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International Inquiry in 911
by John Reimann (wildcat99 [at]
Sunday Mar 28th, 2004 5:25 PM
While the federal government "investigates" 911, an international people's inquiry into that event was held in San Francisco. Its thesis was US government complicity.
Over this weekend a conference was held in San Francisco called “9-11 International Inquiry”. The thesis of the conference was that 911 was either known about by the Bush administration or that the Bush administration was actually involved in some way in planning that event. The issue of the peaking of world oil and gas supplies was held to be behind this; 911 was the excuse to go into Afghanistan and the Mid East in order to secure US control over diminsihing oil and natural gas supplies.

I attended the session on Saturday afternoon and I think it’s worthwhile to report on it.

The first speaker I heard was Richard Heinberg, the author of the excellent book “The Party’s Over”. Heinbert started by pointing out the massive change that had occurred as far as the relation between the US and the rest of the world in the last half century. In the mid 50s, the US was the #1 oil exporter in the world, the #1 machine tool exporter, the #1 creditor nation and was self sufficient in almost all natural resources.

Today, the situation is exactly the reverse.

Heinberg also discussed a 1970 CIA report which predicted peaking of Russian oil supplies. This report predicted that this would place increasing financial strains on the Soviet economy. According to Heinberg, the US followed a twin strategy in order to bankrupt the Soviet economy: One was to encourage the Saudis to increase oil production, thus cutting oil prices and the other was to start a proxy war in Afghanistan, dragging the Soviet Union into a Vietnam style defeat.

Heinberg also discussed other aspects of the peak oil issue, all of which are available on various web sites, including his own (

The next speaker was Mike Ruppert. An ex narcotics cop in Los Angeles who ran afoul of the officials there when he started pushing the view that the CIA was involved in the drug trade, Ruppert was one of the first ones to really push the idea of US government complicity with 911. (More on his views can be found on his web site: http.//

Ruppert pointed to evidence that the US had developed plans to invade Afghanistan well before September, 2001. He showed maps indicating how the US had troops stationed in key locations surrounding the majority of the world’s oil supplies.

He talked about economic development in China and how this would increasingly strain world oil supplies. (China is the number 2 oil product consumer in the world today, recently surpassing Japan.) He also talked about the important role that hydrocarbons play in world food production and commented, “you take away the oil, you take away the food.” (He also pointed out that the US and Canada are the only two food grain exporting nations in the world and that with soil depletion the US grain production is set to decline drastically.)

In regards to China, he also pointed to Chinese imperialist drives, including increased military aid to northern Africa, where there is much oil. The implication was an increasing tension between the US and China.

Ruppert also talked about the recent coup in Haiti, which he claimed was the start of increased pressure on Venezuela; Haiti, he believes, will be the jumping off point for a possible US invasion of Venezuela.

One interesting quote he used: At a conference of the Association for the Study of Peak Oil in Paris recently, Ruppert claimed that an oil executive openly stated: “It may not be profitable to slow the rate of decline” of oil production.

After their presentations, they adjourned to a conference room where a smaller group of people discussed with them. One thing that was interesting: Originally Ruppert placed the entire motive for US complicity in 911 in seeking an excuse to invade Afghanistan in order to get their heroin production going again. (He claimed that the US banking system was dependent on recycled drug money.) Now, he seems to see the reasons as being more profound - the coming crisis from peaking oil supplies and global warming.

I raised the issue of global capitalism and pointed out that if you really wanted to get to the bottom of the matter, this was the problem. Here, Ruppert seems to draw the line; he did not disagree with my point, but pointed to a “solution” of small scale, locally controlled capitalism as the alternative. This is like saying that one wants a lion as a pet, but that one wants it to stay at one month old; it’s an impossibility.

A couple of other interesting points were raised. Heinberg claims that in the 13 century, weather conditions in Europe were particularly favorable, leading to increased agricultural production and increased human population. At the end of that century, the weather changed, lowering food production and causing a social crisis. He says that this was also involved in the rise of the plague.

Heinberg also raised one frightining scenario: One person questioned him regarding the use of methane gas as an alternative to natural gas and oil. This person pointed to large supplies of methane in the oceans. (I wasn’t clear exactly on how these were deposited.) Heinberg, in reply, said that typically use of methane involves releases of 50-80% of what is used. He said that methane is far worse as a greenhouse gas than is carbon dioxide. He said that if there are persistent, widespread releases of methane, this could set up a chain reaction whereby global warming would rapidly escalate, causing even greater methane releases from the oceans, causing even more rapid global warming.

The next speaker I heard was Jim Hoffman, webmaster of Hoffman’s thesis was that the three world trade buildings that collapsed could only have come down due to explosive charges planted around its structure. This is the modern method of demolition of high rise buildings.

Readers may remember the third building, Building 7, that collapsed several hours after the first two towers collapsed. There were no major fires in this building. yet it collapsed in 6.5 seconds, slightly longer than it would take a rock to fall the same distance as the height of the building, if the rock were falling in a vacuum. In other words, it apparantly collapsed with no internal resistance. The key issue, according to Hoffman, was that the building collapsed in a “precise vertical motion”; it collapsed straight down onto itself. Normally with a building that is many times taller than it is wide, one would expect that it would topple over. The direction in which it collapsed was the course that buildings take when they are professionally demolished by having explosive charges planted around their base.

Hoffman also pointed out that there was another building, Building #6, that was between #7 and the Twin Towers. yet supposedly #6 collapsed because its foundations were damaged by the collapse of the Twin Towers. If that is the case, then why didn’t #6 collapse, since it was closer?

Hoffman then discussed the collapse of the Twin Towers. Officially, their collapse was blamed on fire, although never in history has a structural steel building been known to collapse due to fire before or since. He said that these two towers burned jet fuel for approximately five minutes. At the end of this time, black smoke could be seen, indicating that these fires were suffocating from lack of oxygen.

He showed photos of the collapses of these towers, and the huge, exploding dust clouds that flew out at a rate of over 50 feet per second. Three explanantions have been advanced for the collapse of these towers. Two of them are pretty similar - that the structural steel either melted completely or was weakened enough from the heat of the fire that the buildings collapsed. According to Hoffman, however, the structural steel of these buildings melts at 1535 degrees centigrade while the fire from the jet fuel burns at 825 degrees centigrade -- if it has unlimited access to oxygen, which it probably did not. He seemed to dismiss this as a possibility, therefore. He says that another official explanation was that the trusses (horizontal structural members that hold up the floors) collapsed, causing the floors to pancake one on top of another. But this would totally fail to explain why the structural steel collapsed also..

A couple of other anomolies: Why was it, according to Hoffman, that the concrete from these buildings was pulverized? Why was there no large size rubble remaining? Also, why was the steel broken into small pieces? Most curious was why the official investigating team, charged with explaining why these buildings collapsed, denied access to ground Zero for weeks after the collapse? And why was the steel from these buildings quickly carted off to Asia, where it was melted down?

The main point that Hoffman stressed was this: How can a building fall following the path of MAXIMUM resistance - right down the center of itself?

I found Hoffman’s presentation, and his slides, very troubling. I do not agree with the conspiracy theory of history - that everything that happens is the result of a conspiracy by a small secretive group. I believe that the driving force in history is the development of the forces of production and the struggle between the contending social classes that results. However, I am not one to dismiss every conspiracy theory either.

I had come to accept that it was most likely that the Bush administration knew about 911 in advance and intentionally did nothing about it. I think it’s also very possible that some of those involved in the hijackings were agents of the US government without even knowing that they were. But if these buildings were actually demolished by explosive charges planted inside the buildings -- this could only have been carried out by some agency of the US government itself. And to think that they are desperate enough to do something like this is quite incredible.

I have no illusions in their humaneness or unwillingness to destroy property and life. However, to do something like this they must be pretty desperate, more so than most anti-capitalists reckon with. Certainly more than I thought. But I found Hoffman’s points quite powerful.

Overall, there were over a thousand people present. Most of them were middle age and middle class. There were assorted conspiracy theorists, peacenicks, hippy retreads and a whole host of others. However, I feel that these points are very likely to find their way into a wider layer of the population as time passes. Especially as peak oil makes itself felt more severely, if not before.

This leads me to another point: The anti-capitalist left was almost entirely absent from this conference. I think this is shows a severe shortcoming on our part. In general, we are not adequately considering the issue of peak oil, or of the consequences of global warming. I think that in general we are also not willing to take a serious look at the conspiracy explanations of 911. As was pointed out years ago, sometimes there are none so conservative as revolutionaries. We must take care not to be caught unawares by huge, cataclysmic events. We also have something important to offer to this discussion.
Listed below are the latest comments about this post.
These comments are submitted anonymously by website visitors.
slight fact check, but goodanonymousMonday Apr 4th, 2005 3:46 AM
PNAC discussed, Lots of Literature AvailableSan FranciscanMonday Mar 29th, 2004 12:00 AM
The Project For The New American Century (PNAC)Jeffrey JamesSunday Mar 28th, 2004 10:13 PM
Where are the George Dimitrovs in the US Left Exposing the 911 Hoax?San FranciscanSunday Mar 28th, 2004 6:56 PM

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