Handling the Truth
By Frank Moher
On the weekend we began posting daily updates from the three-day Vancouver 9/11 Truth Conference. You can check out my dispatches on the special 9/11 conference page we’ve created for this purpose.
The 9/11 Truth community — and you’ll note that I haven’t put Truth in ironic quotes — wonders with varying degrees of outrage why the mainstream media ignores alternate theories as to what happened that day. Or why they treat the movement strictly as a social phenomenon, without going on to investigate just what it’s saying.
But the reasons aren’t that hard discern. As anyone who’s worked in a newsroom knows, the very facility that in theory gives journalists access to the wider world more often functions as a cocoon, insulating reporters in a combination of orthodox news sources, conventional wisdom, camaraderie that often congeals into a distrust of “civilians” (and their crazy letters and phone calls), and the natural conservatism of corporate structures. Then there are the long working hours that pretty much guarantee reporters won’t be exposed to much beyond home life and office culture.
And, of course, newspapers are struggling simply to find a way to survive lately. So even if a reporter managed to verse herself in the wide range of research being done on 9/11, much of it producing results that are at the very least intriguing, and overcame the natural disinclination to be labelled the newsroom’s resident conspiracy nut long enough to propose writing on the subject, it’s unlikely any editor these days is going to shell out the $$ necessary to really do the job — to investigate the investigation. I’m not saying that if somehow it did happen, there aren’t evil publishers and executives waiting to spike the whole thing. I just don’t think it’s likely they’d ever get the chance to.
And yet the 9/11 movement is becoming a social phenomenon, in part because a significant majority of people in the US and Canada think the government is lying about what happened that day. Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t (though can anyone imagine that what the White House says about the matter could be wholly the truth?). Nevertheless, a major constituency is going unaddressed.
And if even a fraction of what various scientists, architects, engineers, airline pilots, political scientists, and others who have aligned themselves with the movement proves out, it is almost certainly the biggest story of many lifetimes. An odd thing to turn away from. (The Truthers would say, I think, that it’s important not because it’s a great story but because it has seismic global implications. They would be right.)
I have read and heard and even researched enough of what the 9/11 Truth movement has uncovered to say that their call for a new investigation into the events before, during, and after that day is entirely justified. Other than that, I present the information in our report on the Vancouver conference without comment. I don’t know enough to say with any integrity that they’ve latched onto something real. But I certainly don’t know enough to say that they haven’t. And the more I listen, the more I think that such a place of dubiety is, for now, the only defensible place for a journalist to reside.