Killtown's

9/11 coincidences and oddities page!

(and other note worthy tidbits.)

 

Pre 200120019/11 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006

 

Last updated:  08/23/2011

(Use the Wayback Machine for expired links.)


January 2, 2004 - Reporter John Buchanan, who published documentary proof of Bush's grandfather's and great-grandfather's Nazi link,  launches his campaign bid for the Republican nomination against President Bush in which one of his main issues is to end Bush's "cover-up of September 11th."

"The veteran journalist who made history last October when he published in The New Hampshire Gazette documentary proof that the grandfather and great-grandfather of President George W. Bush were Nazi traitors to their country will officially launch his campaign against Bush in the Presidential primaries with an appearance on Monday, January 5 at the New Hampshire Political Action Association’s Presidential Candidates Forum, the oldest such event in the state’s long history of explosive, confrontational politics.
“My three issues,” says Buchanan, a 53-year-old native of Virginia, “are the unanswered and troubling questions about 9/11 and ongoing attempts by the Bush administration to obstruct any investigation of what happened and who is accountable; the campaign of lies and deceit that led to the Iraq war, which is nothing but a war profiteering scam, and Bush’s violation of major campaign promises and core Republican values, from ‘no nation-building’ to the biggest deficit in history.”
“The American people have to right to know, based on the facts and sworn testimony, whether the President of the United States is a liar and war criminal,” says Buchanan. “If he led us to war, costing nearly 500 American lives and thousands of Iraqi deaths, or he was complicit in allowing the tragedy of 9/11 to happen, costing almost 3,000 lives, he is guilty of treason and should be held accountable.”" - DC Indymedia (1/02/04)

"Do you think George W. Bush misled us about the reasons for sacrificing over 400 brave American lives and $166 billion in Iraq - while he gives billion-dollar no-bid contracts to Halliburton?
Do you want an end to secret government, "outing" of CIA officers, domestic spying under the un-American USA Patriot Act, and official coverups - including the coverup of September 11th?" - Buchanan for President 2004

Bush - Nazi Link Confirmed, by John Buchanan
"After 60 years of inattention and even denial by the U.S. media, newly-uncovered government documents in The National Archives and Library of Congress reveal that Prescott Bush, the grandfather of President George W. Bush, served as a business partner of and U.S. banking operative for the financial architect of the Nazi war machine from 1926 until 1942, when Congress took aggressive action against Bush and his "enemy national" partners." - New Hampshire Gazette (10/10/03)

 

January 11, 2004 - The Barreling Bushes:  Four generations of the dynasty have chased profits through cozy ties with Mideast leaders, spinning webs of conflicts of interest.

"Dynasties in American politics are dangerous. We saw it with the Kennedys, we may well see it with the Clintons and we're certainly seeing it with the Bushes. Between now and the November election, it's crucial that Americans come to understand how four generations of the current president's family have embroiled the United States in the Middle East through CIA connections, arms shipments, rogue banks, inherited war policies and personal financial links.
As early as 1964, George H.W. Bush, running for the U.S. Senate from Texas, was labeled by incumbent Democrat Ralph Yarborough as a hireling of the sheik of Kuwait, for whom Bush's company drilled offshore oil wells. Over the four decades since then, the ever-reaching Bushes have emerged as the first U.S. political clan to thoroughly entangle themselves with Middle Eastern royal families and oil money. The family even has links to the Bin Ladens — though not to family black sheep Osama bin Laden — going back to the 1970s.
Eldest son George W. Bush made his first Middle East connection in the late 1970s with James Bath, a Texas businessmen who served as the North American representative for two rich Saudis (and Osama bin Laden relatives) — billionaire Salem bin Laden and banker and BCCI insider Khalid bin Mahfouz. Bath put $50,000 into Bush's 1979 Arbusto oil partnership, probably using Bin Laden-Bin Mahfouz funds.
After losing his bid for a second term as president, [George H.W.] Bush joined up in 1993 with the Washington-based Carlyle Group. Under the leadership of ex-officials like Baker and former Defense Secretary Frank C. Carlucci, Carlyle developed a specialty in buying defense companies and doubling or quadrupling their value. The ex-president not only became an investor in Carlyle, but a member of the company's Asia Advisory Board and a rainmaker who drummed up investors. Twelve rich Saudi families, including the Bin Ladens, were among them.
Bolder critics hinted that George W. Bush had sought to shift attention away from how his family's ties to the Bin Ladens and to rogue elements in the Middle East had crippled U.S. investigations in the months leading up to 9/11. Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) complained that even when Congress released the mid-2003 intelligence reports on the origins of the 9/11 attack, the Bush administration heavily redacted a 28-page section dealing with the Saudis and other foreign governments, leading him to conclude, "There seems to be a systematic strategy of coddling and cover-up when it comes to the Saudis." - LA Times (01/11/04)

(Also see:  1997 - Taleban meet in Texas with Unocal.)

 

January 13, 2004 - The truth is out there - but many prefer a good conspiracy

"Meanwhile conspiracists are running amok in Europe. First there was the claim by the French commentator Thierry Meyssan in his book The Frightening Fraud [The Big Lie] that September 11 was a US-initiated conspiracy to justify military action. In particular, he claims that "no plane crashed into the Pentagon" - but has yet to account for what happened to American Airlines Flight 77 on September 11, 2001 - along with its passengers and crew.
Similar theories abound in Germany. In his book Conspiracies, Conspiracy Theories and the Secrets of September 11, Mathias Brockers alleges that the US - with Israel, of course - blew up the World Trade Centre from the inside. It was a plot by the neo-conservatives (of course) to take over the world. So what about the images of the plane flying into the Twin Towers? Well, they were flown by remote control as part of the cover-up. Convenient, eh? Brockers is a former minister in Helmut Schmidt's social democratic government." - Sydney Morning Herald (01/13/04)

 

January 13, 2004 - Former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill says President Bush planned Iraq invasion before 9/11, releases a Treasury Department memo which contains a military plan of a "post-Saddam Iraq" marked secret.

O'Neill denies use of secret papers

"Ex-Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill said Tuesday he doesn't believe he gave classified documents to the author of a new book about the Bush administration, but said he wished he could take back unflattering comments he made about President Bush.

O'Neill gave author Ron Suskind two compact discs containing 19,000 documents from his 23 months as Bush's Treasury chief.

A document said to contain plans for "post-Saddam Iraq," and marked "secret," was shown during an interview on the CBS program "60 Minutes" that aired Sunday night. But O'Neill said the page displayed was only a cover sheet, not the classified document itself.

Suskind's book, "The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House and the Education of Paul O'Neill," was published Tuesday. It has drawn attention in large part because O'Neill said Iraq was on the president's agenda from his first days in office.

"I was surprised, as I've said in the book, that Iraq was given such a high priority," he told NBC.

In the book, Suskind says that O'Neill -- the former CEO of aluminum producer Alcoa, who sat on the National Security Council as treasury chief -- told him, "From the start, we were building the case against Hussein and looking at how we could take him out and change Iraq into a new country. And, if we did that, it would solve everything. It was about finding a way to do it. That was the tone of it -- the president saying, 'Fine. Go find me a way to do this.' "

Several Democratic presidential candidates seized on O'Neill's comments to argue that the Bush administration misled Americans about the need for war with Iraq, where nearly 500 American troops have been killed since March.

Bush repeated his argument Monday that his administration turned to war with Iraq only after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on New York and Washington changed the way U.S. officials viewed Baghdad's suspected weapons programs." - CNN Money (01/13/04)

O'Neill: Bush planned Iraq invasion before 9/11

"The Bush administration began planning to use U.S. troops to invade Iraq within days after the former Texas governor entered the White House three years ago, former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill told CBS News' 60 Minutes.
"From the very beginning, there was a conviction that Saddam Hussein was a bad person and that he needed to go," O'Neill told CBS, according to excerpts released Saturday by the network. "For me, the notion of pre-emption, that the U.S. has the unilateral right to do whatever we decide to do, is a really huge leap." - CNN (01/14/04)

 

(See also:  January 31, 2001 - Treasury Department memo contains military plan for a post-Saddam Iraq marked secret)

 

January 15, 2004 - Two of the 9/11 Commission's own senior officials, Philip Zelikow and Jamie Gorelick, were so closely involved in the events under investigation that they have been interviewed as part of the inquiry.

"The panel set up to investigate why the United States failed to prevent the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, faced angry questions Thursday after revelations that two of its own senior officials were so closely involved in the events under investigation that they have been interviewed as part of the inquiry.
Philip Zelikow, the commission's executive director, worked on the Bush-Cheney transition team as the new administration took power, advising his longtime associate and former boss, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice, on the incoming National Security Council.
The news was greeted with dismay by many of the relatives of the victims who campaigned for the commission to be set up.
"This is beginning to look like a whitewash," Kristen Breitweizer, who lost her husband Ron in tower two of the World Trade Center, told United Press International.
Jamie S. Gorelick, one of the 10 members of the commission itself, and the other official who has answered investigators' questions, was deputy attorney general in Janet Reno's Justice Department during the Clinton administration.
The families have said for many months that they are not happy with Zelikow's role, which they argue creates at least an appearance of a conflict of interest. They were furious Thursday that they learned from the newspapers he had given evidence.
"Did he interview himself about his own role in the failures that left us defenseless?" asked Lori Van Auken, the widow of Kenneth. "This is bizarre."
Zelikow -- an historian based at the Miller Center for Public Affairs at the University of Virginia -- has also come under fire from some critics for his close ties to senior administration officials. He has had a longstanding relationship with Rice, who hired him to work for her when she was a White House official in the first Bush administration. The two have written a book together.
More recently, some relatives have accused him of being in touch with White House political supreme Karl Rove -- the man widely believed to be the most powerful figure in the administration.
Zelikow, who the commission says has withdrawn himself from those parts of its investigation directly connected with the transition -- a process known as recusal -- was also appointed to the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board in October 2001.
The board provides the White House with advice about the quality, adequacy and legality of the whole spectrum of intelligence activities.
Relatives say the news about Gorelick and Zelikow is a particularly sharp blow to the commission's credibility because they are the two officials to whom the White House has granted the greatest access to the most secret and sensitive national security documents, the presidential daily briefings.
Last year, officials acknowledged that one such briefing in August 2001, more than a month prior to the attacks, warned that al-Qaida was determined to strike in the United States. Some reports suggested that hijacking -- and even the use of airplanes as missiles -- was mentioned as the mode of assault." - UPI (01/15/04) [Archived:  Wayback Machine]

(See also:  December 18, 2003 - Sept. 11 Panel: Bush, Clinton Not to Blame; January 19, 2004 - Bush and Speaker Hastert oppose granting more time to 9/11 Commission)

 

January 15, 2004 - A meeting of TV anchormen and their bosses with Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge discuss how they'll cover the next terrorist attack.

"STEVEN Brill had a summit meeting of TV anchormen and their bosses over dinner at his Fifth Avenue apartment on Tuesday night with Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge to discuss how they'll cover the next terrorist attack. Brill, whose book "After" detailed the response to 9/11, spearheads the America Prepared Campaign to educate the public. Joining Brill, his wife Cynthia and two of their three kids for dinner were Fox News Channel boss Roger Ailes, ABC News prexie David Westin, CBS News chief Andrew Heyward, CNN anchor Aaron Brown, plus Peter Jennings and Tom Brokaw." -  NY Post

 

January 16, 2004 - The U.S. military is continuing to withhold documents over Cold War WMD tests it conducted on over 5,800 soldiers -- many unsuspecting -- during 1960 - 1972.

"The Pentagon is continuing to withhold documents on Cold War chemical and biological weapons tests that used unsuspecting sailors as "human samplers" after telling Congress it had released all medically relevant information.
In response to questions from The Associated Press about a deposition last month by a former military scientist, J. Clifton Spendlove, who planned and supervised the testing program, the Defense Department acknowledged this week it still has documents laying out the scope and methods of the tests.
Detailed planning documents and reports for each of the tests are classified because they identify vulnerabilities of military vessels to chemical and biological warfare agents and capabilities for delivering the agents, the Pentagon said in a response to questions from the AP.
The secretive tests involved 5,842 soldiers and sailors — many of whom were unwitting guinea pigs.
After a three-year investigation that Pentagon officials characterized as "exhaustive," the Defense Department released an overview of the tests and a series of fact sheets last June and then disbanded the probe.
But the overview and fact sheets didn't acknowledge the documents and films that were obtained by the plaintiffs and authenticated by Spendlove, including results of tests to determine how much of the chemical simulants the "human samplers" were exposed to."
The United States scrapped its biological weapons program in the late 1960s and agreed in a 1997 treaty to destroy all its chemical weapons. But according to an October 2003 report by the General Accounting Office, 1990, the U.S. has destroyed only 26 percent of its 31,500-ton stockpile of chemical agents." - CBS (1/16/04)

(See also:  1962 to 1970 - U.S. military secretly tests WMD's on over 5,800 soldiers; July 1, 2003 - U.S. military releases their final findings into the testing of WMD's on thousands of unsuspecting soldiers)

 

January 16, 2004 - Halliburton, V.P. Dick Cheney's former company, wins a competitive bid on a two-year contract worth $1.2 billion to rebuild the oil industry in southern Iraq despite a Pentagon probe into alleged overcharging for fuel delivered to Iraq.

"Despite a Pentagon probe into alleged overcharging for fuel delivered to Iraq, Vice President Dick Cheney's former company yesterday was awarded a $1.2 billion contract to rebuild Iraq's oil industry.
Halliburton won a competitive bid on a two-year contract to rebuild the oil industry in southern Iraq, the Army Corps of Engineers said. The northern Iraq contract, worth up to $800 million, went to a joint venture of California-based Parsons Corp. and the Australian firm Worley Group.
The Defense Contract Audit Agency last month said KBR, a Halliburton subsidiary, charged more than double the price for gasoline brought in from Kuwait than it did for gas trucked in from Turkey. Auditors said KBR may have overcharged the Army by $61 million.
Pentagon auditors this week asked for an investigation into possible criminal wrongdoing.
Halliburton has denied any wrongdoing and said the Kuwaiti government designated the supplier, Altanmia Marketing, and that the U.S. Army approved the subcontract.
A Corps of Engineers document released Thursday says Halliburton chose the high-priced Kuwaiti supplier in one day after considering bids from only three companies." - Seattle Times (01/17/04)

 

January 19, 2004 - President Bush and House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) have decided to oppose granting more time to the 9/11 Commission investigation.

"President Bush and House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) have decided to oppose granting more time to an independent commission investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, virtually guaranteeing that the panel will have to complete its work by the end of May, officials said last week.
A growing number of commission members had concluded that the panel needs more time to prepare a thorough and credible accounting of missteps leading to the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. But the White House and leading Republicans have informed the panel that they oppose any delay, which raises the possibility that Sept. 11-related controversies could emerge during the heat of the presidential campaign, sources said.
Public hearings in coming months will include testimony from key Cabinet members in the Bush and Clinton administrations. The likely roster will include Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, CIA Director George J. Tenet, former secretary of state Madeleine K. Albright, former defense secretary William S. Cohen, and the current and former directors of the FBI, two officials said. The next hearing, scheduled over two days beginning Jan. 26, will focus on border and aviation security issues.
Commission representatives are also negotiating to secure private testimony from President Bush, former president Bill Clinton, Vice President Cheney and former vice president Al Gore. None of the four would be likely to be asked to testify publicly, several sources said.
Several relatives have also strongly criticized the commission's executive director, Philip Zelikow, because of his ties to national security adviser Condoleezza Rice and other Bush administration officials.
Zelikow has recused himself from issues connected to his role as an administration adviser in the early weeks of Bush's term, but he was also interviewed several months ago as a witness by the commission, officials said. Commission member Jamie Gorelick, a Democrat who served in the Clinton Justice Department, has also been interviewed as a witness, officials said.
Kristen Breitweiser, whose husband, Ronald, was killed at the World Trade Center, said the interviews underscore a conflict-of-interest problem at the commission and cast serious doubts on the panel's credibility.
"We've had it," said Breitweiser, who met with several commission leaders last week. "It is such a slap in the face of the families of victims. They are dishonoring the dead with their irresponsible behavior." Commission spokesman Al Felzenberg said Zelikow and Gorelick were among more than 800 witnesses who have been interviewed so far and said their experiences in national security are relevant to the panel's investigation. "Whether these people were involved in this commission or not, they may have well made this list because of the perspective they would have had about the work of the government during the time in question," he said." - Washington Post (01/19/04)

(See also:  January 15, 2004 - 9/11 Commission interviews two of it's own members; January 29, 2004 - Battle Over 9/11 Panel's Deadline Intensifies; April 29, 2004 - Bush, Cheney, Gonzales, meet behind closed doors with 9/11 Commission instead of testifying before public panel and were not under oath)

 

January 19, 2004 - Watchdog groups question Vice President Dick Cheney and Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia going on a hunting trip and having a private dinner together along with Donald Rumsfeld after the Supreme Court had agreed to hear a lawsuit over Cheney's private energy meetings with energy industry lobbyists including former Enron CEO Ken Lay.

"Justice Antonin Scalia has not indicated whether he will pull out a of an upcoming Supreme Court case involving Vice President Cheney, following reports the two recently went on a hunting trip and had dinner together.
Scalia denies doing anything improper.
Cheney invited Scalia, an old friend, to Louisiana earlier this month to hunt waterfowl on a private reserve. The trip occurred three weeks after the court agreed to hear the case, scheduled for sometime in April. Details of the trip were first reported by the Los Angeles Times.
The two also had a private dinner with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Maryland's Eastern Shore in November, when the justices were still considering Cheney's appeal.
Cheney is fighting a federal court's order that he release internal files of a task force he headed for the Bush administration. A lawsuit claims he made improper contacts with energy industry lobbyists when developing government policy.
The White House has argued the courts and Congress have no business making inquiries, even limited ones, into the decision-making power of federal agencies and offices. Cheney has said executive power needs to be increased in such confidentiality cases.
Cheney's task force met throughout in 2001 and developed a report recommending opening more federal land to oil, natural gas and coal development. That includes the remote Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in northeast Alaska. Such development has become a political rallying point for both environmentalists and pro-energy forces.
Among the task force advisers was former Enron Chairman Kenneth Lay.
A lawsuit filed by Judicial Watch, a private watchdog group, and the Sierra Club, an environmental organization, seeks to gather records related to the task force.
Attorneys for the groups say they want to know whether lobbyists for the energy industry privately helped craft the U.S. government's long-term energy policy." - CNN (01/19/04)

 

January 22, 2004 - Report: bin Laden held; U.S. denies bin Laden caught.

"Al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden has been captured, Germany's Die Welt newspaper reported Thursday.
The newspaper, on its Web site, cited "unconfirmed reports" as the basis for its report." - Interest!ALERT/UPI (1/22/04)

"The United States has denied al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden has been captured, Germany's Die Welt newspaper reported Thursday.
The newspaper, on its Web site, earlier cited "unconfirmed reports" as saying the al-Qaida leader had been captured." - Washington Times (1/22/04)

(See also:  December 2001 - Osama bin Laden reportedly dies)

 

 

January 22, 2004 - Todd Beamer's father's parent company, EMC, wins a $40 million Pentagon contract.

 

Pentagon Awards EMC $40 Million Contract

"EMC Corporation, the world leader in information storage and management, today announced a $40 million competitive award of EMC's networked storage, business continuity software and open management software for the Pentagon Renovation Office (PENREN), a large-scale initiative to modernize the Department of Defense's IT infrastructure. PENREN supports multiple agencies within the Pentagon, including the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Joint Chiefs of Staff, Army, Navy, Air Force and the Marine Corps.
PENREN intends to use the new contract to build on the Pentagon's existing infrastructure of one petabyte-plus of EMC networked storage and advance its information lifecycle management (ILM) strategy for optimally managing and storing information throughout its useful life, thereby lowering operational costs and improving data availability. In a separate $4.3 million award, PENREN will utilize LEGATO Software's business continuity solutions for automated monitoring and failover of critical applications coupled with EMC's SRDF (Symmetrix Remote Data Facility) and Global Services (see separate LEGATO news release)." - EMC (01/22/04)

 

(See also:  December 15, 2003 - Beamer's company EMC's Legato Software is awarded a $4.3 million Pentagon contract)

 

• January 22, 2004 - Terror trial witness links Iran to 9/11.

"On what had been the eve of his widely expected acquittal, the trial of the second person charged by German authorities as an accomplice of the Sept. 11 hijackers was thrown into turmoil Wednesday after prosecutors disclosed the existence of a surprise witness purporting to link Iran to the hijackings.
The mysterious witness, who goes by the name Hamid Reza Zakeri and claims to have been a longtime member of the Iranian intelligence service, is said to have told German investigators that the Sept. 11 plot represented what one termed a "joint venture" between the terrorist group Al Qaeda and the Iranian government." - Chicago Tribune (01/22/04)

 

• January 23, 2004 - Final WTC death toll at 2,749 with only 1,538 confirmed by matching with remains.

"Three names have been removed from the list of those killed in the World Trade Center attack, bringing the death toll to 2,749, which could stand as the final count, the medical examiner's office said Friday.
Two weeks after the attack, the number of missing-person reports peaked at 6,886 amid confusion and calls from frantic relatives. The number stood at 2,792 from December 2002 until October, when 40 unsolved cases were removed from the list.
Only 1,538 of the confirmed victims have been matched to remains. More than 1,200 others are listed solely on the basis of court-issued death certificates, which were provided to families who could prove their loved ones were in the trade center at the time of the attack." - Guardian (01/23/04)

 

• January 23, 2004 - Ex-U.S. arms hunter David Kay says no stockpiles of WMD's in Iraq.

"David Kay, who stepped down as leader of the U.S. hunt for weapons of mass destruction, said on Friday he does not believe there were any large stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons in Iraq.
"I don't think they existed," Kay told Reuters in a telephone interview. "What everyone was talking about is stockpiles produced after the end of the last (1991) Gulf War and I don't think there was a large-scale production program in the '90s," he said.
The United States went to war against Baghdad last year citing a threat from Iraq's weapons of mass destruction. No actual banned arms have been found." - ABC (01/23/04)

 

• January 23, 2004 - Bush to ask for $401.7 billion defense budget, a 7 percent increase.

"President Bush will ask Congress to approve $401.7 billion in defense spending for the budget year that begins in October, a 7 percent increase over this year, the Pentagon announced Friday.
The money does not include the cost of fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Currently, the Pentagon is spending about $1 billion a week in Iraq and about $1 billion a month in Afghanistan.
Rumsfeld said the budget reflects Bush's commitment to prosecuting a global war on terrorism.
One year ago, when the Pentagon announced its proposed budget for the current year, it projected that spending for 2005 would be $399.8 billion." - FOX (01/23/04)

 

• January 23, 2004 - Halliburton workers took $6 million worth of kickbacks from a Kuwaiti company that was awarded contracts from the U.S. military.

"Two Halliburton Co. officials accepted up to $6 million in kickbacks from a Kuwaiti company that was awarded contracts to supply U.S. troops in Iraq, according to a newspaper report.
Halliburton disclosed the alleged impropriety to the Pentagon inspector general's office this week, The Wall Street Journal reported on its Web site Friday.
The two employees, who have been fired, worked for Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg Brown & Root in Kuwait, the same division of the company involved in a highly scrutinized gasoline contract, the Journal said.
The newspaper said the new allegations do not involve the gasoline controversy, in which the company charged the Army more than double the price for fuel brought in from Kuwait than for gas from Turkey.
Democrats have demanded further investigations into contracts awarded to Halliburton, which was formerly run by Vice President Dick Cheney and has donated to the Bush campaign.
Critics have cited the Halliburton's contracts as evidence of the Bush administration's favoritism to corporate friends. White House and Pentagon officials say the Defense Department's contract decisions are not affected by political concerns." - FOX (01/23/04)

 

• January 23, 2004 - Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., has been the focus of an investigation into the leak of classified intelligence intercepts linked to the Sept. 11 terror attacks.

"Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., has for months been the focus of an investigation into the leak of classified intelligence intercepts linked to the Sept. 11 terror attacks, according to current and former law enforcement officials.
Shelby, who chaired the Senate Intelligence Committee at the time of the attacks, denied that he or his staff knowingly leaked classified information and said he has no knowledge about where the 18-month-old investigation would head.
Two law enforcement officials and one former official, all speaking on condition of anonymity, said a grand jury in Washington has heard testimony about the disclosure in 2002 of two messages intercepted by the National Security Agency a day before the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.
Those messages contained the words "the match begins tomorrow" and "tomorrow is zero day." The intercepts were not translated from Arabic until Sept. 12.
The intercepts had been disclosed by the NSA director, Lt. Gen. Michael Hayden, during a private meeting of a joint House-Senate intelligence committee that investigated the Sept. 11 attacks. Shelby was on the panel at the time.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., who served with Shelby on the intelligence panel, said Thursday she and the Alabama senator had been privy to more secrets than others on the committee because of their senior status.
The investigation involves the FBI, CIA and NSA and is incomplete, the officials said. No decision has been made whether anyone will be prosecuted for knowingly leaking the classified material, which would be a felony if proved." - FOX (01/23/04)

 

• January 24, 2004 - The Bush administration began planning to use U.S. troops to invade Iraq within days after George Bush entered the White House three years ago, says former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neill. - CNN (01/24/04)

 

• January 24, 2004 - CIA Picks New Iraq Weapons Inspector

"The CIA named a new inspector to lead the search for Iraqi weapons of mass destruction Friday, choosing a veteran investigator who has expressed recent skepticism that Saddam Hussein possessed banned weapons that posed an immediate threat.
Charles Duelfer, the No. 2 United Nations weapons inspector in Iraq for much of the 1990s, is taking over the task of sorting out Saddam's weapons program. He said CIA Director George Tenet assured him he wanted one thing: ``That is the truth, wherever that lay.'' - Guardian (01/24/04)

 

January 26, 2004 - A federal judge has declared a section of the USA Patriot Act unconstitutional that bars giving expert advice or assistance to groups designated foreign terrorist organizations.

"A federal judge has declared unconstitutional a portion of the USA Patriot Act that bars giving expert advice or assistance to groups designated foreign terrorist organizations.
In a ruling handed down late Friday and made available Monday, U.S. District Judge Audrey Collins said the ban on providing "expert advice or assistance" is impermissibly vague, in violation of the First and Fifth Amendments.
The Humanitarian Law Project, which brought the lawsuit, said the plaintiffs were threatened with 15 years in prison if they advised groups on seeking a peaceful resolution of the Kurds' campaign for self-determination in Turkey.
The judge's ruling said the law, as written, does not differentiate between impermissible advice on violence and encouraging the use of peaceful, nonviolent means to achieve goals.
"The USA Patriot Act places no limitation on the type of expert advice and assistance which is prohibited and instead bans the provision of all expert advice and assistance regardless of its nature," the judge said.
Cole declared the ruling "a victory for everyone who believes the war on terrorism ought to be fought consistent with constitutional principles." - ABC (01/26/04)

(See also:  July 1, 2003 - Cities across the country have been quietly staging a revolt against the Patriot Act; February 2, 2005 - Ashcroft urges renewal of Patriot Act powers)

 

• January 26, 2004 - White House Retreats From Once-Confident Claims That Iraq Had Weapons of Mass Destruction

"The White House retreated Monday from its once-confident claims that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, and Democrats swiftly sought to turn the about-face into an election-year issue against President Bush.
The administration's switch came after retired chief U.S. weapons inspector David Kay said he had concluded, after nine months of searching, that Saddam Hussein did not have stockpiles of forbidden weapons. Asked about Kay's remarks, White House spokesman Scott McClellan refused to repeat oft-stated assertions that prohibited weapons eventually would be found." - ABC (01/26/04)

 

• January 28, 2004 - The Bush Administration says they never used the word "imminent" to describe the threat they claim Iraq posed to the U.S. even though senior Bush aides agreed with this term in describing the threat from Iraq in exchanges with reporters and President Bush said the U.S. faces "clear evidence of peril" from Iraq in which the word "peril" means "imminent danger".

"THE White House today denied it ever warned that Saddam Hussein posed an "imminent" threat to the United States.
It is already smarting from the failure so far to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.
"I think some in the media have chosen to use the word 'imminent'. Those were not words we used. We used 'grave and gathering' threat," spokesman Scott McClellan said.
But if US President George W. Bush never called Saddam's Iraq an "imminent threat" in so many words, he said it was "urgent".
In an October 7, 2002 televised speech...he warned that Saddam "could decide on any given day to provide a biological or chemical weapon to a terrorist group or individual terrorists" like the al-Qaeda network behind the September 11, 2001, attacks.
"No terrorist state poses a greater or more immediate threat to the security of our people and the stability of the world than the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq," Rumsfeld testified to lawmakers in September 2002.
Other senior Bush aides shied away from using the word "imminent" but agreed with that characterisation in exchanges with reporters.
On January 26, 2003, CNN television asked White House communications director Dan Bartlett "is he (Saddam) an imminent threat to US interests, either in that part of the world or to Americans right here at home?"
"Well, of course he is," Bartlett replied.
On May 7, 2003, a reporter asked then White House spokesman Ari Fleischer: "We went to war, didn't we, to find these – because we said that these weapons were a direct and imminent threat to the United States? Isn't that true?"
"Absolutely. One of the reasons that we went to war was because of their possession of weapons of mass destruction. And nothing has changed on that front at all," the spokesman replied." - The Australian (01/28/04)

President Bush Outlines Iraqi Threat
"Knowing these realities, America must not ignore the threat gathering against us. Facing clear evidence of peril..." - White House (10/07/02)

Peril - 1a. Imminent danger.

 

• January 26, 2004 - Motorola Tied To Lawsuit On Radios at WTC

"The families of 12 firefighters killed in the World Trade Center collapse have added Motorola, Inc. as a defendant in their lawsuit over radio transmission problems that hampered the Fire Department's response during the attacks.
The families claim that the electronics manufacturer failed to tell the FDNY that its analog radios in use on Sept. 11, 2001 wouldn't work properly in a high-rise building.
As a result, the lawsuit says, firefighters working in the North Tower couldn't hear the evacuation order that commanders transmitted when the South Tower collapsed.
Of the 343 FDNY members killed in the Trade Center's collapse, 121 were in the North Tower. The families, which include relatives of firefighters from the North Tower, are seeking $5 billion in damages from the radio manufacturer and the city." - ufalocal94

 

• January 27, 2004 - Flight 11 Attendant on Sept. 11 Plane Calm in Tape of Conversation With Ground Crew

"Shortly before Flight 11 slammed into the World Trade Center, the American Airlines operations center received a calm phone call from one of its flight attendants.
"The cockpit is not answering their phone," said Betty Ong. "There's somebody stabbed in business class and, we can't breathe in business. Um, I think there is some Mace or something. We can't breathe. I don't know, but I think we're getting hijacked."
Ong, 45, known as "Bee," was on the American Airlines Boeing 767 flying from Boston to Los Angeles on Sept. 11, 2001, before suspected 9-11 ringleader Mohammed Atta and four others took over the plane and crashed it into the North Tower of the Trade Center.
Nydia Gonzalez, who was on duty at the operations center that morning, told the panel how she received Ong's call at about 8:20 a.m.
"Several media accounts of what occurred on Flight 11 claimed that Betty was 'hysterical with fear,' 'shrieking' and 'gasping for air,' she said. "Those accounts were wrong."
"In a very calm, professional and poised demeanor, Betty Ong relayed to us detailed information of the events unfolding on Flight 11," Gonzalez added. "I honestly believe after my conversation with Betty that the 81 passengers and new crew members on Flight 11 had no idea of the fate they were to encounter that day."
In the tape played before the commission, Ong tells the operations center her flight and seat number and describes the scene on board.
"We can't even get into the cockpit. We don't know who's there," Ong says, before the call ends in a dial tone." - ABC

 

January 29, 2004 - Military is 'Sure' of Catching Bin Laden This Year

"The U.S. military is "sure" it will catch Usama bin Laden this year, perhaps within months, a spokesman declared Thursday, but Pakistan said it would not allow American troops to cross the border in search of the Al Qaeda leader." - FOX (01/29/04)

(See also:  December 2001 - Osama bin Laden reportedly dies)

 

January 29, 2004 - Battle Over 9/11 Panel's Deadline Intensifies

"Long-simmering tensions with the commission investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks became a more immediate problem for the White House this week as the panel released a series of damaging revelations about missed opportunities to stop the al Qaeda hijackers and opposed the administration by asking for more time to complete its work, according to panel members and political experts." - Washington Post (01/28/04)

(See also:  January 19, 2004 - Bush and Speaker Hastert oppose granting more time to 9/11 Commission; March 23, 2004 - Gorelick referrers to the object heading towards the Pentagon on 9/11 as a "missile" when questioning Rumsfeld)

 

January 31, 2004 - Killtown makes the prediction that Osama bin Laden will be "found" dead or alive before the next presidential election.

(See also:  December 2001 - Osama bin Laden reportedly dies; October 29, 2004 - Four days before the 2004 Presidential elections, a new videotape of a "healthy looking" Osama Bin Laden airs in which he admits for the first time in public of ordering the attacks of 9/11; November 2, 2004 - Killtown's prediction that Osama bin Laden will be "found" dead or alive before the next presidential election fails to materialize; To date, the whereabouts of Osama Bin Laden are still unknown.)

 

March 4, 2004 - Retrial ordered for 9/11 suspect, Mounir el Motassadeq.

"A German appeals court has ordered a retrial of the only person convicted in connection with the September 11, 2001 attacks in the United States.
The Federal Criminal Court ruled Thursday that the case involving Mounir el Motassadeq must be sent back to a lower court in Hamburg "for a new trial and decision," Presiding Judge Klaus Tolksdorf said.
Lawyers for the 29-year-old Moroccan argued that he was denied a fair trial because the U.S. refused to provide access to a key witness.
El Motassadeq, an electrical engineering student, is serving a 15-year prison sentence after a Hamburg court found him guilty in February 2003 of being an accessory to more than 3,000 murders in New York and Washington and being a member of a terrorist organization.
El Motassadeq's lawyers have asked the appeals court for acquittal or a retrial, alleging their client was wrongly convicted because the U.S. refused to allow court testimony by Ramzi Binalshibh, thought to be the Hamburg cell's key contact with al Qaeda.
Binalshibh was captured in Pakistan on the first anniversary of the September 11 attacks and is in U.S. custody.
Motassadeq consistently denied the charges during his three-and-a-half-month trial and his lawyers were seeking an acquittal from the five-judge panel." - CNN (03/04/04)

(See also:  February 20, 2003 - A German court has sentenced Motassadeq for 15 years; April 8, 2004 - German court frees Mounir Motassadeq)

 

March 11, 2004 - A terrorist bomb attack in Madrid, Spain (referred to as 3/11) blows up multiple commuter trains during rush hour exactly 911 days after 9/11.

 "At least 190 people were killed and 1,240 wounded Thursday as 10 bombs rocked three Madrid train stations during the height of the morning rush hour. The attack took place just three days before Spain's general elections.
A van containing several detonators and an Arabic-language tape of Koranic verses had been found near Madrid, Interior Minister Angel Acebes said later Thursday, announcing that new lines of investigation into the bombings were being opened.
Until that point, suspicion had focused on Spain's primary domestic terrorists, the Basque separatist group ETA (search).
The bombers used titadine (search), a kind of compressed dynamite, a source at Aznar's office said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Mansoor Ijaz, a foreign-affairs analyst for Fox News, said the attacks had many of the hallmarks of an Al Qaeda operation.
A total of 10 bombs, nearly all in backpacks, exploded in a 15-minute span along nine miles of the commuter line -- running from Santa Eugenia to the Madrid hub of Atocha -- killing 190 people and injuring more than 1,240, Interior Minister Angel Acebes said.
Police found and detonated three other bombs.
The blasts began about 7:40 a.m., tearing through trains or platforms on the commuter line running to the Atocha station. At least two of the bombs went off in trains at that station." - FOX (03/11/04)

"Spanish officials, stunned by co-ordinated bomb blasts in Madrid on Thursday that killed 192 people and wounded more than 1 400, said they were keeping their lines of investigation open after clues emerged possibly implicating Basque or Islamic militants.
The atrocity, which Spanish media and officials described as "our own September 11", came exactly two and a half years after the attacks in New York and Washington, or 911 days, and just three days before general elections that the ruling conservative Popular Party is widely expected to win." - News 24 (03/12/04)

"Claim: 911 days separated the September 11 terrorist attacks on the U.S. and the 2004 train bombings in Madrid, Spain.
Status:  True." - Snopes.com

(See also:  9/11 - The most devastating and unprecedented terrorist attack in history happens against the United States of America, the world's mightiest superpower)

 

 

March 13, 2004 - Donald Rumsfeld took a piece of the aircraft that crashed into the Pentagon as a souvenir.

 

Rumsfeld, senior FBI official took Sept. 11 souvenirs

"The Justice Department investigation that criticized FBI agents for taking souvenirs from the World Trade Center site also found that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and a high-ranking FBI official kept items from the Sept. 11 attack scenes.
The final investigatory report said the Justice Department inspector general confirmed Rumsfeld "has a piece of the airplane that flew into the Pentagon." The Associated Press obtained a copy of the report Friday.
Pentagon spokesman Lawrence Di Rita said Friday night that Rumsfeld has a shard of metal from the jetliner that struck the Pentagon on a table in his office and shows it to people as a reminder of the tragedy Pentagon workers shared on Sept. 11, 2001.
"He doesn't consider it his own," Di Rita said, adding the piece is on display for the Pentagon. "We are mindful of the fact that if somebody has an evidentiary requirement to have this shard of metal, we will provide it to them." - USA Today (03/13/04)

 

• March 14, 2004 - On CBS's Face the Nation, Donald Rumsfeld gets busted by New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman for contradicting his claim the no one in the Bush Administration, including himself, said the Iraq posed an "imminent" threat to the United States.

"It seemed for a while that Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld's appearance Sunday on CBS's "Face the Nation" would degenerate into yet another tiresome "did so-did not" spat over whether anyone in the administration said Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction posed an "immediate threat" to the United States.
"You," Rumsfeld said to host Bob Schieffer, "and a few other critics are the only people I've heard use the phrase 'immediate threat.' I didn't; the president didn't." Despite that, "it's become kind of folklore that that's what's happened."
So New York Times columnist Thomas L. Friedman, not previously known as a folklorist, pulled out a Rumsfeld quote from 2002. "Right here it says," Friedman said, " 'Some have argued' -- this is you speaking, 'some have argued that the nuclear threat from Iraq is not imminent, that Saddam is at least five to seven years away from having nuclear weapons; I would not be so certain.' " Friedman said that was "close to imminent."
"Well, I've tried to be precise," Rumsfeld said, "and I've tried to be accurate."
" 'No terrorist state poses a greater or more immediate threat to the security of our people,' " Friedman quoted Rumsfeld as telling Congress in September 2002, " 'and the stability of the world than the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq.' "
"Mmm, ah, my view of the, the situation," Rumsfeld said, "was that he, he, had -- we believed, the best intelligence that we had, and other countries had, and that we believe, and we still do not know, we will know." - Washington Post (03/17/04) [Video:  MoveOn.org]

 

March 19, 2004 - House votes to double reward for Osama bin Laden from $25 million to $50 million.

"The House of Representatives, amid an intensifying hunt for leaders of the al Qaeda terrorist network, voted unanimously Thursday to double the reward for Osama bin Laden's capture to $50 million.
The bill, which was passed 414-0, now goes to the Senate. Rep. Katherine Harris, R-Florida, said it recognizes the growing link between the illicit drug trade and the financing and support of terrorist activities." - CNN (03/08/04)

(See also:  December 2001 - Osama bin Laden reportedly dies)

 

March 19, 2004 - Ex-Advisor Says Bush Eyed Bombing of Iraq on 9/11

"A former White House anti-terrorism advisor says the Bush administration considered bombing Iraq in retaliation after Sept. 11, 2001 even though it was clear al Qaeda had carried out the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
Richard Clarke, who headed a cybersecurity board that gleaned intelligence from the Internet, told CBS "60 Minutes" in an interview to be aired on Sunday he was surprised administration officials turned immediately toward Iraq instead of al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.
"They were talking about Iraq on 9/11. They were talking about it on 9/12," Clarke says.
"Rumsfeld was saying we needed to bomb Iraq. ... We all said, 'but no, no. Al Qaeda is in Afghanistan," recounts Clarke, "and Rumsfeld said, 'There aren't any good targets in Afghanistan and there are lots of good targets in Iraq."'
"I think they wanted to believe that there was a connection" between Iraq and al Qaeda, Clarke tells "60 Minutes."
"But the CIA was sitting there, the FBI was sitting there, I was sitting there, saying, 'We've looked at this issue for years. For years we've looked and there's just no connection,"' says Clarke." -  Reuters (03/19/04)

(See also:  9/11 (2:40 pm) - Donald Rumsfeld began planning strike plans against Osama Bin Laden and Saddam Hussein in Iraq)

 

• March 22, 2004 - 9/11 CitizensWatch Press Conference is covered by C-SPAN.

"The advocacy group 9/11 CitizensWatch holds a press conference at the National Press Club to critique the job done by the national Sept. 11 Commission." - C-SPAN (03/22/04)

 

 

March 23, 2004 - A war in Afghanistan would have been politically impossible pre-9/11.

 

War not realistic option before 9/11

"In retrospect, it seems obvious: President Clinton or President Bush could have gotten a head start in the war on terror and might even have averted the 9/11 attacks by acting sooner to invade Afghanistan, depose the Taliban regime and hunt down the al-Qaeda terrorists based there.
But Democrats and Republicans alike told a bipartisan commission Tuesday that neither U.S. nor world opinion would have stood for such aggression before the fall of 2001. It was only after the Sept. 11 attacks that public opinion here and abroad changed enough to make an invasion politically possible.

"The very hard part," Clinton administration secretary of State Madeleine Albright told the commission Tuesday, "is that we have to put ourselves into the pre-9/11 mode. ... It would be very hard pre-9/11 to have persuaded anybody that an invasion of Afghanistan was appropriate. I think it did take the mega-shock, unfortunately, of 9/11 to make people understand the considerable threat."

A commission report noted that diplomatic efforts failed to disrupt or dislodge al-Qaeda, and some commission members were sharply critical Tuesday of the Clinton and Bush administrations for not using military force more aggressively. But the impediments to military action were considerable in the last years of the Clinton administration and the first months of the Bush administration:

• Invading Afghanistan would have required bases in one of its neighbors. The United States still has no diplomatic relations with Iran, which has the second-longest boundary with Afghanistan. And before Sept. 11, U.S. relations were strained with Pakistan, which has the longest border with Afghanistan, because of Pakistani nuclear tests and a military coup in 1999 that removed an elected government. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage testified Tuesday that the Bush administration had started trying to improve relations with Pakistan, but the process was complicated by the need to remove "an unbelievable number of (U.S. sanctions on Pakistan), which are put on by people with very strong views on Capitol Hill."
• U.S. popular opinion would not have supported an Afghan war. Clinton had been harshly criticized for sending cruise missiles into Afghanistan and Sudan after al-Qaeda bombed the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in August 1998. The strikes came soon after Clinton's admission that he had lied about his relationship with a White House intern, and political opponents accused him of trying to divert public attention from the scandal. Clinton faced similar charges in December 1998 when the United States bombed Iraq and was also criticized for the air war against Serbia in 1999 that was intended to stop ethnic killings in the province of Kosovo." - USA Today (03/23/04)

 

(See also:  September 10, 2001 - White House battle plan to invade Afghanistan awaits Bush's approval)

 

March 23, 2004 - Former deputy attorney general Jamie S. Gorelick referrers to the object heading towards the Pentagon on 9/11 as a "missile" when questioning Donald Rumsfeld at the 9/11 Commission hearings.

MS. GORELICK: ...So my question is, in this summer of threat, what did you do to protect, let's just say, the Pentagon from attack? Where were our aircraft when they -- when a missile is heading toward the Pentagon? Surely that is in -- within the Pentagon's responsibility, to protect -- force protection, to protect our facilities, to protect something -- our headquarters, the Pentagon." - 9/11 Commission (03/23/04)

(See also:  October 12, 2001 - Rumsfeld says missile hit Pentagon in magazine interview; April 22, 2004 - Senate Republicans urge Gorelick be forced to testify)

 

• March 26, 2004 - 9/11 skeptics gather for 3-day conference in San Francisco.

"Conspiracy theorists, anti-war activists and those with healthy doses of skepticism about the official version of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks converged in San Francisco on Friday for a three-day conference to try to figure out what really happened in the worst act of terrorism on American soil.
The gathering includes a hodgepodge of writers, filmmakers, and activists peddling their own version of what they claim was a cover-up by the Bush administration. In essence, they believe the administration knew about the attacks ahead of time but failed to act so that they could go to war against Afghanistan and Iraq.
The administration "motivated America into a war to control the last of the world's oil reserves,'' said Michael Ruppert, a former Los Angeles police officer who has a Web site devoted to what he believes really happened before the attacks.
"There is a 9/11 truth movement,'' said Nicholas Levis, another event organizer, as he addressed reporters while standing in front of a sign that read "Stop the 9/11 Cover-Up." Accusing the Bush administration of stonewalling,' he echoed the sentiments of other speakers that the White House had known ahead of time of the terrorist attacks, using it as an excuse to go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq.
During the conference, participants also are ruminating over theories that the CIA created al Qaeda, that the military saw the planes heading for their targets but chose not to shoot them down and that there were links between Osama bin Laden and high level officials of the Bush administration.
Although organizers have no power to subpoena official documents, they have plenty of material to take offer for consideration. Participants will view a showing of the documentary "Aftermath - Unanswered Questions from 9/11'' as well as other films outlining the events that led to the fateful day.
The speakers include Ellen Mariani, whose husband, Louis, was a passenger on the plane that slammed into the South Tower of the World Trade Center. She has sued President Bush and members of his administration for negligence and has stated publicly she does not trust the commission in Washington to uncover the truth.
As she faced a roomful of reporters and activists Friday, Mariani recalled how her husband was on his way to their daughter's wedding, having taken a flight two hours after hers left, when it crashed. "I had to give her away,'' she recalled as she choked back tears.
"I waited 2 1/2 years for justice, and it never came,'' Mariani said. She accused the government of lying to her and discouraging her from asking questions. "The more I wait,'' she said, "the more determined I get.''
Meanwhile, Ken Lisaius, a White House spokesman, said he refused to dignify the organizers' charges of a cover-up with a response." - San Francisco Chronicle (03/27/04)

"Now a growing subculture of skeptics, amateur sleuths and independent researchers of all stripes are questioning the "official narrative'' of Sept. 11, and about 100 people are gathering in San Francisco this weekend for a three-day inquiry of their own.
It's easy to dismiss the self-proclaimed "911 Truth Movement'' as little more than conspiracy theorists gone overboard.
But the movement, which until recently largely lived on the Internet, is increasingly holding public forums and attracting attention from the mainstream media.
The weekend event, at the Herbst Theatre in San Francisco, includes panel discussions about Al-Qaida's links to the CIA, the history of covert operations, and the role of Pakistan in Sept. 11. Some of the more incredible theories say that the planes never hit the World Trade Center towers but that the towers were destroyed by remote control; others insist that some of the hijackers are still alive. The Internet is filled with Web sites like www.911review.org and www.911sharethetruth.com, many of which argue that Sept. 11 was an elaborately planned hoax.
"We want our inquiry to go on before the official inquiry comes to their own conclusions,'' said Carol Brouillet, a Palo Alto mother of three who is organizing this weekend's events. Brouillet, 46, is a longtime local peace activist, and she says that she wants the public to have a chance to hear from a variety of researchers.
The Internet has allowed Sept. 11 theories to spread like wildfire. And growing public concern about the government's rationale for the war in Iraq has fueled further speculation." - Mercury News (03/27/04)

 

April 1, 2004 - Theologian David Ray Griffin charges White House complicity in the 9/11 attacks in his new book, The New Pearl Harbor.

"In his latest book, The New Pearl Harbor — released just two weeks ago — Griffin all but accuses the Bush administration of taking a dive on September 11 and giving Al Qaeda terrorists an unobstructed shot at the World Trade Center. According to Griffin, a case can be made that the Bush administration arranged the attack, or allowed it to happen. He is aware that he may be dismissed as a conspiracy nut, but given the “transcendent importance” of the issue, Griffin is willing to assume that risk and has taken to repeating Michael Moore’s line on the subject: “Personally, I’m not into conspiracy theories except those that are true.
NICK WELSH: Is there a smoking gun that shows the Bush administration knew 9/11 was likely to happen and did nothing about it?
DAVID RAY GRIFFIN: I think there are four. One is the fact that standard operating procedures for dealing with possibly hijacked airplanes were not followed on 9/11.  And on that day, there were four airplanes that went for a half-hour or more after they were hijacked without jets intercepting them.
NICK WELSH: And the other smoking guns?
DAVID RAY GRIFFIN: The second strongest piece of evidence I would say is the crash at the Pentagon. The physical evidence contradicts so violently the official account, that the Pentagon was hit by a Boeing 757 — Flight 77, that is.
And given that it only penetrated these three rings, the rest of the aircraft would have been sitting outside on the yard. And yet the photographs taken just as the fire trucks got there — very shortly after the crash — show no plane whatsoever.
NICK WELSH: President Bush has also been criticized for behaving somewhat bizarrely that day.
DAVID RAY GRIFFIN: After Andrew Card reported the second crash on the World Trade Center, the president just nodded as if he understood and said, “We’re going to go ahead with the reading lesson.” And he sat there another 15 minutes listening to the children read a story about a pet goat.
In other words, [Bush and the Secret Service] showed no fear whatsoever that they would be targeted for attack, which strongly suggests they knew how many aircraft were being hijacked and what their targets were.
NICK WELSH: What about the plane that crashed down?
DAVID RAY GRIFFIN: We know that on Flight 93, which crashed over Pennsylvania, the passengers were trying to get control of the aircraft.
As soon as that happened, with the FBI listening in, the plane went down. There was a whoosh, then the sound of wind. And people on the ground reported hearing what Vietnam veterans said sounded like a missile. Furthermore, there was debris from the plan eight miles from the crash site, suggesting the plane had been hit and stuff started falling out. And one of the engines was found over a mile from the crash site." - Santa Barbara Independent (04/01/04)

 

April 2, 2004 - Former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds says, 'I Saw Papers That Show US Knew al-Qa'ida Would Attack Cities With Airplanes'.

"A former translator for the FBI with top-secret security clearance says she has provided information to the panel investigating the 11 September attacks which proves senior officials knew of al-Qa'ida's plans to attack the US with aircraft months before the strikes happened.
She said the claim by the National Security Adviser, Condoleezza Rice, that there was no such information was "an outrageous lie".
Sibel Edmonds said she spent more than three hours in a closed session with the commission's investigators providing information that was circulating within the FBI in the spring and summer of 2001 suggesting that an attack using aircraft was just months away and the terrorists were in place. The Bush administration, meanwhile, has sought to silence her and has obtained a gagging order from a court by citing the rarely used "state secrets privilege".
She told The Independent yesterday: "I gave [the commission] details of specific investigation files, the specific dates, specific target information, specific managers in charge of the investigation. I gave them everything so that they could go back and follow up. This is not hearsay. These are things that are documented. These things can be established very easily."
She added: "There was general information about the time-frame, about methods to be used ­ but not specifically about how they would be used ­ and about people being in place and who was ordering these sorts of terror attacks. There were other cities that were mentioned. Major cities ­ with skyscrapers."
She said said it was clear there was sufficient information during the spring and summer of 2001 to indicate terrorists were planning an attack.
"President Bush said they had no specific information about 11 September and that is accurate but only because he said 11 September," she said. There was, however, general information about the use of airplanes and that an attack was just months away." - Independent/UK (04/02/04) [Archived: WayBack Machine; Reprinted at:  Common Dreams]

(See also:  April 26, 2004 - The Bush Administration tries to gag former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds)

 

 

April 4, 2004 - Ex-Nixon legal aid John Dean, who was jailed for his part in the Watergate scandal, in his new book "Worse than Watergate" says the Bush Administration is the most secretive ever to run the United States, willfully mislead Congress over the nature of the threat posed by Saddam Hussein before the Iraq war, and was "stonewalling" over inquiries into the events of September 11.

 

Bush's administration is worse than Nixon's, says Watergate aide

"John Dean, Richard Nixon's legal counsel who was jailed for his part in the Watergate scandal, has accused the Bush administration of trumping even the Nixon regime in secrecy, deception and political cynicism.

In the latest book to attack the conduct of the current United States administration, Mr Dean says that it has created potentially the most corrupt, unethical and undemocratic White House in history.
His Worse than Watergate, the Secret Presidency of George W. Bush is published this week by Little Brown.

"Bush and [Vice-President Richard] Cheney are a throwback to the Nixon time," Mr Dean, 65, told The Telegraph last night. "All government business is filtered through a political process at this White House, which is the most secretive ever to run the United States." - Telegraph (04/04/04)

 

Cheney is running a shadow government, claims Watergate aide

"Thirty-one years ago Mr Dean - Nixon's legal counsel - began co-operating with prosecutors into the Watergate burglary, revealing the inner workings of the most secretive and manipulative administration in American history.
Now, in the latest political blockbuster, Mr Dean "testifies" against President Bush and Vice-President Richard Cheney, accusing them of trumping his former boss when it comes to political sharp practice.
He accuses them of wilfully misleading Congress over the nature of the threat posed by Saddam Hussein before the war in Iraq, and of "stonewalling" over inquiries into the events of September 11.
Much of the blame for the White House style, he suggests, lies with Mr Cheney, who is "by nature a secretive man" who "wants to turn the clock back to pre-Watergate styles of Imperial Presidency". - Telegraph (04/04/04)

 

April 8, 2004 - German court frees Mounir Motassadeq convicted in 9/11 case, U.S. would not provide evidence at Hamburg trial.

"A Moroccan man who is the only person ever convicted of aiding the Sept. 11, 2001, hijackers was freed by a court in Hamburg Wednesday pending a retrial.
Mounir Motassadeq, 30, walked from the courthouse one month after an appeals court panel ruled that his first trial had been compromised by the judges' failure to adequately consider the U.S. government's refusal to provide evidence from an al Qaeda operative it holds in secret custody.
Motassadeq's attorneys contend that the operative, Ramzi Binalshibh, and other prisoners could support their client's defense that although he was friendly with the hijackers when they lived in Hamburg before the attacks in New York and Washington, he had no knowledge of what they planned.
In freeing Motassadeq Wednesday, the court ruled that there was no longer "urgent suspicion" that he had been involved in planning the attacks. Attorneys said that could result in a retrial focusing on the lesser charge that he was a member of a terrorist group.
The release followed disclosure of new evidence that appeared to support his defense. At a hearing on Friday, the court was given a letter written in 2002 in which Said Bahaji, an alleged member of the Hamburg cell who is now a fugitive, told his mother that "Mounir didn't know anything."
Motassadeq had been serving a 15-year sentence after he was convicted last year on charges of membership in a terrorist organization and 3,066 counts of accessory to murder. Prosecutors had successfully argued that he provided material support to the hijackers by paying some of their bills and assisted them in the plot.
But the conviction began to appear vulnerable last year after another Moroccan, Abdelghani Mzoudi, was released midway through his trial on identical charges because German police reported to the court, as required under German law, unconfirmed intelligence that he did not know of the plan. Mzoudi was later acquitted on all counts.
The U.S. government has refused to provide evidence for the cases, citing national security concerns.
Wearing khaki pants and a down coat, Motassadeq smiled as he emerged at the heavy wooden doors of the court Wednesday after a closed hearing. The judges ordered that his passport be retained and that he live with his wife and children in Hamburg and report to police twice a week pending the start of a new trial, set for June." - Washington Post (04/08/04)

(See also:  March 4, 2004 - Retrial ordered for Motassadeq; May 5, 2004 - Motassadeq has asked court to release him from prison pending his new trial)

 

April 10, 2004 - The White House releases the August 6th memo titled "Bin Ladin Determined To Strike in US" early in the evening the day before Easter, a time of very low news consumption.

"President Bush was told more than a month before the Sept. 11 attacks that al Qaeda had reached America's shores, had a support system in place for its operatives and that the FBI had detected suspicious activity that was consistent with a hijacking plot. The memo did not, however, contain specific warnings of any imminent threats.
Since 1998, the FBI had observed "patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with preparations for hijackings or other types of attacks," according to a memo prepared for President Bush and declassified Saturday. They included evidence of buildings in New York possibly being cased by terrorists.
The document also said the CIA and FBI were investigating a call to the U.S. embassy in the United Arab Emirates in May "saying that a group of (Osama) bin Laden supporters was in the U.S. planning attacks with explosives."
The White House released the memo early in the evening on the Saturday before Easter, a time of very low news consumption.
The Aug. 6, 2001, memo made plain that bin Laden had been scheming to strike the United States for at least six years. It warned of indications from a broad array of sources, spanning several years.
The memo cited intelligence from another country, but the White House blacked out the name of the nation. It was the first time a presidential daily brief has ever been released publicly.
The senior administration officials refused to say what Bush's response to the memo was, or precisely what government action it had triggered." - CBS (04/10/04)

(See also:  Aug 6, 2001 - Bush is warned in a CIA memo of possible terrorist attacks and plane hijackings in the U.S. from Osama bin Laden; May 16, 2002 - News comes out that the Bush Administration received warnings about terrorist attacks and plane hijackings by Osama Bin Laden)

 

April 12, 2004 - In an article published by the alternative newspaper American Free Press, AFP reports that pools of "molten steel" were found in the basements of the WTC 1, 2, and 7 and quotes Mark Loizeaux, the president of Controlled Demolition, Inc, as saying he would have put "explosives in the basement" of the Twin Towers to help bring it down.

NEW SEISMIC DATA REFUTES OFFICIAL EXPLANATION

"Peter Tully, president of Tully Construction of Flushing, N.Y., told AFP that he saw pools of “literally molten steel” at the World Trade Center.
Tully was contracted after the Sept. 11 tragedy to re move the debris from the site.
Tully called Mark Loizeaux, president of Controlled Demolition, Inc. (CDI) of Phoenix, Md., for consultation about removing the debris. CDI calls itself “the innovator and global leader in the controlled demolition and implosion of structures.”
Loizeaux, who cleaned up the bombed Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, arrived at the WTC site two days later and wrote the clean-up plan for the entire operation.
AFP asked Loizeaux about the report of molten steel on the site.
“Yes,” he said, “hot spots of molten steel in the basements.”
These incredibly hot areas were found “at the bottoms of the elevator shafts of the main towers, down seven [basement] levels,” Loizeaux said.
The molten steel was found “three, four, and five weeks later, when the rubble was being removed,” Loizeaux said. He said molten steel was also found at 7 WTC, which collapsed mysteriously in the late afternoon.
Asked what could have caused such extreme heat, Tully said, “Think of the jet fuel.”
Loizeaux told AFP that the steel-melting fires were fueled by “paper, carpet and other combustibles packed down the elevator shafts by the tower floors as they ‘pancaked’ into the basement.”
However, some independent investigators dispute this claim, saying kerosene-based jet fuel, paper, or the other combustibles normally found in the towers, cannot generate the heat required to melt steel, especially in an oxygen-poor environment like a deep basement.
Experts disagree that jet-fuel or paper could generate such heat.
The foundations of the twin towers were 70 feet deep. At that level, 47 huge box columns, connected to the bedrock, supported the entire gravity load of the structures. The steel walls of these lower box columns were four inches thick.
Videos of the North Tower collapse show its communication mast falling first, indicating that the central support columns must have failed at the very beginning of the collapse. Loizeaux told AFP, “Everything went simultaneously.”
Asked if the vertical support columns gave way before the connections between the floors and the columns, Ron Hamburger, a structural engineer with the FEMA assessment team said, “That’s the $64,000 question.”
Loizeaux said, “If I were to bring the towers down, I would put explosives in the basement to get the weight of the building to help collapse the structure.” - AFP (04/12/04)

 

(See also:  September 22, 2001 - CDI hired to help clean up WTC & their president said knew towers were 'coming down' after planes hit)

 

• April 13, 2004 - Prof says 'no proof' Muslims behind 9-11, Suspects United States itself responsible for attacks on its soil

"There is "no conclusive proof" Arabs and Muslims were behind the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, and the U.S. itself may be responsible, asserts an Egyptian professor at American University of Cairo.
The charge by Galal Amin, a professor of economics, came in reaction to the U.S. administration's Greater Middle East Initiative, reports the Middle East Media Research Institute.
Amin says the initiative's claim that its aim is to partly or wholly eliminate terror is "unconvincing," insisting "there is still doubt that the September attacks were the outcome of Arab and Islamic terror."
The professor contends there is no "conclusive proof" Arabs Muslims were involved and says many American, European and Arab writers "suspect that the attacks were carried out by Americans, or with American assistance, or that Americans knew about them and kept silent."
The initiative's real motives, he contends, is controlling Iraqi oil, carving off regional markets and "softening the region for Israel's domination." - WorldNetDaily (04/13/04)

 

• April 14, 2004 - News breaks that for at least two years before 9/11, NORAD had conducted drills of hijacked airplanes used as weapons against targets that included the WTC and Pentagon.

"In the two years before the Sept. 11 attacks, the North American Aerospace Defense Command conducted exercises simulating what the White House says was unimaginable at the time: hijacked airliners used as weapons to crash into targets and cause mass casualties.
One of the imagined targets was the World Trade Center. In another exercise, jets performed a mock shootdown over the Atlantic Ocean of a jet supposedly laden with chemical poisons headed toward a target in the United States. In a third scenario, the target was the Pentagon — but that drill was not run after Defense officials said it was unrealistic, NORAD and Defense officials say." - USA Today (04/18/04)

(See:  1999 - NORAD starts conducting exercises in which airplanes are hijacked and crashed into targets; April 2001 - NORAD planned to practice a scenario in which a terrorist group hijacks a plane and crashes it into the Pentagon)

 


April 15, 2004 - Larry Silverstein's lawyer says his insurance brokers changed WTC policy two months before 9/11.

Silverstein Lawyer: WTC Insurance Policy Was Changed
"Two months before the World Trade Center collapsed, leaseholder Larry Silverstein's insurance brokers changed the trade center's policy form from one that defined the towers' destruction as one event to another form, Silverstein's lawyer said Wednesday, according to The Associated Press.
Closing arguments began after a contentious, 10-week trial that Silverstein hopes is the first round in a bid to collect twice the $3.5 billion insurance policy he took out on the center, one for each tower that fell on Sept. 11, 2001.
Thirteen insurance companies led by Swiss Reinsurance Ltd. have sued Silverstein Properties Inc., arguing that they agreed to coverage under an insurance form issued by Silverstein broker Willis Group Holdings Ltd., which specifically defines the word "occurrence" and holds that the Sept. 11, 2001, destruction of the trade center was one event.
Silverstein has argued that Willis switched to a form issued by Travelers Property Casualty Corp. from the Willis form, known as Wilprop." - NYSCPA.org (04/15/04)


April 19, 2004 - Scott Forbes, an IT employee at Fiduciary Trust located in top floors of the South WTC tower, sends an email to a 9/11 researcher John Kaminski claiming that there was a "power down" in the South Tower, which would have disabled all security cameras and locks, on Sept. 8th and 9th for "cable upgrading" that lasted approximately 36 hours from floor 50 up and that many "engineers" were coming in and out of the building.

"From: "Scott Forbes" <scottforbes2002@hotmail.com>
To: skylax@comcast.net
Subject: Official Verison of 9/11 - new info
Date: Mon, 19 Apr 2004 12:35:12 +0000
To John Kaminski,
I was pleased to read your article "The Official Version of 9/11 is a Hoax" ... Please note some other facts. My name is Scott Forbes and I still work for Fiduciary Trust. In 2001 we occupied floors 90 and 94-97 of the South Tower and lost 87 employees plus many contractors.
On the weekend of 9/8,9/9 there was a 'power down' condition in WTC tower 2, the south tower. This power down condition meant there was no electrical supply for approx 36hrs from floor 50 up. I am aware of this situation since I work in IT and had to work with many others that weekend to ensure that all systems were cleanly shutdown beforehand ... and then brough back up afterwards. The reason given by the WTC for the power down was that cabling in the tower was being upgraded ... Of course without power there were no security cameras, no security locks on doors and many, many 'engineers' coming in and out of the tower. I was at home on the morning of 9/11 on the shore of Jersey City, right opposite the Towers, and watching events unfold I was convinced immediately that something was happening related to the weekend work ...
I have mailed this information to many people and bodies, including the 9/11 Commission but no-one seems to be taking and registering these facts. Whats to hide? Can you help publicise them?
Please feel free to mail me.
Scott Forbes" - [posted at:  Seren
dipity] (See also:  Pre-9/11 World Trade Center Power-Down by Victor Thorn)

 

Note:  I emailed Scott Forbes at the listed hotmail email address and asked him if the above email was sent from him and was accurate.  Here's his reply...

"From:  "Scott Forbes" <scottforbes2002@hotmail.com>

To:  killtown@yahoo.com

Subject:  RE: Hi Scott, favor to ask about your "power down" email sent to Kaminski

Date:  Sat, 13 Aug 2005

Hi Killtown,
Thanks for your mail. I can confirm that the information is correct ... Please feel free to contact me for any other related information at any time ...
Scott Forbes"

 

(See also:  Killtown's:  Scott Forbes Interview; George Washington's Blog interview with Scott Forbes)

 

April 22, 2004 - Eleven Senate Republicans send a letter to the 9/11 commission demanding that Jamie Gorelick, a Democratic member of the panel, be forced to testify.

"Eleven Senate Republicans fired off a letter Thursday to the 9/11 commission demanding that Jamie Gorelick, a Democratic member of the panel, be forced to testify.
The senators want Gorelick to testify about her role in strengthening the so-called "wall" between the FBI and CIA that some say hampered government efforts to prevent terrorist attacks.
During her tenure at the Justice Department, Gorelick wrote a memorandum establishing distinctions between intelligence that could be used for law enforcement purposes and intelligence that could be used for national security purposes.
Commission Chairman Thomas Kean, a Republican and former governor of New Jersey, dismissed that demand as "silly" and praised Gorelick's work on the panel.
The separation that Gorelick outlined originally was required as a safeguard against abuse of citizens' rights by government investigative agencies. But passage of the Patriot Act in the wake of the attacks eliminated the requirement.
This separation or "wall" governing intelligence has been a key subject at hearings of the commission. It has been blamed for being a main obstacle to better sharing of information in connection with the September 11, 2001 attacks.
The existence of the memo was disclosed last week by Attorney General John Ashcroft in his testimony before the commission.
The letter was also signed by Republican senators: Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, Trent Lott of Mississippi, Conrad Burns of Montana; Bob Bennett of Utah; Pete Domenici of New Mexico; Don Nickles of Oklahoma; Ted Stevens of Alaska; Mitch McConnell of Kentucky; John Cornyn of Texas and Norm Coleman of Minnesota." - CNN (04/23/04)

(See also:  January 15, 2004 - 9/11 Commission interviews two of it's own members; March 23, 2004 - Gorelick referrers to object heading towards Pentagon on 9/11 as a "missile" when questioning Rumsfeld at hearing; April 26, 2004 - Sen. Sessions calls on Gorelick to resign)

 

April 26, 2004 - The Bush Administration tries to gag former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds from telling the 9/11 commission that she had seen information that there was plenty of evidence before 9/11 that Al Qaeda was planning to attack the U.S. with aircraft.

"The Bush administration will today seek to prevent a former FBI translator from providing evidence about 11 September intelligence failures to a group of relatives and survivors who have accused international banks and officials of aiding al-Qa'ida.
Sibel Edmonds was subpoenaed by a law firm representing more than 500 family members and survivors of the attacks to testify that she had seen information proving there was considerable evidence before September 2001 that al-Qa'ida was planning to strike the US with aircraft. The lawyers made their demand after reading comments Mrs Edmonds had made to The Independent.
But the US Justice Department is seeking to stop her from testifying, citing the rarely used "state secrets privilege". Today in a federal court in Washington, senior government lawyers will try to gag Mrs Edmonds, claiming that disclosure of her evidence "would cause serious damage to the national security and foreign policy interests of the United States".
Mrs Edmonds, 33, a Turkish-American who had top secret security clearance, claimed this month that while working in the FBI's Washington headquarters, she saw information proving senior officials knew of al-Qa'ida plans to attack the US with aircraft months before the strikes. She has provided sworn testimony to the independent panel appointed by President George Bush to investigate the circumstances surrounding 11 September.
Her lawyer, Mark Zaid, said last night: "The FBI wants to shut her up completely." He said it was ridiculous to claim that everything Mrs Edmonds knew had national security implications. Rather, he said, the FBI wanted to silence his client to save its embarrassment.
Mrs Edmonds said yesterday: "What are they are afraid of? If I am not allowed to give evidence, the families will not get the information I have; that will be that."
She said it was wrong for the Bush administration to claim it wanted a full investigation. "If there is transparency, there is going to be accountability and that is what they don't want." - Independent-UK (04/26/04) [Archived:  Wayback Machine; Reprinted at: Common Dreams]

(See also:  April 2, 2004 - Former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds says, 'I Saw Papers That Show US Knew al-Qa'ida Would Attack Cities With Airplanes'; January 12, 2005 - The ACLU files brief to DC Court of Appeals to reinstate case Sibel Edmonds)

 

April 26, 2004 - Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama, called on Jamie Gorelick to resign from the 9/11 Commission.

"With President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney set to appear in private before the 9/11 commission next week, Republicans are ramping up their criticism of the panel -- and Democratic member Jamie Gorelick in particular.
Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama, called on Gorelick to resign, becoming the first senator to do so. He told CNN that such a move would help the commission salvage its credibility.
A Republican chairman of the House Judiciary Committee has previously called on Gorelick to step aside, a demand that was rejected as "silly" by Thomas Kean, the Republican chairman of the 9/11 commission.
Republicans point to a memo Gorelick wrote as a top official in the Clinton Justice Department, which critics charge put a firewall between law enforcement and intelligence agents and made it harder for them to share information and thwart terrorism.
That policy remained in place under the Bush administration, until it was changed by the Patriot Act, passed after the 9/11 attacks.
In a recent Washington Post editorial, Gorelick wrote the restrictions on intelligence sharing date back to 1978- well before she came to Justice. "I did not invent the 'wall,' " she wrote.
She also has the backing of Kean, who is taking heat from fellow Republicans for sticking up for her.
Behind the controversy is a big dose of election-year politics. Democrats say Republicans are just poisoning the well because they fear the commission report will reflect badly on the president." - CNN (06/24/04)

(See also:  April 22, 2004 - Senate Republicans demanding Gorelick be forced to testify)

 

April 29, 2004 - President Bush, Vice President Cheney, White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales, and two other administration staff members meet behind closed doors with the 9/11 Commission, but did not testify before the panel, were not under oath, no recorder or stenographer were present, and critics argue that the reason the President and Vice President meet together was so that they can get their stories straight.

"The entire 10-member bipartisan commission -- known formally as the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States -- attended the meeting in the Oval Office.  Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney answered questions from the commissioners for more than three hours.
The president dismissed suggestions that he appeared before the panel with Cheney to coordinate stories.
"If we had something to hide, we wouldn't have met with them in the first place," Bush said. "We answered all their questions."
Bush described the session as "cordial," but declined to provide any details about topics discussed. He said he was never advised by White House Counsel Alberto Gonzales -- who attended the session, along with two members of his staff -- not to answer a question.
"They had a lot of questions and ... I'm glad I did it," Bush said. "I'm glad I took the time."
But the administration initially opposed the creation of the commission. The White House relented amid pressure from some 9/11 family members and it later backed down from its opposition to an extension of time for the commission.
Bush and Cheney did not testify before the panel -- they were not under oath and there was to be no recording made of the session nor a stenographer in the room.
The two members of the White House counsel's staff were expected to take notes during the session, and the commission members were also allowed to take handwritten notes.
Bush brushed off a question from a reporter Thursday on whether 9/11 families were entitled to a transcript of the session.
"You asked me that question yesterday," Bush replied. "I got the same answer."
He did not repeat the answer, but the White House has said there will not be a transcript of the session.
The Oval Office session began at 9:30 a.m. and ended at 12:40 p.m., although two commission members -- Lee Hamilton, the vice chairman, and Bob Kerrey -- left about an hour earlier.
Former President Clinton and former Vice President Al Gore have also met with the commission. Their sessions were also private and, like Bush and Cheney, they were not under oath. However, Clinton and Gore appeared separately before the panel, and their sessions were recorded." - CNN (04/29/04)

Will President Bush and President Clinton meet with the Commission?
"President Bush and Vice President Cheney have offered to meet privately with Chairman Kean and Vice Chairman Hamilton, but prefer not to meet with all 10 Commissioners. The Commission hopes the President and Vice President will reconsider.
The Commission plans to meet soon with President Clinton and Vice President Gore." - 9-11commission.gov

(See also:  May 23, 2002 - Bush Opposes 9/11 Query Panel; January 19, 2004 - Bush and Speaker Hastert oppose granting more time to 9/11 Commission)

 

 

May 3, 2004 - WTC leaseholder Larry Silverstein is awarded only a single insurance payout of $3.5 Billion for the destruction of the WTC instead of a double payout of $7 billion, claiming the attacks counted as two separate incidences, not one.

 

Jury: No double payout for WTC leaseholder; Insurance company liable for only one $3.5 billion payout

"A federal jury delivered a decisive setback Monday to World Trade Center leaseholder Larry Silverstein in his dispute with his largest insurer for the twin towers toppled in the attacks of September 11, 2001.
The jury decided Swiss Reinsurance Co., or Swiss Re, responsible for 25 percent of the trade center's coverage, is bound by an insurance form that would define the destruction as a single occurrence -- even though the towers were hit by two hijacked airliners 15 minutes apart.
Silverstein has contended the coordinated crashes should be considered two events, which would have allowed him to collect the maximum catastrophic insurance of $3.5 billion twice -- for a total of $7 billion." - CNN (05/04/04)

 

Developer loses Twin Towers case

"The destruction of the World Trade Center by two hijacked planes on 11 September 2001 counts as a single attack, a jury has ruled.
The attacks killed more than 3,000 people, and destroyed the Center's iconic twin towers.
Developer Larry Silverstein had argued that two events had occurred, each attracting $3.5bn worth of insurance.
But the jury said otherwise, in a move which could reduce the money available for rebuilding by at least $1bn.
The jury's decision is only the first of many covering the question of which insurers owe how much to Mr Silverstein.
While a group of Lloyd's of London insurers are the beneficiaries of Thursday's ruling, they account for only $1bn of the $3.5bn for which the towers were insured.
The eight members of the Lloyd's consortium had all signed a broker's form which defined both towers' destruction as a single event.
But the remaining trials could still see Mr Silverstein - whose lease was only six weeks old when the towers fell - collect twice from the remaining insurers." - BBC (04/30/04)

 

(See also:  June 2, 2002 - Silverstein profits $478 million from WTC 7 collapsing; December 6, 2004 - Silverstein awarded an extra $1.1 billion for WTC payout; Killtown's: Was the WTC 7 pulled?)

 

• May 5, 2004 - Disney blocks it's subsidiary Miramax to distribute Michael Moore's film 'Fahrenheit 911'.

"Disney has ordered a subsidiary not to distribute a Michael Moore film critical of President Bush's stance on terrorism, according to a newspaper and Moore's Web site.
The New York Times reports Disney has barred Miramax films from distributing "Fahrenheit 911," an upcoming film in which Moore explores alleged connections between the Bush family and wealthy Saudis, and criticizes the president's counter-terrorism policies both before and after Sept. 11.
A Disney executive says it told Miramax last May that it did not want to be connected to the North American distribution of the film because it could be politically divisive.
But Moore claims Disney is worried it could lose tax breaks it gets in Florida, where the president's brother Jeb Bush is governor. Disney denies that, according to The Times.
Miramax says its deal with Disney only allows the company to block distribution of a film if it is over budget or gets an NC-17 rating, neither of which appears to apply to Moore's movie. The two companies could go to mediation over the dispute.
Miramax bought the film last May when Mel Gibson's Icon Pictures backed out, triggering complaints by conservatives to Disney. Overseas distribution rights have already been sold." - CBS (05/05/04)

 

May 5, 2004 - Mounir el Motassadeq has asked a Hamburg court to release him from prison pending his new trial.

"Mounir el Motassadeq, awaiting retrial on charges he is an accessory to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, has asked a Hamburg court to release him from prison pending his new trial.
El Motassadeq's conviction and 15-year prison term were overturned Thursday by an appeals court.
The 29-year-old Moroccan is the only person to be convicted in connection with the attacks in the United States that killed about 3,000 people.
Hamburg court spokeswoman Sabin Westphalen said el Motassadeq asked for his release Monday by fax.
Prosecutors have not indicated whether they will oppose the request." - CNN (05/05/04)

(See also:  April 8, 2004 - German court frees Motassadeq; August 10, 2004 - U.S.: No testimony at Motassadeq's retrial)

 

May 6, 2004 - FAA manager mangled, cut, and destroyed 9/11 tapes.

"Six air traffic controllers provided accounts of their communications with hijacked planes on Sept. 11, 2001, on a tape recording that was later destroyed by Federal Aviation Administration managers, according to a government investigative report issued today.
It is unclear what information was on the tape because no one ever listened to, transcribed or duplicated it, the report by the Department of Transportation inspector general said.
The report was conducted at the request of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) after the panel investigating the Sept. 11 attacks, officially known as the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, complained that the FAA had been less than forthcoming in turning over documents and issued a subpoena to the agency for more information.
The FAA said it was cooperating fully with the 9/11 panel. The agency said it took disciplinary action against the employee who destroyed the tape but declined to elaborate on what kind of action they took.
According to the report, a second manager at the New York center promised a union official representing the controllers that he would "get rid of" the tape after controllers used it to provide written statements to federal officials about the events of the day.
Instead, the second manager said he destroyed the tape between December 2001 and January 2002 by crushing the tape with his hand, cutting it into small pieces and depositing the pieces into trash cans around the building, the report said.
The tape's existence was never made known to federal officials investigating the attack, nor to FAA officials in Washington. Staff members of the 9/11 panel found out about the tape during interviews with some controllers who participated in the recording.
One controller said she asked to listen to the tape in order to prepare her written account of her experience, but one of the managers denied her request.
But the managers decided not to include the tape in a November 2001 "Formal Accident Package" report the office prepared because one manager said he did not want to break his word to the union official and he did not think the tape should ever have been made." - Washington Post (05/06/04)

"Information provided to the commission investigating the U.S. government's response to terrorist threats prior to September 11, 2001, names an FAA quality manager in the destruction of an audiotape made in the aftermath of the 9/11 hijackings. Each of at least six air traffic controllers and some ten other employees who were on the job at the New York Air Route Traffic Control Center (ARTCC) in Ronkonkoma, N.Y., during the World Trade Center attacks gathered several hours after to recall their version of events. But that tape, which could have helped determine how the agency responded to clues that four planes had been hijacked, was destroyed before it was ever heard. In fact, officials at the ARTCC were never even told of the tape's existence. According to the report given to the 9/11 Commission by Department of Transportation Inspector General Kenneth Mead, the audiotape was crushed in the hand of the unnamed FAA employee, then cut into small pieces and tossed into different trash cans around the ARTCC building. Despite the fact that the quality assurance officer had been told to retain all records pertaining to 9/11, he told inspector general investigators he destroyed the tape because he felt making it was contrary to FAA policy, which calls for written statements. He is also quoted to have said the controllers "were not in the correct frame of mind to have properly consented to the taping" because of the stress of the day, and told investigators that faced with a similar situation, he would repeat his actions." - AV Web (05/10/04)

 

• May 12, 2004 - Miramax chiefs to buy Michael Moore's Sept. 11 documentary from Disney

"Miramax Films chiefs Bob and Harvey Weinstein plan to buy back Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9-11" -- which Walt Disney Co. blocked Miramax from releasing -- and distribute it themselves.
Under the deal, the brothers, who have a thorny relationship with parent company Disney, would not be able to distribute the movie through Miramax. They would have to find a third-party company.
Disney chief executive Michael Eisner said last week that the company "did not want a film in the middle of the political process" because he believed that theme park and entertainment consumers "do not look for us to take sides."
Miramax co-founder Harvey Weinstein spent about $6 million on the film. He and his brother would have to repay Disney for the investment, and would likely insist on a deal that cuts Disney out of any future profits." - SFGate (05/12/04)

 

May 19, 2004 - At the 9/11 commission hearings, Mayor Rudy Giuliani says that FEMA and hundreds of other state and federal government officials were going to have a biochemical attack drill in NYC on Sept. 12 conducted by the NYC Office of Emergency Management.

"MR. RUDOLPH W. GIULIANI: We made the decision to use the police academy because we didn't want to leave this island, we didn't want to leave Manhattan. We thought it would be a terrible statement if city government left the island of Manhattan. But then we realized pretty shortly that the police academy was too small, and we selected Pier 92 as our command center. And the reason Pier 92 was selected as the command center was because on the next day, on September 12th, Pier 92 was going to have a drill. It had hundreds of people here, from FEMA, from the federal government, from the state, from the State Emergency Management Office, and they were getting ready for a drill for biochemical attack. So that was going to be the place they were going to have the drill. The equipment was already there so we were able to establish a command center there within three days that was two-and-a-half to three times bigger than the command center that we had lost at 7 World Trade Center. And it was from there that the rest of the search and rescue effort was completed." - 9/11 Commission (05/19/04)

(See also:  September 10, 2001 - The Massachusetts Urban Search and Rescue Task Force arrives late in the evening in NYC and goes into action at the WTC the following morning on 9/11; September 12, 2001 - FEMA and hundreds of other state and federal government officials were scheduled to participate in a biochemical attack drill called "Operation TRIPOD" in New York City.; May 22, 2004 - The New York City Office of Emergency Management conducts  "Operation TRIPOD".)

 

May 19, 2004 - Clarke: Bush didn't see terrorism as 'urgent'

"President Bush's former counterterrorism chief testified Wednesday that the administration did not consider terrorism an urgent priority before the September 11, 2001, attacks, despite his repeated warnings about Osama bin Laden's terror network." - CNN (05/19/04)

 

• May 20, 2004 - Michael Moore pressured not to make 9/11 film

"U.S. filmmaker Michael Moore says there had been pressure from the beginning to stop him making his controversial documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11."
The film focuses on how Americans and the White House responded to the September 11 attacks and traces links between the Bush family and prominent Saudis, including the family of Osama bin Laden.
The documentary, being screened at the Cannes film festival on Monday, has also sparked a war of words over the decision by the Walt Disney to bar its Miramax film unit from releasing it.
Moore said: "From the beginning, this movie -- there's been this pressure -- to try to stop it so it doesn't get made. Now that it's made, to stop it so it doesn't get distributed." - Reuters (05/20/04)

 

• May 20, 2004 - Ten reasons Bush wants to ban Michael Moore's film Fahrenheit 9/11.

"A NEW film is sending shockwaves through the United States in general and the White House in particular - and it hasn't even been released yet.
Fahrenheit 9/11, which this week got the longest standing ovation in Cannes Film Festival history, tells what its director Michael Moore sees as the truth behind the war in Iraq and on terror.
It is said to be so powerful it could tip November's US presidential election against George W Bush. As Moore says: "We were able to get film crews embedded with American troops without them knowing it was Michael Moore. They are totally f***ed."
Disney has refused to distribute the film in the States, saying its content could upset the presidential elections. Moore says that's precisely why the public should see it.
These are the 10 killer questions the film poses.
1, AFTER the 9/11 attacks, why was the only plane to fly out of the US carrying 24 members of Osama bin Laden's family?
2, ARE the media covering up abuse of Iraqi prisoners and the disillusionment of American troops?
3, IS Bush deliberately creating a culture of fear to get poor American youth to fight his war?
4, HOW deep does the connection between the Bush family and bin Laden family actually run?
5, JUST how sinister was the White House's doctoring of Bush's military record?
6, DID Bush miss an opportunity to nail bin Laden during secret talks with the Taliban?
7, WHY does the Bush family have a "special relationship" with the Saudi royal family?
8, WAS Bush spending too much time on holiday to concentrate on terrorism?
9, DID Bush panic when he was told about the attack on the twin towers?
10, DID Bush manipulate the major US media companies to fix his 2000 election win?" - Mirror UK (05/20/04)

 

May 22, 2004 - The New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) conducts a biochemical attack drill called "Operation TRIPOD" that had first been scheduled to be held the day after 9/11 in NYC.

"NEW YORK CITY OFFICE OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT HOLDS TRIAL POINT-OF-DISPENSING DRILL (TRIPOD)
Drill for Distribution of Medication In the Event of a Biological Attack Had Been Scheduled for September 12, 2001
The New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) today held the first-ever Trial Point of Dispensing drill — also known as "Operation TriPOD" — to test OEM's effectiveness in responding to a biological attack (see Event Photos). Tripod is a six-hour, real-time drill administered by OEM, in cooperation with the United States Department of Justice (USDOJ), the Weill Medical College of Cornell Medical Center, the New York City Department of Health (DOH), the New York City Fire Department (FDNY) and the New York City Police Department (NYPD), along with the American Red Cross of Greater New York.
Tripod had originally been scheduled to take place on September 12th, 2001, at Pier 92-which ironically had served as the temporary home of OEM shortly after the terrorist attacks on 9/11.
"The setting for our first-ever Tripod drill should serve as a poignant reminder of the importance of preparedness," said John T. Odermatt, Commissioner of OEM. "Today, we find ourselves in the same place where the City regrouped following 9/11. Since that fateful day, New York has returned to normal, and we now use this venue not in the aftermath of a terrorist attack, but rather to prepare for one." - NYC.gov  (05/22/04)

(See also:  September 10, 2001 - The Massachusetts Urban Search and Rescue Task Force arrives late in the evening in NYC and goes into action at the WTC the following morning on 9/11; September 12, 2001 - FEMA and hundreds of other state and federal government officials were scheduled to participate in a biochemical attack drill called "Operation TRIPOD" in New York City; May 19, 2004 - Mayor Rudy Giuliani discusses "Operation TRIPOD" at the 9/11 Commission hearings.)

 

• May 22, 2004 - Ashcroft: Al Qaeda intends to attack U.S.

"Intelligence from multiple sources indicates that al Qaeda intends to attack the United States in the coming months, U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft said Wednesday.
"This disturbing intelligence indicates al Qaeda's specific intention to hit the United States hard," Ashcroft said in a news conference. "Beyond this intelligence, al Qaeda's own public statements indicate that it is almost ready to attack the United States."
Ashcroft said that after the March 11 train bombings in Madrid, Spain, "an al Qaeda spokesman announced 90 percent of the arrangements for an attack on the United States were complete."
Ashcroft cited a number of upcoming events that could be potential targets, including the Group of Eight economic summit on Sea Island, Georgia, and the Democratic and Republican national conventions in Boston, Massachusetts, and New York, respectively.
He also warned that terrorists may not have a typical look and that "the face of al Qaeda may be changing."
Ashcroft said the group adapts quickly to new security measures and may be recruiting operatives in their late 20s or early 30s and "may travel with families to lower their profile."
"Our intelligence confirms al Qaeda is seeking recruits who can portray themselves as Europeans," he said.
Also during the news conference, photographs of seven people being sought in connection with terrorism investigations were presented. The names and photos of six of them have been shown previously.
Ashcroft said the seven "all pose a clear and present danger to America" and "should be considered armed and dangerous."
Among the seven were suspected al Qaeda operatives Adnan G. El Shukrijumah and Aafia Siddiqui, two law enforcement sources said.
El Shukrijumah and Siddiqui were among those named by captured al Qaeda leader Khalid Shaikh Mohammed as al Qaeda operatives, government sources said.
FBI director Robert Mueller said: "We currently do not know what form the threat may take. And that is why it is so important that we locate the seven individuals. Though we do not have any reason at this time to believe that they are working in concert, we will not take any chances."
Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge, however, said Wednesday that he did not plan to raise the color-coded terror alert level for the nation. The terror threat level is at yellow, or elevated." - CNN (05/26/04)

 

May 26, 2004 - Poll:  63% of Canadians believe U.S. leaders had "prior knowledge" of 9/11 yet declined to act.

 

Poking holes in the official story of 9/11

"Citizens can choose to buy the official line on the events of Sept. 11, 2001 or they can ask questions about holes in that story as big as the crater at Ground Zero.
Indeed, a majority of Canadians doubt the line out of Washington. A poll conducted for the non-profit inquiry (http://www.911inquiry.org) this month shows that 63 per cent of us believe the U.S. government had "prior knowledge of the plans for the events of September 11th, and failed to take appropriate action to stop them."
Perhaps that's a testament to our media, which were not at Ground Zero, not personally affected by events and not waving the flag.
Inquiry's unasked questions include: Why were fighter jets not scrambled in time to stop the planes from smashing into the buildings? Why did the U.S. chain of command including the commander-in-chief Bush not act when the hijackings were in progress? Why were so many warnings missed? And why did it take the Kean Commission Washington's official 9/11 inquiry so long to get going, and only after the bereaved families noisily lobbied for more than a year?" - Toronto Star (05/26/04) [Reprinted at:  independent-media.tv]
 

$100,000 offer on 'truth' about Sept. 11

"Another poll in May revealed 63 percent of Canadians were convinced U.S. leaders had "prior knowledge" of the attacks yet declined to act." - WorldNetDaily (12/16/04)

 

(See also:  August 30, 2004 - Zogby 9/11 poll says half New Yorkers believe 9/11 an inside job)

 

June 3, 2004 - George Tenet resigns as head of the CIA.

Tenet: Resigning with head 'very, very high'

"After being dogged by heavy criticism over questionable intelligence on Iraq and terrorism since the September 11, 2001 attacks, George Tenet resigned Thursday as the director of the CIA.
Bush also announced that Deputy CIA Director John McLaughlin will become the agency's acting chief once Tenet steps down next month.
The announcement seemed to take much of Washington by surprise. House Speaker Dennis Hastert and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi both said they had no advance notice of Tenet's departure.
Tenet said his resignation will be effective July 11 -- the seventh anniversary of his 1997 appointment by then-President Bill Clinton.
Tenet has faced sharp criticism over the September 11 terror attacks and the war in Iraq, where pre-invasion U.S. estimates that Iraq was amassing stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction now appear to have been incorrect.
Several key lawmakers -- including Sen. John Kerry, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee -- have called for his resignation, and coming reports are expected to call for sweeping changes in the intelligence community.
Sen. Richard Shelby, a former Intelligence Committee chairman, said Tenet's decision to step down as director of central intelligence was "long overdue."
"There were more failures of intelligence on his watch as director of the CIA than any other [director of Central Intelligence] in our history," Shelby, R-Alabama, said in a written statement.
A White House official said Bush would have liked Tenet to stay on, and denied that his departure was "worked out beforehand" or "engineered."
But former CIA Director Stansfield Turner said the timing of Tenet's resignation -- just five months before the presidential election -- cast doubt on the explanation that it was a personal decision.
"I think he's being pushed out or made a scapegoat," said Turner, who led the CIA during the Carter administration.
In April, the panel investigating the September 11 attacks criticized the intelligence community and faulted Tenet for not having a management strategy to battle terrorism before the 9/11 attacks.

In February, Tenet defended his agency's prewar assessment of Iraq's military capabilities and denied allegations that the intelligence community overplayed the potential threat that Saddam Hussein had chemical or biological weapons.

The supposed threat of large Iraqi stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction was the primary justification for the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq.
So far, only a few artillery shells believed to contain sarin and mustard gas have been recovered.
Tenet took responsibility for a later-discredited line in Bush's 2003 State of the Union address that alleged that Iraq was trying to buy uranium from Africa, saying the CIA had seen and approved the speech before it was delivered, and he took responsibility for the mistake.
The uranium claim was investigated by former Ambassador Joseph Wilson, who said he told the CIA the report appeared unsubstantiated.
In journalist Bob Woodward's recent book, "Plan of Attack," Tenet is quoted telling Bush that intelligence supporting Iraq's weapons programs was a "slam-dunk."

And Tenet sat behind Secretary of State Colin Powell during the secretary's February 2003 presentation to the U.N. Security Council, in which the United States accused Iraq of violating numerous U.N. resolutions requiring its disarmament.
Powell said last month that the sources of his allegations were "inaccurate and wrong and, in some cases, deliberately misleading. And for that I am disappointed, and I regret it."
Ahmed Chalabi, the one-time U.S. ally whose Iraqi National Congress has been accused of providing some of that inaccurate intelligence, blamed Tenet for providing "erroneous information" about Iraq's suspected weapons programs.
Chalabi is under investigation for fraud and is suspected of passing U.S. intelligence secrets to Iran, but he says Tenet led a "smear campaign" against him." CNN (06/04/04)

 

(See also:  August 10, 2004 - President Bush nominates Rep. Porter Goss (R) to head the CIA)

 

June 16, 2004 - 9/11 Tapes Reveal Ground Personnel Muffled Attacks

"The very first response was cover-up, when they should have been broadcasting this information all over the place."
"This has been the attitude all the way along," Ms. Dillard observed. "Everybody was keeping it hush-hush." - New York Observer (06/17/04) [Reprinted at:  dangerouscitizen.com]

 

June 16, 2004 - No Evidence Connecting Iraq to Al Qaeda, 9/11 Panel Says

"There is "no credible evidence" that Saddam Hussein's government in Iraq collaborated with the al Qaeda terrorist network on any attacks on the United States, according to a new staff report released this morning by the commission investigating the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
The findings come in the wake of statements Monday by Vice President Cheney that Iraq had "long-established ties" with al Qaeda, and comments by President Bush yesterday backing up that assertion.
The commission issued its report on al Qaeda's history at the start of a two-day round of hearings this morning. In a separate report on the planning and deliberations for the Sept. 11 plot, the panel cited numerous pieces of FBI evidence in concluding that ringleader Mohamed Atta never met with an Iraqi intelligence officer in Prague on April 9, 2001, as Cheney and some other Bush administration officials have alleged.
The conclusions provide the latest example of how the Sept. 11 commission has become a political irritant for the Bush administration. The 10-member bipartisan commission, initially opposed by the White House, has frequently feuded with the government over access to documents and witnesses and has issued findings sharply critical of the Bush administration's focus on terrorism prior to the Sept. 11 attacks.
In testimony before the commission, CIA and FBI officials said they agreed with the staff report's assessment of the abortive relationship between al Qaeda and Iraq." - Washington Post (06/16/04)

(See also:  September 6, 2003 - Poll: 70% believe Saddam, 9-11 link; September 17, 2003 - Bush: No Link Between Iraq, Sept. 11 Attacks; October 30, 2004 - Inquiry began about unreleased 9/11 report about civilian, military response timeline and will stay unreleased until after elections)

 

• June 17, 2004 - Michael Moore shows the Bush at Booker video in his new documentary 'Fahrenheit 9/11'.

"Ditto the unforgettable camcorder scene of Bush on the morning of 9/11. Moore was able to get from the Florida Elementary School the video nobody else had bothered to ask for of the president sitting frozen in the classroom reading a book to the kiddies. And continuing to sit with a catatonic stare for a full seven minutes under the ticking clock after Andy Card enters and whispers to him the news of the attacks. Our commander in chief is paralyzed -- by what? Fear? Indecision? Panic? An unbreakable interest in the plot of "My Pet Goat"? Our conjecture about what must be going through his mind as his eyes dart from side to side at this epic moment (Dick Clarke's neglected terrorism memo?) is fueled by all the instant histories riding the bestseller list." - Washington Post (06/17/04)

(See also:  Killtown's: Was Bush complicit with the 9/11 attacks?)

 

• June 17, 2004 - U.S. conservative groups want Michael Moore's film, Fahrenheit 9/11, banned from cinemas.

"US conservative groups have launched a campaign to have Michael Moore's "misleading and grotesque" film Fahrenheit 9/11 banned from cinemas.
The film alleges connections between President George Bush and top Saudi families, including the Bin Ladens.
Move America Forward has begun a letter-writing campaign, while Citizens United is making TV and internet adverts which criticise Moore.
The group has received several thousand e-mails of support for its Fahrenheit 9/11 campaign, said executive director Siobhan Guiney, a former Republican Party lobbyist.
"Since we are the customers of the American movie theatres it is important for us to speak up loudly and tell the industry executives that we don't want this misleading and grotesque movie being shown at our local cinema," the group said on its website, listing contact details for various US cinemas.
Citizens United is headed by former Republican congressional aide David Bossie, who is also targeting George Soros, a billionaire who donated nearly $13m (£7m) to groups seeking to defeat President Bush.
Fahrenheit 9/11's US distributor Lions Gate Films believes the plan to have the film banned will fail.
"My guess is that their efforts will backfire and only rally support for the film, which will be terrific as far as I'm concerned," said president Tom Ortenberg.
"We need less censorship in this country, not more." - BBC (06/18/04)

 

 

June 18, 2004 - 9/11 Commission says President Bush's phone logs on 9/11 "don't exist."

 

Veep's order was too late

"Armed fighters chasing hijacked jets on 9/11 had no authorization to shoot them down until Vice President Cheney gave the order, but by then all the doomed jetliners had crashed.

The panel's report also appears to question whether Cheney gave the shootdown order on his own or got authorization from the commander in chief.
Cheney has told the commission that he gave the order after getting the go-ahead from Bush, who was airborne over Florida and incommunicado for periods of time due to a faulty radio system on Air Force One.
The commission's chairman said after yesterday's hearing that there is nothing to prove Cheney got Bush's permission before ordering shootdowns.
"The phone logs don't exist," Kean said.
"There's no documentary evidence here," added Democrat Lee Hamilton, the panel's vice-chairman. "The only evidence you have is the statements of the President and vice president." - NY Daily News (06/18/04)

 

 

 

June 21, 2004 - 9/11 tapes reveal ground personnel covered-up attack response, kept things "hush-hush."

 

9/11 Tapes Reveal Ground Personnel Muffled Attacks

"Ms. Dillard dared to hope that the F.B.I. would clarify the timeline in the mystifying story of Sept. 11, 2001.
Who knew what, and when? And what did the airlines and federal officials do about it? These were the burning questions on the minds of many family members who have begged the commission to help connect the dots.
She hoped, in hearing tapes of conversations between flight crews and authorities on the ground, to find out why, when flight controllers in Boston suspected a hijacking of American Airlines Flight 11 as early as 8:13 a.m., neither her company nor the Federal Aviation Administration notified her to warn the crew of American Airlines Flight 77 of the terrorist threat in the skies when the plane took off at 8:20 a.m. By 8:24 a.m., flight controllers were certain that Flight 11 had been overrun.
Those present were told that the material they were hearing is evidence in the government’s case against Zacarias Moussaoui, the once-alleged 20th hijacker, and in order not to compromise the case, it mustn’t be disclosed. They signed nondisclosure agreements and were not permitted to take notes.
Despite all the high secrecy surrounding the briefing, a half-dozen different family members were so horrified by voice evidence of the airlines’ disregard for the fate of their pilots, crew and passengers that they found ways to reveal some of what they heard on those tapes, and also what they felt. To them, the tapes appeared to show that the first instinct of American and United Airlines, as management learned of the gathering horror aboard their passenger planes on Sept. 11, was to cover up.
The response of American’s management on duty, as revealed on the tape produced at the meeting, was recalled by persons in attendance:
"Don’t spread this around. Keep it close."
"Keep it quiet."
"Let’s keep this among ourselves. What else can we find out from our own sources about what’s going on?"
"It was disgusting," said the parent of one of the victims, herself a veteran flight attendant for United Airlines. "The very first response was cover-up, when they should have been broadcasting this information all over the place."
The United dispatcher was told by his superiors: Don’t tell pilots why we want them to land. The F.B.I. and the F.A.A. have also held back or, in one case, destroyed evidence in the government’s possession that would tell a very different story of how the nation’s guardians failed to prepare or protect Americans from the most devastating of terrorist attacks on the homeland.
"I was shocked that I’m finding out, almost three years later, there was a tape with information given by my wife that was very crucial to the happenings of 9/11," Mr. Sweeney told me. "Suddenly it miraculously appears and falls into the hands of F.B.I.? Why and how and for what reason was it suppressed? Why did it surface now? Is there information on that tape that is of concern to other law-enforcement agencies?"
He confirmed that the Justice Department only revealed to the families what in its judgment were the "relevant" tapes. The F.B.I. is holding back other recordings from some of the flights as evidence in prosecuting its criminal trial. It is the way the F.B.I. has always done business: zealously guarding information to make its case retrospectively, rather than sharing information with other law-enforcement agencies to improve the country’s defensive posture proactively. For example, tapes considered "relevant" to the families didn’t include the cockpit voice recorder or the flight-data recorder from Flight 93, the final casualty.
On the American Airlines tape played at the meeting, a voice is heard relaying to the airline’s headquarters the blow-by-blow account by Ms. Sweeney of mayhem aboard Flight 11.
"In Fort Worth, two managers in S.O.C. [Systems Operations Control] were sitting beside each other and hearing it," says one former American Airlines employee who heard the tape. "They were both saying, ‘Do not pass this along. Let’s keep it right here. Keep it among the five of us.’"
Apparently, none of this crucial information was transmitted to other American pilots already airborne—
"You would have thought American’s S.O.C. would have grounded everything," says Ms. Dillard. "They were in the lead spot, they’re in Texas—they had control over the whole system. They could have stopped it. Everybody should have been grounded."
Ms. Dillard had to learn about the two planes crashing into the World Trade Center from the screams of waiting passengers in the next-door Admirals Club who were watching TV. "We all rushed back to our offices to wait for ‘go-do’s’ from headquarters," she recalls. But headquarters personnel never contacted Ms. Dillard, the Washington base manager, to inform her that Flight 77 was in trouble. They had lost radio contact with the plane out of Dulles at 8:50 a.m. More than 45 minutes later, her assistant gave Ms. Dillard an even more devastating piece of news.
"Are you sure it was 77?" Ms. Dillard pressed. "’Cause I just took Eddie over to Dulles," Ms. Dillard said numbly, referring to her husband. "Eddie’s on that plane."
One of American’s top corporate executives directly in the line of authority that day was Jane Allen, then vice president of in-flight services, in charge of the company’s 24,000 flight attendants and management and operations at 22 bases. She was Ms. Dillard’s top boss. But Ms. Dillard never heard from her until after Flight 77 had plowed into the Pentagon. Reached at United Airlines corporate headquarters in Chicago, where Ms. Allen now works, she was asked to confirm the names of participants in the Sept. 11 phone call and why the decision was made to hold back that information.
"I really am not interested in helping or participating," Ms. Allen said, putting down the phone.
"This has been the attitude all the way along," Ms. Dillard observed. "Everybody was keeping it hush-hush."
"I find it alarming that the airline and the F.A.A. would want to hold something as horrific as a hijacking among a few people," he said, "when bells and whistles should have been going off in all categories of responsibility."
"I’d been with American for 29 years," Ms. Dillard said with embittered pride. "My job was supervision over all the flight attendants who flew out of National, Baltimore or Dulles. In the summer of 2001, we had absolutely no warnings about any threats of hijackings or terrorism, from the airline or from the F.A.A."
"I’ve been learning a lot," said Ms. Hoglan. "During the summer of 2001, there were 12 directives sent by the F.A.A.—which are now supposedly classified—notifying the airlines of specific threats that terrorists were planning to hijack their aircrafts. The airlines apparently buried that information and didn’t tell us."
A Freedom of Information Act request has confirmed that the F.A.A. sent a dozen warnings to the airlines between May and September of 2001. Those 35 pages of alerts are being exempted from public disclosure by a federal statute that covers "information that would be detrimental to the security of transportation if disclosed." Most rational people would say that the non-disclosure of the alerts was what was detrimental to the security of transportation on Sept. 11.
"The F.B.I. gathered the evidence, gave it to the F.A.A., the F.A.A. gave it to the airlines, and the airlines didn’t tell us," Ms. Hoglan said. "I was a working flight attendant with United that summer, in 2001, and I never heard a thing. I’m suing United Airlines, and I’m very keen on the role of the flight attendants in Sept. 11."
The same lament was sounded by Ms. Ogonowski, who was also a senior working flight attendant in the summer of 2001, for American Airlines. She had crewed many times on the 767 that her husband piloted on the morning of Sept. 11. "I’m an insider. There was no warning to be more vigilant. We were sitting ducks."
Ed Ballinger, the flight dispatcher for United Airlines that morning, was the last human being to talk to the cockpit of Flight 93.
Mr. Ballinger said he didn’t wait for his superiors or for Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta’s decision to ground all flights. He sent out a Stop-Fly alert to all crews. But United dispatchers were instructed by their superiors not to tell the pilots why they were being instructed to land, he claims.
"One of the things that upset me was that they knew, 45 minutes before [Flight 93 crashed], that American Airlines had a problem. I put the story together myself [from news accounts]," Mr. Ballinger said. "Perhaps if I had the information sooner, I might have gotten the message to [Flight] 93 to bar the door."
NORAD had as long as 50 minutes to order fighter jets to intercept Flight 93 in its path toward Washington, D.C. But NORAD’s official timeline claims that F.A.A. notification to NORAD on Flight 93 is "not available." - New York Observer (06/21/04) [Reprinted at:  dangerouscitizen.com]

 

• June 28, 2004 - Supreme Court Deals a Blow to Bush's War on Terror

"The U.S. Supreme Court placed the first limits on President Bush's war on terrorism on Monday and ruled that terror suspects can use the American judicial system to challenge their confinement.
The historic moves on the day before the end of the high court's term marked a bitter defeat for Bush's assertion of sweeping presidential powers to indefinitely hold "enemy combatants" after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. It was the court's first rulings on Bush's terrorism policies.
In one ruling, the court said the nearly 600 foreign terror suspects held for two years at the U.S. military base at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba could turn to American courts to challenge their confinement. In another ruling, it said an American terror suspect held in his nation is entitled to a chance to contest the government's decision." - Reuters (06/28/04)

 

• July 8, 2004 - A plot to carry out a large-scale terror attack against the United States in the near future is being directed by Osama bin Laden and other top al Qaeda members, senior intelligence officials said

"Bin Laden and his top lieutenant, Ayman al-Zawahiri, are overseeing the attack plans from their remote hideouts somewhere along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, according to senior intelligence officials.
"This type of plotting, this type of operational activity, is being done with the direct direction and authorization of that senior leadership," said one official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
A Democratic senator who attended Thursday's CIA and FBI briefing said, "It is the most worrisome situation since 9/11" without elaborating specifically.
Arrests of terror suspects in Europe and the Middle East resulted in the new warning, said Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge.
"We lack precise knowledge about time, place and method of attack," he said. "But along with the CIA, FBI and other agencies, we are actively working to gain that knowledge."
A senior U.S. intelligence official said the warning was based on "a very strong body of intelligence."
The planned attack is "an effort to disrupt the democratic process" before November's elections, Ridge said.
Sources said al Qaeda is plotting an attack similar to the Madrid train bombings, which killed nearly 200 people just days before Spain's elections in March." - CNN (07/08/04)

 

July 17, 2004 - Rapper Jadakiss blames Bush for the 9/11 attacks in his hit song "Why?".

"Anyone who thought Michael Moore went too far with charges against President Bush in his movie "Fahrenheit 9/11" is advised to avoid the new hit single "Why?" by New York rapper Jadakiss.
Among a litany of questions raised in the song, one has drawn particular attention: Against a thudding, almost hypnotizing beat, the 29-year-old artist growls, "Why did Bush knock down the towers?"
But blaming the president for the destruction of the World Trade Center represents a quantum escalation of the rhetoric. "Obviously it's only a metaphor," Jadakiss says in a telephone interview Thursday from his tour bus outside of Toledo.
"But on the same note," he adds, "I think that before 9/11 the intelligence agencies weren't communicating a lot of the important information. And ultimately, at the end of the day, he's the boss. The buck stops with him."
The rapper known to his fans as Kiss sounds like he's undergone a bit of media coaching since July 9, when he told Billboard.com: "I just felt [Bush] had something to do with it. That's why I put it in there like that. A lot of my people felt he had something to do with it."
Jadakiss has plenty of supporters, who say the song voices the doubts of many young people, particularly young African Americans. "A lot of folks are really skeptical about the president and the whole gangsta manner in which this administration has rolled," says Bakari Kitwana, author of "The Hip Hop Generation: Young Blacks and the Crisis in African-American Culture." "It's not the first time that people are hearing of government involvement, or at least complicity, with 9/11. These theories have been floating around for a while." - Washington Post (07/17/04)

 


July 17, 2004 - A grainy surveillance video from Dulles Airport is released which supposedly shows four of the five alleged Flight 77 hijackers, Nawaf & Salem al-Hazmi, Khalid al-Mihdhar, and Hani Hanjour, in which all of them except for Hanjour set off metal detectors and are pulled aside for addition screening, yet no weapons of any kind are shown on the video, all three men are then allowed to board the plane, and none of the photos have timestamps on them.

"Surveillance video from Washington's Dulles Airport the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, shows four of the five hijackers being pulled aside to undergo additional scrutiny after setting off metal detectors but then permitted to board the fateful flight that later crashed into the Pentagon.
The surveillance video, obtained by The Associated Press, shows an airport screener hand-checking the carryon baggage of one hijacker, Nawaf al-Hazmi, for traces of explosives before letting him continue onto American Airlines Flight 77 with his brother, Salem, a fellow hijacker.
Details in the grainy video are difficult to distinguish. But an earlier report by the commission is consistent with the men's procession through airport security as shown on the video obtained by the AP.
No knives or other sharp objects are visible on the surveillance video. But investigators on the commission have said the hijackers at Dulles were believed to be carrying utility knives either personally or in their luggage, which at the time could legally be carried aboard planes.
The video shows hijackers Khalid al-Mihdhar and Majed Moqed*, each dressed conservatively in slacks and collared shirts, setting off metal-detectors as they pass through security. Moqed set off a second alarm, and a screener manually checked him with a handheld metal detector.
The pair were known to travel together previously and had paid cash to purchase their tickets aboard Flight 77 on Sept. 5, 2001, at the American Airlines counter at Baltimore's airport.
Only Hani Hanjour, believed to have been the hijacker who piloted Flight 77, did not set off a metal detector as he passed through Dulles security that morning, according to the video.
The AP obtained the video from the Motley Rice law firm, which is representing some survivors' families who are suing the airlines and security industry over their actions in the Sept. 11 attacks." - ABC (07/21/04)

*Note that the video clips do not show Majed Moqed as the ABC article says.  See:  Killtown's: Flight 77 - The Alleged Hijackers

 

• July 17, 2004 - "The Puzzling 9/11 Report," by Sibel Edmonds

"The countdown is finally over, and a 567-page 9/11 Commission report [pdf] is out. According to the Commission Chairman, they have seen "every single document" and have interviewed "every single relevant witness and authority." According to all Commission members, this report should be considered a resounding success, since it encompasses all information relevant to the terrorist attacks of 9/11, and very little, almost none, has been redacted, classified, or glossed over. Yet we have heard no one screaming "classification," "sensitive diplomatic relations," "highly sensitive foreign business relations," or "national security implications." This is highly puzzling and curious.
This puzzles me, considering that every investigation by the Congress and the Inspector General (IG) into my issues, every report involving my already-confirmed allegations involving serious lapses within the FBI, and every legal procedure and due process dealing with my case alone, has been blocked, gagged, entirely classified, and stopped.
This puzzles me, knowing the detailed information I myself provided to the commission during a three and a half hour tape-recorded briefing, yet finding only one footnote (footnote 25) briefly stating insufficient translation capability within the FBI. It is highly curious that the report mentions nothing regarding the "intentionally blocked translations by certain Middle Eastern Translators, who also breached FBI security, as confirmed by the Senate Judiciary"; nothing regarding "adamant resistance to investigations of certain terrorist and criminal activities; refusing to transfer them to counterterrorism from existing counterintelligence investigations, solely based on the vague notion of protecting certain foreign relations"; nothing regarding "continued efforts to cover up certain highly specific information received prior to September 11, even now, years after 9/11"; and nothing regarding "knowingly allowing certain individuals, directly or indirectly related to terrorist activities, to leave the United States months after 9/11, without any interrogation, and per the State Department's request."
In fact, this report ended up being blessed by all those responsible for our nation's security and interests, which were severely violated on September 11. I, for one, am highly puzzled and curious. How about you?" - AntiWar.com (07/24/04)

 

 

July 17, 2004 - Almost three years after 9/11, technology only now exists to enable cell phones to work on airplanes at flying altitudes.

 

In-flight cell phones 'worked great' in test

"The race is on to enable airline passengers to make and receive cell phone calls in flight.
Cell phone company Qualcomm (QCOM) has teamed with American Airlines (AMR) to develop satellite-based air-to-ground cellular service. Several smaller companies are working on rival systems. In-flight cell service could be introduced within two years and become commonplace within four, developers believe.
Last week, American and Qualcomm officials circled over West Texas in a jetliner making calls from their cell phones. The Federal Aviation Administration and the Federal Communications Commission authorized the flight to test the technology's safety and transmission quality.
"It worked great," says Monte Ford, American's chief information officer, and the special flight's host. "I called the office. I called my wife. I called a friend in Paris. They all heard me great, and I could hear them loud and clear."
Qualcomm's satellite-based system uses a notebook computer-sized device called a "Pico cell" inside the airplane to act like a small cellular tower, managing separate signals. The signals then will be beamed to a satellite for distribution to ground networks.
Also, the tested system topped out at 14 simultaneous calls." - USA Today (07/19/04)

 

Miracles and Wonders

"Last week, USA Today reported a joint effort between Qualcomm and American Airlines' to allow passengers to make cellphone calls from aircraft in flight. According to the story, the satellite-based system employs a "Pico cell" to act as a small cellular tower.
Before this new "Pico cell," it was nigh on impossible to make a call from a passenger aircraft in flight. Connection is impossible at altitudes over 8000 feet or speeds in excess of 230 mph.
Yet despite this, passengers Todd Beamer, Mark Bingham, Jeremy Glick and Edward Felt all managed to place calls from Flight 93 on the morning of September 11. Peter Hanson, en route to Disneyland with his wife and daughter, phoned his dad from Flight 175. Madeline Amy Sweeney, a flight attendant, made a very dramatic call from Flight 11 as it sped to the North Tower. Barbara Olson made two calls, collect, to her husband at his government office from Flight 77 as it made its way to the Pentagon.
Each call was initially reported as coming from a cellphone. Later, when skepticism reared its ugly head and the Grassy Knollers arrived, the narrative became fuzzy; it was suggested that $10-a-minute Airfones were involved. Olson was an easy candidate for Airfone (one doesn't call collect from a cell), but as the stories developed, Olson—and Felt—were said to have called from inside locked lavatories. No Airfone there." - New York Press (07/27/04)
 

 

• July 22, 2004 - 9/11 commission releases its final report and emphasizes they did not want to place specific blame on President Bush, President Clinton or their intelligence agencies.

"At a time when they needed it most, America's leaders did not have the imagination to perceive their greatest threat, and did not understand its gravity.
Those core findings of the commission investigating the September 11 terrorist attacks amount to a scathing assessment of a bureaucracy ill-equipped to anticipate or confront a creative enemy.
The commissioners emphasized they did not want to place specific blame on President Bush, President Clinton or their intelligence agencies.
But they cited several missed opportunities during both administrations which could have allowed the government to break up, or at least hinder, the 9/11 plot.
But they were clearly frustrated when citing the volume of intelligence the U.S. government possessed about al Qaeda much earlier.
As expected, the commission traces the disconnect to a profound lack of communication between the FBI and CIA and inadequate congressional oversight of intelligence.
Specifically, the commission recommends:
-The creation of a national counter-terrorism center, to unify foreign and domestic counter-terror operations.
-The creation of a new post: National Intelligence Director, to oversee all the agencies.
-Putting more emphasis on the sharing of information between agencies.
-Reform of congressional oversight, which the commission says is too spread out, between different committees.
-Establishing a career path for FBI agents, who want to specialize in intelligence and national security.
However, it does not recommend the creation of a new agency focusing only on domestic terrorism, like Britain's MI-5.
On the possibility of an Iraq-al Qaeda connection, Kean said there was no question in commissioners' minds that there was a relationship at one time. But they have no definite finding on any weapons collaboration between the two. And there is no evidence, they say, of a link between Iraq and September 11." - CNN (07/22/04

- The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States

 

• July 22, 2004 - CIA Rebukes 9/11 Panel's Report; says they regularly reported on threats to civil aviation, despite implications otherwise in the report, and had told Presidents Clinton and Bush that Osama bin Laden was a danger.

"In an attempt to rebut a rash of criticism in recent weeks from commissions detailing intelligence failures, the CIA fired off a strong rebuttal of the Sept. 11 commission's finding that the intelligence community assembled an insufficient counterattack to the al-Qaida threat.
It is rare for the CIA to bring roughly 40 reporters into its headquarters to talk about current events.
But responding to the Sept. 11 commission report's varied criticisms, a senior CIA official briefed that many reporters, acknowledging the agency was unable to determine the time, place and method of attack on Sept. 11, 2001, or to capture mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed before he planned and managed the attack.
But, the official said, speaking on the condition of anonymity, that agency had regularly reported on threats to civil aviation, despite implications otherwise in the report, and had told Presidents Clinton and Bush that Osama bin Laden was a danger.
The official also rebuffed suggestions that the CIA did not share information with the FBI or State Department about two of the hijackers who ultimately crashed into the Pentagon." - ABC (07/22/04)

 

• July 22, 2004 - 9/11 Panel Says That Flight 93 Hijackers Crashed Plane Before Anyone Got Into the Cockpit

"Passengers aboard United Airlines Flight 93 fought back against the hijackers but never actually made it into the cockpit, the Sept. 11 commission concluded.
The assertion, included in the panel's dramatic summary of the harrowing flight, contradicts the firmly held belief by some victims' families that passengers breached the cockpit and fought with hijackers inside during their final moments.
Relying on the cockpit recorder and flight data, the commission said terrorist-pilot Ziad Jarrah violently rocked the jet's wings and told another hijacker to block the door. With the sounds of fighting outside the cockpit, Jarrah asked, "Is that it? Shall we finish it off?"
Another hijacker, who wasn't identified, replied, "No, not yet. When they all come, we finish it off."
Jarrah then began pitching the nose of the plane up and down to throw passengers off balance.
Seconds later, a passenger who wasn't identified yelled, "In the cockpit! If we don't, we die!" And 16 seconds afterward, another passenger yelled, "Roll it!" Investigators previously have said they believe passengers tried to use a food cart to break the cockpit door.
Jarrah said, "Allah is the greatest! Allah is the greatest!", and he asked his fellow hijacker, "Is that it? I mean, shall we put it down?"
The other hijacker answered, "Yes, put it in, and pull it down."
Roughly 90 seconds later, the jet rolled onto its back and crashed into a Pennsylvania field at more than 580 mph, killing everyone aboard.
The commission concluded that the hijackers remained at the controls of the plane, "but must have judged that the passengers were only seconds from overcoming them."
The Associated Press reported last year that the government's theory about Flight 93 described by FBI Director Robert Mueller to congressional investigators in closed testimony also concluded that passengers grappled with terrorists but never actually got into the cockpit." - ABC (07/22/04)

(See also:  Killtown's: Was Flight 93 shot down?)

 

 

July 22, 2004 - The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) say they found no evidence that anyone who had advance knowledge of the 9/11 attacks traded on the basis of that information.

 

Statement Concerning SEC Terrorist Attack Trading Investigation

"The National Commission On Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (the 9-11 Commission) has submitted its final report, which includes its review and conclusions concerning whether any trading in the United States securities markets was based on advance knowledge of the September 11 attacks. The United States Securities and Exchange Commission cooperated fully with the 9-11 Commission and provided information based on the following actions.
On Sept. 12, 2001, the Securities and Exchange Commission began an investigation to determine whether there was evidence that anyone who had advance knowledge of the terrorist attacks on September 11 sought to profit from that knowledge by trading in United States securities markets. In the course of that review, we did not develop any evidence suggesting that anyone who had advance knowledge of the September 11 attacks traded on the basis of that information." - SEC (07/22/04)

 

(See also:  September 6, 2001 - Large number of "put" options are placed on United Airlines stock betting that the stock price would fall)

 

• July 26, 2004 - Funding behind 9/11 still a mystery despite probes.

"Despite nearly three years of digging through the "money trail" in the September 11 attacks, investigators are still largely in the dark about who financed the deadly assault on the United States.
"To date, the US government has not been able to determine the origin of the money used for the 9/11 attacks," the report said.
The report does shed some light on the finances of al-Qaeda and the resources of its leader Osama bin Laden, suggesting his personal fortune was not as great as some had believed.
Much of the information about the finances comes from Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the former al-Qaeda commander who orchestrated the attacks and arranged the financing, but who has refused to divulge the source of the funds.
Referred to as KSM in the report, Mohammed was captured in Pakistan last year. The report traces the funding through several sources around the world, including Dubai, Germany and Pakistan, and back to KSM, but no further.
The hijackers and al-Qaeda spent a relatively modest sum of 400,000 to 500,000 dollars to plan and conduct the devastating attack, the commission report said. About 270,000 dollars of that was spent in the United States.
The investigation uncovered "no credible evidence that any person in the United States gave the hijackers substantial financial assistance," the report said.
The report says al-Qaeda moved money by "hawala," an informal trust-based system for transferring funds that is hard to trace.
But there were bank transfers, including one of 69,985 dollars to a Sun Trust Bank account in Florida held jointly by two of the hijackers. However, the report said the bank did not need to file a "suspicious activity report" for the transactions based on laws at the time.
"The hijackers made extensive use of banks in the United States, choosing both branches of major international banks and smaller regional banks," the report said.
Contrary to many reports, there was no evidence the hijackers used false social security numbers to open bank accounts." - Channel News Asia/AFP (07/26/04)


 

• July 26, 2004 - 9/11 Commission reports says Bin Laden not as wealthy as previously reported.

"The report does shed some light on the finances of al-Qaeda and the resources of its leader Osama bin Laden, suggesting his personal fortune was not as great as some had believed.
The report noted that al-Qaeda spent an estimated 30 million dollars a year before the 2001 attacks.
This was probably not money coming directly from bin Laden, the report concluded, saying some officials had mistakenly believed the exiled Saudi national inherited some 300 million dollars when his father died.
In fact, the report said, bin Laden from 1970 through 1994 received about one million dollars per year -- "a significant sum, to be sure, but not a 300 million dollar fortune that could be used to fund jihad."
In Afghanistan, bin Laden "relied on the Taliban until he was able to reinvigorate his fund-raising efforts by drawing on ties to wealthy Saudi individuals that he had established during the Afghan war in the 1980s."
The commission concluded that the bulk of al-Qaeda's money came from "corrupt" Islamic charities and wealthy individuals in the Gulf region, particularly in Saudi Arabia." - Channel News Asia/AFP (07/26/04)

 

July 26, 2004 - 9/11 commission report which shows that much of the common wisdom about the Sept 11 attacks was wrong.

"...last Thursday...the commission released a final, unanimous, book-length report which, in calling for a overhaul of the way the government collects and shares intelligence, showed that much of the common wisdom about the Sept 11 attacks was wrong.
It found that the hijackers had repeatedly broken the law in entering the US, that Osama may have micromanaged the attacks but did not pay for them, that intelligence agencies had considered the threat of suicide hijackings and that Mr Bush received an August 2001 briefing on continuing domestic terrorist threats from Al-Qaeda.
THE HIJACKERS
Immediately after Sept 11 and in the months that followed, the FBI, CIA and other counterterrorism agencies defended their failure to detect the plot by insisting that the hijackers had gone out of their way to enter the US legally and to avoid detection in the months preceding the attacks.
But in its final report, the commission found that as many as 13 of the hijackers had entered the US with passports that had been fraudulently altered, using criminal methods previously associated with Al-Qaeda.
IMAGINING THE UNIMAGINABLE
IN TRYING to explain why the nation was so vulnerable on Sept 11, the leaders of the nation's law enforcement and intelligence agencies have insisted publicly that they never considered the nightmare of passenger planes being turned into guided missiles.
But in its investigation, the commission found that an attack described as unimaginable had in fact been imagined, repeatedly. It said that several threat reports circulated within the government in the late 1990s raised the explicit possibility of an attack using airliners as missiles.
OSAMA'S ROLE
A senior State Department official testified to the Senate in 2001 that the Osama terror network was 'analogous to a multinational corporation, Osama as CEO', leaving the details of the terrorist attacks to others.
But the commission found that far from being a disengaged leader, he was described by captured Al-Qaeda colleagues as a hands-on executive who wanted to be involved in almost every detail of the Sept 11 plot, choosing the hijacking team himself and selecting targets. He was reported to have been eager to hit the White House.
American intelligence analysts had long believed that Osama had a vast personal fortune that bankrolled Al-Qaeda; news accounts described his fortune as being as much as US$300 million (S$519 million), with real estate holdings in London, Paris and the Cote d'Azur.
But the commission found that Osama was cut off from his family's wealth after the early 1990s, and that he financed Al-Qaeda's operations through a group of wealthy Muslim donors, mainly from the Persian Gulf.
THE IRAQ CONNECTION
THE Bush administration has long maintained that there was a close working relationship between Al-Qaeda and Iraq. In October 2002, with the invasion of Iraq only months away, President Bush said in a speech that 'high-level contacts between Iraq and Al-Qaeda go back a decade', and that 'we have learned that Iraq has trained Al-Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases'.
But in its most contentious effort to set the record straight about the origins of the plot, the bipartisan commission's final report found no evidence of close collaboration between Saddam Hussein and Al-Qaeda, appearing to undermine a justification for the Iraq war.
THE EVIDENCE
IN THE first hours after the Sept 11 attacks and ever since, the White House has consistently insisted that President Bush and his deputies had no credible evidence before the attacks to suggest that Al-Qaeda was about to strike on American soil.
But the assertion has been questioned as a result of the commission's digging. After its most heated showdown with the Bush administration over access to classified information, the commission pressured the White House to declassify and make public a special intelligence briefing that had been presented to Mr Bush on Aug 6, 2001, a month before the attacks.
The document had been known since 2002, when the White House confirmed reports that Mr Bush had received an intelligence report before Sept 11 warning of the possibility that Al-Qaeda might hijack American passenger planes.
In testimony in April to the Sept 11 commission, before it was made public, Ms Rice insisted the report was 'historical'.
But there were gasps in the hearing room when she disclosed the name of the two-page briefing paper: 'Osama Determined to Attack in US'. -- New York Times" - Straits Times (07/26/04) [Archived:  Wayback Machine]

 

July 27, 2004 - The Penta-Lawn 2000! is mentioned -- although by the wrong name -- in an article in the New York Press.

Miracles and Wonders
"And last but not least, every suburban homeowner will want the miraculous PentaGrass. Whatever that lawn at the Pentagon is made out of, it sure is amazing stuff—it resists and repels fire, explosion, skid marks, aircraft debris, jet fuel, luggage and body parts. Shit from your neighbor's dog won't stand a chance!
Who would've thought there'd be a silver lining even in the debris cloud made that Tuesday morning?" - New York Press (07/27/04)

 

July 31, 2004 - Senator Mark Dayton (D - MN) says NORAD and the FAA lied about failures on 9/11.

"Sen. Mark Dayton, D-Minn., charged Friday that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) have covered up "catastrophic failures" that left the nation vulnerable during the Sept. 11 hijackings.
"For almost three years now, NORAD officials and FAA officials have been able to hide their critical failures that left this country defenseless during two of the worst hours in our history," Dayton declared during a Senate Governmental Affairs Committee hearing.
During the hearing, Dayton told leaders of the Sept. 11 commission, that, based on the commission's report, a NORAD chronology made public a week after the attacks was grossly misleading.
The chronology said the FAA notified the military's emergency air command of three of the hijackings while those jetliners were still airborne. Dayton cited commission findings that the FAA failed to inform NORAD about three of the planes until after they had crashed.
And, he said, a squadron of NORAD fighter planes that was scrambled was sent east over the Atlantic Ocean and was 150 miles from Washington, D.C., when the third plane struck the Pentagon -- "farther than they were before they took off."
Dayton said NORAD officials "lied to the American people, they lied to Congress and they lied to your 9/11 commission to create a false impression of competence, communication and protection of the American people."
He told Kean and Hamilton that if the commission's report is correct, President Bush "should fire whoever at FAA, at NORAD ... betrayed their public trust by not telling us the truth."
Asked about Dayton's allegation, a spokesman for Colorado Springs-based NORAD said, "We stand on our testimony to the commission" and declined to discuss the 2001 chronology.
Erin Utzinger, a spokeswoman for Dayton, said the senator "assumes the FAA knew of NORAD's coverup."
FAA spokeswoman Rebecca Trexler said the agency "has never and would never intentionally misrepresent or alter information. We worked very closely with the 9/11 commission and provided them with everything that was available to us."
Dayton told reporters that he skipped festivities at the Democratic National Committee Tuesday night and sat in his hotel room until 2:30 a.m. reading the commission report. After piecing together the section about the FAA and NORAD, he said, he could not fall asleep.
"I'm a strong defender of government," he said. "When government fails, it really outrages me. It just destroys peoples' trust and faith."
Using the chronology, Dayton argued that if the FAA had promptly sent a system wide message about the hijackings, the pilot of the fourth plane seized, United Airlines Flight 93, might have been able to secure the cockpit doors and land the plane.
"This is unbelievable negligence," Dayton said. "It doesn't matter if we spend $550 billion annually on our national defense, if we reorganize our intelligence or if we restructure congressional oversight if people don't pick up the phone to call one another."
He also noted that NORAD could not find the hijacked jetliners because terrorists turned off their transponders and NORAD lacked adequate radar to locate them without that beamed signal.
Dayton said NORAD also falsely claimed that during the hijackings, it had F-16 Combat Air Patrol planes in place at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia and an AWAC command ship in the air to protect the nation's capital.
Dayton, a former Minnesota state auditor, called the FAA's and NORAD's failures "the most gross incompetence and dereliction of responsibility and negligence that I've ever, under those extreme circumstances, witnessed in the public sector." - Star Tribune (07/31/04) [Reprinted:  9/11 Truth.org; Video:  Killtown@YouTube; download:  erichufschmid.net]

(See also:  October 27, 2004 - NORAD takes their 9/11 timeline response off their website; August 2, 2006 - Some of the 9/11 commission concluded the Pentagon may have lied about their reaction to 9/11 and considered criminal action)

 

August 2, 2004 - Archivists to preserve only known recording of President Kennedy assassination that some say recorded the sound of a fourth shot which would prove a second gunmen was at the scene.

"Archivists are trying to preserve and copy the only known sound recording of the gunshots that killed President John F. Kennedy a recording that has fueled conspiracy theories.
The recording, made by a police motorcycle radio, is now too fragile to be played and has never been authentically copied, officials said. Researchers at the National Archives in Washington hope optical scanning will help.
The recording became a focus of a 1979 report by the House Select Committee on Assassinations.
Committee members said it indicated four shots were fired at the Dallas motorcade on Nov. 22, 1963, including one from a separate location from where Lee Harvey Oswald fired shots, suggesting more than one shooter. The committee concluded that Oswald probably did not act alone.
The recording was not used during the Warren Commission investigation, the first government inquiry into Kennedy's assassination. The commission concluded Oswald was the lone gunman and fired three shots.
Some say the recording reveals three shots were fired and Oswald acted alone; others say they can hear four shots and conclude Oswald was aided by a second gunman." - Boston Globe (08/02/04)

- See:  Kennedy Slideshow

(See also:  November 22, 1963 - JFK assassinated; March 29, 1979 - House Select Committee on Assassinations report)

 

August 5, 2004 - Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry blasts President Bush for reading so long after being told the WTC was attacked and says that if he was reading to kids and his top aide whispered to him "America is under attack" that he would have "very politely and nicely" excused himself to attend to the situation.

"Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry said Thursday he would have handled news of the al Qaeda attacks on New York and the Pentagon differently than did President Bush.
Bush was told of the suicide hijackings while he was in a Florida school classroom.
"Had I been reading to children and had my top aide whispered in my ear, 'America is under attack,' I would have told those kids very politely and nicely that the president of the United States had something that he needed to attend to -- and I would have attended to it," Kerry told the Unity conference of minority journalists in response to a question about what he would done.
The independent commission investigating the attacks found that Bush waited five to seven minutes after White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card told him that a second hijacked jetliner had hit the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. (9/11 panel report: 'We must act')
The president then excused himself from the classroom of a group of elementary schoolchildren in Sarasota, Florida.
Footage of a visibly shaken president continuing to read along with the students after being told of the attack is featured prominently in the anti-Bush documentary "Fahrenheit 9/11."
But Bush told the 9/11 commission that his instinct was to project calm, "not to have the country see an excited reaction at a moment of crisis," the commission reported last month." - CNN (08/05/04)

(See also:  9/11 (9:08 am) - Bush reads to kids after being informed the WTC was attacked.)

 

August 5, 2004 - Bush Says Administration Seeking 'New Ways to Harm Our Country' in Gaffe at Bill Signing

"President Bush offered up a new entry for his catalog of "Bushisms" on Thursday, declaring that his administration will "never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people."
Bush misspoke as he delivered a speech at the signing ceremony for a $417 billion defense spending bill.
"Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we," Bush said. "They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."
No one in Bush's audience of military brass or Pentagon chiefs reacted." - ABC (08/05/04)

 

August 10, 2004 - President Bush nominates U.S. Rep. Porter Goss (R-FL) to head the CIA.

Bush nominates Goss to head CIA

"President Bush on Tuesday nominated U.S. Rep. Porter Goss to lead the CIA, an intelligence agency that has been under fire and under the microscope since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
Goss's nomination was praised by Republicans, but key Democrats objected to Bush's choice, questioning whether any lawmaker could bring non-partisan objectivity to the post.
And some questioned whether Goss was too close to the CIA to shake things up at the agency, which was the focus of some critical comments in a recent report by the independent 9/11 commission. The agency has also been faulted for its pre-war intelligence on Iraq.
Democratic Sen. Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, the vice chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, described himself as "disappointed" by Goss's nomination.
In a written statement, Rockefeller stated we "need someone who is objective and independent" to lead the CIA. Rockefeller believes "we should not be nominating any politician to this job," one of the senator's staff members told CNN.
But Sen. Bob Graham, a former Democratic presidential candidate, praised the nomination of his fellow Floridian. He predicted that Goss would be a "vigorous and visionary leader" and urged prompt confirmation by the Senate. Graham once headed the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
Goss, 65, has been chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence since 1997, but he stepped down from that post Tuesday afternoon. Last month, the committee released a scathing report on operations at the CIA." - CNN (08/11/04)

 

(See also:  9/11 - Rep. Porter Goss, Sen. Bob Graham, and Sen. John Kyl are in a meeting at the Capital with ISI director, Lt. Gen. Mahmud Ahmed, who authorized a $100,000 wire transfer to Mohamed Atta; June 3, 2004 - George Tenet resigns as head of the CIA)

 

 

• August 10, 2004 - 'Fahrenheit 9/11' Interview Outtake of CIA Director Porter Goss: "I am not qualified."

"Is this really the guy who should be running the CIA?
See for yourself:
On Tuesday, August 10th, 2004, George W. Bush nominated Florida Rep. Porter Goss to head the Central Intelligence Agency.
Rep. Porter Goss, appeared briefly in Michael Moore's 'Fahrenheit 9/11.' But part of his March 3, 2004 interview for the movie, which did not make it into the film, has suddenly taken on major significance. The following is an excerpt from the interview:
INTERVIEWER: [Y]ou come from intelligence. This is what you did, this is what you know.
REP. GOSS: Uh, that was, uh, 35 years ago.
INTERVIEWER: Okay.
REP. GOSS: It is true I was in CIA from approximately the late 50's to approximately the early 70's. And it's true I was a case officer, clandestine services office and yes I do understand the core mission of the business. I couldn't get a job with CIA today. I am not qualified. I don't have the language skills. I, you know, my language skills were romance languages and stuff. We're looking for Arabists today. I don't have the cultural background probably. And I certainly don't have the technical skills, uh, as my children remind me every day, "Dad you got to get better on your computer." Uh, so, the things that you need to have, I don't have.
-- Rep. Porter Goss, March 3, 2004, Washington, DC" - MichaelMoore.com (08/10/04)

Moore embarrasses new CIA chief
"US Congressman Porter Goss, nominated to be the new director of the CIA, may be talking himself out of the job, according to film-maker Michael Moore.
Moore, who directed the film Fahrenheit 9/11, has released an interview with Mr Goss in which he says he lacks the qualifications for the top spy post.
"I couldn't get a job with CIA today. I am not qualified," Mr Goss told Moore's production company in March.
The White House has dismissed the interview as "ridiculous hearsay".
The interview did not make it into the final edit of the film, which criticises President George W Bush's policy on Iraq.
But following Mr Goss's nomination by the president, Moore has released the transcript and video excerpt on his website." - BBC (08/12/04)

 

August 10, 2004 - U.S.: No testimony at Mounir el Motassadeq's retrial.

"The United States has said it will not let key al Qaeda suspects in its custody testify at the retrial of the only September 11 suspect ever to be convicted.
The announcement came as the retrial of Mounir el Motassadeq opened in a Hamburg courtroom on Tuesday.
In a letter to the German Embassy in Washington, U.S. officials said "interactive access" to such prisoners could hamper their interrogation and lead to critical secret information being divulged, The Associated Press reported.
However, the U.S. State Department letter, which was read out in court, said the United States would provide unclassified summaries, apparently of interrogations, according to AP.
In el Motassadeq's first trial, U.S. authorities refused to allow even transcripts of two key suspects' interrogations to be admitted as evidence.
However, in its letter, the United States said that even information on whether a given individual was in custody was classified as secret.
Other key witnesses sought by German authorities include suspected September 11 plotter Zacarias Moussaoui and Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, who is thought to be the mastermind of the attacks.
El Motassadeq smiled but said nothing as he entered the court. He briefly answered questions about his identity but turned down the judge's offer to respond to the indictment, AP reported.
El Motassadeq's lawyer said he would maintain his client's innocence, then ask the court to drop the proceedings because past experience showed el Motassadeq would not get a fair trial.
Lawyer Josef Graessle-Muenscher told AP he would argue that torture "underlies the interrogation system of the United States," making any evidence from Binalshibh or Mohammed inadmissible even if it is provided.
He cited reports from prisoners released from U.S. military detention at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and the policy of holding Taliban and al Qaeda suspects without giving them the usual rights of prisoners of war set out in the Geneva Conventions, AP said." - CNN (05/10/04)

(See also:  May 5, 2004 - Motassadeq has asked court to release him from prison pending his new trial; January 25, 2005 - 9/11 victim’s son asks FBI to describe his Mother's ordeal at Motassadeq's retrial)

 

• August 10, 2004 - Boeing marks end of 757 fuselage program - USA Today (08/10/04)

 

• August 27, 2004 - '911 in Plane Site' Video Shocks Sacramento Citizens

"A new 9-11 video was screened last night in Sacramento, California, leaving the audience stunned.
'911 in Plane Site' presents actual film from that fateful day and careful analysis focusing on the Pentagon and the two World Trade Center buildings. By slowing down the actual news feeds that day from networks like CNN, FOX, the BBC and others, what you see is quite different from what most people saw in "real time" that day. Live footage from the Pentagon and what was missed by most because of the smoke and confusion was captured up close by the media. Following the showing, a retired vet remarked, "How did we miss this all this time? I've seen media clips of the front of that building [the Pentagon] many times, but I wasn't really seeing what was there. I feel sick."

One particular interview that brought gasps from the audience and many looking around with shock etched on their faces was an interview conducted - live at the time - by FOX News. This intense interview with Mark Burnback, an employee of FOX News, contains the following narrative, paraphrased: Burnback was close to the path of the second plane and had a good long look at what he describes was not a commercial airliner. The plane that hit the second tower had no windows, Burnback was very clear about that. The plane had some kind of blue logo on the front near the nose and looked like a cargo plane. This point was driven to the viewer several times along with the comment from this FOX employee that "this plane wasn't from around here or anything you'd see take off from the airport."
Other footage includes several women who had a very clear view watching the second plane hit were yelling, "That wasn't American Airlines....It wasn't American Airlines going into the building." These interviews were played that morning once on FOX News, never to be replayed again, despite the massive saturation and repetition by the media for many days to come.
Other extremely disturbing segments of this video are the clear, slow motion shots of the second plane going into the towers which show a flash right before the nose of the plane hits the building and a pod attached to the bottom of the plane. This strange flash is clearly recorded from four different angles from four different cameras. While there is only one known piece of film showing the first plane hitting the first tower, in slow motion one can clearly see - as with the second plane - a flash from the nose section right before impact. What caused this?
This video raises extremely disturbing questions about the planes that hit the Pentagon and the World Trade Centers, but no conclusions or accusations are made by the commentator. To date, only one piece of film has been released by DoD of the front of the Pentagon. The question raised in the video is where is all the other film footage from the Pentagon? The heart beat of America's military and security, with a building and perimeter loaded with cameras, but no film for the public to view of events as they unfolded except from one camera?
According to the producers, the purpose of '911 in Plane Site' is to demonstrate that Americans saw one thing that morning that was so shocking, so horrific and so massive, the finer details weren't really being picked up. The producer reinforces to the viewer that after one broadcast of many very controversial interviews live on the spot, these particular interviews were never broadcast again, i.e. firefighters on the spot talking about the explosions and bombs inside the towers. Since 9-11, it has been reported that "Building Seven" collapsed because of the two World Trade Center towers collapsing. However, the footage on this video tells a different story and raises more questions.
'911 in Plane Site,' produced by Power Hour Productions (to order video, call: 800-955-0116), leaves one with many questions as demonstrated by a very upset senior citizen who requested her last name be withheld. Mary asked, "If these weren't commercial airliners, where are those flights? Where are the passengers? My, God what really happened that day?" Indeed, this seemed to be the biggest question expressed by viewers after the lights came back on, but for which there were no answers. Some viewers were visibly upset, angry and "want damn answers" from the Bush Administration. Others just walked out the door in silence. One upset man commented on the way out of the viewing, "It's time to get this on PBS and every investigative news program on TV. We need answers." - News With Views (08/13/04)

 

 

• August 27, 2004 - Small toys showing an airplane flying into the World Trade Center were packed inside bags of candy and sent to small groceries around the country before being recalled.

"Small toys showing an airplane flying into the World Trade Center were packed inside more than 14,000 bags of candy and sent to small groceries around the country before being recalled.
Lisy Corp., the wholesaler that distributed the candy, said Friday that the toys were purchased in bulk from a Miami-based import company.
Pedron said Lisy did not notice the small plastic figurines until two people complained, but there is no mistaking what the toys represent: At the bottom of each is the product number 9011." - CNN (08/27/04)

 

August 30, 2004 - Half of New Yorkers Believe US Leaders Had Foreknowledge of Impending 9-11 Attacks and “Consciously Failed” To Act; 66% Call For New Probe of Unanswered Questions by Congress or New York’s Attorney General, New Zogby International Poll Reveals

"On the eve of a Republican National Convention invoking 9/11 symbols, sound bytes and imagery, half of New York City residents and 41% of New York citizens overall say that some of our leaders "knew in advance that attacks were planned on or around September 11, 2001, and that they consciously failed to act," according to the poll conducted by Zogby International.
The poll is the first of its kind conducted in America that surveys attitudes regarding US government complicity in the 9/11 tragedy. Despite the acute legal and political implications of this accusation, nearly 30% of registered Republicans and over 38% of those who described themselves as "very conservative" supported the claim.
W. David Kubiak, executive director of 911truth.org, the group that commissioned the poll, expressed genuine surprise that New Yorkers' belief in the administration's complicity is as high or higher than that seen overseas. "We're familiar with high levels of 9/11 skepticism abroad where there has been open debate of the evidence for US government complicity. On May 26th the Toronto Star reported a national poll showing that 63% of Canadians are also convinced US leaders had 'prior knowledge' of the attacks yet declined to act. There was no US coverage of this startling poll or the facts supporting the Canadians' conclusions, and there has been virtually no debate on the victim families' scores of still unanswered questions. I think these numbers show that most New Yorkers are now fed up with the silence, and that politicians trying to exploit 9/11 do so at their peril. The 9/11 case is not closed and New York's questions are not going away."
Zogby International conducted interviews of 808 adults chosen at random in New York State." - ZOGBY (08/30/04); 911Truth.org (08/30/04)

(For the breakdown of results of this poll:  www.911truth.org/dossier/zogby911.pdf)

"A Zogby poll released Monday said that 49 percent of New York City residents believed that national leaders "knew in advance that attacks were planned . . . and that they consciously failed to act." An even larger proportion of minority New Yorkers take this view. Sixty-three percent of black New Yorkers and 60 percent of Hispanics believe that officials had warnings, the poll said.
By no means do all New Yorkers believe this. Nearly 400,000 New Yorkers (out of 2 million in the city who voted) chose Bush in 2000, and many of them believe strongly that the president deserves credit for shielding the city from further attacks." - Washington Post (09/01/04)

NYC poll: Half think leaders knew 9-11 attacks coming, Surprising Zogby survey indicates citizens want government to open new investigation

"Half of New York City residents believe some government leaders "knew in advance that attacks were planned on or around Sept. 11, 2001, and that they consciously failed to act," according to a poll by Zogby International.
The new survey, conducted on the eve of the Republican National Convention, showed 66 percent want Congress or New York's attorney general to open up a new investigation of "unanswered questions" surrounding the attacks.
Nearly 30 percent of registered Republicans and more than 38 percent of those who described themselves as "very conservative" supported the claim that leaders knew of the attacks in advance, the poll showed.
The charge found high support among adults under 30, 63 percent; African-Americans, 63 percent; Hispanics, 60 percent; Asians, 59 percent; and "Born Again" evangelical Christians, 50 percent.
The poll also indicated 51 percent of New Yorkers think U.S. leaders "deliberately misled" them before the war.
Possible charges, according to the group, range from criminal negligence and gross dereliction of duty to foreknowledge, complicity and subsequent obstruction of justice." - WorldNetDaily (09/01/04)

 

(See also:  May 26, 2004 - Poll: 63% of Canadians believe U.S. leaders had "prior knowledge" of 9/11)

 

• August 30, 2004 - GOP invokes 9/11 at Republican convention to promote Bush election.

"A few miles from Ground Zero, two widows of the Sept. 11 attacks, a grieving sister, this city's former mayor and its ex-police chief invoked memories of the worst attack on U.S. soil as President Bush's convention cast him as a decisive leader in a dangerous world, unafraid to make tough decisions.
They spoke of bodies falling from the World Trade Center towers, frantic calls from a hijacked plane and Bush's pledge a few days after the attack: "They will hear from us."
Giuliani spoke about "seeing the flames of hell and then realizing that I was actually seeing a man a human being jumping from the 101st or 102nd floor."
The strategy of using Sept. 11 at the convention has prompted Democrats to accuse the Republicans of exploiting the tragedy. It was in the immediate aftermath of the attacks that the president scored his highest approval ratings.
Giuliani told reporters earlier in the day that Republicans would not be "intimidated by the Democrats into not talking about Sept. 11."
Hours later, he was on stage recalling Bush's trip to New York days after the attacks, standing atop a wrecked fire truck and promising action.
An emotional high point of the night came when three relatives of Sept. 11 victims came to the stage, bathed in shadows, and spoke of their loved ones.
Deena Burnett, whose husband, Tom, was a passenger on the plane that crashed in Pennsylvania, recalled getting four calls from him during the hijacking. "Don't worry," he said during the last conversation. "We're going to do something."
Debra Burlingame, whose brother Chic was captain of the plane that crashed into the Pentagon, remembered seeing the huge flag draped over the gash in the big building.
None of the relatives mentioned Bush, but their stories were a poignant rebuttal to other relatives who have criticized the administration's response to terrorism threats before and after the attacks." - ABC (08/30/04)

 

September 7, 2004 - Conservative talk show host Bill O'Reilly ridicules New Yorkers where, in a recent Zogby poll, over half think the Bush administration had prior knowledge and allowed 9/11 to happen and says there's not a "shred of verifiable evidence" backing up their "insane belief."

"Increasingly, the visible anti-Bush forces are defining themselves as way out there. A new Zogby poll found that almost half of New York City residents believe some in the Bush administration knew the USA would be attacked on 9/11 and did nothing to stop it. Of course there's not a shred of verifiable evidence backing up that insane belief. New York City is overwhelming anti-Bush, and the rest of country is noticing the caliber of criticism. If I were making a movie about the irrational Bush haters, I would entitle it: "Night of Living Dumb." - Yankton Daily Press & Dakotan (09/07/04)

(See also:  August 30, 2004 - Zogby 9-11 Poll)

 

September 7, 2004 - Vice President Cheney says a vote for Kerry/Edwards in the 2004 elections would put America in danger of being attacked again in a "devastating" way.

"The presidential campaign spiked to a new level of rhetorical heat Tuesday when Vice President Cheney warned that a vote for Democrat John Kerry could bring terrorist attacks on the USA.
Speaking to supporters in Des Moines, Cheney called it "absolutely essential" that on Election Day voters "make the right choice. Because if we make the wrong choice, then the danger is that we'll get hit again, and we'll be hit in a way that will be devastating."
"Dick Cheney's scare tactics crossed the line today," he said. Protecting America from "vicious terrorists" is not a partisan issue, and Cheney and Bush ought to know that, Edwards said.
Cheney said the nation under a Kerry presidency could "fall back into a pre-9/11 mind-set," which he described as viewing terrorist attacks as "just criminal acts" and the nation as "not really at war." - USA Today (09/07/04)

(See also:  October 19, 2004 - Cheney: Terrorists May Bomb U.S. Cities.)

 

September 7, 2004 - Sen. Bob Graham (D-FL) accuses the White House of covering up Saudi involvement with two alleged 9/11 hijackers, Nawaf Alhazmi and Khalid al-Midhar of Flight 77 fame, who lived in San Diego.

"Reviving a controversy that has festered since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the former chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee alleged Tuesday that the White House covered up possible Saudi Arabian government connections to two of the terrorists who lived in San Diego.
The FBI was also acting at the direction of the Bush administration when it refused to let congressional investigators question an informant with whom the terrorists – Nawaf Alhazmi and Khalid al-Midhar – lived, Sen. Bob Graham, D-Fla., said.
"I find that the actions in San Diego present a compelling case that there was Saudi assistance," Graham said in a conference call with reporters that coincided with the release of his book "Intelligence Matters," which concludes that President Bush directed the FBI "to restrain and obfuscate" the investigation, possibly to protect U.S.-Saudi relations.
Graham co-chaired the exhaustive congressional inquiry into the Sept. 11 attacks and is privy to still-classified information about the probe. His book is the latest in a string of examinations of alleged Saudi ties to the hijackers.
At the center of Graham's allegations are two former San Diego men whom he identifies as Saudi intelligence agents – Omar al-Bayoumi and Osama Basnan. Graham describes a web of complex financial and personal relations between the two men and Alhazmi and al-Midhar, who, like 13 of the other hijackers, were Saudi nationals.
He indicates that much more light would be shed on the matter if the Bush administration would agree to declassify 27 pages of the congressional report that remain secret. Releasing the information would do no harm to national security, Graham said.
Graham also discusses at length the congressional investigators' unsuccessful attempts to question the FBI informant, identified as Abdussattar Shaikh, a retired professor and community leader from Lemon Grove.
FBI officials would not deliver a congressional subpoena to Shaikh, with FBI Director Robert Mueller and Attorney General John Ashcroft arguing it would compromise the bureau's ability to cultivate sources in the Muslim community, according to Graham.
The FBI also failed to give Shaikh, whom Graham says had been relocated by the FBI, a list of written questions from the investigators until he had hired a prominent attorney with ties to the Justice Department. The attorney demanded immunity from prosecution for Shaikh, which the congressional intelligence committees refused to grant so the questions went unanswered. "It was as if in an effort to protect their informant, the FBI had secured counsel for him," Graham wrote, adding that Shaikh was having financial difficulties at the time.
Later, Graham said he and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Porter Goss, R-Fla., received a "candid letter" from a senior member of the FBI's congressional affairs staff that said "'the (Bush) administration would not sanction an interview with the source. Nor did the administration agree to allow the FBI to serve a subpoena or a notice of deposition on the source.'" - San Diego Tribune (09/07/04)

(See also: 9/11 - Rep. Porter Goss, Sen. Bob Graham, and Sen. John Kyl are in a meeting at the Capital with ISI director, Lt. Gen. Mahmud Ahmed, who authorized a $100,000 wire transfer to Mohamed Atta; January 5, 2002 - Charles Bishop crashes his stolen Cessna deliberately into a Tampa office building which houses the local office of Sen. Bob Graham; February 23, 2003 - Sen. Graham runs for president; Flight 77's alleged hijackers Nawaf Alhazmi and Khalid al-Midhar)

 

• September 10, 2004 - 9/11: Lingering Questions

"Sept. 11 began and ended with questions — questions that started while the attack was in progress (How many planes?) and multiplied as the towers fell (How many dead?), questions asked out loud to no one in particular or posed silently to television screens (How could it happen?).
For Saturday's third anniversary of the attacks, some of the questions have been satisfied by the recent final report of the Sept. 11 commission.
Other mysteries remain. Some concern whether the necessary changes are being made to improve U.S. terrorism defenses. Others pertain to intelligence information that is still kept classified by the government. A few concern details of pure historical interest.
The most vexing questions, and the least answerable, deal with exactly what happened on Sept. 11 at the top of the towers and in the four doomed planes. These are the facts known only to those who perished, the victims and killers.
"There are still some unanswered questions because obviously the people who were at the heart of the plot are dead," the commission chairman, former New Jersey Gov. Thomas Kean, said when releasing the report, which he called "the definitive work" on the attacks. "If we capture Osama bin Laden – when we capture Osama bin Laden, I hope – and he answers questions, there may be new information."
Bin Laden may know, for example, whether the target for the fourth plane was the Capitol or the White House. That detail may seem trivial, but it completes the story of what the passengers of Flight 93 accomplished by forcing that plane down in Pennsylvania.
It also could help address one of the unknowns in the Sept. 11 report — whether the military would have been capable of shooting down Flight 93 if it approached Washington.
"NORAD officials have maintained that they would have intercepted and shot down United 93," the report reads. "We are not so sure."
The circumstances of the shootdown order itself are unclear. Some witnesses recall hearing Vice President Dick Cheney getting authorization from President Bush to tell military pilots to shoot down suspicious aircraft; other witnesses do not record that conversation. Also unclear is how the shootdown order was transmitted through NORAD.
Other questions concern the plot and plotters, such as whether the 19 hijackers had a support network in the United States as they prepared their scheme. The Sept. 11 report offers no conclusions on this count, but does cast doubt on the notion.
Also unknown is why hijackers Nawaf al Hazmi and Khalid al Mihdhar traveled to California in 2000, the identity the man named "Khallam" with whom Hamzi and Midhar met or why hijackers Mohammed Atta and Abdul Aziz Omari went to Portland, Maine on the eve of the attacks. Because there were no surveillance cameras, no one knows for sure if the hijackers who boarded plans in Boston or Newark set off metal detectors or were searched.
As for the biggest question of all — whether the attacks could have been prevented — the Sept. 11 panel made no ruling.
At the World Trade Center, there is no certainty as to when people in the North Tower were told to evacuate, or if emergency phones were operating.
It is unclear why tenants in the South Tower were initially told to return to their offices after the other tower was hit. That puzzle may never be solved, because the person who made that announcement, like so many witnesses to the most graphic details of the day, is dead.
Dead too are the people who could tell exactly how the hijackers gained entry to the cockpits of the planes they seized — or the other specifics of the last moments of the hundreds of passengers and crew.
Much is also unknown about the fate of victims at the World Trade Center. Of the firefighters who died in the North Tower, some never heard the evacuation orders issued after the South Tower collapsed. Others might have heard the order and ignored it, perhaps to assist an injured civilian. Some rescuers may have reacted to the order but simply did not get out in time.
Among civilians, it cannot be known for sure how many died when the planes hit the towers. Reports of what happened on the floors above the crash area are incomplete, based largely on phone calls from people who died there.
For all the details that will never be known, there are some lingering questions that could ultimately be answered.
Goodrich hopes to eventually learn about information, now classified, pertaining to "the hijackers, their associates, their funding sources, the means by which they gained entry into the country, the nature of the weapons that were available to them and how they were able to get past security." - CBS (09/10/04)

 

September 11, 2004 - Families Mark Third Anniversary of 9/11

"With quavering voices, parents and grandparents of those killed at the World Trade Center slowly read the names of the victims early Saturday to mark the third anniversary of the attacks that brought down the twin towers.
Moments of silence were observed at 8:46 and 9:03 a.m., the times two planes slammed into the trade center towers on Sept. 11, 2001, and at 9:59 and 10:29, when the two towers collapsed.
At Arlington National Cemetery, there was a moment of silence at 9:37, the time that another hijacked plane hit the Pentagon, where 184 people died. In Pennsylvania, relatives gathered in the field where the fourth plane went down, killing the 40 passengers and crew aboard Flight 93.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Gov. George Pataki, and former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani each delivered readings. Pataki's quoted former President Dwight D. Eisenhower, describing losses of World War II: "There's no tragedy in life like the death of a child. Things never get back to the way they were."
At Arlington National Cemetery, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld joined relatives of those killed in the Pentagon near a large granite memorial marker that bears the names of each victim.
"The lives that were lost on September 11th have meaning. They live on as a testament to a country that is courageous, that is determined, to a people that are resilient despite great loss, and to a cause that continues until that mission is accomplished and beyond," Rumsfeld said.
Both President Bush and Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry spoke on the anniversary of the attacks. Bush used the occasion to warn of continued danger and pledge victory in the war on terror.
"We will not relent until the terrorists who plot murder against our people are found and dealt with," Bush said in a rare live radio address from the Oval Office.
Three years on, work still continues to identify the 20,000 pieces of human remains recovered from the trade center site. The medical examiner's office has identified about 1,570 victims, or just 60 percent. They do not expect to match the remains of every victim because some remains were too badly damaged in the fiery collapse." - ABC (09/11/04)

 

September 11, 2004 - John Edwards accuses Bush and Cheney of implying link between Saddam and the 9/11 attacks.

"Democratic vice presidential candidate John Edwards on Sunday accused President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney of misleading Americans by implying a link between deposed Iraqi President Saddam Hussein and the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.
"Today, Secretary of State (Colin) Powell made clear that there is no connection between Saddam Hussein and the attacks on September the 11th," Edwards said before an AFL-CIO rally. "From this day forward, this administration should never suggest that there is."
The North Carolina senator was referring to Powell's comments on NBC's "Meet the Press" in which the Republican reiterated a statement made by Bush last September that the administration has no evidence that Saddam was involved in the attacks.
Steve Schmidt, a Bush-Cheney campaign spokesman, said Powell's comments are consistent with those made by Bush, Cheney and the bipartisan commission that investigated the attacks.
Bush said last Sept. 17 that "there's no question that Saddam Hussein had al-Qaida ties." But at the same time the president said, "We've had no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with September the 11th."
At the time, Bush also denied that there was an attempt by Cheney or others in the administration to try to confuse people about any link between Saddam and Sept. 11.
The president's remarks last year were in response to questions about a Cheney appearance on NBC's "Meet the Press" three days earlier in which the vice president said "I don't know" when asked whether Saddam was involved in the 9/11 attacks.
However, the Kerry-Edwards campaign argued on Sunday that Cheney suggested such a link as recently as last week.
Speaking at a town-hall meeting in Cincinnati, Cheney recounted the invasion of Afghanistan after the attacks, in which the United States punished the Taliban for harboring al-Qaida. Then he said, "In Iraq, we had a similar situation."
Saddam "provided safe harbor and sanctuary for terrorists for years," including al-Qaida, Cheney said.
Edwards said: "Vice President Cheney should not say the kind of things he said Friday and the president should not mislead the American people by implying there's connection between September the 11th and the attacks of September 11th and Saddam Hussein."
The Sept. 11 commission cited contacts between Saddam's regime and al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden, but said there was no "collaborative operational relationship" and said Iraq was not involved in the Sept. 11 terrorist strikes." - ABC (09/12/04)

 

 

September 21, 2004 - The number of documents classified in the Bush administration increased by over 50 percent since 2001.

 

Bush's passion for secrecy

"SOME MAY be tempted to dismiss this column as more self-interested whining from the media, but stick with it -- it's really about the public's right to know, not the media's. The Bush administration, resistant to scrutiny even before Sept. 11, has drawn a cloak of secrecy over its official actions that has steadily insulated it from the taxpayers.

Bush has expanded the number of agencies with authority to classify documents as secret, including Health and Human Services, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Department of Agriculture. In March, 2003 he signed an excutive order allowing a broad range of documents to be kept beyond the reach of the public for up to 25 years. The number of documents classified in the Bush administration increased by over 50 percent since 2001. Freedom of Information Act requests, meanwhile, are increasingly subject to delays, costly fees, and exemptions.

In 2001, Bush issued an executive order rolling back the Presidential Records Act. The order shifts the burden of accessing presidential archives to the public; scholars could be forced to sue for memos and records of former presidencies." - Boston Globe (12/21/04)

 

(See also:  November 1, 2001 - Bush signs Executive Order 13233 which limits public access to presidential records; March 25, 2003 - Bush signs Executive Order 13292 which allows for documents to be kept secret for up to 25 years and gives classification powers to the Vice President)

 

September 21, 2004 - Government to order airlines to turn over passenger data including passenger names, flight information, addresses, telephone numbers and can even require the disclosure of meal orders, which could indicate a person's ethnicity.

"The government on Tuesday asked airlines to turn over information they collected on passengers who traveled in June, the first step in a controversial plan to screen for terrorists.
Known as Secure Flight, the program would require airlines to provide passenger names, flight information, addresses and telephone numbers. It can even require the disclosure of meal orders, which could indicate a person's ethnicity.
Under Secure Flight, federal agents will match information from airlines against terrorist watch lists newly consolidated by the FBI. Airline computers now match passengers against a much smaller list of suspected terrorists. The government will not turn over complete terrorist lists to the airlines because they are classified.
Privacy advocates have objected vigorously to similar proposals, and earlier this year pressured Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge to scrap a massive screening program known as CAPPS II. More than $100 million had been spent on the program by the time it was aborted.
"Secretary Ridge said that a stake had been driven into the heart of CAPPS II, but it now appears that the vampire is crawling out of the coffin," said Barry Steinhardt, a privacy expert with the ACLU.
Airlines say they generally support Secure Flight. But a spokesman for the airline's trade group, the Air Transport Association, said carriers would object if costs to provide the passenger data are too high or if it slows check-ins.
A key objection to CAPPS II was its intent to use data gathered by businesses to check passengers. But the replacement program also will use commercial data, although to what extent remains unclear.
Another objection is that watch lists contain many erroneous entries, and passengers who are flagged cannot find out why. A TSA spokesman said a passenger advocate will handle such complaints." - USA Today (09/21/04)

 

September 21, 2004 - Cat Stevens to be deported after jet diversion; deemed "terror threat".

"Homeland Security officials said Yusuf Islam — formerly known as singer Cat Stevens — will be deported Wednesday after being denied entry to the U.S. Stevens had recently been placed on a government "no-fly" list after U.S. authorities received information indicating associations with potential terrorists, a government official said.
The former singer was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 919, en route to Dulles International Airport from London when the match was made Tuesday between a passenger and a name on the watch list, said Nico Melendez, a spokesman for the Transportation Security Administration.
Homeland Security Department spokesman Dennis Murphy identified the passenger as Islam. "He was interviewed and denied admission to the United States on national security grounds," Murphy said.
Officials had no details about why the peace activist might be considered a risk to the United States. Islam had visited New York in May for a charity event and to promote a DVD of his 1976 MajiKat tour.
A statement posted on a fan-supported Web site where his music is promoted said Islam being on a watch list "is certainly an error."
"It's also a very sad state of affairs when a man best known as a peace loving pop star can be grouped into the same category Osama Bin Laden just because of his chosen faith," the statement said.
In a statement on his Web site, he wrote, "Crimes against innocent bystanders taken hostage in any circumstance have no foundation whatsoever in the life of Islam and the model example of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him."
After the Sept. 11 attacks, Islam issued a statement saying: "No right thinking follower of Islam could possibly condone such an action: The Quran equates the murder of one innocent person with the murder of the whole of humanity." - USA Today (09/21/04)

 

September 22, 2004 - Former CIA agent says Bush to blame for 9/11

"Former CIA agent Ray McGovern went over what he considers the failures of the intelligence community and current administration over the past few years. He has 27 years of experience as a CIA analyst to draw upon and has dealt with every administration from Kennedy to Bush Sr.
"It's difficult for people to learn the truth about things like Iraq," said McGovern, a member of the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS), which is comprised of more than 40 former employees of agencies such as the CIA, the Defense Intelligence Agency, Department of State's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, Army Intelligence, the FBI and the National Security Agency.
He also criticized the 9/11 Commission's final report, saying the committee was comprised of political extremists who couldn't reach a consensus.
"It wasn't a bipartisan commission; it was more like a bipolar commission," McGovern said. "To say that no one could prevent 9/11 was a bold-faced lie. It basically let the president and everyone responsible off the hook."
He went on to talk about the faulty intelligence attorney general John Ashcroft used when he announced that terrorist attacks may occur before or around election time, saying that elections might have to be postponed if the United States is attacked.
"There might be a real or staged terrorist attack in order to postpone the elections," McGovern said. "This might seem outlandish; I hope it is."
He mentioned how the Bush administration wanted to involve the country with the war in Iraq for certain reasons other than fear of weapons of mass destruction, which was just a more media-friendly explanation for the war.
"I have initials for why I think we went to war in Iraq," McGovern said. "O.I.L. O-I-L, O is for oil, I is for Israel and L is for logistics, as in when we have Iraq we have a foothold and a number of bases strategically placed in the Middle East so we can be in control over there and also to protect Israel."
Next he brought up civil liberties in the United States and how they have declined in the past few years.
"No one has a corner on the truth. We don't have a corner on the truth, but it is certain that Fox News does not," McGovern said. "That most people get their 'news' from Fox News is extremely troubling." - Oracle/Univ. of South Florida (09/22/04)

 

September 23, 2004 - Bush: Terrorists May Plan More Attacks

"Standing beside Iraq's interim leader, President Bush contended Thursday that insurgents could "plot and plan attacks elsewhere, in America and other free nations," if the United States pulled out.
"If we stop fighting the terrorists in Iraq, they would be free to plot and plan attacks elsewhere, in America and other free nations," Bush said." - ABC (09/23/04)

 

October 6, 2004 - U.S. Report Finds No Evidence of Iraq WMD, No Evidence Saddam Made Weapons After 1991

"Contradicting the main argument for a war that has cost more than 1,000 American lives, the top U.S. arms inspector said Wednesday he found no evidence that Iraq produced any weapons of mass destruction after 1991. He also concluded that Saddam Hussein's capabilities to develop such weapon had dimmed not grown during a dozen years of sanctions before last year's U.S. invasion.
Contrary to prewar statements by President Bush and top administration officials, Saddam did not have chemical and biological stockpiles when the war began and his nuclear capabilities were deteriorating, not advancing, said Charles Duelfer, head of the Iraq Survey Group.
White House spokesman Scott McClellan said Tuesday that Saddam was "a gathering threat that needed to be taken seriously, that it was a matter of time before he was going to begin pursuing those weapons of mass destruction."
But before the war, the Bush administration cast Saddam as an immediate threat, not a gathering threat.
For example, Bush said in October 2002 that "Saddam Hussein still has chemical and biological weapons and is increasing his capabilities to make more." Bush also said then, "The evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program." - ABC (10/06/04)

 

October 7, 2004 - A CIA report concludes that Saddam Hussein did not possess stockpiles of WMD's as the Bush Administration claimed.

Report: No WMD stockpiles in Iraq

"Saddam Hussein did not possess stockpiles of illicit weapons at the time of the U.S. invasion in March 2003 and had not begun any program to produce them, a CIA report concludes.
In fact, the long-awaited report, authored by Charles Duelfer, who advises the director of central intelligence on Iraqi weapons, says Iraq's WMD program was essentially destroyed in 1991 and Saddam ended Iraq's nuclear program after the 1991 Gulf War.
The report was released nearly two years ago to the day that President Bush strode onto a stage in Cincinnati and told the audience that Saddam Hussein's Iraq "possesses and produces chemical and biological weapons" and "is seeking nuclear weapons."
"The danger is already significant and it only grows worse with time," Bush said in the speech delivered October 7, 2002. "If we know Saddam Hussein has dangerous weapons today -- and we do -- does it make any sense for the world to wait to confront him as he grows even stronger and develops even more dangerous weapons?"
But Sen. Carl Levin of Michigan, ranking Democrat on the committee, said 1,750 experts have visited 1,200 potential WMD sites and have come up empty-handed.
"It is important to emphasize that central fact because the administration's case for going to war against Iraq rested on the twin arguments that Saddam Hussein had existing stockpiles of weapons of mass destruction and that he might give weapons of mass destruction to al Qaeda to attack us -- as al Qaeda had attacked us on 9/11," Levin said.
Sen. Edward Kennedy, D-Massachusetts, asked Duelfer about the future likelihood of finding weapons of mass destruction, to which Duelfer replied, "The chance of finding a significant stockpile is less than 5 percent."
Duelfer said Wednesday his teams found no evidence of a mobile biological weapons capability.
The U.S. official said he believes Saddam decided to give up his weapons in 1991, but tried to conceal his nuclear and biological programs for as long as possible. Then in 1995, when his son-in-law Hussain Kamal defected with information about the programs, he gave those up, too.
Iraq's nuclear program, which in 1991 was well-advanced, "was decaying" by 2001, the official said, to the point where Iraq was -- if it even could restart the program -- "many years from a bomb." - CNN (10/07/04)

Report concludes no WMD in Iraq

"Iraq had no stockpiles of biological, chemical or nuclear weapons before last year's US-led invasion, the chief US weapons inspector has concluded.

But despite the lack of actual weapons, the White House said the report showed Saddam Hussein's intent and capability and justifies the decision to go to war.
Democrats, on the other hand, used the report to attack the Bush administration, claiming the president misled the American people.

President Bush again defended last year's invasion, though he made no reference to the report.
He told supporters on his election campaign trail that the world was better off without Saddam Hussein, and the risk of him passing weapons of mass destruction (WMD) to terror groups was "a risk we could not afford to take".
But the top Democrat on the Armed Services Committee, Senator Carl Levin, said Mr Duelfer's findings undercut the government's main arguments for war.
"We did not go to war because Saddam had future intentions to obtain weapons of mass destruction," Mr Levin said." - BBC (10/07/04)

(See also:  March 20, 2003 - U.S. and coalition forces invade Iraq; January 12, 2005 - White House says the U.S. no longer searching for WMD's in Iraq)

 

October 7, 2004 - An immensely popular flash video that's been circulating on the internet called "Pentagon Strike" which questions if Flight 77 really crashed into the Pentagon and features Killtown's The Penta-Lawn 2000! and other research from this website, is featured in an article by the Washington Post.

"Working from his home office in a small town in England, Darren Williams spent four weeks this summer making a short but startling video that raises novel questions about the 2001 attack on the Pentagon.
The video, "9/11: Pentagon Strike," suggests that it was not American Airlines Flight 77 that slammed into the Pentagon, but a missile or a small plane.
With rock music as a backdrop, the video offers flashes of photographs taken shortly after impact, interspersed with witness accounts. The pictures seem incompatible with damage caused by a jumbo jet, and no one mentions seeing one. Red arrows point to unbroken windows in the burning building. Firefighters stand outside a perfectly round hole in a Pentagon wall where the Boeing 757 punched through; it is less than 20 feet in diameter.
Propelled by word of mouth, Internet search engines and e-mail, the video has been downloaded by millions of people around the world.
The Pentagon video could be a case study. Williams created a Web site for the video, www.pentagonstrike.co.uk.
"Pentagon Strike" is just the latest and flashiest example of a growing number of Web sites, books and videos contending that something other than a commercial airliner hit the Pentagon.
Most make their case through the selective use of photographs and eyewitness accounts reported during the confusion of the first hours after the attack. They say they don't know what really happened to American Airlines Flight 77 and don't offer other explanations. The doubters say they are just asking questions that have not been answered satisfactorily.
The ready and growing audience for conspiracy theories about the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks has been particularly galling to those who worked on the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, the bipartisan panel known as the 9/11 commission.
The belief that the government is lying about the Sept. 11 attacks is coming from both the right and the left. Experts say more than suspicion of the Bush administration is at work.
David Ray Griffin considers himself an unlikely recruit to what is called the "9/11 Truth Movement." The retired theologian, who taught religion for three decades at Claremont School of Theology, initially dismissed the notion that it was not an airliner that hit the Pentagon. But after visiting several Internet sites raising questions about the attack, he ended up writing a book. "The New Pearl Harbor," published in the spring, argues that a Boeing 757 would have caused far more damage and left more wreckage strewn around the Pentagon.
"There are reasons why people doubt the official story," he said. "There are photographs taken, and there is no Boeing in sight."
Suspicions formed as the Pentagon still smoldered.
For 2 1/2 years, the attack on the Pentagon has been discussed and researched by members of Knight-Jadczyk's online group, the Quantum Future School.
The group's talks formed the basis for articles in which Knight-Jadczyk argues that after the attack on the World Trade Center, eyewitnesses at the Pentagon were predisposed to see a large airliner. She believes that the Pentagon was attacked by a smaller plane and that members of the Bush administration were somehow complicit because it was beneficial for war-profiteers and Israel." - Washington Post (10/07/04); Washington Post graphic

- Flash video links:  Pentagon Strike

(See also:  Killtown's:  Did Flight 77 really crash into the Pentagon?)

 

October 12, 2004 - Government terrorist warnings boost President Bush's approval ratings

 

"When the federal government issues a terrorist warning, presidential approval ratings jump, a Cornell University sociologist finds. Interestingly, terrorist warnings also boost support for the president on issues that are largely irrelevant to terrorism, such as his handling of the economy.

When Willer linked the warnings to presidential ratings from 2001 to 2004, he found that each terror warning prompted, on average, a 2.75 point increase in the president's approval rating the following week.

Willer points to the aftermath of the Sep. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States as an example of the tendency. After Sept. 11, 2001, approval of Bush's job performance jumped from 51 percent on Sept. 10, 2001, to 86 percent on Sept. 15, 2001, in a Gallup Poll. Similarly, approval for Bush's handling of the economy jumped from 54 percent on July 11, 2001, to 72 percent on Oct. 5, 2001, says Willer.

When the out-group threat includes terror, Willer says that the social-identity effects are further heightened. He notes that his findings also are consistent with terror management theory, which indicates that threats involving mortality not only increase in-group biases but also nationalism." - Cornell University (10/04/04)

 

 

 

 • October 12, 2004 - Report: At least 11 Al-Qaida suspects are "missing" in U.S. custody including alleged architect of 9/11, Khalid Shaikh Mohammad, and Abu Zubaydah, who is believed to be a close aide to Osama bin Laden.

 

Report: Al-Qaida suspects 'missing' in U.S. custody

"At least 11 Al-Qaida suspects have ``disappeared'' in U.S. custody, and some may have been tortured, Human Rights Watch said in a report issued Monday.
The prisoners are probably being held outside the United States without access to the Red Cross or any oversight of their treatment, the human rights group said. In some cases, the United States will not even acknowledge the prisoners are in custody.
The report said the prisoners include the alleged architect of the Sept. 11 attacks, Khalid Shaikh Mohammad, as well as Abu Zubaydah, who is believed to be a close aide to Osama bin Laden.
In refusing to disclose the prisoners' whereabouts or acknowledge the detentions, Human Rights Watch said, the U.S. government has violated international law, international treaties and the Geneva Convention. The group called on the government to bring all the prisoners ``under the protection of the law.''
CIA spokesman Mark Mansfield said the agency has not seen the report and declined to comment. The White House had no immediate comment.
The report -- titled ``The United States' `Disappeared': The CIA's Long-term `Ghost Detainees' '' -- said many of the prisoners have provided valuable intelligence to U.S. officials. But it also cited reports that some detainees have lied under pressure to please their interrogators.
Human Rights Watch (www.hrw.org) has no firsthand knowledge of the treatment of these detainees. Much of the report stems from news accounts that have cited unidentified government sources acknowledging the torture or mistreatment of detainees.
The report provides a brief sketch of 11 detainees believed to be incommunicado in undisclosed locations. They hail from countries across the Arab world, including Libya, Yemen, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. U.S. authorities have confirmed the detention of six of them, the report said." - San Jose Mercury (10/12/04) [WayBack Machine]

(See also:  July 23, 2001 - KSM receives US visa despite 1996 terrorism indictment)

 

October 13, 2004 - FDA approves injecting ID chips in patients

FDA approves injecting ID chips in patients

"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the practice of injecting humans with tracking devices for medical purposes, according to a Florida company that makes the devices.
Applied Digital, maker of the implantable VeriChip for humans, announced Wednesday the FDA's approval of its technology for use in hospitals following a yearlong review by the agency.
The computer chips, which are about the size of a grain of rice, are designed to be injected into the fatty tissue of the arm. Using a special scanner, doctors and other hospital staff can fetch information from the chips, such as the patient's identity, their blood type and the details of their condition, in order to speed treatment. - ZDNet (10/13/04)

 

FDA CLEARS VERICHIP™ FOR MEDICAL APPLICATIONS IN THE UNITED STATES

"Applied Digital (NASDAQ: ADSX), a provider of Security Through Innovation™ and Digital Angel Corporation (AMEX:DOC) announced today that VeriChip™, the world’s first implantable radio frequency identification (RFID) microchip for human use, has been cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for medical uses in the United States." - Applied Digital (10/13/04)

 

October 19, 2004 - A fire in a 56-story Venezuelan skyscraper spreads over 26 floors and burns for over 17 hours, but does not collapse.

"Military helicopters doused one of Venezuela's tallest buildings with water Sunday, bringing under control a blaze many feared might cause the tower to collapse.
Earlier, nearby residences and businesses were evacuated. Two floors and some staircases in the building collapsed. But by Sunday afternoon, the temperature inside the burning building had dropped, lessening the danger of a collapse, Caracas fire chief Rodolfo Briceno said.
"Engineers have gone up there and inspected" the building, Briceno said, adding that "it is very solid."
Neighbors of the 56-story, 730-foot office tower were allowed to return to their residential buildings in downtown Caracas' Parque Central complex Sunday afternoon, but firefighters expected to work through the night to extinguish the last flames and keep them from spreading.
The blaze began before midnight Saturday on the 34th floor of the East Tower in the complex, Briceno said. By Sunday afternoon, it had burned for more 17 hours and spread over 26 floors, reaching the roof. The complex was built in 1976 and is considered a Caracas landmark.
The high temperatures also stopped firefighters from reaching the tower's upper floors, where the fire was strongest. Military troops and rescue teams were brought in to help, and military helicopters flew over the building, dropping water on the tower, which houses government offices and ministries.
Firefighters' efforts were also hampered by malfunctioning water pumps and the lack of fire extinguishers inside the building as fire laws are not strictly enforced in Venezuela.
Earlier in the day, officials expressed fears that the building might collapse.
"There is a problem because the building is made of steel. Because of the high temperatures, the structure could collapse," Interior minister Jesse Chacon told President Hugo Chavez during his weekly radio and television show." - CBS (10/18/04)

(See also:  9/11 - WTC 7 collapses supposedly from an internal fire; February 13, 2005 - A 32-story Madrid skyscraper is gutted by a fire, but does not collapse)

 

October 19, 2004 - Cheney: Terrorists May Bomb U.S. Cities

"Vice President Dick Cheney on Tuesday raised the possibility of terrorists bombing U.S. cities with nuclear weapons and questioned whether Sen. John Kerry could combat such an ``ultimate threat ... you've got to get your mind around.''
``The biggest threat we face now as a nation is the possibility of terrorists ending up in the middle of one of our cities with deadlier weapons than have ever before been used against us - biological agents or a nuclear weapon or a chemical weapon of some kind to be able to threaten the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans,'' Cheney said.
``That's the ultimate threat. For us to have a strategy that's capable of defeating that threat, you've got to get your mind around that concept,'' Cheney said.
The Kerry campaign has contended its Republican opponents are trying to frighten people with warnings of likely terrorist attacks in the United States and by suggesting America's enemies want Bush to be defeated.
In Des Moines, Iowa, on Sept. 7, Cheney told supporters: ``It's absolutely essential that eight weeks from today, on Nov. 2, we make the right choice, because if we make the wrong choice, then the danger is that we'll get hit again, that we'll be hit in a way that will be devastating from the standpoint of the United States, and that we'll fall back into the pre-9/11 mindset, if you will, that in fact these terrorist attacks are just criminal acts and that we're not really at war.'' - Guardian (10/19/04)


(See also:  September 7, 2004 - Vice President Cheney says a vote for Kerry/Edwards in the 2004 elections would put America in danger of being attacked again in a "devastating" way.)

 

October 25, 2004 - Former President Jimmy Carter says Bush exploited 9/11 attacks

"President Bush has exploited the September 11, 2001, attacks for political gain, former President Jimmy Carter said in an interview published Monday.
"I think the basic reason is that our country suffered, in 9/11, a terrible and shocking attack ... and George Bush has been adroit at exploiting that attack and he has elevated himself, in the consciousness of many Americans, to a heroic commander in chief, fighting a global threat against America."
"He's repeatedly played that card, and to some degree quite successfully. I think that success has dissipated," he added." - CNN (10/25/04)

 

October 27, 2004 - NORAD takes their 9/11 response timeline off their website.

 -Original NORAD 9/11 response timeline link:   http://www.norad.mil/index.cfm?fuseaction=home.news_rel_09_18_01

-NORAD's newsroom page shows their 9/11 timeline released on September 18, 2001 is gone:  NORAD's Newsroom

-Wayback Machine archive that shows NORAD's last edit on this link was on:  October 27, 2004

-Archive of NORAD's 9/11 timeline response at:  Wayback Machine

(See also:  July 31, 2004 - Sen. Mark Dayton, D-Minn., says NORAD and the FAA lied about failures on 9/11)
 

 

October 28, 2004 - Five days before the 2004 Presidential elections, an alleged American Al Qaeda warns of U.S. attacks.

"A man describing himself as an American member of al Qaeda says a new wave of terror attacks against the United States could come "at any moment," according to a videotape obtained by ABC News.
The tape was acquired by ABC News last Friday from a source known to have Taliban and al Qaeda contacts in the tribal region of Pakistan. ABC paid the source $500 in transportation fees.
While CIA officials say they have not been able to authenticate the 75-minute tape, an agency spokesman says it "appears to have been produced by al Qaeda's media organization, al Sahab productions." The tape is marked with the same logo and graphics seen on previous videos released by al Qaeda.
The man on the tape is identified only as "Azzam the American." U.S. officials say they had not previously known of the nom de guerre. His face is never fully visible and he makes no reference to where in the United States he might have lived.
"No, my fellow countrymen you are guilty, guilty, guilty, guilty. You are as guilty as Bush and Cheney. You're as guilty as Rumsfeld and Ashcroft and Powell," he says in what he calls his message to America. "After decades of American tyranny and oppression, now it's your turn to die. Allah willing, the streets of America will run red with blood matching drop for drop the blood of America's victims."
Azzam makes references to several American officials, including 9/11 Commission Chairman Tom Kean, and even refers to the controversial remarks made by comedian Bill Maher about the cowardice of the United States launching cruise missiles compared with terrorist suicide attacks.
And he warned that Sept. 11 was only the beginning.
"People of America, I remind you of the weighty words of our leaders, Osama bin Laden and Dr. Ayman al-Zawahri, that what took place on Sept. 11 was but the opening salvo of the global war on America," said Azzam. "And that Allah willing, the magnitude and ferocity of what is coming your way will make you forget all about Sept. 11." - ABC (10/28/04)

 

 

 

October 29, 2004 - The FBI has begun investigating whether the Pentagon improperly awarded no-bid contracts to Halliburton and whether the Bush administration showed favoritism to Vice President Dick Cheney's former company.

 

Halliburton Contract Probe Opened

"The FBI has begun investigating whether the Pentagon improperly awarded no-bid contracts to Halliburton Co., seeking an interview with a top Army contracting officer and collecting documents from several government offices.
The line of inquiry expands an earlier FBI investigation into whether Houston-based Halliburton overcharged taxpayers for fuel in Iraq, and it elevates to a criminal matter the election-year question of whether the Bush administration showed favoritism to Vice President Dick Cheney's former company." - CBS (10/29/04)

 

October 29, 2004 - Four days before the 2004 Presidential elections, a new videotape is released of a healthy looking man that is supposedly Osama bin Laden admitting publicly for the first time that he ordered the attacks of 9/11, says U.S. foreign policy is to blame for the attacks and that Bush misled Americans in saying the attacks were carried out because Al Qaeda hates America's freedoms, and explains how the U.S. can avoid another attack.

"Osama bin Laden, injecting himself into the campaign four days ahead of presidential elections, said in a videotape aired Friday that the United States can avoid another Sept. 11 attack if it stops threatening the security of Muslims.
In the segment broadcast, the al-Qaida leader refrained from directly threatening new attacks, although he said "there are still reasons to repeat what happened."
"Your security is not in the hands of Kerry, Bush or al-Qaida. Your security is in your own hands," bin Laden said, referring to the president and his Democratic opponent. "Any state that does not mess with our security, has naturally guaranteed its own security."
Admitting for the first time that he ordered the Sept. 11 attacks, bin Laden said he did so because of injustices against the Lebanese and Palestinians by Israel and the United States.
In what appeared to be conciliatory language, bin Laden said he wanted to explain why he ordered the suicide airline hijackings that hit the World Trade Center and the Pentagon so Americans would know how to act to prevent another attack.
"To the American people, my talk is to you about the best way to avoid another Manhattan," he said. "I tell you: Security is an important element of human life and free people do not give up their security."
It was the first footage in more than a year of the fugitive al-Qaida leader, thought to be hiding in the mountains along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border. The video, broadcast on Al-Jazeera television, showed bin Laden with a long gray beard, wearing traditional white robes, a turban and a golden cloak, standing behind a table with papers and in front of a plain, brown curtain.
His hands were steady and he appeared healthy.
The Bush administration said Friday it believes the videotape was authentic and had been made recently.
Al-Jazeera broadcast about one minute of the tape. The station's spokesman, Jihad Ali Ballout, said they aired what was "newsworthy and relevant" and refused to describe the unaired portions, including whether they included any threats.
There was no way to determine exactly when the tape was made but it offered evidence that bin Laden was alive and following events. Sen. John Kerry emerged as the Democratic candidate in the spring.
Bin Laden accused President Bush of misleading Americans by saying the attack was carried out because al-Qaida "hates freedom." Bin Laden said his followers have left alone countries that do not threaten Muslims.
"We fought you because we are free … and want to regain freedom for our nation. As you undermine our security we undermine yours," he said.
"While I was looking at these destroyed towers in Lebanon, it sparked in my mind that the tyrant should be punished with the same and that we should destroy towers in America, so that it tastes what we taste and would be deterred from killing our children and women," he said.
"God knows that it had not occurred to our mind to attack the towers, but after our patience ran out and we saw the injustice and inflexibility of the American-Israeli alliance toward our people in Palestine and Lebanon, this came to my mind," he said.
In planning the attacks, bin Laden said he told Mohammed Atta, one of the hijackers, that the strikes had to be carried out "within 20 minutes before Bush and his administration noticed."
Bin Laden also said the Bush administration was like repressive Arab regimes "in that half of them are ruled by the military and the other half are ruled by the sons of kings and presidents."
The image of bin Laden reading a statement was dramatically different from the few other videos of the al-Qaida leader that have emerged since the Sept. 11 attacks.
In the last videotape, issued Sept. 10, 2003, bin Laden is seen walking through rocky terrain with his top deputy Ayman al-Zawahri, both carrying automatic rifles. In a taped message issued at the same time, bin Laden praises the "great damage to the enemy" on Sept. 11 and mentions five hijackers by name.
In December 2001, the Pentagon released a videotape in which bin Laden is shown at a dinner with associates in Afghanistan on Nov. 9, 2001, saying the destruction of the Sept. 11 attacks exceeded even his "optimistic" calculations.
But in none of his previous messages, audio or video, did bin Laden directly state that he ordered the attacks.
U.S. authorities have long said they believe bin Laden is hiding in a rugged, mountainous tribal region of Pakistan that borders Afghanistan, but there has been no firm evidence of his whereabouts for three years." - ABC (10/29/04)

 

Bin Laden Claims Responsibility for 9/11

"Usama bin Laden made his first televised appearance in more than a year Friday in which he admitted for the first time ordering the Sept. 11 attacks and accused President Bush of "misleading" the American people.
Injecting himself into the campaign four days ahead of the presidential election, bin Laden said the United States can avoid another Sept. 11-style attack if it stops threatening the security of Muslims. - FOX (10/30/04)

Al-Jazeera: Bin Laden tape obtained in Pakistan - MSNBC (10/30/04)

- OBL animated gif courtesy of whatreallyhappened.com

(See also:  September 20, 2001 - President Bush says 9/11 attacks happened because these people "hate our freedoms";  December 2001 - Osama bin Laden reportedly dies; December 13, 2001 - Pentagon releases a poor quality video showing a husky looking Osama bin Laden bragging about the attacks; December 15, 2001 - Special effects experts say fake video would be easy to make; January 31, 2004 - Killtown predicts Osama bin Laden will be "found" dead or alive before the next presidential election; October 30, 2004 - Bin Laden video seen as boost for Bush)

 

October 29, 2004 - Bin Laden mocks President Bush for sitting in a classroom reading the pet goat story while America was being attacked and says that gave the terrorists three times the required time to carry out their attacks.

"Bin Laden suggested Bush was slow to react to the Sept. 11 attacks, giving the hijackers more time than they expected. At the time of the attacks, the president was listening to schoolchildren in Florida reading a book.
"It never occurred to us that the commander-in-chief of the American armed forces would leave 50,000 of his citizens in the two towers to face these horrors alone," he said, referring to the number of people who worked at the World Trade Center.
"It appeared to him (Bush) that a little girl's talk about her goat and its butting was more important than the planes and their butting of the skyscrapers. That gave us three times the required time to carry out the operations, thank God," he said." - ABC (10/29/04)

(See also:  9/11 (9:08 am) - President Bush picks up a book after he is just told that his country is under attack and begins to read.)

 

October 30, 2004 - Bin Laden video seen as "a little gift" for boosting Bush.

"With his typical flair for drama, Osama Bin Laden inserted himself directly into the presidential election yesterday, and both parties believed it would boost President Bush's reelection hopes.
Bin Laden popping up like a malignant jack-in-the-box four days before the balloting may bolster John Kerry's argument that Bush should have finished wiping out Al Qaeda before turning his attention to Iraq.
But it also refocused the nation on terrorism, which polls show helps Bush. And it reminds voters of their horror on Sept. 11 and Bush's well-received response, as well as obliterating the recent flood of bad news for Bush.
"We want people to think 'terrorism' for the last four days," said a Bush-Cheney campaign official. "And anything that raises the issue in people's minds is good for us."
A senior GOP strategist added, "anything that makes people nervous about their personal safety helps Bush."
He called it "a little gift," saying it helps the President but doesn't guarantee his reelection.
In the closing weeks of the campaign, Kerry has accused Bush of "letting Bin Laden escape" when he was cornered at Tora Bora by "outsourcing" the job to unreliable Afghan warlords instead of using U.S. troops. And he has mocked Bush for never mentioning the Al Qaeda leader after pledging to get Bin Laden "dead or alive."
But the new tape - which is so nakedly political that it should end with the words "I'm Osama Bin Laden and I approved this message" - makes it difficult for Kerry to keep hammering Bush on the subject without appearing to be capitalizing on terror. Kerry eliminated those lines from his speeches yesterday evening.
"If Kerry had been making this a bigger issue, as he should have been, it would definitely translate to his benefit," said a Democratic strategist with ties to the Kerry camp.
Kerry's staff looked somber.
"It's very important for us to move forward. We're going ahead and doing our events as we would," said spokesman Mike McCurry." - New York Daily News (10/30/04)

Zogby:  Bush Leads 5% in Ohio (10/24/04)

Zogby:  Bush Leads 2% in Ohio (10/27/04)

Zogby:  Kerry Leads 3% in Ohio (10/28/04)

Bin Laden Says He Ordered 9/11 Attacks; injecting himself into campaign four days ahead of presidential elections - ABC (10/29/04) [Archived:  Wayback Machine]

Zogby:  Bush Leads 1% in Ohio (10/29/04)

Zogby:  Bush Leads 5% in Ohio (10/30/04)

Zogby:  Bush Leads 4% in Ohio (11/01/04)

(See also:  October 29, 2004 - Video of OBL admitting to attacks is released four days before election)

 

October 30, 2004 - Part of the 9/11 report that deals with the timeline of civilian and military responses to the hijacked planes still remains unreleased, an inquiry on it has begun, and it won't come out until after the 2004 Presidential elections.

"One last chapter of the investigation by the Sept. 11 commission, a supplement completed more than two months ago, has not yet been made public by the Justice Department, and officials say it is unlikely to be released before the presidential election, even though that had been a major goal of deadlines set for the panel.
Drawing from this unpublished part of the inquiry, the commission quietly asked the inspectors general at the Departments of Defense and Transportation to review what it had determined were broadly inaccurate accounts provided by several civil and military officials about efforts to track and chase the hijacked aircraft on Sept. 11.
David Barnes, a spokesman with the Department of Transportation, said yesterday that if the reviews found wrongdoing, the inspector general could recommend administrative penalties or ask federal prosecutors to begin a criminal investigation.
In testimony before the commission, officials had described a quick response to the hijackings that narrowly missed intercepting some of the planes, but the commission's investigators later determined from documentary evidence that none of the military planes were anywhere near the four airliners.
In addition, officials at the Federal Aviation Administration testified that they had notified the military within a few minutes of each hijacking, but the investigation found that tape recordings contradicted that assertion.
Besides the pursuit of the hijacked planes, the supplement, a monograph 60 to 70 pages long, revisits other subjects in the commission's final report of July - telephone calls made from the hijacked airplanes, airline security and orders issued that morning by President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney - and provides additional detail or context, former commission members said.
Mr. Kerrey suggested that presidential politics were behind the delay in the report's release, but a spokesman for the Justice Department, Mark Corallo, said that an ordinary review of the material for national security clearance was complicated when the commission shut down in August.
As a result of these complications, the supplement is the first of the commission's documents to be completely controlled by the Bush administration. While the commission was still in business, it was able to exert pressure on the White House when all 10 members, 5 Democrats and 5 Republicans, simply issued a public request for cooperation.
"I am surprised that the process has dragged on this long, and I think it's inappropriate," Richard Ben-Veniste, a Democrat on the commission, said. "It is longer than any other review of written material."
The monograph has two sections, he said. One concerns airline security, discussing the Federal Aviation Administration and the Transportation Security Administration. The other section, he said, provides a detailed timeline of the movements of the hijacked planes the morning of Sept. 11 and the response by the civil and military aviation officials. On July 29, Mr. Marcus wrote to the inspectors general of the Transportation and Defense Departments requesting reviews of the testimony of those officials. He would not comment this week on the request or the letters, but representatives for both departments confirmed that investigations were under way." - New York Times (10/30/04)

(See also:  June 16, 2004 - No Evidence Connecting Iraq to Al Qaeda, 9/11 Panel Says)

 

November 1, 2004 - Bin Laden tape: a scoop and a mystery

"The videotape that was to prove Osama bin Laden was alive, apparently well and in combative mood, first surfaced on a doorstep in the plush neighbourhood under the Margalla hills, on the edge of Pakistan's capital, it was claimed yesterday.
A few streets away from the house in Islamabad of the disgraced nuclear scientist Abdul Qadeer Khan, an unknown hand dropped the al-Qaida leader's latest message at the door of the television network al-Jazeera.
"When I opened it, I knew it was a great scoop," said Ahmad Muaffaq Zaidan, the Pakistan bureau chief of al-Jazeera.
Yesterday, Newsweek magazine was also reporting on the Bin Laden trail, quoting US officials saying that "just a few weeks ago" the net had been closing on an al-Qaida operative in Pakistan who might lead them to Bin Laden. "It looked like we were really close, maybe one or two people away. There was a lot of optimism around here," one official said.
The information minister, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, told the Guardian yesterday that the tape drop story was a "joke". He said: "It's garbage to suggest that someone could have just dropped the tape there. These days it's not possible for a guard to just take a package without knowing what it is."
Confirmation that Bin Laden, despite some speculation, is alive, and still gunning for US targets, has set alarm bells ringing in Islamabad as well as in Washington. Pakistan has gradually displaced Afghanistan as the focus of the war on al-Qaida.
But the greatest activity has focused on the lawless northern borders where Bin Laden could still be hiding out. Thousands of Pakistani troops have been deployed to the tribal areas where they have carried out bloody assaults on suspected al-Qaida hideouts.
"We are looking desperately [for Bin Laden]. We want him. There are so many people and so many agencies searching," said Mr Rashid.
British special forces and MI6 have joined the hunt on the Afghan side of the border just as, more recently, they have been trying to locate in Iraq the Jordanian militant Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a professed al-Qaida disciple.
But there is little proof that any of the armies tracking Bin Laden are even looking in the right place for him. Ever since his trail evaporated in the caves of Tora Bora in late 2001 there have been few specific leads.
A flurry of Pakistani offensives in restive South Waziristan, on the Afghan border, were mounted against foreign fighters but not specifically for the hunt for Bin Laden. "He could even be in Iran for all we know," said one observer in Islamabad.
British officials are struck by Bin Laden's reference to the Israeli bombing of tower blocks in Lebanon in 1982. He claimed, almost certainly wrongly since it is believed the plan was only put to him in the mid-1990s, that the Israeli bombing inspired the attacks on the World Trade Centre in New York.
And if anything, the latest video has scotched months of conspiratorial rumours that the US forces would pull off the capture of Bin Laden just before this week's presidential election in the US. " - Guardian (11/01/04)

(See also:  December 2001 - Osama bin Laden reportedly dies; October 29, 2004 - Four days before the 2004 Presidential elections, a new videotape of a "healthy looking" Osama Bin Laden airs in which he admits for the first time in public of ordering the attacks of 9/11)

 

November 1, 2004 - ABC News:  On Election Eve, Sept. 11 Doubters Surface

"More than three years after the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, the skeptics are still out there, and despite a massive government investigation into the causes, threats and government response, in the final days before the presidential election, the doubters have been making more noise.
One organization, reopen911.org, has launched an ad campaign calling for a new investigation into what happened on Sept. 11, and another group, 911truth.org, is filing a formal complaint with the New York state attorney general, seeking a criminal investigation.
Conspiracy theories about the attacks began brewing while the ashes of the World Trade Center were still smoldering, and have grown into a booming cottage industry, with countless books, Web sites and videos devoted to the subject.
For some people, the questions about what happened have not been resolved, and the report released by the 9/11 Independent Commission did nothing to put them to rest. For some, it only caused more frustration.
Jimmy Walters, the man behind the campaign that has placed commercials showing the collapsing buildings at the World Trade Center and a computer-generated image of the plane that hit the Pentagon on television in New York, and full-page print ads in newspapers across the country, said he has a definite political aim.
And Walters, who is also the founder and president of the Walden Three Project, which promotes the development of sustainable cities and grew out of his attempt to write a science fiction novel in Hong Kong, said his feelings about what happened have gone from believing that the government bore responsibility for "an error of omission" to a belief that there had to be government involvement in the attacks on some level.
"We were terrorized and it wasn't 19 screw-ups with box cutters from Saudi Arabia," he said. "It had to be somebody bigger, better organized."
His conspiracy theory involves secret U.S. government operatives boarding the four hijacked planes, which he said were then secretly landed and replaced in the skies by remote-controlled drones that were then crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania, all to create a pretext for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Walters commissioned a Zogby International poll in August to ask people in New York about their feelings regarding the Sept. 11 attacks and the investigation. He said the poll said 66 percent of New Yorkers want the investigation to be reopened.
That poll was a spark to others who also have held on to their doubts about who was responsible for the attacks.
David Kubiak, the executive director of 911truth.org, said that while members of the organization, which is based in New York and has chapters in two dozen cities across the country, may have their own beliefs about what happened, there is no agenda beyond getting more information involved in the move to have New York state Attorney General Eliot Spitzer investigate.
The group also released what it calls the 9/11 Truth Statement, which it said is "a call for immediate inquiry into evidence that suggests high-level government officials may have deliberately allowed the September 11th attacks to occur."
The people who signed the statement, the group says, include presidential candidate Ralph Nader, Pentagon whistle-blower Daniel Ellsberg, retired CIA analyst Ray McGovern and former U.S. Ambassador and Chief of Mission to Iraq Edward Peck, as well as 49 family members of victims of the attacks.
Besides the poll, dissatisfaction with the 9/11 Independent Commission report spurred the group to release the Truth Statement and to seek a criminal investigation by Spitzer's office, Kubiak said.
The commission failed to answer the vast majority of the 383 questions the 9/11 Families Steering Committee submitted to it, and did not address 70 percent of them, Kubiak said." - ABC (11/01/04)

(See also:  April 17, 2002 - ABC News: Some Ask, Were Aliens or Bush Behind 9-11?)

 

November 2, 2004 - Killtown's prediction that Osama bin Laden will be "found" dead or alive before the next presidential election fails to materialize, but Killtown does feel vindicated by the convenient timing of the unusual video released four days before the elections that shows a healthy looking person who is supposedly Osama publicly admitting for the first time that he ordered the 9/11 attacks.

(See also:  January 31, 2004 - Killtown predicts Osama bin Laden will be "found" dead or alive before the next presidential election; October 29, 2004 - Four days before the 2004 Presidential elections, a new videotape is released of a healthy looking man that is supposedly Osama bin Laden admitting publicly for the first time that he ordered the attacks of 9/11)

 

November 2, 2004 - President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney are re-elected to the U.S. Presidency for a second term.

 

 

 

November 8, 2004 - 9/11 Conspiracy Ads Hit The Airwaves

"A California millionaire has embarked on a national advertising campaign to press for the reopening of the independent investigation by the Sept. 11 commission.
James W. Walter, of Santa Barbara, Calif., has financed programs for voter registration and prison reform. But now he has taken out $3 million worth of ads in national magazines and television networks that implies that no airplane hit the Pentagon and that 7 World Trade Center was collapsed from within on Sept. 11, 2001.
"It just isn't possible that 19 screw-ups with box cutters pulled this whole thing off," Walter told The New York Times Monday. "We've never gotten solid answers on why Tower 7 collapsed when it was two full blocks away from where the planes hit. We've also never received an answer for how such a large plane left such a small hole in the side of the Pentagon."
A Zogby poll of New Yorkers' feelings on the Sept. 11 investigation showed that nearly half of the city's residents believed some federal officials knew of the attacks in advance, but failed to act.
But Walter's questions on the investigation are bound to join other queries on national tragedies, like those on the John F. Kennedy assassination and the crash of Trans World Airlines Flight 800 as conspiracy theories.
But scientists like Glenn P. Corbett, a professor of fire science at John Jay College of Criminal Justice said there are plain answers to what happened on Sept. 11.
"The conspiracy theorists fail to recognize that there was structural damage in Building 7 caused by flying debris after the first two towers collapsed," Corbett said. He also emphasized that the hole in the Pentagon's wall was not bigger, but the wings disintegrated upon impact.
Undaunted, Walter, who inherited his fortune from his father's building materials company, said he will continue pursuing an answer to the Sept. 11 question.
"I have a hard time not speaking up when I see something that doesn't seem right," he said. "I guess that is just the way I am." - CBS 2 New York (11/08/04)

- See these 9/11 conspiracy ads here:  ReOpen911.org

(See also:  December 15, 2004 - Sept. 11 Conspiracy Theorist Offers $100,000 Prize)

 

November 9, 2004 - New Study Puts Sept. 11 Payout at $38 Billion

"The families or loved ones of civilians killed on Sept. 11 received, on average, $3.1 million in government and charitable awards. The families of those who died in uniform that day - including police officers and firefighters - received more, their average compensation exceeding $4.2 million. Insurance payments to businesses victimized by the terror attacks, for property damage alone, totaled $7.5 billion.
These figures, some exceeding earlier estimates, others never before captured, emerged yesterday from a formal study that was two years in the making. It aimed to be the most comprehensive accounting of how much victims and businesses affected by the Sept. 11 attacks have been compensated by private and public means - an effort by charities and government agencies unmatched in the country's history.
In all, the study, done by the Rand Corporation, a nonprofit research organization based in Santa Monica, Calif., found that victims and businesses have so far received $38.1 billion.
Insurance companies accounted for the single greatest share of payments, about $19.6 billion. Government entities, including payments to individual families as well as loans to small businesses near ground zero, gave out nearly $16 billion.
The study also questioned whether the payouts were fair to all victims, and it asked who should foot the bill in future terror attacks, especially given the fact that terrorism insurance for businesses is now harder to obtain than it was before Sept. 11.
But the study did not include about $11 billion in federal assistance to New York for cleanup, overtime costs and transportation repairs, Mr. Dixon said. Nor did it include payments yet to come, chiefly from pending court cases and litigation costs, as well as continuing insurance disputes.
The study also found that about $660 million was distributed to people who sought help because of exposure to dust and other potential health hazards near ground zero. Again, the federal fund, known as the Sept. 11 Victim Compensation Fund, provided the bulk of the compensation - roughly $380 million tax-free. But as a caveat, the study warned that "a major unknown is whether resources will be available to pay for health care for respiratory injuries that might appear in the future."
But by far the biggest recipients of assistance were businesses - $23.3 billion, to be exact. Of that amount, $7.5 billion came from insurance for property damage, and $9.5 billion for insurance for business interruption. An additional $4.9 billion came from government incentives, such as tax breaks and programs to attract small and large companies." - New York Times (11/09/04)

 

November 10, 2004 - On a CNN "Quick Vote" unscientific internet poll, the question "Do you believe there is a U.S. government cover-up surrounding 9/11?" was asked and out of 10,648 votes, a whooping 89% answered yes.

-CNN (11/10/04)

 

November 11, 2004 - Kevin Ryan, a Site Manager at a division of Underwriters Laboratories who certified the steel for the WTC, sends a letter to Dr. Frank Gayle of the NIST saying that the WTC should have easily withstood the temperatures from the burning jet fuel inside and that "this story just does not add up."

"From: Kevin R Ryan/SBN/ULI
To: frank.gayle@nist.gov
Date: 11/11/2004
Dr. Gayle,
Having recently reviewed your team's report of 10/19/04, I felt the need to contact you directly.
As I'm sure you know, the company I work for certified the steel components used in the construction of the WTC buildings. In requesting information from both our CEO and Fire Protection business manager last year, I learned that they did not agree on the essential aspects of the story, except for one thing - that the samples we certified met all requirements. They suggested we all be patient and understand that UL was working with your team, and that tests would continue through this year. I'm aware of UL's attempts to help, including performing tests on models of the floor assemblies. But the results of these tests appear to indicate that the buildings should have easily withstood the thermal stress caused by pools of burning jet fuel.
There continues to be a number of "experts" making public claims about how the WTC buildings fell. One such person, Dr. Hyman Brown from the WTC construction crew, claims that the buildings collapsed due to fires at 2000F melting the steel (1). He states "What caused the building to collapse is the airplane fuel…burning at 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit. The steel in that five-floor area melts." Additionally, the newspaper that quotes him says "Just-released preliminary findings from a National Institute of Standards and Technology study of the World Trade Center collapse support Brown’s theory."
We know that the steel components were certified to ASTM E119. The time temperature curves for this standard require the samples to be exposed to temperatures around 2000F for several hours. And as we all agree, the steel applied met those specifications. Additionally, I think we can all agree that even un-fireproofed steel will not melt until reaching red-hot temperatures of nearly 3000F (2). Why Dr. Brown would imply that 2000F would melt the high-grade steel used in those buildings makes no sense at all.
The results of your recently published metallurgical tests seem to clear things up (3), and support your team's August 2003 update as detailed by the Associated Press (4), in which you were ready to "rule out weak steel as a contributing factor in the collapse." The evaluation of paint deformation and spheroidization seem very straightforward, and you noted that the samples available were adequate for the investigation. Your comments suggest that the steel was probably exposed to temperatures of only about 500F (250C), which is what one might expect from a thermodynamic analysis of the situation.
However the summary of the new NIST report seems to ignore your findings, as it suggests that these low temperatures caused exposed bits of the building’s steel core to "soften and buckle." (5) Additionally this summary states that the perimeter columns softened, yet your findings make clear that "most perimeter panels (157 of 160) saw no temperature above 250C." To soften steel for the purposes of forging, normally temperatures need to be above1100C (6). However, this new summary report suggests that much lower temperatures were be able to not only soften the steel in a matter of minutes, but lead to rapid structural collapse.
This story just does not add up. If steel from those buildings did soften or melt, I’m sure we can all agree that this was certainly not due to jet fuel fires of any kind, let alone the briefly burning fires in those towers. That fact should be of great concern to all Americans. Alternatively, the contention that this steel did fail at temperatures around 250C suggests that the majority of deaths on 9/11 were due to a safety-related failure. That suggestion should be of great concern to my company.
There is no question that the events of 9/11 are the emotional driving force behind the War on Terror. And the issue of the WTC collapse is at the crux of the story of 9/11. My feeling is that your metallurgical tests are at the crux of the crux of the crux. Either you can make sense of what really happened to those buildings, and communicate this quickly, or we all face the same destruction and despair that come from global decisions based on disinformation and “chatter”.
Thanks for your efforts to determine what happened on that day. You may know that there are a number of other current and former government employees that have risked a great deal to help us to know the truth. I've copied one of these people on this message as a sign of respect and support. I believe your work could also be a nucleus of fact around which the truth, and thereby global peace and justice, can grow again. Please do what you can to quickly eliminate the confusion regarding the ability of jet fuel fires to soften or melt structural steel.
1. http://www.boulderweekly.com/archive/102104/coverstory.html
2. CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, 61st edition, pg D-187
3. http://wtc.nist.gov/media/P3MechanicalandMetAnalysisofSteel.pdf
4. http://www.voicesofsept11.org/archive/911ic/082703.php
5. http://wtc.nist.gov/media/NCSTACWTCStatusFINAL101904WEB2.pdf (pg 11)
6. http://www.forging.org/FIERF/pdf/ffaaMacSleyne.pdf
Kevin Ryan
Site Manager
Environmental Health Laboratories
A Division of Underwriters Laboratories" - 9/11 Visibility Project; Scoop (11/11/04)

(See also:  August 27, 2003 - Preliminary tests show steel quality did not contribute to towers' collapse; November 16, 2004 - Kevin Ryan is fired from Underwriters Laboratories)

 

November 16, 2004 - 9/11 whistle blower Kevin Ryan is fired from Underwriters Laboratories for attempting to cast doubt on the federal investigation into what caused the WTC's twin towers to collapse, UL denies it certified the WTC steel.

"Area Man Stirs Debate on WTC Collapse, South Bend firm's lab director fired after questioning federal probe.
The laboratory director from a South Bend firm has been fired for attempting to cast doubt on the federal investigation into what caused the World Trade Center's twin towers to collapse on Sept. 11, 2001.
Kevin R. Ryan was terminated Tuesday from his job at Environmental Health Laboratories Inc., a subsidiary of Underwriters Laboratories Inc., the consumer-product safety testing giant.
On Nov. 11, Ryan wrote a letter to the National Institute of Standards and Technology -- the agency probing the collapse -- challenging the common theory that burning jet fuel weakened the steel supports holding up the 110-story skyscrapers.
Underwriters Laboratories Inc., according to Ryan, "was the company that certified the steel components used in the construction of the WTC buildings."
Ryan wrote that last year, while "requesting information," UL's chief executive officer and fire protection business manager disagreed about key issues surrounding the collapse, "except for one thing -- that the samples we certified met all requirements."
UL vehemently denied last week that it ever certified the materials.
Ryan wrote that the institute's preliminary reports suggest the WTC's supports were probably exposed to fires no hotter than 500 degrees -- only half the 1,100-degree temperature needed to forge steel, Ryan said. That's also much cooler, he wrote, than the 3,000 degrees needed to melt bare steel with no fire-proofing.
"This story just does not add up," Ryan wrote in his e-mail to Frank Gayle, deputy chief of the institute's metallurgy division, who is playing a prominent role in the agency investigation. "If steel from those buildings did soften or melt, I'm sure we can all agree that this was certainly not due to jet fuel fires of any kind, let alone the briefly burning fires in those towers."
Ryan declined to comment about his letter Thursday when reached at his South Bend home.
But his allegations drew a sharp rebuke from UL, which said Ryan wrote the letter "without UL's knowledge or authorization." The company told The Tribune "there is no evidence" that any firm tested the materials used to build the towers.
"UL does not certify structural steel, such as the beams, columns and trusses used in World Trade Center," said Paul M. Baker, the company's spokesman.
Ryan was fired, Baker said, because he "expressed his own opinions as though they were institutional opinions and beliefs of UL."
Seeking to head off controversy just months before its report is released, the National Institute of Standards and Technology issued its own statement Thursday.
Some steel recovered from the WTC was exposed to fires of only 400 to 600 degrees, the institute said, but computer modeling has shown higher temperatures of 1,100 to 1,300 degrees or greater were "likely" experienced by steel in regions directly affected by the fires.
Ryan's statements have generated interest on many Web sites, including some advocating sharp scrutiny of the federal government's WTC probe.
Ryan copied his e-mail to David Ray Griffin, author of "The New Pearl Harbor," and to Catherine Austin Fitts, a board member of 911Truth.org -- a Web site organized by citizens who believe the government is covering up the true cause of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
One day later, Griffin requested and received permission to distribute Ryan's letter to other parties.
An official from 911Truth.org called Ryan to confirm his authorship. They said Ryan made it clear he is speaking for himself only, not on behalf of his laboratory or the company, but that others at UL were aware of his action.
The letter was published Nov. 11 on the Web site septembereleventh.org, site of the 9/11 Visibility Project. On Tuesday, organizers of the 911Truth.org Web site noted Ryan had been fired.
UL moved immediately to discredit Ryan.
The company said Ryan "was not involved in that work and was not associated in any way with UL's Fire Protection Division, which conducted testing at NIST's request."
The company said it "fully supports NIST's ongoing efforts to investigate the WTC tragedy. We regret any confusion that Mr. Ryan's letter has caused 9/11 survivors, victims' families and their friends."
Organizers of 911Truth.org came to Ryan's defense Thursday, although they couldn't persuade him to speak publicly.
"He just saw too many contradictions, and it set off his sense of what was the right thing to do," said David Kubiak, 911Truth.org's executive director. "It's unfortunate for the country, and it's particularly tragic for him, but [his action is] inspiring as hell." - South Bend Tribune (11/22/04) [Reprinted at:  911truth.org]

"9/11 Whistleblower Kevin Ryan Fired -- Update (11/16) : Kevin Ryan apparently fired
According to Nic Levis, east coast director of 911truth.org, "David Ray Griffin has received confirmation that Kevin Ryan, site manager of the Environmental Health Laboratories (Underwriters Laboratories), was fired today by the parent company, Underwriters Laboratories, apparently for writing a letter questioning certain common theories of the Twin Towers collapses to the leader of the U.S. government NIST team researching the World Trade Center events..." - Scoop (11/18/04)

"On November 13th, 911Truth was contacted by Paul M. Baker, the Media Relations manager of Underwriters Laboratories, who requested that we post a response from their company to Kevin Ryan's letter regarding critical problems with recent conclusions of the NIST investigations.
We emailed back that in the interest of fairness and balance, we would be happy to post their statement, but asked that it specifically address the issues Ryan raised as well as their expected efforts to distance themselves from his remarks. Our request was repeated in a telephone conversation with Mr. Baker at 7:00 PM on November 16th, the day of Ryan's firing." - 911truth.org

 

November 17, 2004 - Underwriters Laboratories sends a letter to the website 911truth.org distancing itself from Kevin Ryan's letter.

"To: W. David Kubiak
From: Paul.M.Baker(@)us.ul.com
Subject: UL's statement regarding Kevin Ryan
Date sent: Wed, 17 Nov 2004 11:34:24 -0600
Dear Mr. Kubiak, thank you for your willingness to post UL's statement regarding Kevin Ryan's letter on your 9-11 Visibility Project and 911Truth web sites. Please see attached:
Paul M. Baker
Manager, Media Relations
Underwriters Laboratories, Inc.
Northbrook, Ill., USA
(847) 272-8800 ext. 41001
Cell: (847) 602-2828
Paul.M.Baker(@)us.ul.com
UL Letter text:
On Nov. 11, 2004, a letter from Kevin Ryan, a former employee of Underwriters Laboratories Inc., addressed to the National Institute of Standards & Technology (NIST), was posted on a Web site called the 9-11 Visibility Project (www.septembereleventh.org). In the letter, Mr. Ryan speculated on the causes of the collapse of the World Trade Center towers.
Mr. Ryan wrote the letter without UL's knowledge or authorization. Mr. Ryan was neither qualified nor authorized to speak on UL's behalf regarding this issue. The opinions he expressed in the letter are his own and do not reflect those of Underwriters Laboratories Inc.
UL's Fire Protection Division has assisted NIST in its investigations regarding the collapse of the WTC towers. However, Mr. Ryan was not involved in that work and was not associated in any way with UL's Fire Protection Division, which conducted testing at NIST's request. Rather, Mr. Ryan was employed in UL's water testing business, Environmental Health Laboratory, in South Bend, Indiana.
Underwriters Laboratories Inc. fully supports NIST's ongoing efforts to investigate the WTC tragedy. We regret any confusion that Mr. Ryan's letter has caused 9/11 survivors, victims' families and their friends." - 911truth.org

 

November 17, 2004 - Clarke:  CIA Had Low-Level Spies Inside Al Qaeda

"The CIA had some low-level spies inside al Qaeda in the three years before the Sept. 11 attacks, but none who could provide advance information about the group's movements, according to testimony released on Wednesday from a closed-door intelligence briefing in 2002.
The CIA did not have spies inside the network run by Osama bin Laden until 1999, but "none of them very high-level," Richard Clarke, a former White House counterterrorism official, told the joint congressional committee investigating Sept. 11.
In a rare move, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a 103-page declassified transcript of the June 11, 2002, closed-door briefing on its Web site late on Wednesday. Most of the information had been made public during subsequent open hearings and in the final report of the joint inquiry.
The CIA "never had anyone in position to tell us what was going to happen in advance, or even where bin Laden was going to be in advance," Clarke told lawmakers.
On the three occasions when they thought they knew bin Laden's location, the CIA opposed taking military action, saying its sources were not good enough, he said.
Several times in the 1990s the Pentagon was asked "snatch" terrorism suspects overseas, but the main message to the White House from uniformed military leadership was that they did not want to do this, Clarke said.
The CIA did not have snatch capability and the military leadership told the White House that it would never work, while telling subordinates who had planned an operation that the White House had stopped it, Clarke said." - MSNBC (11/07/04)

 

November 17, 2004 - Afghanistan Sees Bright Prospects for Trans-Afghan Pipeline - News Central Asia (11/17/04)

(See also:  December 27, 2002 - Afghan pipeline deal finally signed; December 23, 2004 - Afghan President Karzai chooses ex Unocal engineer for Minister of Mines and Industries)

 

November 18, 2004 - Clarke: Al-Qaeda worried Clinton

"The Clinton administration was deeply concerned in 2000 that al-Qaeda sleeper cells existed in North America and considered ways to move against them, according to newly released testimony.
"There were two simultaneous plots, one in Jordan and one in the United States, and they both involved American citizens," Bush administration critic Richard Clarke testified in June 2002 before a congressional inquiry into the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
The plots were of high enough interest that Republican Sen. Richard Shelby, the former chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, requested a briefing.
"The conclusion was that we should ... beef up the counterterrorism task force around the country," said Clarke, whose testimony about the briefing of Shelby in February 2000 was partially blacked out because of national security concerns.
The release of Clarke's 2002 testimony stems from Republican attempts to undermine his criticism of the Bush administration.
Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, R-Tenn., said Clarke's recently declassified testimony from 2002 is effusive in its praise of the Bush administration's efforts targeting al-Qaeda before the Sept. 11 attacks.
The declassified version neither criticizes nor strongly praises the Bush administration. It focuses instead primarily on the Clinton administration.
In his 2002 testimony, Clarke did defend the Bush administration's delay in acting on two CIA memoranda aimed at al-Qaeda and its Taliban supporters in Afghanistan.
He said the two documents drafted in late 2000 were to be finalized as part of a plan to finance a full-bore campaign to destroy al-Qaeda. The president signed the documents six days after the Sept. 11 attacks.
Clarke testified:
• In the Clinton years, "there were people in the administration who were very seized with this issue, beginning with the president. ... It is very rare in my experience when the president of the United States picks an issue after his administration has begun, because the world has changed, and says, this is a priority, guys. ... If 9/11 hadn't happened, I think historians could go back and look at what the Clinton administration did ... and say, 'boy, were those guys overreacting.'" Clarke's qualified praise for the Clinton administration mirrors his more recent testimony to the Sept. 11 panel and the account he gave in his book, "Against All Enemies."
• One of Clarke's nightmares was that the CIA would have been ordered, over internal protests, to use an unmanned, armed aircraft known as a Predator to kill bin Laden. Clarke backed such an operation, but feared his opponents would say: "Look what Clarke did. He assassinated bin Laden and in retaliation for that they blew up the World Trade Center."
• Government officials knew, beginning in 1997, that if they "decapitated al-Qaeda, that it would grow other heads." Officials had to be ready to accept the negative criticism for killing bin Laden and then having al-Qaeda terrorism continue." - USAToday (11/18/04)

 

November 18, 2004 - Castro sees Bush hand in bin Laden video

"HAVANA - Fidel Castro says the emergence of an Osama bin Laden videotape just ahead of the U.S. presidential election seemed to have been “arranged” to help President Bush.
In his first public comments about Bush’s re-election, the Cuban leader said, “We have seen too much ... trickery and shamelessness to sustain the belief that this wasn’t something arranged.”
Speaking Tuesday on the communist-run island’s nightly televised “Mesa Redonda” discussion program, Castro added, “Bin Laden makes the documentaries that decide elections.”
He did any detail on how the tape could have been timed to the election. It was broadcast by the Arab television station Al-Jazeera on Oct. 29, just ahead of the Nov. 2 election. The station did not say how it received the tape.
In the videotape, bin Laden acknowledged he ordered the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States." - MSNBC (11/18/04)

(See also:  October 29, 2004 - Four days before the 2004 Presidential elections, a new videotape is released of a healthy looking man that is supposedly Osama bin Laden admitting publicly for the first time that he ordered the attacks of 9/11; The whereabouts of Osama Bin Laden are still unknown)

 

November 18, 2004 - CIA plans riskier, more aggressive espionage

"CIA Director Porter Goss told his new chief of spy operations this week to launch a much more aggressive espionage campaign that would use undercover officers to penetrate terrorist groups and hostile governments such as North Korea and Iran, according to a senior U.S. official with direct knowledge of Goss' plans.
The risky new strategy would be a sharp departure from the CIA's traditional style of human intelligence, in which field officers under flimsy cover as diplomats in U.S. embassies try to recruit foreign spies and gather tips from allied intelligence services. Those methods don't work with terror groups or in countries where the United States has no embassies, such as prewar Iraq or present-day North Korea and Iran.
The new strategy is dangerous — agents could gather much better information but would run a much higher risk of being killed if found out. Goss hinted at this strategy during his confirmation hearing and has told agency officials it is key to his effort to revamp the agency to meet new and unconventional threats.
The move to more aggressive field operations represents Goss' first major effort to put into effect a strategy that he laid out on his first day on the job Sept. 24, when he told agency employees that the CIA is "the pointy end of the spear" in the war on terrorism, "and now is the time that we need the pointy end of the spear."
Field officers who blow their diplomatic cover are typically thrown out of foreign countries. Under the new tactics, officers caught under deep cover could expect no protection and could be executed. If caught trying to penetrate a terrorist group, they could count on being tortured and murdered." - USA Today (11/18/04)

 

November 19, 2004 -  Venezuela accuses the U.S. of harboring terrorists in Florida who assassinated a top Venezuelan prosecutor who intended to try backers of Venezuela's 2002 failed coup.

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) -- President Hugo Chavez's spokesman on Friday accused "terrorists" training in Florida of being behind the assassination of a top prosecutor who intended to try backers of Venezuela's 2002 failed coup.
Danilo Anderson was killed by two explosions that ripped through his SUV as he was driving through the capital just before midnight Thursday. The killing shook this South American nation and renewed the specter of further violence.
Information Minister Andres Izarra said the assassination of Anderson, known among Venezuelans as the "super prosecutor," was clearly aimed at attacking the judicial branch and derailing his investigations and prosecutions of those who supported the coup, in which 19 people were killed and almost 300 wounded.
Izarra blamed Venezuelan exiles in Florida, echoing Chavez's earlier accusations that Cuban and Venezuelan "terrorists" were training in Florida to execute him and were using the media to call for his removal.
"We want the government of the United States to explain how it is that these terrorist groups that act with total freedom in Florida ... make these statements through the media under the government's nose," Izarra said.
While the United States remains Venezuela's main buyer of oil, relations between the Chavez and George W. Bush administrations have been testy.
The killing of the 38-year-old prosecutor heightened tensions in the world's fifth-largest oil exporter just as a political crisis that gripped the country for the past 2 1/2 years was easing.
Interior and Justice Minister Jesse Chacon said C-4, a military-grade plastic explosive, was apparently used and was set off by remote control. The explosions were so powerful they shattered windows in nearby buildings.
At the time of his death, Anderson was preparing a case against nearly 400 people who signed a declaration supporting interim President Pedro Carmona during the coup." - CNN (11/19/04)

 

November 23, 2004 - Thousands Near 9/11 Attack Reported Ill Effects, U.S. Says

"More than three years after the World Trade Center was destroyed, city health officials released data yesterday from a two-year study showing that thousands of people in the vicinity of the towers on Sept. 11, 2001, said they had increased respiratory problems and suffered higher rates of emotional distress.
The findings are the result of interviews with 61,087 people who could have been directly affected by the terrorist attack, all of whom volunteered to be part of the World Trade Center Health Registry.
None of the registry members received medical examinations as part of the survey, and there is no federal treatment program currently available for those who may be ill.
In fact, financing for treatment, as well as the federal government's initial reaction to possible air quality problems around ground zero, have been heatedly debated since the Environmental Protection Agency announced soon after the attack that it was safe to return to the area.
Since that time, there has been a growing consensus that many people may have grown ill because of a toxic mix of dust, debris, smoke and chemicals that was released into the air. However, there is still no definitive knowledge of what was in the dust, how long it posed a risk and how many people were sickened.
A study by the Government Accountability Office said anywhere from 250,000 to 400,000 people could have been affected by the dust and debris." - New York Times (11/23/04)

(See also:  November 30, 2001 - In an article written by the New York Psychogeographical Association, it states that many New Yorkers "hated" the WTC, that the towers were always "money-losers" which required millions in subsides a year by the State to stay afloat, that the "only" reason the WTC wasn't torn down was because of the high cost of asbestos removal)

 

• December 1, 2004 - Esquire:  Paul Thompson - One man can change the world. Or at least much of its what, when, where, and how....

"He never studied, trained, or even had any intention to become an authority on terrorism. But never underestimate the power of one man's curiosity. Holed up every night in front of the computer in his San Francisco home, poring over news on the Internet, Paul Thompson grew increasingly frustrated with how incomplete the story of September 11 was. Armed with only a broadband connection, he started to gather every credible fact he could find online. Then he condensed each point of information and put it in chronological order. His
Terror Timeline quickly became a monster of about fifteen hundred items, tracing the last quarter century of terrorist activity, incorporating a detailed trail of intelligence failures, and providing a nearly minute-by-minute account of the day of the attacks.
What had started as Thompson's hobby soon became his obsession. Early this year, he quit his job with an environmental protection group, moved halfway around the world to New Zealand, and began dedicating his full attention to a solitary pursuit that paid nothing and seemed unlikely to be seen by more than a handful of people. Finally, he found a small audience through the Center for Cooperative Research, a California-based historical-record-keeping Web site that shared his philosophy of nonpartisanship, information sharing, and reliance on mainstream news sources. The marriage was a fruitful one. People started e-mailing him to point out new information and to make corrections to his data. Open-source historiography had arrived.
The result is that Thompson has assembled by far the most comprehensive and detailed record of September 11 and the events surrounding it ever created.
Thompson may have furthered the cause of journalism to a greater degree than if he worked as a journalist himself. His timeline (cooperativeresearch.org) has become a trusted resource for reporters and researchers, and this fall it was published in book form (The Terror Timeline) by HarperCollins. Still, Thompson continues with his self-imposed labor. "If somebody were to say to me, 'Give me your one paragraph on who did it on 9/11,' I don't feel I could tell you," he says. "And I don't want to stop until I know that answer." - Esquire (12/01/04) [Reprinted at:  Center for Cooperative Research]

 

December 3, 2004 - Bush nominates former NYC Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik for Homeland Security.

Bush nominates Kerik for Homeland Security

"President Bush on Friday nominated former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik to take over as secretary of homeland security.

Kerik, 49, led the New York City Police Department through the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and their aftermath.

Kerik is a senior vice president of Giuliani Partners, the consulting firm founded by Rudy Giuliani, who as mayor of New York appointed him police commissioner in 2000.

In 2003, Kerik went to Iraq at Bush's request to help train the new Iraqi police force, and he campaigned for Bush's re-election, making a speech at the Republican National Convention in August." - CNN (12/03/04)

 

(See also:  January 2002 - Kerik joins Giuliani Partners; December 11, 2004 - Kerik withdrawals Homeland Security nomination)

 

December 6, 2004 - WTC leaseholder Larry Silverstein is awarded an extra $1.1 billion on top of his earlier $3.5 billion WTC payout from winning his court battle against his insurance companies in which the jury decided that the two planes that attacked his towers was considered two separate attacks instead of one, which means he should receive double payment for his insurance policy for the towers.

Jury considers WTC destruction 2 events
"A federal jury ruled Monday that the Sept. 11 attack on the World Trade Center was two occurrences for insurance purposes, meaning leaseholder Larry Silverstein stands to collect up to $4.6 billion.
The verdict in U.S. District Court in Manhattan was the latest twist in Silverstein's efforts to double his $3.5 billion insurance policy on the trade center complex.
Silverstein lost a first trial on the issue earlier this year, but a separate jury said Monday that Silverstein is entitled to collect a double payout for nine insurers who covered him for $1.1 billion.
The verdict means Silverstein could ultimately collect $4.6 billion for the Sept. 11 attacks, lawyers in the case said.
Silverstein still must go to a three-person appraisal panel to collect the money. The insurers are also expected to appeal the decision.
The insurance companies involved in the case were: Travelers Indemnity Co., Industrial Risk Insurers, Royal Indemnity Co., Allianz Insurance Co., Tokio Marine and Fire Insurance Co., Twin City Fire Insurance Co., Tig Insurance Co., Westfield WTC LLC and Zurich American Insurance Co.
In her closing argument, lawyer Carolyn H. Williams argued on behalf of the companies that the hijacked planes were like guided missiles and that the insurance payout should not depend on whether terrorists used "one or two or 10 or 100 weapons." - USA Today (12/06/04)

 

Jury Rules Sept. 11 Attacks Were 2 Events

"A jury decided Monday that the attacks on the World Trade Center were two separate events for insurance purposes, meaning leaseholder Larry Silverstein can collect up to $4.6 billion for rebuilding efforts.
Jurors in an earlier trial ruled in May that the Sept. 11 attacks constituted a single event, limiting Silverstein to a $3.5 billion payout that applied to 13 of the trade center's 24 insurers.
But Monday's decision means Silverstein can collect an additional $1.1 billion from nine of the insurance companies, raising his total payout to as much as $4.6 billion.
Silverstein praised Monday's verdict, saying in a statement that it showed that the insurers "have an obligation to pay their fair share to help make Lower Manhattan whole again." - ABC (12/06/04)

 

Jury awards $2.2 billion in 9/11 insurance

"A jury Monday said New York developer Larry Silverstein, who held the commercial lease of the World Trade Center, is entitled to $2.2 billion in insurance.
The jury's decision came after 11 days of deliberation and was double the insurance coverage provided by nine insurers at the office complex. Silverstein leased the center six weeks before it was destroyed by terrorists Sept. 11, 2001.
The New York Times reported Silverstein, who plans to use the money to rebuild the office buildings, said in a statement he was "thrilled" with the verdict, and that it would "ensure a timely and complete rebuild of the World Trade Center."
A $1.5 billion, 1,776-foot-tall Freedom Tower is planned for the trade center site, but it's expected to cost more than $9 billion to rebuild the trade center.
Silverstein argued the two jet planes that slammed into the twin towers entitled him to a double payment of the $3.55 billion policy, or $7 billion.
The jury's decision, involving nine insurance companies, provides $1.1 billion of the $3.55 billion worth of coverage. If the verdict stands, the companies would be required to pay $2.2 billion." - Washington Times (12/06/04)

(See also:  July 2001 - Silverstein signed 99-year lease for WTC six weeks before attacks; May 3, 2004 - Silverstein loses WTC case, only awarded single payout of $3.5 billion; Killtown's: Was the WTC 7 pulled?)

 

December 9, 2004 - Ex-CIA agent says he was sacked for not faking Iraq WMD reports.

"A senior CIA operative has filed suit saying he suffered retaliation for refusing to falsify reports on weapons of mass destruction, a report said Thursday.
The operative handled informants in Iraq.
The Washington Post said the operative remains under cover, but alleges that in 2001 a co-worker warned him "that CIA management planned to 'get him' for his role in reporting intelligence contrary to official CIA dogma."
The Post said documents in the suit were heavily redacted, with major portions blacked out.
The operative alleges agency managers began investigations into whether he had sex with a female informant and whether he took money meant for informants, solely in retaliation "against him for questioning the integrity of the WMD reporting ... and for refusing to falsify his intelligence reporting to support the politically mandated conclusion."
The Post said the suit is the first public forum in which a CIA employee has charged directly that agency officials pressured him to produce intelligence to support the administration's prewar position." - Washington Times (12/09/04)

 

December 11, 2004 - Bernard Kerik withdrawals Homeland Security nomination after discovering a former household employee had a questionable immigration status.

Homeland security nominee withdraws

"One week after President Bush nominated him to be secretary of homeland security, former New York Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik withdrew from consideration Friday night after discovering a former household employee had a questionable immigration status." - CNN (12/11/04)

 

(See also: December 3, 2004 - Bush nominates Bernard Kerik for Homeland Security; December 22, 2004 - Bernard Kerik resigns from Giuliani Partners)

 

December 15, 2004 - Reuters:  Sept. 11 Conspiracy Theorist Offers $100,000 Prize

"Jimmy Walter has spent more than $3 million promoting a conspiracy theory the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States were "an inside job" and he is offering more cash to anyone who proves him wrong.
The millionaire activist is so convinced of a government cover-up he is offering a $100,000 reward to any engineering student who can prove the World Trade Center buildings crashed the way the government says.
"Of course, we expect no winners," Walter, 57, heir to an $11 million fortune from his father's home building business, said in a telephone interview from California on Wednesday.
He said a panel of expert engineers would judge submissions from the students.
Next month, he also launches a nationwide contest seeking alternative theories from college and high school students about why New York's World Trade Center collapsed. The contest offers $10,000 to the best alternative theory, with 100 runner-up awards of $1,000. Winners will be chosen next June.
Various official investigations give no credence to Walter's theory. A Sept. 11 commission spokesman did not return calls seeking comment.
Walter insists there had to be explosives planted in the twin towers to cause them to fall as they did, and also rejects the official explanation for the damage done at the Pentagon.
"We have all the proof," said Walter, citing videotapes and testimony from witnesses.
"It wasn't 19 screw-ups from Saudi Arabia who couldn't pass flight school who defeated the United States with a set of box cutters," he said. He dismissed the official Sept. 11 commission report, saying, "I don't trust any of these 'facts."'
Walter has spent millions of dollars to bolster support for his case, running full-page ads in The New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, The New Yorker and Newsweek, as well as alternative newspapers and 30-second TV spots.
He points to a Zogby poll he commissioned last summer that showed 66 percent of New Yorkers wanted the 9/11 investigation reopened.
Walter has spent about 30 percent of his net worth on his efforts.
"I am a patriot fighting the real traitors who are destroying our democracy. I resent it when they call me delusional," he said." - Reuters (12/15/04)

$100,000 offer on 'truth' about Sept. 11, Conspiracy theorist claims attacks on U.S. were 'inside job'

"A millionaire activist convinced the Sept. 11 attacks against the U.S. were the result of an "inside job" is putting up cash if anyone can prove him wrong.
Reuters reports Jimmy Walter is offering $100,000 to any engineering student who can prove the World Trade Center collapsed the way the government claims it did.

Another poll in May revealed 63 percent of Canadians were convinced U.S. leaders had "prior knowledge" of the attacks yet declined to act." - WorldNetDaily (12/16/05)

 

- ReOpen9/11's contest

(See also:  November 8, 2004 - 9/11 Conspiracy Ads Hit The Airwaves)

 

December 22, 2004 - Bernard Kerik resigns from Giuliani Partners because of the messy withdrawal from the Homeland Security nomination and for allegations of connections with people with mob ties and two simultaneous extramarital affairs with women.

Kerik resigns from Giuliani Partners

"Former police commissioner and one-time Cabinet nominee Bernard Kerik said Wednesday he will leave Giuliani Partners, former Mayor Rudy Giuliani's consulting firm.

At a news conference in Manhattan, Kerik said he had apologized to Giuliani for being a distraction because of his messy withdrawal as a candidate to head the Department of Homeland Security.
Kerik had been CEO of Giuliani-Kerik LLC, an affiliate of Giuliani Partners LLC. In a statement Wednesday, Giuliani said Giuliani-Kerik would be renamed Giuliani Security & Safety.
He has been hit with other allegations as well, including that he had connections with people suspected of doing business with the mob and that he had simultaneous extramarital affairs with two women." - USA Today (12/22/04)

 

(See also: January 2002 - Kerik joins Giuliani Partners)

 

December 23, 2004 - Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai chooses his new Cabinet which includes Dr. Mir Mohammad Sediq, Minister of Mines and Industries, who was an engineer for Unocal.

"President Hamid Karzai chose a new Cabinet yesterday, heeding calls to keep warlords out of top positions — including the defense minister — and creating a new post to oversee the fight against opium production." - Washington Times (12/24/04)

"Back in the days of the Taliban, Mir Sediq was an engineer for Unocal, working on a pipe dream: bringing natural gas from Turkmenistan down through Afghanistan to Pakistani ports on the Arabian Sea.
Today, Mr. Sediq is minister for Afghanistan's energy, mining, and industrial sector, and he's confident that the pipeline is coming close to reality." - Christian Science Monitor (05/13/05)

"Minister of Mines and Industries: Dr. Mir Mohammad Sediq - Mir Mohammad Sediq, son of Mir Ghulam Sakhi, was born in 1945 in Sheikhan of Mirbacha Kot District of Kabul. After primary and secondary education in Kabul, he earned a Bachelors Degree in Engineering and a PhD from American University in the United States. He is a member of American Engineers Unity and has served in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Puerto Rico and the United States. From 1975 until now, he has been working in the engineering field. He speaks Dari, Pashto, English and Urdu." - Afghanistan Online

(See also:  November 17, 2004 - Afghanistan Sees Bright Prospects for Trans-Afghan Pipeline; March 1, 2005 - Turkmenistan, Afghanistan Agree on Pipeline)

 

December 24, 2004 - In a speech about terrorism giving to U.S. troops in Iraq, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld talks as if the plane that was said to have crashed in Pennsylvania on 9/11 was shot down.

"DONALD RUMSFELD, SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: And to change that way of living, would strike at the very essence of our country.
And I think all of us have a sense if we imagine the kind of world we would face if the people who bombed the mess hall in Mosul, or the people who did the bombing in Spain, or the people who attacked the United States in New York, shot down the plane over Pennsylvania and attacked the Pentagon, the people who cut off peoples' heads on television to intimidate, to frighten -- indeed the word "terrorized" is just that. Its purpose is to terrorize, to alter behavior, to make people be something other than that which they want to be." - CNN (12/24/04)

(See also:  9/11 (8:44 am) - Donald Rumsfeld is in his office at the Pentagon talking about missile defense and the risk of terrorism and predicts there will be a terrorist attack two minutes before the first plane crashes into the WTC; 9/11 (9:35 am) - For the second time of the day, Donald Rumsfeld predicts another terrorist attack right before it happens and correctly predicts it will happen to the Pentagon; October 12, 2001 - In an interview by Parade Magazine, Rumsfeld talks as if the Pentagon was hit by a missile on 9/11; December 27, 2004 - Pentagon: Rumsfeld misspoke on Flight 93 crash; Killtown's:  What really happened to Flight 93?)

 

December 24, 2004 - Militants 'wanted Bush re-elected', it would help promote their cause - CNN (12/24/04)

 

December 27, 2004 - Pentagon: Rumsfeld misspoke on Flight 93 crash; Defense secretary's remark to troops fuels conspiracy theories

"A comment Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld made during a Christmas Eve address to U.S. troops in Baghdad has sparked new conspiracy theories about the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
In the speech, Rumsfeld made a passing reference to United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed in Pennsylvania after passengers attempted to stop al Qaeda hijackers.
But in his remarks, Rumsfeld referred to the "the people who attacked the United States in New York, shot down the plane over Pennsylvania."
A Pentagon spokesman insisted that Rumsfeld simply misspoke, but Internet conspiracy theorists seized on the reference to the plane having been shot down.
"Was it a slip of the tongue? Was it an error? Or was it the truth, finally being dropped on the public more than three years after the tragedy" asked a posting on the Web site WorldNetDaily.com.
Some people remain skeptical of U.S. government statements that, despite a presidential authorization, no planes were shot down September 11, and rumors still circulate that a U.S. military plane shot the airliner down over Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
A Pentagon spokesman insists Rumsfeld has not changed his opinion that the plane crashed as the result of an onboard struggle between passengers and terrorists.
The independent panel charged with investigating the terrorist attacks concluded that the hijackers intentionally crashed Flight 93, apparently because they feared the passengers would overwhelm them." - CNN (12/27/04)

(See also:  December 24, 2004 - In a speech, Donald Rumsfeld talks as if the plane that was said to have crashed in Pennsylvania on 9/11 was shot down)

 

December 29, 2004 - In the movie "The Assassination of Richard Nixon",  Sean Penn plays Samuel Bicke, based on the real-life of Samuel Byck, who on Feb. 22, 1974 tried to hijack a commercial jet and crash it into the White House in order to kill Richard Nixon.

"The star is Sean Penn, generally regarded as the best film actor of his generation, and in "The Assassination of Richard Nixon" a virtual one-man show. Although his career has been a virtual parade of extreme characters and intense acting, "This was the hardest ever," he says of "Nixon."
Penn plays Samuel Bicke, based on the real-life Samuel Byck, an unemployed salesman from Philadelphia who on Feb. 22, 1974 attempted to hijack an Atlanta-bound jet leaving Baltimore-Washington International Airport -- murdering a police officer and being shot to death himself. It was days before authorities discovered, via tape recordings left behind by the 44-year-old killer, that he had planned to fly the hijacked plane into the Nixon White House.
Because of the Sept. 11 parallels, and the fact that Stephen Sondheim made Byck a character in the musical "Assassins" -- his show about people who killed or tried to kill presidents -- the man who once picketed the White House in a Santa suit has regained some of his notoriety in the past few years. Generally, though, he has remained a cipher, his crime an obscure footnote to American history.
"I'd never even known about it," Penn, 44, admits, "partly because the primary reporting was the attempted hijacking. It was days later that they discovered the tapes and understood what he was attempting to do. By that time, probably in a concern for copy-cat crimes, they kept it quiet." - Newsday (12/19/04)

(See also:  February 22, 1974 - Samuel Byck attempts to hijack a commercial plane and crash it into the White House in order to kill Richard Nixon; September 12, 1994 - Frank Eugene Corder crashes a stolen Cessna airplane into the south lawn of the White House)
 

 

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