The 9/11 Post 11807

Having complained of people posting off topic, it seems a reasonable solution to give an opportunity for people to discuss the topics I am banning from other threads – of which 9/11 seems the most popular.

I do not believe that the US government, or any of its agencies, were responsible for 9/11. It would just need too many people to be involved. Someone would have objected. There are some strange and dangerous people in America, but not in sufficient concentration for this one. They couldn’t even keep Watergate quiet, and that was a small group. Any group I can think of – even Blackwater – would contain operatives with scruples about blowing up New York. They may be sadly ready to kill people in poor countries, but Americans en masse? Somebody would say it wasn’t a good idea.

I asked a friend in the construction industry what it would take to demolish the twin towers. He replied nine months, 80 men, and 12 miles of cabling. The notion that a small team at night could plant sufficient explosives embedded at key points, is laughable.

The forces of the aircraft impacts must have been amazingly high. I have no difficulty imagining they would bring down the building. As for WTC 7, again the kinetic energy of the collapse of the twin towers must be immense.

I admit to a private speculation about WTC7. Unfortunately in construction it is extremely common for contractors not to fix or install properly all the expensive girders, ties and rebar that are supposed to be enclosed in the concrete. Supervising contractors and municipal inspectors can be corrupt. I recall vividly that in London some years ago a tragedy occurred when a simple gas oven explosion brought down the whole side of a tower block.

The inquiry found that the building contractor had simply omitted the ties that bound the girders at the corners, all encased in concrete. If a gas oven had not blown up, nobody would have found out. Buildings I strongly suspect are very often not as strong as they are supposed to be, with contractors skimping on apparently redundant protection. The sort of sordid thing you might not want too deeply investigated in the event of a national tragedy.

Precisely what happened at the Pentagon I am less sure. There is not the conclusive film and photographic evidence that there is for New York. I am particularly puzzled by the much more skilled feat of flying that would be required to hit a building virtually at ground level, in an urban area, after a lamppost clipping route – very hard to see how a non-professional pilot did that. But I can think of a number of possible scenarios where the official explanation is not quite the whole truth on the Pentagon, but which do not necessitate a belief that the US government or Dick Cheney was behind the attack.

In my view the real scandal of 9/11 was that it was blowback – the product of a malignant terrorist agency whose origins lay in CIA funding and provision. Also blowback in a more general sense that it was spawned in the nasty theocratic dictatorship of Saudi Arabia which is so close to the US and to the Bush dynasty in particular. As with almost all terrorist activity, I do not rule out any point on the whole spectrum of surveillance, penetration and agent provocateur activity by any number of possible actors.

But was 9/11 false flag and controlled demolition? No, I think not.

(Now I have given full opportunity to discuss 9/11 here, any further references on other threads will be instantly deleted).

11,807 thoughts on “The 9/11 Post

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  • Clark

    One of the things that troubles me is that I routinely get dismissed as a “pro-establishment shill” because I don’t find controlled demolition theories etc. to be convincing. This is divisive. I have contributed to this whistle-blower’s blog for years, hassled the JCHR to hear his evidence, gone to Portcullis House to witness his evidence being given, attended numerous anti-war and pro-Palestinian demonstrations, repeatedly written to my MP about matters raised on this site, continually worked to publicise this site, but just because I remain unconvinced about controlled demolition I’m apparently one of the bad guys. It’s most disheartening at times.

  • glenn

    Clark: “Glenn, thanks, so my 6:25 pm estimate is the one. So so long as the WTC2 buckle point was appreciably lower than 400m, we’re within the realms of physical possibility without explosives, right?

    I don’t think so, Clark, simply because that requires a=9.8 m/s^2, which doesn’t actually hold in air for more than a second or so. The resistance of whatever medium being passed through clearly increases as a function of the square of time for the fall.

    Building material – I’d argue – offers a considerably greater resistance than air. I argued this point more fully in a mini-essay early on it this thread – I can dig it up if necessary.

    Exexpat might find it interesting, too.

  • glenn

    Exexpat: “What about the nosed out video? I think this clearly shows CGI – what say you?

    That’s certainly an interesting video, granted. What looked to me like blow-out of blast debris following a path of destruction inside that tower appears – from that video – to be the same shape as the nose of the plane. I wonder why such fakery would be produced, to what end?

    But it’s also hard to imagine that hundreds of independent witnesses would be simply wrong, actors, making it up, and there was no plane involved at all. That was one of the original “loose change” theories if I recall, I didn’t think it was very convincing at all, but it did get me thinking about some of the other strange business about the events of that day.

    I’m not at all convinced the buildings would have collapsed at all, given the damage, and certainly not in the manner that they did, for instance – the uniformity and completeness of the destruction in each case given the damage was very dissimilar.

    The Pennsylvania “crash” scenario from the Official Story is totally unconvincing – that was rather clearly shot down by a fighter jet, as seems to have been observed by various ground witnesses together with testimony from HQ where Cheney was orchestrating events.

    There is no reason to suppose the Pentagon was hit with anything except a missile, and if it was not, Official Sources seem to have gone out of their way to boost suspicion rather than putting the matter to rest (by – for example – simply releasing credible footage of the impact, on surely one of the most heavily monitored and guarded institutions out there).

    The rag-tag team of hijackers seem a most unlikely bunch to carry out such a precision operation. The standard procedure for hijacked planes is not followed. NORAD seems to have had that day off. The unlikely security drill that day is troubling.

    There is plenty more to be suspicious about, and I think talking about CGI planes cuts dead any interest in discussing alternative theories to the Official Story – because everybody believes real planes did actually crash into those buildings. “Truthers” should let that one go, and start elsewhere, IMHO.

  • glenn

    Exexpat: Here’s the earlier post I referenced, if you’re interested:


    Perhaps the key point to the entire implausibility of the ‘pancake collapse’ theory is considering a very old law – conservation of momentum.

    Conservation of momentum comes from Newton’s first law. A body will remain at rest or travel in uniform motion in a straight line unless acted upon by another force.

    Consider the initial collapse of the top sections, which in each case would have the lightest top portion of the building, being the thinnest part of the core. We are expected to believe that as it suddenly (with a flash) lost all its structure and fell onto the floor below, the combined weight of the section above the disintegrated floor lands on the floor below. That causes the floor below to collapse under the strain, and the entire new mass falls onto the next floor. This progression continues neatly all the way down.

    That’s fine, apart from one very important detail – how does each new floor suddenly assume the accumulated velocity of the falling floors above? We’re talking about a progressively heavy core structure (it having been built to bear the weight of the entire structure above, at each stage). So why did it not _substantially_ arrest the downward motion?

    As Frank Verismo points out, a great deal of the mass was pulverised in any case, so the full weight of the above sections were dispersed each time a new floor was reached by the downward progression.

    How did the really heavy mid to lower sections suddenly start moving at the same pace as the falling upper sections, unless they were offering _virtually no resistance at all_ – unless they were already falling themselves immediately before the progression hit them.

    The towers did not come down quite at free-fall speed, but it was not far off it. It was way too close to free-fall acceleration to believe even for a moment than a substantial structure of increasing strength was being crushed by the powdered remains of the floors above.


    If the motion was entirely downwards, with no other force than downward gravity operating after collapse was initiated, why do we see massive steel girders ejected out laterally for hundreds of feet? Why did tiny body parts (sections of finger, etc.) appear on rooftops hundreds of yards away?

    In standard building collapses, one would find at least a few things intact. A chair, a monitor, something. How come the biggest items found were fragments of telephone keypads?


    But back to conservation of momentum. Inertia dictates that a mass will not suddenly assume the velocity of the moving object falling onto it, even if it is so tenuously structured that a feather falling onto it would initiate its collapse. In this case, we are talking about an increasing substantial structure the further down the building we go. Yet it offered little more resistance than fresh air on the day of 9/11.

  • Clark

    OK, let’s try a guestimate. It’s hard to imagine a collapse taking half a minute; such a slow collapse seems more likely to grind to a halt. But let’s be generous and say that feasible collapse times range from 8 to 37 seconds. NIST only reported whole seconds, so that’s 30 possible values. Both values would have to match so on the face of it that’s 1:900 against – I suspect that the odds are actually better than that due to a counter-intuitive statistical effect (compare how many people must be present before there’s an even chance that two share the same birthday), but even at 1:900 it’s hardly winning the lottery. An event like 9/11 produces reams of numbers to find coincidences in – two towers, four planes, three impacts, nineteen hijackers, etc…

  • Clark

    Glenn, actually, explosive disconnection of the floors from the uprights doesn’t help your argument, precisely because the argument is based upon momentum; the newly released floors would still have much the same mass, leading to a similar deceleration of the falling debris. The explosions would have to be timed well ahead of the collapse wave, and that wouldn’t have yielded the well-defined collapse front that was witnessed.

    Now please don’t misunderstand me…

    There is plenty in the official story that is inconsistent and cause for all sorts of suspicions. I don’t have any proof that explosives weren’t used. But the rapid collapses of the buildings don’t prove that explosives were definitely necessary; the collapses were within the range of possibilities that could have happened without explosives.

    Now so far, over fourteen years later, we don’t have a single shred of evidence against any person or organisation for planting explosives. Even if we take explosives as proven, we’re left holding a blank, we’ve no one to charge.

    On the other hand, there is ample documentary evidence to charge, try and convict all those who ordered and authorised torture to obtain the almost certainly false confessions upon which half of the 9/11 Commission Report is based. That is also ample evidence to demand a proper inquiry. There is also ample evidence to charge and try at least Bush and Blair for initiating illegal war against Iraq. So why are we faffing around arguing about how fast cheap corporate-built structures can collapse?

  • Clark

    Glenn, there’s another problem with your argument. The following is the clearest example, but the theme crops up throughout:

    “How did the really heavy mid to lower sections suddenly start moving at the same pace as the falling upper sections”

    It was only the uprights that were strongest and heaviest at the bottom of the building. The floors were four inch concrete on a steel truss throughout, each functioning only to transfer the load on that one floor (weight of staff, office equipment etc.) to the uprights. The floors were not designed to offer any support to the structure above, and thus offered little resistance when the debris of that structure suddenly impacted upon them.

    The core structure with its very strong uprights did offer much more resistance, but of course most of the debris fell straight past it, straight through the much weaker floor structures. Nevertheless, videos of the collapses show core structure standing for considerable time after the collapse front had passed, eventually falling over.

    – – – –

    It took me a while, but once I’d developed a feel for how strength and mass was distributed in those buildings, I was no longer so puzzled by the manner of their collapse. The buildings were a tube-within-a-tube design, the lightly-floored office space being outside the inner tube and inside the outer tube. That office space must be regarded almost as empty space so far as tonnes of falling steel and concrete are concerned.

  • Clark

    And has anyone considered that the buildings might have been overloaded, by repeated bending of the rules under commercial pressure? The buildings came down in 2001, before lightweight flat-screen monitors were available, right at the height of every employee needing at least one CRT monitor on their desk. Banks of uninterruptable power supplies had been installed in multiple places. Maybe carpets had been laid on top of older carpets, and so on. And maybe, as Craig suggested, batches of some original building components were below specification.

    Plenty there that NIST might have had to cover up. What would happen to the economy of the US if half of its skyscraper office space had to be abandoned because it was suddenly realised to be unsafe?

  • Clark

    What weight of extra copper had been wired into the buildings, to power and connect all those personal computers that were never envisaged when the buildings were designed?

  • exexpat

    Good evening Clark and Glenn

    “That office space must be regarded almost as empty space so far as tonnes of falling steel and concrete are concerned.”

    Clark, I found something we can agree on if you remove “almost” 🙂

    Glenn the interesting thing re the nose-out shot is that it has been removed from the archives. AFAIK it is the only shot removed.

    Guys, I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I wasn’t at the WTC that day – all I can say with 100% certainty is that towers came down that day. I’m not going to get into theories or speculate about what happened that day.

    Sorry Clark, but we can’t really rely on witnesses – ask any investigator and this is backed up by several academic studies – its unreliable at best.

    All the evidence we have is the video – broadcast to the world.

    Another interesting video… synched out, less than 8mins of your precious. Let me know what you think 🙂

  • Clark

    Exexpat, what? You can’t agree that about half of the 9/11 Commission Report was based on confessions extracted under torture? That this in itself invalidates the report? That its most important findings were and remain redacted?

    Why not?

  • Clark

    Glenn, regarding your comment of 8 Jan, 1:44 am, yes, I took an overly simplified approach; there is all sorts of complexity that could be considered. But I only intended to show that NIST’s figure was consistent with a collapse slower than free-fall, in response to “if you believe that you’ll believe anything”. I hadn’t twigged that Exexpat was referring to 9 seconds and 11 seconds being the same numbers as 9/11.

    Actually we don’t need any maths at all. Videos of the collapses clearly show ejected debris falling faster than the progression of the collapse-front, so the collapse front progressed at less then free-fall.

    Regarding your momentum argument, I think we wouldn’t expect any single floor assembly to much slow the fall of the debris impacting it. Say that about eleven floors-worth of debris fell onto the highest floor below the buckle point. Momentum is conserved, but the falling stuff should have about eleven times the mass of the floor it impacted upon. So the falling stuff would lose only about one eleventh of of its velocity. When the next floor down is impacted, it’s 1:12, then 1:13 and so on, each successive floor absorbing a smaller proportion of the velocity.

    OK, we could argue the details for ages. My simple figures treat the falling material as a point mass, which it clearly wasn’t. Much material fell outside the building’s limits, decreasing the impacting mass, but I haven’t included core and perimeter material which would increase it. And so forth. But transfer of momentum to stationary material clearly becomes less and less significant as the collapse proceeds. And that means that if the first floor above the buckle point didn’t arrest the collapse, each subsequent floor was even less capable of doing so.

  • Clark

    Exexpat, 11:32 pm:

    “the interesting thing re the nose-out shot is that it has been removed from the archives”

    Genuine question; how do you know that that shot was ever in the archives?

  • exexpat

    “Genuine question; how do you know that that shot was ever in the archives?”

    It was linked to some years back by the video producer as source material.

  • exexpat

    “what? You can’t agree that about half of the 9/11 Commission Report was based on confessions extracted under torture? That this in itself invalidates the report? That its most important findings were and remain redacted?

    Why not?”

    Clark because it’s not evidence I can prove or disprove with 99% certainty.

  • exexpat

    Any thoughts on synched out?

    Why would the video quality with broadcast cameras be so poor that day? I had a camcorder in 1996 that had a better picture than any of these networks broadcast…

  • Clark

    Exexpat, 9 Jan, 12:36 pm

    “because it’s not evidence I can prove or disprove with 99% certainty”

    What? You haven’t heard Khalid Sheikh Mohammed referred to as “the most waterboarded man in the world”? This article has 145 references, though not all relevant to his being tortured, of course:

    That the findings regarding the powerful backers behind 9/11 remain redacted is a matter of public record. The redacted sections (28 pages) are number four on Daniel Ellsberg’s “Wikileaks Wish List”:

    That half the 9/11 Commission Report was based on confessions extracted under torture (including waterboarding) is also on public record, right up to the United Nations:

    The authorities don’t even deny these things, because they know they’d lose too much credibility if they were to try. Instead they play them down, smokescreen them, pay people to become Wikipedia editors and move them to obscure pages. But the records all exist. This is the sort of evidence that can (and hopefully eventually will) be used in an international court of law.

  • Clark

    Exexpat, 12:52 pm:

    “Any thoughts on synched out?”

    Yeah, my thought is that we’ll be moving the goal-posts if we start considering that. Can’t we get earlier points established before moving on to something else? 12:34 pm:

    “It [the “nosed out” shot] was linked to some years back by the video producer as source material”

    And how do you know that? You complained that:

    “it [confessions under torture] [is] not evidence I can prove or disprove with 99% certainty”,

    but the veracity of the “Nosed Out” video seems to depend upon proving a negative, that something that used to exist doesn’t exist any more. Well you can’t prove a negative. You can prove that faeries exist by persuading some to come and introduce themselves at the Royal Institution, but you can’t prove there are no faeries because their invisibility might be too good.

    – – – – –

    Exexpat, you seem to me to be playing right into the hands of the neocon pro-torturers here. You dismiss evidence that the US government itself would acknowledge to be authoritative, and pin your hopes upon a mere assertion that a specific news shot used to exist but has been deleted.

    And you reckon that has been got-at?

  • Clark

    OK, I’ve been watching the “Nosed Out” video closely. The frames of the aircraft’s nose before impact and the similarly shaped dark area after impact are only an approximate match.

    There are ten or so frames showing the aircraft’s nose before the impact, and the video representation of it is a different shape in each one. This isn’t odd; video frames are approximations at best, and all videos exhibit this sort of variation.

    There are five frames showing a roughly “nose shaped” patch to the left of the tower after impact; these all have different shapes too, though we’d expect that as the patch is presumably debris rather than a rigid aircraft nose cone.

    But taken together, this means that there are fifty frame comparisons to choose from; any of the five “after impact” frames can be compared to any of the ten “before impact” frames. From these fifty comparisons, the video maker selected two – of course, he selected those two where before and after most closely match.

    Glenn, I think this was cherry-picking rather than fakery.

  • exexpat

    Clark, I know this is an emotive subject.. and I realise its a lot to take in. So how about we just discuss without accusing each other of anything?

    If you would like me to contact you via your web page to perhaps establish a better rapport maybe that would help?

    Genuinely just trying to turn down the volume or heat on this.

    I’ll be happy to continue debating if you retract “playing into neocons/toturers hands” – thats a pretty unpleasant thing to say and as far as I know I have been polite and cordial with you.

  • Clark

    Exexpat, my phrase “playing into neocons/torturers hands” isn’t an accusation. I’m saying that I think you’re making a mistake, that’s all. I think it’s a phrase from cricket, where a batsman is hitting good, high strokes that might score sixes, but he’s hitting them towards the opposition’s fielders where he’s also likely to get caught out.

    I don’t want to retract that I think you’re making a mistake by not looking at the sort of evidence I’m highlighting here, but I certainly retract any offense that phrase may have carried.

    Sure, anyone’s welcome to e-mail me anytime.

  • glenn

    Clark: “Glenn, actually, explosive disconnection of the floors from the uprights doesn’t help your argument, precisely because the argument is based upon momentum; the newly released floors would still have much the same mass, leading to a similar deceleration of the falling debris. The explosions would have to be timed well ahead of the collapse wave, and that wouldn’t have yielded the well-defined collapse front that was witnessed.

    Clark, forgive me – I’ve just finished a particularly horrible shift, and am probably giving great injustice to your fastidiously reasoned points, because I had only a glance at them. I do hope to return to them all, but wanted to provide something in the meantime.

    You seem to be arguing the exact opposite of what we did see – an increasing rate of explosive blow-outs, well ahead of the collapsing mass of building. A simple collapse would have been substantially slower. Are you taking account of the fact that the mass of each newly collapsing floor would have substantial inertia, which should have significantly slowed if not arrested the fall, particularly because much of the mass was actually pulverised (mysteriously enough in itself) as it disintegrated.

    The explosions from each floor did indeed appear to be well ahead of the collapse, we heard the concussions as they blew out – they must have already been starting to fall before the collapse wave reached them.

  • Clark

    Glenn, I’ll give you time to look again at my momentum argument before continuing to debate, but just to reiterate:

    Regarding physical evidence, I require conclusive proof that the collapses couldn’t have happened from damage and fire. Yes, there are indications that explosive or cutting charges might have been used or needed, but without documentary evidence or whistle-blowing, no use can be made of these. Over fourteen years, and nothing has become of the deliberate demolition theories. Mike Ruppert warned us about this very soon after the event.

  • Clark

    Glenn, the essential problem that the proponents of deliberate demolition are facing is thermodynamics – Murphy’s Law. Yes, you can always argue that the structure of the buildings just couldn’t have gone that badly wrong, but is there really a limit to how utterly an artifact can fail? Surely Windows can’t get that many infections? Surely not all of these biros are useless? Surely all three of these nuclear reactors can’t have melted down? Surely the whole mine can’t have collapsed? The Lockheed F104G?

    Entropy tends to increase. You need a VERY solid argument if you’re arguing that entropy just couldn’t have increased as much as it seemed to.

    Failure knows no limits.

  • Clark

    Glenn, 8:07 pm:

    “You seem to be arguing the exact opposite of what we did see – an increasing rate of [destruction]”

    Sorry, I failed to phrase the following carefully enough:

    “…leading to a similar deceleration of the falling debris”

    You’re right, we saw an acceleration of the collapse front, not a deceleration. What I meant was:

    “…leading to a similar reduction (ie. reduced from g) in the acceleration of the collapse front”

  • Clark

    Glenn, actually, what I’ve written above does not clarify what I wrote before.

    But I’ve hit a more fundamental point. While sat here working out how to describe the gross simplifications I was using to guestimate momentum and thereby velocity, I’ve been thinking more and more about what must actually have happened during the collapses, and I’m becoming more and more convinced that way we saw the towers collapse is exactly what we should expect, and that NIST’s description is pretty much spot on…

    Domino effect.

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