Below is a summary of the things I personally find strangest about 9/11, and which lead me to suspect complicity by high officials in the U.S. government.
- Bush’s under-reaction
- The lack of air defense
- WTC 7
- The war in Afghanistan
- Credible allegations of U.S. government complicity in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing
- Other issues
- The most important issue: A truly independent investigation is needed
At the top of the list, for me, is the behavior of President Bush that morning.
Once the second plane hit, it was obvious that there was a coordinated attack. If the President was not in on the plot, then there was every reason to believe that he was a likely next target. That being the case, he should have been immediately whisked off to an undisclosed location. He should not have remained in any previously-announced location – especially any previously-announced location where his presence also endangered the lives of children, such as a school. By dawdling for almost a half hour in a classroom – which, even worse, was near an airport – Bush was, at the very least, guilty of reckless endangerment. The only way he could not be putting himself and all those children in danger would be if he knew enough about the plot to know that he personally was not a target.
Furthermore, Bush, as the commander in chief of the U.S. armed forces, had an obligation to turn his full attention to the attack ASAP. By not having done so, he is, at the very least, guilty of criminal negligence, if not treason.
Let me digress, for a moment, to the first day of the Iraq war in 2003. On the first day of the invasion, I heard an interview with one of the generals on the radio. The general was asked a question about the “weapons of mass destruction.” I don’t remember the general’s exact words, but his answer was something to the effect of, “oh, we’ll worry about them later.” I thought, wait a minute! If you’ve just invaded a country that really does have weapons of mass destruction, you don’t worry about them later, you worry about them immediately. Destroying them should be your top strategic priority. Thus I figured out, on the first day of the war, that the WMD excuse must have been a lie. Sure enough, later it turned out that I was right.
This example does not absolutely prove, as a universal rule, that whenever high officials who should be acting like they’re in obvious danger don’t act like they’re in danger, this necessarily and always means that they must be lying about the nature of the danger. However, when high officials who should be acting like they’re in obvious danger don’t act like they’re in danger, this is indeed good grounds for suspicion about the nature of the danger.
(For more about this and related matters, see the Emperor’s Clothes website.)
(P.S., 12/22/2007: For an important update on this point, see my subsequent post about Bush at Booker School on the morning of 9/11.)
Then there’s the question of how and why the Pentagon was allowed to be hit, over a half hour after the second of the Twin Towers was hit, and why none of the four hijacked planes were even intercepted.
First there was the “failure of imagination” excuse. A blatant lie. If the “war games” prove nothing else, they prove, at the very least, that the possibility of hijacked planes crashing into buildings was something that NORAD had not only thought of, but specifically trained for.
The 9/11 Commission Report claims that the FAA didn’t notify NORAD soon enough, but this contradicts earlier timelines from NORAD as well as from the FAA.
Another excuse is the Popular Mechanics claim that intercepts were rare, and that, between 1991 and 2001, there was only one intercept outside of an Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ). As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, this seems to be contradicted by a 1994 United States General Accounting Office report on continental air defense, which said the following about intercepts back in the early 1990’s:
Overall, during the past 4 years, NORAD’s alert fighters took off to intercept aircraft (referred to as scrambled) 1,518 times, or an average of 15 times per site per year. Of these incidents, the number of suspected drug smuggling aircraft averaged one per site, or less than 7 percent of all of the alert sites’ total activity. The remaining activity generally involved visually inspecting unidentified aircraft and assisting aircraft in distress.
“Assisting aircraft in distress” does not sound like the sort of activity that would have been confined to an ADIZ.
(Thanks to John Doraemi for calling my attention to the GAO report.)
Yet another excuse is that there were no scramble-ready fighter planes at Andrews Air Force Base, the base nearest to Washington, D.C. If true, this raises more questions than it answers. Why on Earth were there no scramble-ready fighter planes at Andrews Air Force Base, of all places? And who on Earth made that decision? One would think that Washington, D.C. would be the single most important place to defend, hence the single most important place to have scramble-ready fighter planes at all times.
Previously, I’ve explored these matters in the following posts (listed in forward chronological order, oldest first):
- War games, etc.: A preliminary overview of some of Mark Robinowitz’s evidence about 9/11 – October 19, 2007
- “Stand down” evidence on the “Emperor’s Clothes” site, including FAA web pages – November 3, 2007
- More about the FAA, NORAD, and intercepts – November 5, 2007
- “Stand down” feasibility, etc. – Reply to “9/11 Guide,” part 2 (to ref1) – December 14, 2007
I don’t believe there was an explicit stand-down order. That would have been too obvious. What I do suspect is that various things may have been done to slow down NORAD’s response, and that not having scramble-ready planes at Andrews Air Force Base may have been one of them.
Then there’s the way WTC 7 collapsed. See Jim Hoffman’s collection of downloadable WTC 7 collapse videos here. See also my previous posts about WTC 7, especially Straight-down collapse of WTC 7 – what do “debunkers” say?.
I’m suspicious about the destruction of the Twin Towers too, but the issues regarding the Twin Towers are not nearly as clear-cut. (See my post Demolition of WTC: Let’s not overstate the case, please.)
Before 9/11/2001, there were already plans and preparations to go to war with Afghanistan. See, for example, the following:
- India in anti-Taliban military plan: India and Iran will “facilitate” the planned US-Russia hostilities against the Taliban, News Insight (India), 26 June 2001
- US ‘planned attack on Taleban’ by George Arney, BBC News, Tuesday, 18 September, 2001
- U.S. sought attack on al-Qaida: White House given plan days before Sept. 11 by Jim Miklaszewski and Alex Johnson, MSNBC and NBC News, May 16, 2002
- Comment: This war on terrorism is bogus by Michael Meacher, Guardian, U.K., Saturday September 6, 2003
9/11 provided the perfect excuse for a war which otherwise would have been very difficult to sell to the American public, given what horrible luck the Soviets had had in Afghanistan back in the 1980’s. 9/11 provided an excuse, not only for a war in Afghanistan, but also for a century of imperialistic “war on terror.”
Strangely enough, once our troops were solidly ensconced in Afghanistan, the Bush administration seemed to lose interest in capturing Osama bin Laden. Why?
(P.S., 3/14/2008: For more about the war in Afghanistan, see also my post To Tom: Michael C. Ruppert vs. “COINTELPRO Tool” on Afghanistan.)
According to the Wikipedia article on the World Trade Center 1993 bombings:
In the course of the trial it was revealed that the FBI had an informant, a former Egyptian army officer named Emad A. Salem. Salem claims to have informed the FBI of the plot to bomb the towers as early as February 6, 1992. Salem’s role as informant allowed the FBI to quickly pinpoint the conspirators out of the hundreds of possible suspects.
Salem, initially believing that this was to be a sting operation, claimed that the FBI’s original plan was for Salem to supply the conspirators with a harmless powder instead of actual explosive to build their bomb, but that the FBI chose to use him for other purposes instead.  He secretly recorded hundreds of hours of telephone conversations with his FBI handlers; reported by Ralph Blumenthal in the New York Times, Oct. 28, 1993, section A,Page 1.
In December 1993, James M. Fox, the head of the FBI’s New York Office, denied that the FBI had any foreknowledge of the attacks. The 1993 WTC sting operation was depicted as a false flag operation and was a plot device for the 1996 movie The Long Kiss Goodnight with Geena Davis.
The footnotes are:
11. Blumenthal, Ralph. “Tapes Depict Proposal to Thwart Bomb Used in Trade Center Blast”, New York Times, Oct. 28, 1993, p. Section A, Page 1, Column 4.
12. Tapes Depict Proposal to Thwart Bomb Used in Trade Center Blast by Ralph M. Blumenthal, New York Times, October 28, 1993
Of course, this doesn’t prove anything about the attacks of 9/11/2001. But it does show a possible precedent, as does the history of known false flag operations. (See the Wikipedia article on false flag operations, and see my post False flag terror (Review of 911proof.com, Part 1) – November 16, 2007.)
Both the 1993 and 2001 World Trade Center attacks happened during the first year of the first term of a new U.S. president. We can only hope that this pattern won’t repeat itself, but I’m not looking forward to 2009.
Above, I’ve listed what I consider to be the most important grounds for suspicion. The above issues are also the ones I’ve looked at in enough depth to be reasonably confident that they are indeed valid grounds for strong suspicion (although not, in and of themselves, absolute proof of government complicity).
Another issue that’s important, but one I haven’t yet researched in detail beyond reading various claims and counterclaims, is Osama bin Laden’s history and the question of what connection, if any, he might still have had with the CIA, either directly or via Pakistan. He was once a U.S. ally back in the 1980’s. Of course, erstwhile allies can sometimes turn into genuine enemies. (Saddam Hussein was once a U.S. ally too.) But some people suspect that Osama bin Laden may have turned into a fake enemy, with the role of creating excuses for U.S. imperialism. Are there any solid grounds for such suspicion? That’s an issue I should explore eventually, though it’s not at the top of my priority list right now.
I am inclined to believe that there were indeed real live human hijackers on 9/11, even if the FBI might have been mistaken about the identities of some of them. Some people believe that there were no human hijackers at all, and that the attacks were fully automated and/or remote-controlled. To me this seems very unlikely. For one thing, it implies that the phone calls from passengers and crew must all have been faked. To fake all those phone calls convincingly enough to fool family members and co-workers would have been a huge project, requiring extensive voice samples and knowledge of the individuals’ family situations and personal idiosyncrasies. Still, applying the standard of “innocent until proven guilty” to the alleged hijackers, I should wait with concluding definitively that there were real live human hijackers until I’ve had a good hard look at what’s known about the FBI’s investigation.
Another issue I have not yet researched in depth, beyond reading various claims and counterclaims, is the “put options” which are said to indicate that some people had advance knowledge of 9/11 and used that knowledge to make huge profits in the stock market.
I do think we should reject any hypothesis that requires a large number of knowingly complicit people. With too many people, or with insufficiently motivated people, the “someone would have talked” argument becomes valid counterevidence. I’m not sure exactly how big a reasonable maximum would be, but probably no more than a dozen people besides Bush and Cheney. Thus, for example, I’m inclined to reject any hypothesis that requires the knowing complicity of anyone in either the FDNY or the NYPD.
(P.S., 12/24/2007: Regarding some of the points of contention within the above “other issues,” see Deceitful Tactics of the “Debunkers” by John Doraemi, Monday, October 29, 2007. One minor error I noticed here: Doraemi refers to false blips on FAA radar screens, whereas his linked source refers to false blips on NORAD radar screens. I have yet to research most of the other issues discussed on that page.)
The most important issue is that 9/11 has not yet been investigated by any official entity, with subpoena power, that was independent of the Bush administration. Such independence would be needed for an honest investigation of even the possibility of negligence or incompetence, let alone anything worse, on the part of high officials in the Bush administration. The 9/11 Commission was supposed to be beholden only to Congress and not the executive branch, but was in fact run by people like Philip Zelikow, with close ties to the Bush administration.