Tuesday, 29 November 2016 19:40

Gangs in the Sky

Written by

9/11 is a day that touched every American. Many unfortunate families were directly affected when they lost loved ones in the attacks.

This note may be sensitive to some readers.

This is an excerpt from a paper I wrote for my Experiential Learning class for my Master of Education in Youth Development Leadership.

On September 11, 2001, the world experienced the collision of theoretical parallel universes. The FBI says hijackers who had studied how to fly jets in flight school in just a few months managed to steer planes with perfect accuracy into three buildings, killing 2,996 people. Being my father’s son, I know where there are rooms at airports with warning signs on the door, “Flight Control Equipment: Disrupting Equipment in this Room May Result in Death.” I knew where the door to my father’s Federal Aviation Administration office networking/phone closet was. As a child, I sat on a computer, steering a triangle around a green monotone monitor as my father worked in the office on weekends. I played with the industrial paper shredder used by federal offices. I had a job that gave me tarmac access without an airport badge or going through TSA checks. I knew that GPS receivers could be manipulated, and that some airplanes flew by Fly-by-Wire. I remember the Controlled Impact Demonstration of 1984. I figured out that planes can be remote controlled. I know that VORs exist. I know that Raytheon was one defense contractor that helped develop a system called JPALS that enables planes to land automatically with extreme accuracy. Raytheon had an office on the 91st floor of 2 World Trade Center, just floors above where United Airlines Flight 175 impacted.

Define a virtual flight path inside the memory of a computer. Now, make a plane fly that path, regardless of what the pilot does in the cockpit.

I’m not here to promote a conspiracy theory. I’m just demonstrating that reasonable doubt is defined by the eye of the beholder. Many, many Americans doubt the validity of the FBI’s decisions on Hillary Clinton’s email server investigation. Just as many Americans doubt the integrity of the countless Benghazi hearings that resulted in no action against Hillary.

Why, then, is it so hard to believe that I have a reasonable doubt as to the FBI findings of 9/11.

As I told my Senior Academic Adviser, one of the few redeeming pieces of evidence regarding 9/11 is the United Airlines 93 cockpit voice recorder (commonly called a Black Box). Never before in the history of American aviation has a person outside the FAA/NTSB investigation team heard the recordings on a black box... until the families of those aboard UA93 were given one opportunity to hear their loved ones fight back. No recording devices. Nothing to write notes on. Discreet headphones in a protected room was their one chance to hear their family members say goodbye.

Image: Gangs of New York, Miramax Films, 2002

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