Yes, this is about the 9/11 attacks. Yes, I firmly believe nineteen hijackers drove four planes into three buildings and a field in Pennsylvania. No, I don’t think that’s the whole truth.
Half the people reading left after the first sentence; most of the rest left after the second. Even my saintly mother left after reading the third. If you’re still here, you’re either very intelligent or very bored.
I can work with that.
28 pages are missing from the 9/11 Commission Report. It’s the concluding chapter. Apparently, Washington thinks you can’t handle the truth.
If you disagree, read on.
So here’s the thing: It’s 2016, and most of us can remember quite clearly the events of fifteen years ago when nutjobs flew full passenger jets into buildings full of people, propelling the United States headlong into the War On Terror that has defined so very much of our lives since then.
There were dozens of theories about who was responsible in the days following the attacks — tellingly, nobody had claimed responsibility — and the entire country was in shock. Before very long, America soon found itself galloping headlong into war with Afghanistan. Operation Enduring Freedom was launched on 7 October 2001; the objective was to divorce the ruling Taliban from their terrorist allies and to kill Osama Bin Laden.
However, there’s a lot we, as citizens, did not then know about the events leading up to 9/11, and even today, fifteen years and several intensive investigations later, there’s a lot we still don’t know. There was a thick tome (written in incomprehensible bureaucratese) published containing the findings of the 9/11 Commission; it contained a ton of information, but it’s missing a crucial chunk: 28 redacted pages which, according to former U.S. Senator Bob Graham, reveal the support structure that did all the work of setting up the attacks.
Right here is where many of my conspiracy-minded friends would desert me. They’re of the opinion that the whole thing was faked, or that it was deliberately set up as a “false flag” operation designed to justify our invasions of Afghanistan, then Iraq, and eventually (if the plan worked) half a dozen other countries including Syria and Sudan. I’ve gone over their claims; my responses are in other articles here and here. Basically, I concluded that there’s no sane argument that disputes the four plane crashes, and that by an overwhelming degree the most likely cause of the crashes was deliberate suicide terrorism.
Having said that, though, I nevertheless believe it’s correct to say that there’s a lot more to the truth than we now know. The bulk of the SEC investigation, large chunks of the NIST and FBI investigations, a lot of the NTSB’s findings, and the overwhelming majority of the Pentagon’s data on the actual attacks are still classified (and that doesn’t count the aforementioned 28 pages). This is hardly surprising; we’re talking intelligence and criminal investigations here, and those are almost never made public. It’ll be 2111 before some of this stuff gets declassified.
On the other hand, there’s a ton we do know, and from that we can extrapolate a great deal of what we don’t. Let’s start with the basics, the things any professional investigator agrees on, so we can stipulate them and move on:
- Like any other complex event, 9/11 consists of a long series of improbable coincidences.
- Like any other complex operation, there was a conspiracy in play, and probably more than one.
- A lot of people died. Some were on planes; some were in buildings; some were emergency responders.
- Four aircraft and their crews went somewhere; again, the logical conclusion is that they were destroyed in the attacks.
- Lengthy investigations named nineteen men as the attackers. Presumably, there was a twentieth; Zacarias Moussaoui was tried and convicted of complicity, and had been detained for nearly a month before 9/11.
- Someone other than the twenty attackers must have managed the planning, funding, and logistics. Osama Bin Laden and Khalid Sheikh Mohammed were the two key planners named in the Commission report.
- Notably, no organization took responsibility in the days immediately following the attack. This is highly unlike the overwhelming majority of terror attacks, with the interesting exceptions of the rail bombings in Spain and the tourist attack in Egypt.
- This could not have been accomplished by any American government agency. The sheer volume of effort and preparation could not have been kept secret had it been an American conspiracy; hundreds of people would have had to have been in on it, including several prominent anti-American militant figures who would have no interest in concealing collusion.
- In order to recruit and train twenty (or more) for this operation, a large number of established individuals would have needed to have been in place and assisting with logistics.
The Report tells us that several of the hijackers trained in various flight schools around the United States, and there’s a solid paper trail showing their movements. Among the people known to have assisted them were Omar al-Bayoumi, a Saudi national with some very interesting sources of income linking him with Saudi Intelligence, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, and “unknown Saudi benefactors”. (Coincidentally, the hijackers met by al-Bayoumi later rented rooms from a paid FBI informant, who apparently never noticed a thing.)
And, before we get too far out in the weeds here, I’d like also to mention that there were also links to “Blind Sheikh” Omar, al-Zawahiri, Anwar al-Awlaki, and fake charities such as the Maktab al-Khidamat, a forerunner to Al Qaeda which helped lay the foundation for their worldwide funding and logistics organization.
Bear in mind: All of the above is well-known and widely documented. Everything I’ve stated so far has been reported in a dozen media outlets and from a dozen separate investigations.
So here’s what we don’t know:
- The SEC investigation into the financial events surrounding the 9/11 attacks is still classified.
- The “28 pages” mentioned above were redacted from the 9/11 report.
- Portions of the FBI, NIST, and NTSB investigations into the attacks are still classified.
As I mentioned before, that last is probably due to ongoing criminal cases. We can see most of the NIST report on their website, but that’s complicated by the acknowledged presence of an asset of (presumably) the NSA onsite in one of the WTC office buildings — another reasonable coincidence. (There’s only just so much office space in Manhattan.)
But the two remaining elements that seem unreasonably classified, at least to an outsider, are the SEC reports plus the “28 pages” — the concluding chapter of the 9/11 Commission Report. And, impressively, more than half of the Commission members vehemently support declassification of that chapter. More on that later.
The SEC investigates stock market trades — Wall Street, basically. The only things that could be of interest within the scope of the SEC investigation would be individuals or corporations that profited from the financial repercussions of the attacks proper. There were lots of those, and most of them were probably coincidence; at any given moment, precisely as many shares are bought as are sold, after all. But they had to have discovered something meaningful and significant, or else there’d be absolutely no reason to classify the report.
We therefore can conclude that, in all likelihood, someone made an awful lot of money from 9/11 due to foreknowledge of the attacks.
And this isn’t at all unlikely, not considering the individuals involved. Bin Laden, after all, was a wealthy man and one skilled in business; he’d been instrumental in helping to develop the MKK “charity” to help Mujaheddin fighters in Afghanistan. It’s perfectly reasonable to presume that, given advance knowledge, he could have set up short-sell orders designed to profit greatly from the attacks. Given the levels of his private funding, profits on the order of the high seven digits are not outside the realm of probability.
(There’s been speculation that such nebulous entities as “the military-industrial complex” made a mint from their own foreknowledge, but if so, that’s precisely the sort of thing that the SEC would certainly disclose, if for no other reason than that the money would be readily recoverable from legitimate corporate entities. Money funneled to terror groups, on the other hand, could easily have been concealed by the time trading was stopped.)
And now we return to the subject of the “28 pages”, the contents of which have been hinted at by several senators and congressmen who have read them. Here’s some excerpts from their reported remarks:
Former Sen. Bob Graham: In a recent 60 Minutes interview (linked above), Graham says they “outline a network of people he believes supported the hijackers while they were in the US.” When asked if the support came from Saudi Arabia, he replied “Substantially.” When asked if he referred to wealthy Saudis, to charities, or to the royal family, he responded, “All of them.”
Former Rep. Tim Roemer: “Sure, you’re gonna be surprised by it. And, you’re going to be surprised by some of the answers that are sitting there today in the 9/11 Commission report about what happened in San Diego, and what happened in Los Angeles. And what was the Saudi involvement.”
Former SecNav John Lehman (on the Commission): “It was no accident that 15 of the 19 hijackers were Saudis. They all went to Saudi schools. They learned from the time they were first able to go to school of this intolerant brand of Islam.” (Wahhabism)
Rep. Walter Jones (R, NC): Quoted in a New Yorker article in September 2014, he states, “There’s nothing in it about national security,” and “It’s about the Bush Administration and its relationship with the Saudis.”
Rep. Stephen Lynch (D, MA): Paraphrased in the New Yorker, Lynch says the document “offers direct evidence of complicity on the part of certain Saudi individuals and entities in Al Quaeda’s attack on America.”
Perhaps the most impressive statement is one made by Tim Roemer, who is of the opinion that the majority of the surprises in the 9/11 report lie in the main body of the text, which due to its being written in near-impenetrable bureaucratese, contains information almost unknown to the American people in general and to the news media in particular. He speaks of the obvious nature of certain of the connections to Saudi Intelligence, to funding sources in so-called “charities” and the House of Saud, and through them to influential Wahhabi clerics in Saudi Arabia who exercise a great deal of control over the allocation of political power in that country. The New Yorker article referenced above tells of the Saudi Ministry of Islamic Affairs, which had diplomatically privileged offices in Saudi embassies around the world and which was apparently well-known as a semi-official funding and support organ for radical Muslim extremists around the world.
We don’t know for sure what the contents of the “28 pages” are, and we don’t know what the SEC report contains. It would be reasonable to conclude, however, from what we know above, that the former would be incredibly embarrassing to the House of Saud, and that the latter would name names and methods by which the complicit funded, and then attempted to profit from, the attacks.
Are there names named? Yes. According to Lehman, “It’s safe to say that the average intelligent watcher of ’60 Minutes’ would certainly recognize them.”
So why don’t they release this stuff? Well, it’s speculated — and not without reason — that to do so would seriously harm our relationship with Saudi Arabia. What’s worse, it’s likely to seriously embarrass the royal family, and if that should happen, it’s not at all outside the realm of probability that it would destabilize the throne in favor of a nationalist, populist, extremist uprising. Rather than a lesser power behind the throne, the Wahhabist clerics would suddenly be thrust into positions of active political power.
But that’s a rather extreme scenario, especially given that there’s a new king on the throne. It’s more likely that a few important people would be embarrassed, and then a few heads would roll — perhaps literally. Since one of those heads might belong to an heir to the throne… well, that could get touchy.
When you come right down to it, though, most of the victims of the 9/11 attacks were Americans. Very few of the dead were Saudi; most of those were hijackers. So, really, is it our problem if this stuff comes out and causes a bit of trouble for the House of Saud?
If you’re interested in taking some action to help push for declassification, this site has some advice for you — suggested letters for congressmen (who are up for re-election this year, by the way) and that sort of thing. Take a look.
And remember: Keep your mind open.
NOTE: While much of my research on this has been open-source and many of the conclusions original, it would be disingenous to pretend that I’m solely responsible for all of this content. I own rights to neither the pictures posted nor the videos linked, and I owe a great intellectual debt to the 9/11 Commission Report, NIST studies on the 9/11 events, and the investigation as reported by Popular Mechanics. The reports from the “New Yorker” and “60 Minutes” were invaluable. The image heading the article is a quite famous one taken by Marty Lederhandler and is property of the Associated Press.