Skip to comments.N.Y. Times continues to avoid TWA 800 connection (Richard Clarke & Jamie Gorelick)
Posted on 08/19/2005 5:27:07 AM PDT by Libloather
N.Y. Times continues to avoid TWA 800 connection
Posted: August 18, 2005
1:00 a.m. Eastern
© 2005 WorldNetDaily.com
Yesterday, the New York Times reported that State Department analysts had warned the Clinton administration in July 1996 about the dangers of Osama bin Laden's impending move to Afghanistan.
Deep in the article, the Times reports that the State Department assessment was "written July 18, 1996." Nowhere in the article does the Times mentioned what happened the day before.
What happened on July 17, 1996, is that TWA Flight 800 exploded on a beautiful summer night only 12 minutes out of JFK along the affluent well-populated south shore of Long Island. By all accounts, this crash threw Washington into a virtual war footing. A State Department assessment produced on July 18, 1996, was as likely to have been routine as one produced on Sept. 12, 2001.
On July 18, the last day of official honesty, Times reporters were all over the place, and they were pressing for the truth. On that day, unnamed "government officials" most likely the FBI told the New York Times that air-traffic controllers had "picked up a mysterious radar blip that appeared to move rapidly toward the plane just before the explosion."
These officials and the Times unequivocally linked the radar to the multiple eyewitness sightings and the sightings to a missile attack. According to the Times' sources, "The eyewitnesses had described a bright light, like a flash, moving toward the plane just before the initial explosion, and that the flash had been followed by a huge blast a chain of events consistent with a missile impact and the blast produced by an aircraft heavily laden with fuel." As one federal official told the Times that first morning, "It doesn't look good," with the clear implication of a missile strike.
This was the last day these officials were open with the media about the possibility of a missile. Once they changed the story, so did an oddly quiescent Times. The words "radar" and "eyewitness" would all but disappear from the Times' reporting after the first day. Nor, inexplicably, would the Times investigate the role of the military in the downing of TWA 800, not one paragraph, and not one word about satellites and what they might have captured.
As it happens, the Atlanta Olympics opened on July 19, the day the above stories were reported. Were the White House to acknowledge that an attack from outside the plane had caused its destruction, the Federal Aviation Administration might well have been compelled to shut down aviation on the East Coast. Accordingly, all missile talk ceased on that day. The investigation was forced into a false dialectic between bomb and mechanical. And the government, especially the FBI, would make the Times its unwitting messenger.
The day of the president's visit to Long Island eight days after the crash would prove to be something of a milestone. On that same day, for the first time, unnamed "law enforcement officials" most assuredly the FBI told the New York Times that they "supported the theory that the plane was destroyed by a bomb." At a separate briefing that day, FBI honcho James Kallstrom reinforced the theory. "We know there was a catastrophic explosion," he admitted, "It was caused by some kind of bomb, obviously, explosion." Yet, there was never any evidence of the same then, nor would there ever be, at least not a conventional bomb within the plane.
Besides, by this time the FBI had already interviewed hundreds of eyewitnesses pilots, vacationers, fishermen, surfers and they were all telling the same story. A typical sighting came from a Westhampton school parking lot, where school principal Joseph Delgado saw an object like "a firework" ascend almost vertically. The object had a "bright white light with a reddish pink aura surrounding it." The tail, gray in color, "moved in a squiggly pattern." From Delgado's perspective, the object "arced off to the right in a south-westerly direction."
Delgado saw a second object "glitter" in the sky and the first object move up toward it. He thought at first it was "going to slightly miss" the glittering object, TWA 800, but it appeared to make "a dramatic correction at the last second." Then Delgado saw a "white puff." Delgado and at least 750 other people and probably thousands watched as the plane's fuel tanks exploded, and Flight 800 morphed into what Delgado described as a "firebox" and others as a "fireball." Amazingly, the New York Times would only speak to one eyewitness, and not one of the 270 who saw the object's ascent.
To its credit, the FBI pushed to the terrorist side of the equation and pulled the Times with it. The Times' article on Aug. 14 "Fuel Tank's Condition Makes Malfunction Seem Less Likely" was the most provocative yet.
According to the Times, investigators "concluded that the center fuel tank caught fire as many as 24 seconds after the initial blast that split apart the plane, a finding that deals a serious blow to the already remote possibility that a mechanical accident caused the crash." One official was quoted as saying that parts of the tank were in ''pristine condition.'' Said another official who insisted on anonymity, ''It is clear that whatever set off the tank did not severely damage the tank. Something else, most likely later, blew up the tank.''
There was more. Investigators told the Times that the pattern of the debris "persuaded them that a mechanical malfunction is highly unlikely." From their analysis of the debris field, these investigators concluded the following, a summary that still has all the appearance of unvarnished truth:
The blast's force decapitated the plane, severing the cockpit and first-class cabin, which then fell into the Atlantic Ocean. The rest of the plane flew on, descending rapidly, and as it did thousands of gallons of jet fuel spilled out of the wings and the center fuel tank between them. At 8,000 feet, about 24 seconds after the initial blast, the fuel caught fire, engulfing the remainder of the jetliner into a giant fireball.
"Now that investigators say they think the center fuel tank did not explode," read the Times account, "they say the only good explanations remaining are that a bomb or a missile brought down the plane."
And then Richard Clarke got involved. About four weeks after the crash, based on his own rough timeline, Clarke visited the site of the investigation on Long Island. There he casually stopped to talk to a technician. Their presumed conversation, reported in Clarke's "Against All Enemies," is so utterly disingenuous it needs to be repeated in full:
"So this is where the bomb exploded?" I asked. "Where on the plane was it?"
"The explosion was just forward of the middle, below the floor of the passenger compartment, below row 23. But it wasn't a bomb," he added. "See the pitting pattern and the tear. It was a slow, gaseous eruption, from inside."
"What's below row 23?" I asked, slowly sensing that this was not what I thought it was.
"The center line fuel tank. It was only half full, might have heated up on the runway and caused a gas cloud inside. Then if a spark, a short circuit ..." He indicated an explosion with his hands.
The technician goes on to tell Clarke that these "old 747s" have an "electrical pump inside the center line fuel tank" and lays the blame on the pump. In fact, almost everything about the conversation is wrong. The tank was not half full, but virtually empty. The evening was a cool 71 degrees. The plane's pumps were all recovered and found blameless, and the fuel pump wiring is not even inside the tank. The National Transportation Safety Board admittedly never did find the alleged ignition source.
But pride goeth before a fall. In this one chance encounter, Clarke manages to sum up the essence of the "exit strategy" months if not years before the NTSB does, and he takes all credit for it. That same day, Clarke tells us that he returned to Washington and shared his exploding fuel-tank theory with chief of staff Leon Panetta and NSA Director Tony Lake, even sketching the 747 design.
"Does the NTSB agree with you," Lake reportedly asked Clarke? Clarke's purported response speaks to the priority politics would take over truth in this investigation "Not yet."
Jamie Gorelick took the ball and ran. On Aug. 22, 1996, the deputy attorney general called the FBI's Jim Kallstrom to Washington and effectively put the TWA Flight 800 investigation to bed. Now, it was just a question of how best to explain away the explosive residue and the eyewitnesses.
So, which one of Clintoon's enemies was aboard the plane? How did a U.S. naval vessel go to a general quarters drill and fire a single missile, bringing down the plane, without at least one of the 300-800 sailors (depending on size of ship) taking notice and telling the world?
Seems pretty clear that it was an unacknowledged act of terrorism by parties well known but unverified. But it plays right into the MSM's hatred of the military to try to shift blame in that direction.
I've always believed it was a terrorist attack. Now with the Able Danger scandal it makes sense that Clinton wouldn't have that on his legacy, that precious tarnished legacy that doesn't shine.
Pulling one tooth at a time it will take years to uncover everything that went on in the Clinton White House. Maybe Hillary's real ambition to get in the White House again is to clean up more loose ends that can't be stuffed in Sandy Berger's pants.
N.Y. Times continues to avoid TWA 800 connection ---WHAT ABOUT OKLAHOMA BOMBING CONNECTION?
This is so bad, with all the unnamed sources, etc, it reminds me of old Pravda stories.
thank you all
On Sept. 20, one mainstream newspaper released the story of how the so-called Gore Commission failed conspicuously to address airline safety. The paper claimed that this failure "represents the clearest recent public example of the success that airlines have long had in defeating calls for more oversight."
The paper traced that failure to a series of campaign donations from the airlines to the Democratic National Committee in 1996 in the wake of the crash of TWA Flight 800, donations likely solicited by Al Gore himself. That newspaper just happened to be John Kerry's hometown Boston Globe.
Yes, Clinton and Gore did abandon airport security planning for sake of campaign cash. But worse, they concealed the real cause of the crash, in no small part to justify that abandonment.
In fact, on the same day in September of 1996 that Al Gore sent the airline's lobbyist a letter signaling his intent to roll over, the National Transportation Safety Board reversed its spin and all but ruled out a bomb or missile strike [on TWA 800].
In our book, "First Strike," James Sanders and I make this arguably prophetic comment:
John Kerry seemed to have his sights on Al Gore's Achilles' heel. After the events of Sept. 11, the story of how Al Gore helped subvert the investigation into TWA 800 and undermine airport security may yet prove to be a career-killer. Kerry's "slips" may have put Gore out of the race even before he got in.
Two weeks after advanced copies of "First Strike" started circulating around Washington, Gore withdrew from the presidential race. His withdrawal shocked Washington. It did not shock Sanders and me. We expected it. Kerry plays hardball, too.
While I have your attention, Chris, there is one other person you need to put on the spot. Her name is Jamie Gorelick, former deputy attorney general under the figurehead, Janet Reno. You probably know her. Last week, UPI reported that the high-level 9-11 panel on which she sits "was rocked Thursday by the bizarre revelation that two of its senior officials were so closely involved in the events they are investigating that they have had to be interviewed as part of the inquiry." One of the two was Gorelick.
On Aug. 22, 1996, just a few days before the start of the Democratic National Convention, Ms. Gorelick oversaw a critical Justice Department meeting with the FBI. Immediately after this meeting, as it happened, all serious inquiry into the fate of TWA 800 came to an end.
On the next day, for instance, the FAA began to inquire whether any dog-training exercises had ever taken place on the plane that would become TWA 800. On the same day, as CNN reported, the FBI now claimed publicly for the first time that the explosive residue found along the right wing "could have been brought on the plane by a passenger and was not part of a bomb." Likewise, after the meeting, the FBI would do no more eyewitness interviews, at least not for the next two months. The Bureau only did a handful after that and all of those for the wrong reasons.
I believe you are 100% correct in your assessment. My question is what motivated the Clinton regime to cover up TWA 800 and the fact that there was a mideast connection to Oklahoma City in the form of John Doe #2 ?
Is it possible that when the heroes in the movie Men In Black put on their shades, the device was not fictional?
Seems everyone but the public was told the truth.
I also suspect that it was the klinton administration who began the rumor that it was a US Navy ship that fired a missle at the plane.
Good question and one that I don't think Jack has ever addressed. Here's one possible answer. If the liberal media are as in bed with supporting whatever the Clinton government told them as I personally believe, then that means that they also could be heavily involved in any cover up of claims by groups wanting to take credit for shooting the plane down, no? It may well be that a terrorist group DID try to take credit for it and the media simply sat on it. This sounds far fetched but so does the media's lack of diligence at trying to get to the bottom of a whole ton of crimes that form the Clinton legacy. It could be just one more example of selective reporting to promote their agenda to make sure the 'correct message' gets out there. Once somebody has displayed the characteristics of being crooked and untrustworthy, there is no limit to how far it extends. There may be some media that do know the truth and want to report it but even there, it may be an executive decision to not start a pissing match since the evidence may not be quite strong enough to make the case for the position absolutely airtight. The forces lining up against such a position would be extreme since it wouuld not only include the parties supporting the lie but the media supporting the parties supporting the lie who would be quick to point out that it was nothing but a kooky, slanderous, conspiracy-theorist's mad rantings.
As far as why there have been no more attacks along this line, it may be whoever the terrorist group was that was behind it only had one missile launcher that they managed to sneak into the States and since then, the various security agencies behind the scenes are actually working feverishly to prevent another similar attack. My guess is that since people within those agencies themselves didn't swallow the official version, they are behaving like ducks - quiet and unruffled on the surface while paddling like hell underneath. And obviously the view all along has been 'what would it benefit the public if they knew the truth'. Whatever the real truth is, the one explanation that doesn't explain anything but in a sense it explains everything is we now live in 'the age of deception'. It has always existed but the current age has taken it to a whole new level.
That talk was stopped immediately. After all, slick willie had the Olympics to consider.
The book is centered on an investigation of the July 1996 crash of flight TWA 800, "when... a big Boeing 747 bound for Paris with 230 passengers and crew on board, exploded off the Atlantic coast of Long Island, sending all 230 souls to their deaths." In July 2001, Federal Anti-Terrorist Task Force detective John Corey, a brilliant, smart-ass detective last seen in Plum Island and The Lion's Game, accompanies his FBI agent wife, Kate Mayfield, to the fifth anniversary of the disaster. John, whose wife worked the crash in 1996, understands that Kate has brought him along because she doesn't buy the official finding of "mechanical failure" and wants him to mount his own investigation. There are 200 eyewitnesses who swear they saw a missile lift into the clear night sky and bring down the airplane, a charge dismissed by the CIA as an optical illusion. Though Corey is warned away from the investigation, like any good fictional detective, this only serves to spur him on. He uncovers evidence that a man and a woman, on the beach that fateful night videotaping their adulterous affair, inadvertently caught on tape the missile hitting the plane. The book is primarily about John tracking down the couple, but as the end nears, readers will begin to understand the perilous direction in which Demille is leading them. The pages will turn in a blur as a feeling of dread grows, until the end comes and one's worst fears are confirmed. Readers will think about this one for a long time.
I loved this book - but I think everything he writes is great.
***this is not an advertisement for the book, but rather an "on topic" reference about the TWA 800 flight event. If you liked the old Tom Clancey stuff, then you'll like this.....even more!
I believe that you are correct in your assessment. We continually hear the Klintonoids bemoan the fact that 9/11 didn't happen on Klinton's "watch". I can't help thinking that it did....twice......Flight 800 and KC bombing. It had to be covered up since BJBilly didn't want to go to war, and that what Americans would have demanded.
Probably rates a tin-foil hat, but as an engineer,I also have trouble accepting the story of the plane that crashed in New York shortly after 9/11. Tail just fell of the plane.....hadn't happened before or since.......kind of like the Flight 800 fuel tank.
As far as I can recall, no terrorist organization claimed credit for 9/11 either. It was our own intelligence, after the fact, that made the connection to the terrorists. The Bin Laden video tape that came out a very long time afterwards only affirmed what Al Qaeda had never really publicly announced.
I may never KNOW what actually happened to TWA 800, but I am certain that the "official" story stinks to high heaven and that crash was NOT brought down by an fuel tank problem.
I've always wondered about that plane that crashed shortly after 9/11 too. After what we went through with Clinton, I don't think we're tinfoil hatters to be suspicious.