Added critical comments are in blue. For someone who claims to be a "progressive", we'll soon see that Mr. Rothschild has a fondness for Rove-style bullying and has created a formula-driven hit piece that seems more intended to intimidate than to enlighten.


Enough of the 9/11 Conspiracies, Already

by Matthew Rothschild



At almost every progressive gathering where thereís a question and answer period, someone or other vehemently raises 9/11 and espouses a grand conspiracy theory.


If you havenít had the pleasure of enduring these rants, please let me share.


Note the sarcastic, condescending tone. Rothschild is the one making the grand, sweeping generalization here that anyone who cares enough about what's going on to question the official story of 9/11 (which is easily the most significant geopolitical event of our lifetimes) is automatically a vehement, ranting, unendurable "conspiracy theorist" who should be shunned and ridiculed whenever possible.


Hereís what the conspiracists believe:


9/11 was an inside job.


Absolutely -- critical roles were filled by insiders, both in government and media. "Outsiders" may also have been involved.


Members of the Bush Administration ordered it, not Osama bin Laden.


This is a silly-sounding oversimplification that shows very little understanding of how the exercise of power is organized in the world these days.  Individuals within the administration were no doubt involved and had specific roles to play, but they most likely were not the ones who "ordered it". The network of private interests behind these attacks extends far beyond the boundaries of our government.



http://www.projectcensored.org/ (see article: The Global Dominance Group)


There has been much speculation regarding Bush's odd behavior while left unprotected in the Florida classroom, the lack of fighter escort for Air Force One when he finally took off and his choice of destinations as the day progressed. When word of the second strike came in, a Marine in company with the Secret Service appropriately signaled, "we're out of here", but he was overruled and Bush was allowed to sit and fidget for what seemed like an eternity. It is quite possible that Bush and/or his handlers either knew that this was not a real threat, or that it was a very different kind of threat compared to what we were told later in the day.



Arab hijackers may not have done the deed.


There are always patsies involved in these kinds of false-flag operations -- Arabs in this case. They may be witting or unwitting, but they are a critical ingredient because they are the ones being set up to take the blame. Some of the supposed hijackers may have been on the planes, although the evidence for this is sketchy at best.



When Davin Coburn, one of the debunker editors for Popular Mechanics, was asked in a recent interview  how the government knew all the hijackers were on the planes, he said that the DNA for all 19 had been found at the crash sites. When he was then asked how the government had previously obtained the matching DNA samples that would be necessary to verify identification, he of course could not answer and instead tried desperately to change the subject...



It's also highly questionable whether the supposed hijackers could actually have flown the planes to their targets (hundreds of miles away, with no help from ground control) with such pinpoint accuracy. Flying a large commercial aircraft flying at hundreds of miles per hour is not like sitting in a flight simulator or flying a Cesna. You can't always tell where you are (at 30,000 feet) just by looking out the window. Even assuming you manage to end up within sighting distance of your destination, successfully aiming a large passenger jet at a small target is no easy feat. Remote control is a much more likely explanation, especially when the flight path of AA Flight 77 is also considered.



On top of that, the Twin Towers fell not because of the impact of the airplanes and the ensuing fires but because the Bush Administration got agents to plant explosives at the base of those buildings.


There are two problems here. First, we're back to the gratuitously implausible assertion that the properly constituted government was behind this in a "business as usual" sort of way. It really helps to do a study of the history of false-flag attacks to get a better sense of how these operations are typically carried out, why, and by whom.



Second, The Towers were exploded from the top down. Rothschild is trying to set up a false comparison to a standard controlled demolition where gravity is used for most of the work after taking out the supports at the base of the building.



Building 7, another high-rise at the World Trade Center that fell on 9/11, also came down by planted explosives.


Controlled demolition is the only conceivable explanation for such a perfectly executed implosion. Regardless of any claims the debunkers or NIST may make regarding evidence for specific types of explosives, the global characteristics of the collapse show multiple features of controlled demolition, including:


1) It was an almost perfectly vertical and symmetrical collapse,

2) It fell in only 6.5 seconds, very near the rate of free-fall,

3) The exterior walls fell inward as the building came down into its own footprint, causing very little damage to adjacent buildings,

4) Squib-like bursts of smoke emerge from the north face as the destruction begins,

5) Recovered steel samples showed sulphur residues, rapid oxidation and intragranular melting -- all signature characteristics for the use of demolition charges,

6) Several days after 9/11, NASA conducted an infrared aerial survey of Ground Zero and detected hot spots in the rubble that were over 1300ƒF.



The Pentagon was not hit by American Airlines Flight 77 but by a smaller plane or a missile.


The debunkers love this one -- as do certain of their strident counterparts, who may be less than genuine in some cases.



While many people have questioned the physical evidence from the impact, there are other questions about the Pentagon attack that are perhaps more conclusive and incriminating. The aircraft approaching the Pentagon made an extraordinary spiral dive, turning 270 degrees and dropping 7000 feet in 2.5 minutes. It was flying almost level, only a few feet from the ground, as it impacted the first and second floors of the building. These stunts would certainly be beyond the questionable piloting skills of Hani Hanjour. And why execute such a difficult maneuver only to be able to strike the one section of the Pentagon where only hapless construction workers would be killed and which also happened to be farthest from Rumsfeld's office? Why take the risk of crashing into the ground before even reaching the building? Why not just crash into the building from above? And why does the official NTSB data show the plane (or whatever it is) flying over the building and not into it?



And the Pennsylvania plane did not crash as a result of the revolt by the passengers but was brought down by the military.


The debris field was not continuous. One of the engines was reportedly found more than a mile away from the primary crash site, and other debris sites were discovered three, six and eight miles away. This is inconsistent with a simple crash scenario and implies that some sort of breakup occurred while the plane was still in the air.



Iím amazed at how many people give credence to these theories. Everyoneís an engineer. People who never even took one college science course can now hold forth at great length on how the buildings at the World Trade Center could not possibly have collapsed in the way they did


So sarcastic! The people he's talking about in such disparaging terms are simply fellow citizens trying to share with others what they've learned from actually doing their own homework and comparing the credibility of the government version of 9/11 (which ignores or falsely discredits large amounts of important evidence) to the more comprehensive independent efforts to explain ALL the evidence and ALL the data.


And why do they do this? Because they care about what's happening to America. This is not an idle pastime for the psychologically disabled. Rothschild suggests that we take HIS word for it that ALL the independent research into 9/11 is bogus and we shouldn't even bother to look for ourselves. And, if we do, expect to be ridiculed and branded as a dreaded "conspiracy theorist". I'll think for myself and take my chances, thank you.


I believe that it is the civic duty of every American who cares about their freedom and the future of this country to spend a little time learning about (1) the history of false flag tactics and (2) basic physics relating to gravity, fire and the behavior of steel structures.


 and why the Pentagon could not have been struck by that American Airlines jet.


Problem is, some of the best engineers in the country have studied these questions and come up with perfectly logical, scientific explanations for what happened.


Yes, actually quite a few DIFFERENT explanations. They can't seem to make up their minds. First the steel melts and then it doesn't. First they say it was the columns and then they say it was the trusses. First the truss connections were too weak and gave way, then they became so strong they pulled the walls in. First they say that nothing could survive the incredible heat and then they report actual test data from steel recovered from the fire zones that shows that the steel never reached temperatures over 500 degrees F -- far below the point where it would even begin to weaken. First they say that floor truss failure led to a "progressive collapse", then they report that in post-9/11 fire tests they were not able to re-create failure even with fires that were hotter and of longer duration than those observed on 9/11...




It is very important to understand that fire temperature and internal steel temperature are NOT THE SAME. This is why meat thermometers were invented. Not only does steel take time to heat up, but it is also a wonderful conductor of heat, meaning that heat is dissipated quickly throughout the entire framework, making it very difficult to bring steel to a high temperature in a localized region. These are two of the reasons why steel-frame high-rise structures NEVER collapse from fire.



The American Society of Civil Engineers and FEMA conducted an in-depth investigation of the World Trade Center.


This was an under funded exercise where the investigators were denied access to ground zero, barred from examining crucial evidence and not given subpoena power to obtain critical documents. Fire Engineering Magazine referred to this investigation as a "half-baked farce".




The team members included the director of the Structural Engineering Institute of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the senior fire investigator for the National Fire Protection Association, professors of fire safety, and leaders of some of the top building design and engineering firms, including Skidmore Owings & Merrill in Chicago, Skilling Ward Magnusson Barkshire in Seattle, and Greenhorne & OíMara in Maryland.


It concluded that massive structural damage caused by the crashing of the aircrafts into the buildings, combined with the subsequent fires, ìwere sufficient to induce the collapse of both structures.î


Like the NIST report that followed, all of the attention is focused on the alleged "triggering event" where the top section of the building above the crash zone presumably begins to fall on the lower floors below.  It's supposed to be obvious to anyone why the entire building would then be destroyed. No explanation for the actual process of destruction is ever given, beyond the simple suggestion that the structure was "overwhelmed", and a three-page paper by ASCE authors Bazant & Zhou based on equations that are irrelevant due to impossible assumptions.



The National Institute of Standards and Technology did its own forty-three volume study of the Twin Towers. ìSome 200 technical experts . . . reviewed tens of thousands of documents, interviewed more than 1,000 people, reviewed 7,000 segments of video footage and 7,000 photographs, analyzed 236 pieces of steel


Here we go with thousands of this and thousands of that. Popular Mechanics does the same thing, as if were supposed to be hopelessly intimidated by these large numbers of experts, photographs, etc. Throwing 7000 video segments at something doesn't make it true. And why can't WE see some of those 7000 video segments?? Someone who knows what he's talking about will rest his case on the merits of his argument -- not on how many experts he talked to.


 from the wreckage, [and] performed laboratory tests and sophisticated computer simulations,î the institute says.


The computer simulations were performed using undisclosed input values and were based upon admittedly unrealistic scenarios. Remember that the post-9/11 fire tests did NOT cause floor model failure and the recovered steel samples showed only relatively low temperatures.



It also concluded that a combination of the crash and the subsequent fires brought the towers down: ìIn each tower, a different combination of impact damage and heat-weakened structural components contributed to the abrupt structural collapse.î


Sure, they concluded this, but it's not exactly clear how or why. And in all their thousands of pages all they have to say about the actual destruction of the Towers is that "collapse then ensued". That's it. That's all they say.



Popular Mechanics, first in its March 2005 cover story and now in its expanded book, Debunking 9/11 Myths, after interviewing scores of other experts in the engineering field, takes apart the most popular contentions of the conspiracists. ìIn every case we examined, the key claims made by conspiracy theorists turned out to be mistaken, misinterpreted, or deliberately falsified,î the book says.


What they actually have done is cherry-pick claims that even most 9/11 researchers have discarded, while ignoring or misrepresenting the serious questions.



I made a few calls myself, including to Gene Corley, who conducted the American Society of Civil Engineers/FEMA study, and to Mete Sozen, structural engineering professor at Purdue, who was one of the principal authors of ìThe Pentagon Building Performance Reportî of January 2003, which was done under the auspices of the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Structural Engineering Institute. I also contacted engineering professors at MIT and other leading universities in the country, and none of them puts any stock in the 9/11 conspiracy theories.


These are the same people who have been paid to promote the "official" story from the very beginning. It was Eduardo Kausel from MIT who appeared on the Discovery Channel production "Anatomy of the Collapse" and "proved" his theory for the destruction of the WTC Towers with a flimsy wooden model that consisted only of four wobbly sticks representing the corner columns, leaving out the other perimeter columns with their interconnecting horizontal spandrels, no core structure at all, and none of the interconnecting floor structures. MIT was also the source for the equally misleading "science" presented in the NOVA production "Why the Towers Fell".


In fact, they view them as a huge waste of time. They are busy trying to figure out how to prevent buildings from falling in the future.


That sounds nice -- as if they are the virtuous ones and 9/11 researchers are just wasting everybody's time. People should realize that individuals like Kevin Ryan, Steven Jones and others are risking their careers, credibility and livelihood for the sake of finding out the truth about these important matters. It takes courage to make a principled commitment to truth based upon one's own convictions -- particularly if your conclusions are going to be politically unpopular. These individuals should be honored and respected for what they are doing (regardless of their conclusions), not ridiculed and slandered with cheap shots the way Mr. Rothschild seems to enjoy so much.


Of course, any conspiracy theorist worth his or her salt will claim that all these people are in on the plot.


Not all, but probably some of them. (Another gratuitous oversimplification.)


And that I am in on it, too.


Perhaps unwittingly.


Get over it.


Sorry, I'm not convinced yet that I can just go back to sleep, forget about 9/11 and believe whatever Mr. Rothschild or this government tells me.


The guru of the 9/11 conspiracy movement is David Ray Griffin, an emeritus professor not of engineering but of philosophy and theology at the Claremont School of Theology. First in The New Pearl Harbor and then in The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions and now in Christian Faith and the Truth Behind 9/11, Griffin has peddled his conspiracy theory.


Actually, unlike authors like Michel Chossudovsky or Webster Tarpley, Griffin doesn't put forward comprehensive theories of his own, let alone "peddle" any. His skills in philosophy qualify him to apply logical analysis to a comparison of what is known and documented about 9/11 versus what we've been told about 9/11. One doesn't have to look far before almost everything we've been told falls apart. He has also provided a service by compiling the numerous unanswered questions along with the conclusions of many other researchers. His efforts have provided a significant overview of this large and complex body of documented fact, government claims and ongoing speculation.


Heís not alone, of course. A myriad of websites devote themselves to this subject, and several films are circulating on it, including Loose Change. Thereís even a group called Scholars for 9/11 Truth, which insists ìthe World Trade Center was almost certainly brought down by controlled demolitions.î Most prominent among these is Steven E. Jones, professor of physics and astronomy at Brigham Young University, whose primary field is not engineering but cold fusion, according to Debunking 9/11 Myths.


Mr. Rothschild and Debunking 9/11 Myths are apparently choosing to ignore all facts that don't fit their agenda. Dr. Steven Jones is a not only a professor of Newtonian Mechanics, but his primary relevant field is forensic archeometry, which involves the application of advanced physics to the study of "artifacts" recovered from sites where unknown physical events have taken place. Sophisticated techniques like the use of photon-induced X-ray emissions are used to do materials analysis on recovered samples. It is these types of expertise that have led him to the discovery of materials deposits on WTC steel that match the chemical signature of the use of thermite and thermate -- incendiaries and explosives typically used in building demolitions.



The conspiracy theories are particularly popular on the left


Actually they're not. The Left, exemplified by the likes of Amy Goodman and Noam Chomsky, is notorious for its 9/11 gatekeeping. 9/11 researchers tend to be independently minded and come from both the left and the right.



 for a couple of understandable reasons. Itís undeniable that Bush has ceaselessly seized on 9/11 to justify his warmaking abroad and his repressive policies at home. And then thereís the notorious phrase in a document of the Project for the New American Century, the fount of neoconservativism, whose members included Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Douglas Feith, and a host of other hawks who flew into the Bush Administration. That line, from the September 2000 study ìRebuilding Americaís Defenses,î argues for transforming the U.S. military posture into a much more aggressive one, and for expanding the Pentagonís budget to reach $500 billion a year. The authors recognized that this transformation would be difficult to achieve quickly ìabsent some catastrophic and catalyzing event--like a new Pearl Harbor.î


Griffin and other leftwing conspiracy theorists put the two together, and voila. The attacks ìwere orchestrated in order to pave the way for launching unprovoked wars on two countries that provided no threat, whether imminent or long-term, to the people of the United States,î


Iraq posed no threat and was virtually defenseless when we attacked with "shock and awe", killing and maiming thousands of innocent civilians while thoroughly destroying their infrastructure. And for what? Would this have been allowed without 9/11?




 he writes in Christian Faith and the Truth Behind 9/11. ìThe Administration and its Pentagon even planned to use 9/11 as a pretext . . . to attack still more countries.


Is Iran next?


 The U.S. government was planning, therefore, to use the deaths of some 3,000 people (whom itself had killed) to justify wars that would most likely kill and maim many hundreds of thousands of people, perhaps millions.î


Who do we bomb after Iran?


Before taking some of the major conspiracy claims one by one, letís examine how outlandish the conspiracy theory is on its face.


First, Osama bin Laden has already claimed responsibility for the attack several times and boasted of the prowess of the suicide bombers who hijacked those planes. Why not take him at his word?


Which "bin Laden" is Rothschild talking about? The bin Laden that spoke directly to the Middle East press immediately after 9/11 denied involvement. It was the bin Laden with the fat nose that showed up in a VHS tape miraculously found just laying around somewhere in Afghanistan that claimed responsibility. Most Islamic scholars and intelligence experts (who aren't working for the government) believe this tape, as well as most of the ones that came after, is fake.





 And if bin Laden were working in cahoots with the Bush Administration, why was the President warned on August 6, 2001, in a Presidential daily briefing that Osama bin Laden was about to attack the United States? Wouldnít that risk exposing the conspiracy?


The whole idea is to get everybody to believe that the patsies were independently planning the attack and could carry it out on their own.


Second, if the Bush Administration plotters carried out 9/11 to justify attacking Iraq, why didnít they have Iraqi hijackers do the deed? In actuality, there was not a single Iraqi hijacker, and Bush propagandists had to do all sorts of gymnastics to link Iraq to the actual attackers.


You can't just order believable patsies from the supermarket. Plus the patsies don't necessarily know that they're patsies and they take time to cultivate. If the plan is to use double-agents to infiltrate an existing group and take them to a higher level of activity, then you have to work with the best material available, as long as it's a close enough match to the target nationality or ethnic group. Saudi's, Iraqi's, whatever. Most uninformed Americans probably still think Sadam was behind 9/11.


Third, for this conspiracy to have succeeded, it would have had to have been amazingly vast: not only the high level members of the Bush Administration (including the head of the Secret Service, Griffin says in Christian Faith) and the explosives teams, but also many others.


This is the tired theory that conspiracies never happen because too many people would have to keep them secret. This goes nowhere and only serves to comfort those timid souls who are afraid to look at the evidence. Far fewer witting individuals would be required than Rothschild imagines.



Professional operatives are in the business of keeping and protecting secrets. They know that if they don't they'll be dead and out of a job. Consider how fanatically secretive the current administration has been about almost everything. Remember Cheney's energy meetings?


Griffin, in Pearl Harbor, for instance, alleges that Mayor Rudolph Giuliani may have been involved. Griffin quotes Giuliani telling ABC News, ìWe were operating out of there [Building 7] when we were told that the World Trade Center was gonna collapse.î Griffin says Giuliani had no obvious way of knowing that, and concludes: ìGiulianiís statement provides, therefore, evidence someone, perhaps he himself, knew something that the firemen in the buildings did not knowówhich was perhaps that explosives had been placed in the buildings and were about to be set off.î Is that really evidence? Isnít it much more likely that the firefighters told the mayor to leave because the fire itself was jeopardizing the building?


Firefighters know that fire does not cause steel structures to collapse. It never has and it never will. That's why they didn't hesitate to enter the Towers to try to rescue people and fight the fires.



Griffin also alleges that Larry Silverstein, who leased the World Trade Center complex, was in on the deal so he could collect the insurance. (This claimówhich he might as well have called ìThe Jew Cashed Inîódovetails with the anti-Semitic conspiracy theory popular in the Middle East that the Mossad blew up the towers and warned the thousands of Jews who would have been working there to stay home.)


Wow. Is Rothschild making a cheap shot here by insinuating that Dr. Griffin is somehow anti-Semitic by association? Silverstein did collect a lot of money under questionable circumstances and the justifiable sentiments of many Arabs in the Middle East are anti-ZIONIST. Deliberately confusing anti-Semitism with anti-Zionism simply gives Israel's right wing extremists a cover story, most recently used to destroy Lebanon once again and slaughter whomever they choose along the way.





In Pearl Harbor, Griffin quotes Silverstein in a 2002 PBS documentary recalling a conversation from the fire department commander on September 11 ìtelling me that they were not sure they were gonna be able to contain the fire, and I said, ëWeíve had such terrible loss of life, maybe the smartest thing to do is pull it.í And they made that decision to pull and we watched the building collapse.î Griffin, who writes that Silverstein ìmade almost $500 million in profit from the collapse of Building 7,î says by ìpull itî Silverstein was recommending that the building be demolished by explosives. Silverstein has flat-out denied that.


Of course.


 By ìpulling it,î he has said that he meant giving up on the firefightersí efforts to save the building.


Two books later, Griffin removes any ambiguity Silversteinís ìassertion that Building 7 was brought down by explosives, whatever the motive behind it, explains why and how it collapsed,î Griffin writes in Christian Faith and the Truth Behind 9/11. But Silverstein never made such an assertion, and for Griffin to claim he did is, to say the least, a distortion.


It's anyone's choice whether or not to believe Silverstein. He did say pull IT (not them) and according to the FEMA report (Chapter 5), firefighters had already abandoned WTC7 early in the day due to lack of water pressure.

http://911research.wtc7.net/mirrors/guardian2/wtc/WTC_ch5.htm (See Sec 5.5.3)


He also must have realized (at the time he made the remark) that the collapse was such an obvious demolition that everyone would know anyway, just by looking at it.


The problems with a vast conspiracy theory are obvious. Thereís the likelihood that someone along the chain would squeal.


This is the "professionals can't keep secrets" theory again. Many of those who thought they were participating only in the planning and execution of the multiple terror drills and war games that day may actually have been unwitting accomplices. And the witting perpetrators no doubt continue to have many good reasons for staying silent.



Members of the government have been engaged in far less treasonous plots (such as Bushís designs on Iran), and whistleblowers have managed to get the information out to the likes of Seymour Hersh over at The New Yorker. And, on top of that, weíre supposed to believe that this incompetent Administration, which brought you Katrina, was somehow able to execute this grand conspiracy?


Sorry, I don't buy the "incompetence" theory either -- follow the money and see who profits from all of this "incompetence". The often-repeated claim that there are no 9/11 whistleblowers is a myth that has been assisted by the 9/11 Commission's pre-determined conclusions and suppression of contradictory evidence and testimony.



ìThe government is not sufficiently competent to pull off such conspiracies and too leaky to keep them secret,î said Richard Clarke, the one-time counterterrorism czar for Clinton and Bush, in a blurb for Debunking 9/11 Myths. Clarke has been a harsh critic of Bush, and he was a strong supporter of John Kerry. Donít you think Clarke would have blown the whistle had he known? And who was in a better position than he to know?


Richard Clarke is a classic mole who played a critical role on 9/11. He was the one who first announced -- without evidence -- "This is Al Qaeda". I don't trust a word he says and his criticisms of Bush serve only to win credibility among those who genuinely dislike Bush -- as in the preceding paragraph.


Finally, in Pearl Harbor, Griffin acknowledges one enormous, unfillable hole in the conspiracistsí theory: If Flight 77 did not hit the Pentagon, where did it go? And where did all sixty-four people on board go? Griffin pathetically answers: ìOne cannot expect that the revisionists, being independent researchers with limited budgets and no power to subpoena testimony, could answer all the questions raised by their alternative scenario.î But that doesnít stop him from speculating, in a ghoulish way, about one piece of evidence that contradicts his Flight 77 notion: the phone calls from conservative Barbara Olson, who was on Flight 77, to her husband, Ted Olson, Bushís solicitor general. Griffin casts doubt on whether the phone calls actually happened, noting that Olson ìis very close to the Bush Administration.î At least in Pearl Harbor, Griffin recognizes the weakness of this argument. The conspiracy theorists ìstill need to explain, of course, what became of Barbara Olson, and also whether it is plausible that Ted Olson would have participated in a plan with that outcome,î he writes. In his latest book, though, Griffin does not appear bothered in the least, as he continues to cast doubt on Ted Olsonís account. He has swept Barbara Olson and sixty-three other people under the rug.


Griffin didn't sweep them under the rug, SOMEBODY ELSE DID -- he had nothing to do with the disappearance of these people! Griffin is just trying to make sense out of contradictory and questionable reports.


On to some of Griffinís most oft-cited questions.


Why did dust clouds shoot out of the Twin Towers as they fell?


Or, as Griffin poses it in Pearl Harbor: ìWhat other than explosives could turn concrete into powder and then eject it horizontally 150 feet or more?î


Corley, who headed up the investigation for the American Society of Civil Engineers and FEMA, gives a quick response to that. ìThat is simply the air pressure being pushed down,î he says. ìOnce the collapse started, then you had roughly a twenty-story building and roughly a thirty-story building acting as a very large mass to push everything down. The air pressure gets quite something, and the windows on the lower floors break, and you see puffs of smoke coming out of them.î


If he is talking about the high-speed, squib-like lateral ejections that are seen shooting out from the intact portion of the structure many floors below the advancing wave of destruction, they include dust, not just smoke. Where would this dust come from? The ejections are too energetic and too far down the building to be caused simply by air pressure from floors above that are presumed to be collapsing. In fact, as the wave of destruction progresses, it leaves only an expanding slurry of dust and debris in its wake, with no sign of intact, falling floor slabs that would act like a collapsing bellows, as Corley suggests.



Debunking 9/11 Myths offers the same explanation and cites structural engineer Jon Magnusson, who says this expulsion of air and debris is fairly common when buildings collapse.


Common when buildings collapse? What buildings is he talking about? Steel frame structures are sometimes damaged during earthquakes, but they never collapse except during controlled demolitions.



Why did the tower that was hit second fall first?


ìAll other things being equal, then, the tower that was struck first should have collapsed first. And yet, although the South Tower was struck seventeen minutes later than the North Tower, it collapsed twenty-nine minutes earlier,î writes Griffin in Pearl Harbor. The fact that the South Tower fell first, he concludes, ìsuggests that the collapse of these buildings was caused by something other than the fires.î


But all things werenít equal. ìThe damage done to the second building was more serious than the damage done to the first,î says Corley.


We can see visible damage to the perimeter columns, but any claims regarding damage to the interior core columns and fireproofing are pure speculation that cannot be verified visually. The shattered fragments of an aluminum airplane that has been shredded by passing through the perimeter wall are very unlikely to have enough mass concentration to sever many of the heavy core columns. It's also important to remember that standard design parameters require that building structures be able to support five times anticipated static loads.


In fact, Engineering News-Record reported in 1964 that the specially manufactured high-strength steel perimeter columns had even greater strength whereby "live loads on these columns can be increased more than 2000% before failure occurs." From the book City in the Sky (Times Books, Henry Hold and Company, LLC, 2003, page 133), we're told that the calculations of the engineers working on the Tower design showed that ALL the columns on one side could be cut, along with the two corners and some of the columns on each adjacent side, and the building would still be strong enough to withstand a 100-mile-per-hour wind!



The National Institute of Standards and Technology concurs. Its ìFinal Report on the Collapse of the World Trade Center Towersî notes that ten core columns were severed in the South Tower,


They don't really know this, even though it's presented here as a settled fact. But even if this is true, ten core columns is less than 25% of the 47 columns making up the core structure, leaving the building well within the five times load design redundancy. And remember, NIST's own testing on steel samples recovered from the fire zone showed no temperatures hotter than 500 degrees F, far below what would be required to weaken the surviving columns. (Remember: fire temperature and steel temperature are not the same thing.)



 whereas only six were severed in the North. And 20,000 more square feet of insulation was stripped from the trusses in the South Tower than the North.


This is also a guess, arrived at by firing a shotgun at a piece of retardant-coated steel in a plywood box. And again it is of little consequence, given the temperature and duration of the fires and the results of NIST's floor model fire testing.

http://www.gunsandbutter.net/archives.php (see interview from June 14, 2006)


 The report ìfound no corroborating evidence for alternative hypotheses suggesting that the WTC were brought down by controlled demolition using explosives planted prior to September 11, 2001.î


The NIST report only covers the time frame leading up to what they call the "triggering event". The evidence for the use of explosives occurs AFTER this point in time, during the actual destruction of the building, which is beyond the scope of NIST's investigation, so it is ignored.



What about Building 7?


This is a favorite of the conspiracy theorists,


For good reason!


 since the planes did not strike this structure. But the building did sustain damage from the debris of the Twin Towers. ìOn about a third of the face to the center and to the bottomóapproximately ten storiesóabout 25 percent of the depth of the building was scooped out,î Shyam Sunder, the lead investigator for the National Institute of Standards and Technology, told Popular Mechanics.


Our government investigators need to get their stories straight. FEMA's Building Performance Study carried out shortly after 9/11 includes detailed diagrams of debris distribution from the destruction of the Towers. WTC7 is beyond the zone impacted by heavy structural materials and was struck only by lightweight debris, according to FEMA's study. It is not possible for lightweight debris to scoop out 25% of the depth of the building over ten floors. There are also no photographs in the public domain that confirm this claim. But even if it were true, the building would still be within its design redundancy and this type of damage could not account for the nearly perfect vertical collapse of the building. Scooping out the structural support from one side would create an overhanging mass that would cause the building to tip if it were to fail for some reason.

http://911research.com/mirrors/guardian2/wtc/WTC_ch1.htm (see Fig 1-7)



Whatís more, the fire in the building lasted for about eight hours, in part because there were fuel tanks in the basement and on some of the floors. ìThe building was designed for a fire duration of no more than about three hours,î says Corley. ìEight hours was way more than what that building was designed for.î (Corley, by the way, also headed up the investigation of the Murrah Buildingís collapse in Oklahoma City.)


Fuel oil is just another hydrocarbon that burns no hotter than paper or office furniture. Many steel frame buildings have become true towering infernos engulfed by emergent flames and have burned for 24 hours and longer, but the steel framework never fails. High-rise structures would NEVER be built out of steel if they were known to collapse from fire, especially after burning for ONLY THREE HOURS!

http://911research.com/wtc/analysis/compare/fires.html - ref8


The National Institute of Standards and Technology is still studying the collapse of Building 7, but its initial report says: ìNIST has seen no evidence that the collapse of WTC 7 was caused by bombs, missiles, or controlled demolition.î


Of course.


What about the Pentagon?


Conspiracy theorists will bend your ear explaining that the American Airlines Boeing 757 couldnít possibly have made such a small hole in the Pentagon. Griffin in Pearl Harbor: ìThe orifice created by the impact . . . was at most eighteen feet in diameter. Is it not absurd to suggest that a Boeing 757 created and then disappeared into such a small hole? . . . Can anyone seriously believe that a 125-foot-wide airplane created and then went inside a hole less than twenty-feet wide?î


First of all, the hole was actually ninety feet wide, according to the ìPentagon Building Performance Reportî of January 2003, which the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Structural Engineering Institute put out. And Professor Sozen of Purdue, one of the authors of that report, has an explanation.


ìThe reinforced columns of the Pentagon destroyed the wings,î says Sozen. ìThatís why the hole is smaller. It had to be smaller.î Since working on that report, Sozen has designed simulations at Purdue, and his results correspond with what happened to Flight 77, he says. Sozen, who identifies himself as a progressive, says it is ìridiculous to denyî that the American Airlines plane hit the Pentagon. And, he adds, if Flight 77 didnít hit the Pentagon, where did it go and ìwhat happened to the people in that planeî?


But we know what happened to them. They died at the Pentagon. ìAll but five of the 189 people who died on the aircraft and in the Pentagon were later identified through DNA testing,î according to Debunking 9/11 Myths.


These issues are a distraction from the more important questions mentioned earlier regarding the piloting skills necessary for the almost impossible spiral dive, and the odd choice to strike the building where it was under construction, far from Rumsfeld's office, requiring another difficult and very risky maneuver.



Finally, was Flight 93 shot down?


Griffin and many other conspiracists allege that Flight 93, which crashed in Pennsylvania, was brought down not by the passengers struggling with the hijackers but by a U.S. missile. But we know from cell phone conversations that passengers on board that plane planned on confronting the hijackers. And, as Debunking 9/11 Myths notes, ìa Cleveland air traffic controller assigned to Flight 93 heard signs of a struggle in the cockpit, followed shortly by screaming.î


Tapes of the conversations at the northeast regional headquarters for the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) confirm this, as Michael Bronner has shown in his August article for Vanity Fair entitled ì9/11 Live: The NORAD Tapes.î Major Kevin Nasypany was the facilityís mission-crew commander that day, and the tapes show him frantically trying to figure what was going on and whether he had orders to shoot Flight 93 down.


ìGimme the call sign,î he says at 10:07. ìGimme the whole nine yards. . . . Letís get some info, real quick. They got a bomb?î


But, as Bronner reports, by then ìeveryone on board is already dead. Following the passengersí counterattack, the plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania at 10:03 a.m.î


The man who headed up the crash site investigation there was Matthew McCormick, a thirty-three-year veteran at the National Transportation Safety Board. ìFrom my investigation there was no pre-impact stress to the airplane,î he told the Debunking authors.


How does he explain the discontinuous debris field with an engine showing up so far from the crash site?



To be sure, there are discrepancies and omissions in The 9/11 Commission Report,


Including major ones that have not been mentioned in this article.



and the Pentagon and FAA appear to have not been fully truthful and forthcoming about what happened that day. Not every riddle that Griffin and other conspiracists pose has a ready answer. But almost all of their major assertions are baseless.


Saying so doesn't make it so. And this article didn't even mention some of the most important issues, like the other demolition features of the WTC destruction (in addition to the discovery of thermite -- symmetry and pulverization, for example), the war games on 9/11, insider trading, the lack of military response, no reprimands or firings, pre-9/11 warnings to selected individuals, stonewalling the investigation and appointing insiders to control it, improper destruction of evidence from Ground Zero, destruction of flight controller depositions, other missing evidence, etc.



And their own theories have such gigantic holes and require such monumental leaps of logic that they discredit themselves.


This, in fact, more accurately describes the government's claims.


At bottom, the 9/11 conspiracy theories are profoundly irrational and unscientific.


Some are, but SOME AREN'T. This is another sweeping, baseless generalization. And what about the government's conspiracy theory? That's the one with the guy in the cave and his boxcutter gang...


 It is more than passing strange that progressives, who so revere science on such issues as tobacco, stem cells, evolution, and global warming, are so willing to abandon science and give in to fantasy on the subject of 9/11.


This is degenerating into Mr. Rothschild's personal opinions, which are either hopelessly uninformed or deliberately fraudulent.


The 9/11 conspiracy theories are a cul-de-sac. They lead nowhere.


Another uninformed personal opinion presented with absolute authority.


And they arenít necessary to prove the venality of the Bush Administration.


That was never the point. We're talking about CRIME, not politics.


 Thereís plenty of that proof lying around. We donít need to make it up.


Dr. Steven Jones didn't "make up" the presence of thermite on WTC steel, and Kevin Ryan didn't "make up" NIST's test results.


© 2006 The Progressive


Where do we find REAL progressives that think for themselves and have their eyes open?