User:Patrick Haseldine/Suppressed Lockerbie evidence ignited 9-11 attacks
|Date||11 September 2001 08:46 - 11 September 2001 10:28|
|Location||Manhattan, New York City; Arlington County, Virginia; near Shanksville, Pennsylvania|
|Type||suicide attacks by plane hijackers|
|Deaths||2,996 (2,977 victims + 19 hijackers)|
The September 11 attacks, often referred to as 9/11, were a series of four coordinated terrorist attacks by the Wahhabi Islamist terrorist group Al-Qaeda against the United States on the morning of Tuesday 11 September 2001.
9/11, in addition to being a unique, highly coordinated and meticulously planned act of aggression, constituted a media event on a scale not seen since the advent of civilian global satellite links, round-the-clock television news organisations and the instant worldwide reaction and debate made possible by the Internet. As a result, most of the events listed in the 9/11 timeline below were known by a large portion of the planet's population as they occurred.
Lockerbie's 189 American fatalities
Until Tuesday 11 September 2001, the world had recognised the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 at Lockerbie in Scotland on 21 December 1988 as the worst terrorist attack against the USA: of its 270 fatalities, 189 were American. On 11 September 2001, important Lockerbie evidence that had been suppressed for over twelve years, finally entered the public domain. That evidence by security guard Ray Manly concerned a break-in at Heathrow airport hours before Pan Am Flight 103 took off and exploded over Lockerbie:
- "A terrorist who wanted to put a bomb on that plane would have gained access to the perfect place. The luggage would not be checked again before being loaded on the plane. Although police took a statement, I never heard from anyone afterwards."
Ray Manly, who died in 2010, was described by Adam Larson's Lockerbie Divide website as the epic whistleblower whose actions dredged up perhaps the key piece to the puzzle of the 1988 Lockerbie bombing:
- "The same clue had been erased from the record early on by authorities, and kept from the world for over a decade. That long silence ended for good with his clue’s first publication in the news, nearly eight months after Abdelbaset al-Megrahi’s conviction for his plot on Malta.
- "This came on Tuesday, 11 September 2001, and it was obviously superseded by events overseas. A new record was set that day - by a landslide - for American civilians killed in a terrorist attack (2,977). But the explosive power of Manly’s revelation to understanding the previous record-holder, also involving an airliner, was not diminished.
- "Patrolling Heathrow’s terminal three shortly after midnight on 21 December 1988, he had discovered a padlock that had been cut on a certain door called T3/2A. This had left open the way to the usually-secured airside area, where luggage is loaded onto airliners. He dutifully reported this to his superiors, but apparently nothing further was done, and about 17 hours later, Pan Am 103 was loaded with a bomb at terminal three.
- "Somehow the fact of this breach never emerged during the investigation, as attention turned first to Germany, and then to Malta. For years it remained unknown, up to and even at the Lockerbie bombing trial in 2000. There, Megrahi’s defence tried to argue for a bomb introduction at Heathrow, based on other compelling evidence. But they were as clueless as anyone that there was also a reported break-in at the airport, almost a smoking gun in that context.
- "Manly says the memory remained with and 'weighed' on him over the years, and when it still hadn’t come up as of the wrongful verdict at the end of January 2001, he contacted al-Megrahi’s defence team and, later, the media."
Abdelbaset al-Megrahi's appeal against his Pan Am Flight 103 conviction was scheduled to be heard at Camp Zeist in the Netherlands in January 2002. Armed with Ray Manly's Heathrow break-in evidence, the Libyan's conviction would undoubtedly be overturned. More importantly, Libya would be exonerated from the crime of Lockerbie and the UN sanctions imposed a decade earlier would have to be lifted. Faced with this dreadful prospect, the UK/US authorities had to do something dramatic, even world-shaking, to ensure the innocent "Lockerbie bomber" remained convicted. The eventual 9/11 highly coordinated and meticulously planned act of aggression would have been hatched in March or April 2001 soon after Ray Manly told the Scottish authorities he intended to testify on Megrahi's behalf.
Suddenly, on 11 September 2001, the Heathrow break-in evidence made front page news in a Scottish Mirror exclusive ("Lockerbie: The Lost Evidence"). Other newspapers also carried the story on 11 September 2001 including The Independent. A BBC News report "Key Lockerbie 'evidence' not used" published at 08:42 a.m. (GMT) on Tuesday 11 September 2001 was broadcast worldwide. According to former British diplomat Patrick Haseldine, it was this BBC News report about the suppressed Lockerbie evidence that ignited the 9/11 attacks – see 9/11 timeline 05:00 a.m. (below).
All times are given in Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) which is Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) minus 04:00 hours.
05:00: 9/11 conspirators receive their BBC News daily email (09:00 a.m. GMT edition) containing BBC News article "Key Lockerbie 'evidence' not used" (published at 04:42 a.m.) which is believed to be the prearranged signal for the highly coordinated and meticulously planned act of aggression to proceed.
06:00: Mohammed Atta travels on Colgan Air Flight 5930 from Portland International Jetport in Portland, Maine to Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts along with Abdulaziz al-Omari.
06:45: Atta and al-Omari arrive at Logan International Airport.
06:52: Marwan al-Shehhi calls Atta from another terminal at Logan to confirm that the plans for the attack are set.
07:35: Atta and al-Omari board American Airlines Flight 11.
07:40: The rest of the Flight 11 hijackers board the aircraft.
07:59: Flight 11, a Boeing 767 carrying 81 passengers and 11 crew members, departs 14 minutes late from Logan International Airport in Boston, its destination being Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in Los Angeles, California.
08:13: Flight 11 has its last routine communication with the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA's) Boston Air Route Traffic Control Center.
08:14: Flight 11 is hijacked when hijackers Waleed and Wail al-Shehri rise from seats 2A and 2B and stab two flight attendants. Atta rises from seat 8D and approaches the cockpit. Within minutes, he is at the controls.
08:14: United Airlines Flight 175, another fully fuelled Boeing 767, carrying 56 passengers and nine crew members, also departs from Logan International Airport in Boston; its destination was also Los Angeles International Airport. Five hijackers are aboard. One of them communicated with Mohammed Atta shortly before American Airlines Flight 11's takeoff.
08:19: Betty Ong, a flight attendant on Flight 11 alerts American Airlines via an airphone:
- “The cockpit is not answering, somebody’s stabbed in business class — and I think there’s Mace spray — that we can’t breathe — I don’t
know, I think we’re getting hijacked.”
08:20: American Airlines Flight 77, a Boeing 757 with 58 passengers and six crew members, departs from Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia for Los Angeles International Airport. Five hijackers are aboard.
08:26:30: Flight 11 makes a 100-degree turn to the south heading toward New York City.
08:37: Flight 175 confirms sighting of hijacked Flight 11 to flight controllers, 10 miles (16 km) to its south.
08:37:52: Boston Center control notifies NEADS of the hijacking of Flight 11, the first notification received by NORAD that Flight 11 had been hijacked. The controller requests military help to intercept the jetliner. [[Image:Manhattan from above Hudson River.jpg|thumb|right|250px|Cockpit view of the World Trade Center towers from the Hudson River — the flightpath of American Airlines Flight 11.
08:42: United Airlines Flight 93, a Boeing 757, takes off with 37 passengers and seven crew members from Newark International Airport (now Newark Liberty International Airport), bound for San Francisco International Airport, following a 40-minute delay due to congested runways. Four hijackers are aboard. Its flight path initially takes it close to the World Trade Center, which is 3 minutes away from being struck, before moving away westwards.
08:42–08:46: Flight 175 is hijacked.
08:48–10:28: At least 100 people (some accounts say as many as 250), primarily in the North Tower, trapped by fire and smoke in the upper floors, jump to their deaths. One person at street level, firefighter Daniel Suhr, is hit by a jumper and dies. No form of airborne evacuation is attempted as smoke is too dense for a successful landing on the roof of either tower and New York City lacked helicopters equipped for horizontal rescue.
08:50–08:54: Flight 77 is hijacked.
08:55: An announcement is made over the building-wide PA system by officials in the still-undamaged South Tower of the World Trade Center, "The building is secure, please return to your desks." This announcement is reacted to in numerous ways, ranging from people going back to their offices as suggested, ignoring it and evacuating anyway, or congregating in common areas such as the 78th floor sky lobby.
08:55: President George W. Bush arrives at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Florida, as part of a scheduled visit to promote education when White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card, who is with Bush, informs him that a small twin-engine plane has crashed into the World Trade Center. Before entering the classroom, the President speaks to National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, who is at the White House. She first tells him it was a twin-engine aircraft — and then a commercial aircraft — that had struck the World Trade Center, adding “that’s all we know right now, Mr. President.”
09:03:02: Flight 175 crashes at about 590 mph (950 km/h, 264 m/s or 513 knots) into the south face of the South Tower (2 WTC) of the World Trade Center, between floors 77 and 85.
09:03: President Bush enters a classroom as part of his school visit.
09:05: After brief introductions to the Booker elementary students, President Bush is about to begin reading The Pet Goat with the students when Chief of Staff Andrew Card interrupts to whisper to the president:
- "A second plane has hit the second tower. America is under attack." Bush stated later that he decided to continue the lesson rather than alarm the students.
09:14: President Bush returns to a holding room commandeered by the US Secret Service shortly before 9:15. The holding room contains a telephone, a television showing the news coverage, and several senior staff members. The president speaks to Vice President Dick Cheney, Condoleezza Rice, New York Governor George Pataki, and FBI Director Robert Mueller, and prepares brief remarks.
09:21: All bridges and tunnels into Manhattan closed.
09:25: A video teleconference begins to be set up in the White House Situation Room, led by Richard A. Clarke, a special assistant to the president, that eventually includes the CIA, the FBI, the departments of State, Justice, Defence, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
09:29: President Bush makes his first public statements about the attacks, in front of an audience of about 200 teachers and students at the elementary school. He states that he will be going back to Washington:
- "Today, we've had a national tragedy, Two airplanes... have crashed... into the World Trade Center... in an apparent terrorist attack on our country," and leads a moment of silence.
09:35: The President's motorcade departs from the elementary school, bound for Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport and Air Force One.
09:37:46: Flight 77 crashes into the western side of the Pentagon and starts a violent fire. The section of the Pentagon hit consists mainly of newly renovated, unoccupied offices. All 64 people on board are killed, as are 125 Pentagon personnel.
09:43: The White House and the Capitol are evacuated and closed.
09:57: President Bush leaves Sarasota, Florida, on Air Force One. The plane reaches cruising altitude and circles for approximately 40 minutes while the destination of the plane is discussed.
09:58:59:The South Tower of the World Trade Center collapses, 56 minutes after the impact of Flight 175. Its destruction is viewed and heard by a vast television and radio audience. As the roar of the collapse goes silent, tremendous grey-white clouds of pulverised concrete and gypsum rush through the streets. Most observers think a new explosion or impact has produced smoke and debris that now obscures the South Tower, but once the wind clears the smoke, it becomes clear that the building is no longer there.
09:59: As the South Tower collapses, Father Mychal Judge, Franciscan chaplain to the FDNY, is struck by falling debris on the lobby level of the North Tower. He dies of blunt force trauma to the head. As Fr Judge's body is the first recovered and certified by the medical examiner's office, he will be designated "Victim 0001" of the September 11 attacks.
10:03:11: United Airlines Flight 93 is crashed by its hijackers and passengers due to fighting in the cockpit 80 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Later reports indicate that passengers had learned about the World Trade Center and Pentagon crashes on cell phones and at least three were planning on resisting the hijackers; the resistance was confirmed by Flight 93's cockpit voice recording, on which the hijackers are heard making their decision to down the plane before the passengers succeed in breaching the cockpit door. The 9/11 Commission believed that Flight 93's target was either the United States Capitol building or the White House in Washington, D.C.
10:10: Part of the west side of the Pentagon collapses.
10:13: Thousands are involved in an evacuation of the United Nations complex in New York.
10:20: President Bush, aboard Air Force One, tells Vice President Cheney that he has authorised a shootdown of aircraft if necessary.
10:28:22:The North Tower of the World Trade Center collapses. Due to the destruction of the gypsum-encased stairwells on the impact floors (most skyscraper stairwells are encased in reinforced concrete), no one who was above the impact zone in the North Tower escapes the collapse. The Marriott Hotel, located at the base of the two towers, is also destroyed. The second collapse is also viewed live on television and heard on radio. The North Tower collapses 1 hour, 42 minutes after the impact of Flight 11—the building had burned during the whole duration of the attacks. 7 World Trade Center burns after the collapse of the North Tower. New York City's 1010 WINS reports the collapse live as it happens, broadcasting a live phone call with a witness. On NBC News, Katie Couric says:
- "The South Tower of the World Trade Center has just collapsed..."
23:30: Before sleeping, President Bush enters into his journal:
- The Terror Timeline: Year by Year, Day by Day, Minute by Minute: A Comprehensive Chronicle of the Road to 9/11
- "Interactive 911 Timeline" - Provided by TimeRime.com.
- "Complete 911 Timeline" minute by minute - Provided by the History Commons.
- "Understanding 9/11" archive).
- 911 "Case Study: Pentagon Flight 77": 3D Computer Simulation about The Pentagon impact.
- My 9/11 Flight: Airline pilot's account of the SCATANA airspace shutdown on 9/11.
- Pasquale Buzzelli, the "9/11 Surfer" who survived North Tower collapse.
- 1010 WINS from 8:00 a.m. (September 11, 2001) to 8:00 a.m. (September 12, 2001)
- 9/11 tragedy pager intercepts, published by WikiLeaks.
- "Lockerbie: Heathrow alert was ignored"
- "They told me no one knew…” Ray Manly and the Heathrow Break-in
- "1992: UN threatens Libya with sanctions"
- "Lockerbie: Heathrow break-in revealed"
- "Key Lockerbie 'evidence' not used"
- "Was the #CIA complicit in #Lockerbie and #11September2001 attacks?"
- "Extract: 'We have some planes'"
- The 9/11 Encyclopediaen, 2011|publisher=ABC-CLIO, LLC|location=Santa Barbara, California|isbn=978-1-59884-921-9|page=57|accessdate=June 23, 2012}}
- "Remembering the 10th Anniversary of 9/11"
- "The 9/11 Commission Report, Chapter 1: "We Have Some Planes"
- "NTSB Report", page 3
- "Vast Archive Yields New View of 9/11"
- "90th Floor Frozen, Even as Ground Zero Changes" New York Times
- "9/11 Commission Report", p. 35.
- Time as given in the 9/11 Commission Report, July 2004, pp. 8, 32. However, Final Report of the Collapse of the World Trade Center Towers, published by the U.S. Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology in September 2005, pp. 83-84, timed this event at 9:02:59 a.m., established from time stamps in four September 11 telecasts.
- "National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, We Have Some Planes," 1.3 National Crisis Management, The President and the Vice President.
- "As Director of Communications Dan Bartlett points to news footage of the World Trade Center Towers burning, President George W. Bush gathers information about the attack at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Florida" Also photographed are Director of White House Situation Room, National Security Council, Deborah Loewer (directly behind the President) and Senior Advisor Karl Rove (right). White House photo by Eric Draper.
- "9/11 Commission Report", Sec. 1.3, National Crisis Management.
- "St. Peter's Parish: Death and Resurrection at Ground Zero - September 2003 Issue of St Anthony Messenger Magazine Online"
- The exact time is subject to some dispute — a report on seismographic data readings by Won-Young Kim and Gerald R. Baum puts the time of impact at 10:06:05. The 9/11 Commission argued "the seismic data on which [Kim and Baum based their] estimate are far too weak in signal-to-noise ratio and far too speculative in terms of signal source to be used as a means of contradicting the impact time [of 10:03] established by the very accurate combination of FDR, CVR, ATC, radar, and impact site data sets (National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, Notes, 1 "We Have Some Planes", note #168). Flight data recorder recordings, radar analysis, satellite data (National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, "We Have Some Planes," 1.2 Improvising a Homeland Defense, United Airlines Flight 93) and at least one telephone call indicate 10:03:11.
- "The 9-11 Commission Report, Chapter 1 'We Have Some Planes'"
- The 9/11 Commission Report, p. 41.
- "America's Chaotic Road to War: Bush's Global Strategy Began to Take Shape in First Frantic Hours After Attack"