14 March 2009

Beverly Eckert's view of 9/11 truth was based on a rational, critical, common-sense worldview

Followers of the so-called "9/11 truth movement" like to invent conspiracies and portray activists like Beverly as their allies. While some 9/11 survivors and family members do actually cross the line from the real world to the make-believe land of this fringe movement, Beverly Eckert never did. She had a clear-eyed, rational view of the world in which real terrorists hijacked real airplanes, crashed them, and caused unimaginable mayhem and destruction. Along the way there was also a long, sad trail of official incompetence, ignorance and duplicity. But Beverly avoided association with people who smelled of conspiracy theories, whether they were touting a book, film, or website. 

Although she and other members of the Family Steering Committee were critical of the 9-11 Commission many times as it carried out its work, once the report was issued Beverly embraced it as the best outcome that could be expected, considering the compromises needed along the way. She was skeptical of dodgy official excuses, yes; but was accepting of rational explanations based on hard evidence and common sense. This article about Beverly at counterknowledge.com gets it right, and appears in a blog devoted to debunking the "truthers" and other purveyors of pop-culture piffle. And here is another, on the screwloosechange blog, along the same lines. 

In many public statements, and in interviews with me, Beverly expressed frustration with officials who stonewalled or lied. But she was equally adamant about constructing a 9/11 truth based on evidence, not conjecture or fantasy. 

And after her death, the wild-eyed conspirators continued to have a field day, attributing the plane crash to sinister government designs, for example. Another thread of "truth movement" fiction involves Beverly's meeting with President Obama just days before her death. According to this groundless speculation, she had a secret request to make of the president: establish a new 9/11 commission to uncover the "truths" left buried by the original one. Beverly gave me a detailed account of her participation in the meeting, and her sole pleas to the president were to close the Guantanamo detainee facilities and to bring the 9/11 attack suspects to trial in the US. 

On Monday, an article I wrote about the meeting will appear on the History News Network site. And in due course I'll publish in this blog a copy of Beverly's letter to the president. Documents such as these are the real basis of truth.

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