Monday, February 11, 2008

Tackling the Final Cut: Prologue

I'm going to try to do a full-on debunking of the Loose Change Final Cut. It's going to take awhile, so we'll have to do an organizational post later tying it all together.

Prologue. The film opens with footage of the blackshirts at Ground Zero on 9-11-06. Much of this part is simply Dylan setting the stage for the parts that follow, but there are a couple (admittedly minor) points of interest in this section.

Dylan says "Why was a growing percentage of the world population becoming increasingly skeptical of the events of September the 11th? Was it a natural inclination towards believing the worst about the United States government? Or was it a legitimate concern that only grew more powerful with time?"

Note the false dilemma; either 9-11 Troofery is "natural" or it's "legitimate". No hint that there's a third option; that it's a bunch of conspiracy theory nuttery.

Dylan notes that the 9-11 "Truth" Movement includes "academics" and shows us a video of Kevin Ryan. This is an odd choice, to say the least, of an academic; as far as I know Kevin has a bachelor's degree and is not involved in academia in any capacity whatsoever. Dylan does seem to be introducing some of his featured interviewees here and perhaps he didn't want to say that the movement includes a former manager of a water testing facility? But the fact remains that Kevin's an academic like I'm an academic; we both went to college many years ago.

A little later, the screen reads "Five Years Earlier", leading us to believe that he's going to transition into the events of 9-11. But instead he starts off with a British interview of Dan Rather that took place in May 2002.

Then we get into a few clips of several news reporters speculating (almost certainly on the day of 9-11) that it was an "inside job". As usual with the Troofers we are given no context for these remarks. Suppose a reporter had claimed that a bomb had gone off in the WTC; there were such reports that day. Was the news reporter trying to make sense of that report by talking about "inside job" theories?

We get a clip of Tom Kean saying "People ought to stay out of our business." Again, no context is given, so we can't tell what was being discussed. I was able to locate a discussion of the quote here:

"People ought to stay out of our business": That's what the 9/11 Commission chair Thomas Kean seems to be saying in response to calls for Jamie Gorelick to resign. (I say "seems" because there's always the possibility that he was quoted out of context.) From the Washington Post:

Gorelick told CNN yesterday that she will not resign. "The wall was a creature of statute. It's existed since the mid-1980s," she said.

Several of Gorelick's colleagues on the commission rushed to her defense, characterizing her as qualified and nonpartisan, and complaining privately that she was ambushed by Ashcroft.

"We don't want to get in a fight with the attorney general, and I hope he doesn't want to get in a fight with us," said commission Chairman Thomas H. Kean, the former Republican governor of New Jersey. But "people ought to stay out of our business." . . .

So the issue here was whether Gorelick would resign. I don't want to burden you with too many side issues but the claim was that Gorelick was responsible for "the wall", which prevented the CIA from informing the FBI about information it gathered overseas and vice-versa.

President Bush states "A country that hides something is a country that is afraid of getting caught."

Of course, that is not about 9-11, but about Iraq.

FBI Agent Robert Wright is shown a little later at a news conference, saying, "FBI management intentionally and repeatedly thwarted and obstructed my attempts to launch a more comprehensive investigation to identify and to neutralize terrorists. To the families and victims, of September 11th, on behalf of John Vincent, Barry Carmody, myself, we’re sorry."

Except that you read about that press conference and it was not about Al Qaeda, it was about his investigations of money-laundering for Hamas and Hezbollah.

Chicago-based FBI Special Agent Robert Wright, who worked in counterterrorism from 1993-1999, said the recent trajectory of his FBI career has taken a downward spiral since he complained about two incidents that inhibited his ability to continue terror funding and money laundering probes of members of Islamic terrorist groups Hamas and Hezbollah.

Wright, who is filing a complaint through his counsel Judicial Watch, said in documents that the FBI would not provide him decent computer equipment, a problem that has been acknowledged by the FBI as being a bureau-wide problem.

He also said that he was prevented from pursuing an investigation after an unnamed Muslim special agent refused to wear a wire during a probe because, as the Muslim agent allegedly said, "Muslims don't record other Muslims."