A Clue to the Truth about 9/11?

1. Introduction

The Naudet brothers: Jules, left, and Gιdιon, right.
At 8.46 a.m. on September 11, 2001, at the intersection of Church and Lispenard Streets in Manhattan, one of two French film-making brothers, 28-year-old Jules Naudet, was filming a group of firemen from Ladder 1/Engine 7 at 100 Duane Street, checking for an alleged suspected gas leak, when he captured what was thought to be unique film of American Airlines Flight 11 from Boston flying into the North Tower of the World Trade Center, three quarters of a mile away.

Two years later — the delay still not satisfactorily explained — a Czech immigrant called Pavel Hlava produced his own video film of the event, shot from south-east of the tower and much further away, at the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel — the plane impact unseen, on the far side. It now turns out — although virtually no-one seems to have noticed at the time — that the plane had a third photographer all along, a German artist, Wolfgang Staehle, whose single still picture showed the plane heading towards the tower. No credible explanation has been offered as to why the Naudet shot was universally, for two years and more, described as the only existent image of the plane. It is still in many ways unique, however, with its almost straight-ahead view of the plane actually hitting the tower, followed by close-up, and far superior to its two competitors.

Jules Naudet claims his film exists only because of pure luck — as would seem to be logical, given that this was the first attack of the whole "9/11" sequence, and was totally unexpected. When United Airlines Flight 175 flew into the South Tower sixteen minutes later, it was captured by several photographers — including Jules Naudet's brother Gιdιon — who were filming the aftermath of the attack on its neighbour, but who had not, of course, filmed that attack itself. After the first attack, the second one was easy to film — but how else could the first one have been captured than by luck?

There is an answer to that question, but an extremely disturbing one. I believe the Naudet film of Flight 11 is a charade, staged to appear accidental. However bizarre that claim may appear to be, the evidence that justifies it is there in the film (the DVD version, issued in September 2002, titled "9/11 — The Filmmakers' Commemorative Edition"
(Paramount PHE 8276)), and I challenge anyone watching it and following my arguments to reach any other conclusion. No-one can dispute that this is an extraordinary piece of film — because of its uniqueness as well as its content — and that there must therefore be an equally extraordinary explanation for how it came to be captured. I believe, for the reasons in this essay, that those who had both the motive and the effrontery to carry out these attacks also had the motive and effrontery to film the first one for propaganda purposes, passing it off as the product of luck, complete with a contrived cover story, the one told in the Naudet film.

The second plane would have been filmed anyway, but having "accidental" film of the first one as well was obviously too good to resist. It was too important an event not to somehow record on film and, perhaps with the help of professionals from the industry, which has had a long and close relationship with the intelligence agencies (Richard Sorge, Sir William Stephenson, the Korda brothers, etc), it would not be too difficult to disguise the fact that the scene was arranged — the film equivalent of the (long-outdated, but similar) steganographic technique of hiding a coded message in a microdot, where it would not even be suspected. [The absence of film from the Pentagon that morning, where security surveillance appears — if only to the chronically credulous — to be limited to the one car park camera that allegedly got stills of the explosion, with the wrong date and time, must have some other explanation.]

Unfortunately — for them — the people behind this disguise operation were anything but professional, and it does not take a genius to deconstruct the whole thing, when the joins holding it together are so obvious, to anyone who can see not only what is in the film, but — just as important — what is not. A single still photograph from the DVD — Picture 1d in Appendix 4 — raises a whole host of questions. Where, for example, in a Manhattan street scene at about 8.45 am on a working Tuesday, is the moving traffic? This is not the busiest area of the city, but there are vehicles in the shot: they are all stationary, however, and given that two of them belong to the Fire Department and are displaying emergency lights, it would be illegal to overtake them, or park behind them in the same block.

Anyone, professional or amateur, who has tried filming street scenes knows about the problems moving vehicles can cause, and that the best solution is filming when there are none — but that normally means waiting for traffic lights to change. Or, even better, the situation in the Naudet film — a junction blocked by authority of the Fire Department, whether traffic lights change or not; a trick not available, it has to be said, to most ordinary photographers — one so unusual, in fact, that it immediately attracts suspicion. Furthermore, this photographer is not only filming at an officially blocked junction, he is filming the firemen who blocked it, as their guest — a 28-year-old beginner, treated the way a documentary film legend like Fred Wiseman might be; the suspicions multiply.

At the scene of a potential emergency, a photographer without credentials from the Fire Department would have been told to stand well clear, along with other pedestrians: he would not get the kind of privileged access Naudet gets. And if the white mail van parked at the south-east corner in this film had been turning right up Lispenard Street, between Naudet and the North Tower, just as the plane flew into it, not only — since he is standing in the road — would he have had to get out of the way rather fast, the plane's impact might have been missed. How very convenient that, at the appropriate time, the van was still parked at that corner, the only other vehicles that could have caused problems belonged to the Fire Department and Naudet's view of the tower was unimpeded by either vehicles or people — including the firemen, all conveniently standing well away from the film action to the south.

How many firemen, precisely? According to Firehouse magazine (April 2002), three units responded to the gas leak call — Duane Street, Engine 6 from Beekman Street and Ladder 8 from North Moore Street — and co-director James Hanlon's commentary tells us there were thirteen men on duty just at Duane Street alone that day, with only probationary Tony Benetatos left in charge of the firehouse when the call came in. There must have been at least twenty firemen at this intersection, yet no more than five are ever in shot at any one time. Where are the rest of them? All hiding behind Naudet, camera-shy?

And where are the police at this emergency roadblock? The First NYPD Precinct's HQ is at 16 Ericsson Place, just across West Broadway from Lispenard, and one block north of Ladder 8. Why did no-one contact the police? Why did the brothers choose Duane Street, out of the 224 firehouses in New York, or the 51 in Manhattan? Because their "old friend" James Hanlon worked in that one. How did they become "old friends"? We don’t know: they met only a couple of years after the brothers moved (1989) to New York, before Hanlon the actor became a fireman as well (1994) and before the brothers graduated (1995). How does Antonios "Tony" Benetatos fit into this? Because the brothers had followed the progress of 99 Fire Academy* students, decided Benetatos was the one they wanted and, explains Hanlon, "We got Tony assigned to my firehouse, one of the biggest in the city" (06:35 into the DVD).

* Based at Randall's Island in the East River — which, ironically, is hired out by the Fire Department as a film location (fire trucks and equipment also available).

How did they manage that — an ordinary firefighter and two French film-makers? We don't know. How long were the brothers going to be allowed to film at Duane Street, under their arrangement with the Department — for a fixed period, or as long as they liked? We don't know. A two-month contract would obviously have had them out of Duane Street before 9/11 happened, if they started in June — so it would have be long enough to have them still there in September — but not just starting, and not there since January. Why were they still there in September? Waiting for a big fire, we are told — again and again: ah, that would explain it. But does it? Doesn't this begin to look like the construction of a fiction? The Naudets linked to Hanlon and Duane Street — how, we don't know — linked to Benetatos — how, we don't know — with a film deal for how long? — we don't know — but we can't have the film without the links. Ironically, or not, Benetatos' mother, Rev. Patricia Ray Moore, a Presbyterian pastor, says she is convinced the Naudet film was scripted, and "I think it was my boss" — presumably a reference to God. I agree about the scripting, but not the writer: I would suggest someone rather less exalted, possibly in the pay of some branch of the US Government.

How can I make such an outrageous accusation against public figures? Surely if the Naudet film was so obviously incriminating, it would have been exposed long before now, and all those behind the 9/11 plot would have been brought to justice? Why would those responsible even risk having public figures so openly involved in it? The short answer to that is that the Naudets are no longer public figures.

Since the brothers were the honorees at the 2nd annual United Firefighters' Association celebrity golf benefit at Lake Success on Long Island on 23 June 2003 (with Evander Holyfield, the late Jerry Orbach, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and others), there have been, to my knowledge, only three pieces of evidence of the Naudets still being alive:

1. In November 2004, Variety magazine carried news of a follow-up to "9/11," a feature film written and directed by the Naudet/Hanlon team, and produced by Daniel Bigel, called "Seamus"; two years later, this project has yet to appear as an actual film.

2. On 26 September 2005, the New York Daily News reported that the brothers had been special guests at the Department's centenary party for the Duane Street firehouse — their "second home" — the day before, also attended by Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta.

3. In May 2006, lawyers for the Naudets and Hanlon (Frankfurt, Kurnit, Klein and Selz PC) forced the removal, under copyright law, of footage from "9/11" from Dylan Avery's film "Loose Change" (due to be given a special screening at the UK Houses of Parliament on 14 June until its sponsor, former Cabinet Minister Michael Meacher, bottled out and withdrew it.)

None of these involved the brothers making a public appearance, being photographed or interviewed at any length, and with these sole exceptions — and their 2006 update to the "9/11" film, for which see Appendix 3 — they have effectively dropped off the radar. The Emmy and Peabody laureates have gone back to private obscurity — and the world of journalism seems not to have noticed, or cared. If the Naudets are perfectly innocent, where are they, and what have they been doing for four years, apart from the above? They have, like James Hanlon, no website, no Blog, no presence on the internet, apart from what other folk contribute; nor does their production company, Goldfish — but then with virtually no product to advertise, why would it need one?

I originally wrote this because virtually no-one else was saying it, and I was amazed — and appalled — that that was the case. Why wasn't every professional investigative journalist in the USA and elsewhere on to the Naudets from Day One, when it should have been obvious to anyone who knew the Flight 11 shot was unique that it must have been contrived? Were they blind? What was wrong with these people? I still don't know the answer, and most still refuse to touch it, as if afraid their careers might be contaminated by anything with the word "conspiracy" attached: a lethal combination of cowardice and stupidity. Even among those who refuse to believe the official story, the Naudet angle is still, six years later, a minority view, although a growing one. I could blame a general failure of imagination — the fact that most people, even conspiracists and skeptics, have fixed patterns of thinking, and are looking for the same kind of clues that might have helped explain the Kennedy assassination four decades ago (with which 9/11 does indeed have many similarities). Sometimes the truth is just too obvious for folk obsessed with the fine detail, or with using scientific terminology to make their case sound more impressive, whether it actually is or not. Sometimes the truth can stare us in the face for years before someone looks at it the right way and sees it for what it is. If other people don't want to accuse the Naudets and their associates, for whatever reason — shortsightedness? — intellectual laziness? — in some cases, just plain dishonesty? — that is up to them, and they can and will be judged by it. There are libel laws, and that can perfectly understandably affect some people's attitudes, if they have too much to lose — and don't have enough confidence in their case. I have 99.9% confidence in the case, and nothing to lose — and unlike some, I have no interest in making one penny out of 9/11, in sales of books, films or anything else. To me, the case for the Naudet film being fraudulent stands on its merits: you don't need degrees in physics, engineering or anything else to follow my arguments, and I am a non-graduate myself. Anyone applying an open, common-sense, rational mind to the facts presented here should reach the same conclusions I did. And these are mostly facts: there is nothing speculative in my list of 69 conveniences in the Flight 11 shot — they are all solid, concrete factual observations. The speculation is in trying to construct an explanation for them — a perfectly valid exercise, as long as fact and conjecture are distinguished.

On that subject, I want to emphasize that this essay does not claim to be able to prove who was responsible for 9/11. The point of the exercise is to establish that the Naudet shot must have been staged by people who knew about the attacks in advance: who those people might be is a different subject. I have my own ideas on that, but they have little or nothing to do with the Naudet film, other than observing that it seems rather unlikely that two French infidels would be working for a Muslim fundamentalist group — or that that group could penetrate and subvert the Fire Department of New York, which at some level seems to have been involved in the planning of 9/11 — and the Naudet film.

If the film was staged, it strongly suggests that that planning must have been internal to the USA, but anything beyond that has to be guesswork, albeit educated. They wouldn't have done it if it was going to be simple to prove who they were: unless, of course, you buy the instant solution of the al-Qaeda confession — so much easier than having to animate the brain cells. Or maybe you prefer the Noam Chomsky argument — the man who has to have the documents before he believes it — a historian who has the truly bizarre idea that everything is written down somewhere, or it didn't happen. 9/11 must have involved hundreds of people. It would have leaked out, and before it happened. So why doesn't that apply equally to al-Qaeda? Why did none of them talk? Zacarias Moussaoui was arrested before it happened: did he talk? If twenty or thirty Muslim terrorists could pull it off, without leakage, why not twenty or thirty senior US military officers — who would be in a better position to do it, and under the constraints of military discipline?

For the record, my own opinion is that 9/11 was commissioned by that clichι of American politics — the military-industrial complex: the one Eisenhower warned us about — and he knew of which he spoke — he was one of them; and that the lead role in organizing the attacks (and failing to respond to them) was played by the Pentagon, in particular the branch of the armed forces that took zero casualties when that building was hit (and where have you ever seen that pointed out, in all the writings of all the "skeptics"?) — the US Air Force — in which formerly served General Richard Bowman "Star Wars" Myers, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs until his retirement on 30 September 2005, and, to this writer, prime 9/11 suspect.

Considering method, motive and opportunity, the USA's military leaders could unquestionably be said to have method and opportunity for being able to, at best, fail to defend the country — or, at worst, to actually attack it themselves. Killing people is, after all, their job, and the Pentagon's version of morality is, and always has been, what works — not least in the nuclear age, now 60 years old, with its strategy documents contemplating dead and dispensable Americans by the million, not thousand.

The Manhattan Project that produced the USA's — and the world's — first atomic bomb is the perfect demolition of the "always leaks" argument: up to 130,000 people working at 30 sites, some the size of cities, for six years, and the Russian government knew more about it than most Americans — until Truman announced Hiroshima in August 1945. Yes, it leaked — but not to the folk we are told always find out because it would be impossible to keep secret if so many were involved. Manhattan was kept secret — from the Germans, the Japanese and most of the rest of humanity. Hiroshima and Nagasaki also demonstrate that the US Government is perfectly prepared to kill its own: hundreds of Allied POWs, some of them American servicemen, were among the victims — as was known, or should have been, to those who bombed them. Just like Northwoods, that too was kept secret for a lot longer than the atomic project — more than 30 years. If these things can be hidden, the truth about 9/11 can be hidden — and nobody even suggests as many as 130,000 were in on that: probably only dozens or hundreds. History — and simple common sense — prove the leak argument totally false. When it's important enough, or dangerous enough, those involved keep their mouths shut.

Another aspect of method, the multiple deceptions of 9/11 — like having Bin Laden playing his part as the Muslim Lee Oswald, or Hitler, or Satan, or whoever — would have gone to the specialists in that area, George Tenet's CIA. The motive would be what it always has been in the USA's 200-year history of warmongering — greed; in this case the greed of men — and, these days, the odd token woman — in the boardrooms of companies selling oil and weapons. The chances, however, of a single shred of evidence emerging from those buildings, or from offices at the Pentagon or the Capitol or the White House, proving — or even hinting at — the involvement of any of these people in the 9/11 attacks, must be virtually non-existent. If we are to get to them, it will have to be indirectly, and I think the Naudet film is the most promising way of doing it.

Some people claim to have established as fact that the Twin Towers' collapses (and 7 WTC's) were caused by demolitions, which must have been planned long in advance, but where does that get us? Adding the biggest insurance fraud in US history (with leaseholder — since only 24 July 2001 — Larry Silverstein the most obvious suspect) to the biggest mass murder? (For more on the Silverstein lease). The central question was never "how?" but "who?" — and we have no evidence of charges being planted or of who might have planted them. The film of Flight 11 must have been planned in advance, too, but in this case we can put an actual name to the deed, and we have at least a chance of getting from that name to others perhaps more deeply involved. In the fog of lies, theories, speculation and disinformation around 9/11, the Naudet film offers something solid and tangible, that might, eventually, lead us towards the guilty: it may only be a start, but the people who changed the world that day, incalculably for the worse, are not going to be voluntarily throwing themselves in jail in the near future.

It is, of course, possible — theoretically — that all the circumstances in the film were genuine, if unusual, and that it was captured by chance. The most incredible things do happen that way sometimes, and we have all heard the stories. They do not normally involve capturing the last two seconds of a plane's flight before it ploughs into the joint tallest building in New York. That sets this story apart from the likes of ten strangers meeting at a party and discovering they all share the same birthday: spooky, but ultimately meaningless and irrelevant — unless God likes practical jokes. A jet being used to attack a skyscraper is an unusual enough event on its own, without our being asked to accept a second bizarre proposition happening at the same time — that someone managed to get full-frontal film of it, while making a documentary about firemen checking a gas leak. How often has that been seen on the streets of New York in the last 50 years? How many fingers would you need to count it? And how many of the cameramen were French? Why not — since I have had it put to me as a serious argument that the circumstances did not matter — have it captured by an Albanian Jehovah's Witness, standing on his head on a bicycle, while juggling three camcorders, blindfolded? Because what is most unusual — and most suspect — about the Naudet story is that its unusual circumstances are all highly convenient. The scene could not have been filmed by someone in normal circumstances — and wasn't, to prove the point. It had to be an unusual situation — but it would have been far more credible if there had been only one or two unusual elements in it, and none especially convenient to the photographer.

Naudet himself has suggested the intervention of "History" to explain his achievement — but we might ask why that intervention did not prevent the plane from hitting the building, instead of letting him film it happening. Why would an omniscient God need a videotape, or want us to have one? But someone in the propaganda business might. Half a dozen pieces of luck coinciding could produce a credible story: when ten times that many are involved, the odds magnify astronomically. You have to take into account that the conveniences in my list do not all have only one alternative — but even if they did, their cumulative effect would be enough to justify my claim that staging is more credible than accident. The Occam's Razor standard says the simplest, most obvious, explanation is normally the correct one, and in this case prearrangement causes far fewer problems than accepting 69 simultaneous accidental conveniences. In probability terms, one fraud beats a 69-part miracle.

I cannot claim to be able to prove my proposition, except in the probability sense — but that is the sense in which things are proved in a criminal trial: to the satisfaction of a jury weighing the evidence — beyond a reasonable doubt. I do not believe there is a reasonable doubt that this film shot must have been prearranged, because luck is so improbable an explanation. There is no smoking gun in the film — only circumstantial clues and absences. But I don't need a smoking gun — I only have to demonstrate which is more probable: either Jules Naudet performed the greatest miracle in the entire history of photography, with not one film or still picture remotely comparable to it — no other event of such historical importance, or as unlikely, given its brevity and unexpectedness, to be captured on film, ever has been filmed; or, like so many other miracles before and since, it is a total fraud, the product of dishonesty.

The Zapruder film of the 1963 Kennedy assassination started off as film of a public event — a Presidential visit to Dallas; the explosion of the Hindenburg in 1937 — as in the "Oh, the humanity!" film — took place at a public event. There was no public event going on in Lispenard Street in Manhattan on 11 September 2001: no-one was expecting a President or an airship — and very few expected a hijacked jet. If someone had been filming the Grand Hotel in Brighton in the small hours of 12 October 1984 while making a documentary about the Metropolitan Police, and captured a bomb going off, there might be questions asked as to how the film-maker could be so "lucky" — or whether he might in fact be in league with the IRA. Not an exact analogy — the IRA has never had any interest in filming its bombings, for example — but roughly equivalent to Naudet's achievement.

Another example might be a Japanese photographer in August 1945 capturing a large bomb being unloaded from an American plane called the "Enola Gay." No such film or photograph exists — for obvious reasons — and if it did, the reason would be that the photographer was working for the US armed forces. I think that, as it happens, is the explanation of the Naudet film — although I do not necessarily accept that Jules Naudet was the photographer. He claims to have been, and he may have been, but, like my proposition, there is no proof in the film — only circumstantial evidence.

One could point out that, if my argument is a conspiracy theory, so too is the official story of what happened on 9/11. Two of the only three people ever convicted of involvement in 9/11 were found guilty of conspiracy; one pleaded guilty, meaning that no evidence of that conspiracy would be put to the court in a trial, and the evidence in the two other cases was such that until the major conspirators are convicted, the official story can reasonably be described as just another theory, one of several.

Even if that were not true, there are usually perfectly valid, logical reasons for belief in conspiracy theories: there is no mystery, and we need no insulting nonsense about the mentality of their supporters. When an American President is shot in broad daylight in one of the country's biggest cities, in front of dozens of witnesses, and no-one is ever convicted of the crime, that fact alone justifies the theories. When the alleged assassin is himself murdered two days later, in police custody, in front of cameras that weren't there for the first murder, and no policeman is fired or jailed for total incompetence, we have a double justification. How many times has that happened in the USA in the last 50 years? Do I hear the number one? When the ex-wife of the heir to the British monarchy, and mother of a possible future monarch, is killed in a late-night car crash in Paris, with her Muslim boyfriend, having been allowed by a paid bodyguard, himself a passenger (so much for his services), to get into a car driven by an alleged drunk, and ten years later there has still been no inquest, that fact alone justifies the theories. When there never was any need for this idiotic contest with journalists, when they could have spent the night in one of the biggest hotels in Paris, looked after by its owner, the boyfriend's father, we have a double justification. When a hijacked plane is flown into the defense HQ of the most powerful country in the world, and not one government official, military or civilian, is ever punished for even accidental negligence, that fact alone justifies the theories. When the two tallest buildings in New York are attacked the same way and pulverized, killing thousands, and six years later not one person has been convicted of those murders, we have a double justification.

What kind of argument do opponents of conspiracy theory have to offer? That we need easy answers — and yet, at the same time, elaborate, fiendishly complex structures: which is it? Why do we need to come up with these ridiculous ideas to explain events that are perfectly normal and straightforward? A hijacked plane flies into the Pentagon: what could be more mundane? Happens all the time. Kennedy is shot by an ex-Soviet defector who defects back: what's the mystery? Just an ordinary car crash in Paris, like dozens of others involving a Princess and the son of one of the richest men in Britain: why can't the poor fools see that? Does a question like that deserve a polite response? I think not. I think liars who expect us to swallow any old insulting nonsense they serve up to us deserve a jail cell, and that those of us who research these subjects and try to construct explanations for them should stop ever being apologetic about it. The onus is on them, not us. When do we get the Kennedy files still classified? When do we get the Diana inquest? When do we get the Twin Towers murder convictions? Until then, conspiracy theories are as good as anything else we've been offered, the anti-conspiracy brigade are no better informed than the rest of us and their abuse can be treated with the total contempt it deserves. The implication is not so much "How dare you question the government?" as "How dare you question us"? Considering the patronizing drivel churned out by the media on both sides of the Atlantic — but with a special mention for the news departments of the BBC and ITN, and their never-ending vomit of government handouts and lying, biased, racist, monarchist, tabloid junk — I would say we had a civic duty never to believe one word they say.

*You don't need some giant conspiracy linking all the small ones together, or the existence of some secret elite organization responsible for it all. Northwoods was a conspiracy involving senior government officials of the USA; Watergate was the same, and led to the only Presidential resignation in US history; Irangate was the same, and another President had to broadcast his tortuous version of an apology for it — and should have been impeached. Where would anyone get this silly idea that the USA's leaders are involved in secret plots? The history of the last 50 years, maybe? The stories plastered all over the front pages of the papers and broadcast by TV companies, when even those liars can't suppress it any longer? But the media cognoscenti — the "opinion formers" — know better: there are no conspiracies — it's all nonsense. JFK's death was Oswald, Diana's was a drunk driver and 9/11 was Bin Laden, period — do not disagree, or feel the power of my sneer. Simple, comforting solutions coming from folk who accuse others of wanting the same: in two words, lying hypocrites.*

How probable is it that not only did Naudet (or whoever) capture Flight 11 — as if that were not enough on its own — but that he and his brother Gιdιon then went on to record the rest of that day's events — and survive them? Who else could appear to be almost simultaneously inside the towers, out on the streets and back at Duane Street firehouse, seven blocks away, than a pair of miracle workers like these? Does the English — or the French — language have a word for people who can repeatedly, umpteen times in the space of a few hours, "just happen" to find themselves in the right place at the right time, doing the right thing? Apart, that is, from "liar" ("menteur").

Their friend Hanlon just happened to work at a firehouse seven blocks from the Trade Center;
Hanlon just happened to be off duty that day;
That firehouse just happened to take no casualties, Hanlon or anyone else, on 9/11;
It just happened to be the night before September 11 when Jules cooked for the firehouse and they sat up all night laughing about it (20:54 into the film);
Jules just happened to capture the first plane (24:46);
Gιdιon just happened to capture the second one (33:55) (see Appendix 4, Pictures 7a-d);
Jules just happened to film — and name — of the hundreds of firemen going through the lobby of 1 WTC:
  1. Chief Richard Prunty, who was later killed (see Appendix 4, Picture 15a);
  2. Lieutenant Michael Fodor, who was later killed (15b);
  3. Lieutenant Kevin Pfeifer, who was later killed (15c);
  4. Rev. Mychal Judge, who was later killed (15d);
Chief Pfeifer just happened to be looking towards the camera, trying his radio, when the South Tower came down, so that Jules conveniently gets a good reaction shot (see Appendix 4, Pictures 6a and b) — similar to the Flight 11 shot in that, when it happens, Pfeifer is (a) not talking to anybody and (b) fiddling with a machine, but not actually using it, because that would distract him; but totally dissimilar in that he actually seems to hear the noise in the lobby, unlike the plane at the junction (in fact, he hears it suspiciously soon, freezing at the first distant rumble, long before it becomes ominous enough to justify his expression);
Jules and his group just happened to come across, in the pitch-blackness and confusion after the collapse, the late Father Judge (55:24);
Jules just happened to be far enough away from the North Tower to escape when it collapsed – and film his escape as it happened (1:08:28);
Seven hours later, one of the brothers — we are not told which — just happened to be filming the top of the No. 7 building as it suddenly collapsed (1:28:27): some predicted it would, but never offered the exact time it did; etc etc.

If this string of improbabilities was presented as the script of a fictional film, people would quite rightly laugh at it. But this film is a documentary, we're told — and millions accept this insult to their intelligence, if they have any. The people who helped to produce the Naudets' "9/11" film seem not to know the meaning of the words "subtlety" and "taste" — but I am not a film critic. I am making an accusation of complicity in mass murder, primarily based on the few seconds of film of Flight 11 that I think prove the case.

One could be forgiven for thinking the film might have been shot by a recruit of Bin Laden's based in New York, given al-Qaeda's fondness for video and audio cassettes (which they somehow manage to deliver to al-Jazeera time after time without ever giving away their whereabouts — like the anthrax letters that were never traced — but even less credibly). That idea might even have been given consideration — a tape posted anonymously to one of the national networks? — before the French film-maker scenario was dreamed up. Al-Qaeda would obviously have had the required foreknowledge, and it certainly suits their interests — if they exist — in shocking and terrorizing people.

*But fear propaganda is a weapon on both sides of the “War against Terrorism” — if there are two sides — and governments have far more experience of it than terrorist groups. The US and British governments used fear of non-existent WMD to justify their illegal invasion of Iraq in 2003,* and fear of another 9/11 could keep the scaremongers in business for another twenty years — so much so that it seems obvious to some of us that the whole thing is as fake as the threat from Iraq. We know they lied about that: what else have they been lying about since 2001? 9/11 itself — the biggest lie of the lot? But, again, while these ideas may help explain the Naudet film's function, they are not proved by it. We need to examine the first plane sequence in detail, and since it would be a breach of copyright law to reproduce the sequence here, and not everyone has access to the DVD, verbal description alone will have to complement the few stills in Appendix 4.
* (an invasion that at a stroke totally demolished one of the received wisdoms, i.e. lies, of the last 40 years — that Israel was the USA's guard dog in the Middle East: so what are they now, when the dog's alleged owners have moved in themselves? The argument had been threadbare enough since the USA sent 230,000 troops into Saudi Arabia in 1990; in fact, it had never been true.)*

Go to Part 2