Major additions: June 4, 2015 (now a 70,000 word paper, plus 132,000 words in 557 written-out endnotes)
“Ba-boom! … like an earthquake… a giant, giant explosion. … massive explosion … huge explosion… huge, gigantic explosions… loud blast… secondary explosions… secondary device… flashes… bombs… shockwave… detonators… controlled demolition… pools of molten steel […] at the bottom of the elevator shafts… vaporized [steel] … lava … [underground] fires of hell… more than 2,800 degrees F [1540°C]…”
Typical terms used by witnesses, mainly firefighters and other rescue personnel, to describe their experiences during the WTC collapses and the clean up of the site. Little of it fits the attack as it was devised by Osama bin Laden and cohorts. See Part 1 for full details on this aspect.
“We calculated that the floors that would be hit would be three or four floors. I was the most optimistic of them all. (…Inaudible…) due to my experience in this field, I was thinking that the fire from the fuel in the plane would melt the iron structure of the building and collapse the area where the plane hit and all the floors above it only. This is all that we had hoped for. …
“We had notification since the previous Thursday that the event would take place that day. … The brothers, who conducted the operation, all they knew was that they have a martyrdom operation and we asked each of them to go to America but they didn’t know anything about the operation, not even one letter. But they were trained and we did not reveal the operation to them until they are there and just before they boarded the planes. … Mohammed [Atta] … was in charge of the group.”
November 1, 2001, Osama bin Laden privately discussing details of the attack. A videotape of the conversation was found by U.S. forces on November 9 and released in December. Apart from 19 hijackers running around in the United States, from this it seems clear that Al Qaeda, whoever is behind them in terms of financing and control, plotted the attack, but also that even a very optimistic Osama did not expect a full collapse of the towers – not to mention WTC 7.