For Activists, Architects, 9/11 Questions Linger Ten Years Later
By GLORIA TATUM | April 30, 2011
With additional reporting by Matthew Cardinale, News Editor.
(APN) ATLANTA -- It will be ten years since September 11, 2001, in just a few months. And yet some of the most basic and fundamental questions about what happened that day--based upon physics and the forensic science of structural engineering--in the collapse of three towers at the World Trade Center in New York, still linger.
Groups such as Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth (A&E), founded by Richard Gage; and We Are Change Atlanta want to re-examine the evidence regarding the collapse of all three buildings.
First, the group is especially interested in new evidence of un-ignited fragments of nano-engineered thermitic pyrotechnics found in debris from the Twin Towers. The presence of these fragments would be consistent with explosives having been used in a controlled demolition.
Second, the group is also troubled that, in their view, official reports by the US government appear to defy the fundamental laws of physics.
[Before delving into these two sets of issues, an editorial note is in order. The purpose of this article is not to hypothesize what the real story behind the Towers' collapse is, but to address what we find to be reasonable and compelling questions about the government's official account.]
These issues will be addressed at an upcoming event in Atlanta. Gage; former US Rep. Cynthia McKinney (D-GA); Luke Rudkowski, founder of We Are Change; and April Gallop, Pentagon survior will speak at First Iconium Baptist Church in East Atlanta on May 21, 2011, from 4-9pm.
DISCOVERY OF NANO-THERMITE
First, the discovery of thermite and nano-thermitic composites in the dust and debris following the collapse of the three buildings was published in The Open Chemical Physics Journal in 2009, as proof that explosives were used in the destruction of the Twin Towers.
Jeremy Lynes, We Are Change Atlanta, explained nano-thermite to Atlanta Progressive News, "Thermite has been around over a century and refers to aluminum's highly energetic reaction to iron when in a certain form. When ignited, thermite releases large amounts of energy and will destroy iron's integrity fast. Nano refers to the modern technology of constructing materials much smaller, on the supra-molecular scale, than previously possible, creating chemical reactions never-before imaginable. Nano-thermite is an advanced type of thermite which is more explosive and gives a faster complete burn."
The 2009 article was titled "Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe," and was written by Niels Harrit, Department of Chemistry, University of Copenhagen, Denmark; Jeffrey Farrer, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Brigham Young University; Steven Jones; Kevin Ryan; Frank Legge; Daniel Farnsworth; Gregg Roberts; James Gourley; and Bradley Larsen.
"The destruction of three skyscrapers (WTC 1, 2 and 7) on September 11, 2001 was an immensely tragic catastrophe that not only impacted thousands of people and families directly, due to injury and loss of life, but also provided the motivation for numerous expensive and radical changes in domestic and foreign policy. For these and other reasons, knowing what really happened that fateful day is of grave importance," the authors wrote.
The collapse of the towers generated a surprisingly large amount of fine, toxic dust. Four different Manhattan residents took samples of this dust and later responded to a call for such samples.
The authors conduct a variety of highly technical tests upon the small red and gray chips they found in the dust, to conclude as follows: "Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material."
The publication of this article was highly controversial, leading to the resignation of editor-in-chief, Marie-Paule Pileni, who had no specific scientific rebuttal to the article. And for many activists, architects, and engineers who had already believed that explosives were involved in the collapse of the three towers, it confirmed their suspicions.
ARCHITECTS, ENGINEERS SEE CONTROLLED DEMOLITION
The US government's official explanation of how terrorists came to hijack two planes and fly them into two buildings is provided in the 9/11 Commission Report. But its explanation of how those two plane collisions led to the buildings later collapsing into their own footprint is provided by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
The NIST official report on 9/11 states that a "total progressive collapse or disproportionate collapse" occurred in WTC 1, 2, and 7, as in each case the entire building above the damaged area moved downward as a single unit.
Three buildings collapsed on 9/11, although only two were hit by a plane.
A growing chorus of activists, scholars, architects, and engineers--including several groups and activists in Atlanta--have been questioning the official account by NIST of how the three towers fell.
In WTC 1, NIST states fires weakened the core columns and caused the floors on the south side to sag. Other neighboring columns became overloaded and columns on the south wall buckled causing the top section of the building to tilt and begin its descent.
In WTC 2, NIST states fires caused the floors on the east side of the building to buckle and sag, which pulled neighboring columns and caused them to buckle causing the top section to tilt and begin its descent.
In WTC 7, NIST states fire-induced thermal expansion of the floor system surrounding column 79 led to the collapse of floor 13 which triggered a cascade of floor failures.
Last September, Derek Johnson, Structural Steel Inspector & Mechanical Engineer, visited Atlanta to make a multi-media presentation at the historic Plaza Theater on Ponce de Leon Avenue in Midtown, which called into question the official government report on the collapse of WTC 1, 2, and 7. 250 people attended the event hosted by We Are Change Atlanta.
Johnson's presentation blasted holes in NIST's report of a fire-induced total progressive collapse.
"NIST's conclusion of a fire-induced collapse of building 7 is based on computer simulation and not on physical evidence that can be tested and confirmed by others. NIST manipulated the computer inputs by using unrealistic values for the weight, strength, and flexibility of steel and concrete in their model," Johnson said.
"The model NIST used was more representative of Lincoln Logs that fall like a house of cards than the very strong welted and bolted large steel beams used throughout WTC 7," Johnson explained.
"The three buildings that were destroyed on 9/11 were designed and built using fire resistance plans that were thorough and continually updated, and that ensured the buildings could not fail from fires," Johnson said.
WTC 7 was not hit by a plane and received only minor damage from the falls of WTC 1 and 2. WTC 7 did exhibit all the characteristics of classic controlled demolition with explosives, such as rapid onset of collapse, sounds of explosions, free-fall acceleration, and collapsing completely in its own footprint with expanding pyroclastic dust clouds.
WTC 7 housed Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) files relating to numerous Wall Street investigations including Enron, Citigroup, and WorldCom. All files and evidence from government agencies in WTC7 such as the CIA, Secret Service, DOD, and INS were destroyed.
Other high-rise building with much larger, hotter, and longer-lasting fires have never collapsed. WTC 4, which was next to WTC 2, was destroyed by tons of falling and buring debris with large permanent deformations and sagging of many beams, but it did not collapse.
WTC 5 was also destroyed by extensive fire-related damage, but it did not collapse.
Johnson reported "NIST would not release over three thousand documents on their investigation of the collapse of WTC 7 to Ron Brookman, a structural engineer... NIST's reason for refusing to release the documents was that it might jeopardize public safety."
"This is the first time in history that a steel and concrete framed building has collapsed due to office fires where one damaged column caused a total progressive collapse of the entire building at near free fall speed," Mike Smith, an Atlanta-based electrical engineer and member of A&E, said.
"If the official story of the collapse of the towers is true," Mr. Lynes said, "then the top floors, above the plane's impact, acted like a pile driver of incredible pressure, forcing its way to the ground through the other ninety floors at free fall speed--impossible, according to laws of conservation of energy. Therefore, after this demolishing, the top twenty or thirty stories would be sitting atop the rubble intact. Since they were not, it shows they were not the cause of the collapse."
The South Tower collapsed at 9:59 am and the North Tower collapsed at 10:28 am, while building 7 collapsed at 5:21 pm. The WTC7 collapsed in under seven seconds, while The Twin Towers collapsed somewhere between 8.5 and fifteen seconds.
"The accelerated speeds of collapses evident in videos of all three buildings prove that these are not progressive collapses as the government contends. In a progressive collapse a failed structure will encounter resistance--thousands of tons of steel and concrete--and exhibit jolts which will slow down, not accelerate, its decent and will not disintegrate symmetrically into its own footprint. The government's miraculous steel and concrete disintegration theory is fraudulent science. Only in a controlled implosion, using explosives to remove the internal support system, will you get the free-fall speed and vertical decent leaving only a pile of dust and rubble," Smith said.
"The rate of free fall or the gravitational acceleration of Earth is 9.8 meters per second per second, or 9.8/s^2 without air friction coefficients or drag. It is impossible for a gravitational collapse to proceed so destructively through a path of such great resistance in anywhere near free-fall time of 8.5 to 15 seconds," Smith explained.
In addition to the speed and symmetry of the collapse of WTC 7 and the Twin Towers, many eye witnesses, firefighters, and police officers reported hearing violent explosions from all three building before they fell.
"Amazing, incredible... For the third time today, it's reminiscent of those pictures we've all seen too much on television before where a building was deliberately destroyed by well-placed dynamite to knock it down," Dan Rather of CBS News said, for example, according to a clip posted widely on Youtube.
LOCAL 9/11 TRUTH ACTIVISM
The Pink Elephant Collective, a group of local artists, painted a 9/11 Pink Elephant Mural on the wall at Euclid and Colquitt Avenues in Atlanta's Little Five Points during the summer of 2010. The mural shows several pink elephants drudging through oil, with the words "9-11 Truth" and "Nano-thermite?"
Camron Wiltshire, a member of the Pink Elephant Collective, said, "We painted the mural as a means to connect directly with people on the street and to have an authentic discussion of the facts. It is a visual invocation to awaken the heroic within us all and look at the evidence being brought forward by concerned citizens all over the world."
"The US is now immersed in two illegal wars of occupation and 9/11 is given as the righteous precedence, for our invasion, destruction, and occupation of these sovereign countries. Over one million innocent Iraqi men, women, and children have been murdered by our tax funded military occupation, not to mention the thousands of US soldiers and public servants. If we can be brave and look for ourselves at the evidence, we can begin fixing our country," Wiltshire said.
"The mainstream media is not willing to look at the evidence and spends much of its efforts demonizing or smearing anyone who is speaking out," Wiltshire said.
A CODE OF SILENCE
Since 9/11, there has been a code of silence surrounding any questions towards the accuracy of the US government's official account. This code of silence has been antithetical to the very values of freedom of speech, democracy, and open inquiry which are fundamental to our country.
Indeed, when former US Rep. McKinney asked in a 2002 radio interview what the President knew and when he know it, she was viciously attacked, and this led to her electoral defeat by former US Rep. Denise Majette (D-GA) in 2002.
A February 2010 article in the American Behavioral Scientist, “Beyond Conspiracy Theory: Patterns of High Crime in American Government,” by Lance deHaven-Smith, Professor of Public Administration at Florida State University, examines the characteristics of what he refers to as State Crimes Against Democracy (SCAD). SCAD is a term intended to replace the term conspiracy theory, because government agencies frequently engage in illegal conspiracies as a proven fact.
DeHaven-Smith includes 9/11 as a suspected SCAD in a list of actual and suspected SCADs.
SCADs involve high-level government officials, often in combination with private interests, that engage in covert activities for political advantages and power, according to deHaven-Smith. Proven SCADs since World War II include McCarthyism, the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, burglary of the office of Daniel Ellsberg’s psychiatrist in effort to discredit Ellsberg, the Watergate break-in, Iran-Contra, Florida’s 2000 Election (felon disenfranchisement program), and fixed intelligence on weapons of mass destruction to justify the US invasion of Iraq.
“Research shows that people are far less willing to examine information that disputes, rather than confirms, their beliefs... pre-existing beliefs can interfere with SCADs inquiry, especially in regards to September 11, 2001," Psychologist Laurie Manwell, University of Guelph, wrote, also in an article in the same February 2010 issue of ABS.
Professor Steven Hoffman, visiting scholar at the University of Buffalo, expanded upon this in his ABS article, “There Must Be a Reason: Osama, Saddam and Inferred Justification.”
“Our data shows substantial support for a cognitive theory known as ‘motivated reasoning,’ which suggests that rather than search rationally for information that either confirms or disconfirms a particular belief, people actually seek out information that confirms what they already believe. In fact, for the most part people completely ignore contrary information," Hoffman wrote.
The present APN article is intended to increase citizens' awareness of the lingering questions, architectural analyses, and new physical evidence as it relates to 9/11. It is hoped that this article may advance public discourse and lead to an open conversation, including in the comments section of this article.