“Where were you on 9/11?” The question is the new, “Where were you when Kennedy was shot?” It was one of, if not the most significant events in American history.
On September 11th, 2001, the terrorist group Al-Qaeda unleashed four coordinated attacks on American landmarks. The attacks shook up the world order. They precipitated the War on Terror in the Middle East. They bolstered the intelligence state, from restricted air-travel to increased phone and Internet surveillance. The national debt deepened considerably as a result of military expenses overseas.
Despite all these negative consequences, there are still people who think that 9/11 was planned, or at least expected, by certain high-ranking Americans. They propose three main types of conspiracy: LIHOP (“Let It Happen On Purpose”), MIHOP (“Made It Happen On Purpose”), and Others, which don’t specifically fit into those first two categories.
Bad events can sometimes, perversely, have good effects. The commercial jet was a result of the intense research and development done for aerial warfare during WWII. These hypotheses allege that professionals had done cost-benefit analyses of the circumstances and either commissioned or allowed the attacks for personal gain.
Although dastardly theatrical, it is doubtful that the U.S. government or U.S. big business green-lit 9/11. One would have to believe in the essential evil of mankind to make that ludicrous claim. But some people make it anyways.
Here are 10 instances of just that happening.
10. A Missile Hit The Pentagon
The official version of the story is that another plane hit the Pentagon in Arlington, VA. But some people think that the damage was done by a missile launched from inside the U.S. They claim, for instance, that the holes in the sides of the Pentagon are too small to have been made by a Boeing 757. But these claims have largely been disprove by several key pieces of evidence: eyewitness testimonies (the Pentagon, and certainly a gigantic airliner, is visible from D.C.), airplane parts left at the scene, and phone calls made from the plane after it had been hijacked.
9. Flight 93 Was Struck Down
A fourth plane, this one headed towards the White House, was derailed when passengers revolted and caused a crash landing in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania (about 150 from Washington D.C.) But some theorists think that a missile took down United Airlines Flight 93. They say that the broken pieces of the plane were too disparate to be consistent with those of other similar crashes. CNN said that investigators found debris from the crash past eight miles away from where the plane went down. It was later said that this was mostly light material that would have been picked up by a gust.
8. The Israeli Government Organized The Attacks
Several conspiracy theories documented by the Anti-Defamation League, an American Jewish organization that fights anti-Semitism and bigotry, say that Ariel Sharon, Mossad, and/ or the Israeli government orchestrated the attacks on the United States. Several reasons have been provided, including baiting the U.S. to attack Israeli enemies, to divert international attention away from the treatment of Palestinians in Israel, to attract support for Israel, and to help boost Zionists into positions of power. They proved this by pointing out the 4000 Jews rumor, that said 4000 expected Jews were missing the day of the attack. As proved in a U.S. Government study, this turned out to be a miscommunication in translation (the fact was extracted from an article originally in Hebrew in the Jerusalem Post.)
7. There Were No Planes, Only Missiles Resembling Aircrafts
Morgan Reynolds, the former chief economist of the labor department under the Bush administration, argues that there were no planes involved in taking down the towers. He thinks that Boeing jets could not have penetrated the steel frames of the buildings. According to David Shayler, a UK journalist and former Security Service officer, missiles surrounded by holograms were launched and digital compositing was used to alter the ensuing media and amateur footage. Although it comes from a powerful men, this claim was not received kindly. Truth movement veterans have refuted the no-planes theory and it has been banned from certain conspiracy theory forums.
6. Inside Traders Knew Of The Events, Didn’t Try To Prevent Them For Greed
Some conspiracy theorists think that trading insiders may have known about the planned attacks and placed their stock market bets accordingly. On the days leading up to the attack, two airlines experienced an increase in their put-to-rise ratio. Those airlines were American Airlines and United, or the two airlines involved in the attacks. No other airline companies saw anomalies. Plus, American Airlines had just issued a major warning about potential losers on the morning of the attack. The 9/11 Report, commissioned when rumors reached fever pitch, concluded that “Exhaustive investigations by the Securities and Exchange Commission, FBI, and other agencies have uncovered no evidence that anyone with advance knowledge of the attacks profited through securities transactions.” The claims were debunked by a government commission, but these aren’t people that trust our overlords.
5. Cheney Forbade The Interception of Planes
The U.S. military is notoriously large and powerful. Why, then, would the Air Force not have been able to intercept and take down a hijacked plane? Conspiracy theorists think that the U.S. vice president, Dick Cheney, ordered the military to stand down and forbade them from intercepting the planes. Official reports have disproven this. When the planes were hijacked, the transponders, which identify, were destroyed. Colin Scoggins, the air traffic controller at the time, didn’t see any lack of response. What’s more, the Air Force’s priorities were outdated and their equipment was set to look out over the ocean for an inactive Cold War threat.
4. The Twin Towers Were Rigged With Bombs
The Twin Towers, giant buildings made with reinforced steel, collapsed quickly and on their own footprint (rather than scattering outwards) from a fire that only lasted a few hours. Conspiracy theorists believe that bombs caused the buildings to fall: the collapse was rapid (more or less ten seconds), the fires were relatively short, and the violent bursting of windows. An extensive report by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) says that the planes severed and damaged support columns and dislodged fire-proofing. There has so far been no evidence of explosive charges or pre-cutting, which usually signals controlled demolition.
3. World Trade Center Building 7 Collapsed With Explosives and Incendiaries
Some conspiracy theorists wonder how a building that was not hit by a plane could collapse when no other similar skyscraper has ever collapsed only because of fire. People think it was a controlled demolition, achieved with explosives and incendiaries. Scientists have examined dust samples from ground zero and found thermitic material which reacts explosively when heated up. A three-year report by the NIST says that the building collapsed because of uncontrolled fires. The sprinkler system was crushed. There is no evidence of explosive charges or the loud, booming sounds that would have had to accompany them.
2. The Hijackers Survived The Attacks
During the chaos following the attacks, the BBC published the names and identities of the supposed hijackers. Some of those people were later discovered to be alive, leading many to believe that the hijackings were staged: that something else had caused the attack and certain people had agreed to take the blame. The BBC explained, as confirmed by the FBI, that these were common Arabic and Islamic names, like John Smith in the U.S. and the U.K. Khalid al Mihdhar and Nawaf al Hazmi, two of the men responsible for the attacks, had been identified as Al Qaeda agents by the CIA, but U.S. Immigration never got that information and mistakenly let them enter the country, precipitating the attacks.
1. 9/11 Was A Neo-Conservative Attempt At World Dominance
In 2006, a group of 9/11 conspiracy theorists called Scholars for 9/11 Truth claimed that an American group of neo-conservatives, Project for a New American Century (PNAC) organized 9/11 as a reason to invade Iraq, Afghanistan, and later Iran. In 2000, the group released a strategic treatise called Rebuilding America’s Defenses. One sentence in the pamphlet was cited, specifically: “the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor.” Matt Taibbi, in his book The Great Derangement, says that this sentence was, to anyone except for trigger-happy reactionaries, about a longstanding effort towards a new, more relevant organization of the U.S. military, still stuck in Cold War patterns.