9/11: 20 Years Later
On 11 September 2001, 19 al-Qaeda terrorists hijacked and crashed four passenger jets, destroying the World Trade Centre towers in New York and damaging the Pentagon. The attack killed almost 3,000 people and injured 25,000, prompting the launch of US-led military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Jet Fuel Can Melt Steel Beams? 9/11 Eyewitness Reveals Why He Doesn’t Believe It Was an Inside Job
13:20 GMT 11.09.2021 (Updated: 13:36 GMT 11.09.2021)
Saturday marks the 20th anniversary of the 11 September 2001 terror attacks – the deadliest acts of terror in US history. The attacks killed nearly 3,000 people, with thousands more dying later of cancers and other ailments associated with the cleanup operations. The acts of terror served as a pretext for the US government’s global ‘war on terror’.
Jiri Boudnik, a Czechoslovak-born architect who assisted in the 9/11 rescue effort, and who was in New York City on the day a pair of jet airliners flown by terrorist hijackers slammed into the World Trade Center’s Twin Towers, is confident in the official story of the towers’ collapse, and believes that a conspiracy would have involved too many people to keep a secret.
“If we assume the existence of a conspiracy on the part of US intelligence, for example, then hundreds of people would have been involved in such a conspiracy. But it’s known that in a situation where there are even two people, a secret cannot remain a secret,” Boudnik told Sputnik.
“In 20 years, we have not heard any credible confessions about a conspiracy”, the architect suggested, adding that he had “physical evidence confirming the involvement of aircraft in the attack on the buildings”, thereby debunking the ‘controlled demolition’ claims.
“I found in various places around the ruins of the World Trade Center pieces of the aircraft’s skin, headphones belonging to one of the crew members, and some other items,” Boudnik said, recalling his work at Ground Zero in the attacks’ aftermath.
Boudnik is confident that the Twin Towers collapsed mainly due to the jet fuel present in the aircraft that flew into the towers, which he said contributed to the creation of a fiery inferno on many floors of the buildings, and violated their steel beams’ integrity to the breaking point. “If it wasn’t for the jet fuel, the buildings could have withstood the terrorist attack,” the architect assured.
© AFP 2021 / SETH MCALLISTER(FILES) In this file photo taken on September 11, 2001, a hijacked commercial aircraft approaches the twin towers of the World Trade Center shortly before crashing into the landmark skyscraper in New York.
(FILES) In this file photo taken on September 11, 2001, a hijacked commercial aircraft approaches the twin towers of the World Trade Center shortly before crashing into the landmark skyscraper in New York.
2,753 people died in New York City on 9/11, among them the passengers of the two hijacked airliners, people inside the Twin Towers and their immediate vicinity, as well as police and firefighters who ran into the buildings to try to assist in evacuation operations. 189 more people perished in the attack on the Pentagon, and 44 in Pennsylvania as they attempted to take back control of the hijacked aircraft, which was reportedly on route for the White House.
Boudnik was working on a project in Brooklyn on 11 September, 2001, and volunteered to assist in the 9/11 cleanup operations in the immediate aftermath of the attacks, quickly working to create 3D and 4D models of Ground Zero which assisted emergency rescue workers in searching for survivors.
‘Jet Fuel Can’t Melt Steel Beams’
The Twin Towers’ relatively smooth, ‘controlled demolition-style’ collapse, combined with similarly mysterious destruction of 7 World Trade Center several hours after the Twin Towers fell, has given rise to conspiracy theories that the buildings may have contained explosives, planted either by terrorists or other unknown forces. In the immediate aftermath of the attacks, some eyewitnesses and TV commentators speculated on the presence of such explosives in the buildings, but such theories were later dismissed.
Engineers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology conducted an investigation into the physics behind World Trade Center’s destruction, concluding that the planes damaged the Twin Towers’ support columns as they smashed into the buildings, with fires caused by ample jet fuel onboard the aircraft reaching up to 1,000 degrees Celsius, causing beams to melt and prompting the collapse of the towers. However, in the years since, some civil engineers have challenged this version of events, and other official conclusions of 9/11-related engineering investigations.
The ‘Jet Fuel Can’t Melt Steel Beams’ theory is just one of a host of 9/11-related conspiracy theories which quickly arose in the wake of the attacks, with others pointing to the official 9/11 commission report’s ignorance or omission of a number of facts, particularly as relates to allegations that the intelligence services of Saudi Arabia or other countries may have been involved.
Many conspiracy theories surrounding 9/11 have been fueled by the Bush administration’s aggressive use of the 9/11 tragedy to declare a ‘global war on terror’ and to declare a series of preemptive wars to try to reshape the Middle East. In the year 2000, a neoconservative Washington-based think tank known as the Project for the New American Century released ‘Rebuilding America’s Defences’, a document which suggested that “absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor,” the United States would need many years to achieve its goals of cementing its position as the world’s sole superpower. Conspiracy theorists have used this document, and the fact that PNAC contained many Bush-era officials, including Dick Cheney, Robert Kagan, William Kristol, Paul Wolfowitz and Donald Rumsfeld, as evidence that 9/11 may have been an inside job.
In addition to being used as a pretext to justify the invasion of Afghanistan over the Taliban’s* harbouring of al-Qaeda* leader and suspected 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden, the 2001 attacks were used make possible the 2003 war with Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, amid allegations that he was cooperating with al-Qaeda. In 2007, four years after the Iraq invasion, former Bush-era CIA Director Tenet admitted to 60 Minutes that the US was never able to “verify that there was any Iraqi authority, direction and control, complicity with al-Qaeda for 9/11 or any operational act against America, period.”
The Taliban, who recently reestablished control over Afghanistan in the wake of the Kabul government’s sudden collapse, continue to maintain that “there was no proof” that bin Laden was involved in 9/11.
26 August, 11:50 GMT