Document:Organised 911 Disinformation
Organised 911 Disinformation
In the nine years since the attacks of September 11 2001, 9/11 truth has become a significant social movement, with hundreds of millions of adherents worldwide. A Scripps Howard/Ohio University poll in 2006 found that 36% of Americans believe that the US government either promoted the attacks, or intentionally sat on its hands and let the attacks unfold.
Since 2005, the leading portal for news and discussion about 9/11 has been 911blogger.com. Of the many websites for researchers investigating the events of 9/11 (a Google search for “9/11truth” brings up over a half a million results), 911blogger is the most heavily trafficked. The content is user-generated; registered users post items of interest and other users post comments.
But over the past two years, many well respected 9/11 truth activists and scholars have been banned from 911 blogger without explanation or cause, while the moderators have become heavy-handed in squelching the views of one particular group. These actions have caused many of the banned activists to suspect that Blogger has been infiltrated by agents working for the other side, i.e., those tasked with keeping the truth about 9/11 from gaining widespread acceptance.
The mass bannings are not random, but directed at, among others, users who support the work of Citizen Investigation Team (CIT).  (The RCFP ran front page articles about CIT in the April 2009  and July 2009  issues. All back issues are available as PDFs at rockcreekfreepress.com. )
The uninitiated are urged to read those 2009 articles to get the full picture, but a drastically reduced summary is: no plane hit the Pentagon on 9/11. CIT showed, through interviews of seventeen eyewitnesses, that the plane that was seen approaching the Pentagon flew over it and away, as explosives simultaneously detonated inside the building. This created an enormous fireball, filling the sky with dense, black smoke, which obscured the escaping plane. Observers who saw the plane head toward the Pentagon, and next saw the fireball, falsely but understandably concluded that the plane had hit the building. However, the airliner was seen after the fireball by several people, including a Pentagon police officer.
CIT has been endorsed by many of the leading figures of the 9/11 truth movement, including Richard Gage, founder of Architects & Engineers for 911 Truth, University of California at Berkeley professor and author Peter Dale Scott, author David Ray Griffin, and actor Ed Asner. In the 9/11 truth community, even among those who are not familiar with CIT, the general consensus is that no plane hit the Pentagon. For starters, plane crashes leave wreckage, and there was no wreckage at the Pentagon. No wings or tail, no fuselage, no luggage or bodies, no skid or burn marks on the pristine green Pentagon lawn.
Many 9/11 truth researchers had strongly suspected for years that no plane hit the Pentagon, then CIT came along and proved it: the plane flew away. And yet, the leading 9/11 truth site is actively suppressing CIT’s evidence and aggressively promoting the view that the plane hit. What is going on?
Before looking at the evidence that 911blogger is censoring the truth about the Pentagon and promoting disinformation, let’s look briefly at why this matters and what their motivations might be.
Although the entire 9/11 story is full of holes, the evidence proving that no plane hit the Pentagon stands in a class by itself, because a deception at the Pentagon is unspinnable. It may be possible to convince the American public that al Qaeda placed bombs in the World Trade Center towers, but the public will never believe, (nor should they) that al Qaeda planted bombs in the Pentagon. The military headquarters for the most powerful nation on earth is a very secure place, and evidence of an elaborate deception at the Pentagon is iron clad proof of complicity at the highest levels of government. Hence, for those trying to keep a lid on the truth, it is absolutely imperative that the facts about what happened at the Pentagon not get out.
Infiltration of the enemy is a common tool of warfare, and it would be surprising if the perpetrators of 9/11 had not attempted to infiltrate and subvert the 9/11 truth movement, to prevent it from doing them (the perps) any damage.
Why activists are so alarmed
Barrie Zwicker is an award-winning journalist, lecturer, author and documentary producer. He was astute enough to question the official 9/11 story from day one, as it was happening. He produced one of the first 9/11 Truth documentaries, “The Great Conspiracy”, in 2003. His most recent book, Towers of Deception, explores the media’s role in covering up the truth about 9/11. Based in Toronto, Canada, Zwicker is an expert on the subject of infiltration of social movements. When Zwicker peaks, people listen.
This summer, via YouTube, Zwicker created a ringing endorsement of CIT’s “National Security Alert” video. He not only enthusiastically applauded CIT’s work and their conclusion (that the plane seen at the Pentagon overflew the building as explosives were detonated), Zwicker delivered a stinging rebuke to CIT’s detractors:
“To me, two most important questions now, almost nine years after the events, urgently call out for investigation. First, who are those behind the vicious attempts to discredit the work of the Citizen Investigation Team? Second, what are the motives of the would-be discreditors and those behind them? And I say “attempts” because careful examination of the arguments of CIT’s tormentors show them to be tricky and unreliable, in fact as flimsy as the official story they try to defend.”
Zwicker submitted the video endorsement to 911Blogger on July 22, 2010.
Now, this is big news in the truth community. For someone of Zwicker’s stature to provide unambiguously enthusiastic support of citizen investigators, on an issue that has not (until now) had clear answers (namely, what happened at the Pentagon), is important to everyone in the truth community. But incredibly, Zwicker’s post to 911blogger was never published.
Zwicker, ever the gentleman, politely emailed the 911blogger moderators, asking why his entry wasn’t approved. He never received a reply from any of the four moderators.
However, just ten days later, 911blogger published a 3100 word article from an anonymous poster, titled “CIT is useless.” The amateurish writing and ad hominem attacks are evident from the very first paragraph:
“Some time ago I wrote an article about not wasting time on CIT. Most of their followers are impossible to convince and consequently the endless debates with them are entirely fruitless, resulting in nothing more than distraction. But that’s not to say we should ignore them completely. Just because we ignore them doesn’t mean they won’t be zipping around spouting their fl awed testimony, their aggressive behavior, anything that discredits those of us who are careful and have realistic standards of evidence.”
In part because of this decision by 911blogger, to reject Barrie Zwicker’s endorsement of CIT while publishing a childish hit piece from an anonymous source, Southern California 9/11 truth activist and We Are Change LA member Adam Ruff wrote:
“In my view it is now 100% confirmed that 911blogger is an enemy of the truth movement as a whole and is engaged in an open campaign of attack on good truthers.”
The RCFP interviewed Zwicker via email
- RCFP: What do you find most compelling about CIT’s work?
- Zwicker: A historically significant deception has been revealed by these eyewitnesses. The simplicity of CIT’s findings is also significant, as they don’t lend themselves to being undermined by obfuscations or convoluted scientific discussion. It comes down to this: South side of the gas station = official story, North side = inside job. Not even CIT’s detractors have found a way around this, try as they might. Any honest person who watches the interviews has to agree that the plane was on the north side proving inside job. It’s as good an example as any of critical truth, the primary goal of the 9/11 Truth movement.
- RCFP: What do you make of those who say they appreciate CIT’s work but do not think they proved “flyover?”
- Zwicker: Commercial airliners cannot make startling turns to left or right in such limited airspace, nor can they vanish into thin air. Flyover is the only rational explanation, not to mention that CIT provides a witness who saw the plane flying away. If this ever gets to a fair and uncorrupted court of law, I am as confident as I am of anything, that such a court will determine this plane overflew the Pentagon.
- RCFP: Have you read the criticisms of CIT’s work from Arabesque, Jim Hoffman and Victoria Ashley, and do you think they have merit?
- Zwicker: They lack merit because they do not provide counter-evidence. They have no firsthand eyewitness interviews from people who specifically place the plane to the south side of the gas station. Those I could weigh against the eyewitnesses interviewed by CIT. As far as I can see, Arabesque, whoever that is (I don’t care for anonymity), Hoffman and Ashley have provided none at all. They take snippets of third-hand printed media quotes, none of which are actually South of Citgo witnesses, just statements by people who said they saw the plane hit the building. Indeed, one particular detractor blog by “Caustic Logic” quotes a few people as “witnesses” who were not even in the area at the time of the attack! One was in North Carolina, arrived in DC the afternoon of 9/11, saw the downed light poles, and was thus presented as a “light pole witness.” This is in a blog entry titled “The South Path Impact: Documented.”
- RCFP: What conclusions do you draw from 911blogger refusing to post your endorsement of CIT?
- Zwicker: Actually, my endorsement was briefly posted for about 30 minutes, then withdrawn. It’s painful for me to learn that 911blogger, which I consider to be the premiere 9/11Truth site, is censoring CIT and those who support CIT. Even more distressing is that 911blogger has failed to censor some quite rude comments about CIT’s work and its team members. So it’s clearly one-sided. One conclusion that can be drawn is that there are players behind the scenes who have prevailed upon the moderators at 911blogger to stultify CIT and its findings. Since the censorship is so blatant and carries with it obvious penalties in the form of loss of credibility, those behind the censorship orders must really have their knickers in a knot about something. It’s a clear sign that those who control that website are trying to control thought when it comes to the Pentagon. Most people in the truth movement that I talk to in the real world are agreed that no plane hit the Pentagon. That the most visited 9/11 truth website would be so hostile towards evidence that supports this widely held belief within the ranks of Truthers is at the least disconcerting.
A little more than a month after Zwicker’s endorsement of CIT was rejected, the situation repeated itself, when retired NASA aeronautical engineer Dwain Deets recorded a video endorsement of CIT on August 30, 2010 and submitted it to 911blogger. Once again, 911blogger refused, without explanation, to post the endorsement of a highly qualified professional.
Prior to 911blogger rejecting these video endorsements from Zwicker and Deets, nearly all users at 911blogger who were vocal in their support of CIT had been banned. An informal poll easily came up with 25 former users of 911blogger who had been banned without explanation—about half of whom are CIT supporters.
Three of the most well-informed, articulate and prolific CIT supporters were banned simultaneously on May 24, 2010, while in the midst of a heated online debate with 911blogger moderator Erik Larson (aka Loose Nuke). Truth activist Stefan S. of London, England explains it:
“The exact moment that Adam Syed, Adam Ruff and I were banned, we were in mid-debate with Erik Larson. Nothing remotely offensive or rule breaking was being said by any one of us, let alone all three of us at the exact same time.
“What was happening was that Larson had been backed into a corner over a blog entry of his, which was a listing of what he claimed were witnesses to the plane flying south of the Citgo station prior to it striking the Pentagon.
“Not a single one of those witnesses even mentioned Citgo, it was just a collection of laughably tenuous arguments for why ambiguous witness statements must be supportive of the official story. The list was submitted to an intensive analysis and it was shown conclusively that none of the witnesses supported the official flight path, that the list included several witnesses who stated that the plane flew to the north of Citgo, and most strikingly, several who explicitly stated that they were not even in the vicinity at the time of the attack.
“The discussion was drifting into increasingly embarrassing territory for Larson when — presto — all three of us were banned and Larson, in a completely childish fashion, proceeded to have the “last word” in full knowledge that he had just stopped the people he was addressing from being able to respond.
“Larson’s articles are disinformation; the information he puts out there is deliberately false with a motive to undermine genuine research. 911blogger is no longer a 9/11 truth site, that much is clear.”
Response from 911blogger
Other than from moderator John Wright (aka LeftWright), who stressed that he was giving only his own personal views, not those of the website, there has been no response from 911blogger to questions emailed to them on September 15, 2010 about their treatment of Citizen Investigation Team. The email, which stated that the Rock Creek Free Press was working on an article about 911blogger and wanted to include their side of the story, was sent to the current email addresses for site owner Justin Keogh and moderators Erik Larson, Ted Tilton, Jr. and John Wright, as well as to the joint email address for the “blogger team.”
John Wright stated on September 16 that he was available for a phone interview, but, as of press time on October 23, has not replied to an email sent on October 5 to arrange that interview.
The lengthy emails from Wright explaining his view of why CIT has been treated so badly at 911blogger amount, in our view, to implausible excuses: he’s been busy; as a fulltime truth activist he has higher priorities; despite their best efforts, rules are not always enforced fairly; the site has been in a state of transition; and personality conflicts have gotten out of hand.
Most shockingly, Wright claims that Barrie Zwicker broke the site rules by stating in his endorsement that there is a “cadre of disinformation agents who are in the business of attempting to mislead and confuse honest authentic people everywhere about 9/11.” Is Wright really saying that the leading 9/11 truth site will not allow discussion of disinformation or even acknowledge that such a thing exists?
Truth activist and professional orchestral musician Adam Syed of Cincinnati, Ohio, who was banned during the debate with Larson in May, offered this comment on the censorship at 911blogger:
“Arguments in an online forum may at first glance seem to be of interest only to diehard keyboard warriors. But without the Internet, most of us would never have learned about 9/11—certainly the traditional media won’t go near it. 9/11 truth lives or dies on the Internet, and when the most heavily trafficked truth site decides to suppress certain evidence, it obviously makes it harder for people to learn the truth and figure out what happened. In the case of CIT, we are being told to disregard one of the most incriminating facts about 9/11: no plane hit the Pentagon. Now, why would any genuine truther ask us to turn our backs on such damning, unspinnable evidence?”
Answer: they wouldn’t.
- National Security Alert - Citizens Investigation Team Video
- Citizen Investigation Team - National Security Alert Web Site
- Rock Creek Free Press Volume 3 Number 4 - April 2009
- Rock Creek Free Press Volume 3 Number 7 - July 2009
- Rock Creek Free Press Website