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« Doubt and Disbelief in the Warren Report | Main | Five Best Books on the Conspiracy Mindset »

30 January 2008



"Shenon’s radically different account of the commission’s inner workings promises to achieve what none of the crackpot conspiracy theorists have managed to do so far: put the 9/11 Commission in disrepute."

Well, you're wrong about that, Max. The so-called "crackpots" have known the commission was a farce for years. Shenon apparently fills in some blanks, but I'll have to wait for the book before I can say if he's added anything significant or surprising to the discussion.

steve banyai

How do you say the fix is in? - “architect” responsible for demoting Richard Clarke


It is very dangerous to assume that members of the US government or military are incapable of carrying out potentially criminal acts because it's "too difficult" to keep secrets in Washington. Secrets are kept in Washington, and they are kept _extremely_ well given the efficient and overpowering secrecy classification system the government uses at will. However, what is even more disturbing is that members of this secrecy apparatus are able to insert people at the proper level (i.e. 9/11 commission director) who are able to further compartmentalize and sanitize information before it is given to the honest team of investigators.

Cover-ups in Washington are extremely, extremely easy to pull off given this abused secrecy and compartmentalization system. The fact that the 9/11 commission investigators didn't even bother to put witnesses under oath no doubt goes to the level of complicity and cooperation involved in this cover-up. Those that keep the secrets make others feel ashamed or guilty if they dare ask for actual backing evidence, or, if they dare make a logical request to put witnesses under oath. It is a system based on secrecy, and shame put onto those who demand the secrecy lifted. I quite frankly am sick of it and I hope we inherit a President that will put an end to this insanity.

david morrison

"Crackpot Conspiracy Theorists?" Max Holland, the reviewer seems to have a screw loose. He may have read this book but clearly is not familiar with the 9/11 "truth" movement and the smoking guns that are virtually definitive regarding involvement of the corporate and military elite as well as the mossad. this guy needs some reeducation.

Crackpot Conspiracy Theorist

This is just a limited hang out: Zelikow was a crony and covered up Bush administration incompetence. Oh, and they're almost out of power, so never mind that there was never any real investigation.

Crackpot Conspiracy Theorist

(Sorry about the link. The software they use,, decided to insert it of its own accord.)
And another thing, it's curious that Mr. Shenon, who covered the commission for the NYT comes out with the 'Uncensored History' version several years later. Did he deliver the 'censored' version earlier? He seems content to keep writing for the NYT.


cover up # 2 begins

this will attempt to corral people into a holding pen and stave off the growing impatience for truth. as well it will serve as a steering model for the inevitable new 911 investigation which wil delve into the approriate channels clear of the guilty parties.

Nik Green

Anybody who wants to look into the findings of the "9/11 Commission" will do no better than to read Professor David Ray Griffin's brilliant and incisive analysis "9/11 Commission: Omissions and Distortions". His findings are so utterly relevant because he uses material and data culled from government and mainstream media sources, to make his case. He proves without a shadow of a doubt that the Commission used straw-man arguments, circular logic, carefully cherry-picking the material that gelled with their pre-ordained conclusion, while omitting thousands of items of "difficult" or contrary material. The 9/11 Commission even told bald faced lies to make their case, one particularly blatant example being their description of the internal architecture of the Twin Towers. Griffin conclusively proves, without the slightest shadow of a doubt, that the "wacko conspiracy theory" label maps neatly onto the official U.S. Government version of what happened on 9/11.


Maybe the original 911 commission chairman Nobel Peace Prize laurate war criminal and mass murder Dr. Henry Kissinger would have done a better job?

At least a better job of covering his tracks.


Have you called Bob Kerrey or Karl Rove to confirm these accounts?

Bill in Chicago

I always thought Zelikow was a fink, especially after reading this:

Clearly not a man who has any regard whatsoever for the publics' right to know.

And for a bit more on one glaring omission from the 9/11 Commission Report, see "Part 4" here:


In response to Bob: this article is strictly about what Shenon's book reports, with little analysis or comment. Any remarks about the accuracy of The Commission are reserved for February's review.


And this is NEWS to you?

Bill in Chicago

Speaking of Bob Kerrey, this is the guy who admitted on CNN that the 9/11 Commission "took an oath" to white-wash their presentation of the facts in order to increase the chances that their wonderful recommendations would be enacted:

Clearly, the politicians and bureaucrats who made up the 9/11 Commission took it upon themselves to pursue two different agendas. The first was to investigate the events on and leading up to 9/11 and lay out the facts before the public. The second was to set forth a number of political and bureaucratic reforms to help prevent another terrorist major terrorist attack.

As Bob Kerrey publicly admitted, these two goals clearly came into conflict with each other. And I doubt it is mere happenstance that this conflict was resolved to the benefit of the Bush administration.

This reporting by Shenon sheds new light on just how deeply and insidiously the Commission's basic fact-finding work was comprised by Rove and company.


One of the most glaring omissions in the so-called "official" Report, is the complete absence of any mention, let alone discussion, of the WTC7 skyscraper collapse later in the day of the attack. WTC7 was the building which was not hit by a plane, but somehow managed a free-fall collapse anyway -- a historic first in modern office construction.

Even the government scientists cannot explain this to date, and the so-called "crackpots" who have undertaken scientific and engineering studies appear to make a case for, at a minimum, a forensic reinvestigation of the crime and the evidence.

In the meantime, recent revelations that the best evidence of the alleged CIA "interrogation" of suspects has been intentionally destroyed have surfaced, and this new book implies the White House was pulling far more strings tied to the Commission's chair than sworn to by Mr. Zelikow himself.

This is not merely political bankruptcy suited to cocktail party chit-chat -- this is criminality.

Philip J Dennany

Until the people require a real and open investigation into what really happened on Sep 11, 2001, there only more secracy and more wars. 9-11 was not just about oil, but the same One World Order that the Hitler regime saught. The underfunded 9-11 panel was not intended to do a real investigation, but mearly to confirm the non-sence the bush regime claimed. Zelicow was not the only "insider" on the Panel, and there were also other panel members that should not have been appointed to the Panel. Hamilton had prior experience in putting a former scandle down to avoid a sitting administration further embarrassing exposure - Iran/Contra. Then there is Kean - didn't he have a very big interest in the flow of Oil? There are others.

Edward Rynearson

There are some great clips of "underground radio" at my website including an interview with National Science Award Winner Lynn Margulis.

fred c dobbs

never believe anything until it has been officially denied.

keep watchin' the skies...


Let's not forget that Zelikow was an author of the PNAC document and wrote this in a 1998 essay called Catastrophic Terrorism:

"Like Pearl Harbor, the event would divide our past and future into a before and after. The United States might respond with draconian measures scaling back civil liberties, allowing wider surveillance of citizens, detention of suspects and use of deadly force. More violence could follow, either future terrorist attacks or U.S. counterattacks. Belatedly, Americans would judge their leaders negligent for not addressing terrorism more urgently.”

Zelikow had previously said that the war in Iraq was for Israel:

“Why would Iraq attack America or use nuclear weapons against us? I’ll tell you what I think the real threat (is) and actually has been since 1990 — it’s the threat against Israel,” Zelikow told a crowd at the University of Virginia on Sep. 10, 2002, speaking on a panel of foreign policy experts assessing the impact of 9/11 and the future of the war on the al-Qaeda terrorist organisation.

“And this is the threat that dare not speak its name, because the Europeans don’t care deeply about that threat, I will tell you frankly. And the American government doesn’t want to lean too hard on it rhetorically, because it is not a popular sell,” said Zelikow.

"While at Harvard he worked with Ernest May and Richard Neustadt on the use, and misuse, of history in policymaking. They observed, as Zelikow noted in his own words, that “contemporary” history is “defined functionally by those critical people and events that go into forming the public’s presumptions about its immediate past. The idea of ‘public presumption’,” he explained, “is akin to William McNeill’s notion of ‘public myth’ but without the negative implication sometimes invoked by the word ‘myth.’ Such presumptions are beliefs thought to be true (although not necessarily known to be true with certainty), and shared in common within the relevant political community.”

Or as a commentator says:

Is anybody asking the candidates for president whether they will convene a real 9/11 Commission?


"Shenon’s radically different account of the commission’s inner workings promises to achieve what none of the crackpot conspiracy theorists have managed to do so far: put the 9/11 Commission in disrepute."

LOL, the "crackpots" have had most of this down already, long ago.

hilfiger tout

I was an Air Force officer working in military intelligence during the early 90's. All of the following statements are entirely true to the point that I would be willing to testify to any of them under oath:

i) In the mid-1990's the U.S. Intelligence community composed and disseminated a classified message tagged with the highest levels of reliability stating that Islamic terrorists were making plans to fly commercial airlines into the World Trade Center.

ii) At least one intelligence officer flagged this message and saw that it was forwarded up the most appropriate chain of command.

iii) After the actual attacks, the same intelligence officer was able to contact the 9/11 commission to share this story.

iv) Following multiple conversations, the administrative aide for a Republican member of the 9/11 commission stopped accepting calls from this intelligence officer.

v) The final published 9/11 commission report included an explicit denial that the U.S. intelligence community had *any* prior indication of the notion that terrorists may fly commercial airlines into buildings.

After witnessing all these events as they happened, I have no reservation in saying that the 9/11 Commission was politically controlled and motivated from the outset. If I were a spouse, parent, child, or friend of anyone that died in the attacks of September 11th, I would feel nothing but contempt for this collection of political hacks and the nefarious group of war criminals which enabled and influenced them: the Bush Administration.

There should be no need for conspiracy theories when the simple facts are as incriminating.


Note how Mr. Hollands calls 9-11 truthers "crackpots" at the end. Did he not read his own article? This is what we have to contend with here. People just refuse to Get It.

Kucinich bobbled the ball badly. Instead of going forward with his announced 9-11 hearings in September, he tabled them so he could run for president. This was an ego-driven move, and now he's paying the price by having his very congressional seat threatened. had he stuck to the original plan he could have exposed the 9-11 conspiracy and brought down the Neocons and would have been a HERO. Instead, he clammed, big-time.

in the meantime, certainly no one in the media will ask the candidates about 9-11, but if any of you get the opportunity to, I'd probably say, "Senator Clinton, the evidence is insurmountable that the Neocons engineered 9-11. Will your first move as president be to appoint a special prosecutor to bring the real perpetrators of 9-11 to justice?"


@hilfiger tout 2:19AM

"ii) At least one intelligence officer flagged this message and saw that it was forwarded up the most appropriate chain of command."

Not only that. Members of the team who led the investigation that ended in the conviction of Ramzi Yousef spoke to the press during the last days of that trial. They said they were "very concerned" about information gathered in the Philippines regarding Ramzi's uncle. They said they suspected that "foreign-born terrorists" were already training at US flight schools, that some of them might be living on "secure US military bases," and that these terrorists intended to hijack airliners and fly them into the WTC, the Pentagon, and other targets that might include a nuclear plant. When I read that in the news, I realized that nothing but arrests would ease those officers' concerns. Worse yet, by describing the tactic, they invited copycats. Yet the team who sent Ramzi Yousef to prison for 240 years were precisely the people who most needed to know about the plot.
We're told that one hand didn't know what the other was doing, yet the information reached exactly the right people four years before the attacks. The risk of copycats could only be addressed by air patrols, so I knew that NORAD and FAA would begin training to intercept hijacked planes if they hadn't already.
As months passed with no further mention of the plot, I began to worry. If the media silence continued, many would believe the attacks had been a surprise. Around that time, the New York Times review of books noted the sinister implications of Brzezinski's "Grand Chessboard" book, which called five times for a domestic attack as a way to defeat democracy's objections to "imperial mobilization." He predicted we would invade Afghanistan first, then play hopscotch all over the Middle East in order to seize control of the world's remaining oil.
In 1999 I became absolutely convinced that the attacks on the WTC and Pentagon would occur on September 11, 2001. The news blackout on such a sensational story was hard to explain any other way. If the media simply published whatever would sell, that story about the plot would not have vanished from the headlines. I could only make sense of it by positing that there was a faction in the Clinton administration committed to a Bush dynasty, and that they had all the advantage of drawing on lessons learned from Iran-Contra. That gang's support of terror tactics abroad could not be kept offshore forever, and the people who wanted to enact a police state after OKC would be back with the next disaster. Prolonged serial invasions would require domestic oppression, which could be achieved by psychological means.
But I am not particularly smart or well informed, and apart from my friend's accurate prediction about a Bush dynasty, I had no clues that were not public knowledge. Yet I was able to use logic and strategy to predict the attacks two years in advance and pick the exact date as a way to test my hypothesis. It's not a hypothesis any more. Now it's a theory.


I came across some interesting information about Lee Hamilton, the Democratic vice chairman of the 9/11 panel, whose quotes have been used in several articles about the new book by Shenon to excuse Philip Zelikow’s actions on the 9/11 Commission. Hamilton said, among other statements supportive of Zelikow, that Zelikow “was totally dedicated to a full airing of the facts"? Really? Given what we now know, that’s patently false.

Lee Hamilton, who is held up as a character witness for Zelikow, was the man in charge of the Congressional investigation in 1992 into what was called the “October Surprise” – an alleged operation by members of Ronald Reagan’s election team to concoct a deal with the Iranians to delay releasing our embassy hostages until after the election campaign of 1980 and to thus deny President Carter the credit for their release. This was an act that one could easily argue was treasonous and it implicated a number of people in Reagan's inner circle including George H.W. Bush.

The investigation that Hamilton headed was winding down when numerous sources - including operatives from both French and Russian intelligence as well as former CIA member, Charles Cogan – came forward with new detailed evidence supporting the allegations. It was Mr. Hamilton who denied an extension of the deadline of the report in order to further investigate and substantiate these claims. All of this is detailed by journalist Robert Parry who was able to gain access to the boxes of evidence available to Hamiton’s panel (see this link for more information:

Quoting from Parry, “Hamilton’s task force then finished up work on a report that reached the opposite conclusion from what the new evidence indicated. The task force report claimed there was no credible evidence to support the long-standing allegations that the Reagan-Bush campaign had interfered with the 1980 hostage crisis.” Hamilton seems well suited to playing the role of the useful idiot. The only question is whether this is an example of incompetence or collusion.

But, thank God another conspiracy theory was nipped in the bud, huh? And we get another fine example of the U.S. media asleep at the switch. And the American people? Hell, they can’t handle the truth, evidently.

It’s probable that Shenon’s book has only scratched the surface of what went on in the 9/11 Commission. I predict that, if we are ever going to get to the bottom of the 9/11 attack, there will have to be another investigation. In fact, I just read that the “Jersey Girls” called for just that after hearing the latest revelations about collusion between Zelikow and the White House. Just like the infamous Warren Commission Report, what the 9/11 Commission has done is muddy the water and give copious amounts of fuel to conspiracy theories.

Meanwhile, Lee Hamilton’s background might be a fruitful area of exploration for you in conjunction with your on-going coverage of the 9/11 Commission. How is it that after being involved in what appears to be a whitewash of the October Surprise inquiry, Hamilton has the credentials and credibility to be co-chair of the 9/11 Commission? And, wouldn’t credible revelations about his past activity help undermine the credibility of the 9/11 Commission report and help bring the demand for a valid, impartial study of the 9/11 attack?

And, if you need more possible conspiracies to unravel, please take a look at the Sibel Edmonds case now experiencing a new round of attention on the web due to several recent articles in the Sunday Times of London. Seems the MSM here isn't interested in treason at the highest levels of our government. Here’s a recent link:

I enjoyed discovering your site today and look forward to spending more time here.

Esenthal Prave

I'm not sure what the hold-up is... maybe they have re-thought their stance on how this is going to actually make the company any money. Or perhaps their lawyers pointed out the liability of providing agents a platform to stick their feet in their mouth. Whatever it is, it's hardly something I'd claim as being "Well done".


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