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8 years later, TWA 800 case just heating up! ^ | Friday, July 16, 2004 | Jack Cashill

Posted on 07/16/2004 4:53:39 AM PDT by JohnHuang2

Edited on 07/16/2004 4:55:29 AM PDT by Admin Moderator. [history]

Last July 17, the major media made no comment that seven years prior, on July 17, 1996, TWA Flight 800 exploded off the coast of Long Island, killing all 230 people on board.

If the media took note of the date "July 17" at all last year, it was only to observe that American soldiers had found it scrawled on walls throughout Iraq. July 17, after all, was Iraq's national liberation day, the day Saddam helped lead the Baath Party to power in 1968, the day he seized the presidency in 1979, and not impossibly, the day he took his revenge on the United States in 1996.

This year, as every year, thousands of TWA Flight 800 family members and other interested parties will honor the date. Among them is Capt. Ray Lahr. Just last week, the retired United Airline pilot learned that his case against the National Transportation Safety Board and the Central Intelligence Agency is still on track. On Monday, Aug. 2, Lahr and his attorney, John Clarke of Washington, will square off against the NTSB and the CIA at the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles.

Lahr is hoping to force the NTSB and CIA to disclose the data upon which they based what Lahr calls "the impossible zoom-climb." As the agencies and Lahr both understand, the zoom-climb is the Achilles heel of the TWA Flight 800 investigation.

The FBI first publicly advanced the zoom-climb scenario when it bowed out of the case in November 1997. Its agents did so to negate the stubborn testimony of the hundreds of eyewitnesses who had sworn they saw a flaming, smoke-trailing, zigzagging object destroy TWA Flight 800.

To make its case, the FBI presented a video prepared by the CIA. A key animation sequence in that video showed an internal fuel tank explosion blowing the nose off the aircraft, which then "pitched up abruptly and climbed several thousand feet from its last recorded altitude of about 13,800 feet to a maximum altitude of about 17,000 feet." This rocketing aircraft, claimed the video, looked like a missile and confused the eyewitnesses.

This animation was essential to close the investigation. Without it, there was no way to explain what these hundreds of eyewitnesses – many of them highly credible – had actually seen. A veteran safety investigator and a serious researcher in the field of gravity, Ray Lahr watched this animation in utter disbelief. He knew this scenario to be impossible, and he set out to prove it. When he learned that not a single eyewitness had seen the plane ascend, including airline pilots who had watched it from above, he redoubled his efforts to discover the basic physics behind the alleged zoom-climb. For the last several years, however, despite numerous FOIA requests, the NTSB has refused to cooperate. The impressively stubborn Lahr finally took the agency to court.

Lahr has done an excellent job pulling the sometimes-fractious TWA 800 community together to assist him. Many key people have filed sworn affidavits with Lahr, including retired Rear Adm. Clarence Hill, and their collective commentary has to impress even the most skeptical of observers. All of this evidence, including the court papers, can be found at, as well as in past articles on WorldNetDaily.

One question that has never been resolved is just how the CIA animation project came to pass. Two recent books, however, do shed light on the dynamics of the video's creation. One is the much-discussed "Against All Enemies," by Richard Clarke, then chairman of the Clinton administration's Coordinating Security Group on terrorism. The second is Murray Weiss's recent and highly readable book, "The Man Who Warned America," on the subject of John O'Neill, a terrorist expert with the FBI who died in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11.

Within 30 minutes of TWA Flight 800's destruction, Clarke relates in his book, he had convened a meeting of the CSG in the White House situation room. "The FAA," Clarke reports, "was at a total loss for an explanation. The flight path and the cockpit communications were normal. The aircraft had climbed to 17,000 feet, then there was no aircraft."

Clarke here serves up two significant untruths in a book replete with them. The first is that the Federal Aviation Administration was at "a total loss" for an explanation. In fact, it was the FAA that prompted the meeting and did so for a very specific and frightening reason: Its personnel believed the aircraft had been attacked. As NTSB Chairman Jim Hall would report in a confidential November 1996 report, "Top intelligence and security officials were told in a video conference from the White House Situation Room that radar tapes showed an object headed at the plane before it exploded."

Clarke also deceives the reader about altitude. The FAA never reported an altitude of 17.000 feet – nothing close. The FAA knew that the last recorded altitude of TWA Flight 800 was "about 13,800 feet" as even the CIA animation later admits. In the retelling, Clarke pads in the zoom-climb differential on the night of the crash and attributes it falsely to the FAA.

Weiss, who had excellent access to O'Neill's FBI colleagues, gets much closer to the truth as to the motive behind the emergency White House meeting. "The FAA," he writes, "initially reported spotting a radar blip on their tapes that indicated there was another plane or projectile near TWA Flight 800 when it exploded." This much is true. Weiss, however, is misled on his next point, namely that the FAA told the FBI one day later that "there was no blip. There were no missiles picked up on the JFK scanners." The sighting was an "anomaly."

In truth, to its credit, the FAA refused to change its story despite the pressure to do so. When in November 1996, the NTSB leaned on the FAA to "agree that there is no evidence that would suggest a high speed target merged with TWA 800," the FAA refused.

"We cannot comply with your request," the FAA's David Thomas responded. "By alerting law-enforcement agencies, air-traffic control personnel simply did what was prudent at the time and reported what appeared to them to be a suspicious event. To do less would have been irresponsible."

To set the record straight on this issue, Ray Lahr persuaded one key witness, James Holtsclaw, to go public for the first time. In 1996, Holtsclaw was serving as the deputy assistant for the Western Region of the Air Transport Association. Within a week of the crash, Holtsclaw received the radar tape directly from an NTSB investigator frustrated by its suppression. "The tape shows a primary target at 1200 knots converging with TWA 800, during the climb out phase of TWA 800," swears Holtsclaw on the Lahr affidavit.

In fact, before the investigation was through, authorities would introduce five different explanations to rationalize away that "blip." This obvious dissembling may explain why investigators felt the need to smuggle out evidence. Holtsclaw's informant would be the first of several – at least four of whom would be either suspended from the investigation or arrested.

Within weeks of the crash, the FBI would interview more than 700 eyewitnesses. By its own count, 270 of them saw lights streaking upward toward the plane. Defense Department analysts also debriefed some of these witnesses, 34 of whom, according to the FBI, described events "consistent with the characteristics of the flight of [anti-aircraft] missiles." There were also scores of witness drawings, some so accurate and vivid they could chill the blood.

About four weeks after the crash, Clarke reports in "Against All Enemies," he met with O'Neill, who told him that the eyewitness interviews "were pointing to a missile attack, a Stinger." Given what the FBI knew at the time, this much seems credible.

"[TWA 800] was at 15,000 feet," Clarke allegedly responds. "No Stinger or any other missile like it can go that high." One would think that on so sensitive and contentious a point, Clarke would have made an effort to get the altitude of TWA 800 right or even consistently wrong. He does neither. In his scarily sloppy book, the boastful Clarke finesses credit for the zoom-climb and, in a stunning revelation, seizes full credit for deducing the exploding fuel tank part of that scenario even before the NTSB did.

Clarke, however, has had a hard time keeping his story straight. In an earlier New Yorker article on O'Neill soon after Sept. 11, Clarke tells reporter Lawrence Wright that it was O'Neill who insisted that TWA Flight 800 was out of the range of the Stinger, and O'Neill who believed that the "ascending flare" that the witnesses saw must have been something else, like "the ignition of leaking fuel from the aircraft."

Weiss likewise gives all credit to O'Neill for the zoom-climb scenario, thinking that it is indeed "credit" O'Neill deserves. Weiss contends that O'Neill not only conceived the zoom-climb scenario, but that he also "persuaded the CIA to do a video simulation of his scenario." Under an eight-panel recreation of the zoom-climb in the photo section of his book, Weiss writes that O'Neill used the CIA video simulation "to quash any fears that the disaster was a terrorist event." This last point is tellingly true.

Clarke and O'Neill have not been the only two agents angling for credit. The best-documented claim, in fact, comes from "CIA Analyst 1" during his April 1999 grilling by a few honest, rank-and-file NTSB investigators. As the CIA analyst relates, the zoom-climb insight came to him like an epiphany. He traced the moment of awareness to the precise hour of 10 p.m. on Dec. 30, 1996.

Said the analyst, "There was a realization, having all the data laid out in front of me, that you can explain what the eyewitnesses are seeing with only the burning aircraft." The analyst came to his startling conclusion after reviewing only about 12 percent of the interview statements. The CIA did no interviews of its own.

What puzzled the NTSB guys was just how many eyewitnesses actually saw a plane with a ruptured center fuel tank rocketing upward with burning fuel spewing behind it (especially with the center fuel tank being essentially empty at take-off). The CIA cited only 21 witnesses. But as the questioning of CIA Analyst 1 wore on, it became clear there were fewer still. An NTSB investigator finally sighed in frustration, "If it's only one or two of [the eyewitnesses], it's not representative of all of them."

Analyst 1 then pulled out his trump card, his key witness, the man who had seen everything: "That [zoom-climb] is something that a few eyewitnesses saw. The guy on the bridge saw that." As we have documented on these pages before, the man on the bridge saw no such thing. The CIA or the FBI (or both or Richard Clarke) manufactured an interview with this man, Mike Wire of Philadelphia, out of whole cloth. Wire's "second interview" is the most crucial bit of evidence in the entire investigation, the evidence around which the zoom-climb scenario was created, and it's fully and provably counterfeit.

Whether Clarke or O'Neill or the CIA analyst were responsible for the zoom-climb scenario individually or together is not relevant to technicians like Ray Lahr. Nor has he focused on how an FBI middle manager like O'Neill could have breached the historic wall between the two agencies and enlisted the CIA in a project that would take at least 11 months from conception to execution. No, what most troubles Lahr is how three men with no discernible aviation or engineering experience could possibly have used any science whatsoever to arrive at such critical conclusions.

The truth of the matter proves elusive. The CIA analyst lied shamelessly in his testimony. Richard Clarke lies shamelessly throughout his book. The jury is still out on O'Neill, but the evidence is not encouraging. As Weiss well documents, O'Neill maintained a wife and two children in New Jersey and simultaneously cajoled at least three women in three different cities into thinking that he was going to marry them. What is more, despite maintaining two households, O'Neill somehow managed to live extravagantly on a government salary. In an otherwise flattering profile, Weiss concedes of O'Neill, "He always seemed to be lying about some aspect of his life."

Whether O'Neill helped conceal the demise of TWA Flight 800 remains unclear. Although Weiss attributes both the zoom-climb scenario and the final TWA 800 report to O'Neill, no reporter made this connection while he was alive. In her book on the crash investigation, "Deadly Departure," CNN reporter Christine Negroni does not even mention O'Neill. In her FBI-friendly book, "In The Blink of an Eye," AP reporter Pat Milton pays O'Neill little heed, but she does reveal that upon hearing the news of the crash, John O'Neill's first call went to none other than Richard Clarke, and it is O'Neill, Clarke's best friend in the FBI, who plays the role of tragic hero in "Against All Enemies."

Ray Lahr will leave it to other courts to establish who was the architect of the greatest peacetime deception in American history. His interest is the zoom-climb scenario itself, according to Weiss, "the most significant part" of the final case-closing FBI presentation.

"A little basic physics," adds Weiss naively, "helped explain what witnesses saw and heard in the summer skies off Long Island." Lahr is hoping that the federal courts will finally force the NTSB and CIA to explain finally what those "little basic physics" are.

TOPICS: Editorial; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: clarke; clarketreason; clarkeweasel; concpiracy; conspiracy; klintonkommies; richardclarke; treason; twa800; twaflight800
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To: JohnHuang2
Not that I would ever want to add fuel to the fire, but I heard Georgie Steponallofus say it with my own ears that day, "the bombing of Flight 800." Freudian slip? Yeah, sure.

201 posted on 07/17/2004 9:11:10 PM PDT by FlyVet
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To: muawiyah
I'm still putting my money on a boloid that also hit flight 800.

That was considered. I think it's appendix 13 of the report. There are several reasons it was rejected. The most important is that the breakup sequence definitely began in the CWFT and proceeded from there (there are a number of ways to determine the sequence, metallurgy, sooting, etc. and they all agree).

OK, so why didn't a piece of space debris, say, penetrate the CWFT and set off the fuel-air explosion that overpressured the carry-through and broke the plane up? Because there's no hole. The structure was almost all recovered, and the bits that were not recovered, the inner and or outer skin between them and the great outdoors was recovered. (Actually the "missing" bits were probably among the fragmentary wreckage recovered, but couldn't be ID's with certainty and put into place. We are talking a max of a pound or so in sub-one-ounce fragments here and there). And none of those missing tank fragments can be gotten to in a straight line from outside the aircraft, except by going through skin and/or structure that evidences no hole.

SO... Imagine you have a helium balloon inside a shoebox that is taped shut. You come home from school and you open the box and the ballon is popped. You think your brother did it with his bb gun. But there is no hole in the box, and no hole in the balloon that resembles that made by a BB gun. Your brother didn't do it -- at least, not that way.

If you have followed me so far, you see that your space debris theory can't be responsible. ANd by the same reasoning, neither can missile fragmentation. (There are no signs of missile blast or fragmentation, or of a bomb, on the wreckage. Anywhere. And yes, these things leave definite signatures and NTSB metallurgists can spot them almost with their eyes closed). There was no question on Clipper 103. There isn't on TWA 800 either.

Here are a couple experiments that most TWA 800 refuseniks either don't know about, or don't understand:

  1. An instrumented test flight in a similar 747, reproducing the profile of 800, showed that the fuel-air mixture in TWA800s CWFT was explosive at 13,800 MSL (this danger, by the way, is not news to jet pilots or aero engineers. The traditional answer has been to eliminate ignition sources. That will now be supplemented with chemical inerting or the fuel tank ullage).
  2. Test explosions in a scale model of the CWFT produced structural failures identical to those documented in the mishap aircraft.

    Those tests were conducted by Cal Tech's Explosion Dynamics Laboratory (more members of the great conspiracy! Egads how will Jamie Gorelick rub them out now that they know too much? But I digress). Some of the conspiratroids latch onto the fact that these tests did not use Jet A, but they don't understand that the tests could not be conducted at 13,800 feet. The substitute fuel was selected because its properties at the test altitude in California duplicated the properties of Jet A at 13,800. It is very hard to get this across to someone who thinks that Boyle's Law is a cop show on TV....

You are correct about the Iranian Airbus. It was hit by a Standard missile (possibly by two, two were fired) from USS Vincennes. All 290 crew and pax perished. Iranians were very angry about the incident. In defence of the skipper of Vincennes and his officers and men, they were fighting with Iranian light surface vessels at the time, as the US had been engaged in a series of undeclared fights with Iran since 1987 in the Gulf, and a US warship (USS Stark) had recently been hit by a pair of Exocets from an Iraqi fighter, in part because the crew were slow on the trigger. It still was a major blunder and a tragedy.


Criminal Number 18F

202 posted on 07/17/2004 9:56:23 PM PDT by Criminal Number 18F
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To: 1rudeboy
Where is Michael Rivero when we really need him?

Banned, for repeating the jihadi lie that the Joooooz did 9/11... which makes about as much sense as his theories on this.

If you really want to read his superheated, fact-free drivel, you can find him on "" which is one of his websites (he has several so he can agree with himself). WHat Really Happened. That's as good a howler as Clinton's "Most Ethical Administration in History." But if you want to see what Mikey sayd, go ahead: it's a free country!


Criminal Number 18F

203 posted on 07/17/2004 10:01:41 PM PDT by Criminal Number 18F
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It is consistent with other known information

Oh, I'm going to have fun with this.

  1. regarding spill patterns showing the cockpit separated before the center fuel tank blew

    First place, "spill patterns" refers to fluids. If you want to know the breakup sequence of the aircraft, look at the sequence group's report -- it's all based on physical evidence and it's pretty damn unequivocal. Yeah, Cashill, Sanders, et al lie about it.

  2. how people died with necks broken in the same direction

    Ask a physician what happens to humans when they are inside a vehicle that experiences accelerations of 40+ G.

  3. positive missile fuel residue tests,

    This particular lie comes from Sanders. After being banned from the wreckage storage area, he had a friend steal a piece of upholstery from the wreckage. He, his wife and his friend were all convicted of this theft. He did have it analyzed and declared that the analysis shows that the stuff is rocket fuel. Unfortunately for Sanders the result is inconsistent with any known rocket fuel. It is, however, a good match for seafloor sediment. Dr. George Bizigotti addressed this in great detail and his response forms FAQ 2.1.5 of the alt.disasters.aviation FAQ.

  4. Iranian terrorist claims of responsibility

    That's true, they claimed they did it. They claimed AA 587 too (another mechanical). And they claimed the summer power failures of 2003. But you are in the position of accepting felons (Sanders) and terrorists at their word, while suggesting that thousands of disinterested government engineers and scientists are liars. Time for a vacation...

  5. secret storage of key aircraft salvage

    You mean, they were trying to keep secret the location of stuff ghoulish newsmen were trying to photograph, and creepy collectors, and conspiracy nutballs like Sanders (who was successful, briefly!) were trying to steal? Gee, why would they do that?

    The wreckage is now used as a training aid for investigators, as part of George Washington University's aviation safety program (a very good one!) But wait, is GWU in on the conspiracy too...? [cinching the chinstrap on my foil helmet]

  6. removal of whistleblower protections from naval rescue squads by Clinton's executive order

    I dunno where this howler came from. First, what rescue squads? It was clear within an hour of the crash that no one was going to be rescued. Second, I never heard of anybody in the military having "whistleblower protection." Maybe I missed it -- I only spent 25 years in uniform.

  7. prosecution of dissenters,

    Sanders was not prosecuted for "dissent." He was prosecuted for theft. A jury of his peers found him guilty despite his best line of "dissent" bullshit and a bunch of red herrings his lawyer dragged across the trail. SO was his wife; she now whines that "persecution" cost her her job. (What would YOU do to an employee caught stealing?) They argued this case all the way to the supreme court and lost all the way. Thieves and felons shouldn't get a break because they feel it's really important for them to steal. I have this old-fashioned idea that jail is the place that thieves should be hanging their hats.

  8. press complicity in a reelection year

    The press dutifully reported the process of both the official investigation and the conspiracy nutballs. Ultimately, the official investigation won out because, in the final analysis, it is more credible. When the nutballs can advance Jailbird Jim Sanders (I know, Sanders fans, he only got probation... Felon Jim just doesn't "sing" OK?) and Michael "Blame the Jews!" Rivero as their spokesmen, they ain't gonna get a lot of credibility. Particularly given the tendency of these folks to be economical with the truth.

  9. This glove fits.

    LOL. I always suspected Johnnie Cochran was a closet FReeper....

"Johnnie," please don't take this as a personal attack. You have been exposed to some propaganda on this. The conspiracy minded folks keep moving the ball; when one of their pet theories is disproven (like the Sanders "Rocket Fuel" lie) they either move on to the next, or keep repeating the lie as if they never heard the counter. Listen! Read the ADA FAQ (linked in this post). Then if you have the time read the public docket at If you are not an aviator, or don't have a decent science background, you may get stuck at points.

Then read the conspiratorial books with a new eye. Compare the tone, and the assertions versus what is proven in each. Why are Sanders's, for instance, technical experts mostly anonymous? None of them stole anything, so they should have nothing to fear. Is it that they don't exist? Or is it that they, like "aviation professional" Sanders, overstate their credentials? The experts on the NTSB side are all really experts... take a look at the bios of the technical people on that report (they all have real names and real CV's, unlike Sanders's pick-up team).


Criminal Number 18F

204 posted on 07/17/2004 10:56:48 PM PDT by Criminal Number 18F
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To: JohnHuang2

bump and save

205 posted on 07/17/2004 10:59:16 PM PDT by krunkygirl
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To: Rokke
Almost none of them claimed they saw a missile.

"Almost none?"

Do you speak English as your fifteenth language or something?

What dimension do you live in?

206 posted on 07/17/2004 11:00:04 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Drug prohibition laws help fund terrorism.)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

As a multilingual genius, allow me to translate. "Almost none" means a number close to zero. There were 755 recorded witnesses. Few, if any stated they observed a missile. You can read their statements yourself from one of the sites at the link you provided.

207 posted on 07/17/2004 11:22:06 PM PDT by Rokke
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To: ninenot
besides the fact that there was NO OTHER Boeing plane on which this EVER happened.

Er, how about seven other planes (including military a/c?) Or to quote from Dr Bernard Loeb:

previous fuel/air explosions in the center wing tanks of commercial airliners that contained Jet A fuel have confirmed that a center wing tank explosion involving Jet A fuel can result in destruction of an airplane. Specifically, I am referring to the November 1989 accident involving a Boeing 727 operated by the Colombian airline Avianca that occurred during the climb after takeoff, and the May 1990 accident involving a Boeing 737 operated by Philippine Air Lines that occurred on the ground at the airport.

Speech date 8/22/2000

There also was, after Dr Loeb gave his speech, another fuel-air explosion which destroyed a Thai 737 on the ground. See here. Initial reports were that that was terrorism, too, but it was found to have been a tank blast in the "empty" centre wing fuel tank. (Empty tanks, every pilot, mechanic, and engineer learns, always contain a quantity of 'unusable' fuel, so they are never truly empty once the machine has ever had fuel in it).

Dr Loeb missed this famous accident to an Iranian Air Force Boeing 747 in Spain. (At the time, Iran was a monarchy under Shah Mohammed Reza Pahlavi, and an important US ally in the Middle East). In this case, lightning may have been the ignition source but the explosion that destroyed the plane inflight and killed all on board was most probably a fuel-air blast. I suspect that Dr Loeb did not mention this accident because the finding of probable cause is not 100% for fuel-air.

You really shouldn't post very strong statements of fact when authoritative contrary information is just a Google away. I will presume you have made an honest error. As far as the explosivity of Jet A, check the Cal Tech "Explosion Dynamics Laboratory" on line, they have done extensive research and they explain themselves in laymen's terminology, or in as much depth as you woulf like. As you point out, if the mixture is too rich (too much fuel) or too lean (not enough fuel) combustion, and therefore explosion, is not possible.

For many years aero engineers thought that it was inevitable for you to have a combustible fuel/air mix at certain ranges of altitude and temperature. So the answer has been to try to keep the third necessary ingredient (fuel, oxygen... and ignition), the ignition source, out of the fuel tank. The TWA 800 accident was unable to determine the actual ignition source. To the horror of the investigators, there were several potential suspects. In a belt-and-suspenders approach, the FAA ordered them all fixed. (NTSB investigates, FAA regulates).

After a while, the FAA was not comfortable with even that and as a result inerting systems will be required. (this removes ingredient #2, oxygen). The good news is that FAA and Boeing have come up with a lighter weight and less costly system than the military had been using. In the meantime, as I understand it 74's are all flying with the CWFT full, or at least with too much fuel for combustion of the fuel-air mixture ("too rich").


Criminal Number 18F

208 posted on 07/17/2004 11:27:31 PM PDT by Criminal Number 18F
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Me either. It is BS. Technically impossible.

Went to public school, didn't you? Do you have any idea how stupid you look when you post something that assertive, when it is absolutely, completely, wrong? Your statement is contradicted by science and disproven by history (the above mentioned fuel tank explosions). It is as wrong as saying you can't go around the world because you'll fall off the edge.

Here is Cal Tech's explanation of just how it is possible.

Now, I expect you to read that and apologize to everyone on this thread for either lying (which is deliberately posting false information) or running your mouth about stuff you don't understand, and claiming you did. Which, when you think about it, is still lying, once removed, but it may have been through overestimating your own knowledge, so maybe you shouldn't have to wear a scarlet "L" just yet.

You may be knowledgeable about many things, but your post here is a perfect illustration of Will Rogers's famous aphorism. "It's not what we don't know that hurts us. It's what we know that just ain't so."

If you can't understand the words on the CalTech EDL page, maybe you can make sense of the diagram. If you have questions, ask. There are numerous FReepers that did actually take physics (some that teach it).

Sorry for singling you out from all the people that post that guff, but I ran across your post exactly at the point where I had had it with endlessly repeated falsehoods, myths, and lies.


Criminal Number 18F

209 posted on 07/17/2004 11:44:43 PM PDT by Criminal Number 18F
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To: JohnHuang2

We have a better chance of getting the guy on the grassy knowl than getting to the truth on this one.

210 posted on 07/18/2004 5:21:39 AM PDT by longfellow
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To: Criminal Number 18F
First it was 'ullage' and now it's 'tatterdemalion'.

Every time go expository on TWA 800, I find myself in need of a dictionary.

What's up with that?

211 posted on 07/18/2004 8:27:51 AM PDT by Hoplite
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To: Rokke
Few, if any stated they observed a missile. You can read their statements yourself from one of the sites at the link you provided.

I don't understand the psychotic word game you are playing. Let's start with one of my previous links: how does the following article support your statement that "almost none" of the eyewitnesses reported seeing a missile?

One other question: you are really James Kallstrom, aren't you?

New York Post
September 22, 1996
TWA Probers: Missile Witnesses "Credible"

Criminal Justice Editor

More than 150 "credible" witnesses -- including several scientists -- have told the FBI and military experts they saw a missile destroy TWA Flight 800, The Post has learned.

Sources provided startling new details from the frustrating two-month probe -- persuading agents to acknowledge that the witnesses' accounts point toward a missile:

The FBI interviewed 154 "credible" witnesses -- including scientists, schoolteachers, Army personnel and business executives -- who described seeing a missile heading through the sky just before Flight TWA 800 exploded.

"Some of these people are extremely, extremely credible," a top federal official said.

Sources said the witnesses lived or were vacationing along Long Island's South Shore in Nassau and Suffolk counties when they saw the object heading toward the sky.

"When we asked what they saw and where they saw it, the witnesses out east pointed to the west, and the people to the west pointed to the east ," one source said.

FBI technicians mapped the various paths -- points in the sky where the witnesses said they saw the rising "flare-like" object -- and determined that the "triangulated" convergence point was virtually where the jumbo jet initially exploded.

Struck by the number and confidence of the witnesses, the FBI sat down many of the witnesses with U.S. military experts, who debriefed them and independently confirmed for the FBI that their descriptions matched surface-to-air missile attacks.

"The military experts told us that what the witnesses were describing was consistent with a missile," a federal official acknowledged. "They told us, "You know what they are describing is a missile.' "

Law-enforcement sources said the hardest evidence gathered so far overwhelmingly suggests a surface-to-air missile -- with the sophisticated ability to lock on the center of a target rather than its red-hot engines -- was fired from a boat off the Long Island coast to bring down the airliner July 17.

That theory would have the attackers launching their missile from a boat and fleeing north into Canada during the confusion immediately after the explosion. Investigators are reviewing an anonymous threat received after the Oct. 1, 1995, conviction of radical sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, a law-enforcement source said.

The threat was that a New York area airport or jetliner would be attacked in retaliation for the prosecution of the sheik, convicted of plotting to blow up major New York City landmarks.

Investigators have been unable to find definitive evidence proving any of their three key theories: missile, bomb planted in the plane or a mechanical malfunction.

On Friday, the bomb theory took another tumble when the FBI revealed the plane had carried explosives within a year of the crash as part of a training exercise for drug-sniffing dogs.

That revelation could explain how traces of explosives were found on wreckage of the downed Boeing 747.

The overriding obstacle for investigators probing the missile theory has been the fact that Flight 800's engines show no signs of missile damage.

But military experts told the FBI several modern heat-seeking missiles -- in the hands of terrorists in Africa and available to their Middle East counterparts -- target a plane's "central mass."

These missiles -- launched from a shoulder harness or a small pad -- different from the Stinger missiles that Afgani freedom fighters used against the Russians -- are equipped with a super-sophisticated heat- seeking device and are able to reach higher targets.

TWA 800 exploded at 13,700 feet -- the upper limit for the newest of these portable-type missile systems.

Military experts pointed the FBI to man-portable missiles such as the SA -14 Gremlin, SA-16 Gimlet and SA-18 Grouse -- equipped with "proportional convergence logic" systems that are "sensitive enough to home in on airframe radiation" once it nears its target, rather than isolated hot spots.

Copyright 1996, N.Y.P. Holdings Inc.

212 posted on 07/18/2004 8:44:13 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Drug prohibition laws help fund terrorism.)
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To: Rokke
Few, if any stated they observed a missile. You can read their statements yourself from one of the sites at the link you provided.

Struck by the number and confidence of the witnesses, the FBI sat down many of the witnesses with U.S. military experts, who debriefed them and independently confirmed for the FBI that their descriptions matched surface-to-air missile attacks.

The fact that you resort to childish word games makes you look silly.

213 posted on 07/18/2004 8:46:49 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Drug prohibition laws help fund terrorism.)
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To: Rokke
Heat seeking missiles guide to engines. Not internal fuel tanks.

The latest SAM technology is able to lock onto center-of-mass.

214 posted on 07/18/2004 8:49:13 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Drug prohibition laws help fund terrorism.)
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To: JohnHuang2

Why did I get a request for a cookie from the New York Times when I clicked on this thread? The article is from

215 posted on 07/18/2004 8:57:00 AM PDT by fightu4it (conquest by immigration and subversion spells the end of US.)
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To: JohnHuang2
Radar Images of TWA 800

216 posted on 07/18/2004 9:07:54 AM PDT by zeebee
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To: E. Pluribus Unum
"how does the following article support your statement that "almost none" of the eyewitnesses reported seeing a missile?"

Unlike you (apparently) and the New York Post, I don't rely on anonymous sources for my information. The transcript of every single witness interview is a matter of public record and available on line. What becomes stunningly clear, is that there is no consistant eyewitness description of what happened that night. Furthermore, as anyone who has witnessed a SAM launch will tell you, the most obvious indicator is the smoke trail it leaves behind. In fact, that is all most people will see. The entire time the rocket burns, it smokes. A lot. So it is incredible that witnesses who reported a streak of light, did not also report a smoke trail. But very few did. Just like very few called it a missile. So you and the Post can say all you want that witnesses observed a missile, but that doesn't make that statement a fact.

Furthermore, not a single investigative body involved in the TWA 800 investigation could find any tangible evidence of a bomb or missile strike in the wreckage (including Boeing, TWA, ALPA and the NTSB). The IAMS report stated they thought an overpressure event happened outside the aircraft, but unless someone created a SAM that explodes without creating shrapnel, it is unlikely such an event occured.

Finally, infrared seekers cannot guide to the center of mass of a target. They can only guide on heat sources, because that is all they "see". An infrared missile will generally lock onto the hottest object it sees, and keep that object in the center of its focal array until impact. It doesn't know if it's locked onto a 747, an F-16, a flare or the Sun. It just knows it has to hit the hotspot. Radar guided missiles will guide to center of mass, but if you want to argue TWA 800 was shot down by a radar guided missile, you're opening a whole new can of worms that is even less likely. Bottomline, not surprisingly, the Post and its anonymous sources don't know what they're talking about.

217 posted on 07/18/2004 9:26:27 AM PDT by Rokke
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To: Rokke
Being tasered was the single worst experience of my life (coming, as it did, on a day that was already bad), and I still feel residual effects.

So what did all those people see?

Are they all lying?

218 posted on 07/18/2004 9:30:35 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Drug prohibition laws help fund terrorism.)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum
"Are they all lying?"

No. They are all telling the truth. It is folks who report that these people say they saw a missile fly up and impact TWA 800 that are lying. It is a lie made to support an otherwise unsupportable theory. It is a lie that is told over and over again with the hope that it will eventually become "truth". But the truth is on the record, and the record is a collection of signed statements by witnesses who do NOT say they saw a missile fly up and hit an airplane.

219 posted on 07/18/2004 10:32:35 AM PDT by Rokke
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To: Hoplite

Er, I have a big vocabulary?

Hey, how many FReepers know what a 'hoplite' is? (was)?

ullage: the part of a fuel tank not containing liquid fuel, therefore, the part which will normally contain fumes from the evaporation of the fuel. It's a highly arcane technical term and maybe I should not have used it without defining it.

tatterdemalion: shabby; wretched; all beat-up! Can also be a n. for a person (especially a boy) in such condition. It might be archaic; my grandmother used to use it.

And yeah, I really use words like this in conversation... most of my friends an co-workers do too, but then, some folks need to know what an "ullage" is.


Criminal Number 18F

220 posted on 07/18/2004 10:37:22 AM PDT by Criminal Number 18F
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