Interview by Abigail Lewis / Whole Life Times – 2006-09-10 23:46:30
The 9/11 Crediblity Gap:
Why We Still Don’t Know What Really Happened
Interview by Abigail Lewis / Whole Life Times
(September 2006 ) — Do you remember where you were September 11, 2001? Can any of us forget? We carry on, of course, but something has shifted in our collective worldview. Beyond the obvious repercussions in our daily lives, the White House has been able to achieve some major objectives as a direct result of 9/11: oil pipeline through Afghanistan, control of Iraqi oil fields, fearful citizens who acquiesced to the Patriot Act, billions in no-bid contracts to Bush-supporting corporations like Halliburton.
What if the conspiracy theory we accept — that 19 Arab Muslims inspired by a guy in a cave in Afghanistan defeated the most powerful military machine in history and, for the first time in history, defeated the laws of physics to collapse three steel-framed, high-rise buildings — is inaccurate? What if the reported findings of the 9/11 Commission are incomplete or even flat-out false? Hearing this possibility for the first time, most of us immediately dismiss it. It’s too painful to think our government might not be telling us the truth.
That was David Ray Griffin’s reaction, too. A professor in Theology of Religion at the prestigious Claremont Colleges, Griffin had long been curious about so-called “false flag” operations and was finishing a book about global democracy in 2002 when he heard a visiting theologian propose that 9/11 had been “an inside job.”
At the time, the professor didn’t find the evidence convincing enough to overcome his own denial that “even the Bush administration would do such a thing.” But curiosity aroused, he began to delve into hundreds of stories in the mainstream press that were in contradiction to, or at least in tension with, the official story. He compiled his findings into a book titled for a previous false flag operation: The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions About the Bush Administration and 9/11 (Olive Branch Press, Interlink).
With his faded blond hair and rosy patina, Dr. Griffin looks more choir boy than political activist or, for that matter, esteemed doctor of letters with 36 years teaching and 31 books to his credit. The sunlight-washed, mission-inspired home he designed and built in Santa Barbara with Ann Jaqua, his wife of 22 years, has the relaxed ambience of a coastal hideaway. Yet from this base of operations, the now Emeritus professor has painstakingly sorted through mountains of information that have led him to a painful conclusion — that whatever we think we know about 9/11 is neither complete nor accurate.
Like any professor worth his salt, Griffin doesn’t pretend to know all the answers. But he does present compelling evidence for asking more questions.
WLT: Where did you start your research?
DRG: I focused on “Why no interceptions?” Why, with the most sophisticated air defense system in the world, nobody scrambled to stop these planes from flying into the various targets. We have standard operating procedures that work flawlessly about 100 times a year, where planes are scrambled and interceptions made within 10 to 15 minutes of the first sign there’s anything wrong. If they can’t get it corrected within about a minute they contact the military, and the military calls NORAD and has them scramble fighters from the closest airbase. These normally take 10 or 15 minutes. And here, 20 minutes — 40 minutes with the Pentagon — nothing happened.
What is the most disturbing element of the collapse of the World Trade Center towers?
There are two: One is simply that steel-frame, high-rise buildings have never collapsed because of fire or fire and externally induced damage. Secondly, all such collapses have been caused by explosives and these collapses have at least 10 characteristics of the particular kind of controlled demolition, known as controlled implosion, where the building falls basically straight down.
When you go through those 10 characteristics, not a single one can be accounted for by the official fire-plus-impact theory. And then if you said, “Well okay, let’s say it’s never happened before and would be very unlikely but there’s one chance in a hundred that one of them could have occurred.” But that all 10 of them could have occurred in the same building and in two buildings? You’re talking about chances of one in a trillion or something like that.
So the construction didn’t lend itself to collapse?
When the core of each tower consisted of 47 massive steel columns that go from the sub basements to the top, how could those all have just collapsed into a pile of rubble? The 9/11 Commission said the core of each building consisted of a hollow steel shaft that just had elevators and stairwells in it. You can’t get a bigger lie.
Why did Building 7 at the World Trade Center collapse?
It’s still not covered, even by the 9/11 Commission Report. It was the most glaring example of potential complicity by the administration. It is the most obvious because with the Towers, one can think that somehow the planes caused them to weaken and fall but with Building 7, it would be the first steel-frame, high-rise building (47 stories) in history that was ever brought down entirely by fire alone. It’s obviously the biggest embarrassment for the government, so the 9/11 Commission handled Building 7 (which housed an office of the CIA) by simply not mentioning that it collapsed!
What happened at the Pentagon?
The Pentagon was allegedly hit by an airplane about the same size as the one that hit each of the towers. Why did the seismic measurements not register? You get a definite impact registration when each of the towers is hit. But when the Pentagon is hit — nothing.
Pictures show a hole between the first and the second floor, so the aircraft had to be extremely low to the ground, and if that hole was punched by the nose of a Boeing 757, the engines would have been digging into the grass, but there is no damage to the grass whatsoever. Also, with the force of a Boeing 757 going several hundred miles an hour, even a reinforced Pentagon façade would have been much more destroyed.
And if it was a 757, the tail, which would go up about 40 feet off the ground, surely would have made some sort of visible mark above that hole we saw in the façade before the building collapsed. Also, there are no marks on the side where the wings would have hit. So the amount of damage done to the Pentagon and very little plane-sized debris suggest that whatever struck the Pentagon could not have been a Boeing 757, which is what Flight 77 was.
Are “false flag” incidents — where a country fabricates a situation that makes it look like another country has attacked first — common practice?
Imperialists have regularly done this. The Chinese did it when they were ready to take over Manchuria. When the Germans wanted to attack Poland, they dressed some of their own troops in Polish uniforms and had them attack places along the German-Polish border. They then dressed convicts as Poles and left their bodies as proof Poland had attacked.
Operation Northwoods — when the Pentagon proposed to Kennedy a pretext to attack Cuba — is documented. And they used that language. They said, “Operations to provide a pretext to attack Cuba.”
It is broadly acknowledged that former Pres. Roosevelt was not surprised by the bombing of Pearl Harbor, which allowed the US to become engaged in WWII.
We wouldn’t be sitting on this property other than for a false flag operation we did to start the war with Mexico, claiming they had “shed American blood on American soil.”
What motive would our leaders have for orchestrating the 9/11 attacks?
As soon as the Soviet Union imploded, the neoconservatives started thinking we could have the first borderless empire in history. They formed this organization called Project for the New American Century and laid out five conditions for doing this:
• 1) A tremendous increase in military spending;
• 2) Transformation of the military technologically, which really means the weaponization of space;
• 3) Getting control of the world’s oil;
• 4) Revising the doctrine of pre-emptive strike. According to international law, you could not launch a pre-emptive strike on a country unless you had very good evidence that it was about to launch a pre-emptive strike so imminently that there was no time to take it to the UN Security Council.
The fifth requirement would be a kind of new Pearl Harbor that would get the American people ready to support these policies. 9/11 did all that. Gave them everything they wanted.
Our motives were much more powerful than Al Qaeda’s — what were the Al Qaeda motives? “They hated Americans, hated our freedoms, our way of life…” It’s comic book stuff.
The 9/11 Commission included both Republicans and Democrats who did a thorough investigation. Who are we, without their resources, to question their conclusions?
Who actually ran the Commission? Philip Zelikow, Executive Director. He and Condoleezza Rice had been part of the National Security Council during the administration of the first president Bush. Then when Republicans were out of power during the Clinton years, they wrote a book together.
When Rice was named national security adviser for Bush II, she brought Zelikow on to help with the transition to the new National Security Council. Then he was appointed by Pres. Bush to the president’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board. After that, he became Executive Director of the 9/11 Commission. So it was no different than if Condoleezza Rice or Dick Cheney had been running the Commission.
As a theologian, is there a spiritual way to respond to this?
I need to address the Christian community in particular because America is primarily a Christian nation and I’m a Christian theologian. I would say Christians should look into 9/11 and if they agree it was an inside job, expose the truth. First of all because 9/11 is still the pretext for all the things we are doing and not doing in the world, for focusing on the so-called War on Terror rather than dealing with global warming, or the war on poverty or the health crisis, education… and it’s the pretext for the attacks on Lebanon.
The US gives a free pass to attack anybody you can label a terrorist, because they’re kind of like the terrorists who attacked us and we’ve got to get rid of all the terrorists in the world. It’s the pretext for everything that has happened that has made the world a far more dangerous place than it was before 9/11. So just on a purely moral basis, if there’s one chance in a thousand that 9/11 was an inside job, we need to know it.
How do you respond to the allegation that you are just a “conspiracy theorist?”
I would issue a challenge to anybody who just wants to dismiss it a priori: “Read my three books, write enough back to me to show me that you’ve read and understood them, and then tell me you don’t have any doubts about the official theory.” I’ve thus far not run into anybody who’s done that.
Do you have concerns for your safety?
I don’t worry about that because there are two choices: they can either leave me alone or they can take me out. If they leave me alone I get to enjoy my old age and write my systematic theology. If they take me out, my 9/11 books rise to number one on the New York Times bestseller list. So it’s a win/win situation.
Paul Andrews also contributed to this story.
• For a longer version of the exclusive interview, go to:
Resources and Suggested Reading
• mujca.com (Muslims, Christians and Jews united for 9/11 truth)
• The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions, by David Ray Griffin (Olive Branch Press, Interlink)
• 9/11 & American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out, Edited by David Ray Griffin and Peter Dale Scott (Olive Branch Press, Interlink)
• 9/11 and American Empire — Christians, Jews and Muslims Speak Out, Edited by Kevin Barrett, John B. Cobb Jr. and Sandra Lubarasky (Olive Branch Press, Interlink)
• Towers of Deception: the Media Cover-up of 9/11, by Barrie Zwicker (New Society)
NATO’s Secret Armies, by Daniele Ganser (Frank Cass)
• Jesus and Empire: The Kingdom of God and the New World Disorder, by Richard A. Horsley (Augsburg Fortress)
• Waking Up from Our Nightmare: The 9/11/01 Crimes in New York City, by Don Paul and Jim Hoffman (Harts Spring Works)
• Painful Questions: An Analysis of the September 11th Attack, by Eric Hufschmid (Endpoint Software)