Afghanistan Exposing Huge Limits on American Power

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BIN-LADEN.jpgDoes anyone even remember that this was supposed to be about Osama bin Laden? How did we get into a full on war with the Taliban and thus in the middle of an Afghan Civil War in which neither side likes us much?
The Obama administration has made a major mistake in allowing a sleight-of-hand shift in its overall framing of challenges in Afghanistan.
Rather than focusing on al Qaeda and Arab jihadists as “the threat” the US is trying to quash, the Taliban now seems to be the overwhelming focus.
The Taliban and al Qaeda are now used interchangeably — and frankly, we are hearing the words “al Qaeda” less and less. We now seem to be fully at war with the Taliban — a now huge indigenous group embedded in Afghan society.
Is America’s objective to quash al Qaeda? If so, then it would seem that there are many ways other than full scale war with the Taliban to possibly achieve that objective.
Is it to annihilate the Taliban? to contain the Taliban? If so, what are the compelling national security reasons to do so? The case has not been clearly made. What is the alternative if this goal is not reachable?
And is Karzai — the likely winner of the Afghan elections fraudulent or not — a friend or foe? How does our relationship with him fit with any of the other objectives above? Or is our goal in Afghanistan a functioning ballotocracy of corruption-free elections?
One really can’t tell what our overall goal is at this point — and the calls by some, like Brian Vogt at Across the Aisle, that we not do Afghanistan “on the cheap” make little sense when we ought not to be neck deep in problems of this sort without knowing why we are there and what constitutes failure and success.
Afghanistan, like Iraq, is sending the impression to the rest of the world that America is at a “limit” point in its military and power capabilities. This prompts allies not to count on us as much as they did previously and prompts foes to move their agendas.
Limits are very, very, very bad in the great power game — and Afghanistan is yet again, an exposer of monumental limits on American power.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

313 comments on “Afghanistan Exposing Huge Limits on American Power

  1. Ken says:

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  2. Ken says:

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  5. arthurdecco says:

    questions, I can draw one conclusion from your gargantuan contribution to this thread.
    I’ve been privately comparing it to the Israeli bulldozer that deliberately crushed Rachael Cory to the thickness of a paperback by driving over her twice – a condition that didn’t kill her indomitable will to live for eleven hours. I thought I’d share that thought with you.
    Your repeated attempts to bury us all under a pile of dirt dumped here expressly for that purpose proves once and for all just how seriously damaged you are. You’ve revealed your intrinsic contempt for both reason and your fellow posters in these over-300 comments.
    You can take that to the bank from this close relative of a wacked-out freak psychiatrist who defends her own insanities and inanities in many of the same ways you do to the distress of all but her patients, who, presumably, are even crazier than she is.
    Yer one sick puppy.

    Reply

  6. questions says:

    Kathleen,
    A little more on the numbers of conspirators issue, this was linked to above, but here’s the copy/paste.
    “The math of 9/11
    According to many popular theorists’ statements, it was a missile that hit the Pentagon.
    People on the plane that all agreed to fake their deaths – 61
    The crew of the plane that dropped the missile and the ground crew – 10
    Crew to round up and haul off all pieces of the missile before the media gets there – 20
    Bush, Cheney, his cabinet etc… (on the low side) – 20
    People whom have stayed silent for the Pentagon – 111
    Keep in mind that Clinton’s scandal that was uncovered could not have involved more than (I’m being generous with this number) 15 people. As we all know, this ended up coming out.
    Then some bring up, that the government just killed all the people on planes. That still leaves 50 that have been silent.
    Another major point for the “Truthers” is that we demolished WTC 1, 2, and 7 (7 was just for fun)
    Firefighters and others that went into WTC 1 and 2 and escaped, not spotting any bombs
    (This number is too low but making it higher aids my case no less) – 100
    Once again, Bush, Cheney, his cabinet etc… – 20
    A major demolition company that worked only at nights when all the security guards were distracted to set the charges for this implosion. – 150
    That last number could not have been any less because it takes about four months to bring down ONE 60 story building (about the size of WTC 7). The extra security had only been lifted for about two weeks before 9/11.
    Total number of people involved (as always, way underestimated) – 270
    Watergate (Generously) – 50
    To add onto that, why would they waste time rigging up WTC 7 to implode? Did they just have some extra explosives and an extra night and thought, what the heck, let’s bring down another one. They knew WTC 7 was going to come down and no one was in it, no one died because it came down, why oh why would the government bring it down?
    The final plane, Flight 93, which the 9/11 “experts” have claimed was off loaded in Ohio and brought down either by remote or a single pilot.
    The people on the plane – 37
    The coroner’s office in Pennsylvania – 5
    The airport staff/military personnel in Ohio – 10
    The FAA radar stations all over America that chart that flight never stopping in Ohio (this is a very low number for the hundreds of eyes that would have seen it. – 30
    The clean up crew at the actual site that supposedly “found” plane parts – 20
    Bush, Cheney, his cabinet etc… – 20
    Pennsylvania Cover up – 122
    Still don’t see any explanations as to why the government would even crash this one in the middle of no where.
    The recent Foley scandal (this is insanely generous) – 20
    Total cover up of 9/11 (an insanely conservative one) – 503
    Total people involved in 3 foiled government cover ups – 85
    Average per failed cover up – about 28
    So, five hundred people (at least) have kept quiet over five years and structural engineers, architects, and every government agency has corroborated the evidence. This includes the people whom faked their deaths and have not since attempted to contact the family members they left. These theories are as absurd as believing that the internet is a series of tubes!
    Send your love/hate mail to slugmancs@yahoo.com
    All numbers are estimates obtained from personal knowledge and guesstimates, the 9/11 numbers are extremely under estimated and the Scandal numbers are extremely exaggerated.”
    http://politicalmythsdebunked.blogspot.com/
    ********
    The numbers don’t have to be accurate. But they tell a nice story about how a lot of people needed to be involved in any version of the conspiracy (and remember, there are many many many versions) and all those people were either killed, or they have kept silent.
    What makes sense, really?

    Reply

  7. Outraged American says:

    Kathleen, you mean Joe Lieberman is a person? You just rocked
    my world. I honestly thought he was an automaton whose
    program button was set on “Eretz Israel.”
    I didn’t get your email, would you please resend?!?! I would love
    to talk to you!!! The sex-change has been a bit traumatic, and I
    do need a good psychologist. My husband needs a better one
    because he no longer has penis envy.
    I’m sure easy e and Gates would love to meet you, although I
    have to warn you that they are both kind of smelly. I haven’t met
    Gates yet, but I can tell by his voice that he overdoes it on the
    cologne.
    Look, if you’re suffering from Empty Nest Syndrome, you can
    take these kids. Five and seven, very well-behaved when beaten
    regularly. I’ll get them packed and ready to go. You can sell
    them if it doesn’t work out.
    Last year, during the presidential “campaign” (McCain didn’t
    really run IMO– the GOP tossed the ball to the Demos so they’d
    get the blame for the economic meltdown) I made friends with
    a bunch of people in the POW/ MIA campaign that McCain
    deep-sixed while hypocritically running as THE POW TO END
    ALL POWs. That little man is a creep. He has physically
    assaulted and verbally abused the relatives of POWs / MIAs.
    I have to cross myself when I open the front door, because of
    our physical proximity to his old house, and wear garlic when I
    actually walk past it.
    We can tear up the Bill of Rights. No –I forgot, McCain/ Kyl/
    Lieberman/ Pelosi/ Reid/ et al, have already done that.
    Kathleen, resend your # please!

    Reply

  8. questions says:

    Kathleen,
    I tend to think that after-the-fact use of 9/11 is significant. I think the trumped up intell is pretty damning. I think they saw an opportunity and POUNCED.
    I don’t think the government planted bombs in the towers.
    I don’t think the Pentagon plane was faked, hologrammed (that one is floating around out there).
    I don’t think they KNEW IT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN the way that we know that Jan. 1 is New Year’s Day.
    IF they KNEW, what they knew was a vague, non-specific threat that they didn’t take very seriously, most likely because Clinton did take it very seriously.
    So, no, I don’t excuse the Bush regime, but I also don’t think that they planted bombs, or held the flashlight while someone else planted the bombs. There weren’t bombs, by the way.
    I don’t think we put the bombers on the planes. (There were planes, by the way.)
    I do think that people fucked up on letting the bombers get on the planes.
    Fucking up is not a conspiracy, though.
    Bush’s shame forever is that his arrogance and self-satisfaction and stupidity allowed him to ignore Clinton’s warnings. That he will carry forever. The Republican crowing over Lewinsksy and travelgate and all the trivial shit of the Clinton years is, in my view, the primal Bush crime. Add in the opportunistic use of the tragedy and you have the 8 years of the Bush presidency. A lot of death. A reasonable explanation. No conspiracy needed.

    Reply

  9. questions says:

    Oh, and I did respond to the 9/13 8:57 list. It’s up there somewhere.
    Jolene, the nice thing about the relative who stays too long on the intertubes is that you can change the chanel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    DonR, thanks!!!!!

    Reply

  10. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    questions….I have my share of typos too…No, you are not the only one who thinks the offical story is correct and honest.
    I disagree that vast numbers would have to be involved..on covert actions, many people play unwitting roles without knowledge of the end game…all the Bush cronies with Put options on United, at least…so it seems we each have our pet questions…mine is where was NORAD?…
    My questions on 9/11 include watching Dopey and Darth’s body language and facial expressions…I found Busholini’s performance at the White House Correspondents Dinner very revealing from a Freudian perspecive…
    If indeed there are no jokes, or a joke is an expression of the truth…his faux search for WMD was an expression that the real search for WMD in Iraq was in fact, a faux search…this helped me see a level of indifference to others’ pain and 9/11 becomes more conceivable as a false flag black-ops….I’m prepared to accept snswers to valid questions asked by an independent panel, with testimony under oath and on the record.
    OutragedAmerican..your dinging all my buttons…Lieberman,McCain…Lieberman is an old freind since the days when he was Prosecuting Attorney for the City of New Haven and I was on Senator Abe Ribicoff’s campaign staff. As I recall, he wasn’t as orthodox when he was married to his first wife, but since marrying a Rabbi’s daughter, he seems far more stictly observant.
    Steve is having a big doooo at the Cosmos Club today…the last time I was there, I was with his friend and mine, Anne Wexler and Joe Duffey…it was the day Al Gore announced that Lieberman would be his running mate…we were celebrating because we were all friends..little did we know how twisted that would all come out….
    And then there’s McCain…I’ve been there and done that with his red-faced temper…nez a nez…when I brought the Chairwoman of the UN Working Group On Indigenous Peoples to his office for an official report on relocation, his pet legislation…
    OA I sent you my number some days ago..,my youngest daughter might be moving to AZ in Nov..from Nebraska…we hope so…don’t know the details yet..we all hated it when they moved away to Nebraska..sooooo far to go…AZ will be so much easier to visit..so I might end up knocking on your door sooner rather than later…we can tear something up…

    Reply

  11. questions says:

    JamesL,
    I don’t think moon-landing deniers are very, umm, with-it and I don’t give them a lot of what is it I lack, umm, oh yeah, acceptance. And I deride people. And I don’t have compassion. And I should just love all the truthers so much that I become one.
    The greatest respect one can have for another is the adoption of every single view that other person holds, regardless. Now THERE’S a recipe for precisely what you want to avoid!
    Orly Taitz and her followers also don’t merit a lot of acceptance in my worldview.
    Vaccine/autism people are also not the most careful researchers. Though I can deeply understand their pain, and I have relatives and friends dealing with autism, I’m not there on the vaccine thing.
    Finding patterns is a human trait. Finding patterns where there aren’t any is tempting, but not the best thinking.
    Finding cause when there’s merely correlation is bad science, bad thinking, bad citizenship, leads to bad policy and ought to be avoided.
    The contradictions in the truther positions (and there are so many positions is hard to keep up with it all) are also, you’re correct, off-putting to me.
    I have lots of skepticism towards: thermite, lack of planes, CIASAUDIPAKISTANIISRAELIFBIFDNYCONGRESSCABINETPRESIDENT conspiracy theories.
    A truther will then pull out something not on this list and say, SEE, WHAT ABOUT THIS. And I’ll find a link because it’s all been gone over before, and it’ll happen again and again and again. No coherence, no careful work.
    Everyone is implicated in the truther world. And truthers just have some “serious questions.”
    I see no logic in the number of people required for a gov’t conspiracy, I see no logic in any motive anyone has put forth, I see no logic in the number of countries now seemingly involved. I see no logic at all.
    I did answer some of POA’s questions with links that followed (a link to the supposedly never published list of hijackers, two links to the Pakistani ISI guy he’s worried about (he was worried in 2006 on TWN as well). If he was never arrested, maybe it’s because he’s a Pakistani ISI guy. And besides, which conspiracy is this? POA insinuates that it’s Israeli, now it’s Pakistani, unless it’s Saudi or CIA or FBI or FDNY or Bush…..) I responded to the path-crossing, to the number of posts, to the impossibility of satisfying his demands on the issue.
    And I added in what would make me change my view — I gave some pretty specific conditions that haven’t been addressed in response.
    But I have no idea what would satisfy truthers of the opposite of their views — because nothing would satisfy them. You started with asking for a video of the plane crash at the Pentagon. That’s all. Nothing more. Well, there’s a lot of evidence of the plane crash at the Pentagon — but I guess all of those people are in on the conspiracy.
    You cannot be satisfied. You WILL NOT be satisfied. Unless everyone confesses to a conspiracy. That’s the only conclusion you think is even possible.
    I do not defend Bush at all. In fact, Bush’s arrogance and Cheney’s paranoia are pretty central in this mess. Along with a long long history of US foreign policy.
    Considering that I have Pentagon family, relatives in DC and NY, I know people who lost people, telling me that I have no compassion is a little over much. But it’s okay. You don’t know a thing about me aside from your fantasy of what kind of person would dare to be skeptical of the Truthers.
    Well, I am more than skeptical of the truthers. I read what they write, I find so many holes big enough for large airplanes that I cannot but believe that Trutherness is a religion and is utterly akin to Intelligent Design, another crazy mishmash of ideas designed to explain complexity in the universe.
    And decco, the suggestion that a person is a waste of food is, ummm, compassionate in the extreme.
    And as to the number of words in my 8:58 post — what is it with the obsession with the number of words?
    Or with who pays me or doesn’t pay me?
    You started out on this thread, JamesL, by saying you were planning to be oh so patient and we should all get along and not be suspicious of each other, and now you’re all suspicious.
    Reminds me of the posts on the soul searching truther site I linked to above. Many thought they should be nice and rational seeming, but they had a hard time keeping it up because they have the received truth of things and it’s hard to be patient when you already know stuff. You have to make arguments and show evidence and logical progressions. You can’t just have “serious questions” and assume those questions are sufficient. So they await the messiah. It’s a religion.
    I obviously did not read several tomes on the history of advertising, psychology of mind control, turning people into sheeple and the like because I actually think people have something called “agency” and aren’t simply prone to Marxian false consciousness at all turns. I think that readers can respond in multiple and multifarious ways to input. We aren’t machines. We don’t lack self-reflection. We sometimes even pause at moments of cognitive dissonance. Not always, but we’re capable of it.
    Huge numbers of people were convinced of the Iraq-9/11 connection and over time that has changed as more information has come in. People can change, aren’t robots, can think.
    I have read widely at this point in the trutherdom and though I haven’t been at it for years, and I made one major mistake you pointed out, I have a pretty good idea of what is on the crazy side and what makes sense.
    I’m not steeped in governmental propaganda, though you think I am. I don’t think Bush handled anything well in his presidency. But go ahead and think I do. It fits your worldview to think so, and you can’t seem to think past your worldview. (Isn’t that what you charge me with?)
    The only explanations for someone with my views seem to be: paid poster, idiot, no sex, victim of propaganda. And of course, one with no compassion for the suffering many who just have some “serious questions” — questions that structurally have only one answer.
    Round and round and round. Rolling that rock up the hill. Another inch up. Can’t wait til I’m done for the day!!!!!

    Reply

  12. Jolene says:

    I’d say he’s more like that obnoxious relative who’s stayed way too long and talked way too much.
    Take a break, questions, you’re not convincing anyone at this point.

    Reply

  13. DonR says:

    both the bandwidth and food have turned into bovine excrement

    Reply

  14. arthurdecco says:

    …and food.

    Reply

  15. JamesL says:

    Questions, I think you’re full of it. You apparently have no skeptical cells in your entire body, which qualifies you as highly marketable cannon fodder. You cite the work of many “scientist” “debunkers” as conclusive, and you ignore the massive, explicit list by POA on 9-13 8:57. You deride people who have valid questions and who are heartsick that the evidence THEY believe and observe strongly implicates either collusion or advanced knowledge by high US government officials of the events of Sept 11, 2001. You grant no acceptance of the thousands of questions Americans have about 911, meaning you dishonor your fellow Americans as a matter of course. You apparently have no problem whatever with the gigantic amount of information about the events of September 11 that the government has withheld or obstructed access to. The only thing that explains your posts is that you are a paid poser. If not, there is the most negligible difference between your posts and those a paid poser would make. Your 8:58 post contained a lot of words, but you avoided giving any answers to the few questions of POA that you quoted. You obviously did not pursue Kathleen or my suggestions. You are so in love with making labels for people that you could work for Popiel. Your compassion is miniscule and highly selective. In terms of your volume of words, you exhibit much more concern over the reputation of Bush the Lesser than you do for the millions of lives and millions of families George’s Global War on Terror, made possible by September 11, has ended, wrecked, displaced and otherwise screwed up. I have no idea of your gender. While I do have some consistent opinions about the characters of other TWN posters, the only intuition I have of you is that you do not have children, because if you did, you would tend (not guaranteed) to think of what their lives will be like in the authoritarian world that is heading at them, courtesy of Bush et al and the New Pearl Harbor of 911 which they so enthusiastically embraced as the missing key to their world domination fantasies. Afer laboring through all your writings and seeing your complete intrasigence, I must reluctently conclude you are a waste of bandwidth.

    Reply

  16. questions says:

    Web citation at the bottom….
    “Lt. Gen. Mahmood Ahmed, Director of Pakistan’s secret service, the ISI, is quite possibly the most taboo suspect of all 9/11 suspects. It was reported in early October 2001 that Mahmood ordered Saeed Sheikh to send $100,000 to hijacker Mohamed Atta. Since then hardly a word has been said about this stunning report, and in fact this once very powerful man appears to have completely disappeared from view.
    In December 2002, Senator Bob Graham, head of the Congressional 9/11 inquiry and thus privy to much information still not publicly released, said he was “surprised at the evidence that there were foreign governments involved in facilitating the activities of at least some of the [9/11] terrorists in the United States. … It will become public at some point when it’s turned over to the archives, but that’s 20 or 30 years from now.” [PBS Newshour, 12/11/02] Is he referring to Pakistan and the role of Mahmood, a man Graham just happened to be discussing bin Laden with in Washington DC as the 9/11 attacks were happening?
    If Mahmood had a role in 9/11, this would not only strongly suggest that the rest of the Pakistani government had foreknowledge, but it would also raise curious questions about who else knew, in the US, Saudi Arabia, and elsewhere. Mahmood seems to be involved in a number of important but obscure meetings before, during and after 9/11.
    For more on Mahmood’s possible connection with the 9/11 hijackers, see the entries about middleman Saeed Sheikh (also in narrative form). See also the section on the ISI generally. It is possible that the story of Mahmood’s involvement in 9/11 is only Indian propaganda, but no Western reporter seems curious to find out.”
    http://s3.amazonaws.com/911timeline/main/mahmoodahmed.html
    ########
    So now we have the following issues:
    It’s the CIA. It’s Israel. It’s Pakistan. It’s the US government setting the whole thing up in advance. It’s the US government knowing about it and letting it happen. It’s the Saudis and Bushes. It’s the War in Iraq. It’s that there were never planes in the first place. It’s that the US demolished its own buildings. It’s Bob Graham. It’s the NYFD. It’s the NYTimes editorial board.
    It’s a floor wax. And a toothpaste!!
    It’s the GINSU knife!!!!!!!
    Am I the only one in the universe who thinks something is awry in the conspiracy side of things? Nothing coheres, nothing makes sense. And you all scream about the contradictions in the OFFICIAL CONSPIRACY THEORY put out byt the US gov’t??????????????

    Reply

  17. questions says:

    From Wiki,
    “Lieutenant General Mahmud Ahmed is a former head of Inter-Services Intelligence, the principal intelligence body of Pakistan. He along with other generals were successful in overthrowing the elected government of Nawaz Sharif, in the 1999 coup d’etat to bring General Pervez Musharraf to power. He was serving as the Corps Commander Rawalpindi at that time. After the coup, General Mahmud was transferred as the Director General ISI, replacing Lieutenant General Ziauddin Butt, who was Sharif’s choice to replace General Musharraf as the army chief before the coup. He himself was replaced by Lieutenant General Jamshed Gulzar Kayani as the Rawalpindi Corps commander.
    …..
    …..
    General Mahmud was known to visit the United States regularly during his time as the head of ISI consulting senior officials in the U.S. administration in the weeks before and after 9/11. In fact, he was with Republican Congressman Porter Goss and Democratic Senator Bob Graham in Washington, discussing Osama bin Laden over breakfast, when the attacks of September 11, 2001 happened. He was immediately called into meetings with American officials where demands of Pakistani cooperation were made and he was told to convey this to the Pakistani government.
    General Mahmud Ahmed opposed the US invasion of Afghanistan[citation needed]. He was retired from his role in the ISI on 8 October 2001, just prior to the US invasion of Afghanistan. He was replaced by Lieutenant General Ehsan ul Haq as the Director General ISI.
    He is now a member of Tablighi Jamaat and preaching the teaching of Islam.”

    Reply

  18. questions says:

    http://www.democracynow.org/2003/7/25/9_11_report_incontrovertible_evidence_that
    The evil Amy Goodman and some Saudi-bashing…. And some Bush-bashing.

    Reply

  19. questions says:

    http://www.911myths.com/html/still_alive.html
    More on the FBI list that was “never” released….
    But maybe I’m missing something. If so, I’m sure someone will let me know…..

    Reply

  20. Outraged American says:

    Wow, just cracked-open Gates book because I had to take a
    sh*t-McCain really is an Evil, Zionist, Munchkin. I had my
    doubts given his dad’s complicity in the Israeli attack on the USS
    Liberty.
    Jeff and I better not meet for lunch, because McCain will
    probably call in an air-strike on the restaurant, kill us and a
    bunch of fellow dinners, who will be Mexican because I only eat
    tacos and penises, and then blame it on Iran.
    That will get Mexico all riled up, which would be good because
    she has a bunch of cannon fodder, most of whom already live in
    Phoenix, and then we can say we have “allies” in our attack on
    Iran.
    Gang members make excellent soldiers, just ask the US army,
    and the Iraqis, who have now learned that they’re either Crips or
    Bloods.

    Reply

  21. questions says:

    http://www.debunk911myths.org/topics/Hijackers
    Does this help on the hijacker names list issue?
    If not, what are the flaws, line by line compy/paste and comment, or don’t.

    Reply

  22. questions says:

    SORRY — Kathleen — really don’t know how that one slipped by…..

    Reply

  23. questions says:

    Lathleen,
    The issue of the numbers of conspirators is more central than you seem to realize. It runs this way:
    If two or three people are in on a secret, there’s a decent chance that the secret can be kept.
    BUT, it you need two airlines (AA and UAL), some military people, a huge stack of eye witnesses, the Fire Deptartment of New York, all the first responders, a bunch of police, the passengers in the planes (after all, those people disappeared whether or not planes crashed), the New York Times editorial board, lots of journalists, Congress, the president’s cabinet, leaders from around the world, all the aides to all these politicians, architects and chemists and physicists and building engineers all around the world, the explosives experts, the guys who trucked in and loaded tons and tons and tons of explosives, all the people who must have seen something and said nothing, all the Bin Laden experts who lyingly fingered Bin Laden when it was Bush….
    ALL those and a cast of thousands? Hundreds?
    What is the likelihood that so many people could have been silenced? They all KNOW the TRUTH, and NO ONE CALLS A JOURNALIST OR BLOGGER OR POSTS ANYTHING over the course of EIGHT YEARS.
    Really, how likely is this?
    If the conspiracy is VAST (as it would have to be), then someone is gonna speak up.
    They spoke up in: Watergate, Iran/Contra, Weapons of Mass Destruction (not) in Iraq. They spoke up about Halliburton’s malfeasance. We got reports about Wall Street’s bad deeds that caused the financial melt down. We got all kinds of info about mortgage lenders. We get shit about contractors all over the government. There are whistle blowers everywhere. Even small things get screamed about.
    And yet, where are the in-on-the-conspiracy whistle blowers for 9/11?
    Instead we get people like POA trying to find yet one more hole. Note, he has given up on Chertoffs (which is was POSITIVE was an issue), maybe he was never a Pentagon plane denier, but that’s not coming up, building fall times aren’t coming up, thermite hasn’t come up in a while, the (non)peer-reviewed paper hasn’t come up again, the cast of thousands including PSYCHOLOGISTS hasn’t come up again, but there’s always something new….
    POA writes:
    “One doesn’t even need to get into the science to find huge holes in the official narrative.
    *****Okay, no science. What does this mean? No explosives, no disappearing planes. So the government paid ME terrorists, or CIsrAel paid the terrorists to get the US to invade Iraq.
    Did it occur to anyone that the US could just, umm, invade Iraq? We had done it before, we could do it again. But no, gotta get the conspiracy of nations involved.
    Why wasn’t Mahmud Ahmed detained, questioned, and held for his role in financing Atta?
    ****Dear lord, I don’t know. So clearly the government planned the whole thing in cahoots with CIsrAel.
    Why did the path of Mossad agents cross the paths of the hi-jackers so many times leading up to 9/11
    *****The answer is clear. There was no Pentagon plane.
    OR, paths cross endlessly all the time, and you could be linked to 9/11 way more easily than you realize. I am related to a whole bunch of people who work for a whole bunch of government agencies of all sorts and all level. I could be linked to things too. Maybe my neighbors all have connections as well. And so if someone works hard enough at finding the links, lo and behold…
    Why was there never a revised list released when it was discovered a number of the hi-jackers were misindentified?
    ********This one is all over the Truther sites. I will have to look around and see what the basis for it is.
    See, POA, you give me a task and then complain about the amount of time I spend on the task. If I spend too little or none, you CROW ABOUT HOW I CAN’T ANSWER YOUR CONCERNS/QUESTIONS/CHALLENGES. If I spend too much time, you complain about how much time I spend. You calculate and count and live through my day to see what I’ve been doing in my (dead) mother’s basement in my pjs all day long.
    I can’t win if this is your logic. And it is how all the truther stuff works. Too many words prove CIsrAel, too few words proves, well, CIsrAel.
    If you cannot state the grounds under which you’d be satisfied by a conclusion that doesn’t agree with your sensibility, then no one can do anything. It’s basic irrationalism where proof and non-proof mean the same thing — you’re right and everyone else is wrong.
    Can you see that structure?
    I’ve already indicated things that would make me change my mind — reasonable whistle blowers, firefighters who say, HEY, there was no fire. The passengers of the non-planes return to earth. Reputable physicists testifying about the physics aspects AND reputable explosives experts testifying about the explosives, and chemists and politics people and engineering people… All tossed into the stew.
    That peer reviewed paper not “peer-reviewed” by a cold fusion advocate and his “thermite” buddy.
    But none of this has happened.
    Instead, we get these crazy unsatisfiable “serious questions” floating around.
    Unsatisfiable.
    That’s religious thinking.
    Go ahead and put this posting up on your questions-count chart. Save it to your hard drive to archive it and pull it out in 8 more years. We’ll yuck it up…..

    Reply

  24. Outraged American says:

    I actually have no idea as to Questions’ gender, as I have no idea
    of my own as well. At one point I think I made-up that she was
    female and then forgot that I’d made it up.
    We both need those tests they gave that South African runner.
    Then, when Questions is proved to be a hermaphrodite, she’s
    going to get Chertoff, the one over at Popular Mechanics, not his
    cousin, to do a detailed article debunking conspiracy theories on
    Gender Analysis. There’ll probably be a reference to thermite in
    there, with some long mathematical equation that will leave
    heads scratching. Paul’s because of the lice.
    Phoenix is not fun: easy e lives in the barrio and since he looks
    like a Skin can blend in, hiding his Jihadi activities, like his plan
    to take over McCain’s church (North Phoenix Baptist if anyone
    has some spare dynamite), from his neighbors, who all have
    assault weapons themselves and would probably help. Except
    Mexicans, like un-rich Republicans, never vote in their own best
    interest.
    I have to read Gates’ book first. God I hate reading. It’s sitting
    next to the toilet ready to have its spine cracked. Ask nicely and
    he might send you one, he’s a very nice man. Well, maybe not,
    he might try to deflower me at lunch. 46 -year-old virgins really
    turn men on. Ask Question, s(he) would know.

    Reply

  25. questions says:

    A new day, a new boulder to roll up the hill. Yesterday’s boulder fell back down, dammit.
    The problem with having vague “questions” about the report it that they vagueness will never be answered.
    The specific questions people have dreamed up about physics, chemistry, falling buildings, planes, people, conspiracies, Bin Laden’s cavehood ignorance, the inability of A-rabs to do anything sophisticated and so on have been responded to in aching wordy detail by lots of people — hobbyists and specialists alike, by eye witnesses and basic logic, too. (and even the number of words has become a complaint. It’s only the CIsrAel that could find so many words in the universe after all.)
    The general questions seem to be based on some vague distrust of anything the government says. At the bottom of this post, I will touch on the huge problems we have now because of the crazed distrust, rather than a kind of healthy distrust that we should cultivate.
    Let’s say there’s a whole new report — fine by me. Not sure why you think I’m opposed to endless constant investigation. We could have a Department of 9/11 Investigation for all I care. I pay taxes, money would support it, jobs would be created. Fine.
    But are you capable of stating the conditions under which you’d accept the results of the investigation without reservation?
    What people would have to be in on it? What kinds of work would they have to do?
    What would their conclusions need to be?
    If a whole new commission or Dept of Invest. ended up concluding that it was bureaucratic incompetence and turf battles and Clinton/Bush transition shit that caused the whole thing, would you still have “serious questions?”
    After all, the problem of induction hasn’t been solved yet.
    Remember, Orly Taitz still has “serious questions” despite the proof.
    Are you capable of being convinced that 9/11 was a fuck up, or do you require conspiracy?
    The Truthers are more and more split. As I noted above, the Pentagon Plane issue was debunked BY A TRUTHER SITE. JamesL has serious questions about the Pentagon Plane, and he doesn’t like the OCT (“Official Conspiracy Theory” — that’s what it’s called on the Truther sites) — but here’s a TRUTHER SITE DEBUNKING THE TRUTHERS on this one. It’s not the official government report that is being attacked.
    It’s Truther-on-Truther violence.
    The Truther soul-searching site I linked to above is worth reading to get a sense of how little reality they have and how much faith and hope they have. And how much they are waiting for their very own messiah (that actual scientific paper in an actual peer reviewed journal that will be out any day week or month. Those actual thousand famous credentialed people who any day now will prove….)
    And yes, POA, I’m spending crazy-time on this one. Every now and then I get bitten by a bug. This week’s bug is the Truther movenment as put on display by the fine posters at TWN. This thread will fade, my interest will fade, and I’ll move on to a new thing to do….
    ******
    On the distrust issue, as promised…
    Remember the “Get the government out of my Medicare” line? Well, what’s really being said here is first, that the “government” whatever it is cannot be trusted to take care of me. It lies, it steals, it kills. Bad BAD BAD government. Second, Medicare is something I know, use, trust, value. Third, if I know, use, trust, value something, it CANNOT emanate from the bad BAD BAD government.
    That same blinder is on with the Truther stuff. If a bad thing happened, it has to have been government-sponsored, government controlled because the government, like the devil itself, is the cause of evil, and has ever been so.
    It’s a religious appeal.
    Note that on the very specific issues, not even the Truthers themselves can agree anymore. They have split on the Pentagon plane, there’s dissent on the PEER REVIEWED paper that wasn’t peer reviewed about the thermite stuff — the STEVEN Jones thing (as opposed to Alex Jones).
    When you say you have “questions” and I don’t have questions, you are falling into a rhetorical position that guarantees that you look reasonable and I look like an idiot. Fine. But what are your questions and what are my lacks?
    You have vague questions, because the specific ones are already responded to.
    I have “questions” about just how widespread the Republican/Bush-inspired distrust of all things Clinton and government may have led directly to the mess of 9/11, and I see the same pattern in health care reform work. The government is evil, but I want my clearly-non-governmental Medicare, dammit!!
    I see a huge cognitive dissonance in this position.
    Now as for healthy suspicion of the government — sure. Look for money trails. Look for opportunists. Look for those who can’t do the Rousseauian thing of wearing the hat of the general will for public decisions. Look for violations of the Kantian categorical imperative. The violations are there. The opportunism is there. The selfishness is there.
    In fact, when government officials get all selfish and opportunistic, they really aren’t “governing” anymore. And they themselves need to be governed in the name of the public good.
    So I’m not a “my government right or wrong” idiot. And I don’t think that the 9/11 commission report is complete. It’s a political document with all the usual compromises. I’m sure commissioners wanted harder and softer lines on all sorts of issues throughout. I’m sure commissioners had their own agendas. Some were likely worried about future governance should they come down too hard on incompetence and malfeasance. Others worried that not coming down hard enough would be bad.
    Nothing exceptional or bizarre.
    And again, the basic science has been addressed all over the place. Eye witnesses including firefighters have reported what happened to the supposedly mysterious fall of Building 7.
    How many people do you want in on your conspiracy theory?
    And as for coincidence… Remember, any major event that ends up happening will have so many insane coincidences that it will seem to have been a miracle or the workings of evil for it to have happened. Or some intelligence will have had to have created the events.
    Dear lord, it sound like creationism is lurking here. It’s the same argument. Too many patterns, too many coincidences, too much went right. The Earth is too perfect and unique for life. The food webs and food chains too amazing. THERE HAD TO BE INTELLIGENT DESIGN. Evolution must be a government lie.
    Do you see the implications of the kinds of thinking you all head towards?
    Now are there questions about evolution, still? Yes. But is intelligent design the only possible answer? No.

    Reply

  26. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    …I like “coincidence theory” too…less emotiomal baggqage than conspiracy….sooner or later the permutations and calculations go off the charts.
    JamesL..welcome aboard,mate…
    arthurrrr, short and sweet..bingo! yes it is conditioning and defense mechanisms to prevent disturbing cherished perceptions…to re-inforce that conditioning, certain words, phrases, images are repeatedly repeated…you know,,Welcome to the Pavlocracy…Drool, baby drool…
    OutragedAmerican…Lucky you..having lunch with Jeff Gates…I’m jealous…please express my profound appreciation to him for his excellent scholarship on 9/11…as you can see we are on the same wave-length..you with the math, me with the psycho…ask him if he is familiar with harry Stack Sullivan..you’re making Phoenix sound so fun…Good luck with your own radio show…I hope it doesn’t mean you won’t have time for TWN…it’ll be like flat champagne without your imagery, good, but without the dazzle…cage fight with Carroll and Netanyahu on pay per view…half a gefiltefish..two fried eggs in a handkerchief…I’m going to go dig out my hookah…sadly, like POA I have dial-up, so no can do live-streaming…
    arthurrr..you asked who said you gey the gov’t you deserve…I don’t know but I do know social scientists say a government is a reflection of the maturation levle of the society..the more juvenile, infantile a society is, the more authroitarian the form of gov’t…the more mature a society, the more open and free the gov’t because citizens are capable of self-gov’t or gov’t by consent of the governed…so, in addition to conditioning, it is also the level of maturation…if you still need a parent/authority figure/agency, you will not want to question authority and will accept what you are told and follow orders, which is diferent from consenting to cooperate..Sullivan defines mature as becoming one’s own authority…authorship…if not, arrested developement…
    questions…I’m heartened to hear that you can bring yourself to believe the worst about Darth Cheney…but you’ve leaped to an erronenous conclusion when you say I would not accept answers to valid questions asked in an investigation…
    I’ve told you I don’t have answers and welcome questions being asked…you are the one oppsing an investigation..you are the one who wouldn’t accept answers and you’te projected your own close-mindedness onto me. I don’t have a denominator because I’m not doing fractions..you’re the one with the wrong denominator because you’re fixated on the exact number of consiprators as if that is a high priority question..kind of like a trick trivia question.

    Reply

  27. easy e says:

    Why do many on this site refer to questions as a “he”?
    I learned recently that questions is really a “she”. That was over cocktails with OA, before being renditioned to a black site in the north central fringes of Phoenix…..a strategic outpost in the Jihadist movement to the west. Thank g_d for OA’s familiarity and intrinsic prior reconnaissance of this territory. Had it not been for the use of OA’s burka that enabled those progressive J-Streeters to rescue my naked ass, along with the recovery of OA’s shoes flung upon McCain’s old mansion near her ‘mean sister’s’ house………one of which was able to protect my ‘corn-shucked’ private part, this comment wouldn’t be occurring.
    So, is OA really Steve and Easy E really an undercover transvestite jihadist? And how about POA? Inquiring minds want to know.
    Hmmm.
    But, more importantly, what about questions? A ‘he’ or a ‘she’? One of US, or one of THEM? With all of question’s comments on this thread alone, one has to wonder what his/her agenda is. Or to put it more appropriately in POA-speak…. “You’re either a purposely dissingenuous jackass, or a complete and utter idiot. Not exactly two stellar options.”
    Kapeesh?!?
    [ and also…………Shalom Aleichem and As-Salamu Alaykum ]

    Reply

  28. ... says:

    arthur – i agree.. i go with questions being defined as option 1) disingenuous jackass…

    Reply

  29. arthurdecco says:

    great post, POA.

    Reply

  30. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Questions…….
    On the 12th…
    Posted from 8:42AM to 11:14PM with a two hour lunch break and a two hour dinner break for a total online time of about ten hours, posting a total of 24 separate comments.
    On the 13th…
    Posted from 7:17AM to 9:50PM with a two hour lunch break and a three hour dinner break for a total online time of about 10 hours, posting a total of 32 separate comments.
    On the 14th, so far…
    Posted from 5:30AM to 8:47PM with a three hour lunch break and a two hour dinner break for a total online time of ten hours, posting a total of 21 separate comments.
    Not bad, eh? In three days, 30 hours of commenting, 77 comments, almost ALL spent on the subject of discrediting any and all questions we have about the official narrative about what occurred on 9/11.
    Why?
    Note how he constantly uses the term “conspiracy theorists” as a term of derision. Of course, you won’t see the jackass using that same terminology to describe the White House spokesmen Gibbs, who said Saturday at a press conference that Iran had a “nuclear weapons program”. And you won’t see him saying that about these fuckers that took this nation to war based on the claim that Saddam had connections to Al Qaeda, and a hidden stockpile of WMDs.
    Like I said way upthread, questions doth protest too much. One doesn’t even need to get into the science to find huge holes in the official narrative. Why wasn’t Mahmud Ahmed detained, questioned, and held for his role in financing Atta? Why did the path of Mossad agents cross the paths of the hi-jackers so many times leading up to 9/11? Why was there never a revised list released when it was discovered a number of the hi-jackers were misindentified?
    And, of course, why is it the treasonous lying fucks that got us into this mess in Iraq are suddenly considered honest when it comes to their line of shit about what occurred on 9/11??? Why are we asked to trust the account of known liars?? Truth is, Dick Cheney is about the most satanic treasonous inhuman piece of shit that has been in the White House during my lifetime. Is someone responsible for, and unrepentent about, over a million dead Iraqis capable of something as heinious as 9/11??? You bet, in spades. Personally, I believe he is capable of worse. He’s our own little private Idi Amin.
    You can’t possibly believe we know the full truth about 9/11. And you can’t possibly be comfortable with the fact that no one has been held accountable, even if only for criminal malfeasance and ineptitude. So, for whatever reason, you are once again offering debate that is neither based in conviction, or honesty. I don’t know if its out of nefarious intent and assigned task, or just out of some perverse need to spar intellectually through argument, assuming ANY position as long as it is polar to your opposition’s. But its particularly despicable, as has been pointed out to you by more than one commentor here.
    I don’t believe you are a damned fool. And it takes a damned fool to swallow the fantasy that we have been fed about 9/11. And it takes a BIGGER damned fool to get fucked over like we did by these people that dragged us into Iraq, yet think we aren’t getting fucked over in regards to 9/11.
    But then again, in your perverse fantasy world, (where people that don’t swallow the propaganda of known propagandists are called “conspiracy theorists”), you see the efforts of AIPAC as a waste of time and money, because they aren’t getting anything for it.
    So, I don’t know, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe you are just an ignorant buffoon that swallows whatever line of shit you’re told to swallow. Either way, I feel sorry for you. You’re either a purposely dissingenuous jackass, or a complete and utter idiot. Not exactly two stellar options.

    Reply

  31. ... says:

    questions likes the official line.. supporting bush in his march to war, or anyone else that feeds him a line is a given, so long as no one tells him it’s a ””conspiracy theory””’… bells goes off when this happens, as conspiracy is never a part of the ””official line””.. questions likes ”’coincidence theory”’….

    Reply

  32. questions says:

    decco,
    When are YOU going to get it? There are many cogent clear coherent explanations for the events in question. There are physics, chem, engineering, political, institutional explanations. There’s a wealth of photographic evidence. There’s video. There are eye witnesses. There are firefighters. There are missing people, presumed dead from air plane crashes. There are missing buildings with reasonable explanations for their demise.
    And then people come along and say, “I have serious questions. I don’t think the hole in the Pentagon is big enough for a plane to fit inside.” The link above to a truther site explains what part of the plane hit, how it broke up and why there’s a small hole.
    Truthers come along and say “THERMITE!!” Or “NANOTHERMITE” and a chemist explains that it’s not so.
    Truthers come along and scream CONSPIRACY and someone says, here’s how a conspiracy works, here are some famous ones, here’s how many people each time, and here are the whistle-blowers. 9/11 doesn’t fit.
    Truthers come along and scream that this is how buildings fall and this is how explosives work and this is impossible and so it has to be this instead. And physicists and chemists and engineers and fire experts say, ya got it wrong.
    Every point the truthers come up with ends up refuted by reasonable arguments using available evidence, computer modeling, eye witness accounts, videos, photos, and more. And yet the truthers hold tight to their accounts like young children with security blankets.
    And that is what truthers want. The security blanket of knowing deep inside that it was a government conspiracy. For whatever reason, major FUCK UP is less comfortable than the government’s deliberately killing its own, deliberately destroying its economy, harming its war-fighting ability on the eve of a war, crashing the stock market to cause its wealthy few to lose money….
    I’m willing to believe in quite a nasty, and even stupid, government. But I really don’t see how anyone can argue that the US would send a missile into the Pentagon so that it could declare war on Iraq and remake the middle east. That’s like smashing your car so that you can go on a driving trip to the Grand Canyon. Would anyone do that?
    The doubt leveled at the specifics is never really accurate or grounded doubt. It’s vague. It’s related to a lack of trust of the government and therefore, regardless how absurd the point, one must demand that the government be complicit, guilty, and actively undermining its own people.
    What if it’s just a fucked up, incompetent government? What if they really just didn’t take Clinton’s concerns seriously? What if the FBI guarded turf from the CIA? What if that’s just how the government functions? It doesn’t really function. Or rather, it’s human, all too human, in its functioning.
    Every Shakespearean emotion is there to in the government as well. Pride, stupidity, jealousy, family squabbles, inappropriate love, unguarded moments, vulnerabilities, insults…. What if that’s normal, and it causes us to fuck up every now and then and fail to protect ourselves? What if every now and then a bunch of us are going to die and we’re not going to respond with wisdom, but rather with opportunism?
    And here’s a little side corroboration — when Obama was working his transition, man did they cooperate. They KNEW that the transition went badly with Clinton to Bush, they KNEW they had better not fuck up this time because they fucked up completely last time. The Clinton people tried to communicate the seriousness of Bin Laden and terrorism. The Bush people were full of themselves, disdainful, they thought Clinton an immoral ass and they thought themselves the beginning of permanent Repub. rule. They owned the world.
    Until September 11, that is.
    The next transition was very different. Information was shared, taken seriously, and acted on. Lots more meetings, shared documents, care went into it this time. Why? The Bush people HATED Obama, the racism at election time was notable. The dems certainly hated Bush. But everyone took the transition seriously.
    And note how very slowly Obama is moving on altering Bush security policies. Because he doesn’t want to fuck up as well.
    That’s how you can tell that they knew they FUCKED up last time. Because they didn’t fuck up this time. They made sure of it.
    The Bushes FUCKED IT UP. W. fucked up a lot of stuff. Arrogance got the best of them.

    Reply

  33. arthurdecco says:

    questions, when are you gonna get it? Those of us who doubt the “official story” don’t have a clue what happened.
    No one does except for the perpetrators.
    That’s why I think those of us who have doubts about the “official story” all support a transparent and public investigation into what happened on 911 with the power and resources of the state firmly behind it but not directing it.

    Reply

  34. questions says:

    http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread499982/pg1
    A fascinating discussion board thread in which Truthers do some soul-searching about the failures of Alex Jones (“fiasco” is the word, I think) and what they can do to regain some respectability. Very interesting to read them reading themselves.
    Note, by the way that the plane/Pentagon link I tossed in above that explains that the plane did hit the Pentagon and shows huge amounts of photographic evidence and explains why the hole is the size it is… is from a truther site. Same as the one posted right here:
    http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread499982/pg1
    As I said, the truthers are now split on the plane at the Pentagon, and on the value of Alex Jones and on all sorts of things. What exactly is the truth of the Truthers? What’s left that’s coherent?
    The only thing they share is suspicion. Not interpretation, not fact, not even heroes anymore. Just suspicion.
    But what the hell is suspicion without any facts to back it up?
    Religious thinking….

    Reply

  35. questions says:

    decco writes:
    “I’ve often wondered what sets the uncommonly sensible Suspicious types like JamesL and Kathleen apart from those, like questions, who eagerly almost rabidly, buy into every new smoke and mirrors fandango the puppeteers construct for them. Is it really conditioning that is at the root of question’s puzzling refusal to even consider doubt rather than desperate acceptance of the status quo?”
    Note that the genetic version of questioning is only related to the govt. Not to the conspiracy theorists.
    Note that asking what could possibly be in it for the gov’t to go off the deep end into lala land is status quo and badbadbad.
    But refusing to question the denialist crowd, wondering about the hole in the wall when there are reasonable explanations, (even wondering about Obama’s birth cert) — now that’s perfectly fine and should be expected.
    Who’s status quo-ish? Who’s asking questions? Who accepts blindly and who wonders why people accept things?
    Very interesting rhetorical tactic.
    Still, no one has answered how many people must have been involved, why no one has confessed yet, what the US gov’t would have gotten out of it.
    And where the hell are all those people on that missing plane that never hit the Pentagon.
    By the way, there’s a noted split in the denialist crowd. Some think the plane hit the Pentagon. Some think a missile hit the Pentagon. They don’t like each other any more, near as I can tell. It’s a religion with denominations. There are reformed Truthers, and a wide range of orthodoxies now. It’s not monolithic. Very interesting developments over time amongst the right-thinking.
    No one has fessed up to the level of denial they subscribe to, though JamesL seems to be a plane denier even if he denies that he’s a plane denier. At any rate, he has some serious questions about that Pentagon plane….
    I have tossed in non-Pop Mech links all over the place. I have copy/pasted lots of text. No specific rebuttals of the specific points. No math corrections for all the equations. No chem corrections for the thermite stuff.
    One thing about thermite I came across is that they didn’t test for thermite, they tested for sulfur and used that as a proxy for thermite, but sulfur is in gypsum board — ya know, sheet rock or dry wall or wall board. If this one is true…. But I’m not a chemist. So rebut it someone! Bring on that chemistry knowledge that knocks down the debunkers.
    Or maybe you don’t actually know, and so you let that feeling of illegitimacy of the Bushies you carry around with you color EVERYthing you think. A feeling you have isn’t enough to prove a damned thing. At least admit that that’s where all those serious questions come from. Because they don’t seem to come from the events.

    Reply

  36. arthurdecco says:

    yer killin’ mee, OA.

    Reply

  37. Outraged American says:

    Kathleen, Jeff Gates lives in Phoenix, as I wish you did, and we’re
    supposed to go out for lunch, and he’ll probably end-up in a seedy
    motel, spread-eagled and hog-tied, much like easy e did after our
    “dinner.”

    Reply

  38. JamesL says:

    Questions, your moniker isn’t really who you are. And the propaganda machines I was talking about weren’t the govt (which lagged way behind), it was the people with money who want to sell you things and ideas. Officials COUNT on you not wanting to believe they do bad things. You seem to be very angry and not at all inquisitive.
    Arthur, a friend told me a story about monkeys in Africa (maybe you know the specifics), how psychologists studying them observed a percentage of the troops was depressed. So they figured they’d help out the troop (maybe depression was contagious) and removed them, took them away. A year later the troops were all dead. The depressed monkeys, the ones who had insomnia and were ill at ease, were the ones who were wary and awake when the others weren’t. The complacent ones all got eaten. So it goes.
    BTW the friend who told me that story majored in Poly sci and behavioral sciences. He got to the last quarter of college and gave it up. He realized the immorality and utter ease of being able to change other peoples minds and couldn’t bring himself to lead a life like that.

    Reply

  39. questions says:

    http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread79655/pg1
    The plane! The plane!!
    (that’s from an old tv show)

    Reply

  40. arthurdecco says:

    “…there are lots of books that illustrate every step of how easy it is to make people believe things that are not in their own best interests.” posted by JamesL
    I’ve often wondered what sets the uncommonly sensible Suspicious types like JamesL and Kathleen apart from those, like questions, who eagerly almost rabidly, buy into every new smoke and mirrors fandango the puppeteers construct for them. Is it really conditioning that is at the root of question’s puzzling refusal to even consider doubt rather than desperate acceptance of the status quo?
    Could there be a gene that carries the blocking agent for bullshit?
    If so, WE better find it before THEY do or pretty soon millions and millions of people just like questions are gonna start using up every available online byte they can scrounge or steal in their attempts to turn the rest of us into “true believers” like them.
    Like those wacky pie plate-covered trash can outer space aliens said through a phase shifter on Dr. Who,
    “Resistance is Futile!”

    Reply

  41. Kathleen Grasso Anderse says:

    questionsd…what’s the point of telling sotires when an honest indepedent investigation would reveal the truth.. .Madison Avenue sells soap every day and regularly does market research, periodically thoughout the year, in depth psychological surveys…the point is,,,that those who stood to profit by war knew how to herd public opinion.
    Touching upon some of my points…
    What Role Did The U.S.-Israeli Relationship Play In 9-11?
    By Jeff Gates
    September 13, 2009 “Information Clearing House” — On the day of the 9-11 attacks, former Israeli Ponest investigation will reveal the truthrime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was asked what the attack would mean for US-Israeli relations. His quick reply was: “It’s very good. Well, it’s not good, but it will generate immediate sympathy (for Israel).”
    Intelligence wars rely on mathematical models to anticipate the response of “the mark” to staged provocations. Reactions thereby become foreseeable-within an acceptable range of probabilities. When Israeli mathematician Robert J. Aumann received the 2005 Nobel Prize in economic science, he conceded that “the entire school of thought that we have developed here in Israel” has turned “Israel into the leading authority in this field.”
    With a well-planned provocation, the anticipated response can even become a weapon in the arsenal of the agent provocateur. In response to 9-11, how difficult would it be to foresee that the U.S. would deploy its military to avenge that attack? With fixed intelligence, how difficult would it be to redirect that response to wage a long-planned war in Iraq – not for U.S. interests but to advance the agenda for Greater Israel?
    The emotionally wrenching component of a provocation plays a key role in the field of game theory war planning where Israel is the authority. With the televised murder of 3,000 Americans, a shared mindset of shock, grief and outrage made it easier for U.S. policy-makers to believe that a known Evil Doer in Iraq was responsible, regardless of the facts.
    The strategic displacement of facts with induced beliefs, in turn, requires a period of “preparing the mindset” so that “the mark” will put their faith in a pre-staged fiction. Those who induced the March 2003 invasion of Iraq began “laying mental threads” and creating agenda-advancing mental associations more than a decade earlier.
    Notable among those threads was the 1993 publication in Foreign Affairs of an article by Harvard professor Samuel Huntington. By the time his analysis appeared in book-length form in 1996 as The Clash of Civilizations, more than 100 academies and think tanks were prepared to promote it, pre-staging a “clash consensus” five years before 9-11.
    Also published in 1996 under the guidance of Richard Perle was A Clean Break: A New Strategy for Securing the Realm (i.e., Israel). A member since 1987 of the U.S. Defense Policy Advisory Board, this self-professed Zionist became its chairman in 2001. As a key adviser to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Perle’s senior Pentagon post helped lay the required foundation for removing Saddam Hussein as part of a Greater Israel strategy, a key theme of A Clean Break released five years before 9-11.
    A mass murder, articles, books, think tanks and Pentagon insiders, however, are not enough to manage the variables in a “probabilistic” war-planning model. Supportive policy makers are also required to lend the appearance of legitimacy and credibility to an operation justified by intelligence fixed around a pre-determined agenda.
    That role was eagerly filled by Senators John McCain, Joe Lieberman, a Jewish Zionist from Connecticut, and Jon Kyl, a Christian Zionist from Arizona, when they co-sponsored the Iraq Liberation Act of 1998. Echoing Tel Aviv’s agenda in A Clean Break, their bill laid another mental thread in the public mindset by calling for the removal of Saddam Hussein three years before 9-11.
    The legislation also appropriated $97 million, largely to promote that Zionist agenda. Distracted by mid-term Congressional elections and by impeachment proceedings commenced in reaction to a well-timed presidential affair involving White House intern Monica Lewinsky, Bill Clinton signed that agenda into law October 31, 1998 – five years before the U.S.-led invasion that removed Saddam Hussein.
    After 9-11, John McCain and Joe Lieberman became inseparable travel companions and irrepressible advocates for the invasion of Iraq. Looking “presidential” aboard the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt in January 2002, McCain laid another key thread when he waved an admiral’s cap while proclaiming, alongside Lieberman, “On to Baghdad.”
    By Way of Deception
    The chutzpah with which this game theory strategy progressed in plain sight could be seen in the behavior of Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz, another Zionist insider. Four days after 9-11, in a principals’ meeting at Camp David, he proposed that the U.S. invade Iraq. At that time, the intelligence did not yet point to Iraqi involvement and Osama bin Laden was thought to be hiding in a remote region of Afghanistan.
    Frustrated that President George H.W. Bush declined to remove Saddam Hussein during the 1991 Gulf War, Wolfowitz proposed a No-Fly Zone in northern Iraq. By 2001, the Israeli Mossad had agents at work for a decade in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul. Intelligence reports of Iraqi ties to Al Qaeda also came from Mosul – reports that later proved to be false. Mosul again emerged in November 2004 as a center of the insurgency that destabilized Iraq. That reaction precluded the speedy exit of coalition forces promised in Congressional testimony by senior war-planner Wolfowitz.
    The common source of the fixed intelligence that induced America to war in Iraq has yet to be acknowledged even though intelligence experts agree that deception on such a scale required a decade to plan, staff, pre-stage, orchestrate and, to date, cover up. The two leaders of the 9-11 Commission report conceded they were stopped by Commission members from hearing testimony on the motivation for 9-11: the U.S.-Israeli relationship.
    The fictions accepted as generally accepted truths included Iraqi WMD, Iraqi ties to Al Qaeda, Iraqi meetings with Al Qaeda in Prague, Iraqi mobile biological weapons laboratories and Iraqi purchases of “yellowcake” uranium from Niger. Only the last fact was conceded as phony in the relevant time frame. All the rest were disclosed as false, flawed or fixed only after the war began. An attempt to cover-up the yellowcake account led to the federal prosecution of vice-presidential chief of staff Lewis Libby, another well-placed Zionist insider.
    Did game theory-modeled pre-staging also include the Israeli provocation that led to the Second Intifada? An intifada is an uprising or, literally, a “shaking off” of an oppressor. The Second Intifada in Palestine dates from September 2000 when Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon led an armed march to Jerusalem’s Temple Mount one year before 9-11.
    After a year of calm-during which Palestinians believed in the prospects for peace-suicide bombings recommenced after this high-profile provocation. In response to the uprising, Sharon and Netanyahu observed that only when Americans “feel our pain” would they understand the plight of the victimized Israelis. Both Israeli leaders suggested that shared mindset (“feel our pain”) would require in the U.S. a weighted body count of 4,500 to 5,000 Americans lost to terrorism, the initial estimate of those who died in the twin towers of New York City’s World Trade Center-one year later.
    The American Valkyrie?
    When successful, game theory warfare strengthens the agent provocateur while leaving the mark discredited and depleted by the anticipated reaction to a well-timed provocation. By game theory standards, 9-11 was a strategic success because the U.S. was portrayed as irrational for its reaction – the invasion of Iraq that triggered a deadly insurgency with devastating consequences both for Iraq and the U.S.
    That insurgency, in turn, was an easily modeled reaction to the invasion of a nation that (a) played no role in the provocation, and (b) was known to be populated by three long-warring sects where an unstable peace was maintained by a former U.S. ally who was rebranded an Evil Doer. As the cost in blood and treasure expanded, the U.S. became overextended militarily, financially and diplomatically.
    As “the mark” (the U.S.) emerged in the foreground, the agent provocateur faded into the background. But only after catalyzing dynamics that steadily drained the U.S. of credibility, resources and resolve. This “probabilistic” victory also ensured widespread cynicism, insecurity, distrust and disillusionment along with a declining capacity to defend its interests due to the duplicity of a game theory-savvy enemy within.
    Meanwhile the American public fell under a regime of oversight, surveillance and intimidation marketed as “homeland” security. This domestic operation even features rhetorical hints of a WWII “fatherland” with clear signs of a force alien to the U.S. with its welcome embrace of open dissent. Is this operation meant to protect Americans or to shield those responsible for this insider operation from Americans?
    By manipulating the shared mindset, skilled game theory war-planners can wage battles in plain sight and on multiple fronts with minimal resources. One proven strategy: Pose as an ally of a well-armed nation predisposed to deploy its military in response to a mass murder. In this case, the result destabilized Iraq, creating crises that could be exploited to strategic advantage by expanding the conflict to Iran, another key Israeli goal announced in A Clean Break-seven years before the invasion of Iraq.
    Which nation benefitted from the deployment of coalition forces to the region? Today’s mathematically model-able outcome undermined U.S. national security by overextending its military, discrediting its leadership, degrading its financial condition and disabling its political will. In game theory terms, these results were “perfectly predictable”-within an acceptable range of probabilities.
    In the asymmetry that typifies today’s unconventional warfare, those who are few in numbers must wage war by way of deception-non-transparently and with means that leverage their impact. Which nation-if not Israel-fits that description?
    Treason in Plain Sight?
    Game theory war-planners manipulate the shared mental environment by shaping perceptions and creating impressions that become consensus opinions. With the aid of well-timed crises, policy-makers fall in line with a predetermined agenda-not because they are Evil Doers or “imperialists” but because the shared mindset has been pre-conditioned to respond not to the facts but to manipulated emotions and consensus beliefs. Without the murder of 3,000 on 9-11, America’s credibility would not now be damaged and the U.S. economy would be in far better shape.
    By steadily displacing facts with what “the mark” can be induced to believe, the few-within-the-few amplify the impact of their duplicity. By steady manipulation of the public’s mindset, game theory war-planners can defeat an opponent with vastly superior resources by inducing those decisions that ensure defeat.
    Intelligence wars are waged in plain sight and under the cover of widely shared beliefs. By manipulating consensus opinion, such wars can be won from the inside out by inducing a people to freely choose the very forces that imperil their freedom. Thus in the Information Age the disproportionate power wielded by those with outsized influence in media, pop culture, think tanks, academia and politics-domains where Zionist influence is most rampant.
    Induced beliefs act as a force-multiplier to wage intelligence wars from the shadows. At the operational core of such warfare are those masterful at anticipating the mark’s response to a provocation and incorporating that response into their arsenal. For those who wage war in this fashion, facts are only a barrier to overcome. For those nations dependent on facts, the rule of law and informed consent to protect their freedom, such insider treachery poses the greatest possible threat to national security.
    America is far less safe than before 9-11. Tel Aviv clearly intends to continue its serial provocations, as evidenced by its ongoing expansion of the settlements. Israel has shown no sign of a willingness to negotiate in good faith or to take the steps required to make peace a possibility. To date, Barack Obama appears unwilling to name senior appointees who are not either Zionists are strongly pro-Israeli. The greatest threat to world peace is not terrorists. The greatest threat is the U.S.-Israeli relationship.
    In the same way that a decade of pre-staging was required to plausibly induce the U.S. to invade Iraq, a similar strategy is now underway to persuade the U.S. to invade Iran or to support and condone an attack by Israel. The same duplicity is again at work, including the high profile branding of the requisite Evil Doer. From its very outset, the Zionist enterprise focused on hegemony in the Middle East. Its entangled alliance with the U.S. enabled this enterprise to deploy American might for that purpose.
    Only one nation had the means, motive, opportunity and stable nation state intelligence required to take the U.S. to war in the Middle East while also making it appear that Islam is the problem. If Barack Obama continues to defer to Tel Aviv, he can rightly be blamed when the next attack occurs in the U.S. or the European Union featuring the usual orgy of evidence pointing to a predetermined target. Should another mass murder occur, that event will be traceable directly to the U.S.-Israeli relationship and the failure of U.S policy-makers to free America from this enemy within.
    Jeff Gates, A widely acclaimed author, attorney, investment banker, educator and consultant to government, corporate and union leaders worldwide, Jeff Gates’ latest book is Guilt By Association—How Deception and Self-Deceit Took America to War (2008). His previous books include Democracy at Risk: Rescuing Main Street From Wall Street and The Ownership Solution: Toward a Shared Capitalism for the 21st Century.

    Reply

  42. questions says:

    And Kathleen,
    I can believe the worst of Bush and Cheney. They distorted intell because of stupid paranoia, because they don’t value life, because Cheney is an authoritarian, because they think a certain kind of political order matters more than political freedom.
    Cheney was able to court the religious right despite his daughter. Now there’s some sick fuck.
    Cheney’s fear of death destroyed Iraq, killed vast quantities of people.
    Bush’s weakness in the shadow of Cheney is a wicked weakness.
    Death and destruction, willful, entered into for no good reason.
    I can believe it all.
    It’s not a moral argument I make against the conspiracy shit. It’s a pragmatic argument. If they are so fucking smart, how could they be so fucking stupid? They aren’t both.
    And it’s the fact that every piece of evidence against the conspiracy shit it taken as PROOF of the conspiracy shit.
    Try this one on —
    If you’re not a birther, it works, if you’re a birther and a truther, oh my.
    What do you make of Orly Taitz and her insane quest for Obama’s birth certificate? Do you accept the state of Hawaii’s statement that his birth record is intact, clear, legal, and he’s a citizen?
    Well, Taitz doesn’t.
    Truthers are the same as birthers, in my mind. No propaganda. Just a refusal to see evidence, accept what’s there, and a dogged determination to turn every bit of legit proof into more proof of irrational conspiracy.
    Orly Taitz has “serious questions” about the “Certificate of Birth” — since that’s not a “birth certificate.” And she has serious questions about the notices in the 1961 newspapers, even though the hospital places them, not the family.
    All she wants is a simple thing — to see the actual birth certificate. Even though Hawaii no longer releases the actual paper. It’s all she wants.
    What are the chances that a trip to the office of vital statistics would satisfy her?
    Most likely, she’d find something wrong with the building, the microfiche, the microfiche reader, the guide, the ….
    Fact is, Orly Taitz can’t live in a world where Obama is a legitimate president of the US. She will always have “some simple questions, some serious questions.”
    The 9/11 denialist shit strikes me the same way. You all will always have some “simple questions, some serious questions” no matter what.
    And yet the questions will never be answerable to your satisfaction because underneath it all, to get all psychological, there’s a crisis of legitimacy you all are going through. It can’t have happened the way it’s reported because… IT SIMPLY CAN’T. No proof would ever satisfy you.
    That’s religion.

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  43. questions says:

    JamesL,
    Again, read up on the selection bias and how it pushes thinking in particular directions, like the one you’re headed in with the omni-omnium of the US Gov’t propaganda machine.

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  44. questions says:

    JamesL writes:
    “Things don’t match up, and people who try to match them seem to be reaching a lot farther than those whe simply say: what about this, and this. Why do American buildings fall down in an hour or two when buildings in other nations do not, and when the WTC’s were designed to withstand when hit by even two airliners?”
    How many buildings have been hit by jets traveling at 500 mph?
    How many buildings have been hit by the debris of other buildings, burned for 7 hours….
    The WTC was designed to deal with a slow, getting ready to land jet, not one traveling 500 mph.
    But you’ve read this all already.
    And you clearly cite nearly every conspiracist argument I’ve seen in the last few days, including the plane denial shit. (Must have been a missile….
    As in, the US shot a missile at its own defense headquarters right before a war it was planning to incite. Fucking genius!!!!!)
    It makes more sense to you that the gov’t would destroy itself to have an excuse for a war, when in fact the nation has gone to war routinely over so much less….
    Remember when Saddam Hussein attacked Kuwait? We attacked Saddam Hussein.
    Remember, umm, Grenada?
    We send troops to Latin America routinely. We don’t blow up holes in buildings, blame it on S. Am. dictators and then attack.
    But you know these points too.
    I simply cannot see the world as a paranoid denialist does. There hasn’t been one convincing argument posted here for why the US would take the most rubegoldbergian path towards war possible and NO ONE EVEN SAID ANYTHING ABOUT IT 8 YEARS LATER. Compare to Watergate. Compare to Iran/Contra. Compare to WMD in Iraq.
    How does it match up?
    And Kathleen,
    Madison Ave. doesn’t “do it every day”. They test market and they use focus groups and they try a whole lot of shit that fails. Ever see a product go bust? New Coke failed. Car models fail. Products seem to be great, but they fail. How about peanut butter packed like cheese slices? Or crustless bread? Or 8-track tapes? The world is paved with failed ad campaigns and failed products.
    You’re falling into what’s called “selection bias” — you’re counting the things you’ve selected — the successes, and you’re omitting the endless stream of failures. Your denominator is all wrong.
    People fuck up. Governments fuck up. We don’t see things until it’s too late — all the time.
    The cleanest explanation for 9/11 is a major fuck up, huge blind spots in a bunch of incompetent governing officials. It’s the condition of humanity to miss stuff like this despite the warnings that are so obvious after the fact.
    If you look for patterns, you will always find something. The stars can seem to guide your every action. The thing you want is delivered to you — wow your prayers were answered. ‘Course, you’ve wanted all sorts of things that did NOT happen, but the selection bias makes you focus only on what did happen.
    On and on, round and round. Denialists, rubegoldbergians, baroquists…. Logical fallacies left and right. Refusal to read and watch undoctored videos. A preference for magical thinking. Oh my.
    Try to tell a coherent story.
    What would the government get from 9/11 that it couldn’t get elsewhere or in some other way?
    What is the expected cost of 9/11 before the fact?
    How do the two balance out?
    They had to know the level of destruction of industry and economy, life and property, city and safety.
    The people of the US could easily have turned on the Repubs. Easily. No psych. study could conclude otherwise BEFORE THE FACT.
    So how does this calculus work?
    Now think it through the other way.
    They fucked up. Big time.
    A fuck up is either the end, or an opportunity. Machiavelli is a great guy to look at for learning to turn disaster into success.
    So they do their best to turn utter devastation into an 8 year run. Of course, they wanted a “permanent Republican majority.” They lost in the end, they fucked up lives and nations, lost fortunes, crashed the economy with the war and the unregulated trading. They killed people….
    It wasn’t a smashing success in the end. And the ME is still not remade. And the Repubs are out of office.
    This is the stuff of evil genius and mind control?
    And the fact that you all are conspiracy theorists would seem to suggest that the mind control doesn’t work very well. Somehow YOU SPECIAL people have not been bent and broken by the evil CIsrAel.
    I don’t know about you, but I never rallied to the flag, supported the war in Iraq, hated myself some ter’ists. I still can’t tell the difference between terrorists and freedom fighters.
    What mind control for heaven’s sake?
    What psychology? What success? What conspiracy?
    Tell a coherent narrative. See what you come up with.

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  45. JamesL says:

    Questions, I concur with Kathleen. If you are less than 90 you have your entire life been swimming in increasingly effective propaganda, emanating from an ever increasing number of extremely well funded sources. By now those who have created the steps to influence public opinion have become very, very effective. For a book less theoretical or heady than a college text, you might first take a run through Predictably Irrational. But there are lots of books that illustrate every step of how easy it is to make people believe things that are not in their own best interests.

    Reply

  46. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    questions…I disagree..it is possible to predict how people will react..even to get them to react in a certain way…Madison Avenue does it all day every day…it’s how they sell soap…don’t be sophomoric…Behavioral Sciences…in depth motivational research…ring any bells?
    Just because you can’t predict how people will react doesn’t mean there aren’t specialists in behavioral sciences who can.
    You interject Truther statements… I am not a Truther in that I do not have a theory..just too many unanswered questiuons…
    And, giving Busholini more of a beneift of the doubt than Darth Cheney does with his One Percent Doctrine, I do have probable cause to warrant an indepedent inquiry…
    I find that Busholini’s words and actions don’t jibe…on the one hand he wants OBL dead or alive..on the other, despite the 9/11 victims’ families wishes and protecting our country from further “undetected” attacks, he refused to conduct any inquiry..those two positions are antithetical..
    It was not until Senator Jim Jeffords left the Repugnican party and changed the majority in the Senate, that an inquiry, such as it was, was possible.
    And then there’s the image of Dopey and Darth refusing to testify and holdiing hands while having a “conversation” not under oath and off record…..this is not the way inncocent people, eager to protect the country, conduct themselves…it’s the way two chickenshit draft-dodgers with an overblown sense of their own exceptionalism do their dainty little side-step. Enhanced interrogation techniques for everyone they say is an enemy combantant, but they get kid gloves behind closed doors.
    Calling Jeff Gannon…don’t forget your uniform, boots and whip, boy.
    OutragedAmerican raises the importance of critical thinking in seeing the truth…I agree….analytical thinking as well…I’m not sure how much of either an art historian would need…Rahm Emmanuel and I have the same Alma Mater, but I was there before it became co-ed. My academic baksground is in the social sciences…psychology, sociology. anthropology, social psychology, economics. political science, philosophy/logic and religions….
    Most relevant to our debate, questions, were my studies in Psychoanlytic Theory and Politcal Thought, taught by Dr. Jane Dahlberg, guest professor at Sarah Lawrence College and current Director of the William Alanson Whithead Psychiatry Foundation in Manhattan..where practicing psychoanlysts are trained in Dr. Harry Stack Sullivan’s Interpersonal Theory of Psychiatry…. Sullivan was a physicist and became a psychoanalyst and one of the authors of the UN Charter.
    Not as famous as Freud and Jung, Sullivan went beyond the individual’s abilty to integrate all their levels of consciousness, but went on to how an “adult” individual integrates into society, and relates to authority/community in thr context of political thought.. ie the psychiatry of leadership/followship, governor/governed, lawmaker/lawbreaker…we psychoanalysed Nixon and LBJ…
    Which is why I loved Dr. Justin Frank’s “Bush On the Couch”…Dr. Frank was also trained at the William Alanson Whitehead Psychiatry Foundation in Harry Stack Sullivan’s theory…
    questions.,..you might like Sullivan’s “The Fusion of Psychiatry and Social Scinece”. He delves into the psdychiatry of Anti-Semitism and the oppression of the American Negroe…
    Relevant to our different perceptions of Bush and 9/11…some chapter titles “Psychiatry and Morale”, “Leadership, Mobilization and Postwar Change”, “Psychistry and the National Defense”, Propoganda/Censorship”, to give you some idea of how I arrive at what dots to connect in the 9/11 puzzle. ..questions,,thank you for inspiring me to get all my Sullivan books down fron the shelf again…one favorite is “The Psychiatirc Interview”….
    One other area of study relevant to how the public views public, national and world events, was taught by guest Professor Charles Siepmann, Constitutional Law expert and Social Psychologist. He was current National President of the ACLU and had just comnpleted a 13 week documentary on the Constitution for PBS Omnibus
    series. The course examined Nazi and Chinese Communist brain washing techniques, enhanced interogation techiues like, sleep or sensory deprivation, and how observing how humans behave under extreme stress,anxiety, insecutity, and how they can be conditioned to react certain ways when they fell threatened.
    The course title was Mass Persuasion, (a euphemism for propoganda) and Constitutional Law…how to use the media, public airwaves to shape public opinion, otherwise known as marketing products, candidates, concepts, myths and what is and is not legal.
    So questions…you connect your dots and I’ll connect mine…you might need to read Sullivan on “selective inattention”…the process by which one unconsciously filters out whatever does not confim what we want to believe in order to cling to a cherished illusion….a reluctance to believe the worst of someone, for example, like learning of incest in the family or that a President is a meglomaniac, bemt on war for his own aggrandisement.
    Now I have to go back and read the other comments.

    Reply

  47. Outraged American says:

    You should taste my BALL curry. It’s a real Indian dish, sometimes
    called “Kofta” curry.
    It’s the reason why every man in this neighborhood, including
    McCain, is a eunuch.

    Reply

  48. JamesL says:

    Paprika–I’d have never thought of it. And Chianti… you do have a way with food.

    Reply

  49. Outraged American says:

    James L: I make fun of everyone, including Question’s boyfriend,
    the oversized carrot in her fridge.
    That having been said, I am Steve: the sex-change was relatively
    painless. The cats licked up the blood and then we cooked the
    member with a little bit of paprika and fed it to the kids with
    some fava beans and a nice chianti to wash it down.
    Questions is just playing with us so just play back, unless you
    have something important to do like MAKE POLICY, which
    Questions claims is her job, and which is why I’m applying for
    citizenship in Bangladesh.
    I have sat here for years (well, not really, I was just outside
    trying to kill my neighbor, the Satanist, for mowing his lawn too
    loudly. Push mowers — oh when will they ever learn) lamenting
    the lack of critical thinking in this country.
    I have interviewed very credible people who were at the
    Pentagon that day, and some who came in the days following.
    Bottom line — there needs to be a real investigation.
    Hey Concerned I’m a registered Republican and live in the Great
    State of Arizona, which is just left of Cuba in terms of politics.
    I’ll buy you a brain if you promise to stay out of my state.

    Reply

  50. ConcernedCitizen says:

    Socialists and Muslim-appeasement lobbyists masquerading as 9/11 truthers going off like feral dogs on a left-wing blog. Who coulda fucking guessed.
    And you know the catchy slogan Alex Jones uses for the 9/11 movement (Truth Rising), for what it’s worth:
    Faith Freedom International – Truth Rising. Because seeing is believing.

    Reply

  51. JamesL says:

    Questions: Drop the denier label for me, it doesn’t suit you. The hole in the Pentagon (see pic before collapse of the wall) is, to me, just too tiny for a Boeing. Measure it as best you can. The engines would have been outboard of the fuselage hole. What impact marks do you find there? The vertical fin was very tall. What is the shape of the top of the hole? The lack of aircraft debris outside the building is too pronounced. The rapid “cleanup” of even the topsoil there was too weird. Go find an archive of airliner crash photos where the impact was something solid and look at those for five or six hours. I have, lots of them. Things don’t match up, and people who try to match them seem to be reaching a lot farther than those whe simply say: what about this, and this. Why do American buildings fall down in an hour or two when buildings in other nations do not, and when the WTC’s were designed to withstand when hit by even two airliners? I don’t know what hit the Pentagon, but an airliner doesn’t seem like it, and the government has given me no solid evidence to think so yet when it could have, immediately after the fact and many times since then. No I don’t know what to say about the passengers, and I have seen, and don’t buy, some outlandish explanations. I don’t have to have an answer for that. But on that day, a few dead passengers here or there or how they might have met their fate was not uppermost in the minds of the 911 planners, in the greater (in their minds) context of world domination or manipulation of nations, whoever they were. All I have done is observe, as closely as I can. That’s all anyone needs to do. I am open to new info that would make me think otherwise, but that info has been classified. The best place to hide something is in plain sight. It happens all the time.

    Reply

  52. questions says:

    http://politicalmythsdebunked.blogspot.com/
    Some numbers on demolition and numbers of necessary conspirators and disappeared plane passengers and the like.
    The amount of time it took to set up the blasting for the next largest building aver blasted, a much smaller building than WTC 7….
    But you won’t believe this either because you have serious questions.

    Reply

  53. questions says:

    JamesL,
    I just re-read your piece. Are you really one of the plane deniers? No plane hit the Pentagon, in your view?
    I’m dying to know!
    So where did the plane go? Where are the passengers? Did Bush, in Cockburn’s words, shoot each one personally?

    Reply

  54. questions says:

    OA,
    “There’s no way those fires could have collapsed it.”
    http://www.structuremag.org/article.aspx?articleID=284
    Maybe this is all bs. Maybe it was written by the CIsrAel.
    Since you studied so much physics and math, show me why it’s wrong and what it means….
    And still, will someone explain what the US gov’t got out of it all that made it worth conspiring?
    And will someone estimate the number of people who had to be in on it?

    Reply

  55. questions says:

    http://www.debunking911.com/freefall.htm
    Here’s everyone’s favorite CIsrAel site to hate with links and physics. WTC 7 seems to have fallen below free fall speed according to this, even thought the actual speed is indeterminate.
    Sorry again for my blooper. Please don’t start a new conspiracy theory with it. It’s an honest mistake by a very non-physics non-math novice trying to digest huge amounts of info in a short time and with other commitments besides living in my mother’s basement blogging all the day long.
    Sorry and will try not to repeat. (Even though I really do feel like I saw that phrase somewhere….!)
    And thanks for actually reading and paying attention and correcting. I think that’s the point of the blog.

    Reply

  56. JamesL says:

    Outraged: I really don’t want to make fun of anyone. I think it is counterproductive because the ability to nurture a healthy amount of skepticism is critical to a democracy, and skepticism is hard to muster if one is under attack. In a world dominated by propganda blizzards, one must doublecheck. I just had to set straight a 2001 racist screed that made its way to me via the emails, with copies I noted going to all the important members of the church of my childhood. You can’t let that stuff slide, and to think these people believe this crap…. I have chickens that evidence a more pragmatic and skeptical view of the world than some on this forum, but they unfortunately don’t have the semantic forthwith for me to put them on the keyboard. On the other hand I do rely on your rapier wit and balls (or ovaries) to the wall approach. Sometimes you just need that.

    Reply

  57. questions says:

    James L,
    Sorry for the blooper.
    The basic attitude I find in the conspiracy stuff, which I have to say I’m a novice at, is that any single unanswered question, any single contradiction in a huge, complex, multifarious event is sufficient cause for a GRAND conspiracy theory in which the government seems to have done one of the following:
    Blown up the buildings itself.
    Let someone blow up the buildings.
    Fake the planes and blow up the buildings itself.
    So which is it? It seems that the conspiracy minded have split on these.
    I will say quite honestly none of them makes sense to me.
    What does make sense to me is an after-the-fact use of the attack as an excuse for war. This is pretty damning if you ask me.
    I would certainly not be surprised if some rubble was moved overly hastily, though even this seems on the controversial and possibly nutty side.
    I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if there had been a cover up of sorts to help the Saudis. The Saudi/Bush stuff seems to be significant. The Saudi/oil stuff seems to be significant. The hijackers and Bin Laden are Saudi. The Saudi government is built on a house of cards.
    I have read absolutely nothing that explains why the government would let or make 9/11 happen.
    I have read a lot about institutional paralysis, bureaucratic dysfunction, Clinton/Bush transition issues, think-tank cravings for re-making the ME.
    I have read lots of debunkings of thermite and the size of the hole in the Pentagon (dear lord, that too) and the Hearst Corp’s owning Pop Mech (I don’t even rely on Pop Mech — that was the first thing I turned to because I read it when it was newly published. I’ve ignored this “field” since.)
    The Pentagon hole is explained by the loss of a plane wing, by the angle of the crash… It’s in the debunking sites if you want more.
    As for my blooper, sorry. I got sloppy because I’m not a physicist. But if you are, thanks for catching it. Still and all, it seems that I have read claims that explosives were used to make the building fall faster but explosives apparently don’t do that. I’ll look and see if the blooper is really mine or someone else’s.
    As for civility, you might be right. But I don’t think that the conspiracy stuff is civil and POA has a long history of incivility (to put it mildly) aimed at my direction. OA I simply don’t understand.
    If you have so many questions about things, read some debunking sites I’ve linked to and see if they make sense. Do the firefighter testimonies count? Do videos count? What is you evidence for doubt and does anyone offer a reasonable possible explanation?
    It’s a complex event in terms of politics, physics, chemistry, and engineering. One is likely to find inconsistencies all over the place. But in my mind, the craziest notion is that the US would deliberately destroy itself to justify a war when it can just declare war as it has done so often.
    What unique thing did we get out of 9/11 that would have made it worthwhile?
    If you have a good answer for that, a UNIQUE thing, something we couldn’t have gotten more easily, I might change my mind.
    So far no one has an answer for that, and there are lots of debunkings of the so-called questions about Building 7 and THE HOLE IN THE PENTAGON and whether or not there were planes and what happened to the rubble and why are dead people alive or living people dead or some people silenced or why there’s no name on a website when the cold fusion guy has his name everywhere and why the religion prof isn’t considered an expert and what about….
    The conspiracy makes less and less sense as the desperate cling to more and more unreasonable seeming contradictions. It’s religious.

    Reply

  58. Outraged American says:

    James L, you should show-up more often-Questions needs a
    good smack down about once an hour. Lack of sex is my
    suspicion. You’re a man presumably, maybe you could give her
    that and some Haldrol to stop her rambling.
    My news show was based out of Manhattan ( I worked virtually
    from LA and then Phoenix, or rather, Southern Mexico) and one
    of the producers went down with a camera and filmed Building 7
    as it burned. There’s no way those fires could have collapsed it.
    I have interviewed so many people who were there on that day,
    and I will never believe the official 9/11 narrative. But
    Questions does because it allowed her precious Homeland,
    Yisrael, the one she doesn’t live in (too scared of Ragheads with
    Attitudes — prefers to be a Laptop Warrior like most Zionists)
    but has pledged allegiance to, like 98% of “our” Congress, to use
    the US military as her private mercenaries.
    So JamesL come on over anytime, because I am Steve and this is
    my site.

    Reply

  59. JamesL says:

    Questions, that last one was really a blooper. The only one who has talked about ‘faster than free fall’ re WTC is you. The consistent argument against the official story has been ‘at freefall speeds’, which the WTC’s did, and which no one I know of has successfully challenged.
    I just slogged through the last 50 comments. What a compendium of examples of why America is sliding. I recall the first lines of the keynote speakers of the Dem and Repub conventions: “We are Strong.” (applause) “We are United.” (applause)
    Well, America is neither. We don’t like each other any more; we suspect each other. And innumerable governmental and media figures keep stoking the first of discord for narrow minded political favor. We can’t even agree on what a fact is. America is severely divided and some of the most important reasons reside in the comments here. When people start seeing their neighbors as suspect, or the enemy, people are easy to manipulate, and the future is not rosy.
    RE Pearl: PNAC wanted a new one for their very own. They got it. Also, I suggest Akira Iriye’s Pearl Harbor and the Coming of the Pacific War, containing the diplomatic to-ing and fro-ing of Roosevelt and Japan. Pearl was a Roosevelt bluff game gone bad, with Pearl’s pearls left exposed by Roosevelt having placated a distressed and vocal Churchill by moving forces and fuel to the Atlantic theater. No fuel at Pearl, no long range scouts. Eerie similarity to the 24/7 air defense umbrella America has paid for for 50 years that somehow fell flat on its ass and was totally non-functional on 911. If the Air Force is so competent, why did it screw up so badly? Might have it had some help? Who was in charge that day? What else was going on that might have offered some confusing assistance?
    RE Popular Mechanics and Popular Science: I read these as a kid and loved them. They were all DIY stuff. How to make an egg scale. How to build your own bulldozer out of a Willy’s coupe. How to build a radio out of rock and a coat hanger (probably illegal now under the Patriot Act). I can’t stand the current versions and I had to think about why. ‘Why’ is that PM and PS are mind candy for technology hope freaks. I have a PM in the other room with a story brimming with hope about a new ship propulsion system that uses wind, just about to be deployed. Problem is it is dated 1956. It was just candy. PM and PS are all about the undying and altruistic PROMISE that technology will save our butts and make life easier too. But now the covers of PS and PM every other month feature a new weapon, the propaganda equivalent of pumping up the public as an alternate to saying how many billions those weapons cost. And inside you find page after full page of adverts showing smiling, handsome, well muscled, well kitted US soldiers, telling how they joined the army to get an education (single payer). No sweaty, filthy, tired, shell-shocked, or morally filleted troops, just the good lookers. PM and PS have become military industrial shills, addicted to the income that full page ads and a never ending lineup of flashy stories like how great it will be for all Americans when we finally have weapons in space. So no, PM and PS are not my idea of unimpeachable sources. Especially when they start with the premise of debunking the “unofficial” myths.
    Questions, your mind won’t change about 911, but my personal list of questions is very long, very serious, and very troubling because I HAVE looked far and wide to find answers to those questions and I haven’t found them. I just found more questions. The tiny hole in the Pentagon, the unbroken windows where the vertical fin would have hit, the special edition “folding wings” Boeing, the immediate confiscation of all video monitors, and no public video image of an airliner hitting the Pentagon. Erasing my doubts would have been easy: show me the plane hitting the building. But no. Show me the WTC debris being examined. Show me how the insurance policy on the WTC benefited me.
    How about the extreme damage in the BASEMENT of the WTC building we have video for, taken before the collapse? How about the completely empty high security vault down there? Who cleans out and abandons a high security vault of an important building housing financial, governmental,and security offices, leaving the door open? Why has the person who shot that video been silenced and hounded by the US government? You’ve made up your mind and that’s unfortunate. Your toss-off of Mexico shows you are uninterested in what else might have been going on in the international community. I am open to explanations. You haven’t offered any to me that outweigh my own considered conclusion. Only in America can the best steel buildings on fire America can build fall into their own footprint. Only in America. In every other country they burn, often for many times the amount of time the WTC’s did, but they remain standing. I should think that would trouble you.

    Reply

  60. questions says:

    “n pure conspiracy theorist form, the second paragraph on this page has been taken out of context. Yes, building 7 fires were unfought but that doesn’t mean there wasn’t firemen on the scene, does it? Daniel Nigro said there were RESCUE OPERATIONS that were ongoing. He also says it was HE and not Silverstein who ordered the firemen out.
    I ordered the evacuation of an area sufficient around to protect our members, so we had to give up some rescue operations that were going on at the time and back the people away far enough so that if 7 World Trade did collapse, we [wouldn’t] lose any more people. Chief Nigro
    There is more than enough evidence that there were firemen around Building 7 to “Pull” from the area.
    We had to be very forceful in getting the guys out. They didn’t want to come out. There were guys going into areas that I wasn’t even really comfortable with, because of the possibility of secondary collapses. We didn’t know how stable any of this area was. We pulled everybody back probably by 3 or 3:30 in the afternoon. We said, this building is going to come down, get back. It came down about 5 o’clock or so, but we had everybody backed away by then. Chief Hayden
    What part of this is difficult for the people who purport to be scholars? While my grammar is admittedly poor, the conspiracy theorists reading comprehension seems to be worse. Or is it? I think they’re hoping everyone else has poor reading comprehension. For those who are reading comprehensionally challenged let me clear this up for you.
    The firemen started search and rescue operations for people who may have been trapped or hurt in Building 7. By 2:00PM they knew the building was going to collapse and PULLED them away. These are the firemen saying this. Not me, not Bush, but the firemen.
    What about just listening? Do the conspiracy theorists know how to listen?
    http://www.911myths.com/WTC7_Smoke.avi
    Do they really think the immediate area around the building was vacant with not a soul for blocks? Of course they don’t. They pounce on any and all quotes which have the slightest possibility of being taken as a contradiction. This is the theme which runs throughout the so called truth movement.
    Here is evidence they had rescue operations IN Building 7:
    We made searches. We attempted to put some of the fire out, but we had a pressure problem. I forget the name of the Deputy. Some Deputy arrived at the scene and thought that the building was too dangerous to continue with operations, so we evacuated number 7 World Trade Center.
    http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages/pdf/nyregion/20050812_
    WTC_GRAPHIC/9110313.PDF
    You can’t evacuate a building no one is in…
    How many firefighters are they going to call liars? How many?… These heroic firefighters who would risk their lives for these opportunists. The personal attacks on me are to be expected but the attack on these brave men and women should not go unnoticed. E-mail the conspiracy theorists and tell them to stop lying about the firemen’s quotes for monetary and/or personal gain. One of whom is dead and can’t defend himself.
    What Silverstein said means nothing in the light of the firemen’s quotes. It’s not unreasonable to conclude Silverstein was under the impression the firemen were containing the fires when in fact the firemen were performing a rescue operation. There is the real possibility Silverstein was told by Nigro that (Paraphrasing) ‘there are firemen in the building and I’m going to have to pull them out.’ Silverstein may have just assumed they were fighting the fires, which isn’t unreasonable. Maybe they were fighting fires in the very beginning but when the “attempt” failed due to a lack of water pressure, they switched to rescue only? So for the purposes of the report. there were no firefighting in the building because they had low water pressure. At least I’ve provided you with evidence to support this conclusion.
    Is that the evidence of explosives? Do you want to put Silverstein in jail because he used the word pull “it” to describe getting the firemen out of the area? Or because he didn’t know the task the firemen were performing in the building? Is that reasonable? Of course not.
    Using conspiracy theorists logic, since conspiracy theorists have created a small industry around this event, maybe they blew up the towers?
    This is just the latest attempt to take your mind off their collapsing conspiracy story.”
    More from above link.

    Reply

  61. questions says:

    Some of the quotations are from an interview with Firehouse Magazine as well.
    “Firehouse: Chief Nigro said they made a collapse zone and wanted everybody away from number 7— did you have to get all of those people out?
    Hayden: Yeah, we had to pull everybody back. It was very difficult. We had to be very forceful in getting the guys out. They didn’t want to come out. There were guys going into areas that I wasn’t even really comfortable with, because of the possibility of secondary collapses. We didn’t know how stable any of this area was. We pulled everybody back probably by 3 or 3:30 in the afternoon. We said, this building is going to come down, get back. It came down about 5 o’clock or so, but we had everybody backed away by then. At that point in time, it seemed like a somewhat smaller event, but under any normal circumstances, that’s a major event, a 47-story building collapsing. It seemed like a firecracker after the other ones came down, but I mean that’s a big building, and when it came down, it was quite an event. But having gone through the other two, it didn’t seem so bad. But that’s what we were concerned about. We had said to the guys, we lost as many as 300 guys. We didn’t want to lose any more people that day. And when those numbers start to set in among everybody… My feeling early on was we weren’t going to find any survivors. You either made it out or you didn’t make it out. It was a cataclysmic event. The idea of somebody living in that thing to me would have been only short of a miracle. This thing became geographically sectored because of the collapse. I was at West and Liberty. I couldn’t go further north on West Street. And I couldn’t go further east on Liberty because of the collapse of the south tower, so physically we were boxed in.”
    ****
    Extensive damage, PULLING firefighters back and PULLING firefighters out, letting a 47 story tall fire damaged skyscraper collapse rather than risk the lives of firefighters.
    Some conspiracy this is.
    2 10-story gaping holes on 2 connecting sides of the building. Smoke, fire, creaking sounds…. KABOOM.
    Clearly the work of the US Govt with a cooperative NYFD conspiracy team…. (SNARK)
    Do conspiracy theorists read anything other than each other?

    Reply

  62. questions says:

    From the same site, note that these are from transcripts the NYTimes ran.
    “”A little north of Vesey I said, we’ll go down, let’s see what’s going on. A couple of the other officers and I were going to see what was going on. We were told to go to Greenwich and Vesey and see what’s going on. So we go there and on the north and east side of 7 it didn’t look like there was any damage at all, but then you looked on the south side of 7 there had to be a hole 20 stories tall in the building, with fire on several floors. Debris was falling down on the building and it didn’t look good.
    But they had a hoseline operating. Like I said, it was hitting the sidewalk across the street, but eventually they pulled back too. Then we received an order from Fellini, we’re going to make a move on 7. That was the first time really my stomach tightened up because the building didn’t look good. I was figuring probably the standpipe systems were shot. There was no hydrant pressure. I wasn’t really keen on the idea. Then this other officer I’m standing next to said, that building doesn’t look straight. So I’m standing there. I’m looking at the building. It didn’t look right, but, well, we’ll go in, we’ll see.
    So we gathered up rollups and most of us had masks at that time. We headed toward 7. And just around we were about a hundred yards away and Butch Brandies came running up. He said forget it, nobody’s going into 7, there’s creaking, there are noises coming out of there, so we just stopped. And probably about 10 minutes after that, Visconti, he was on West Street, and I guess he had another report of further damage either in some basements and things like that, so Visconti said nobody goes into 7, so that was the final thing and that was abandoned. ”
    NOTE THAT THERE WAS A HOLE AS BIG AS 20 STORIES OR SO in the side of Bldg. 7.
    But who would believe a transcript from the NYT of a firefighter on the scene at the time? Probably no one.

    Reply

  63. questions says:

    http://www.debunking911.com/pull.htm
    On “pull” and Silverstein and conspiracy. Oh, and the, umm, was it 8-story, Building 6 that was pulled by cables, unlike the 47 or so story Building 7 that collapsed after firecrews were pulled out, pulled back, and it had burned for 7 hours…..
    But it won’t convince you because you KNOW things……….
    “Structure Magazine explains one probable cause of the WTC 7 collapse. “Single Point of Failure: How the Loss of One Column May Have Led to the Collapse of WTC 7”
    http://www.structuremag.org/Archives/2007-11/SF-WTC7-Gilsanz-Nov07.pdf
    Conspiracy theorists say World Trade Center 7 is the best proof for controlled demolition because it wasn’t hit by airliners and only had a few fires. They also claim that there was a confession from the building owner who said he “pulled” it. But this is deceptive because while building 7 wasn’t hit by an airliner, it was hit by the large perimeter columns of the Tower collapse. It was 400 ft away but the towers were more than 1300 ft tall. As the tower peeled open, it easily tilted over to reach building 7. Below is evidence showing that conspiracy theorists are wrong.
    As you can see from the graphic below, all the buildings just as far away from both towers as WTC7 were hit. The others were either very short buildings which didn’t have to support a massive load above or had no fire. Only Building 7 had unfought fires and the massive load of 40 stories above them.”
    From the above link.
    “So we know the building should have been hit given the debris field above. But what of the damage to the building? Conspiracy sites say there were small fires. And what of Silverstein’s comments in the PBS special? He used the term “Pull” to describe a decision made. Conspiracy theorists say “Pull” is a term used by demolition experts. This is one of those many half truths conspiracy theorists use to convince the ignorant. “Pull” is used when they “Pull” a building away from another with cables during demolition. ”
    From the above link.

    Yes, that worker certainly does say they’re getting ready to “pull” building six. Then we have a quote from Luis Mendes, from the NYC Department of Design and Construction:
    “We had to be very careful about how we demolished building 6. We were worried about building 6 coming down and damaging the slurry walls, so we wanted that particular building to fall within a certain area.”
    Interesting. They needed to be sure that building 6 came down in a “controlled” way. But wait a second: the video clip that Alex Jones presents – the clip that’s shown on all the conspiracist websites –ends abruptly at this point. Huh? Where’s the money shot? Why’d they cut it there?
    Here’s why:
    Because the following scene shows how building 6 was “pulled”: with cables attached to the hydraulic arms of four excavators, not with explosive charges.
    “We’ve got the cables attached in four different locations going up. Now they’re pulling the building to the north. It’s not every day you try to pull down a eight story building with cables.”
    Narrator Kevin Spacey: “The use of explosives to demolish World Trade Centers 4, 5 and 6 was rejected for fear workers would risk their lives entering buildings to set the charges.”
    Why do they pull that part of the documentary out of the conspiracy story? This is yet another example of outright deception by the so called “truth” movement and its leaders like Alex Jones. They draw their stories around the truth like a child drawing around their hand.
    However, was the fire more severe than conspiracy theorists let on and was Silverstein’s quote taken out of context? The two are related and are explored below.”
    All of that was from the above link as well.
    PULL isn’t what you think. And Bldg. 7 went down the usual way — massive fire damage on the lower floors, one or more gaping holes, and 7 hours of fire…..
    I’m sure you won’t let facts get in the way of religion. No one ever does….

    Reply

  64. questions says:

    Look up “pulled” and “9/11 conspiracy” and find the transcripts that say “pulled out” “pulled back” and the firefighters who indicate that “pulled” is synonymous with “evacuated” or “pulled out” or “pulled back”….
    And why the obsession with my major? If you want it to have been “illogic,” so be it.
    So which “truther” version do you subscribe to? The no planes one, the let it happen one, the gov’t did it one? Somewhere in between? Do you even have a coherent narrative?
    Why did the gov’t demolish bldg 7? What secrets lay in its vaults….

    Reply

  65. Outraged American says:

    Silverstein, Netanyahu’s best friend, is on camera saying that
    Building 7 was pulled. I think Questions majored in Illogic.
    Terri’s parents wanted her kept alive and that’s enough for me.

    Reply

  66. questions says:

    Bill Frist the Diagnostician is to Terry Schiavo’s true condition as controlled-demolition truthers are to WTC 7 and 9.8 meters per second per second…
    From Wiki:
    “This means that, ignoring air resistance, an object falling freely near the Earth’s surface increases its velocity with 9.81 m/s (32.2 ft/s or 22 mph) for each second of its descent. Thus, an object starting from rest will attain a velocity of 9.81 m/s (32.2 ft/s) after one second, 19.6 m/s (64.4 ft/s) after two seconds, and so on, adding 9.81 m/s (32.2 ft/s) to each resulting velocity. Also, again ignoring air resistance, any and all objects, when dropped from the same height, will hit the ground at the same time.”
    The supposed “proof” of “controlled demolition” for WTC7 is that it fell faster than free fall, or that it fell faster than gravity’s pull. This extra-fast fall was made possible by the judicious use of explosive, goes this physics-defying theory.
    Bill Frist KNEW from video that Schiavo’s brain was fine. Cd-ers KNOW from video that WTC7 fell faster than gravity’s pull.
    Frist was incompetent, though not physics defying. The CD-ers don’t know any physics.
    Demolition explosives don’t make things fall FASTER than gravity’s pull. They can’t. Gravity is what we have. 9.8 m/sec^2.
    Explosives knock out low supports and allow gravity to do the work. Explosives don’t speed up the process of gravity’s pull.

    Reply

  67. questions says:

    http://wtc.nist.gov/media/ScheuermanStatementDec2006.pdf
    Some guy named “Sheuerman” who had something to do with CIsrAel…
    or the NYFD…
    Whatever.
    Idle speculation about Building 7.
    Or maybe expert and witness analysis.
    But expertise wouldn’t matter anyway cuz of the CIsrAel connection….
    Besides, this piece is part of a 2006 NIST report and we all know that NIST IS CIsrAel….

    Reply

  68. questions says:

    http://wtc7lies.googlepages.com/home
    Main page of a debunking site noted above. And it’s not anonymous, but I have to say, I haven’t researched the author to see if he works for the CIsrAel.
    REMEMBER FACTS DON’T MATTER!!!!!!

    Reply

  69. questions says:

    And (Columbo like) one more thing…
    One of the complaints on the Yahoo board POA linked to about my favorite CIsrAel site is that there were too many words there so it had to be CIsrAel-sponsored.
    So, too many words is proof that the conspiracy people are right and the debunkers of the debunking or whatever it is that my views are called are EVIL.
    But too few words leaves holes that PROVE beyond a shadow of a doubt that the conspiracy-minded are right.
    Pray tell, what is the exact right number of words to be used to be legit?
    The boulder moves, slowly slowly up the hill.

    Reply

  70. questions says:

    One more note on this as I push the boulder….
    Every too-many-Chertoffs issue becomes all the more proof that the conspiracy theory is correct. In fact, all of my posts prove it, too.
    If something contradicts the conspiracy theory, that something is PROOF positive that the theory is correct.
    If there’s something that still needs explanation, PROOF POSITIVE that the conspiracy theory is correct.
    EVERYthing proves the theory is correct. Even the proof that it isn’t correct proves that it is correct.
    Somehow, this must be related to magical thinking. It’s really something to see.
    The CIsrAel is so powerful that it can make things seem, it can defy, it is omnipresent, it turns websites on and off, it controls posters on every blog, it is magical, powerful, and profoundly devious.
    So we have the good — Jones, et al; we have evil — CIsrAel, questions (me, that is), debunking sites; we have explanations for all the mysteries of the universe — oil, money, power; we have devoted followers — POA, decco, Kathleen (?), and OA (here) and posters on all the sites elsewhere; we have gathering spaces — all those pages and pages of google links; we have sacred texts — Loose Change, the “peer reviewed” (not!) thermite paper, a book by the Griffin person, and a scattering of other sources; we have quotations and (mis)readings of evidence; we have testimony we don’t question at all (the same litany of “experts” who are way out of their fields and who are simultaneously wrong (the two don’t always go together, but often do)……….
    It’s a religion.
    Religion isn’t open to proof or facts.
    Justification by faith.

    Reply

  71. questions says:

    I’m just getting my work gloves on….
    http://wtc7lies.googlepages.com/eyewitnessaccountsofwtc7fires
    CIsrAel site that quotes from that other bastion of Propaganda:
    http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages/html/nyregion/20050812_WTC_GRAPHIC/met_WTC_histories_full_01.html
    There are numerous firefighters talking about the extensive fire damage and all the blazing fires in Bldg. 7.
    But again, like a rock, some are immobile. Evidence doesn’t count because one’s mind is so set on seeing the government in a certain way. It works like religion. If you’re sure that your deity intervenes in the world, listens to your prayers, puts his likeness into statues and mold on the fridge and pieces of cheese (lots of real and comic references for those who don’t see them), then no one’s going to convince you that indeed the deity has other things to do that day or doesn’t actually exist.
    The level of conviction in the conspiracy theories is the same as the level of conviction in the religious-minded. It HAS to be that way because there’s no other explanation, they seem to hold.
    Problem is, there are other explanations. And those explanations are more faithful to the nature of institutions, scientific understanding, and the human capacity for error.
    Could there be holes in the reports? Of course. Are there compromises amongst the writers of the report? Of course.
    But what does it really mean to say the gov’t was involved?
    What does it mean, pre-9/11 to say we coulda stopped it?
    What does it mean to say we planned it?
    What does it mean to say there were no planes?
    What does it mean to say that the ONLY way to go to war is to destroy the Twin Towers, the Pentagon, the White House, civil aviation, Wall Street, and the economy of the US?
    Rich people lost money for a while. Famous people lost relatives. Lots of rich people lost relatives. Does it really fit together?
    (These are some of the basic conspiracy theories out there.)
    If you get all your information going through a filter, than what you know is filtered. If all you get is Fox News, you already see there will be problems. The Truthers have the same problem.
    They latch on to “mysteries” that turn out not to be mysteries. They follow their deity because they already believe. And if the deity is wrong on some point (say the “too many Chertoffs” issue), then they just move on to the next thing.
    The belief is so deep that there could be thousands of “too many Chertoff”-like issues and it wouldn’t matter. No fact stands in the way of belief. No likelihood gets in the way. No other source of thermite, or red/gray chip could matter. It had to be SO cuz I can’t think any other way.
    ‘Sides, I read a summary of a peer-reviewed article that agrees with me (even if it wasn’t really peer-reviewed and the author is into the cold fusion fiasco. Cold fusion has nothing to do with the TRUTH OF 9/11.)
    Well, I have moved the rock an eighth inch or so!
    Thanks CIsrAel for the check by the way! I’m gonna buy a subscription to the Jerusalem Symphony and go listen to Shotakovich.

    Reply

  72. questions says:

    The Jenny Lin Shostakovich is wonderful! Sharper than the Jarrett. Very different music for being the same music. Worth a listen.
    And now I have a rock I have to roll up a hill again.

    Reply

  73. Paul Norheim says:

    Sorry Arthur.
    I promise: I`m sober.
    But I can understand that my last posts may have been obscure and confusing.
    On another thread, I jokingly predicted that Questions would chime in, first by arguing against Nadine,
    then against POA. He did the first, but not the latter (probably because he read my “prediction”).
    Questions then frequently referred to a story retold by Somerset Maugham (and quoted above on this
    thread) about a man who met his fate by trying to escape it. Obviously Questions struggled hard to escape
    his “fate” (arguing with POA) on the other thread, only to jump right into it on this thread… So I started
    joking here that he did just as I had predicted.
    When I said just above that I had an errand in Bagdad, it was my way to say that I am probably rather
    predictable as well. Yeah, I probably expressed myself as if I was under influence of some exotic drugs.
    Better that, though, than this long winded explanation, or?
    In any case, the little Maugham story (I think I`ve seen it retold by Borges as well) is worth reading,
    independent of these harmless jokes about the predictability of TWN readers…

    Reply

  74. ... says:

    paul, sounds like you are channeling some ingmar bergmans seventh seal… i enjoyed that movie…

    Reply

  75. arthurdecco says:

    Paul, sometimes you post like you’re on the most exotic drugs. Is it a language issue? Or do ya just like gettin hi?

    Reply

  76. Paul Norheim says:

    Oh no, nothing dramatic. I`m just going to the marked place
    to buy some provisions for my merchant.
    (Ref: the 9:09PM post)

    Reply

  77. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Hey, why don’t you write my posts for me for a while. I’ll go on vacation!”
    Contact AIPAC, they owe you a trip or two to Israel anyway.

    Reply

  78. Outraged American says:

    Oh great, Questions has now driven Norheim to become a suicide
    bomber. What part of Baghdad do you plan to target Paul?
    Because we’ll make sure that a ton of kids are slaughtered there
    and then Sweden, whoops, Norway, will be attacked by “radical
    Islamic terrorists” and then they’ll both diddle around for awhile
    before they join NATO. Or are they already in NATO?
    To quote McCain/ T. Roosevelt ,”Walk softly and carry a big dick.

    Reply

  79. Paul Norheim says:

    Can`t step in for you, Questions, due to travel preparations:
    I have an errand in Bagdad tomorrow 🙂

    Reply

  80. questions says:

    I gotta work on the predictable thing. I’m going to try to channel POA.
    Okay, I can’t.
    I’ll be predictable.
    Hey, why don’t you write my posts for me for a while. I’ll go on vacation!

    Reply

  81. questions says:

    My irony ran a slightly different direction, but yours is probably more in keeping with the story….

    Reply

  82. quesitons says:

    Building 7, according to what I’ve been reading, had massive structural damage on one side, numerous fires throughout, was EVACUATED BY THE FIREFIGHTERS because they saw it was going to go down. There are quotations from many firefighters saying that they evacuated — the had to PULL OUT or PULL BACK — before it went down. And then it went down. Debris from the other buildings fell on it. And it went down.
    THE REAL story is that the CIA had all sorts of crucial secret records in it and we all know that the ONLY way to get rid of records when you’re planning to demolish several buildings in a plaza is to blow up the records-holding building as well. No data wipe in advance, no shredding, no removal. Just blow up the building cuz you can be CERTAIN that demolition will leave nothing behind. They’re that good!!!!!!!
    And lots of CIA agents are on record saying yes indeed we destroyed the building so that the records would all go away and no one would ever be able to prove that we destroyed the building. We are such clever agents. We figured it out ourselves!!
    By the way, thermites apparently burn, they don’t explode. Thermites are some mix of aluminum and something else, I forget what. Thermites might be a little like termites — kind of ubiquitous in fires that have burning airplanes in them. I dunno. I’m not a chemist.
    ****
    More seriously — figuring out the entire spectrum of events requires expertise in:
    Politics, history, aviation, ME affairs, Bin Ladenism, the BCCI scandal, chemistry, physics, mechanical and chemical engineering, demolition, explosives and whole lot more. No one person has all this contained within his/her knowledge and experience.
    This fact shows the limits inherent in dealign with complex topics like this. The electricians see part of it, the demolition people see part of it, the politics people see part of it, the materials science people see part of it…. Putting it into a coherent whole requires knowledge about the areas you have and a certain amount of faith/quotation/dependence on others to fill in the rest.
    Once you’re at your limit point, you are left exposed to criticism by the expert in that area.
    Professional anti-gov people have very little knowledge about the science stuff and so they hit a limit early and often. The science people tend not to be able to speak anti-governmentese well enough to please the suspicious.
    the result is threads like this all over the web. We are dancing in other people’s steps. I repeat lines, POA repeats lines. There are things I know and others I take on faith. Same for POA.
    What can anyone do?

    Reply

  83. Outraged American says:

    Paul’s obviously been subsisting only on his beard lice. Paul, don’t
    worry, I’m going to send you a chimichanga by the next post.

    Reply

  84. Paul Norheim says:

    “PAUL,
    YOU’RE CHEATING!!!!!!!! That only applied to the other thread.”
    Questions, don`t you realize that the other thread actually was
    your “Bagdad”, and that you had an appointment on this thread?
    That`s the whole point of the story which you yourself alluded to,
    isn`t it?
    Sorry, Questions, but that`s life… And yes: you are predictable…

    Reply

  85. questions says:

    (sorry about the weird PAUL insert in the middle of things — it should have been tacked on at the end.)
    And Paul, how ’bout weighing in on the conspiracy theory?? It’ll be like old times….

    Reply

  86. questions says:

    Putting Harrit on that list was a mistake. The guy didn’t do solid work. If others are similar, the list is a joke.
    Mental health professionals? On what basis?? Family members?? Legal scholars?
    The 9/11 commission people had all sorts of positions and agendas and disagreements and the emphasis in the document displeased many. That happens whenever people work in a group. Look at health care legislation. No one is gonna like the outcome. Doesn’t mean there’s a conspiratorial cover up of profound governmental malfeasance.
    PAUL,
    YOU’RE CHEATING!!!!!!!! That only applied to the other thread. You powers have been vanquished or banished or whatever!!! This is an all new thread and I am back from the SAHARA!!!!!!!!
    On what basis do they question the “OFFICIAL STORY”??
    There are vast numbers of conspiracy theories, each with its own emphasis and truth. I actually don’t know what you believe. Were there planes? Some deny that. Was Islam at all related? Who paid whom? Did Bin Laden have anything to do with anything? Did George Bush directly order this? When did the training start? Whose idea was it and why…
    So those who have a problem with the “Official Story” — what problem do they have and should they be grouped on the same list?
    You SCREAM GOVERNMENT CONSPIRACY, but what is your version of the conspiracy, what questions do you have, just for curiosity’s sake….
    There’s a HUGE difference between calling for a little more study and INSISTING that the gov’t quite deliberately killed thousands of its own to get: gold? war?? oil??? contracts???? All stuff that could be gotten more easily and certainly by other means……
    Around and around and around. I don’t at all trust your list of sources and you don’t trust mine. I’m guessing we wouldn’t really like each other were we plagued with actually meeting. No like, no trust, no mutual belief, no seeing aspects of the world the same way.
    I don’t see your world. It makes no sense to me when I try to take a peek. No sense at all. And I’m sure the feeling is mutual.

    Reply

  87. Paul Norheim says:

    “If it’s disinformation, POA, and the CIA set it up so that I would find it and post here to
    disagree with you, then the joke’s on me I guess.”
    The one who set it up operates from Samarra.
    “The Appointment in Samarra”
    (as retold by W. Somerset Maugham [1933])
    The speaker is Death
    “There was a merchant in Bagdad who sent his servant to market to buy provisions and in a
    little while the servant came back, white and trembling, and said, Master, just now when I
    was in the marketplace I was jostled by a woman in the crowd and when I turned I saw it
    was Death that jostled me. She looked at me and made a threatening gesture, now, lend
    me your horse, and I will ride away from this city and avoid my fate. I will go to Samarra
    and there Death will not find me. The merchant lent him his horse, and the servant
    mounted it, and he dug his spurs in its flanks and as fast as the horse could gallop he went.
    Then the merchant went down to the marketplace and he saw me standing in the crowd and
    he came to me and said, Why did you make a threating getsture to my servant when you
    saw him this morning? That was not a threatening gesture, I said, it was only a start of
    surprise. I was astonished to see him in Bagdad, for I had an appointment with him tonight
    in Samarra.”
    If you call the “197 comment” thread “Bagdad” and this thread “Samarra”, the meaning of
    the story will be clear.

    Reply

  88. arthurdecco says:

    questions, It’s NOT the singer. It’s the SONG!
    You can rattle on all you want about this fruitcake or that nutbar crazy-man theory and it won’t ever change a thing. The fact is: The official story about what happened on 911 is a gothic fairy tale of mythic proportions, starring Codpiece and Satan as Gawd and King. Too bad no one is willing to identify the director…AND the Producer…
    So let’s start small – I don’t think you’re up to much more than that just now. You must be tuckered out with all the lying you’ve been doing.
    Why did building #7 fall down?
    Come on now – a sensible, engineering-type answer, okay?

    Reply

  89. questions says:

    http://mobile.salon.com/ent/feature/2006/06/27/911_conspiracies/index.html
    It’s amazing how many pages down one has to go in google searches to get to something that criticizes the conspiracy theories.
    This one is on the movie “Loose Change” and is from Salon.
    Previous link, to implosionworld, is a report by a fairly major building-destroying and documenting the destruction company. An amazing addition to the universe.
    Much info there about how buildings fall down.
    OA, the guy was into the cold fusion crap. ZOMG.
    The MIT link is a series of papers.

    Reply

  90. PissedOffAmerican says:

    If you follow the link, each and every one of the below mentioned statements is linked to.
    http://www.prisonplanet.com/20_minutes_bibliography.html
    Highly Credible People Question 9/11
    The following people question the government’s version of 9/11, or the government’s openness in providing information about the September 11 attacks.
    9/11 COMMISSIONERS
    The co-chairs of the 9/11 Commission (Thomas Keane and Lee Hamilton) said that the CIA (and likely the White House) “obstructed our investigation”.
    The co-chairs of the 9/11 Commission also said that the 9/11 Commissioners knew that military officials misrepresented the facts to the Commission, and the Commission considered recommending criminal charges for such false statements, yet didn’t bother to tell the American people (free subscription required).
    Indeed, the co-chairs of the Commission now admit that the Commission largely operated based upon political considerations.
    9/11 Commission co-chair Lee Hamilton says “I don’t believe for a minute we got everything right”, that the Commission was set up to fail, that people should keep asking questions about 9/11, that the 9/11 debate should continue, and that the 9/11 Commission report was only “the first draft” of history.
    9/11 Commissioner Bob Kerrey said that “There are ample reasons to suspect that there may be some alternative to what we outlined in our version . . . We didn’t have access . . . .”
    9/11 Commissioner Timothy Roemer said “We were extremely frustrated with the false statements we were getting”
    Former 9/11 Commissioner Max Cleland resigned from the Commission, stating: “It is a national scandal”; “This investigation is now compromised”; and “One of these days we will have to get the full story because the 9-11 issue is so important to America. But this White House wants to cover it up”.
    9/11 Commissioner John Lehman said that “We purposely put together a staff that had – in a way – conflicts of interest“.
    The Senior Counsel to the 9/11 Commission (John Farmer) who led the 9/11 staff’s inquiry, said “I was shocked at how different the truth was from the way it was described …. The tapes told a radically different story from what had been told to us and the public for two years…. This is not spin. This is not true.”
    CONGRESS
    According to the Co-Chair of the Congressional Inquiry into 9/11 and former Head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Bob Graham, a U.S. government informant was the landlord to two of the hijackers for over a year (but the White House refused to let the 9/11 inquiry interview him).
    Current U.S. Senator (Patrick Leahy) states “The two questions that the congress will not ask . . . is why did 9/11 happen on George Bush’s watch when he had clear warnings that it was going to happen? Why did they allow it to happen?”
    Current Republican Congressman (Ron Paul) calls for a new 9/11 investigation and states that “we see the [9/11] investigations that have been done so far as more or less cover-up and no real explanation of what went on”
    Current Democratic Congressman (Dennis Kucinich) hints that we aren’t being told the truth about 9/11
    Former Democratic Senator (Mike Gravel) states that he supports a new 9/11 investigation and that we don’t know the truth about 9/11
    Former Republican Senator (Lincoln Chaffee) endorses a new 9/11 investigation
    Former U.S. Democratic Congressman (Dan Hamburg) says that the U.S. government “assisted” in the 9/11 attacks, stating that “I think there was a lot of help from the inside”
    Former U.S. Republican Congressman and senior member of the House Armed Services Committee, and who served six years as the Chairman of the Military Research and Development Subcommittee (Curt Weldon) has shown that the U.S. tracked hijackers before 9/11, is open to hearing information about explosives in the Twin Towers, and is open to the possibility that 9/11 was an inside job
    MILITARY LEADERS
    Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense under President Ronald Reagan (Col. Ronald D. Ray) said that the official story of 9/11 is “the dog that doesn’t hunt” (bio)
    Director of the U.S. “Star Wars” space defense program in both Republican and Democratic administrations, who was a senior air force colonel who flew 101 combat missions (Col. Robert Bowman) stated that 9/11 was an inside job. He also said:
    “If our government had merely [done] nothing, and I say that as an old interceptor pilot-I know the drill, I know what it takes, I know how long it takes, I know what the procedures are, I know what they were, and I know what they’ve changed them to-if our government had merely done nothing, and allowed normal procedures to happen on that morning of 9/11, the Twin Towers would still be standing and thousands of dead Americans would still be alive. [T]hat is treason!“
    U.S. Army Air Defense Officer and NORAD Tac Director, decorated with the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star and the Soldiers Medal (Capt. Daniel Davis) stated:
    “there is no way that an aircraft . . . would not be intercepted when they deviate from their flight plan, turn off their transponders, or stop communication with Air Traffic Control … Attempts to obscure facts by calling them a ‘conspiracy Theory’ does not change the truth. It seems, ‘Something is rotten in the State.’ “
    President of the U.S. Air Force Accident Investigation Board, who also served as Pentagon Weapons Requirement Officer and as a member of the Pentagon’s Quadrennial Defense Review, and who was awarded Distinguished Flying Crosses for Heroism, four Air Medals, four Meritorious Service Medals, and nine Aerial Achievement Medals (Lt. Col. Jeff Latas) is a member of a group which doubts the government’s version of 9/11
    U.S. General, Commanding General of U.S. European Command and Supreme Allied Commander Europe, decorated with the Bronze Star, Silver Star, and Purple Heart (General Wesley Clark) said “We’ve never finished the investigation of 9/11 and whether the administration actually misused the intelligence information it had. The evidence seems pretty clear to me. I’ve seen that for a long time.”
    Air Force Colonel and key Pentagon official (Lt. Colonel Karen Kwiatkowski) finds various aspects of 9/11 suspicious
    Lieutenant colonel, 24-year Air Force career, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs at the Defense Language Institute (Lt. Colonel Steve Butler) said “Of course Bush knew about the impending attacks on America. He did nothing to warn the American people because he needed this war on terrorism.”
    Two-Star general (Major General Albert Stubbelbine) questions the attack on the Pentagon
    U.S. Air Force fighter pilot, former instructor at the USAF Fighter Weapons School and NATO’s Tactical Leadership Program, with a 20-year Air Force career (Lt. Colonel Guy S. Razer) said the following:
    “I am 100% convinced that the attacks of September 11, 2001 were planned, organized, and committed by treasonous perpetrators that have infiltrated the highest levels of our government ….
    Those of us in the military took an oath to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic”. Just because we have retired does not make that oath invalid, so it is not just our responsibility, it is our duty to expose the real perpetrators of 9/11 and bring them to justice, no matter how hard it is, how long it takes, or how much we have to suffer to do it.
    We owe it to those who have gone before us who executed that same oath, and who are doing the same thing in Iraq and Afghanistan right now. Those of us who joined the military and faithfully executed orders that were given us had to trust our leaders. The violation and abuse of that trust is not only heinous, but ultimately the most accurate definition of treason!”
    U.S. Marine Corps lieutenant colonel, a fighter pilot with over 300 combat missions flown and a 21-year Marine Corps career (Lt. Colonel Shelton F. Lankford) believes that 9/11 was an inside job, and said:
    “This isn’t about party, it isn’t about Bush Bashing. It’s about our country, our constitution, and our future. …
    Your countrymen have been murdered and the more you delve into it the more it looks as though they were murdered by our government, who used it as an excuse to murder other people thousands of miles away.
    If you ridicule others who have sincere doubts and who know factual information that directly contradicts the official report and who want explanations from those who hold the keys to our government, and have motive, means, and opportunity to pull off a 9/11, but you are too lazy or fearful, or … to check into the facts yourself, what does that make you? ….
    Are you afraid that you will learn the truth and you can’t handle it? …”
    U.S. Navy ‘Top Gun’ pilot (Commander Ralph Kolstad) who questions the official account of 9/11 and is calling for a new investigation, says “When one starts using his own mind, and not what one was told, there is very little to believe in the official story”.
    The Group Director on matters of national security in the U.S. Government Accountability Office said that President Bush did not respond to unprecedented warnings of the 9/11 disaster and conducted a massive cover-up instead of accepting responsibility
    Additionally, numerous military leaders from allied governments have questioned 9/11, such as:
    Canadian Minister of Defense, the top military leader of Canada (Paul Hellyer)
    Assistant German Defense Minister (Andreas Von Bulow)
    Commander-in-chief of the Russian Navy (Anatoli Kornukov)
    Chief of staff of the Russian armed forces (General Leonid Ivashov)
    INTELLIGENCE PROFESSIONALS
    Former military analyst and famed whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg recently said that the case of a certain 9/11 whistleblower is “far more explosive than the Pentagon Papers“. He also said that the government is ordering the media to cover up her allegations about 9/11. And he said that some of the claims concerning government involvement in 9/11 are credible, that “very serious questions have been raised about what they [U.S. government officials] knew beforehand and how much involvement there might have been”, that engineering 9/11 would not be humanly or psychologically beyond the scope of the current administration, and that there’s enough evidence to justify a new, “hard-hitting” investigation into 9/11 with subpoenas and testimony taken under oath.
    A 27-year CIA veteran, who chaired National Intelligence Estimates and personally delivered intelligence briefings to Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, their Vice Presidents, Secretaries of State, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and many other senior government officials (Raymond McGovern) said “I think at simplest terms, there’s a cover-up. The 9/11 Report is a joke”, and is open to the possibility that 9/11 was an inside job.
    A 29-year CIA veteran, former National Intelligence Officer (NIO) and former Director of the CIA’s Office of Regional and Political Analysis (William Bill Christison) said “I now think there is persuasive evidence that the events of September did not unfold as the Bush administration and the 9/11 Commission would have us believe. … All three [buildings that were destroyed in the World Trade Center] were most probably destroyed by controlled demolition charges placed in the buildings before 9/11.” (and see this).
    20-year Marine Corps infantry and intelligence officer, the second-ranking civilian in U.S. Marine Corps Intelligence, and former CIA clandestine services case officer (David Steele) stated that “9/11 was at a minimum allowed to happen as a pretext for war”, and it was probably an inside job (see Customer Review dated October 7, 2006).
    A decorated 20-year CIA veteran, who Pulitzer-Prize winning investigative reporter Seymour Hersh called “perhaps the best on-the-ground field officer in the Middle East”, and whose astounding career formed the script for the Academy Award winning motion picture Syriana (Robert Baer) said that“the evidence points at” 9/11 having had aspects of being an inside job .
    The Division Chief of the CIA’s Office of Soviet Affairs, who served as Senior Analyst from 1966 – 1990. He also served as Professor of International Security at the National War College from 1986 – 2004 (Melvin Goodman) said “The final [9/11 Commission] report is ultimately a coverup.”
    Professor of History and International Relations, University of Maryland. Former Executive Assistant to the Director of the National Security Agency, former military attach頩n China, with a 21-year career in U.S. Army Intelligence (Major John M. Newman, PhD, U.S. Army) questions the government’s version of the events of 9/11.
    The head of all U.S. intelligence, the Director of National Intelligence (Mike McConnel) said “9/11 should have and could have been prevented”
    A number of intelligence officials, including a CIA Operations Officer who co-chaired a CIA multi-agency task force coordinating intelligence efforts among many intelligence and law enforcement agencies (Lynne Larkin) sent a joint letter to Congress expressing their concerns about “serious shortcomings,” “omissions,” and “major flaws” in the 9/11 Commission Report and offering their services for a new investigation (they were ignored).
    SCIENTISTS
    A prominent physicist with 33 years of service for the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC (Dr. David L. Griscom) said that the official theory for why the Twin Towers and world trade center building 7 collapsed “does not match the available facts” and supports the theory that the buildings were brought down by controlled demolition
    A world-renowned scientist, recipient of the National Medal of Science, America’s highest honor for scientific achievement (Dr. Lynn Margulis) said:
    “I suggest that those of us aware and concerned demand that the glaringly erroneous official account of 9/11 be dismissed as a fraud and a new, thorough, and impartial investigation be undertaken.“
    The former head of the Fire Science Division of the government agency which claims that the World Trade Centers collapsed due to fire (the National Institute of Standards and Technology), who is one of the world’s leading fire science researchers and safety engineers, a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering (Dr. James Quintiere), called for an independent review of the World Trade Center Twin Tower collapse investigation. “I wish that there would be a peer review of this,” he said, referring to the NIST investigation. “I think all the records that NIST has assembled should be archived. I would really like to see someone else take a look at what they’ve done; both structurally and from a fire point of view. … I think the official conclusion that NIST arrived at is questionable.”
    The principal electrical engineer for the entire World Trade Center complex, who was “very familiar with the structures and [the Twin Towers’] conceptual design parameters” (Richard F. Humenn), stated that “the mass and strength of the structure should have survived the localized damage caused by the planes and burning jet fuel . . . . the fuel and planes alone did not bring the Towers down.”
    Former Director for Research, Director for Aeronautical Projects, and Flight Research Program Manager for NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center, who holds masters degrees in both physics and engineering (Dwain A. Deets) says:
    “The many visual images (massive structural members being hurled horizontally, huge pyroclastic clouds, etc.) leave no doubt in my mind explosives were involved [in the destruction of the World Trade Centers on 9/11].”
    A prominent physicist, former U.S. professor of physics from a top university, and a former principal investigator for the U.S. Department of Energy, Division of Advanced Energy Projects (Dr. Steven E. Jones) stated that the world trade centers were brought down by controlled demolition
    A U.S. physics professor who teaches at several universities (Dr. Crockett Grabbe) believes that the World Trade Centers were brought down by controlled demolition
    An expert on demolition (Bent Lund) said that the trade centers were brought down with explosives (in Danish)
    A Dutch demolition expert (Danny Jowenko) stated that WTC 7 was imploded
    A safety engineer and accident analyst for the Finnish National Safety Technology Authority (Dr. Heikki Kurttila) stated regarding WTC 7 that “The great speed of the collapse and the low value of the resistance factor strongly suggest controlled demolition.”
    A 13-year professor of metallurgical engineering at a U.S. university, with a PhD in materials engineering, a former Congressional Office of Technology Assessment Senior Staff Member (Dr. Joel S. Hirschhorn), is calling for a new investigation of 9/11
    A Danish professor of chemistry (Dr. Niels Harrit) said, in a mainstream Danish newspaper, “WTC7 collapsed exactly like a house of cards. If the fires or damage in one corner had played a decisive role, the building would have fallen in that direction. You don’t have to be a woodcutter to grasp this” (translated)
    A former guidance systems engineer for Polaris and Trident missiles and professor emeritus, mathematics and computer science at a university concluded (Dr. Bruce R. Henry) that the Twin Towers “were brought down by planted explosives.”
    A mechanical engineer with 20 years experience as a Fire Protection Engineer for the U.S. Departments of Energy, Defense, and Veterans Affairs, who is a contributing Subject Matter Expert to the U.S. Department of Energy Fire Protection Engineering Functional Area Qualification Standard for Nuclear Facilities, a board member of the Northern California – Nevada Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers, currently serving as Fire Protection Engineer for the city of San Jose, California, the 10th largest city in the United States (Edward S. Munyak) believes that the World Trade Center was destroyed by controlled demolition.
    The former Chief of the Strategic and Emergency Planning Branch, U.S. Department of Energy, and former Director of the Office of Engineering at the Public Service Commission in Washington, D.C., who is a mechanical engineer (Enver Masud) , does not believe the official story, and believes that there is a prima facie case for controlled demolition of the World Trade Center.
    A professor of mathematics (Gary Welz) said “The official explanation that I’ve heard doesn’t make sense because it doesn’t explain why I heard and felt an explosion before the South Tower fell and why the concrete was pulverized”
    STRUCTURAL ENGINEERS AND ARCHITECTS
    A prominent engineer with 55 years experience, in charge of the design of hundreds of major building projects including high rise offices, former member of the California Seismic Safety Commission and former member of the National Institute of Sciences Building Safety Council (Marx Ayres) believes that the World Trade Centers were brought down by controlled demolition (see also this)
    Two professors of structural engineering at a prestigious Swiss university (Dr. Joerg Schneider and Dr. Hugo Bachmann) said that, on 9/11, World Trade Center 7 was brought down by controlled demolition (translation here)
    Kamal S. Obeid, structural engineer, with a masters degree in Engineering from UC Berkeley, of Fremont, California
    Ronald H. Brookman, structural engineer, with a masters degree in Engineering from UC Davis, of Novato California
    Graham John Inman, structural engineer, of London, England
    Paul W. Mason, structural engineer, of Melbourne, Australia
    Mills M. Kay Mackey, structural engineer, of Denver, Colorado
    David Scott, Structural Engineer, of Scotland
    Nathan Lomba, Structural Engineer, of Eureka, California
    Edward E. Knesl, civil and structural engineer, of Phoenix, Arizona
    David Topete, civil and structural engineer, San Francisco, California
    Charles Pegelow, structural engineer, of Houston, Texas (and see this)
    Dennis Kollar, structural engineer, of West Bend, Wisconsin
    Doyle Winterton, structural engineer (retired)
    Michael T. Donly, P.E., structural engineer
    William Rice, P.E., structural engineer, former professor of Vermont Technical College
    An architect, member of the American Institute of Architects, who has been a practicing architect for 20 years and has been responsible for the production of construction documents for numerous steel-framed and fire-protected buildings for uses in many different areas, including education, civic, rapid transit and industrial use (Richard Gage) disputes the claim that fire and airplane damage brought down the World Trade Centers and believes there is strong evidence of controlled demolition (many other architects who question 9/11 are listed here)
    LEGAL SCHOLARS
    Former Federal Prosecutor, Office of Special Investigations, U.S. Department of Justice under Presidents Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan; former U.S. Army Intelligence officer, and currently a widely-sought media commentator on terrorism and intelligence services (John Loftus) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Former Inspector General, U.S. Department of Transportation; former Professor of Aviation, Dept. of Aerospace Engineering and Aviation and Professor of Public Policy, Ohio State University (Mary Schiavo) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Professor of International Law at the University of Illinois, Champaign; a leading practitioner and advocate of international law; responsible for drafting the Biological Weapons Anti-Terrorism Act of 1989, the American implementing legislation for the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention; served on the Board of Directors of Amnesty International (1988-1992), and represented Bosnia- Herzegovina at the World Court, with a Doctor of Law Magna Cum Laude as well as a Ph.D. in Political Science, both from Harvard University (Dr. Francis Boyle) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Former prosecutor in the Organized Crime and Racketeering Section of the U.S. Justice Department and a key member of Attorney General Bobby Kennedy’s anti-corruption task force; former assistant U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois (J. Terrence “Terry” Brunner) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Professor Emeritus, International Law, Professor of Politics and International Affairs, Princeton University; in 2001 served on the three-person UN Commission on Human Rights for the Palestine Territories, and previously, on the Independent International Commission on Kosovo (Richard Falk) questions the government’s version of 9/11., and asks whether the Neocons were behind 9/11.
    Bessie Dutton Murray Distinguished Professor of Law Emeritus and Director, Center for Human Rights, University of Iowa; Fellow, World Academy of Art and Science. Honorary Editor, Board of Editors, American Journal of International Law (Burns H. Weston) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Former president of the National Lawyers Guild (C. Peter Erlinder), who signed a petition calling for a real investigation into 9/11. And see petition.
    Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice at Troy University; associate General Counsel, National Association of Federal Agents; Retired Agent in Charge, Internal Affairs, U.S. Customs, responsible for the internal integrity and security for areas encompassing nine states and two foreign locations; former Federal Sky Marshall; 27-year U.S. Customs career (Mark Conrad) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Professor of Law, University of Freiburg; former Minister of Justice of West Germany (Horst Ehmke) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Director of Academic Programs, Institute for Policy and Economic Development, University of Texas, El Paso, specializing in executive branch secrecy policy, governmental abuse, and law and bureaucracy; former U.S. Army Signals Intelligence officer; author of several books on law and political theory (Dr. William G. Weaver) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Famed trial attorney (Gerry Spence) questions the government’s version of 9/11.
    Former Instructor of Criminal Trial Practice, Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California at Berkeley 11-year teaching career. Retired Chief Assistant Public Defender, Contra Costa County, California 31-year career (William Veale) said:
    “When you grow up in the United States, there are some bedrock principles that require concerted effort to discard. One is the simplest: that our leaders are good and decent people whose efforts may occasionally warrant criticism but never because of malice or venality… But one grows up. … And with the lawyer’s training comes the reliance on evidence and the facts that persuade… After a lot of reading, thought, study, and commiseration, I have come to the conclusion that the attacks of 9/11 were, in their essence, an inside job perpetrated at the highest levels of the U S government.”
    FAMILY MEMBERS AND HEROIC FIRST RESPONDERS
    A common criticism of those who question 9/11 is that they are being “disrespectful to the victims and their families”.
    However, half of the victim’s families believe that 9/11 was an inside job (according to the head of the largest 9/11 family group, Bill Doyle) (and listen to this interview). Many family and friends of victims not only support the search for 9/11 truth, but they demand it (please ignore the partisan tone). See also this interview.
    Indeed, it has now become so clear that the 9/11 Commission was a whitewash that the same 9/11 widows who called for the creation of the 9/11 Commission are now demanding a NEW investigation (see also this video).
    And dying heroes, soon-to-be victims themselves, the first responders who worked tirelessly to save lives on and after 9/11, say that controlled demolition brought down the Twin Towers and that a real investigation is necessary.
    PSYCHIATRISTS AND PSYCHOLOGISTS
    Finally, those who attack people who question the government’s version of 9/11 as “crazy” may wish to review the list of mental health professionals who have concluded that the official version of 9/11 is false:
    Psychiatrist Carol S. Wolman, MD
    Psychiatrist E. Martin Schotz
    Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University Medical Center, as well as Radiology, at Duke University Medical Center D. Lawrence Burk, Jr., MD
    Board of Governors Distinguished Service Professor of Psychology and Associate Dean of the Graduate School at Ruters University Barry R. Komisaruk
    Professor of Psychology at University of New Hampshire William Woodward
    Professor of Psychology at University of Essex Philip Cozzolino
    Professor of Psychology at Goddard College Catherine Lowther
    Professor Emeritus of Psychology at California Institute of Integral Studies Ralph Metzner
    Professor of Psychology at Rhodes University Mike Earl-Taylor
    Retired Professor of Psychology at Oxford University Graham Harris
    Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Nebraska and licensed Psychologist Ronald Feintech
    Ph.D. Clinical Neuropsychologist Richard Welser
    THOUSANDS OF OTHERS
    The roster above is only a sample. There are too many Ph.D. scientists and engineers, architects, military and intelligence officials, politicians, legal scholars and other highly-credible people who question 9/11 — literally thousands — to list in one place. Here are a few additional people to consider:
    The former director of the FBI (Louis Freeh) says there was a cover up by the 9/11 Commission
    Former air traffic controller, who knows the flight corridor which the two planes which hit the Twin Towers flew “like the back of my hand” and who handled two actual hijackings (Robin Hordon) says that 9/11 could not have occurred as the government says, and that planes can be tracked on radar even when their transponders are turned off (also, listen to this interview)
    Perhaps “the premiere collapse expert in the country”, who 9/11 Commissioner Timothy Roemer referred to as a “very, very respected expert on building collapse”, the head of the New York Fire Department’s Special Operations Command and the most highly decorated firefighter in its NYFD history, who had previously “commanded rescue operations at many difficult and complex disasters, including the Oklahoma City Bombing, the 1993 World Trade Center Bombing, and many natural disasters worldwide” thought that the collapse of the South Tower was caused by bombs, because the collapse of the building was too even to have been caused by anything else (pages 5-6).
    Former Deputy Secretary for Intelligence and Warning under Nixon, Ford, and Carter (Morton Goulder), former former Deputy Director to the White House Task Force on Terrorism (Edward L. Peck), and former US Department of State Foreign Service Officer (J. Michael Springmann), as well as a who’s who of liberals and independents) jointly call for a new investigation into 9/11
    Former FBI agent (Robert Wright) says “The FBI, rather than trying to prevent a terrorist attack, was merely gathering intelligence so they would know who to arrest when a terrorist attack occurred.”
    Former Minnesota Governor (Jesse Ventura) questions the government’s account of 9/11 and asks whether the World Trade Center was demolished
    Former FBI translator, who the Department of Justice’s Inspector General and several senators have called extremely credible (free subscription required) (Sibel Edmonds), said “If they were to do real investigations we would see several significant high level criminal prosecutions in this country. And that is something that they are not going to let out. And, believe me; they will do everything to cover this up”. She also is leaning towards the conclusion that 9/11 was an inside job. Some of her allegations have been confirmed in the British press.

    Reply

  91. Outraged American says:

    Many scientists have been religious and their research has not been
    called into QUESTION. It’s Sunday, walk yourself down to the
    evening mass at a Catholic church, and see what a bunch of hooey
    is spouted there.
    I’m assuming you’ve read the Talmud and the Torah. Try to
    interpret those using critical thinking. And yet how many of our
    high achievers believe this nonsense?
    Wrong argument. And I’ve interviewed Jones. Face to face. His
    eyes are probably still bleeding. Very nice and shy/ unassuming
    man.
    And I have no love for Mormons except for their entertainment
    value.

    Reply

  92. questions says:

    Your Hero, Dr. Jones:
    “The Pseudo-Science of the ‘9/11 Truth’ Movement
    Click here if you want to print, or adjust the appearance, of this article
    By Edmund Standing
    In recent months, a number of high (and not so high) profile celebrities have publicly offered support to conspiracy theories regarding the September 11th 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center. Central to the claims of many who embrace notions of 9/11 as an ‘inside job’ is that credible scientific research by mainstream scientists supports this position. In this article, I shall briefly look at two qualified academic scientists who hold that the 9/11 attacks were orchestrated by a cabal of scheming neo-conservatives in Washington DC. The picture that emerges is not one of mainstream scientists whose research is trustworthy and should be urgently addressed. Instead, we find purveyors of extreme and fact-free conspiracy theories, scientists who appear to have little regard for the scientific method, and who mirror in every way the pseudo-scholars found in other fringe ‘research’ areas such as ‘Creation Science’.
    Dr Steven E. Jones
    Steven Jones is a retired Professor of Physics. His retirement from his post at Brigham Young University followed a period in which the university placed him on paid leave due to controversy over his claims of a 9/11 conspiracy involving the ‘controlled demolition’ of the World Trade Center’s twin towers. Brigham Young University is owned by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon Church) and run under its ‘Church Educational System’, and Jones is a committed Mormon. Throughout his career, Jones’ main area of academic interest has been ‘alternative energies’, including the widely discredited ‘Cold Fusion’. However, in addition to this, he has also been keenly involved in Archaeometry ‘research’, the entire aim of which has been to give an academic sheen to the claims of the Book of Mormon. Jones is ‘scientific advisor’ to the Ancient Historical Research Foundation, a pseudo-scholarly body that produces research on ancient American cultures and peoples such as Native Americans, Aztecs, and Mayans. The central purpose of this work is to support the Book of Mormon’s absurd ‘historical’ claims, and, with this aim, Jones has engaged in a search for evidence of ‘pre-Columbian’ horse remains in North America. In addition to this, he has also published a risible paper in which he claims to have found evidence in ancient Mayan artwork ‘proving’ the Book of Mormon’s claims regarding Jesus visiting America. The article, entitled ‘Behold My Hands: Evidence for Christ’s Visit in Ancient America’, concludes:
    These discoveries have provided me a deeper appreciation for the reality of the resurrection of Jesus and of His visit to “other sheep” who heard His voice and saw His wounded hands as did Thomas. My hope is that these new insights will encourage you to seriously consider the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Christ. Why don’t you start reading right away?”
    http://www.butterfliesandwheels.com/articleprint.php?num=320

    Reply

  93. questions says:

    Of course, it’s no longer the only site I’ve linked to, but whatever.
    If it’s disinformation, POA, and the CIA set it up so that I would find it and post here to disagree with you, then the joke’s on me I guess.
    I kind of think the site makes sense, and it fits with other stuff I’ve found at this point.
    But go ahead and think what you will, because you will anyway.
    And the Yahoo forum is just that, a forum. And like any and all fora, there’s a limit to what it shows. Just like this one, and the one I linked to above.
    And as for keeping it maintained and anonymous, my guess is that it’s something of a career-ender to be seen too caught up in this mess.
    And I did link to a list of links. Probably those are CIA disinformation as well. The CIA is pretty amazing as a fantasy construct!

    Reply

  94. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Hmmmm, seems I’m not the only one wondering why no one claims ownership of questions’ pet site.
    http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index;_ylt=Ag2PZo8.bPMtW5Cyc3M3Z4Y8.Bd.;_ylv=3?qid=20080627164412AAiuSHp
    Note the evasive sarcasm questions uses when queried about the site ownership. From some asshole that is so fond of attacking the messenger, he certainly is cavalier about dismissing the anonymity of his pet site’s ownership. Truth is, the jackass has no idea who owns or administers the site, nor does anyone else apparently. But be prepared for a basic tried and true line of obsfucating SHIT from questions as to why we shouldn’t concern ourselfs about who administers the site.
    Have any of you ever seen such a carefully maintained site that does not have an “about us” page, or a bio of the owners, or SOMETHING to indicate ownership?
    Personally, on this issue, I think questions doth protest too much. He has replaced his usual obsfucation with direct denial, and is basing his entire argument on the links and information provided by a site whose ownership and administration is a giant question mark.
    The “peer reviewed” study he cites is not a “study” at all. It is a hypothetical theory about what MIGHT have brought down the buildings.
    Interesting seeing questions devoting this much time and effort to a topic he is clueless about. Is it just a coincidence he is basing his argument on a site whose ownership, and motives, are unknown?
    Ask yourself why someone would go to such lengths to create a website, while keeping the ownership and the identity of the administrators secret.

    Reply

  95. Outraged American says:

    POA “Questions, who owns and administers the site
    “Debunking911.com”?” Nadine, whose nickname is Bibi.

    Reply

  96. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Questions, who owns and administers the site “Debunking911.com”?

    Reply

  97. questions says:

    A link to links to peer reviewed papers….
    http://www.debunking911.com/paper.htm
    Yep, the link is to the earlier joke of a website. But the papers seem real and the links go to Caltech and the like….

    Reply

  98. questions says:

    As much as 22-220 tons of thermite…
    “Now, Jones estimates that “Roughly 2,000 pounds of RDX-grade linear-shaped charges” would be sufficient to bring the building down, and such a quantity of explosive might conceivably have been hidden in each of the towers. But the quantity of thermite required to produce this stream of molten metal is much greater. 107 Kg of thermite is required to produce 54 Kg of molten iron, and the stream of molten metal flowing from the impact zone (if iron) has been estimated at thousands of kilograms. Even if the stream is only 1,000 kg of iron, then 2,000 kg, or two metric tonnes, of thermite would be required. But the CD hypothesis implies much more than this. For a start the thermite would have been distributed over the proposed target floor for initial collapse, so it would be very difficult for the molten iron products to pool in one place and pour out. Secondly, the CD hypothesis agrees that the floor(s) of impact of the plane could not have been exactly predicted, so every, say, 5 floors, another couple of metric tonnes of thermite would be required. (Jones: ‘… to make it appear that the planes somehow initiated the collapse; cutter-charges could have been pre-placed at numerous spots in the building, since one would not know exactly where the planes would enter.’) Even if only the top half of the building were so prepared, then we would anticipate 2 metric tonnes x 11 locations or 22 tonnes. If the mass of stream of molten metal were estimated at more like 10,000 kg of iron then the figure goes up to 220 tonnes of thermite. We have to believe (a) that the conspirators were ignorant enough to attempt to use thermite, and (b) could insinuate between 22 and 220 tonnes of thermite, plus charges, plus radio firing systems, into each tower.”
    From the above and much hated I’m sure link. What would it be to transport that much stuff into a building, hide it in all the right places for demolition…. Read the link on demolition and how it works, too.

    Reply

  99. questions says:

    “Hence the CD theory is not supported by the quantities of molten metal, because thermite in its conventional form is useless in demolition: it is slow-burning, with unpredictable time to melt, and can only be used in direct contact with horizontal unclad steel beams / components. (The horizontal steel members in the Twin Towers were covered by at least 4 inches of concrete.) Prototype thermite cutter torches have been developed which could cut steel at any angle, but they work by producing as stream of high-velocity, high-temperature combustion products. Any iron produced by such a cutter would be dispersed as as droplets and would only in exceptional circumstances pool into any significant quantities of molten iron. It is more likely that a film of iron particles, mixed with aluminium oxide particles, would be deposited on nearby surfaces. However this is speculation on my part as I cannot find any reference to commercially available thermite cutter torches. If anyone can provide information on such devices I would be pleased to hear from them. Nano-thermites, mentioned by Jones, are also ruled out because they operate more like an explosive, and so would disperse iron particles as I suggest above. The thermite lance, a variant that uses a long iron tube with aluminium rods running through it, is ruled out as far as I can tell because it would require an operative.”
    ********
    From the piece linked right above.
    This is a nice careful slow science filled debunking of Jones a point at a time with links, background and info.
    I’m sure it’ll be hated.

    Reply

  100. questions says:

    http://www.jnani.org/mrking/writings/911/king911.htm#_Toc144445987
    Here’s another piece taking on the Jones thing.
    At some point you choose your sources and they either apply Occam’s Razor or they don’t.
    There are plenty of explanations for Jones’s findings and POA chooses to make Jones and Harrit the gospel. I don’t. There are peer review issues, sample purity issues, a wide range of other, more plausible, explanations for Jones’s and Harrit’s findings….
    On and on, round and round. Ideology? My blinkered unthinking thought? Whateveh.

    Reply

  101. questions says:

    There’s a whole controversy apparently about the Open Chemical Physics Journal that “published” the Harrit piece. Something about the editor’s no knowing that the article was appearing in this online journal and the editor’s subsequent removal from her editorship…. I’ve seen a few references to this one. The name of the editor was Marie-Paule Pileni.
    Maybe she was forced out by Cheney because she dared to speak truth to power. Who knows.
    it would seem to be something of an iffy journal. I don’t outright dismiss it because it’s an iffy source. After all, the NYTimes printed Judith Miller and all. But still, ya gotta wonder about this peer review stuff if the editor didn’t even know about the piece….
    http://www.911myths.com/html/traces_of_thermate_at_the_wtc.html
    A reading of Jones.
    It’s just nowhere near as clear a case as POA wants it to be at any level. And it’s harder to do the interpretive work without a strong background in science research, but these sources POA takes as gospel need to be interpreted, not accepted.

    Reply

  102. Outraged American says:

    Article: Israel goes ballistic (which begs the question, “When is
    Israel NOT ballistic?”)
    An Arleigh Burke class destroyer – one of the largest and most
    powerful naval vessels built in the United States – the Higgins is
    one of 18 American ships with an Aegis interceptor system,
    capable of destroying enemy ballistic missiles above the
    atmosphere.
    In just a few weeks, additional Aegis vessels will arrive here to
    participate in the biennial Juniper Cobra missile defense exercise
    that the IDF has been holding with the US European Command
    (EUCOM) and Missile Defense Agency since 2001.
    This year’s drill, scheduled for mid-October, is being described
    as the largest joint exercise ever held by the countries. During it
    they will jointly test four ballistic missile defense systems.
    In addition to the Aegis, the MDA and EUCOM are sending
    THAAD and Patriot 3 missile defense systems – America’s most-
    advanced – for the first time.
    http://tinyurl.com/pm44am
    Continues and is a must read –from the Jerusalem Post, Wolf
    Blitzer -krieg’s old outfit
    F*CK ISRAEL AND HER ENABLERS IN THE US.
    OK:my encounter with easy e was brief and sweaty, so brief that
    I never even got a chance to tell if his corn cob was shucked.
    It was not my booty the Easy was staring at, as it’s been
    compared unfavorably to “two eggs in a hanky.” You’d need the
    Hubble to find my butt. Easy was not scoping out my two
    pimples, but rather the waiters. A serious study of Islam would
    turn any man gay.

    Reply

  103. questions says:

    OMG, no scratch that — ZOMG — POA that debunking site you hate so much hits on just about everything on your list… No wonder you hate it so much. All your info comes from the conspiracy sites and all you did to avoid them with SCIENCE was to go to their favorite sources — two nutwings who have it wrong also…. ZOMG.

    Reply

  104. arthurdecco says:

    From the comments section of a web site showing the real-time collapse of Building 7:
    “What gives it away for me is the obvious. If someone knocked down two towers in your homeland, you would have your best criminal inspectors. The crime scene would be preserved, lots of questioning of employees, lots of lab work. I mean, it would be the greatest criminal investigation of all times.”
    Posted by: skateboardkid | August 30, 2009 at 11:46 PM
    http://www.picassodreams.com/picasso_dreams/2008/11/new-footage-of-wtc-7-collapse.html
    And what did your government do instead of mounting “the greatest criminal investigation of all times”?
    They started carting off the evidence and selling it to the Chinese for scrap as fast as their twisted little minds could arrange it.
    Who needs any more proof than that to suspect the official story – the real conspiracy theory – is bunk and hokum?

    Reply

  105. questions says:

    Some problems and questions with Harrit and Jones have been raised all over the place….
    The thermite issue is less straightforward than POA would have it. Seems that paint chips, aluminum from the planes and other things could have caused what Harrit found.
    The science is less straightforward than POA wants it to be.
    Here’s a link to a mere blog discussion board, but it seems to point out some issues. It’s quite possible that not a lot of actual scientists are going to bother taking on Jones and Harrit as they are nutcases. I mean, how many scientists really bother with anti-evolution people either?
    http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=5097459
    But here’s some discussion on both sides anyway.
    Please be aware that both Jones and Harrit have come under a fair amount of criticism for having their conclusions fixed before they started. Makes you find things that aren’t there. The whole red and gray chips thing is not what they portray, apparently. But I’m not a chemist…. I’ll try to find more.

    Reply

  106. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Oddly collapsing buildings, mysterious pre-impact flashes, missing aircraft debris, puddles of once molten steel and/or videotape anomolies.
    The extensive yet seemingly taboo eye witness accounts of multiple, immense explosions prior to the collapse of each of the WTC towers.
    The speedy disposal of or classifying of crime scene evidence at three locations.
    The removal of anti-terrorism expert, (in four administrations), Richard Clark from the presiden’t inner circle in the months prior to the attacks, even though, according to FBI Chief George tenet that the entire US intelligence system was “blinking red”.
    The ignored and expunged key testimony by US Transportation Secretary Norman Mineta before the 911 Commission that directly contradicted critical claims by Cheney.
    The ignored testimony and subsequent gag order of Sibel Edmonds regarding FBI procedures that likely affected intelligence failures leading to the attacks.
    The critical Pentagon officials that offer three contradictory accounts of their failures to respond to the attacks, the final one offered to the 911 Commission.
    The timeline, whereabouts and disputed actions of Dick Cheney during the attacks.
    The appointment of Cheney to head all US air defenses, an unprecedented delegation of presidential authority, three months prior to the attacks.
    That Bush and Cheney would only agree to appear before the 911 Commission without taking an oath, only appearing together and with no transcript of notes allowed.
    The multiple war drills in progress at the center of the failures to respond militarily, (only one of which was mentioned in a footnote by the Commission), and the Pentagon’s defensive missle system that failed to operate.
    The philosophy and advocacy within the PNAC document of 2000 and the influence of key contributors of that document within the Bush administration.
    That the Bush administration vigorously fought the formation of an invstigation into the attacks for over fourteen months, that the 911 Commission was badly underfunded and was directed by a Bush insider.
    The close, decades long ties between the Bush family and the Saudi Royal family, and the significant business ties between the Bush family and the bin Laden family.
    The five so called “Dancing Israelis”, arrested and later deported, that had been sent – in advance – to document the 911 attacks on videotape.
    The documented afilliations between a number of the alleged hijackers and US intelligence and other government agencies.
    The FBI admits that there is no evidence to this day that connect bin Laden or al Qaeda to the 911 attacks.
    The documented $100,000 payment to the alleged lead hijacker Atta shortly before the attacks by Pakistan’s chief of intelligence, ignored by the Commission.
    The impossible, and immediate, discovery of a passport in the rubble of the WTC, leading to the conclusion as to who was responsible for the attacks.
    The fact that a number of the named terrorists were later discovered to be alive, yet no revised list has ever been released.

    Reply

  107. PissedOffAmerican says:

    This deserves a repost.
    Note the credentialing and positions of the various contributers. In order to post this, I had to remove a number of links offering further accredidation and peer review. I hope you will examine those, and reach your own conclusions as to the credibility of this SCIENTIFIC STUDY and PEER REVIEWED study, in contrast to questions’ vague rebuttals and anonymous “debunk” site.
    http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCPJ/2009/00000002/00000001/7TOCPJ.SGM
    “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe” by Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R. Ryan, Frank M. Legge, Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley and Bradley R. Larsen
    The paper ends with this sentence: “Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.”
    In short, the paper explodes the official story that “no evidence” exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.
    What is high-tech explosive/pyrotechnic material in large quantities doing in the WTC dust? Who made tons of this stuff and why? Why have government investigators refused to look for explosive residues in the WTC aftermath?
    These are central questions raised by this scientific study.
    The peer-review on this paper was grueling, with pages of comments by referees. The tough questions the reviewers raised led to months of further experiments. These studies added much to the paper, including observation and photographs of iron-aluminum rich spheres produced as the material is ignited in a Differential Scanning Calorimeter (see Figures 20, 25 and 26).
    The nine authors undertook an in-depth study of unusual red-gray chips found in the dust generated during the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11/2001. The article states: “The iron oxide and aluminum are intimately mixed in the red material. When ignited in a DSC device the chips exhibit large but narrow exotherms occurring at approximately 430 degreesC, far below the normal ignition temperature for conventional thermite. Numerous iron-rich spheres are clearly observed in the residue following the ignition of these peculiar red/gray chips. The red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic.” The images and data plots deserve careful attention.
    Some observations about the production of this paper:
    1. First author is Professor Niels Harrit of Copenhagen University in Denmark, an Associate Professor of Chemistry. He is an expert in nano-chemistry; current research activities and his photo can be found here:
    Molecular Structures on Short and Ultra Short Timescales
    A Centre under the Danish National Research Foundation
    The Centre for Molecular Movies was inaugurated 29th November 2005, at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen. The Centre is made possible through a five year grant from the Danish National Research Foundation. We aim to obtain real time “pictures” of how atoms are moving while processes are taking place in molecules and solid materials, using ultrashort pulses of laser light and X-rays. The goal is to understand and in turn influence, at the atomic level, the structural transformations associated with such processes.
    The Centre combines expertise form Risø National Laboratory, University of Copenhagen, and the Technical University of Denmark in structural investigation of matter by synchrotron X-ray based techniques, femtosecond laser spectroscopy, theoretical insight in femtosecond processes, and the ability to tailor materials, and design sample systems for optimal experimental conditions.”
    We understand that the Dean of Prof. Harrit’s college, Niels O Andersen, appears as the first name on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Bentham Science journal where the paper was published.
    2. Second author is Dr. Jeffrey Farrer of BYU.
    3. Dr. Farrer is featured in an article on page 11 of the BYU Frontiers magazine, Spring 2005: “Dr. Jeffrey Farrer, lab director for TEM” (TEM stands for Transmission Electron Microscopy). The article notes: “The electron microscopes in the TEM lab combine to give BYU capabilities that are virtually unique… rivaling anything built worldwide.” The article is entitled: “Rare and Powerful Microscopes Unlock Nano Secrets,” which is certainly true as regards the discoveries of the present paper.
    4. Kudos to BYU for permitting Drs. Farrer and Jones and physics student Daniel Farnsworth to do the research described in the paper and for conducting internal reviews of the paper. Dr. Farrer was formerly first author on this paper. But after internal review of the paper, BYU administrators evidently disallowed him from being first author on ANY paper related to 9/11 research (this appears to be their perogative, but perhaps they will explain). Nevertheless, the paper was approved for publication with Dr. Farrer’s name and affiliation listed and we congratulate BYU for this. We stand by Dr. Farrer and congratulate his careful scientific research represented in this paper.
    5. Perhaps now there will finally be a review of the SCIENCE explored by Profs. Harrit and Jones and by Drs. Farrer and Legge and their colleagues, as repeatedly requested by these scientists. We challenge ANY university or established laboratory group to perform such a review. This paper will be a good place to start, along with two other peer-reviewed papers in established journals involving several of the same authors:
    Fourteen Points of Agreement with Official Government Reports on the World Trade Center Destruction
    Authors: Steven E. Jones, Frank M. Legge, Kevin R. Ryan, Anthony F. Szamboti, James R. Gourley
    The Open Civil Engineering Journal, pp.35-40, Vol 2
    Environmental anomalies at the World Trade Center: evidence for energetic materials
    Authors: Kevin R. Ryan, James R. Gourley, and Steven E. Jones
    The Environmentalist, August, 2008
    6. James Hoffman has written three essays further explaining the implications and results of the paper. Thank you, Jim, for this work!
    7. Important features of the research have been independently corroborated by Mark Basile in New Hampshire and by physicist Frédéric Henry-Couannier in France, proceeding from earlier scientific reports on these discoveries (e.g., by Prof. Jones speaking at a Physics Dept. Colloquium at Utah Valley University last year.) We understand that details will soon be forthcoming from these independent researchers.

    Reply

  108. questions says:

    So David Ray Griffen, author of a debunking the debunking (is that the phrase — he disagrees with me and sides with POA) book is an emeritus theologian. This book is everywhere on the conspiracy sites.

    Reply

  109. easy e says:

    Posted by Outraged American, Sep 13 2009, 12:20PM
    “…he’s just been
    let out of a madrassa where his penis was chained to a Quran…”
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    I was just released by some sympathetic and open-minded J-Streeters.
    More on Operation Northwoods:
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4242016437813472857#
    Questions, kindly take your blinders off.

    Reply

  110. easy e says:

    Questions, when I read your comments I’ve learned to just consider the source. The world view prizm of you and your ilk (and we know who they are among the TWN posters) is pathetic. I would expect people of reasonable to intelligence to question at least some of the things that the MSM media puts out there.
    The Military Industrial Establishment/War Profiteers have a very successful track record, as reflected in prior posts.
    What further proof do you need? Ever heard of Operation Northwoods? Google it.
    Please stop insulting the intelligence of this community that 9/11 couldn’t have been more than what’s been spoonfed to us by the MSM.
    Turning 9/11 Realities Upside Down: When the “Big Lie” becomes the “Truth”
    The Unspoken Truth: The Global Research Reader on 9/11
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=15147
    Open your eyes and think beyond the hasbara and MEMRI viewpoints that have been embedded in your prizm.

    Reply

  111. questions says:

    POA, I’m not going to go chasing things down right now, but here’s a question just from what you posted — did blackmax agree with the things he posted or is he just noting headlines — each seems sourced to: Beck, conservative pundits, and the Washington Times. So does Blackmax agree with these or is black max merely citing them….
    I have spent so much time on line in the past 15 or so hours (24 even) and most of what I find is nut case conspiracy theory CRAP.
    The debunking site seems rational to me. If it’s not, then go through a few points and show how it’s not. I’m always willing to revise if I come across things that seem rational. So far, the conspiracy stuff seems just that–conspiracy stuff.
    And I honestly don’t have even an inkling about why the government would do something so colossally stupid, risky, and stupid when there are easy ways to declare war. Like, say, declaring war.
    Cockburn thinks it’s idiotic. I don’t always like Cockburn, but he’s on my side on this one at any rate. Lots of journalists, Kos, and others are on my side. A few sources that seem to rely on the same few Truther pieces about the same issues (nano thermites — which are small hot things, by the way) just don’t do it for me.
    But I’m glad you have a coherent worldview in which: I am hasbara itself, Israel turns off Free Gaza dot com, Benjamin and Michael Chertoff are cousins… and so on. It’s an interesting track record for someone who prides himself on being right about things.
    If the debunking site is utterly wrong, debunk it!!!
    I’m having a hard time doing so.
    And on the history site, first, as I said, I didn’t read much of it. Second, go ahead and find a source that says the opposite about stuff. Maybe BCCI isn’t involved at all. I didn’t follow that one. Who knows. Maybe all sorts of things. But find something that debunks some of the historical points it makes.
    You said “Chertoff” and I found “Not-Chertoff”. Do likewise….
    And OA, there’s no suspicion on my part about your being who you are. I just think you know some things and not others. Congrats on your booties or whatever.
    I don’t really care about the Bin Laden tapes or their fakeness or reality. My thing is basically that it doesn’t make sense to me that the US gov’t would do this, that there are plenty of rational-seeming explanations for the so-called anomalies, that the so-called anomalies seem to be attested to by fairly fringe beings.
    I will never be in a position to evaluate the chemistry and physics myself. I can do some, but not all, of the politics and history. I have to rely on others. Some others I find unreliable and so I don’t believe them.
    I think the government of the US used the opportunity to clear some of its to-do list (1. Remake the middle east 2. Steer contracts to friends…) but I don’t think the US created the opportunity in the first place. That’s all. Not rocket science.
    But I’m sure you know the math, you’ve proven that fer sure.

    Reply

  112. easy e says:

    Questions, when I read your comments I’ve learned to just consider the source. The world view prizm of you and your ilk (and we know who they are among the TWN posters) is pathetic. I would expect people of reasonable to intelligence to question at least some of the things that the MSM media puts out there.
    The Military Industrial Establishment/War Profiteers have a very successful track record, as reflected in prior posts.
    What further proof do you need? Ever heard of Operation Northwoods?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Northwoods
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4242016437813472857#
    Please stop insulting the intelligence of this community that 9/11 couldn’t have been more than what’s been spoonfed to us by the MSM.
    Turning 9/11 Realities Upside Down: When the “Big Lie” becomes the “Truth”
    The Unspoken Truth: The Global Research Reader on 9/11
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=15147
    Open your eyes and think beyond the hasbara and MEMRI viewpoints that have been embedded in your prizm.

    Reply

  113. easy e says:

    Questions, when I read your comments I’ve learned to just consider the source. The world view prizm of you and your ilk (and we know who they are among the TWN posters) is pathetic. I would expect people of reasonable to intelligence to question at least some of the things that the MSM media puts out there.
    The Military Industrial Establishment/War Profiteers have a very successful track record, as reflected in prior posts.
    What further proof do you need? Ever heard of Operation Northwoods?
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Northwoods
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4242016437813472857#
    Please stop insulting the intelligence of this community that 9/11 couldn’t have been more than what’s been spoonfed to us by the MSM.
    Turning 9/11 Realities Upside Down: When the “Big Lie” becomes the “Truth”
    The Unspoken Truth: The Global Research Reader on 9/11
    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=15147
    Open your eyes and think beyond the hasbara and MEMRI viewpoints that have been embedded in your prizm.

    Reply

  114. ... says:

    paul norheim… make sure if you are going to guess when a thread is going to make it to 197 that you get questions and poa in a trade off… without them i doubt it is going to work!

    Reply

  115. PissedOffAmerican says:

    If you search the “debunk” site that questions relies on to falsely imply he’s looked at both sides of the 9/11 issue, you will note a strange anomoly; There is no “about us” page, and no individual, organization, or entity takes credit for the existence of the site. There is no way to determine motive, credentialing, or affiliation.
    Yet questions relies solely on the Popular Mechanics hit piece, and this one single “debunk” site for his argument.
    Note too, the “timeline” link that questions provides is from a site whose most prolific “manager” seems to be a charascter by the name of “blackmax”. Here are the headings of three of Blackmax’s contributions to the site..
    “9/11 – Beck: Health Care Reform Is Eugenics, May 13, 2009, posted by blackmax”
    “9/11 – Conservative Pundit Predicts Obama, Democrats Will Engineer ‘Final Solution’ of Enforced Abortions, January 27, 2009, posted by blackmax”
    “9/11 – Washington Times: Obama Health Care Program Will Euthanize Old, Infirm, Others, February 11, 2009, posted by blackmax”
    Now thats a credible bit of fuckin’ slime, isn’t it?
    I invite anyone to peruse this thread, and examine the SOURCING for the information provided by both questions and myself. I purposely stayed away from “conspiracy sites”, and cited from three sources, a credible magazine dealing in building fire safety, magazine call “Fire Engineering”, a consortium of architects and engineers that directly confront the NIST about faulty and incomplete investigation of the collapse of WTC Building Seven, and a peer reviewed study published in the “Scientific Journal”.
    Questions? He provides links from a NON-CREDITED and ANONYMOUS site, a layman’s “scientific” monthly how-to periodical, and a site whose main administrator claims Obama is going to euthanize the elderly and institute forced abortions.
    Bottom line? Questions is on a knee jerk mission to argue a topic he knows NOTHING about, has not researched, and is arguing from a purely tunnel visioned, closed minded, and uninformed position. His “research” on the issue is limited to his reponses on this thread and hurried internet searches, conducted over the course of an hour or so in total, designed to buttress his predetermined conclusions.
    In short, questions is doing what he always does, and does best;
    Feeding us a line of shit.

    Reply

  116. questions says:

    http://www.historycommons.org/timeline.jsp?timeline=complete_911_timeline
    62 pages of history suggesting that this didn’t come out of the blue, and Bin Laden has been floating around for a while. No, I did not read all 62 pages, but it’s nice to know it’s out there for a rainy season or two….
    (got the link from that you-know-what site….)

    Reply

  117. questions says:

    http://www.debunking911.com/osama.htm
    Whoa, the dude in the cave had a degree in civil engineering. Not a chance he could have done it. Not a chance. What would he know.

    Reply

  118. questions says:

    “I called the FBI myself to ask about why Bin Laden’s Most Wanted
    poster didn’t accuse him of 9/11. “No hard evidence” was what
    Tomb told me.”
    Proof positive that everything you say is true. Why did I ever doubt anything. Geez, I wuz a foole!
    And of course it follows like jelly after peanut butter that if Bin Laden wasn’t responsible in the least for ideas, money, support, encouragement or anything else that THE US GOV’T MUST HAVE BEEN RESPONSIBLE. There’s no other possibility in the heavens or on earth! The fault is in ourselves.
    “I was a TV and radio news producer and I never said that I was
    an expert on anything beyond creative ways to kill dogs. I
    TALKED to experts on many different subjects, both domestic
    and foreign issues.”
    And yet more proof. Oh, dear. I have really fucked up THIS time!!!!! You never said you were an expert, but yet you’ve TALKED to experts and so you know a whole lot of chemistry, politics, physics, probability (but the meth messed up the math, and now your 5 year old nephew’s math is methed, oops, messed, up….) Is it, like umm, it rubs off on you, or you absorb it as through the ether, or is it vibes? How does she do it?
    And I’m supposed to believe all of this over that step-by-step debunking site full of engineers and stoichiometry and rational thinking? YOKAY!!
    Wasn’t there some painting by a pre-Raphaelite like this? Oh yeah, that Ophelia thing by Millais? There she was, lying in the water with some Shakespearean flowers. The connections to 9/11 are really eerie. It really was the US gov’t. They drove Ophelia mad, too!!!!! Damn, I’m good!!!!
    Sincerely,
    Art Propagandist to the Stars

    Reply

  119. Outraged American says:

    Mainstream media (Daily Mail UK) finally clues in: Has Osama Bin
    Laden been dead for seven years – and are the U.S. and Britain
    covering it up to continue war on terror?
    (excerpt)
    This military offensive ignored the fact that Bin Laden had
    already insisted four times in official Al Qaeda statements made
    to the Arab press that he played no role in 9/11.
    Indeed, on the fourth occasion, on September 28 and a fortnight
    after the atrocity, he declared emphatically: ‘I have already said I
    am not involved. As a Muslim, I try my best to avoid telling a lie.
    I had no knowledge… nor do I consider the killing of innocent
    women, children and other humans as an appreciable act.’
    Within hours of the October 7 strikes by the U.S. on Tora Bora,
    Bin Laden made his first ever appearance on video tape. Dressed
    in Army fatigues, and with an Islamic head-dress, he had an
    assault rifle propped behind him in a broadly lit mountain
    hideout. Significantly, he looked pale and gaunt.
    Although he called President George W. Bush ‘head of the
    infidels’ and poured scorn on the U.S., he once again rejected
    responsibility for 9/11.
    ‘America was hit by God in one of its softest spots. America is
    full of fear, from its north to its south, from its west to its east.
    Thank God for that.’
    Then came a second videotape on November 3, 2001. Once
    again, an ailing Bin Laden lashed out at the United States. He
    urged true Muslims to celebrate the attacks – but did not at any
    time acknowledge he had been involved in the atrocity.
    (WHOLE, MUST READ ARTICLE)
    http://tinyurl.com/lhxg7q
    I was a TV and radio news producer and I never said that I was
    an expert on anything beyond creative ways to kill dogs. I
    TALKED to experts on many different subjects, both domestic
    and foreign issues.
    I have given you a sh*tload of evidence, as have others on this
    site, and you just ignore it.
    I called the FBI myself to ask about why Bin Laden’s Most Wanted
    poster didn’t accuse him of 9/11. “No hard evidence” was what
    Tomb told me.
    And I’ve interviewed David Ray Griffin, whose book they talk
    about in this article. I called him on certain things that I felt
    didn’t reach the burden of proof.
    There is obviously no satisfying you, because you ignore facts
    even when they’re first hand knowledge. So I’ll guess your major
    was not art history, but just art. With a minor in propaganda.

    Reply

  120. questions says:

    Take all the bets you want. And since I spend so much time here relating things to cubism and primitivism, and the Renaissance, you’re likely right on the mark! So many sly sleuths around here!!!
    And BTW, if you didn’t see the sarcasm in the multiple name thing it might be because you haven’t been posting here for long. There’s a long history of my being accused of being many. “I contain multitudes” and all. I’m WigWag and Sweetness and bunches of others. Perhaps I’m even Paul Norheim as well. Amazing all the things I can be.
    Your math background should have you using “probability” a little more carefully even with all the drug use you allude to. I don’t have a math background and even I know a teensy bit about what probability actually entails.
    And purplemath.com will help you help your nephew get through life. It does rate problems in spades!
    Oh, and somehow, “doing” a show for a radio program probably is not sufficient for producing expertise. Hannity and Limbaugh and Glenn Beck “do” shows. I don’t think they are experts in much of anything.
    The credential thing is overmuch. What matters is having reasonable arguments, presenting them in reasonable fashion, and changing if the evidence pushes that direction. It helps to have read fairly widely in an area that you’re making assumptions about. (WigWag reads tons of history, but maybe doesn’t even have a degree in history. POA knows a lot about the treatment of the Palestinians, but isn’t an area studies guy.) It’s not the credential, it’s the use of evidence and reason and careful language. When it gets overly sloppy, you ought to stop midcourse and correct.

    Reply

  121. Outraged American says:

    Questions: my major was theoretical math and astrophysics I
    was not just taught physics, but also things like mathematical
    modeling, set theory, game theory, real analysis, probability and
    statistics, all of which require a modicum of the ability to think
    critically.
    Can’t say I remember much of it — now when I try to help my
    five-year-old nephew with his homework I’m like “Two + two =
    what?” All that cocaine…oh wait, was it meth? They need to
    color drugs so you know what you’re snorting.
    I’m really curious about what you majored in? I’ll take bets it
    was Art History, which does prepare one for a life spent thinking
    critically. *ROLLS EYES*
    We were set to do a series on casus belli for US wars just before
    the show went off the air. These would include the Maine, the
    Lusitania, Pearl Harbor, the Gulf of Tonkin (escalation).
    I heard that we’d broken the Japanese code from a Rear Admiral
    for Gawd’s sake.
    We covered 9/11 extensively, again interviewing very smart
    people with excellent credentials in their fields. But you know
    more than them, because you’re Mark.
    And BTW: I too have posted under different names, but it was
    only because I was really busy at the time and changing
    computers and could never remember the last name I posted
    under. Plus the show was on the air and I didn’t want my
    “extremist” views associated with it.

    Reply

  122. questions says:

    “Questions, I don’t think that you’ve done your homework on this
    topic or on Pearl Harbor. The US government has a history of
    false flag attacks to start or escalate war. I’ve discussed that at
    length, providing proof, on this very board, such as the Gulf of
    Tonkin, which was exposed as a fraud after a group filed a
    Freedom of Information Act query.”
    Yes indeed the US exaggerates and makes things up and according to Howard Zinn, even the war with Mexico was based on falsity.
    Falsity, exaggeration of threat, lying about a ship’s being exploded or a soldier’s being kidnapped or whatever, IS NOT IN THE SAME LEAGUE as blowing up landmark skyscrapers and the Pentagon, destroying the domestic airline industry, destroying the economy, increasing unemployment….
    I know!! It was the sock industry that stood to benefit. Now, you have to fly with socks so that you can get through security without picking up a fungal infection!!!!!!!! Ok, so it was a conspiracy. Remember, always ask who stands to gain….
    Isn’t Hanes run by Gwanzo Bush III?

    Reply

  123. questions says:

    “There would have been no way that the US public would have
    rallied around an attack on Afghanistan or Iraq without a really
    horrific casus belli. ”
    **********
    Nonsense — and besides no one would have known this at the time. The US is frequently up for a good war, and we LOVED the first Bush’s 100 hour thing.
    And again, physics, chemistry, politics, the real workings of conspiracies, history — it’s all against the conspiracy theory crap.
    But, as Cockburn, that is, as I note above, the more proof against the nuttiness, the more the nuts hold tight tight tight to their nuttiness. And all the nuttiness goes together and is held by websites, undergrad probability courses, ideology, a religious belief that there has to be purpose and purpose is supplied by evil governments….
    Oh my.

    Reply

  124. questions says:

    And one more thing, so long as I’m outed as “Mark” I might as well do multiple long posts….
    ANY ANY ANY event that ever happens can be stated as a series of improbable occurances. What are the chances that YOU were the one to be born, and not someone else? What are the chances that any one particular person will win the lottery — and yet someone eventually wins. What are the chances that any two people in a town have a mutual acquaintance (and yet it happens all the time — see graph theory for this). What are the chances that ANY EVENT happens rather than doesn’t happen? And yet every event HAPPENS.
    You are working from a misunderstanding about the nature of events and probability. A single undergrad course doesn’t cut it (and I use this point since it is your stated credential).

    Reply

  125. questions says:

    Oh, and OA,
    OF COURSE there are NO PROBABILITIES involved IF AND ONLY IF the US government is the cause of the 9/11 bombings.
    (Im)Probability enters only if it was 19 Saudis with box cutters, weak cockpit doors, an unsuspecting airline industry, documented flight lessons, grudges against the US, jets full of fuel and all the other stuff that goes into this.
    But if the US gov’t finds the hundreds of people who have to be involved (and not one of them speaks out), and the planes (unless you deny there were any planes involved) and and and… Nothing weird about that at all….
    Oh my.

    Reply

  126. questions says:

    “As I’ve mentioned, the other part of my major was math. I had
    to take a class in probability: the probability of all the
    “coincidences” surrounding 9/11 being coincidences is virtually
    nil.”
    *********
    Oh please please show your work!!!!!!!!
    How does one calculate the probability that terrorists will bomb some buildings?
    How does one calculate the probability that a certain card will show up on top of the deck?
    In the first case, one cannot. In the second case there are a finite number of possibilities and so the the chances of one card’s showing up can be stated as a ratio.
    So please, show your work calculating the numerators and denominators for chances of political actions’ happening or not happening.
    Math is fun!
    And indeed there might be some interesting graph theory things about famous people and their seeming involvement, about intersections between numbers of co-conspirators and the likelihood of someone’s spilling the beans or somesuch. But I never did take a class in graph theory, and I’m sure your undergrad probability course had a whole 3-week unit on political probability….

    Reply

  127. questions says:

    Pauline, thanks for the vote of confidence. Of course I smell funny! I use many many many pseudonyms here and I am Mark and WigWag and Sweetness and Kotz and Steve himself!! and all sorts of people. I am hasbara. I am paid by Israel. I am paid by George Bush…. You and POA are indeed such sly sleuths!! Pat yourself on the back and say, “Hey, good job!!!”
    It would be terribly shocking, I have to admit, if two people on the internet used the same debunking website that shows up on a Google search. Shocking, indeed. How could such a thing happen? Why, probably no two people ever look at the same things on the internet. Do the math. It’s just impossible.
    Oh, and here’s Cockburn from today….
    “Truthers and Birthers: the Janus Face of Nut-dom
    In his little squib on 9/11 on this site today Paul Krassner writes , I once asked a true believer, “If the Pentagon was really hit by a missile and not a plane, then what happened to all the people who were on the plane that didn’t hit the Pentagon?”
    I answered this many years ago. The people on that plane had been kidnapped at an earlier stage in the operation, and flown to an airbase in Louisiana – the very self-same airbase where George Bush briefly touched down in his erratic flight from Florida on 9/11/2001. George Bush then personally executed the captives.
    Diid I really believe this when I wrote it? No. It was a satirical sally. But I did receive serious letters from people troubled by the lack of detail.Where had he shot them? With what type of weapon? A summary burst from a machine gun, or a .22 bullet behind each ear?
    For all too many on the left, the so-called 9/11 conspiracy has become the magic key. If it can be turned, then history at its present impasse will be unlocked and we can move on.
    For those on the racist right, aghast at the reality of a black man (albeit half white) in the White House, the magic key to reversing this unpleasing development is Obama’s suposedly fake Hawai’ian birth certificate. Their suppositions and claims shift, but the essence is always the same: he’s alien. He has no right to be president. And as with the Truthers, the provision of evidence rebutting their claims is merely fuel piled on the bonfire of their insanity.
    The useful word here (or so I once found it in a memorable victory over my mother in Scrabble) is syzygy, from the Greek participle sun and verb zugein, meaning two entities linked together while maintaining their separate existence – like a pair oxen drawing a plow in boustrophedonic syzygy. That’s Truthers and Birthers – hauling their obsessions along. There’s considerable overlap.”
    **********
    Smells pretty fishy that Mark, questions, and Cockburn think the Truthers are nuts. Probably I’m actually Alexander Cockburn trying to get more hits for my pathetic website that has some of the best Iraq reporting on it from my brother Patrick (whose books I’m selling….)

    Reply

  128. Outraged American says:

    I called the FBI and asked why Osama bin Laden’s most wanted
    poster did not include 9/11. The answer, from a man named
    Tomb who was in charge of publicity at the time, was that and
    I’m quoting, there was “no hard evidence” to tie Bin Laden to the
    attacks.
    This was three or four years ago. I just checked the Most
    Wanted list again — still no official linkage between Bin Laden
    and 9/11.
    http://www.fbi.gov/wanted/topten/fugitives/laden.htm
    There would have been no way that the US public would have
    rallied around an attack on Afghanistan or Iraq without a really
    horrific casus belli.
    As I’ve mentioned, the other part of my major was math. I had
    to take a class in probability: the probability of all the
    “coincidences” surrounding 9/11 being coincidences is virtually
    nil.
    Also, it’s an old trick to link outlandish “conspiracy theories” with
    ones that do have some basis in fact. Some of the kooks in the
    9/11 “Truther” movement are just that, others are putting out
    whacky things to discredit everyone involved. Nevertheless
    there are very serious people with very serious credentials who
    are questioning the official narrative, including members of the
    9/11 Commission themselves.
    Questions, I don’t think that you’ve done your homework on this
    topic or on Pearl Harbor. The US government has a history of
    false flag attacks to start or escalate war. I’ve discussed that at
    length, providing proof, on this very board, such as the Gulf of
    Tonkin, which was exposed as a fraud after a group filed a
    Freedom of Information Act query.
    Now the kiddies are being indoctrinated about Amerika Uber
    Alles, just like I was. We’re going to need a lot of cannon fodder
    when Israel attacks Iran:
    Schools teach importance of Sept. 11 attacks
    Thousands of flags, patriotic music to honor victims, veterans
    http://tinyurl.com/pvrvmf

    Reply

  129. pauline says:

    POA, Kathleen G. A.,
    Anyone remember the firster from years ago on TWN who called himself “Mark” and then later admitted he was using many other pseudonyms on TWN? I remember he was admitting this to you, POA?!
    This guy “questions” used this exact same “debunking” URL back then as his fallback reasoning on 9/11. A coincidence? — hmm, possible.
    I do see “questions” unending posts very similar to “Mark”‘s old posting style. Back then he was making the claim “debunking” gave him all the scientific proof necessary to shun anything but the official 9/11 Commission report of 19 Arabs with boxcutters and knives.
    Something about “questions” kinda smells funny to me. . .

    Reply

  130. questions says:

    Kathleen, dialogue interspersed:
    We didn’t need 9/11 to justify war??? So why did Dopey and Darth go to such great lengths to “prove” an Iraqi connection to 9/11..
    ###You’re mixing up two things here. We didn’t need to knock down buildings, destroy the airline industry and Wall Street and the US economy in order to have a reason to declare war. We declare war when we feel like it.
    BUT, once 9/11 happened, it was a reasonable opportunity and it was used. Politicians make use of moments, and 9/11 was a juicy one. It didn’t have to be pre-planned to be used, and in fact, it would have been the dumbest fucking thing to pre-plan.
    What benefit did the Busholini Cabal derive from 9/11? I’ve already addressed that..but I’ll elaborate.
    ####NOT what benefit was derived, but BEFOREHAND, what benefit could they have reasonably counted on, or UNreasonably have counted on (if you prefer)?
    It wasn’t the destruction of a couple of buildings that was the golden goose..it was the perception that America had been attacked that was the jackpot…
    #### This was after the fact. NO ONE could have known with reasonable certainty that the US public would respond this way. We could have HATED our gov’t and gone after them, we could have had a revolution, we could have had an even worse economic collapse, many many many more people could have died, more of NYC could have been wiped out, the fires could have spread more, the Pentagon could have been far more damaged. People “in” on the “conspiracy” could have started talking and then what would the public have done….
    You have to keep timelines straight here. BEFORE 9/11, in the “planning” stages, what could people reasonably have expected??
    9/11, not being very long after that Florida Reeecount debacle, was like a magic wand, psychologically…
    ####Again, how could US gov’t officials have known in advance. Planning this thing took some time.
    Depending on where you draw the lines on the conspiracy, the US put the hijackers up for flight training? Or the US merely KNEW that the hijackers were going to do this and took advantage of it by loading TONS AND TONS AND TONS of explosives into how many places in how many buildings? You have to work out the details here instead of having a vague sense of “conspiracy.”
    So what are the boundaries of your version of the conspiracy? There are so many versions out there I’m discovering. They can by typologized or taxonomied…..
    In one instance Dopey went from Pretender to the Throne to HardHat Hero, complete with Bullhorn at Ground Zero talking tough, Dead or Alive jive.. Bring it on bullshit…everybody forgot he was a weasely draftdodger.
    ####But he was already president, so who cares what anyone thought. And besides, who would have, who COULD have, sat there BEFOREHAND and predicted precisely these responses from the public??
    In one instance it became traitorous to criticize or question him…he was the deciderator…
    #### Again, after the fact responses become suddenly before the fact predictions. It doesn’t work. No one could know beforehand and it’s just not that important a characteristic for the rest of the aftermath. We could have gone to war on numerous pretexts much easier to manufacture than this one. Really.
    In one instance the whole citizenry joined together and a fear of Arabs was galvanized…Islamofascist was coined to make it easier for Joe Sixpack to grasp…no need to specify which country, etc…small detail most of the alleged highjackers were Saudis…no one questioned bombing Afghanistan and Iraq and maybe, if their luck doesn’t run out, Syria and Iran too….get that Plame Dame out of WMD Dept.
    ##### Again, there are much easier ways to deal with this than blowing up buildings, destroying the economy and a couple of pretty major industries and harming our ability to fight the very war we are trying to incite.
    The whole logic of the Truthers on this issue is something like this: My gov’t is evil and incompetent simultaneously. My evil government cannot do anything right (like govern properly) but is quite capable of the most elaborate plot to justify a war in a distant land with utterly unknown consequences. The government thinks the following: We want to attack Iraq so that we can remake the middle east and make money and besides we work for Israel and Israel controls everything we do and told us to blow up our own buildings to justify this attack on Iraq…. So, let’s load TONS AND TONS AND TONS of explosives into the WTC, especially Building 7 where there are important CIA records we cannot destroy any other way and let’s train some middle eastern “looking” people (Saudis, even) to fly planes into these buildings so that we can then blame Iraq for the explosions, make all white Americans hate all brownish skinned people, and use that hatred to make everyone forget that Bush was a draft dodger and so was Cheney by the way so they’ll forget that too (phew) and we’ll declare war because we know that Saddam Hussein doesn’t have weapons of mass destruction but we’ll pretend that we know he does have them and he won’t be able to surrender the weapons since he doesn’t have them but only pretends that he does and then we’ll send our light and fast new military into Iraq for a 100 hours war (it worked for Papa Bush) and then we’ll own the middle east and we’ll change all the governments and no one will remember we’re draft dodgers and we’ll get re-elected gazillions of times and we’ll own the middle east and Israel will own us and we’ll have oil and we’ll own things and Halliburton will pay my grandkids…….
    Really? And if not this story, then what story? What could they have planned in advance? What could they really have known?
    Don’t mix before and after issues, and tell the story in a coherent way, add in the physics and chemistry of the whole thing.
    Building 7 actually is well explained in the debunking site above. Lots of quotations and video and stills from the actual firefighters there on the actual days of firefighting. They knew the building was going down, they evacuated the firefighters in advance. There were substantial fires in the building and it went down as predicted. Nothing mysterious at all. To this extent, the Pop Mech piece is indeed out of date. Click the link above, read it with a critical eye, not a conspirator’s eye. And then make an informed decision.
    Remember also that the same impulse that denies global warming, that thinks Israel pulled the Free Gaza website and put it back up a day or two or three later without anyone’s commenting on it, that thinks the moon landing didn’t happen, that thinks vaccines cause autism, that denies evolution, is the impulse that thinks that the US government had to have blown up its own buildings, that there are significant “unsolved” mysteries about the whole 9/11 disaster.
    Science, reasonable readings of politics, a realization that ME terrorism is a long-standing issue and that this didn’t come out of nowhere, realization that when there are conspiracies, there simply cannot be hundreds and hundreds of co-conspirators AND that there will be leaks and disagreements, realization the the simplest explanation is that we fucked up big time, played turf wars, miscommunicated, that the draft dodgers in the Bush admin didn’t take seriously the draft dodger in the Clinton admin…. That’s enough to explain 9/11.
    The US government doesn’t come out well at all, and indeed they used the 9/11 bombings as a pretext for an unnecessary war and they did indeed exaggerate the intell and they lied and so on. So I’m not defending the government here. BUT, they didn’t bomb the WTC on top of it all.
    And on the NORAD thing quickly, I came across something I can’t find now about how difficult it is to intercept flying objects, how infrequent NORAD is called on to do such things, how little communication technology there was such that NORAD could easily be notified about errant aircraft, how any plane is simply a blip on a radar screen with hundreds of other blips — how could they actually find the right plane to shoot down — were they going to aim at every commercial jet in the air? There was little time, little preparation, and absolutely no post-9/11 mindset about shooting down passenger planes on the off chance that there would be terrorists in them. Again pre-and pos-9/11 thinking get conflated in these conspiracy theories over and over and over again.
    But none of this will allay the doubts of the true believers because the letter always arrives at its destination.
    (Note by the way, POA hasn’t returned to the Pop Mech author issue because it’s clear there’s no Chertoff connection (which doesn’t date out properly anyway).)

    Reply

  131. ... says:

    pos 842pm – perfect example of what it is like hanging out with an insane person living inside their head… thanks for the reminder… keep on banging your head against the wall.. it seems to give you pleasure..

    Reply

  132. questions says:

    Some more non-science from that non-science nonsense non-debunking site….
    http://www.debunking911.com/moltensteel.htm
    ” Metals lose about 50% of their strength at 60% of their melting temperature. This is common knowledge and may be found in any undergraduate text regarding “Fracture and Deformation of Materials.”
    If the approximate melting temperature of steel is 2750 F the the material would be plastic at 1650 F. Even assuming a safety factor of 3, you would expect the bolts or other structural members to deform and fail near this temperature, especially with the additional weight if a jet air liner. I would assume that the live load calculations did not include the typical office equipment and an airliner plus a factor of 3. THEREFORE I assume that the flow is not steel and that the temperature of the steel members at the time of the photo is less than 1650 F.
    Assuming that the flow would be molten aluminum from the airliner and the color of molten aluminum is silver then why is the flow orange?
    The color of pure molten aluminum is silver, It has an emissivity of .12. Steel has an emissivity of .4 and appears orange in the temperature range of molten aluminum.
    The emissivity of aluminum oxide is .44 and also appears orange in the melting temperature range of molten aluminum.
    The emissivity of plate glass is .937 It begins to soften at 1000 F and flows around 1350 F. Silica has an emissivity of .8
    Copper oxide also has an emissivity of .8. however I will assume that their effect is negligible.
    Aluminum oxidizes readily in the foundry under ideal melting conditions. Large surface area relative to thickness, turbulence, the presence of water or oil greatly increases the oxidation of aluminum. A jet airliner is made of thin aluminum sheet and most probably suffered considerable oxidation especially in contact with an open flame and being in contact with jet fuel. If you don’t believe this, try melting a few soda cans over coals or open flame. If you are lucky you will end up with only 50% aluminum oxide. However, the cans may completely burn up.
    The specific gravity of aluminum is 2.7. The specific gravity of aluminum oxide (Al2O3-3H2O) is 2.42 the specific gravity of Si = 2.40 and Glass is 2.65 these are all very similar and likely to be entrained in a molten aluminum flow. Don’t believe it? lightly stir the dross into molten aluminum. The surface tension is so high is is almost impossible to separate them.
    THEREFORE assuming that the flow consist of molten aluminum and considerable oxides, and assuming that the windows in the trade center were plate glass and also in a plastic state and that they were also likely entrained in the molten aluminum. I would expect the flow to appear to be orange in color. Especially since both the entrained materials have emissivities equal to or more than twice that of iron.
    Also since dross cools to a gray color and glass with impurities also turns dark. I would expect that the flow would darken upon cooling.
    I would also suggest that not only is the photo possible, but entirely likely.
    Summary: The flow is not steel because the structural steel would fail well below the melting temperature. The flow is likely to be a mixture of aluminum, aluminum oxides, molten glass and coals of whatever trash the aluminum flowed over as it reached the open window. Such a flow would appear orange and cool to a dark color.
    Stephen D. Chastain
    The color means nothing. The color can be misleading, and because it can be misleading, it means nothing as evidence. This is not aluminum in a foundry which hasn’t mixed with anything. This is a cocktail of whatever was on the plane and in the towers which happens to come together. It wouldn’t be unreasonable to suspect Aluminum and some other properties has changed its color. ”
    ******
    The color of the metal flowing out of the tower is part of the nanothermite story, really….
    Nanothermites, it would seem, can come from aluminum and maybe even computers, although I’m not sure about this stuff. My chemistry is utterly high school. Happily there are others around here who know chem! And probably I’ll find some other links floating around!

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  133. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “And no, POA, the site runs through every single piece of “proof” that you have linked to and pushed and shows the chemistry is faulty”
    That a lie, questions. But its good to see you openly lying your ass off instead of weaving the web of dissingenuous obsfucating horseshit that you usually spew.
    You’re such a fuckin’ fraud, questions. You haven’t examined both sides of this. On a knee jerk quest to argue, you’re pulling this shit out of your ass, using some obscure and poorly done website and the ridiculous Popular Mechanics article. You haven’t a clue WTF you’re talking about, and its obvious to anyone following this thread.

    Reply

  134. Kathleen Grasso Adersen says:

    questions…you already addressed the inntercepted planes thing??? When was that?
    We didn’t need 9/11 to justify war??? So why did Dopey and Darth go to such great lengths to “prove” an Iraqi connection to 9/11..
    What benefit did the Busholini Cabal derive from 9/11? I’ve already addressed that..but I’ll elaborate.
    It wasn’t the destruction of a couple of buildings that was the golden goose..it was the perception that America had been attacked that was the jackpot…
    9/11, not being very long after that Florida Reeecount debacle, was like a magic wand, psychologically…
    In one instance Dopey went from Pretender to the Throne to HardHat Hero, complete with Bullhorn at Ground Zero talking tough, Dead or Alive jive.. Bring it on bullshit…everybody forgot he was a weasely draftdodger.
    In one instance it became traitorous to criticize or question him…he was the deciderator…
    In one instance the whole citizenry joined together and a fear of Arabs was galvanized…Islamofascist was coined to make it easier for Joe Sixpack to grasp…no need to specify which country, etc…small detail most of the alleged highjackers were Saudis…no one questioned bombing Afghanistan and Iraq and maybe, if their luck doesn’t run out, Syria and Iran too….get that Plame Dame out of WMD Dept.
    In one instance, 9/11 was justification to swipe away our civil liberties, warrantless wiretapping, preventive detention,. even seizing funds under certian circumstances defined by Dopey and Darth…Congress just bent over in unison and did the War President with the War Power’s bidding…Pavlavian Patriots who didn’t dare leave the house without their FlagPins.
    You question that so many people could be part of such a consirpacy…why so many people? The WHIG was all it took…you think it’s easy to connect a lot of coincidental dorts after the fact…the minute I saw the secondf plane fly into the WTC, I immediatley asked, where’s NORAD,,,and immediatley follwed with where was the intelligence, as did Senator Chris Dodd within hours, for which he was roundly criticized….I thought it was his duty to ask that question…neither questions have been answered to my satisfaction…
    You find it impossible to believe that bush et al could have perpetrated 9/11…I find it impossible to believe that they didn’t have a clue before 9/11 but knew instantly who did it.
    9/11 meant we were at perpetual war GWOT…as such instead of bienf civilian President expected to speak in complete sentences and know the names of foreigners, he got to be Commander Cod Piece.
    What benefit did Bush et al derive from 9/11? We’re not done counting.

    Reply

  135. questions says:

    Turns out I’m not the only one who thinks this way…
    ” From a reader:
    WHY would the government do it? I don’t mean Iraq , oil etc I mean why would they do it in this way ? just to help a pal with his insurance?
    Why use a plane at all . Why crash your own airline industry and every other countries { Swissair etc}, damage your financial markets { just when you are going to need some war funds} destroy very very
    valuable property, panic the WORLD, kill your own citizens etc. Could all this not be achieved by a ‘foiled’ plot. Terrorists were 15 minutes from the murder of thousands… a president would certainly come out better
    having stopped an attack than permitted one. Or if you needed a big attack why not just the anthrax that came after. Everyone panicking over any white powder. Far far easier to plant Anthrax or similar in the towers or Disneyland, have a panic, then capture your suspects who blow themselves up or whatever you want.
    If you were going to do this, would you do it this way?’ There are cheaper, better, easier and safer ways to get into a war.. Also why pick Osama as the fall guy if the target is Hussein. Why not just pick Saddam and ‘plant’ evidence to show it was him all along, thereby never needing to go to Afghanistan at all .After all if you can plan the attack why not the culprit.. no need to go scratching for evidence of a link to Iraq AFTER the attack , set it up before.
    Funny how the authorities are both all powerful, all seeing, all knowing, and completely incompetent at the same time…
    The good old Pearl Harbor theory always struck me the same way . Why destroy your fleet just as you are planning war. Discover the jap carriers 500 miles out while on manouevers’ and the impact on public opinion would be similar to a attack.
    Why sink your whole fleet ? Especially if you could sink theirs .. take a few years off the war if they lost 6 carriers day 1 !!”
    From the debunking site above.
    And no, POA, the site runs through every single piece of “proof” that you have linked to and pushed and shows the chemistry is faulty, the photographic evidence that those same people use is faulty, the word “pull” is misunderstood, the conspiracy worldview is screwy….
    So far, it seems there isn’t the science, there isn’t the politics, there isn’t the logic that you are desperately clinging too.
    But you’ll hold to you views because that’s what conspiracy theorists do. Regardless of the evidence and regardless of the logic, they hold on tight.
    I’m guessing there are more debunking sites, but I’m new to this field of enquiry!

    Reply

  136. PissedOffAmerican says:

    So, this questions asshole uses one website that he found on the cuff, as rebuttal. What transparent crap.
    The article he claims “debunks” DOES NOT debunk the science that found Nano-thermite particles in the WTC dust. What it DOES do is go after some photographs that supposedly show evidence of thermite. The article is utterly non-scientific, and actually quite poorly and unproffessionally presented. Take a look at it, its a fucking joke. Thats “science” in questions’world.
    http://www.debunking911.com/thermite.htm

    Reply

  137. questions says:

    http://www.debunking911.com/pull.htm
    A whole thing on building 7.
    Read it and think about the kinds of evidence the conspiracy people use and then look at the explanations of the photos….
    This is a nice debunking of bunk and it runs through huge amounts of the conspiracy stuff.

    Reply

  138. questions says:

    “Assume 3000 lbs of aluminum fell from the towers. If it had been molten iron produced by thermite, then 6*3000 = 18,000 lbs of thermite reactants would have been required to produce that same volume of falling mass.
    Suppose 10 tons of molten aluminum fell from the south tower, about 1/8th of that available from the airplane. If it had been molten iron produced from thermite, 60 tons of thermite reactants would have to have been stored in Fuji Bank to produce the same volume spilling out of the south tower. The section of floor would have to hold all of that plus the aircraft.”
    *******
    And a little more from the same site. Not even the science holds up, and certainly the motivation stuff doesn’t either.

    Reply

  139. questions says:

    ” 0.5*4.2 kg = 2.1 kg = 4.8 lb
    That much just to burn a small hole in a small car engine. I bet it’s even an aluminum block but lets say it isn’t. How much do you think it would take to burn a massive core column? Then add enough to burn for 6 weeks! You see where we’re going. You’d need tons.”
    *******
    I think the point is that 4.8 pounds of thermite will produce a teensy weensy burn hole. Burning a whole building for 6 weeks would take tons and tons of the stuff. Oh, but then, Chertoff’s uncle was in charge, or was it Neil Bush’s twin cousin?
    This is from the link right above.

    Reply

  140. questions says:

    http://www.debunking911.com/thermite.htm
    Debunking the thermite connection, perhaps…
    Every bunk has a debunk. It’s an industry!
    I can’t even entirely read this one. My stoichiometry is fairly primitive all in all. Did a unit on it in high school….

    Reply

  141. questions says:

    POA, you can cite every single piece that shows up in every single 9/11 conspiracy theory. The thermite theory is all over the place too. Keep citing, and I’m not buying it.
    There are enough questions about your sources for your deeply held beliefs such that they’re not about to be my deeply held beliefs.
    I’m sure that you feel strongly that the US government deliberately destroyed its own citizens, its own economy, its own airline industry, its stock market, a chunk of its biggest city, part of its war-fighting capacity (the PENTAGON), crashed another plane if there was another plane… all to be able to declare war on Iraq.
    I’m sure that you think that the gov’t felt it had no other way to declare this war it decided would be fun and profitable for a few and didn’t actually think about the pain it might cause for the many. I’m sure that you think Israel had a hand in it too.
    I don’t think it, and your favorite conspiracy websites aren’t gonna push me over the edge. But it has been interesting to encounter a new field of enquiry today. I had no idea people were putting so much energy into creating epicycles to explain this event.
    Remember, the letter always arrives at its destination. Once you KNOW that the government caused the explosions, you will find the evidence to prove it. The question remains, what really did you find? How many tales could explain the same things?
    I don’t see a motive for the bombings. The US declares wars whenever it feels like it. And it sends troops without declarations, too. Saddam Hussein was enough of a “bad guy” already. We didn’t need the excuse. So we blew up the buildings just cuz?
    I’m sure the internet has proof that the moon landings were fake (I actually just heard someone wondering about this a couple of weeks ago), and that Barack Obama was born in Kenya. But I’m not going there either. It’s not a matter of accepting mainstream media or being an ass. It’s a matter of what makes sense to me as I try to figure out why the US would do such a thing, and reading enough materials science and engineering reports that suggest that it happened the way it’s been reported. An anomaly here or there doesn’t knock a whole tower of evidence down. But the anomalies will likely be explained over time.

    Reply

  142. PissedOffAmerican says:

    And here is more science for this buffoon questions, whose academic integrity would have you read “Popular Mechanics” for the definitive “science” about what occurred on 9/11…..
    http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.commentview&comment_id=158
    An exerpt……
    The temperatures of the fires present a problem for NIST’s claim that fire alone was involved. The melting point of steel is about 2800° F. According to NIST’s own documents, hydrocarbon fires (e.g., jet fuel and office furnishings) generate temperatures only up to about 2,000° F under ideal conditions. NIST recognizes these fires could not melt steel, so they had to postulate elaborate mechanisms that might trigger collapse due to weakened columns and sagging girders.
    Yet there is widespread evidence of molten iron in the rubble piles. Photos and numerous witnesses — including fire fighters, cleanup crews, and structural engineers — confirm the existence of several tons of molten metal under the debris. Some fire fighters described molten steel flowing like lava. Photos clearly reveal molten metal dripping as material is being lifted by excavation equipment.
    Office fires are not hot enough to create the molten metal seen by dozens of witness
    A video of the South Tower shows molten metal pouring out, glowing a radiant orange-yellow. Some have claimed this is molten aluminum, which melts at a lower temperature, but molten aluminum would be silvery in these conditions. This is molten iron or steel.
    Jet fuel and office fires can’t create molten iron
    At least three independent laboratory analyses of the dust that blanketed Lower Manhattan after the destruction of the Twin Towers reveal the presence of iron-rich “microspheres.” These spheres are formed when molten iron is sprayed into the air and forms droplets that cool before hitting the ground. The iron droplets indicate temperatures during the collapses much higher than hydrocarbon fires, in an explosive environment that could spray many tons of these droplets into the air.
    Billions of previously molten iron spheres found in all WTC dust samples
    In April 2002, the RJ Lee Company was hired to investigate environmental contaminants in the Deutsche Bank, across the street from the World Trade Center. It reports, “Many of the materials, such as lead, cadmium, mercury and various organic compounds, vaporized and then condensed during the WTC Event.” The problem here is that lead vaporizes at 3200° F, some 1200° F hotter than is possible in hydrocarbon fires. A study of the WTC dust by the USGS for the EPA observed molybdenum-rich spheres that can form only above 4750° F. The high temperatures are another smoking gun.
    Unignited Nano-Thermite in the WTC Dust
    NIST did not even look for physical evidence of explosives. In fact NIST did not look at the physical evidence at all, apart from a few selected samples of the steel. The rest was destroyed. However, physical evidence did remain: the dust. NIST did not look at the dust, but independent investigators did. They discovered, along with the microspheres, tiny red-grey chips. They examined samples of WTC dust from different parts of Manhattan. All contained the red-gray chips. They found that the red layer consisted of unignited nano-thermite. Ordinary thermite is an incendiary: it can burn through heavy steel in seconds. The tiny particles in nano-thermite (1/1000 the thickness of a human hair) causes a much faster reaction so it can be used as a high explosive. The discovery of nano-thermite in the WTC dust was published in The Open Chemical Physics Journal in April 2009.
    Hundreds of Red/Grey chips of “Unignited thermite” in every WTC Dust sample
    Nano-thermite particle sizes are 1,000 times smaller than a human hair. This material is not made in a cave in Afghanistan.
    These scientists found not just a smoking gun, but a loaded gun.
    continues……..
    http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.commentview&comment_id=158
    Perhaps questions can find a recent copy of Marvel Comix to provide a rebuttal.

    Reply

  143. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Here is a reputable editor of nationally recognized magazine pertaining to building fire safety, “Fire Engineering”, quoted from an opinion editorial he placed in the Jan. 2002 issue…..
    “Burning Questions…Need Answers”: FE’s Bill Manning Calls for Comprehensive Investigation of WTC Collapse
    Fair Lawn, NJ, January 4, 2002-Bill Manning,
    Fire Engineering’s editor in chief, is summoning members of the fire service to “A Call to Action.” In his January 2002 Editor’s Opinion, “$elling Out the Investigation” (below), he warns that unless there is a full-blown investigation by an independent panel established solely for that purpose, “the World Trade Center fire and collapse will amount to paper- and computer-generated hypotheticals.” Manning explained: “Clearly, there are burning questions that need answers …. The lessons about the buildings’ design and behavior in this extraordinary event must be learned and applied in the real world.”
    In an interview with the New York Daily News today, Manning reiterated his call for a “full-throttle, fully resourced” investigation into the collapse of the World Trade Center. He is asking members of the fire service to read “WTC ‘Investigation’? A Call to Action” in the January 2002 issue of Fire Engineering and at fireengineering.com and to contact their representatives in Congress and officials in Washington to ask that a blue ribbon panel be convened to thoroughly investigate the WTC collapse.
    Among those also calling for the investigation are Sally Regenhard, the mother of Christian Regenhard, the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) probationary firefighter killed in the World Trade Center (WTC) attack, and founder of the Campaign for Skyscraper Safety; Give Your Voice, a civilian relatives’ group headed by Michael Cartier, who lost his brother in the collapse; prominent structural engineers and fire-safety experts, and New York State Senators Charles Schumer and Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.
    $elling Out the Investigation
    By Bill Manning
    Did they throw away the locked doors from the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire? Did they throw away the gas can used at the Happyland Social Club Fire? Did they cast aside the pressure-regulating valves at the Meridian Plaza Fire? Of course not. But essentially, that’s what they’re doing at the World Trade Center.
    For more than three months, structural steel from the World Trade Center has been and continues to be cut up and sold for scrap. Crucial evidence that could answer many questions about high-rise building design practices and performance under fire conditions is on the slow boat to China, perhaps never to be seen again in America until you buy your next car.
    Such destruction of evidence shows the astounding ignorance of government officials to the value of a thorough, scientific investigation of the largest fire-induced collapse in world history. I have combed through our national standard for fire investigation, NFPA 921, but nowhere in it does one find an exemption allowing the destruction of evidence for buildings over 10 stories tall.
    Hoping beyond hope, I have called experts to ask if the towers were the only high-rise buildings in America of lightweight, center-core construction. No such luck. I made other calls asking if these were the only buildings in America with light-density, sprayed-on fireproofing. Again, no luck-they were two of thousands that fit the description.
    Comprehensive disaster investigations mean increased safety. They mean positive change. NASA knows it. The NTSB knows it. Does FEMA know it?
    No. Fire Engineering has good reason to believe that the “official investigation” blessed by FEMA and run by the American Society of Civil Engineers is a half-baked farce that may already have been commandeered by political forces whose primary interests, to put it mildly, lie far afield of full disclosure. Except for the marginal benefit obtained from a three-day, visual walk-through of evidence sites conducted by ASCE investigation committee members- described by one close source as a “tourist trip”-no one’s checking the evidence for anything.
    Maybe we should live and work in planes. That way, if disaster strikes, we will at least be sure that a thorough investigation will help find ways to increase safety for our survivors.
    As things now stand and if they continue in such fashion, the investigation into the World Trade Center fire and collapse will amount to paper- and computer-generated hypotheticals.
    However, respected members of the fire protection engineering community are beginning to raise red flags, and a resonating theory has emerged: The structural damage from the planes and the explosive ignition of jet fuel in themselves were not enough to bring down the towers. Rather, theory has it, the subsequent contents fires attacking the questionably fireproofed lightweight trusses and load-bearing columns directly caused the collapses in an alarmingly short time. Of course, in light of there being no real evidence thus far produced, this could remain just unexplored theory.
    continues……
    http://911research.wtc7.net/cache/wtc/groundzero/fireengineering_manning.html
    Now, what “science” is questions giving you? Read his comments carefully, they’re nothing but empty fluff. He’s got NOTHING.

    Reply

  144. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “STFU is rich coming from someone who clearly doesn’t know how to take their own advice…”
    So, you little weasel, you stand by your admonition that I should place some “blame on the folks in Washington”?
    Like I don’t do so, probably more than any other commenter, on a daily basis?
    Like I said, you’re making an idiot of yourself.
    You posted a knee jerk response that you didn’t even bother to think about, and now you’re too bullheaded to admit your mistake. So the smart move for you is to just put a cork in it.
    But if you want to jump up and down in the back of the room with your hand raised, mewling “Call on me! Call on me!”, have at it. Its not up to me to salvage your dignity.

    Reply

  145. PissedOffAmerican says:

    More science, contained in an article written for the Scientic Journal, and subjected to extensive peer review. But of course, only questions’ “Popular Mechanics” scientists are credible. I especially like it when the magazine tells me how to build a miniature hot air balloon or how to use a magnet to pick up errant nails.
    What a sad joke this questions jackass is.
    http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCPJ/2009/00000002/00000001/7TOCPJ.SGM
    “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe” by Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R. Ryan, Frank M. Legge, Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley and Bradley R. Larsen
    The paper ends with this sentence: “Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.”
    In short, the paper explodes the official story that “no evidence” exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.
    What is high-tech explosive/pyrotechnic material in large quantities doing in the WTC dust? Who made tons of this stuff and why? Why have government investigators refused to look for explosive residues in the WTC aftermath?
    These are central questions raised by this scientific study.
    The peer-review on this paper was grueling, with pages of comments by referees. The tough questions the reviewers raised led to months of further experiments. These studies added much to the paper, including observation and photographs of iron-aluminum rich spheres produced as the material is ignited in a Differential Scanning Calorimeter (see Figures 20, 25 and 26).
    The nine authors undertook an in-depth study of unusual red-gray chips found in the dust generated during the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11/2001. The article states: “The iron oxide and aluminum are intimately mixed in the red material. When ignited in a DSC device the chips exhibit large but narrow exotherms occurring at approximately 430 degreesC, far below the normal ignition temperature for conventional thermite. Numerous iron-rich spheres are clearly observed in the residue following the ignition of these peculiar red/gray chips. The red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic.” The images and data plots deserve careful attention.
    Some observations about the production of this paper:
    1. First author is Professor Niels Harrit of Copenhagen University in Denmark, an Associate Professor of Chemistry. He is an expert in nano-chemistry; current research activities and his photo can be found here:
    Molecular Structures on Short and Ultra Short Timescales
    A Centre under the Danish National Research Foundation
    The Centre for Molecular Movies was inaugurated 29th November 2005, at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen. The Centre is made possible through a five year grant from the Danish National Research Foundation. We aim to obtain real time “pictures” of how atoms are moving while processes are taking place in molecules and solid materials, using ultrashort pulses of laser light and X-rays. The goal is to understand and in turn influence, at the atomic level, the structural transformations associated with such processes.
    The Centre combines expertise form Risø National Laboratory, University of Copenhagen, and the Technical University of Denmark in structural investigation of matter by synchrotron X-ray based techniques, femtosecond laser spectroscopy, theoretical insight in femtosecond processes, and the ability to tailor materials, and design sample systems for optimal experimental conditions.”
    We understand that the Dean of Prof. Harrit’s college, Niels O Andersen, appears as the first name on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Bentham Science journal where the paper was published.
    2. Second author is Dr. Jeffrey Farrer of BYU.
    3. Dr. Farrer is featured in an article on page 11 of the BYU Frontiers magazine, Spring 2005: “Dr. Jeffrey Farrer, lab director for TEM” (TEM stands for Transmission Electron Microscopy). The article notes: “The electron microscopes in the TEM lab combine to give BYU capabilities that are virtually unique… rivaling anything built worldwide.” The article is entitled: “Rare and Powerful Microscopes Unlock Nano Secrets,” which is certainly true as regards the discoveries of the present paper.
    4. Kudos to BYU for permitting Drs. Farrer and Jones and physics student Daniel Farnsworth to do the research described in the paper and for conducting internal reviews of the paper. Dr. Farrer was formerly first author on this paper. But after internal review of the paper, BYU administrators evidently disallowed him from being first author on ANY paper related to 9/11 research (this appears to be their perogative, but perhaps they will explain). Nevertheless, the paper was approved for publication with Dr. Farrer’s name and affiliation listed and we congratulate BYU for this. We stand by Dr. Farrer and congratulate his careful scientific research represented in this paper.
    5. Perhaps now there will finally be a review of the SCIENCE explored by Profs. Harrit and Jones and by Drs. Farrer and Legge and their colleagues, as repeatedly requested by these scientists. We challenge ANY university or established laboratory group to perform such a review. This paper will be a good place to start, along with two other peer-reviewed papers in established journals involving several of the same authors:
    Fourteen Points of Agreement with Official Government Reports on the World Trade Center Destruction
    Authors: Steven E. Jones, Frank M. Legge, Kevin R. Ryan, Anthony F. Szamboti, James R. Gourley
    The Open Civil Engineering Journal, pp.35-40, Vol 2
    Environmental anomalies at the World Trade Center: evidence for energetic materials
    Authors: Kevin R. Ryan, James R. Gourley, and Steven E. Jones
    The Environmentalist, August, 2008
    6. James Hoffman has written three essays further explaining the implications and results of the paper. Thank you, Jim, for this work!
    7. Important features of the research have been independently corroborated by Mark Basile in New Hampshire and by physicist Frédéric Henry-Couannier in France, proceeding from earlier scientific reports on these discoveries (e.g., by Prof. Jones speaking at a Physics Dept. Colloquium at Utah Valley University last year.) We understand that details will soon be forthcoming from these independent researchers.

    Reply

  146. PissedOffAmerican says:

    More science, contained in an article written for the Scientic Journal, and subjected to extensive peer review. But of course, only questions’ “Popular Mechanics” scientists are credible. I especially like it when the magazine tells me how to build a miniature hot air balloon or how to use a magnet to pick up errant nails.
    What a sad joke this questions jackass is.
    http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCPJ/2009/00000002/00000001/7TOCPJ.SGM
    “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe” by Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R. Ryan, Frank M. Legge, Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley and Bradley R. Larsen
    The paper ends with this sentence: “Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.”
    In short, the paper explodes the official story that “no evidence” exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.
    What is high-tech explosive/pyrotechnic material in large quantities doing in the WTC dust? Who made tons of this stuff and why? Why have government investigators refused to look for explosive residues in the WTC aftermath?
    These are central questions raised by this scientific study.
    The peer-review on this paper was grueling, with pages of comments by referees. The tough questions the reviewers raised led to months of further experiments. These studies added much to the paper, including observation and photographs of iron-aluminum rich spheres produced as the material is ignited in a Differential Scanning Calorimeter (see Figures 20, 25 and 26).
    The nine authors undertook an in-depth study of unusual red-gray chips found in the dust generated during the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11/2001. The article states: “The iron oxide and aluminum are intimately mixed in the red material. When ignited in a DSC device the chips exhibit large but narrow exotherms occurring at approximately 430 degreesC, far below the normal ignition temperature for conventional thermite. Numerous iron-rich spheres are clearly observed in the residue following the ignition of these peculiar red/gray chips. The red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic.” The images and data plots deserve careful attention.
    Some observations about the production of this paper:
    1. First author is Professor Niels Harrit of Copenhagen University in Denmark, an Associate Professor of Chemistry. He is an expert in nano-chemistry; current research activities and his photo can be found here:
    (http://cmm.nbi.ku.dk/)
    Molecular Structures on Short and Ultra Short Timescales
    A Centre under the Danish National Research Foundation
    The Centre for Molecular Movies was inaugurated 29th November 2005, at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen. The Centre is made possible through a five year grant from the Danish National Research Foundation (see e.g. http://www.dg.dk). We aim to obtain real time “pictures” of how atoms are moving while processes are taking place in molecules and solid materials, using ultrashort pulses of laser light and X-rays. The goal is to understand and in turn influence, at the atomic level, the structural transformations associated with such processes.
    The Centre combines expertise form Risø National Laboratory, University of Copenhagen, and the Technical University of Denmark in structural investigation of matter by synchrotron X-ray based techniques, femtosecond laser spectroscopy, theoretical insight in femtosecond processes, and the ability to tailor materials, and design sample systems for optimal experimental conditions.”
    We understand that the Dean of Prof. Harrit’s college, Niels O Andersen, appears as the first name on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Bentham Science journal where the paper was published.
    2. Second author is Dr. Jeffrey Farrer of BYU. (http://www.physics.byu.edu/images/people/farrer.jpg)
    3. Dr. Farrer is featured in an article on page 11 of the BYU Frontiers magazine, Spring 2005: “Dr. Jeffrey Farrer, lab director for TEM” (TEM stands for Transmission Electron Microscopy). The article notes: “The electron microscopes in the TEM lab combine to give BYU capabilities that are virtually unique… rivaling anything built worldwide.” The article is entitled: “Rare and Powerful Microscopes Unlock Nano Secrets,” which is certainly true as regards the discoveries of the present paper.
    4. Kudos to BYU for permitting Drs. Farrer and Jones and physics student Daniel Farnsworth to do the research described in the paper and for conducting internal reviews of the paper. Dr. Farrer was formerly first author on this paper. But after internal review of the paper, BYU administrators evidently disallowed him from being first author on ANY paper related to 9/11 research (this appears to be their perogative, but perhaps they will explain). Nevertheless, the paper was approved for publication with Dr. Farrer’s name and affiliation listed and we congratulate BYU for this. We stand by Dr. Farrer and congratulate his careful scientific research represented in this paper.
    5. Perhaps now there will finally be a review of the SCIENCE explored by Profs. Harrit and Jones and by Drs. Farrer and Legge and their colleagues, as repeatedly requested by these scientists. We challenge ANY university or established laboratory group to perform such a review. This paper will be a good place to start, along with two other peer-reviewed papers in established journals involving several of the same authors:
    Fourteen Points of Agreement with Official Government Reports on the World Trade Center Destruction
    Authors: Steven E. Jones, Frank M. Legge, Kevin R. Ryan, Anthony F. Szamboti, James R. Gourley
    The Open Civil Engineering Journal, pp.35-40, Vol 2
    (http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCIEJ/2008/00000002/00000…)
    Environmental anomalies at the World Trade Center: evidence for energetic materials
    Authors: Kevin R. Ryan, James R. Gourley, and Steven E. Jones
    The Environmentalist, August, 2008
    (http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10669-008-9182-4)
    6. James Hoffman has written three essays further explaining the implications and results of the paper. Thank you, Jim, for this work! (http://911research.wtc7.net/essays/thermite/index.html)
    7. Important features of the research have been independently corroborated by Mark Basile in New Hampshire and by physicist Frédéric Henry-Couannier in France, proceeding from earlier scientific reports on these discoveries (e.g., by Prof. Jones speaking at a Physics Dept. Colloquium at Utah Valley University last year.) We understand that details will soon be forthcoming from these independent researchers.

    Reply

  147. arthurdecco says:

    shaddup, questions – you’ve got nuthin to say. Stop burnin’ through bandwidth to assuage your own fragile ego and tenderized intellect or I’ll sic another H L Mencken quote on ya.

    Reply

  148. PissedOffAmerican says:

    More science, contained in an article written for the Scientic Journal, and subjected to extensive peer review. But of course, only questions’ “Popular Mechanics” scientists are credible. I especially like it when the magazine tells me how to build a miniature hot air balloon or how to use a magnet to pick up errant nails.
    What a sad joke this questions jackass is.
    http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCPJ/2009/00000002/00000001/7TOCPJ.SGM
    “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe” by Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R. Ryan, Frank M. Legge, Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley and Bradley R. Larsen
    The paper ends with this sentence: “Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.”
    In short, the paper explodes the official story that “no evidence” exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.
    What is high-tech explosive/pyrotechnic material in large quantities doing in the WTC dust? Who made tons of this stuff and why? Why have government investigators refused to look for explosive residues in the WTC aftermath?
    These are central questions raised by this scientific study.
    The peer-review on this paper was grueling, with pages of comments by referees. The tough questions the reviewers raised led to months of further experiments. These studies added much to the paper, including observation and photographs of iron-aluminum rich spheres produced as the material is ignited in a Differential Scanning Calorimeter (see Figures 20, 25 and 26).
    The nine authors undertook an in-depth study of unusual red-gray chips found in the dust generated during the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11/2001. The article states: “The iron oxide and aluminum are intimately mixed in the red material. When ignited in a DSC device the chips exhibit large but narrow exotherms occurring at approximately 430 degreesC, far below the normal ignition temperature for conventional thermite. Numerous iron-rich spheres are clearly observed in the residue following the ignition of these peculiar red/gray chips. The red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic.” The images and data plots deserve careful attention.
    Some observations about the production of this paper:
    1. First author is Professor Niels Harrit of Copenhagen University in Denmark, an Associate Professor of Chemistry. He is an expert in nano-chemistry; current research activities and his photo can be found here:
    (http://cmm.nbi.ku.dk/)
    Molecular Structures on Short and Ultra Short Timescales
    A Centre under the Danish National Research Foundation
    The Centre for Molecular Movies was inaugurated 29th November 2005, at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen. The Centre is made possible through a five year grant from the Danish National Research Foundation (see e.g. http://www.dg.dk). We aim to obtain real time “pictures” of how atoms are moving while processes are taking place in molecules and solid materials, using ultrashort pulses of laser light and X-rays. The goal is to understand and in turn influence, at the atomic level, the structural transformations associated with such processes.
    The Centre combines expertise form Risø National Laboratory, University of Copenhagen, and the Technical University of Denmark in structural investigation of matter by synchrotron X-ray based techniques, femtosecond laser spectroscopy, theoretical insight in femtosecond processes, and the ability to tailor materials, and design sample systems for optimal experimental conditions.”
    We understand that the Dean of Prof. Harrit’s college, Niels O Andersen, appears as the first name on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Bentham Science journal where the paper was published.
    2. Second author is Dr. Jeffrey Farrer of BYU. (http://www.physics.byu.edu/images/people/farrer.jpg)
    3. Dr. Farrer is featured in an article on page 11 of the BYU Frontiers magazine, Spring 2005: “Dr. Jeffrey Farrer, lab director for TEM” (TEM stands for Transmission Electron Microscopy). The article notes: “The electron microscopes in the TEM lab combine to give BYU capabilities that are virtually unique… rivaling anything built worldwide.” The article is entitled: “Rare and Powerful Microscopes Unlock Nano Secrets,” which is certainly true as regards the discoveries of the present paper.
    4. Kudos to BYU for permitting Drs. Farrer and Jones and physics student Daniel Farnsworth to do the research described in the paper and for conducting internal reviews of the paper. Dr. Farrer was formerly first author on this paper. But after internal review of the paper, BYU administrators evidently disallowed him from being first author on ANY paper related to 9/11 research (this appears to be their perogative, but perhaps they will explain). Nevertheless, the paper was approved for publication with Dr. Farrer’s name and affiliation listed and we congratulate BYU for this. We stand by Dr. Farrer and congratulate his careful scientific research represented in this paper.
    5. Perhaps now there will finally be a review of the SCIENCE explored by Profs. Harrit and Jones and by Drs. Farrer and Legge and their colleagues, as repeatedly requested by these scientists. We challenge ANY university or established laboratory group to perform such a review. This paper will be a good place to start, along with two other peer-reviewed papers in established journals involving several of the same authors:
    Fourteen Points of Agreement with Official Government Reports on the World Trade Center Destruction
    Authors: Steven E. Jones, Frank M. Legge, Kevin R. Ryan, Anthony F. Szamboti, James R. Gourley
    The Open Civil Engineering Journal, pp.35-40, Vol 2
    (http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCIEJ/2008/00000002/00000…)
    Environmental anomalies at the World Trade Center: evidence for energetic materials
    Authors: Kevin R. Ryan, James R. Gourley, and Steven E. Jones
    The Environmentalist, August, 2008
    (http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10669-008-9182-4)
    6. James Hoffman has written three essays further explaining the implications and results of the paper. Thank you, Jim, for this work! (http://911research.wtc7.net/essays/thermite/index.html)
    7. Important features of the research have been independently corroborated by Mark Basile in New Hampshire and by physicist Frédéric Henry-Couannier in France, proceeding from earlier scientific reports on these discoveries (e.g., by Prof. Jones speaking at a Physics Dept. Colloquium at Utah Valley University last year.) We understand that details will soon be forthcoming from these independent researchers.

    Reply

  149. questions says:

    I am not prone to “my country right or wrong” because I am more prone to “my country is wrong.” We’ve gotten all sorts of policies wrong from slavery through Latin America through interventions at the wrong times and non-interventions at the wrong times through the NY Times’s current front page story about polluters and huge damage to children….
    I am also not prone to conspiracy theories that find patterns in things where those patterns are accidental, not causally related.
    I have just today read a bunch of seemingly rational debunkings of the “questions” people are raising here. Air intercepts are rare, difficult, and are why missile defense stuff doesn’t work well. Star Wars was nonsense, knocking flying things out of the air is nonsense, and shooting them down when you don’t really expect them to be there in the first place is ever more unlikely.
    My version of 9/11 has the following points in it: the Clinton admin. took Bin Laden and ME terrorism very seriously. Clinton was not taken seriously by the Republicans. Bush had a domestic agenda of cutting taxes and closing down the public schools through NCLB and not much more. Oh yeah, privatizing Social Security and deregulating stuff all the more. There were institutional turf wars that kept the intell that was out there from being collected in one place, analyzed carefully and acted on. There were warnings for years about cockpit doors and hijackings. But there hadn’t been a domestic hijacking in quite some time (I think I saw 1979 as a date for the last one earlier today.) There were warnings about the Twin Towers as they had been hit from below already. Stuff was out there. It wasn’t dealt with.
    But people don’t put these things together well. Ever know someone (like, say, my mom) who has a breast lump for years but doesn’t quite connect it to cancer? And then has bone pain like you wouldn’t believe and STILL doesn’t connect it to cancer. And finally goes for the pain — to a pain doctor that is, and is finally sent to an oncologist for the cancer that could have been dealt with some years prior (if we had nationalized single payer health insurance, that is). All the signs were there, but they weren’t in the right place at the right time, and someone died.
    We don’t connect unfamiliar dots until after the fact. The dots leading up to 9/11 were not taken seriously by the people who needed to take them seriously, and thinking defensively and paranoiacally in that fashion did not come naturally to enough people in enough places.
    Hence, 9/11.
    Building 7 seems to have been hit by debris from other buildings, had internal unseen structural damage and then it went down.
    The planes interception thing I touched on.
    The “it wasn’t hot enough to melt” stuff seems to be well explained by the structural engineer people. The core steel softens significantly at a much lower temp and down goes the building.
    ***
    Now think about all the crazy things people have believed over time. The miracles, the sea monsters, the fires, the gods, the bizarre and amazing “facts” that people testify to. What are the chances any of it is true? Think about how hard it is to remember if someone is wearing bright orange or bright red — you remember bright, but not the color. Think about how big the one was that got away — we exaggerate. We falsify for attention, for reward, for whatever.
    There are lots of reasons eye witness accounts can be wrong wrong wrong. So not even that is good enough. That’s how people are wrongly sentenced to death. People lie. People misremember. Routinely. And now there’s the internet to help us along. (See POA’s repeated claim of the Chertoff nonsense — which seems to have started because his mom boasted in a phone interview that since the Chertoffs share a name, they must be cousins at some level. This is not a claim of first cousinhood and improper relations. This is wild speculation to fill in time with a whopper of a story.)
    It’s not at all a matter of my country right or wrong. It’s a matter of thinking about what the chances are that conspiracy involving huge numbers of people and chance could have been planned by a fairly incompetent government to justify a war — WHEN WE JUSTIFY WARS ON MUCH LESS — ROUTINELY. We didn’t even need 9/11 to go after Iraq. We could have made up shit, which maybe we did anyway. What in heaven’s name does blowing up buildings add to anything, except a ridiculous epicycle…..
    Seriously, what does anyone in the Bush admin. get out of destroying the buildings? Seriously.

    Reply

  150. arthurdecco says:

    “Fist bump Arthur! Are you really a butler? Because I’m spreading that rumor all over Phoenix.” posted by Outraged American
    No, I’m an amalgam of creative man and ponderous machine, but HEY!, maybe its time for a career change…
    …Collect some resumes for me, will ya?
    PS: questions: getting a trifle querulous, are we? LOL
    “arthurdecco, You don’t read, do you?”
    I can feel you quivering, questions.
    Relax, for Pete’s sake!
    Reading your interminable missives always forces me to remember the REAL wit and penetrating stare of HL Mencken. Here’s a taste of HIS intelligence and, incidentally, an accurate description of you:
    “”Of all the classes of men, I dislike the most those who make their livings by talking–actors, clergymen, politicians, pedagogues, and so on. All of them participate in the shallow false pretenses of the actor who is their archetype. It is almost impossible to imagine a talker who sticks to the facts. Carried away by the sound of his own voice and the applause of the groundlings, he makes inevitably the jump from logic to mere rhetoric. His success is judged by the favor of his inferiors, or at all events of persons supposed to be his inferiors, and for that sort of thing I have no taste. If he is intelligent at all, which happens occasionally, he must be well aware that this favor is irrational and almost certainly transient. He is admired for his worst qualities, and he cannot count upon being admired for long. A good part of my time, in my earlier days, was spent listening to speeches of one sort or another, and to watching their makers glow under the ensuing clapper- clawing. I was always sorry for such men, for I soon observed that the applause of today was almost invariably followed by the indifference of tomorrow.”
    Kinda nails ya, don’t it?

    Reply

  151. Outraged American says:

    I went to Smith/Amherst for a year as an exchange student and
    then joined the Smith Club of LA ( it is now obvious that I was
    subconsciously recruiting for Feminiza) I became friends with two
    elderly ladies who’d been at Smith with both Barbara Bush and
    Nancy Reagan. They were battle-axes way back in their
    undergraduate days.

    Reply

  152. PissedOffAmerican says:

    This asshole questions demands science, yet cites a Joe Homeowner technical how-to magazine to provide it.
    Here is science, and scientists, directly confronting the NIST report on the collapse of Building Seven.
    http://www.911blogger.com/node/17794
    Bottom line? Questions isn’t interested in science, facts, or answers. Anyone swallowing the official narrative about the WTC crimes is an idiot.

    Reply

  153. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    questios…I have more questions about 9/11 than answers and not being a “MY country right or wrong” person, I do not accept the Commssion report as accurate or adequate…perhaps you can explain why NORAD failed to scramble for all three planes that day, for example.
    One of the images that has stuck in my mind is of Busholini being asked on New Year’s Eve, 2001 what kind of year he had..he cheerfully said “great”…hehehe. I guess 9/11 worked for our Cheerleader in Chief…since he thinks God asked him to run for President, he must have thought the much prayed for Trifecta, was the answer to his prayers to go down in history as a “War President” instead of the little chickenshit draft dodger he is….so what if thousands had to die…they were going to die someday anyway…hehehe…why not for a good cause…that of making his legacy..
    I agree with Dr.Justin Frank’s conclusions in his book Bush on the Couch…that our juvenile Frat Brat in Chief is a sadist who enjoys inflicting pain….consider Barbara BattleAxe Bush’s remark on the eve of our invasion of Iraq, that it would be a waste of her beautiful mind to watch the war news and notice the dead…they’re iirrelavant, she said….
    Some conspiracies are not theories…they are actual dastardly plots.
    POA OA don’t go away…we’ll die of boredom…

    Reply

  154. ... says:

    questions, aside from the buildings not being hit and coming down anyway, the fact norad was unable to get a plane to intercept these jet airliners over the course of an hour and a half must raise a question in the back of you mind soemwhere… as for bush /cheney committing illegal actions, of that their is more then ample examples, 9-11 being within the realm of possibility..one could call it looking the other way, much like the niger forgeries or the outing of plame… when someone says anything, you can claim innocence, as you weren’t personally directing it..
    you can believe your coincidence theories, while others choose to believe conspiracy theories… neither one is better or worse, in spite of anyone’s suggestion otherwise… without a proper inquiry into 9-11, this is all we’re left with… i suppose you think that is a coincidence too.. it appears so..

    Reply

  155. Outraged American says:

    Questions, I call bull-sh*t. And actually you just proved that Israel
    had a huge hand in 9/11.

    Reply

  156. questions says:

    From that great source, Wikipedia! Three nice quotations…. The whole Wiki piece is a nice survey of the field….
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/9/11_conspiracy_theories
    “Journalist Matt Taibbi, in his book The Great Derangement, discusses 9/11 conspiracy theories as symptomatic of what he calls the “derangement” of American society; a disconnection from reality due to widespread “disgust with our political system”.[133] Drawing a parallel with the Charismatic movement, he argues that both “chose to battle bugbears that were completely idiotic, fanciful, and imaginary,” instead of taking control of their own lives.[133] While critical, Taibbi explains that 9/11 conspiracy theories are different from “Clinton-era black-helicopter paranoia”, and constitute more than “a small, scattered group of nutcases […] they really were, just as they claim to be, almost everyone you meet.”[133]
    Historian Kenneth J. Dillon argues that 9/11 conspiracy theories represent an overly easy target for skeptics and that their criticisms obfuscate the underlying issue of what actually happened if there wasn’t a conspiracy. He suggests that the answer is criminal negligence on the part of the president and vice president, who were repeatedly warned, followed by a cover-up conspiracy after 9/11.[182] This was expanded upon by columnist Matt Mankelow writing for the Socialist Workers Online. He concludes that 9/11 truthers while “desperately trying to legitimately question a version of events” end up playing into the hands of the neoconservatives they are trying to take down by creating a diversion. Mankelow noted that this has irritated many people who are politically left wing. [183]
    British historian Antony Beevor wrote in January 2009 that “studies of internet sites reveal an unholy alliance between left-wing 9/11 conspiracy theorists, right-wing Holocaust deniers and Islamic fundamentalists”. He claimed that 9/11 and other conspiracy theories are a result of a “Wikipedia age” phenomenon that author Damian Thompson dubbed “counterknowledge”. It allegedly involves people “seizing upon one or two minor discrepancies in a government report, then joining up all the wrong dots to create a monstrous fable”. He believes “counterknowledge” is potentially greater threat to liberal democracy than Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin. [184]”
    …,
    Nope, not really. It’s coincidence AFTER THE FACT. The government used the event the way governments (and all people) do.
    Ever hear of a “teachable moment?” That’s an event that one uses as a way to impart a lesson to someone.
    9/11 was a useful moment for a range of government officials to do some things think tanks had been proposing for a while. So far, it hasn’t worked out as they had wanted.
    As for pre-planning, not very likely at all. Too complex, too risky, to vicious, too stupid, too prone to failure, too many steps, too many people involved, too much to do. All for a war on Iraq that could have been provoked quite easily in typical American fashion. No blown up buildings needed.

    Reply

  157. Outraged American says:

    I’m up for a streamed internet radio show, so you’all at TWN will
    soon be relieved of me, but I do want you all to call-in. It’s your
    chance to vent your frustrations, as well as educate others
    worldwide.
    I haven’t finished the deal yet because I am seriously worried
    that I won’t be able to get into Israel/ Gaza Strip / the West Bank
    if my views on a one state solution become known.
    Mossad is everywhere.
    Hey, it’s summer in Phoenix, there’s nothing to do except hop
    into a pool of what feels like boiling water and BBQ the kids. In
    early fall, i.e., late December, I’ll be out playing golf naked and
    sending care packages of Cuervo Gold to Norheim.
    And looking at pictures of dead Iranian children.

    Reply

  158. Carroll says:

    Posted by questions, Sep 12 2009, 4:25PM >>>>>>
    The question about 911 is.
    WHO ‘LET’ IT HAPPEN. We know the WHY.
    Unless of course you expect everyone to believe that in a country whose military, security and inteligence budget is more than all other countries combined…had ALL it’s agencies, federal, military and civilian , ALL FAIL, at the SAME EXACT TIME, on the SAME EXACT DAY,in the SAME EXACT WAY….FAIL BOTH BEFORE AND DURING and that all the warnings we now know about that were deep sixed by certain people in these agencies were all just accidential and due to incompetence…for which they were never fired or asked to fall on their sword.
    That what you want us to believe? That is was a convergence of the stars..a coincidence?
    Ha!

    Reply

  159. ... says:

    questions, i don’t know if you have thought 9-11 thru… 9-11 has been the convenient unspoken excuse for the past 8 years of war on iraq and afgan… it might be better to say you are into coincidence theory, as there are way too many coincidences to ignore on this one..
    OA, i understand peoples frustration on these issues and how their political system has been hijacked… ratcheting up the angst over it on a message board doesn’t seem to serve much purpose other then as a form of venting… and…. i like your humour and the posts you have been making on some of the other threads..

    Reply

  160. Outraged American says:

    Then why is Silverstein on camera saying that he made the decision
    to “pull” Building 7? “Pull” is a word used by demolitionists to mean
    start bringing down a building using explosives in place.
    As to why 9/11 happened, just do a web search on “Project for the
    New American Century” “Rebuilding America’s Defenses” and “new
    Pearl Harbor” and look at who signed the “Rebuilding America’s
    Defenses” document.
    I’m with POA on this one — hey POA you can come over and do
    Feminazia’s threshold anytime — there’s no use trying to argue
    with…academics, or is the correct term “acadamia-i”? They know
    nothing.

    Reply

  161. questions says:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/conspiracy_files/6341851.stm
    2007 debunking of nuttiness from BBC (part of the conspiracy as well, I suppose, because Zebulon Bush (an unknown cousin of Marvin Bush, but not of George Bush) did telephone soliciting for ads for the BBC) (This part is snark.)

    Reply

  162. questions says:

    arthurdecco,
    You don’t read, do you? POA brought up that criticism of the piece all by himself after I first posted the link. So, no, it wasn’t my non-sequitur, it was POA’s. (The author issue, that is.)
    The Pop Mech piece has a whole section about Building 7 that may or may not be out of date at this point. If I find something updated and reasonable sounding, I’ll link to it just for you. But according to the Pop Mech piece, Bldg. 7 had internal structural damage that was thought at the time to be sufficient to cause it to fall eventually.
    Think about earthquake damage — you don’t go back into a building after an earthquake til it’s been inspected because it can have serious but hidden damage and can collapse later. The authors of the Pop Mech piece speculate about Bldg 7 and this is their basic thought at the time. If it’s been updated, fine. If structural engineers and materials scientists and the forensic people are now unsure, I’ll revise my opinion based on that actual research. And not based on nutty conspiracy theories that must include hundreds and hundreds of now-silent co-conspirators.
    I don’t spend a lot of time on 9/11 conspiracy thoughts, so I don’t keep up with the field. but if something comes my way, you’ll read about here.
    But please think through how and why this particular “conspiracy” would be undertaken? What could be the point of the whole thing? It’s right up there with the birther nonsense in terms of setting up a past to deal with impossible to predict future events. In 1961, Obama’s mother would have had no reason to fake anything. In 2001 or whenever the plans started, Cheney et al would have had no way to predict what would happen as a result of the bombings.
    Once the bombings happened, they made use of them for sure. And it didn’t do the world or them much good. Reputations, political power, the wealth of the nation, the health of the nation — all kind of in the toilet at this point.
    They planned this??

    Reply

  163. ... says:

    STFU is rich coming from someone who clearly doesn’t know how to take their own advice…
    poa quote “and if I have any brains or willpower, the next time I sign online, it will be to research an herb garden I want to plant, and not to bat heads with asses and idiots.” good luck with that one..

    Reply

  164. Outraged American says:

    Rabbi Dov Zakheim, signatory to the Project for the New
    American Century’s document that predicted that it would take
    an “attack on the scale of Pearl Harbor” for PNACs agenda was
    comptroller of the Pentagon on the day of 9/11. The document
    was called “Rebuilding America’s Defenses” and it was written
    and signed by Dick Cheney and a host of other nefarious
    characters ONE YEAR BEFORE THE 9/11 attacks.
    Prior to that Zakheim had been CEO of Systems Planning Corp.
    International, which HAD DEVELOPED THE TECHNOLOGY TO
    REMOTELY PILOT HIJACKED PLANES.
    Do some reading-up, girlfriend.
    And I did major in physics, an undergraduate degree only
    because I can’t stand pontificators, but the collapse of Building
    7, pre-reported by a few news outlets, and which Larry
    Silverstein, in a PBS documentary, admitted giving the order to
    “pull” should make any person, even if they’re living in a cave
    under Koztis’ ego, think.
    Fist bump Arthur! Are you really a butler? Because I’m
    spreading that rumor all over Phoenix.

    Reply

  165. arthurdecco says:

    Explain the collapse of Building#7 for me, will ya, questions?
    Thanks so much.
    It doesn’t much matter who wrote the bullshit Mechanics Illustrated article – that’s a non-sequitur like much of your carefully constructed house of cards, isn’t it questions? The article under discussion is still filled with bullshit that has long been deconstructed by various and sundry un-bought AUTHENTIC academic and practical experts in the fields of engineering, physics, chemistry and logic. Look up the completed research instead of running to today’s Hasbarah talking points memo for the seeds of your endless squirming, circular arguments that leave no one but you and your fellow travelers satisfied.
    So…
    …explain to me again what led to the collapse of Building #7. Okay? You know… that third building, 47 stories tall with only minimal surface damage, no structural damage and only scattered fires burning throughout the building?
    Explain how it fell down in its own footprint.
    Can you do that?
    No?
    Of course you can’t

    Reply

  166. Carroll says:

    Posted by Outraged American, Sep 12 2009, 2:53PM – Link
    It’s inevitable that this rage will eventually spread beyond anger
    at the Zionists to anger directed at all Jews, but that is exactly
    what the Zionists want.>>>>>>>>>
    Absolutely right. All one has to do is look at comments of the pro Israel zios and how they immediately sling the anti semitic slur..as in you hate “ALL” jews….that’s why you are criticizing Israel!
    They hide behind “the Jews”. I think some of ‘the Jews’ have wised up over the past several years as to who is actually a threat to them…but they need to speed up the process before an Israeli attack on Iran sends the US into a tailspin.
    “And I’m with Kathleen — in so many countries whose people I’ve
    received hospitality from even a gift is considered offensive.”
    In the South we alway take some small gift, nothing big, for our hostess if we are to be someone’s house guest for instance.
    But I am believer in ‘when in Rome do as the Romans do’…it’s always a good idea to bone up on other people’s cultures…taking the trouble to do that is a sign of respect. But I wouldn’t take offense at a social boo boo that had good intentions behind it or let the person be embarassed by it.

    Reply

  167. questions says:

    “And BTW, claiming that Benjamin Chertoff is not related to Michael Chertoff is a lie. No problem though, you’re good at it.”
    FROM WIKIPEDIA…. I know, it’s part of the conspiracy theory, too….. But whatever.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benjamin_Chertoff
    “Disputed family background
    Supporters of the conspiracy theories have claimed that 9/11: Debunking The Myths is “a propaganda piece” written by “a senior government official’s cousin” because Chertoff has the same last name as Department of Homeland Security secretary Michael Chertoff. However, Chertoff has repeatedly denied this claim, most notably in the September 11, 2006 issue of U.S. News & World Report, stating “no one in my family has ever met anyone related to Michael Chertoff”.[6] In an audio interview, he noted that any possible relationship would likely only be found in “19th-century Belarus”, and that his mother has described any such possible relationship as “distant”.[7]”

    Reply

  168. questions says:

    I’m repeating this for effect. POA insists that a)I never read the Pop Mech piece b)it’s nonsense written by Michael Chertoff’s cousin and c)I refer to no science at all.
    Below is POA’s charge list followed by a piece debunking POA’s source for the charge. I repeat the posting lest anyone not read this and continue to think that the Pop Mech piece has no science and was written by Chertoff’s cousin and that even if it had been, it would be a relevant factoid.
    Hope you don’t mind the extra bandwidth, but this issue is really important with the conspiracy crap that is flying around here.
    Then, please read the Pop Mech piece yourself if you have doubts. It’s loaded with science, with quotations by scientists who aren’t going to ruin their careers in the service of junk. Read it, think about it, think about POA’s sourcing. Think. And note that all the editors together are in on the piece, not just the unrelated Chertoff dude.
    http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/military_law/1227842.html?page=1
    “Posted by PissedOffAmerican, Sep 11 2009, 9:53PM – Link
    “Read the Pop. Mech piece and get the materials SCIENCE info”
    Funny, a piece written/compiled by Chertoff’s cousin.
    It always amazes me how you assholes never address the huge HOLES in the official 9/11 narrative, but instead always point to a piece that was obviuosly created to buttress the official line of shit.
    You gotta be a complete moron to buy into the official narrative. And seeing as how you aren’t a complete moron, whats that tell us about you, questions?
    And what “science” are you referring to, questions? Cite specifics, instead of feeding us a ration of shit from an article you probably have not even bothered to read with anything other than a blank stare and a nodding head.
    You are predictable, if nothing else.”
    THE DUBUNKING OF POA:
    http://biobrain.blogspot.com/2009/06/debunking-911-debunkers-debunking.html
    “Too Many Chertoffs
    And the second piece of evidence is that the piece was partly written by Benjamin Chertoff, an editor of Popular Mechanics who conspiracy theorists incorrectly believe to be a cousin of Michael Chertoff, a former head of the DHS. As they explain:
    This means that Benjamin Chertoff was hired to write an article that would receive nationwide attention, about the veracity of the government’s explanation of an event that led directly to the creation of Homeland Security, a body that his own cousin now heads.
    This is unparalleled nepotism and completely dissolves the credibility of the article before one has even turned the first page.
    Of course. Because Benjamin’s cousin got a job three years after a terrorist attack and that job was created in order to prevent similar terrorist attacks, Benjamin lacks any credibility to write about that attack. It’s not that they think Michael Chertoff had any responsibility whatsoever with stopping the attack or was directly involved with the cover-up of it, but because Michael became the second head of this agency, his cousin can’t investigate it. And of course, they’re not actually cousins. They just have the same last name.
    And so the first two pieces of evidence against Popular Mechanics’ article is that the magazine is owned by the company that William Randolph Hearst once owned and the article was written by a guy with the same last name of someone whose job was created to prevent similar attacks. And to think, people accuse conspiracy theorists of inventing ridiculous connections that don’t exist.”

    Reply

  169. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Carroll, just read the sequence of posts again. I think it is quite clear where I stand. And no, none of my comments were directed towards you.
    But to be honest, I think I’ve about had it with TWN. Its like visiting the fuckin’ Twilight Zone. For an alleged “foreign policy blog” to completely ignore the current interchanges between Israel and the United States in regards to the setllements, as well as ignore Reid and Hoyer’s open efforts to undermine their President, robs this blog of all credibility.
    And seeing that obscene posting about Dubai was truly a telling window into the mindset of these fledgling Kizzingers of tomorrow. Sick fucks, one and all. If these are the kinds of minds steering the ship of state, we are going to run aground sooner rather than later. The one glaring trait they all seem to share is an extremely blatant absence of personal values, to say nothing of their inappreciation for the values this country was founded on.
    From questions’ constant stream of obsfucating bullshit to Nadine’s hateful racist lies and excuses, this comment section has become a carnival of pseudo intellectual posturing, academic pretentiousness and collective denial.
    And questions, you’ve offered up one more hiut piece, without examining or addressding any of the serious questions raised by serious examination of the official narrative. You have offered debate, you’ve offered propaganda. Its all you ever offer, because you are a complete and utter fraud and a liar. Your dissingenuous posturing and willful obsfucations are well known here, and numerous posters have noted them.
    Questions, you’re a liar. You offer arguments for argument’s sake, with no conviction or integrity. I have a very low opinion of you, aqnd recognize the futility of engaging you in debate. Its a waste if time, because your arguments are not honest or hearetfelt,. Its all bullshit in your world. You’re swimming in it, and, to be frank, I’m sick of diving into your putrid pool in an attempt to pull your head out of your ass. Unfortunately, its lodged permanently.
    And BTW, claiming that Benjamin Chertoff is not related to Michael Chertoff is a lie. No problem though, you’re good at it.
    And, uh, the amount of reputable scientists now questioning the “science” you refuse to directly cite now surpasses the number of those willing to support the official narrative.
    Now, I’m going to go replace the threshold on my front door, and if I have any brains or willpower, the next time I sign online, it will be to research an herb garden I want to plant, and not to bat heads with asses and idiots.

    Reply

  170. questions says:

    OA, are you now saying that the planes weren’t hijacked? That the pilots did this deliberately? That there were certifed UAL pilots suicidal enough to crash their planes into tall buildings in DC and NY and accidentally in PA so that the explosions would look like plane crashes so that Dick Cheney could start a war in Iraq so that we could have oil so that Halliburton could have money so that Dick Cheney could leave more money to his grand kids if was to have any grand kids that is?
    Maybe YOU need to do a little source checking!!
    Do you see how you are headed straight for Cloud Cuckooland?
    ANY and all complex events have coincidences. There’s always some relative of an important person, because there are lots of relatives of important people — NONE OF WHOM WAS RELATED TO MICHAEL CHERTOFF BY THE WAY — and there are lots of people who get lucky and aren’t affected — because lots of people have just been wherever there’s been an event and have left just before the event or haven’t arrived and so miss the event….
    ZOMG

    Reply

  171. questions says:

    POA, have you read the Pop Mech piece? I was just re-reading it. It makes a lot more sense than, say, you do, on this one. Lots of actual SCIENCE — the stuff you say I don’t supply.
    Well, I don’t supply it directly because, umm, I’m not a materials scientist, a structural engineer, a forensics scientist, a crash investigator or the like. But maybe you should try to refute every point in there from seismic data to the behavior of concrete and steel under temperature stress to the behavior of crashing planes to the behavior of windows to the location of debris and on and on and on.
    So all those scientists quoted in the article are in on the conspiracy as well, I guess. No worry about the impact on their careers — BECAUSE ALL OF ACADEMIA IS IN ON THE CONSPIRACY AS WELL. In fact, I think I’m the only one who isn’t in on it which is why I think it’s nonsense!

    Reply

  172. Outraged American says:

    Questions, you need to do some basic research on all the
    “coincidences” surrounding 9/11. Your forte is critical thinking.
    I want a magic passport, like that of one of the 9/11 “hijackers”
    which miraculously survived the plane crash, fireball, and collapse
    of the WTC, so that Israel can’t burn mine when I attempt to go
    from the West Bank into “Israel”
    Colin Powell’s presentation to the UN about Iraq’s WMD was based
    on a plagerized, 10-year-old student thesis. This was reported by
    CNN and overseas press, but yet the world believed it.
    Conspiracy theories happen, and governments often tend to be the
    ones selling them.

    Reply

  173. rich says:

    McChrystal: No major al-Qaida signs in Afghanistan
    http://www.timesunion.com/AspStories/story.asp?storyID=840797
    By MIKE CORDER, Associated Press
    Last updated: 10:55 a.m., Friday, September 11, 2009
    THE HAGUE, Netherlands — The top commander of U.S. and international forces in Afghanistan said Friday he sees no signs of a major al-Qaida presence in the country.”:
    So why are we there?
    We need our own Dien Bien Phu — big enough to put the French to shame, big enough so that all Afghanistan serves to control all of Central Asia. Big enough to end the American Empire.
    For our trouble — we get this —>
    Human Charcoal in Afghanistan
    By: JacobFreeze Saturday September 12, 2009 8:03 am (via FireDogLake)
    From the Guardian…
    At first light last Friday, in the Chardarah district of Kunduz province in northern Afghanistan, the villagers gathered around the twisted wreckage of two fuel tankers that had been hit by a Nato airstrike.
    “We didn’t recognise any of the dead when we arrived,” said Omar Khan, the turbaned village chief of Eissa Khail. “They were like burned tree logs, like charcoal.”
    “The villagers were fighting over the corpses. People were saying this is my brother, this is my cousin, and no one could identify anyone.”
    “I couldn’t find my son, so I took a piece of flesh with me home and I called it my son.”

    Reply

  174. questions says:

    REad it and weep….
    “And speaking of 9/11 conspiracies, while researching that post, I happened upon a site which purported to debunk the Popular Mechanics article I linked to which debunked the conspiracies. And the debunking’s debunking was really one of the shoddiest pieces of debunking I’ve seen since the last time I read a conspiracy theorist debunk anything.
    It’s titled Debunking Popular Mechanics’ 9/11 Lies: Nepotism, bias, shoddy research and agenda-driven politics. And for as strong as that title is and as long as the piece is, it barely gets around to any sort of debunking at all. As expected, it’s taken as assumed that the article is wrong, and barely mentions a few areas the article didn’t cover; while the bulk of it consists of strong assertions about how fraudulent the piece is.
    The first piece of evidence against the original debunking is that Popular Mechanics is owned by the Hearst Corporation, which was once owned by William Randolph Hearst, who “wrote the book on cronyism and yellow journalism.” Needless to say, this undermines everything the magazine could possibly say. And just to be clear, Popular Mechanics started in 1911 and was bought by the Hearst Corporation in 1958, while William Hearst died in 1951; seven years before his company bought the magazine. So Hearst never actually owned Popular Mechanics at any time; even assuming this was a valid point against the magazine, which it isn’t.
    Now normally, people try to start this sort of thing with their best piece of evidence, rather than an entirely embarrassing point that serves no purpose whatsoever. But hey, we’re not talking normal people here. We’re talking conspiracy theorists, and when conspiracy theorists begin a point, they like to go with the longshot connection which stretches the reader’s credibility to the point of breaking. After that, anything sounds plausible.
    Too Many Chertoffs
    And the second piece of evidence is that the piece was partly written by Benjamin Chertoff, an editor of Popular Mechanics who conspiracy theorists incorrectly believe to be a cousin of Michael Chertoff, a former head of the DHS. As they explain:
    This means that Benjamin Chertoff was hired to write an article that would receive nationwide attention, about the veracity of the government’s explanation of an event that led directly to the creation of Homeland Security, a body that his own cousin now heads.
    This is unparalleled nepotism and completely dissolves the credibility of the article before one has even turned the first page.
    Of course. Because Benjamin’s cousin got a job three years after a terrorist attack and that job was created in order to prevent similar terrorist attacks, Benjamin lacks any credibility to write about that attack. It’s not that they think Michael Chertoff had any responsibility whatsoever with stopping the attack or was directly involved with the cover-up of it, but because Michael became the second head of this agency, his cousin can’t investigate it. And of course, they’re not actually cousins. They just have the same last name.”
    READ THE LAST LINE TWO OR THREE TIMES, Please!!
    http://biobrain.blogspot.com/2009/06/debunking-911-debunkers-debunking.html
    This is the problem with all of the conspiracy crap. It’s CRAP!!!!!!!

    Reply

  175. Carroll says:

    Posted by arthurdecco, Sep 12 2009, 2:42PM>>>>>>>>>>>>
    Be my guest..as I said I don’t always live up to it but I believe in it.
    This got me thinking about some of the things I learned as a child that are still with me today.
    My father use to take this older couple (the parents of a deceased childhood friend of his and their only child) out to Sunday lunch every month. My family was well off and the only reason I knew that was because other people commented on it, they never did themselves.
    So it was normal for us children to see and expect
    our father to always pick up the bill for any outings. One Sunday lunch the older gentlemen insisted on paying the dinner bill and my father let him and thanked him profusely for the lunch. On the way home I was puzzled in a ten year old way at this change and asked why he had not paid for lunch as usual. His reply was that a man’s pride is more important than money and that is why he let him pay for the lunch. That’s all he said but even at 10 I got it.
    I have never forgotten that, maybe it is one reason why the humilation of the Palestines, trying to destroy their self respect, their manhood gets to me the way it does.

    Reply

  176. questions says:

    OK, let me get this straight. It’s not just Chertoff’s cousin and Geo. Bush’s bro Marvin who are in on the conspiracy. It’s the editors and reviewers at Popular Mechanics, whatever professional society of materials scientists, all the people who would have been hauling and hiding crate after crate after crate of explosives, huge numbers of UAL folks, the air defense of the US, large numbers of political/governmental employees — how many people are in on this conspiracy???
    And for what — OH YEAH, to justify a war on Iraq that couldn’t be justified any other way except by knocking down a few large and important NYC and DC buildings and creating this Osama Bin Laden-Al Quaeda exploding plane thing, fabricating huge amounts intell BEFORE the fact so that it was all ready for just in time delivery, crashing the US economy so that the Repubs could… umm, whatever…..
    Oh and that nonsense about Clinton’s having been after Bin Laden and deeply concerned about him? Nonsense. Oh, no. Clinton was in on the conspiracy as well. And that’s why HRC is Secy State…..
    Now what makes more sense — the conspiracy pre-planning version, or the OH SHIT, but we could probably use this event just like it says in Machiavelli? I wager the latter. There’s an oh shit quality to this, a lot of near misses reported, a typically incompetent uncooperative selfish institutional structure… that all together makes it seem more likely that the events happened, and then Cheney and the like minded decided this was a good excuse.
    It makes so little sense that anything was pre-planned that I cannot quite believe that people think that, but people think a lot of things.
    How would Cheney et al KNOW what our response would be? How would they know that enough people would die because the radio signals were fucked up? What if everyone escaped? What if people had been happy that the evil Gotham City had taken a hit? What if no one cared? What if vastly more people died and the anger was directed at the US govt in the first place? How’d they KNOW the box cutters would get through, the planes would crash spot on? Oh, there weren’t actually any planes. NASA faked the pix. The bribe is that we’ll keep funding the space program.
    What if they did all of this, and then the war wearied the entire country, the Republicans lost the election and were in the wilderness for 40 years?
    There is no way to pre-guess the consequences of this, but there were certainly reasons to use it as an excuse after the fact.
    But you’ll never be convinced of anything because, as I pointed out in some previous post a while ago, the letter always arrives at its destination.
    If there were no Bush or Chertoff connected, that very LACK of a connection would have been telling.
    DO YOU REALLY THINK THAT IF THERE HAD BEEN A CONSPIRACY, they’d have been dumb enough to use Bush’s bro’s security contract? Or Chertoff’s cousin as a justifier? But OF COURSE, all the better to throw off the investigators. They’ll think that we’ll think that they’ll think…so we’ll do….. ZOMG.
    If no materials scientist could make graphs of melting points of steel or the behavior of sky scraper cores or whatever, THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN PROOF, too.
    The science issues are well laid out in the Pop. Mech piece as I recall. I read it a while ago and it seemed pretty convincing. Though I will confess, unlike you, I don’t have a degree in materials science, though I think it’s a really cool field of study and had I time, I’d take a few classes in the behavior of concrete and steel under temperature stresses.
    You will read causal chains whether or not they are there because you want them to be there. I will wait for some proof — which I have yet to see on your side of things.
    Our brains are always on the lookout for patterns. It’s why we see faces in the clouds and conspiracies in the headlines. But there are no faces in the clouds, and sometimes, a headline is just a headline.
    ***
    The Fibonacci sequence is pretty cool too!
    ****
    ****
    On Bush — Neil Bush pushed some gawdawful reading curriculum onto innocent school children under NCLB. Neil Bush made money. Teachers complained. They didn’t like the curriculum and it is no longer a federal requirement for NCLB classes near as I can tell (I think it was mandated, but maybe not…. The details are getting fuzzy.)
    The point of the digression is that there are Bushes everywhere and they make money. BUT they drag along other people who are perfectly happy to out them should it be necessary.
    If it was an inside job, it was a HUGE job, and a lot of conspirators are floating around. They wouldn’t all be silent, except in a Hollywood production — which is what this all sounds like to me.

    Reply

  177. Outraged American says:

    I think that both POA and Carrolls’ comments reflect the level of
    frustration that aware Americans feel about the power of the
    Israel lobby. All three of us. And how it will drive the world into
    the War to End All Wars.
    It’s inevitable that this rage will eventually spread beyond anger
    at the Zionists to anger directed at all Jews, but that is exactly
    what the Zionists want.
    …, Congress does not listen to us about Israel. Over the decades
    I very sadly lived in LA I was in Waxman, Harman, Berman,
    Shermans’ districts. It appears you have to have a “man” after
    your name to get elected in Tinseltown.
    While all progressive on domestic issues they were Zionazis
    about Yisrael, much like some of the pro-Israel posters here.
    This is one thing that I want to say that might be controversial: I
    have had friends who I’ve lost over the years, inexplicably — no
    big fight, nothing. Rather than blame them I’ve turned inwards
    and asked myself, “What did I do to end the friendship?” I think
    that Jews have to ask themselves that, and many already have
    because they’re not buying into the Zionist BS but instead
    working towards peace.
    Zionists rabbit on about how everyone hates Jews rather than
    asking themselves why. They really need to because the
    majority of the world now doesn’t hate Jews because they Jews,
    but if Israel pulls another hat trick by starting WW III, they will
    hate all Jews.
    Amazing photos from “Af-Pak” and other parts of South Asia
    and the Middle East. CHECK THESE OUT, especially if you’ve
    never been to these regions: they might give a better
    understanding of the situation on the ground.
    Plus they’re visually stunning:
    http://tinyurl.com/d5m6z6
    And I’m with Kathleen — in so many countries whose people I’ve
    received hospitality from even a gift is considered offensive.

    Reply

  178. arthurdecco says:

    I think he was directing his ire at dotty (…), Carroll.

    Reply

  179. Carroll says:

    Posted by PissedOffAmerican, Sep 12 2009, 2:35PM
    >>>>>>>>
    Let me try this again.
    Are you talking to me or some one else?

    Reply

  180. Carroll says:

    Posted by arthurdecco, Sep 12 2009, 2:24PM
    >>>>>>>>>>>
    Thanks to you too arthur…I warned the usual suspects several articles back that bullshit myths about the US and the allies deliberately “letting the jews die” would no longer be tolerated.
    Evidently they didn’t take the warning seriously.
    Too bad no Roosevelt descendents have sued the zio propagandist for slander…maybe eventually someone will…way past due to call out these sick liars.

    Reply

  181. arthurdecco says:

    Carroll wrote: “In my family, honor, responsibility not only for self but for less fortunate others, doing your part and more than your part in any endeavor, reserving judgment until you have all the facts, treating the prince and the pauper with the same respect, being fair to all in all your dealings, being compassionate toward the needy, not in words but in deeds, taking action to right wrongs, defending the helpless but not suffering fools and the scurrilous gladly, making a stand for what is right even if it’s unpopular, not whining or complaining over personal set backs, relentlessly keeping on regardless of the difficulties,not seeking admiration, being humble, that supporting a lie is the same as telling a lie, to uphold the honor of your family, state and country by your actions, to not be cowed or stopped by criticism when you know you are in the right…and last but not least having the confidence in the right and wrong you were taught and the courage to take ACTION, to fight like hell when there is no other alternative against evil.”
    I have copied this to my hard drive, Carroll, and with your permission, I will send it on to my friends.
    It is an admirable place and tradition you come from.

    Reply

  182. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Thanks POA…as they say in the movies some people can’t handle the truth….”
    Oh, stuff it, you squeaking little gnat.
    “….if it wasn’t for the immoral subsidation provided by the American taxpayer, and the immoral and ill-advised support our politicians have provided…”
    Just what to you think that means, if I am not “blaming the folks in Washington”?
    Don’t be an ass. Shut up on this one before you make a bigger fool of yourself.

    Reply

  183. Carroll says:

    Posted by PissedOffAmerican, Sep 12 2009, 1:04PM
    >>>>>>>>>
    Thanks POA…as they say in the movies some people can’t handle the truth….

    Reply

  184. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    questions…you ask how all those explosives could have been brought into the WTC…ask Marvin Bush who had the security contract for the WTC and United Airlines.
    On the subject of gift giving, speaking as a Sicilian-Anerican, we never go anywhere empty-handed and never allow anyone to leave our hone empty-handed…it isn’t considered a gift…it’s simply sharing. I know Steve thinks the Sicilian approach is un-American…frankly, I’d rather be un-American.

    Reply

  185. arthurdecco says:

    “looks like carroll went off the deep end…”posted by dotty
    From here it looks like Carroll has experienced an epiphany of sorts.
    Something like the line in Network, “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore!”
    and Paul, before you start fluffing up your feathers, pumping up your chest and rehearsing your magisterial, Velveeta voice of Righteous Outrage, do one thing for me.
    Define “anti-Semitism” as honestly as you can.
    And then shut up for a bit and wait for the inevitable responses.
    Can you do that for me? Before you do what you always-so-predictably do?

    Reply

  186. Carroll says:

    Posted by questions, Sep 12 2009, 12:13PM – Link
    Carroll, what do you think it means to live in a society?>>>>>>>>>
    You can’t get to stating what being part of society should mean without first understanding what you are suppose to be as a human being.
    I have no idea how you raised or what you were taught. In my family, honor, responsibility not only for self but for less fortunate others, doing your part and more than your part in any endeavor, reserving judgement until you have all the facts, treating the prince and the pauper with the same respect, being fair to all in all your dealings, being compassionate toward the needy, not in words but in deeds, taking action to right wrongs, defending the helpless but not suffering fools and the scurrilous gladly, making a stand for what is right even if it’s unpopular, not whinning or complaining over personal set backs, relentlessly keeping on regardless of the difficulities,not seeking admiration, being humble, that supporting a lie is the same as telliing a lie, to uphold the honor of your family, state and country by your actions, to not be cowed or stopped by criticism when you know you are in the right…and last but not least having the confidence in the right and wrong you were taught and the courage to take ACTION, to fight like hell when there is no other alternative against evil.
    My family were highly educated but not given to endless intellectual moralizing, they were action people, they taught by example and their own deeds.
    Do I alway live up to these standards? No, of course not. But they are the standards that society should operate by in my opinion.
    Let other people decide what their role in society is..this is what I was taught and I am sticking to it…with occasional slip ups of course.

    Reply

  187. PissedOffAmerica says:

    “…if all you want to do is blame, then give a good chunk to the folks in washington….”
    STFU, you mealy mouthed little pissant. You haven’t noted my posts about Reid, Hoyer, etc? Like I haven’t placed any “blame” on the “folks” in Washington?
    I’ve sure noted your absence when it comes to any substantive criticism of the actions of the Democratic leadership in undermining Obama’s half-hearted attempts at changing the Isr/Pal dynamic.
    If you are going to criticize opinions, think before you hit the keypad.

    Reply

  188. ... says:

    the political class in the usa aren’t faultless in all of this.. if the usa wants to gets its ass out of israel, then maybe it can consider a few other options… not many in washington seem quite up to the task…if all you want to do is blame, then give a good chunk to the folks in washington….

    Reply

  189. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Questions, wheres the specific science you were blathering on about in the Chertoff hit piece?
    Paul, I’ve read FAR worse than Carroll’s blunt rejection of the Israeli excuses for Hitler-like behaviour. How about Nadine’s constant lies, excuses, and justifications for the treatment of the Palestinians? How about her blanket denials of Israeli attrocites that are well documented and widely known as truth? How about the dishonesty and willfull obsfucations surrounding questions’ droning denials about the irrefutable power the Israeli lobbies exercise over American foreign policy?
    I too have had it up to my ears with the eternal victimhood of a leech nation whose actions would have long ago consigned them to extinction if it wasn’t for the immoral subsidation provided by the American taxpayer, and the immoral and ill-advised support our politicians have provided to a nation whose record of attrocity, espionage, and inhumanities is every bit as egregious as Hitler’s, and over time, may well surpass Nazi Germany’s in scale and scope.
    Mincing words is no longer acceptable, as the maggot leaders of Israel work to push mankind to the brink of another world war. Do you REALLY think China and Russia will stand by idly while the US and Israel attack Iran? Do you really think China and Russia have failed to note how over-extended we are militarily and weakened economically we are at this moment?
    Israel is bound and determined, if it goes down, to drag the United States with it. It needs us, we don’t need it. And its time to call a spade a spade, and cast aside this mutually destructive relationship. If Israel can’t stand on its own, tough shit, we’ve held them up by their boot straps for far too long. Perhaps if their very survival depended on a change in their behaviour and the casting aside of the constant excuse of victimhood and “anti-semitism”, they might actually develop some national character, humanity, and integrity. But right now? Its a nation led by bloodthirsty racists and ghouls, who would nuke New York if they thought it would advance the zionist agenda.

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  190. ... says:

    looks like carroll went off the deep end…

    Reply

  191. questions says:

    JohnH,
    The point of the Derrida reference is that upon giving a recognized gift, both the giver and the receiver enter into a transaction. There are expectations on both sides, protocols, proper ways to treat givers and receivers. Thus a gift, recognized as such, automatically becomes transactional.
    The obligation, then, is to give without recognition, without one’s name’s going up on a wall or one’s receiving the Nobel Prize, without generations of debt’s accruing to the giver. Without Carroll, for example. Without the resentment of the right and all of its marchers on Washington.
    One gives quietly, as one watches one’s children at night and never asks for them to watch you. One gives without wanting even a thank you. But then, if no one recognizes the gift as such, it isn’t a gift. It’s something else entirely.

    Reply

  192. questions says:

    Carroll, what do you think it means to live in a society?

    Reply

  193. Carroll says:

    Posted by questions, Sep 12 2009, 9:14AM
    >>>>>>>>>
    The talky talky is over.
    As I said previously…my comments henceforth are aimed at destroying the lies and myths used by the zios to extort the world and cover their present day crimes.
    Waxing on about universal debts and society is just your typical way of changing the subject from the lies of the zionist that the “world” owes the jews because it “let them” die.
    My post was not for “philosophical” discussion of universal debts and responsibilities,it was for the ‘factual truth’ about the ‘specific’ claim that the world was responsible for the jews death in Germany and could have ‘saved them’ when in fact they could not have.
    I don’t accept any more whines, lies and excuses and fewer and fewer people do. If Israel and jews can’t make a case based on the actual truth then they don’t have a case.
    The US might owe a lot of people but the jews aren’t one of them. The money extracted from US taxpayers for jews and Israel is the product of corrupt politics,not a debt we owe. If we were paying people for actual failings of the US we would be giving 3 billion a year to the descendents of the slaves in America and the victims of US policy in SA.

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  194. JohnH says:

    questions…”I think that Israel should GIVE somehow to Palestine — without obligation for reciprocity. Which means of course, it won’t be a “gift.”
    Of course it will be a gift. In giving the gift, Israel cannot EXPECT reciprocity, otherwise it becomes an anticipated transaction, not a gift. But if the gift is given sincerely, and has value to the recipient, then the recipient will feel bound to reciprocate. The key here is the lack of expectations upon the part of the giver. Part of this is to remove the possibility of disappointment if the recipient doesn’t see the value of the gift and doesn’t feel a need to reciprocate. The other part is to remove the possibility of “indian giving.”
    Isreal would not need to risk everything, only something of real value. But frankly I don’t see that ever happening, because once you give to your enemy, and you see his humanity, then you don’t feel comfortable dispossessing all he owns. The history of Israel is the story of dispossession, not generosity.
    You are right in saying that generosity and magnanimity are missing in conservative thought, except within the bounds of their community.

    Reply

  195. Carroll says:

    Posted by Paul Norheim, Sep 12 2009, 4:18AM>>>>>>>>>
    Carroll, you may provide arguments back and forth regarding the tactical wisdom of
    bombing Auschwitz and preventing the Holocaust during WWII.
    However, I strongly react against your hateful tone in the quote above, as well as
    your apparent attempt to blame only Hitler (except for possibly blaming the Jews
    themselves…) for what happened. In Europe there is a background and context for
    this genocide and persecution that goes far beyond Nazism and the decade when this
    happened. You ignore all of that.
    *I am not ignoring a thing. You are. The POINT being that there was no way the US or allies could have saved the Jews. THAT is point. Stick to it. CAN you stick to the POINT?
    No, the Jews do not have some kind of monopoly on genocide and persecution in world
    history. And Israel has no right to use Holocaust to legitimate abuses and crimes
    committed now by the IDF and the Israeli government. But I can`t sympathize with
    attempts to argue that no one could do nothing to prevent it, and that the Jews “owe
    the world for every single Jew alive today”.
    *You don’t have to sympathize..it’s been proven tbru offical records. Who the hell are you? You think you can question the officials and official records regarding the impossibility of getting onto Germany? You know more than the people who were there?
    So the Jews of the world should actually THANK THE WORLD for being alive, eh?
    “…there would be none, you would be extinct.
    The Jews owe the world for every single Jew alive today.”
    Carroll, let me be frank here. I think that`s about the most disgusting statement
    I`ve ever read at the Washington Note since I started commenting here two years ago.
    *Let me be frank. I don’t care. I have no respect for your opinion. Your opinions are based on how can you maintain popularity with everyone so posters will keep talking to you. You both condemn and suckup depending on the situtation to give the impression of fairness. Pitiful. I find people like you who are evidently so desperate for attention and conversation that they will support the most henious lies of other posters just so they can keep people talking to them to be disgusting. You are similar to quesions in your verbal diarrhea..round and round you go.
    And similar to nadine it your dishonesty as in …”(except for possibly blaming the Jews
    themselves…” ascribing something I neither said nor implied and has nothing to do with the POINT…which is the jewish/zio claim the world “deliberately let” the Jews die.. That little slipup reveals your basic dishonesty… you’re busted buddy.
    So let me say it again…the world does not owe the Jews. The Jews owe the “world” that fought Hitler for their lives.
    If you think your assorted anti semites in Europe were the drving force of the jewish holocaust I suggest you call your PM and demand that Europe take over paying Israel 3 billion a year instead of Americans who had nothing to do with the jews fate and without whom..once again…there would be no jews left alive today..and you would be saluting pictures of Hitler hanging in your government buldings today.

    Reply

  196. Outraged American says:

    A lot of the high profile cases against Muslims and their
    charities are being defended by American Jewish lawyers. A few
    for instances:
    * The Al -Harriman case. It was a Muslim charity that was
    illegally wiretapped and can prove it because of a mistake that
    released documents to the defense. The charity is the ony entity
    out of possibly tens of thousands who were illegally wire-tapped
    by the Cheney administration. The defense attorney is Jon
    Eisenberg, a wonderful man who was working pro bono.
    * Jonathan Hafetz, another lovely man, of the ACLU, is the
    attorney for Al-Marri, who was in the US legally but is (or was)
    being held as an “enemy combatant” without charges.
    http://tinyurl.com/lkqy6d
    * Michael Ratner, of the Center for Constitutional Rights, has
    been at the forefront of Guantanamo cases.
    So should my tax dollars go to an Olympic size, public, lap pool
    when it’s 114 degrees out, or to killing kids in the Swat Valley in
    our undeclared war on Pakistan?
    Oh wait — it’s a new country now called “Af-Pak”? See — since
    it’s one country now it’s not like Obama is pulling a Nixon and
    extending his non-existent (morally) mandate to kill civilians in
    surrounding countries…
    Israel doesn’t have a duty to be insane, she just is.
    And Paul, many people in Europe risked their lives to help Jews
    and you know that: I have a Dutch friend whose uncle was killed
    for helping Jews. Read the partially fictitious “Diary of Anne
    Frank.”
    And to put this all in perspective, here’s a fascinating article on
    the Killing Fields of Cambodia, another result of US
    interventionism gone awry. One ethnicity wasn’t targeted, only
    everyone who had a smidgen of education.
    http://tinyurl.com/oxwp5y
    And John H, I have mentioned here that growing-up in Arizona
    in the 1970s, in a school with a huge percentage of Native
    Americans, and a few Vietnamese fresh off the boat, we weren’t
    taught the atrocities wreaked on them, we were bludgeoned
    over the head with the history of the Jewish Holocaust. We bear
    the blame for Vietnam and what happened to the Natives, yet
    were indoctrinated into feeling guilty for something that we did
    not have anything to do with.
    And to whoever was talking about Pearl Harbor. I have a very
    old friend, literally, who was a rear admiral. He admitted to me
    about a year ago, after I kept hounding him for the truth, that
    we had broken the Japanese code and knew an attack was
    coming.
    Why were thse planes lined up that way? Why had the newer
    ships been moved out of Pearl Harbor? Did Roosevelt want war?
    I would say, and I’ve interviewed a lot of people who’ve done
    their research, “Yes.”
    So when the pundit babas call 9/11 a “New Pearl Harbor” they’re
    more right than they know.

    Reply

  197. questions says:

    And as for the book/interview cited above….
    If you know anything about scholarship at all, you should know that scholars debate things. No one book or article ever “demolishes” everything that came before. There’s a lot of interpretive work done in every branch of study and interpretation is, dare I say it, complex, incomplete by nature, and always provisional.
    The tendency to cite one thing here or there and thus PROVE something is a long-running issue on this blog. Citations can open up issues for debate and bring about counter-citations and a general discussion. But no one book or article proves much of anything. So tossing in a long interview that makes you feel vindicated is more a rhetorical strategy than a definitive proof of the truth of your feelings.
    I’m guessing there will be endless revisions of the historical record, endless debates about obligations for saving others, for what is possible or impossible, what is motivated by bias and what by “reality.” We can see it happening in current events. What is possible and impossible to do to rescue any besieged people? What do we owe the Palestinians, the residents of Swat, people suffering from famine and drought and economic disorder? What does the US owe to Mexicans, to undocumented laborers, to cancer sufferers? How much is possible? How much is bias? What action or inaction is acceptable?
    We don’t have this altogether ever. Should every person who doesn’t die from cancer pay Carroll? Should anyone who loses a family member because of lack of health insurance be able to write a book in which the lack of social will to save that family member is proof of something bad in US thinking? One day we might argue that it was IMPOSSIBLE to provide health insurance/care for all. But is it really? It’s a matter of interpretation.

    Reply

  198. questions says:

    JohnH,
    On the issue of giving, a few mildly long winded things (so that there’s room to attack me based on length)….
    Derrida’s work on gift giving makes the “gift” seemingly impossible. That is, if I give something to you and you recognize it as a gift, you have to respond in some manner. The gift, then, requires reciprocity and so isn’t a free and clear gift, it’s in a system of “economic” obligation. I give you life, then expect you, my child, to grow up, be responsible, clean your bedroom, not kill me (see Hobbes), take care of me when I’m dying. This is a gift? I give you a birthday present and I expect a thank you note and a fun party. Gift?
    But if I give you something that I don’t want reciprocity for, then you can’t see it as a “gift” at all. The giving has to be hidden from the recipient. So then it’s not really a “gift” because we can’t call it that. as soon as it’s a “gift” it require reciprocity and is more an “exchange,” not a “gift.”
    So the free and clear gift, for Derrida, doesn’t happen, and obligation is hard to pin down.
    That said, I think that Israel should GIVE somehow to Palestine — without obligation for reciprocity. Which means of course, it won’t be a “gift.” I’ve posted before about Israel’s duty to be insane at some level. To risk all, and hope for nothing in return, and maybe there’s some humanity in the insane risk. Game theory tends to deny that this risk will ever be taken, but it’s what is required.
    Insane risk of self with no hope of benefit or return. How often does that happen in the universe?
    Now, sorry to ask for this one… Think through the “logic” of Carroll’s triumphal demand. She has destroyed every nerve in my soul or something over the claim that somehow she/those like her/all Europeans or whatever have done EVERYthing for me and I OWE EVERthing in return. There’s no gift there and there’s infinite demand for return of this non-gift of life and the lives of all descendants. How could one receive such a gift knowing what the debt would be (even the great great great great great… grandkids owe Carroll personally for this “gift”.) Who would receive such a thing? Who would offer without a guarantee of payment?
    The issue of political obligation is missing from much conservative thinking, and the resentments for lack of payback with interest are really, umm, interesting.
    One simply owes and never gets paid back. One owes the insanity of self-sacrifice if the times call for it, and one doesn’t demand the servitude of the offspring as payment. (Somehow the logic of slavery seems apt here.) We are given life and we encounter the debt of labor in return. But that debt can never be called “debt” because the life was a gift. So you pay taxes, you sacrifice, you labor, you help and serve and are kind, and you don’t scream about it. You just do it, as Nike would say.
    But Carroll will be paid by those ingrates, by me, by WigWag…. And OA wants her swimming pool because the state owes her that. And no one wants his money used for things he doesn’t like….
    The argument needs to be elsewhere. If it stays here, then the reason for changing policy rests on pools, money, and how-dare-you-speak-you-ingrate-you.

    Reply

  199. questions says:

    Sorry, Paul, I hadn’t read your response before I put in mine. I deleted the history section from mine in the interest of brevity (didn’t think I had it in me, did ya?!!)
    Thanks for stating so succinctly what I was thinking.

    Reply

  200. questions says:

    Carroll,
    You may think you have some kind of special power to destroy whatever it is you think I have, but first, what a bizarre, truly bizarre, thing to brag about. Second, you don’t actually know anything about me such that you could decide if you have destroyed anything. Third, I am not at all politically poised where you have located me. But you have a hard time thinking through nuanced positions that agree partly with some things you’re familiar with and disagree with others.
    Yoiks. The triumphalism you display is pretty sickening all in all.
    My family was out of Europe long long long ago. Not quite FFV, but certainly no Euro connections after the earliest days of the 1900s. Have to go back to great- or great-great-grand parents to get that Old Euro experience. No Holocaust relatives immediately behind me. So for me personally, nada.
    If you want endless debt for any life saving act at all, then make sure that you bow before the entire law and order and regulatory system of the US that has probably saved your life from: random violence, product defects, food poisoning, drowning, crashing, burning, scamming, rape, knives, objects falling from the sky, rabies, car accidents… over and over without your even being aware of it.
    Civilization requires some amount of the saving of others. One accepts the duties and the gifts of civilization, one makes claims on others, one has others’ claims made against one. And that’s that.
    But go ahead and assume you personally have given everything you have to ME, and I owe everything I am to YOU. It makes you feel more powerful in the world, clearly. And personal power is a feeling people like to have, especially in tough economic times when the real power is elsewhere.

    Reply

  201. Paul Norheim says:

    Carroll said to Questions: “Destroyed your special victimhood claim to fame did I?
    ..Not use to anyone telling it like it really was and is are you?
    Afraid too many people will realize the truth of your Jewish/zio guiltmail fund
    raising and start telling you to fuck off? Well as you can see many of us already
    are.
    Let me say it again..and I’ll repeat it often so everyone can start thinking about
    the truth of the Jews and WWII…and who isn’t to blame.
    If not for the US and allies every single jew in the universe would be dead…there
    would be none, you would be extinct.
    The Jews owe the world for every single Jew alive today.” (Carroll)
    ——————————–
    Carroll, you may provide arguments back and forth regarding the tactical wisdom of
    bombing Auschwitz and preventing the Holocaust during WWII.
    However, I strongly react against your hateful tone in the quote above, as well as
    your apparent attempt to blame only Hitler (except for possibly blaming the Jews
    themselves…) for what happened. In Europe there is a background and context for
    this genocide and persecution that goes far beyond Nazism and the decade when this
    happened. You ignore all of that.
    No, the Jews do not have some kind of monopoly on genocide and persecution in world
    history. And Israel has no right to use Holocaust to legitimate abuses and crimes
    committed now by the IDF and the Israeli government. But I can`t sympathize with
    attempts to argue that no one could do nothing to prevent it, and that the Jews “owe
    the world for every single Jew alive today”.
    So the Jews of the world should actually THANK THE WORLD for being alive, eh?
    “…there would be none, you would be extinct.
    The Jews owe the world for every single Jew alive today.”
    Carroll, let me be frank here. I think that`s about the most disgusting statement
    I`ve ever read at the Washington Note since I started commenting here two years ago.

    Reply

  202. Paul Norheim says:

    I disagree with some of the premises here, Carroll.
    In Eastern Europe many people (powerful people as well as ordinary people, nazis, as
    well as people opposed to nazism) were more than happy to get rid of the Jews.
    In Western and Southern Europe, I see no reason to go into details regarding
    Mussolini`s Italy or Franco`s Spain here – France is a better example. Also here,
    many people with authority as well as ordinary people – EVEN MANY MEMBERS OF THE
    COMMUNIST PARTY – were more than helpful in providing information to the Gestapo
    about where they could find more Jews to send to Germany.
    You can`t just put the blame on the evil psychopath Adolf Hitler and explain it as an
    unfortunate and regrettable, but in the end inevitable event. The crime is much
    bigger in it`s implications on the European continent.

    Reply

  203. Carroll says:

    Matching right ahead with myth busting truthiness….
    “Wishful Thinking”
    It’s time to stop blaming the West for not doing more to stop the Holocaust, says a Jewish historian.
    Salon..BY JONATHAN BRODER
    It has been an article of faith, among average Jews and Holocaust scholars alike, that the Allies in World War II could have done more to try and save the Jews of Nazi Europe. David Wyman’s “The Abandonment of the Jews” and some 20 other similar books have appeared since the 1960s, accusing the Allies, out of indifference and antisemitism, of shutting their doors to Jewish refugees and deliberately foregoing military strikes that could have saved many Jews languishing in the Nazi death camps.
    Last year, a rash of reports in British newspapers claimed that Winston Churchill’s government knew about the mass killings of Jews in the Soviet Union as early as July 1941 and did nothing to stop it. More recently, Switzerland has come under international pressure to reexamine their wartime activities in connection with the Jews. On Tuesday, the eve of the Jewish New Year, the French Catholic church in France apologized for its silence when the Vichy administration deported tens of thousands of French Jews to the Nazi gas chambers.
    According to a new book, the West has very little for which to apologize. In “The Myth of Rescue: Why the Democracies Could Not Have Saved More Jews From the Nazis” (Routledge), William D. Rubinstein, a professor of history at the University of Wales, demolishes the most cherished articles of faith of what he calls the “Holocaust revisionists”: that the Allies could have taken in more Jewish refugees, negotiated with the Nazis to save more Jewish lives and bombed Auschwitz and other death camps.
    Salon talked with Professor Rubinstein about his findings and the controversy that is already swirling around them.
    The core of your book is that nothing — absolutely nothing — could have been done by the Allies to rescue the Jews of occupied Europe during the War. How did you conclude that?
    I examined every plan for rescuing Jews devised by people in the democracies that I could find. It’s self-evident from reading the plans that nobody had any idea of what to do.
    Most of the plans concerned opening up the gates of Palestine, an idea made famous by Leon Uris’ “Exodus” among other books.
    It’s true that beginning in 1939, the British, who ruled Palestine, restricted Jewish immigration to please the Arabs. But the point is: that wasn’t relevant to the basic problem facing the Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe, which was that they couldn’t get out. It wasn’t a matter of Jews not being able to get British permission to enter Palestine; it was a matter of Jews not being able to get emigration papers from the Nazis.
    Which made it hard for Jews to go to any country.
    Right. The main problem was not that Western countries were closing their doors. The main problem was that the Germans wouldn’t let them go. German policy changed totally and completely from expelling all Jews from Germany to imprisoning and killing all the Jews throughout Europe. Nobody, nobody had a way to get around the fact that Adolf Hitler, as his life’s mission, wanted to rid Europe of the “biological basis of Jewry,” as he put it.
    So, the whole concept of “Jewish refugees” is wrong?
    A refugee is a person who has to flee from his or her homeland because of a well-founded fear of persecution. That is an accurate description of the Jews of Germany, especially in the late 1930s, when they were being kicked out of Germany. My argument is that when the war came, this changed. They were no longer refugees. They were now the precise opposite. They were prisoners. They were the prisoners of a psychopath who was the absolute master of Europe from the border of Spain to the gates of Moscow.
    In other words, you’re agreeing with what Western leaders said at the time: that the only way to rescue the Jews was by the Allies’ defeating Nazi Germany.
    Exactly, which is what even the Jewish leaders said at the time. Roosevelt and Churchill said the only way we can liberate the remaining Jews was to conquer Europe mile by mile, which is what they were doing.
    Let’s go through the myths that you challenge in your book. First, the myth of “closed doors.”
    It is widely believed that the Western world, the democracies, closed their doors to Jewish immigration from Germany in the 1930s. Well, first of all, 72 percent of Germany’s Jews, including 83 percent of German Jewish children, actually escaped from Germany between 1933 and 1939, most of them in the last year before the war started. Many German Jews were reluctant to leave. They thought the antisemitism would blow over.
    Second, the closed-door issue only applied to Germany and the territories annexed by Germany in the late 1930s — Austria and Czechoslovakia. It had nothing to do with Poland, Russia, Romania, Hungary, France and so on, where the bulk of the Jews who were killed actually lived. Before the war began, those countries were not under Nazi occupation and, therefore, their Jews were not refugees. Many people now ask why we didn’t save the Jews of Hungary in 1935. That’s a non sequitur. In 1935, nobody thought they were in any danger from anything.
    What about the infamous St. Louis incident, in which several hundred German Jews aboard the SS St. Louis in 1939 were turned away from the United States and were eventually forced to return to Europe?
    It was a very regrettable incident. At that time, America would not allow in any more German Jews than the quota of 25,000 to 30,000 a year, which was rigorously enforced. The boat also unsuccessfully tried to unload its refugees in several other countries in the Western Hemisphere. But they were not sent back to Nazi Germany, contrary to popular belief. They all received refuge either in England, the Netherlands or France. Some of the countries were later conquered by the Nazis, and some of the St. Louis refugees died. But in 1939, nobody foresaw that.
    still, it has been well-documented by Wyman and other historians that the U.S. State Department was thick with officials, like Loy Henderson and John J. McCloy Jr., who were either not very sympathetic to the plight of the Jews or outright antisemites. Didn’t they have influence on U.S. policy toward Jewish refugees?
    Again, the number of Jews that could enter the United States was established by a quota system that was set in concrete by Congress. It wasn’t influenced in any way by the antisemitism at the State Department. For Germany, it was between 25,000 and 30,000 a year, a figure established in 1924 and that did not vary during the Nazi period. The State Department’s antisemites could do nothing about that. In fact, the immigration forms, which were very formidable and presented a huge obstacle to anyone who wanted to immigrate to the United States, were simplified because of congressional pressure. As a result, the number of Jews who came to America increased within the context of the quota.
    But Congress wouldn’t increase the overall quota.
    No, there was strong opposition to it. Some of that was antisemitic and nativist, but most of it was because of unemployment and the Depression. There was one attempt to waive the quota in 1939 to allow in 10,000 German Jewish children, but that died in committee. People like Wyman have a field day with this incident, saying it proves how antisemitic the United States was. But the main source of pressure on the committee in that case came from the labor unions that opposed widening the labor pool during the Depression. One must remember that changing immigration laws at that time was extremely unpopular politically. Now, with hindsight, it’s obvious what happened to those 10,000 children, and it’s tragic. But at the time, nobody knew that Hitler was going to kill the Jews.
    Another “myth” that you cite is the Allies’ failure to bomb Auschwitz.
    If you look through all of the proposed plans for rescuing the Jews, nobody anywhere proposed this — or bombing any concentration camp, for that matter — until the tail end of the war. The first person to propose it was Michael Weissmandel, a Czech rabbi who escaped from a death train to Auschwitz and managed to send messages to members of his denomination in the West in May 1944. It was not greeted with enthusiasm by Jewish groups. The Jewish Agency in Palestine, the governing body of the Jewish community there, headed by David Ben-Gurion, voted in June 1944 by a vote of 11-to-1 against asking the Allies to bomb Auschwitz. Why? Because it would kill Jews. This idea of bombing Auschwitz only emerged as a panacea many years later, in the 1960s, when David Wyman first plucked it out of thin air.
    How did the U.S. military feel about bombing Auschwitz?
    There is a fair amount of writing by military historians now that shows it was extremely difficult to have bombed Auschwitz. First of all, it wasn’t until early 1944, when the Foggia air base in Italy was captured, that the Allies had a base from which the concentration camps would have been within range of Allied bombers. Then there’s the fact that the technology to bomb only the extermination camps — the gas chambers and the crematoriums without killing Jewish prisoners — didn’t exist at the time. In those days only 54 percent of American bombs fell within 1,000 yards of their target. You could bomb a factory, and indeed they did. They hit the I.G. Farben factory about seven miles from Auschwitz. But pinpoint bombing of the type I just described was not possible then. So even if they had bombed the camps, there’s a very good chance they would have killed Jews without stopping the killing process. That is to say, they would have killed the Jewish prisoners and missed the gas chambers.
    What about the proposals to bomb the railway lines that led to Auschwitz?
    This proposal reached the War Refugee Board, the federal agency set up specifically by President Roosevelt to rescue Jews. What the board proposed was to bomb one railway line in Slovakia, somewhere between Preskov and Kelsicie. This was the train line that, according to Weissmandel, facilitated the shipment of Jews from the eastern part of Hungary to Auschwitz. But the Jews had actually come and gone along this line by the time Weissmandel’s proposal reached Washington, D.C. So if they had bombed it, they wouldn’t have saved anybody. This was the only thing the War Refugee Board proposed until October of 1944.
    Still, it was rejected by the U.S. military.
    It was rejected by the army because its strategy for destroying Germany’s military and industrial infrastructure had been set in concrete since 1943. They knew the targets they wanted to bomb and were doing so with relentless efficiency. Within less than a year, they destroyed more than 50 percent of Germany’s military-industrial complex. That actually ended the war. Now you can argue that there was more than meets the eye there and that antisemitism was behind the decision. But a bombing of Auschwitz was never seen as a panacea, most Jewish groups opposed it and in the manner it was proposed, it would have been useless.
    The French Roman Catholic Church has formally apologized to the Jewish people for what it called its “docility” and “abstention” in the face of the Holocaust. What was the French church’s record during the war?
    There were many individual clerics in France who hid Jews during the war. But the church did nothing in a corporate capacity, and many church leaders supported the collaborationist Vichy government. It’s a very difficult and controversial subject in France. Of all the Nazi satellites, Vichy France was probably the most extreme in its antisemitism. The government instituted antisemitic legislation, and Vichy officials aided in the deportation of more than 70,000 Jews, most of whom died in Auschwitz. On the other hand, many French argue, that thousands of Jews were hidden and saved by individual clerics, and monasteries show that the French Catholic Church was not a satellite of the Nazis. In a sense, a case can be made that they did their best under very difficult circumstances.
    Some Holocaust historians point to the proposal by (Heinrich) Himmler to trade the lives of a million Jews for 10,000 trucks and that the Allies could have used such offers to save more Jews.
    Yes, but others believe Himmler was not serious, citing the fact that he was actually killing the Jews at the same time and that he probably proposed this idea to lull the Jews of Budapest into a sense of security. But there is another reason which no one has pointed to as to why this could not have worked. And that is that Hitler knew nothing about it. Himmler was keeping Hitler in the dark. Everything we know about Hitler and his personality indicates that he never would have contemplated a deal like this under any circumstance. We know, for example, that earlier in 1945, Hitler read in a Swiss newspaper that Himmler had arranged for 1,200 Jews to be sent to Switzerland in exchange for some favor. Hitler hit the roof and totally forbade Himmler to proceed.
    What if Hitler had been assassinated?
    That is the one area where there is no mythologizing. If Hitler had been assassinated, I think the Holocaust would have been prevented. Whoever succeeded him, probably (Hermann) Goering, would have stopped it. But oddly enough, there were no Allied proposals to assassinate Hitler, which is one of the few things that might have worked. Of course it was enormously difficult to assassinate Hitler because he was extremely well-guarded. But the West did nothing to help von Stauffenberg and the other German officers who tried to kill Hitler with a bomb in July 1944. It’s well known that the Allies had no dealings with them. This was a lost opportunity. I don’t know what was going through the Allies’ heads. I suppose they thought that the Germans would then assassinate Roosevelt and Churchill.
    All of this raises the question of why this entire myth of rescue has evolved.
    You tell me. So far as I know, the earliest article or book by any academic that criticizes the Allies for doing too little to save the Jews was written in 1966. Since then, this entire subject, and particularly the bombing of Auschwitz question, has gained enormous momentum, so much so that the Allies now appear almost as guilty as Germany in turning their backs on the Jews. My point is that the only thing we were guilty of is being in an impossible situation.
    Why have there been no serious challenges to Wyman’s and others’ similar views until now? Surely, there were enough people who had lived through those terrible times and who remembered what really happened.
    You’re asking a very pertinent question that I’ve been asked before and that I cannot answer. I don’t know why. In America, I think, the Jewish community feels guilty about surviving and prospering while their kinsmen died. This is probably the most sensitive topic one can imagine historically, so people have tended to tread on eggshells the whole way. It’s not very politically correct to suggest that the arguments presented so far are illogical and ahistorical.
    What does Wyman think of your work?
    I wanted to debate him, but he refused. That was a nice scholarly thing to do.
    What other responses have you received?
    About two-thirds of the British reviews have been very fulsome. They say that at last somebody’s told the truth. The other third have been venomous, hostile and personally defamatory, some of them really over the top. I imagine the response here in the U.S. will be somewhat similar. But no one can accuse me of being an antisemite. I’m sure that if my name were Smith and not Rubinstein, I probably couldn’t have gotten away with writing a book like this. ”

    Reply

  204. Carroll says:

    Posted by questions, Sep 11 2009, 8:55PM – Link
    http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/military_law/1227842.html?page=5
    Here’s the Popular Mechanics piece….
    And JohnH, I didn’t write any of that, I copy/pasted, hence the quotation marks and links. Derrida’s work on gift giving is profound and mandates a lot more thinking than, say, Carroll’s work….>>>>>>
    Hehehe…I love knowing I have shattered your last nerve and gotten you to reveal yourself…yep,poor questions,..so carried away with his inane profound tibdbits and convoluted insights that are totally meaningless to factual history/reality. And suddently his zio exceptionalism shell is cracked and his pettiness shines thru.
    Destroyed your special victimhood claim to fame did I?..Not use to anyone telling it like it really was and is are you?
    Afraid too many people will realize the truth of your Jewish/zio guiltmail fund raising and start telling you to fuck off? Well as you can see many of us already are.
    Let me say it again..and I’ll repeat it often so everyone can start thinking about the truth of the Jews and WWII…and who isn’t to blame.
    If not for the US and allies every single jew in the universe would be dead…there would be none, you would be extinct.
    The Jews owe the world for every single Jew alive today.

    Reply

  205. JohnH says:

    questions–I was entirely serious in my comment. I agree that unconditional giving can have a profound, positive effect. And, yes, it deserves much more thought and reflection.
    I also believe that a show of unconditional magnanimity by powerful nations (the US, Israel) towards their enemies could initiate a whole new dynamic both within the giver and within the receiver. Both would be suddenly humanized, not dehumanized, by the other.
    It would certainly be worth a try. The whole policy of not talking to one’s enemies has been a notable flop.

    Reply

  206. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “One falsity, the WMD issue, does not necessitate other falsities”
    It was a dandy “conspiracy theory”, though. Wasn’t it, questions? So was Saddam’s link to Al Qaeda. Of course, I’m sure you have a lengthy convoluted essay you can bore us with about why we should believe the official 9/11 line of shit when we know that the same writers of the 9/11 script were the writers of the script on Iraq.

    Reply

  207. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Why Conspiracy Theory Rhetoric is Hurting our Democracy
    By Tim Hjersted
    Shortly after the terrorist attacks of September 11th, President Bush asked the American public to “never entertain outrageous conspiracy theories.” The irony of his statement is easily lost. Most people consider themselves reasonable, thoughtful individuals that don’t believe in crazy conspiracy theories, but the Official story of 9/11 – that 19 radical terrorists conspired for several years to hijack airplanes and fly them into buildings – is, in fact, a conspiracy theory. It just happens that this theory has the official endorsement of the U.S. government. So, believe our conspiracy theory, not theirs, Mr. Bush asks us. Don’t look at the facts. Don’t investigate for yourself. Just believe what you’re told.
    This is, in effect, what the government and the mainstream media is asking us when it labels any idea a “conspiracy theory,” and we can see how incredibly effective this tool has been in stunting rational debate.
    Over the decades, the term “conspiracy theory” has gained an increasingly negative stigma. People associate conspiracy theorists with kooks and wackos, paranoid rabble-rousers and self-proclaimed prophets with delusions of grandeur.
    Long story short, the term has a whole long list of negative connotations, and most reasonable folks who value their reputation will avoid any conspiracy topics like the plague once it’s clear that the topic is now deemed ultra hazardous “conspiracy” territory.
    Because of this, the term has become an incredibly effective propaganda tool for those who would prefer to silence dissenting opinions rather than debate them. After all, if you can’t win an argument with evidence and reason, dismissing the topic by negative association is your next best bet.
    9/11, of course, has been the most recent casualty of the “crazy conspiracy theory” propaganda tactic.
    You can almost hear the sirens going off and the bright flashing warning lights that turn on when someone brings up alternative ideas about 9/11. “Whoa,” people cry, “don’t go there!” Discussing 9/11 critically remains as heretical today as questioning the Iraq war was back in 2003.
    Our mainstream media got the hint early on. The political climate around the issue has been inhospitable, to say the least. Quickly after the official narrative became dominant in the headlines, reporting on any conflicting evidence or giving air time to “both sides of the story” would have been career suicide.
    Because of this, we have seen a virtual blackout of serious investigation from the mainstream media. Even most of the liberal alternative media has steered clear of the issue most likely because it would be deemed too costly to their credibility.
    All the while, serious evidence that has been dug up and compiled by patriotic independent researchers remains largely obscured from mainstream public view. Eight years since the September 11th attacks, a deluge of information has come out that contradicts the official narrative in many ways.
    You wouldn’t know this from the mainstream media, but since the 9/11 Commission released their official report in 2004, over one hundred professors and over fifty senior government officials have been quoted raising serious questions about the integrity and accuracy of the report. Let me give just four examples.
    Senator Max Cleland, a former member of the 9/11 Commission, who resigned in December 2003 and who has been a U.S. Senator from Georgia from 1996 to 2002 is on the record saying:
    “If this decision stands [to limit 9/11 Commission access to White House documents], I, as a member of the commission, cannot look any American in the eye, especially family members of victims, and say the commission had full access. This investigation is now compromised.”
    Next is a quote from Raymond L. McGovern, a 27-year CIA veteran, and former U.S. Army Intelligence Officer:
    “I think at simplest terms, there’s a cover-up. The 9/11 report is a joke. The question is: What’s being covered up? Is it gross malfeasance, gross negligence? Now there are a whole bunch of unanswered questions. And the reason they’re unanswered is because this administration will not answer the questions.”
    Third is a quote from Representative Curt Weldon. He is a ten-term Republican Congressman from Pennsylvania. He is the House Armed Services Committee Vice Chairman and Homeland Security Committee Vice Chairman. In a speech he gave to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2005, he says:
    “Intelligence officers … identified [lead 9/11 hijacker] Mohammed Atta and three terrorists a year before 9/11, tried to transfer that information to the FBI, were denied, and the FBI Director has now said … the FBI could have used it to perhaps prevent the hijackings. The 9/11 Commission totally ignored this entire story.
    I am a strong supporter of our military. I am a strong supporter of President Bush. I say all of that, Mr. Speaker, because … there is something desperately wrong here. I have met with at least 10 people who fully corroborate what [intelligence officer] Tony Shaffer says. This is not [about] Republicans or Democrats. It is about what is fundamental to this country.”
    And last, just this month, former F.B.I. translator and government whistle blower Sibel Edmonds said that she was aware from her work at the F.B.I. that “Osama Bin Laden worked for the U.S. right up until 9/11.” Despite this shocking allegation made by a former government official, no mainstream news outlets have covered her story. To this day, she remains gagged and unable to speak about her knowledge due to a court order. Doubly, the testimony that she gave to the Official 9/11 Commission was censored from the final report.
    The list goes on. The point is, these are not “nut-job” conspiracy theorists. As Alan Miller writes on behalf of WantToKnow.info:
    “These dedicated individuals from across the political spectrum are not irresponsible believers in some 9/11 conspiracy theory. Their sincere concern, backed by decades of service to their country, demonstrate that criticism of the 9/11 Commission Report is not only reasonable and responsible, it is in fact a patriotic duty.”
    I just have to wonder what kind of a country we would live in if every topic that the administration wanted to bury could be easily dismissed by labeling it a “conspiracy theory.” What if accusations of torture had been labeled a conspiracy theory? Would we have ever found out about the horrendous acts that took place at Abu Ghraib? Would we have found out that there were in fact high-level discussions in the Bush administration that approved very specific methods of torture?
    What if the accusation that there were no WMD’s in Iraq was labeled a conspiracy theory? Would we have ever found out the truth – that the evidence presented by the administration was a complete fabrication, a lie?
    What if the Bush administration’s secret domestic surveillance program was dismissed as a silly conspiracy theory? “Ooh, Big Brother! Always watching you!” They’d cry. Would journalists have had the political breathing room to investigate whether the claim was true?
    The fact that journalists have been so afraid to investigate legitimate questions about 9/11 sets a dangerous precedent. This tactic will no doubt continue to be exploited as long as the public and the media remains susceptible to its persuasive and silencing effect.
    Fortunately, issues of torture, WMDs, and illegal wiretapping have not had the same cultural stigma, and the truth has come out about these issues. But I have to ask: What price will our democracy pay because our political climate forbids the media from covering some issues that are deemed “too hot to handle.” What price has it already paid?
    http://www2.ljworld.com/weblogs/tribalzendancer/2009/sep/05/why-conspiracy-theory-rhetoric-is-hurting-our-demo/
    The author was on a roll, right on, until the last paragraph. If he thinks we have been told the truth about torture, warrantless wiretapping, and WMDs, then the first part of his essay is correct out of sheer dumb luck.

    Reply

  208. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Read the Pop. Mech piece and get the materials SCIENCE info”
    Funny, a piece written/compiled by Chertoff’s cousin.
    It always amazes me how you assholes never address the huge HOLES in the official 9/11 narrative, but instead always point to a piece that was obviuosly created to buttress the official line of shit.
    You gotta be a complete moron to buy into the official narrative. And seeing as how you aren’t a complete moron, whats that tell us about you, questions?
    And what “science” are you referring to, questions? Cite specifics, instead of feeding us a ration of shit from an article you probably have not even bothered to read with anything other than a blank stare and a nodding head.
    You are predictable, if nothing else.

    Reply

  209. questions says:

    One falsity, the WMD issue, does not necessitate other falsities. And it’s really quite possible that Cheney BELIEVED fervently that there were weapons. Maybe he’s not into data, either.

    Reply

  210. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “Forget the conspiracy theories.”
    I agree, There is absolutely NO way we should believe this fucking “conspiracy theory” that the 9/11 Commission fed us.
    Saddam’s WMDs, and his collusion with the Al Qaeda boogey man was another “conspiracy theory” that it was insane to buy into.

    Reply

  211. questions says:

    Pauline, there’s another way to think about it all, and it shows up in a lot of rational pieces. Imagine all the conspirators in the US government none of whom has spoken. Imagine killing that many of your own people. Imagine all those crates of explosives — how were they transported in without anyone’s seeing. Imagine our government’s even having the competence to do something so large.
    Now, imagine that someone has the idea to use planes as bombs. Imagine a bunch of guys’ taking flying lessons to learn just enough to crash the planes. (Isn’t there documentary evidence?) Imagine that a mildly hit or miss scenario worked out. Read the Pop. Mech piece and get the materials SCIENCE info. I know some around here hate data and science, but sometimes it’s more telling than ideology, rumor, and the internet. Really…..
    To be honest, it makes a whole lot more sense that these guys lucked out than it does that the US did this KNOWING EXACTLY what the US citizen response would be….
    So much rumor, so little actual science. So much speculation, so little data. Fits with the general style around here so often.

    Reply

  212. questions says:

    http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/military_law/1227842.html?page=5
    Here’s the Popular Mechanics piece….
    And JohnH, I didn’t write any of that, I copy/pasted, hence the quotation marks and links. Derrida’s work on gift giving is profound and mandates a lot more thinking than, say, Carroll’s work….

    Reply

  213. arthurdecco says:

    I didn’t see your post before I hit send, Pauline so I didn’t get a chance to say thank you until now. Great summation.

    Reply

  214. arthurdecco says:

    John Waring, I’ve been led to believe the Roosevelt administration was aware of Japan’s plans for an attack on Pearl Harbor and allowed the attack to proceed as a means of manipulating the American people (who were passionately opposed to going to war in Europe) into changing their minds.
    And Building #7 wasn’t “sucker punched” – it was imploded. Suck it up and get with the program.
    Nothing falls down into its own footprint unless its meant to. To believe anything else is to believe in the tooth fairy or Tinkerbell.

    Reply

  215. pauline says:

    Today is, of course, bin Laden’s personal anniversary to destroy-the-west day, right? A terrible, terrible day for so many people.
    Where’s he celebrating today? Still hiding in a candle-lit cave somewhere between Pakistan and Afghanistan?
    So absolutely amazing he was able to get 19 Arabs with box-cutters and knives to plan that awful, awful day. Just amazing, so unreal, what he planned from a cave.
    How could bin Laden fool us so easily?
    9/11 is all his design, management and money, right?! right??!!
    *****************
    http://www.ae911truth.org/
    “The link above is a capture of European broadcast video of the WTC-2 collapse, with the north tower in the foreground but shot from a little east of north so you can see quite a bit of the south tower. At the start of the collapse the south tower begins to lean to the south, away from us in this view, so there should be no significant compression (and possibly some traction, if the core has any resistance) on the side closest to us. This means that there is no way from the action of gravity to generate the high pressures it would take to pulverize and eject material in the manner seen. Instead of the kind of slow start we would expect near the beginning of a gravitational collapse we see high speed “demolition waves” coming directly toward us, with another set shooting out to the left, from the east side of the building. These are exactly the sort of confluent rows of small explosions that are so characteristic of a controlled demolition, and can be seen emerging in flat rings extending all the way around the tower and propagating rapidly downward.”
    “As seen in this revealing photo, the Twin Towers’ destruction exhibited all the characteristics of destruction by explosives: (and some non-standard characteristics)
    1. Destruction proceeds through the path of greatest resistance at nearly free-fall acceleration
    2. Improbable symmetry of debris distribution
    3. Extremely rapid onset of destruction
    4. Over 100 first responders reported explosions and flashes
    5. Multi-ton steel sections ejected laterally 600 ft at 60 mph
    6. Mid-air pulverization of 90,000 tons of concrete & metal decking
    7. Massive volume of expanding pyroclastic-like clouds
    8. 1200-foot-dia. debris field: no “pancaked” floors found
    9. Isolated explosive ejections 20 – 40 stories below demolition front
    10. Total building destruction: dismemberment of steel frame
    11. Several tons of molten metal found under all 3 high-rises
    12. Evidence of thermite incendiaries found by FEMA in steel samples
    13. Evidence of explosives found in dust samples
    14. No precedent for steel-framed high-rise collapse due to fire
    And exhibited none of the characteristics of destruction by fire, i.e.
    1. Slow onset with large visible deformations
    2. Asymmetrical collapse which follows the path of least resistance (laws of conservation of momentum would cause a falling, intact, from the point of plane impact, to the side most damaged by the fires)
    3. Evidence of fire temperatures capable of softening steel
    4. High-rise buildings with much larger, hotter, and longer lasting fires have never “collapsed”

    Reply

  216. John Waring says:

    I have just read Pepe Escobar’s “Fifty Questions”, and I am underwhelmed.
    9/11 is not the first time we were caught wholly off guard. We lost the greater part of our Pacific fleet at Pearl Harbor, our battle wagons berthed side by side, sitting ducks when the Japanese attacked. Then, forty-eight hours later, we lost the greater part of our Far East air force at Clark Field in the Philippines. Our planes were parked wing tip to wing tip, sitting ducks easily blown to bits when the Japanese attacked. If we had used the most elementary of precautions, and had a screen of reconnaissance aircraft aloft, we would have known the enemy’s planes were in the air and on the attack.
    We had just shut off export shipments of petroleum and scrap iron to Japan. We highly suspected a military response, yet were caught wholly unprepared for the audacity of the attack when it came. Gordon Prange’s one line summation of our predicament, and of our boundless stupidity, is the title of his book, “At Dawn We Slept”.
    Eight years ago our intelligence systems were blinking red and we were caught napping one more time. If we had used the most elementary of precautions, inter agency communications and rudimentary airline security,, we could have prevented 9/11. I do not think the events of 1941 and 2001 were the consequence of American conspiracy. I think they were the consequence of American stupidity. We have a massive character flaw. We cannot conceive that our enemies may have brains and balls.
    We Americans, however, do not have the distinction of being the greatest fools of the last century. That dubious honor goes to Joseph Stalin, who ignored several pieces of credible intelligence on the eve of Barbarossa. Stalin could not conceive Hitler’s treachery was superior to his own. Our mistakes cost us thousands of casualties, Stalin’s caused millions.
    Forget the conspiracy theories. 9/11 happened because we were stupid and let ourselves be sucker punched.
    Then, caught will our pants down around our ankles, we let ourselves be panicked into a rash war in Iraq, and, I fear, into a fool’s errand of armed nation building in Afghanistan.

    Reply

  217. JohnH says:

    “One gains honor, respect, and authority from [gift giving], [and] one will also receive something in return.”
    questions, are you suggesting that Israel should give the Palestinians something? As far as I know, it’s never been tried!!!!

    Reply

  218. questions says:

    http://www.amazon.com/Gift-Reason-Exchange-Archaic-Societies/dp/039332043X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1252700902&sr=1-1
    “In his The Gift, Marcel Mauss attempts to explain and understand gifts in primitive societies. Mauss first decides to show that the motives behind giving gifts are more complicated than commonly believed to be. In modern day society, gifts are often thought of as something given out of good will and without the expectance of something in return. Mauss shows us that in many tribal and native cultures, this is not necessarily true. In discussing the Maori, he says, “They had a kind of exchange system, or rather one of giving presents that must ultimately either be reciprocated or given back” (10). The principle of gift giving is governed by the concept of mana, which is the authority, honor, and prestige derived from the wealth and glory of being a superior gift giver. One must give gifts in order to maintain and increase mana and reciprocates them in order to prevent oneself from losing it. The obligations to give and receive are both very important. To reject a gift leads to two problems. Initially, Mauss states that to do so “is to reject the bond of alliance and commonality” (13). To reject such an important bond in a society that so heavily values communal identity is “tantamount to declaring war” (13). The second problem is that of losing mana and being viewed as afraid to accept gifts because one is unable to reciprocate them. The concept of gift giving as one that has the motives of power and authority involved displaces the common belief of gift giving. Durkheim’s influence on Mauss is apparent in Mauss’ discussion of the contract and sacred qualities. The sacred quality of exchange and contracts also has a relationship to appeasing the gods according to Mauss, or so it is viewed in primitive societies (and according to Durkheim the remnants of such beliefs continue in today’s society). Mauss says that the ideal of the gift as distributive justice arises from the belief that the gods punish those with great wealth who are not generous. Therefore, if a gift are given out of generosity and to promote justice, does that mean that those with less wealth have not only less honor and authority, but also a lower level of justness because they are unable to give great gifts?
    Gift giving appears to be a “total” social phenomenon or service because of how it works on not only economic levels, but also social levels. The motives for gift giving are not as magnanimous as one may believe because as Mauss says concerning exchange-gifts, “They are kept for the sheer pleasure of possessing them” (23). He seeks to understand the blind accumulation of wealth and says that it is motivated by “competition, rivalry, ostentatiousness, the seeking after the grandiose” (28). To him, these are somewhat negative motives, although he does not explicitly say so. Mauss shows how gift giving evolves with the Native Americans where the concept of honor is more exaggerated and the idea of “credit” and a time limit on the reciprocation of gifts is highlighted. A gift is essentially given with the motive that not only does one gain honor, respect, and authority from it, but that one will also receive something in return. Now if this something received in return is usually paid “with interest” so to speak as it is expected to be of greater value than the original gift. If Mauss is indeed correct, then why is there not a greater disparity of wealth in these primitive societies? If one is wealthy, then one could seek to continuously extend one’s own authority and wealth at the same time by giving all the time, since accepting the gift is virtually required, a wealthy person could do so and gain interest on all the gifts given.
    Overall, it’s interesting and provocative. It is helpful to have read Durkheim’s Professional Ethics and Civic Morals (then you realize that Mauss is just following in Durkheim’s footsteps). What kind of society do they propose? It’s not too clear. I’m still trying to figure that one out, but nonetheless, it’s a provocative book, as is Durkheim’s. ”

    Reply

  219. questions says:

    “Product Description
    Is giving possible? Is it possible to give without immediately entering into a circle of exchange that turns the gift into a debt to be returned? This question leads Jacques Derrida to make out an irresolvable paradox at what seems the most fundamental level of the gift’s meaning: for the gift to be received as a gift, it must not appear as such, since its mere appearance as gift puts it in the cycle of repayment and debt.
    Derrida reads the relation of time to gift through a number of texts: Heidegger’s Time and Being, Mauss’s The Gift, as well as essays by Benveniste and Levi-Strauss that assume Mauss’s legacy. It is, however, a short tale by Baudelaire, “Counterfeit Money,” that guides Derrida’s analyses throughout. At stake in his reading of the tale, to which the second half of this book is devoted, are the conditions of gift and forgiveness as essentially bound up with the movement of dissemination, a concept that Derrida has been working out for many years.
    For both readers of Baudelaire and students of literary theory, this work will prove indispensable.”
    http://www.amazon.com/Given-Time-Counterfeit-Money-Vol/dp/0226143147

    Reply

  220. questions says:

    http://www.amazon.com/Second-Literature-Secret-Religion-Postmodernism/dp/0226142779/ref=pd_bxgy_b_text_b
    “French philosopher Derrida stares death in the face in this dense but rewarding inquiry. Beginning with an analysis of an essay on the sacred by Czech philosopher/human rights activist Jan Patocka, Derrida follows the development of moral and ethical responsibility, and the concept of the soul’s immortality, in the transition from Platonism to Christianity. He then ponders the self’s anticipation of death in sacrifice, war, orgiastic mystery cults, murder and execution, with reference to Kierkegaard’s Fear and Trembling, Nietzsche, Heidegger’s thought (a “constant attempt to separate itself from Christianity”) and the biblical story of Abraham’s contemplated sacrifice of his son, Isaac, at God’s behest. In the most provocative section, Derrida links religious injunctions of sacrifice to the “monotonous complacency” of modern society, which allows tens of millions of children to die of hunger and disease.
    Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. –This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
    From Library Journal
    This is Part 2 of Derrida’s exploration of the ambiguity of giving. Part 1 (Given Time: Counterfeit Money, Univ. of Chicago Pr., 1992) weaves in and out of a Baudelaire prose poem on giving a beggar a counterfeit coin. Part 2 is more direct and reality-grounded, probably because its point of departure is an essay on history, religion, and responsibility by Jan Patov cka, Czech philosopher who died of a brain hemorrhage after police interrogation in March 1977. When confronted with the death of a scholar who gave his life because of his commitment to human rights, Derrida’s readers will find the paradox of giving one’s life-through death-somewhat precious. Derrida moves through texts from Emmanuel Levinas, Kierkegaard, the New Testament, and Nietzsche before ending with a passage from Baudelaire’s art criticism, where he finds some of the same possibilities for double-reading a gift. Willis’s model translation renders the text in clear English, with sufficient parenthetical French interpellations for readers to see where Derrida is playing on the gaps between the two languages. Recommended primarily for academic libraries.
    Marilyn Gaddis Rose, Binghamton Univ., N.Y.”

    Reply

  221. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    JohnH..exactly..I was just wondering, since Arabs are Semites, what one calls someone who is Anti-Arab…wouldn’t that make WigWag, Nadine Kotzm et al anti-semitic???

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  222. JohnH says:

    I see Wigwag is having another holocaust moment–“in the United States we still recognize the legacy of slavery more than 150 years after it ended,” so Europeans should be eternally guilt ridden. Of course, forget about gypsies, the Jewish holocaust narrative doesn’t have room for any but its own.
    In any case, Wigwag’s analogy to slavery is extremely weak. I don’t see shows on cable TV recounting the horrors of slavery with anything near the regularity that I see shows about about the holocaust (the Jewish part.) And since Americans never played any part in the holocaust, why should we be inundated with Jewish holocaust propaganda, while virtually ignoring the horrors that America over the centuries against other ethnic groups?
    Fact is, there has never been virulent antisemitism directed against Jews in America, nothing at all like slavery, or the extermination of the Indians, or even the widely approved stigmatization of Arabs in this country. If you don’t think stigmatization of Arabs is virulent, drive by any mosque and see what it looks like. The ones I’ve seen are surrounded by chain link fences and barbed wire, even though care is to make the mosque as invisible as possible (a quiet street and little signage to identify it as a mosque).
    The worst antisemitism is now being propagated against Arabs, not Jews, but protests by the Jewish community have been very quiet, because the most powerful elements of the Jewish community happen to think that demonizing some Semites is just fine, as long as it isn’t their Semites. All I can say is, ‘what comes around goes around,’ and everyone should be vocal and steadfast in their opposition to demonizing any ethnic or racial group.

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  223. Carroll says:

    Posted by questions, Sep 11 2009, 2:44PM >>>
    My post is accurate and true….truth beats profound bullshit every time.
    You owe us, you owe the world for Jewish lives today.
    I am sure punching a hole in your typical zionist whine’ that..’the world owes us’ crapola destroys your little Jewish grudge and blackmail scheme against the world…but it is what it is…over….the myths are dead. Find another scam.
    No one owes the jews but some long dead naizs…move on.

    Reply

  224. Outraged American says:

    Carroll, there were Jews sheltered by…um… Muslim countries
    like..um…Iran.
    Here’s an interesting anecdote about how Iran saved Jews during
    WW II:
    http://users.sedona.net/~sepa/sardarij.html
    The Iranians didn’t even get half a gefilte fish in return.
    Although cluster bombs are edible with the proper herbs. And
    I’m sure nuclear radiation can cook chicken to the perfect crisp.
    Also you should read Pat Buchanan’s work (I know, I know, but
    Pat is pretty good on historical ANALYSIS and correctly called DC
    “Israeli occupied territory”) on if Hitler actually wanted world
    domination or just the lands taken from Germany under the
    Treaty of Versailles.
    Buchanan has written a lot on this lately, including a book. An
    archive search at antiwar.com will find his articles.

    Reply

  225. questions says:

    Carroll,
    There’s a lovely little movie called “The Alberto Express” all about social debt, family debt, debt for having been given life, death and debt, paying back, the impossibility of paying back, the demand to pay back and the failure to do so, gifts and debt, birth and death, giving life and giving death….
    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0099009/
    http://www.amazon.com/Alberto-Express-VHS-Sergio-Castellitto/dp/6302793947
    It’s a profound set of issues, and your post above is not profound.

    Reply

  226. Carroll says:

    Posted by WigWag, Sep 11 2009, 12:44AM
    ‘Also the tendency of many Europeans to question how long the burden of anti-Semitism should stigmatize them is something I find annoying. My answer is that in the United States we still recognize the legacy of slavery more than 150 years after it ended; how about Europeans accepting the burden that comes with their history until the relatives of all the people they shoved into the ovens are gone. Tens of millions of people are still alive who were alive at the time Europeans (it wasn’t all Europeans but it was much more than just the Germans and Austrians) butchered their Jewish neighbors.’>>
    Short answer.
    Everyone everyone is tired of the unending zionist
    anti semitism whine.
    Everyone is tired of the “blame the entire world’ for the dead Jews.
    It’s over, you are beating a dead horse.
    Why don’t you tell us and give us specific examples of all the “Euopeans” who killed Jews?
    You seem to think that ‘all Europeans” and every country in the world is to blame for the Jews simpily because everyone didn’t drop all other WWII efforts and rush in to save Jews. That not the way a World War works honey. There were “billions” of other lives at stake in WWII.
    Being a minority tribe didn’t and rightly shouldn’t have put you at the head of the rescue list when the fate of the free world was hanging on the allies stragety and resources.
    It was a matter of priorities. Deal with it. If Hitler had won and we hadn’t “all” the jews would be dead and you wouldn’t be here.
    You owe us. Every Jew alive today owes the allies for their lives.

    Reply

  227. Outraged American says:

    On the 8th anniversary of The Day that Changed Everything,
    looks like we’re winning Israel’s battle against “radical Islam”!
    Taliban Holds Sway in 97% of Afghanistan, controls 80%
    From the International Council on Security and Development
    10 September 2009
    Eight years after 9/11 Taliban now has a permanent presence in
    80% of Afghanistan
    In wake of widespread election review onset of winter could
    delay second round of voting until spring
    Contingency plans needed to address constitutional vacuum in
    presidency
    LONDON – The Taliban now have a permanent presence in 80%
    of Afghanistan, up from 72% in November 2008, according to a
    new map released today by the International Council on Security
    and Development (ICOS). According to ICOS, another 17% of
    Afghanistan is seeing ‘substantial’ Taliban activity. Taken
    together, these figures show that the Taliban has a significant
    presence in virtually all of Afghanistan.
    “Despite the presence of tens of thousands of foreign troops in
    Afghanistan, the return, the spread and the advance of the
    Taliban is now without question” said Norine MacDonald QC,
    President and Lead Field Researcher for ICOS.
    Continues…
    http://tinyurl.com/qpl5aw

    Reply

  228. bob h says:

    “Rather than focusing on al Qaeda and Arab jihadists as “the threat” the US is trying to quash, the Taliban now seems to be the overwhelming focus.”
    But how do you focus on Al Qaeda and the Arabs unless you can keep the Taliban at bay? The former cannot be engaged at a distance.

    Reply

  229. Paul Norheim says:

    Let me correct a typo and add a couple of words to my last paragraph above:
    “To some extent, this nails it, and I think I appreciate your position. On the
    other hand, you are much less willing to admit the crimes committed by Israel than
    I am willing to openly discuss the (admittedly much larger) crimes committed by
    Europe. This is basically what so frequently pisses me off with your approach to
    the issue. More straight forward admissions from you would have changed the
    character and quality of the dialogue, I believe.”

    Reply

  230. Paul Norheim says:

    “…the Enlightenment philosophers (especially Spinoza and to a lesser extent Voltaire).”
    What about Diderot, WigWag? Have your read “Jacques the Fatalist and his Master”? A close
    friend of mine translated it to Norwegian 12-15 years ago. If you appreciate Don Quijote,
    I would be surprised if you didn`t love Jacque the Fataliste. (Among many others, Milan
    Kundera is an admirer of this novel). Diderot is a very interesting figure in the context
    of the Enlightenment, as I`m sure you know.
    “…how about Europeans accepting the burden that comes with their history until the
    relatives of all the people they shoved into the ovens are gone.”
    Just like in America, there are many voices in Europe. If you look closer, and especially
    in Germany, I think you`ll conclude that the acceptance of that burden shows no signs of
    vanishing. Actually, the awareness is a continuing motive in the debates in Europe. As
    both you and I must have expected, the character of this debate will change when these
    generations who actually experienced it die out. The outcome is difficult to predict.
    Unfortunately people like Lieberman, Netanyahu and others frequently take advantage of
    history in opportunistic ways that undermine the substance of this issue. This
    complicates the whole affair to a considerable degree.
    “By the way, your reaction to my critical and often un-nuanced comments about Europe are
    probably pretty similar to my reaction to the critical and un-nuanced comments about
    Israel that I read at the Washington Note almost every day.”
    To some extent, this nails it, and think I appreciate your position. On the other hand,
    you are much less willing to admit the crimes committed by Israel than I am willing to
    admit the crimes committed by Europe. This is basically what so frequently pisses me off
    with your approach to the issue. More straight forward admissions from you would have
    changed the character and quality of the dialogue, I believe.

    Reply

  231. WigWag says:

    I actually love Europe, Paul. The food (even Scandanavian), the languages (especially Italian), the wine (especially French), the music (especially Italian and German opera and particularly the Mozart/DaPonte operas), the art (everything from the Rennaisance up to the pre-Raphaelites), the literature (I am literally in love with Don Quixote and Sancho Panza), the theater (I’m Shakespeare obsessed, you might say I suffer from “bardolitry”), the Enlightenment philosophers (especially Spinoza and to a lesser extent Voltaire).
    I could go on and on.
    It’s European politics that make me weary. Many in the European left are reflexively suspicious of American exceptionalism and that’s fine.
    But the lack of self reflection, the bigotry, and the tendency to be sanctimonious is as bad among Europeans (especially in the educated left) as anything you will find in the United States.
    Also the tendency of many Europeans to question how long the burden of anti-Semitism should stigmatize them is something I find annoying. My answer is that in the United States we still recognize the legacy of slavery more than 150 years after it ended; how about Europeans accepting the burden that comes with their history until the relatives of all the people they shoved into the ovens are gone. Tens of millions of people are still alive who were alive at the time Europeans (it wasn’t all Europeans but it was much more than just the Germans and Austrians) butchered their Jewish neighbors.
    So I don’t think I’m Europhobic. There are things about Europe I like and things about Europe I don’t like.
    By the way, your reaction to my critical and often un-nuanced comments about Europe are probably pretty similar to my reaction to the critical and un-nuanced comments about Israel that I read at the Washington Note almost every day.
    The one place in my life that I will never get to go to that I really wish I had seen is the Dalmatian Coast. In my younger years I loved Rebecca West’s book, “Black Lamb, Grey Falcon” which describes her travels in what would become Yugoslavia in the months before the onset of World War II. It’s the greatest travel book ever written and I re-read it often.
    If I could see one place before I die, it would be some of the towns she visited on the Dalmatian Coast. It practically brings a tear to my eye, just to think about it and type the words.
    I don’t hate Europe at all; just the politics and politics really isn’t all that important.

    Reply

  232. Paul Norheim says:

    WigWag,
    I agree – especially with your last sentence, which also includes me.
    I also tend to agree with your point regarding how critical it is for America to show
    it`s limits. I think I wrote in the discussion with Steve (linked to in my comment in
    the thread above this) that those who are saying that America`s power is in decline,
    are often exaggerating. To some extent, I believe they are victims of a temporary
    mood.
    I don`t think I`ll counter your habitual Europhobia this time. Apparently it`s a
    chronic disease of yours, and I realize that I can`t provide a cure.

    Reply

  233. WigWag says:

    Well that would be fine, Paul, but I’ve already written three comments on the subject and even as loquacious as I am, I’m not sure I can think of anything else to say.
    I do wish Steve would defend his point though. He made an assertion but didn’t really provide any evidence to back it up.
    He could well be right and I could easily be wrong; I wish he would expand on this thesis which I happen to find very interesting.
    I also find it refreshing to have a post that’s a little different from the tedious posts on Afghanistan, Iraq and Israel/Palestine where all the posters and commenters (including me) just repeat the same old banalities.

    Reply

  234. Paul Norheim says:

    WigWag,
    since there is a dedicated thread to this above, why don`t we continue discussing
    this interesting topic there?
    Just a practical suggestion…

    Reply

  235. WigWag says:

    More on the Steve Clemons thesis that, exposure of limits is “very, very, very bad in the great power game”
    Were American limits exposed in our humiliating defeat in Viet Nam? What about when the North Koreans captured and took hostage the Pueblo?
    What did it say about American limits when the Iranians took 53 Americans hostage for 444 days and ransacked the American Embassy in Tehran? Were our limits exposed when 241 marines were killed in Beirut in 1983 or when 18 marines were killed and 83 wounded in Mogadeishu a decade later?
    What did the first World Trade Center bombing, the bombing of the Khobar Towers or the attack on the USS Cole say about American limits?
    What did the attacks of September 11, 2001 suggest about American limits?
    My question is this, is it “really, really, really bad” in the “great power game” for a powerful nation to have its limits exposed, or does it just come with the territory?

    Reply

  236. arthurdecco says:

    “We may have gone to Afghanistan to look for OBL but I think he was safely ensconced in Crawford, Texas and that’s why Busholini wouldn’t invite Cindy Sheehan in for tea…just saying…” posted by Kathleen Grasso Anderson
    This is so funny because its essentially true. And ain’t that sad?

    Reply

  237. Kathleen Grasso Andersen says:

    I think we’re exposing more than our limits in Afghanistan. Does anyone remember that we went to Afghanistan to find Bin Laden? Everyone at TWN remembers…whether we accept the “stated” resaon is another thing…
    Frankly, after years of observing out Foreign Policy and trying to make sense of it in terms of our “stated” reasons for things we do, I’d say we are not in Afghanistan for any of the reasons we stated, but rather for many we refuse to admit…like oil, oil and then maybe a little more oil and don’t kid yourself, we love those poppies too. Does any country use more morphine and heroin than the usa?
    We may have gone to Afghanistan to look for OBL but I think he was safely ensconced in Crawford, Texas and that’s why Busholini wouldn’t invite Cindy Sheehan in for tea…just saying…

    Reply

  238. Outraged American says:

    Rick Reyes the John Kerry of Afghanistan on air now. Call-in!
    800 259-9231
    Stream it at:
    http://whatreallyhappened.com/

    Reply

  239. Dan Kervick says:

    An interesting article in the Guardian on the status of Al Qaeda, by Ian Black and Richard Norton-Taylor, link supplied by Matt Yglesias:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/sep/10/al-qaida-recruitment-crisis

    Reply

  240. arthurdecco says:

    I agree completely with your last post, JohnH. I’d like to highlight the following:
    “”Position” and credibility are earned by demonstrating an ability to get things done. It’s not just image for image’s sake, acting for the sake of acting.”
    It is no longer about maintaining a “position” or “credibility” in the overheated public world of international politics for the American and foreign political schemers who are struggling to create an alternate reality capable of being convincingly superimposed over the harsh truths any sentient human can now see from miles away. None of the monsters at the top of the carrion pile appear to care any longer about masking their feral ambitions. As you suggested – the whole charade seems to have morphed into “image for image’s sake, acting for the sake of acting” while the profitable carnage continues.
    The wheels are coming off the chuck wagon and now we’re down to the final straight before the wire. Now, for “them”, its all about keeping our collective eyes off the ball with high-falutin’ rhetoric long enough for the banksters and fascists who are systematically stripping the whole western world of its assets to sweep up the last remaining bits that haven’t yet been stolen from the public with the collusion of our political “representatives”. These endless wars are just their latest scheme to steal our countries from us by burying us in perpetual debt piled up like mountains. Buying useless things that kill people and rewarding with trillions of our tax dollars the thieves who caused our latest batch of problems for their larcenous, sociopathic behaviour are not solutions to our intractable social, political, financial or international problems.
    Way back in the 30’s, Smedley Darlington Butler, who was a Major General in the U.S. Marine Corps and, at the time of his death, the most decorated Marine in U.S. history at a time when those kinds of medals actually meant something, had already figured out what America’s armies were for. He wrote a book about it: “War is a Racket”. It’s short and to the point. Find it on the web and read it now.
    They’ve refined that sentiment to its essence now, haven’t they? War is a Racket? …With the cooperation of an army of well-paid apologists, murderers and con men all huddled around your politicians, elbows akimbo – holding you at bay?
    Who was it who said we get the government we deserve?

    Reply

  241. JohnH says:

    Steve’s lamentation about the US loss of “position” is misplaced. “Position” in the world is a lagging indicator, the accumulated effect of a long series of wise or foolish policies. Lamenting loss of “position” is kind of like a meth addict complaining about his appearance but disregarding his addiction.
    Instead, Steve would do better to voice his opinion about specific, misguided behavior. He has finally made an important first step by asking what the objectives are in Afghanistan. He could just as easily have asked what the strategic objectives are in Iraq? In Iran? In supporting Israel?
    Since no one, certainly none of the TWN approved writers, is willing and able to articulate any strategic rationale for America’s military involvement in any of these areas, isn’t it pretty easy to conclude that the United States is squandering its resources on foreign adventures of highly dubious merit? If the US is losing “position” in the world, isn’t it pretty easy to attribute it to a long history of misguided behavior around the world?
    It only gets worse. Why do you need a horrendously expensive, bloated military to pursue dubious objectives? And what sense does it make to finance increasing military adventurism by borrowing from China, Japan, and petro states? If you borrow money to fund an organization with no clear mission to implement pointless policies, isn’t that a pretty direct route to ruin (and, of course, loss of “position”)?
    I’m sure that many would say that the United States needs to be tough and strong and engaged in order to maintain its position in the world. Apparently any action that projects strength and toughness will do. But that argument proves the hollowness of the “position is everything” school.
    “Position” and credibility are earned by demonstrating an ability to get things done. It’s not just image for image’s sake, acting for the sake of acting. And that’s exactly the problem. There are no clearly stated concrete objectives that can bear scrutiny, only a hopeless flailing about that is masquerading as an effort to project strength, and maintain image and “position.”
    Let’s hope Steve becomes more involved in scrutinizing and voicing his opinion about specific American objectives and less worried about ethereal concepts such as “position.” Position will follow if sound objectives are followed by sound strategies and policies.

    Reply

  242. ... says:

    wigwag, i like the historical overview.. making a comparison between the british empire and the american one is a good analogy… either way it’s empire building… no one in world cop usa politics seems willing to admit this… instead the way it is sold is bringing ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy’ to the world.. the usa needs to learn how to mind it’s own business, instead of imposing itself on others… the usa has become reliant on having a certain degree of power, but is constantly being reminded of the limits of its own power… the characterization of the usa as a bully is a good one… those few americans who have the ability to get outside of their isolated world probably aren’t comfortable with the image that others have of them, and it certainly isn’t something to be ”proud” of…
    as john said earlier this morning
    “Let us hope we can learn from our previous mistakes and find a role suitable for us in this century and find ways to use our wisdom to guide others rather than force our views down their throats.”
    the exact opposite has been happening and continues to be demonstrated in the mid east which would include afgan, iraq, iran and all things to do with israel/palestine..

    Reply

  243. WigWag says:

    While much of the discussion here has been about Afghanistan and U.S. policy there, I think an important part of Steve’s point has been lost in the discussion. I think Steve is trying to make the point that first the Iraq War and now the Afghan War have exposed the limits of American power and that this is very disadvantageous to the position of the United States in the world.
    Steve seems to believe that the extraordinary difficulty in creating a stable regime in Iraq and in subduing the Taliban can’t help but convince adversaries and potential competitors alike that U.S. hegemony is on the wane and that U.S. interests can be successfully challenged. To quote Steve, “this is very, very bad in the great power game.”
    While Steve’s premise seems sound, he presents no empirical evidence to support it. As far as I can tell most of the evidence is on the other side. History seems to suggest that tactical reverses, the tendency to overstretch and poor foreign policy and military decisions made primarily for domestic political reasons are a ubiquitous feature in the history or superpowers. Far from being “very, very bad” for the hegemonic aspirations of those powers, they tend to be largely irrelevant.
    As I mentioned in my previous comment, the British Empire was born in the English defeat of the Dutch in New Amsterdam in 1664 and ended in its defeat and withdrawal from India in 1948; ironically the Empire didn’t reach its apex size-wise until the end of World War I a mere three decades before it disappeared completely. The Empire lasted 284 years and during that period of time it witnessed continued reverses, continued defeats and continuous condemnation from critics that British hegemony was not sustainable. There is hardly a decade in the 28 decades of its existence that the Empire wasn’t stretched almost to the breaking point in its military, diplomatic and financial affairs. Despite its great power, the British were humiliated by its North American colonists, the Afghans and the Boers. Still, nothing “very, very bad” happened until the Empire was forced to defend itself in two world wars within a quarter century.
    According to most accounts the Hapsburg Empire had its genesis in 1526 in Vienna and lasted until the end of the First World War. At its height, the Hapsburg Empire controlled huge swaths of Central and Southern Europe and ruled over scores of ethnic groups speaking a large number of different languages and practicing Roman Catholicism, various forms of Protestantism and at certain points, even Islam. There may have never been a superpower as consistently overextended as the Hapsburg Empire. It experienced almost continuous internal rebellions and insurrections and faced the need to send and station troops at enormous expense in subject nations that had nothing but disdain for their imperial rulers. Like the U.S. in Afghanistan the Hapsburg’s fought numerous battles that it frequently lost in Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia, Dalmatia, Slovakia, Hungary and numerous other places. As it turns out, these reverses weren’t “very, very bad” for the viability of Hapsburg Empire or its superpower status. After all, the Empire lasted 391 years.
    The Ottoman Empire lasted 623 years (from 1299-1922). At the height of its power during the late 16th century and early 17th century the Ottomans controlled territory in three continents that included much of southeastern Europe and most of western Asia and North Africa. During the 17th century, 29 separate nation states were subject to Ottoman rule. While it was one of the strongest “superpowers” the world has ever seen, and while for several centuries its military prowess was the envy of Europe, like the Americans in Iraq, the Ottomans fought and lost numerous critical battles both on land and at sea. From their spectacular defeat at the Battle of Lepanto (1571) to their failure to capture Vienna (twice), to the humiliating terms it was forced to accept in the Treaty of Karlowitz (1699) to its expulsion from Kosovo and the rest of its Slavic territories, the Ottomans experienced one defeat followed by another. Despite this, nothing “very, very bad” happened. The Ottoman Turks remained one of the strongest superpowers the world has ever seen for over six centuries.
    World War I ended the superpower status of the Hapsburgs and the Ottomans. It took the cumulative effect of the two world wars to terminate the superpower status of the British.
    Reverses like the ones experienced by the United States in Iraq and Afghanistan seem to be largely inconsequential when it comes to international affairs.
    If Steve has evidence that reverses like these are “very, very bad” in the “great power game” he should present it.
    Respecfully, it seems to me that history puts his thesis very much in doubt.

    Reply

  244. Outraged American says:

    Questions, I’ve interviewed “experts” on everything from the
    housing crisis to rape in the Congo, all extremely important
    issues.
    When UsRael attacks Iran, an attack on Iran being on the verge
    of a fait accompli, these will be unimportant issues. The world
    will be plunged into nuclear war, because some bonehead in
    Pakistan or India or somewhere will decide to use a nuclear
    weapon and then there will be retaliation.
    But even an attack on Iran’s nuclear plants themselves will kill
    millions, without any need for a follow-up war. I’ve interviewed
    experts on nuclear technology: the hit on the plants alone would
    release lethal radiation. And UsRael will kill some Russian techs
    and then Putin will be under a lot of pressure to avenge them,
    and then it will go on and on.
    WW I was started by one death.
    I did five to nine shows a week for almost five years. Some of
    those shows had more than one guest. I talked to a lot of
    people about a lot of things.
    When I conduct interviews I figure that the person I’m
    interviewing is a lot smarter than I am, and knows a lot more, so
    I do my research, enough so that I can call them on it if they say
    something factually untrue, but I let them talk. Given their
    status as an “expert” I figure they’ve done critical analysis.
    On controversial topics, like Iran or the Tamil Tigers’ atrocities
    vs. the Sri Lankan government’s, we had different POVs on, but
    in the latter case provided info from aid agencies on the
    ground, so that our audience could decide for themselves.
    What good is honor when your kids are dead? To quote Kipling,
    previously pro-war, who lost his son in WW I, “If any question
    why we died/ Tell them, because our fathers lied.”
    And here’s another Kipling quote, “When you’re wounded and
    left on Afghanistan’s plains, and the women come out to cut up
    what remains, jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains and
    go to your gawd like a soldier.”

    Reply

  245. questions says:

    I think the underlying issue is still something along the lines of what exactly causes the threats to security — is it merely “radical Islam?” (not really, in my sense of the world); is it scarcity of resources? (only partially); is it US hegemony? (I don’t think this is sufficient); is it an imbalance of power/lack of deterrence/asymmetry of threat? (partially, maybe). Clash of civilizations? Doubtful.
    Absent an overarching power (which we’ll never have) and absent therefore ways to coordinate, avoid misperceptions, and feel secure in one’s own boundaries, we aren’t really going to avoid conflict. A single overarching power will always lead smaller powers to form alliances; a multi-polar world will always have shifts; nuclear arms all over the world is likely a disastrous strategy.
    Hobbes demonstrates ably that scarcity of resources cannot ever be dealt with as honor is the most precious resource and is by nature scarce. In a Hobbesian world, what works best is the overarching power of the sovereign, but even Hobbes notes that internationally, there is no such thing.
    What we’re left with thus far is a kind of meddling muddling proxy world of neighborhood bullies. Chanting US out of wherever isn’t likely to work, and the worship of McDonald’s will only work for so long (read up on the “no two nations with McDonald’s have ever attacked each other” thesis).
    Conflict may be irreducible, in which case management skills are more important than ever, as the weapons are nasty and creative in their destructiveness.
    The takeaway for Paul who is lately very opposed to my writing style: Getting out of Afganistan is no more helpful than staying in Afghanistan as there will be disaster either way. We have to pick disasters carefully as we do not know in advance which one we are courting at any one time.
    The takeaway for OA: stop with the “all things Israel” and “I interviewed so and so who said ‘All things Israel.'” Having interviewed someone is an insufficient guarantor of good analysis.
    The takeaway for WigWag: Huntington had “issues.” Huntington isn’t the be-all and end-all of international theory/analysis.
    The takeaway for others: It’s a mess out there.

    Reply

  246. John says:

    Steve: thanks for opening the discussions. It is high time to find better solutions.
    Let us hope we can learn from our previous mistakes and find a role suitable for us in this century and find ways to use our wisdom to guide others rather than force our views down their throats.

    Reply

  247. ... says:

    fight terrorism with state sponsored terrorism.. interesting premise…

    Reply

  248. Karol Bracy says:

    Terrorism has only enemies and knows no boundaries. We all have to fight against it unitedly. The only course is to kill it.

    Reply

  249. TonyForesta says:

    Afghanistan is all about the oil, and positing enough US military hardware and warfighters in the region to control the flow of oil, and by passing Russia. There is nothing to be gained any American military involvement in Afghanistan, outside of pipelines and securing those pipelines. Until the real objectives of America’s oligarchs – I mean government is articulated there will be a constant shapeshifting of reason and necessities to justify a huge American military presence in the place where empires go to die.
    The current MSM government fairytale justifying our intensifying activities in Afghanistan has NOTHING to do democratization, freedom, or liberation, or snuffing out al Quaida, (when is the last time we even heard about Ossama bin Laden?), or deTalibanization, or eradicating poppy fields and heorine trade (CIA cash cow) – and every thing to do with securing oil and energy routes and supply.
    Like the horrorshow in Iraq, Afghanistan is all about the oil!!!

    Reply

  250. Paul Norheim says:

    Thanks for the link,…
    I basically agree with the content.

    Reply

  251. ... says:

    okay thanks dan… i neglected to keep that in mind when reading specific comments in your post.. i get turned off by what i perceive to be an open acceptance of the way the usa conducts wars on others with the use of drones doing targeted killing of anyone in the vicinity of a ‘unproven’ threat.. what type of kangeroo court is in operation where killing is condoned and readily accepted by americans en masse? we can longer blame cheney for overseeing any of it… it seems to be considered an acceptable american attitude…
    carroll, i also strongly endorse johnh and his views on this issue…
    paul norheim here is an article connected to norway that you might find interesting.
    http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1113382.html

    Reply

  252. Carroll says:

    Posted by Paul Norheim, Sep 09 2009, 11:50PM
    >>>>>>
    It’s not called kidnapping in third world countries, it’s called fund raising.

    Reply

  253. Carroll says:

    I don’t agree with Zathras or others who think that Afaghan is the key to terrorism…or that any one location or country is the key to ending terrorism or disrupting terrorist.
    JohnH and others are more correct and realistic about the cause and the cure.
    As long as we have the elite and non elite, powerful and not powerful, rich and poor,occupied and occupiers, total winners and total losers on a global scale we will have terriers…and more terriers will join them and we have about as much chance of killing them all or stopping them all as the world has of eliminating cockroachs worldwide.
    It’s the same movie over and over, same plot, same wars, same explosions, same good guys, bad guys, same tired scripts…boring, stupid, wasteful, idiotic and predictable.

    Reply

  254. Dan Kervick says:

    …, its not faith. I’m just pointing out how skeptical I am about this whole “safe haven” bugbear. I don’t think it is a plausible reason for being in Afghanistan, despite Zathras’s tentative defense of that rationale.

    Reply

  255. ... says:

    good point paul.. (if) i … see what a little imagination can do? but no… you said, lol….

    Reply

  256. Paul Norheim says:

    “…their is a shortage of critical thinking within the usa”
    Now, which learning sites did most of these guys screwing up in politics
    and economics come from? It was the Chicago School – from Leo Strauss to
    Milton Friedman, right?
    I was in charge of CentCom, I wouldn`t hesitate a second. I would use a
    handful of those drones to target the main source of bad thinking, the
    madrases of American fundamentalism, the mother of all mistakes in recent
    political and economical theory.

    Reply

  257. ... says:

    dan kervick putting his faith in drones and the view of cia operatives on who is or isn’t guilty before being bombed….interesting..

    Reply

  258. Carroll says:

    Saying same thing I said last year…
    Afghanistan is where other countries go to die.
    Afghanistan has almost no water,
    Limited cutivatable land.
    Only one mineral they can mine.
    And poppies.
    That’s all.
    The average life span in Afghanistan is 44 years.
    So even if we succeed where all others failed and ‘conquered’ it, “de Talibaned” it and “democracized” it what would we do with it?
    Turn it into a storage facility or international scenic park?
    Crazy f******* stupid.

    Reply

  259. ... says:

    Posted by questions, Sep 09 2009, 9:37PM – Link
    Maybe, OA, there’s more than one way to describe the guy??<<
    indeed questions… either way it serves the fear mongers and war mongers… you are part of such a lovely crowd to be relying on him so heavily…
    i agree with oa… their is a shortage of critical thinking within the usa.. lets hope they don’t try to export it… avi’s post looks like another attempt..

    Reply

  260. kotzabasis says:

    Clemons, from his political labyrinth as the modern Theseus but without his Ariadne with any hope of escape, sends desperate signals about America’s “limits” and the dire repercussions these will have on American power and prestige. From the boundless darkness of his labyrinthine domicile he is bound to be pessimistic of any prospect that the US could defeat the Taliban. It’s the same kind of pessimism that he also had for years about the war in Iraq, which he had also pontificated as being unwinnable. And he has as yet to acknowledge that the US under General Petraeus had defeated the insurgency in Iraq.
    Only Clemons, in his strategic blindness, could make the statement, “One really can’t tell what our overall goal is at this point.” Really, the Taliban which was a host to al-Qaeda and which would continue to be so in the event it took over once again Afghanistan, and moreover threaten the Talibanization of Pakistan, as a result of the US abandoning its strategic goal of defeating the Taliban and al-Qaeda in one stroke and hence inflicting a devastating blow of global dimensions to the holy warriors of Islam. Nor can he envisage that any withdrawal from Afghanistan would be perceived as a defeat of America by Islamists and would embolden their threats against, in their eyes, a weak America. And the consummation of these threats could be of a greater magnitude of destruction than that of 9/11.
    WigWag is right. “Radical Islam” is the great enemy of mankind. And the civilized countries of the world, America, India, and China will hammer their nails to its coffin.

    Reply

  261. Paul Norheim says:

    Using the same arguments as some of those who defend a strong military
    presence in Afghanistan, I assume now is the time for America and its allies
    to open up a new front in the Global War On Terror – Yemen:
    “It is paramount for the Yemeni authorities to crack down on the vast
    infrastructure of al-Qaeda in the country,” said Rohan Gunaratna, head of
    the Singapore-based International Center for Political Violence and
    Terrorism Research.. “Yemen is becoming an epicenter of global terrorism.””
    Read more at
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aapKi2HaofqU
    And another article at Open Democracy:
    The growing insecurity and violence in the most ancient of Arab lands are
    creating a slow political implosion. The world must take greater note, says
    Fred Halliday.
    “Yemen is in the news, and for all the wrong reasons. A spate of kidnappings
    and killings of foreign tourists and aid workers in the first months of 2009
    has highlighted the dangers of a country whose people are renowned for their
    hospitality. The murder of a group of foreigners, including two German
    nurses and a South Korean teacher, in the northeast of the country in mid-
    June 2009 is but one example of a chain of events designed to foment
    discord, hatred and alienation from this beautiful land. But such incidents,
    heartbreaking as they are for the families and friends of those affected,
    are also symptoms of a deeper disorder in Yemen’s polity and society.
    Yemen is often the source of exotic or disconcerting news, but current
    trends are especially worrying. The news is bad for the stability and
    security of the region in which Yemen is located; for the broader regional
    conflict between radical-terroristic Islamism and its opponents; and, most
    of all, for the approximately 20 million long-suffering people of the
    country itself.”
    continues…
    http://www.opendemocracy.net/article/the-travails-of-yemen-unity
    ——————————
    Attacking Yemen has several advantages: from there the US and NATO may go
    into Somalia when necessary. In addition to AfPak, they may create a YemSom
    strategy. Add to that the convenience in fighting the Somalian pirates
    operating in the area.
    Now imagine this: if Israel/USA attacks Iran, the impact will also be
    dramatic over the border to Iraq. This requires an IrIr strategy
    (Iran/Iraq).
    And then the next POTUS may inherit AfPak, YemSom and IrIr, and ad a new
    front on his own.
    I would personally suggest NiNi and SuChad in the oil rich African
    continent.
    Now I know that one commenter, Questions, will be arguing with him self
    about what to do. Attacking YemSom, NiNi or SuChad would be wrong. At the
    same time, not attacking them would also be wrong, wouldn`t it?
    And for those who ask if I`m joking, I`m not. The suggestions above are all
    natural extensions of the arguments behind the GWOT – or, if you will:
    incremental steps towards WW3.

    Reply

  262. AnnaTuthill says:

    This site has good information.Thanks
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    Reply

  263. AnnaTuthill says:

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    Reply

  264. Dan Kervick says:

    My understanding is that our success against the Al Qaeda network since 9/11 is primarily due to the fact that we have physically disrupted that network, and done so all over the world. We have killed or captured a large number of the known leaders and particpants, and many of the others are constantly harrassed and on the run, which makes it hard for them to develop and sustain plans. We have shut down financial networks, and thoroughly infiltrated communications networks. There are even volunteer amateurs who keep a constant eye on jihadist militant discourse online, and report anything interesting to the feds and other governments. If anything, these anti-terrorist watchdogs, official and unofficial, are even more hyper-vigilant and paranoid than they have to be.
    I understand that in the 90’s an important role was played by the camps in Afghanistan. They seemed to provide a destination to which young jihadists could make a pilgrimage to a kind of Militant Mecca, receive some training, acquire a comprehensive ideology, and develop fighting spirit, contacts and camaraderie.
    But is there really any serious possibility such a thing could be recreated in Afghanistan, even under the worst-case scenarios? In the post 9/11 environment, the world’s governments appear to keep a pretty close eye on young Muslim militants. If there were some significant flow of militants to an Al Qaeda safe haven or Salafist Woodstock, whether in Afghanistan or anywhere else, I assume we would detect it pretty quickly, and know where they are going. And we have a bunch of new post 9/11 capabilities. Aren’t those capabilities – drone attacks, greatly expanded intelligence networks and covert operations, improved spy technology, greatly expanded government cooperation – largely independent of who is nominally in charge in Afghanistan?
    If you are a young jihadist, you can’t take out a freaking library book without some spook knowing about it. Do we really think the jihadists are all going to sneak away to some new Al Qaeda U. in Afghanistan, for long enough time to constitute some significant new threat? And even if they did, couldn’t we just bomb the crap out of the camp with our drones on the very day we find out about it?

    Reply

  265. Outraged American says:

    I interviewed, many times, the last journalist to interview Bin
    Laden before 9/11. A Pakistani journalist named Abid Ullah Jan
    who interviewed Bin Laden in Kandahar, Afghanistan less than
    two weeks before the attacks.
    He does not think that Bin Laden was behind the attacks. He
    said that Bin Laden knew something was coming, but not what it
    was.
    Here’s Jan’s site:
    http://tinyurl.com/ncap3e
    I’ve interviewed so many credible people on the topic of Sept.
    11: diplomats; pilots; CIA agents; engineers; physicists — there
    are a lot of extremely credible people who think the official
    narrative of Sept. 11 is a bunch of BS, including members of the
    Commission themselves.
    Who benefited from the attacks? First question a detective asks.
    Well Netanyahu, best buddies with Larry Silverstein, who was
    leasing the World Trade Center, and made a fortune off of their
    destruction, said that 9/11 was a good day for Israel.
    This was the same Netanyahu who was warned in advance of the
    7/7 attack in the UK.
    Amazing how “Radical Islamic Terrorists” always seem to work
    for Israel’s benefit.

    Reply

  266. JamesL says:

    Yahoo News on the hijacked Mexican airliner: “Jose Flores, 44, told investigators he hijacked Aeromexico Flight 576 after a divine revelation, according to Public Safety Secretary Genaro Garcia Luna. Flores said Wednesday’s date — 9-9-09 — is the satanic number 666 turned upside down.”
    Reminds me of Bush. And Israel, which apparently figures it has some kind of divine sanction surplus from 40 years in the desert a while back.

    Reply

  267. questions says:

    Maybe, OA, there’s more than one way to describe the guy??

    Reply

  268. Outraged American says:

    I didn’t mean to boast, just to say that I was taught critical thinking
    by extremely smart people and I don’t buy the official narrative of
    the Sept. 11 attacks at all.

    Reply

  269. Zathras says:

    I thank ExBrit and questions for their kind words upthread.
    One additional aspect of the Afghan situation should be discussed more often than it is. Then- Sen. Obama was not wrong during the campaign when he pointed out the Bush administration’s mistake in putting Afghanistan on the far back burner while it pursued the Iraq adventure. One wonders how fully he and his administration have considered all that follows from this.
    Accept, just for the sake of argument, that a reasonably honest, functioning Afghan government would be an important bulwark against the restoration of an al Qaeda sanctuary in Afghanistan. Well, 2009 is not 2002 in that regard. While the Bush administration was mucking around in Iraq, a very different kind of government formed in Kabul and the momentum generated by the stunning American rout of the Taliban in 2001 dissipated long ago. Look, for example, at Hamid Karzai, a prominent member of a smallish anti-Taliban clan of the Pushtun plurality who was chosen as President for that reason and also because of his numerous Western contacts and excellent English. Karzai was a placeholder, a respectable figure thought able to preside over the government while things got sorted out. He’s no strongman, nor does his personality command wide allegiance among Afghans, but he’s still there more than seven years later. Few people then would have thought Karzai was the man to lead Afghanistan on the path to becoming a normal country, and if he wasn’t then he surely isn’t now.
    Like most new administrations, President Obama’s is prone to act as if it started last January with a clean slate. It didn’t, not in Afghanistan anyway, and neither did any of the new American military commanders there. There is reason to think some of these people believe that we did things wrong in Afghanistan before and things went badly; therefore, if we do things right now the situation will improve. Also, if we do things right the Afghans will catch up after a time.
    I admire the optimism behind this way of thinking. I understand that Obama and his team did not create the situation they face now. But I also understand that nation-building from scratch is a lot easier than making a good government out of a bad one. Preventing al Qaeda from reestablishing a base of operations in Afghanistan is one objective; just buying a little time with a lot of borrowed money is another. The Obama administration and the military commanders reporting to it need to consider which of these objectives is realistically within our reach, bearing in mind that the worst thing that could happen is not the only bad thing that could happen.

    Reply

  270. Outraged American says:

    Part of my major was math, the other part was physics, and I went
    to a really good school.
    Anyone who believes that a former CIA asset, caveman on dialysis
    in the wilds of this new entity called “Af-Pak” was behind 9/11 and
    now the deaths of millions of people, needs to go back to grade
    school and with any luck learn critical thinking.
    Which is almost impossible in the US Every Child Left Behind
    system.

    Reply

  271. JohnH says:

    8) Obama hadn’t reached puberty by the end of the Vietnam War and can be excused if he didn’t internalize any lessons from it. And John Kerry, an important adviser as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, learned a lot from Vietnam then promptly discarded it all on the altar political opportunism.

    Reply

  272. questions says:

    sorry for double post — really weird error message showed up.

    Reply

  273. questions says:

    The do no harm thing is mixed, though. Not pursuing some techno-intervention can cause its own harm, even as pursuing it can also cause harm. There are judgment calls all around. So even as I generally like the precautionary principle, as I said above, I also recognize the paradoxes it brings about.
    So I’m not sure the phrase “half-assed” is really right. The real problem is that the real problem is insoluble in a way that will satisfy all claims to right action.
    As for not creating terrorists, this one is also on the harder side to figure out. Yes Bin Laden said “Get outta Saudi Arabia.” Let’s say we said, “Yokay, Mr. Bin Laden.” And away we went. What consequences are there of doing precisely what Mr. Bin Laden says? Are there any? What would the world have been like? The gaming out of capitulation needs to be done. Non-intervention may be less possible than Mr. Bin Laden would like. Making parts of the world off limits may or may not be a good idea. It’s not automatically a great idea to say “Let’s just stay home tonight, dear.”
    And since Mr. Bin Laden is not at all in love with the rest of his family, maybe he might have had designs on the (fairly despicable) rule of the Saudi family. And what if that avenue was a)more than a fiction I just cooked up and b)actually put into practice?
    All the what ifs one can ask…. I don’t think it’s enough to say that we have generated lots of terrorists. We may have cut down some on the numbers as well. It’s impossible to say.
    On Afghanistan, I have generally thought it was a dumb intervention, the end of the Soviet Union, utterly without regard to local life and preferences, all the usual left things. I probably still think all of this. But I have an internal debate that wonders about the effects of the Taliban (a nasty group if ever there were one), the effects of failed states in failing flailing regions, the opium trade’s ability to generate large profits for unsavory deeds.
    And I don’t know how to balance all of the concerns, and judging by Zathras’s posting, the not-knowing side of things is a pretty big issue.
    I have been faulted numerous times for this not-knowing, or for making my own not-knowing public rather than declaring simple moral pieties, but the not-knowing is genuine. I have known that Afghanistan was a mistaken venture. I do not currently know that it is as I don’t think I have a great alternative up my sleeve.
    Exiting is not so easy once you’re there, and not entering in the first place is not always so easy either.
    What I do feel I know is that simplistic pieties are not going to help this situation or any other. There are specific people with specific plans and desires and investments of energy, there are institutional pressures, egos and so on all involved and so just braying out as some around here do that we need to leave without taking into account the downsides and pressures probably isn’t going to move the policy world forward. And I say all of this while recognizing that my own view on Afghanistan is shifting in bits and pieces.

    Reply

  274. questions says:

    The do no harm thing is mixed, though. Not pursuing some techno-intervention can cause its own harm, even as pursuing it can also cause harm. There are judgment calls all around. So even as I generally like the precautionary principle, as I said above, I also recognize the paradoxes it brings about.
    So I’m not sure the phrase “half-assed” is really right. The real problem is that the real problem is insoluble in a way that will satisfy all claims to right action.
    As for not creating terrorists, this one is also on the harder side to figure out. Yes Bin Laden said “Get outta Saudi Arabia.” Let’s say we said, “Yokay, Mr. Bin Laden.” And away we went. What consequences are there of doing precisely what Mr. Bin Laden says? Are there any? What would the world have been like? The gaming out of capitulation needs to be done. Non-intervention may be less possible than Mr. Bin Laden would like. Making parts of the world off limits may or may not be a good idea. It’s not automatically a great idea to say “Let’s just stay home tonight, dear.”
    And since Mr. Bin Laden is not at all in love with the rest of his family, maybe he might have had designs on the (fairly despicable) rule of the Saudi family. And what if that avenue was a)more than a fiction I just cooked up and b)actually put into practice?
    All the what ifs one can ask…. I don’t think it’s enough to say that we have generated lots of terrorists. We may have cut down some on the numbers as well. It’s impossible to say.
    On Afghanistan, I have generally thought it was a dumb intervention, the end of the Soviet Union, utterly without regard to local life and preferences, all the usual left things. I probably still think all of this. But I have an internal debate that wonders about the effects of the Taliban (a nasty group if ever there were one), the effects of failed states in failing flailing regions, the opium trade’s ability to generate large profits for unsavory deeds.
    And I don’t know how to balance all of the concerns, and judging by Zathras’s posting, the not-knowing side of things is a pretty big issue.
    I have been faulted numerous times for this not-knowing, or for making my own not-knowing public rather than declaring simple moral pieties, but the not-knowing is genuine. I have known that Afghanistan was a mistaken venture. I do not currently know that it is as I don’t think I have a great alternative up my sleeve.
    Exiting is not so easy once you’re there, and not entering in the first place is not always so easy either.
    What I do feel I know is that simplistic pieties are not going to help this situation or any other. There are specific people with specific plans and desires and investments of energy, there are institutional pressures, egos and so on all involved and so just braying out as some around here do that we need to leave without taking into account the downsides and pressures probably isn’t going to move the policy world forward. And I say all of this while recognizing that my own view on Afghanistan is shifting in bits and pieces.

    Reply

  275. DonS says:

    Speaking of keeping it simple, it doesn’t seem to me that there is much of a need to look beyond a few factors as the really salient ones, and other’s I am sure I’ve omitted:
    1) Obama’s too clever campaign political calculations that elevated Afghanistan into something far more significant in geopolitical terms than it had to be (his escape hatch to being called soft on terror)
    2) Obama doubling down on initial political calculations during early months in office instead of taking a measured “now that I’m in office, let’s evaluate this situation de novo”. (Of course there is always the overlay of Obma being the “first” and having the pressure to a) prove he is indeed up to playing the big power game and b) being accept by the inside politics types, not necessarily in that order).
    3) The ongoing US hubris-streak that fails to recognize that carrying a big stick just doesn’t cut it anymore, especially when it simultaneously exacerbates economic disaster at home.
    4) The military schizophrenia that doesn’t like to see it’s personnel placed in strategically tenuous positions, but that relishes and justifies it’s importance during times of conflict . . . it’s where/when the action is.
    4) Obama’s ignorance of or failure to grok the crucible of Vietnam as a template for the sucking black hole of groupthink decision making, and fatal failure to think outside the box.
    5) The simple American macho posture that routinely outweighs the humble, common sense “good” American, exacerbated by recent and increased polarization.
    6) The sensationalistic mass media that only, ever, makes things worse.
    7) The paranoid drift of the US to the right, with an overdefensiveness that empowers image-based, rather than pragmatic thinking im most spheres of American life, politics, etc.
    I’ll stop. But it’s not that complicated. Obama needs to wake up. The US needs to “get over it” (self importance)

    Reply

  276. Avi says:

    The points made in this article are very
    interesting and it is sad how the war on terror
    has basically dissipated, with no clear goal and
    not even called a war on terror anymore. The sad
    thing is that a very real threat exists to the
    United States by radical Islam and it is hardly
    being dealt with.
    A very important film that should be seen by all
    to understand the motivation of the radical
    Muslims and why they attacked the US on 9/11 is
    The Third Jihad documentary movie. It is available
    online for free for 6 days, until Sept. 15th, to
    commemorate and remember 9/11. The full length
    movie can be seen here:
    http://www.wejew.com/thethirdjihad
    The Third Jihad, the newest offering from the
    producers of the award-winning documentary film,
    Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West,
    explores the growth of radical Islam in America.
    The film, narrated by devout Muslim American Dr.
    Zuhdi Jasser, opens with the following statement:
    “This is not a film about Islam. It is about the
    threat of radical Islam. Only a small percentage
    of the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims are radical.
    This film is about them.”

    Reply

  277. JohnH says:

    Another point, questions. The first rule of the precautionary principle is to do no harm. This is obviously not the US policy in Afghanistan, which has caused lots of long term damage, physical and human and been a boon to terrorist recruitment. If you were a true advocate of the precautionary principle, you would back an entirely different policy, not this half a**ed one.

    Reply

  278. JohnH says:

    If there’s a 1% chance that terrorists will come to do something devastating to the United States, then the prudent course would be to back policies that create fewer terrorists. Constantly increasing the US footprint in lands where it behaves badly and is not welcome only increases terrorist recruitment, not to mention defense contractor profits. It is simply not a strategy that can stand any kind of logical scrutiny. It’s just part of the ongoing foreign policy farce.

    Reply

  279. questions says:

    JohnH,
    The problems Zathras raises under “we just don’t know” and “the worst has already happened once” are the crucial ones to grapple with, and part of why I am so conflicted with this war.
    I tend to like the precautionary principle when it is applied to environmental issues. I realize that it can get a little crazy at its extremes, but generally it makes a lot of sense to me to ban first, and then figure out if the trade offs are worthwhile later.
    To the best of my knowledge, Cheney translated the leftist enviro mantra into the “1% Doctrine” — if there’s a 1% chance….
    So how does one put these together into some kind of coherent whole? There’s the basic sense that the US makes things worse most of the time. Fine, maybe. There’s the “1%” (fake stat, everyone) chance that a pull out may not lead to peace and happiness. Do we bank on the likelihood that the US is simply the casus belli, or do we work on the possibility that the US may be right to be concerned/involved? We just don’t know, and the worst has already happened once.
    Banking on Bin Laden’s rationality and rationale, banking on dumping Israel as an ally, banking on a pullback as the road to peace — it’s all really more of a gamble than I think you think.
    It’s not that the status quo is any good, it’s not that the war in Afghanistan is furthering justice in any great and wonderful way, it’s not that we have a definite purpose that can be expressed as anything other than “If we leave, something might go wrong.” But figuring out what the word “might” cashes out to seems to be pretty important and less easy than you make it seem.
    Paul, I think I’m failing your “One must be definitive in all things” test. I am complicating the situation, so tell me what’s simple. I am unsure, so tell me what’s definitive. I see the institutional logic of a kind of stasis “for now” where “now” ends up fairly elastic, so make a time boundary. I hope you’re right in your definitive certainty and brilliant analysis of local conditions. And I hope you can explain in simple terms what to do and prove in two or three simple steps what will necessarily follow.
    And WigWag, I’m not entirely convinced by the clash of civilization stuff. A lot of clashes are instigated as politicians play games. Is it really inherent? I think David Laitin may have a very different take on this one, a take worth working through.

    Reply

  280. Outraged American says:

    In the Indian state of Gujarat, in 2002, an unknown number of
    Muslims were massacred by Hindus, but it was in the thousands,
    and reportedly sanctioned by elements in the government.
    Hundreds of thousands of Muslims were displaced.
    As I’ve mentioned, my parents and grandparents lived through
    the partition of India and Pakistan, and helped save as many
    lives, Hindu and Muslim, as they could.
    There were villains on all sides, so to claim that no country has
    been victimized more by “radical Islam” is pure and utter BS.
    Where do you come up with this?
    I know all about the Mohammad cartoons, well, not ALL about,
    but I covered them. They were a deliberate attempts by pro-
    Israel factions in the European media to inflame Muslims
    worldwide, and then the Muslims reaction would then lead
    “civilized” people to find all Muslims insane.
    Honestly, I want all Zionists, especially the “Christian” ones
    (who’ve obviously never read the New Testament yet still purport
    to believe in the teachings of Christ) to go off onto their own
    planet — we’ll call it Eretz Israel on Mars — and blow
    themselves up.
    Because otherwise they’re going to blow the rest of us up.

    Reply

  281. ... says:

    your relatives…. in hollywood …
    final question –
    whose purpose does it serve??
    it will definitely keep the arms industry happy.. is that something you are happy to support?

    Reply

  282. ... says:

    wigwag, perhaps you can tell your relatives in who seem determined to ”destroy” islam in it’s entirety, instead of just ”radical”’ islam to make some distinctions… the same exists with anything radical, such as ‘zionism’ which is another form of radicalism… as i said previously, trying to establish peace thru war ( warmongers repeat after me : destroy, destroy, destroy) has never succeeded in anything except creating more problems and yet you advocate exactly this..

    Reply

  283. WigWag says:

    “Afghanistan, like Iraq, is sending the impression to the rest of the world that America is at a “limit” point in its military and power capabilities. This prompts allies not to count on us as much as they did previously and prompts foes to move their agendas.
    Limits are very, very, very bad in the great power game — and Afghanistan is yet again, an exposer of monumental limits on American power.” (Steve Clemons)
    Why exactly do limits on U.S. power even matter?
    While the United States is not an empire in the same way that the British Empire was, it certainly resembles the British Empire as a superpower. From the loss of its North American colonies to the turn of the 20th century Great Britain became the strongest nation in the world since the Rome. For two centuries the British debated whether their power was on the decline and they even debated whether their world dominance made them richer or poorer. The debate about whether they were overextended took place almost continuously in Buckingham Palace, the House of Commons and the British Press. Even at the apex of its power the British experienced constant reverses; first in their North American colonies and later in Afghanistan and then against the Boers in South Africa. With the benefit of hindsight we now know that the obsessive debate about whether Great Britain was overextended was a waste of breath. It’s superpower status wasn’t done in by being overextended, it was done in by the cumulative and exhausting effects of fighting two world wars within a quarter decade. Anyone who is interested in this subject should read Piers Brendon’s “The Decline and fall of the British Empire.”
    Had Steve Clemons read it, he might think exposing limits isn’t quite as fatal to a nation’s superpower status as he supposes.
    Even if limits on American power suggest we are moving from a unipolar to a multipolar world what will this really change? It seems to me that the dominant theme of international relations in the early part of the 21st century is the world’s collective fight against radical Islam. This theme is bound to dominate world affairs whether the United States is ascendant or not and whether the United States is the only strong power in the world or one of many powerful nations.
    If the United States overstretches and China becomes stronger does anyone doubt that one of China’s major preoccupations will be fighting radical Islam? There are at least 100 million Muslims in China divided into at least 12 ethnic groups and living in 4 regions (several of which have separatist movements). Whether it’s the Taliban and their indigenous concerns such as preventing women in Afghanistan from going to school or Al Qaeda and their worldwide Jihad, China won’t take kindly to either. It will view both as enemies.
    If it’s India that grows more powerful isn’t it obvious that their preoccupation with radical Islam will only grow? Has there been a nation in the world more victimized by Islamic extremism than India? Is their a nation in the world more committed to destroying Islamic extremism than India? Whether it’s the Taliban or Al Qaeda count on the fact that India will view itself as implacable foes of both.
    In the unlikely event that Russia overcomes its demographic woes and economic difficulties to become stronger and more consequential in world affairs, we already have ample evidence of how Russia deals with Islamic extremists. What better example do we need than Russia’s behavior in Chechnya and the North Caucasas? Militant Islamists trained in Afghanistan and supported by Al Qaeda were at the center of the Chechen revolt. Russia responded by bombing Grozny back to the Stone Age. According to the United Nations, Grozny has more damage to its physical infrastructure than any city on earth. During the second Chechen War Russia is reported to have killed more than 15 percent of the Chechen population. Given the dreadful behavior of Jimmy Carter and Zbignew Brzezinsky three decades ago, the Russians can hardly be blamed if they take a perverse pleasure in American difficulties in Afghanistan, but that hardly means the Russians have any sympathy for the extremists who forced the Soviets to retreat with their tail between their legs.
    So who does that leave in contention as a potential influential player in world affairs? Oh yeah; there’s the Europeans. Given their military enfeeblement and their inability to speak with a unified voice on any subject it’s hard to believe the Europeans have many consequential years ahead of them. But just in case they do, is there anywhere else on the planet where bigotry against Muslims is as extreme as it is in Europe? Whether it’s the head scarf issue in France, the hostility to Muslim immigrants in the Netherlands, prejudice against South Asians in England, the increasing intolerance towards Iraqi refugees in Sweden, residual anger because of the cartoon issue in Denmark; Europe’s famous tolerance disappears when it comes to Muslims. Of course as the Jews, can inform the Muslims, that tolerance was always pretty much of a myth.
    And while the deluded European left basks in its own narcissism and labors under the misapprehension that it is actually consequential, the real trend in Europe is the empowerment of right wing anti immigrant parties whose opposition to Muslims is always vitriolic and frequently anti-Semitic (the only people as bad are those that object to illegal Mexican immigration in the United States). Anyone who doubts the saliency of this trend in Europe need only familiarize themselves with the results of the recent elections to the European Parliament.
    The bottom line is this; not only is the United States focused on destroying the rise of radical Islam so is every putative competitor of the United States.
    From wherever he is, Samuel Huntington must be smiling.

    Reply

  284. DCpol says:

    Steve,
    Your button pushing is on target as usual. Where is the rest of smart Washington on this? Thanks for your fresh leadership and candor.

    Reply

  285. Outraged American says:

    Rick Reyes, Iraq/ Afghanistan vet who is one of the founders of
    a movement to get us and all the other losers (why are the
    Germans in Afghanistan? Of course, Germans never like to miss
    out on a good war. Bloody Huns…) out of Afghanistan will be on
    the What Really Happened radio show tomorrow.
    Rick just got back from Afghanistan. His organization is
    Veterans for Rethinking Afghanistan, which seems to be
    supported in terms of its goals by Steve’s own New America
    Foundation:
    http://rethinkafghanistan.com/veterans/
    Reyes is being compared to John Kerry, the young, purportedly
    anti-war, “last man to die for a mistake” John Kerry, not the hag
    we have now.
    So tomorrow, Thurs., Sept. 10, 5 PM Central, 6 PM Eastern, 3 PM
    Pacific, streaming live at http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/
    Here’s your chance to talk to someone who was just there, and
    served there, about what’s going on in Afghanistan. Call-in!
    Governmental thinking and institutional logic are exactly what
    we need to run screaming like banshees from while twirling
    swords over our heads in case they attack again.
    The “think” tanks and the paid for whores in the US Congress
    got us into this very bloody mess.

    Reply

  286. JohnH says:

    Zathras is obviously an avid believer in conspiracy theories. Sorry, but the evidence just doesn’t show that terrorists follow their oppressors home after they leave. They have bigger problems, like addressing the devastation left behind by the occupier. If I’m wrong, show me the evidence–and not just the rare exception that proves the rule.
    Osama Bin Laden was motivated by the US military presence in Saudi Arabia. Four months after “Mission Accomplished” in Iraq, the US transferred control of the Prince Sultan Air Base to the Saudis. Guess what? No more Al Qaeda attacks! Sure, copy cats appeared in Iraq, where there was a destructive American presence.
    Many observers will cite Israel’s experience with Hezbollah and the Palestinians. In those cases, Israel kept up hostilities, despite formally withdrawing or nominally agreeing to a cease fire. That pattern of behavior is clearly described here by Uri Avnery:
    http://original.antiwar.com/avnery/2007/02/14/israels-provocationsthe-method-in-the-madness/
    And guess what? Terrorism didn’t go away!
    Once you remove the US presence and provocative Israeli behavior, you drain the swamp, and the terrorists can no longer recruit.

    Reply

  287. ... says:

    personally i am not impressed with Zathras articulate post… why bother going into all the nuances, when the remaining fact stands – the usa is making excuses (nation building, getting rid of terrorists etc. etc.) when the main objective of continuous servitude to military based objectives is always underlying it all? solving thing militarily is a last resort, but it seems the usa finds itself caught up in appeasing its military leadership, much like you would find in some 3rd world military dictatorship that many thought was a thing of the past… having the cheap veneer of a 2 party ”dumbocracy” system that is always trying to get in bed with these same power brokers, doesn’t change any of it…

    Reply

  288. questions says:

    ExBrit, I have to agree. Zathras has a nice clear way of getting at governmental thinking and institutional logic. I’m impressed.

    Reply

  289. ... says:

    if it wasn’t afganastan it would be somewhere else… seeking peace thru war has never been a recipe for success, but one would have thought the usa in particular could have avoided a descent into a society and country run by powerful corporations that have essentially replaced the monarchy they were running away from.. apparently they don’t especially like the new emperor, the ones that are awake enough to see it for what it is..
    meanwhile, fun little word games get played out by the mandarins of the internet overseeing foreign policy commentary… it is like watching folks shuffle cars on the titanic..

    Reply

  290. John Franklin says:

    Is Karzai a friend or foe you ask? Well, it doesn’t help that he is driving villages into the hands of the Taliban. http://tinyurl.com/lksekg

    Reply

  291. ExBrit says:

    Zathras wrote the most cogent analysis of the case for being in Afghanistan I have read in a long, long time. His/her analysis is dead on. There are so many variables at play that the situation defies simple story lines. We don’t know what’s going to happen. Obama inherited this mess, but the fact that we are there without a clear objective other than “preventing all hell breaking loose” doesn’t necessarily equate with “getting the hell out”.

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  292. JohnH says:

    If reputation and power projection are the main goals of US foreign policy, as Kerick asserts, probably correctly, then it was the Iraq Occupation that really showed the limits for all to behold.
    Bullies lash out only when they are not firmly in control. The United States lashed out against Iraq because it could not control Iraq any other way. This may appear to contradict the view, widely held at the time, that America’s strength was overwhelming. In fact, the US was widely seen as the world’s only superpower, possessed unrivaled military strength, and had the world’s largest economy and market.
    But it is not unusual for weakness to underlie the greatest apparent strength. Despite America’s overwhelming apparent position, cracks were already quite visible in the foundation. The US’ international financial position had been deteriorating for years. The economy was being hollowed out as manufacturing capacity and know-how fled to China. The US was becoming increasingly dependent on energy resources found in the most remote and insecure places. And, finally, most R&D was being misallocated to military needs, not to meeting the social, environment and economic opportunities that would drive future economic growth and productivity.
    Bush set out to highlight American power by removing Saddam, supposedly the first in a series of ventures to reshape the world to conform to American interests. But Iraq turned into a quagmire, consuming American attention and exposing its weakness. The US could hold a gun to the head of an oil producer, but it could not make it produce. Meanwhile, Bush policies neglected or exacerbated other negative trends. China grew. Manufacturing fled. Economic growth depended mostly on fraudulent financial instruments. And worst of all, the US became dependent on China, Japan, and PetroStates to finance its national and international debt.
    Afghanistan is only shining a more intense light on the already visible limits of American power.
    If there are any wise policy makers left in Washington, they should firmly reject the notion of using military power to project the image of strength. The military should only be used in the nation’s defense, something I have yet to see in my long lifetime. Washington has more pressing problems to attend to at home.

    Reply

  293. Brian B says:

    Though I agree that this region is where we need to focus to counter terrorist activities, it makes me wonder if anyone remebers the lesson of Vietnam. The Vietcong, posing as Vietnamese sympathizers, made it seem like that they were wanting to cooperate with the US on the outside, but inside they were gathering intelligence for strikes against US positions. There is an eery similarity to what’s going on in Afghanistan/NWFP. There is a genuine and historical dislike for the US, despite any efforts by the US to overcome this sentiment. I think there is a false impression by JCS and commanders on the ground that the US can win the hearts and minds to counter the Taliban. The US seems to also be overlooking the concept of Pashtunwali. If the US cannot get a tribal militia to aid in its mission, then I see no real success in defeating the Taliban. There is no real push by the Pak/Afgh govts to try and aid the US in winning hearts and minds by challenging the indoctrination that’s going on in tribal madrassas. The US has superior firepower, but that power cannot eradicate a people or an ideology. It seems that the US’s mission creep is overextending the policy that put us there in the first place. US counter terrorist activities will soon be moving into Yemen, but counter terrorism in the ME needs to move into the anti-terrorism realm. I think that the US’s inability to develop a policy of how to do transit from one to the other will overextend our military operations.

    Reply

  294. Linda says:

    It looks more and more like Vietnam to me. We didn’t learn any lessons from the French there. Obama surely is old enough to recall USSR in Afghanistan 20 years ago.

    Reply

  295. samuelburke says:

    from pat buchanan over at antiwar.com
    Consider. If there were no Americans in Afghanistan today, and the Taliban were on the verge of victory, how many of us would demand the dispatch of 68,000 troops to fight to prevent it? Few, if any, one imagines.
    What that answer suggests is that the principal reason for fighting on is not that Afghanistan is vital, but that we cannot accept the American defeat and humiliation that withdrawal would mean.
    Thus Obama’s dilemma: Accept a longer, bloodier war with little hope of ultimate victory, a decision that could cost him his presidency. Or order a U.S. withdrawal and accept defeat, a decision that could cost him his presidency.
    In such situations, presidents often decide not to decide.
    http://original.antiwar.com/buchanan/2009/09/08/obama-at-the-rubicon/
    Harry Truman could not decide in Korea. LBJ could not decide in Vietnam. Both lost their presidencies. Ike and Nixon came in, cut U.S. losses and got out. The country rewarded both with second terms.

    Reply

  296. samuelburke says:

    Faced with rising criticism both internationally and from several high profile members of her own nation’s parliament, German Chancellor Angela Merkel lashed out over the issue of Friday’s deadly air strike in Afghanistan’s Kunduz Province, insisting that she “will not tolerate that from whoever it may be, at home as well as abroad.”
    http://news.antiwar.com/2009/09/08/german-chancellor-condemns-critics-of-afghan-air-strike/

    Reply

  297. Zathras says:

    A safe house is not a safe haven. Plans can be made by conspirators in a variety of places under many different conditions, but the conspirators themselves need to be chosen, their loyalty vetted, their training supervised, and their indoctrination done thoroughly. This was done in Al Qaeda’s Afghan safe haven through September of 2001; it has been done much less effectively since that safe haven was removed.
    This has been documented at some length by Steve Coll and others, but the point does beg an important question: how likely is it that what existed, and was so helpful to the al Qaeda organization’s effectiveness, prior to September of 2001 would be recreated and serve the same purpose eight years later? The short answer, really, is that we don’t know. Most Afghan Taliban are fighting for local objectives — a fair number, actually, must by this time be fighting because they have never done anything else — and might be assumed to be unwilling to do anything after the Americans leave that might invite them back. On the other hand, some factions that operate under the Taliban rubric retain an intense ideological orientation and fight alongside Islamist types from many countries in the Arab world and Central Asia. These factions, interpreting an American withdrawal as a great victory, would certainly seek to capitalize on it, and inviting their current foreign “guests” along with new ones to use Afghanistan as a base from which to plan terrorist actions elsewhere would be one way to do this.
    What if they do? What could al Qaeda types do in Afghanistan that they cannot do in Pakistan now? Well, one thing they could do much less easily is contribute to civil strife within Pakistan itself. The ISI and Pakistani military have long sought to use Islamist militancy as part of what they are pleased to call their strategy against India. Islamist gangs taking over Pakistani territory and murdering Pakistani leaders was not part of that bargain. I’ve seen the argument that an American withdrawal from Afghanistan would make an Islamist coup in Pakistan more likely. I find this argument unpersuasive. The record suggests it’s more likely that the Pakistani security services would seek to export their terrorist problem by negotiating deals with Pashtun factions leaders to cease hostilities within Pakistan in exchange for Pakistani support across the border.
    What might this mean for al Qaeda? Again, we don’t know. Its current leaders might not be interested in the deal, thinking they can ultimately win in Pakistan. They might not be able to reconstitute an effective international terrorist organization even with Pakistani support, or the Pakistanis might be able to control them. Or the Pakistani ISI might have concluded by this time that negotiations with the Islamist factions most supportive of al Qaeda are pointless, Pakistan’s Islamists having broken so many agreements already.
    In any event, the bottom line is that with respect to al Qaeda in Afghanistan, the Obama administration is committed to preventing the worst case. To be fair, it’s inherited its commitment to preventing the worst case — and since the al Qaeda leadership was allowed to escape at Tora Bora nearly eight years ago, most of that commitment has been directed at trying to make a functioning state of Afghanistan. This is not an enviable position. The questions being asked as to how likely nation building is to succeed there, in a reasonable time and at a reasonable cost, are fair ones. They aren’t made any less fair by the fact that the people asking them are not offering the Obama administration many alternatives as to how to drop this mission and still be sure of avoiding the worst case.
    Some of them are saying that the worst case can’t happen, others that we can prevent it at low risk for a small price. Small comfort this is for an administration aware that the worst case happened once before, and aware also that the people now demanding it “make its case” or abandon Afghanistan will scatter if the worst case should materialize again.

    Reply

  298. PissedOffAmerican says:

    The bigger picture is the full scale of the picture of American impotence that is being painted for the global community….
    Iraq, situation rapidly deteriorating, which Obama will be blamed for by the right.
    Afghanistan/Pakistan, unwinnable with undefined goals.
    Isr/Pal, as Netanyahu spits in Obama’s face with the willing complicity of Obama’s own party.

    Reply

  299. samuelburke says:

    By William Pfaff
    The United States has for practical purposes been a plutocracy for some years now. American national elections usually function more or less correctly, except that they have become all but completely dominated by money.
    The contributors of money to Senate and House campaigns are dominated by the source of that money, and the source of the money is the United States government, which directs it to them as a result of the contracts awarded to them by the House and Senate members whose election they support. The process is circular.
    It would be cheaper for all concerned if business were directly to pay senators and representatives and eliminate the middlemen, the parasites who live on the surplus money in this system, paid for their ability to persuade both sellers and buyers (so to speak) that they are providing a service by facilitating the bargain. Elections now cannot take place without them.
    There would seem to be two steps by which this rot has taken hold.
    The first is change in the legislation originally concerned with the use by broadcasters of the airwaves, a public resource. In 1934 the Federal Communications Commission was established with authority over broadcasts. Being a politically balanced body, it decreed that the public service obligation of the broadcaster included the responsibility to provide balanced information. (The Fox News claim to be “fair and balanced” is a sneering reference to this, no doubt unintentional.)
    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/20090908_the_united_states_of_plutocracy/?ln

    Reply

  300. Dan Kervick says:

    I agree with Paul. The safe havens argument is BS. So why is the US in Afghanistan? There are several reasons, but I think one stands out as fairly obvious: reputation and power projection.
    The US successfully ignores many problems and conflicts around the world. But once it invests its power and resources in addressing one, it puts its reputation and its credibility on the line, and defines a new standard for global success and failure.
    The Bush administration attacked Afghanistan back in 2001, both to hit Al Qaeda encampments, and to punish and remove the Taliban government, since the latter was pegged as a state sponsor of terrorism.
    Many of the people captured in those initial phases of the war were subjected to brutal forms of interrogation and torture. A number of these people are still in captivity, in prisons that have become 21st Century bywords of great power oppression and brutality. The damage to the US reputation has been enormous.
    So obviously, many in Washington are eager to see the initial effort through to some kind of definitive victory, and not just write off the high prices that have been exacted so far as sunk costs. If the United States leaves Afghanistan and the Taliban manage to return to power, the outcome will be seen as a humiliating defeat, the culmination of almost a decade of futile war and brutal suppression, with nothing to show for all those US dead soldiers and brutalized Afghan prisoners but another ignominious Saigon.
    And then there is NATO: if NATO can’t keep a rag-tag outfit of backward madrassa students, with few powerful friends and no major state backers, from taking over Afghanistan, then what the hell is NATO good for?

    Reply

  301. JohnH says:

    Steve is to be applauded for offering a rare dose of common sense in Washington.
    The main question has been sitting there for months with no takers: What is the point of Afghanistan (Iraq, too)? What are the stakes?
    Lots of objectives have been floated. None bear scrutiny (as in Iraq and in Iran). If America is losing credibility among its friends and foes, it’s because it’s foreign policy is a farce. How do you conduct Jerry Seinfeld wars (wars about nothing) and still maintain respect or even attend to what really matters?
    It’s strange how Washington works. Nobody had anything intelligent to say about Afghanistan for years. Then suddenly somebody flipped a switch (must have been George Will) and made it acceptable to actually think about Afghanistan. Now everyone is weighing in.
    Pat Buchanan: http://www.nytimes[dot]com/2009/09/09/world/asia/09policy.html?hp
    NY Times: http://original.antiwar[dot]com/buchanan/2009/09/08/obama-at-the-rubicon/
    Norman Solomon: http://original.antiwar[dot]com/solomon/2009/09/08/men-with-guns-in-kabul-and-washington/

    Reply

  302. JohnH says:

    Steve is to be applauded for offering a rare dose of common sense in Washington.
    The main question has been sitting there for months with no takers: What is the point of Afghanistan (Iraq, too)? What are the stakes?
    Lots of objectives have been floated. None bear scrutiny (as in Iraq and in Iran). If America is losing credibility among its friends and foes, it’s because it’s foreign policy is a farce. How do you conduct Jerry Seinfeld wars (wars about nothing) and still maintain respect or even attend to what really matters?
    It’s strange how Washington works. Nobody had anything intelligent to say about Afghanistan for years. Then suddenly somebody flipped a switch (must have been George Will) and made it acceptable to actually think about Afghanistan. Now everyone is weighing in.
    Pat Buchanan: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/09/09/world/asia/09policy.html?hp
    NY Times: http://original.antiwar.com/buchanan/2009/09/08/obama-at-the-rubicon/
    Norman Solomon: http://original.antiwar.com/solomon/2009/09/08/men-with-guns-in-kabul-and-washington/

    Reply

  303. PissedOffAmerican says:

    I note Steve’s comments about the current Isr/Pal/USA dynamic are identical to Maddow’s and Olberman’s.

    Reply

  304. Paul Norheim says:

    Stephen Walt is correct when he says that the “safe haven”
    argument is bullshit.
    Al Qaeda members may find safe havens in Somalia, Yemen and
    other countries. And plans by sympathizers may be made in
    Hamburg, London – even Seattle and Boston.
    I think it`s important to reduce the distractions and noise,
    and concentrate on the real stuff: Kashmir, the risk of
    Pakistani nuclear weapons falling into the hands of
    fundamentalists, and the Pakistan/India relation.
    And with regard to Afghanistan, one word: pragmatism. And
    this implies negotiating with the devil.

    Reply

  305. PissedOffAmerican says:

    US Pullout From Iraq Remains in Doubt Amid Rising Violence
    Four More US Troops Killed in Roadside Bombings
    by Jason Ditz, September 08, 2009
    The rising level of violence in Iraq took another turn for the worse today, as four US soldiers were killed in a pair of roadside bombings in the nation. The deaths made for one of the deadliest days in recent memory for US forces, whose casualties have dropped considerably since withdrawing from Iraq’s cities.
    The deaths have added to the flurry of concerns about the already nebulous US pullout plan, and whether or not the promised drawdown may wind up delayed in the face of escalating violence.
    continues…..
    http://news.antiwar.com/2009/09/08/us-pullout-from-iraq-remains-in-doubt-amid-rising-violence/
    Obama has trapped himself. Rather than campaigning on the promise of disengagement in Iraq, (premised on “the success of the surge”), he should have leveled with the American people by underscoreing the obvious transient nature of the success, and the fact that this “success” was based on “buy-offs” and not American military prowess. It was obvious, even to this carpenter in Central California, that all the “surge” was doing was stalling the inevitable. But because Obama made campaign promises based on the contrived fallacy known as “the success of the surge”, (which the majority of Americans view as fact, thanks to our state controlled and criminal Fourth Estate), he will now be blamed for losing control of Iraq, and destroying the “success” of the Bush Administration and this political yes-man masquerading as a brilliant general, (Petreaus).
    Factor in Afghanistan and Pakistan, and the situation will only get worse. Think “Viet Nam”, only with two escalating fronts.
    Obama will be a one-termer, and his legacy, as it applies to waging war, will make LBJ look competent in comparison.

    Reply

  306. Martin says:

    Good on a Steve! Keep chipping away at this story because there are few in-depth reports on this. I think the United States is well on its way to losing focus in Afghanistan as it did in Iraq. I also think the recent polls out that show Americans disapproval of the war in Afghanistan is a clear sign that the political winds will begin to blow in a similar direction inside the beltway… or at least in Congress. I think these have been wars of special interest groups who would attempt nation building throughout the entire world (if they could) using a tool (the U.S. military) that is ill-equipped to do so.

    Reply

  307. Paul Norheim says:

    “Is America’s objective to quash al Qaeda?” (Steve Clemons)
    That was certainly not the main objective of the Bush administration in the two
    countries they invaded in the aftermath of 9.11, neither is it the objective of the
    Obama administration. It looks like the Obama adm. is sincerely in doubt with regard to
    their objectives.
    Allow me to quote what I said in a thread some days ago about President Obama and his
    Afghanistan approach:
    “I think he and those around him (especially Holbrooke) should focus on the
    considerable risk that fundamentalists may take over in Pakistan and obtain control
    over their nuclear arsenal (and also the underlying Kashmir conflict), and be much
    more pragmatic with regard to the Taliban in Afghanistan and Al Qaeda members in
    hiding.
    The core US “national interests” are linked to the nuclear arsenal, Kashmir, and the
    relationship between India and Pakistan; the rest of it is not worth a decades long war
    with no end in sight and no convincing strategy.”

    Reply

  308. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Steve, I have to disagree with the following comment you made regarding developments in Israel and the settlements, and the Democrats efforts, led by Reid and Hoyer, to derail Obama’s policies as it applies to Isr/Pal………
    ” ” -Steve Clemons
    I look forward to you clarifying your position.

    Reply

  309. Cato the Censor says:

    Afghanistan, like Iraq, is sending the impression to the rest of the world that America is at a “limit” point in its military and power capabilities. This prompts allies not to count on us as much as they did previously and prompts foes to move their agendas.
    This isn’t an impression. It is a fact. Otherwise, your analysis strikes me as completely sound.

    Reply

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