by Eve Conant NEWSWEEK
From the magazine issue dated Jan 12, 2009
In the grim, sleepless months of excavation after the September 11 attacks, forensic pathologists in New York City worked day and night to identify the dead. They didn’t have much to go on. The collapsed World Trade Center towers had burned at temperatures reaching 2,000 degrees, incinerating those trapped inside. Many of the bodies of the passengers aboard the two airplanes that struck the buildings were consumed by burning jet fuel, leaving only traces of DNA, much of it so damaged that it was impossible to read. Few bodies were found intact. Most of the human remains culled from the vast wreckage at Ground Zero were little more than tiny fragments of charred tissue and bone. The volume was overwhelming. Robert Shaler, who headed the city’s Department of Forensic Biology and was a leader of the identification effort, worried his lab would be paralyzed if it tried to identify every piece. At first, they decided they would only attempt to test samples that were “the size of a thumb or larger,” he says. But when they saw how small many of the fragments were, they changed their minds. “If we were really going to make an honest effort,” Shaler says, “we had to do everything that came along.”
Shaler and his colleagues at the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner gave weekly updates to family members of the victims, reporting how many of the dead had been identified and reassuring them that the city was doing everything to identify their loved ones.…Continue reading
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.
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
By Joe Dwinell
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Three families who lost loved ones in the 9/11 terrorist attacks head to court
today to plead with a federal judge to release a million pages of documents
detailing the mass murder of nearly 3,000 Americans.
Those secret papers, one Bay State family member told the Herald, are “so
bad you won’t believe it.”
“It was out control,” Paul Keating, 45, said of security on Sept.
11, 2001, including at Logan International Airport in Boston where two ill-fated
jets left on a collision course with infamy.
“My mother went through the most public murder you could imagine . .
. and I’ve been putting up with this crap for seven years,” Keating
said of his refusal to settle his case out of court.
Keating’s 72-year-old mother, Barbara, a Framingham native, died aboard
American Airlines [AMR] Flight 11.
Keating is making legal history today, along with the families of Mark Bavis,
31, and Sara Low, 28, by asking Judge Alvin K. Hellerstein in Federal District
Court in Manhattan to lift the order keeping all the evidence hidden.
Low was a Boston-based flight attendant on Flight 11; Bavis of West Newton,
a passenger on United Airlines Flight 175. Both jets left Logan with hijackers
on board and were slammed into the World Trade Center’s Twin Towers.
“Sept. 11 should not have happened,” said attorney Donald A. Migliori,
whose firm represents all three families.
He said the secret papers include depositions of former Massport Executive… Continue reading
The Reflecting Pool
Monday, May 4th, 4 PM
8639 Lincoln Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 900045
April 23, 2009
JAREK KUPSC — “The Reflecting Pool,” trying to tell the truth, in America, through film.
anybody born and raised
behind the Iron Curtain,
it wasn’t difficult to realize
what you were getting from
the television, newspapers
and the media did not exist
outside your house,” Kupsc says.
“People developed other ways
to find what was going on.”
JAREK KUPSC, 43, lives in Los Angeles, as of February 2009.
Born in Warsaw, Poland, Jarek has been involved in independent film production
He studied art and history in his native Warsaw, Poland, learned Byzantine
Icon painting techniques in Greece, and received his B.A. in Film Writing/Directing
from San Francisco State University.
He authored and illustrated “The History of Cinema for Beginners,”
a comic film history textbook (Writers&Readers, New York/London, 1998).
As a writer/director/producer, Jarek completed numerous short films, including
the Rosebud Award-winning “Dog.”
He debuted in 2001 with “Recoil” in the feature film category, following
with “Slumberland” in 2005 (Winner of Special Jury Prize, 2006 Gdynia
Film Festival, Poland; First Prize, 2007 Oskariada FF, Poland; Best Screenwriter,
2007 Young Film Festival, Poland.).
He is the writer/director of the 9/11 film “The Reflecting Pool.”
“For anybody born and raised behind the Iron Curtain, it wasn’t
difficult to realize what you were getting from the television, newspapers and
the media did not… Continue reading
My lecture is entitled “9/11: Time for a Second Look.” In suggesting that it is time for people to take a second look at 9/11, I have in mind primarily people who decided long ago that the attacks of 9/11 happened essentially the way the Bush-Cheney administration and the official reports about 9/11 said they happened, and who therefore decided that the so-called 9/11 Truth Movement, which disputes that account, is comprised of crazy conspiracy theorists with no capacity to evaluate evidence objectively. Having formed these views long ago, such people, including most journalists, have been impervious to any arguments presented by the Truth Movement. They simply roll their eyes and move on.
However, both the Truth Movement and the available evidence have changed dramatically in the past three years. Because of these changes, it is not rational to reject the claims of this movement out of hand, without taking a second look. If you are a person who has had such an attitude, you cannot, in the face of these changes, simply roll your eyes without exhibiting the very irrationality of which you accuse the people you dismiss as “conspiracy theorists.”
My lecture is also addressed, albeit indirectly, to fellow members of the Truth Movement. Some members have decided that, now that Bush and Cheney are out of office and the Obama administration has reversed some of their 9/11-based policies, getting the truth about 9/11 revealed is no longer so important. Other members of the… Continue reading
by Shoestring May 26, 2009 911blogger.com
Langley Air Force Base was the second military base that launched fighter jets to defend America in response to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Three of its F-16s were ordered to take off toward Washington at 9:24 a.m. that morning, but by the time they were airborne, more than 40 minutes had passed since the first attack on the World Trade Center, and almost half an hour since the second.
Furthermore, the pilots were hindered by an extraordinary combination of confusion, communications problems, conflicting orders, breaches of protocol, and other difficulties. Consequently, when the Pentagon was hit at 9:37 a.m., the jets were further away from it than they’d been when they took off. According to witnesses on the ground, fighters did not arrive over the Pentagon until around 10:40 a.m.–more than an hour too late to protect it from the attack.
A close examination of publicly available accounts raises the possibility that deliberate attempts were made to sabotage the ability of the Langley jets to respond to the 9/11 attacks, thereby paralyzing normal, well-practiced procedures. In this article, I focus on three particular aspects of the jets’ response.
Firstly, I examine the initial order to launch F-16s from Langley AFB. Notably, instead of the usual two jets taking off, a third pilot took off in a spare jet. This left the unit with no supervisor of flying (SOF) to communicate with other agencies and pass on vital information to the pilots.… Continue reading
May 29, 2009
Statement On Behalf of the 9/11 Families United to Bankrupt Terrorism
In Response to the Solicitor General’s Refusal to Support The 9/11 Families’
Petition for Writ of Certiorari with the Supreme Court
(In Re: Thomas E. Burnett, Sr., et al. v. Al Baraka Investment & Development
Corp., et al., Case No. 03-CV-9849 (RCC) In Re: Terrorist Attacks on September
11, 2001, MDL 1570)
WASHINGTON, May 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The following is a statement
of 9/11 Family Members: Mike Low, Father of Sara Elizabeth Low, AA Flight 11;
Bill Doyle, Father of Joseph M. Doyle, WTC North Tower; Tom & Beverly Burnett,
Sr., Parents of Thomas E. Burnett, Jr., UA Flight 93; and Terry Strada, Wife
of Thomas Strada, WTC North Tower on Behalf of the 9/11 Families United to Bankrupt
Terrorism in Response to the Solicitor General’s Refusal to Support The 9/11
Families’ Petition for Writ of Certiorari with the Supreme Court:
Today the Obama Administration filed in the Supreme Court a document that expressed
the Administration’s decision to stand with a group of Saudi princes and against
the right of American citizens — 9/11 family members — to have our day in
court. Let there be no doubt: The filing was political in nature and stands
as a betrayal of everyone who lost a loved one or was injured on September 11,
We are deeply dismayed by this decision, filed by the solicitor general of
the United States in response to the Supreme Court’s February 23, 2009 invitation
for the government to express its views in the 9/11 families’ request to appeal
a portion of the case to the Court.…
June 22, 2009
According to a Freedom of Information Act reply from the U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS), the last known pre-9/11 flights for three of the four aircraft involved in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 took place in December, 2000, nine months before the attacks, while no pre-9/11 final flight information was provided for American Airlines flight 77 (N644AA).
However, a discovered searchable online BTS database produces the following search results for three of the four 9/11 aircraft on September 10, 2001:
AA 11 departs San Francisco (SFO): AA 09/10/2001 0198 (flight number) N334AA (tail number) BOS (destination) 22:04 (wheels-off time)
UA 175 departs San Francisco (SFO): UA 09/10/2001 0170 (flight number) N612UA (tail number) BOS (destination) 13:44 (wheels-off time)
UA 93 departs San Francisco (SFO): UA 09/10/2001 0078 (flight number) N591UA (tail number) EWR (destination) 23:15 (wheels-off time)
2009 Truth Statement
We STILL Want Real Answers About 9/11
[Signatures have been closed as of March, 2010]
On August 31, 2004, Zogby International, the official North American political polling agency for Reuters, released a poll that found nearly half (49.3%) of New York City residents and 41% of those in New York state believe US leaders had foreknowledge of impending 9/11 attacks and “consciously failed” to act. Of the New York City residents, 66% called for a new probe of unanswered questions by Congress or the New York Attorney General. Since that time, multiple professional polling organizations have obtained similar results in polls conducted nationally and internationally.
In 2004, 911truth.org assembled a list of notable Americans and family members of those who died who signed (see that list of signatories, below) a 9/11 Statement, calling for “immediate public attention to unanswered questions that suggest that people within the current administration may indeed have deliberately allowed 9/11 to happen, perhaps as a pretext for war.”
On the eighth anniversary of 9/11, in spite of Americans having elected the “other” party in hopes it would deliver on its promise of a change in direction, we find ourselves asking these same questions and encountering the same resistance to transparency. The ensuing wars have destroyed countless lives, our civil liberties (including habeas corpus) are in tatters, posse comitatus is history, and our economy lies essentially in ruin. Meanwhile, thousands of 9/11 responders who rushed to stand with America in its time of… Continue reading
Saturday November 14, 2009 7:51 am
A senior counsel for the 9/11 Commission, John Farmer, has written a book exposing the degree to which our response to 9/11 was disorganized and outdated, geared to respond to an attack from Russia rather than from terrorists. Most significantly, Farmer reveals that FAA and NORAD altered their chronologies of the day only after a briefing at the White House.
Perhaps nothing perturbs Farmer more than the contention that high-ranking officials responded quickly and effectively to the revelation that Qaeda attacks were taking place. Nothing, Farmer indicates, could be further from the truth: President George W. Bush and other officials were mostly irrelevant during the hijackings; instead, it was the ground-level commanders who made operational decisions in an ad hoc fashion.
Yet both Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz and Vice President Dick Cheney, Farmer says, provided palpably false versions that touted the military’s readiness to shoot down United 93 before it could hit Washington. Planes were never in place to intercept it. By the time the Northeast Air Defense Sector had been informed of the hijacking, United 93 had already crashed. Farmer scrutinizes F.A.A. and NORAD records to provide irrefragable evidence that a day after a Sept. 17 White House briefing, both agencies suddenly altered their chronologies to produce a coherent timeline and story that “fit together nicely with the account provided publicly by Deputy Defense Secretary Wolfowitz and Vice President Cheney.”
We’ve known for a long time that the… Continue reading
November 29, 2009
News: The Fifth Estate
‘The Unofficial Story: Eight years after 9/11, why are doubts growing about
the official record of that day?’
This documentary was originally broadcast on November 27, 2009 on Canada’s
CBC and will be available for viewing at www.CBC.ca (or below, if you are not in Canada).
On September 11, 2001 the world watched in shock and disbelief as planes flew
in to New York’s World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Washington, and Americans
realized they were under attack. But by whom? What really happened? In The Unofficial
Story, the fifth estate’s Bob McKeown introduces us to people who believe the
real force behind the attacks was not Osama Bin Laden, but the U.S. government
Emerging from the dust and debris that day was a movement, known these days
as 9/11 Truth or “truthers” — people who believe that 9/11
was part of a vast conspiracy and cover-up by a criminal faction within the
U.S. government. As the fifth estate reports, public opinion polls now show
that the majority of Americans believe the Bush Administration had advance knowledge
of those attacks and somehow allowed them to happen and that one-third of Canadians
share the same belief.
In The Unofficial Story, Bob McKeown explores why these questions and theories
are growing in popularity.
You’ll meet some of the leading proponents of “truther” theories:
Richard Gage, an American architect, explains how the WTC twin towers and the
lesser known ‘Tower #7′ could only have crumbled as they did due
to explosive charges placed inside the buildings.…
City Room Blog – NYTimes.com
by Jennifer 8. Lee
Jeff Clark used pager message data released by WikiLeaks to created a visualization of the events of the day. The words, which are sized to their overall frequency over a 24-hour period starting from 3 a.m. on Sept. 11, 2001, brighten and fade in the video depending on how often they were used.
Programmers are introducing tools to analyze the hundreds of thousands of pager messages, supposedly dating from Sept. 11, released last week by WikiLeaks, an organization that releases sensitive documents and materials.
More than half a million messages were released by WikiLeaks, which has not disclosed who turned over the messages. Jeff Clark, a data visualization research who is not involved in WikiLeaks, interpreted the data in the aggregate, creating a video that shows the most commonly used terms that day, like “complex has evacuated” or “possible terrorist act.” The words grow brightest when they hit their peak and are sized by how frequently there were used.
“I recognize the pager data was very much like Twitter data, because it’s basically a time stamp with a bit of text,” said Mr. Clark, who had done work with Twitter.
He also created small time lines showing when certain key phrases hit their peaks, and then ordered the phrases by the peak time to create a moving narrative of the day.
Over the weekend, another programmer, Colin Keigher, created a searchable database of the messages, which makes them much easier to parse than the original 40-megabyte file.…Continue reading
By John Byrne
May 11th, 2010
Elena Kagan, President Barack Obama’s latest nominee to the Supreme Court,
helped protect the Saudi royal family from lawsuits that sought to hold al Qaeda
financiers responsible in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
The suits were filed by thousands of family members and others affected by
the Sept. 11 attacks. In court papers, they provided evidence that members of
the Saudi royal family had channeled millions to al Qaeda prior to the bombings,
often in contravention of direct guidance from the United States.
But Kagan, acting as President Obama’s Solicitor General, argued that the case
should not be heard even if evidence proved that the Saudis helped underwrite
al Qaeda, because it would interfere with US foreign policy with the oil-rich
nation. She posited “that the princes are immune from petitioners’
claims” because of “the potentially significant foreign relations
consequences of subjecting another sovereign state to suit.”
In an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer published Tuesday,
the mother of a man who was killed on United Flight 93 in Pennsylvania said
he didn’t know why Kagan argued that the case not even be heard. By keeping
the case off the dockets, the Saudis were spared scrutiny of their finances.
“We had hoped she would be with us so that we could have our day in court,"
Beverly Burnett said.
David Ray Griffin
There are many questions to ask about the war in Afghanistan. One that has been widely asked is whether it will turn out to be “Obama’s Vietnam.”1 This question implies another: Is this war winnable, or is it destined to be a quagmire, like Vietnam? These questions are motivated in part by the widespread agreement that the Afghan government, under Hamid Karzai, is at least as corrupt and incompetent as the government the United States tried to prop up in South Vietnam for 20 years.
Although there are many similarities between these two wars, there is also a big difference: This time, there is no draft. If there were a draft, so that college students and their friends back home were being sent to Afghanistan, there would be huge demonstrations against this war on campuses all across this country. If the sons and daughters of wealthy and middle-class parents were coming home in boxes, or with permanent injuries or post-traumatic stress syndrome, this war would have surely been stopped long ago. People have often asked: Did we learn any of the “lessons of Vietnam”? The US government learned one: If you’re going to fight unpopular wars, don’t have a draft — hire mercenaries!
There are many other questions that have been, and should be, asked about this war, but in this essay, I focus on only one: Did the 9/11 attacks justify the war in Afghanistan?… Continue reading
An Open Letter to Terry Allen, Noam Chomsky, Alexander Cockburn, David Corn, Chris Hayes, George Monbiot, Matthew Rothschild, and Matt Taibbi1
According to several left-leaning critics of the 9/11 Truth Movement, some of its central claims, especially about the destruction of the World Trade Center, show its members to be scientifically challenged. In the opinion of some of these critics, moreover, claims made by members of this movement are sometimes unscientific in the strongest possible sense, implying an acceptance of magic and miracles.
After documenting this charge in Part I of this essay, I show in Part II that the exact opposite is the case: that the official account of the destruction of the World Trade Center implies miracles (I give nine examples), and that the 9/11 Truth Movement, in developing an alternative hypothesis, has done so in line with the assumption that the laws of nature did not take a holiday on 9/11. In Part III, I ask these left-leaning critics some questions evoked by the fact that it is they, not members of the 9/11 Truth Movement, who have endorsed a conspiracy theory replete with miracle stories as well as other absurdities.
I. The Charge that 9/11 Truth Theories Rest on Unscientific, Even Magical, Beliefs
Several left-leaning critics of the 9/11 Truth Movement, besides showing contempt for its members, charge them with relying on claims that are contradicted by good science and, in some cases, reflect a belief… Continue reading
Memoirs reveal former US president gave order to shoot down any hijacked planes before United Airlines flight 93 crashed.
by James Meikle
29 October 2010
George Bush initially believed the only plane not to reach its intended target during the 11 September attacks had been shot down on his orders, according to leaks from the former president’s memoir of his two terms in office.
Bush reveals that he gave the order for any further suspected hijacked planes to be shot down after the first aircraft were flown into the World Trade Centre in New York during the 2001 terror attacks.
He at first thought the crash of United Airlines flight 93 in Pennsylvania had resulted from this instruction, although it later emerged that passengers had stormed the cockpit as hijackers flew the plane towards the Capitol building in Washington.
The memoir, Decision Points, is due to be published on 9 November, in the aftermath of the US midterm elections, and Bush is already lined up for interviews on the Oprah Winfrey and NBC Today shows.
(Continues at source)
by Kevin Ryan
Foreign Policy Journal
Just after September 11th 2001, many governments began investigations into possible insider trading related to the terrorist attacks of that day. Such investigations were initiated by the governments of Belgium, Cyprus, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Monte Carlo, the Netherlands, Switzerland, the United States, and others. Although the investigators were clearly concerned about insider trading, and considerable evidence did exist, none of the investigations resulted in a single indictment. That’s because the people identified as having been involved in the suspicious trades were seen as unlikely to have been associated with those alleged to have committed the 9/11 crimes.
This is an example of the circular logic often used by those who created the official explanations for 9/11. The reasoning goes like this: if we assume that we know who the perpetrators were (i.e. the popular version of “al Qaeda”) and those who were involved in the trades did not appear to be connected to those assumed perpetrators, then insider trading did not occur.
That’s basically what the 9/11 Commission told us. The Commission concluded that “exhaustive investigations” by the SEC and the FBI “uncovered no evidence that anyone with advance knowledge of the attacks profited through securities transactions.” What they meant was that someone did profit through securities transactions but, based on the Commission’s assumptions of guilt, those who profited were not associated with those who were guilty of conducting the attacks. In a footnote, the Commission report acknowledged “highly suspicious trading on its face,” but said that this trading on United Airlines was traced back to “A single U.S.-based institutional investor with no conceivable ties to al Qaeda.” 1
With respect to insider trading, or what is more technically called informed trading, the Commission report was itself suspect for several reasons.…Continue reading