"On Sept. 10, NEWSWEEK has learned, a group of top Pentagon officials suddenly canceled travel plans for the next morning, apparently because of security concerns".
Let’s see this quote in context.
Twice a week, the “Threat Committee,” a group of top intelligence officials and diplomats, meets in the White House complex to review dozens of terrorist threats at home and abroad. In late June the CIA warned of possible terrorist action against U.S. targets, including those in the United States, for the Fourth of July. Nothing happened, but then in July the agency again warned about possible attacks overseas. The threat seemed grave enough to force U.S.ships in Middle Eastern ports to head for sea. Three weeks ago there was another warning that a terrorist strike might be imminent. But there was no mention of where.
On Sept. 10, NEWSWEEK has learned, a group of top Pentagon officials suddenly canceled travel plans for the next morning, apparently because of security concerns. But no one even dreamed that four airliners would be hijacked and plunged into targets in New York and Washington.
And now combine that with the earlier report that appeared on September 13th.
NEWSWEEK has learned that while U.S. intelligence received no specific warning, the state of alert had been high during the past two weeks, and a particularly urgent warning may have been received the night before the attacks, causing some top Pentagon brass to cancel a trip. Why that same information was not available to the 266 people who died aboard the four hijacked commercial aircraft may become a hot topic on the Hill.
Is this meaningful? Let’s work through the problems.
First, we have an unnamed source. There’s no way to check the accuracy of the quote.
Second, even this unnamed source appears uncertain of the facts: “apparently” because of security concerns, “a particularly urgent warning may have been received the night before the attacks”. If the source doesn’t know for sure, then what is the basis for the claim at all?
Third, we don’t know whereabouts these “Pentagon officials” were located. There’s nothing in the story to say they were starting, or ending their prospective journey in America, for instance. If they did cancel the the trip, and this was because of security issues, then it could have been due to local circumstances that were nothing to do with 9/11.
Fourth, even if they were in the US, they may have been responding to a warning that is already public, and demonstrably nothing to do with 9/11. On September 7th 2001, for instance, a State Department “worldwide warning” was updated to “include the threats to U.S. military personnel in Asia”. And as you’ll see in that article, it was being circulated to others on September 10th 2001. Could any Pentagon cancellation have been connected to this?
Fifth, it’s unclear whether Pentagon “top brass” would require warnings anyway. Would they really be taking regular commercial flights, for instance? Or would a military aircraft be more likely?
And sixth, if the top brass were based in the Pentagon, and the trip was to take them elsewhere, then of course cancelling it may well have resulted in them being killed. Not the most helpful example of specific 9/11 foreknowledge we’ve ever seen.
None of these issues are unsurmountable, then, but they do illustrate some of the problems with this account, which so far looks flimsy in the extreme.