Monday, August 30, 2010

Report Calls for “Infiltration” of 9/11 Sites

Report Calls for "Infiltration" of 9/11 Sites
Sunday Aug 29th, 2010 7:11 PM
A new report released by a think tank called Demos warns of the hazardous effects of conspiracy theories on society and recommends strategies for governments to mitigate these effects, including the infiltration of websites.
The report, called The Power of Unreason: Conspiracy Theories, Extremism and Counterterrorism, says "most notoriously and influentially, the '9/11 truth movement' has questioned the official accounts of 9/11 and has become a large and growing political force." The authors note that the 9/11 truth movement is "peaceful", but make no distinction between the legitimate questioning of the official account of 9/11 and any number of unrelated, and often racist, conspiracy theories. The Demos report acknowledges that "some conspiracies have turned out to be true. Our institutions and governments have deceived the population to advance hidden and unstated interests", and goes on to cite Operations Northwoods, the Joint Chief of Staff's unimplemented plan to stage a false flag Cuban terror attack in 1963, as well as the CIA's involvement in the Chilean coup of 1973. But the report is only concerned with limiting the effects of conspiracy theories on operations of the state, not with justice or the accuracy of the historical record. It states:
More broadly, conspiracy theories drive a wedge of distrust between governments and particular communities. Conspiracy theories - such as those that claim 7/7 or 9/11 were 'inside jobs' - demolish the mutuality and trust that people have in institutions of government, with social and political ramifications that we still don't fully understand. This can especially hinder community-level efforts to fight violent extremism.
Demos makes a number of recommendations for governments to combat conspiracy theories, including a call for more government openness. The report also cites the writings of Cass Sunstein, an Obama appointee who recently called for the "cognitive infiltration" of 9/11 truth groups. The Demos paper in turn calls for government agents to "openly infiltrate" websites and chatrooms in order offer "alternative information" and "plant seeds of doubt". The Demos report can be downloaded here.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Monday, August 9, 2010

NIST piles it higher and deeper: structural engineer Anders Björkman refutes Dr. Zdenek Bazant

Indianapolis Examiner:

We need to continue to seek the truth about 9/11
Bloomington Herald-Times, Agust 8, 2010
This guest column is by Kevin Ryan, a member of the 9/11 Working Group of Bloomington.

Over the past three years, a group of concerned Bloomington citizens has worked to raise the public consciousness about the need for 9/11 truth. These folks are sometimes called "conspiracy theorists" because they do not believe the official version of events. Once people get by their initial reactions to 9/11 questioning, however, much can be learned in the process.

To begin with, we all understand the definition of a conspiracy to be a secret plan, among two or more people, to commit a crime. Yet when faced with emotionally charged events like 9/11, many of us pretend that the definition of the word has changed.

It is certain that unless you believe these crimes were committed by one person acting alone, you believe in a 9/11 conspiracy. But people today have been trained to use the word to mean only a small subset of conspiracies enacted by powerful people, like government officials.

For those who redefine the word in this way, al-Qaida is not capable of a conspiracy, and belief in conspiracies committed by powerful people is not rational. We are therefore left with the notion that conspiracies are irrational altogether, despite the fact that our news and our laws are chock-full of conspiracy charges.

Additionally, to accept this redefinition, we must ignore the many instances of secret criminal plans involving powerful U.S. government agencies, such as Operation Northwoods, Operation Gladio and the Gulf of Tonkin incident, all of which are now a matter of indisputable fact.

Others who are satisfied with the official explanations promote a theory called "blowback." This theory suggests that certain people in the Middle East, who have been bombed and blockaded for many years, have assembled the means to strike back with vengeful acts of otherwise-irrational violence, by attacking symbols of Western wealth and power.

Oddly enough, proponents of the blowback theory cling forcefully to it but yet would never consider the "managed blowback" theory. That is, they would never allow the thought that powerful people might notice, and then manipulate or exploit, such vengeance.

Accepting the blowback theory also requires people to ignore the fact that the ever-changing official explanations for 9/11 were created by representatives of the Bush administration, which had a long record of secrecy and dishonesty.

Buying into blowback as the sole explanation also means ignoring that the U.S. national air defenses shut down for nearly two hours only on that one morning, that insider trading occurred without any insiders and that three tall buildings fell through the path of most resistance, when such events have never occurred before or since. And that's before any discussion of the peer-reviewed scientific papers that have described explosive residues found in the WTC dust.

Undoubtedly, there are significant psychological challenges related to our understanding of 9/11, and the public response to both official and alternative explanations bears this out. Understanding those barriers might help us to discover the complete truth and thereby end terrorism and the related wars.

With this in mind, many professional people are calling for a new investigation into 9/11. They include more than 1,200 licensed architects and engineers, and other groups representing hundreds of religious leaders, firefighters, lawyers, medical professionals, scientists and intelligence officers, among others.

Two such people will join us this year at the Buskirk Chumley, for another free presentation at 7 p.m. on Sept. 4. Buddhist scholar Graeme MacQueen and behavioral neuroscientist Laurie Manwell will speak on the topic of "Peace through Truth: 9/11 and State Crimes Against Democracy."

Everyone who is concerned about terrorism, and who hopes for peace, is welcome and encouraged to attend.

Copyright: 2010

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Our duty to the truth makes us responsible for what we believe

Today my local paper (Bloomington Herald-Times) published this guest column from Byron Bangert, who is an ordained minister and 25-year Bloomington resident.

Every Tuesday, I join fellow Bloomington Rotary Club members in reciting what we call the Four-Way Test. It begins, "Of the things we think, say or do: First ... is it the truth?"

Our culture is infused with a strong sense of commitment to the truth, thanks in part to Socrates, who urged us to follow the argument wherever it leads.

I belong to a religious community that identifies its founder with the truth.

USS Enterprise Captain Picard admonished, "The first duty of every Starfleet officer is to the truth, whether it's scientific truth or historical truth or personal truth! It is the guiding principle on which Starfleet is based!"
I submit we have a duty to the truth, first, because no human society can flourish based on lies and deception.

Absence of truth is not always occasioned by intent to deceive, however. Sometimes the truth escapes us. We all labor with illusions, misconceptions, mistaken perceptions. We have a duty to the truth, also, because it can be enormously harmful, even fatal, to be in error.

The corollary to this, which may not immediately seem obvious, is that we are morally responsible for our beliefs. What we believe is significantly determinative of what we do. And what we do has real-world effects. If our actions follow from our beliefs, shouldn't we be morally responsible for those beliefs?

Religious and political communities have often ostracized, sometimes persecuted, and even killed those among them who dissent from certain core beliefs. This would always be morally indefensible were such communities without grounds for regarding those who are "heretics" as morally at fault.

In our time various "heresies" are regarded as morally objectionable. For example, the sane person who denies the Holocaust will likely be regarded as morally deficient, and grievously so. Similarly, those who deny the realities of global climate change may be judged as morally obtuse or worse.

Yes, there's some room for debate about primary causes, but no reasonable denying that average global temperatures are rising, glaciers are disappearing and ice caps are melting. In both cases, the potential consequences of disputing what can be evidentially confirmed are ominous for future human existence.

Still, is it true that most people freely choose what they believe or disbelieve? Aren't we all more or less compelled to believe or disbelieve by unconscious societal pressures, personal experience and interests, as well as what we take as facts, evidence, logic, the testimony of trusted authority, and such? Perhaps we should reserve our disapprobation for those who hold absolutely and uncritically to their beliefs, refusing to admit contrary evidence or the possibility of being wrong and dismissing the opportunity to pursue potentially inconvenient truths.

In this light, most Americans remain complicit in one of the greatest moral failings of our time.

That moral failing is the uncritical acceptance of the "official narrative" of the events of 9/11/2001, according to which a terrorist attack was effectively executed principally by a group of 19 Arab terrorist hijackers conspiring under the leadership of bin Laden and al-Qaida.

The consequences of uncritically believing this demonstrably implausible story have been devastating for millions of Afghans and Iraqis, as well as tens of thousands of American military families.
It has led to a permanent state of "war on terror," the trashing of human rights and civil liberties, extraordinary abuses of executive power, and untold economic hardship and ecological destruction.
This false belief has drastically skewed the political agenda of the past nine years. Our democracy has been severely diminished, and may not survive, if citizens do not come to their senses.

Copyright: 2010 

House Defeats First Responder Bill

On the heels of passage of Obama's $37 Billion war supplemental for escalation of the War in Afghanistan, the House of Representatives on Sunday defeated legislation that would have provided $11.5 billion in health care benefits over ten years for 9/11 first responders sickened at Ground Zero.  The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010, H. R. 847, failed to get the 2/3rds number of votes needed for passage.  The final vote was 255 yea and 159 nay. 


A 2/3rds majority was needed for passage because of a decision by Democrats to suspend the rules to limit amendments and to limit time for debate.  As the final vote indicates, the James Zadroga Bill, named for a first responder who died in 2006 of respiratory illness, could easily have passed on a straight up or down vote.  


Indiana's delegation voted along party lines with all Democrats voting for and all Republicans against.  This mirrored the overall vote in which only 12 Republicans voted for the measure while only 4 Democrats voted against.


On Sunday, first responders held a rally protesting the decision.  John Feal, a first responder injured at ground zero, accused both sides in Congress for their inaction.   First Responders plan to hold another rally in Washington D.C. when Congress returns from its Summer Vacation.