Transcribed by A+ Recording & Transcribing*
167 West 21st Street @ Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10011 http://www.aplusnyc.com9/11 Citizens’ Commission – September 9, 2004
Symphony Space, New York, NY
Developed by 9/11 CitizensWatch & 911truth.org
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Press Conference page 2
Introduction – Program Overview page 14
Commissioners – Opening Statements page 21
Victim Family Statements page 29
[Q&A in most cases follows witness testimony]
Witness Jenna Orkin page 32
Staff Statement by John Judge page 40
Witness Barrie Zwicker page 61
Witness Michael Springmann page 73
Witness Paul Thompson page 80
Witness Michael Ruppert page 90
Witness Indira Singh page 125
Reads Sibel Edmonds letter to Kean page 126
Staff Statement by Nick Levis page 154
Staff Statement by Carolyn Betts page 160
Staff Statement by John Judge page 170
Final Q&A page 179
Thank you and Conclusion page 198
KYLE HENCE: . . . hearings or the hearings that were conducted by the 9/11 Commission. We have a group of commissioners that will be hearing testimony provided by witnesses, authors, experts, whistleblowers and I’d like to first start by saying that who is not here yet. Dr. Faiz Khan, um, is an emergency room doctor and a local imam. He’s an American Muslim of Indian Afghani extraction. He is an M.D., he’s an emergency physician and internist in New York City, on duty on 9/11, treated victims, later at Ground Zero with rescue teams. He’s an assistant imam at various New York City and Long Island mosques and is on the advisory board of 9/11 Truth.org.
We have three commissioners. He’s the first. Secondly we have, on the far end of the table here, Bob McIlvaine and Bob is a 9/11 victim family member. He lost his son Bobby, in the, on the 106th floor of the north tower. And then we have Cynthia McKinney. Cynthia is a former congresswoman, four terms – is that correct, Cynthia?
CHAIRWOMAN CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Five.
KYLE HENCE: Five terms, excuse me. And she’s just won her primary and she’s running to regain her seat in congress. And she will be chairing the hearings to day. Originally we had planned to have Cynthia co-chair with Catherine Austin Fitts, life long Republican and former Assistant Secretary of Housing in the first Bush administration.
00:00:04:28 Due to an emergency medical situation with a very close friend of hers she called late last night and said that she could not make it. So, she expressed her regret and that she does intend that are we to follow on this hearing with others and find financial and public support that she will be joining as a Republican member of the commission to co-chair it. She brings great expertis and, and insight to this process. So we miss her and we also miss Dr. Bob Bowman. Dr. Bob Bowman is a retired lieutenant colonel in the air force. He’s a Ph.D. and I believe he is a bishop in the United Catholic Church. His house was damaged in the recent hurricane so he’s not here.
00:01:00:09 However, we’re going to proceed anyway. So I’m going to turn it over briefly, very briefly to brief comments if they’d like to from Cynthia and Bob and then I’m going to introduce Michael Kane who represents New York 9/11 Truth.org and then we’ll turn it over to the witnesses very briefly just to say who they are and their affiliation and what they’ll be testifying to today. And then we’ll turn if over to members of the press who have questions for either our witnesses or the commissioners. So let me turn me it over to Cynthia McKinney, the chair of today’s 9/11 Citizens Commission. Cynthia.
00:01:42:02 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Thank you, Kyle. And, as soon as we can get out, cord unentangled we will allow Mr. McIlvaine to make his opening statement.
00:02:21:04 BOB McILVAINE: Hi, I’m Bob McIlvaine. I apologize for this short biography there. You know I’m, I’m at the end stage of work and I, I was a teacher. I’ve worked in a psychiatric unit, acute care facility. I was a teacher on the unit and I got laid off in 2003. And it’s amazing since then the journey I’ve been on, to find the truth. That’s, that’s the only thing I wanted out of life. I’m a parent – I’m sorry. It is a very difficult time of year.
00:02:55:27 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Don’t be sorry.
00:02:57:16 BOB McILVAINE: I, I, it’s – I’ve spoken over a hundred times in the last year and I just can, can never get through the beginning because it’s still without Bobby, my son. And a wonderful person, a graduate of Princeton, tremendous intellectual, unaffected human being yet he wanted to solve the world’s problems also. And the week before he died we had talked about the Taliban in Afghanistan because he had such a profound interest in what was happening there.
00:03:31:02 So he died on September 11th and I knew that the answers were so simple, that this was definitely wrong and we categorize it as a good against evil. But, I continued working. I never did find out how my son died. He was supposed to be on the 106th floor but I wasn’t able – we were able to find his body the following day and I just, for a year I spent trying to find out how, you know, the exact circumstance surrounding his death.
00:03:59:02 But anyway in February 2003 I got laid off and since then I’ve had the opportunity belonging to groups, going to the commission, reading all these wonderful people over here about what’s happened on September 11th and just trying to find the truth. That’s all I want. It’s not that I’m looking for punishment but I’ve been at the commissions and I, and I do want blame cause there’s a lot of people to blame. Nineteen who killed my son, they’re dead. But there’s so much that happened before then and the truth has to come out. And we were talking about early, this country will not survive if we don’t get the truth of this because it will never ever stop.
00:04:41:07 And we, the citizens in the United States and that’s my only quest. I’ll spend the rest of my life, as hard as this is – it’s opening up that wound every time I talk about it cause I have to talk about Bobby. And it’s difficult and that’s why not that many – it just wears at you, just wears you down. But the thing is it’s a powerful voice. So the only thing I want to do and that’s why I’m here is to maybe find more ways to get it out to the public. I think the rest of the world has heard the message but I don’t know, just – and more people in the United States are hearing the message. But hopefully everyone will know the truth of what’s happened on September 11th. Thanks.
00:05:26:26 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: A very powerful opening statement from Mr. McIlvaine, Commissioner McIlvaine who, sets the context for us as to why exactly we are here. And, the importance of the work that these good presenters, these panelists do. Every day that they wake up their work is about finding the truth. And the reason we are here is about truth.
00:05:58:17 So now I would just like to say that I’m finally happy to be on a commission where it’s okay to ask a lot of questions. Here we intend today to ask a lot of questions. Questions will be posed from the audience and questions will be posed from the, commissioners, Mr. McIlvaine and myself. Let me also mention the fact that Catherine Austin Fitts, my co-chair in these, in this hearing which we hope to expand to include more hearings, is not here, as has been explained by Kyle. But we also want to know that the work that she does and the important issues that she covers will not remain uncovered. That will just give us more opportunity and more need to do a follow up hearing.
00:07:03:20 Now let me also just say that Hurricane Frances stormed into Florida and in, to a lesser extent, into my home state of Georgia. And after she left we all have to clean up, we’re part of the clean up crew. Well, the Republicans stormed into New York City just a few days ago and you could consider the work that we’re about to do the clean up work, the most necessary clean up work. But in this space our minds are open, our facts are welcome, we have no political agenda other than the truth. The City of Atlanta where I come from, our symbol is resurgence, the Phoenix, because as you all know the City of Atlanta was burned by, General Sherman as he went through, um, through the south. And Atlanta rose again even sending President Jimmy Carter to the White House. We don’t take credit for Zell, however.
00:08:28:26 When Reconstruction took place in this country and George White, was the last African-American member of congress, he stood on the floor of the house as he was about the leave because of Jim Crow laws and he said, “This, Mr. Chairman, is perhaps the Negroes temporary farewell to the American Congress but let me say, Phoenix-like, he will rise again and come again some day.”
00:09:01:08 When I came to New York, in one of my previous visits, this was a – there’s a poster that was given to me – truth crushed to the ground shall rise again. And so now we are here to say that no organization, no administration, no forces, no powers that be are going to crush the truth of what happened on September 11th to the ground. [APPLAUSE] Because these panelists who are here, these researchers and those of you in the audience who spend all of your time trying to understand what happened so that we can put to rest some of the pain of my fellow commissioner Mr. McIlvaine. We will make sure that the truth will rise again. That’s why we’re here today. So thank you very much.
00:10:06:26 KYLE HENCE: Michael Kane from NY 9/11 Truth.org, very briefly.
00:10:14:24 MICHAEL KANE: Very briefly. Thank you, Kyle. I’m with 9/11 Truth. It’s a group that we had our founding here on September 11th, 2003 when we had an event at the Riverside Church where some of these distinguished panelists were there including Cynthia McKinney and Mike Ruppert, John Judge. It was a great event and off of that we decided this movement that was a researched-based movement that was widely on the internet, needed to get into the streets, needed to get to the people because widely the media was not doing the job that we thought it needed to do in order to get to what both commissioners so eloquently said we’re here for, the truth.
00:10:57:12 So ever since January 3rd, of 2004 of this year, we’ve been at the footprint of Ground Zero, handing out literature, holding up signs that say, “Support Victims Families, Stop the 9/11 Cover-Up,” other signs as well. And starting basically a dialogue with the people of New York as well as internationally because Ground Zero is affording people coming from all over the world to see it. That’s what we’ve been doing. I have to say the response has been overwhelmingly supportive. Some people disagree and debate but that’s great, that’s what it’s about.
00:11:30:12 It’s about freedom of assembly, freedom of speech and of and about citizens taking –
00:11:35:17 KYLE HENCE: It needs to be very brief.
00:11:36:08 MICHAEL KANE: Responsibility for what happens into this investigation of 9/11 because the 9/11 Commission has not done a sufficient job. So, on behalf of New York 9/11 Truth I thank everybody for coming here especially our panelists and the commissioners here. I just want to say there is one other commissioner that, he isn’t here right now, Dr. Faiz Khan. He was also at our September 11, 2003 event. He’s a great man and I’m very honored he’ll be here as well as a commissioner to hear this. So once again ’d like to thank everybody for coming on behalf of the New York 9/11 Truth.
00:12:12:04 KYLE HENCE: Thank, thank you, Michael. Now we’d like to move very quickly through the witnesses who are here. Obviously we’ll be hearing from each of these later. We want to get to your questions and we the public waiting outside. So, I’m going to turn if over first to Paul Thompson, then we have Barrie Zwicker, Michael Springmann, Michael Ruppert, John Judge, Jenna Orkin and Nicholas Levis. Paul Thompson, please.
00:12:36:04 PAUL THOMPSON: Hi, my name’s Paul. I’ve had something on the internet called the 9/11 Timeline for the past couple of years and I’m really glad to say that two days ago it was released as a book published by Harper Collins and I’m going to be speaking today on two topics. I’m going to be speaking on the foreign intelligence warnings warnings that came from foreign governments and generally aren’t that well known. And then the second thing is [the] potential role of Pakistan in the 9/11 attacks.
00:13:01:12 BARRIE ZWICKER: I’m Barrie Zwicker, a journalist and media critic, and I will touch on the intersection of history, 9/11 and the media in my remarks.
00:13:23:16 MIKE SPRINGMANN: I’m Mike Springmann. I’m a former foreign service officer. I’m currently an attorney in private practice in Washington, D.C. I’m going to be talking to you all today about the issuance of visas to terrorists by officials of the United States government.
00:13:39:09 MIKE RUPPERT: My name is Mike Ruppert. I am the publisher/editor from the “Wilderness Newsletter,” also the author of a new book which is going to print even as we speak today, called Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil. I will be testifying today about, a couple of important things, one of which is a series of unmentioned, unexplored war game live highjack exercise drills and other exercise drills, inserting false radar blips into radar screens on 9/11. I will present to the Commission today, and I’ve written confirmation that the joints chief was running a live fly exercise on 9/11, a highjack drill which confused fighter response. I will also discuss elements of perjury and how the attacks were facilitated by the United States government and particularly Vice President Cheney.
00:14:21:02 JOHN JUDGE: My name is John Judge. I’m one of the co-founders of 9/11 Citizens Watch. We have served as a monitor and watchdog over the commission process since it began, the 9/11 Commission. And I’m here today in the role of trying to help an independent commission frame some of the questions and contradictions and omissions of the, of the official report and the flawed recommendations that have come from those conclusions.
00:14:59:09 JENNA ORKIN: Jenna Orkin, chairperson of the World Trade Center Environmental Organization. I’ll be talking about the environmental disaster of 9/11 which was largely the fault of the White House and the EPA. The White House told the EPA to change it’s press releases, reassure New Yorkers for the sake of reopening Wall Street and sacrifice the health of thousands.
00:15:32:00 NICK LEVIS: my name is Nick Levis, I’m with 9/11 Truth.org. I am an author and a researcher. I’m going to be dealing with an overview of the, many, many bodies of evidence that have been gathered by 9/11 researchers and shared in the net, within the network, over the last three years. I’ll be presenting a kind of summary of the different bodies of evidence, and, and an evaluation of the possibilities for a future investigation.
00:16:15:02 [KYLE HENCE]: Yeah, just, just to clarify. Nick Levis, John Judge and Carolyn Betts are giving essentially what would amount to a staff statement. If some of you followed the 9/11 Commission hearings, there were staff statements presented to the commission and to the public at those hearings so they’ll serve that purpose. Carolyn Betts is a, a lawyer and she will be, we’ll present her, introduce her later on. Unfortunately Sibel Edmonds could not be here. We had planned to have video testimony of her but due to scheduling problems, that did not happen.
00:16:49:13 So, if, without any further ado let’s turn it over to questions from members of the press and, if we can – probably we’ll try to do this within the next 10 to 15 minutes so that we can get the public in here. They’re waiting out, they’ve been waiting outside. So, members of the press if you please. Could you please stand up. If, if you don’t mind we would like – cause we are recording this for the wider audience that are not here – there are microphones, if you would be wiling to come up and get on the microphone over on the opposite side of the room where [UNINTEL] is pointing, there’s a standing mike. You see that? Thank you so much.
00:17:27:19 You can address your question to either commissioners or anyone there on the panel.
00:17:34:18 MERCEDES TALEGO: Hi, my name is Mercedes [TALEGO (?)], I work of the newspaper, El Correo, from Spain. It seems to me that most of you here already have achieved a conclusion about what was the motivation of these covert acts of September 11th. I’d like to, I know it’s going to be discussed all day, but I’d like to get like a briefing by somebody who will tell me what were the motivation and how high up, the government was, is the responsibility of ignoring, the signs of September 11th. I’ve seen somebody in the witness panel have mentioned Dick Cheney.
00:10:19:08 KYLE HENCE: Mike?
00:18:20:09 MIKE RUPPERT: Okay, I’ll, I’ll speak for myself on this. There is some degree of consensus beginning to appear on the world scene. Not everybody necessarily agrees with it but for me, I think the overriding, the imperative with regard to a motive for the attacks of 9/11 was the fact that very clearly the world is beginning to encounter diminishing supplies of hydrocarbon energy in a situation called peak oil. In fact where the planet, I believe, is, plus or minus one year away from the all time historical peak of production even as demand is still soaring and we are at a point now where global oil production will diminish irrevocably, and unalterably into the history, which will be probably one of the most epochal changes in human history.
00:11:03:20 There’s an abundant record, which I present in my book, Crossing the Rubicon showing that Vice President Cheney through his energy task force, an even before his entrance into in the White House was well aware of the situation called peak oil. The energy supplies were foremost of the Bush administration’s agent and that the pretext in the form of terror attack historically consistent with Operation Northwoods, which we’ll talk about today I’m sure, with the attacks on Pearl Harbor. We needed a pretext to secure by force the world’s hydrocarbon energy supplies and to pursue them around the world, wherever, they could be found. And I’ll be talking about that at some length in my testimony today and I hope I’ll, I’ll be asked about it.
00:11:45:05 Others may disagree about that but clearly what the evidence we’ve seen with the world economy today, and what has been happening to oil supplies since 9/11, as we predicted in my newsletter, that the world is clearly behaving as if that was the case.
00:20:00:25 KYLE HENCE: Okay, um – Bob.
00:20:04:21 BOB McILVAINE: Yeah, I do a lot of speaking and I like to go to high schools and, if I can, to colleges also – and, again, I’m not an authority on anything – but it’s very important to me that especially high school kids understand that this isn’t a one shot deal. We look at Bush and say that the horrors of the world [UNINTEL] revolve around Bush and I really try to trace the foreign policy of the United States, you know, for the last 50, 60 years after World War, or 50 years after World War I [sic] and in connection with oil and the idea, you know, that we’re out there for the good of democracy and human rights and equality and things of this sort but it’s more about natural resources. But just try to connect the dots and to explain to people my son’s murder isn’t just a one day affair and then it becomes good and evil. But it’s part of the big tapestry, the history that we’re such an immense part of.
00:21:00:17 KYLE HENCE: [UNINTEL] can we move onto another question, a member of the press?
00:21:04:22 ANTHONY LAPPÉ: Hi, Anthony Lappé from GNN.TV. How you guys doing today? It’s a question for, former Congresswoman McKinney. You may be back in office soon. Are you worried that participating in a panel like this is a, is a dangerous, another dangerous move. And are you going to be continuing to do some of this work if and when you get back into Congress.
00:21:33:11 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Anthony, I can, I, I’m not surprised that you would ask me that question. Is participating on a panel who’s purpose is to discover the truth about an American tragedy, is that, is such participation dangerous? It shouldn’t be. This is still America. And, will I continue to do the work that I was doing before I left Congress? I am – there’s not way I can stop pursuing the truth. And in fact, if anything the July 20th Democratic primary which put me in a position to return to Congress actually was a, I would say a referendum on pursuit of the truth.
00:22:33:09 And so it would be a betrayal to my constituents and to all of the supporters who have supported me during these two years that I have not been in Congress for me to all of a sudden become a different person. So I’m not going to become a different person. What you see, basically, is what you get. And, I think the voters understood that. All of the powers that be understand that and most importantly the activists can rest assured that, we will pursue inside the halls of Congress these questions now as they once were being pursued.
00:23:17:02 ANTHONY LAPPÉ: Thank you.
00:23:21:11 KYLE HENCE: Okay, we’re going to need to call this to an end for now because they’ve got, we’re behind schedule and if you can try to catch up with the various witnesses cause they don’t all go on at once. So if you’re a member of the press and have further questions, please try to catch them when you can. And, we’ll be posting their statement on the 9/11 Citizens Watch.org site. We’ll also be making a transcript available of the entire proceedings today, all six hours. And those of you who are going to leave, you – I believe WBAI will be covering the portion of the hearings that run from 3:00 to 5:00. So whoever’s on the schedule from 3:00 to 5:00. So, thank you very much for your attention. So we’ll take a break for about 10 minutes and then we will start the program. Thank you.
[END OF PART 1]
00:24:22:03 KYLE HENCE: Thank you Michael Kane. Well welcome. This is a truly historic day and this is a truly, we believe, historic process we’re beginning. I would like to apologize. I see some of you waving yourselves with paper or magazines. Apologize for the temperature and the uncomfortable humidity in the room. I was told that this morning the AC was working fine, I think we’re starting to get some air moving for you. And so as a result of the air conditioning stopping working it’s a little hot so please bear with us. Hopefully the, the technicians or the folks who are, the repairmen are here and, and work.
00:25:06:21 So I’m going to basically – again, my name is Kyle Hence, I’m a co-founder of 9/11 CitizensWatch, a Watch Dog Group based in D.C. and New York. And I’m going to read a brief introductory statement and the format is very much like a congressional hearing. We have commissioners here that I’ll be introducing. We have witnesses providing testimony, whistleblowers, experts, authors and so on. They will come forward, they’ll give a 15 minute presentation, 10, 15 minutes, sometimes with PowerPoint or video. And then the commissioners will pose questions to the witness that be sworn in. Some of you who maybe attended the earlier 9/11 Commission’s hearings noticed that they weren’t swearing in witnesses and that was, they only started because we made some noise about it and the press raised some questions to Chairman Kean.
00:26:01:18 So, let me begin my formal remarks. Ladies and Gentleman, New Yorkers, fellow Americans and concerned citizens from around the world. Welcome to the first hearings of the 9/11 Citizens Commission, who some have dubbed the Omission Hearings. Thank you for coming to join our commission in hearing, our commissioners in hearing testimony of witnesses we have assembled today. We are, we’re present here today to say that we the people will be heard and that neither courageous whistleblowers nor unflinching investigative journalists will be silenced or intimidated by the pomp and circumstance that of a deeply compromised 9/11 Commission, the one commissioned by our government after much, much pressure was put on by family members and other concerned citizens.
00:26:54:21 The Bush administration obstructed and did not want to even launch an investigation into the attacks. And when they did the Congress only allotted $3 million until, again, public pressure, family member pressure raised the budget and eventually they were granted $15 million. Which is still a pittance compared to what they investigated, invested in the, the Challenger shuttle disaster. I think they spent $50 million. Moving on.
00:27:21:21 We are here to exercise our god – in the broadest, most inclu-, most inclusive sense – given right of assembly, of free speech and ultimately to demand redress of grievances relative to the events of September 11th and the actions taken by the U.S. government in our names in the wake of the September 11th attacks. Three years ago the world was transfixed when in the course of an hour and twenty minutes four aircraft were employed as weapons to murder nearly 3,000 people from scores of countries around the world.
00:27:55:25 We must ask ourselves and our leaders how we can maintain that ours is a government of, by and for a free people when a panel commissioned to investigate 9/11 and funded with just $15 million does not answer a majority of the questions posed by victim family members and others. And I can confirm, for you that after speaking with one of the leaders of the victim family groups, that indeed as they’ve combed through their nearly 400 questions and looked at the report they have found thus far, and they haven’t gone through all their questions, but the majority of them have not been addressed.
00:28:33:27 How can we champion the great principles of our founders when nearly 400 questions were posed by the families over the course of two years and nowhere were they directly answered by a government appointed panel, distinguished panel. This, after fighting the administration who do not want to investigate and lobby hard on capital hill. This is an outrage and all the enacted recommendations, or hoped to be enacted, the hopeful, those who hope to enact the recommendations put forward by the commission in the world won’t change the reality that the government failed to provide a full accounting of all the facts and circumstances.
The commission was charged with a dual mandate: to provide recommendations to make us safe on one hand but to also provide us a full accounting of the facts and circumstances. We are here to raise questions and doubt about their accounting of the events and the facts and circumstances surrounding the attacks. These are facts and circumstances that Bob McIlvaine, one our commissioners, wants to have answers to, wants to be further scrutinized for their wives, husbands, brothers, sisters, mothers and father, the victim family members, they perished on 9/11. New York’s Finest and Bravest and our fellow citizens, many of whom still to this day have not been granted proper burial.
We are here to right this wrong, this travesty of justice and begin to redress the bodies of evidence too long ignored, that will help us to begin to answer the questions and help place pressure on the government, the important places in government, to reopen the investigation, to answer the questions and the issues that the 9/11 Commission has either ignored or failed to address completely.
00:30:19:08 It is vitally important to note that note only hasn’t the alleged primary culprit not been brought to justice for, but neither has a single co-conspirator been successfully prosecuted in nearly three years since 9/11. Not one single co-conspirator has been successfully brought to justice through out court system and charged with complicity in 9/11. And yet in the wake of the attacks not a single government official in a position of responsibility at the time of 9/11 has been held accountable in any way. In fact, what you have instead is people in positions of responsibility getting promotions and rewards in the wake of the attacks.
00:31:03:03 We have an intense and full program of hearings planned today. In six hours we cannot possibly begin to address everything that has been brought forward by different researchers, investigative journalists, family member on it. But we can begin to touch upon that which has not been addressed by the Kean Commission. We can begin to frame the key questions and the body of evidence that suggests perhaps a wider circle of complicity.
00:31:28:16 A Zogby poll commissioned by 9/11 Citizens Watch and 9/11 Truth.org found that nearly 50 percent, nearly half of New Yorkers polled, believed that the administration, or some leaders with this particular wording, had specific knowledge of an attack imminent on or around September 11th and consciously failed – these were the words in the question – to take action. Sixty-six percent of those polled in New York City believed that the investigation should be reopened by Congress or by the Attorney General of New York State, Elliot Spitzer.
00:32:05:28 Today’s – there are many events upcoming on 9/11, this coming Saturday, here in New York City at the Hammerstein Ballroom, the Manhattan Center. From 8:00 to 10:30, they’ll [be] examining some of the questions we won’t be. There are events in Santa Barbara, Washington, D.C., sponsored by Pacifica, in San Francisco sponsored by 9/11 Truth.org and in other cities across the country and around the world. We’re scheduled to go to 7:00 p.m.; we hope to have time for your questions; we’ll be passing around four by six cards later. And this evening, as Michael mentioned, we have 9/11 Truth.org – it’s an umbrella organization that is trying to bring forward to the broader audience the key questions and to direct the public to bodies of evidence, documentaries, books, etc. that begin to open up a broader discussion about what happened on September 11th. They, with 9/11 Truth, New York 9/11 Truth.org, are sponsoring a world premiere of a documentary by Barrie Zwicker who is here as a witness and who will also be answering questions during Q&A session tonight. There are two showings, 8:00 p.m. and 9:30.
00:33:17:12 We’ll have a 20 minute break around 3:00 p.m. and what I’d like to do now before I introduce our commissioners briefly for their opening statements, I’d like to ask that we observe a moment of silence and that for those who perished on 9/11 and in the wars and violence since. So let us proceed with a moment of silence and prayer if you wish before we begin our first hearing. And I’d like to begin with these words: Not by power, not by money but by this, by thy spirit.
00:34:15:05 KYLE HENCE: Thank you. A couple of changes to our panel, Dr. Bob Bowman had his house damaged by the hurricane. He was to be one of our commissioners. And Catherine Austin Fitts, a former official with the first Bush administration, was to join Cynthia McKinney to co-chair today’s hearings. And we hope to have her back should we do follow on hearings from this event. She’s an extraordinary resource and can help shed light on the economic systems underlying much of the malaise that we see in our world today.
00:34:54:26 So let me move on and introduce the commissioners that we do have here. We have Dr. Faiz Khan at the far end of the table. He’s an American Muslim of Indian and Afghani descent or extraction. He is a doctor, an M.D., emergency physician and internist here in New York City. On 9/11 he was on duty and treated victims at a triage center and worked with rescue teams. He’s active in the peace movement. He’s a lecturer and writer on various issues related to Islam. He is an assistant imam at various New York and Long Island mosques and was a delegate on the Baghdad peace belt pilgrimage that went to Baghdad the week before the war began.
00:35:45:12 And then on, Bob McIlvaine, um, very briefly and he can say a little bit more if he’d like. With Bob, we’re honored to have Bob here on the panel. As some of you, most of you are probably aware there was not a family member on the 9/11 Commission. At one point it was discussed, but in the end, it was made up primarily of conflicted insiders from inside the Beltway. So Bob McIlvaine lost his son Bob, Bobby, who worked, he was working and presenting on a business day in the north tower.
00:36:20:09 And then we have our, our chair, today’s chair, future co-chair, of today’s hearings, Cynthia McKinney. And much of you, I’m sure most of you are familiar with, with her extraordinary record in Congress, standing up, a voice of the people. Someone who – [as] a five term Congresswoman – who recently won her primary and is working to regain her seat. [APPLAUSE] Yes, to regain her seat in Congress.
00:37:02:13 So let me turn if over to Cynthia and the commissioners and then after they’ve made brief introductory remarks we’re going to show a portion of, an edited portion, of testimony provided by Mindy Kleinberg of the 9/11 Family Steering Committee, that she made before the 9/11 Commission – on the first day of hearings, March 31st of last year, down at the old, the Customs House, Manhattan. So, let me turn it over to Cynthia. Cynthia, please.
00:37:35:02 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Thank you, Kyle. I would like to take this opportunity to thank 9/11 Truth and Citizens Watch for having this important hearing today. I’d like to also take the time to thank Commissioner Khan, as well as Commissioner McIlvaine for agreeing to serve with me on this very important commission. I would also like to mention another commissioner who couldn’t be with us today but whose commitment we all know and that is Catherine Austin Fitts.
00:38:07:08 Today is just the beginning. Your support can ensure that we follow up with more of these hearings to flesh out all the remaining questions the experts and family members know have not been fully addressed by the official 9/11 commission or the Bush administration. Of course, please forgive me, but I cannot be in the City of New York and not say thank you, New York City. [APPLAUSE] But this time not just for supporting me but for also not being bamboozled into submission by questionable insider, backroom characters who want to take away our freedoms, [APPLAUSE] send out children off to war and rip and shreds the social safety net for the American people.
00:39:00:16 And, of course, I can’t say thank you to New York City without also saying thank you to Georgia’s Fourth Congressional District Democratic voters and our supporters of truth all over our country, who put me in a position to return to Congress as Congress’ sojourner for truth. [APPLAUSE] A special thanks to the small coterie of friends who kept my questions relevant by their own deep understanding of the fundamental danger posed by today, day’s forces known and unknown, operating in our name at this time. Those thanks especially include the dedicated leaders of the 9/11 Truth movement whose work has spawned similar gatherings this week all over our country.
00:39:51:28 For me personally it means the thousands of people I’ve had the opportunity to meet, who are not just against everything, but who are in the deepest sense pro America. Activists like our hosts today, Kyle Hence, John Judge, Nicholas Levis, Michael Kane, the panelists, Ms. Singh, Mr. Ruppert, Mr. Springmann, Mr. Thompson, as well as my fellow commissioners. And finally a word of thanks to the $20 million man whose movie came out literally just days before my election. In the face of stinging criticism about the impact that his film might have had on my election, Michael Moore responded and I quote: “I’m glad Cynthia McKinney’s coming back to Congress and I’m glad if my movie helped make that happen. [APPLAUSE] Even all those thank yous don’t do justice to you, the activist community. But enough with that because now we’ve got work to do.
00:41:04:21 Finally I’m serving on a commission where it’s alright to ask questions. We have allotted time at the conclusion of the panelist presentations for audience questions. Now I know that I intend to ask a whole bunch of questions and I hope you do too. Because we’ve go the experts here who have studied this tragedy and now it’s details backward and forward. Hurricane Frances stormed into Florida and, to a lesser extent my state of Georgia, and left the cleanup to us. Well the Republican party stormed into New York City, their words dripping with the politicization of an American tragedy and they left the cleanup to us.
00:41:55:10 Now I don’t mind being part of cleanup crew. But here we operate under a different set of rules. First, our minds in this place are open, facts are welcome in this place; we have no political agenda other than the truth. My birth city of Atlanta has as it’s symbol, resurgence. The phoenix because out of General Sherman’s Civil War ashes, that jewel of the south rose again and even sent a plain spoken man like Jimmy Carter to the White House. We take no credit for Zell. [LAUGHTER]
00:42:36:09 When reconstruction was truly over and all the civil rights gain from the Civic War had been wiped out through Jim Crow legislation in the south, Representative George White, the last black man serving in the United States Congress on his way out because those Jim Crow laws had made it to North Carolina too, rose on the floor of the house in 1901 and said, “This Mr. Chairman is perhaps the negroes temporary farewell to the American congress. But let me say, phoenix like, he will rise up some day and come again.” And with the United States congress was all white for two, for one generation.
00:43:45:12 On one of my previous trips to New York City I was given a beautiful poster entitled, “Truth Crushed to the Ground Will Rise Again.” Today and into tonight we will explore the truth of 9/11, the truth about America’s tragedy belongs to all of us and can only crushed to the ground for so long. The work of this commissioner, our expert panelists and our audience will ensure that the truth of 911 will rise one day. I look forward to the intense learning bout to take place during these presentations of our esteemed panelists. And now we were hear from our Commissioner, Mr. McIlvaine, Commissioner McIlvaine and Commissioner Khan.
00:44:21:23 BOB McILVAINE: My name’s Bob McIlvaine, I’m the rural Pennsylvania. I lost my son – when I did this for the press I wasn’t able to get through it but maybe the second time around. I lost my son at Merrill Lynch – can’t do it. And it’s not just because it’s 9/11, you know, it’s – everywhere I speak it happens. But it brings a cold reality to the whole thing. There’s a lot of people dying in the world. We’re talking horrible deaths. The death of those people down there were horrible. To this day, I just had a discussion – I’m sorry I forget your name – but I’m still trying to find out what happened to him. I want to know to that last second what happened to him. Every parent wants to know that. I’ve run into a lot of parents, you know, my neighbor that have lost children and you just want to know that last second what horror that your child was going through.
00:45:27:22 And I think about it every day and it rips me apart. And to do this truly is a double edged sword because I really would – many days I want to go to an island and just sit there the rest of my life, ignore the rest of the world and as my son said yesterday, he said, “Why don’t you be happy, try to be happy.” Well it’s impossible to be happy. I have happy moments. The suffering isn’t as bad but the t-, pain is still very immense. It’s always there. And when you do something like that it brings you right back to day one. Day one I have every day of my life. I’ve made that choice, it’s been a wonderful journey.
00:46:11:03 And I do it for my son because he really believed that knowledge is power. And if anything you get out of this, it’s knowledge. And you have to take it out to the people, out to the American public. That’s the only way we can do this. The people of this country must realize what the truth is. And history is replete with so many lies and they continue day in and day out. And it’s just not this Bush administration, it’s every administration. [APPLAUSE]
00:46:44:17 And trust me, I’m not an, I’m not an authority up here. All these other people are great authorities. I’m – this is a learning process for me. I’ve made every commission meeting, I’ve been involved with the widows. I mean they’ve done tremendous work. What they’ve done, the fact that this is out in the public, it would have been an impossibility. Just don’t forget George Bush never wanted this commission. We would have had Kissinger as the head of the commission if it wasn’t for the widows. They went to him and said to him, “Didn’t you have some dealings with the bin Ladens in your past,” and with that he quit the commission. Yet we would have had him.
00:47:21:24 So it’s, it’s just so important that you take a lot out of this and take it out there onto the streets because I just deal with the people, deal with my relatives, deal with the people in my neighborhood, they still look at it and say well I still want to be safe. No one wants to lose their life and they look at the president and say well he’s out protector, our military is our protector.
[CALL FROM AUDIENCE]
00:47:47:19 Well, but the thing is this is the way it is. If you’re raised in a family and you have three kids, all you want to know is you’re protected. And I’m not saying that this is right, I’m just saying is it’s so difficult to get to people to explain to them. Where do I start? Do I start in Iran in ’53 or do I go into the Congo in ’60?
00:48:07:00 WOMAN: Right.
00:48:07:19 BOB McILVAINE: It’s a constant thing but it’s an education. And I don’t know, I think there’s a lot of people it’s a lost cause in this country. That’s why we have to get out to the students of the world and they have to understand where this all comes from. It’s connecting the dots. My son didn’t die just because George Bush wasn’t inattentive. It has a lot to do with Clinton, it has a lot to do with Bush, it goes all the way back to Eisenhower. Okay, so I just –
00:48:35:24 And this is the legacy of my son. If I would have died in those towers he’d be doing the same thing. He wants to know the truth, I want to know the truth. And I have found myself in the position – I get invited to this just because I’m a parent. It brings a lot of power to me. And I’ve had the opportunity to speak around the world. Although I won’t fly I do a lot of TV and, and radio but I haven’t flown yet. but it, it’s been a great experience for me because I have, I’m an educator. I was a teacher most of my life. And to me it’s all education and that’s what it has to be. We just constantly have to educate, educate, educate. Then maybe people will start participating and that to me is the solution. Okay, thank you very much.
00:49:42:03 FAIZ KHAN: Good afternoon.
00:49:43:17 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Good afternoon.
0:49:44:21 FAIZ KHAN: It’s a privilege and an honor for me again to share the platform with Cynthia McKinney. It’s been an honor for me to be asked to be a commissioner on this panel. The importance of 9/11 truth cannot be overemphasized. It is impossible to overemphasize the issue of 9/11 truth. Now the attacks themselves and the false explanations, both have been a springboard not only to further criminal agendas by those who wield military and political influence in their bid to maintain a one way flow of cash and natural resources and labor.
00:50:28:18 And notice I don’t make any mention of nation states when I comes to these deep political issues because a lot of the deep politics transcends the dialectic of nation states. We have to think beyond nation states sometimes. Our foreign policy to some extent may be executed through Washington but it often does not originate there. It’s very important for people to understand that when they probe these issues.
00:50:53:06 Now the false explanations that have been put forth by the mainstream media has in a very powerful way intellectually arrested many of, not only the American public opinion but also many peace activists. Their opinions have been arrested. And using 9/11 as a platform for peace activism, while not addressing, while not addressing 9/11 truth, is just purely on the realm of logic completely absurd. The whole Muslims gone bad plus overwhelmed or incompetent intelligence equals 9/11, that just doesn’t cut it anymore for anyone with the slightest amount of mental capacity to read the facts as you’re going to have them presented to you today.
00:51:44:13 But it’s not just presenting the facts. It’s not even digesting the facts. As the evidence grows we need to be psychologically strong enough to face the implications like Bob just mentioned about how deep this can go. As the evidence grows we have to be completely dissatisfied and for-, forgive me for using medical lingo, I can’t help it, but with incomplete diagnoses, with partial truths or with just treating or addressing symptoms without trying to root out root causes.
00:52:12:23 Now any activist working for peace, anyone who claims to be a truth seeker has to be honest. If you’re not going to be honest then you might as well just get out of the game. At some point everyone has to ask themselves well: Am I more committed to my role as a spokesperson or am I more in love with my soapbox than I am with seeking truth? Am I more satisfied with occupying a niche in the activist scene than I am with seeking the truth? And as a physician I often ask myself am I just satisfied treating symptoms and not trying to get at the cure?
00:52:47:09 I just want to draw an analogy for you to really just bring the point home. Say you were a patient of mine and you came to me with a cough, some malaise, not feeling well. I’d advise some rest, may be some steam inhalation, maybe take a check x-ray. On the chest x-ray I might happen to see a little nodule in your lung. But you continue to hack away, come back days later I hear some wheezing. Maybe it’s allergy season. I give you a little inhaler – how many asthmatics are out there, use their inhalers and, and some anti-allergy medicine.
00:53:17:26 Days later you come back, you’re still hacking, you’re still coughing . . . except this time you’re brining up phlegm. Well then I’ll give you a very strong cough suppressant, something that numbs the entire upper airways so you don’t really feel the need to cough. And after a while you’re better and you come back again, coughing, bring up more phlegm, this time with fevers and chills. Aha, pneumonia, I’ll diagnose as pneumonia, give you some antibiotics, give you some fluids and you’re better for a while and then again you come back.
00:53:47:19 This time you’re losing weight, you’re dehydrated, the fevers continue. Well no problem, I’ll hospitalize you, give you some IV fluids, I can correct the dehydration, give you some nutrition, we can even give nutrition through the IV if you’re not hungry. A week later your cough becomes bloody; first a little bit of blood tinged mucus the gobs and gobs of blood. Well that’s okay, I’ll transfuse you. I’ll just give you blood back through your IV, no problem. Then the nausea, the vomiting, the blurry vision, you can’t walk right, the lymph nodes in your neck are golf ball sized. What’s all of this, at this point you’re asking. Well it’s what called a peroneal plastic syndrome from cancer that spreads.
00:54:33:25 Now how absurd is it, it is to just treat symptoms and not diagnose root causes. How absurd it is to treat symptoms but not even mention the word cancer. Many activists don’t even want to go near the 9/11 truth issue. It’s completely diagnostically dishonest not to approach this issue. Making partial diagnoses, treating symptoms in the face of obvious signs that there’s something much deeper is harmful. It’s harmful and it allows the perpetrative agenda to be unnoticed. So I hope you open your ears and pay attention. I’m going to learn a lot today. I’ve been following this issue. I’ve been very supportive of 9/11 Truth and I hope we have great session. Thank you.
00:55:25:24 KYLE HENCE: Thank you commissioners for your opening statements. I’ve just been approached backstage by Barry Zellman. Barrie’s been on my e-mail list of CitizensWatch and Unanswered Questions.org for many months. And I’ve run into him on a couple of occasions during hearings and so on. And, he’s asked to make a brief statement. He hasn’t prepared anything, he lost his brother Kenneth in the north tower, and so I’d just like bring Barry Zellman out for a brief statement to address you. Barry.
00:56:05:01 BARRY ZELLMAN: Hi everybody. I kind of dropped by on a, on a short notice. I, this is kind of an impromptu kind of visit. I didn’t plan to come here so if I stumble and don’t make sense it’s because I really didn’t plan this. I really was never into politics ever in my life and it was a rude awakening on my brother’s, murder three years ago. He was my best friend, my only brother and, you know I’m, these kind of things help me a lot because people understand me. You’re a group of captive audience and it’s good, it helps me get through my, my grief process.
00:56:46:18 There’s never a resolution but it helps cause most of the time when I talk about the dynamics of politics, about 9/11, people look at me like I have three heads. Like, what, what you knew about it, what are you crazy? You know, so much for Republicans. And I never want to root, to label myself anything and I don’t label myself anything. I just, I’m just out there dealing with my brother’s murder. And I just wrote this e-mail, you know, people who do know me know me from the internet. I, I have a, I just write and write, and write and write. So I’ve become a good, pretty decent writer.
00:57:24:10 But I just responded to, Bush families for 9/11 and I’ll just read this aloud, it kind of makes sums up a lot of things. When a political party chooses to run on its performance, the handling of its response to 9/11, it had better hope that it can back it up. So many of the surviving 9/11 families know the transparencies in this message. But the Bush administration has always played to its biggest audience, those not directly affected by the mass murder of 2,749 people.
00:57:55:18 Still to sell this audience on the issue of 9/11, you’re walking the dangerous territory. The record speaks of an administration who is not interested in following any of the so many leads in the months proceeding 9/11. The August 6th PDB briefing that was public-, publicized was a snapshot of our intelligence. It depicted an al Qaeda terrorist group active with cells ready to strike. In fact your own CIA agency named it “Bin Laden Determined to Strike Within the U.S.” That was the time to do something. The window of opportunity to intervene and maybe save those lives is gone. Now is not the time to exploit those lives for your own self-serving interest.
00:58:44:21 This was in response to the RNC coming to New York. Um, that’s really what it’s, what’s, what it’s pertaining to. But I, I just embrace people that, that understand that four airplanes, an hour and half between the first impact the second impact with zero military response in the United States, it, it didn’t happen that way, couldn’t have happened that way. You’re talking about the most intelligence, agencies that we have on the face of the earth, state of the art agencies and there was zero military response. Why wasn’t President Bush on the horn as soon as the second tower was impact-, impacted, saying deploy military to, to New York? Why? And, you know, I, I’m a fair person, I listen to both, all sides of the, of the argument and I, and I did research upon research, upon research and no one can give me the answer.
00:59:42:10 But it’s very transparent because our own president did not want to investigate this tragedy. And I understand it for you today for one reason, the only thing that I could give my brother is the truth, that’s it. I, I didn’t get paid a cent, you know, the, the money was out there to shut people up. This [UNINTEL] money because there’s two, there’s two sides to 9/11 families. There are ones that were paid and ones that weren’t. And I hate to bring money up but money is part of the equation. if they were married the spouses got lots of money, [UNINTEL] families got nothing. My father is 82 years old, my mother’s still alive, my, he was, my brother was married. The money doesn’t – anything, you know, once my brother’s wife and she doesn’t even speak to us any more.
01:00:33:18 That’s, that’s on a personal level but . . . but the money was there for, for one reason. It’s for peop-, keep people, pay off and keep it quiet and, um, I think people like you that are listening, thank you very much.
MINDY KLEINBERG testimony by video [A short video excerpt from 9/11 Family Steering Committee member, Mindy Kleinberg’s testimony before the 9/11 Commission on March 31, 2003 is shown. Her complete testimony is posted as a PDF at the ‘downloads’ section of 911citizenswatch.org: http://911citizenswatch.org/modules.php ... ted_States
JENNA ORKIN: I want to make sure to get two things in before I start. One is I am a plaintiff in a potential class-action lawsuit against the EPA and two is my website, World Trade Center Environmental Organization, wtceo.org. September 11th was a tragedy that has changed the course of history and the way we lived. It was also an environmental disaster of historic proportions.
The way the federal government has handled this aspect of 9/11 has been passive at best. At worst it rises to a level of reckless endangerment stemming from lies from the White House itself. From the beginning, independent scientists and other experts have uncovered data and testified to the dangers of the air downtown.
The response of the EPA, and by domino effect, by city and state agencies has been contradictory. On the one hand they protest, this was unprecedented, what do you expect us to do? On the other hand, they claim there is no problem. The fact remains that to this day there has been no adequate testing or clean-up and there are no plans in place for the comprehensive health care that will be necessary for the broad spectrum of illnesses not only respitory, but also neurological, endocrinological, etc. which will manifest itself in decades to come.
In short, in the environment aftermath of 9/11 Osama bin Laden could not have found a more felicitous collaborator than George W. Bush.
The World Trade Center was a city with its own zipcode. It contained approximately 50,000 computers, each made with between four and twelve pounds of lead. The first forty storeys of at least one of the towers was coated with hundreds of tons of asbestos which was pulverized to particles of unusually small size and dispersed around Lower Manhattan as well as possibly to Brooklyn and beyond. Tens of thousands of fluorescent light bulbs each contained enough mercury to contaminate a quarter of a city block. The smoke detectors contained radioactive americium 241. The United States Environmental Protection Agency ("EPA") found levels of polychlorinated biphenyls at 75,000 times the previous record. ["Numerous PCB congeners including co-planer [dioxin-like] PCBs were detected at high concentrations. The Toxic Equivalency (TEQ) ... is 151 pg/L. In previous harbor work... the highest observed PCB TEQ was 0.002 pg/L." EPA report, September 20, 2001; quoted in FALLOUT, Juan Gonzalez, p. 73)] Dioxin also reached record levels.
The alkalinity of the air was equivalent to that of drain cleaner. A month after the disaster, scientists from the University of California at Davis found the highest levels of vanadium and very- and ultrafine particulates that they had ever recorded out of 7000 samples taken around the world including at the burning Kuwaiti oil fields. (The EPA did not measure particles of this size.) In addition, there were benzene, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and all the other contaminants one might expect to find when a modern city burns.
Dr. Marjorie Clarke of Hunter College has testified that the World Trade Center disaster was "equivalent to dozens of asbestos factories, incinerators and crematoria as well as a volcano." [March 30, 2004 New York City Council Hearing on Post-9/11 Remediation of WTC Contamination.]
Nevertheless, starting on September 13, the EPA issued reassuring statements about the air quality downtown. At hearings conducted in February and March of 2002, EPA Ombudsman Robert Martin and his Chief Investigator Hugh Kaufman accused EPA Administrator Christine Todd Whitman of lying in part to protect her husband's holdings in Citigroup, the owner of major insurers of Lower Manhattan. The accusation that the EPA had actively lied was recently corroborated by a memo uncovered by EPA scientist Dr. Cate Jenkins which revealed that at the time of Whitman's statements, EPA already had test results showing asbestos that exceeded the agency's regulation levels. [From "9/11 Memo Reveals Asbestos 'Cover-Up,'" by Sam Smith of the New York Post, July 16, 2004.]
A report by the EPA Inspector General in August, 2003, had said that Whitman's reassurances were premature but had stopped short of accusing her of lying. However it revealed that EPA's initial press releases, which cautioned the public about the levels of asbestos in the air and dust, had been revised by the White House Council on Environmental Quality. The cautionary statements had been deleted and reassurances added. Why did the CEQ interfere in this way? The report stated, "the desire to reopen Wall Street...played a role in EPA's air quality statements."
EPA was also able to report low readings for certain contaminants by using outdated equipment. An article by Andrew Schneider in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on January 14, 2002, quotes Dr. Jenkins to the effect that for every asbestos fiber EPA found, independent contractors found nine. The risk of cancer from asbestos could be as high as one person in ten.
EPA Region 8 which had been in charge of an asbestos cleanup in Libby, Montana, offered Region 2 in New York access to up-to-date equipment. According to Dr. Jenkins' memo of July 4, 2003, Region 2 replied, "We don't want you fucking cowboys here. The best thing they could do would be assign you to Alaska." [From comments on the EPA Office of Inspector General's 1/27/03 interim report titled: 'EPA's Response to the World Trade Center Towers Collapse;'" Dr. Cate Jenkins, July 4, 2003.]
With the green light from EPA, Lower Manhattan reopened for residents, offices and students. Ground Zero workers were often told that since the air was safe, they didn't need to wear respirators. Some, such as Lieutenant Manuel Gomez, were explicitly forbidden to wear a respirator on the grounds that it might frighten the public.
Residents returned to their homes some of which looked like Pompeii. But since EPA had declared the air to be safe, insurance companies often refused to pay for professional abatement. Businesses faced the same dilemma. And since EPA had handed jurisdiction over indoor air to city agencies, residents were obliged to turn to the New York City Department of Health which recommended that to clean up the dust in their apartments, they use a wet mop or wet rag. If the dust was really bad, said DOH, they should wear long pants. The Red Cross distributed buckets to assist in what was being portrayed as a piece of mundane, if heavy-duty housecleaning. DOH also cautioned residents to lower curtains slowly so as to dislodge as little dust as possible. But they said that children and pregnant women need take no extra precautions.
00:00:00:10 On October 9, Stuyvesant High School, where this writer's son was a student, opened to much fanfare about "showing the terrorists." Schools Chancellor Harold Levy set up a bivouac office at the school telling parents, "If I thought it wasn't safe, would I be here myself?" A freshwoman whom I'll call Anne told Levy she was worried and wanted to transfer out at least while the fires burned. Levy said if you leave now you can’t come back. Four days later Levy himself left later telling a TV interviewer parents should focus instead on whether their children are having safe sex or wearing seatbelts.
00:00:19:07 In the past three years Ann has had two spinal taps to relieve the buildup of fluid pressure in her brain, a condition known as pseudotumor cerebri. For the next eight months after October 9th Stuyvesant Borough of Manhattan Community College which is home to 17,000 students and Independence Plaza a housing complex of 5,000 got a double whammy of toxic waste. Not only did they have the World Trade Center side to the south, but also at Stuyvesant’s north doorstep and next to it’s ventilation intakes sat the waste transfer barge which transported the toxic debris to Staten Island.
00:00:59:25 Ordinarily this placement would have been a violation of state and federal laws but with the eight months of cleanup emergency conditions prevailed. The um...barge operation also prevented evacuation in the event of another disaster downtown. The kids would have to evacuate south towards it.
00:01:18:09 The barge station which operated 24/7 played host to a diesel [UNINTEL] (grain?) and idling diesel trucks which were only intermittently covered and wetted down as they bore their toxic cargo through the streets. Recently EPA itself has advocated stronger legislation curtailing diesel emissions particularly in stationary vehicles as diesel has been found to contain myriad carcinogens and toxic air contaminants.
00:01:46:09 In part as a result of the barge operation for half the days until February at the Stuyvesant monitoring station particulate matter 2.5, dust that is small enough to penetrate deep into the lungs and not come out again was above EPA regulatory levels. Often it was higher at Stuyvesant than at Ground Zero.
00:02:08:17 Because it has a relatively large surface area to volume ratio and that’s because it’s so small PM2.5 also absorbed onto it’s surface whatever toxic chemicals were in the debris. On occasion isocyanate and tetrachloroethane. and asbestos also exceeded EPA limits and high levels of lead were found in the gym where the lead could be inhaled deeply. And in the cafeteria where it will settle on student’s food.
00:02:37:01 Little is known about the synergistic effect of these contaminants but Dr. Steven Levin of Mt. Sinai has pointed out that if someone is an asbestos worker and a smoker for instance, the effect is not simply twice as bad as being one or the other – it’s 80 or 90 times as bad.
00:02:57:15 A major shield against these pollutants Stuyvesant’s filtration system was approximately 10 percent effective until the end of January when at the insistence of the parents’ association it was upgraded to 40 percent effectiveness. In addition, after the school reopened parents and staff learned that in the course of the school’s supposed asbestos abatement ventilation system had not been cleaned.
00:03:25:06 At this point the chronology is going to become very simplified. Even after FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, allocated $20 million dollars to clean the Ground Zero schools the Board of Education refused to clean Stuyvesant’s ventilation system or do white tests on the grounds that there was no problem.
00:03:43:29 Finally parents using the pro bono services of Stuyvesant alumnus and attorney Richard Ben-Veniste of Watergate and now 9/11 Commission fame threatened to sue. The Board of Ed refused uh...performed the white tests which showed 30 times the level of lead one might expect to find on the floor. There are no standards for lead in ventilation systems.
00:04:05:26 After initially claiming that the lead would stay in the walls the Board of Ed finally agreed to clean the ventilation system over the summer. During that cleanup a group known as Concerned Stuyvesant Community had two segments of the auditorium carpet tested for asbestos using an unusually sensitive test called ultrasonication. The auditorium is the focus of particular concern as it had been used as a triage center during the weeks that followed 9/11.
00:04:34:06 One of the samples came back with a reading of 2.4 million structures per square centimeter. A level which according to the independent experts whom Concerned Stuyvesant consulted indisputably called for remediation. The carpet was replaced - the Board of Ed citing aesthetic reasons.
00:04:55:13 There have been many illnesses. [DROPS OFF MIC. SPEAKER BEGINS AGAIN ON MIC]
00:05:04:01 There have been many illnesses already as a consequence of this exposure. Um...new onset asthma among residents over 50 percent of the Ground Zero workers, a larger number of the firefighters, 13 rescue dogs have died. Um...let me talk about something else first.
00:05:24:26 In May of ’02 EPA instituted a cleanup program which was dangerously flawed. I won’t go into detail unless you want to during the Q&A except for two things. The normal goal during a cleanup of a superfund site is one in a million extra cancers per contaminant. In the case of lower Manhattan EPA decided that the best they could shoot for was one in 10,000 extra cancers per contaminant. That’s 100 times as many cancers as they usually aim for at Superfund sites.
00:05:59:19 The second anomaly in EPA’s treatment of lower Manhattan...they relied on air tests for asbestos whereas in their own building they relied on dust tests which many experts agree are preferable to determine that their building needed an asbestos abatement.
00:06:21:07 In conclusion the EPA’s handling of 9/11 is not only a catastrophe for New Yorkers it also bodes ill for the rest of the country since it serves as a precedent for their response to analogous disasters in the future. As a New Yorker I’d like to make this final comment, the way the Bush administration has responded to 9/11 strongly suggest that they are very pleased to use New York as a lightening rod to take more than it’s share of it’s and get far less than it’s share of homeland security funding. At the same time President Bush can use future attacks on New York to further his military and other aims. Thank you.
00:07:35:04 CHAIR CYNTHIA MCKINNEY: I have the distinct honor and pleasure to introduce the next panelist John Judge [UNINTEL]. John Judge and I worked together when I was in Congress. In fact I worked with a lot of these people when I was in Congress and that’s why we had troublemakers inside [UNINTEL] outside. But in pursuit of the truth and in pursuit of information that the powers that be would rather us not have John Judge’s particular expertise is the murder of John F. Kennedy. And as a result of that and my interest in the counter-intelligence program we came together and he gave me information, critical information in fact about the murder of Martin Luther King, Jr. which is one of my rather intense interests.
00:08:38:01 So with that introduction...John Judge is a stickler for details and he finds himself now with the unanswered questions of September 11th. So welcome John.
00:08:58:00 JOHN JUDGE: My comments are meant to serve in the role of what would be a staff member to an investigative commission and that’s part of the role that if we could build a truth commission had other support for it that 9/11 CitizensWatch has had as it’s, as it’s long term outcome. So what I’ve tried to do is sort of frame for the commission some of the problems that pertain to this.
00:09:24:09 I’m sure you’ve seen this. It sold better than Harry Potter recently. And fortunately today I was glad to see that we have an antidote which won’t sell as well.
00:09:37:00 This is Paul Johnson’s excellent terror timeline and uh...it’s a much more objective and thorough account of the events of 9/11 than you’ll get from this official commission report. One of the questions I had about this is who is the author? The reason I ask that is it’s written in a very lucid almost novelist style. It’s not a conjunction of reports from other individuals. There’s one author here. And we were never told the author of the Warren Commission report either. I dug it out of the record. It was brought over from the Pentagon army historical division on a technical duty order to write the report. And when the report was handed back to those investigative teams they wrote extensive notes saying ‘what’s his basis for this? How does he reach this conclusion?’
00:10:23:06 All those were buried for many years. His name was Otto Minniger he was brought here by General MacArthur at the end of the war. He was one of 26 official historians for Hitler’s Reich.
00:10:36:23 And the author of the...Starr Report about the Clinton scandal with Monica had been a previous writer for Penthouse Magazine. I actually sent Tipper Gore a note asking her to put one of her obscene stickers on the report.
00:10:54:24 So, we don’t know who the real author is here but um...it is a best seller. It’s still seen as the definitive account. There’s very little public criticism of it. It came out of a flawed commission process that we addressed in a critique that we released the day that it was released and there’s some copies of that available here. In addition, sort of we couldn’t do the autopsy til the corpse hit the ground but it’s still ticking.
Two monographs have appeared...staff statements since this came out. And a chronology is promised and there is ongoing Congressional testimony as well. In the monographs there was an interesting disclaimer on each by Philip Zelikow the former executive director of the commission saying that the commission had access to these monographs in both draft and final form and in both classified and unclassified forms. That the commission had drawn in part on these for staff statements during the investigation that were read at the hearings and for some of the final report.
00:12:04:23 But, it says, the commission does not endorse these monographs as official record. That suggests to me that there was a lack of consensus and that we’re given this bipartisan consensus decision at the top between the investigative teams at least on some issues and the commission staff and that’s an area I think for fruitful…fruitful inquiry.
00:12:30:21 This also has no index ...there is an online index at the vivisimo.com web site, that’s very useful where you can pull up a term and get it by paragraph in the order it appears in the report but the hard back edition which just came out within the last week does have an index but that also is not thorough. I began on a Word file doing an index of the first two chapters and ran out of memory because we don’t need just a name index to this. It has to be topical and so there’s work yet to be done on that.
00:13:03:28 It in large part at the rear of the, of the body over 100 pages is a notes section. The problem with the note section is that for the most part it is self-referential. It refers to testimony taken by the commission in private, to documents not yet released and to material that no one can see. At least the Warren report was released with 26 volumes of evidence. It wasn’t all the evidence but it was some of it. And there had been a discussion between Hale Boggs...one of the commissioners and Alan Dulles another commissioner former head of the CIA where Boggs said ‘well, do you think we ought to just put out the report without none of the evidence, won’t it look a little fishy?’ and Mr. Dulles says ‘go ahead and print some of it. Nobody will read it anyway.’
00:13:50:04 I guess they’re so…they’ve learned now that some of us will read it and so we got a report with footnotes that go nowhere. There were over 2,000 interviews. There were 80 staff members that of course [UNINTEL] themselves. There were nine investigative teams. We don’t know the nature of this final record if we can get it loose because much of the testimony privately and some of the public was not taken under oath and also we were told that much of it was not transcribed. Much of it was not directly recorded and in many cases merely notes were taken.
00:14:29:01 That was officially told us to be the case with four hours of private testimony with Condoleezza Rice even though the 15 hours with Richard Clarke was fully transcribed and recorded. And it was certainly the case with the Cheney and Bush interviews which had notes that only one person was designated to be able to write and those notes had to be turned over to the White House for vetting before they’d be taken back to the commission that presumably sat and heard the hearing. And that kind of secrecy and lack of transparency and lack of sunshine approach to this has, has made it almost impossible to have an objective external review of the forensic and unclassified data which is still not released.
00:15:08:18 We wrote to the commission as 9/11 CitizensWatch and suggested that on release of documents that all unclassified forensics should be released immediately. And on the classified that they should use the new standards adopted under the JFK Assassination Record Review Board. That means only a living agent can be compromised, a current source or method of intelligence being compromised, a privacy agreement with an individual or a foreign government agreement. Those are the four categories under which something can be postponed for release. Nothing else.
00:15:37:21 Much more constricted than the Freedom of Information Act. And we asked for them to call for expedited release of the classified materials under that standard. We won a small victory I think in that the documents have now been sent to the National Archives for release in four and a half years rather than the standard anywhere between 20 and 50 years is possible for a Congressional investigation.
00:16:01:23 So it’s a shorter period. Interestingly enough it’s dated January 2nd 2009 when the current administration can’t remain in power. So I found that interesting. But as a function the Commission was exempt from the Freedom of Information Act and because these records are generated by a legislative branch they are currently exempt.
00:16:25:07 Interestingly enough there’s a legal possibility to effect a mandatory review of a classified document put into the four and a half year delay, but there’s no way to review an unclassified document for release. Of course you’d have to know the classified document existed to get the review and what agency it came from, but maybe you’d find it in the notes.
00:16:43:17 And the other option is to get a Congressional reversal and release of this material. The other problem with this report is it is jointly written by the independent commission and the White House. Governor Kean said that they took pains to create before it’s release an unclassified…or a classified version of a report that would pass White House vetting and in order to do that they forwarded the draft chapters to the White House for pre-vetting. The standard procedure for an independent commission is that they release a report if it has intelligence issues involved, the White House would do the vetting along with the agencies and then they’d come out with a final report that might be redacted.
00:17:29:28 You think back to the joint inquiry report on the House and Senate intelligence committees it’s redacted. It has holes in it. Well those holes tell you something. You know they indicate areas at least that are left out for a reason or what sorts of things. This has no redaction because it’s pre-redacted. And so this is essentially not an independent document. It’s a document that was co-edited by the White House and the Commission and it suffers from that as well.
00:17:58:01 Now Senators Dodd and Lieberman and representative Shay asked and formally requested that the report include if not answer the questions compiled over time by the family groups. And it did neither. It answers a few and there’s many unanswered. It’s at least put the questions in as an addendum and they didn’t do that. But they can be found online at their 9/11 Independent Commission dot org site [SIC - 911independentcommission.org] and I know some family members are compiling lists of others.
00:18:28:28 This is based I believe because of the flawed Commission process on incorrect assumptions. Incomplete testimony and evidence, major omissions in the record and unsupported conclusions and the recommendations that come from all of that are similarly poorly informed and only the recommendations so far are getting any challenge. Interestingly enough I mention Thompson’s timeline as an antidote to this report. Another antidote is Commission record itself. A combination of testimony and staff statements. When you begin to go through those you will find contradictions in their own record with what they’ve decided in the report.
00:19:09:03 Unlike the Warren Commission, which was characterized as a rush to judgment, I would characterize this as a rush to exoneration.
[LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE]
00:19:21:28 It takes, it takes the attitude that this is all a systemic failure which means that there’s no way to have direct accountability. There were no reprimands or demotions that resulted from these failures. No courts of inquiry or court[s] martial in the military where you can be court marshaled for wrecking a jeep and with their own building attacked, no line of duty inquiry. In fact people were more often promoted than demoted in relation to the events of 9/11.
00:19:50:26 A lack of appropriate preparational response to the warnings and opportunities and the events of 9/11 is unchallenged and naming these names is not in my view a witch hunt, but a probative approach that begins to put people on the carpet in terms of their own accountability and then shows you which part is systemic and which part is individual so that you can trace it down in a normal investigation.
00:20:15:00 But their attitude led them at the beginning to take much of the testimony not even under oath. And when challenged on that by the families and 9/11 Commission they told us, [Chairman] Governor Kean and [Vice-Chair] Hamilton told us that they felt people would be more forthcoming if they weren’t under oath and we said that’s a little counterintuitive to the way most investigations operate.
00:20:36:12 So we did eventually sort of shame them into having people raise their hand and we did an ad campaign saying that Bush, Cheney, Condoleezza Rice, Clinton and Gore should all be called into public and testify under oath and to do anything less was to dishonor the dead. And so they can get everybody in there but it did cause them to at least start acting like they were investigating something.
00:20:57:17 And the failures of the command structure level have also not been addressed by the Commission even though they are pointed at. The law required that the Commission be available for 60 days for Congressional oversight hearings and if there were special sessions this summer and one’s going on even today I think focusing on their recommendations but not their process or their conclusions. And they have now sort of transformed themselves into a new thing called the 9/11 Public Disclosure which is a non-profit organization that will take pairs of commissioners and send them around the country to have public discussions. This may be a way to at least begin to have the public ask questions directly about some of these contradictions.
00:21:41:24 I’ve had trouble getting any schedule of appearances out of them but I’m working on it but there will be additional access of public input. And an objective assessment is going to be difficult given the lack of the record of the concealment or destruction of the forensic evidence. Pretty much what we have is standing court suits, our own investigations and the ongoing investigation on the building collapses by the National Standards group [NIST].
00:22:12:16 So, but there are some ongoing investigations and could be others initiated on specific aspects. This is called a consensus, a bipartisan consensus. But the consensus of history is not just bipartisan at the upper levels of power. It has to be agreed to in a non-partisan base…basis of the lowest levels of power in a society. And the facts of 9/11 belong to the American people as a whole. Because until we really know the truth we can’t act on the truth.
00:22:44:13 Martin Shotz in one of the Kennedy assassination books makes a very telling statement. He says that the political paralysis in America stems from the fact that we are allowed to believe anything but to know nothing. And when we cannot know we cannot act. Rumors and theories then replace the knowledge to act responsibly and that’s the exact opposite of a democratic process.
00:23:10:22 Thomas Jefferson said he knew of no safe repository for the powers of the society beyond the people themselves. And he said that if you feel that they are unable to exercise their discretion in a wholesome fashion, 17th Century for you to think them too stupid, the solution is not to take the power from them but to inform their discretion. So that’s why Jefferson realized that given the choice between a government without a newspaper or a newspaper without a government he would always take the latter because the flow of information, accessed information is more critical to the democratic process than the government that’s put in power to enact it.
00:23:57:21 We don’t have that here unfortunately. We have less and less of it. The task ahead is to investigate the work on the report and these monographs as they, as they continue to monitor the process of these legislative branch hearings, to establish the groundwork for a rationale for a people’s truth commission because if this commission has done it’s work why should we have an additional one? Anyone who’s here I’m sure know why we want one but the general public would have to be convinced that this is flawed.
00:24:27:15 To challenge the assumptions of the Commission and Congress and the hearings and decision they’re making and then to begin, and I hope the Commission does this not only address the facts of 9/11 but as the 9/11 Commission did address the recommendations. And get into the real questions that lie behind American foreign policy in the last 50 years. What constitutes real security in this country?
00:24:51:23 What is the balance between civil liberties and security? What is the role of militarism and intelligence in this society? What does it mean that we’re going to go into an ongoing war for 60 years or the rest of our lives? Is that the proper response? And also what a basic question I’d ask is what is the role of covert operations in the past and now in the future that I believe led into the situation we now live in…
…and they’re not a solution to it.
00:25:24:22 Instead we’re getting silent assent on many of these questions and no structural critique from this 9/11 Commission. So it’s left to investigative journalists and researchers, the international press sources and whistleblowers. They have to both educate the public to these contradictions and the credibility of this report to justify further inquiry and also push for release of the full record so that we can do ongoing research.
00:25:53:24 The commission itself is limited in time and budget. They spent way more money on the nine deaths in the Challenger crash than they did on the 3,000 deaths. No family members were appointed. It was obstructed actively from it’s beginning by the executive branch. It had limited access to the record and the documents. Even the joint inquiry hearings which two of the Commission members sat in on, the record of those hearings were denied to them. At first it was exempt from the Federal Advisory Act so no families or citizens could serve in a formal advisory position. And it was rife with conflicts of interest. We detailed those in our preliminary report, but one of the major ones was the executive director Philip Zelikow, a person who’s challenged by the librarian for the JFK Library on a book that he wrote based on tapes made available from the library of the, of the, of the Cuban missile crisis.
00:26:50:20 And this librarian said that Zelikow’s work couldn’t be trusted by any scholar or student. That his transcription of these tapes was so faulty that you couldn’t rely on it and what they did was undermined the truth of the tapes which she had listened to which showed that Kennedy almost alone in many cases stood against the Joint Chiefs and the rest of his Cabinet in not wanting to go to nuclear war.
00:27:14:17 But this person Zelikow is part of the milicenter which is respect for the president and is creating the new version of the White House press conferences. People are pre-selected. He was also very tight with Condoleezza Rice and co-authored books with her.
00:27:30:24 He was appointed, the families didn’t know this until much later, as part of the transitional team for the Bush Administration and the National Security Advisory Group. He sat in on the meetings with Sandy Berger and Richard Clarke where the advance warnings were given.
00:27:48:03 Now when the families found this out they said he should step down. The response of Kean and the Commissioners was well he has had to recuse himself at certain points in this investigation. In fact both he and Jamie Gorelick one of the commissioners were called as witnesses to their own commission. And the conflicts were so rife that Kean in exonerating him said we will all have to recuse ourselves at some point in this investigation. That’s the chair…
00:28:17:01 MAN: You can take 30 seconds to, to wrap up. We’ve got to get to Joanne.
00:28:21:01 JOHN JUDGE: …there’s more to it but it was a flawed process that led to flawed conclusions. And I did present a report to you covering some of these along with an exhaustive comparative timeline on the flights and a bibliography. There is more work to do. But I think the key areas that will bear fruit in terms of a Commission investigation are to challenge this idea that this was an intelligence failure and put it into it’s proper historical framework of a state level sophisticated covert operation.
00:28:58:09 And, and this….[UNINTEL. SPEAKING OVER APPLAUSE] the last five administrations starting with Carter and Brezinski and the operations of the [UNINTEL] and also the Contra-gate scandal and many of the Contra-gaters are back in power. These were financed jointly by U.S. and Saudi intelligence, Pakistani ISI, drug money and uh...Otto Wright and Poindexter and Powell himself. All of these and others in the current administration were part of these covert operations [UNINTEL] led into the current situation we’re in.
00:29:32:01 So, taking a look at that, taking a basic look at the suspects and the plot I would argue we do not yet know the true identity of the 19 people on the planes.
00:29:45:09 And I don’t believe that they didn’t get on the plane but I believe that when you don’t know their true identity to have a report like this track them back through time encourages what’s called an intelligence parlance a legend. It’s like the false Oswalds. They go someplace, they use a particular identity. They establish a trail that you are meant to follow. But it’s a trail that gives you false sponsorship of the event. And in covert operations you spend more time on that false sponsorship than you do on the event itself.
00:30:14:23 Were we unprepared? I approached Richard Shelby when the joint inquiry report came out and I asked him did you find instances where planes had been used as weapons or used as weapons by the, these terrorist groups. He smiled because I had quoted Condoleezza Rice saying it was so outside the box no one could possibly imagine. She backed of on that in her testimony saying well they knew but I didn’t know which questions her competence to be National Security Advisor I would think.
[LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE]
00:30:43:16 But, he said oh yes we found numerous instances of that. And then I said well, did your, did your inquiry find instances of preparations made in relation to these things? He literally blanched. His face turned, he stepped back and he said “can’t get into that”. Walked away from the podium. Graham took the next question and he came back to the podium Shelby and before asking the next question pointed at me and said “and on advice of counsel by answer to your question is ‘no’”.
MAN: John? John I hate to cut you off. But in the interests of time I just want to…
00:31:16:02 JOHN JUDGE: That’s alright.
MAN: I can hear him all day of course as all of you can I’m sure.
00:31:20:18 JOHN JUDGE: Alright well I just the undefended skies of 9/11 will bear fruit FAA, and NORAD and these timelines are wrong. And the Minetta testimony at 9:25 of Cheney discussing with a young lieutenant an order unidentified he said “sir, the plane is 50 miles out, it’s 30 miles out, it’s 10 miles out does the order still stand at each juncture?” Cheney snaps at 10 miles out and says “of course the order still stands”. This is before the Pentagon is hit. This is in reference to flight 77. If this is a shoot down order and all the testimony says no shoot l down order until after the Pentagon is hit. If this is shoot down order what’s delaying it? And if it’s not what is the order that’s concerning the young Lieutenant as the plane approaches the Pentagon?
00:32:22:08 WOMAN: Of course as you can see Mr. Judge is a stickler for details and the wealth of details is what this Citizens Commission is all about. We will go to a question and answer period now for the Commissioners and perhaps I know Dr. Khan is very interested in posing some of these medical questions to Ms. Orkin.
00:32:57:26 …but first I want to go to Commissioner McIlvaine.
00:33:05:03 MR. MCILVAINE: First question to Jenna [Orkin]. Who do you think put the pressure about getting everything open? Was it Wall Street or the government or the government on Wall Street? Can we put a blame somewhere? Did it come from a group of people?
00:33:21:19 JENNA ORKIN [Witness]: Well, I’m not any more informed. Probably less than many other people about how Wall Street works with government. But do you think there’s a conflict between them?
MR. MCILVAINE: No.
00:33:35:07 JENNA ORKIN: I think that they were in agreement. Let’s get Wall Street up and running and that’s you know, their primary objective. Their first priority.
00:33:44:27 MR. MCILVAINE: Jenna, can you just also you mentioned the insurance companies. What interest did they have in sort of down claiming the role of [MIC FEEDBACK].
00:33:55:13 JENNA ORKIN: That they wouldn’t have to pay for the cleanups.
MR. MCILVAINE: That’s a huge incentive. [MIC FEEDBACK] And one more question just for the audience. Where can we get information about the facts, morbidity rates and the incidence of asthma and [UNINTEL] airways diseases and other things? Are those being tabulated by a private medical agency? A city agency? You? Where can you get those?
00:34:19:00 JENNA ORKIN: Well, there are a lot of studies being done. There was one um...done by Dr. Anthony Zema of Stonybrook and the Charles B. Wang Community Health Center in Manhattan. Department of epidemiology University of Pittsburgh School of Health. It showed an increase in asthma rates and severity among pediatric patients living with in a radius of five miles of ground zero after 9/11. There’s a study at Mt. Sinai being done. There was an article by Andrew Revkin in the New York Times called Smoke and Dust at World Trade Center is Linked to Smaller Babies. So that the advice initially given that pregnant women need take no extra precautions turns out to have been false.
00:35:03:13 A lot of people, Dr. Joan [UNINTEL] (Gryman?) is studying it and many others.
MR. MCILVAINE: Thank you. Do you have anything?
00:35:15:18 WOMAN: Yes I do actually.
00:35:28:04 CHAIRWOMAN MCKINNEY: Well then let me go ahead and ask Ms. Orkin when my mother used to be a nurse, a retired nurse and when these images of Ground Zero were broadcast to all of us she picked up the phone to me and said Cynthia, those workers are going to have health effects.
00:35:53:10 Now this is you know, my mom who is like so far away recognizing that there’s going to be a problem here. Tell me in your legal case who are your defendants?
00:36:10:12 JENNA ORKIN: I’m so hesitant to talk about the legal case. EPA, Christie Todd Whitman, Mary Ann Gorinko who was under Whitman, um...it’s essentially focused on EPA in general and specific individuals within Environmental Protection Agency
00:36:26:11 CHAIRWOMAN MCKINNEY: And so then what about the role of the City of New York and it’s responsibilities for protecting it’s citizens?
00:36:35:28 JENNA ORKIN: You’re not talking about residents. You’re not talking about Ground Zero workers um...essentially everybody took their cues from EPA and once EPA declared the air to be safe that was the signal that you behave accordingly. And um...and so business as usual is what happened.
00:36:56:22 WOMAN: Well, couldn’t people um...who were charged with the responsibility of protecting the lives of people here uh...question EPA?
00:37:07:12 JENNA ORKIN: In general the government didn’t question. Citizens, the activists did question to a large extent and did protest and you know Juan Gonzalez came out with an article on October 26th which was the first I think major article that there really were problems. But there was such a kind of sense of um...we’ve got to show the terrorists, get back on the horse you know uh...that people were drowned out if they raised any such questions.
00:37:35:04 I know the kids at Stuyvesant felt it was unpatriotic to raise those sorts of questions and most did not. And I think that was the general sense at the time.
MAN: Just in fairness to the workers, I mean I happen to have been there the morning of the 12th or 13th. I forget which one. 24 hours after the event and I can tell you all the workers there, there was such a frenzy to get there and do something that oftentimes we were actually reprimanded by senior officials for not wearing respirators, not wearing protective gear. But for them it was just a question of getting in there and doing what we can.
00:38:11:09 Um...so it wasn’t uh...no one was thinking of those terms then. But at this point in terms of chronic exposure to things we really get in trouble with health. With chronic exposure, days and days and weeks and weeks and weeks – that’s where these issues are probably most important. So I think they’ve been neglected.
00:38:28:12 As far as the EPA is concerned that holds as much esteem in my eyes as the FDA. So both these agencies have been compromised multiple times through this [UNINTEL].
McKINNEY: I’ve concluded my questions.
KHAN: Any questions from the audience.
McKINNEY: Yes there should be.
00:38:50:17 MAN: [UNINTEL]. We’re gonna do audience at the end or…? Our plan is to take a short bathroom break now. WBAI is going to cover this next round of witness testimony and questions for two hours beginning at three sharp so we need your cooperation. We want you in your seats ready for Barrie Zwicker who will be coming next as the next witness at 3:00 o’clock sharp. That’s when we understand and were told that WBAI will go live. So Q&A at the end of the next round.
[TAPE STOPS AND RESTARTS]
00:39:30:09 NICHOLAS LEVIS: [OFF MIC] I believe we are at this moment we are live with WBAI and maybe another couple of minutes we’ll have to start right away our panel. There have been some revisions.
[HERE THE SPEAKER GOES ON OFF MIC WHILE SEVERAL PEOPLE ON MIC ARE DISCUSSING PROBLEMS WITH SOUND OR RECORDING EQUIPMENT]
00:40:49:26 NICHOLAS LEVIS: [MIC COMES UP] …book The Terror Timeline.
00:40:53:00 NICHOLAS LEVIS: Ah, hello everybody! Welcome once again to the [UNINTEL] hearings. Now we’re really going to get started. We’ve had a great panel so far with John Judge and Jenna Orkin and now we’re going to get started with Barrie Zwicker in just a moment. We’re going to turn this over back to the [UNINTEL] [OVERLAPPING VOICES] Bob McIlvaine and Dr. Khan
00:41:27:20 NICHOLAS LEVIS: And this is sponsored by 911truth.org, 9/11 Citizens Watch and New York 9/11 Truth which is the local arm of 911truth.org
NICHOLAS LEVIS: And after Barrie Zwicker, Michael Springmann, Paul Thompson, Michael Ruppert we will have a panel with all four speakers and I believe some chance for the audience as well to pose questions. Then we will take a break at 5:00 o’clock and at 5:20 Indira Singh will be testifying. But first she will be reading the FBI whistleblower and translator Sibel Edmonds before she testifies herself. Then we will have another break and the final panel with myself and attorney Carolyn Betts which we will present…
CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Come back or stay here all day, I am going to do [UNINTEL]. Please make sure you come back for the film, the brilliant film [UNINTEL]. Now there have been a lot of people who have done, you know, a little bit around this issue researching. And then there’s a few people who have done a tremendous amount of work. And these are the people, some of the people that we have with us here today as panelists. One of those persons is –
00:00:34:15 [OVERLAPPING VOICES]
00:00:34:26 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: . . . great work is Barrie Zwicker. And, of course, he would be from Canada. [LAUGHTER] And people are able to view this work there to some [UNINTEL] it’s not such a big thing. It’s a big thing for us here to have –
00:01:00:21 [OVERLAPPING VOICES]
00:01:03:16 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Because I sat there enthralled with each and every story [OVERLAPPING VOICES]. So here to let us know what he has discovered, the ins and outs of how it was put together, the great deception and the information [UNINTEL] that produces that great documentary is Barrie Zwicker himself. Thank you.
00:01:32:11 BARRIE ZWICKER: Well thank you very, very much Cynthia. May I use your first name?
00:01:38:08 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: You better.
00:01:40:17 BARRIE ZWICKER: I would not describe myself as a researcher actually. I don’t want to, I don’t want to correct your introduction, we were getting along so well, but truly I think that I am, I, I see myself as a popularizer. I have done research, I was an investigative journalist for Canada’s national newspaper for a time and all journalism should be investigative. But it turns out I think I’m a, I’m a popularizer. And the voice I will use in my prepared remarks today is different from the voice I would use in the DVD that will premiere tonight, The Great Conspiracy: The 9/11 News Special You Never Saw.
00:02:23:24 Somebody’s trying to get my attention.
00:02:25:18 WOMAN: Get sworn in.
00:02:26:27 BARRIE ZWICKER: Get sworn in?
00:02:27:23 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Oh yes that’s right. Thank you very much.
00:02:31:09 BARRIE ZWICKER: [MAKES SOUND]
00:02:34:21 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Do we swear in popularizers?
00:02:37:24 AUDIENCE: Yes.
00:02:39:21 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Do you swear to tell the truth to us all here today?
00:02:45:04 BARRIE ZWICKER: I do swear to tell the truth to the best of my ability here today and every day.
00:02:55:24 BARRIE ZWICKER: That was an interesting diversion. Thank you audience person. Now in the interest of not taking other peoples’ time I will stick pretty closely to my prepared remarks here which begin this way.
00:03:10:29 “History is bunk” said Henry Ford. Interestingly he was a supporter of Hitler sending the Fuhrer a birthday gift each year. Another quote: “Those who ignore history are condemned to repeat it” wrote Santayana whose reputation for thoughtfulness was a little better than Ford’s. Now my responsibility here today is actually not so much to tell background behind the making of Great Conspiracy although I’ll digress for a moment with a little tad. Moments from now boxes are supposed to arrive at the back there that contain the first issues of and I was talked into this, Barrie Zwicker’s “9/11 Resource Guide,” 52 pages.
00:04:00:02 And in it there’s a story about how The Great Conspiracy was made but mainly it’s a transcript of the DVD. It’s probably the best list of 9/11 websites assembled anywhere. It includes John McCurdy’s 9/11 literature survey divided into nine sections, very [NOISE OBSCURES] sound and other resource materials like that. It will go on sale in, in moments.
00:04:27:00 But my responsibility is not to discuss the making of the that, I hope, popular, another popular DVD because The Great Deception did prove itself in the market if you will. My responsibility is to address 9/11 and history. And to be truly responsible I must add the media. And to say there’s an intersection between history and the media, however, comes close to being a misstatement unless we mean relatively insignificant and/or officially approved history. Now an example of officially unapproved and significant history would be Howard Zinn’s book A People’s History of the United States.
00:05:10:06 The media and significant history barely intersect. And I say that as a person who has earned his living as a media critic for 33 years. Just as the media and 9/11 barely intersect, especially in respect to the claiming anomalies in the official story, some of which have been so compellingly defined here today by Janna and by John sitting in this very seat. I hope some of his erudition might rub off on me one way or another and the official story is the history of 9/11 as presented by the media to date. The New York Times ran a front page story in which the Times endorsed the Report of the 9/11 Commission as the final version of the history of 9/11.
00:06:03:24 And in the Globe and Mail, Canada’s national newspaper in the book review section about two weeks ago, a gentleman named Wesley [LAST NAME (?)] who’s an intelligence specialist, he wrote a review of the 9/11 Commission Report and another equally thick and equally unrevealing and distorted volume called the 9/11 Investigations, I think. And he praised these to the skies saying that this is history the way it’s supposed to be. And somehow, even though he mentioned there was no index – now he seemed to overlook that, do not trust a book without an index. Someone doesn’t want to check [UNINTEL]. And indexes are extremely revealing.
00:06:47:19 So someone coined the phrase, supposedly admiring journalism, that it is history on the run. And I say journalism is more like history on the lam. [LAUGHTER] The media to be more academic, to use more academic language, the media are ahistorical. If you’re depending on USA Today or ABC for your historical perspective, you are on a blind date with history. It’s not an accident that some of those that some of us respect the most for their questioning of the provenance of 9/11 are historians. I mentioned Howard Zinn. There’s also the marvelously well informed and capable Webster G. Tarpley of Washington, D.C. [APPLAUSE]
00:07:34:08 Now allow me a few – yeah. [APPLAUSE] Allow me a few observations about trends in the media, especially in regard to the media’s relationship to power and history. This is the time to do so and to become more specific in that regard and to look at both the deadly pivot point in history and to critique the media’s role in cradling that pivot point. Now there are many examples of rulers – by what I mean by pivot point – many examples of rulers surreptitiously ordering self inflicted attacks to mobilize public opinion behind their usually war agenda.
00:08:21:05 You can go back as far as Sparta. But more recently, for instance, in 1605 there was the so-called gunpowder plot against the British parliament buildings. Now, now I’ll allow myself a digression here because it shows just how conned we can be. It so happens that my birthday is November the 5th. So I grew up knowing about Guy Fawkes Day, which is November 5th. And I always knew the little rhyme “Remember, remember the fifth of November/ Gunpowder, treason and plot.” And I always assumed that there was a guy names Guy Fawkes who took barrels of gunpowder under the bridge of parliament buildings in 1605 and, um, tried to light them to blow up the parliament buildings against, to, to the detriment of the king.
00:09:12:09 And it turns out, I just learned a few months ago, that that was a deception by King James. It was cooked up and Guy Fawkes was framed and his co-conspirators, alleged co-conspirators, were frame and they were hanged. And it was to aid the king in his wish for war with Spain and to generally, buttress his reign. And I’ve gone literally my whole life not knowing about a deception pulled off by a ruler of old . . . and I just didn’t know. And my son – last night I phoned him and his did some checking on the internet – and the official story about Guy Fawkes Day is still the one most people believe.
00:10:02:10 So if we are able to uncover the truth of 9/11 is will be in a snap of time in terms of historical development. And I hope we can. So you go back to Sparta as I say, you go back to 1605, you go back to 1989, the Spanish-American War. Why did the battleship Maine blow up in Havana Harbor? Why did somebody store all the armaments inside the boiler room? This is not a complete list. You have 1941, Pearl Harbor, in 1950 the Korean War, in 1964 the Gulf of Tonkin non-incident, in Operations Northwoods Plan, the non-existent incubator babies of 1991, who paved the way for Dever-, Desert Storm. And, of course, the greatest [UNINTEL] of the deceivers of all, 9/11.
00:10:53:14 Now in my DVD premiering tonight I do include sections on the Reichstag Fire of 1933, Operation Northwoods, Gulf of Tonkin and Desert Storm. And so let’s play a brief clip on the Gulf of Tonkin incident and then I’ll tell you why I chose this clip, this example from such an embarrassment of tawdry riches.
00:11:28:17 Now fast forward just two years from Operations Northwoods to August 2nd, 1964. In the Gulf of Tonkin, North Vietnamese torpedo [LAUNCHERED (?)] war triggering deception, is partly because of one comment made to me personally two weeks ago today in Toronto by John Gibson of Fox News. Fox flew a crew from this city to my city to interview me, and I put interview in quotes, and I am losing my ability to read.
00:12:10:23 So, whoever’s in charge of the lights.
[a short video is played]
00:12:12:05 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: [OVERLAPPING] Lights please.
00:12:13:26 BARRIE ZWICKER: Oh, thank you. Just like a record [UNINTEL]. So on September 11th, Fox News is to air a one hour documentary on anti-Americanism around the world. Um, I hope someone will tape it. And on that program unless there is a miracle or a mistake I will appear playing the role of mincemeat. [LAUGHTER] Fox learned of my miserable existence through Professor Nancy Snow of the University of Southern California – I think it’s where she is. She’s a friend and colleague. She has co-edited a book to be published shortly titled War, Media and Terrorism: A Global Perspective.
00:12:58:02 And I contributed an academically sound chapter titled “America: The Fourth Reich,” which Fox is almost certain to publicize in its own way. In any event during my be [CLEARS THROAT] – excuse me – during my being grilled by John Gibson, he readily agreed to, to my surprise, that the Gulf of Tonkin incident was a sham. Now I can only presume that this was because LBJ, a Democrat, was in the White House at the time and the only things Fox hates more than terrorist harboring Canadians is Democrats. [LAUGHTER]
00:13:38:16 At the time of the Tonkin Gulf deception no media questioned the events. And I will digress just one other little time here and I hope this is not going to sound self serving. It really isn’t intended to be. I remember seeing that headline in the Globe and Mail [UNINTEL] – Q&A, alright. I remember seeing the headline that was shown in the Globe and Mail and, which I was working for at the time, and I remember myself thinking this is fishy. Now I don’t say that to be self aggrandizing. I say it because there’s a huge history. What is it that makes us in this room, so you have to explain, what is it that makes us question things? I haven’t found the answer to that. I mean it isn’t sexual orientation, it isn’t culture, it isn’t race, it isn’t religion. I don’t know what it is. What is it?
00:14:30:16 Well anyway we’ve go to Q&A. I would say that the media swallowed the Gulf of Tonkin trick hook, line and sinker. I have said generalizations about the media which could be heard any time, any day. [LAUGHTER] And I’ll move rapidly through to my conclusion. History remains hidden. It is stillborn and it remains that only the people, we the people, it seems, can force history out into the open bit by bit. And this is what we’re engaged in here today. We, the ruled, must do everything we can that is non-violent to reveal the tool of grand deceptions, wielded by the rulers, for the blight on humankind that it is.
00:15:27:17 The day is long passed that this murderous ploy should have been removed from the bag of dirty tricks that rulers use to keep populations in line and to line the pockets of the few. Thank you.
00:15:52:10 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Okay, now we have a brief opportunity to ask questions of Mr. Zwicker. And we’ll start again with Commissioner McIlvaine.
00:16:02:06 BOB McILVAINE: I just wanted to ask a couple of things. There’s one that I can’t get [UNINTEL] with. do you think if Bush loses, or when he loses, the media will attack him? It seems like the, the fear factor is so great in the media that they’re just . . . But I, I’m hoping that once he, once he loses that the gloves come off and we really might get the truth a lot quicker than like the Warren Commission or something that sorted was [UNINTEL].
00:16:30:19 BARRIE ZWICKER: Well that, Bob, that is really, really a, a deep and excellent question because it’s true that the media, – look at Martha Stewart – the media will attack like a bunch of piranhas when somebody’s down and out. So normally they serve power, they reflect and promote – they reflect power and thereby promote it and serve it through servitude rather than questioning power and thereby serving it to loyal opposition. So [UNINTEL] questioning Bush n-, needles to say, and he, it’s, if he goes down yes they might attack him.
00:17:08:25 There’s such a thing as fad in journalism. The, or pack journalism and they may do that. But I don’t know. You’re looking at a dynasty there and I will leave it at that. I mean I could – all sorts of ideas pop into my mind, or whether it would be maybe better if Bush was re-elected and make things even worse being which might in historical times speed up the clean up that we need. I mean I know that sounds heretical but –
[OVERLAPPING VOICES] [APPLAUSE]
00:17:39:22 BARRIE ZWICKER: And, and, and I don’t think I’m alone in thinking that Kerry is much, is much the same.
00:17:46:22 MAN: Right.
00:17:47:04 BARRIE ZWICKER: You know you [APPLAUSE OBSCURES] between their foreign policies. And mostly Kerry has just said he won’t let Toronto ship its garbage to Detroit. [LAUGHS] Shame on him. Joking. [LAUGHTER]
00:18:03:08 BOB McILVAINE: I just wanted to make a statement. You know, I, I had the quotes in my notes from being down at the commission hearings. But then Denise once said – we were in the commission hearings or hearing the news, whatever – he says, “Don’t forget this is an exposition, it is not an investigation.” So I think that was a real clue of what the nine, 9/11 Commission was all about.
00:18:24:01 BOB McILVAINE: And my last question is, why is it the real of the world seem to be getting this idea of what’s happening in the world and it, it’s all going in the wrong direction, and yet the people in the United States – I mean it’s that basic question. You asked why. What is it in the American public that they don’t want to answer, ask these questions. Are the Europeans, Canadians or are they, they say I won’t try. So . . .
00:18:46:02 BARRIE ZWICKER: Well there are distinct differences in [UNINTEL]. Thirty percent of Germans, these are, these are –
00:18:52:13 MAN: Academics.
00:18:53:08 BARRIE ZWICKER: These are [UNINTEL] polls. Thirty percent of Germans, young Germans anyway believe that the U.S. government had a hand in 9/11, was complicit in it.
00:19:01:02 WOMAN: Yes.
00:19:01:16 BARRIE ZWICKER: [OVERLAPPING] A poll that we commissioned in Canada in May found that 16 percent of Canadians believed that. Sixty three percent of Canadians believed that – I believe this is almost a quote from our poll question – that persons within the U.S. government up to and including the White House has foreknowledge of the events, we don’t use the word facts, of the events of 9/11 and, and deliberately failed to prevent them. Sixty three percent of Canadians believe that.
00:19:34:02 BARRIE ZWICKER: [OVERLAPPING] We, we, I think – see I used to in [UNINTEL] in the United States and I love it. I love it when people call me anti-America. I love it because it just gives me an opening and I demolish them. But because I have so many friends here and, and I have so much respect for all sorts of American traditions. But at the same time you live in a cocoon here and it’s all got mirrors inside it. And it’s all kind of USA is the greatest. And it, and it, and it, it harms the, the judgment.
00:20:17:05 And so outsiders can see that. And then somebody once said that the 49th parallel, that’s the border between USA and Canada, is the longest undefended one way mirror in the world. [LAUGHTER] And so we see every twitch of the American elephant and that American elephant rolls over and the Canadian mouse is squashed. So people have to pay attention to the United States because of the huge power that it [UNINTEL] here, economic, military, informational power especially. Although it’s on a very shaky foundation.
00:20:51:12 So there, I think that is one large generalized answer to why Canadians, Germans, Brits, Spaniards and so on have a different view of this. We have different information sources in addition to CNN and also, they are, they tend to be more diverse. And so in my DVD, which will premier tonight at 8:00, I quote a Canadian columnist, Mark [MARTIN (?)], who, who writes things that you don’t see here very often. Paul Krugman of The New York Times is very good, Bob Herbert and others. But there are more of, of that ilk, questioners, in Canadian journalism than in U.S. journalism by, by a small margin. We’re far, far, far from perfect with the journalism in Canada. After all we’re the land that spawned Conrad Black.
00:21:48:15 WOMAN: Yes.
00:21:49:08 BARRIE ZWICKER: As Black would say, “[OWEN (?)].”
00:21:56:27 MAN: . . . questions from the audience.
00:21:58:29 MAN: Hello.
00:22:00:29 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: At the end of session of the four panelists so that they can be broadcast over WBAI.
00:22:08:17 MAN: The audience has [UNINTEL].
00:22:14:04 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: Yes.
00:22:14:08 MAN: [UNINTEL]
00:22:16:03 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: The, the audience will ask [OVERLAPPING] questions at the end of the presentations of the four panelists which is coming up and your questions will be broadcast on WBAI.
00:22:28:28 MAN: That’s, that’s correct. Um, we’re actually working on WBAI right now [UNINTEL] they gave us their word or said they were going to air the program live and it’s [NOT/NOW (?)] happening.
00:22:37:25 MAN: [UNINTEL]. But the plan is originally to have questions at the very end of the program. Um, and, but, we’re going to do it both at the end and at the end of this particular sequence of four presenters. So let’s not waste any more time. Again, this is not a town hall forum, this is a commission hearing, but we are opening it up to, to questions. Cards will be, if they haven’t already been passed out, for you to submit this questions. There is a town hall forum and more questions and, you know, will be allowed from the, from the public, on the 11th. I understand that the Manhattan [UNINTEL] is also free. So we need to move on and I’ll just turn it back over to our Chairwoman.
00:23:18:29 CYNTHIA McKINNEY: I thought the chair had some discretion in this. But obviously we don’t. Um, do you have your cards?
00:23:26:01 MAN: Yup.