Shoestring's blog

Former 9/11 Commission Staffer Responds to New Military Exercises Revelations

Miles Kara, who was a professional staff member of the 9/11 Commission, has posted an entry on his Internet blog (copied below), in response to recent revelations about training exercises held by the U.S. military prior to the 9/11 attacks.

The new information about the training exercises appears in a 9/11 Commission document found in the U.S. National Archives by a contributor to the History Commons website. The document reveals that, among other things, two days before 9/11, NORAD's Northeast Air Defense Sector (NEADS) conducted an exercise scenario based around "Terrorists with explosives who plan to detonate them over NYC." Three days earlier, another scenario conducted as part of the same exercise involved a fictitious terrorist group hijacking a Boeing 747 and threatening to "rain terror from the skies onto a major U.S. city unless the U.S. declares withdrawal from Asian conflict."

The F-16s That Failed to Protect Washington on 9/11: Was the Langley Jets' Emergency Response Sabotaged?

Langley Air Force Base was the second military base that launched fighter jets to defend America in response to the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Three of its F-16s were ordered to take off toward Washington at 9:24 a.m. that morning, but by the time they were airborne, more than 40 minutes had passed since the first attack on the World Trade Center, and almost half an hour since the second.

Furthermore, the pilots were hindered by an extraordinary combination of confusion, communications problems, conflicting orders, breaches of protocol, and other difficulties. Consequently, when the Pentagon was hit at 9:37 a.m., the jets were further away from it than they'd been when they took off. According to witnesses on the ground, fighters did not arrive over the Pentagon until around 10:40 a.m.--more than an hour too late to protect it from the attack.

A close examination of publicly available accounts raises the possibility that deliberate attempts were made to sabotage the ability of the Langley jets to respond to the 9/11 attacks, thereby paralyzing normal, well-practiced procedures. In this article, I focus on three particular aspects of the jets' response.

New David Ray Griffin Book: Osama bin Laden, Dead or Alive?

Osama bin Laden
Dead or Alive?
David Ray Griffin

“This book is part of a growing body of nonfiction that illuminates the cataclysmic gap between those with power, who do as they please, and those with knowledge, who are not heard. … President Obama [must] break out of the closed circle of power to connect with the kind of independent knowledge found in this book…”
—Robert David Steele Vivas, recovering spy, founder of the USMC Intelligence Center, CEO of OSS.Net, and CEO of Earth Intelligence Network

The US’s political discourse and foreign policy in recent years has been based on the assumption that Osama bin Laden is still alive. George W. Bush promised as president that he would get Osama bin Laden “dead or alive” and has been widely criticized for failing to do so. The US’s present military escalation in Afghanistan is said to be necessary to “get Osama bin Laden.” The news media regularly announce the appearance of new “messages from bin Laden.” But what if Osama bin Laden died in December 2001—which is the last time a message to or from him was intercepted?

9/11 Commission Documents Available for Researchers

This information has recently been posted at the History Commons Groups blog:

... Another contributor, paxvector, is doing yeoman work posting a tremendous number of obscure but important 9/11 Commission documents online:

http://www.scribd.com/HistoryCommons

I'm going to make that one a permanent link in the sidebar.

Lots of new things coming down the pike, slowly but steadily. Don't forget, we're in need of any and all donations--financial and volunteer--that you can make.

British Hedge Fund Manager Admits Profiting from 9/11 Short Selling

A British hedge fund manager has revealed how, in the 15 minutes after the first plane hit the World Trade Center on 9/11, he was able to short sell key shares, thereby making a financial profit from the tragedy that was unfolding.

In part two of the BBC documentary series The City Uncovered with Evan Davis, which was broadcast on Wednesday 21st January, David Yarrow, the managing director of Clareville Capital, described how he made significant profits following the September 11 attacks, as well as the 2004 Madrid train bombings and the July 7, 2005 London bombings.* Presenter Evan Davis began the segment: "On 9/11, David Yarrow was watching television in a hotel room in America. In the minutes after the first plane hit the World Trade Center, his trading instincts kicked in. Seeing the market was about to plummet, he shorted key vulnerable shares, like airlines." (Short selling is a technique used by investors who try to profit from the falling price of a share. It involves selling shares you don't already own, but instead only borrow, with the intent of purchasing them at a later date at a hopefully lower price, thereby netting a profit.)

Rehearsing 9/11: How Training Exercises Foretold the Attacks of September 11

The idea of such an attack was well known [and] had been
wargamed as a possibility in exercises before September 11.

- Professor John Arquilla of the Naval Postgraduate
School, Monterey, California

In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks, senior U.S. government and military officials repeatedly claimed that what happened that day was unexpected. In May 2002, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said, "I don't think anybody could have predicted that these people would take an airplane and slam it into the World Trade Center, take another one and slam it into the Pentagon; that they would try to use an airplane as a missile, a hijacked airplane as a missile." [1] Two years later, President Bush stated, "Nobody in our government, at least, and I don't think the prior government, could envision flying airplanes into buildings on such a massive scale." [2] General Ralph Eberhart, the commander of NORAD on September 11, said, "Regrettably, the tragic events of 9/11 were never anticipated or exercised." [3]

What Do NORAD's 9/11 Computer Chat Logs Reveal?

In April 2006, journalist Michael Bronner received in the post 30 hours of recordings he had requested from the Pentagon. These recordings, which came as a series of computer audio files on three CDs, had captured events on the operations floor at NORAD's Northeast Air Defense Sector throughout the day of September 11, 2001. [1] NORAD--the North American Aerospace Defense Command--is the military organization responsible for monitoring and defending the airspace of North America. Its Northeast Air Defense Sector (NEADS), based in Rome, New York, is responsible for monitoring and protecting 500,000 square miles of airspace above the northeast U.S., including the airspace over New York City and Washington, DC. [2] It was within this airspace that the 9/11 attacks occurred, and from the NEADS operations floor that the U.S. military's response originated. Evidence of what happened there that day is clearly in the public interest and of obvious importance for attempts to unravel how the attacks were able to succeed. In an August 2006 Vanity Fair article based on the recordings, Bronner therefore referred to these "NORAD tapes" as "the authentic military history of 9/11." [3]

The Phantom USA Today Building Fire and the Evacuation of Arlington's 'Twin Towers' on 9/11

In a recent interview, Assistant Chief James Schwartz of the Arlington County Fire Department (ACFD) revealed an intriguing detail relating to the 9/11 Pentagon attack. Just before the Pentagon was hit, ACFD responded to alarms going off at the USA Today building, located a few miles from there. Yet it is unclear whether there was actually any fire. Other evidence indicates that, as a result of this alarm, when the Pentagon was hit a significant number of fire and medical units were already on the road nearby and available to quickly respond to the attack. Curiously, the two buildings of the USA Today complex were known as the "Twin Towers." [1]

Fake Firefighters and Military Imposters at the Pentagon After 9/11

Several entries in the Complete 9/11 Timeline (copied below) describe what appear to have been individuals disguised as firefighters or military personnel, who were involved in the rescue and recovery efforts at the Pentagon following the attack there on September 11, 2001. What these individuals were doing is unknown, but possibilities need to be investigated, such as whether they were there to tamper with, plant, or remove evidence. That this may have been the case is given weight by the fact that some people who appeared to be members of the military were witnessed stealing crash debris from in front of the Pentagon.

Davison Army Airfield and the 12th Aviation Battalion on 9/11: Pentagon Attack Oral Histories Reveal New Details

Minutes after the Pentagon was hit on September 11, two aircraft were seen on the radar screen at a nearby Army airfield, circling the Pentagon and rapidly descending, with one of them emitting an emergency distress signal. The identities of these aircraft are unclear, as is the reason one of them was emitting the distress signal. These and other details about the 9/11 Pentagon attack were revealed by a supervisor of air traffic control at the airfield, in one of over 1,300 oral histories relating to the attack that were recorded by military employees. To date, only a small number of the oral histories have been publicly released, which raises questions about what important details might be in the other, unreleased interviews.

UNIDENTIFIED AIRCRAFT OVER THE PENTAGON

New David Ray Griffin Book: New Pearl Harbor Revisited

Here are the details of David Ray Griffin's important soon-to-be-released new book, The New Pearl Harbor Revisited: 9/11, the Cover-up and the Expose. It is available for pre-order at Amazon.com here:
http://www.amazon.com/New-Pearl-Harbor-Revisited-Cover-Up/dp/1566567297

The New Pearl Harbor Revisited: 9/11, the Cover-Up, and the Exposé
David Ray Griffin

The Andrews Air Force Base Stand Down: How the 'Capital Guardians' Failed to Guard the Capital on 9/11

"Thank God that guy's there! Where has he been?"

- Firefighter Mike Smith, upon seeing the first military fighter jetarriving over the Pentagon, 10:40 a.m., September 11, 2001


At the time the 9/11 attacks began, many of the pilots with the District of Columbia Air National Guard (DCANG) were in the headquarters of the 121st Fighter Squadron at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland. They had been suspicious upon learning of the first crash in New York, but when a second plane hit the World Trade Center the emergency became obvious. "We're under a terrorist attack!" someone yelled. One DCANG officer at the base exclaimed, "Well, holy shit, if this is a terrorist attack, we need to get something in the air!" According to Lt. Col. Steve Chase, who was at the operations desk there: "People just launched into action. There was a buzz in the unit." [1]

Anthrax Attacks and Chechnya: Additions to the Complete 9/11 Timeline as of August 23, 2007

Most new entries this week again look at the 2001 anthrax attacks. In October 2001, the FDA only recommended Cipro for use against the disease, despite a plentiful supply of alternatives, and the FBI investigation into the attacks was hampered when it destroyed an original batch of Ames strain anthrax. In November, reports began emerging linking the USAMRIID lab to the attacks, although its head later claimed a "lot of good" had come out of them.

Anthrax, Steven Hatfill, and More: Additions to the Complete 9/11 Timeline as of August 17, 2008

Most of the new entries published by the 9/11 Timeline this week deal with the anthrax scare. The main drug used to combat anthrax was Cipro, which a high government official advised some reporters to take shortly after 9/11. Although an inquiry was launched into a coverup of problems with it in May 2000, the FDA endorsed the drug two months later. Hoax letters similar to the later anthrax mailings were sent to Fox News from 2000, and one may have been received by a Florida tabloid in mid-September 2001.

"Shockingly Calm": The Phone Calls From the Planes on 9/11

A number of people received phone calls the morning of September 11, 2001 that they believed were made by individuals on board the planes that crashed in New York, Washington, and Pennsylvania. Descriptions of these calls, however, reveal something odd. According to the official story we have been told, the callers were in an unprecedented crisis, stuck on planes under the control of murderous terrorists, and with no knowledge of whether they were going to be allowed to live or die. Yet in many of the phone calls, the caller appears to have been remarkably calm. Perhaps if just a few of them--for example, those with specific personal experiences, like the flight attendant who was a former police officer--had maintained their composure, then this would be less remarkable. Yet the large majority of the callers displayed this same calmness. In their recollections, some of the people who received the calls have indeed commented on this fact, apparently surprised by it. Some of them have also commented on the absence of panic, screaming, or other sounds of chaos in the background.