Thursday, July 19, 2007

Conspiracy theories

A commenter on my blog has been dotting several of my posts for the last few months with this single very long comment containing a lot of links:

"Speaking of the “war on terror”, let’s take a few moments and look at some of the details of the horrible event that precipitated it and around which America’s foreign policy has been inextricably wrapped ever since that awful morning.One thing that struck me as odd in the days after 9/11 was Bush saying "We will not tolerate conspiracy theories [regarding 9/11]". Sure enough there have been some wacky conspiracy theories surrounding the events of that day. The most far-fetched and patently ridiculous one that I've ever heard goes like this: [more]

Usually I skip through as it is too long, but today I went back and read it.

Many articles and books were written about 9/11 , and you and I have read more than we could ever hope to remember about it. All sorts of theories. When I read the theory exposed above to my Arab mind it seems plausible. whoaaaa wait before you explode in my face, I'm telling you it 'seems' possible that is what your average Mo would believe. So how can I explain to him that it is not true and convince him? I'm sure there were many counter theories.

So I would like you to tell me WITHOUT getting emotional or angry, without threatening me or each other and without sarcasm (because I'm asking therefore I really need an answer) your opinons and ideas on educating my peers (not necessarily Libyans ) when they bring that kind of stuff in my face what arguments could I use to make them understand especially that everything is clear?


Maya M said...

cIt is amusing that this commenter has registered himself as "Enlightenment". Big Pharaoh would have called this "the definition of irony" (
The hijacker pilots were too incompetent to fly the planes into their targets. Then what happened? Possibly the CIA convinced the regular pilots to do it? I remember that a 15-yr-old inspired by the Sept. 11 attacks flew a small plane into a building in Tampa. If he could, why should we think that the hijackers couldn't?
The buildings were supposed to endure such attacks, the Air Force was supposed to react. The logic that this or that structure or institution must have endured an unimaginable attack is sick. You will hear a similar logic from police after beating a detainee to death: "He wasn't supposed to die. Others have endured much worse beatings and survived."
Frankly, I couldn't read this masterpiece to the end. And it's no use trying to disprove all of its follies. So let's use plain common sense.
"Enlightenment" suggests that the Sept. 11 attacks were done by somebody who cared about Rumsfeld's safety and had control over the Air Force, i.e. the US government. But the US government has no record of such acts, didn't benefit from Sept. 11 (on the contrary, it suffered harm) and I cannot conceive what benefits, even if not coming true, would have been expected.
Islamist terrorists have a long record of attacks against infidel civilians, both before and after Sept. 11. Remember e.g. Munich, Nairobi, Beslan, Madrid, London, Bali, not to mention the numerous terror acts in Israel. Islamists also had the necessary motivation: jihad. And they benefited from Sept. 11, as they expected. 2 or 3 years ago, I've read an article in Spiegel about Ayman al-Zawahiri. The author reported that in a pre-2001 book titled "Knights under the Banner of the Prophet" Zawahiri stated that a successful attack against the USA on their territory would make their European "allies" abandon them. The author's comment: "This was exactly what happened".
It is funny that the same sort of people who first celebrated Sept. 11 and then rallied under the slogan "Beware new 9/11" are eager to construct or accept absurd conspiracy theories about it. But I don't think they really believe in these theories. So I don't think arguments would help against such hypocritical fantasies.
Instead, I would suggest asking (with your most innocent tone) whether similar conspiracies were behind the London bombings, the school kidnapping in Beslan etc. So I guess, at the end you will press your opponent to claim that the bomb that killed the two little brothers in Nazareth last summer was an Israeli one. They were Arabs, so this is veeeery logical.
Sorry for the sarcasm.

Perkunas said...

It's difficult to fight ignorance -- not likely that any argument can help people think clearly if they are ignorant.

duniazad said...

This is what i use "Bin Laden admitted it, i mean we all saw him on aljazeera"

...that usually leaves them stumped, unless they go into the jazeera is a CIA?Mossad/Arab governmnet tool, which isn't as widespread as it was thanks to rumsfeld and the bombing of it's offices...but there's another conspiracy theory right there :)

mani said...

bin laden didnt admit it.. he praised it..

Al zawaheeri did..

and these days its a piece of piss to fake a human, let alone his video.. psssht...


maya my dear I have not seen you around in ages lol I admit I really enjoy your contributions to these debates.. really.. lol.. its good to be informed of how the misled mind accepts information.

I think if you are concerned more for the truth of this event rather than your selfishness to somehow prove why your hate is so valid, then maybe you should see this from the perspectives of the young and uprising American people. I believe most new yorkers fully know the truth of 9-11, and the 911 truth movement has in its ranks not only direct families of 911 victims, but the thousands of people; workers, retired US senior advisors, and representation from all walks of professional life.

on the one hand you can either give the presentation ample time to read til the end and check the sources like any real scientist ....and then make an informed opinion... or just continue to be the maya we all cherish and love :) :) :)

programmer craig said...

Personally, Highlander, I don't think there's much point arguing with people who construct such elaborate theories to fool themselves(regardless of their background, because we have people like Rosie O'Donnell who believes that 9/11 was an inside job, too). They do so, because they want to believe that their conspiracy theories are true.

Highlander said...

Maya thanks for your input, regardless of the sarcasm, it is interesting that you compared this story to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. I don't see the similarities though I understand that many people though refusing conspiracy theories are willing to accept them if it suits their purpose :P I've seen that a lot on the blogosphere.

Perkunas, I agree ignorance is the worst plague all over the world and the cause of so much hatred.

Duniazad welcome to my blog, it's great to see you back in the blogosphere :P mabrouk ! LOL@ 'another conspiracy theory right there'-

Mani tislam 3azizi the risk of sounding too Libyan centrist :P I don't know if this exists lakin ma igdha illa siyadha 7weita 3aleik wu bess .

Craig yes conspiracy theories are rife :) I have my favourites too he he he

Maya M said...

Mani, dear, thank you for the kind words. I would try to answer you but I first checked your blog and saw that it would be to no avail. Because we are losing you anyway - to the nomenklatura, like Aragorn at the end of "Lord of the Rings". I'll miss you. My favourite opponent, as I called you once.
Highlander, it was natural for me to connect 9/11 to the Mideast conflict not only because Bin Laden tried to portray himself as a friend to the Palestinian people but also because the basic technique was developed (or at least elaborated) in Palestine. It relies on a post-nuclear weapon - the suicide bomber, a creature brainwashed to have a wish to kill greater than the instinct to live. And until the Palestinian-Israeli conflict is solved, I am sure nothing will be over.
I've heard more moderate conspiracy theories about Sept. 11 - that CIA/Mossad fooled the hijackers to believe they were following Bin Laden's orders or that Bin Laden was bribed by investors putting their stocks on the anticipation of the attacks. I've answered, "Well, it could have been like this. I don't believe it, but it's difficult to disprove. And it doesn't matter to me. Because those suicide hijackers were the key element to the plot. Without them, there would be no 9/11, no matter how much CIA or an investor would want it."
About the passenger who said "Mom, here is Mark Bingham" - I don't think it is so unnatural under the circumstances.
Until recently, the entry exam of our Medical University included a test. Once I saw a test sheet that contained only the candidate student's name and several answers (checked boxes). It was extraordinary, because candidate students were required to check all boxes (or they could claim that the sheet had been taken away from them, or pay somebody to check the boxes for them). Officials on duty during the exam testified that the youth had been apparently drugged.
"But it seems strange to me that he managed to write his full name yet failed to scribble 40 Xs into boxes," I said.
"He has produced his (full) name as a reflex," others replied.

agger said...

Well, as for a thorough debunking of a lot of these and other claims I'd suggest this: