Thursday, May 06, 2004

9/11 Tape "Destroyed" and Unavailable to Investigators

Would you believe that some of the most important conversations in recent history, that of the air traffic controllers regarding the hijacked planes on 9/11, were destroyed by members of the Federal Aviation Administration, even after express admonitions not to destroy any tapes from that day (and is if they should even have needed a reminder!) Truly one of the more outrageous stories I've read in a while. From today's Washington Post story:
Hours after the hijacked planes flew into the World Trade Center Towers, the Pentagon and a Pennsylvania field, an FAA manager at the New York Air Route Traffic Control Center gathered six controllers who communicated or tracked two of the hijacked planes and recorded in a one-hour interview their personal accounts of what occurred, the report stated.

The manager, who is not named in the report, said that his intentions were to provide quick information to federal officials investigating the attack before the air traffic controllers involved took sick leave for the stress of their experiences, as is common practice.

According to the report, a second manager at the New York center promised a union official representing the controllers that he would "get rid of" the tape after controllers used it to provide written statements to federal officials about the events of the day.

Instead, the second manager said he destroyed the tape between December 2001 and January 2002 by crushing the tape with his hand, cutting it into small pieces and depositing the pieces into trash cans around the building, the report said.
And then the press blames people for conspiracy theories. If people didn't act in conspiratorial ways, crushing tapes and destroying evidence in one of the biggest crimes of our lives, we wouldn't see the sprouting of conspiracy theories as to why that was done.


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