Pentagon strikes
April 30, 2005 8:26 PM   Subscribe

Hmm.. A friend linked me this critque of the Pentagon 9/11 event. I was wondering if there was any official or unofficial debunking of the claims made here?

That hole looks awful small for a 757.. Personal debunkings welcome too.
posted by Mossy to Grab Bag (29 answers total)
Hint: the wings came off when it hit the outer wall = relatively small breach. This "what really happened" crap has been extensively debunked -- google around.
posted by words1 at 8:30 PM on April 30, 2005

mefi thread. Various debunkings therein, as well as links to others.
posted by advil at 8:32 PM on April 30, 2005

posted by mlis at 8:32 PM on April 30, 2005

Anybody know what the music in the background is? It sound so familiar, but I can't identify it.
posted by mosch at 8:47 PM on April 30, 2005

mosch I think Craig Wedren is what you are looking for.
posted by mlis at 9:03 PM on April 30, 2005

“A Conspiracy!” cried the delighted lady, clapping her hands. “Of all things, I do like a Conspiracy! It’s so interesting!”

-Lewis Carroll
posted by extrabox at 9:05 PM on April 30, 2005

Thank ye. *googles hunt the boeing*
posted by Mossy at 9:14 PM on April 30, 2005

Erm, but does anyone know why there aren't any videos of this? Security reasons?
posted by Mossy at 9:17 PM on April 30, 2005

That hole looks awful small for a 757

Well, that's part of it -- people making assumptions and conclusions far beyond anything they have any experience in. Without wanting to be any more rude than necessary, why would you or I have the slightest damn idea how big a 757 doing 350+ mph should make in a steel-reinforced concrete structure? A similar problem was after Columbia was lost, people kept asking why they didn't just go to the space station.

does anyone know why there aren't any videos of this?

Happenstance, AFAIK. They only got footage of the first NYC impact through sheer luck, and NYC probably has a very high incidence of security cameras, traffic cameras, and other cameras on all the time, just like DC.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 9:44 PM on April 30, 2005

1) The Pentagon is far larger than you think it is.

2) Airplanes are far weaker than you think they are.

The reason there isn't a 757 sized hole in the side of the pentagon? Really, that's a false question. There *was* a 757 sized hole in the side of the Pentagon, minus the wingspan, since the wings were shattered on impact with the ground. Most of the 757 ended up as little tiny scraps of metal on the lawn. What was left blew a huge hole in the side of the building.

Walk up to a large building. Imagine a hole four stories high. Now make it circular. That's what that airplane did.

Or, if you will, go to DC and walk up to the Pentagon, then you'll understand the scale.
posted by eriko at 10:33 PM on April 30, 2005

I would think the best evidence for a 757 hitting the Pentagon is the missing 757...

Eriko is right...commercial airliners are, basically, hollow aluminum tubes. The Pentagon is a concrete and steel structure designed to be hardened against blast damage. It's not hard to see why there wasn't a big hole.
posted by thewittyname at 10:42 PM on April 30, 2005

Arguing that Flight 77 didn't crash into the Pentagon seems an especially bizarre claim to me. Where, then, are these people?

To carry out the conspiracy described here, the flight crew would have to be involved (or murdered and replaced after boarding and before takeoff) and then the plane flown somewhere else and completely destroyed, along with its passengers, without anyone witnessing anything. Quite a puzzler.

On the other hand, the "Flight-77-never-existed" theory means that 60-odd passengers, including children on an educational trip, were all convinced or compelled to assume secret identities and magically disappear, and that a variety of organizations agreed to go along with the "Flight 77 charade". Tricksy.
posted by taz at 11:45 PM on April 30, 2005

Erm, if someone was evil enough to blow holes in the pentagon and the wtc, I think they wouldn't have any qualms about disposing of 60 odd people.

I think I was looking at the wrong hole, thanks :)

Re: film. It's the pentagon, it has cameras from all angles trained on it, right?

ROU_Xenophone - space station?
posted by Mossy at 2:04 AM on May 1, 2005

Re: film. It's the pentagon, it has cameras from all angles trained on it, right?

If you're willing to make stuff up to prove your point, then you can prove anything. WMD on one side, this ridiculousness on the other.
posted by grouse at 2:26 AM on May 1, 2005

Mossy: the International Space Station.
posted by biscotti at 7:31 AM on May 1, 2005

If it were a giant government cover-up, how hard would it have been to manufacture some grainy security camera footage of the crash you think you should be seeing?
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:05 AM on May 1, 2005

mosch: It's the Fight Club soundtrack, track 3:"What is Fight Club?" by the Dust Brothers.
posted by Who_Am_I at 8:16 AM on May 1, 2005

Re: film. It's the pentagon, it has cameras from all angles trained on it, right?

You'd think there would be lots of cameras from all angles trained on the WTC or out from it, but, in the real world, the only pictures we have of the first impact are because a film crew shooting a documentary was in the exact right place at the exact right time. If their shooting schedule had been different, we wouldn't have any shots of the first impact.

There is actually security camera footage, but it was one of those cameras that takes a picture every couple seconds so it didn't catch the actual impact, just the explosion afterwards. This is of course then taken as evidence that there was no plane by the crazy people you're starting to believe -- anything, or the lack thereof, can be twisted into the framework of conspiracy theories like this.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:57 AM on May 1, 2005

This is stupid. I can't believe we're even discussing this, or that some guy made up a whole webpage about it. Jesus.
posted by josh at 11:51 AM on May 1, 2005

Thanks guys (and gals?).
posted by Mossy at 12:46 PM on May 1, 2005

My grandparents heard it. People I know saw it. That's enough, if you ask me, to believe that it happened.
posted by croutonsupafreak at 4:38 PM on May 1, 2005

I was in Arlington on 9/11. While I didn't see the crash itself, I did see the last part of the explosion and the smoke from my office window, and all of the black helicopters that suddenly appeared. I was also able to tour the site and the response village about a week after.

On the tour, we saw the light poles that had been snapped in two by the plane as it crossed the highway. There's no doubt in my mind that this was an airplane crash.

What's more interesting, to me, is the Pennsylvania flight. I was in charge of setting up the Arlington County crisis center while the towers were still burning, and the initial reports we got indicated that the military had downed at least one commercial airliner. At some point those reports just stopped, and nobody mentioned them again.
posted by aberrant at 6:54 PM on May 1, 2005

Just for fun (right?):
posted by flavor at 8:01 PM on May 1, 2005

Also, re: the videos. It's my understanding that there are a number of other tapes that presumably contain footage of the pentagon explosion, but were confiscated by the FBI and have not been released. I've read this a couple of places, but not from CNN, and I have not verified the fact myself, so there's that qualification.

I don't have any personal investment in the case of Flight 77, but it certainly seems strange enough for me to wonder, even if there's no way to be sure. All that "debunking" isn't exactly satisfying, given all the weirdness floating about. For the interested, check out this site and browse the posts under the 9/11 subject index:
posted by flavor at 8:25 PM on May 1, 2005

All that "debunking" isn't exactly satisfying

Jesus Christ. Some people wouldn't be "satisfied" if they'd personally seen the plane slam into the building but then read a super-cool article "proving" it didn't happen. "Oh, I must have had my brains scrambled by those evil government masters of deceit!" Ah well. I'm glad Mossy is able to accept the truth.
posted by languagehat at 5:57 AM on May 2, 2005

indeed ... what happened to flight 77 and the people aboard it if it wasn't crashed into the pentagon? ... and what did crash into the pentagon instead and why hasn't it come up as missing?

those are two questions the conspiracy theorists need to answer to prove their case ... so far, they haven't
posted by pyramid termite at 9:44 AM on May 2, 2005

indeed ... what happened to flight 77 and the people aboard it if it wasn't crashed into the pentagon? ... and what did crash into the pentagon instead and why hasn't it come up as missing?

We don't know, but that's the point. Nobody needs to prove what happened to Flight 77, why it wouldn't have been crashed into the pentagon or any such thing to make the case that there are a number of weird things with the official story and, as such, questions that need to be answered. If it makes you comfortable to believe that the "conspiracy theorists'" claim is that Flight 77 didn't crash into the pentagon, fine, but that's not the intelligent side of the debate. The real claim is merely an observation, that things may very well not be as they seem, accounted for with a large amount of supporting evidence.

There's one thing I do know, however, and it is that the people I have encountered who are so sure of things have not looked into the matter very far. Perhaps you have read the Snopes bit or some other articles debunking the "conspiracy theorists'" claims, but all of these that I've seen are content to deal simply with a few points raised against the official story and call it good, content with official story simply because the alternatives are the realm of "conspiracy theory". That's my own evaluation, at least, but it is the only evaluation I can account for, so by all means be free to your own.
posted by flavor at 3:36 PM on May 2, 2005

I was directly across the river from the Pentagon that day, watching it burn, and for what it's worth, I could smell the jet fuel even on the DC side.
posted by CunningLinguist at 5:37 AM on May 17, 2005

Go here for a full page of eye-witness accounts confirming that it was in fact an American Airlines plane that flew into Pentagon that morning.

Go here for the best missile theory debunking article you'll find, which bases itself partly on the above witness accounts as well as a ton of other things. Logical, reasonable and loaded with pics and illustrations to prove its points.

Go here for a similarily excellent missile theory debunking article.

I used to be in favor of the missile theory and considered it one of the most feasible ones related to 9/11. Not so much, anymore.

My feelings toward 9/11 conspiracies are a lot more balanced, I feel, after having read loads of articles (from both sides) in the past few months. I believe certain people knew about the attacks prior to them, and I believe the cover-ups are massive. Why and who - I have no idea. The theories that the government ACTIVELY PARTICIPATED, on the other hand - that I don't believe. Loose Change, for instance, is a load of bollocks. For an in-depth analysis of it, go here. A must-read.
posted by Haarball at 2:28 PM on April 3, 2006

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