Skip to comments.The ongoing dissent re: TWA Fl800
Posted on 07/10/2002 7:35:52 AM PDT by JohnFiorentino
Secret FBI report refutes sworn testimony of William Tobin
A recently declassified FBI report appears to refute the sworn testimony of the FBI's former chief metallurgist assigned to the TWA800 crash case.
As disclosed in the recently declassified document (excerpts printed below) it appears William Tobin's testimony before the Senate during the Grassley hearings had little basis in fact.
Tobin testified that by September of 1996, approximately 4-6 weeks after his arrival on the case, there was a general consensus that there was "no bomb or missile damage" evident on the TWA wreckage. At the time frame indicated in Tobin's testimony, approximately one half of TWA800 was still at the bottom of the ocean.
The FBI's James Kallstrom, dismissed Tobin from the probe. Kallstrom believed Tobin's "conclusions" were hasty and unprofessional.
As evidenced by the once secret FBI report, it wasn't until November of 1996 that the FBI considered alternate investigative methods. This was two months after Tobin had already arrived at his conclusions. The report also states that even in November 1996, salvage efforts were still ongoing.
The document indicates that investigators had "little forensic documentation or guidance on large-body aircraft missile engagements, and no supportable mechanical or operational explanation for the crash."
FBI, TWA Flight 800 Brookhaven National Laboratory Examinations. Declassified FBI Report, 1997. (excerpts)
"It became apparent by the end of November 1996, about four months into the FBI's criminal investigation, that no aircraft debris recovered to that time had clear indicia of a high explosive event, although evidence recovery (i.e., ocean trawling for aircraft debris) and subsequent examination by bomb technicians for such indicia was continuing. In the face of no "classic" explosive artifacts little forensic documentation or guidance on large-body aircraft missile engagements, and no supportable mechanical or operational explanation for the crash of Trans World Airlines (TWA) Flight 800, FBI management decided that "... any investigative or scientific avenue that was reasonable and which could assist in providing a factual cause of the incident should and would be pursued."
The report goes on to say, that the initial metallurgical findings were reviewed, stating: A "cursory metallurgical peer review was conducted......" The report further states however, "No analysis or microscopic examinations were conducted." This would seem to indicate a review of the methodology used, and not a review of actual findings, as no further tests were performed.
Reproduced below, are excerpts from William Tobin's sworn testimony at the Grassley hearings.
Excerpts of FBI Metallurgist William Tobins testimony during the Grassley hearing.
GRASSLEY: Within 30 days of arriving at Calverton, what was your professional assessment of as to whether the cause of the crash was a bomb?
TOBIN: It progressed from an inclination of viewing the earmarks as possibly a bomb, but it changed rather quickly to confirmation within my mind that there was no indication of a bomb and unlikely to be that of a missile within the first 30 days.
GRASSLEY: At some point, did the bomb techs agree with yours and the NTSB's assessment that the cause of the crash was not a bomb?
TOBIN: Yes, Senator. I would estimate that probably four to six weeks -- after about four to six weeks, we were all unanimously or near unanimously on the same page. And all being the bomb techs, the National Transportation Safety Board and the metallurgy or the material science interests in the FBI laboratory. We were all unanimously -- we were united in our observations and conclusions that there was no bomb or missile damage evident on those aircraft parts.
GRASSLEY: The term four to six weeks brings you to what date on the calendar approximately? Just approximately.
TOBIN: My guess would be mid September, early to mid September.
It would appear that the FBI report and Tobin's testimony are at odds. This is just another glaring example of the inept and inconclusive investigation into one of the worst air disasters in history.
Copyright 2002, John E. Fiorentino -- All rights reserved. Distribution to wire services and recognized news media is allowed. No other use, distribution, or reproduction can be made without the express consent of the author.
If 150 witnesses all say they saw the defendent in a murder case walk over and shoot the victim, it would be a short trial.
The Federal government has become a giant conspiracy, nothing more or less.
The initial event was not the explosion of the center fuel tank; another impact affected the airframe prior to that explosion.
Missiles do not require "warheads" to alter airworthiness.
There are bombs which do not leave chemical particulates to be traced among shards of metal; nor do they have fuzes.
The federal government lied about the presence of U.S. military operations and ships in the area.
There are many kinds of missiles other than "shoulder-fired."
There are many, many locations from which a missile could have been fired.
Not a good idea to discuss more ... which would reveal more.
If the federal government says what really happened, then some secrets more valuable, 'tis their thinking, will be compromised; and they would prefer to not do that.
The exclamation that "so many people could not keep a secret(!)," is sometimes true and sometimes false.
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In this case, as well as the Murrah Building, I think the reason was Clinton's unwillingness to confront Arab terrorists, and risk alienating them, for his on personal political purposes. Therefore, they didn't exist.
Whatever happened to the confident and determined FBI agent in charge who we saw on tv for the first two or three days assurring us that the case was about to be solved and the perps brought to justice? He disappeared like an apparition.
There were simply too many witnesses to what happened, including military pilots who know what missiles and ordinance explosions look like.
I remember the Vietnam vet pilot of the ANG C-130 saying on TV the night of the accident that he had seen a missile go up and hit TWA 800. That ONE observation alone is enough for me. No embellishment. Pure fact.
Everything to the contrary is US Grade "A" DISINFORMATION.
Now excuse me for stating the obvious here but such an investigation of an attack on a US flag air carrier over domestic waters is a potential act of war which is one of the primary purposes of the federal government. I submit that an honest airing of the established facts would lead to identification of what missle was used and who fired it, The net result would be an even angrier American populace something that is dangerous to the Washington appartchiks.
Stay well - Stay safe - Stay armed - Yorktown
Agreed. They covered it up, and Mr. & Mrs. John Q. Public bought it! You're flogging a dead horse!!
So let's just hide our heads in the sand and just pretend that it will all get better, is that your answer?
Center fuel tank my a**. The fact is that 100's of people in a civilian airplane were shot out of the sky while ascending through peaceful, well charted civilian airspace and nothing has been done about it by now and, it looks like, nothing ever will be done about it.
This is just another example of the government's choice to abdicate its role as protector of its citizens in favor of a role of protector to the well-connected few who are involved when stuff goes horribly wrong.
There are certain people who continually demand PROOF of things who, no matter what evidence you present, will ALWAYS give you a reason why it will not suffice.
For example, you could show them a videotape of the actual event and they would tell you that it proves nothing because you cannot PROVE that it was not fabricated doctored etc etc. Similarly, you could show them laboratory spectrometer analysis of metal taken from the wreckage and they would argue that the results PROVE NOTHING because they could have been contaminated etc etc.
It is best to avoid the temptation to engage these posters in debate as they are likely paid to post these messages and will NEVER be satisfied.