It’s Time to Drop The 9/11 Conspiracies

I have never been a 9/11 “Truther”. Yes, I know this will disappoint some, but I have never seen any convincing reason to believe that the events of that day were anything other than what they seemed. The only alternative theory I’ve ever heard that I find even remotely plausible is that of Peter Lance, who essentially claims only that the FBI dropped the ball even worse than they admitted, and may have had a greater chance of preemptively stopping the attack than we all might believe. I’m not saying I necessarily believe it, but at least it stays on logical ground that I’m comfortable with – the idea that one generally shouldn’t blame on shadowy conspiracies what can be explained by simple incompetence and shortsightedness.

But let me ask a question to the 9/11 “Truthers” out there – and I mean it sincerely. What is the point – now, a dozen years on – of continuing with your movement? What I mean is: let’s say that somehow tomorrow you stumbled onto some evidence with which you could undeniably, irrefutably prove that your conspiracy theories are correct, and that it was all one big government inside job. So… then what? I guess you could throw George W. Bush in jail, but he’s been out of office for years now, so what would that really change? Obama would simply blame everything on his predecessor, fire or jail a few career people at the CIA, FBI, and Pentagon, and then keep on trucking with what he’s been doing – NDAA, drone strikes, NSA surveillance, and all. The war in Iraq is over. Bin Laden’s met his fate. Afghanistan is lost no matter what, and anyhow has wide bipartisan support (in Congress – though not among the people, whose opinions on the subject don’t matter) to keep grinding on until we run out of cash. The military is popular with the people, could (and would) blame everything on the politicians and a few rogue bad apples in its ranks, and besides has new threats to scare the public and justify its existence with, so there’s not much chance of seriously taking down the Military-Industrial complex. Unless you could prove that Israel was actually behind the attacks (highly unlikely, even if you did prove your theories about the events of the day correct), the government won’t stop slavishly supporting Israel – not as long as the technically-legal bribes from The Lobby keep flowing. And you wouldn’t be very likely to deeply and permanently change the political culture of Washington, either – Richard Nixon got thrown out of the White House on his ass after an earthshaking, epoch-defining set of scandals in which he got caught lying and covering up, but that did virtually nothing to stop future Presidents from lying or covering things up. It’s not terribly likely that a validated 9/11 conspiracy theory would permanently affect Washington greatly more than the devastating twin punches of the Pentagon Papers and Watergate did, especially when, unlike the Nixon Administration, the people who were in power at the time of the event at the heart of the scandal would be long gone from Washington when the story broke.

So what exactly do you expect will happen if you ever actually manage to prove all this? Other than throwing a few has-been ex-politicians and long-retired Generals in jail? And if that’s all that would happen, isn’t it time to let it drop and devote your energies to other matters?