Triumph And Disaster: Reflections On The 9/11 Accountability Conference

Kevin Barrett

“I love disaster, and I love what comes after.” – Tom Verlaine

My first 9/11 skeptic’s conference was the DC Truth Convergence in July, 2005. At first glance it might have seemed like a disaster, both for me (my decision to go almost cost me my marriage) and for the organizers (they lost money big time).

But disasters, I discovered, could be learning opportunities, even opportunities for personal growth. I know it sounds hackneyed. But just as the 9/11 inside job, the worst disaster this country has ever faced, gives us all the tools we need to achieve peace, transparency and Constitutional governance—every pyroclastic toxic dust cloud has its silver lining—so do other superficially calamitous events ultimately uplift us in ways we never could have imagined.

Disasters, like so much else, are in the eye of the beholder. The recent 9/11 Accountability Conference in Chandler, Arizona is an extreme example. Some of the folks I’ve talked to think it was a disaster, while others say it was fantastic, amazing, stupendous, the high point of their lives.

The downbeat analysts cite statistics, as downbeat analysts often do. The organizers had hoped that over a thousand would attend. When “only” several hundred came, they faced financial problems, as well as a problem of perception.

But most attendees did not seem particularly miserable to be in a crowd of hundreds rather than thousands. I remember my own feelings as a 9/11 conference newbie at the 2005 DC Truth convergence: Wow! I get to sit in a small group and chat with Webster Tarpley for over an hour! I get to meet and converse with folks like Bob Bowman, Nafeez Ahmed, Barbara Honneger, Morgan Reynolds, Paul Thompson, and Barrie Zwicker! I get invited to a dinner party along with Jeanette MacKinley, a true 9/11 artist-heroine! And I get to know the fantastic, dedicated, less-well-known activists who are making everything happen, folks like Gabriel Day and Janice Matthews and Mia Hamel and dozens of others!

Some attendees complained of a lack of organization and focus at the D.C. Convergence. But the real point of any 9/11 conference is not its organization and official goals, which will always be inadequate to the monumental task. It is the chance to meet and interact with the real live people at the other end of your internet connection, exchange ideas and enthusiasm, bask in the atmosphere of hundreds of people living in actual reality (sure beats trying to survive amongst the mob of psychotic zombies that passes for the non-9/11-hip population) and go home weary but somehow refreshed. It’s like the complete opposite of a trip to Disneyland. Instead of leaving reality to briefly inhabit a puerile fantasy, we leave the puerile fantasy of the sheeple and touch bases with other members of the reality-based community. And sure, reality is messy. That’s the whole point.

From that standpoint, the 9/11 Accountability Conference was an unqualified success—a messy reality that will still be inspiring us long after we’ve returned to our PhilDickian halflife among the mindless, regimented zombie hordes.

What good will come of it? There is no way of knowing—and that’s the beauty of the thing. The D.C. Convergence planted seeds that blossomed all over the country, inspiring all sorts of actions including the Chicago Revealing the Truth, Reclaiming Our Future conference of June 2006, which massively grew the movement and helped put 9/11 truth on the mainstream map. And that Chicago Conference’s seeds spread even further. I discovered one example during my recent visit to Austin, home of a kick-ass new bookstore named Brave New Books—probably the best place on the planet to study up on 9/11 and related subjects. The two guys who started that store met at the Chicago Conference, after having traveled there separately from Austin! As one of the organizers of the Chicago Conference, I could never have foreseen that result. It had little to do with the level of discipline and organization of the Conference’s organizers, I am sorry to say. Brave New Books emerged from the serendipity of bringing people together physically, and letting a thousand flowers bloom.

That’s what the Arizona organizers did, and I salute them for it. I know how incredibly hard it is to put on this kind of event. A few years from now, when we look back, who knows how many good things will have grown from seeds planted at the 9/11 Accountability Conference in Chandler, Arizona.

* * *

PS-This just in from Jon Gold:

I just found out that Michele Little has contacted John Feal, and spoke with him for a good hour today. Her brother David's birthday falls on the same day as the FealGood Foundation's benefit concert. She will be attending and appearing as his guest.

Hopefully just her being there will raise a lot of money for them, and give them even more exposure.

If people ask you what good has come from this conference... There's a GREAT example.


well stated

"It’s like the complete opposite of a trip to Disneyland. Instead of leaving reality to briefly inhabit a puerile fantasy, we leave the puerile fantasy of the sheeple and touch bases with other members of the reality-based community."

That pretty much describes posting at this website, at least for me. I can only hope the sense of disconnect this produces -- the disconnect between what you are told is real and what you know to be real -- doesn't eventually have deleterious effects.

But worse than some future scenario in which 9/11 remains unprosecuted and the sense of disconnect remains would be a future scenario in which all that remains, all the time, is the "puerile fantasy," with no conferences or websites to escape it, no matter how "messy" they may be.

"I get to meet and converse

"I get to meet and converse with folks like Bob Bowman, Nafeez Ahmed, Barbara Honneger, Morgan Reynolds...."


Why the f*ck does Barrett still support Reynolds?


The time he's describing, I think everyone in the movement supported Reynolds.

"So where is the oil going to come from?... The Middle East, with two-thirds of the world's oil and the lowest cost, is still where the prize ultimately lies."

Richard Cheney - Chief Executive Of Halliburton

Kevin Barrett is a true

Kevin Barrett is a true Patriot. He's one of the brightest, most sophisticated people on the Planet. He's going to go down in history as another George Washington or Abraham Lincoln.

We are really lucky.... have Dr. Barrett in the movement.

Barrett ought to

Barrett ought to disassociate with Fetzer publicly, and his insistence that the two scholars groups are equal is off putting and wrong.

I understand that Barrett and Fetzer are perhaps friends, but Fetzer has gone way off the rails and lending him legitimacy at this point doesn't do anyone any good.

You Are Telling Me

"People have been pissing and moaning, or as we scholars saying "urinating and ululating" about the break-up of Scholars for 9/11 Truth. It is not a break-up, it is a split into two groups. People ask me, "Why did they split?" and I say, "because there are so many of us, one group can't hold us anymore. And that's actually the truth. This always happens to groups, when they get big they split off.

-Kevin Barrett 9/11 Accountability Conference-

Yeah, OK Kevin, you have about 30 people who are actually full-time professors at actual 4 year institutions, and that is just so big that you have to split the group up.

The Chandler Conference

The Chandler Conference was an amazing opportunity and confirmation to why I am connected to this movement. Having the chance to speak human to human with any one of the speakers and many of the attendees was an amazing experience. I have to keep reminding myself that my perceptions of the events that surrounded 9-11 are not "crazy" at all.

I initially wanted to attend the conference simply to see where the movement was headed, what was being planned next. The exchange of ideas and strategies to take the truth movement to the next level gave me a renewed strength at a time when my spirits were waning.

Even though I live in a liberal part of California, I had been feeling the weight of being shunned by "those who don't want to know the truth" or by "those who are holding on dearly to their Dream of what American patriotism looks like". The truth oftentimes is a bitter pill and many don't want, or simply refuse, to swallow it.

My favorite analogy...

Even though the glucosamine pill is slathered in wet dog food and hidden in 2 cups of kibble, my dog will eat every morsel of kibble, find find the pill, lick off the good stuff and spit it back into the bowl.

When I hear the ping from the pill dropping back into her metal bowl, I have to (unfortunately) shove it down her throat...too bad I can't use this tactic when discussing 9-11 truth with the nay sayers. Many speakers at the conference emphasized patience and compassion for those who don't want to take the pill. I needed to be reminded of this...

I believe that a movement such as this does take a great deal of time and patience. It takes a huge amount of courage to evoke change in the hearts and minds of any society. People don't want to risk what they have. It is ironic that they haven't paid attention to what civil liberties they have lost since 911, they must be confusing it with Bush's message of "bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq". they ever cared a hoot about anyone in the mid east beyond keeping the price of oil down....(Whoops! there I go again).

Many 9-11 truth movement advocates have risked their future to come forth and speak their truth. It is up to the rest of us to support them. The truth will ultimately prevail if we don't allow ourselves to waver from it. Thanks to all of you who dedicate your time to keep this Truth Movement thriving, growing stronger by the day.