. They understand that to support a political party or a government that is destroying the US Constitution and America’s reputation in the world is, in fact, an act of treason. Therefore, I did not have to read the usual drivel about how doubting “our government” is un-American.
Among the issues raised are:
How could the complicity of the US government, or some part of it, in the events of 9/11 be kept a secret? For the most part, this question comes from Americans who believe the government must have been, to some extent, complicit in the attacks on the WTC and the Pentagon.
How can we differentiate between the real facts, the 9/11 Commission’s reporting of the facts, and “conspiracy theories”?
What about the role of suicide flyers led by M. Atta?
What about the Popular Mechanics article and the TV documentary that debunk the skeptics and support… Continue reading
By David Chen
If there was an Achilles heel that would definitely bring down not only the Bush Administration, but every tyrannical mechanism they have constructed in their fraudulent “War on Terror”, would you strike at it? As I scour the web and talk to people in the anti-war movement, I have heard disheartening answers ranging from dismissiveness to fear to willful ignorance. I am referring to attitudes regarding the one event used by the neo-cons and their flag waving supporters to justify endless war, government looting, eroding constitutional freedoms, and everything else under the sun, namely 9/11. What is disheartening is that we are missing out on a golden opportunity to unite and bring down the current reign of tyranny.
In light of probable war in Iran, previous scams in history, such as the Nazi Gleiwitz incident and the Iraqi WMD scam , serve as guides as to what we can watch for as the powers that be prepare a staged provocation to lead America to war. It is time for everyone to drop the dismissive attitude towards the rapidly growing 9/11 truth movement. It is time for people to recognize 9/11 truth’s vital role in preserving liberty and stopping future wars of aggression. It is high time for people in the mainstream anti-war movement to investigate 9/11 and expose the official story for the fraud that it is.
“But 9/11 is a distraction to the larger fight to end the war in Iraq…”
I often hear this objection from people who are ignorant of the relationship between 9/11 and our current situation.…Continue reading
President Bush is at the Helm of an Administration that Won’t Stop Lying
Paul Craig Roberts
The Bush Regime has killed tens of thousands of people in Iraq and Afghanistan, mainly women and children. The deaths are excused as unintended “collateral damage” of the ongoing war, but the deaths are nonetheless important to the tens of thousands of relatives and friends. An equally important casualty of the Bush Regime is truth. The American public has been trained to obediently accept their government’s lies fed to them by their government’s handmaiden, the US Media. No statement or claim by a Bush Regime Official is too outlandish to be received with acceptance. Consider the claim by Donald Rumsfeld, the US Secretary for War and Aggression, made to the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee on May 17, that Iran was to blame for the instability in Iraq.
Did the senators laugh Rumsfeld out of the room? No.
Did the media remind the “informed public” that it was actually the US invasion and unsuccessful occupation, together with mass detentions, torture, slaughter of citizens and invasions of their homes, destruction of infrastructure and entire cities, such as Fallujah, and removal of Saddam Hussein’s government, which kept the three Iraqi factions from each other’s throats, that destabilized Iraq?…Continue reading
Daniel Ellsberg is a former American military analyst employed by the RAND Corporation who precipitated a national firestorm in 1971 when he released the Pentagon Papers, the US military’s account of activities during the Vietnam War, to The New York Times. The release awakened the American people to a systematic program of organized deception carried out by the Pentagon against the population to continue the Vietnam War.
Daniel Ellsberg, speaking on air to GCN radio host Jack Blood, stated his concerns that criminal elements of the US government were psychologically capable to have carried out 9/11.
“If there’s another 9/11 or a major war in the Middle-East involving a U.S. attack on Iran, I have no doubt that there will be, the day after or within days an equivalent of a Reichstag fire decree that will involve massive detentions in this country.”
- Daniel Ellsberg
Author, Pentagon Papers
Ellsberg said that he worked with individuals at the highest… Continue reading