Tuesday, September 11, 2007

9-11, Six Years Later - Bush for Life

September 10, 2007

9-11, Six Years Later

By Paul Craig Roberts

On Sept. 7, National Public Radio reported that Muslims in the Middle East were beginning to believe that the 9-11 attacks on the WTC and Pentagon were false flag operations committed by some part of the U.S. and/ or Israeli government.

It was beyond the imagination of the NPR reporter and producer that there could be any substance to these beliefs, which were attributed to the influence of books by U.S. and European authors sold in bookstores in Egypt.

NPR's concern was that books by Western authors questioning the origin of the 9-11 attack have the undesirable result of removing guilt from Muslims' shoulders.

The NPR reporter, Ursula Lindsey, said that "here in the U.S., most people have little doubt about what happened during the 2001 attacks."

NPR's assumption that the official 9-11 story is the final word is uninformed. Polls show that 36 percent of Americans and more than 50 percent of New Yorkers lack confidence in the 9-11 commission report. Many 9-11 families who lost relatives in the attacks are unsatisfied with the official story.

Why are the U.S. media untroubled that there has been no independent investigation of 9-11?

Why are the media unconcerned that the rules governing preservation of forensic evidence were not followed by federal authorities?

Why do the media brand skeptics of the official line "conspiracy theorists" and "kooks"?

What is wrong with debate and listening to both sides of the defining issue of our time? If the official line is so correct and defensible, what does it have to fear from skeptics?

Obviously, a great deal considering the iron curtain that has been erected to protect the official line from independent examination.

Some may think that the 9-11 commission report was an independent investigation, and others will protest that we have the National Institute of Standards and Technology analysis, which explains the collapse of the Twin Towers as a result of airliner impact and fire.

The 9-11 commission was a political commission run by Bush administration insider Philip Zelikow. The National Institute of Standards and Technology is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, the head of which is a member of President Bush's Cabinet.

Zelikow was a member of President Bush's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board, a neoconservative stronghold. In February 2005, Zelikow was appointed counselor of the U.S. Department of State. Obviously, there was zero possibility that the 9-11 commission would hold any part of the Bush administration accountable for the numerous failures of U.S. government agencies on Sept. 11, much less would the commission investigate for any complicity.

If one looks at the credentials of skeptics compared to the credentials of defenders of the official line, it is impossible to dismiss skeptics as kooks. There are many people with strong imaginations on the Internet, but serious skeptics stick to known facts, known violations of standard procedures and the laws of physics. The vast majority of the people who call skeptics "kooks" are themselves ignorant of physics and have little comprehension of the improbability that such an attack could succeed without either the complicity or complete failure of government agencies.

Over the past six years, the ranks of distinguished skeptics of the 9-11 storyline have grown enormously. The ranks include distinguished scientists, engineers and architects, intelligence officers, air traffic controllers, military officers and generals, including the former commanding general of U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, former presidential appointees and members of the White House staff in Republican administrations, Top Gun fighter pilots and career airline pilots who say that the flying attributed to the 9-11 hijackers is beyond the skills of America's best pilots, and foreign dignitaries.

Dr. Andreas von Buelow, former West German minister of research and technology and former state secretary of the federal ministry of defense, said: "The planning of the attacks was technically and organizationally a master achievement. To hijack four airliners within a few minutes and within one hour to drive them into their targets with complicated flight maneuvers! This is unthinkable, without years-long support from secret apparatuses of the state and industry."

Gen. Leonid Ivashov, chief of staff of the Russian armed forces, said: "Only secret services and their current chiefs -- or those retired but still having influence inside the state organizations -- have the ability to plan, organize and conduct an operation of such magnitude. ... Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida cannot be the organizers nor the performers of the Sept. 11 attacks. They do not have the necessary organization, resources or leaders."

Americans might concede that it is unusual that U.S. airport security would fail four times within a few minutes, that U.S. air defenses would fail across the board to intercept the hijacked airliners and that hijackers lacking in flight skills could conduct the exotic flight maneuvers that top gun fighter pilots say are beyond their own skills. Still, there is some possibility, however remote, that Allah could have blessed the hijackers with unbelievable luck.

But when we come to the explanation of the collapse of the Twin Towers, the official story lacks even a remote possibility of being true. Architects, engineers and physicists know that powerfully constructed steel buildings do not suddenly collapse at free-fall or near-free-fall speed simply because they were impacted by airliners and experienced short-lived, low intensity and limited fires.

Physicists also know that there was not enough gravitational energy to pulverize massive concrete into fine dust, to cut massive steel beams into appropriate lengths to be loaded and removed on trucks, and to eject dust and steel beams hundreds of yards horizontally. Physicists know that if intense fire were present throughout the towers sufficient to cause steel to weaken and suddenly collapse, such fires would not have left unburned and unscorched hundreds of thousands of pieces of paper, which floated all over lower Manhattan.

Physicists have raised unanswered questions about the official explanation's neglect of the known laws of physics. Recently, Dr. Crockett Grabbe, a Caltech trained applied physicist at the University of Iowa, observed: "Applying two basic principles, conservation of energy and conservation of momentum, the government explanation quickly unravels. NIST conspicuously ignored these principles in their reports. NIST also ignored the observed twisting of the top 34 floors of the South Tower before it toppled down. This twisting clearly violates the conservation of both linear and angular momentum unless a large external force caused it. Where the massive amounts of energy came from that were needed to cause the complete collapse of the intact parts below for each tower, when their tops were in virtual free fall, is not answered in NIST's numerous volumes of study."

Some of NIST's own scientists are questioning its reports. Dr. James Quintiere, former chief of the fire science division of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, recently said that "the official conclusion that NIST arrived at is questionable" and called for an independent review of NIST's investigation into the collapses of the WTC towers.

Quintiere has called attention to many problems with NIST's investigation and reports: the absence of a timeline, failure to explain the collapse of WTC 7, the spoliation of the evidence of a fire scene, reliance on questionable computer models, the absence of any evidence for the existence of temperatures NIST predicts as necessary for failure of the steel and a Commerce Department legal structure that instead of trying to find the facts "did the opposite and blocked everything."

On Aug. 27, 2007, a prominent member of the National Academy of Sciences and recipient of the National Medal of Science, Dr. Lynn Margulis, dismissed the official account of 9-11 as a "fraud" and called for a new, thorough and impartial investigation.

On Sept. 5, 2007, U.S. Navy Top Gun fighter pilot and veteran airline pilot Ralph Kolstad said that the flight maneuvers attributed to the 9-11 hijackers are beyond his flight skills. "Something stinks to high heaven," declared Kolstad.

When faced with disturbing events, the Romans asked a question, "Cui bono?" Who benefits? This question was conspicuously absent from the official investigation.

Who are the beneficiaries of 9-11? The answer is: the military-security complex, which has accumulated tens of billions of dollars in profits; U.S. oil companies, which hope to get their hands on Iraqi and perhaps Iranian oil; the Republican Party, which saved a vulnerable newly elected president, George W. Bush, viewed by many as illegitimately elected by one vote of the Supreme Court, by wrapping him in the flag as "war president"; the Republican Federalist Society, which used 9-11 to achieve its goal of concentrating power in the executive; Vice President Dick Cheney and the neoconservatives, who used the "new Pearl Harbor" to implement their "Project for a New American Century" and extend American hegemony over the Middle East; and right-wing Israeli Zionists, who have successfully used American blood and treasure to eliminate obstacles to Israeli territorial expansion.

In addition to American troops and Iraqi and Afghan civilian casualties, a casualty of the neoconservative "war on terror" is the civil liberties that protect Americans from tyranny. President Bush and his corrupt Department of Justice (sic) have declared our constitutional protections to be null and void at the whim of the executive.

The greatest benefactors of 9-11 are the authoritarian personalities that John Dean says have taken over the Republican Party.


Paul Craig Roberts [email him] was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan Administration. He is the author of Supply-Side Revolution : An Insider's Account of Policymaking in Washington; Alienation and the Soviet Economy and Meltdown: Inside the Soviet Economy, and is the co-author with Lawrence M. Stratton of The Tyranny of Good Intentions : How Prosecutors and Bureaucrats Are Trampling the Constitution in the Name of Justice. Click here for Peter Brimelow’s Forbes Magazine interview with Roberts about the recent epidemic of prosecutorial misconduct.

Read this or George W. Bush will be president the rest of your life

by William Blum

The world is very weary of all this and wants to laugh again

Okay, Bush ain't gonna get out of Iraq no matter what anyone says or does short of a)impeachment, b)a lobotomy, or c)one of his daughters setting herself afire in the Oval Office as a war protest. A few days ago, upon arriving in Australia, "in a chipper mood", he was asked by the Deputy Prime Minister about his stopover in Iraq. "We're kicking ass," replied the idiot king.[1] Another epigram for his tombstone.

And the Democrats ain't gonna end the war. Ninety-nine percent of the American people protesting on the same day ain't gonna do it either, in this democracy. (No, I'm sorry to say that I don't think the Vietnam protesters ended the war. There were nine years of protest — 1964 to 1973 — before the US military left Vietnam. It's a stretch to ascribe a cause and effect to that. The United States, after all, had to leave sometime.)

Only those fighting the war can end it. By laying down their arms and refusing to kill anymore, including themselves. Some American soldiers in Iraq have already refused to go on very dangerous combat missions. Iraq Veterans Against the War, last month at their annual meeting, in St. Louis, voted to launch a campaign encouraging American troops to refuse to fight. "Iraq Veterans Against the War decided to make support of war resisters a major part of what we do," said Garrett Rappenhagen, a former U.S. Army sniper who served in Iraq from February 2004 to February 2005.

The veterans group has begun organizing among active duty soldiers on military bases. Veterans have toured the country in busses holding barbeques outside the base gates. They also plan to step up efforts to undermine military recruiting efforts.
Of course it's a very long shot to get large numbers of soldiers into an angry, protesting frame of mind. But consider the period following the end of World War Two. Late 1945 and early 1946 saw what is likely the greatest troop revolt that has ever occurred in a victorious army. Hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of American soldiers protested all over the world because they were not being sent home even though the war was over. The GIs didn't realize it at first, but many soon came to understand that the reason they were being transferred from Europe and elsewhere to various places in the Pacific area, instead of being sent back home, was that the United States was concerned about uprisings against colonialism, which, in the minds of Washington foreign-policy officials, was equated with communism and other nasty un-American things. The uprisings were occurring in British colonies, in Dutch colonies, in French colonies, as well as in the American colony of the Philippines. Yes, hard to believe, but the United States was acting like an imperialist power.

In the Philippines there were repeated mass demonstrations by GIs who were not eager to be used against the left-wing Huk guerrillas. The New York Times reported in January 1946 about one of these demonstrations: "'The Philippines are capable of handling their own internal problems,' was the slogan voiced by several speakers. Many extended the same point of view to China."[2]

American marines were sent to China to support the Nationalist government of Chang Kai-shek against the Communists of Mao Tse-tung and Chou En-lai. They were sent to the Netherlands Indies (Indonesia) to be of service to the Dutch in their suppression of native nationalists. And American troop ships were used to transport the French military to France's former colony in Vietnam. These and other actions of Washington led to numerous large GI protests in Japan, Guam, Saipan, Korea, India, Germany, England, France, and Andrews Field, Maryland, all concerned with the major slowdown in demobilization and the uses for which the soldiers were being employed. There were hunger strikes and mass mailings to Congress from the soldiers and their huge body of support in the States. In January 1946, Senator Edwin Johnson of Colorado declared "It is distressing and humiliating to all Americans to read in every newspaper in the land accounts of near mutiny in the Army."[3]

On January 13, 1946, 500 GIs in Paris adopted a set of demands called "The Enlisted Man's Magna Charta", calling for radical reforms of the master-slave relationship between officers and enlisted men; also demanding the removal of Secretary of War Robert Patterson. In the Philippines, soldier sentiment against the reduced demobilization crystalized in a meeting of GIs that voted unanimously to ask Secretary Patterson and certain Senators: "What is the Army's position in the Philippines, especially in relation to the reestablishment of the Eighty-sixth Infantry Division on a combat basis?"[4]

By the summer of 1946 there had been a huge demobilization of the armed forces, although there's no way of knowing with any exactness how much of that was due to the GIs' protests.[5]

If this is how American soldiers could be inspired and organized in the wake of "The Good War", imagine what can be done today in the midst of "The God-awful War".

Iraq Veterans Against the War could use your help.

A pullet surprise for "Legacy of Ashes" by Tim Weiner

In 1971 the New York Times published its edition of the Pentagon Papers, based on the government documents concerning Vietnam policy which had been borrowed by Daniel Ellsberg. In its preface to the book, the Times commented about certain omissions and distortions in the government's view of political and historical realities as reflected in the papers: "Clandestine warfare against North Vietnam, for example, is not seen... as violating the Geneva Accords of 1954, which ended the French Indochina War, or as conflicting with the public policy pronouncements of the various administrations. Clandestine warfare, because it is covert, does not exist as far as treaties and public posture are concerned. Further, secret commitments to other nations are not sensed as infringing on the treaty-making powers of the Senate, because they are not publicly acknowledged."[6]

In his new book, "Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA", New York Times reporter Tim Weiner also relies heavily on government documents in deciding what events to include and what not to, and the result is often equally questionable. "This book," Weiner writes, "is on the record — no anonymous sources, no blind quotations, no hearsay. It is the first history of the CIA compiled entirely from firsthand reporting and primary documents."(p.xvii)

Thus, if US government officials did not put something in writing or if someone did not report their firsthand experience concerning a particular event, to Tim Weiner the event doesn't exist, or at least is not worth recounting. British journalist Stewart Steven has written: "If we believe that contemporary history must be told on the basis of documentary evidence before it becomes credible, then we must also accept that everything will either be written with the government's seal of approval or not be written at all."

As to firsthand reporting, for Weiner it apparently has to be from someone "reputable". Former CIA officer Philip Agee wrote a 1974 book, "Inside the Company: CIA Diary", that provides more detail about CIA covert operations in Latin America than any book ever written. And it was certainly firsthand. But Agee and his revelations are not mentioned at all in Weiner's book. Could it be because Agee, in the process of becoming the Agency's leading dissident, also became a socialist radical and close ally of Cuba?

Former CIA officer John Stockwell also penned a memoir ("In Search of Enemies", 1978), revealing lots of CIA dirty laundry in Africa. He later also became a serious Agency dissident, and the Weiner book ignores him as well.

Also ignored: Joseph Burkholder Smith, another Agency officer, not quite a left-wing dissident like Agee or Stockwell but a heavy critic nonetheless, entitled his memoir "Portrait of a Cold Warrior" (1976), in which he revealed numerous instances of CIA illegality and immorality in the Philippines, Indonesia and elsewhere in Asia.

There's also Cambodian leader Prince Sihanouk, who provided his firsthand account in "My War With The CIA" (1974). Sihanouk is also a non-person in the pages of "Legacy of Ashes".

Even worse, Weiner ignores a veritable mountain of impressive "circumstantial" and other evidence of CIA misdeeds which doesn't meet his stated criteria, which any thorough researcher/writer on the Agency should give serious attention to, certainly at least mention for the record. Among the many CIA transgressions and crimes left out of "Legacy of Ashes", or very significantly played down, are:

* The extensive CIA role in the 1950s provocation and sabotage activities in East Berlin/East Germany which contributed considerably to the communists' decision to build the Berlin Wall is not mentioned, although the wall is discussed.

* The US role in instigating and supporting the coup that overthrew Sihanouk in 1970, which led directly to the rising up of the Khmer Rouge, Pol Pot, and the infamous Cambodian "killing fields". Weiner, without providing any source, writes: "The coup shocked the CIA and the rest of the American government."(p.304) [7] Neither does the book make any mention of the deliberate Washington policy to support Pol Pot in his subsequent war with Vietnam. Pol Pot's name does not appear in the book.

* The criminal actions carried out by Operation Gladio, created by the CIA, NATO, and several European intelligence services beginning in 1949. The operation was responsible for numerous acts of terrorism in Europe, foremost of which was the bombing of the Bologna railway station in 1980, claiming 86 lives. The purpose of the terrorism was to place the blame for these atrocities on the left and thus heighten public concern about a Soviet invasion and keep the left from electoral victory in Italy, France and elsewhere. In Weiner's book this is all down the Orwellian memory hole.

* A discussion of the alleged 1993 assassination attempt against former president George H.W. Bush in Kuwait presents laughable evidence, yet states: "But the CIA eventually concluded that Saddam Hussein had tried to kill President Bush."(p.444) Weiner repeats this, apparently, solely because it appears in a CIA memorandum. That qualifies it as a "primary document". But what does this have to do with, y'know, the actual facts?

* Moreover, the book scarcely scratches the surface concerning the dozens of foreign elections the CIA has seriously interfered in; the large number of assassination attempts, successful or unsuccessful, against foreign political leaders; the widespread planting of phoney stories in the international media, stories that were at times picked up in the American press as a result; manipulation and corruption of foreign labor movements; extensive book and magazine publishing fronts; drug trafficking; and a virtual world atlas of overthrown governments, or attempts at same.

"A Legacy of Ashes" is generally a good read even for someone familiar with the world of the CIA, but it's actually often rather superficial, albeit 700 pages long. Why has so much of importance and interest been omitted from a book which has the subtitle: "The History of the CIA"; not, it must be noted, "A History of the CIA"?

Whatever jaundiced eye Weiner focuses on the CIA, he still implicitly accepts the two basic beliefs of the Cold

War: 1)There existed out there something called The International Communist Conspiracy, fueled by implacable Soviet expansionism; 2)United States foreign policy meant well. It may have frequently been bumbling and ineffective, but its intentions were noble. And still are.

Some sundry shooting from the lip

Football star Michael Vick has been condemned for allegedly helping to execute dogs.

But is killing a dog morally worse than killing a chicken, cow, pig, lamb, or fish which is done every hour of every day to enable non-vegans to enjoy the kind of diet they've become accustomed to? The fact that a dog is much more likely to be someone's pet doesn't answer the question; it only explains why that someone is upset over canineicide but cares much less about the liquidation of the other animals.

Home run king Barry Bonds is vilified for reputedly using steroids to build up his strength. He may have an asterisk put next to his record because this, presumably, gave him an unfair advantage over other baseball players who are "clean". But of all the things that athletes put into their bodies to improve their health, fitness and performance, why are steroids singled out? Doesn't taking vitamin and mineral supplements give an athlete an unfair advantage over athletes who don't take them? Should these supplements be banned from sport competition? Vitamin and mineral supplements are not necessarily any more "natural" than steroids, which in fact are very important in our body chemistry; among the steroids are the male and female sex hormones. Why not punish those who follow a "healthy diet" because of the advantage this may give them?

"Do you think homosexuality is a choice, or is it biological?" was the question posed to presidential candidate Bill Richardson by singer Melissa Etheridge. "It's a choice," replied the New Mexico governor at the August 9 forum for Democratic candidates. Etheridge then said to Richardson, "Maybe you didn't understand the question," and she rephrased it. Richardson again said he thought it was a choice.[8]

The next time you hear someone say that homosexuality is a choice, ask them how old they were when they chose to be heterosexual. When they admit that they never made such a conscious choice, thus implying that people don't choose to be heterosexual, the next question to the person should be: "So only homosexuals choose to be homosexual? But what comes first, being homosexual so you can make the choice, or making the choice and thus becoming homosexual?"

Why is the Bush administration so unenthusiastic about preventing global warming? Perhaps this news report provides a clue.

"The Arctic sea ice will retreat hundreds of miles farther from the coast of Alaska in the summer, the scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration concluded. That will open up vast waters for fishermen and give easier access to new areas for oil and gas exploration."[9]

We can say that the United States runs the world like the Taliban ran Afghanistan before the US ousted them from power in 2001. Destabilizing actions are taken against Venezuela like punishing a woman caught outside not wearing her burkha. Harsh sanctions are imposed on Iran in the manner of banning music, dancing, and kite-flying in Kabul. Cuba is subverted and hurt in dozens of ways like the religious police whipping a man whose beard is not the right length.


[1] Sydney Morning Herald, September 6, 2007
[2] New York Times, January 8, 1946, p.3
[3] New York Times, January 11, 1946, p.1
[4] Ibid., p.4
[5] For more information about the soldiers' protests, see: Mary-Alice Waters, "G.I.'s and the Fight
Against War" (New York, 1967), a pamphlet published by "Young Socialist" magazine.
[6] "The Pentagon Papers" (NY Times Edition), p. xii-xiii
[7] See William Blum, "Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II", p.137-8
[8] santafenewmexican.com/news/66424.html
[9] Washington Post, September 7, 2007, p.6


After losing two friends and over a dozen comrades, I have this to say:

Do not wage war unless it is absolutely, positively the last ditch effort for survival,? wrote Spc. Alex Horton, 22, of the 3rd Stryker Brigade in Army of Dude. ?In the future, I want my children to grow up with the belief that what I did here was wrong, in a society that doesn?t deem that idea unpatriotic,?

AP via Marine Corp Times:
Troop blogs show increasing criticism of war

By Robert Weller
The Associated Press
Sunday Sep 9, 2007 13:03:28 EDT

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