Nine Eleven Architects

Richard Gage is an architect in the USA, and the lead promoter of a theory that the collapse of the twin World Trade Towers (and WT-7) in New York, was not caused by islamic fundamentalists after all. We’ve added a poll that you can vote on here, just to the right of this article. Please vote! He is also at present in New Zealand, and spoke on Kim Hill’s show this morning, and at Te Papa this afternoon: calling stridently for a new, proper, and thorough investigation. According to him, supposedly the buildings can only have been detonated by professionals, and the plane crashes were just a cover story. It is an interesting theory, and we’ll try to remain fairly neutral about it: he is collecting signatures and donations to support the movement. So far he has 976 architects and engineers who have signed up to his theory: and according to the donation logger on his website, he has collected only $20 so far in New Zealand. In America, some people take this very seriously indeed. Some of our members are strong believers in what he says, while others may be in disbelief or outright denial. In any case, Arch Centre’s web pages are a welcome venue for you to discuss the matter below.

However, for someone putting up such a convincing argument, I’m surprised that the number of signees he has is so low. There are over a thousand architects in New Zealand, and I’ve never tried to count the number of engineers; from memory there are something like 28,000 architects in the UK, and so I’m picking that there would be well over 100,000 architects in the USA. So, just under one hundredth of that who have signed up would seem to fit the 1 in 100 crackpot fringe numbers, leaving 99% of the USA architectural population as sceptics, deniers, or at least non-believers.

The immediate problem that most people have is of course that they saw on TV (and over and over again) the 2 planes impacting into the side of the Twin Towers, and then an hour or so later, the collapse of the towers, one after another. In New Zealand of course it was already the 12th of September, when we awoke to watch the terrible destruction. It seemed to me at the time fairly obvious that the buildings would not have lasted, for all that had to happen was for one floor to break off and land on another, and the impact of dropping a 10-20 storey building the 3m onto the floor below would inevitably cause a domino effect on the floors below. True enough, within minutes of waking we watched the buildings pancaking down floor after floor into the massive basements.

To blame the purposeful death of 3000 innocent people on the American government is a fairly audacious act – one that Mr Gage at least does not say directly. He does however repeatedly call for a new investigation. Much as one can agree that the invasion of Iraq was never really over democracy, but really over oil, and as odious and idiotic a president as George W Bush was: to take the step of blowing up your own citizens and destroying your own financial market headquarters seems more than a little extreme.

To ask a President who can barely string together a coherent sentence (the David Letterman show presented every night for about 2 years the segment “Great Moments in Presidential History” ridiculing W’s umming and arrring) to authorise a top secret explosion of three buildings, with Thermite high explosive hidden inside every single structural joint in the lift shafts, and to keep the hundreds of workmen co-ordinated and quiet (perhaps paid off or perhaps assassinated without notice), to schedule a FEMA mock rescue for the area on the same day and yet not let on that they may have real practice on their hands – or even more fancifully, to sneak inside the buildings while they were burning, and blow them that way, seems more than likely to be just slightly implausible.

Having just been on a project where to even get the relevant sub-contractor to turn up and do their work on time was a major issue with programme, it seems somewhat improbable that any project manager worth their all American salt could wrangle the necessary man-power into unleashing that kind of organisation. On the other hand, if it was the US military, or CIA, or FBI, or NCIS, or CSI, then we all watch TV which shows just how good these guys and girls are at finding, working out, uncovering, exposing, infiltrating, carrying out, and in some cases, shooting all the possibly guilty parties so that we will never really know what happened – all within a single half hour programme – then it all seems totally likely.


20 responses to “Nine Eleven Architects”

  1. One of the lasting memories I have is that of the dust clouds afterwards, which continued to descend for hours: as did the floating scraps of paper.

    I recall an eye-witness saying that it was so odd that while a massive steel and concrete building had been destroyed so thoroughly, and yet the thinnest, most fragile items of all, the fragments of paper, were still surviving, blowing in teh wind.

    If the conspirators had wanted to cover up the bureaucracy hidden within WTC7, then they failed miserably, as the paperwork survived….

  2. The most fascinating thing about this is the finding that only 1% of architects are part of the crackpot fringe. A tad low I would have thought.

  3. Are you implying that more architects should be crackpots? Or that they all are crackpots, but just aren’t admitting it?

    Aren’t architects meant to be the visionaries, the free thinkers, the ones who can see the future and build it for you?

    Maybe its just the engineers who believe the crackpot fringe theories.

  4. “Aren’t architects meant to be the visionaries, the free thinkers, the ones who can see the future and build it for you?” – Yes, which would make me think more should be part of the crackpot fringe. Or at least more should be thought of as being part of the crackpot fringe.

    I haven’t read Gage’s theory in detail, but given that there was about an hour between impact and collapse, perhaps the planes were full of explosives experts who managed to survive the crash and then dispersed across the building setting the charges. I may take that theory on the road.

  5. Explosives experts always survive the blasts that kill the rest of us – that’s how come they are experts. They probably rapelled out of the jet windows on the way in.

    Gage’s donation total in NZ is now $170, and a total of 5 people have paid money in. I would guess that he may have a less than 95% agreement on his theory in our highly sceptical society.

    This is possibly something to do with the fine standing we hold our government appointed officials in, such as the top secret document left lying on the street corner a few weeks ago, or the SIS briefcase being found containing a copy of Penthouse and two meat pies. It seems unlikely in our government that we could hide something as eleborate as the 911 conspiracy. But then again, those Americans are awfully clever…

  6. jayseatee Avatar

    Pretty close guess on the number of architects (at least registered architects)

    The 2009 survey of state architectural registration boards by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB) indicates that there are currently 101,673 registered architects in the United States.

  7. jayseatee Avatar

    Gage’s argument is entirely within the loon fringe and is easily discounted by anyone who actually lived through the event. I lived in DC and had to put up with many people who lived thousands of miles away sending me forwarded messages about how a missile hit the pentagon, instead of a plane. Well, since I was working at an architecture firm which rebuilt it, and personally knew the structural engineer who was in charge of leading the search for survivors in the wreckage I tell these people to STFU.

    Unfortunately this posting engages in an equivalent fallacy; “To blame the purposeful death of 3000 innocent people on the American government is a fairly audacious act”. I suggest you read the daily policy briefing titled “Bin Laden Determined to Strike in US.” The American government completely wears the blame of this act.

    and to discount government responsibility because of incoherency of an idiot president shows complete niavete about how things actually work in the US.

  8. “and to discount government responsibility because of incoherency of an idiot president shows complete niavete about how things actually work in the US.”

    quite agree. Idiot president he may well have been, but you still can’t hold him responsible for the alleged organisation of any such conspiracy plot. But i suspect he was included more as just an easy target, symptomatic of a greater lack of accountability behind the scenes.

  9. on behalf of... Avatar
    on behalf of…

    from teh Capital times….

    9/11 conspiracy
    The article on Richard Gage is absolutely magnificent. It’s about time this issue was dealt with properly by the mainstream media. Well done, as a Kiwi living in Australia who has watched the Aussie media completely ignore the tour of Gage and Prof Jones, and ignore the overwhelming evidence for controlled demolition, I am very happy and proud that you have done such a balanced report.
    Andrew Whooley, Wellington

  10. Sh1t – freedom of speech is a wonderful institution and all, so I guess we have to put up with idiots like this from time to time…

  11. It is interesting how the media spin on things can be taken at face value. Years ago, just after the first George Bush had initiated the First Gulf War, I went to Egypt, and was intrigued that the widespread opinion in the Arab world was that the whole thing was about Oil, and not about the poor Kuwaiti people that the media had told us was the reason for America to go to war. We, in the west, had believed that totally at the time – the story of the death of the Marsh Arabs, and the gas attacks on the Kurds – these had never really made the headlines. But Saddam’s attack on Kuwait – that made the headlines – outrageous, shocking attack on one of the few democratic states in the Arab world.

    I think people in the west have even forgotten that excuse now – we have, like the Arabs, have long since twigged that the real reason was the protection of USA Oil supply.


    The curious thing about the Twin Trade towers, which would seem to go against the whole US Government secret / not so secret super plan, is that the 19 ? hijackers were all (nearly all) Saudi nationals (going from memory here) and that therefore if the US was trying to set up scapegoats for the attacks, then why would they use people from a so-called friendly country?

    If it was a vast conspiracy, which it is so obviously not, then why would they not set up some hapless Iraqi or Afgahistani airline students and blame them directly? If this is a conspiracy theory, then it has to be absolutely the worst planned, most poorly thought out theory ever.

    But then of course all that was just to throw you off the track. Its brilliant. Proves everything.

    George Bush only pretends to be stupid, just like Paris puts on a dumb act for the cameras, because she’s really a very clever business woman who knows there is money to be made in looking dumb….

  12. What I’m finding all the more interesting about this Twin Towers thing, is that people are so quick to become experts and proclaim their opinion on things. Kim Hill was reading out her emails this morning (ie one week on form the interview with Gage) and the ones she read out were full of invective from people who had listened to Gage for an hour and suddenly were experts on building demolition, trajectories of jets and flying debris, abilities of demolition experts to bring down buildings etc. One person was stridently saying that because a piece of the outside wall was found imbedded in a roof 600 ft away, then it must have been put there by an explosion.

    Well, duh, yes, there were a number of explosions – there were two fully laden jet planes flying at 300kph flying into the side of the buildings (themselves 1368 ft tall) – and the effects of the weight of a 20-storey building falling down would in itself create quite an explosion, let alone being repeated for every other of the 90 floors below – and a fireball and smoke cloud many floors tall.

    There is probably only a handful of demolition experts in the world who really know everything about explosions, and how much things explode, and how things fly around at great speed – but suddenly, after listening to a stranger for a short period of time, we’ve sprouted a couple more world experts.

    Having only 976 “experts” (architects and engineers who, let’s face it, can not be said to really know anything about demolition) out of the 83,500 architects in the AIA. Still sounds like totally unlikely crackpot theory to me.

  13. Andrew Whooley Avatar
    Andrew Whooley

    What a bizarre article, a site of architects talks about Richard Gage and fail to discuss the actual reasons over 1000 colleagues believe the 3 highrises that collapsed on 9/11 were due to controlled demolition.

    Have any of you visited the website where the reasons are outlined on the r/hand side of the page?

    BTW, the third steel framed highrise that collapsed on 9/11, wtc 7, not only collapses in the exact same manner as an implosion, but has an officially recognised 2.25s period of freefall, this is proof it was a controlled demolition.

    Freefall means all of the buildings potential energy is used to accelerate the building, it means there is no energy expended on removing or buckling the 50-odd steel columns.

    Freefall means an external force had to have removed all the steel columns simultaniously because all the building’s potential energy is used accelerating the building.

  14. Andrew, thanks for your comment – yes, I have been to the website, and listened and watched and trawled my way through loads of documents, and – well, hell’s belle’s Andrew, the man is madder than a rattlesnake in a bucket of ballbearings.

    The whole thing promoted by Richard Gage is just a pile of horseshit. The more I listen to people trying to tell me that it was a government secret mission, the more unlikely it seems. Government organisations are the most dysfunctional disorganised bunch I’ve ever met.

    I just don’t believe a word of it. I’m an architect. I’ve put up buildings, I’ve been there when they come down. I’ve watched controlled demolition, and I’ve watched things fall by accident. I just don’t believe any of it. Sorry.

    The government sector, with its thousands of millions of dollars, has been trying to find Osama Bin Laden for the last 10 years, hiding in a cave in Pakistan or Afganistan. They’ve expended millions of man-hours searching the skies with the most sophisticated machinery ever invented, and they still don’t even know if he is in country A or country B. They are so bloody useless they couldn’t find a monkey in a nut tree.

    And yet, you expect me to believe, that they somehow convince a secret army of controlled expert demolition men, to sneak in thousands of yards of wiring and several hundred kilos of high explosive, into a building that is on fire, and wire the whole thing up without any one of the world’s press crews spying what was going on, and then to secretly blow it all up, in order to destroy some paperwork (which incidentally doesn’t get blown up or burnt, it just floats out into the street and gets picked up and read by my friend in Manhattan who was there when the planes struck the building and was covered in the dust cloud).

    I dunno Andrew, you guys over the pond really believe that pile of crap? There’s no way that anyone could demolish that building on that day by stealth – so they would have had to have the building wired up before hand – and so that means they had to be in on the case, and knew the buildings were going to be demolished by the planes crashing – and they let the people die, and they are still all keeping quiet?

    Come on mate, its just not believable at all !

  15. Andrew, sorry about the rant – just can’t believe you’re buying into this. Very few architects, and no engineers that i have met, believe Gage’s theories. It’s just all in the realm of crackpotness.

    However, if you’re an expert on, or interested in demolition, and freefall speeds, then have a look at this one:

  16. Andrew Whooley Avatar
    Andrew Whooley

    Guy, the video of demolitions that went wrong is evidence of how difficult it is to implode a building, if the structure is not pre weakened enough or if a few explosives fails to detonate (which is what I believe most likely happened in the Turkish demolition) then failure is on the cards.

    Implosions are a precision operation, all the columns must be removed within a fraction of a second to get the building to fall symmetrically, yet WTC7 collapsed in the same manner supposedly due to random fires.

    We all know the effect that fire has on steel columns, it cannot cause instantious failure. Fire can only soften the steel column to the point that it buckles, but the steel will still retain some mechanical strength as it buckles, so it is not an instantanious failure.

    Consider the logistics of getting 50 steel columns to fail virtually simultaniously and instantaniously, we know it can be done through the precision use of explosives but please consider the dramatically different effects that fire and explosives have on steel.

    Yet on 9/11 3 steel framed highrises went from standing bolt upright into instantanious and complete failure.

    WRT your earlier comment, there are special forces in the US and Israel that could pull this completely pre-planned operation off, and some Israeli agents were arrested on 9/11 for cellebrating their success.

  17. Just as there are websites devoted to the conspiracy, there are websites devoted to debunking them – thus, if you are that special brand of lunatic who subscribes to internet gossip, you should end up neutral on this issue…

  18. Travis Gray Avatar
    Travis Gray

    It seem to me that anyone who believes anything the US government says when openly they lie to it’s people are the “crackpots” if name calling is to be allowed here. Anyone that does not toe the official line is a “crackpot” apparently.There have been many “crackpots” in history that are then called heros when finally proven right. The US military were preped in advance for desert warfare (Afganistan style) 3 months in advance of 9th of September 2001. Um why? The perfection and poetry of the collapse of WTC1 and WTC2 is all to much like a staged Hollywood CGI movie (James Careron is working on the 3D version). If you did not realise all the death in those seconds of falling it is almost beautiful, mesmerising. Too symetical, too perfect. Are we to believe that random imperfection set this swiss watch demolition in motion?. Your eyes must see this without blinkers. Where is the convincing evidence that aligns itself with the official line? Despite the fact that we do not want it to be true, controlled demolition is the only theory so far that can be explained with real world physics. It cannot be so easily dismissed as others would want it to go away. Lets not be too gullible. Maybe the world affected so much should be asking a few more questions. After all it is not the first time the US Government has decieved its citizens and the world for its own gain.The only diference is the scale and media.

  19. Travis: welcome. Yes, you’re right: that politicians lie. It’s their job: they do it all the time – they are paid to do it. We should not expect them to tell the truth, although occasionally they do. The 911 aircraft bombings at WTC1 and WTC2 were indeed the catalyst for Bush and Cheney to go to war once more, just like his Daddy done, and yes, you’re right that the forces had been amassing waiting for a chance to go find those them Talebans.

    However, about the rest, I believe you are indeed totally wrong. I presume that you are not an explosives expert? Then don’t claim that controlled demolition is the only theory that can be explained. Although it is not a perfect source, the following excert from Wikipedia gives the official view of what happened:

    “A federal technical building and fire safety investigation of the collapses of the Twin Towers and 7 WTC has been conducted by the United States Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The goals of this investigation were to determine why the buildings collapsed, the extent of injuries and fatalities, and the procedures involved in designing and managing the World Trade Center.[233] The investigation into the collapse of 1 WTC and 2 WTC was concluded in October 2005, and the investigation into the collapse of 7 WTC concluded in August 2008.[234][235]

    “The report concluded that the fireproofing on the Twin Towers’ steel infrastructures was blown off by the initial impact of the planes and that, if this had not occurred, the towers would likely have remained standing.[236] A study published by researchers of Purdue University confirmed that, if the thermal insulation on the core columns would have been scoured off and column temperatures were elevated to approximately 700 °C, the fire would be sufficient to initiate collapse.[237][238]

    “W. Gene Corley, the director of the original investigation, commented that “the towers really did amazingly well. The terrorist aircraft didn’t bring the buildings down; it was the fire which followed. It was proven that you could take out two thirds of the columns in a tower and the building would still stand.”[239] The fires weakened the trusses supporting the floors, making the floors sag. The sagging floors pulled on the exterior steel columns to the point where exterior columns bowed inward. With the damage to the core columns, the buckling exterior columns could no longer support the buildings, causing them to collapse. In addition, the report asserts that the towers’ stairwells were not adequately reinforced to provide emergency escape for people above the impact zones.[240] NIST concluded that uncontrolled fires in 7 WTC caused floor beams and girders to heat and subsequently “caused a critical support column to fail, initiating a fire-induced progressive collapse that brought the building down”.[235]”

  20. I’ve just watched some fantastic documentaries, passed on to me from Barnaby, by a man called Adam Curtis. His series ‘The Power of Nightmares’ is particularly useful in contextualising the attacks on the WTC. I was sympathetic to an extent to some of the evidence put forward about the controlled demolition, however in light of these documentaries, and other comments from people like Noam Chomsky, I see that as pretty much impossible, and as Chomsky has perhaps controversially commented -it might not really matter, there are far greater ‘threats’ to democracy and society that these types of discussions unfortunately eclipse. Curtis’s documentaries are an excellent and fascinating source to learn more about these issues, especially the activities and agenda’s of the US government and islamic radicals in the last thirty years.

    Here is Part 1 of Curtis’s documentary:
    Wgtn library or Aro video doesnt seem to have it at a glance unfortunately…

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