Review: 911 and American Empire

A book review at

911 and American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out
Edited by David Ray Griffin and Peter Dale Scott
Olive Branch Press, 2006
Paperback, 247 pages, $18

Contributing Writer

The eleven essays which comprise this urgent work are penned by reputable scholars and scientists. It would perhaps be comforting if these erudite individuals could be written off as crackpots and alarmists, but given their impressive academic credentials, that would be impossible. With meticulous care, Peter Dale Scott, David Ray Griffin, and the nine other learned contributors collectively build an unsettling yet cogent argument: that elements of our own government were complicit in the horrific atrocity of 9/11.

Itching to implement their designs for the military and economic domination of the planet — as well as of outer space — bellicose neocons of the Bush administration yearned for a “new Pearl Harbor” that would stun the American citizenry and open the door for an audacious and unprecedented global power grab. The conflagration of 9/11 proved to be an effective catalyst for the realization of rapacious neocon desires. And it may very well have been an elaborate “false flag” operation.


Simply put, a false flag operation is a surreptitious tactic which employs an act of murderous terror perpetrated secretly by one state and blamed subsequently on another state or countervailing political entity. This is done in order to discredit a perceived enemy, instill fear in a given population, and garner public support for enhancing a state’s security apparatus. In some instances, the provocative act provides the rationale for war. Swiss historian Daniele Ganser’s essay provides a shocking synopsis of this “strategy of tension” as it was employed in western Europe after World War II. He describes how various bombings that took place in Italy attributed originally to the Red Brigades were later revealed to have been carried out by individuals and organizations of the neo-fascist Right, sometimes in collusion with the CIA. In any act of this sort, states Ganser, it is crucial that “the secret agents who carried out the crime blame it on a political opponent by removing and planting evidence.”

Princeton University’s Richard Falk, long a leading authority on international law, contributes an essay in which he expresses his dismay at the somnolence of the American citizenry in light of alarming discrepancies in the official explanations of the 9/11 Commission. He writes, “A political democracy that adopts a war policy without airing critical views in Congress and the media betrays its identity and does not deserve to be regarded as a democratic society.” Falk goes on to give credence to the argument for some element of government duplicity in the events of 9/11, and states that deception of the citizenry is fundamental to neocon principles: “Deception is actually required to achieve virtuous leadership in a liberal democracy, because the public cannot be trusted with the truth.”

Two essays which deal specifically with some of the hard evidentiary components of the 9/11 disaster are ably written by Stephen Jones and Kevin Ryan. Both men have suffered personally for their outspoken critique of the official perspective. Jones is a professor of physics from Brigham Young University. Although he was not fired, Jones was recently barred from teaching his customary courses at BYU. Ryan, a quality engineer, had been employed as the site manager at Environmental Health Laboratories, a division of Underwriters Laboratories. He concurs with Jones regarding the sloppy science employed by officialdom to explain the incongruous implosion of the Twin Towers. As a result of his public stand, Ryan lost his job.

In order to properly understand what exact physical forces caused the collapse of the WTC buildings, Jones calls for the formation of an “independent, cross-disciplinary, international panel.” He states furthermore: “Physics sheds light on the issue that we ignore to our peril as we contemplate the wars that have been, and others that may yet be, justified on the basis of 9/11 and its official interpretation.”

Editors Griffin and Scott have performed an invaluable public service in bringing this exigent collection of essays to light. It may very well be one of the most important books published since that day over five years ago that has seemingly propelled America and the world into an abyss of truly terrifying proportions.