TWA Flight 800 hearings to begin. FBI admits to withholding evidence of bomb. : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Heard on the evening news just a few moments ago.

Well, looks like they tried real hard to keep the lid on this one, and it didn't work. Strike a point for truth.

-- (, May 09, 1999



-- FLAME AWAY (, May 09, 1999.

They still aren't telling the truth. A missile brought the plane down, everybody knows it. This is coverup plan B. Soon to be followed by coverup plan C.

-- Nikoli Krushev (, May 09, 1999.

er, mass, I think that news report was garbled - the reuters story says just the opposite. see: twa_report_1.html

relevant quote:

"WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Federal Bureau of Investigation suppressed a report blaming mechanical failure for the crash of TWA Flight 800 in 1996 because its own theory was a bomb or missile, the Washington Post said Sunday.

The paper said that in January 1997, six months after the plane crashed off the coast of Long Island killing all 230 people on board, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) issued a report that the crash was caused by mechanical failure.

But the FBI dismissed the report as ``unprofessional and reprehensible,'' according to the newspaper, because it was convinced the flight had been attacked.

The FBI declined to comment on the Post report Sunday.

The paper said the FBI stuck to its missile theory despite protests from the ATF, the National Transportation Safety Board, the Central Intelligence Agency and some of its own agents until admitting in November 1997 that a mechanical problem caused a fuel tank to ignite on the Boeing 747.

The infighting between law-enforcement agencies during the probe, the FBI's conduct and the never-released 24-page ATF report will be the subject of Senate hearings Monday, the newspaper said.

Senator Charles Grassley who is holding the hearings told the Post they would show the FBI prolonged its investigation to boost its budget, causing a delay in airlines implementing fuel tank safety recommendations.

``The FBI didn't want to hear about anything but a missile or a bomb, because otherwise there was no FBI case,'' the Iowa Republican told the newspaper. ``Their conduct was disturbing from the very beginning.''"

-- Arlin H. Adams (, May 09, 1999.

Even *I* believe that plane was brought down by a missile, based on reports from eye-witnesses. However, the headlines said the FBI sat on the story of Mechanical Failure.

[ For Educational Purposes Only ]

5/8/99 -- 11:41 PM

Report: FBI sat on report that crash caused by mechnical failure

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms had concluded within six months after TWA Flight 800 crashed off the coast of Long Island that mechanical failure was to blame, but the FBI sat on the report, The Washington Post reported.

The paper says in Sunday's editions that FBI officials, still convinced terrorists had downed the plane, dismissed the 24-page ATF report, prepared in January 1997, as ``unprofessional and reprehensible'' and even persuaded a Treasury Department undersecretary to help them suppress it.

The Post said it was November 1997 before the FBI acknowledged publicly that a mechanical flaw had ignited the Boeing 747's central fuel tank, causing the crash.

A Senate subcommittee headed by Sen. Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa, is holding hearings on the investigation Monday.

``The FBI didn't want to hear about anything but a missile or a bomb, because otherwise there was no FBI case,'' Grassley told the Post.

``Their conduct was disturbing from the very beginning.''

The Post cited a number of internal memos and confidential sources for its report. It said the FBI declined to comment.
Sumpin a widdle fishy wit dat.

xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxx

-- Leska (, May 09, 1999.

Leska, this is just a diversionary tactic by the government to draw attention away from the missile attack again. I bought the book "The Downing of TWA Flight 800" a while back. It was very enlightening. Written by a former FAA crash inspector, it documents private lab analysis of seat covers from the wreckage with missile fuel residue on them, over 200 witnesses saw a missile either hit the plane or streaking towards it, two videos caught it on tape, (FBI has misplaced the tapes) and three Air force and Navy pilots on other aircraft in the area saw the missile attack. The Navy denied haveing ships in the area at the time of the crash but in fact had several combat ships, a submarine, and a p-3 orion in the air tracking missile launches in an ongoing exercise. Sorry I can't remember the authors name, I donated the book to our local library.

-- Nikoli Krushev (, May 09, 1999.

Nikoli is right. Its a Red Herring.

-- dave (, May 09, 1999.

Kinda sum dumdum to try to draw attention away from the whole sorry episode by Bringing It Back Up With Controversial Headlines and making a federal issue out of it again!

They take the stoooopid pills right after the oaf of office ...

xxxxxxx xxxxxxx xxxxxxx

-- Leska (, May 09, 1999.

Leska, not so dumb. They need a media diversion from China gate, the Kosovo war, upcoming gun control legislation, Y2K, War crimes charges......You get my drift I'm sure. 800 is old news, the bodes are buried, the parties retired, low cost high effect distraction.

-- Nikoli Krushev (, May 09, 1999.

That's just it -- it doesn't compare to the Breaking News of Now. Very few will pay attention. Old fish warmed over. Just another blip of lies, cover-ups, sat-ons, obfuscation. Meanwhile ... ;^)
I think the weeples are ssllllowly wising up and are hardening cynical.

xxxxxxxx xxxxxxxx xxxxxx

-- Leska (, May 09, 1999.

Right after 800 went down, the Clinton admin. called for extensive 'anti-terrorist' expansions of 'powers', including digital telephony (check the FBI's requested specs on that one: 1% simultaneous monitoring capacity in all major urban markets; sheesh, that would take S.E.T.I. equipment and word recognition software...), 'roving phone taps' (original court order extensible to any suspected channel), encryption restrictions, taggants of powder (i.e. registration of ammunition reloading components), etc. A whole laundry list. Neither mechanical failier, nor a friendly fire snafu would support that.

You have to give this administration credit for always trying to surf the wave of public opinion, even if they have to create the wave themselves.


-- Jon S. (, May 10, 1999.


To monitor 1% of US domestic telephone traffic wouldn't take anything new to be developed, or using anything as outdatesd as SETI's gear. All that would have to be done would be to amend the National Security Act of 1947 to allow the National Security Agency (NSA) to operate domestically.

To monitor one percent of all US communications would be nothing added to their capacity. It probably wouldn't take much more for them to be able to monitor 100% of the domestic communications system.

If you ever really want to get scared for this nation's liberty, read the books Puzzle Palace and Deep Black. And then imagine the government turning loose that capability on its own citizens.

Orwell's Big Brother would be green with envy and purple with jealousy over the level of government intrusion we could be under. All with not much more effort than pointing some more antennas at the domestic communication satellites and adding a few microwave intercept antennas at key spots around the country.


-- Wildweasel (, May 10, 1999.

That statement ... "infighting between law-enforcement agencies" ... doesn't give me warm fuzzies.

Think Y2K.


-- Diane J. Squire (, May 10, 1999.

That's the biggest line of bullhockey yet. The FBI knew exactly what it was. How do you suppress a report of mechanical failure when your own investigation reveals the jet was the target of a missile? All they had to do was release the findings of their own investigation. No, this is pure crappola. le.shtml

-- OR (, May 10, 1999.

I have an acquaintance (a intelligence officer for the DIA and DOD) who along with a journalist investigated this subject at some length. They had the whole story (that plane was shot down) IN THEIR HANDS, and right before they went live, the journalist was fired and the story was canned.

Read the below two links which are EYEWITNESS ACCOUNTS of the TWA800 explosion:

Account 1

Account 2

It was the FBI who told us that they didn't know the cause but were going to call it a mechanical failure "to provide closure" to families of the persons killed. The total inanity of simply making something UP to make people FEEL better -- and even saying so! -- was not lost on me, but apparently most of the viewing audience bought it.

The concept that the FBI tried to "hide" that it was "a mechanical failure" is totally absurd -- if anything it was quite the opposite, ALL the investigative agencies worked hard to dismiss, ignore and suppress the considerable amount of evidence indicating it had been taken down by some kind of missile -- this latest story is a total rewrite of history.

So I ask myself, "Why are they telling me this, and why do they want me to think this?" That is the real question. This is sort of out of the blue as an announcement, don't you think? What is behind it?

PJ in TX

-- PJ Gaenir (, May 10, 1999.

Hey wait a minute. My 'trend in advertising' meter just went off and pointed out that both the CIA and the FBI have been somewhat 'discredited' very publicly just in the last 1-2 days. No, I can't imagine where this is going or what my point is. Just an observation.

PJ in TX

-- PJ Gaenir (, May 11, 1999.

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ---------- THE DOWNING OF TWA FLIGHT 800 Investigator testifies to Congress Donaldson not encouraged by reception

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------

By David M. Bresnahan ) 1999

The leading private investigator of the crash of TWA Flight 800 has taken his case to Congress, but doesn't have much hope that anyone took him seriously. His claim that the ill-fated flight was shot down by a missile is largely ignored. Retired Navy Cmdr. William Donaldson, an experienced crash investigator, has spent the past two years working with other aviation professionals in an effort to learn what caused Flight 800 to fall from the sky on July 17, 1996 killing 230 people.

He recently made public extensive evidence to support his claim that the commercial flight was the victim of a missile. That evidence includes actual FBI documents to show that a search for missile fragments was conducted. He claims the missile parts were found.

Donaldson testified Thursday before the Subcommittee on Aviation, chaired by Rep. John J. Duncan Jr., R-Tenn. He is not happy with the results, but is not discouraged in his effort to expose what he believes is an effort to cover up the real cause of the crash.

Duncan conducted the hearing to evaluate continued funding of the National Transportation Safety Board. A spokesman for Duncan told WorldNetDaily that he expects the committee to send a favorable approval to Congress.

Donaldson was highly critical of the NTSB in the way it has handled the investigation of TWA Flight 800. He told the committee that the NTSB should have a complete overhaul in structure, including firing the chairman, James Hall. Hall also testified at the hearing.

"Based on the performance of the NTSB while investigating the unexplained loss of Flight 800, I no longer believe the NTSB is capable of fulfilling its aviation mission," Donaldson testified. "Its abuse of power used to muzzle witnesses and interested parties proves that it has become so politicized that the board itself has become an aviation hazard."

Rep. James A. Traficant Jr., D-Ohio, was assigned by the committee to conduct an investigation. Early in that investigation, Donaldson claims he was taken seriously and his evidence was given careful consideration. About seven months along, he says, Traficant took an opposite view and became hostile.

"If, in fact, Flight 800 was downed by a missile and there is a cover- up going on, then hundreds, if not thousands, of government personnel are involved -- including me," Traficant stated in the hearing.

At one point in the hearing, Traficant asked Donaldson if he ever thought the Canadians were responsible for firing the missile. Cmdr. Donaldson said this was just one example of the effort made to discredit him.

"Not once did I ever write anything anywhere of that opinion. That didn't go down on any document as something we seriously believed. He used it to try to say, 'See how much of a flake this guy is,'" he described, adding that he had been ambushed.

During his testimony, Donaldson restated claims that President Clinton had forewarning that a commercial flight would be shot down as early as October 1994. He said the president was only a few weeks from the 1996 election and had political reasons to cover-up the truth of the crash.

He also accused the NTSB and FBI of using intimidation tactics to control the investigation and to use fear to keep people who knew the truth from coming forward. Despite the comments made by Traficant, Donaldson does not believe a cover-up requires large numbers of people. He suggested only a few people in positions of power are able to control others and manipulate the press.

A major example of alleged manipulation of the press took place when Hall stated, "It wasn't a missile," which was reported in the Wall Street Journal in April 1997. At the time he made that statement to the press he was completing a successful covert search for missile parts on the bottom of the ocean, according to Donaldson.

Despite the current effort to discredit the missile theory, Traficant was helpful in obtaining important information from the FBI for Donaldson. Radar records from the time of the event show a vessel very close to the location where the TWA 747 exploded in mid-air.

A list of questions was sent to Traficant to forward to the FBI for answers. One of those questions asked about the unidentified radar contact.

"They admitted for the first time ever that they did not identify the contact, that was only 2.9 miles away from Flight 800 when it exploded. This was after the investigation had been formally dropped," explained Donaldson.

Why wouldn't President Clinton take advantage of the downing of a commercial flight by terrorists just before and election? He could easily justify a missile attack on Iran in retaliation and become a hero in the eyes of the American public. That question has been asked more than once by those who do not accept the missile and cover-up theory.

"The problem is that we're not talking about Kosovo. We're talking about Iran with 40 million people, some of which are rabidly fanatic about anti-Americanism. Any shot at Iran could result in severe terrorist reprisals," explained Cmdr. Donaldson.

A spokesman from the NTSB told WorldNetDaily that Donaldson is just a conspiracy theorist who is not to be believed.

Thomas F. Stalcup, representing the Flight 800 Independent Researchers Organization, had been invited to testify but was canceled at the last minute. Donaldson arranged for his prepared testimony to be included in the official record even though Stalcup was not permitted to speak.

"The NTSB and FBI conducted incomplete testing of crucial pieces of evidence and are guilty of a high level of complacency about the contradictory results determined by the different agencies," charged Stalcup.

"Both agencies have failed to identify the nearest surface vessel to the tragedy. Eyewitness reports have been inaccurately portrayed by NTSB and FBI officials in at least two animations depicting the official crash sequence. At least one senior NTSB official finds it more important to 'put the thing to bed' than to conduct a scientifically sound investigation.

"The cause of the crash of Flight 800 is still unresolved. Other independent investigators and some journalists and writers claim to have discovered many other anomalies, gaps, failings and non-rigorous aspects of the official investigation. It now appears that any objective and close scrutiny of the more accessible facts in this closely held investigation leads to only one indisputable certainty. That is, that the most expensive inquiry ever, of the greatest disaster in U.S. aviation history has produced an inexplicably flawed and inconclusive official investigation," he concluded.

The NTSB reports that the investigation has cost $40 million to date. Hall told the committee that he hopes to have the investigation concluded by December with a report available soon after.

The Clinton administration has asked that NTSB funding be increased to $57 million in fiscal year 2000, $73 million in 2001, and $76.4 million in 2002. The requests will include 68 new employees for the NTSB.

After the hearing concluded, Duncan invited Donaldson to his office for additional discussion about his investigation.

Once in his office, Duncan introduced him to Capt. Mike Coffelend, a pilot for Continental Airlines and a lobbyist for the Continental Airline Pilots Association.

"Here we go again," explained Donaldson of the meeting. "The guy with the power is going to hand the ball to a guy in the middle to be the filter, and he has a political cutout if he needs him."

Duncan excused himself from the meeting and asked Donaldson to present his case to his pilot friend. David Bayloff, a spokesman from Duncan's office, confirmed the meeting and said he knew Coffelend personally as a constituent from Ohio. He said Rep. Duncan was trying to be fair and open-minded about the claims of Donaldson.

"This guy (Coffelend) tells me he's representing the Airline Pilots Association from Continental to Congress and he'd already missed one other congressional appointment and he can't afford to miss the next one, so 'here's my e-mail address.' So here I am, stuck again. It's not a good place to be," said Cmdr. Donaldson.

"This pilot made clear that I should make sure that Duncan's not portrayed as siding with me in promoting a theory. He's being fair and he's listening to the evidence," he added.

Cmdr. Donaldson is not discouraged and has no intention of ending his efforts to expose what he claims is a major cover-up by government agencies, and even by the president. He is considering holding an executive hearing at which members of Congress could attend.

"I have access to 119 eyewitnesses on 18 boats, four aircraft, and 31 locations ashore that surrounded the missile launch site. None of these witnesses were allowed to testify at the NTSB hearing," Donaldson told the committee.

He concluded by urging the committee to hold special hearings on the possible cover-up.

---------------------------------------------------------------------- ----------

David M. Bresnahan, a contributing editor for, is the author of "Cover Up: The Art and Science of Political Deception," and offers a monthly newsletter "Talk USA Investigative Reports." He may be reached through email and also maintains a website.

-- Nikoli Krushev (, May 11, 1999.

No, Nik. That is the reason they've been able to cover this up, is inability to prove the vessel which shot the missile. It didn't. It was a shoulder-fired missile used by a person on a boat off the coast. Not an American. Allegedly hit the wrong plane anyway (that plane was only there due to a course correction early in the flight) but that's another story. Anyway that is what I have heard; I have no physical proof but the sources it came to me from -- long ago -- cause me to believe it.

PJ in TX

-- PJ Gaenir (, May 11, 1999.

Here's a report from Commander Donaldson as found on the web site:


PJ in TX

-- PJ Gaenir (, May 11, 1999.


You may have hit on something when you observe that both the CIA and the FBI have been dragged into the same mudhole as the military (who are always discredited). I wonder if some new federal agency is going to ride into the spotlight on a big white horse, just in time to be the lead for Y2K. Any guesses as to who the new government heroes will be? FEMA? BATF? Some agency we've never heard of before?


-- Wildweasel (, May 11, 1999.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ