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Trojan Horses

The 9/11/01 attack was a complex psychological operation carefully designed to conceal the truth, in spite of numerous obvious red flags in the fraudulent official story. As such it relies on the dissemination of memes that overpower rational consideration of the evidence. One of the most important memes is the idea that all people who question the basic tenets of the official story are loony conspiracy theorists, whose ideas are not worthy of consideration. Part of the construction of this meme was to make the attack so audacious that even a straightforward accounting of the basic facts sounds too outrageous to possibly be true.

The ideas that the Twin Towers were destroyed by explosive demolition and that top-level administration officials were involved in the planning and execution of the attack are so painful that most people reflexively reject them, even if that means ignoring mountains of evidence. Nevertheless the perpetrators run the risk that these ideas will gain currency and begin to be examined with some objectivity if the loony conspiricism meme fails to maintain its hold.

Nonsense as a Weapon

An effective tool for reinforcing the loony conspiricism meme is the introduction of theories that that have no basis in evidence, such as the idea that no planes hit the towers. The association of these ideas with the careful research of investigators in the 9/11 Truth Movement stands to set back the cause of awakening the larger public to the facts of the attack.

A series of websites have promoting more or less obvious hoaxes since the attack. Examples are 911Review.org (See 9/11 Review REVIEWED), and Physics911.net. Both adopted as their centerpiece the idea that no jetliner crashed at the Pentagon -- an idea that may be single most elaborate and well-orchestrated hoax used to undermine the credibility of the 9-11 Truth Movement.

More traditional media such as videos and books have also been used to discourage rational inquiry into the crimes of 9/11/01 by associating alternatives to the official narrative with uncritical thinking and junk science.

Several of these websites, videos, and books have been promoted in segments of the 9/11 Truth Movement that may seem surprising, given how effectively such material is used by the cover-up as ammunition against the spectrum of 9/11 Truth efforts. (A prime example of this is the March 2005 Popular Mechanics attack piece.) There are many possible reasons for this:

  • Because people inclined to accept that the attack was an inside job tend to be more open-minded in general, they are more likely to entertain a range of ideas, and are somewhat handicapped in appreciating the potency of ill-founded or poorly presented theories in discrediting good research.
  • Many working on social justice causes like 9/11 are reluctant to admit that there are saboteurs in their midst. The idea that the struggle to expose the crime is just a contest between the official story and alternatives is comforting in its simplicity. Recognizing that the struggle is a two-or-more-front war of ideas can be intimidating or even overwhelming.
  • Hoaxes come in many levels of sophistication and subtlety. Whereas few people have ever taken the hologram plane theory seriously, and the pod-plane theory was long ago rejected by most aspiring 9/11 activists, the Pentagon no-jetliner theory continues to detract from substantive evidence implicating insiders in the attack.

The Morgan Reynolds Phenomenon

In mid-2005 a former Bush administration official, Morgan Reynolds, gained notoriety by publishing an essay that sandwiched grandiose ridicule of the accounts of the crashes of the four jetliners between imprecise summaries of evidence for the controlled demolition of WTC 1, 2, and 7. Titled Why Did the Trade Center Skyscrapers Collapse?, the article was widely promoted, for the most part, without any comment on its embedded no-jetliners message. Reynolds did not respond to the substance of the 911Research critique of his article: A Critical Review of Morgan Reynolds' Why Did the Trade Center Skyscrapers Collapse? , and went on to promote his flawed analysis of the plane crashes on venues like Coast to Coast and the Boulder Weekly. His Boulder Weekly interview is the subject of Boulder Weekly Trots Out Morgan Reynolds' Trojan Horse.

Even if Reynolds has only the best of intentions, his inclusion of easily debunked arguments against the jetliner crashes in his well-publicized article questioning the official account of the World Trade Center disaster makes it function as a Trojan Horse.

page last modified: 2007-10-09
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'Trojan horse' is used as a metphor for a something that appears friendly but actually conceals a surreptitious attacker. The term has its origins in the Trojan war, in which the Greeks were attempting to take the walled city of Troy. The Greeks used a large wooden horse to deceive the Trojans. Under the direction of Odysseus, the Greeks built the horse with a secret hollow interior to conceal several warriors. The Greek fleet sailed around the tip of the island where it was not visible, and left one warrior behind to tell the Trojans the Greeks had abandoned him. The Trojans, thinking the horse was a gift, wheeled it into the city. Then, in the middle of the night, Greek warriors hidden in the horse emerged and opened the gates of the city to the Greek army so that they could take over the city.