Center for an Informed America



July 4, 2007
September 11, 2001 Revisited



Resolving all the mysteries surrounding the fate of United Airlines Flight 93 will not be an easy task. The biggest problem, alas, is that the events transpired in what could best be described as ‘the middle of fucking nowhere.’ Witnesses were relatively few and far between, as were news cameras. In contrast to the attacks in New York, the media paid little attention to the anticlimactic events in Pennsylvania. And aside from casting aspersions on the Flight 93 phone calls or positing, absurdly, that the aircraft actually landed safely in Cleveland, the skeptics’ community has avoided looking too closely at the saga of Flight 93.

There are, therefore, frustratingly few resources to draw upon. But by utilizing those that are available, and adding a little informed speculation, we can perhaps find reasonable answers to some of the most perplexing questions surrounding the forgotten flight of September 11.

One question concerning the attacks of that day that has never been definitively answered, either by the official story or by various alternative theories, is how exactly were the cockpits of these planes breached? How could a small band of hijackers have successfully gained control of four passenger jets so quickly and decisively that not one of the pilots or copilots was able to send out a formal hijacking alert?

The “no hijackers” theories – a subset of alternative theories that includes both the “remote control” and the “no planes” hypotheses – arose at least in part as a response to this vexing question. But if those theories are in error (or, more likely, deliberate disinformation), and if there were real planes and real human actors that day, then how was such an unprecedented operation pulled off? The answer, perhaps, can be found in some of the forgotten details of the Flight 93 story.

One such long-forgotten detail is that spokesmen for United Airlines initially reported that there were 45 persons on board Flight 93 that fateful day – 38 passengers (including the four hijackers) and seven crew members. Several days after the attacks, however, at the very same time that the Todd Beamer story was hitting the press, the airline abruptly revised the passenger count to 37. To explain the discrepancy, “United issued a statement Sunday [September 16, 2001] saying one of the 37 passengers had purchased two tickets, so the number of people had been incorrectly reported as 45.” (“’Let’s Roll,’ Flight 93 Victim Heard to Say Before Crash,”, September 16, 2001) Airline spokesmen failed to explain why it took five full days to realize that there was allegedly a duplicate name on the curiously short passenger list.

The airline also declined to identify the passenger or give a reason for his or her alleged purchase of an additional seat, thus making the claim difficult to investigate, if anyone had been so inclined. At the time, no one really questioned the explanation for the revised passenger count, but in retrospect, United’s claim seems rather suspect. After all, even if someone had needed or wanted a little extra personal space, there was no reason for them to have paid extra for that luxury, given that the aircraft could seat around 200 passengers and only 38 tickets were sold. If they so desired, every passenger on that plane could have spread out across their very own row of seats, for the price of a single ticket.

What conclusion then should we draw from this curious tidbit of lost history? One possibility is that there was in fact a 38th passenger, one whose existence was denied so that his identity would remain forever concealed – and for a very good reason: that 38th passenger, you see, could very well have been the real post-hijacking pilot of United Airlines Flight 93.

Another aspect of the Flight 93 story that has been long forgotten is that one theory/rumor that was circulating very early on, but that never really took root, was that one member of each hijacking team was already in the cockpit, sitting in a jump seat, before the planes ever left the ground. Real airline pilots, or those who can be passed off as real airline pilots, are routinely afforded that privilege, so such a scenario is entirely plausible. Once the official story began to take shape, however, such talk quickly subsided. Perhaps it is time to bring it back.

Consider, if you will, that all of the callers from Flight 93 were consistent in claiming that they only saw three hijackers. At no time throughout their ordeal did any of the passengers see the fourth hijacker that the government steadfastly maintains was aboard that plane. But how could that be? The most reasonable explanation that comes to mind is that the fourth man was already in the cockpit before the plane took off and thus was never seen by passengers.

Consider also that none of the callers – several of whom spoke at length about what had transpired on the doomed flight – spoke of a violent takeover of the cockpit. None of them, in fact, gave any indication that they had any idea how control of the plane had been gained, even though, as has already been discussed, several of the callers were seated in either first-class or business-class seats, from where they should have been able to hear and probably even see any attempted takeover of the cockpit. Why then did none of them witness the cockpit takeover? Again, the most logical answer is that, contrary to how the scene plays out in Hollywood’s multiple versions of the event, there was no storming of the cockpit; control of the plane was gained quietly and efficiently by someone working within the cockpit.

Another forgotten fact about Flight 93 is that passenger Tom Burnett told his wife, Deena, that one of the hijackers “has a gun.” ( Deena Burnett has said that Tom, a gun enthusiast who had grown up around weapons, was well acquainted with guns and was quite sure that what he had seen was real. But how could a gun have made it through airport security (which, despite frequent claims to the contrary, was not all that lax prior to September 11, 2001)? The answer is that it almost certainly did not pass through security; it was either carried on by the 3rd pilot/38th passenger, bypassing normal passenger security, or it was planted somewhere on the plane, possibly in the cockpit, its location known to the mysterious 38th passenger.

It is not hard to imagine how a man with a gun, who was already within the cockpit and who was not considered a threat by the flight crew, could easily have taken both the pilot and the copilot by surprise, preventing either from sending out a hijacking alert. This mystery man could then have been joined, either at a set time or by some type of prearranged signal, by a couple of his associates conveniently seated nearby in first-class seats. Together, they could have quickly killed/disabled/restrained the two pilots, after which the unseen 38th passenger could have taken the wheel, so to speak – remaining unseen by any of the passengers – while one of the other men took the gun to use for crowd control, where it could then have been seen by first-class passenger Tom Burnett.

Speaking of crowd control, it should be noted that the hijackers had uncannily good luck in that regard, given that all four of the hijacked planes were flying that day, for reasons that have never been explained nor seriously questioned, with a suspiciously light load of passengers. In hindsight, it seems rather obvious that the likelihood of this mission succeeding would have been significantly reduced had the hijackers had to contend with, say, 175 passengers on each plane rather than just a few dozen. Equally obvious is that the ‘terrorists’ that the government has blamed for the attacks would have had no control over how these flights were booked, and yet they still managed to secure not just one, but four ridiculously under-booked flights to carry out their dastardly mission.

On just about any day other than September 11, 2001, the ‘terrorists’ would not likely have gotten so lucky. We know this because the size of the cabin crews assigned to these flights indicates that the passenger loads on September 11 were quite atypical. United Airlines Flight 93, for example, had five flight attendants on duty serving just 37 passengers. American Airlines Flight 11 had no less than nine flight attendants on board, apparently serving each other since most of the passenger seats were empty. Similarly, United Airlines Flight 175 had seven flight attendants on board, or about one for every seven ticketed passengers. Anyone who has flown in recent years with American or United, or with any other domestic airline, knows that that level of service is hardly the norm.

As was previously noted during the discussion of the Cleveland Airport non-mystery, United Airlines Flight 93 is mirrored by both an American and a Delta flight; all three airlines fly Boeing 767 aircraft on the very same route at the very same time. This, again, strongly suggests that the passenger figures from September 11 were wildly atypical – unless one chooses to believe that the major airlines routinely fly enormous aircraft all the way across the country with a full flight crew aboard for the benefit of a handful of passengers. The obvious conclusion to draw from all this is that the September 11 flights, operating on busy morning commuter routes, normally carried a far greater passenger load.

As previously mentioned in this series, it has frequently been claimed – by, for example, more than a few feisty respondents to this latest series of posts – that there were no planes used on September 11, 2001 and that the passenger and crew lists were complete fabrications. One question that these theorists have never addressed, however, is why the lists were ‘made up’ in such a thoroughly half-assed manner. Why so suspiciously few passenger names on what should have been crowded commuter flights? Why, for example, were there only 33 ‘fictitious’ passengers on Flight 93? If 33 names could be spun from whole cloth, then why not, say, 162 names? Are we to believe that someone among the cabal of conspirators at some point said: “You know what? Fuck this! I’m spent. Unless one of you guys has something to contribute, I’m just going to go with these 33 fake names and call it a night”?

And while we’re on this topic, here’s another question that comes to mind: why, if the powers-that-be were going to go light on the ‘fake’ passengers, did they load the planes up with incongruously large ‘fake’ flight crews? Was it because the conspirators used up so many of their fake names on the flight attendants that they didn’t have enough left over for the passengers? We can assume, I’m guessing, that these ‘fake’ lists were not thrown together on the spur of the moment, but rather were planned long in advance, as were all the rest of the operational details of this mission. So again I must ask: if the lists are faked, why are they faked so poorly? And why, come to think of it, did United Airlines need to revise the passenger count for Flight 93? If the ‘fake’ passenger list was one name short, couldn’t they have just added another fake name to it?

Speaking of poorly-faked lists, certain factions of the skeptics’ movement have argued that the passenger lists are so badly composed that they don’t even contain the names of any of the alleged hijackers – thus proving that there were no hijackers on board the planes that day! Sadly, in some quarters this seems to pass for serious analysis. It is true, of course, that the passenger lists that normally appear in the media do not contain the names of the alleged hijackers. Shockingly, the published passenger lists also do not contain the names of the flight attendants and cabin crew, even though, technically speaking, those folks were all passengers on the 9-11 flights as well (“passenger” is defined by Webster’s as: “a person traveling in a train, boat, car, etc.”).

Surprisingly enough, the “passenger lists” seem to contain only the names of those persons who were what most people would consider to be “passengers,” as that term is commonly understood. If for no other reason than to feign respect for the families of the victims, it is hardly shocking to find that the names of the hijackers are not intermingled with the names of the passengers (just as the names of alleged school shooters, who invariably end up among the dead – but don’t even get me started on that – are not intermixed with the names of the other shooting victims). Thus we find that there are actually three lists of names for each 9-11 flight: a passenger list, a list of crew members, and a list of hijackers. Seriously, people, it’s not really that hard to figure out if you put even a little bit of effort into it.

Some would have you believe, nevertheless, that the ‘missing’ names on the passenger lists are a telling clue. Because the conspirators, you see, although clever enough to engineer the massive spectacle that we all witnessed on September 11, and clever enough to keep the wool pulled over the nation’s eyes for nearly six years now, were not clever enough to remember a little operational detail like including the fake hijacker names on their fake passenger lists. And none of their stooges in the tightly-controlled media were alert enough to notice the oversight before publishing the incriminating lists, and, amazingly enough, no one to this day has bothered to correct this smoking-gun error!

I hate to veer off course here, but I have to mention that there is something else that puzzles me about the planning for this operation. According to some particularly aggressive 9-11 ‘truth’ seekers, there were no planes used that day, not even the ones that appeared to crash into the World Trade Center towers. Those planes that you thought you saw crash into those buildings? Just some clever trick photography. Not clever enough, of course, to fool some of the hardcore 9-11 skeptics, but clever enough to fool most of us. “But,” you protest, “I was watching the news that day and I saw the second tower hit by an airplane on live television!” What you didn’t realize, of course, is that the conspirators have the technology to, believe it or not, convincingly add crashing airplanes to live television footage! And, incredibly enough, those crafty bastards were also able to – during live broadcasts, mind you – perfectly synchronize the inserted CGI airplanes with the very real explosions that blew holes in the sides of the towers!

That, I think we can all agree, would have been a mighty impressive blend of live action, digital animation and pyrotechnics, all captured in real time during an unrehearsed yet flawless one-time-only performance! But here’s the part that troubles me: how come we never saw the video footage of the fake plane hitting the Pentagon? I mean, it’s obviously pretty easy to throw such a video together, especially given that the conspirators already had the footage of an explosion occurring at the alleged point of impact – footage, in fact, from several different cameras filming from various angles. All they needed to do was have their FX wunderkinds insert the fake plane, which should have only taken a few seconds, judging by their alleged live performance on September 11. Come to think of it, while they had their Dreamworks Real-Time Plane Superimposer® kit out, they could have thrown together a fake video of Flight 93 plowing into the ground as well. If they had the technology, after all, why did they not use it for all four of the ‘fake’ planes? And if not at the time of the attacks, then why not anytime since then? Why would the powers-that-be let questions about Flight 77 and Flight 93 fester among 9-11 skeptics, even while busily running around planting disinformation to muddy the issues, if they had the technology all along to easily produce a couple of convincing videotapes to prove their case?

According to the ‘cartoon airplane’ crowd, some or all of the 9-11 flights never flew at all that day. On every other day, they flew as scheduled, but on September 11, 2001, the regularly scheduled flights had supposedly been given the day off without explanation. This scenario, of course, begs a rather obvious question that the ‘fake plane’ cheerleaders have thus far avoided addressing: the professional lives of a good number of people revolve, to some extent, around the flight schedules at their local airport – travel agents, frequent business travelers, ticketing agents, baggage handlers, aircraft mechanics, flight crews, air traffic controllers, etc. Many of these people, I’m guessing, would have noticed that regularly scheduled flights were AWOL that day. They would perhaps have found it a bit odd, but not unduly troubling. But when they then heard, later that same day, that the curiously missing flights were being blamed for the carnage in New York, it’s a pretty safe bet that they would have found that to be extremely troubling.

The question then is a simple one: where are all these people? Why have none of them come forward? And yes, I know that the mainstream media would have no interest in providing a forum to such people, if they did in fact exist. But the Internet, as we all know, is a wild and wooly place where sometimes even something resembling the truth manages to emerge. After all, virtually everyone has access to a blog of some sort these days – a MySpace page if nothing else. And there is no shortage of 9-11 skeptics to contact if someone were to want ‘their’ 9-11 story to be told. So once again the question is: why have we not (to my knowledge, at least) heard from a single person who was in a position to know coming forward to report that the 9-11 flights never actually took off that day?

As previously stated, the ‘cartoon airplane’ cult claims that the viewing audience at home was fooled by some rather rudimentary special-effects work. But what of all the live eyewitnesses? After all, after the first strike caught everyone’s attention, all eyes in Manhattan were on the smoldering Twin Towers, and given their immense size, they were visible to thousands of stunned tourists, commuters, pedestrians, occupants of surrounding buildings, etc. To explain how all those folks were fooled, the ‘fake plane’ theorists at one time claimed that giant holographic images were employed. But that idea, alas, proved too absurd even for the ‘cartoon plane’ blowhards to promote, so a different strategy was embraced: now, in response to questions about the witnesses in New York, the ‘ghost planers’ shrug and answer, “What witnesses? There were no widespread witness reports of planes hitting the towers that day.”

The proper response to this, of course, is “Duh! It was broadcast fucking live, or nearly so, on pretty much every television station on the dial! Millions of people around the world watched it happen – over and over and over again. Why then would reporters have sought out witnesses to discern what had happened? Why was there a need, then or now, for witnesses to come forward to report that they had seen what everyone else in the world had seen? If, however, all those thousands of witnesses had seen something much different than what the rest of us thought we saw, then there would certainly be a reason for them to come forward.

The question, in other words, is not “where are all the witnesses who saw planes crash into the World Trade Center towers?”, but rather “where are all the witnesses who didn’t see planes crash into the towers?” Where are all the people who saw the second tower explode for no apparent reason? And again, the argument that they have been silenced by the media just doesn’t cut it. We are talking here, without exaggeration, about thousands of witnesses. Have none of them blogged their stories? Have none of them approached a member of the 9-11 ‘Truth’ movement, which has been active in New York City since shortly after the attacks? Did none of the foreign tourists go home and tell their stories to a press that might be a little more willing to print such news items?

Does anyone really believe that it is possible, in this information age, to completely muzzle thousands of outraged New Yorkers? Every single one of them?! Along with, of course, the thousands of friends and family members that these witnesses would undoubtedly have told their stories to. Why are the offices of the 9-11 ‘Truth’ movement in New York not besieged on a daily basis by hordes of irate citizens who want the record set straight about the ‘fake’ plane crashes? Why are 9-11 skeptics not inundated with e-mails from those who witnessed the events live? Can any self-described 9-11 skeptic point to even a handful of such witness accounts that have surfaced in the nearly six years that we have been living in this post-911 world? How about just one such credible witness account?

And where, by the way, are the photographs and videotapes that don’t feature the insertion of the ‘fake’ planes? Even if we accept the not entirely implausible notion that all the mainstream media’s videotapes and still photographs were altered, and that the rank-and-file spectators who have released images into the public domain were actually government plants, there undoubtedly were real witnesses who captured either still or moving images of the events of that day. After all, there are a whole lot of tourists prowling through Manhattan on any given day, and tourists tend to carry cameras. The obvious question then is: where are the ‘unaltered’ images of the towers exploding without the presence of any aircraft? Where are the videos that show the very same scenes we all saw play out on September 11, except without airplanes? Surely such footage exists. Why then haven’t we seen it? Can someone please supply me with links to where I can find these provocative videos?

According to the ‘cartoon airplane’ camp, the website of the Bureau of Transportation – which, as a website administered by an agency of the federal government, is obviously a repository of The Truth – indicates that American Airlines Flights 11 and 77 did not fly on September 11, 2001. According to researcher Gerard Hologram Holmgren, writing back in November 2003,“This solves the question of what happened to them. Nothing. Because the flights did not exist.” The United Airlines flights, however, were quite real: “A search for UA flights from Newark on Sept. 11, 2001 shows 0093 to SF was scheduled at 8:00 and actually departed at 8:01 … A search for UA from Boston on that day shows 0175 to LA was scheduled for 8:00 and actually departed at 7:58.” (

Holmgren and company later decided, of course, that all four of the flights were fake. The problem, however, is that the very same database that they claim ‘proves’ the nonexistence of Flights 77 and 11, also ‘proves’ that Flights 175 and 93 did exist. The obvious question, therefore, is: why did the conspirators choose to use ‘fake’ flight numbers for two of the ‘fake’ flights and real flight numbers for the other two ‘fake’ flights?  Why not use ‘fake’ flight numbers for all the ‘fake’ flights? Why complicate things by having half the ‘fake’ flights carry the numbers of flights that really did take off that morning (and therefore needed to be disposed of in some covert way)? Or, if the argument is to be that none of the 9-11 flights left the ground that day, then why is it that United Airlines was able to successfully list their fake flights but American Airlines was not? And why is it that while the conspirators are powerful enough to silence the media, academia, the scientific community, etc., they were not powerful enough to have had the BTS database brought into compliance with the official story before it could be ‘discovered,’ some two years after the fact, by an alleged 9-11 skeptic?

Speaking of 9-11 skeptics, it has occurred to me, while working on this post (at, I might add, a rather blistering pace that has left me feeling a bit fatigued), that perhaps the reason that the ‘truth’ movement has heaped so much scorn and derision upon both the passenger lists and the reported phone calls placed from Flight 93, is to discourage serious researchers from looking too closely at the details of those phone calls and passenger lists – for perhaps hidden in those details is something approximating the truth of what happened on September 11, 2001. And the truth, needless to say, would be a most unwelcome addition to the 9-11 ‘truth’ movement.

There are many out there in that movement, by the way, who will say that positing that there were real hijackers aboard the 9-11 flights – or even that there were real 9-11 flights – is an exercise in disinformation designed to slyly lend support to the official story. They would say such things, that is, if there were any 9-11 skeptics/scholars/researchers out there who ever commented on, denounced, praised, critiqued, linked to, shit upon, or otherwise acknowledged any of the original 9-11 research that has been posted on this site. But as we all know, there are no such persons out there, apparently because the ‘movement’ is far too busy these days discussing holographic airplanes, space-based weapons, mini-nukes, and various other avenues of ‘research’ that can collectively be described - and quite charitably, I might add - as “a steaming pile of horseshit.”

Perhaps, though, I have painted with too broad a brush here. To be fair, not everyone who hangs a “9-11 Skeptic” shingle over their door these days is pitching Star Wars weapons and cartoon airplanes, though a sizable faction does appear to be. Have I mentioned, by the way, that the most verbally aggressive member of the holographic-airplanes team, Gerard Holmgren, just happens to be the brother of David Holmgren, who appears to be, for lack of a better description, Australia’s answer to Mike “Peak Oil” Ruppert ( That’s probably just one of those wacky coincidences that we occasionally stumble upon while cruising down the Conspiracy Superhighway, so we probably shouldn’t attach too much significance to the fact that ‘Peak Oil’ seems to walk hand-in-hand with other forms of 9-11 disinformation.

Anyway, as I started to say, there is another faction of the skeptics’ community that remains unimpressed with the newfangled ideas being introduced and/or endorsed by the Scholars-come-lately in the crowd. Some among this other faction, however, spend a lot of time bemoaning the fall from grace of some of the ‘old school’ skeptics like Mike Ruppert and Dan Hopsicker, who were, we are assured, the ‘real’ skeptics in the crowd. If we could just turn the clock back to the days of yore when ‘real’ investigators were steering us in the fruitful direction of, for example, Delmart “Mike” Vreeland, then we would, I guess, be making real progress. Or something like that.

Truth be told, there never were any real 9-11 skeptics who attained any prominence within the ‘skeptics’ community. The movement has been fully controlled from the very start and continues to be so today. The only thing that has changed is that the bullshit that was being shoveled by the ‘old school’ skeptics appears to have been largely replaced by the horseshit being spread by the new wave of fake skeptics. Some people seem to have a preference for one or the other. To each his own, I guess, but from where I stand, it all looks and smells about the same and I do my best to avoid stepping in either one.

To digress a bit further here, it should be noted that there is a perfectly obvious agenda behind the new wave of theories concerning the demolition of the Twin Towers. All of the newfangled theories being dumped into the marketplace of ideas – mini nukes, microwave weapons, space-based weapons, etc. – share one thing in common: unlike conventional controlled demolitions, they do not require meticulous and time-consuming planning and preparation. As such, these far-fetched scenarios serve as something of an insurance policy for the conspirators: in the unlikely event that it should ever become necessary to admit to the deliberate demolition of the towers, the powers-that-be will be able to claim that the decision to implode the towers was a spontaneous one – which was, of course, undertaken with the intention of minimizing loss of life by preventing the massive structures from toppling over and decimating a huge swath of Manhattan. It was, you know, one of those difficult decisions that we hope our fearless leaders never have to make, blah, blah, blah, and luckily they were able to whip out some previously undisclosed ‘black’ technology to do the job, yadda, yadda, yadda, so it’s actually a good thing – don’t you think? – that they brought those towers down, even if they did have to lie about it, though in retrospect we can see that that was probably for our own good, what with the wounds being so fresh and all …

And that, my friends, is how the deliberate demolition of the towers could be sold to the American people. Rest assured that, presented with such a bill-of-goods, John Q. Public would undoubtedly do what he does best: buy it and consume it with gusto.

Anyway, as I started to say before rudely digressing from my original digression, there is a very slim possibility that this post will be denounced by some 9-11 skeptics as a covert endorsement of the official story. In the unlikely event that that should come to pass, I would like to point out – preemptively, of course, because that is how we, as Americans, like to do things – that if the scenario outlined here is accurate, there are several clear indications that this had to have been an inside job:

·        First, the planners of this mission had to be absolutely certain that the mysterious 38th passenger (and, obviously, his counterparts on the three other flights) would be afforded the privilege of being seated in the cockpit.

·        Second, it had to be assured that this person would have access to a gun – either one that he carried on himself, or one that was planted for him.

·        Third, the four flights had to be deliberately under-booked to help insure the success of the operation.

·        Fourth, all of these facts had to be covered up and/or glossed over.

All of these indicators of state sponsorship are, of course, in addition to the compelling evidence already reviewed in this series, including the curious collapses of three World Trade Center buildings; the absence of any convincing evidence of a passenger jet crash at the Pentagon; the wildly inappropriate responses/non-responses of the U.S. military, NORAD, the FAA, various Bush administration officials, Bush’s Secret Service detail, and, lest we forget, George Bush himself; and the apparent downing of United Airlines Flight 93, which is the topic we now return to.

One question concerning Flight 93 that begs for an answer is: what happened to the rest of the plane (and, of course, the plane’s contents, including the passengers)? Officially at least, only a small fraction of the plane was ever recovered, leaving nearly 100 tons of aircraft unaccounted for. Since it seems very unlikely that either a crash or a missile strike would have reduced nearly the entire plane to confetti, the obvious question is: what became of all the wreckage?

That, alas, is not an easy question to answer. The problem arises from the fact that the alleged ‘crash’ site, along with a large swath of the surrounding countryside, was sealed off from public view in near-record time. As one early report noted, “The curious were kept more than 3 miles from the crash site.” (Ken Zapinski “A Blur in the Sky, Then a Firestorm,” St. Petersburg Times, September 12, 2001) A veritable “army of 400 troopers, 16 mounted police officers and three helicopters” was quickly assembled to secure the perimeter of the restricted zone. (Tom Gibb “FBI Ends Site Work, Says No Bomb Used,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, September 25, 2001) Some residents were barred from their homes for the duration of the search. At least seven people were arrested in the first two weeks after the attacks for committing the unpardonable sin of trying to breach the perimeter to get a look at the purported final resting place of Flight 93.

The FBI was clearly quite concerned with keeping prying eyes away from the alleged crash site. What were they afraid might be seen? While the curious were kept at bay, an unknown number of FBI agents (along with, undoubtedly, various other shadowy government operatives) presumably occupied themselves with finding evidence. To aid in those efforts, “A self-piloting helicopter developed by Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute was sent to Somerset County yesterday afternoon to aid the FBI in its investigation of Tuesday’s crash of United Airlines Flight 93. The 14-foot-long helicopter is outfitted with a laser rangefinder that can quickly produce a highly detailed, three-dimensional map of the impact crater and the surrounding spread of debris … the aerial map can include objects as small as one or two inches in diameter … The aerial map may help identify key evidence faster than it might be found by physically canvassing the area.” (Byron Spice “Self-Piloting Copter from CMU Aids in Mapping Somerset Crash Site,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, September 13, 2001)

So the FBI was clearly also quite worried about possibly leaving some speck of evidence behind. And yet, with no shortage of manpower, technology or commitment, some 90% of the plane was allegedly never recovered. How could that be? Two possible answers come to mind: there never was any plane, or at least not one that blew up near Shanksville, Pennsylvania; or considerably more airplane wreckage was recovered than has been, or ever will be, officially acknowledged.

As previously stated, it seems reasonable to conclude that something exploded in the air over Shanksville. A fair amount of debris was recovered, much of it by rank-and-file citizens who gathered it from around their nearby homes and farms. And if there was nothing more for the government to conceal than a small crater serving as a fake crash site, then why was such a large area cordoned off? What were all those state and federal agents so diligently guarding? And what was it that searchers were looking for?

Though impossible to verify, my best guess is that they were searching for exactly what they found: large chunks of Flight 93 that came to rest far from the alleged crash site. The existence of these pieces, of course, could not be officially acknowledged since it would be difficult to explain how a light breeze could transport bulky pieces of aircraft fuselage over great distances. And it certainly wouldn’t have been difficult to ‘disappear’ the troublesome wreckage given the extraordinary level of security around the restricted zone.

Another lingering question surrounding Flight 93 concerns the precise time that it crashed/exploded. There are three relevant times to consider here: 9:58 AM, the time at which all communications from the plane reportedly ceased; 10:03 AM, the time that, according to the official story that eventually took shape, Flight 93 plowed into the ground; and 10:06 AM, the time that was initially widely reported and accepted as the time of the ‘crash,’ until the 9-11 Commission said otherwise, with the alleged CVR (cockpit voice recorder) to back up their claim.

According to one media report, “A Daily News investigation has found a roughly three-minute gap between the time the tape goes silent – according to government-prepared transcripts – and the time top scientists have pinpointed for the crash. Several leading seismologists agree that Flight 93 crashed last Sept. 11 at 10:06:05 a.m., give or take a couple of seconds. Family members allowed to hear the cockpit voice recorder in Princeton, N.J., last spring were told it stopped just after 10:03.” In the same report, we find that “’The seismic signals are consistent with impact at 10:06:05,’ plus or minus two seconds, said Terry Wallace, who heads the Southern Arizona Seismic Observatory and is considered the leading expert on the seismology of man-made events. ‘I don’t know where the 10:03 time comes from.’ Likewise, a written study commissioned by the Department of Defense – carried out by seismologists from Columbia University and the Maryland Geological Survey – also determined impact was at 10:06:05.” (William Bunch “Three-Minute Discrepancy in Tape,” Philadelphia Daily News, September 16, 2002)

There would seem, at first glance, to be a bit of a conflict between the seismic data and the official 9-11 Commission report.

In September 2002, however, the ever-popular Terry Wallace spoke with Discover Magazine and in doing so he may have unwittingly solved the mystery of the three-minute discrepancy: “’The UA flight produced a significant signal, consistent with a fully-loaded jet that was intact, or nearly intact, on impact.’ That finding disputes rumors that the hijacked jet was shot down, he says, because a missile or other explosion would have broken the craft into smaller pieces that would have caused less seismic disturbance. The Pan Am crash [sic] over Lockerbie, Scotland, which blew apart in midair, produced only a faint signal, even though the crash [sic] occurred close to an array of ground-motion sensors.” (Lauren Gravitz “Seismic Waves: The Ultimate Black Box,” Discover Magazine, September 2002)

What we know then, thanks to Mr. Wallace, is that the destruction of an airplane in the air will not produce a significant seismic signal. We also know that the vast majority of the available evidence clearly indicates that Flight 93 was indeed destroyed in the air. We can therefore safely conclude that the seismic event that occurred at 10:06:05 AM on the morning of September 11, 2001 was not directly related to the termination of Flight 93. What did produce that significant seismic signal, needless to say, was the explosion that created the legendary crater near Shanksville – an explosion that a witness described as “like an atom bomb hit.” (“Flight 93 Passenger Said He Planned Action,”, September 12, 2001)

What we are obviously dealing with here are two separate events. One of those events, the creation of the Shanksville crater, occurred at precisely 10:06:05 AM. But that tells us only that at 10:06:05 AM on the morning of September 11, 2001, some type of explosive device, likely an air-to-ground missile, was detonated on the ground near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, either to destroy a large portion of the plane that had landed there, or simply to create a crude, improvised ‘crash’ site. This would have occurred, we can reasonably infer, sometime shortly after the actual destruction of Flight 93.

We are left then with two possible times for that event: 9:58 AM and 10:03 AM. Unfortunately though, dear readers, I don’t really have the time right now to delve into such picayune details. The problem, alas, is that I inadvertently stumbled upon a completely different avenue of research and it has proven rather difficult to pry myself away from that venture. But I have no doubt that I will, at some point in time, return to the 9-11 saga to address some additional issues. I’m just not sure when that will happen because first I have to roll out my new series of posts that I have been diligently researching for these past several months.

I still have a bit of reading to finish up, after which I have to somehow organize my voluminous notes in some coherent fashion, but then I’ll be ready to pen what could conceivably turn into a book-length series of posts. The topic will be a new one, but the ground that we will be dragging the old conspiracy plough through will be all-too-familiar to regular readers. Along the way, we’ll encounter a whole lot of people with military and/or intelligence connections, and we’ll occasionally brush up against organized pedophilia, mass murder, a secret military installation in the most curious of places, creepy underground tunnels, and a ‘call boy’ ring allegedly servicing Washington politicos. Indications of occult activity, of course, will weave their way through our story. And we will trip over more dead bodies than you can shake a friggin’ stick at – although I’m not really sure why you would want to shake a stick at dead bodies, though what you do on your own time is, I suppose, none of my business. But as I was saying, there are an extraordinary number of curious deaths attached to this story.

What we will be looking at, fearless readers, is the birthplace of the 1960s counterculture – the place that spawned the freak/hippie/flower child movement and the new styles of music that would provide the soundtrack for an era. As we all know, that place was, of course, the legendary Haight Ashbury district of San Francisco. Except that, as is so often the case, what we all ‘know’ to be true isn’t really true at all. So we will be spending our time in a different place, though we might drop in on the Haight every now and then. But here I’m getting ahead of myself, so for now, while you wait with breathless anticipation for the new posts to surface, here are some links to a handful of fairly recent interviews that I have done:

· (this interview with Vyzygoth covered my latest book, Programmed to Kill)

· (this second interview with Mr. Goth covered my Flight 93 rants)

· (this interview with Fintan Dunne covered a variety of topics)

· (once again the focus was on Programmed to Kill, this time with host Derek Gilbert of The Eagle 93.9)