On this week’s episode of 9/11 Free Fall, AE911Truth’s Ted Walter and 9/11 family member Matt Campbell join host Andy Steele to discuss the appeal that AE911Truth and ten 9/11 family members filed earlier this week with the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
The 98-page appeal challenges NIST’s initial decision on the “request for correction” to its 2008 report on World Trade Center Building 7 — laying bare the decision’s many falsehoods and absurdities — and urges NIST’s associate director, James K. Olthoff, to throw out the agency’s theory on the cause of Building 7’s destruction.
We invite you to listen or to read the interview below.
Welcome to 9/11 Free Fall. I’m the host Andy steel. We’ve got some major developments going on in our campaign against NIST, and we’re joined by two people that are at the ground floor of it. First one is Ted Walter. He’s the director of strategy and development at AE911Truth. He holds a Master’s of Public Policy degree from University of California, Berkeley. He was a director of NYC CAN’s 2009 ballot initiative and his 2014 High-Rise Safety Initiative as well as a volunteer campaign manager for AE’s ReThink911 campaign back in 2013.
He’s joined by Matt Campbell, whose brother Geoff died at the World Trade Center on September 11th. Currently Matt is pursuing a new inquest into Geoff’s death in his home country of the UK. He is one of the family members who is signing onto the appeal of NIST’s response to AE911Truth’s request for correction, which we’ll be talking about today. Guys, welcome back to the show.
Thanks very much, Andy.
All right. So I’ve already hinted at what we’re here to discuss today, but Ted, I’m going to have you lay it out for our audience. Talk about the request for correction to remind our audience what that was all about and then the appeal.
Sure. So, earlier this week on Monday, we Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth, along with 10 family members, including Matt, and 88 architects and structural engineer filed an appeal to NIST’s initial decision on the request for correction that we submitted back in April of this year. So, the request for correction is a document that essentially uses the Data Quality Act to basically question or request corrections to information that agencies, federal agencies, have disseminated.
So the final report on the collapse of World Trade Center Building 7 obviously falls into that category as information that the agency has disseminated. And in the request for correction, we point out eight areas in particular, and there’s many more, but eight areas in particular where NIST has committed information quality violations under the Data Quality Act, which means that they’ve failed to comply with their information quality standards, which require the information that they disseminate to be objective, unbiased, completely fully stated and so on.
And some of these areas, people that have been following this issue for a long time will be familiar with. There’s the steel that was recovered from Building 7 that was severely eroded that underwent sulfidation and intergranular melting that was documented by the FEMA investigation back in 2002. That’s one of several issues that we raised in the request.
The ultimate goal is to have NIST revise their report on Building 7 to correct all these violations. And in order to truly do that, they would actually have to throw out their theory on the collapse of the building and come up with a new theory that is physically possible and that fits with the evidence. And we know that that theory is straightforward; it’s controlled demolition. Most people who watch the building come down can tell intuitively that the building was demolished because it comes down symmetrically into its own footprint.
And if you measure the rate of collapse, it’s coming down in free fall and so on. And so NIST had 120 days in which to respond to the request. They ended up responding a little bit late, about two weeks later than the deadline. And that was in late August. And, we obviously were not shocked to find out that NIST rejected our request for correction. Unfortunately, I have to say I was taken a little bit by surprise at how and how simplistic and, unserious and unsubstantive NIST’s response was.
We submitted a document that was over a 100 pages. Their letter is about 10 pages, but not even all the pages comprised an entire page. Some of the pages are only half a page responding to each overall point that we made in the request. And so they deny on each of the eight points that we raised in the request, they denied our request.
In most cases, they actually completely avoid addressing the issues that are raised in the request. And in the few instances where they try to go toe to toe with us and actually answer our challenges, they really embarrassed themselves. The arguments that they make are absolutely ridiculous, which is why in general, they avoided responding substantively to most of the claims and most of the requests.
So from that initial decision that was issued in late August, we had 30 days in which to file an appeal with somebody higher up in the agency. He’s basically the number two person at NIST. He’s the associate director for laboratory programs. His name is James Olthoff. He will basically be reviewing the appeal that we filed earlier this week.
He’s supposed to respond within 60 days, although the language is very flimsy. It says that the associate director will usually respond within 60 days. So it could take longer than that, but essentially what we’ve done in this appeal, the appeal document is almost as long as the request. It’s about 90, 98 pages or 96 pages. And it methodically demonstrates how NIST either didn’t respond to the points that were made in the request, which they’re required to do according to their information quality guidelines and the Data Quality Act. They either didn’t respond, or they were just completely, their responses were completely irrational. And, so we laid that out in detail in the document.
And, so that’s the gist of it. We basically, in order to safeguard against sort of a similar outcome where he sends us a letter that that is two pages or that is totally unsubstantive. We’re very explicit in the appeal document about the options that he has. You know, either to accept the requested changes that we’re insisting on or other things that he must do to comply with the Information Quality Act.
We, also, in our initial request, asked NIST that if you disagree with the changes that we’re requesting, well then you need to make these other changes to at least add some supporting information into the final report, which currently is not in the final report. They completely ignored all of those kinds of requests. And so we’re saying, if you continue to disagree with us, you at least have to amend your report to include all of this additional information. And so, that’s the second option.
The third option that we give him in each of these cases is you have to write us a very thorough response that is explaining why all of these arguments are incorrect. And if you don’t even do that, then you’re not complying with the Data Quality Act and NIST information quality guidelines. So that’s the essence of the appeal.
Right? And they can’t do that of course, because they’re in bunker mentality. I like this. I like that we are putting them on the hot seat and that we show that we know what we’re talking about by requesting this appeal in the way that you just described. And I just want to clarify something for our audience. And I was sort of surprised to learn this when I was reading the article the other day about this appeal, but this James Olthoff, the appeal decision is going to rest squarely on him?
Yes, it is, yeah. It’s entirely his decision. Now, we don’t know what kind of staff he has or assistance he has who might assist him. We don’t know who else he might work with on responding to the appeal. It does say in the information quality guidelines, and this is a requirement under the Data Quality Act, NIST didn’t just add it to their own guidelines, that nobody who was involved in preparing the response to the initial request can be involved in responding to the appeal. So, that’s important. It’s supposed to be a completely independent review of the request of the appeal.
Now, Matt I’m so happy to have you on here because we do this job as people that were very concerned about this issue, but you have a very personal connection as a 9/11 family member. What was the reaction that you had when you heard about NIST’s initial response, this very shoddy, shallow response that Ted just described? Was this something that you expected, not really surprised, or what?
I would say, rather sadly, that it wasn’t a surprise. I’ve had years and years of the authorities either ignoring you or just try and pawn you off with, as Ted said, nothing with substance, just the hope, vain hope that that’s going to keep me quiet, and of course that you don’t need to continue. So, I wasn’t really surprised. I mean, to me personally, it’s so sad. I mean, I’m seeing in lots of areas at the moment just the way that science has gone. That’s not how science is done. And, obviously they… an arm of the extension of the U S government. But they’re still.., ultimately, these guys are scientists and it is just, it’s so sad when you see things getting mixed up with just doing the techie stuff, you know?
But yeah. So yes, to answer your question, not surprised. And, I can’t even say disappointed because wouldn’t you kind of expect this response? You just know it’s going to happen. Eventually they’ll give in, or they’ll have to capitulate. And I’m sure Ted will talk about other options, including legal ones against them.
But in my own dealings with NIST it’s been a similar story. My exchanges with the chap that used to write the FAQ’s when I was trying to get hold of the structural drawings of the core. They kept just fobbing me off and ignoring me. And it went on for almost a year to something that really should have been, my request should have been classified within certainly 30 days or so.
And sadly, it’s just the way that these institutions are. And it does beg the question, they’re obviously not just focusing on science; there’s other stuff that they’re involved in, which of course we know. They are in between a rock and a hard place. Now, whatever this guy’s involvement is, he knows that if he capitulates to a lot of stuff that was put in both the initial request for correction but obviously the appeal it can open up a real can of worms for them.
Right, they’ll have to essentially step forward and admit that they screwed it up. They wasted all that money when they put out their first report, and that’s something they do not want to give into it. Plus they don’t want to give us an inch, I would assume. I’m obviously not on the other side and listening to these conversations, but once they start giving us an inch after dismissing us and letting people call us crazy all these years, they know it’s the beginning of the end for them. So they have to defend this no matter how bad their science is to the bitter end, But we’re not going to stop. And Matt talked about other options. I can’t believe that it’ll just fall on this one person in the very end, Ted. So let’s say we get a similar response from this person at NIST, this James Olthoff, what are our options from there?
Our main option legally is to sue NIST under the Administrative Procedure Act, which is a federal act that governs how agencies are supposed to deal with members of the public in their administrative proceedings. So this is an administrative proceeding, this whole process we’re going through to request a correction to NIST’s report. And there’s a couple other statutes that we may, that we could sue under well, but that’s probably the top of the list.
And we’d essentially be demonstrating that… I mean, to be very clear, there’s no way like we all know, and anybody who reviewed this information objectively can tell, that NIST’s report is hopelessly invalid and false. And there’s no way that he’s going to be able to respond and go toe to toe with our arguments and refute them. So, I mean, I’m not going to try to predict what he’s going to do, but it’s hard to imagine a response that is in any way, substantive that even comes close to persuasively refuting our arguments.
So, in all likelihood, if he’s not doing what we’re requesting, he’s not really going to be complying with the Data Quality Act. He’s not going to be providing substantive responses to our criticisms. And that really paves the way for us to claim that they’re not complying with the Data Quality Act. They’re not complying with the Administrative Procedure Act.
And the goal is to get the courts to order NIST to go back and do what we’re requesting or at least make good on the administrative procedure, the requests process, and give us a substantiate response, which again, the only substantive response that we know that can be valid is for them to actually correct the report. So, that’s the main route, the way forward that we’re looking at, if we don’t get a positive response from Dr. Olthoff.
Now, it’s an extreme long shot, but we have to proceed as if… We always have to proceed expecting that these agencies will behave the way they’re supposed to. And I think there’s always a small chance, at least a tiny chance, that there will be somebody with actual integrity who’s in a position, and for whatever reason is courageous enough, to do the right thing. And so I wouldn’t, I wouldn’t give up hope completely that Olthoff will just say enough is enough. This has gone on for long enough. And the report, it’s clear here from what these people are arguing, that the report that we put together is incorrect and deeply, deeply flawed, and we have to revise it. So, I wouldn’t give up hope of that.
Certainly that’s the thought that’s going to be going through his mind. There’s no way that he could become the number two person at NIST and look at the science that we’re presenting and not see that we’re right. So, is he going to have the courage to be on the right side of history or is he going to go through the motions that sadly most people do and the kind of position that he is in. We’ll see.
That’s right. You don’t want to go into it pessimistic because you may run into the one person that is going to help you. So you don’t want to be firing both guns right from the outset. You want to assume that they’re going to do the right thing, but also prepare for them not to, I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re not already talking to the lawyers, ready for the next stage of this whole thing. But we got to have hope.
And I think these legal efforts are so important. First of all, the only option that we have right now and keep on knocking on their door like this, keep on coming on so many fronts is the right thing to do. It’s also the strategic thing to do because they know we’re not going to go away. Now, that’s my opinion. I’m going to start with Matt here. In your view, why do we need to keep all of these different legal and procedural efforts going in this fight for justice for all the people that died on that day.
I think it’s fairly, not obvious, but it’s kind of clear, if we don’t actually reach out to the authorities and take those sort of circular discussions that you have in your own forums or small groups, and don’t actually take it to the people that in theory have the authority or the ability to really make a difference, did they actually respond in the correct way, then you’re wasting your time. You’re just going to end up having letter chambers and just be talking amongst your mates and not actually change anything. So, these procedures are there and like Ted said you have to approach all these different bodies in a way in which you, if it was a different topic, you would expect them to behave just the same as you would hope that they would deal with response to do with 9/11.
And then I very much agree with Ted that, you hope that you’re going to reach someone who is able to actually speak out or realize that something’s wrong here. And, at least start the process internally, if not externally, actually, just speaking to you whilst tested in that position. I think to not stare down the various channels that available to us is… Mutual is the wrong word, because I’m sure there’s some people that go, what’s the point, the system is against you and all the rest of it, but no it’s no different to what I’m trying to do legally wise in the UK, which obviously we’ll talk about, but it’s there, it’s a system and a process to be used and there are success stories.
So it’d be kind of foolish thing, to just think oh, there’s no point and being pessimistic and just give up because it will never actually get out of those kind of circular discussions that don’t really go anywhere. I think it’s really important to use all the official channels. Every means at your disposal to keep pressure up, to keep letting them know that you’re not going to be silent.
Right, and if everybody had that attitude, then we would never have accomplished anything in human history. And look where we are from where we started going back to the caveman days. Now we got giant skyscrapers in the cities and all sorts of crazy technology. And that started with people believing that they can do things, Ted, same question for you in your view, why is it important to keep up these legal efforts? And I also want to know, since you’re the director of strategy here at AE, our supporters love to be involved. What’s the best way that they can help out in this effort?
Sure. Well, I second, everything that Matt said. I would also add that it is through these kinds of, pursuing these kinds of avenues that you reach more people, that more people will learn about this, that more people might see the whole issue in a different light. The request document and the appeal are very important documents in sort of the development of the body of evidence that the 9/11 Truth Movement has made over the years.
They’re sort of like as far as Building 7 is concerned the most recent manifestation of all of this evidence, at least the evidence that applies most directly to refuting what NIST said about the collapse of the building. And so that document is very important for not only for how NIST is going to deal with it, but also for the thousands, tens of thousands, hundred thousands, or even millions of people who might end up reading it in the not too distant future.
It’s through initiatives like this, that we at least create the opportunity for this information to reach a much larger audience. Of course, we’re always hoping and doing our best to try to create some more media coverage of what we’re doing. It’s an abomination. You know, just another example among countless examples that no one in the mainstream media is covering this. Again, something that none of us are going to be surprised about, but in a just rational world, it’s totally an abomination that no one in the mainstream media is covering what we’re doing.
This is an incredibly important thing. I tend to think that something like this, it’s so well presented that this is the last thing, sadly, that someone in the mainstream media would want to touch or whatever, or have the courage to touch because there’s no way to debunk it. There’s no way to discredit it. It’s it’s untouchable. So that’s really sad. But as far as how people can help, it is by sharing this document, share the story on our website. The link is, URL is very simple. It’s our website, AE911truth.org forward slash NIST. That is the URL that we’re using to document and track everything that we’re doing as far as this request for correction is concerned and as far as our challenges to NIST.
So share that URL, AE9/11truth.org forward slash NIST that will always have the latest information on what’s happening with this initiative. And as I said before, this doc, these documents are really important. You know, if you’re looking for something to share with somebody who’s particularly technically minded, an engineer or scientist, head of an engineering department,this is something that’s really worth sharing in my view, and continuing to do everything else that folks do and not being afraid, just don’t be afraid to have the discussion with friends and family.
And I know Matt is somebody who’s always having the discussion with friends and family, or maybe not quote unquote always, but he doesn’t shy away from having the discussion. And so I just encourage people to not be afraid to raise this issue. And if you’re looking for some something credible to point to, AE911truth.org. Point to the website forward slash NIST and show them the video, like we’ve done the polling to show that 50 to 60% of people who watched the video of Building 7 immediately suspect that it’s a controlled demolition, and less than 15, 20% believe the idea that it’s fires. So, the video itself tells the whole story.
Absolutely. And if you’re out in the alternative media, write articles about it. Help us out. I mean, good God, the two political parties have their own embedded journalists out there pushing their cause. We should have our people out there pushing these stories when the mainstream media won’t. That’s how I started out. So please do that if you’re so inclined.
Now, Matt, we’ve got only a few minutes left here, but I wanted to just touch on these two things at the end of the show. First of all, we had John a few weeks ago to talk about the inquest that you’re pursuing. Can you give us an update on that? And also apparently you were a little busy yesterday with the BBC, so maybe you can enlighten our audience as to why.
Yeah. So firstly, the inquest, I’m very pleased and thankful to everyone who’s donated, but we’ve raised the funds required to petition, paid a barrister to do all the work that’s required to get the actual application to the attorney general in the UK. We’re hoping to do that. I’d love to say within the next 30 days, but you know, there’s still work to be done, but definitely this year.
I’m very hopeful that that’s going to progress actually into court. I don’t see any reason why it shouldn’t do. That’s really good from my perspective. I kind of feel that again, going back to that, getting out of those circular sort of discussions, it’s like, no, this is actually going into the legal sphere and it’s kind of annoying to have to do that sometimes, it’s actually one of those things that it’s important when it’s done because it definitely, it makes people sit up and take notice that this isn’t something that’s just a conspiracy theory in a forum somewhere. There’s real people’s lives and deaths at stake and a real legal push behind it and real evidence.
The second thing that’s happened was I had been involved, well my family has actually in a… I didn’t see the 90 minutes or two-hour documentary that BBC are making for the anniversary next year. And the company that’s being commissioned to do that doesn’t actually work for the BBC. A lot of the documentaries that are made is actually an independent third party. And they’re essentially looking back probably more on the sort of personal side of stuff of what the impact of 9/11 was, whether it be you lost someone or you’re a first responder, et cetera, in the last 20 years.
They are actually interested in my family, so for lots of reasons. There’s my dad’s story, my brother Rob, and , my mum is… but from my perspective, he’s interested in what I’ve been doing for the last 20 years and, in particular, this stuff in the last sort of seven years leading up to actually trying to get my brother’s inquest reopened.
So, I mean, at the moment, although it’s the dreaded BBC and we all know what they’ve done in there various documentaries as fear of 9/11 and conspiracy theories and conspiracy files are shocking, but I’m kind of hopeful. I mean, it’s still going to be very muc… the guy. So it’s going to be a very much a personal kind of documentary, I think.
The guy made a documentary called The Last Survivors, which was talking to the last survivors from the Holocaust. And then I think I know the way he talks about making documentaries, it’s going to be certainly quite on the emotional, personal side, but actually just that journey we’ve all had, whoever’s been involved since 9/11. But you know, like I said, he’s going to cover the inquest. He’s very keen when we do actually petition the attorney general to cover that.
And obviously if we get a response before his filming deadline and in editing, we obviously include that as well. So yesterday he had me up in the attic. we were going through some old stuff, not just memorabilia of my brother, but also, I’ve got almost a quite load of communications that are printed off in my dealings with the authorities. And so we talked a little bit about that.
We also talked about Building 7 and we talked… I said, “I have many questions about that.” He’s going to come back and follow me and my family for probably the next, certainly four or five, six months. So I know there’s going to be a great opportunity to discuss my brother’s inquest and obviously any progress that we make in that. So it’ll be interesting. I have every confidence, just the way this guy is, that he’s certainly not read in to the guide of conspiracy policies, he’s not one of them.
And he’s also allowing everyone who takes part to actually see an edit before it actually gets broadcast. So, I’ll be interested in seeing what happens between when he finished it off and when the BBC actually broadcast it. But there you go, it’s set up. That’s great that he’s actually going to follow that, the inquest as it develops. Obviously, BBC two-hour documentary, it’s going to get a lot of worldwide coverage. And I just really hope that there’s, as best it can be through the BBC, an impartial look at what I’m trying to do here for justice for my brother and obviously everyone else who was killed that day.
That will be very interesting to watch. It’s coming out around the 20th anniversary, and we’re going to have a lot of very good things for supporters to get behind on the 20th anniversary. But that is good news, too. And it’s good to have publicity on these kinds of efforts. Guys, you’re doing an amazing job here. Keep it up. We’re going to push this thing over the hill and get where we want to be because of you. Thank you so much for that. And thank you for coming on 9/11 Free Fall today.
Thank you, Andy.
Thanks, Andy. Cheers, Ted.
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