A Compendium Of Deception & Conspiracy: The September 11 2001 Terrorist Attacks

Adam Fitzgerald
20 min readJul 2, 2022

When American Airlines Flight 11 slammed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 465 mph at 8:46am, the initial reports on the radio and even on the news stations, were that of hysterical confusion. Some bystanders had heard of a roaring engine sound, and then a large explosion. Many thousands started looking at the thick acrid smoke pouring out of the wide gaping black hole, thinking that maybe, just maybe this was technical error.

17 minutes later, at 9:03am, United Airlines Flight 175 came screaming into lower Manhattan and within a few short seconds hit 513 mph and impacted the South Tower. By then many thousands across the New Jersey harbor, lower Manhattan and tens of thousands across rooftops in all five boroughs, saw the large burst of fire. Many dozens even filmed the incident, with every major news pullet capturing the horrifying act. Even to the layman, this was no accident.

This was a coordinated terrorist attack. Osama Bin Laden was not a household name, and even if they did know who this nefarious Yemeni was, they still couldn’t process the notion of why he allegedly ordered these attacks to begin with. At noon, with two more plane hijackings and impacts into the Pentagon and a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania, the country still dazed and utterly in shock of this massive attack on the nation, were still nowhere near at conceiving the thought of Osama Bin Laden and his Arab fundamnetlist orgaznaition, Al Qaeda.. However, the legacy media had reported “ad nauseam” thru-ought the hours, days and weeks about this mysterious Saudi who had deep vitriol for the United States.

Meanwhile in Washington D.C, government officials from every agency had coordinated into functional units to coordinate operations which involved data collection, public services and military defense. Yet to some within the political departments, they were looking into the vast oceans of the future. Many within this sector were from a Neoconservative background and had long been aligned with the Bush dynasty which started under George H.W. Bush in 1989, who was also the former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency before becoming the 41st US President of the United States.

The minds that turned the Bush Sr. administration into an imperialist statehood, were now functioning here under the “prodigal son”. The catalyst was here, and now it was time to take full advantage of it. The immediate reactions to the attacks were not from the military at first, but from policy makers, hell bent on subverting the civil rights of those considered “enemy combatants” , which covertly added US civilians. The US Constitution was not just“obstructing” the nefarious agendas of the Neocons, but also human rights afforded to the “enemy”.

During the course of an interview with Frontline PBS, Richard Perle, the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Global Strategic Affairs under President Ronald Reagan, was asked about what led to the US military invasion of Iraq 10 years prior to the attacks of September 11th 2001, where the Neocon think tanks like Project for New American Century, and the Office of Special Plans run by Paul Wolfowitz and Douglas Feith, tried to connect Iraq and Bin Laden’s Al Qaeda to the day’s events.

Frontline: Soon after the Gulf War we’re realizing that this was a new age, post-Cold War. New theories, new documents needed to be developed, leading to the Defense Planning Guidance that Wolfowitz wrote, and that got a lot of press back in ’92. But can you bring us back to what the thinking was at that point, post-Gulf War, and before the end of that administration? What was going on? …

Perle: I think attention after the Gulf War turned to what the American role would be. The Gulf War then was largely thought to have been a great success on the part of the United States and its allies. It looked as though some sort of world order might emerge with the United States in a leadership position, but with broad agreement among our friends and allies. There was tremendous optimism at that time. And understandably, we had just been through half a century of Cold War with the existential threat that a massively armed and nuclear Soviet Union posed.

So, people thought that there were no more global issues; there would be regional issues. And we would have to deal with specific problems in specific regions. And attention was turned to those regional issues. People like Paul Wolfowitz, who were quite prescient, understood that the regions were seething with potential conflict. And he was eager to develop concepts for regional security.

While the policy makers were persuading Bush and his loyalists to entertain the idea of an invasion of Iraq, the CIA under Director George Tenet, as well as the NSA headed by Director Michael Hayden, were asking for less restraints while conducting their operations in the “shadows” so to speak. Or as Cofer Black, head of the agency’s Counter-terrorism Center once stated to the Congressional 9/11 Senate Inquiry, “the gloves need to come off”. The war wasn’t simply about “getting justice” on the perpetrators of this attack, but also to ensure that no attack or similar to it ever happens again, and if constitutional protections and state laws need to be circumvented, so be it. This was not a war on terrorism, but a war on a free and protected humanity.

The conspiracies, the actual anomalies and gross negligence from the domestic intelligence services before the attacks however, would need to be shielded from investigation or even known to the public. But how could they shadow these fault-lines from being known? By saturating the public with disinformation, and by implementing fictitious scenarios and even irrational speculations into the very people who are already wary of the federal government, those involved in progressive organizations, In this instance, they would be called the 9/11 Truth Movement.

“Many millions of people hold conspiracy theories; they believe that powerful people have worked together in order to withhold the truth about some important practice or some terrible event. A recent example is the belief, widespread in some parts of the world, that the attacks of 9/11 were carried out not by Al Qaeda, but by Israel or the United States. Those who subscribe to conspiracy theories may create serious risks, including risks of violence, and the existence of such theories raises significant challenges for policy and law. The first challenge is to understand the mechanisms by which conspiracy theories prosper; the second challenge is to understand how such theories might be undermined.

Such theories typically spread as a result of identifiable cognitive blunders, operating in conjunction with informational and reputational influences. A distinctive feature of conspiracy theories is their self-sealing quality. Conspiracy theorists are not likely to be persuaded by an attempt to dispel their theories; they may even characterize that very attempt as further proof of the conspiracy.

Because those who hold conspiracy theories typically suffer from a “crippled epistemology,” in accordance with which it is rational to hold such theories, the best response consists in cognitive infiltration of extremist groups. Various policy dilemmas, such as the question whether it is better for government to rebut conspiracy theories or to ignore them, are explored in this light.” (Cass Sunstein, Law & Economics Working Papers, 2008)

The disinformation campaign started out rather inconspicuously in 2002, as a French author by the name of Thierry Meyssan, published a book questioning the incident of American Airlines Flight 77wether it had crashed into the Pentagon or not. The book’s main theory was going by a couple of photos showing the fire trucks at the impact point showering the building with a thick white foam which covered the entire first floor. Meyssan showed one photo which was the second floor damage. This, he said, was the first floor and that the impact damage was only 16 feet wide.

His theories took off after a trio of young college students produced in a film in 2006 entitled “Loose Change”, which used Meyssan’s theory. It exploded and the 9/11 Truth Movement began questioning the evidence and narrative which they also exempted because it was used as the “official narrative” of the federal government. All but now forgotten and ignored, was the link between the CIA’s protection of both Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, and the Saudi financial link to the two men while they lived in California. If there are no hijackers, there are no intelligence operations involving monitoring them.

With the 9/11 Truth Movement currently in disarray and beyond any repair, rationally anyway, those behind the scenes at the CIA, NSA, Israel and Saudi governments, are not showing any slight concern whether the public or any vested entity will bring forth to light about their alleged involvement regarding pre-intelligence and even assisting those involved with the hijackings. Richard Gage, formerly of Architects & Engineers had once said, during a live broadcast on his podcast “9/11 Unleashed” during a question directed to him by me, that:

“The 9/11 truth movement does not need authentic hijackers on the planes…it does not depend on any hijackers on the planes that hit or missed their targets”.

This resounding statement, from one of the more influential voices in the currently dilapidated 9/11 Truth Movement, just proves the case that disinformation, intentional or not, still permeates within an organisational structure even after 20 years of its' inception. A “trojan horse” if you will, driven either by the intelligence services, federal government or by those in the truth movement. Sunstein was right, “conspiracy theorists are not likely to be persuaded by an attempt to dispel their theories”. People like Richard Gage are living proof of just that.

In the days and weeks after the attacks, the federal government led by it’s White House Legal Counsel, the Central Intelligence Agency, National Security Agency, the Pentagon as well as the nefarious Neoconservative faction (Israel-US) began to plan out the next 3 lifetimes, in response to the terrorist attacks on New York City and Washington D.C. Over at the Office of Special Plans, Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld had related to Paul Wolfowitz, Deputy Secretary of Defense, that there had to be evidence linking Iraq to Al Qaeda and the 9/11 attacks. According to an article authored by Seymour Hersh in 2003 entitled “Selective Intelligence” which was published by the New Yorker:

“According to the Pentagon adviser, Special Plans was created in order to find evidence of what Wolfowitz and his boss, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, believed to be true — that Saddam Hussein had close ties to Al Qaeda, and that Iraq had an enormous arsenal of chemical, biological, and possibly even nuclear weapons that threatened the region and, potentially, the United States.

Iraq’s possible possession of weapons of mass destruction had been a matter of concern to the international community since before the first Gulf War. Saddam Hussein had used chemical weapons in the past. At some point, he assembled thousands of chemical warheads, along with biological weapons, and made a serious attempt to build a nuclear-weapons program. What has been in dispute is how much of that capacity, if any, survived the 1991 war and the years of United Nations inspections, no-fly zones, and sanctions that followed.

In addition, since September 11th there have been recurring questions about Iraq’s ties to terrorists. A February poll showed that seventy-two per cent of Americans believed it was likely that Saddam Hussein was personally involved in the September 11th attacks, although no definitive evidence of such a connection has been presented.”

One week after the attacks, the United States Congress unanimously passed the “Authorization for Use of Military Force of 2001” . The authorization granted the President the authority to use all “necessary and appropriate force” against those whom he determined “planned, authorized, committed or aided” the September 11 attacks, or who harbored said persons or groups. And just a month later, the Patriot Act was enacted. It was a highly controversial piece of legislature that caused some rift between the Republican and Democratic Partys but was passed unanimously with a vote of 357 yay and 66 nay. The three main provisions that caused most of the controversy were the following:

  • expanded surveillance abilities of law enforcement, including by tapping domestic and international phones;
  • easier interagency communication to allow federal agencies to more effectively use all available resources in counterterrorism efforts; and
  • increased penalties for terrorism crimes and an expanded list of activities which would qualify for terrorism charges.

One of the loudest opponents of the Patriot Act was the The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) where they would write the following concerning Section 206, which extends to the FBI and the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) which lends them the ability to “follow any target” for purposes of surveillance.

“Imagine that the FBI could, with a single search warrant, raid every house or office that an individual suspect has visited over an entire year — every single place, whether or not the residents themselves are suspects. Suppose that the FBI could do this without ever having to identify the suspect in question. This is what Section 206 allows in the communications context. Section 206 authorizes intelligence investigators to conduct “John Doe” roving surveillance — meaning that the FBI can wiretap every single phone line, mobile communications device or Internet connection that a suspect might be using, without ever having to identify the suspect by name. This gives the FBI a “blank check” to violate the communications privacy of countless innocent Americans. What\’s worse, these blank-check wiretap orders can remain in effect for up to a year.”

The US federal government under Bush would later make some of the provisions, permanent, as seen in this speech from President Bush on December 10th 2005:

“This week’s agreement would renew all 16 provisions of the Patriot Act that are scheduled to expire at the end of this month — and it would make 14 of these provisions permanent. It reauthorizes critical national security tools, while bolstering the Patriot Act’s significant protections of civil liberties. It also includes provisions to fight crime and terrorism at America’s seaports, and tougher criminal penalties and increased resources to combat the dangerous spread of methamphetamine abuse throughout our country.

I applaud the conference committee for its good work. Now Congress needs to finish the job. Both the Senate and the House need to hold a prompt vote, and send me a bill renewing the Patriot Act so I can sign it into law.”

The 9/11 Truth Movement wasn’t an idea just yet. Not in the early 2001–2002 period, but cautious widows such as Mindy Kleinberg, Kristen Breitweiser, Patty Casazza, and Lorie Van Auken, whose husbands were killed while inside the Twin Towers, spoke out for a federal investigations into the incidents. Soon they would have the momentum of the public. They would soon become part of the 9/11 Family Steering Committee, an organization of twelve relatives of victims of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center.

The committee put enough pressure, with the help of a very wary public, on the Bush administration to put together an investigation. Bush initially balked at such an idea. But the media was focused on the “jersey Girls” and the public wanted answers. On November 27th 2002,, the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States was created. Originally, the Committee would be led by an infamous creature with a notorious suspect background, former Secretary of State under Nixon, Henry Kissinger. The obvious criticism were soon felt by the Steering Committee. Kissinger was out.

However selected to become the Committee’s Executive Director was a Bush appointee, Philip Zelikow. Zelikow had obvious conflicts of interests. He was a close friend to Bush National Security Adviser, Condoleezza Rice, and served on President Bush’s transition team late 2000 to early 2001. The Commission’s Republican chair and Democratic vice-chair strongly defended Zelikow, both at the time, Lee Hamilton and Thomas Kean. However during the course of the 911 Commission's investigation, in 2003, Zelikow had visited Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan to meet with U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Shaffer, regarding a top covert operation code named “Able Danger”, a meta-data collection operation which uncovered members of the “hamburg Cell” whom were involved with the 9/11 attacks.

However the data was ordered to be destroyed by Army SOCOM lawyers. Despite the promise that the Commission would investigate all 9/11 related topics. Able Danger was not included in the Commission’s final report. A conspiracy often neglected by even the most “careful” 9/11 researchers and truth advocates. The Truth Movement was not the least bit concerned with “Able Danger” which in itself was embroiled in an actual conspiracy. The reason? It involved the existence hijackers, to which, the fringe elements of the 9/11 Truth Movement deny were even involved with the attacks.

Prior to the 9/11 Commission, a bipartisan inquiry was formed on February 14th 2002, called the Joint Inquiry into Intelligence Community Activities before and after the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001. Senator Bob Graham (D-Fla.), chair of the Select Committee on Intelligence, and Representative Porter Goss (R-Fla.), chair of the House Intelligence Committee would head the investigation involving the state and federal authorities and intelligence services during the Clinton and Bush years. Almost immediately the committee quickly ran into stonewalling, delays and attacks from Vice President Dick Cheney and United States Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld, especially after an alleged leak from the committee.

CNN had reported classified information that the National Security Agency had received warning of the attacks on September 10th but failed to translate and forward them. Many obvious intelligence lapses were reported to the Inquiry panelists, including the interviews with George Tenet, Director CIA. In which, Carl Levin questioned Tenet vigorously regarding the CIA intentionally withholding of information regarding Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi’s passports with dual US Visas from the FBI. Tenet denied that anyone had even read the cable, yet over 50–60 CIA officers working in counter-intelligence had read it.

The complete and adamant refusal to share pertinent information involving the two Al Qaeda operatives, Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, was critical according to Levin. Another conspiracy ignored, and the seemingly ignorant fringe leaders of the 9/11 Truth Movement refusal to acknowledge an actual conspiracy because it entailed hijackers which again, they simply don’t believe were involved at any level. One of those individuals is Barbara Honegger, a former 1980 Reagan-Bush election committee appointee who worked in Reagan’s White House for over three years.

Honegger had recently been involved with a debunked conspiracy that involved Iran-Contra called “October Surprise”. Soon in the years following the September 11 attacks, Hongger, seemingly out of nowhere involved herself in the 9/11 Truth Movement and began holding lectures and conducting interviews where she make many remarkable claims, including the hijackers reported as being alive and that none of the hijacked planes crashed anywhere on that day. These fringe conspiracies' took precedence over the actual anomalies outlined above during the key period of 2006–2011.

In December 2002 Senator Graham himself revealed in a PBS interview that “I was surprised at the evidence that there were foreign governments involved in facilitating the activities of at least some of the terrorists in the United States.” Yet without any further media reporting, and with a nation now beset by the saturation of fringe material coming from the likes of people such as Alex Jones, Jim Fetzer, Barbara Honegger and Richard Gage, the malfeasance, and even actual foreign government and intelligence services conspiracies went ignored outright. Many years later, Bob Graham and Porter Goss, as well as other former U.S. officials, who are familiar with the entire text of the Joint Inquiry′s report, aired their belief that the U.S. government was persisting in its coverup on the Saudi Arabian government officials′ substantial aid provided to the perpetrators of the 9/11 attack.

Nevertheless the Bush White House got exactly what they had hoped for. Two Congressional inquiries which were largely managed by Bush loyalists, to which most evidence involving pre-intelligence was not investigated fully. Plus, the obfuscation and misdirection of the public thru the 9/11 Truth Movements' own ignorance that allowed questionable people to lead them down a path of the fantastical.

Meanwhile, another oft forgotten period in the days after the attacks, Director of the NSA, Michael Hayden meets with George Tenet. A PBS Frontline film, “The Spy Factory” which covers the NSA’s role in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks where Hayden explains the following:

“George then apparently went in and talked to the president in one of his morning meetings, and “Hey, by the way, Mike Hayden’s kind of leaning forward,” and they said to him, “Is there anything more he could do?” George says: “I don’t know. I’ll ask.” So George calls me and says: “Mike, the president, vice president, told them, good. Any more you can do?” I said, “George, no, not within my authorities, not within my current authorities.” And he paused and said: “That’s not actually the question I asked you. Is there anything more you could do?” I said, “I’ll get back to you.

So I sat down with my leadership team, both operations and legal, and put together several things that we could do, that we felt might have specifically addressed the problems that were laid bare by 9/11, if we had the authority to do it. So I briefed that to George. George told the president. The president and vice president had me come down. I laid it out to them, and we did get authorities to do most of the things that we recommended.”

What the Bush White House wanted out of the NSA, was to have unfiltered access to data, by any means they can obtain it. Bush established the President’s Surveillance Program. As part of the program, the Terrorist Surveillance Program was established pursuant to an executive order that authorized the NSA to surveil certain telephone calls without obtaining a warrant. Once again, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, published an article entitled “AT&T’s Role in Dragnet Surveillance of Millions of Its Customers” which illuminated the abuse of privacy laws and cell phone providers who were giving the NSA all customer data without a warrant. In the article it states:

“AT&T’s internet traffic in San Francisco runs through fiber-optic cables at an AT&T facility located at 611 Folsom Street in San Francisco. Using a device called a “splitter” a complete copy of the internet traffic that AT&T receives — email, web browsing requests, and other electronic communications sent to or from the customers of AT&T’s WorldNet Internet service from people who use another internet service provider — is diverted onto a separate fiber-optic cable which is connected to a room, known as the SG-3 room, which is controlled by the NSA. The other copy of the traffic con.”

US Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said the program authorized warrantless intercepts where the government had “a reasonable basis to conclude that one party to the communication is a member of al Qaeda, affiliated with al Qaeda, or a member of an organization affiliated with al Qaeda, or working in support of al Qaeda” and that one party to the conversation was “outside of the United States”. The public was outraged, but tempered down with Bush Legal Counsel downplaying the invasive techniques involving cell phone providers. Another conspiracy which had some interest by the advocates in the 9/11 Truth Movement that went ignored once again, due to the fact they were far more invested with the more outrageous claims. The “less dramatic’ conspiracies were not given the serious merit they obviously should have had.

This left the public confused and temperamental with the utter failures from two congressional investigations as well as the ensuing abuses of their civil liberties from the Bush White House and the domestic agencies such as the NSA. On top of this, the proactive movements demanding a “new” investigation, were being inhibited by the obnoxious and outspoken fringe elements within it. They were asking the wrong questions at the right time. As if it was by design almost.

Bush meanwhile had won his reelection in 2004, with the full invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan underway, while the rendition and torture programs were covertly functioning in the background. Many of the alleged major members of Al Qaeda who were suspected of being involved in the September 11 attacks, were captured and flown by private and commercial aircraft from Afghanistan to CIA “black sites”. Then after weeks and months of brutal torture sessions, which were called “enhanced interrogation techniques”, they were imprisoned at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba.

The torture and rendition program began in the days after the attacks when five lawyers met behind closed doors in the White House or the Pentagon — and called themselves the “War Council.” David Addington, Alberto Gonzales, and John Yoo were some of the more notables names that were involved. They launched their legal revolution. A radical opinion asserted that Congress could not place any limits on the President’s determinations as to any terrorist threat, the amount of military force to be used in response, or the method, timing, and nature of the response. These decisions, under our Constitution, are for the President alone to make. The CIA was granted permission to use rendition of indicted terrorists to American soil Back in a 1995 presidential directive signed by President Bill Clinton on June 21st 1995. Outlined in the order was the following:

“It is the policy of the United States to deter, defeat and respond vigorously to all terrorist attacks on our territory and against our citizens, or facilities, whether they occur domestically, in international waters or airspace or on foreign territory. The United States regards all such terrorism as a potential threat to national security as well as a criminal act and will apply all appropriate means to combat it. In doing so, the U.S. shall pursue vigorously efforts to deter and preempt, apprehend and prosecute, or assist other governments to prosecute, individuals who perpetrate or plan to perpetrate such attacks.

We shall work closely with friendly governments in carrying out our counterterrorism policy and will support Allied and friendly governments in combating terrorist threats against them.

Furthermore, the United States shall seek to identify groups or states that sponsor or support such terrorists, isolate them and extract a heavy price for their actions.”

After the terrorist attacks on September 11th 2001, this program was given a “green light” from the Bush White House, with the full guarantee from Tenet that the CIA will either capture or kill Al Qaeda and their affiliates. Those who were captured, were treated without any human right protections, especially the Geneva Convention. The White House Counsel under John Yoo, redefined the label of “enemy combatants” to where those labeled such by the President would not be afforded the Geneva protections. A conspiracy to circumvent the Geneva Convention went underway in those weeks by the “War Council”.

Many hundreds were alleged to have been victims of this program, including many Afghans simply caught and sold to Americans by tribal warlords who sought to claim their land and goods for a convenient price. In an article by the BBC dated January 24th 2006:

“Swiss MP Dick Marty in a detailed report stated that the US admits picking up terrorism suspects but denies sending them to Arab nations to face torture Mr Marty said he could not be certain that the CIA used secret prisons in Europe to interrogate terror suspects.”

Marty would later go on to say that it was “absolutely incredible” that European governments had no knowledge of the activities carried out by the CIA prior to 2005. The report said his case was just one part of “a great deal of coherent, convergent evidence pointing to the existence of a system of ‘relocation’ or ‘outsourcing’ of torture”. The violation of multiple human rights went largely ignored by the 9/11 Truth Movement, even from the more “rational” advocates and hardly any films or documentaries touched on these subjects of actual conspiracies exists within the 9/11 advocacy groups.

However, most of their visual work, concentrated on a very gaudy Israeli-US conspiracy which involved the general suspects of Ducke Cheney, Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz and Donald Rumsfeld. Yet, hardly any mention of George Tenet, Tom Wilshire, Richard Blee, Michael Hayden, or even Saudi Intelligence agents such as Omar al-Bayoumi, where the “real” and obvious cover-up's and anomalies took place. The conspiracy involving a conspiracy to hide the truth from the public is real. It happened, and it continues to the present day.

The advocates for fringe conspiracies have eliminated any future possibilities for a new investigation or even inside a court of law due to their own positions which, ironically, “coverup” the actual conspiracies' involving pre-9/11 intelligence, the invasive warrantless wiretapping of Americans, the tartare and rendition program as well as an argument for foreknowledge of the events by foreign intelligence.

In George Orwell’s famous book, 1984, the main character “Winston Smith” states “Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.” Did the US federal government whisper into existence some of the more extreme theories into the 9/11 Truth movement, with the hopes of manipulating the public at large into persuading them to believe in scenarios that actually absolve the perpetrators of the actual anomalies before and after the 9/11 attacks?

Or was it simply a case of general ignorance that led to the downfall of the movement along with any aspirations of trying to convene another congressional investigation with new information that exists today. It seems the conspiracy to circumvent the conspiracies with ludicrous inventions have worked for the last 21 years.

“Let us never tolerate outrageous conspiracy theories concerning the attacks of September the 11th; malicious lies that attempt to shift the blame away from the terrorists, themselves, away from the guilty.” — George W. Bush, address to the United Nations, November 10 2001)



Adam Fitzgerald

Geo-political scientist/researcher into the events of September 11th 2001.