I have always been concerned about what really happened on September 11, 2001, but I have also always thought that the attacks were the result of a combination of determined action on the part of terrorists and official incompetence. I did not really believe that they might have actually been orchestrated by our own government. Indeed, such a thought, in itself, seemed almost treasonous to me. I am a political moderate, but I am also a strong patriot. I don't believe in condoning anti-government activity in time of war unless it is warranted by fact.
However, a story appeared on Yahoo News on January 30 that has shocked me deeply. (As of March 25, the story has been pulled by Yahoo, but remains available on PR web. To read it, click here. Normally, Yahoo retains its stories for 6 months.)
I don't want to believe that our leaders did this to us, that they are responsible for killing thousands of Americans in the interest of restoring the president's then abysmal popularity ratings and enabling them to end many of our freedoms, but a growing number of distinguished academics and scientists do think so, and that has me deeply, deeply worried.
This worry does not end with 911. There is so much wrong that it staggers the mind. In fact, it looks very much like the United States of America is well on its way to becoming a dictatorship--a danger that no less an authority than retiring Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Conner warned of in a speech at Georgetown University on March 8--a speech that was virtually unremarked in the general media.
On Monday, the story I have linked to above was published on Yahoo News. It's easy to say that the academics involved are just a bunch of liberals, but that simply isn't the case. Some are lefties, but they are mostly political moderates. They have been radicalized by what they have discovered. They are not really promoting a political agenda, but rather demanding an investigation of what increasingly seems to have been not simply official incompetence that led to mass murder, but an actual offical locomotion behind this murder.
That there was official incompetence is now generally accepted. That was even the conclusion of the 911 Commission. But this goes beyond that.
My initial reaction was that the whole business of accusing government officials of orchestrating the attacks was conspiracy theory nonsense. Then I watched "911 in Plane Sight" and I wondered. I liked the way the author of the DVD, Dave von Kleist, asked questions without drawing what seemed to me to be unwarranted conclusions. Then David Ray Griffin came along. I saw him on C-Span, and he seemed quite rational and his research was careful.
I interviewed him on Dreamland. I must add here that the fact that I interview somebody on my radio program doesn't mean that I endorse them. A lot of people get that wrong. It means that I think they're interesting, nothing more. I'm always open and encouraging with them. I conceal my opinions. My program is not about my opinions, it is about my guests' information, and I am often the only interviewer they get who has read their books and/or thought about their work carefully enough to ask them questions that enable them to express their ideas.
Griffin was a very convincing interview. He had done his homework. His book is carefully annotated, with every claim supported by careful documentation.
Frankly, I was appalled at what I read and heard from this man. I found it difficult to believe that he wasn't right. The thought flickered into my mind that I might live in a country run by a bunch of mass murderers.
Which I rejected. Not on rational grounds, on emotional ones. I guess my feeling is that if the light goes out in the United States, maybe mankind is a failed species. It's that large an issue, and if our leaders did indeed cause this catastrophe in order to juice their popularity ratings and cement themselves in power, that is a tragedy of historic proportions. Along with the collapse of the Roman republic and the transformation of Weimar Germany into the Nazi dictatorship, it is one of the great subversions of an institutional republic.
Other media are just now reacting to the Yahoo article. They are as stunned as I am. Robert Steinback, writing in the Miami Herald, puts it very well:
"The reflexive first reaction is incredulity -- how, one asks, could anyone even contemplate, never mind actually do such a barbaric thing? But before you shut your mind, check the resumés -- these aren't Generation X geeks subsisting on potato chips and PlayStation. Then look at the case they present."
The case is indeed a powerful one. It is, largely, not a political case or a case based on conspiracy theories. It could best be described as an engineering-based case. This is what makes it so terrifyingly convincing. These men know how structures work, and they are becoming convinced that these structures--the World Trade Center and the Pentagon--were not destroyed and damged in the ways the government has claimed. They are making an argument that the World Trade Center was, in fact, demolished, and that this was done with thousands of living human beings inside, without regard for their lives.
Immediately after 911, I posted a journal entry complaining that the FBI had failed so profoundly to protect us in this case that its failure was indistinguishable from treason. Now I think that it may have BEEN treason. And this treason may not have involved only the FBI.
I base this not only on the well-publicized investigatory failures of that agency, but also on the way another matter was handled by the administration. This was the fact, that emerged during the 911 hearings, that Condoleeza Rice, in her role as National Security Adviser, had received no fewer than 11 specific warnings from the Federal Aviation Administration that terrorists might use aircraft to strike the World Trade Center.
The fact that she had received this information was held classified prior to the election--illegally classified, incidentally--and only released afterward. Ms. Rice sat before 911 Commission and said that she and her colleagues were completely surprised by the attack.
Frankly, if they were surprised, then there must be some other presence within the government that is able to project its power without the leadership knowing, and is willing to use mass muder as a means of doing so.
I don't believe that. I believe that we need further investigation of 911 and the possible official role in it. In a couple of weeks, Jim Marrs and I are going to interview Webster Tarpley, who wrote 911: Synthetic Terror. I am not going to say what my opinion is of Mr. Tarpley's book. As I stated before, that's not what Dreamland is about. What I am going to do, though, is give him a chance to really air his ideas. As radical as they once appeared, it now seems that they deserve careful attention.
Something that now worries me terribly--in fact, keeps me awake at night--is fear that has arisen from the most recent Osama Bin Laden tape. In it, he states that there is shortly going to be another attack on the United States. He also goes on to condone a book by a liberal author critical of the Bush Administration.
This tape was immediately "validated" by the CIA. Gone was the long period of investigation and the hedging that came from CIA when George Tenet was director. Now, under Porter Goss, confirmation is immediate.
And yet, serious and competent researchers have cast doubt on the authenticity of this tape. So much so that the president has even spoken out against them.
Given what is emerging about 911, what are we to believe? The administration has reached another nadir of unpopularity, one even deeper than the one it was in before 911. However, if there is another terrorist attack at this point, it is going to be blamed, not honored with the support of a shocked nation.
So what would motivate it to orchestrate another attack, if indeed it orchestrated the first one? It knows that what few supporters it has left would abandon it if this was done. Homeland Security would be painted as another FEMA-style farce. Beyond being impeached, the president might literally be run out of town on a rail.
However, it could be that the attack will be so appalling that the administration will, quite simply, end the republic altogether and commence frank dictatorial rule.
If such an attack happens, there seems a distinct possibility that it will have been either officially inspired, actually orchestrated by a government run amok, or allowed to happen. Even if the terrorists are real and they are indeed responsible for such an attack, it wll represent a failure of government so profound that we will need the administration to resign. There will have to be a special election, or a special convention of the Electoral College to choose new leadership.
However, that's not what will happen. If there is an attack, the country will be battened down tight by the administration. It will become a dictatorship, and will remain so until the terrorists are defeated.
But they will never be defeated.
NOTE: This Journal entry, previously published on our old site, will have any links removed.