By Craig McKee
Paul Simon stepped to the microphone at Ground Zero and something amazing happened.
The legendary singer/songwriter had been asked to sing the non-threatening Bridge Over Troubled Waters at the ceremony for 9/11’s 10th anniversary ceremonies in New York, but he didn’t. Instead, he launched into a haunting version of another classic that begins, “Hello darkness, my old friend.” Simon had decided that the most appropriate statement for this occasion would come from The Sound of Silence.
“Fools”, said I, “You do not know
Silence like a cancer grows…
Was he protesting the fact that firefighters had not been allowed to attend the ceremony, or was it even deeper, that the real truth about 9/11 was not being spoken? I don’t know, but his choice was not an accident.
This was the most emotional 9/11 moment of the year and possibly the most encouraging. The “acceptable” mainstream response to the anniversary of this dark day was a kind of contrived solemnity (I mean media, government officials, and the like – not the public). It was propaganda that did not honour the victims – it sought to bury the truth about what happened to them.
This 10th anniversary year was a significant one in the fight for 9/11 truth. I include the anniversary and everything that came with it as one of my nine biggest 9/11 stories of the year. That includes the phony media build-up and all the bogus retrospectives designed to tug at our emotions and bypass our brains.
Here are the other key 9/11 stories as I saw them (in no particular order). I’m sure readers have more, and some may disagree with the ones I’ve chosen. I look forward to your input about what mattered to you in 2011:
2) Gage bails on Citizen Investigation Team, ignores rebuke: The founder of Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth, Richard Gage, shocked many in the movement in February when he released a statement withdrawing support for the Pentagon research of CIT and their founders, Craig Ranke and Aldo Marquis. Gage had offered an endorsement of their work, but had subsequently come under heavy pressure to denounce them and their film National Security Alert.
Apparently Gage caved to this pressure, because in February he released a statement posted on 911blogger.com (the site that has banned most CIT supporters and whose contributors delight in bashing CIT unopposed).
Gage made the incredible statement that despite being initially impressed by National Security Alert, he later was “surprised” to learn that the witnesses who contradicted the official flight path also said they did see the plane hit the building. This was an odd thing to say given that the witnesses say this clearly in the film.
Gage’s statement endorsed the research of such dubious names as Chris Sarns, Victoria Ashley, Jim Hoffman, Frank Legge, Warren Stutt, Jeff Hill, and Gregg Roberts. In doing so, he threw his weight behind the idea that we can’t prove a 757 didn’t hit the Pentagon and that one probably did. He would have been much better to stay out of the Pentagon discussion altogether. The cause and Gage’s credibility have suffered.
In the end, Gage suggests we stick to the idea that a 757 should not have been able to hit the Pentagon and avoid saying the no 757 hit. In other words, allow incompetence as an explanation, thereby letting the perpetrators off the hook.
In April, a group of 27 truthers (I was one) wrote Gage a letter protesting his actions and calling on him to explain his shocking embrace of the anti-CIT hit squad. He never replied.
3) 9/11 patsy Osama bin Laden is “killed” by U.S. special forces: At the beginning of May, the American media reported that the mastermind of 9/11 had been killed by U.S. special forces in a raid on his compound in Islamabad, Pakistan. No reporters questioned whether this was true or not; they just reported it as fact. And it happened just in time for the 10th anniversary commemorations of 9/11. How convenient.
And Barack Obama, clearly the darling of big money and the global elite, got the credit for this momentous accomplishment. After all, the government had been hunting bin Laden all those years, right? How clever of him to hide in a large, highly fortified compound a short distance from a Pakistani military installation.
Where does one begin with a story this transparently bogus? To start with, the story changed almost hourly. First it was a firefight with bin Laden being armed. Then he was unarmed. He used his wife as a shield. Then he didn’t.
The most obvious thing was that the body was dumped at sea, supposedly in keeping with Islamic tradition. How religiously tolerant of them. It also saved the government from having to prove that the death had actually happened.
We were also told that plans for future 9/11-like attacks were in the works. It didn’t occur to anyone in the media to point out that killing an unarmed bin Laden (a known CIA asset whose family has ties to the Bush clan going back to the ‘70s) might make it harder to thwart these supposed attacks.
And, of course, there won’t be any messy trials that might bring out information that contradicts the 9/11 official story.
4) Gallop suit against top Bush officials thrown out of court by Bush cousin: Former U.S. Army executive administrative assistant April Gallop pursued her lawsuit against Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, and Gen. Richard Myers for damages in connection with injuries she and her newborn son suffered at the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001.
What she didn’t know when she first launched the suit was that it would ultimately be thrown out of court on appeal by Judge John M. Walker, a cousin of George W. Bush. As you’d expect, the mainstream media ignored the story (with the exception of CNBC). Gallop’s lawyer, William Veale, tried unsuccessfully to get Walker disqualified from the case.
Gallop was at her desk when a large explosion caused the ceiling above her to collapse. When she regained consciousness, she made her way, son in tow, through the hole the alleged Flight 77 was supposed to have created. She saw no bodies, no airplane parts, no jet fuel, nothing to suggest a plane had hit the building.
Gallop launched the original lawsuit in 2008 alleging that the 9/11 attacks were planned at the highest levels of the U.S. government, and that they were blamed on fundamentalist Muslims as part of a cover story. She claims that there was plenty of knowledge that employees of the Pentagon were in imminent danger, and that had alarms been sounded many deaths and injuries would have been prevented.
5) Toronto 9/11 Hearings virtually ignore Pentagon evidence: One of the major events of the year was a set of hearings that took place in Toronto, Canada that was scheduled to coincide with the 10th anniversary of 9/11.
The idea was to have expert “witnesses” who would present compelling evidence to a trio of moderators refuting the 9/11 official story. It was decided that only the “least controversial” evidence would be considered because it would more likely lead to consensus. This meant no invitation to CIT or to native Torontonian Barrie Zwicker, a leading member of the Truth movement and avid CIT supporter.
There were numerous witnesses who presented evidence that the World Trade Center was destroyed in a controlled demolition, but the Pentagon was almost ignored. We had a 25-minute presentation about explosives in the Pentagon by Barbara Honegger and a 45-minute talk by David Ray Griffin about anomalies related to Flight 77. That’s less than an hour and a half out of a four-day event.
But there were other fascinating presenters whose focus was less on the physical science of the event and more on the psychological and political aspects (along with evidence regarding the alleged hijackers and the insider trading that preceded 9/11).
The event will result in a final report that is eagerly awaited.
CIT held a Toronto screening of National Security Alert after the hearings were over. This event was successful, drawing about 200 people.
6) Griffin looks to mend fences in the movement: David Ray Griffin published his 10th book on 9/11 this fall (9/11 Ten Years Later: When State Crimes Against Democracy Succeed), and it contained a new direction for the prolific and highly respected author. In the book’s chapter on the Pentagon, Griffin went over the case made by CIT critics that a plane did hit, and then countered that with his own arguments that none did.
Griffin’s case was the vastly stronger of the two arguments, and I credit him with not caving to the pressure to denounce CIT as Gage did. But the problem, as I saw it, was that he elevated the importance of the dubious Pentagon “research” of David Chandler, Jonathan Cole, and Frank Legge.
His new position was to put aside the “relatively unimportant” question of whether a plane hit and to concentrate on the overwhelming evidence that a 757 piloted by al-Qaeda did not. The idea, I gather, was to break the impasse created by the entrenched positions for and against CIT’s position that a plane flew towards the building but did not hit.
Griffin’s Toronto address was genuinely perplexing because it relied almost exclusively on positions put forward by Chandler, Cole, and Legge on every aspect of the Pentagon event. In doing so, he gave them a standing that they have not earned.
7) Griffin unveils 9/11 Consensus Panel: Griffin was involved in another major consensus-related initiative this year designed to create a bank of reliable information about the failings of the 9/11 official story that the media and the public can refer to.
In early September the formation of the 9/11 Consensus Panel was announced. It is an expert panel of academics, scientists, pilots, journalists, and other prominent members of the 9/11 Truth movement. The group was created to assemble a list of points that have achieved consensus status by virtue of receiving the approval of 85% of the panel.
So far, 13 points have already been agreed upon and can be read on the panel’s web site. These are hardly groundbreaking, and only one Pentagon point is listed. But more will be added, maybe hundreds more, according to co-founder Elizabeth Woodworth. The key to this effort will be adding more – and stronger – points to the list as quickly as possible.
8) Direct democracy given a chance through Citizens 9/11 Commission: One of the most promising initiatives by the Truth movement in 2011 was the effort to place a ballot initiative before voters in at least one of the 26 states that have an initiative law. This would allow voters in a given state to vote on whether or not they want a new investigation into 9/11 to be initiated.
Fronted and founded by former U.S. Senator Mike Gravel, the commission seeks to get on the ballot in one or more states for the 2012 presidential election. The effort took centre stage when Gravel gave a presentation on the Commission at the Toronto 9/11 Hearings in September.
The initial target of the project was Massachusetts, but the short time frame and lack of funds to collect signatures led the organizers redirect their focus to other states. The ones currently being targeted are Oregon, Alaska, and California.
According to the web site (9-11cc.org): “Because our established federal institutions are unable to address the unanswered questions about 9/11, we have no choice but to circumvent them. And that is why our campaign has turned to the state initiative process, the only legally constituted forum for an appeal to the people through the method of direct democracy.”
Campaign seeking to raise awareness about Building 7 expands: Remember Building 7 is a campaign launched in late 2010 using local TV ads to educate New Yorkers about Building 7, which the majority of city residents had never seen footage of. The goal of the effort is to take the ad campaign to other U.S. cities like Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, and San Francisco.
In 2011, Remember Building 7 produced new ads calling for an investigation of what happened to Building 7. There have also been print ads in New York and there will be more in the cities listed above. The fundraising goal for this campaign is $1 million. About 8% of that has been raised so far.
Campaigns like this help to show the world that this fight isn’t over, that it’s just warming up.
There is much more one could say about 9/11 and 2011. There was a lot of excellent research done, and much creative thinking went into finding new approaches to further the cause of 9/11 truth.
But really, the biggest ongoing story is the tragic fallout from the fake “terrorist attacks” of 2001. Many hundreds of thousands of innocent people have died in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the U.S. government is now actively preparing the way for an invasion of Iran.
In the meantime, the freedom of Americans and others around the world is being hacked away in the name of security. The powers that be create fear with false flag operations and then they ride to the rescue with new security measures to keep us safe. The problem is that this safety comes at the expense of freedoms once taken for granted.
The National Defence Authorization Act, for example, would make it legal for the government to arrest and detain anyone they want on American soil and hold them until the “end of hostilities.” In other words, they can be held forever in direct contravention of the U.S. Constitution. This erosion of freedom is only getting worse, and elected officials aren’t even pretending to care. They think the country and the world isn’t noticing what’s happening or doesn’t care.
It’s up to all of us to prove them wrong.