Flight 93, Rice on 9/11 - Additions to the 9/11 Timeline as of July 27, 2008

About half of the new entries in the History Commons' 9/11 Timeline this week deal with the actual day of 9/11. One set focus on Flight 93, on which passenger Todd Burnett reportedly said a hijacker had a gun, although the 9/11 Commission disagreed. Burnett's wife informed the FBI of her husband's calls before the plane crashed. United Airlines informed its staff of the crash at 10:17, American Airlines at 10:27, and the public at 11:17.

A second lot of day of 9/11 entries look at National Security Condoleezza Rice, who entered the White House bunker shortly before 9:59, and then had a diplomatic cable sent out saying the US government was still functioning. She and Transportation Secretary Normal Mineta tracked an unidentified aircraft from the bunker and she wondered whether Iraq was involved.

Other day of 9/11 events include a disputed call from Flight 175, which United Airlines learned was missing from radar around 9:00. A manager at the airline assured employees that the crisis was not a drill, and lots of people, including military personnel, stole debris from the Pentagon crash site.

More new entries cover radical London-based imam Abu Hamza, a British intelligence informer who took over a leading London mosque in 1997. He celebrated suicide bombers in a Friday sermon, his militia beat up some moderate Muslims while the police stood by and did nothing, and he took over a second London mosque in 1998.

Another group of entries cover comments made by current and former officials. The Los Angeles Times said no al-Qaeda leaders were held in Guantanamo in mid-2002, and CIA veteran Milt Bearden doubted that torture saves lives in 2008. Some Republican politicians suggested criticism of the War on Terror was out of line and the White House said that it helped terrorists in 2002. A Canadian officer and a conservative columnist both said we needed another 9/11 in 2007.

A demolition industry leader said that no explosives were used in the WTC collapse, although a Dutch documentary and a Japanese MP were of a different mind.

Finally, miscellaneous entries cover the slow progress of the Justice Department inquiry into the destruction of the CIA interrogation videotapes, an al-Qaeda operative in the US informing on his former colleagues from 2003, and the Pakistan Taliban's imposition of Sharia in a tribal region recently. We end on a happy note: last year Saudi Arabia opened a "care center" to rehabilitate militant Islamists.

Originally posted here. Please also bear in mind that the History Commons is in need of donations.