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The Ground Zero Grassy Knoll

A new generation of conspiracy theorists is at work on a secret history of New York’s most terrible day.

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Free fall: The speed at which the towers came down—they were almost in free fall—suggests controlled demolition rather than catastrophic collapse.  

1. 11/22 and 9/11
They keep telling us 9/11 changed everything. But even in this Photoshopped age of unreliable narrators, much remains the same. The assassination of President John Kennedy, the Crime of the Last Century, occurred in plain sight, in front of thousands—yet exactly what happened remains in dispute. The Warren Commission found that Lee Harvey Oswald, fellow traveler of the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, shot Kennedy with a cheap Mannlicher-Carcano rifle from a sixth-floor window of the Texas School Book Depository. The commission found that Oswald, who two days later would be murdered by nightclub owner Jack Ruby, acted alone.

Yet, as with so many such events, there is the sanctioned history and the secret history—players hidden from view. In the Kennedy murder, the involvement of shadowy organizations like the Mafia and the CIA came into question. This way of thinking came to challenge the official narrative put forth by the Warren Commission. It is not exactly clear when the grassy knoll supplanted the sixth-floor window in the popular mind-set. But now, four decades after Dallas, it is difficult to find anyone who believes Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman.

But if Oswald didn’t kill the president, who did? So 11/22 remains an open case, an open wound.

Now here we are again, contemplating the seemingly unthinkable events of September 11. An official explanation has been offered up: The nation was attacked by the forces of radical Islam led by Osama bin Laden and his Al Qaeda jihadists. Again, this narrative has been accepted by many.

But not all.

2. War Without End
“Just your average wild-eyed, foaming-at-the-mouth conspiracy nuts,” Father Frank Morales told me as he surveyed the 200 or so graying beatniks and neighborhood anarchist punks sporting IS IT FASCISM YET? buttons who had assembled in the basement of St. Mark’s Church for the weekly Sunday-night meeting of the New York 9/11 Truth Movement to hear a lecture by Webster Tarpley, author of 9/11 Synthetic Terror: Made in USA.

Saying he was in New York “to debunk the outrageous myth . . . the absurd fairy tale” that the tragic events of September 11, 2001, were the work of nineteen fanatics with box cutters sent by a bearded man in a cave, the 60-year-old Tarpley projected a slide designated “State-Sponsored False Flag Terrorism,” depicting a Venn diagram of three interconnected circles.

Circle one was labeled patsies, comprising “dupes,” “useful idiots,” “fanatics,” “provocateurs,” and “Oswalds.” Included here were the demonized bin Laden and alleged lead hijacker Mohammad Atta. The second ring, marked MOLES, contained “government officials loyal to the invisible government,” such as Paul Wolfowitz, Tony Blair, Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney, and, of course, George W. Bush. The third circle, PROFESSIONAL KILLERS, encompassed “technicians,” “CIA special forces,” “old boys”—the unnamed ones who did the dirty work and kept their mouths shut.

September 11 was the true face of corporatized terror, said Tarpley, graduate of Flushing High School, class of 1962 (also Princeton), and author of an “unauthorized” biography of George Herbert Walker Bush. The book paints the Bush-family patriarch, Senator Prescott Bush, as knowingly profiting from Hitler’s Third Reich in his role as a director of the Union Banking Corporation, where, Tarpley’s book says, the Nazis kept their money.

According to Tarpley, this, roughly, is how it went down on September 11: Cheney, Rumsfeld, and the Pet Goat–engrossed president played their assigned roles enabling the strange events of the day, including the wholesale “stand-down” of the multi-trillion-dollar American air-defense system. Cued by fellow mole Richard Clarke, the main players made sure the CIA-owned-and-operated Osama and his alleged 72-virgin-craving crew got the blame, the towers collapsing not from fire, as reported by the brainwashed mainstream media, but thanks to a well-planned “controlled demolition.”

Laying out his scenario, Tarpley touched on many of the “unanswered questions” that make up the core of the 9/11 Truth critique of the so-called Official Story.

Like: How, if no steel-frame building had ever collapsed from fire, did three such edifices fall that day, including 7 World Trade Center, which was not hit by any airplane?

And why, if hydrocarbon-fueled fire maxes out at 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit and steel melts at 2,700 degrees, did the towers weaken sufficiently to fall in such a short time—only 56 minutes in the case of the South Tower?

And why, if the impact destroyed the planes’ supposedly crash-proof flight-recorder black boxes, was the FBI able to find, in perfect condition, the passport of Satam al Suqami, one of the alleged American Airlines Flight 11 hijackers?

And how to explain the nonperformance of the FAA and NORAD?

How could they, an hour after the first World Trade Center crash, allow an obviously hostile airplane to smash into the Pentagon, headquarters of the entire military-industrial complex, for chrissakes? And why did the Defense Department choose to stage an extraordinary number of military exercises on 9/11—occupying matériel and spreading confusion about who was who on that day?


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