Richard Gage’s Asterisk by Michael Wolsey
March 29, 2011
Anyone who knows Richard Gage, AIA very well or has worked with him, knows that Richard insists that when you cite his name anywhere, whether in voice or print, that you include his title AIA, which stands for American Institute of Architects. I assume it’s much like a Dr. following his name with the letters PhD and is obviously important to Richard for whatever reasons. Those of us who know, always include the AIA tag when formally referring to Richard. We know that if we do not, Richard will be quick to correct us!
Unfortunately, Richard now has another inclusion in his title; an Asterisk.
In early 2009, I learned that Richard Gage, AIA and founder of Architects and Engineers for 9-11 Truth had given a written endorsement of a new documentary about the September 11th Pentagon attack titled National Security Alert. This film was being aggressively promoted by two people, Craig Ranke and Aldo Marquis who call themselves the Citizen Investigation Team or CIT. Craig and Aldo were apparently seeking written or verbal endorsements of their film from high profile members of the 9-11 Truth Movement. At some point, they had approached Richard and he agreed to give them a statement. Richard’s written endorsement reads as follows:
“The exhaustive effort by Craig Ranke and Aldo Marquis of Citizen Investigation Team to contact, record, document, and analyze numerous first-hand eyewitness accounts of the actual flight path of the airliner at the Pentagon on 9/11 has been long overdue, but worth waiting for. The evidence they have uncovered and compiled in their DVD “National Security Alert” deserves serious attention – particularly in light of what we now know about the explosive destruction of the three World Trade Center high-rises that day.”
Prior to Richard’s endorsement of CIT, I knew about Craig and Aldo and their kooky theory that speculates that Flight 77 flew over the Pentagon. I confess that I didn’t really pay that much attention to them. I consider CIT’s work to be counter to the truth and believe that unsubstantiated claims of truth based on dishonest research and methods and speculation actually hurts our efforts at achieving a new 9-11 investigation. It was also a highly held belief that in most cases, it’s best as a movement to ignore disruptions such as these, which is what I did with CIT.
With much fanfare, CIT boasted their high profile endorsers to as much of the movement as would listen and used these peoples’ names as an appeal to authority  to further promote their film. I saw this behavior as extremely dishonest and was very disappointed in Richard and the others.  I considered this a tipping point and a place where 9-11 activists could no longer ignore CIT. Since then, we have published several podcasts as well as articles on the topic at visibility911.com. 
In response, I personally contacted Richard and some of the other endorsers with polite, yet firm emails asking them if they knew the whole story behind CIT. I urged them to look further into Aldo and Craig if they had not done so in the beginning, and reconsider their endorsements of what I considered to be the worst disinformation in the 9-11 movement history. I also had a chance to sit down with Richard face to face when he was in Denver in August of 2009.
My biggest concern was that Richard’s endorsement of CIT was helping CIT’s credibility and hurting his own. It is my opinion that there is very strong evidence to support the Controlled Demolition hypotheses at the World Trade Center on 9-11. Richard and his organization AE911T had gained much credibility over the years in this area. I did not want to see this hard work discredited by association with CIT and I saw this as a real possibility. I informed Richard of my concerns, as well as why I believe what I do. I was certainly not alone in my critique of CIT and I know Richard was hearing from many others on this topic. After spending over an hour and a half talking on this, Richard admitted to me privately that he had probably made a mistake with regards to CIT but still failed to fully retract his endorsement.
In December 2009, Richard issued a “clarification” of his CIT statement, and in February of 2011, after educating himself about who Craig and Aldo really are, issued his “complete withdrawal of support” for CIT and their film.
Personally I welcomed this withdrawal of support by Richard, although I wished he hadn’t given them the statement in the first place. I argued for a long time that the damage had been done, and that even if Richard took back his support from CIT, that they would never remove his name or words from their website. This was even a prediction I made privately after Richard issued the withdrawal; repeat, that CIT will NEVER remove his name or endorsement from their website.
Since then, I have from time to time checked back to the “Praise for Citizen Investigation Team” webpage to verify my prediction. It is no great surprise to me, nor should it be to anyone familiar with CIT’s methods, that Richard’s endorsement continues to be posted at the CIT website along with the others. The only difference now is that Richard’s words are now followed by a big red Asterisk which is actually a link to another page at the website which contains a long and wordy response by CIT to Richard’s withdrawal of support. The link is neither prominent or easy to see. It is linked only to the Asterisk itself and unless you are looking for it, you won’t see it.
The reasons that CIT will never remove Richard’s statements are not hard to understand. It’s not because of pride or ego or anything like that. The main reason, and one of the main goals of disinformation is to discredit good information with bad . Since Richard and AE911 promote solid information, one way to undermine them is to discredit them. When Richard, and all the other endorsers gave their names to CIT, they all in one way or another discredited themselves by associating good information with bad; some have called it the “turd in the punchbowl”. The endorsements provide a strong tie between the good and the bad and these ties will never be broken; they are actually the goal.
Dishonest? Heck yea, but what else is new with CIT.
 It should be noted here that in my experience in the movement which goes back to 2003, I have never known any film about 9-11 to seek or even need endorsements. The movement has at times been hungry for tools to use on their friends and new video’s about the 9-11 attacks are no exception. The success or failure of a film was based on the films’ own merits.
 Argument from authority (also known as appeal to authority) is a fallacy of defective induction, where it is argued that a statement is correct because the statement is made by a person or source that is commonly regarded as authoritative. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_from_authority
 This list includes David Ray Griffin, Richard Gage, Aidan Monaghan, Barrie Zwicker, Sander Hicks, Kevin Barrett, Peter Dale Scott, and Ed Asner.
 It is not my intention in this essay to discuss the relative dangers in disinformation/ misinformation as it relates to CIT. This topic has been extensively covered on our podcast and at my blog.
“The most perfidious way of harming a cause consists of defending it deliberately with faulty arguments.”
-Friedrich Nietzsche, German philosopher (1844 – 1900)
This article is a response to “Is Leading 9/11 Truth Site Working For The Other Side?”, credited to “staff writers” at the Rock Creek Free Press, November 2010 edition, available at: http://www.rockcreekfreepress.com/CreekV4No11-Web.pdf
The “leading 9/11 Truth site” being referred to is 911Blogger.com. The authors of the article critiqued here chose to remain anonymous, and the article’s title doesn’t lend itself to an easily pronounceable acronym. Therefore I will refer to the article’s authors, along with their vocal message board sympathizers and Barrie Zwicker, as The Complainers. We will abbreviate Citizen Investigation Team as “CIT” and their video National Security Alert as “NSA” (noting the irony).
I normally prefer the high ground when it comes to accusations regarding intentions. However, since the Complainers routinely impute sinister motives to their critics, the reader must consider whether that behavior is more consistent with an intention to support or subvert the overall agenda of the 9/11 Truth Movement.
The Complainers’ article, like NSA itself, is fraught with logical fallacies and intellectual dishonesty. Examples are discussed in the following sections:
A Running Ad Hominem…………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 2
A Key Exaggeration………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 3
False Statements and Exaggerations………………………………………………………………………………………….. 4
“There was no [plane] wreckage at the Pentagon”…………………………………………………………………………… 4
“CIT came along and proved [that] the plane flew away”…………………………………………………………………… 7
“The leading 9/11 truth site is actively suppressing CIT’s evidence”…………………………………………………….. 8
“Zwicker is an expert on the subject of infiltration of social movements.”……………………………………………… 9
“Many well respected 9/11 truth activists and scholars have been banned from 911 blogger without
explanation or cause”……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 9
Refusal to Acknowledge Rational Criticism and Respond to It Rationally……………………………………………… 10
Appeal to Popular Opinion………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 11
“Authorities Would Blame Controlled Demolition on Al Qaeda”…………………………………………………………… 11
A Severe Non Sequitur: Poor Political Analysis……………………………………………………………………………… 12
Deceptive Mentions of NSA “Endorsements” or Reviews………………………………………………………………….. 13
Most of the article consists of a running ad hominem attack, accusing people who run one of the admittedly “leading” 9/11 Truth websites of wanting to cover up mass murder. The Complainers correctly state “it would be surprising if the perpetrators of 9/11 had not attempted to infiltrate and subvert the 9/11 truth movement”, but knowing this alone does not help to identify the infiltrators. Sorting out the cast of characters requires close examination of the devilish details in order to distinguish among knavish infiltrators, simple fools, and sincere truth-seekers who have been fitted into a well-designed “snitch jacket” in the spirit of COINTELPRO. The implicit assumption of the Complainers is that criticizing the investigative quality of CIT’s work is the same as working to cover up 9/11 – a manipulative appeal to emotion. The accusation of disloyalty echoes the McCarthyists and their modern-day brethren. It comes from the same playbook used by those who defend the illegal invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, for which 9/11 served as the pretext, by calling 9/11 activists “terrorist sympathizers.”
The Complainers drew warnings from 911Blogger moderators, for their vicious and divisive attacks on other researchers, the real cause of the banning of which the Complainers … complain. A moderator told them that this was one of the reasons that they were banned. Yet this explanation brought no humility or lessened outrage to the Complainers. Is their reaction simply an inability to see their own misbehavior as others see it, or something more? Does it perhaps come from the idea that the best defense is a good offense? (Readers with a well-developed sense of consistency will understand my indulgence in some questions regarding the Complainers’ intentions, given that they “went there” first.)
Whatever the reason, many comments supportive or critical of CIT/NSA that violated 911Blogger rules were allowed to stand because of the overwork that is endemic to the 9/11 truth movement. Whatever inconsistencies there might have been, in terms of who was allowed to get away with what, say little or nothing about the moderators’ intentions.
A Key Exaggeration
The Complainers write as though the evidence against a large airliner having flown into the Pentagon were strongly in their favor, and they make vastly exaggerated claims for the power and the clarity of that evidence. Jim Hoffman’s essay, The Pentagon No-757-Crash Theory: Booby Trap for 9/11 Skeptics, published in October 2004, finds that much of the evidence regarding what hit the Pentagon is inconclusive, and is incapable of being made much better than it is. Since the 9/11 Truth movement is working to uncover the truth about 9/11, against a backdrop of blatant lies that constitute an orchestrated coverup, it is important to deal very cautiously with facts. Deviating from the official story carries a heavy burden of proof, especially in the mind of the public. Speculation lays us open to debunking. Speculation that appears outrageous, and is proved wrong, can paint the whole 9/11 Truth Movement with a broad brush as crazies. We could lose all the hard fought ground we have gained, rendering our solid accomplishments moot. On these grounds, the question of what hit the Pentagon is a self-defeating choice as the focus of any demand for a new investigation. In one of his later analyses Hoffman concludes that “[the] evidence comports with the crash of a Boeing 757.” He added that while “the evidence does not conclusively prove that the aircraft was a 757, much less that it was Flight 77”, “that lack of conclusiveness should not be surprising given the systematic suppression of evidence by authorities.” We need to be willing to let the official story stand unless the proof to the contrary is extremely solid.
For critiques of the deceptive tactics used by CIT, see:
Here are three essays and a shorter but very recent piece describing what the Pentagon evidence actually shows. They also contain explanations of the severe disadvantages of focusing publicly on the question of what hit the Pentagon, and the benefits of focusing on the evidence that many other key aspects of the official account of what happened at the Pentagon are demonstrably false:
The National Military Command Center (NMCC) is the most secure part of the Pentagon and, at the time of the 9/11 attacks, was “the focal point within [the] Department of Defense for providing assistance” to law enforcement efforts in response to aircraft hijackings in U.S. airspace, according to military instructions.  In response to the attacks on New York and Washington, the job of the NMCC, according to the 9/11 Commission, was “to gather the relevant parties and establish the chain of command between the National Command Authority–the president and the secretary of defense–and those who need to carry out their orders.” 
The NMCC therefore had a critical role to play that day. And yet evidence reveals that emergency actions conducted from the center were totally inadequate. Numerous obstructions occurred, including technical problems and outside agencies failing to provide the center with the information it required. Furthermore, a number of military leaders were particularly slow in reaching the NMCC, from where they could assist emergency response efforts, and only arrived there after the attacks ended and it was too late to make a difference.
The evidence currently available is insufficient to draw firm conclusions from. But the sheer number of factors that hindered the actions of those in the NMCC, combined with several oddities, raises the possibility that a deliberate and coordinated attempt was made by treasonous U.S. government and military insiders to sabotage the center’s ability to respond to the 9/11 attacks, at a time when its rapid actions were imperative.
THE U.S. MILITARY’S ‘WORLDWIDE NERVE CENTER’
The NMCC has been described as “a communications hub, a switchboard connecting the Pentagon, the civilian government, and the combatant commanders.”  It is a maze of offices, cubicles, and conference rooms in an area of the Pentagon where offices of the military’s Joint Staff and many top officials, including the secretary of defense, are located. The center is designed to operate in an emergency, and has its own electrical, heating, and air-conditioning systems. 
The NMCC’s primary task is to monitor worldwide events for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Its other main missions are providing a strategic watch component and providing a crisis response component. At the time of the 9/11 attacks, it was operated by five teams on a rotating basis, with each operations team typically having 17 to 20 personnel on duty and performing a variety of functions. 
OFFICERS LACKED URGENCY IN RESPONSE TO FIRST CRASH
The morning of September 11, 2001, the NMCC was receiving live feeds from numerous television stations, which its personnel were monitoring, and those in the NMCC learned of the first plane crashing into the World Trade Center from TV news reports.  This was reportedly the first time they learned anything of the crisis in the skies over America that morning. 
NMCC personnel supposedly didn’t realize that the crash was a terrorist attack. Operations officer Dan Mangino has recalled, “At first, we thought it was a terrible accident.”  Major Charles Chambers recalled, “My instinct was that the pilot had used the towers to point himself towards the area, lost consciousness, and autopilot had done the rest.” Therefore, at that time, “Our interest in the crash … was no different from anyone else’s in the country.” 
The operations team’s response was to continue monitoring media reports and make notifications up the chain of command, simply telling senior Pentagon officials that a plane had crashed into one of the WTC towers. 
Commentary by John Bursill – Contributor and supporter of 911Blogger.com – 10/28/10
“Is 911Blogger.com working for the other side?” This question has been asked in an article written by the “staff writers” at the Rock Creek Free Press.
I found this article I have attached below rather corrosive and it appears to me some people (“staff writers”) want to perpetuate some sort of civil war within our movement over the Pentagon? Or is it only that many people truly believe that no plane hit the Pentagon and need a plausible scenario to make that theory work for them? And the limiting/censoring of CIT’s exposure and other advocates of no plane theory, is just too much to bear and they have to speak out for their important theory?
Now any reasonable person could accuse 911Blogger.com of being, too careful, too reasonable, too responsible and pro positive public relations, fair enough. But to insinuate they are working for the government is laughable, ridiculous and very hurtful to some very hard working 9/11 Truth Advocates at this site!
So here’s my take on it…”the censorship of CIT”?
Well firstly it is not just 911Blogger.com who has limited or removed support from groups and or people over the years, such as CIT, Webster Tarpley, Kevin Barrett, Pilots for Truth, Jim Fetzer, Morgan Reynolds, Judy Wood and David Shayler to name but a few. This is a very common thing within political movements to stick to the best evidence and information and to only support people who behave civilly and responsibly regarding their dealings with people and subjects associated with the case being advocated. The 9/11 Truth movement is probably the loosest political campaign in history and is so full of misinformed people and theories it is already nearly impossible to get any high level support for such a rabble.
So who gives sites like 911Blogger.com the right to chose who they support? Well in a nut shell, they do! It’s their site and they do what they please based on their experience and the advice they chose to take from the experts they trust around them.
Unplug the Signal: The Truth Will Not Be Televised by Nathan Janes PUPAGANDA.com
A flow of information is constantly streaming from the television set; a bombardment of words and pictures. The speed at which this information is communicated makes it easy for the signal to take control, switching the viewer’s brain to stand-by as information is absorbed without analysis or question. Today the television’s constant signal shapes the conclusions of the masses and produces the collective norm. The signal prescribes what is news and what is truth through the words of so-called experts and authorities, gelding the consciousness and independent thoughts of those subjected to it. Through television, the masses can be made to accept the most monstrous distortions of reality. The signal is a chill wind of continuous oppression over the minds of the masses. It controls the management of society and culture, creating uniformity across all subjects.
The fuel for this vehicle of mass deception is a technique known as perception management where an array of psychological techniques are used to alter the truth, leading the viewer to a desired conclusion. Some call this spin or propaganda while others know it as lying. According to Joseph Goebbels, Propaganda Minister for Adolph Hitler, “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it… It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.” Most of what can be found on the nightly news is nothing but advertisements selling more government and a false reality that benefits only those in control. Television is the dictator of information; newspaper and radio are the whisper campaign of the television’s message.
FEAL GOOD FOUNDATION RESPONSE TO NEWS THAT THE PRESIDENT of the UNITED STATES DOES NOT SUPPORT H.R. 847
Dear Fellow First Responder:
As you may already know, today we have learned that President Barack Obama no longer supports H.R. 847, the Congressional bill that would guarantee funding for health care and research. While this news is stunning, and a complete reversal of his position on this bill during his 2008 presidential campaign, please be assured that the Feal Good Foundation alongside its friends in labor and the N.Y. Congressional Delegation will continue to fight for this bill and to advocate for full Presidential support. Our fight is not over.
Nearly eight and one half years ago we, the First Responder Community, demonstrated our strength, resilience and determination of spirit following September 11th. We must do so again. While the President’s current stance on H.R. 847 represents an obstacle, we have surmounted such obstacles before and will continue to overcome them now. “Never Forget” is more than a campaign slogan or bumper sticker to the men and women who bravely immersed themselves into the toxic Ground Zero air to save the lives of strangers and rebuild New York City and this country. We will “Never Forget” and today I tell all those opposed to H.R. 847 “We Will Never Give Up.”
H.R. 847 is about guaranteed health care treatment, monitoring and research; nothing more, nothing less. We have witnessed First Responder after First Responder fall victim to 9/11 illnesses over the past several years. Just this week another firefighter and friend perished as a result of his heroic actions. While the White House and detractors of H.R. 847 are quick to point out that treatment for First Responders currently exists at the Centers of Excellence, such arguments are missing the central mandate of the bill – guarantees!
The reluctance of the White House to support this bill merely 8 ½ years after the worst terrorist attack on United States soil merely solidifies the need for guaranteed care now. Shall we rely on “discretionary budgetary spending” twenty years from now when the World Trade Center attack is a distant memory to new administrations?
Are we to trust that presidents in the years to come will allocate sufficient funding for treatment and research when we are already being told that current administrations “don’t have the money to make us healthy? We cannot and will not give up hope that this government will recognize its moral imperative to care for the World Trade Center First Responders.
The Feal Good Foundation will not give up its efforts on behalf of the First Responders. It is our sincere hope that you will continue to join us in our quest for justice.
The Obama administration stunned New York’s delegation yesterday, dropping the bombshell news that it does not support funding the 9/11 health bill.
The state’s two senators and 14 House members met with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius just hours before President Obama implored in his speech to the nation for Congress to come together and deliver a government that delivers on its promises to the American people.
So the legislators were floored to learn the Democratic administration does not want to deliver for the tens of thousands of people who sacrificed after 9/11, and the untold numbers now getting sick.
“I was stunned — and very disappointed,” said Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who like most of the other legislators had expected more of a discussion on how to more forward.
“To say the least, I was flabbergasted,” said Staten Island Rep. Mike McMahon.
The 9/11 bill would spend about $11 billion over 30 years to care for the growing numbers of people getting sick from their service at Ground Zero, and to compensate families for their losses.
From their apartment, Dawn Vignola and her roommate Hugh ‘Tim’ Timmerman saw American Flight 77 hit the Pentagon, September 11, 2001. Shortly afterward, they gave witness accounts to local and national TV media. In 2007, they were interviewed by Citizen Investigation Team (CIT), who attempted to discredit their testimony. I interviewed Dawn and her husband, Dan Ferrigno, January 5, 2010 at that same apartment and found them credible; they talked openly with me, their accounts have not changed since they were first offered, and I saw for myself that Dawn and Tim could have easily seen what they claimed to have seen.
On September 11, 2001 Dawn Vignola shared a 16th floor apartment with Hugh ‘Tim’ Timmerman, in Arlington, VA, which overlooked the Pentagon and the surrounding area. They were both at home, and Dawn was on the phone with her husband, Dan Ferrigno, because of what was happening in New York. She saw the plane approaching out the West window, over the top of a line of trees, and then it turned East. She could see the AA, and in the bright sun the plane appeared to be white. (See here for photos of the Boeing 757 N64AA, the plane that was American 77 on 9/11; notice how it appears white in the photos where there is direct sun on it). It was flying above the line of trees and buildings, and seemed to be over 395 or Columbia Pike.
As the plane disappeared from view past the window’s North edge, she went over to the window on the North side and watched for the plane, which she had noticed was flying unusually low; she and Tim were accustomed to seeing airplanes flying over the area, including over the Pentagon, as Reagan National Airport is close by. She saw the plane cross in front of the Sheraton Hotel on Columbia Pike, then it disappeared from view behind some nearby buildings. She watched for it to appear in view on the other side of a neighboring apartment building; it did, and she and Tim saw it impact the Pentagon, about 3/4 of a mile away. They did not see the plane fly over- in fact, it hit so low at the base, it looked like it hit the heliport first.
At the time, there was only vacant land and buildings under construction in between their building and the Pentagon, and these did not obstruct their view of the heliport. Since then, shorter buildings have been built in that area, but they still can still clearly see the upper floors of the Pentagon. In person everything appears much larger and clearer than it does on the accompanying video; when the camera is zoomed in, it actually gives a better idea of how large everything appears in person. Dawn and Tim had a clear view of the impact side and the airspace over the Pentagon, and would have seen the plane fly over- or seen something else hit- if that had happened. In addition, Dan’s office across the Potomac River had a view of the airspace over the Pentagon; he was looking at it while on the phone with Dawn, and saw the black smoke rising, but did not see a plane flying over or away from the Pentagon.
This photo gives an approximate idea of how large the Pentagon appears from Dawn and Dan’s apartment, but still does not accurately convey how clear everything appears in person (also note that the shorter buildings in the middle were not there on 9/11; the view of the heliport was not obstructed):
This Google Earth image shows Dawn Vignola’s apartment and the line of sight to the Pentagon, as it was on 9/11/01. As can be seen from this photo, the area between her apartment and the Pentagon was largely vacant, with some construction going on:
Shortly after they saw the impact, Dawn called WUSA, the local CBS channel, and was interviewed live on the air. Tim was listening to the questions as they were asked by the TV reporter, and he can be heard in the background offering his input to Dawn, some of which she passed on over the phone. Later, Tim was interviewed by CNN. Dawn’s account has not changed since that interview; it is the same account she gave to Citizen Investigation Team in 2007 (judging by what CIT has said about it), and the same account that was given to me. Dawn is no longer in contact with Hugh ‘Tim’ Timmerman. There are a number of hits for ‘Hugh Timmerman’ online, but I did not attempt to track him down for comment; CIT has said they could not locate him.
Since 9/11, various people have claimed that AA 77 did not crash into the Pentagon. As there are numerous witness accounts of an AA 757 crashing into the Pentagon, some crash skeptics have questioned those accounts. For instance, in the case of Dawn’s account, blogger Steven Welch alleged that Tim was ‘coaching’ Dawn in her account, and claimed neither testimony could be considered credible. And, according to Dawn and Dan in my interview of them, when Craig Ranke and Aldo Marquis (CIT) interviewed them in November 2007, Craig and Aldo were not simply interested in receiving Dawn’s account and verifying the view from the apartment. Rather, they sought information that would support their theory that the plane known as AA 77 had flown over the Pentagon, dismissed the elements of Dawn’s testimony that did not support this theory and attempted to persuade Dawn and Dan they were mistaken and their theory was correct. (For 2 sides to this story, see the ‘Plan271’ thread at CIT’s forum)
CIT insists they’re objective and have not done anything improper in their investigation and reporting. For instance, in a 12/12/09 podcast interview by Paul Tassopulos, Craig Ranke said, “Citizen Investigation Team, myself and Aldo Marquis, have been to Arlington, Virginia several times to interview dozens of eyewitnesses to the Pentagon attack. We went there with no pre-conceived notions about what happened- we went there with no particular theory in mind. Our entire goal was to objectively ask the people on the street what they saw, and report it, and let the chips fall where they may.” (2:05) However, it is clearly not the case that they went to Arlington with “no pre-conceived notions about what happened”; as early as 1/11/06, before Craig and Aldo joined the Loose Change forum, Aldo Marquis had posted an article online titled “Meet Agent Lloyd A. England (Pentagon Plant)“. Lloyd England says the plane knocked a light pole through his cab’s windshield, and numerous photos place him, his damaged cab and a broken light pole at the scene. Aldo attempted to show that England could not be telling the truth about what happened, and that the scene was staged. If the plane knocked the light pole through the windshield of England’s cab, the plane was on the ‘South of Citgo’ path, (not on the ‘North of Citgo’ path, as CIT claims certain other witness accounts prove), and this disproves CIT’s ‘flyover’ theory. And according to Pentagon crash witness Mike Walter, when he met Craig and Aldo at his barbeque on the first trip to Arlington, “They were saying things like, ‘Are you sure the plane didn’t land [at Reagan airport] and they set off a bomb?’ They kept coming up with all these scenarios.”
Dawn and Dan invited Craig and Aldo into their apartment, talked with them at length and gave them permission to record the view from their apartment, but declined to be interviewed on camera, as Dawn was close to 9 mo. pregnant at the time, and felt it would be invasive of her personal privacy. CIT recorded conversation at the apartment anyway, (and their phone conversations), without Dawn and Dan’s knowledge or consent. In a comment thread at 911Blogger, Craig Ranke acknowledged this at least in part, saying, “Obviously while we video taped her POV with her consent after being invited to her home our discussion with her at the time was recorded by the video camera. And we most certainly did record our initial conversations on the phone with her as we do with EVERY phone call we make in our investigation.”
On 11/29/07, CIT published an entry on their forum titled Details of our Nov 2007 research trip to Arlington, more data proving a deception, and included this statement regarding their interview of Dawn: “Previously published witness Dawn Vignola who was coached by her former roomate [sic] Hugh Tim Timmerman on the radio as an eyewitness declined to be interviewed on camera but let us into her Pentagon City high rise apartment to get shots of her POV and the one of the best possible views of the the event from high up. Dawn swears that the plane was white and although with her panoramic view she got a great look at it approaching from a ways away, once it got near the Pentagon it was obscured by the building in front of her until a split second before the explosion. She says it hit the heliport. We know this isn’t true because there was no damage to the heliport so likely the explosion and fireball simply concealed what the plane really did.”
Following this, on 1/15/08, on CIT’s forum, Aldo Marquis posted an entry titled, Witnesses List Broken Down, No such thing as 104 “impact” witnesses, and under a sub-heading for witnesses categorized as, “Only saw plane (possibly from far away location), could not see pentagon, light poles or impact, either deduced or are lying OR do not directly mention or CONFIRM seeing an impact”, he listed Dawn Vignola as “(TALKED TO by CIT, claimed the plane was white seemed unsure of final position)”
1/21/08, ‘plan271’ confronted Craig and Aldo on the CIT forum regarding inaccurate/misleading statements about ‘coaching’, the view Dawn and Tim had of the plane, the Pentagon and the crash, and what they had said about it. Craig and Aldo defended making an issue out of Tim interjecting comments during Dawn’s TV interview, although in dialogue with plan271 they referred to it as Tim ‘helping’ Dawn. They also denied accusing Dawn and Tim of lying, but continued to insist they could not have seen what they said they saw:
Craig Ranke, 1/21/08: “As soon as we saw the view from their apartment I knew instantly that there is no way she would have been able to physically see an impact and could only have deduced it based off the explosion.”
Notice this was filmed wide angle, from the middle of the apartment (not from Dawn’s vantage point); this gives uncritical viewer’s the impression that Dawn and Tim could barely see the Pentagon, which is not true.
Dawn and Dan are aware of the allegations and misrepresentations regarding Dawn and Tim’s accounts. Dawn told me that after seeing the plane crash into the Pentagon, she felt it was important to alert the media, but hadn’t expected to be put on the air live, and had not wanted to attract attention. But now they’re part of the controversy over ‘what’ hit the Pentagon.* Dawn and Dan OK’d my coming to their apartment to record the view and spoke with me for over an hour, but due to their experience with CIT, they did not want the conversation recorded, and I didn’t. As Dawn explained in a January 2, 2010 email to Michael Wolsey, which she authorized for public release, “I am now hesitant to have a telephone conversation recorded or even to be interviewed since my experience has been that I cannot trust how it will loaded onto the Internet or whether others will be able to access it and then edit it, unjustly, for their own pursuits. The last time I trusted someone in this sort of matter, in particular Craig and Aldo, I found my words being distorted, taken out of context, and/or insinuations that I meant something other than what I said.” In the near future, Dawn and Dan will be launching a website that will host photos, video, Dawn’s personal account written down shortly after witnessing the Pentagon crash, and other related material, in an effort to set the record straight.
For more information on Citizen Investigation Team, see the articles written by Arabesque and Adam Larson.
*NOTE: This article was written to shed light on Dawn Vignola’s and Tim Timmerman’s witness accounts, and the manner in which CIT has conducted its investigation and reporting. I support independent research and investigation of 9/11, and there are many reasons to question the official version of events. I take issue with selective interpretation of evidence, absolute claims regarding events for which contradictory or incomplete evidence exists, and the promotion of speculation as fact.
Certainly, the US government should release all photos, video and documentation related to ‘what’ hit the Pentagon. By withholding evidence, the US government is diminishing its credibility, as well as fueling the controversy about ‘what’ hit, and this in turn has distracted from larger questions, including the questions about why the Pentagon was hit at all; about the reason there was no air defense over D.C. more than half an hour after the second WTC impact, close to an hour and a half after the first signs of hijacking, after a ‘summer of threat’ that included warnings from different nations about an impending attack on the US using planes, when the CIA, FBI, NSA and SOCOM had developed their own intelligence on the impending plot, when the FAA, NMCC, NORAD and NEADS have procedures that enable quick interception of aircraft and had known for decades of attempts to use aircraft as missiles, and when the NSC and White House were aware of “patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with preparations for hijackings or other types of attacks, including recent surveillance of federal buildings in New York.” (Aug 6 PDB)
The 9/11 Commission omitted and distorted facts that are part of the public record, including in its own and other government reports. The Complete 9/11 Timeline at HistoryCommons.org gives a comprehensive overview of what’s known about 9/11 and related entities and events, based on ‘mainstream’ sources. In addition, 9/11 Research, and the Journal of 9/11 Studies, document many unanswered questions and disturbing facts related to the total destruction of WTC 1, 2 & 7, and about NIST’s investigation of same. The big picture and thousands of details make the case that there needs to be a full, independent investigation of 9/11, before that day- or any other terrorist attack- are used again to justify increased funding for the military-industrial complex, foreign interventions, and draconian domestic security measures.
“Earlier this year I wrote a review of CIT’s “National Security Alert” in which I recommended that we all take a closer look at the eyewitness accounts supporting the “North path” of American Airlines Flight 77 at the Pentagon. CIT’s investigation includes detailed in-person interviews which appeared quite compelling. As AE911Truth’s focus is the destruction of three buildings at WTC, I didn’t perform an exhaustive review of CIT’s material and methods. My quick statement should not be portrayed as an endorsement of CIT’s conclusion that the airliner ‘flew over’ the Pentagon.”
Richard Gage, AIA, Architect
Founder of Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth
Sibel Edmonds has a story to tell. She went to work as a Turkish and Farsi translator for the FBI five days after 9/11. Part of her job was to translate and transcribe recordings of conversations between suspected Turkish intelligence agents and their American contacts. She was fired from the FBI in April 2002 after she raised concerns that one of the translators in her section was a member of a Turkish organization that was under investigation for bribing senior government officials and members of Congress, drug trafficking, illegal weapons sales, money laundering, and nuclear proliferation. She appealed her termination, but was more alarmed that no effort was being made to address the corruption that she had been monitoring.
A Department of Justice inspector general’s report called Edmonds’s allegations “credible,” “serious,” and “warrant[ing] a thorough and careful review by the FBI.” Ranking Senate Judiciary Committee members Pat Leahy (D-Vt.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) have backed her publicly. “60 Minutes” launched an investigation of her claims and found them believable. No one has ever disproved any of Edmonds’s revelations, which she says can be verified by FBI investigative files.
John Ashcroft’s Justice Department confirmed Edmonds’s veracity in a backhanded way by twice invoking the dubious State Secrets Privilege so she could not tell what she knows. The ACLU has called her “the most gagged person in the history of the United States of America.”
But on Aug. 8, she was finally able to testify under oath in a court case filed in Ohio and agreed to an interview with The American Conservative based on that testimony. What follows is her own account of what some consider the most incredible tale of corruption and influence peddling in recent times. As Sibel herself puts it, “If this were written up as a novel, no one would believe it.”
* * *
PHILIP GIRALDI: We were very interested to learn of your four-hour deposition in the case involving allegations that Congresswoman Jean Schmidt accepted money from the Turkish government in return for political favors. You provided many names and details for the first time on the record and swore an oath confirming that the deposition was true.
Basically, you map out a corruption scheme involving U.S. government employees and members of Congress and agents of foreign governments. These agents were able to obtain information that was either used directly by those foreign governments or sold to third parties, with the proceeds often used as bribes to breed further corruption. Let’s start with the first government official you identified, Marc Grossman, then the third highest-ranking official at the State Department.
SIBEL EDMONDS: During my work with the FBI, one of the major operational files that I was transcribing and translating started in late 1996 and continued until 2002, when I left the Bureau. Because the FBI had had no Turkish translators, these files were archived, but were considered to be very important operations. As part of the background, I was briefed about why these operations had been initiated and who the targets were.
Grossman became a person of interest early on in the investigative file while he was the U.S. ambassador to Turkey [1994-97], when he became personally involved with operatives both from the Turkish government and from suspected criminal groups. He also had suspicious contact with a number of official and non-official Israelis. Grossman was removed from Turkey short of tour during a scandal referred to as “Susurluk” by the media. It involved a number of high-level criminals as well as senior army and intelligence officers with whom he had been in contact.
Another individual who was working for Grossman, Air Force Major Douglas Dickerson, was also removed from Turkey and sent to Germany. After he and his Turkish wife Can returned to the U.S., he went to work for Douglas Feith and she was hired as an FBI Turkish translator. My complaints about her connection to Turkish lobbying groups led to my eventual firing.
Grossman and Dickerson had to leave the country because a big investigation had started in Turkey. Special prosecutors were appointed, and the case was headlined in England, Germany, Italy, and in some of the Balkan countries because the criminal groups were found to be active in all those places. A leading figure in the scandal, Mehmet Eymür, led a major paramilitary group for the Turkish intelligence service. To keep him from testifying, Eymür was sent by the Turkish government to the United States, where he worked for eight months as head of intelligence at the Turkish Embassy in Washington. He later became a U.S. citizen and now lives in McLean, Virginia. The central figure in this scandal was Abdullah Catli. In 1989, while “most wanted” by Interpol, he came to the U.S., was granted residency, and settled in Chicago, where he continued to conduct his operations until 1996.
This interview focuses on Dr. Legge’s new essay is titled What Hit the Pentagon? and is published in it’s latest version (v.5) at the Journal of 9-11 Studies. This essay’s leading hypothesis states that:
The major hypothesis is that various groups within the 9/11 truth movement are strongly asserting contradictory views and hence weakening the credibility of the movement as a whole. The damage is exacerbated if the supporters of these views not only disagree but also attack one another.
Dr. Legge also includes a minor hypothesis which says:
The minor hypothesis of the paper is that there is no scientific proof that a Boeing 757 did not hit the Pentagon.
Both hypotheses are examined as well as the idea that the “no plane at the Pentagon” theory is a booby trap for the entire movement. This idea states that if members of the 9-11 movement continue to promote this “no plane” theory as fact, that as our efforts become increasingly mainstream, we run the risk of the government producing a video of AA 77 actually hitting the Pentagon. We know the government has many videos which they have deliberately withheld from the public. What little information we have been given through official channels has only fueled the “no plane” argument. If a video were released tomorrow, it is suggested that this would thrust the entire movement into disarray as well as be used in the media to discredit us and irrevocably damage our credibility.
Also of importance in Dr. Legge’s essay is the section on The Precautionary Principle. We at Visibility 9-11 endorse this approach and caution listeners and visitors to do your homework and only present to the public that information which is solidly documented or backed up by scientific research.
Lastly, is a brief mention of the fine work of John Bursill in hosting 4 events in Australia and New Zealand during the month of November. The Hard Evidence Tour Down Under 2009 will feature my guest Dr. Legge as well as other solid and reputable members of the movement, and providing to the public only the best evidence we have. Thanks to John Bursill for pulling together such a fine line-up and for setting a great example for everyone to follow when it comes to bringing to the public only that information which can be solidly proven. If you want to help with the costs associated with these conferences, which are largely being funded by John himself, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, an apology from the National Geographic Channel
by Kevin Ryan August 22, 2009
Six days after September 11th, National Geographic Today (NGT) published one of the very first descriptions of the official myth for what happened to the World Trade Center (WTC) towers. This article exaggerated the little known facts about the fires in the towers, equated gas temperatures with steel temperatures, and detailed the long-surviving but incorrect Pancake Theory of “collapse.” Since that time, millions of people have been killed or injured in the 9/11 Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that originated from the official myth about 9/11.[2,3] Fortunately, this week it was announced that the NGT’s parent, the National Geographic Channel (NG Channel), is scheduled to broadcast a new television special covering the science behind the events of 9/11. We can only assume that this new show is meant to correct the record and apologize for the company’s false statements that contributed to the ongoing wars.
Some of the false statements made in that NGT article had to do with an early version of the Pancake Theory for destruction of the buildings. One claim was : “As the steel columns at the core of the Twin Towers collapsed, the floors they supported fell on each other like two stacks of pancakes.” Another statement was more authoritative, saying: “Once the structural support of the upper floors is removed, a few falling floors can bring down an entire building.” The Pancake Theory did not make sense to many people but was tested by my former employer, Underwriters Laboratories (UL), in August 2004. The tests showed that the floors in the WTC buildings could not have pancaked, even when exposed to higher temperatures for longer periods of time than was actually the case. Two years later, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) finally made clear that its “findings do not support the ‘pancake theory’ of collapse.”
To date, there have been no apologies from any of the media sources that, oftentimes arrogantly, promoted the Pancake Theory as a means to prevent further questioning of the WTC events. But we all know that “National Geographic” is different, right? Actually, some people are unaware that the NG Channel is majority controlled (67%) by Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation. The National Geographic Society, publisher of the well-known magazine, was a minority partner in creation of the NG Channel, but does not have editorial control over what is produced there. Instead, the News Corporation controls the programming much like it controls Fox News.
In the early article promoting the WTC myth, NGT described how “Jet fuel fires burn unusually hot, and engineers believe the fire may have led to temperatures as high as 1,600 degrees Celsius (2,900 degrees Fahrenheit).” But the truth is that the jet fuel fires at the WTC, which lasted a total of 79 seconds by one expert estimate, and lasted only a few minutes according to NIST, would have been cooler than the later fires fed by office furnishings alone. It has since been admitted by NIST that gas temperatures reached only “as high as 1,000 degrees Celsius.”
Want to hear about a mass case of faulty memory at an air show that directly correlates to the type of eyewitness testimony CIT has gathered? Even better, want to experience your own false memory? Grab a pen and paper and hit play!
“Eyewitness identification evidence is the leading cause of wrongful conviction in the United States. Of the more than 200 people exonerated by way of DNA evidence in the US, over 75% were wrongfully convicted on the basis of erroneous eyewitness identification evidence. In England, the Criminal Law Review Committee, writing in 1971, stated that cases of mistaken identification “constitute by far the greatest cause of actual or possible wrong convictions”. Yet despite substantial anecdotal and scientific support for the proposition that eyewitness testimony is often unreliable, it is held in high regard by jurors in criminal trials, even when ‘far outweighed by evidence of innocence.’ In the words of former US Supreme Court Justice William J. Brennan, there is “nothing more convincing [to a jury] than a live human being who takes the stand, points a finger at the defendant, and says ‘That’s the one!’” – Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eyewitness_identificationhttp://innocenceproject.org/understand/Eyewitness-Misidentification.php
Criminal Law Review Committee Eleventh Report, Cmnd 4991
Elizabeth Loftus, Eyewitness Evidence 9 (1979).
Watkins v. Souders, 449 U.S. 341, 352 (1982) (Brennan, J. dissenting).
Who could have placed explosives in the World Trade Center (WTC) towers? This is the second essay in a series that attempts to answer that question. The first installment began by considering the tenants that occupied the impact zones and the other floors that might have played a useful role in the demolition of the WTC towers.  The result was a picture of connections to organizations that had access to explosive materials and to the expertise required to use explosives. Additionally it was seen that, in the years preceding 9/11, the impact zone tenants had all made structural modifications to the areas where the airliners struck the buildings.
The management representatives of these tenant companies were seen to be secretive and powerful. Through these powerful people, the tenants were connected to organizations that benefited greatly from the 9/11 attacks, including the defense contractors Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, General Dynamics, Halliburton, and Science Applications International Corp (SAIC). The tenants also had strong connections to the Bush family and their corporate network, including Dresser Industries (now Halliburton) and UBS, and to Deutsche Bank and its subsidiaries, reported to have brokered the insider trading deals. There were also links between these tenant companies and the terrorist-financing Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI).
Throughout this review we should keep in mind that, according to 2009 estimates, the membership of Al Qaeda’s conspiracy network is estimated to be “as low as 200 or 300.”  Other reports suggest the group numbers in several thousands, and that Al Qaeda maintains a presence in at least forty different countries, not including the western countries that fear it the most. Including those western countries, however, it was reported in 1996 that Al Qaeda had an economic and financial establishment spanning more than thirteen countries.  It is clear, therefore, that Al Qaeda is typically described as a “vast conspiracy”. , [4,5]
Given the considerable evidence in support of the WTC demolition theory , , , , , , , [6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13], it is reasonable to ask if Al Qaeda’s reach allowed it to have unlimited and secretive access to the three WTC skyscrapers that were destroyed that day, which were among the most well-secured facilities in the world at the time. If Al Qaeda did not have such a reach, we must wonder if other powerful people within the US or other western countries, specifically those who did have unlimited access to the WTC buildings, were involved in the attacks.