My brother, my mother, and myself (yellow shirt), on the World Trade Center (WTC) observation deck circa 1985.
Like the questions surrounding JFK’s assassination, I don’t think we will ever have definitive answers to what happened on September 11, 2001. Scientists, some who have since been released from their university or laboratory jobs, have released a paper "Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe" which will likely have conspiracy theorists once again presenting their arguments that the plane alone could not have destroyed the World Trade Center.
We have discovered distinctive red/gray chips in all the samples we have studied of the dust produced by the destruction of the World Trade Center. Examination of four of these samples, collected from separate sites, is reported in this paper. These red/gray chips show marked similarities in all four samples. One sample was collected by a Manhattan resident about ten minutes after the collapse of the second WTC Tower, two the next day, and a fourth about a week later. … The red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic. [Source, Bentham Open Access,Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe]
For more information on the super-thermite, read The Raw Deal.
Today on Reddit, the question was posed "2,740 Americans died in 9/11, justifying the removal/restrictions of many of our freedoms. How many people died to give us those rights in the first place?" Within the answers, this illuminating comment:
It’s sort of a nationalistic cliche to say that soldiers fight for our freedom but what they really fight for is the sovereignty of our government, which happens to guarantee us certain freedoms.
When we say a soldier died fighting for our freedoms, what we really mean is that he died in a war which threatened the loss of some or all of American sovereignty to a foreign or domestic power which would likely guarantee less rights than the present government.
This distinction is important because in the history of American wars, very few have definitively fallen under that category – and even in those cases, preserving the rights of American citizens was ancillary to sustaining or expanding the sovereign power of the U.S. government.
We now live with a generation that has never known the feeling, the freedoms, we had prior to September 11, 2001. There is a different feeling. I felt more secure! I wish my youngest children could know that feeling and could experience true trust. I have lived with a tension since 9/11 that I had not known prior. The tension is not from a fear of terrorists; they’ve always been around (well, at least from the 1960s First U.S. Aircraft Hijacked, May 1, 1961 and at least 1800BC for the rest of the world). The fear is from my own government! Prior to 9/11 the police were different; now everyone should fear the police.
Question: “The police are here. They want to talk to me. What should I do?”
Answer: “Make no statement to the police under any circumstances.”
– Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson
The point of terrorism is to cause terror, sometimes to further a political goal and sometimes out of sheer hatred. The people terrorists kill are not the targets; they are collateral damage. And blowing up planes, trains, markets or buses is not the goal; those are just tactics.
The real targets of terrorism are the rest of us: the billions of us who are not killed but are terrorized because of the killing. The real point of terrorism is not the act itself, but our reaction to the act.
And we’re doing exactly what the terrorists want.
Whether the terrible incident of September 11, 2001 was foreign or domestic terrorism, whether it was solely the plane or the plane timed with well placed explosives is irrelevant. Our society has dramatically changed, some say irrevocably. We were a better America when we could trust our government. We were a better America when the police were not the enemy. We were a better America before Civil liberties were taken away.
The last man out says there were explosions in the basement.
This is from Rosie.com
Update: A friend on IRC asked, "you seriously questioning the WTC was just planes or not?" From time to time I think of the open questions like Silverman’s insurance policy, the assessment that the towers needed to be torn down and rebuilt but was too costly an endeavor, the demolition style collapse of the buildings instead of toppling, and all the other babble from the conspiracy theorists. Now, I love a good conspiracy theory. Conspiracy for 9/11 almost writes itself. When I write conspiracy, it’s just creative writing often for satirical purposes. The truth of the matter is that 9/11 was the second attempt by terrorist to bring buildings down. The first attempt was with 1500 pounds of explosives in the basement in February 1993. Including explosives in the basement is conceivable for an effort that planned to organize 10 planes and at one point included simultaneous attacks on 2 continents before being scaled back to the 4 plans used on 9/11.
The commission found that the plot originally called for hijacking 10 planes and attacking targets on the eastern and western coasts of the United States.
The plot also called for hijacking and blowing up 12 airliners in Southeast Asia, but al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden scrapped that part of the plan because it was too difficult to coordinate operations on two continents.
Bin Laden scaled back the plot in the United States to the four planes that were eventually used in the attack.
I doubt it though. That day was horrible. I watched it broadcast live and as smoke billowed out from the towers I was amazed they were still standing. But like JFK’s assassination, I think people will believe strongly one way or another and that some questions will never be answered. None-the-less, I found Rosie’s video interesting.
I remain at a mostly at loss for words. Of course, two very unexpected things happened as a result of September 11, 2001. First, Amy happened. Second, September 12, 2001 happened. September 12 is a day I will never forget for it was the first time I my life, the only time, I can remember looking into the sky and not seeing a single airplane. No flashing lights. No contrails. No engine noise. No whump whump whump of helicopter blades. Only sky, birds, and at night, stars. For such tragedy on September 11th, there was an ironic peacefulness to the skies in the hours and days that followed.
What is Twitter? I feel that Twitter is still defining itself. Essentially, Twitter is an ongoing chat designed to be easily accessible from your cell phone via SMS which is why messages have a 140 character limit. The limit also forces you to be concise in your thought. Twitter puts us closer to people of importance or influence in our lives. (That’s not a Joe Biden endorsement..just showing that you can get a message to Joe Biden via Twitter easier than a phone call) Several other presidential candidates are using Twitter. The shakers and movers in the tech industry are using Twitter and I have been able to interact with a couple of people that otherwise would have remained "that famous person on the stage at the tradeshow." Today I even cracked a joke at Wil Wheaton in response to his tweet although I doubt he saw it. There is still some debate about whether or not a person receives your @ message if they are not following you. I say yes as long as the @ is the first character. You cannot direct message someone unless they are following you.
So why add RedCross? Because it is another way to make sure emergency information is getting into people’s hands as rapidly as possible. They are even using Twitter to add people to a searchable database showing you are safe and well!
Send ‘D safeandwell FIRSTNAME LASTNAME #### STREET CITY STATE ZIP CELLPHONE’ and a brief note about how you are. We’ll enter you in.
about 12 hours ago from web
I think Twitterers will fall into one or more of three types:
- Exhibitionists, Voyeurs, Gossips – These are the folks that will send/read a stream of messages about the minutia of daily life
- News feeds – These are the folks alerting the world about their experiences with the California fires, or the next big event. These are the newspapers getting the headlines out. These are people like myself alerting others that the Interstate is at a stand still.
- Topic Specific – These would be people sharing information about a particular subject. Unlike news feeds these will often include back and forth discussions about the topic.
I originally had this one listed as "Techies" because that is what I do: Techies – These are the people sharing links to events in the technical world. Unlike a news feed, these will often include back and forth discussions on the ins and outs of technical issues.
- [added November 10, 2008] Spammers – People taking advantage of the tendency to follow those who follow you simply to draw attention to a product or website. The Twitter staff and others are trying to minimize the ability for people to spam through Twitter.
- [added November 10, 2008] Utility – such as how The RedCross has used Twitter to make accessing the Safe and Well database easier.
I suppose I should include a 4th classification "self-promoters/spammers" which would be people that use Twitter exclusively for trying to drive traffic to their sites. Twitter can drive traffic!