Several things about the theories taken up in D.R. Griffin's book are
convincing, a few collapse of their own weight, and several deserve
further study. Note that Griffin knows that of mutually contradictory
conspiracy theories ONLY ONE CAN BE TRUE, and Griffin doesn't endorse
any one. This tentativeness is helpful and refreshing; it, and his
great labors in assembling questions raised by diverse suspicious
observers, make quite sufficient reason for praising the book, and
I agree with the reliable people like Howard Zinn who have done so.
Experts seem to disagree on whether the fire in the twin towers could
have got the supporting steel members hot enough to account for their
collapse. How then could the attackers have expected the towers to
collapse? We have at least three alternatives: (a) that Al-Qaeda or
somebody knew more about the vulnerability of the towers than their
designer did, (b) that the attackers (and whoever was co-conspiring
with them) expected to cause much fewer casualties than they did, and
(c) that the towers were readied in advance for demolition. On the
face of things, (b) is much the most plausible.
There was something fishy about a third WTC building collapsing much
as the twin towers had done, but without being hit by a jet plane or
anything else. No conspiracy theory with coherence explains this
strange event, so for the present it does not lead me to support any
of them; only it does increase the plausibility of theory (c), that
buildings were readied in advance for demolition. It sure doesn't
get rid of major problems with that scenario!
I wish Elaine Scarry or somebody else experienced in casting a
skeptical eye on FAA reports of crashes had looked closely at the
official report of the crash into the Pentagon. I agree with this
criticism of what Griffin calls the official story: If a large jet
plane crashed into the Pentagon, why was the hole in the wall so small
and what became of the plane's wreckage? Again, I can't deduce from
this weak link in the official story any support for any other
coherent story. The picture regarding eyewitness accounts of the
plane approaching the Pentagon is murky: (1) There were MANY such
accounts. (2) They disagree widely. Proponents of several theories
claim support from these eyewitness accounts.
Forensic examination of the ruins of the twin towers was thwarted,
just as in the case of the Pentagon damage, and with much less
credible justification on "security" grounds. I haven't seen any
news stories about recovery of bodies of passengers in the hijacked
planes; in my ignorance I am left wondering if forensic examination
of the bodies --which might have implications for the official story
of the crashes-- is also being suppressed, and if so, why.
In short, examination of the evidence is needed. I have no apology
for my open-mindedness-- and no excuse for not getting to work on
the questions myself.