Reply to Criticism of WTC Demolition Page

On October 31, 2001, I received a message from a fan who did not like
what I had to say on my World Trade Center Demolition page.  Here is 
my reply to him (with a few subsequent additions) written the same day:

Hi Chris,

-------- I'm a fan of your site writing to express frustration with the shoddy science and even shoddier logic behind your 9/11 diatribe. ... Unfortunately, you're thinking too hard on this one. --------

I'm always happy to hear from a fan of my site, and thank you very much for your comments on my WTC page. I am always open to intelligent criticism, since I do try to stay within hailing distance, at least, of fact and reason.

-------- I'll offer as examples, however, three things:

(1) sprinkler systems are not designed to put out, nor are they capable of putting out, liquid fuel fires. Heat from a jet fuel fire is intense enough to instantly vaporize water as it exits a nozzle, and that water which is not evaporated will commonly serve to spread a liquid fuel fire; --------

I agree that water sprayed directly onto burning jet fuel will do nothing to dampen the fire. I don't know the details of the WTC sprinkler systems, but I'd imagine that when the sprinklers were activated that they were activated on many floors, not just where the jet fuel was burning. Thus they would have soaked the combustible material on the other floors that were not yet burning, making it more difficult for the fire to spread.

I've modified my page to take note of this objection.

-------- (2) the ruin from the tilting Tower Two collapse did in fact spread blocks north. I know this because my sister lives six blocks north of ground zero on Duane, and there were automobiles crushed by cascading debris on Church that far north; and --------

You are objecting here to a point made in the McMichael article (which, by the way, I did not write):

>Where is the ruin where the 200ft x 200ft x 50 story-object struck?
>Forty floors should have caused a ray of devastation 500 ft. into
>the surrounding cityscape. I don't doubt that some debris managed to reach six blocks away, but does this explain the disappearance of that 50-story object?

   Click for enlargements

In fact, I'm not sure that it ever existed.  Above left is 
a picture of the South Tower from the BBC's website
(http://news.bbc.co.uk/olmedia/1535000/images/_1538563_thecollapseap150.jpg). 
But at http://www.civil.usyd.edu.au/wtc_enr.htm 
there is also a picture of the South Tower (Tower Two) collapsing (it collapsed 
first and the North Tower is still visible at the right side of the image) 
and there is no such tilting 50-story-object visible.  

Actually that 50-story-object in the left picture really doesn't look like 
the top of a WTC tower at all.  ...  Was the video from which this is taken faked?

-------- (3) jet fuel burns with black smoke, even in open air, and even at full burn rate. You can look at footage from any plane crash, even the Concorde footage, for proof. --------

I agree that burnng jet fuel gives off a lot of black smoke, perhaps the origin of most of the smoke that was visible. However I did not say that it didn't, I said that although there was a lot of smoke there was not much fire visible. The fires-were-the-cause theory conjures up images of The Towering Inferno, with a huge raging fire producing incredibly high temperatures, but we do not see a huge raging fire. What probably happened is that the jet fuel, as much as entered the buildings, burnt itself out fairly quickly, and the remaining fires were feeding on the combustible material in the buildings (wood, etc.) which would have produced much smoke but not fires hot enough to melt steel.

-------- The premise is silly enough. --------

I'm not sure which "premise" you mean (probably that it was an inside job), but to dismiss something as silly normally means that you don't want to consider it, and in the case of these events there is no explanation for what happened which doesn't have some problems, so we shouldn't dismiss anything out of hand.

By the way, that it was an inside job is not a *premise*. It's more of a *conclusion*, though best to think of it as a hypothesis for testing.

-------- If the Bush administration wanted to wag the dog and stage an attack, they hardly had to go as far as you suggest they went. There is enough rampant hatred of Arabs and Muslims that all you'd need to do is set off a pipe bomb at a Cowboys game and we'd be at war before you could say "Jihad me at hello." --------

I agree that even the impacts of the planes on the towers, without the collapse of the towers, would have been sufficient material for Bush to declare his "War on Terrorism". (I do not say that Bush himself was involved in the planning; this was clearly done by competent people.) But the difference between the Twin Towers damaged but still standing (American resiliance in the face of attack!) and the Twin Towers absolutely destroyed (this is symbolically *very bad*) is huge (a major blow to America's sense of its invulnerability to attack on its own soil). To "justify" the initiation of an attempt to take over the world by military force (as I believe is happening now) requires a *big* atrocity (blamed on "Arab terrorists").

Notice how everything, such as eavesdropping on people's email and phone conversations, increased powers of arrest and detention, dropping cluster bombs on Afghan villages is now justified by "the fight against terrorism". To make this stick the atrocity attributed to "terrorists" had to be a *big* one. That's why the Twin Towers were destroyed *completely*. Just a few floors burnt out and a few hundred people killed would not have been enough to provoke the level of hysterical outrage at which people no longer think but just believe whatever their leaders tell them is the case (such as that they have to give up their civil liberties in defense of freedom!). Oh ... here's a nice quote: "The Red Cross warehouses in Kabul destroyed last week were not hit by accident, a senior U.S. military official told NBC News. They were bombed because Taliban troops had commandeered the food stored there, the source added." (MSNBC, Oct. 30) These warehouses contained not only food but also blankets and tents. American bombs destroyed three out of five. Why is it OK to bomb Red Cross warehouses? Because the Taleban had commandeered the food, perhaps to feed soldiers defending their country against American attack, and since America is "fighting terrorism", any opposition to America is support of "terrorism", and anything is justified in the "fight against terrorism", so it's OK to bomb Red Cross warehouses. (Tough luck if there happen to be some Red Cross personnel there at the time, but hey! that's war.) Is there something twisted, Orwellian, perverted, about this logic? For sure. And we see it everywhere now in official statements. Welcome to 1984 — a bit late.

I do not wish to discount the atrocious nature of the attacks on the WTC. Thousands of civilians died under terrible circumstances. On the other hand, I am willing to believe, as some are not, that there are people within the American government (and their associates) who would do this sort of thing for their own purposes. This is something which a lot of Americans could never accept as possible (since it contradicts their faith in the goodness of their government).

As regards the perpetrators, it seems there are basically two possibilities: (1) It was Arab terrorists. (2) It was an inside job. If one rejects (2) by dismissing it as "silly" then only (1) is left. I think this is what you have done, and then object to my publishing the interview with Usama bin Laden because (you believe) he is *obviously* the culprit and so *must* be lying. But (1) has not been proven, and, as I try to show, there is sufficient evidence against (1) and for (2) that (2) cannot simply be dismissed as silly.

-------- You're free to believe what you want, of course, but if you refuse to believe that the Taliban doesn't rape, imprison, torture, maim and kill innocent women as a matter of course, you're plain wrong. I personally know relief workers who have treated and befriended such victims, and to lend credence to the despot who sponsors this kind of inhumanity is pretty despicable, in my opinion. --------

Although on my page I refer to the Taleban government as "reprehensible", it's true that I don't emphasize the fact that, yes, they treat women abominably (though claims that they rape, torture, maim and kill innocent women may emanate from their detractors; this sort of thing is typical of wartime propaganda). However, although Afghans may or may not be happy to see the Taleban removed (their Mujahadeen predecessors were pretty bad too, and may return if the Northern Alliance takes Kabul), the qualities of the regime are not really relevant to the WTC attack, unless you assume, as you seem to do, that Usama bin Laden was the culprit, and, as I said, this has not been proven (actually the evidence is flimsy). George W. Bush and Tony Blair (America's ambassador to the world) never tire of repeating that Usama bin Laden was responsible for the WTC attacks (since this serves their purposes). So why should Usama bin Laden not have a right to deny that he was responsible? I thought that one of the much-vaunted values that distinguishes the West from "inferior civilizations and nations" was that a person had a right to defend himself against charges of wrong-doing and a right to be heard. And if Usama bin Laden was behind the WTC attacks, why has he denied it? Not to try to deflect blame, since the Americans insist he is the culprit and are bombing civilians in Afghanistan to show how much they believe it, so there is no real point in denial, and a certain amount of prestige to be gained by claiming responsibility. But he has denied responsibility, as in the interview whose presence on my website offends you.

By the way, I believe Usama bin Laden is shown in one of those videos as wearing a U.S. Army jacket. As someone else has said, "Did Winston Churchill wear a swastika and a Luftwaffe uniform while giving speeches during World War II?" Is there something fishy about this video?

-------- Moreover, if they'd already managed to plant the explosives, why go the trouble of hijacking two planes that just happened to have Arabs aboard using remote control technology that may or may not exist? Why not just blow the fuckers up? Everyone would assume it was the work of terrorists, for Chrissakes — after all, they did it once, and promised to do it again! -------- They did it once, but it seems they did it because the FBI planted an agent provocateur among them. See the Kuby quote in the Adam article. So, to paraphrase your words, if the FBI did it once then why not again? (Of course, this time they needed some outside help, in particular, from military pilots experienced in remote control of jet airliners.)

Thanks for making the point that if explosives had been planted then they could simply have been detonated, with no need to crash planes into the towers. This is another point against the explosives theory, and I've added it to my page.

I think the available evidence is sufficient to rule out *both* the fires theory and the explosives theory as explaining the total collapse of the towers. This suggests that *something else* was the cause. What that might have been is something we should think about. You found a few nits to pick, and thanks for pointing these out. You made a couple of largely emotional objections based on the unproven assumption that Usama bin Laden was the culprit. And you drew attention to the fact that if explosives were the cause then there would have been no need for the plane impacts (thus the plane impacts were needed because probably explosives were not the cause). But you ignored the big picture that is presented by my page. (It involves oil, and more.) I won't attempt to summarize this for you here, since I'm sure you are quite capable of understanding it for yourself if you read the page a couple of times with an open mind and think about it. -------- I'm glad the world has someone like you in it, but I'm not glad that you would choose to put your own credibility on the line for something as clearly ill-thought as this. -------- Credibility? But I do not rely on credibility. Unlike George W. Bush and Tony Blair, I do not ask anyone to believe anything just because I say it is so. I present evidence, facts and reasoning, and I ask my readers to think about the evidence and to decide for themselves. Naturally I say what I think the evidence points to, and I hope readers will agree. If they do not then either it is because of some error of fact or reasoning on my part, in which case I am pleased to hear of it, or else there is no error of fact or reasoning and the reader is rejecting my conclusions on irrational grounds, because they don't like them, or they challenge their cherished assumptions too much, or whatever. The question of credibility simply doesn't arise, except as a red herring. Finally, why is there no official inquiry which is asking questions like what I and a few others have been asking? Why has there been almost no investigation of these matters by the mainstream media? Regards, Peter Meyer

Note added by PM, May 3rd, 2005:

Three and a half years after this reply was written it remains as cogent as in October 2001. It was obvious then that the official story of 9/11 could not be true and it has remained obvious ever since. Yet, amazingly, something like 50% of Americans still don't have a clue! Never before has there been such a nation of idiots! Or don't they want to know? Are the implications of acknowledging that their government killed about 3000 of their fellow citizens more terrifying than what happened on 9/11?

The problem with the human species is not that most humans are lacking in wisdom. The problem, rather, is that most humans are just plain stupid.

Or maybe this is just true of those humans currently living in the US.

The World Trade Center Demolition and the So-Called War on Terrorism

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