Woke Enough

wtc-plane-imact

In the fifteen years since terrorists allegedly hijacked passenger planes and crashed them into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a field in Pennsylvania, there has been no shortage of self-appointed scientists stating emphatically that the events of 9/11 could not have transpired according to the official account.  And thank goodness for these stalwart champions of truth; they have let nothing – not logic, not contradictory evidence, not even good taste – waylay their march to expose the lies behind the events of September 11, 2001.  These truthsayers, whose unique perspective allows them to get it while the rest of the world is mired in ignorance, continue to illuminate the events of that tragic day in the form of memes.  And as we all know, memes are the most reliable source of information available on the Internet.

What would we do without the 9/11 “Truth” movement and its truth-spewing memes?  Without “Truthers”, who would remind us that jet fuel doesn’t burn hot enough to melt steel beams?  And when structural engineers, who mistakenly believe themselves to be experts because of their years of education and practical experience, tell us that the steel beams in the WTC didn’t need to melt in order to bring the towers crashing down, who but a “Truther” has the temerity to stand up to those so-called experts’ superior knowledge and call them out?  God bless “Truthers” for their unwavering ability to ignore evidence that doesn’t suit their preferred narrative.

The “Truthers” – no doubt inspired by a bevy of conspiracy-fueled websites such as The Free Thought Project, AboveTopSecret, and Infowars – shed light where officials would prefer darkness.  For example, these tireless terriers of truth uncovered the shocking reality that the World Trade Center towers were designed to withstand an airplane impact even more severe than the ones that actually brought them down (according to our reptilian overlords).  And how do the dastardly government apologists explain that damning fact?

One sycophant – the maintainer of 911Myths.com – claims that there is quite a bit of discrepancy in reports about how much of an impact the towers were designed to withstand.  Leslie Robertson, the lead structural engineer of the WTC (and probably also a spineless sheep who accepts the government’s account of 9/11 without question!) says that he performed a calculation during the 1960’s showing that the towers could withstand a direct impact by a Boeing 707 moving at about 180 miles per hour.  The assumption was that the airplane would be lost in thick fog and would accidentally strike one of the buildings while approaching JFK or Newark for landing.  The extended damage caused by a large jet fuel fire was not taken into account because (A) the effects of that kind of fire on a skyscraper’s internal structure were not well-understood at the time, and (B) a landing airplane would probably be low on fuel anyway.  Robertson never actually claimed that the towers would hold up under a 9/11-type attack.

Ha!  Nice try, Leslie, but your qualified calculations won’t throw real “Truthers” off the track.  They’ve picked up the scent of another report, filed by the Port Authority around the same time, indicating that the towers were perfectly capable of withstanding a direct hit from an airplane traveling at 600 mph.  That’s even faster than the alleged airplanes that allegedly hit the towers traveling at 470 to 590 alleged miles per hour.  What do you say about that?

According to non-“Truthers” (i.e. sheeple), the Port Authority trumped up the results of Robertson’s study in order to silence critics of the WTC project.  You see, in 1945 and 1946, airplanes accidentally crashed into the Empire State Building and 40 Wall Street, respectively, resulting in 22 deaths.  In both cases, fog was blamed (although to be honest, the New World Order probably created the fog that blinded the pilots.)  Critics were fearful that the WTC towers, being taller and broader, would present an even greater risk for low-visibility plane crashes.  Apparently, the Port Authority, anxious to see the already over-budget project completed, felt that Robertson’s numbers were not soothing enough, and decided to go for gold by falsely reporting that the towers were more than safe enough to withstand any kind of impact speed that could possibly be produced by a passenger plane.

An un-woke sheeple might think that 9/11 “Truthers” are ignoring the results of Robertson’s calculation and focusing on the Port Authority’s faulty report because, you know, it’s more convenient for their conspiracy theory.  But of course, that’s all poppycock.  The Port Authority was right, structural engineer Robertson was wrong, and Bush did 9/11!  I don’t even want to imagine a world in which 9/11 “Truthers” were not around to remind us of this, repeatedly, on the anniversary of that horrific tragedy.

 

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Someone Needs a Debris-fing

Pentagon Debris

We’re going to be talking about plane crashes, obviously.  If you’re particularly saddened by news of the recent crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 into the French Alps (and I can’t blame you if you are), you may wish to scroll on by.

This crash was tragic, not only because of the loss of life but also because co-pilot Andreas Lubitz’s mental illness may have pushed him to intentionally drive the airplane down.  This meme claims that the debris from Flight 9525 was spread over 215,000 square feet, or roughly the same area as two city blocks.  I suspect the terrain surrounding the impact site may have constrained the spread of debris, but it’s hard to say for sure.

The second part of this meme is utter nonsense.  There were many pieces of airplane debris found in and around the Pentagon in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, crash of American Airlines Flight 77.  What this meme’s author means is “I can’t personally see any airplane debris in the pictures shared by the 9/11 ‘Truther’ websites I frequent; therefore, none was ever found.”

What kind of debris should one expect to see in the wake of a plane crash?  Of course it depends on many factors, not the least of which is the intent of the pilot.

When a pilot is trying to avoid a catastrophic crash, he focuses on reducing the plane’s speed (if possible).  With less speed, the plane has less kinetic energy.  It may break apart on impact, but the pieces will be larger.  Whole engines or sections of fuselage may survive the crash.  Since most airplane crashes are accidental, we’re accustomed to seeing debris fields featuring large, mostly-intact sections of the airplane – evidence that the pilot saw what was coming and did his or her best to mitigate the damage.

But when a pilot is intentionally trying to wreck the plane, he does not slow down.  The hijackers aboard Flight 77 intended to hit the Pentagon with full force; as a result, the destruction of the plane was total.  The plane’s body was ripped into tiny shreds by the crash and ensuing explosion.  If you can’t look at post-crash photos of the Pentagon and see huge chunks of airplane littering the lawn, it’s because the airplane was thoroughly reduced to small, twisted, scorched shards of metal.  At the risk of sounding insensitive, complaining that no wreckage is visible in the post-attack photographs of the Pentagon’s west lawn is similar to complaining that no pine cones are visible in the same photographs.

Furthermore, most of the wreckage would have been carried inside the building by the momentum of the airplane.  There’s a well-known law in physics (well-known to everybody but 9/11 “Truthers”, apparently) called the Law of Conservation of Momentum.  The Law of Conservation of Momentum states that the momentum of an object tends not to change, unless that object is acted upon by an outside force.  If the object splits into smaller parts, each part carries a fraction of the original object’s momentum proportional to its mass.  Furthermore, if that object collides with something else, the total momentum is spread out over all the bodies involved in the collision.  In any case, overall momentum is conserved.

When American Airlines Flight 77 struck the western face of the Pentagon, it had a lot of momentum.  That momentum was spread out to millions of tiny pieces, each of which tended to keep moving in the same direction as the original airplane.  Most of the airplane’s wreckage would be found inside the Pentagon building, because that’s the direction the plane was going.

Are there photographs of plane wreckage taken inside the Pentagon building?  Yes, but they’re not easy to come by.  Most of the early photographs are private or government property and are not open for public viewing.  By the time FEMA captured the first public domain images on September 14, much of the debris had already been cleared from inside the building.  The remaining debris was torn, twisted, and charred to the extent that it was virtually impossible to distinguish from the rubble of the Pentagon itself.  Sarah Roberts, writing for Rense.com, presents some of the publicly-available images.  They show the chaos that can only result from an airliner deliberately being flown into a building.  Debris is clearly visible; including a wheel hub characteristic of an airliner’s landing gear.  The website 911review.com offers another critical analysis about why “Truthers'” claims vis-à-vis the Pentagon are all wet.

The fact that the meme’s second statement can be so easily debunked by a moment of searching demonstrates “Truthers'” violent allergy to the actual truth.  When their claims are shown to be flagrant falsehoods, many “Truthers” respond that they are “just asking questions.”  What’s wrong with asking questions, man?  Nothing’s wrong with asking questions, if you’re honest enough to accept the answers.