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The Biggest Secret About 9/11
August, 2005
Barrie Zwicker

On the fourth anniversary of 9/11, the most amazing aspect is how many people do not believe the official account.

In May, 2003, The Toronto Star published “Conspiracy crusader doubts official 9/11 version.” by Michele Landsberg. “Last January, I wrote about American declassified documents that verify a long history of top-level conspiracies,” she wrote. “The U.S. government, its military and its secret service have plotted to justify wars and impose their control on other countries through intricate secret schemes of drug-running, gun smuggling and assassination. They even considered rigging fake terrorist attacks that would cost American lives in order to stir the public to war-ready outrage. Immediately, I was deluged with hundreds of approving e-mails from American citizens. Some of them praised the TV work of Barrie Zwicker...”

I had learned of this constituency earlier. I’ve watched the constituency grow. In speaking engagements in New York City, California, Oregon, Montana, Ontario and London, Berlin, Amsterdam, Paris, Madrid, Vienna and Iceland where audiences, indicated they disbelieve the official story.

In a Zogby International poll conducted from Tuesday August 24 through Thursday August 26, 2004, on the eve of the Republican National Convention, 50% of New York City residents said some US leaders "knew in advance that attacks were planned on or around September 11, 2001, and that they consciously failed to act."

The evidence that elements of the U.S. government were complicit in 9/11 is overwhelming. It can be found in two superb volumes by California theologian and historian David Ray Griffin- The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions about the Bush Administration and 9/11 and The 9/11 Commission: Omissions and Distortions, in Michael C. Ruppert’s Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil, in Nafeez Mosaddeq Ahmed, The War on Truth: 9/11, Disinformation, and the Anatomy of, in The Terror Timeline: Year by Year, Day by Day, Minute by Minute by Paul Thompson, and in 9/11 Synthetic Terrorism: Made in USA, by Webster G. Tarpley. Together, these books blow the official story out of the water.

Why are the mainstream media closing their eyes? Why are they censoring all the hard questions? Why aren’t the media telling the people the truth?

A clue may be found in philosopher Bertrand Russell’s 1967 book War Crimes in Vietnam. The first chapter is “The Press and Vietnam.” Russell writes: “The role of the Western press in the Vietnam controversy has been important and revealing. It is from Western newspapers that I derived my earliest understandings of the involvement of the United States, and it is from these same reports that I first became aware of the barbarous character of the war” Good. But at the top of the next page he says: “I was soon to discover that although some newspapers were prepared to publish isolated pieces of horrifying information, they had no intention of forming a coherent picture of the war from these reports -- and every intention of preventing others from doing so.”

In other words, when a coherent picture – is to be provided on a really controversial topic, something as huge as the Vietnam War, or the assassination of John F. Kennedy, or 9/11, the media usually quickly buy into the initial official story. Tons of images and verbiage follow. Contradictory facts and interpretations become like light trapped in the black hole of the official narrative that can’t escape. The investment of the media in the official story becomes too big to abandon, even when alarming contradictions – even books full of them -- surface.

The underlying reasons for the media blackout are complicated. First is the sense of reality shared by most people from acculturation and education that is largely determined by the prevailing powers in a given society, corporate culture. Many who work in the mainstream media will privately attest that the selection of people for promotion adheres to a value system that suffuses the workplace. That value system is more status quo than it is Socratic, more accepting of basic tenets than it is questioning, sharply critical, fundamentally dissenting.

But there’s an 800-pound gorilla in our synthetic perceptual environment: the increasing deployment by “invisible governments” of covert agents, technicians of deception and death who carry out increasingly brazen “black ops.” Webster Tarpley in 9/11 Synthetic Terror refers to “over-determined reality.” U.S. historian Daniel Boorstin coined the term “pseudo-events” in his 1961 book The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America. Public life, he said, was filled with staged and scripted counterfeit versions of actual happenings. Tarpley adds: “Mass gullibility about the events of 9/11 is based on unmediated sense certainty reinforced by merciless and repetitious media bombardment.”

Conventional wisdom usually prevails, no matter the evidence contradicting it. At the heart of it are fears. There’s the fear of being wrong about something that could really discomfit the establishment.

Another fear, paradoxically, may be a fear of success, fear of winning a Pulitzer Prize. Fears of stepping out of line, being laughed at, losing a promotion, facing a demotion, being seen as “a conspiracy nut.” Two additional fears face journalists willing to treat questions about 9/11 more seriously than previously. The fear can be expressed this way: “Why in the world wasn’t this done months or even years ago? If we suddenly go into this now, aren’t people going to ask where the heck were we earlier? How can we explain that?

The second is: “Migawd, this opens the biggest can of worms I ever saw. We’ll have to confront so many questions – not least about the so-called ‘war on terrorism’ -- that I can’t see where this will end.” An editor who decides to “go there” faces the task of selling his or her colleagues on it. To pursue this at an editorial meeting would mean careful preparation, probably lobbying. What would come up would be nothing short of questioning the general run of hundreds of news stories that stream in every week. These stories keep pouring out of the establishment: the White House press corps, the rightwing think tanks, the wire service reports… As Tarpley says, “a merciless and repetitious…bombardment.” For the conscientious editor it will be a cataclysm to reconsider all this. “The implication is that our newsroom and our lives will be turned upside down.” Exactly. But that’s what has to happen sooner or later.

(This is an excerpt from a draft of an upcoming article by Barrie Zwicker, director of the International Citizens’ Inquiry Into 9/11, Phase 2, held in Toronto in May 2004 who is writing a book- 9/11, The Media, and Our Future).

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