9/11 Family Members Patty Casazza And Bob McIlvaine 11/3/2007 Transcript
On 11/3/2007, 9/11 Family Members Bob McIlvaine, and "Jersey Girl" Patty Casazza participated in a panel specifically about the 9/11 Commission at the "9/11: Families, First Responders, & Experts Speak Out Symposium" in West Hartford Connecticut. The following is the transcript for that panel.
Following Richard Gage's presentation...
Damon Bean: Uh, some very nice surprises, um.. that just happened. Patty Casava, one of the Jersey... (Jon Gold corrects Damon) Casazza, one of the "Jersey Girls", original "Jersey Girls", has made a surprise appearance (loud applause). And, she will be coming on next, I think, I'm sorry, we do have a lot of questions here, and I hope to... I hope... they're great questions, I hope to get them online and maybe Richard could do... answer those questions online and we'll make it available for everyone, but we'd like her come up with Bob McIlvaine, and, um... and take some questions on the Commission . And, the other wonderful news is Cynthia McKinney will be here (loud applause). She will be doing the introduction speech for William Pepper, and she should be arriving at about 7 o'clock, so... without further adieu... and we will have Jon... yeah, let's have Patty up first... (Damon points to Patty)... Patty... (applause from the audience as Patty walks to the stage)...
Jon Gold: The... Uh, Bob and Patty are going to take questions specifically on the 9/11 Commission because both of them were involved in that process so if you have questions, please put them on the cards, and, with that... um.... (hands microphone to Patty Casazza)...
Patty Casazza: Hi, I'm Patty... (19 second standing ovation)... believe me if it wasn't for our friend Jon Gold here, and so many other citizen activists, I'm sure the 9/11 movement would have died a long time ago. Um, partly the reason for that is is that, every time we look at the information on 9/11, we die a little. And, I speak from that from personal experience. This is not an easy thing, um, I wish I could do more with the movement myself, but it pains me greatly... Uh, to know that it's 6 plus years, and we still don't have a true investigation into 9/11. Uh, we worked hard to form the Commission, it took us 18 months of fighting, um, basically weekly, daily on the phone, writing emails, sending out letters, doing press, um, conferences, all of which I'd never did before in my life.
Um, I was in nursing school when 9/11 occurred, and um... we brought with us to Washington, to your Representatives empirical evidence showing that 9/11 shouldn't have happened for a number of reasons, um... Basically, from the outset, the planes... they didn't follow protocol. There should have, uh... planes sent to accompany the commercial airlines once transponder, which is the identification the FAA uses to track planes.... Once that went off, that's, in itself, reason enough for fighter jets to be sent up into the air, and it's not on.. they're not... their purpose isn't necessarily shoot down an errant plane, that's the last resort, but they do have the means to... um... they're supposed to go on the side of a plane, rock their wings, that's an indicator that the pilot should turn some type of communication on with these fighter jets, let them know that every thing's ok onboard, that... that... ya know, there isn't a hijacking, or a pilot hasn't, ya know, gotten sick. Um... All of those things can happen without you shooting down a plane, and those jet fighters could rock their wings, they can actually knock, if there were hijackers actually flying those planes, they could have knocked those people, um... off their feet. So, there were many measures that could have been taken, and should have been taken, and those were written in protocols, and were not followed on 9/11. And that's with FOUR commercial jet airliners having been hijacked. I ask you how is that possible? We spend more money in military than more than half the countries totaled in the world. And again, we couldn't get one plane up in time to accompany those four planes that were wildly off course.
Uh.. So, that's just one instance, and we brought those things to Washington, and we actually had Congressmen and Senators say, "Well, that's all very well and good, but, ya know... what is the President saying?" What do you mean what is the President saying? We're asking for an investigation based upon empirical evidence. To my way of thinking, that's all you needed... I'm a citizen, I'm bringing forth information, it's right or wrong, and I'm expecting that my Representatives are going to do something about this. Nothing happened. Nothing happened. Nothing happened until we went to the press. Until we made ourselves these annoying little gnats that wouldn't go away. Um... the Pan Am 103 families were the ones who forced us to do a rally. They said, "you're not getting listened to, if you don't get a rally going, nothing's going to happen. You're going to go away. 9/11's, ya know, going to be a non-issue in a few months." So, we went to Home Depot and started um... cutting up wood ourselves, figuring out, ya know (holding up her arms as if holding a sign), "How high does a piece of wood have to be for people to hold it up and be seen?" And, we got buses... I don't know how any of this transpired, but we did it. Cause we did... we didn't know what we were doing, but we called around, and we got it done, we got over 2, probably like 300 families down in D.C. to come with us, and after that, it was something, that the Government apparently could not overlook our efforts, and... As I said, it took us 18 months to get the Commission... then the Commission was installed. And, it was not with people that we would have chosen. We wanted academics. We wanted ,ya know, people in professions, like, Dr. Gage, and such, who could, ya know... provide evidence. We did not have evidence presented at the 9/11 Commission. We got platitudes. We got a lot of rhetoric. And we got lies. Uh.. with a smattering of the obvious truths. "Yeah, there were four planes that day. Ok." Much more than that, we don't know. We don't even know who was on those planes for sure. I never saw one terrorist get on a plane. I have trouble with that. Nobody showed me the bank accounts for Mohammad Atta, or any of these other people who got, supposedly got on those planes, and destroyed those buildings.
I did get a phone call from my husband after the first plane had hit, and... he said... he had thought that there were bombs going off in the building, and he knew he was going to die. They had already tried to find their way out. The center cores of the building had been destroyed, and the roof top doors were locked, and the room had been filling up with thick black smoke, and they were finding it difficult to breathe. He asked me to find help. And, uh... Obviously there was no help for those above, I think it was the, uh...78th floor of that building. And, um... even.. even with that, I look back on the day, and I say to myself, "Where was the Emergency Broadcast System (EBS)?" Ya know, all of these people were calling 9-1-1. And, especially for people in building two who still had a chance to get out between building one and two getting hit. Where was that? That is a system that's supposed to be in place to let you know what to do in the event of an emergency. If 9/11 wasn't an emergency, what DOES qualify as one? Those people in building two were told to go back to their desks. That it was safer for them in the building. And that was a lie. The first responders, most of them will tell you, the people who got out, got out because their instincts told them to get out. And that's how most people saved themselves on that day. Even with um... regard to the roof top doors, in 1993, the roof top doors were not locked. How else do you expect people in a building that's 110 stories high to get out in the event of an emergency? Even if, say one full floor is engulfed in flames, how do you expect them to get out? The fire trucks can't reach ladders and water up that high. They got out in 1993 via the Police Department. The roof top doors were not supposed to be locked, according to those building's permits. But, then, the building was owned by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which is, pretty much a group that can write its' own laws.
And so... in... the Police rescued 43 people in 1993. And apparently there was some kind of disagreement between the Fre Department and the Police Department, and... the roof top doors were locked. Now, the Fire Department had wanted to be the service of rescue. But they don't have helicopters. Only the Police Department does. So... ya know it turned out to be politics over lives. And I... I believe 9/11 was basically about politics. And agendas. Not my agenda. Not your agenda. So we became part of somebody else's agenda. And that's what we have not... what has not been investigated. What that agenda was. Why it happened, and how it happened.
I don't have ideas exactly on how it happened, but I know it didn't go as according to what the Commission put down on paper. And one of the reasons why we still continued to fight with... for the Commission, even as we knew it was a farce, is we wanted their words, their lies down on paper. We wanted to make them go through at least this exercise. And even if it came down to the annals of history, that the truth will come out, that was part of our purpose. Our purposes were layered. We'll be a pain in the butt. That's fine. We'll get their lies down on paper. We'll have more Americans wake up to the fact that their Government is not looking out for their best interests. In fact, they may be counter to our best interests. But, none of this would have come to this point, if in fact, the Commission didn't exist at all. And for that, I'm grateful that we had the where with-all yo get that done with other family members, and the support of the public, and others... like Jon Gold, and the people who helped us with the video, "Press For Truth". Without those people spreading the word, I believe more people in the future, might not run out of a burning building. that they might actually might listen to a recording that says "you're safe in the building, remain seated, or you could be fired." I think we have to start thinking for ourselves, and question everything. Ok, now that I've hogged the microphone... smiles... (applause)...
Jon Gold: Thank you Patty. Um, some of these (questions) are hard to read. Um, one second. This is a good one. What do you make of Prince Bandar's comments that they said, that they, Saudi Arabia, were quote "precisely tracking" the 9/11 hijackers. This was just two days ago.
Patty Casazza: With Saudi Arabia, ya know, they've been... financial friends to us. Ya know, they provided oil. They've kept our economy going. And... with our protection, ya know, they've existed. I'm now speaking of, ya know, the Kingdom, the princes of Saudi Arabia. I wouldn't doubt that they were following these people who supposedly hijacked these planes. Um... Many of the people, like Osama Bin Laden himself, were once our own patsies. So... it would not surprise me that, perhaps, these people, either of their own volition, or were perhaps patsies once again, were being followed by Saudi Arabia, Israel... I mean, there were at least 12 countries that warned us that there were people within our own borders willing to fly planes into buildings. I mean, it was that specific. Other than an invitation, I don't know what else you needed in that arena to do the right thing, and step up the protection of at least the airlines on that day. Um, Saudi Arabia, as a nation, perhaps is thinking, I would guess that they... they might be at risk of retaliation against us, and maybe they're trying to marshall, ya know, their own people in that area together, in the event that, ya know... we feel that they've overstepped their bounds, and now they're the enemy. I can't answer that, but it would not surprise me.
Jon Gold: Um, what happened to the testimony of Sibel Edmonds?
Bob McIlvaine: Wait... What?
Jon Gold: Sibel testified for 3 hours. What happened to that testimony?
Bob McIlvaine: Oh Oh... the test... Well... Her testimony, I think it was 3 1/2 hours, she, uh... testified before the uh... Commission, and... we never heard it. That's what happened to it. Uh... I think she just came out with a statement... it was on, I know it was on the web the other day... She challenges any news organization to put her on... uh... TV... National TV... unedited, and uh... she'll suffer the conseq... she feels... ya know, she's willing to suffer the consequences to reveal everything she does know.
Question From The Audience: Who is she?
Bob McIlvaine: She was a translator that came into... she worked for the FBI, she was a whistle-blower. And she was a translator after 9/11, and uh... she's one... And I... one of her statements is... to understand 9/11... and I truly truly believe this... is that you have to "follow the money"... and, that seems sort of nebulas. Follow the money, what money? But I think she just understands what's happening, ya know, between Governments, between intelligence agencies throughout the world. How do people get money to do the things that they do. It has to come from some place, and personally... (fade out).
Patty Casazza: Sibel came to, actually, the four widows, and asked us if she could get a hearing with the Commission because nobody of the Commission was responding to her requests to testify. And part of the problem with testifying, um... as someone who's working for one of the agencies, is that, they have to be careful with state secrets, what they reveal. And, in order to be a whistle-blower, and not be retaliated against, most whistle-blowers need to be subpoenaed, cause then their co-workers, and those who might retaliate against them, know that under penalty of, ya know, law, they could be... um... ya know, accused of being traitors and what not, and put in jail, or executed. So, most whistle-blowers were... did not come forward on the basis of what happened to Sibel Edmonds. Um, Sibel brought us many whistle-blowers, and I submitted them personally to Governor Kean, who was the Chairman of the Commission. And I said, "these people are not being subpoenaed. They will not come before the Commission voluntarily unless they are subpoenaed." And, he promised me... to my face that "every whistle-blower would be... indeed heard." And, most were not heard. Sibel was only heard because we dragged her in and surprised the Commission on one of the days we were meeting with them... that we had her with us. Um, we met other whistle-blowers on the side of the road in Maryland, ya know, to hear what they could tell us. None of them revealed state secrets to us by the way (laughs)... um, but, they had information... and basically, the Government knew... ya know, other than the exact moment... they knew the date, and the method of which the attacks were supposed to come. (pauses) And none of this made it to mainstream media. None of it made it into the Commission. And yet, again, all of your Representatives, on the day that the Commission book came out, were on their pulpits saying, "What a fabulous job this Commission has done. A real service to this nation." And it was anything but a service. It was a complete fabrication.
Question From The Audience: (inaudible)
Patty Casazza: Other than the exact.. perhaps time, ya know, cause planes don't always go off on time. Um... They knew the date, they knew the method, that it was going to be with airplanes.
Question From The Audience: (inaudible)
Patty Casazza: Yep... mhmm.. They knew that it was that day, and they were going to happen. They knew the targets.
Jon Gold: Thank you... um... this is the last question I believe cause we're kind of rushing through this surprise. If you had one question you could now ask the Commission, what would it be?
Bob McIlvaine: It's very easy for me, I just would ask... who murdered my son? That's very simple (applause)...
Question From The Audience: What did he say?
Jon Gold: He didn't hear it.
Bob McIlvaine: Oh... Just, who murdered my son?
Jon Gold: Patty, do you have a question?
Patty Casazza: I guess I'd like to know where Dick Cheney was on the morning of 9/11, and exactly what he was doing (applause).
Jon Gold: I would like to thank Patty Casazza, Bob McIlvaine for giving us their time today (applause).
Thank you Patty and Bob. Thank you so very much.