US President Barack Obama has signed a proclamation, designating the anniversary of the September 11 attacks as the Patriot Day and National Day of Service and Remembrance.
"As we remember the victims, their families, and the heroes who stood up during one of our country's darkest moments, I invite all Americans to reclaim that abiding spirit of compassion by serving their communities in the days and weeks ahead," Obama said in a proclamation released Monday by the White House.
In December 2001, the US Congress designated the anniversary of the attacks as the Patriot Day. In April 2009, Congress requested the observance of the anniversary as an annually recognized National Day of Service and Remembrance.
Meanwhile the ambiguities in the highly controversial terrorist incident of 9/11 have raised questions about the identity of the real perpetrators of such a deadly incident.
Many analysts believe the 9/11 attacks were masterminded by the Israeli Mossad and CIA to justify their subsequent aggressions of the Middle Eastern countries such as Iraq and Afghanistan.
Press TV has conducted an interview with journalist, writer and broadcaster Chris Bambery to further discuss the issue.
The program also offers the opinion of another guest: Caleb Maupin with the International Action Center anti-imperialist activist group.
What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview.
Chris Bambery, if 9/11 was actually the result of the failure of the national security state to deter an attack a lot of observers saying then the government’s refusal to conduct a real investigation is even a greater failure so basically we heard for instance this year a lot of the family members were not allowed to speak out.
Why is accountability still an unaddressed issue even if we go with the official story of what actually caused the attack? Why did that happen? Why was the for instance security apparatus not able to stop it?
Well, of course accountability and democracy are things which are very absent in America and in Western European democracies. It’s a problem right across the Western world but I think [what] you have got to say is that since 9/11 we have seen a massive expansion of that security apparatus, a massive expansion of an essentially repressive machine in America and indeed other countries around the world and there is no questioning about this. There is never going to be any questioning about this.
To give you an example, it’s a bit like NATO; you know NATO reinvented itself after the collapse of the Soviet Union and it’s become this aggressive alliance launching wars in Afghanistan and around the world. There is never any discussion of any of this. This has never held up for a public debate.
And I think your previous speaker was right, the real question in 9/11 if you like, George W. Bush might have even written a children’s story in Florida but [US Defense Secretary] Donald Rumsfeld was within hours dusting down plans which were already there to invade Iraq, even though there was no Iraqi involvement whatsoever in that attack. They were already ready to launch an attack into Afghanistan, even though it was an Afghani involvement in 9/11.
And subsequent to that we’ve seen the extension of the wars into Somalia, into Yemen, into Pakistan. America seems to have no understanding that there may be people in the world who resent what it does and in the CIA’s terrible term blowback are prepared to strike back against the evil empire.
Chris Bambery, the thing is over the years we’ve seen a lot of questions being raised as was said earlier in that report that we saw at the start of the program. A lot of questions are still being raised by experts, by specialists, by people inside and outside of America and again that question of how the public view is being affected by all this. Caleb Maupin saying there that maybe we will never know what actually happened in 9/11.
Do you think however that the doubts that have been put forward and some of those doubts being described as very credible, that these are going to change how the public at least in America is looking at this and will that affect anything?
Well, I think there is going to be a debate by 9/11 to come and actually because there is these doubts that debate will continue. You don’t have to accept the idea [that] this was an inside operation to question what happened in 9/11 and in particular how 9/11 was used because the American state moved seamlessly in reaction to 9/11 and moved seamlessly towards intervention around the world.
It was a God-given opportunity in many ways for the Americans and they seized on it ruthlessly to implement plans which rolled in there as I said to attack Iraq and to carry out this war on terror and since then we’ve seen 11 years and my fellow guest is absolutely right tens of thousands of more people have died in the wars that America and its allies have unleashed than died in the twin towers and yet there is no recognition.
President Obama today was in New York; there is no recognition that really what those wars and what those occupations do and what American support for Israel does, is fuel resentment against America and could well drive people towards those actions. They can’t discuss that because actually that would be a questioning of all of America’s foreign policy and its strategic goals around the world.
That discussion cannot be allowed and therefore I do not believe there is going to be a public discussion about what’s wrong with the official narrative of 9/11 because it goes to the heart of American foreign policy, American domestic policy and they do not want to open up that discussion because it opens up a whole can of worms that Obama and no other American president will allow.
Chris Bambery, the thing is parts of the US government responsible for this, the Israeli Mossad also being held accountable for what happened in 9/11. Do you think that this was as a lot of observers have been saying in various analyses a US-Israeli project to wage wars in the region in terms of the global interest that they’re after? Do you think that the hands of Israel are obvious in this or we can’t tell for sure?
Well, I think there already was a plan and it’s been a long time coming to use American military might in a demonstrative way that might bring all the other capitalist powers in the world into line behind America to gain control of Middle Eastern oil which other major European countries depend on so that America could have leverage over them through its control of military oil to surround China and Russia and indeed Iran with American bases right across the region and I have to say potentially China as well.
That plan was already there and to use American military powers I say to offset its relative economic decline, the Israelis are very much part of that plan and we know there is coordination between the Americans and the Israelis over many, many military things at the moment over Iran despite a fake war of words which is going on between Obama and Netanyahu.
So I think that project was there. It was part of that Neo-conservative project. So I repeat within virtually hours of 9/11 the plans for invading Iraq were put in place by Donald Rumsfeld who showed them to George Bush as soon as he returned to Washington. That plan was there; it was waiting for an opportunity like 9/11 to happen.
So clearly there were people waiting for that opportunity, whether we will ever know, I don’t know but I’ll tell you this it will require the families of those who died to find out just as the families of the people who are the victims of the Lockerbie Airline that came down Lockerbie in Scotland had to campaign against the official narrative of that story, have driven a coach and horses through the official story that we were told over like that. But it requires a campaign by those families to get it. That’s the only way we’ll ever get to the truth in my opinion.
Chris, I don’t know if you got all the question, the role of the media in all of this. Do you think that they’re knowingly or unknowingly again having a role in how the people perceive the facts?
Well, the people who own the media and the people who largely write to produce the media in America, in Britain, elsewhere are part of what Caleb calls the one percent, the elite and they’re tied into this. I mean the media is dominated by multinational corporations, closely canal-tied to the US state, closely tied to the British state.
They’re not going to particularly question this unless pressure comes on them and therefore I think we are seeing a situation where more and more people are questioning the information we’re given by the media and looking towards alternative news sources via the internet, social media and elsewhere and indeed Press TV which I know many young people in Britain for instance watch because they want to get a different angle in the world from what they’re fed by institutions like BBC.
So I think there is a questioning about this. There is a question about democracy in general as I said. You know, you mentioned an investigation into 9/11 where Bush and Cheney give evidence not under oath and in camera will never know what was said.
You know how can you have an investigation where the President of the United States and his vice president appears in this way; it’s a joke. It’s just the same in this country and Britain, you have official commissions made up of the elite investigating the actions of the elite, usually taking months even years before they reach some sort of report, by which time people have forgotten the issue which they’re reporting on.
You know people are getting cynical, they’re questioning this and looking for alternatives and that’s why I think we’ve seen a growing rejection by the population whenever they’re polled in Britain, in America and elsewhere of these military adventures whether it was most recently in Libya, whether it was in Iraq or Afghanistan. There is a growing dichotomy between what actually the populations of these countries believe and what the leaders are trying to tell them they should believe and that dichotomy is something which I think is going to grow as it becomes obvious there are big social and economic problems as well as military problems around the world.
The good news is this certainly from what I’m saying people in Britain don’t support the war in Afghanistan, the ongoing war and occupation, they’re against it. However that’s not been enough to stop the British government tailing behind the Americans.
The thing is those who are saying that actually all this was pre-planned and it was about rather the plans that the United States may have in terms of controlling the Middle East region they’ve been referring for instance to the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. We know now the basis for those wars is under question. What happened in Libya, you mentioned there the US presence in Yemen and now increasingly how the United States is going to act in Syria being discussed.
Do you think that we are going to see based on this analysis a continuation of US efforts to control the region, especially the Middle Eastern region including Syria?
Yes, I think you are and I think we are heading towards some form of intervention in Syria. I am very worried about the noises coming for an attack on Iran and I don’t think we should be fooled by the supposed war of words between Obama and Netanyahu. The American buildup is proceeding in the Persian Gulf and in that region and I think we have to be every aware; people should know the history.
You mentioned the Iran/Iraq war; people should know that America egged on and armed Saddam Hussein to attack the Islamic Republic of Iran. That when the Iraqis were not doing well, they intervened. When it looked like the Iranians might win in that war, the Americans sent ships into the Persian Gulf and shot down an Iranian civil airliner.
These are important things to remember because it goes counter to the whole narrative we were fed that, you know, Saddam Hussein was an evil man and I think it’s important that people know this and people are going to hear their alternative message and know there is a different version of history out there.