Winnipeg Sun Column: Scholars debate 9/11 findings


April 18, 2007
Scholars debate 9/11 findings

An unbiased observer doesn’t need to look beyond what’s happening on the ground
today in Iraq and Afghanistan to conclude the War on Terror has been a brutal,
manipulative means to a transparently self-serving end.

None of this is news, however, to proponents of “9/11 Truth,” a worldwide
movement that seems to keep growing despite an unofficial media blackout on
their questions and investigations. So what are these “Truthers” saying?

Many people were quick to declare 9/11 a possible “inside job” based
on the visible facts themselves, in particular the blanket failure of air defence,
which even former Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura said defied all logic and
precedent. They also seized on the history (largely unknown in North America)
of Pentagon-linked “false-flag” terrorist attacks in Europe during
the Cold War, and CIA involvement with al-Qaida operations.

With the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, it was seen that 9/11 was amazingly
fortuitous to the Bush administration, elements of which had been looking for
excuses to invade both countries — for purely strategic-commercial reasons
— in the months and years prior to the attacks.

But it was the release of the 9/11 Commission Report in 2004 that breathed
full life into the 9/11 Truth Movement — because it was now apparent to many
that the “official story” relied on massive distortion and evasion.

The most dramatically disputed aspect of 9/11 is the question of what the world
really saw that day in New York City, when three steel-frame high-rises — the
110-storey Twin Towers and the 47-storey WTC 7 — collapsed at near free-fall
speed neatly into their own footprints.

In 9/11 and American Empire: Intellectuals Speak Out (Olive Branch
Press, 2007), former Brigham Young University physics professor Steven Jones
argues forcefully that the nature of the collapses, the presence of large pools
of molten metal in the basements of all three buildings, witness accounts of
hearing explosions — that these and other factors point to the conclusion all
three buildings were brought down by controlled demolition.

This view, though rejected by Popular Mechanics and defenders of the
status quo, has won support from engineers and academics from other disciplines.
For instance, John McMurtry, a philosophy professor emeritus at the University
of Guelph and fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, credits Prof. John Valleau
of the Chemistry-Physics Research Group at University of Toronto for drawing
his attention to “this scientific anomaly.” McMurtry concludes: “The
instant and inexplicable collapses of the WTC buildings in uniform demolition
style could not be explained by fire (plus, in the case of the Twin Towers,
the impact of the airplanes) without contradicting the laws of engineering physics.”

David Ray Griffin, a former theology professor from California who has become
a leading voice of 9/11 dissent, also points to the destruction of evidence
after the collapse — most of the steel was quickly hauled away and shipped
to Asia, where it was melted down.

“Although it is normally a federal offence to remove evidence from a crime
scene, the removal of the steel, which was carefully overseen, was facilitated
by federal officials,” Griffin wrote.

You can see why these scholars are calling for an independent, preferably international
investigation into 9/11.

John Gleeson is the editor of the Winnipeg Sun. He can be reached by e-mail
at: jgleeson (at)
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