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9/11 News Stories

Below are key excerpts of revealing news articles on 9/11 from reliable news media sources. If any link fails to function, a paywall blocks full access, or the article is no longer available, try these digital tools.

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Engineer Society Accused of Cover-Ups
2008-03-25, Atlanta Journal-Constitution/Associated Press
Posted: 2008-04-03 12:24:22
http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/shared-gen/ap/National/Embattled_Engineers.html

After the 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and the levee failures caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the federal government paid the American Society of Civil Engineers to investigate what went wrong. Critics now accuse [ASCE] of covering up engineering mistakes ... and using the investigations to protect engineers and government agencies from lawsuits. In the World Trade Center case, critics contend the engineering society wrongly concluded skyscrapers cannot withstand getting hit by airplanes. The Federal Emergency Management Agency paid the group about $257,000 to investigate the World Trade Center collapse. In 2002, the society's report on the World Trade Center praised the buildings for remaining standing long enough to allow tens thousands of people to flee. But, the report said, skyscrapers are not typically designed to withstand airplane impacts. Abolhassan Astaneh-Asl, a structural engineer and forensics expert, contends his computer simulations disprove the society's findings that skyscrapers could not be designed to withstand the impact of a jetliner. Astaneh-Asl, who received money from the National Science Foundation to investigate the collapse, insisted most New York skyscrapers built with traditional designs would survive such an impact. He also questioned the makeup of the society's investigation team. On the team were the wife of the trade center's structural engineer and a representative of the buildings' original design team. "I call this moral corruption," said Astaneh-Asl, who is on the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley.

Note: For a revealing two-page summary of many unanswered questions about 9/11 raised by major media sources, click here.


9/11 Commission Chief's Ties to White House
2008-03-08, Sydney Morning Herald (Australia's leading newspaper)
Posted: 2008-03-11 08:50:33
http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/they-knew-but-did-nothing/2008/03/07/1204780...

The members of Mike Hurley's [9/11 Commisson investigative] team were ... alarmed by the revelations, week by week, month by month, of how close the commission's chief director, Philip Zelikow, was to Rice and others at the White House. They learned early on about Zelikow's work on the Bush transition team in 2000 and early 2001, and about how much antipathy there was between him and ["Counterterrorism Czar"] Richard Clarke. They heard the stories about Zelikow's role in developing the "pre-emptive war" strategy at the White House in 2002. Zelikow's friendships with Rice and others were a particular problem for Warren Bass, since Rice and Clarke were at the heart of his part of the investigation. It was clear to some members of team that they could not have an open discussion in front of Zelikow about Rice and her performance as National Security Adviser. For Hurley's team, there was a reverse problem with Clarke. It was easy to talk about Clarke in Zelikow's presence, as long as the conversation centred on Clarke's failings at the NSC and his purported dishonesty. Long before Bass had seen Clarke's files, Zelikow made it clear to the team's investigators that Clarke should not be believed, that his testimony would be suspect. He argued that Clarke was a braggart who would try to rewrite history to justify his errors and slander his enemies, Rice in particular.

Note: This critique of the close ties to the White House of Philip Zelikow, Executive Director of the 9/11 Commission, is an excerpt from Philip Shenon's new book, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation. For an even deeper analysis of the Commission's failings, read WantToKnow.info team member David Ray Griffin's book, The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions.


Marion Cotillard's 9/11 conspiracy theory
2008-03-01, The Telegraph (One of the U.K.'s leading newspapers)
Posted: 2008-03-11 08:37:47
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/03/01/wcotillard101...

Oscar-winning Marion Cotillard was facing embarrasment with her new American public last night after it emerged that she doubted the official account of the September 11 attacks. The 32-year-old French star has swept this years best actress awards, also receiving a Bafta, Golden Globe and a Csar for her performance as singer Edith Piaf in La Vie en Rose. But the actress faces a potential backlash in the US over comments she made in an interview in France. Footage which surfaced on the internet showed her questioning the New York terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. "I think were lied to about a number of things," she said, singling out September 11. Referring to the two passenger jets flown into the World Trade Centre, Miss Cotillard said: "We see other towers of the same kind being hit by planes, are they burned? There was a tower, I believe it was in Spain, which burned for 24 hours. It never collapsed. None of these towers collapsed. And there [New York], in a few minutes, the whole thing collapsed." Miss Cotillard suggested that the towers, planned in the early 1960s, were an outdated "money sucker" which would have cost so much to modernise that it was easier to destroy them. Miss Cotillard, who was born and brought up in Paris, made the comments on Paris Premire Paris Dernire (Paris First Paris Last), a programme first broadcast a year ago. They were largely ignored at the time, but appeared yesterday on a French website. Miss Cotillards film career began in Luc Bessons 1998 film Taxi.

Note: For a revealing summary of many unanswered questions about what happened on 9/11, click here.


BAE: secret papers reveal threats from Saudi prince
2008-02-15, The Guardian (One of the U.K.'s leading newspapers)
Posted: 2008-02-25 08:39:41
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/feb/15/bae.armstrade

Saudi Arabia's rulers threatened to make it easier for terrorists to attack London unless corruption investigations into their arms deals were halted, according to court documents revealed yesterday. Previously secret files describe how investigators were told they faced "another 7/7" and the loss of "British lives on British streets" if they pressed on with their inquiries and the Saudis carried out their threat to cut off intelligence. Prince Bandar, the head of the Saudi national security council, and son of the crown prince, was alleged in court to be the man behind the threats to hold back information about suicide bombers and terrorists. He faces accusations that he himself took more than 1bn in secret payments from the arms company BAE. He was accused in yesterday's high court hearings of flying to London in December 2006 and uttering threats which made the prime minister, Tony Blair, force an end to the Serious Fraud Office investigation into bribery allegations involving Bandar and his family. The threats halted the fraud inquiry. Lord Justice Moses, hearing the civil case with Mr Justice Sullivan, said the government appeared to have "rolled over" after the threats. He said one possible view was that it was "just as if a gun had been held to the head" of the government. The SFO investigation began in 2004, when Robert Wardle, its director, studied evidence unearthed by the Guardian. This revealed that massive secret payments were going from BAE to Saudi Arabian princes, to promote arms deals. Yesterday, anti-corruption campaigners began a legal action to overturn the decision to halt the case. They want the original investigation restarted, arguing the government had caved into blackmail.

Note: This report comes very close to confirming the close link between terrorist attacks and high-level policy of certain states. For many revealing clues along these lines from reliable sources, click here.


What FBI whistle-blower Sibel Edmonds found in translation
2008-02-17, Dallas Morning News (Dallas' leading newspaper)
Posted: 2008-02-25 08:32:03
http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/dn/opinion/points/stories/DN-sibe...

Most Americans have never heard of Sibel Edmonds, and if the U.S. government has its way, they never will. The former FBI translator turned whistle-blower tells a chilling story of corruption at Washington's highest levels sale of nuclear secrets, shielding of terrorist suspects, illegal arms transfers, narcotics trafficking, money laundering, espionage. Ms. Edmonds' account is full of dates, places and names. And if she is to be believed, a treasonous plot to embed moles in American military and nuclear installations and pass sensitive intelligence to Israeli, Pakistani and Turkish sources was facilitated by figures in the upper echelons of the State and Defense Departments. Her charges could be easily confirmed or dismissed if classified government documents were made available to investigators. But Congress has refused to act, and the Justice Department has shrouded Ms. Edmonds' case in the state-secrets privilege, a rarely used measure so sweeping that it precludes even a closed hearing attended only by officials with top-secret security clearances. Ms. Edmonds' revelations have attracted corroboration in the form of anonymous letters apparently written by FBI employees. There have been frequent reports of FBI field agents being frustrated by the premature closure of cases dealing with foreign spying, particularly when those cases involve Israel, and the State Department has frequently intervened to shut down investigations based on "sensitive foreign diplomatic relations." Curiously, the state-secrets gag order binding Ms. Edmonds, while put in place by DOJ in 2002, was not requested by the FBI but by the State Department and Pentagon which employed individuals she identified as being involved in criminal activities. If her allegations are frivolous, that order would scarcely seem necessary.

Note: The author of this article, Philip Giraldi, is a retired career CIA officer. For further powerful details of Sibel Edmonds' revelations, click here.


Willie Nelson doubts official explanation for 9/11
2008-02-05, Houston Chronicle/Associated Press
Posted: 2008-02-17 12:12:46
http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/metropolitan/5516149.html

Texas icon Willie Nelson said on a nationally syndicated radio show that he questions the official story of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in New York City. "I certainly do," Nelson said ... when asked by talk-show host Alex Jones. "I saw those towers fall and I've seen an implosion in Las Vegas, there's too much similarities between the two. And I saw the building fall that didn't get hit by nothing," the singer-songwriter said. "So, how naive are we, you know, what do they think we'll go for?" Nelson, 74, said that if he were president, he would "stop the damn war, it's just that simple." He said he doesn't [understand] why if Saudi Arabians "hit us in New York ... we go jump on Afghanistan." Nelson's publicist would not comment on the remarks.

Note: For an ABC video clip of this news, click here.


9/11 Commission controversy
2008-01-30, NBC News
Posted: 2008-02-17 12:07:17
http://deepbackground.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2008/01/30/624314.aspx

The 9/11 Commission suspected that critical information it used in its ... Report was the product of harsh interrogations of al-Qaida operatives - interrogations that many critics have labeled torture. Yet, commission staffers never questioned the agency about the interrogation techniques and in fact ordered a second round of interrogations specifically to ask additional questions of the same operatives. Much of what was reported about the planning and execution of the terror attacks on New York and Washington was derived from the interrogations of high-ranking al-Qaida operatives. Each had been subjected to "enhanced interrogation techniques." Some were even subjected to waterboarding. There was a separate, second round of interrogations in early 2004, done specifically to answer new questions from the Commission, [involving] more than 30 separate interrogation sessions. According to both current and former senior U.S. intelligence officials, the operatives cited by the Commission were subjected to the harshest of the CIAs methods, the "enhanced interrogation techniques." The techniques included physical and mental abuse, exposure to extreme heat and cold, sleep deprivation and waterboarding. In addition, officials of both the 9/11 Commission and CIA confirm the Commission specifically asked the agency to push the operatives on a new round of interrogations months after their first interrogations. The Commission, in fact, supplied specific questions for the operatives to the agency. This new round took place in early 2004, when the agency was still engaged in the full range of harsh techniques.

Note: WantToKnow team member and renowned theologian David Ray Griffin's detailed exposure of the many lies put forth by the 9/11 Commission is available here. And for a succinct, eye-opening summary of many unanswered questions about the official account of 9/11, click here.


Ex-9/11 Panel Chief Denies Secret White House Ties
2008-01-30, ABC News
Posted: 2008-02-03 12:08:29
http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/story?id=4218157

The former executive director of the 9/11 Commission denies explosive charges of undisclosed ties to the Bush White House or interference with the panel's report. The charges are ... contained in New York Times reporter Philip Shenon's [new] book, The Commission: The Uncensored History of the 9/11 Investigation, [and are] confirmed by the book's publisher. [When] 9/11 Commission co-chairs [Thomas] Kean and Lee Hamilton hired former Condoleezza Rice aide Philip Zelikow to be executive director, Zelikow failed to tell them ... that he was "instrumental" in demoting Richard Clarke, the onetime White House counterterrorism czar. In his book, Shenon also says that while working for the panel, Zelikow appears to have had private conversations with former White House political director Karl Rove, despite a ban on such communication. Shenon reports that Zelikow later ordered his assistant to stop keeping a log of his calls. Zelikow told ABC News he was under no prohibition that barred his conversations with Rove, and did not recall asking his assistant to stop logging his calls. Shenon directed calls to his publisher, Twelve Books, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group. Cary Goldstein, a spokesman for Hachette, confirmed the [above] characterization of the book's contents, but said he could not confirm direct quotes. "It's not a surprise," Goldstein said when asked his reaction to the leak of the book's details before its Feb. 5 publication date. "I think people are really curious to see what the report had looked like if it hadn't been neutered in [the panel's] effort to be unanimous."

Note: Philip Zelikow co-authored a 1998 Foreign Affairs article, "Catastrophic Terrorism: Tackling the New Danger," which warned of a possible catastrophic attack on the World Trade Center and accurately predicted the governmental aftermath of 9/11. And a highly significant fact is that before he was selected as Executive Director of the 9/11 Commission, he authored the Bush administration's National Security Strategy of the United States of America for 2002. This document for the first time asserted a national policy of pre-emptive war (the "Bush Doctrine"), and paved the way for the war on Iraq.


Lost In Translation
2004-08-08, CBS News
Posted: 2008-01-13 08:02:14
http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2002/10/25/60minutes/main526954.shtml

Sibel Edmonds, a translator who worked at the FBI's language division, says [that hundreds, if not thousands, of foreign language intelligence documents] weren't translated because the division was riddled with incompetence and corruption. Edmonds was fired after reporting her concerns to FBI officials. Because she is fluent in Turkish and other Middle Eastern languages, Edmonds, a Turkish-American, was hired by the FBI soon after Sept. 11 and given top-secret security clearance to translate some of the reams of documents seized by FBI agents who have been rounding up suspected terrorists across the United States and abroad. In its rush to hire more foreign language translators after Sept. 11, the FBI admits it has had difficulty performing background checks to detect translators who may have loyalties to other governments, which could pose a threat to U.S. national security. Take the case of Jan Dickerson, a Turkish translator who worked with Edmonds. The FBI has admitted that when Dickerson was hired, the bureau didn't know that she had worked for a Turkish organization being investigated by the FBI's own counter-intelligence unit. They also didn't know she'd had a relationship with a Turkish intelligence officer stationed in Washington who was the target of that investigation. According to Edmonds, Dickerson tried to recruit her into that organization, and insisted that Dickerson be the only one to translate the FBI's wiretaps of that Turkish official. She got very angry, and later she threatened me and my family's life, says Edmonds, when she decided not to go along with the plan. She said, Why would you want to place your life and your family's life in danger by translating these tapes? Edmonds says that when she reviewed Dickerson's translations of those tapes, she found that Dickerson had left out information crucial to the FBI's investigation - information that Edmonds says would have revealed that the Turkish intelligence officer had spies working for him inside the U.S. State Department and at the Pentagon.

Note: This article should be read in its entirety. For many revealing articles on the ongoing efforts by longtime whistleblower Sibel Edmonds to tell her story, click here.


Blame U.S. for 9/11: 'Plots' Thicken in Shocking Poll
2007-11-24, New York Post
Posted: 2007-12-02 13:14:11
http://www.nypost.com/seven/11242007/news/nationalnews/blame_u_s__for_9_11_id...

Nearly two-thirds of Americans believe the federal government had warnings about 9/11 but decided to ignore them, a national survey found. Sixty-two percent of those polled thought it was "very likely" or "somewhat likely" that federal officials turned a blind eye to specific warnings of the 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon. Only 30 percent said the 9/11 theory was "not likely," according to the Scripps Howard/Ohio University poll. The findings followed a 2006 poll by the same researchers, who found that 36 percent of Americans believe federal government officials "either assisted in the 9/11 attacks or took no action" because they wanted "to go to war in the Middle East." In that poll, 16 percent said the Twin Towers might have collapsed because of secretly planted explosives - not hijacked passenger jets flown into them. And what hit the Pentagon? Twelve percent figured it was a US cruise missile. In the latest Scripps Howard/Ohio University poll, 811 US adults were interviewed Sept. 24 to Oct. 10. Among [other] findings: 42 percent believe the federal government knew in advance of the plot to assassinate John F. Kennedy, compared with 40 percent who call that theory "not likely." 37 percent believe UFOs are real and that the feds have been hiding the truth about them. Eight out of 10 Americans suspect oil companies are conspiring to keep fuel prices high and 50 percent said a conspiracy is "very likely." Only 14 percent felt it was unlikely.

Note: We normally don't use the New York Post as a reliable source. Yet this key news is based on a very reliable poll, which you can read in the Scripps News Service report available here. Sadly, the Post was the only major newspaper to pick up this important news, and they took a heavy editorial slant against 9/11 truth. For a concise summary of major media reports suggesting that the official account of 9/11 cannot be true, click here.


Dan Ellsberg: Sibel Edmonds case
2007-11-19, OpEdNews.com
Posted: 2007-12-02 13:06:02
http://www.opednews.com/articles/genera_luke_ryl_071119_dan_ellsberg_3a_sibel...

Bradblog has been chasing the story about former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds' offer to 'tell all.' [Daniel] Ellsberg says: "I'd say what she has is far more explosive than the Pentagon Papers. From what [Edmonds] has to tell, it has a major difference from the Pentagon Papers in that it deals directly with criminal activity and may involve impeachable offenses. And I don't necessarily mean the President or the Vice-President, though I wouldn't be surprised if the information reached up that high. But other members of the Executive Branch may be impeached as well. There will be phone calls going out to the media saying 'don't even think of touching [Edmonds' case], you will be prosecuted for violating national security.'" [Edmonds] said: "The media called from Japan and France and Belgium and Germany and Canada and from all over the world. I'm getting contact from all over the world, but not from here." More Ellsberg: "I am confident that there is conversation inside the Government as to 'How do we deal with Sibel?' The first line of defense is to ensure that she doesn't get into the media. I think any outlet that thought of using her materials would go to the government and they would be told 'don't touch this, it's communications intelligence.' As long as they hold a united front on this, they don't run the risk of being shamed." [Edmonds:] "I will name the name of major publications who know the story, and have been sitting on it --- almost a year and a half." "How do you know they have the story?," we asked. "I know they have it because people from the FBI have come in and given it to them. They've given them the documents and specific case-numbers on my case."

Note: Though this is not from one of our normal reliable sources, Dan Ellsberg is a highly respected whistleblower who has received an abundance of major media coverage over the years. As the mainstream media are clearly and consciously ignoring this story, we felt it deserved to be posted, even though we don't have a major media source to back it up. For lots more reliable information on this courageous woman, click here.


Brothers, Bad Blood and the Blackwater Tangle
2007-11-17, New York Times
Posted: 2007-11-25 11:16:42
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/17/us/17brothers.html?ex=1352955600&en=1cb325e...

They were smart, scrappy brothers who rose from modest circumstances in Baltimore to become lacrosse stars at Princeton, succeed in business and land big government jobs. Now the Krongard brothers who have carried childhood nicknames, Buzzy and Cookie, through long careers are tied up in the tangled story of Blackwater, the security contractor accused in the deaths of at least 17 Iraqis while guarding a State Department convoy in Baghdad. The shorthand version boils their involvement down to that Washington catchall conflict of interest. The full story appears more complicated. Alvin [Buzzy] Krongard, 71, ... left a $4 million-a-year job in investment banking to serve in top posts at the Central Intelligence Agency from 1998 to 2004. Buzzy Krongard spoke [to the New York Times] in his 15,000-square-foot Georgian mansion, Torch Hill, north of Baltimore. After rising to the helm of Alex. Brown & Sons, the venerable Baltimore investment banking firm, Buzzy Krongard oversaw its acquisition by Bankers Trust in 1997 and left the next year for the C.I.A., as a counselor to George J. Tenet, then the director of central intelligence. He became executive director, the No. 3 post, in 2001 and helped design the agencys secret detention program after the Sept. 11 attacks. Buzzy Krongard vigorously defends Blackwaters record in Iraq. Its very easy to second-guess them when youre sitting back in an air-conditioned office, he said.

Note: Buzzy Krongard took quite a cut in pay to move from Bankers Trust to the comparatively modest salary of even a high-ranking CIA position. Bankers Trust was purchased by the same company that placed the highly unusual and suspicious "put options" on United Airlines stock just days before 9/11. For a powerful summary of similarly strange, unexplained facts related to 9/11, click here.


O Brother, Who Art Thou?
2007-11-15, Washington Post
Posted: 2007-11-18 10:42:26
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/11/14/AR20071114021...

"I am not my brother's keeper," Howard "Cookie" Krongard, the State Department's inspector general, testified to the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee yesterday. As Cookie surely must know, that excuse hasn't worked since Genesis. In this case, the players weren't Cain and Abel, but Cookie and his brother Buzzy. Cookie, under fire for allegedly quashing probes of the infamous Blackwater security contractor, began his testimony by angrily denying the "ugly rumors" that his brother, former CIA official Alvin "Buzzy" Krongard, is on Blackwater's advisory board. But during a recess, Cookie called Buzzy and learned that -- gulp -- the ugly rumors are true: His brother is on the board. When the lawmakers returned, Cookie revised and extended his testimony. "I had not been aware of that," Cookie told the congressmen. "I hereby recuse myself from any matters having to do with Blackwater." The lawmakers reacted with Old Testament fury. The swaggering Cookie -- he alternately addressed the lawmakers with his thumb in his waistband, slouching in his chair, rolling his eyes and making baffled glances -- had spent the morning aggressively denying the allegations lodged against him: that he had impeded investigations into contracting fraud, including weapons smuggling by Blackwater, and that he had abused his underlings. But then came Buzzy's bombshell -- and Cookie's credibility crumbled. Either he had lied to Congress, or his own brother had lied to him. It was only the latest bit of strangeness for the powerful but eccentric Brothers Krongard. Buzzy [is] known for his cigar chomping, martial arts and recreational workouts with SWAT teams. "Krongard once punched a great white shark in the jaw," his hometown Baltimore Sun reported when he took the No. 3 job at the CIA a decade ago. More recently, Buzzy joined the advisory board of Blackwater, the firm known for its ready trigger fingers in Iraq.

Note: Alvin "Buzzy" Krongard was the Executive Director (the third-highest position) at the CIA on 9/11, and had until 1998 been the head of the firm used to buy many of the "put" options on United Airlines stock made just prior to 9/11 that were never claimed, though this received little media coverage.


Was Bin Laden's last video faked?
2007-10-29, MSNBC
Posted: 2007-11-11 08:33:13
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21530470

When [the] first Osama Bin Laden video in nearly three years [appeared], most of the media attention was focused on Bin Laden's beard. It appeared either dyed or perhaps even pasted on. He was ridiculed and a variety of theories were offered to explain it. But now, there is a running debate among video analysts about whether, rather than being new, the September 7 [video] may have been something recorded at the same time as [the] last video in October 2004 (and then released with new audio). Of the 25 minutes of video tape, only three and a half minutes, were moving video. The rest was covered by a still image or a frozen still. Moreover, the still covered the only time references on the 25 minutes of tape references to political developments in Iraq, Britain and France. This led to the suspicion that the video is not new, but disguised to appear as new. The leading proponent of the theory is computer scientist ... Dr. Neal Krawetz of Colorado ... who [says] that the similarities between the October 29, 2004 tape and the September 7, 2007 tape are too great to be coincidental. Here is Bin Laden in the same clothing, same studio, same studio setup, and same desk three years later, [said] Krawetz ... in an interview with NBC News. In fact, [the] papers that he reads are moved between the exact same stacks. What are the chances of nothing changing (except his beard) in three years? Virtually zero. The clips appear to have been recorded three years ago. I am saying the two videos were likely made either on the same day or within days of each other. The CIA will not say what it thinks about the possibility, but a senior U.S. intelligence official tells NBC News the U.S. believes the tape is new. He would not discuss the reasons why intelligence analysts feel that way.

Note: For a succinct summary of many reports from major media sources that suggest the US government's explanation of what happened on 9/11 cannot be true, click here.


State Department Use of Contractors Leaps in 4 Years
2007-10-19, New York Times
Posted: 2007-11-11 08:29:15
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/24/washington/24contractor.html?ex=1350878400&...

Over the past four years, the amount of money the State Department pays to private security and law enforcement contractors has soared to nearly $4 billion a year from $1 billion, ... but ... the department had added few new officials to oversee the contracts. Auditors and outside exerts say the results have been vast cost overruns, poor contract performance and, in some cases, violence that has so far gone unpunished. A vast majority of the money goes to companies like DynCorp International and Blackwater [Worldwide] to protect diplomats overseas, train foreign police forces and assist in drug eradication programs. There are only 17 contract compliance officers at the State Departments management bureau overseeing spending of the billions of dollars on these programs, officials said. Two new reports have delivered harsh judgments about the State Departments handling of the contracts, including the protective services contract that employs Blackwater guards whose involvement in a Sept. 16 shooting in Baghdad has raised questions about their role in guarding American diplomats in Iraq. The ballooning budget for outside contracts at the State Department is emblematic of a broader trend, contracting experts say. The Bush administration has doubled the amount of government money going to all types of contractors to $400 billion, creating a new and thriving class of post-9/11 corporations carrying out delicate work for the government. But the number of government employees issuing, managing and auditing contracts has barely grown. Thats a criticism thats true of not just State but of almost every agency, said Jody Freeman, an expert on administrative law at Harvard Law School.


The Good Germans Among Us
2007-10-14, New York Times
Posted: 2007-11-11 08:26:11
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/14/opinion/14rich2.html?ex=1350014400&en=83a8b...

Bush lies doesnt cut it anymore. Its time to confront the darker reality that we are lying to ourselves. By any legal standards except those rubber-stamped by Alberto Gonzales, we are practicing torture, and we have known we are doing so ever since photographic proof emerged from Abu Ghraib more than three years ago. As Andrew Sullivan, once a Bush cheerleader, observed last weekend in The Sunday Times of London, Americas enhanced interrogation techniques have a grotesque provenance: Verschrfte Vernehmung, enhanced or intensified interrogation, was the exact term innovated by the Gestapo to describe what became known as the third degree. It left no marks. It included hypothermia, stress positions and long-time sleep deprivation. We must ... examine our own responsibility for the hideous acts committed in our name in a war where we have now fought longer than we did in the one that put Verschrfte Vernehmung on the map. The war was sold by a ... fear-fueled White House propaganda campaign designed to stampede a nation still shellshocked by 9/11. Both Congress and the press the powerful institutions that should have provided the checks, balances and due diligence of the administrations case failed to do their job. Had they done so, more Americans might have raised more objections. This perfect storm of democratic failure began at the top. [But] as the war has dragged on, it is hard to give Americans en masse a pass. We are too slow to notice, let alone protest, the calamities that have followed the original sin. Our humanity has been compromised by those who use Gestapo tactics in our war. The longer we stand idly by while they do so, the more we resemble those good Germans who professed ignorance of their own Gestapo.


TV show host boots out 9/11 conspiracy theorists
2007-10-23, Guardian (One of the U.K.'s leading newspapers)
Posted: 2007-11-02 16:24:23
http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,,2197237,00.html

It's the conundrum that faces all television personalities broadcasting live: how to deal with hecklers trying to disrupt the show. Do you ignore the perpetrators? Do you try to reason with them? Or do you do what the American comic and talk show host Bill Maher did - jump into the audience, threaten the hecklers with an "ass kicking" and scream "Get the fuck out of my building!" In one of the more unconventional displays of audience interaction on US television in recent years, that is now doing hot trade as a clip on YouTube, Maher reacted to the interruptions of hecklers in his studio audience with the memorable words: "Do we have some fucking security in this building?" He then tore off his lapel microphone and stormed off the stage and up to some protesters wielding "expose the 9/11 cover-up" banners. It was at that point during a panel discussion on his HBO show, Real Time With Bill Maher, that the nature of the comic's difficulties with an element of his audience became clear. Maher is a darling of the US liberal intelligentsia for his brand of Bush-bashing and anti-religious pedantry. But the one point over which he will not bash the Bush administration is the events of September 11 2001. He does not agree with 9/11 conspiracy theorists, or Truthers as they call themselves, that the Bush administration brought down the Twin Towers in a controlled explosion. The trouble started a few weeks ago when Maher launched a verbal assault on air against the Truthers, calling them "crazy people". He advised the conspiracy theorists, who had been demonstrating outside his studio, to visit their doctor to ask whether the antidepressant Paxil was right for them. In 2002 ABC ended its relationship with him over comments he made in his former show, Politically Incorrect, about the 9/11 hijackers.

Note: To watch Bill Maher's performance on YouTube, click here. For a concise summary of reliable reports from major media sources which raise many unanswered questions about what really happened on 9/11, click here.


Former CEO Says U.S. Punished Phone Firm
2007-10-13, Washington Post
Posted: 2007-10-19 07:46:53
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/10/12/AR20071012024...

A former Qwest Communications International executive, appealing a conviction for insider trading, has alleged that the government withdrew opportunities for contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars after Qwest refused to participate in an unidentified National Security Agency program that the company thought might be illegal. Former chief executive Joseph P. Nacchio, convicted in April of 19 counts of insider trading, said the NSA approached Qwest more than six months before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks ... about participating in a warrantless surveillance program to gather information about Americans' phone records. In the court filings disclosed this week, Nacchio suggests that Qwest's refusal to take part in that program led the government to cancel a separate, lucrative contract with the NSA in retribution. He is using the allegation to try to show why his stock sale should not have been considered improper. He has claimed in court papers that he had been optimistic that Qwest would overcome weak sales because of the expected top-secret contract with the government. Nacchio's account, which places the NSA proposal at a meeting on Feb. 27, 2001, suggests that the Bush administration was seeking to enlist telecommunications firms in programs without court oversight before the terrorist attacks on New York and the Pentagon. The Sept. 11 attacks have been cited by the government as the main impetus for its warrantless surveillance efforts. In May 2006, USA Today reported that the NSA had been secretly collecting the phone-call records of tens of millions of Americans, using data provided by major telecom firms. Qwest, it reported, declined to participate because of fears that the program lacked legal standing.

Note: The Bush Administration has claimed that the NSA surveillance of the American public was a necessary response to the attacks of 9/11. But this story reveals that the surveillance began before 9/11, shortly after Bush took office. The obvious question is, why? For many other reliable, verifiable reports that suggest the official explanation of the events of 9/11 is false, click here.


Unanswered questions: The mystery of Flight 93
2002-08-13, Independent (One of the U.K.'s leading newspapers)
Posted: 2007-09-29 08:18:16
http://news.independent.co.uk/world/americas/article173206.ece

The shortage of available facts [about the crash of Flight 93 on September 11, 2001] did not prevent the creation of an instant legend ... that the US government and the US media were pleased to propagate, and that the American public have been eager, for the most part, to accept as fact. The absence of official information has led to lively and often well-informed debate [on] the internet (see www.flight93crash.com.) There are ... a number of important unanswered questions ... based on evidence, as well as on a manifest absence of candour on the part of the authorities which the national US media, typically so sceptical and inquisitive, have shown a curious reluctance to ask. The alternative theories, both of which have been denied by the US military and the FBI, are a) that Flight 93 was brought down by a US government plane; and b) that a bomb went off aboard. If doubts remain despite the denials, if conspiracy theories flourish, it is in large part because of the authorities' failure to address head-on questions, [including:] 1. The wide displacement of the plane's debris, one explanation for which might be an explosion of some sort aboard prior to the crash. Letters ... and other papers from the plane were found eight miles (13km) away from the scene of the crash. A sector of one engine weighing one ton was found [more than a mile] away . Other remains of the plane were found two miles away near a town called Indian Lake. 2. A federal flight controller [was quoted] a few days later in a newspaper [stating] that an F-16 had been "in hot pursuit" of the hijacked United jet and "must have seen the whole thing". Everything is speculation that is the problem with the story of Flight 93.

Note: For a treasure trove of revealing articles from major media sources that raise numerous questions about what really happened on 9/11, click here.


"One of the Eeriest Moments Amid the Carnage of 9/11"
2007-09-12, CNN
Posted: 2007-09-21 07:51:00
http://transcripts.cnn.com/TRANSCRIPTS/0709/12/acd.01.html

JOHN KING: Today, six years after 9/11, a mystery endures about just what happened in the skies over the White House that terrible day. A plane flew right over it, but why, and what was it? For conspiracy theorists, the image is a gold mine. It appeared overhead just before 10 a.m., a four- engine jet ... in the nation's most off-limits airspace. On the White House grounds and the rooftop, a nervous scramble. And still today, no one will offer an official explanation of what we saw. Two government sources familiar with the incident tell CNN it was a military aircraft. They say the details are classified. This comparison of the CNN video and an official Air Force photo suggests the mystery plane is among the military's most sensitive aircraft, an Air Force E-4B. Note the flag on the tail, the stripe around the fuselage, and the telltale bubble just behind the 747 cockpit area. MAJ. GEN. DON SHEPPERD (RET.), U.S. AIR FORCE: There are many commercial versions of the 747 ... that look similar, but I don't think any of them that have the communications pod like the ... Air Force E-4 does behind the cockpit. KING: The E-4B is a state of the art flying command post, built and equipped for one reason: to keep the government running no matter what, even in the event of a nuclear war, the reason it was nicknamed the doomsday plane during the Cold War. Ask the Pentagon, and it insists this is not a military aircraft, and there is no mention of it in the official report of the 9/11 Commission. [In] sum: the lack of any official explanation feeds an ominous conspiracy. This is from an online discussion about the plane on the web site 911blogger.com. "I have always thought these planes were exactly that, mission control for the 9/11 attack on our country."

Note: For many other anomalous major media reports which collectively suggest that the official story of 9/11 may be a cover-up, click here.


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