Friday, April 05, 2002

There is an instructive collection of witness statements on the Pentagon attack now compiled. I find that the statements are of people who didn't actually see the crash, or from witnesses who are connected with the Pentagon (I don't mean to impugn their credibility, but we should be allowed to factor this in as we consider the whole weight of evidence), or contradict other evidence, or even suggest that something else may have happened other than the official story. You can learn a lot if you read the statements carefully: 1) The two first witnesses, 'Anon' and Donald "Tim" Timmerman, have clear testimony that an American Airlines passenger plane crashed into the Pentagon. 'Anon' is, well, anon, speaks like a pilot, and is from the Navy Annex. Mr. Timmerman is a navy pilot. 2) Christopher Munsey, John O’Keefe, Omar Campo, a woman driver wanting to exit from Interstate 395, Brig. Gen. Clyde A. Vaughn, Alan Wallace, Mark Skipper, Dennis Young, Alfred S. Regnery, Sergeant Maurice L. Bease, Christine Peterson, Fred Gaskins, Aydan Kizildrgli, Kirk Milburn, Allen Cleveland, Meseidy Rodriguez, Oscar Martinez, and Daniel and Cynthia McAdams, all appear to have versions of the same story - each saw a plane fly overhead but did not actually see a crash into the Pentagon, although some heard the noise or saw the fire at some time later. 3) Captain Lincoln Liebner saw the plane hit a helicopter on the helipad (!), which is odd as no one else seemed to see this, the helipad appeared to be relatively undamaged, and this scenario is inconsistent with those who claim to have seen the plane crash directly into the wall of the Pentagon. He also heard people crying (?!) inside the wreckage. 4) Mike Walter, a USA Today reporter, saw an American Airlines jet, which slammed right into the Pentagon, but described it as 'a cruise missile with wings' (!). 5) Afework Hagos saw a plane which 'hit some lampposts on the way in' (!), although pictures of the scene appear to show all the lampposts intact (Kirk Milburn also thought the plane hit lampposts). 6) Dave Winslow, AP Radio Reporter, saw 'the tail of a large airliner' (I have no idea of what that means) and a CNN reporter saw a hole with some pieces of plane inside (but pieces of which plane?). 7) Steve Patterson, one of the most descriptive witnesses, saw 'a commuter jet which appeared to hold about eight to 12 people' (!), which 'sounded like the high-pitched squeal of a fighter jet' (!). 8) John Damoose was not a witness to the crash but claims to have seen pieces of the plane along Fort Meyer Drive, a bike trail (odd that we haven't seen any evidence of these pieces). 9) Father Stephen McGraw, who actually saw the crash, is another witness who saw the plane clip the top of a light pole, 'injuring a taxi driver' (?). 10) Ron Turner just saw the fire, as did the ARFF fire crews, who claim a plane was inside because they 'saw pieces of the nose gear'. 11) Ken Ford, a State Department employee, was watching the airport through binoculars (is this what they do for fun at the State Department?) and followed the plane from the airport until it hit the building. He said they thought it had been waived off (what does that mean?). 12) The pictures of Steve Riskus, who claims to have seen the crash, show the intact lampposts and the relatively undamaged helipad. 13) Mickey Bell was inside the Pentagon in an area near the crash but saw nothing of the plane except for debris afterwards. I don't understand what it could mean for him to be 'very nearly struck by one of the wings as they sped by him'. 14) Wayne T. Day didn't apparently see anything himself, but reports some vague hearsay. 15) Steve Snaman actually saw the plane crash into the Pentagon from across the river (and works for a military contractor). 16) Mark Bright, a security officer, saw the plane hit, but also claims it knocked down street lights. 17) Perhaps the most impressive witness, having a good story of actually seeing the crash and not in some way being connected to the Pentagon, is Joel Sucherman, Multimedia Editor. However, he confuses me when he says: 'almost like a heat-seeking missile was locked onto its target and staying dead on course'. We might be able to make some sense of all these confusing stories if only there were a shred of either physical or video evidence of the crash.