By Mark Drolette
As yet another September 11 approaches, like it does so often this time of year, I need to address an issue that makes my true-blue patriotic blood boil. (Even though it’s red, really.) I’m talking about the 9/11 conspiracy nuts.
Their brand of lunacy is nothing new, of course. With the precise timing of, say, a controlled demolition, you can count on paranoid whackjobs to come crawling from deep within their tinfoil mines whenever some controversial event, like the Maine explosion or the Gulf of Tonkin incident, helps push a reluctant America into war, war we no doubt need as determined by those who are a lot cleverer than any of us -- you know, like weapons manufacturers, without whose unwavering dedication and ever-vigilant stockholders we’d all be sitting ducks for swarthy evildoers who seek to destroy the one or two freedoms we have left.
Wild-eyed Constitution-huggers hope you’ll believe that things like Iran/Contra, Watergate, the California energy crisis and the plan my co-worker and I were devising to, um, “borrow” those office laptops just prior to my (latest) dismissal, were all conspiracies. So, what if they were? Even a blind nut finds a squirrel once in a while! Or something.
As for this 9/11 nonsense, there I was recently, minding my own business at a wedding reception (for once, not one of mine) when a friend asked my opinion of WTC 7.
“Personally? I prefer WD-40,” I confided.
“I mean,” he replied, all factual-like, “World Trade Center building 7, a 47-story tall structure that collapsed the afternoon of 9/11.”
“So -- even if one swallows that flames doomed the twin towers, which I don’t, that still doesn’t explain why a third skyscraper, which wasn’t hit by a plane and had only small scattered fires in it, simply fell in upon itself. Quite remarkable, don’t you think, considering that before 9/11, a steel-frame building had never collapsed from fire, and none has since, but this once-ever event just happened to occur that very same day?”
Now I wished it was my reception. Even getting married again would’ve beat hearing this crazy talk.
I asked, “Do you have a point?” (Other than the one I envisioned on his head.) “There were already three reports done.”
“That is my point. All three -- from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the 9/11 Commission -- leave far too many questions unanswered.”
“Like what?” Doh! Sometimes I’m my own worst enemy.
“Like how could WTC 7 just fall down, and why was its collapse ignored altogether by the 9/11 Commission? Like why did the building’s owner say a decision had been made to ‘pull it,’ a controlled demolition term? Speaking of which, why did all three buildings that day come down in a manner resembling controlled demolition? What about all the explosions heard by those on the scene? How could each twin tower’s massive 47 core columns be, somehow, pulverized in seconds flat? Who placed all of the suspiciously high ‘put’ stock options just days before the attack? Why did the commission say that knowing who funded the operation was ‘of little practical significance?’ How miraculously convenient for investigators was it, as reported by the Associated Press, ‘that a passport belonging to one of the hijackers…was found on the street minutes after the plane he was aboard crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Center and before the New York landmark collapsed?’ How could one of the hijackers, described by an ex-employee of his flight school as someone who ‘could not fly at all,’ still manage to steer a commercial airliner into -- ”
“Whoa!” I exclaimed. “That’s way too many questions.”
“Exactly. All of which, and myriad more, need to be addressed by a new, truly impartial investigation.”
“Why?” I cried. “Because a few loonies say so? Whyn’t ya ask salt-of-the-earth, level-headed Americans what they think?”
“Well,” he said, “an August 2007 Zogby International poll showed half of them think Congress should investigate the Bush administration regarding 9/11, and two-thirds believe the commission should have examined WTC 7’s collapse.”
“Yeah, so what do they know? Ignorant hicks.”
Man, I couldn't believe it. My friend was so far gone, I'll bet he’d even convinced himself corporations run our government. Ooga-booga!
I’d heard enough. “Look,” I said evenly, “this is insane. For those of us who don’t believe in impossibilities, like, say, the Red Sox winning the World Series -- ”
“They’ve won it twice in the last four years.”
“Whatever.” My pal, the nitpicker. I tried again: “What I’m saying is that for America, September 11 was as serious as it gets. It was like, well -- like a new Pearl Harbor!”
“Funny you should mention that, considering that The Project for the New American Century, or PNAC, in a 90-page paper one year prior to 9/11, declared only a ‘new Pearl Harbor’ could rally Americans behind its unabashed call for total U.S. global dominance, a report that's been a blueprint for Bush administration actions ever since.”
“Come on!” I snorted. “Next you’ll be claiming PNAC members are or have been actual policymakers.”
“Members include Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz and Donald Rumsfeld.”
My goodness. Surely he wasn't suggesting our government had perpetrated 9/11?
“I’m not saying that at all,” he admitted. “I simply don’t know -- which is exactly why a real investigation is needed, to find out what the true story is. This much I can say, however: Anyone capable of lying a nation into war that’s killed over 1,000,000 innocents, is capable of anything.”
‘Lying??’ I should’ve known. Now he was saying Iraq was a conspiracy, too!
Don’t people ever learn?
Copyright © 2008 Mark Drolette. All rights reserved.