Thursday, November 5, 2009

"Please Fire Away" You Say?

A month ago I received the following comment on YouTube:


"to all you 9/11 debunkers, i have only one question. Why is it that no one will rise to the defense of the government's story to debate charlie sheen live on TV. rush limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Cindy mccain, all refused to engage in a live debate, Why?? Is it because they know they dont have any hope of debating someone, or are they cowards, I hope one of you debunkers can explain this one too me. If 9/11 are truthers are so stoupid, why not send the debate to the grave?"
To which another YouTuber replied
To faasprabbit,

I along with many other people would gladly debate anybody who believes 9/11 was a 'controlled demolition' or that their was 'no plane at the pentagon.' Charlie Sheen doesn't scare anybody, unless you're measuring his lack of intelligence on the matter. It would just be an annoyance, kind of like trying to debate psycology with Tom Cruse, or Rosie Odonnell about structural engineering.

Please fire away!
I informed fengineer08 that I would debate them through email and post it on this blog if they could remain civil, they accepted. I failed to tell them that the issue being brought up about Sheen is not that nobody will debate him, it's that his prominent detractors won't, but I digress.

Before beginning the debate I let them know that there would be no need to debate the Pentagon issue seeing as how I agree with their statement in that regard. To this they jokingly replied, "ahh ok then, I see you are not hard core crazy, this is good." But joking aside, this again demonstrates that the Pentagon no-jetliner theory works against us. Anyway, here is the debate...


The claim that bombs brought down the Twin Towers + Building 7 is something I do not believe for many reasons.

First off, the scale of actually rigging the nessicary ammount of explosives needed to bring down two of the largest buildings on earth and another 50 story building all within close proximity of each other is not possible.

I have never been part of a professional demolition team before, but I've witnessed them, and I've witnessed the kind of prep work that goes into taking down a structure (much smaller than the twin towers and building 7).

You need to access a building's core structure on almost every floor. This intails;
-Tearing walls down.
-Hammering away at concrete barriers and concrete surrounding columns.
-Pre-cutting each and every structural column with a cutting torch.

Their is no way that out of the thousands of people who set foot in each of those buildings daily, that this activity would have not been noticed.

Next, you have to rig the buildings with explosives. I am not the right person to talk to as far as the exact quanity you would need to pull off a job like this, but I do know it would be several thousand tons at the very least, and again, how would this not be noticed?

I witnessed a 6 story building (approximately 240,000 square feet) get professionally demolished with an actual controlled demolition from a half mile away. Just the noise from the demolition waves was painful. We had a decibel meter set up and we hit 120-130 db, from a half mile away.

If bombs were used at the WTC, why couldn't you hear or see them? Their were probably a hundred cameras pointed at ground zero after the planes had crashed into the towers, yet not a single one picked up the noise that would have certianly been there if bombs were set off in those buildings.

Another reason I do not believe this theory is because conspiracy theorists completely dismiss the idea that flying a commerical airliner into a building can cause structural failure. And their is also no hard evidence that bombs were used, it's pure speculation.

That in short is why I don't believe the claim.

John-Michael P. Talboo:

In regard to the first couple of points that you have raised, I am going to defer to already published resources from myself and 9/11 researcher Jim Hoffman. This will allow me to focus my retort on the most pertinent issue you raised: that there is "no hard evidence that bombs were used." Please do give these initial resources, and all of the information I make reference to, a good look.

In regard to the "the scale of actually rigging the nessicary ammount of explosives," and "how this "would not be noticed.":

Demolition Technology

Covert Demolition

"I asked demolition experts about setting off charges with radio signals. They said it was very feasible." - Robert Erickson, Source: Exchange of emails (March 2009) with Robert Erickson, producer of the National Geographic special on 9/11

How Could They Plant Bombs in the World Trade Center, and Why?

"If bombs were used at the WTC, why couldn't you hear or see them?":

Reply: Richard Gage Explains the Lack of Explosive Sounds

Un-debunking the WTC Demolition Squibs

"Conspiracy theorists completely dismiss the idea that flying a commerical airliner into a building can cause structural failure.":

Twin Towers' Designers Anticipated Jet Impacts Like September 11th's

OK, so now we can get the hard evidence, let's start with Building 7. In NIST's 2008 final report on WTC 7 they admitted that the diesel fuel on the premises "played no role in the destruction of WTC 7," that "the damage from the debris from WTC 1 had little effect on initiating the collapse," and that the building fell "almost uniformly as a single unit." These are all points that truthers have been making for years, and that "debunkers" vehemently refuted.

But most importantly they admitted that the building experienced a "freefall drop for approximately 8 stories." Previous to this admission in their final Nov '08 report, their Aug '08 draft report attempted to demonstrate that "there was no freefall."

When lead NIST investigator Dr. Shyam Sunder was fielded a question by high school physics teacher David Chandler regarding the issue at a NIST press conference subsequent to the release of the draft report, Sunder stated that "freefall time would be an object that has no structural components below it." In essence, Sunder admitted that this is impossible absent some external force, i.e., explosives. I submit to you this is why NIST failed to mention their admission of freefall in their list of changes made in the final report.

The fact that WTC 7's facade plunged at a nearly fee-fall rate is also something that we 9/11 truthers have been right about for years, perhaps we are also right about its implications.

It's either that, or as NIST says, fires "similar" to those "experienced in other tall buildings," caused "the first known instance of fire causing the total collapse of a tall building." Again, we truth seekers have often been criticised for saying that fires have never caused skyscrapers to collapse, but the NIST report vindicates us.

Other hard evidence in regard to Building 7 centers around the unexplained phenomenon documented in Appendic C of FEMA's WTC Building Performance Study, which found "intergranular melting capable of turning a solid steel girder into Swiss cheese."

Appendix C states, "The severe corrosion and subsequent erosion of Samples 1 and 2 are a very unusual event. No clear explanation for the source of the sulfur has been identified."

NIST never even attempted to explain the melting of this steel or the source of the sulfur, however independent scientists did. What they found was that iron-rich spheres discovered in the WTC dust contained the chemical signature of the incendiary thermate, which is thermite with sulfur added to lower the steel's melting point. Critics of their findings have argued that a thermate chemical signature would contain barium nitrate, however this is only true if the form thermate-TH-3 was used. This should have been clear since the scientists were comparing the chemical signature of the spheres to a known sample of thermate which did not contain barium nitrate. All that being said, thermate TH-3 may have been in use as WTC dust samples have shown high traces of barium.

In fact the iron-rich spheres are themselves hard evidence of the use of thermate which produces such spheres as a by-product. Thermate also produces molten iron as a by-product, and lo and behold molten metal was found under WTC 7 as well as the Towers and seen flowing from the South Tower's crash zone. NIST tried to deny the existence of the molten metal underneath the buildings and explain away the flowing metal in the South Tower as molten aluminum. Here is a video I made demonstrating that these claims are beyond dubious.

Combine these evidences with audio of explosions, reports of explosions both from people inside and outside of the building, reports of plans to "take down" the building, and close examination of WTC 7 collapse warnings in the FDNY oral histories and in the press, and I think the case for explosive demolition is very strong.

But the bottom line is that NIST didn't test the steel for explosives or thermite residues. Their excuses for failing to do so included saying that thermite could not have been coupled to the beams sufficiently to inflict the intended damage, however this ignores methods such as shaped charges, sol-gels, and linear thermite cutting devices. They also stated that, "The metal compounds also would have been present in the construction materials making up the WTC towers, and sulfur is present in the gypsum wallboard that was prevalent in the interior partitions."

But just because the chemical elements are there does not mean they would be there in the correct proportions. As mechanical engineer Gordon Ross stated, "If I leave margarine, flour, sugar and fruit in a cupboard, when I next open the cupboard I will not find a fruit crumble. Some mechanism is required to convert the ingredients. Similarly, if I take these same ingredients, set them alight and throw them out the window, I still will not get my fruit crumble."

Furthermore, physicist Steven Jones has pointed out that, "Wallboard has calcium and sulfur and they're very tightly bound with oxygen as well as calcium sulfate."

Now chemical signatures are one thing, but unignited explosive residues is quite another, and that is exactly what a team of scientists report to have found in WTC dust in April of this year. Specifically, they claim to have found a nano-engineered variant of thermite, that when heated exerted an energy/volume yield exceeding that of explosives commonly used in demolitions. There has been debate as to how energetic this material was, and exactly how it would have been used for a building demolition, but during these discussions no argument was presented that the material was anything but nano-thermite.

Their findings were published in a peer-reviewed journal and have yet to be refuted in any similar fashion. Attacks upon the journal they published in, The Open Chemical Physics Journal, published by, are unfounded. This is especially true considering that the NIST reports have not been independently peer-reviewed. Attacks upon the provenance of the samples are also unfounded.

So not only did the official investigators fail to do the proper forensic tests, but they also failed to independently verify the non-forensic tests that they did do.


I have read some of the response, not finished yet, but I will say one thing so far.

Most of your "sources" come from pro-conspiracy web pages, they are not neutral.

Second, they say over and over again that "WTC 7 fell near free fall speed."
Not once do any of the articles discuss the collapse of the building's east penthouse which occured about 8 secounds before the full structure collapsed. The entire penthouse collapsed into the shell of the building, clearly indicating a progressive structural collapse. Why wasn't this addressed?

And about Richard Gage's explination as to why these "tremendous sounds" of explosives were not captured on a single video camera was because "they" edited the sounds out. I mean, really?? Come on man, you know that is bogus.

And last, they seem to contradict themselves an awful lot, especially regarding the Twin Towers.

They say that the only reason they produced so much dust during the collapse can only be from explosives. That's right, "can only be" from explosives.

When are these people actually going to take into account the massive level of energy that the upper floors generated when they slammed into the lower floors? They also didn't claim that the Twin Towers fell at free fall speed, atleast they realized they were wrong about something.

But in all seriousness, so far they do not rule out any other explanations (which are all very logical by the way) for what they bring up. They just push their ideas, and I'm sorry but that is not how you "investigate" anything.

I'm far from done reading it though, it is lengthy, I'll let you know when I get a chance to finish it.

John-Michael P. Talboo

I emailed "fengineer08" back twice after this partial response, once asking if I should wait until they gathered all of their thoughts before responding, and once asking if a further response was still coming. I have yet to hear back from them. So, until then, if there is a then, here is my response.

Regarding most of my sources being "pro-conspiracy," I agree. We are after all having a debate concerning whether there is evidence that points towards a government conspiracy or not. That being said, throughout my post I present the counter arguments to the information I am presenting, there are many links to the official reports and "debunking" sources so that the reader has everything they need at hand to compare and contrast. Furthermore, physics isn't biased, and our side of the debate has followed the scientifically accepted form of debate: peer-reviewed science. So when you state that we haven't ruled out any other explanations, I am astounded.

Regarding the objections to the freefall of WTC 7 argument, I suggest this blog:

And I suggest taking a look at this video which features a non-disputed progressive collapse, which is not only partial and non- symmetrical, but also takes 10 seconds for 13 stories to collapse.

If you look at the blog I posted regarding Richard Gage and the lack of explosive sounds, in it's totality, you will see that I wasn't agreeing with him.

I believe the vast volumes of dust produced on 9/11 are a good piece of supporting evidence, and suggest this page:

I meant to mention the supporting evidence in regard to the Twin Towers, as I did with Building 7, but since you claimed there was no hard evidence I wanted to focus on what I believe is the rock solid material. One of the points raised in the link above is that the Twin Towers also fell at near the rate of free fall, the difference in regard to WTC 7 is that NIST admitted it as well as admitting that it was impossible!

As far as the upper floors slamming into the lower floors as an explanation for the destruction of the Twin Towers, I suggest these resources:

Here is another debate where a master debator ran away.

Face off with the Debunkers, Part 2 - Ryan Owens


I keed, I keed