Taking the 9/11 conspiricy theorists seriously

Gary Monbiot has written a  a rather good piece in today’s edition in today’s edition of The Guardian taking issue with those people who, like the makers of the film Loose Change and the followers, claim that the 9/11 bombings were planned and executed by people who worked within the United States government  

Why do I bother with these morons? Because they are destroying the movements some of us have spent a long time trying to build. Those of us who believe that the crucial global issues – climate change, the Iraq war, nuclear proliferation, inequality – are insufficiently debated in parliament or congress, that corporate power stands too heavily on democracy, that war criminals, cheats and liars are not being held to account, have invested our efforts in movements outside the mainstream political process. These, we are now discovering, are peculiarly susceptible to this epidemic of gibberish…

I believe that George Bush is surrounded by some of the most scheming, devious, ruthless men to have found their way into government since the days of the Borgias. I believe that they were criminally negligent in failing to respond to intelligence about a potential attack by al-Qaida, and that they have sought to disguise their incompetence by classifying crucial documents.

I believe, too, that the Bush government seized the opportunity provided by the attacks to pursue a longstanding plan to invade Iraq and reshape the Middle East, knowing full well that Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 9/11. Bush deliberately misled the American people about the links between 9/11 and Iraq and about Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction. He is responsible for the murder of many tens of thousands of Iraqis.

But that is not enough to satisfy the conspiracy theorists.  To be  truly one of their number:

…..you must believe that Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld and their pals are all-knowing, all-seeing and all-powerful, despite the fact that they were incapable of faking either weapons of mass destruction or any evidence at Ground Zero that Saddam Hussein was responsible. You must believe that the impression of cackhandedness and incompetence they have managed to project since taking office is a front. Otherwise you are a traitor and a spy.

I fully understand why Monbiot is incensed, but I find it hard to believe that the conspiricy theorists do as much damage to sensible discussion as he says. As far as I know, neither congress nor parliament has paid too much attention to their ravings. And I don’t believe for a moment that either pays little attention to those who have sensible points to bring up because they lump them in with the conspiracy theorists. They simply ignore what it suits them to ignore.  

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