By Joel S. Hirschhorn
10 September, 2007
Many technical analyses cast
doubt on the official explanation of the collapse of three World Trade
Center buildings, including those presented by an impressive new group:
Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth. More difficult than discovering
the truth, however, is convincing most of the public to accept the bitter
Americans easily block out
painful truths. Powerful societal forces keep much of the population
distracted and uninterested in complex issues. Entertainment-oriented
mainstream media contribute to mass ignorance. And the political establishment
often buries the truth, uses propaganda and manipulates citizens. Intelligent,
strong-willed people can fight all these.
But on a deeper level, many
truths are blocked psychologically, because they produce too much pain.
This results when truths sharply disagree with strongly held beliefs.
The conflict produces cognitive dissonance that can block full acceptance
of the disturbing truth. People fall victim to self-manipulation and
self-delusion. Truths are dismissed and false beliefs remain embedded.
When it comes to 9/11, we
face the strong belief that only Al-Qaeda caused 9/11. But analyses
by many experts reveal the collapse of three WTC buildings was not caused
by the two airplanes exploding into the two towers. Without getting
into details that one can spend many hours examining on a number of
websites, the general view is that the buildings were brought down by
If correct – IF –
the immediate reaction is like a cosmic big bang. It would have taken
considerable effort by a number of people with expertise and access
to the buildings to rig them so that they could be intentionally collapsed
when the two jets hit the towers. Tough questions flood in: Who could
have engineered all this? Could foreign agents accomplish such complex
actions – and if they did, why not take credit for it? If Americans
did it, why would they intentionally inflict inevitable mass death and
devastation? Worse, they seemingly knew about the plan to fly the jets
into the towers.
Post-9/11, why have the government
and official investigations not come to the same controlled demolition
conclusion? This might be explained if the government was involved.
Pull one string and the whole
9/11 story unravels as your imagination triggers unending questions.
Can Americans support a reinvestigation and rethinking of the 9/11 event?
Or would they rather avoid even more pain and preserve the official
account that places all blame on Al-Qaeda? So easy to criticize those
who offer different explanations as conspiracy nuts.
After all, the new truth
would be so shocking that we would have to question our political and
government system. Could there have been such malevolence somewhere
in our government? Did a monumental conspiracy push us into attacks
on Afghanistan and Iraq? Did petroleum and corporate interests shape
Like other groups, Architects
and Engineers for 9/11 Truth wants a new, honest and comprehensive study
that considers all the evidence for controlled demolition. First, let
the technical truth emerge. Then, if necessary, cope with the inevitable
political, conspiracy and other questions. But let us not allow a possible
painful truth block the primary task of determining once and for all
what caused the collapse of the WTC towers and building no. 7.
If there were non-Muslim
forces – possibly U.S. government ones – that played a major
role in the WTC catastrophe, then let us have the courage to face the
truth. Suppose some element of our government played a secret, awful
role. If we do not uncover it, then we are vulnerable to repeat nefarious
and unimaginable activity in the future – possibly to impact the
2008 presidential election. Discovering 9/11 truth would enshrine the
wisdom of the old adage: the truth hurts. That means suffering the pain
of revealing lies and cover-ups. Mourning over the deaths of building
victims and heroic first responders would expand with new anger. And
another reason to hate and oppose the Iraq war would surface.
If those that believe the
official 9/11 story – especially elected officials – trust
their views, then let them support a serious investigation to test the
validity of the controlled demolition hypothesis. If they fear and reject
doing so, then let us see that as suspicious and unacceptable.
As a former engineering professor
with growing skepticism about the official WTC story, I joined Architects
and Engineers for 9/11 Truth; you can learn about the controlled demolition
findings and other similar truth-seeking efforts at www.ae911truth.org.
You choose: seek the truth yourself or take the easy way and just criticize
those who question the official story.
To sum up, horrific possible
answers can cause us to shun a question. But clearing our minds of fears
of painful truths is essential to clearing our nation of destructive
lies. Otherwise, we stay stuck in a delusional democracy.
[Joel S. Hirschhorn
was a full professor at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and a
senior staffer at the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment
and the National Governors Association; he is the author of Delusional
Democracy – Fixing the Republic Without Overthrowing the Government
at www.delusionaldemocracy.com and co-founder of Friends of the Article
V Convention at www.foavc.org.]
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