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'9/11 theories as factless as those of Bush'

SIX years since the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, conspiracy theories about the events of that day continue to abound. One of the better known films is the 2006 "documentary" Loose Change, a "final cut" of which was released recently.

The film claims that a missile, not a plane, crashed into the Pentagon, bombs were used to collapse the World Trade Centre towers and that United 93 landed at Cleveland Airport. If that's not fantastic enough, the filmmakers throw in a subplot about a gold heist from the basement of the World Trade Centre carried out in the fog of the attacks.

The "evidence" presented by the makers of Loose Change is laughable. Almost no credible experts are interviewed, and many of the documentary and news sources are quoted selectively or use inaccurate reports that were later corrected. Many other claims are simply untrue and are easily refuted by both official and unofficial sources.

Nevertheless, the conspiracy theorists are winning converts. A 2006 poll of 1010 Americans conducted by researchers from Ohio University found that just more than a third of respondents suspect that the US Government promoted the attacks or intentionally did nothing to prevent them. Sixteen per cent thought that explosives were used to bring down the World Trade Centre and 12 per cent believed that a cruise missile hit the Pentagon.

The appeal of conspiracy theories isn't limited to a lunatic fringe. An otherwise rational and intelligent liberal-left American academic I met at a conference two years ago, for example, confidently assured me that September 11 was perpetrated by her own government. She didn't really have any evidence, but she was convinced that the whole thing had been a plot. My questions and counter-arguments to her claims were met with the kind of pitying smile reserved for the extremely gullible.

While most of those pushing September 11 conspiracy theories like to style themselves as opposed to President George Bush, their cavalier disregard for evidence and rational explanation places them far closer to the Bush camp than they'd like to think.

The September 11 conspiracy theories are like a left-liberal version of intelligent design. Just as the adherents of intelligent design invoke a great designer whenever they come across some part of the natural world that they personally can't explain, the September 11 conspiracy theorists invoke the White House whenever they can't account for the events of that day

For example, the makers of Loose Change claim that explosions were used to collapse the twin towers. To support the claim, the filmmakers present footage of windows 20 and 30 floors below the impact site blowing out as the towers begin to collapse. They also play sound footage caught at the scene, in which small explosions can be heard.

More plausible explanations that the air pressure exerted by the weight of the collapsing towers blew out offices and windows below, causing smaller "explosions", for example are not considered.

Similarly, the apparently small size of the hole in the Pentagon's wall is used to prop up the claim that a missile hit the building. The filmmakers conveniently ignore the fact that many witnesses reported seeing the plane hit, whereas no one saw a missile.

In the world inhabited by conspiracy theorists, even the absence of evidence is itself turned into evidence of how large and how successful the cover-up has been.

In the same way that supporters of intelligent design lead away from an explanation of the natural world, the September 11 conspiracy theories lead us away from any deeper understanding of the attacks, into a fantasy world in which the US has no enemies except its own leaders.

In doing so, the conspiracy theorists absolve both the terrorists and those responsible for the misdeeds of US and Western foreign policy. The September 11 conspiracy theorists draw on, and perpetuate, a deeply ingrained view of "orientals" as passive, incapable of acting except as puppets of "our" will. But in denying Middle-Eastern terrorists' agency, the September 11 conspiracy theorists also deny their moral culpability for mass murder.

It also ignores more than 50 years of short-sighted Western foreign policy, replacing it with a few bad apples in the Bush Administration.

In this regard, the conspiracy theorists' logic is close to President Bush who, unable to contemplate that the attacks may have been a response to years of frequently disastrous foreign policy in the Middle East, chooses to believe that "the enemy hates us because of what we love. We love freedom."

There's no doubt that there are things we don't know about the events of September 11, 2001, and that we'll never know.

It's likely that information has been withheld for both good and bad reasons. But an effective response to the events of September 11, 2001, begins with a rejection of the false choice between both the fantasies of conspiracy theorists and the Bush White House.

Christopher Scanlon is a research associate of RMIT University's Globalism Institute.

http://www.theage.com.au/news/opinion/911-theories-as-factless-as-those-of-bush/2007/09/09/1189276541563.html


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Added: Sep-10-2007 
By: Interloper
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Tags: 9/11, therories, loose, change
Views: 10380 | Comments: 18 | Votes: 1 | Favorites: 2 | Shared: 0 | Updates: 0 | Times used in channels: 1
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  • Given that there was a huge governmental coverup and conspiracy and the people on all these planes were killed and put somewhere ( God and Bush only know where they are) and the governmant blew up the towers and a missile hit the Pentagon and whatever else the truthers dream up, I have a question that maybe they can answer. If the all mighty government supreme can do all this so good , why can't they get rid of a few stupid truthers???

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  • I've watched Loose Change and I found it a thought provoking documentary. I agree that much information concerning 911 is still with held and rightly so, until all investigations are complete. Until the whole truth comes out there will always be conspiricies - and so there should be.
    In my opinion (and only my opinion) it's not the events of the day - the why's and who's and how's - that should be scrutinized but the after events leading to the War on Terror and who exactly is benefitting from More..

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  • Loose Change sucks. The guy admits he originally wanted to make a fake documentary and made stuff up. Watch a real documentary.

    www.911eyewitness.com

    www.zeitgeistmovie.com

    www.911mysteries.com

    "How come none of these 'conspiracy theorists' have any backing from any authoritative sources, such as from professional architects or engineers?"

    www.ae911truth.org

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  • If it was an inside job, why is Osama confessing to it and taunting us every anniversary of 9/11?

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  • Great post ... plain truth.

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  • has anyone seen the foto with the second plane about to hit and it has something underneatjh the fuselage? definitely not a normal passenger aircraft! can anyone explain that?

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  • rich801: "If it was an inside job, why is Osama confessing to it and taunting us every anniversary of 9/11?"
    the confession you are talking about was another fake bin laden like the last video. the goverment said the 19 high jackers confessed to it how do the dead talk.

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  • there is more proof that it was a inside job than there is that it wasnt. the one that went down in pa.caused me some trouble wondering why there were never no plane parts or human remains removed from the crash site.

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  • bazeret: "has anyone seen the foto with the second plane about to hit and it has something underneatjh the fuselage? definitely not a normal passenger aircraft! can anyone explain that?"
    That's called an engine. The photo was taken from below and slightly to one side. The plane has two engines one on each wing. You see the shadow of the left engine. There, explaination given....Go to Wikipedia and look up "September 11, 2001 Attacks" and maybe you can find out all the other More..

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  • If the government was forthright and wanted to have an investigation there'd be no conspiracies. Less sympathy for the government and more sympathy for the theorists. The 9/11 Commission Report only happened because of the 9/11 Families organization pressuring the government. Even then, though, it was a whitewash because of the gov'ts refusal to testify or release documents pertaining to the attacks.

    The government is less equal in credibility than a bunch of theorists with varying ideas on wha More..

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  • There would be know stupid
    truthers out there if the goverment would be straight forward about all the facts and let real exsperts tell the people what happend without the goverment telling them what to say... What you say about that????? Oh and the 911 commision was hand picked and do you know who controls Wikipedia???? Learn your facts then you can think for yourself and not go by what you think is the truth, only facts are the truth not what people think..... ;-)

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  • Comment of user 'Ketamininja' has been deleted by author (after account deletion)!
  • oneeyedrat: "There would be know stupid
    truthers out there if the goverment would be straight forward about all the facts and let real exsperts tell the people what happend without the goverment telling them what to say... What you say about that????? Oh and the 911 commision was hand picked and do you know who controls Wikipedia???? Learn your facts then you can think for yourself and not go by what you think is the truth, only facts are the truth not what people think..... ;-)"
    S More..

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  • G.W. Bush comanded the planes to be flown into the towers.Bush also has a multi billion dollar laser beam system in the North Pole that randomly shoots holes in our ozone layer.Bush also built a giant turbine under the ocean floor under "el nino" to generate weather paterns.He is also a racist who used this generator system to cause hurricane katrina.All Americans r fat,drive big gas guzzeling cars,and have big houses that use all the worlds energy.Americans cant read a map,they r all More..

    Posted Sep-11-2007 By 

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  • My post reflected my own true feelings and was on topic. A liveleak user reported my post as spam. This is an abuse of the flag comment function.

    Posted Sep-13-2007 By 

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