Special Reports
United 93 shoot down reference again appears in news
By Wayne Madsen
Online Journal Contributing Writer

Aug 1, 2008, 00:23

(WMR) -- At the first military commission trial last week in Guantanamo, Cuba, Navy Lieutenant Commander Timothy Stone, one of the prosecutors, told the jury that accused Al Qaeda terrorist Salim Hamdan, a Yemeni citizen, was guilty of knowing about the 9/11 attacks because he overheard a conversation between Osama Bin Laden and Al Qaeda number two man Ayman al Zawahiri concerning details of the attacks.

According to a Reuters report from the courtroom, Stone stated: �If they hadn�t shot down the fourth plane it would�ve hit the dome.�

The reference was to United 93, which crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania. Chief prosecutor Colonel Lawrence Morris later said that Stone was merely quoting Hamdan, however, Morris would not even concede that the �dome� reference was to the U.S. Capitol building.

Whether or not Stone was himself referring to the shoot-down of United 93 or whether he was quoting Hamdan, who was, in turn, quoting either Bin Laden or Zawahiri is immaterial. The shoot-down of United 93 is backed up by evidence in U.S. intelligence files, including those found in the super-classified CRITIC database maintained by the National Security Agency (NSA). There is little doubt that the prosecutors in Guantanamo had some form of access to CRITIC and other intelligence in preparing their case against Guantanamo detainees like Hamdan.

On May 27, 2005, WMR reported: �President Bush spoke of the heroic actions of the passengers and crew aboard United Flight 93 over rural Pennsylvania on the morning of 911. However, NSA personnel on duty at the NSOC that morning have a very different perspective. Before Flight 93 crashed in Pennsylvania, NSA operations personnel clearly heard on the intercom system monitoring military and civilian communications that the �fighters are engaged� with the doomed United aircraft. NSOC personnel were then quickly dismissed from the tactical area of the NSOC where the intercom system was located leaving only a few senior personnel in place. NSA personnel are well aware that Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld did not �misspeak� when, addressing U.S. troops in Baghdad during Christmas last year, said, �the people who attacked the United States in New York, shot down the plane over Pennsylvania.� They believe the White House concocted the �passengers-bring-down-plane� story for propaganda value.��

On December 2, 2005, WMR reported: �Vice President Dick Cheney ordered two U.S. Air Force fighters to shoot down United flight 93 over Shanksville, Pennsylvania, on September 11, 2001, according to an intelligence officer who was monitoring the flow of intelligence between the Pentagon and the White House that morning. After the target was identified as United flight 93, Cheney gave the order to engage the target and shoot it down. There have been previous reports that Cheney ordered the shoot down.�

On October 29, 2007, WMR reported: �According to U.S. intelligence sources, the archives of the National Security Agency (NSA), available to cleared users via the INTELINK network, contains an archive of Flash precedence and Sensitive Compartmented Information (SCI) NSA intelligence messages known as �CRITICs.�

One such CRITIC from September 11, 2001, which includes a number of follow-on intelligence reports, concerns United Airlines flight 93, downed over Shanksville, Pennsylvania. However, the CRITIC is at odds with the official account of the fate of United 93, which is that passengers and crew attacked the hijackers and forced the plane to crash into the ground.

The NSA CRITIC, according to sources who have seen it, is about five or six sentences, and paraphrasically states:

�Two F-16s scrambled from Andrews Air Force Base at [likely 1336 Zulu]. Civilian airline hijacked. Over state of Pennsylvania civilian airliner was �intercepted� at (Latitude and Longitude of intercept].�

Several follow-up CRITICs are appended to the first United 93-related CRITIC. One follow-up CRITIC mentioned a possible fifth hijacked plane flying south from Canada that was near the Canadian-U.S. border. Another CRITIC states the plane �intercepted� over Pennsylvania was �confirmed civilian.�

On April 16, 2008, WMR reported: �WMR has received another confirmation, bringing the total number to three, that United Flight 93, hijacked on the morning of September 11, 2001, was shot down over rural Pennsylvania by U.S. Air Force jets scrambled from Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland. There are also reports that one F-16 scrambled from Langley Air Force Base in Virginia returned to base minus one air-to-air missile but the National Security Agency CRITIC report specified the interceptors that downed United 93 took off from Andrews.

�The third confirmation, as were the first two, is from a National Security Agency (NSA) source. In fact, a number of personnel who were on watch at the Meade Operations Center (MOC), which is a floor below the NSA�s National Security Operations Center (NSOC), were aware that United 93 was brought down by an Air Force air-to-air missile. Personnel within both the MOC and NSOC have reported the doomed aircraft was shot down.�

The fate of United 93 serves as an example of the lying conducted by the Bush administration in order to advance its perception management campaign to inflate and perpetuate the cleverly-constructed U.S. government propaganda surrounding the 9/11 attacks.

Previously published in the Wayne Madsen Report.

Copyright � 2008 WayneMadenReport.com

Wayne Madsen is a Washington, DC-based investigative journalist and nationally-distributed columnist. He is the editor and publisher of the Wayne Madsen Report.

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