Last week, GOP presidential candidate and businessman Vivek Ramaswamy was goaded by a comedian who tried to get him to say that the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, that felled the World Trade Center was an “inside job.”
Ramaswamy’s reply to the comedian brought people to say he is a purveyor of “conspiracy theories.”
When asked about the attacks Ramaswamy said, “I don’t believe the government has told us the truth. Again, I’m driven by evidence and data. What I’ve seen in the last several years is we have to be skeptical of what the government does tell us.”
“I haven’t seen evidence to the contrary, but do I believe everything the government told us about it? Absolutely not. Do I believe the 9/11 Commission? Absolutely not,” he said.
.@alexstein99: "Was 9/11 an inside job or exactly how the government tells us?"@VivekGRamaswamy: "I don't believe the government has told us the truth. We have to be skeptical. Do I believe everything the government told us about it? Absolutely not." pic.twitter.com/nLhUtuvCZ5
— BlazeTV (@BlazeTV) August 2, 2023
A close listen to the reply will show that Ramaswamy said he knows of “no evidence” that proves the attacks on 9/11 were anything other than straight out terrorism. But he was slammed as a “conspiracy theorist” as if he did say that 9/11 was an inside job.
Now Ramaswamy has put out a long, more detailed explanation of his position. Here is his statement in full…
Last week, a comedian podcaster asked me if 9/11 was an “inside job or exactly as the government tells us?” I answered truthfully: I do not believe everything the government has told us about that day. I wasn’t referring to the baseless theories about controlled demolitions at buildings around the World Trade Center, but the very real possibility supported by recently declassified documents that al-Qaida’s attack was undertaken with support from Saudi intelligence officials.
Apparently, that breached a third rail of American politics. Democrat Senator Chris Murphy from Connecticut tweeted: ‘If you want to be the GOP presidential nominee, you need to believe the government blew up the Twin Towers, and Osama bin Laden is an innocent man who’s living under an alias in Miami.’ Former Vice President Pence said he was ‘deeply offended’ that I don’t trust that the government told us the full truth in the 9/11 Commission Report. The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board pages mocked me for wading into “fever swamps” and were appalled that a presidential candidate ‘really just said that,’ quipping that “back on planet Earth, the 9/11 Commission was one of the better efforts at government accountability in recent memory and its findings have never been discredited by anyone credible.”
Hold on there. Back on the real planet Earth, the FBI declassified documents in 2021 which reveal that the 9/11 Commission flatly lied about potential Saudi government involvement in the attacks. Yes, it’s in our national interest to move on from 9/11 and to preserve a stable relationship with Saudi Arabia – but our best chance of rebuilding public trust is to acknowledge the truth about one of the defining events in our nation’s history.
A key question confronted by the 9/11 Commission was whether the Saudi government was involved in planning the attacks. The report concluded there was neither Saudi government nor royal family involvement. At the time, questions swirled around a 42-year-old graduate student who welcomed, housed, set-up bank accounts, and gave rent money to the first two Qaida hijackers after they landed in Los Angeles in January 2000 – concerns which the FBI and 9/11 Commission flatly dismissed.
The Saudi student, Omar al-Bayoumi, claimed to have met the two terrorists entirely by chance; The 9/11 Commission report verified that Bayoumi’s altruism was in the name of hospitality as he claimed. And FBI official, Jacqueline Maguire, testified to the 9/11 Commission in 2004 that Bayoumi’s first meeting at a café with the hijackers appeared to be “a random encounter.”
This is all against the backdrop of a 1998 FBI investigation revealing that rather than attend graduate school as he purported, Bayoumi frequented local mosques, doling out money for various causes and frequently and conspicuously videotaped visitors. The “graduate student” reportedly put up $400,000 to start a mosque in San Diego and all the while was paid a stipend and other expenses as a ghost employee of a Saudi contracting company, the FBI reported. Notwithstanding these facts, both the FBI and the 9/11 Commission emphatically supported Bayoumi’s account.
Now over 20 years later, the FBI has changed its story. In documents declassified last year, the bureau affirmed that Bayoumi was in fact an agent of the Saudi intelligence service who worked with Saudi religious officials and reported to the kingdom’s powerful ambassador in Washington.
These revelations are now the focal point in a long-running federal lawsuit in New York, where 9/11 survivors and relatives of the 2,977 people who were killed are seeking to hold the Saudi government responsible for the attacks. Even if the media doesn’t want to litigate the case against the Saudi government, these survivors and family members are – and understandably so.
There are reasons to believe that successive U.S. administrations hid the Bayoumi revelations to provide public cover to the CIA for critical failures in the lead-up to 9/11. The two Saudis, Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi, were known to the CIA as al-Qaida operatives. The CIA was watching as they joined an al-Qaida planning meeting in Malaysia in early January 2000. But the agency reportedly lost track of the two when they flew on to Bangkok and then to Los Angeles on Jan. 15, 2000. Embarrassingly, the CIA did not alert the FBI for more than a year after it learned the terrorists had entered the United States using their real names and Saudi passports.
Given the enduring mystery over how the CIA lost track of Hazmi and Mihdhar in Malaysia, former FBI investigators have speculated that Bayoumi might have been asked to approach the hijackers as part of a U.S. or Saudi intelligence operation to recruit them. At the time, former officials have said, the CIA was trying desperately to develop sources inside al-Qaida.
The CIA has consistently denied that it allowed the hijackers to come into the United States as part of a failed recruitment effort. Former White House counterterrorism coordinator, Richard Clarke, cited this as a plausible explanation for the CIA’s failure to track the first two hijackers and its abiding refusal to alert the FBI to their presence in the United States.
The government hasn’t done itself any favors since then to build public trust around 9/11 or the U.S. response to it. The Pentagon’s prevarications about celebrity soldier Pat Tillman’s death in Afghanistan – initially claiming he was shot by enemy forces, but later forced to admit that he was killed by friendly fire – is one undisputed case among many.
These events are important foremost because U.S. government officials continue to lie about other matters of public importance – the origin of Covid-19, knowledge about UAPs, Hunter Biden’s laptop, and so on – with a complicit media that just accepts the prevailing narrative without question. This fuels rampant public distrust. There is no credible evidence that 9/11 was an ‘inside job,’ but ironically when the government systematically lies about Saudi involvement and the media runs interference, that lends plausibility to an otherwise nonsensical claim.
There’s no such thing as a noble lie. The reason the people don’t trust the government is because the government doesn’t trust the people. And yes, a Republican candidate for President really just said that.