Response required: Author William Gibson knocks 9-11 Truth activists

Some very absurd thoughts on 9/11 coming from science fiction author William Gibson. See the interview in "The Tyee":

I have never read any of William Gibson's science fiction. After this, I have even less interest in it.

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Comments on the site would be more useful than comments here. For talking points, see the excellent material on the Gatecreepers site on debunking conspiracy debunking:

The Tyee is a popular Canadian on-line magazine. I have not paid it too much attention, but I believe it to be mainstream progressive. I would probably also call it a left-gatekeeper site, if I were to include a link to it on my blog.

From the interview:

On whether he enjoys conspiracy theories

"Conspiracy theories are popular because no matter what they posit, they are all actually comforting, because they all are models of radical simplicity. I think they appeal to the infantile part of us that likes to know what's going on."

On whether he believes 9-11 might have been an inside job

"Absolutely not. It makes no sense. I mean how could incompetents, particularly incompetent at keeping secrets, have done this? But that's a perfect example. People want to believe a simple version, a radically simplified, actually imbecilic version of complex and largely incomprehensible reality."

On whether some new terrorist attack will make 9-11 look small

"Eventually, I would say it's almost inevitable. Not immediately, because there is no need. The last one is still working. In some strange way, [for terrorists] anything that was less than 9-11 won't do. Anything less spectacular just won't do.

"How terrorism works in the broadest sense really is the inversion of the psychology of the lottery. The paradigms of asymmetrical warfare are such that one of the defining and unchanging characteristics of the terrorist is that he has very, very little in the way of stuff to work with. He can't really do much. He can kill a few people. He can knock down a few buildings in New York. But if he does it in a terroristically effective way, and if the society he does it to responds in what to the terrorist is the optimal way, everybody in society feels threatened. In spite of the fact that the odds of any given individual being done in by a terrorist's bomb are about the same odds of that individual winning the lottery.

"Terrorism is a con game. It doesn't always work. It depends on the society you are playing it on. It certainly has worked with the United States."

On why the 9-11 attacks 'worked'

"I think that if I were Osama Bin Laden, I can't really imagine what more I could ask for. The strafing of Mecca, possibly. But we've done everything we could wrong. It's not only America. It's like Thomas Kuhn's thinking on the structure of scientific revolutions, how we have these deeply held cultural paradigms, for instance about what we do when we are attacked. And we have these huge structures, armies and air forces and all of that, and they can be triggered by an event. But in this case, the event they were triggered by was a criminal act. It wasn't a military invasion of the island of Manhattan.

"But emotionally, I think it caused an understandable infantilization of society. Not just American society. I think there was a bubble right after 9-11 when the whole world seemed quite labile. Myself included. As we moved through that, all these existing mechanisms in our various societies moved forward to do what they believed they were there to do. Things that we sort of have in our immediate cultural mindset. What do we do when we are attacked? We invade countries. What do we do to countries that won't do what we want them to do? We use air power.

"Invade countries. Use air power. Well, it turns out, those are the two things not to do. The old paradigm is the wrong paradigm."

My response

I posted the following response on

(By the way, thanks for linking to my article!)

As good points as Gibson makes on how 9/11 affected American society, his stance on the 9/11 Truth Movement unfortunately reads like a n official textbook of propaganda.

Contrarily to his pseudoscientific psychological analysis, a government that would be ready to sacrifice the lives of its fellow citizens as an excuse to massacre more people in wars is nothing to be reassured about. It is a threat far closer to home than terrorists living in a cave on the other side of the planet. If anything, this would make people avoid the theory like the plague because it is far too discomforting regardless of how simplistic it supposedly is.

Although the US government certainly got the results it wanted from the crime it committed, it was by no means competent in covering it up, as the onslaught of evidence and the explosion of the 9/11 Truth Movement coming out every week will tell.

If the 9/11 events were so complicated as claimed by Gibson, then why would a group of 19 Arabs, far less competent and without state resources, have been succesful where a government wouldn't have been? On the other hand, if allegations that the attacks were sponsored by the government were so simplistic, then why would the US government have been incapable of it?

Anyone who would study the non-official theories of 9/11 would find that it involves many complexities, such as compartmentalisation of the actors involved in the conspiracy, and explanations of why the media has been complicit with government, not only for 9/11 but also for the war in Iraq, and in promoting a war against Iran.

Is it not far more simplistic, on the other hand, to claim that 19 arabs would plot in a backwards country to smash airplanes in buildings because 'they hate our freedoms'?

Gibson's comments on conspiracy theories have nothing original about them; those are propaganda talking points repeated over and over by the US media. Gibson should have known better than blindly believing those assumptions. I am the co-author of an article that addresses them, many of which originate directly from a CIA memo:


Well stated.

Also, I'm tired of people using ad hominem attacks to dismiss 9/11 Truth. Either talk about the evidence, or shut the hell up about "incompetence".

That was an

excellent reply.



That was a perfect reply, well said indeed.

Tye Tyee has not posted the comment from laukev7

Tye Tyee has not posted the comment from laukev7, as of 11 am PDT on Sunday.

My comment shows up fine for

Must click on "All Comments"

OK, I see it. You must click on "All Comments" on the site. Trust me, yours really should have been in "Best Comments".


A very cogent analysis

For a very cogent analysis of disinformation on conspiracy, I urge all to read the article cited above on the Gatecreepers site. There are also a number of other excellent pieces. See . It is a significant site and seems to be neglected.

For another analysis of disinformation and left gatekeeping, see the article "9/11 "Conspiracies" and the Defactualisation of Analysis" by Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed at

This is a key article, and I strongly urge everyone to read it.

I also suggest that you buy Barrie Zwicker's book and read his chapter on gatekeepers. If you are a fan of Chomsky, it will probably create a "cognitive dissonance moment". How you resolve the dissonance is up to you. However, it is a very good analysis I believe; almost certainly correct in many essential details.

Mike Zimmer

Not so much

Calling William Gibson a "science fiction" writer is more than a bit of a stretch, imo.

Senior 9/11 Bureau Chief, Analyst, Correspondent, Principle Investigator, Forensic 9/11ologist

To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men. — Abraham Lincoln

Secrecy is the beginning of tyranny. — Robert Heinlein

What do you mean?

This guy is THE science fiction writer of our time.

William Gibson is the first name that enters my mind. When I hear the term "science fiction"

Tastes vary

I understand him to be significant. I think that is why I felt he needed rebutting.

On reflection,I realized that I did read one of his works. He was a coauthor of "The Difference Engine". The book was certainly not to my taste, and I have been reading science fiction for over 5 decades. Tastes vary.


I don't have any opinion of his writings, as I haven't read him. I am no sci-fi fan.
But I know that he is a very influential sci-fi writer. Maybe more so for the younger generation?

Oh, that's just disgusting

I can't believe you would make that comment.

He's a hack writer who got lucky and wrote about something in a timely manner a long time ago now and got popular and has been riding that ever since.

Imo, he can't write his way out of a wet paper bag.

I suggest you read some real science fiction writers and then you will see how he pales in comparison.

Senior 9/11 Bureau Chief, Analyst, Correspondent, Principle Investigator, Forensic 9/11ologist

To sin by silence when they should protest makes cowards of men. — Abraham Lincoln

Secrecy is the beginning of tyranny. — Robert Heinlein