When you lie to the government, they put you in jail. When the government lies to you, you don’t know what crimes they are trying to hide. Eventually you find out. ~ Loosely based on a quotation from Jesse Ventura
Here’s a brief exchange between my two friends, Carlo and Dio, about the feds’ 9/11 Commission:
Dio: What do you think of the government’s official account of what happened on 9/11?
Carlo: I think it’s not true.
Dio: Why do you think it’s false?
Carlo: The evidence we have doesn’t support it. In fact, the evidence contradicts it.
Dio: What do you think actually happened?
Carlo: We don’t know what actually happened. We need a new investigation to find that out.
Dio: You must have some idea, based on the evidence, what happened on 9/11.
Carlo: We’ll only learn what happened if a new investigation evaluates all the evidence.
Pressed, Carlo might say that Congress or the media, or the two together, ought to undertake the investigation. They have the resources, the argument goes, as well as the independence. They can be thorough and do what previous investigations did not do: follow the evidence where it leads.
Here’s the problem with that reasoning:
- The executive branch possesses information to answer the question, “What happened on 9/11?” It doesn’t possess all the information, but it holds most of what’s available in this country that has not already come to light.
- During the first round of investigations, the executive branch clearly stated that it would not release classified information related to 9/11.
- The information we need to discover what happened on 9/11 is classified.
- Therefore the executive branch won’t release it.
We don’t use the word criminal in polite political discourse. The information, classified and otherwise, would reveal criminal behavior. That’s another reason the government won’t release it.
Now we have to ask, what would happen if the New York Times, or the House Intelligence Committee, convened an independent commission nevertheless? What would we learn?
We know from Wikileaks what suppressive measures government is willing to use when it wants to restrict information. We also know how effective those measures are. It used similar methods during the first round of 9/11 investigations: intimidation, distraction, denial of resources, dishonesty, and of course the stock phrase, “That information is classified so as not to reveal intelligence sources and methods.” When you hear that phrase, you will get nowhere.