Bill Clinton addresses victims’ families on eve of 9/11 anniversary

Bill Clinton met with families of the victims of 9/11 on the eve of the seventh anniversary of the attacks on New York and Washington, and called for unity to return to the United States.

In the wake of his own bruising encounters on the campaign trail on behalf of his wife Hillary, and amid a presidential contest that is daily growing more ugly and rancorous, the former president bemoaned the lack of togetherness that had characterised the country immediately after the attacks.

“I will always remember the way New York and America came together on 9/11,” he said. “Every time we fail to do that when our national interest is involved, I wish we could recover it.”

Seven years on from the terrorist assault, in which almost 3,000 people died, help for the families of the victims remains mired in bureaucratic wrangling. Clinton addressed last night a conference organised by Voices of September 11th, a campaign run by and for families impacted by the tragedy, in a hotel in downtown Manhattan.

Before speaking, he met with several representatives from the group and heard their complaints.

He promised to work hard to rectify problems that have beset a multi-million dollar scholarship fund that he helped to set up that supports children of 9/11 victims through college. There has been criticism that funds awarded by the $27.3m scholarship have been inadequate.

“From my point of view, this is your money. This money was given for your benefit, for your children,” he said.

Clinton said he would also give “real time” to support Voices of September 11th in its on-going project to memorialise each of the victims of the attacks through a digital database.

He said he thought it was of great importance, as a way of informing people in a hundred years time who had no experience of New York when the twin towers were still standing.

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Fabled Enemies (Thanks Alice)

The Enemy Struck America. But Who Is The Enemy? Fabled Enemies is unlike any 9/11documentary ever put together. Rather than focusing on the physical anomalies at the World Trade Center and Pentagon, this film follows the intelligence ties of Osama Bin Laden, the alleged hijackers, and those who were actually detained on 9/11. The movie delves deeply into the roles of seperate Nations that were involved in supporting the 9/11 attacks. From Israel to Saudi Arabia to Pakistan, and even the United States itself, no one is spared in this scathing expose that pulls no punches. Sit back and get ready to learn how members of the FBI had their investigations into Bin Laden obstructed and shut down, how the hijackers were trained at US bases, that military drills crippled our defense and facilitated the attacks, how the Shadow Government was actually activated that day, and much much more.

Saudi Arabia wins 9/11 court battle

A US court has ruled that Saudi Arabia and four of its princes are immune from legal action by victims of the September 11 attacks in the US alleging they provided material support to al-Qaeda.

A Saudi banker and a charity were also to be given immunity from prosecution, a federal appeals court in New York ruled on Thursday.

The ruling, by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, upheld a 2006 ruling dismissing a claim against the Saudis.

The victims and their families said that because the defendants gave money to charities that in turn gave money to al-Qaeda, they should be held responsible for helping to finance the attacks.

The appeals court found that the defendants were protected under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act.

The court also said exceptions to the immunity rule do not apply because Saudi Arabia has not been designated a state sponsor of terrorism by the US state department.

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Robert Fisk: Even I question the ‘truth’ about 9/11

ground zero
Robert Fisk

Each time I lecture abroad on the Middle East, there is always someone in the audience – just one – whom I call the “raver”. Apologies here to all the men and women who come to my talks with bright and pertinent questions – often quite
humbling ones for me as a journalist – and which show that they understand the Middle East tragedy a lot better than the journalists who report it. But the “raver” is real. He has turned up in corporeal form in Stockholm and in Oxford, in Sao Paulo and in Yerevan, in Cairo, in Los Angeles and, in female form, in Barcelona. No matter the country, there will always be a “raver”.

His – or her – question goes like this. Why, if you believe you’re a free journalist, don’t you report what you really know about 9/11? Why don’t you tell the truth – that the Bush administration (or the CIA or Mossad, you name it) blew up the
twin towers? Why don’t you reveal the secrets behind 9/11? The assumption in each case is that Fisk knows – that Fisk has an absolute concrete, copper-bottomed fact-filled desk containing final proof of what “all the world knows” (that usually is the phrase) – who destroyed the twin towers. Sometimes the “raver” is clearly distressed. One man in Cork screamed his question at me, and then – the moment I suggested that his version of the plot was a bit odd – left the hall, shouting abuse and kicking over chairs.

Usually, I have tried to tell the “truth”; that while there are unanswered questions about 9/11, I am the Middle East correspondent of The Independent, not the conspiracy correspondent; that I have quite enough real plots on my hands in Lebanon, Iraq, Syria, Iran, the Gulf, etc, to worry about imaginary ones in Manhattan. My final argument – a clincher, in my view – is that the
Bush administration has screwed up everything – militarily, politically diplomatically – it has tried to do in the Middle East; so how on earth could it successfully bring off the international crimes against humanity in the United States on 11 September 2001?

Well, I still hold to that view. Any military which can claim – as the Americans did two days ago – that al-Qaida is on the run is not capable of carrying out anything on the scale of 9/11. “We disrupted al-Qaida, causing them to run,” Colonel David Sutherland said of the preposterously code-named “Operation Lightning Hammer” in Iraq’s Diyala province. “Their fear of facing our forces proves the terrorists know there is no safe haven for them.” And more of the same, all of it untrue.


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