Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Three terrorist memorializing features in the Flight 93 Memorial, all trivially easy to verify
If you are already familiar with this demonstration (hat tip blumerle), skip to the next heading. Newcomers, just notice that a person standing between the tips of the giant crescent and facing into the center of the crescent (red arrow) will be facing almost exactly at Mecca (the "qibla" direction, marked on Islam.com's green circle). It is so easy, even a reporter can do it. (Getting other newspapers to pass on this explosive revelation: so far impossible.)
A crescent that Muslims face into to face Mecca is called a mihrab, and is the central feature around which every mosque is built. As unveiled in September 2005, the Crescent of Embrace would have been the world's largest mosque by a factor of a hundred. There are a dozen typical mosque features. All are realized in the Crescent design, all on the same epic scale as the giant mihrab. (See Crescent of Betrayal, especially download 2, Chapter Five.)
The insignificantly altered Bowl of Embrace redesign leaves every particle of structure from the original design fully intact. Not a single one of the twelve mosque features was altered in any way. The only change was to surround the original design with some irrelevant trees, slightly disguising the crescent structure, but a mosque is unaffected by how many trees are planted around it. The planned memorial will still be the world's largest mosque by a factor of a hundred.
The Crescent/Bowl of Embrace is no ordinary mosque. It is a terrorist memorial mosque, specifically honoring the hijackers of Flight 93. The purpose of this post is to show how trivially easy it is to verify the three main terrorist memorializing features in the crescent design. Figure 30 minutes to do it. Five minutes to read it.
Terrorist memorializing feature #1: the 9/11 date is placed in the exact position of the star on an Islamic crescent and star flag
Most crescent and star flags descend from the Ottoman flag, which has the star centered on the bisector of its crescent. In the Mecca orientation graphic above, you can see that the grove of trees that surrounds the Sacred Ground Plaza, down by the crash site, is centered a little bit below the center line of the giant crescent. The crescent bisector (red arrow) passes through about the top third of the Plaza.
Of course that made me curious whether there might be some feature within the upper third of the Plaza that is centered on the bisector of the giant crescent. All I had to do was open up the Sacred Ground PDF and look:
The Memorial Wall that is built along the flight path, just above the crash site, has a separate upper section marked: "wall with inscribed date." (You can think of "upper" here either as uphill, or as to the north, or as up the flight path from the crash site. All are to the right in the above graphic.)
The gap between the upper and lower sections of Memorial Wall is marked "trail." This trail is visible on the Mecca-orientation graphic:
The trail that passes between the upper and lower sections of Memorial wall can be seen coming in from the left. It meanders between the "23" and "P10" reference marks, then divides the Memorial Wall at the point marked by the yellow arrow.
Just by looking, one can see that the section of Memorial Wall that sits above the trail (the section that is inscribed with the 9/11 date) is centered on the bisector of the giant crescent. September 11, 2001 is to be placed exactly in the position of the star on an Islamic crescent and star flag. The date, it seems, is to go to the terrorists.
You can think that this is coincidence if you want (and if it were the only Islamic or terrorist memorializing feature in the design, that might even be plausible), but the starting point for any discussion of the significance of this placement has to be an acknowledgement that this placement is indeed a simple geometric fact, trivially easy to verify. You have already verified it just by looking. If you want to be a stickler, you can print out the above graphic and use a ruler and square to verify that the red arrow is actually the bisector of the giant crescent, or if you really want to be a stickler, start with the raw site plan, connect the most obtruding points of the crescent structure, and construct the perpendicular bisector yourself. If you want to get the original design PDFs from the horse's mouth, call the National Park Service curator at (814) 443-4557.
To Tom Burnett Sr. and myself, it is intolerable for the 9/11 date to be positioned as the star on an Islamic flag, whether or not it is by coincidence, and we think most Americans will agree.
Terrorist memorializing feature #2: 44 inscribed translucent panels emplaced along the flight path, equaling the number of passengers, crew, AND terrorists
Architect Paul Murdoch explains the crescent and star configuration of his design in terms of the path that Flight 93 followed to ground. The flight path breaks the circle, says Murdoch, turning it into a giant crescent. Thus the flight path enters the memorial at the upper crescent tip, then continues down to the Sacred Ground Plaza, where the two part Memorial Wall is built along the flight path, just above the crash site.
When Tom Burnett Sr. said he would not allow Tom Jr.'s name to be used in the memorial, reporters asked Paul Murdoch if there were really 44 glass blocks on the flight path, as I have been claiming. He acknowledged the 43 translucent panels in the two sections of Memorial Wall but denied knowing about any 44th glass block on the flight path:
...there are 40 inscribed marble panels listing the names of the passengers and crew at the gateway to the Sacred Ground, where their remains still rest.Yes he does. At the upper crescent tip, where the flight path breaks the circle in Paul Murdoch's explanation, sits a large glass block or panel that dedicates the entire site:
There is then an opening in the wall, Mr. Murdoch said, and three additional panels, which would include the date, Sept. 11, 2001.
"Where the other one is being fabricated, I don't know," he said.
Oh THAT glass block! The 44th translucent panel on the flight path is at the end of the Entry Portal Walkway. It marks the spot where the 9/11 terrorists smashed our liberty loving circle, turning it into a giant Mecca oriented crescent. On this block will be carved the inscription: "... a field of honor forever."
Having used the flight path as an organizing principle for his design, Paul Murdoch is obviously well aware of the features that are built along it. His feigned ignorance of the Entry Portal walkway, where visitors first view the site, is a desperate attempt to avoid exposure. He knows that if the glass block count is verified, then all of my claims will be investigated and be found to be accurate, and his attempt to stab a terrorist memorial mosque into the heartland of America will fail.
Challenged by the father of one of our murdered heroes, the architect of the Flight 93 Memorial tells the baldest possible lie about his own design, feigning ignorance of the huge glass panel that marks the thematic creation of the crescent structure. If our news media would do its job and check the facts, Murdoch would have been immediately exposed as a liar, but the media has not yet reported this deception.
You can verify the translucent block count for yourself in two minutes. Just open up the Sacred Ground PDF and the Entry Portal PDF and count the inscribed translucent panels that are to be built along the flight path. Nothing in these PDF's was changed in the Bowl of Embrace redesign.
Mr. Burnett is asking the American people to take our warnings seriously. Paul Murdoch wants you to accept on faith his claim that there is nothing to see here. This one is a real no brainer. It reveals who's got no brains. Exhibit 1 is Tom Birdsong, editor of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.
I learned from Post Gazette reporter Paula Ward that the editors of the Post Gazette knew about the Mecca-orientation of the Crescent of Embrace way back in September 2005, when the controversy over the crescent design first erupted, and made a top-level editorial decision not to publish it. (See Crescent of Betrayal, download 3, pp 108-10.) At the same time, the Post Gazette was calling critics of the crescent bigots. (Ibid.)
Birdsong's response to Mr. Burnett's plea that our warnings be taken seriously? A new editorial titled: "Efforts to sully Flight 93 memorial deserve scorn." As Paul Murdoch struggles to keep his hijacked airplane on course, Tom Birdsong will be blocking for him to the bitter end.
Terrorist memorializing feature #3: It points to the White House
Lines across the most obtruding tips of Paul Murdoch's crescent structures always have a meaningful orientation. Draw a line across the most obtruding tips of the vast array of crescents of trees that surround the Tower of Voices portion of the memorial (a year-round accurate Islamic prayer-time sundial), and it points in the exact same almost-exact Mecca direction as the giant central crescent (1.8 degrees north of Mecca).
Take an image of the Tower crescents with a blue line drawn across the most obtruding crescent tips, place it atop an image of the central crescent that has the crescent bisector superimposed in red, and without rotating either graphic, the result is a single purple line. With north at the top in both images, the two orientation lines match perfectly, proving that neither orientation is an accident.
There is one more giant crescent in the Crescent/Bowl of Embrace design: the crescent of radial arbors (the so called "Forty Memorial Groves," of which there are only 38) that sits asymmetrically on the back of the central crescent. Draw a line across the most obtruding tips of this fat rear crescent and see where it points:
The White House sits just about at the middle of the “i” in “Washington” on this Yahoo map. It is used here as the Washington end of the superimposed Shanksville-to-Washington line. Yahoo’s red star marks downtown Shanksville. The crash site is about three miles north and slightly east of downtown Shanksville, which according to Yahoo’s distance scale, puts it just to the right of the top of the star. A line through the White House and the crash-site (depicted) turns out to have the same slope as a line across the tips of Murdoch’s rear crescent (129° clockwise from north).
To continue the theme of this post: you can verify this orientation just by opening up the site plan PDF, measuring the angle across the fat rear crescent, and comparing it to the direction from the crash site to the White House as measured off of any map you please.
Now you know why the crescent of radial arbors (unchanged in the Bowl of Embrace redesign) is not symmetrical with the full Crescent of Embrace. It has a different job to perform. The full crescent gives the direction to Mecca. The rear crescent gives the direction to the target that the terrorists were trying to destroy. The full crescent is a mosque element (one of 12). The rear crescent is a terrorist-memorializing element (one of 3, or of 15, if you count the mosque elements as terrorist memorializing elements too, on account of the mosque being a terrorist memorial mosque).
Bonus terrorist memorializing feature: The 44th block defines a hidden exact Mecca-orientation of the giant crescent
One of architect Paul Murdoch’s repeated themes is inexact Islamic and terrorist memorializing geometries that contain hidden exact Islamic and terrorist memorializing geometries. The Sacred Ground Plaza, for example, is centered a little bit below the exact position of the star on an Islamic crescent and star flag, but there is a separate upper section of Memorial Wall, inscribed with the 9/11 date, that is in the exact position of the star on an Islamic flag.
Similarly with the inexact Mecca-orientation of the giant crescent (facing 1.8° north of Mecca). The design also contains a hidden exact Mecca orientation.
Recall the graphic of the Entry Portal Walkway passing through a gap in fifty foot tall Entry Portal Walls. Since the walkway (following the flight path) breaks the circle in Paul Murdoch's explanation (thereby turning the circle into a crescent), the fact that the Walkway passes through a gap in the Wall means that the Wall continues out beyond the point where the circle gets broken. It actually continues out for about another 125 feet.
That means that the conceptual crescent tip (where the circle gets broken) is 125 feet in from the most obtruding tip of the Crescent of Embrace design. It is not surprising, then, that the crescent defined by a line across the most obtruding tips of the crescent structure would not face exactly at Mecca. The real/hidden upper crescent tip is the one that Paul Murdoch describes. It is the point where the flight path breaks the circle, which Murdoch marks with the 44th glass block on the flight path.
Use the 44th block as the upper crescent tip, and the result is a crescent that is oriented exactly on Mecca, as precisely as can be determined by the pixel resolution of the graphics (i.e. ± about a tenth of a degree). See Crescent of Betrayal, download 2, Chapter Three.
Thus does Murdoch tie his central Mosque element (the Mecca oriented crescent) and his central terrorist memorializing element (the 44 translucent panels, strategically emplaced and inscribed along the flight path) into a perfect Bin Ladenist embrace.
Murdoch is an evil genius. Hate to have to tell you. Sure hope you pay attention.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Tom Burnett Sr. and Alec Rawls protest the Flight 93 Memorial on TV and radio
On with us was another family member, Kenneth Nacke (brother of murdered passenger Louis Nacke II), and John Reynolds, chairman of the Memorial Project. The 10 minute segment accomplishes a lot.
With the help of some very revealing on-screen graphics, Tom and I get a chance to explain the overt Islamic symbolism of the original Crescent of Embrace design. Defenders of the crescent can only resort to denying that they can see what is obvious to everyone else, including the hosts.
I was able to say a little bit about why the very slight redesign, adding a few irrelevant trees, does not affect the Islamic and terrorist memorializing features at all, but was not able to explain fully. [The original Crescent of Embrace design, every particle of which remains completely intact in the Bowl of Embrace redesign, is a terrorist memorial mosque, built around the half-mile wide Mecca-oriented crescent. You can plant as many trees as you want around a mosque and it is still a mosque.]
Tom makes very heartfelt appeals for people to take our concerns seriously and to INVESTIGATE it. Altogether, this is great exposure, with many compelling moments. Good job Tom.
Tom and I have also undertaken a number of radio interviews recently. Two days ago we appeared together for 45 minutes on the Don Kroah show out of Arlington Virginia. (Audio requires Real Player. Scroll down to "Monday August 20, 2007 -- Hour 1".)
The show starts with me going over some central Islamic and terrorist memorializing design features, then Tom comes on and makes his protest against the overt Islamic symbolism, and we both talk for a while with Don, who proved to be a very knowledgeable host (pulling out a quote from the Pittsburgh Post Gazette the moment I alluded to it).
Tom and I also appeared separately on the Fred Honzberger show out of Pittsburgh.
Tom was on for a short interview on Monday. Very powerful. I was on for 45 minutes today: "Critic of Flight 93 Memorial design,") part 1 (streaming/podcast) and part 2 (streaming/podcast).
I have done a couple dozen solo interviews over the last month, most of them a half hour to an hour long. Several are linked at CrescentOfBetrayal.com.
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Insane statements from the Flight 93 Memorial Project
Paula quotes a host of principles from the memorial debacle making the most insane statements. Daniel Lovering's AP article, "Flight 93 Memorial Design Worries Father," is drawn from Paula's article, but omits the revealing quotes. Here is a rundown:
The diabolical Daniel Griffith
The central feature of the planned memorial is a half mile wide crescent, originally called the Crescent of Embrace. In answer to my claim that a person facing directly into the giant crescent will be facing almost exactly at Mecca, up pops a Rasputin-like figure, acting as a consultant to the the Flight 93 families:
Daniel Griffith, a geospatial information sciences professor at the University of Texas at Dallas, said anything can point toward Mecca, because the earth is round.On the other side are the one billion Muslims who face Mecca five times a day to pray, all calculating the direction to Mecca by the "great circle" or "shortest distance" method. If only they knew about this stunning new mathematical advance by Professor Griffith they could save themselves so much effort. Indeed, we could all stop worrying about which direction to drive to work or which direction to fly our airplanes. Don't worry, be happy, the world is round! Is this guy on LSD?
Unfortunately for Mr. Griffith, I am in possession of the analysis of the orientation of the Crescent of Embrace that he sent to the Pittsburgh Tribune Review last year. The first thing his report does is calculate the direction to Mecca:
I computed an azimuth value from the Flight 93 crater site to Mecca of roughly 55.20°."Azimuth" is the technical term for "direction," measured in degrees clockwise from north. I get that the direction to Mecca from the crash site is 55.19° clockwise from north (one one hundredth of a degree different from Griffith's "roughly 55.20°"). Griffith and I both calculate the direction to Mecca by the "great circle" method, which one can think of as the straight-line direction to Mecca, curving only in the over-the-horizon direction, with no side to side movement.
This professor calculated the direction from the crash site to Mecca to two decimal points, yet now claims that there is no such thing as the direction to Mecca! He is flat out lying about his OWN analysis. A scan of Griffith's full report is attached at the bottom of this post. Griffith says that he does NOT give me permission to distribute this report, but I am confident that any file named "Tribune Review comments for distribution" is already in the public domain.
How the families happened onto this fiend is a great mystery. Does he think he is doing them a favor by telling them what they want to hear when they ask him for expertise?
Superintendent Joanne Hanley repeats Chairman Reynolds' ignorant assertion that the Washington Monument can be seen as as an Islamic prayer-time sundial
Just as Griffith claims that everything faces Mecca, John Reynolds, chairman of the Flight 93 Memorial Project, claimed in a recent newspaper interview that any tower shaped object (like the Tower of Voices portion of the Flight 93 Memorial), can be seen to be an Islamic sundial, if one wants to see it as such. (i.e. It is all in my head.)
On the contrary, an Islamic sundial is a very exact and particular structure. But Reynold's remarks are not just wrong. They prove he never even looked at my sundial analysis. He thinks that Islamic prayer times are determined by shadow angle (so that when the shadow of the Washington Monument crosses the surrounding security wall at the time for Islamic afternoon prayers, that spot on the security wall can be interpretted as marking the time for Islamic prayer, if one wants to interpret it that way).
But the first thing I explain in my sundial analysis is that Islamic prayer times are determined by shadow length, not shadow angle. Thus prayers commence at a different time every day (earlier as the days get shorter). That means they cannot be marked by a given spot on the security wall. Rather, the prayer line on an Islamic sundial must be placed an exact distance from the shadow caster, and it must follow an exact arc, which in the case of the Washington Monument, never goes anywhere near the granite security wall that Chairman Reynolds thinks could serve as an indicator for Islamic prayer times. I put together a graphic for him of where the end of the Monument's shadow lands at Islamic afternoon prayer time at different times of the year:
When the shadow of the Washington Monument reaches the outer curved vertical, drawn in red, it is time for Islamic afternoon prayers. If there were a wall built along this line, THEN that wall could be interpretted as turning the Washington Monument into an Islamic prayer time sundial. Note that this would require moving the road and demolishing the building at the top, which blocks the end of the Monument's shadow from even eaching the ground between November 15th and January 15th. (Full explanation here.)
I informed Memorial Project Superintendent Joanne Hanley last week about the foolishness of Chairman Reynold's sundial remarks, yet she repeats them to the Post Gazette, proving that she too has never even looked at my sundial analysis:
As for the allegation that the Tower of Voices is really an Islamic sundial, Ms. Hanley said with an analysis like Mr. Rawls' then the Washington Monument could be perceived as one, as well.Take a look for yourself at what Reynolds and Hanley are refusing to examine. The likeness between an traditional Islamic sundial and the Tower of Voices is overt:
South is at the top in both images. In the photo of the traditional Islamic sundial (left) the gnomon shadow is just reaching the outer curved vertical, indicating time for afternoon prayers. Tower of Voices (right) is the second large scale structure in the Flight 93 Memorial. The crescent shaped tower sits amidst a vast array of crescents of trees, with this little (hundred yard wide) horseshoe-shaped ring of trees in the middle.
Shadow calculations confirm that, on any day of the year, when the shadow of the Tower of Voices reaches the inner arc of trees, it will be time for Islamic afternoon prayers.
Reynolds and Hanley both prove by their remarks that they have not even looked at my sundial analysis. They don't even know that Islamic prayer times are determined by shadow length! Yet they are claiming to have thoroughly investigated my warnings of terrorist attack and determined them to be a false alarm. In fact, they have been grasping for ignorant excuses NOT to investigate my warnings. Is it possible to be more irresponsible?
At least Superintendent Hanley does admit one key terrorist memorializing feature. Talking about the orientation of the crescent, she describes how the crescent is placed so that the crash site is situated between the crescent tips:
"The only thing that orients the memorial is the crash site," she said.Murdoch admits it too:
"It's oriented toward the Sacred Ground," he said. "It just couldn't be clearer."They both admit that the Flight 93 crash site is placed roughly between the tips of the giant crescent, leaving it in roughly the position of the star on an Islamic crescent and star flag. Doesn't Superintendent Hanley know that this is what caused the original outrage over the Crescent of Embrace design back in September 2005? That it was a bare naked Islamic crescent and star flag?
Original Crescent of Embrace publicity photo from Paul Murdoch Architects shows a bare naked crescent and star flag on the crash site, plainly visible to commercial airplanes like Flight 93 cruising overhead. The copse of trees that is placed in roughly the position of the star on an Islamic flag marks the crash site.
The Bowl of Embrace redesign adds a few trees so that the crescent and star flag will not be quite so bare naked, but everything that you see in this original publicity photo remains completely intact in the so-called redesign. The crash site is still placed as the star on an Islamic crescent and star flag.
The hijacker speaks: architect Paul Murdoch denies that there is a 44th glass block on the flight path
One of the reasons that Tom Burnett Sr. is insisting that Tom Jr.'s name not be inscribed on one of the glass blocks in the planned memorial is because there are a total of 44 inscribed memorial glass blocks emplaced along the flight path, matching the number of passengers, crew AND terrorists. Asked about this suspicious glass block count, architect Paul Murdoch first quibbles about the terminology (in the design PDFs they are labeled "translucent marble" blocks, not "glass" blocks), then he feigns ignorance about the 44th block:
Regarding the claim that there are 44 glass blocks in the memorial, Mr. Murdoch vehemently disagreed, saying that, first of all, there is no glass block used in the design.Reporter Paula Ward helps him out:
Instead, there are 40 inscribed marble panels listing the names of the passengers and crew at the gateway to the Sacred Ground, where their remains still rest.
There is then an opening in the wall, Mr. Murdoch said, and three additional panels, which would include the date, Sept. 11, 2001.
"Where the other one is being fabricated, I don't know," he said.
A separate glass plate will be located near the visitor's center and include the memorial project's preamble.The only thing Paula failed to note in her fact checking is that this glass block by the visitor center is emplaced along the flight path, up at the upper crescent tip, where as Paul Murdoch describes it, the flight path breaks the circle, turning it into a crescent. Here is an image of this most impressive inscribed glass block (from the original Crescent of Embrace design PDFs, released by the Memorial Project):
Oh THAT glass block! The 44th glass block on the flight path is at the end of the Entry Portal Walkway. As the walkway passes through the Entry Portals Walls, it breaks the circle in Paul Murdoch's explanation. What a lovely thought: that on 9/11, the terrorists smashed our liberty loving circle and turned it into a giant Mecca oriented crescent, and that huge damned 44th glass block on the flight path marks the spot!
Having used the flight path as a central theme of his design, Paul Murdoch is obviously well aware of the flight path and what is built along it. His claim that he can't figure out where there might be another glass block on the flight path is a typical Paul Murdoch lie.
We hosted an open design competition in time of war. We should have expected that the enemy would enter and try to win a memorial to their heroes instead of ours, and this is exactly what has happened. Paul Murdoch is trying to win a victory for the enemy. Is he a member of al Qaeda, or just a nihilistic trickster who wants to see what he can get away with? I can't answer that question. I do not know his motivation, but I do know what he is doing: that he is trying to stab a terrorist memorial mosque into the heartland of America.
Edward Felt, President of Families of Flight 93, calls Tom Burnett Sr. a sore loser
Talking to Mr. Burnett on the phone the other day, I learned a possible explanation for one of the more bizarre aspects of my dealings with the Memorial Project. I would explain to them how, unbeknownst to them, the memorial design they chose was actually a terrorist memorial mosque, and they would respond by extolling the "open and inclusive process" by which the design was chosen, adding: "we all understand and agree that the design neither depicts or was intended to imply any religious iconography." (Addendum 10, Exhibit 1.)
What??? Who cares what you THOUGHT. I am showing you what you MISSED. But then Tom explained to me that this was their reply to HIS criticisms too. When he continued to protest the Islamic symbolism in the Crescent of Embrace design, they dismissed him as a sore loser. Tom served on Jury Two and lost a democratic vote, hence was supposed to shut up now. (Strange view of democracy.)
As if on cue, Ed Root came out in the Somerset Daily American this morning attacking myself, and it seems Mr. Burnett as well, for refusing to accept the results of the vote that Tom lost:
To allow someone to destroy what so many others have worked so honestly and diligently to do, that's not democracy, that's tyranny.No, Mr. Root. You are on a hijacked airplane and Tom Burnett and I are trying to save your life.
Faced with my new information, the Memorial Project just used their anti-Tom talking points as an excuse not to look at what I was telling them. They had already voted. What kind of undemocratic tyrant is the Rawls person, daring to warn us that we are under terrorist attack? And on it goes, through an entire, seemingly bottomless, Crescent of Betrayal.
Addendum: Professor Daniel Griffith's February 2006 report on blogger claims that a person facing into the Crescent of Embrace would be facing Mecca
Griffith focuses primarily on a post by Jonathan Haas at the Politicalities blog titled “It points towards Mecca.” Several other bloggers, myself included, also produced mathematical or graphical demonstrations of the Mecca orientation of the giant crescent. In Griffith's report, we are referred to simply as “the bloggers," and are not referred to separately.
My calculations are very close to Griffith's. I get that the direction to Mecca from the crash site is 55.19° clockwise from north, one one-hundredth of a degree different from Griffith's "roughly 55.20°."
To compare this direction to Mecca with the orientation of the crescent, I connect the most obtruding tips of the crescent structure, then form the perpendicular bisector of this line, finding that it points 1.8° north of Mecca. Griffith never even contests my analysis of the orientation of the crescent, or anyone else’s analysis. He simply assumes that these analyses are correct and goes on to note that there is an ex-Nazi prison camp between the crash site and Mecca. Thus according to Griffith, the crescent is pointing towards this Nazi prison camp, which would seem to be a confirmation, not a refutation, of its pointing towards Mecca.
Griffith told reporter Kirk Swauger at the Tribune Review that "it can point to a Nazi prison camp if you want," (from my notes of my discussion with Kirk on 7/20/07). He also told Kirk the same thing he told Paula Ward. In Kirk's words: "he said you can face anywhere to face Mecca." Griffith is clearly suggesting to Swauger that one can see the crescent as pointing to ANY prison camp if one wants. But that is not what his analysis says. Again, Griffith is lying about his own analysis. (Kirk's article, which mentions the prison camp claim, but not the "you can face anywhere to face Mecca" tidbit, here.)
Google searches do not immediately turn up any Darcey Nazi concentration camp, but Griffith's meaning is clear. He is saying that the crescent does point to this place, and notes that this would be a coincidence, using it show that the orientation of the crescent on Mecca could also be a coincidence.
The questions of whether the Mecca orientation of the Crescent of Embrace is a coincidence, and whether it would be okay to make the central feature of the Flight 93 Memorial a geometric twin to the central feature of a mosque, so long as it is by coincidence, are separate from the question from whether the Crescent of Embrace is indeed oriented on Mecca. Griffith's whole discussion of possible coincidence takes the orientation on Mecca as an established fact (which it is). But this is not what he is now telling the press. Now he is denying that there is any such thing as facing Mecca! Any Muslim would beg to differ.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Tom Burnett Sr. denounces Flight 93 Memorial, calls for Congressional investigation
He described his own efforts to stop the crescent design, including letters to the press that were never published. [Update: In a subsequent discussion with Mrs. Burnett, she thought that at least one of the letters was published by the Somerset Daily American. Will update later with what I can verify about who did and did not publish the letters.] With the crescent design still going forward, he has decided that it is necessary to up the ante, and has authorized me to publicize his decision to protest the crescent design by insisting that Tom Jr.’s name not be inscribed on one of the 44 glass blocks emplaced along the flight path, or used anywhere else in the memorial.
“I think we HAVE to,” says Mr. Burnett. “It’s not that I pull a lot of weight around. I know that. I’m one of forty.”
There were forty heroes on Flight 93, along with four terrorists.
Mr. Burnett was adamantly against architect Paul Murdoch’s design long before he knew about the suspicious glass block count, or the Mecca orientation of the giant crescent, or any of the other Islamic and terrorist memorializing specifics that I have discovered.
He read two letters (transcribed below) that he sent to the press back in September 2005, when the unveiling of the crescent design first ignited a national controversy. For those who are not familiar, the publicity photo, provided by Los Angeles architect Paul Murdoch, showed a bare naked crescent and star flag planted on the crash site:
The crash site, marked by the Sacred Ground Plaza, sits roughly in the position of the star on a crescent and star flag.
Both of Tom Burnett's September 2005 letters condemn the chosen design in the strongest possible terms. “It is unmistakably an Islamic symbol,” charged Mr. Burnett: “The red Crescent of Embrace… bastardizes what my son and others did on Flight 93.”
Incredibly, the newspapers declined to publish these explosive letters from the father of one of the heroes of Flight 93, a man who is also one of only fifteen Stage Two jurors, making him one of the few people who witnessed the design competition from the inside. “This all went on deaf ears, apparently,” Mr. Burnett told me on the phone. [Before posting, I Google searched several phrases from both letters and turned up nothing, but letters to the editor might not be posted online. Full verification of whether the letters were published is in process. In any case, published or not, they "fell on deaf ears," according to Mr. Burnett.]
Neither was this the first time that his objections were ignored. About the jury process itself, Mr. Burnett says: “I thought it was railroaded.” When he pointed out the Islamic symbolism of the crescent, the design professionals on the jury were scornful: “In effect, they said: ‘Don’t be stupid. That’s an aesthetic symbol. That’s all, and it’s used all over the place.’ They were telling us how to interpret it!” (Full transcript below.)
He also thought the voting process was suspicious, saying that there was never a straight up or down vote on the crescent design. Organizers asked the jurors for an ordering of preferences amongst three competing designs, then announced the winner. Even the vote count was suspicious: “It was not an open process.”
Afterwards, the Project announced that: “By consensus the Stage Two jury forwards this section of the Flight 93 memorial to the partner [architect Paul Murdoch] with the full and unqualified support of each juror.” On the contrary, says Mr. Burnett, the vote was NOT unanimous: “It was 9 to 6,” and Mr. Burnett for one remained adamantly opposed to the crescent design.
About my discovery that the planned memorial is actually a terrorist memorial mosque, built around the half mile wide Mecca oriented crescent, Mr. Burnett said that he believes in the validity of my findings and wants a Congressional investigation. Keeping Tom Jr’s name out of the Memorial is partly a moral imperative, and is partly to force attention. “We don’t want it used at all if that design stays in,” says Mr. Burnett. “We’ve got to audit this process, and we’ve got to get to the TRUTH! That’s really what we’re after.”
Tom himself found two different Islamic elements in the crescent design. In addition to identifying the giant crescent as an Islamic symbol, he also noted that the Tower of Voices is akin to an Islamic minaret (long before seeing my proof that it is actually a year-round accurate Islamic prayer-time sundial).
This prescient commentary is what our newspapers [or at least most of the newspapers contacted] decided that the American people should not see. “You’d think we lived in the Middle East!” Tom laughed on the phone. We laughed at a number of such dark epiphanies. Such is the joy of discovering a compatriot when there is a battle to be fought.
Any press people who want to contact Mr. Burnett to verify his remarks can reach him through me. Contact email@example.com.
Full transcript of Tom’s letters and our phone call
Tom allowed me to record our conversation so that I could accurately transcribe his letters. The rest of our conversation included many important revelations, so I am posting a complete transcription, sans only some irrelevant personal discussion. Where Tom is reading the text of his letters, I use blockquotes, so anyone who just wants to see the letters can scroll for that.
The unrecorded phone call
Before I got the recorder out, Tom and I had already talked for about 20 minutes. Our first call began with Tom introducing himself and asking if I was familiar with the name. I said I was, from Flight 93, and he told me he was Tom Burnett Jr.’s father. I thanked him for calling and he started out by telling me that he fully approved of my efforts to uncover and expose what is in the crescent design. He said he was adamantly against the design during the jury process, before he knew anything of what I have found in the design. He tried to go public at the time, but his letters to the press were not published. With me fighting so hard now to stop the design, he has decided to try to make his voice heard again.
He wants the public to know that he has always believed that the design contains Islamic symbolism, and that he regards it as a desecration of the grave site of his son and the other heroes of Flight 93. He says he has seen my information, he recognizes the soundness of my analyses, and very much wants it to be exposed and properly investigated. He said that to stop the crescent design from going forward, he and other members of his family have decided to insist publicly that the Burnett name not be inscribed on one of the glass blocks emplaced along the flight path, or used anywhere else in the crescent design.
We talked about quite a few aspects of what has been going on, most of which we went over again in our taped conversation. The most important thing that he talked about more in the first conversation was how much he approved of what I was doing and believed in the validity of what I have found. These remarks were also repeated in the taped conversation, but not in as much depth. Tom’s expression of support means a lot. Mr. Burnett and I both hope that his standing with me will help to convince others that they need to take my claims seriously.
About the transcription: when Tom is reading the letters, we have some conversation of our own mixed in. I think this kept Tom from reading the letters quite verbatim, because there a few disjoints and ungrammatical parts. He says he will send me the letters themselves, so I will be able to correct any errors in due time.
Transcript of recorded phone call (we talked for about an hour, or ten typed pages)
Tom Burnett Sr.: Tom Burnett speaking.
Alec Rawls: Hi Tom. It’s Alec.
TB: Yeah, okay.
AR: So I finally found my recorder! [Both laugh, since it took me about 15 minutes.]
TB: First of all, let me ask you. Are you on the staff at Stanford?
AR: No. I started out in the economics Ph.D. program at Stanford. Then I started doing work in moral theory and constitutional law, and so I dropped the program and started writing. I was actually writing a book on republicanism [the system of liberty under law] when I discovered this. I was able to contact the same publisher who was going to publish my other book [World Ahead] and get them interested in this book.
TB: I have been intending to reach you. You sent us that information in 2005-2006, and we do appreciate that, but I haven’t had the inertia [sic] to get moving on it seriously… I really don’t like the use of media, but if I have to I will.
AR: Yeah… I understand.
TB: I just don’t like it. I talked to some of the people on that committee and by and large they dismissed me, nicely you know. I don’t know anyone actually who spoke eloquently about that design during that time. I talked against it of course. All the family members have not voted, by the way. Just the people on Jury Two.
AR: You suggested you thought the jury process was dominated by the design professionals.
TB: I thought it was railroaded. Yeah, that’s right. I don’t know that for sure, but it seem…. You know when I told people about the process. I won’t get into that now, because I don’t have the… but what happened, … we wanted to get out of there. It was warm, and everybody wanted to get home, and I too, but I was not going to let this go. What they did is they: “okay, we’ve got five designs here: put number one, first choice, two, second choice, three, four, five, all of you.” Then they took them in, made the count, privately, secretly. It was not an open process. And then what they did was say okay, now we got that. I we want you to [rank] the top three, in your estimation, for the design, so the people did. The other two were gone. So then we went with the three: “We’d like to have you go one, two and three again,” and that was the final vote. It was 9 to 6.
AR: So they never did a vote between the crescent design and the second favorite?
TB: No no no. Just the way I said. We just put the number down in the order in which you like them, and boom, we got out of there in a hurry. Wasn’t so bad except, the people who were running it, from Portland Oregon, the design people…
AR: This was Don somebody?
TB: I may even think of his name. Helene? What was her name? (Unintelligible voice in the background).
AR: You think it sounds something like “Eleen,” “Helene”?
TB: Helene is the woman, his partner. These people are design specialists, and they build things, contract to build, and assign guys like Murdoch to build them, all around the world, embassies, couple embassies and so on. I still haven’t kept the guy’s name but…
AR: I should be able to find that.
TB: You probably will, if you dig…. Now let me give you my letter. Is that okay?
AR: Yeah. That’d be great.
TB: And ah, again, I don’t like the media, but ah, when I’m talking to Jim Ramstad, our representative, he said that’s an important thing to do. Let people know how you feel.
AR: And especially now…
TB: So I wrote a letter… I don’t have a heading on this, but I sent it out to several different newspapers a long time ago:
I am Tom Burnett Sr., father of Tom Burnett Jr., who led the effort to take Flight 93 back from the Islamists. He did something. Now I must do something. I must speak out against the memorial planned for Shanksville.TB: That was their word.
The design, “Crescent of Embrace,” by Paul Murdoch, which [will run? has won?] approval by some, and to those who are now clamoring to support it, though they think the design can be tweaked to make it acceptable…
AR: That it can be “tweaked”?
TB: Yeah. Some of the people on our committee—some of the family members—came up with the idea that we better change it. It [the crescent design] was against ALL the rules in my book.
AR: Okay. So when they were voting on it, they were voting on it provisional with some changes being made?
TB: The possibility was there and it was mentioned, but this “tweaking” came up afterwards. The family members suggested it because there was a … there was a huge… the United States went against this! Did you ever read Michelle Malkin’s blog?
AR: Yeah. I was reading all the blogs carefully at that point. I saw all the comments on it, pretty much.
TB: Then I wrote the letter, that I’ll read to you also, to the jury members, about this “tweaking” business. They wanted to change it, to make it acceptable, and Murdoch agreed with it.
[So both letters were written at the height of the crescent controversy in the press, when the families were talking about responding to the controversy by “tweaking” the design, and it seems that the majority of the newspapers that Mr. Burnett sent the letters to never published them!]
Okay, I’ll continue now:
… acceptable, semicolon; … I do not approve or accept it as a fitting memorial to those passenger and crew on Flight 93.TB: Those are his words. I’ve got them in quotes, “healing and contemplation”:
Mr. Murdoch’s plan just isn’t acceptable. Millions of Americans and I find the “red crescent of embrace” an insult to my son, and the others on Flight 93, who engaged in a violent and valiant struggle to take that plane back from the Islamic hijackers.
Without warning, my son and the other passengers and crew of Flight 93 were suddenly placed in the vanguard of the war on terrorism. Facing unfathomable choices, Tom was calm, clearheaded, decisive and fearless. I can only hope that in the years to come the rest of us live up to the standard of heroism that he and others set on 9/11.
What I am preeminently concerned about is what our countrymen will feel and learn when they visit the site. The story, when properly presented, will properly honor and properly reverberate in history what those heroes accomplished for their fellow Americans, and for the entire Western world. I would want them to feel the desperateness of those aboard Flight 93 as they became aware of what was happening, and the cold realization of what they had to do. I want them to ask themselves, “what would I have done, had I been aboard that flight?” We know that in very little time the passengers got out of their seats and attempted to take back that airplane. They tried. We believe, with more time, they could have.
No, I cannot approve the suggested memorial, “red crescent of embrace.” That was accepted without unanimity, by Jury Two, August 2005. It should be thrown out. It is unmistakably an Islamic symbol that has been used by Muslims for centuries. A jarring symbol that, inadvertently or not, commemorates—on such hallowed ground—the hijackers’ faith, and on the site where forty Americans, forty heroes, died.
There is no way that a “red crescent of embrace” should be accepted. It will not work. Even with all of the tweaking people have suggested. Paul Murdoch, the architect, whose firm insists that his submission was about “healing and contemplation”…
The power of “wind chimes,” that he also proposes, is about the size and height of a minaret. Tall, and or taller, than on a mosque. Mr. Murdoch wants TWO Islamic symbols for our memorial. This must not happen.TB: You see more [Islamic features], and I agree with you. There’s more there.
AR: [Laughs] Yup.
TB: [Laughs] You know more about it than I do. Now… and there’s a paragraph now:
No to this design, the “red crescent of embrace.” This proposed design memorial bastardizes what my son and others did on Flight 93.This all went on deaf ears, apparently. I sent it to a Pennsylvania newspaper and … I didn’t send it to our local paper. I was just reluctant to. But I’d like, if you will, if you’d like to take the time, I wrote the jury members a letter too, September 10th 2005.
AR: Yeah. Let’s get that one too. One question about this first letter. Do you know which paper you sent it to in Pennsylvania?
TB: I think I sent it to the Tribune Democrat. I’m not positive about that. Which one does Swauger work for?
AR: Swuager works for the Tribune Democrat.
TB: I’m not sure. You know, I didn’t have a heading on that. I sent it and… one of my friends said, “why don’t you send it to The New York Times. A lot of people read that.” But I didn’t do that. I don’t know if I sent one to Philadelphia or not. I’ll have to… I’ll see what I can find. … Any other questions?
AR: No. It’s just very interesting to find that you also recognized the minaret.
TB: Right. Hell yes! You know… but they pooh-poohed it. [The jury apparently.] Ah, they had a guy on that thing in charge of memorials around the world, the government, one of which is in Hawaii of course [the Arizona memorial?], and he went along with this. I think he went along because so many other people did. He went along, … against what I said. Oh… okay! Pittsburgh Post Gazette!
AR: Oh you sent it to the Post Gazette! Wow. That’s very interesting. Very interesting.
TB: The Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 9/10/05. This is to the jury members. “Dear Jury members: September 10th, 2005.”
AR: So this is …. It’s this second letter that you sent to the Post Gazette?
TB: Yeah. “Oh boy,” I say, “the dawn came up like thunder out here in flyover land,” paragraph:
I will attach the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, 9/10/05, headline: “Flight 93 memorial decried as Islam symbol.”TB: So you see? They were setting it up already. [Laughs] … In other words: “You think our way. We’re saying that this is not a CRESCENT of embrace. This is not Muslim. This is not … you think of it as a circle.”
I have been asked many times: “Didn’t anyone on the Stage Two jury recognize the Crescent of Embrace as a universal Muslim symbol?”
To the point, four [?]: Please send everyone a copy of the notes of the meeting during which I, Tom Burnett, brought up the point that the crescent is a Muslim symbol, and the discussion that ensued.
I am somewhat hesitant to bring this up, but I feel it is of the utmost importance. The crescent is a universal Muslim symbol. That symbol is unacceptable for a memorial that will reputedly honor the victims of Flight 93. Those who had the courage to get out of their seats and fight back, those who had the courage to overpower terror, over fanatical Muslims.
It is very interesting that in the Stage Two jury report, under jury recommendations, number 5 says: “Words and labels; consider the interpretation and impact of words within the context of this event. The crescent should be referred to as a circle or arc or other words that are not tied to specific religious iconography.”
AR: They’re telling you … there making it a crescent and telling you to think of it as a circle.
TB: And I was asked personally: “Listen, would you vote for it if we used the word “circle,” or “arc”? And I said “no.” What the hell? You change words. A pig is a pig!
[This may explain the mystery of why the Crescent of Embrace name was not changed to something more benign from the outset, when the jury report itself suggested avoiding the crescent name. The person who was objecting out loud to the name was Tom and he said that changing the name would not change his vote, so apparently they decided there was no point in changing the name. Thank God. Look how hard it is to break this story even when the Memorial Project was so bold as to use the crescent name. If they could deny today it was EVER a crescent, it would be that much harder to explain to people that the Mecca oriented crescent is still there in a slightly disguised form that leaves its religious significance completely intact.]
AR: It is interesting that in the end, they didn’t even follow their own recommendation.
TB: [Laughs hard]. And we had these people. … They were from Harvard…. [USC?], Pennsylvania University, … they were all landscape architects, and they wanted to consider the aesthetics of it. Don’t be stupid, you know. In effect, they said: “Don’t be stupid. That’s an aesthetic symbol. That’s all, and it’s used all over the place.” They were telling us how to interpret it!
TB: Next paragraph:
It is amazing to me that this was not changed before it was presented to the public.TB: And I really WAS surprised, you know:
Didn’t enough people realize what the symbol represented, or did someone make the decision that this could be fixed later, if someone had the guts to protest? Did that someone realize that the American public would notice, or did they think they were stupid? I don’t think Paul Murdoch, or anyone else, can convince the public that the crescent is not offending to our loved ones, whether the crescent is part of architectural vocabulary or not. The public will not believe them.TB: I have to believe that the crescent was discussed at the Murdoch planning meeting. Jim Ramstead, representative, and his right hand man who worked in his office, agreed with me. How could they miss this? How could landscape architects miss this? It had to be planned, is my point. Next paragraph:
My wife reported to me that there was concern by family members [about] having CROSSES in the memorial. They did not [want] to offend anyone by putting up crosses. And my family has visited national cemeteries. Your religious preference can be placed on your headstone. I have never heard that people complained about doing it that way. Now, do we have any family members being offended because of the Muslim symbol? I read in the article that Kenny Nacke…TB: You know the name?
TB: He had a brother on the flight. Kenny Nacke said, quote:
It doesn’t affect my decision on it in any way. I’m still happy with it.TB: Then we have Tom Sokolowski. I sat next to Tom Sokolowski at the meeting. [Starts laughing.] Talk about a pecksniff!
AR: You’ll like what I say about him in the book.
TB: [Laughs] Well you know, he dismissed me as being a nut. Tom Sokolowski, not a family member, said that the claim is “asinine.” He used the word “asinine.”
AR: So he used that in the meeting. I know he used that to describe this guy [Ron McRae] who protested in public about it [the crescent]. He actually used it to describe…
TB: He used it at the meeting.
AR: So this was anybody who criticized the crescent and thought it was a Muslim symbol?
TB: “The claim is asinine,” he said. Of course I was sitting right to his left. I could have popped him one, but I didn’t. [Laughs] It wasn’t worth it. [Continues]:
The third person interviewed was Gordon Felt, said it was an “unfortunate distraction,” and said it would be SILLY for us to have in the memorial some sort of symbolism, in parentheses, full parentheses, that would be offensive to people. [i.e. Felt’s SILLY comment was a parenthetical remark, dismissing the notion that the jury members would have accepted anything offensive.]TB: Holy Mackerel! … That’s ME explaining.
TB: “[Crosstalk] .. with Gordon, it would be more than silly, it would be horrible.”
I also comment on the voting procedure:
I really want to know exactly how it was tabulated. On page 4 and 5 of 12 [of the Jury Report] it is described as the following: “Day three of the Stage Two jury session began with a period of individual study [laughs], followed by an in depth discussion of the three entries remaining under consideration. Following further discussion and polling, the jury narrowed it to two entries, ongoing discussion, and final vote by the jury resulted in one entry receiving a majority of the jurors votes. By consensus the Stage Two jury forwards this section of the Flight 93 memorial to the partner [Paul Murdoch] with the full and unqualified support of each juror.TB: I laughed. I got out of there. I did talk to Swauger right after that. I can’t remember what we talked about. I guess I ah, I threw my hands up. My final sentence, and final paragraph:
Let’s have the tally of the vote.TB: Okay. That is what I sent to the jurors. I heard nothing back. Okay Alec. You’ve been very patient with me. … But ah… I’m FOR you on this. I will do what I can, small though it may be, when called upon.
TB: And I am contacting Ramstad. I like Tancredo, because he’s got a lot of common sense.
TB: You know what we’d like to do. [Unintelligible] has been in on this thing. She’s been on the board for years now, ever since this started. [In our unrecorded call Tom said that his wife is on the board of the Families of Flight 93.] We want the government to pull funding and do a complete audit. They want a hundred million for this thing. I don’t think the public can afford the cost. And I want you to know that I am for the simple… this is a little off the beat maybe but… I want a simple plan. I would like to see a cemetery there, at Shanksville. Nothing ostentatious at all, and certainly not those 44 glass blocks. Absolutely insane. I can’t understand why people don’t get it.
AR: And how they think that an architect could do that unintentionally.
TB: There’s something wrong with this whole thing. I would like to see a FULL investigation. LOVE to have it come from Congress. And find out WHY? Why Murdoch. What’s his reason here? He can’t be that dumb. And by the way, he was very polite. I talked to him for about an hour on the telephone, and he assured me, again and again, when I asked these questions—I mentioned this earlier—that he was not a Muslim, none of his family were Muslims.
I kind of felt that he was extending a hand to the Islamists. I didn’t want to extend a hand!
AR: Right. I think that is what they meant by the embrace: that they were going to embrace Islam too, and try to reach out to the good people of Islam, or whatever their thought was.
TB: It is all… I can’t say the words in public. It is all SHIT. I can’t believe it. …About the people I’ve talked to on the telephone: its been a long time. I know I’m holding you but I talked to Reynolds [chairman of the Memorial Project]. Know the name?
TB: I talked to Joanne Hanley [Superintendent of the Memorial Project]. Of course she was at the meetings that we had when I was out there. I get nowhere when I talk to them. … Who was the other one?
AR: Reinbold? [Memorial Project manager]
TB: Yeah Reinbold. I talked to all three of them on the telephone, telling them pretty much what I am telling you, and this was a long long time ago.
AR: So this was before you knew the specific things I was pointing out?
TB: Yeah. Before I knew what you were doing! I’ve learned about you gradually. And of course we are reading, got it off of the internet, part of your book. And we will be reading the book. …
For a hundred million dollars, they haven’t worked very well. They have kind of excluded it, kind of taken it over. …
[We talk about some personal things. I say how proud I am of his son.]
TB: We know for sure of Tom: he organized that group to fight the Islamists.
And listen. I am so happy you are doing this.
AR: There’s a couple questions I have for you.
AR: Would you like it if I go ahead and make public that you do not want Tom’s name used?
TB: You would call the newspapers?
AR: I will just put it on my blog. The blogs count as a news source now. The newspapers, when they report it…
TB: That’s fine.
AR: … will just cite me as the source, or will just quote that you have come out saying….
TB: I suppose you want to use some of the letter that I just read to you.
AR: Yup. And I would put perhaps the whole thing, maybe part of it.
TB: Yes Alec. I think we HAVE to. It’s not that I pull a lot of weight around. I know that. I’m one of forty.
AR: Yeah, but this is crucial. We are really in ..
TB: You can quote me on this.
TB: It’s on the record. You can do that.
AR: And your whole family is okay with coming out and taking a stand against this design?
AR: Keeping the Burnett name out of it?
TB: Yeah. We don’t want it used at all, if that design stays in. We’ve got to audit this process, and we’ve got to get to the TRUTH! That’s really what we’re after.
AR: Another question. When you talked to Murdoch about your concerns, did you have any of my information? Like did you ask him about the Mecca orientation of the crescent, for instance?
TB: I don’t believe I did. That was a LONG time ago. Shortly after the jury left.
AR: So he was just assuring you that there was no Islamic symbolism, no Muslims in his family?
TB: Yes. And Murdoch, he denied all of it. He said [no I didn’t?]. But you know, it doesn’t make sense to me. Anyone who does architectural design, landscape design, is keenly aware of where symbols … why wouldn’t they vet that properly? [Here Tom is talking about the Murdoch firm, and expressing skepticism that they were not aware of the block count and other symbols. I jump the "they" over to the people at the Memorial Project.]
AR: Yeah. They just relied on his denials. If he is on the side of the enemy, he’s not the guy you should be listening to.
TB: Nope. Hell!
TB: Listen. Even if it is incidental. He tried to impress me with the fact that… coincidental is all. He kept saying that. And you know, I have a hard time believing that. I certainly know nothing about architecture, but at least I’m, at least I know what I SEE.
By the way. My family. Immediate family, HAS voted on this: to eliminate Tom Jr.’s name.
AR: Oh. Okay.
TB: Now, the only thing, when I asked [Tom Jr.'s widow] about a year ago, she didn’t give me a yes. So, probably leave her name off it.
AR: So, she was an abstention?
TB: Yeah. Let me tell you this though. Thy ALL voted against the design, within our family.
When it comes to Tom Jr.’s name, yes we did, we talked about it when I was down in Little Rock, and… she was hesitant because of the publicity. She has those three little kids.
[I cannot think of a way to describe the family’s support for Tom Sr.’s position on use of Tom Jr.'s name without mentioning the abstention of Tom Jr.'s widow so I am including it here and just ask everyone to please respect the privacy of those family members who ask for it.]
AR: One last question I have is: I’m wondering if you can tell me what the Memorial Project told the family members about my report.
TB: They’ve been damning it. In any email that we get, they give you talking points against it. They want people to, when they are asked about it, to (unintelligible). That is really anathema to me. To have someone tell me, ANYONE tell me, how to think!
They talk about it every now and then. Ed Root, and others. Gordie Felt, and others. They say: “Hey.” You’ve probably seen it. It has been published, a lot of it. [Statements against me by Root, Felt and Patrick White (Vice President of the Families of Flight 93) have all been published in local western Pennsylvania newspapers.] I can’t tell you specifically, but they pooh-pooh it.
[I ask if Tom will send me the Jury Report and other materials he has.]
TB: I hope we can prevail against this.
AR: I’m sure we will. What the people who are supporting this design are doing: they are just counting on their ability to suppress this information. It’s too explosive. They can’t keep this information down.
TB: [Laughs] You’d think we lived in the Middle East!
AR: Yeah! The number of people who have been suppressing the information. It is just crazy.
[We make mailing and emailing arrangements.]
TB: It’s been nice talking to you.
AR: It has been VERY nice talking to you. You know, the family members I did talk to were very hostile to me and I just didn’t want to bother anybody.
TB: I know. And anybody who opposes what they see as passed by democratic vote, they treat the same way. It’s not just you Alec. It’s other people too, including some family members.
[Including Tom himself I presume. This commentary from Tom explains the very peculiar response I kept getting from Memorial Project representatives when I tried to show them how, unbeknownst to them, the memorial design they had chosen was actually a terrorist memorial mosque: that the enemy had snuck into their design competition, and won! Superintendent Joanne Hanley and others kept extolling the "open and inclusive process" by which the design was chosen, adding: "we all understand and agree that the design neither depicts or was intended to imply any religious iconography." (Addendum 10, Exhibit 1.)
What??? Who cares what you THOUGHT. I am showing you what you MISSED. But now I see where this was coming from. They already had these talking points in place as a response to Mr. Burnett's criticisms. They all had the same information that Mr. Burnett had when they chose the crescent design, thus his continued objections to Islamic symbolism was portrayed as him being a sore loser. He lost a democratic vote and was supposed to shut up now. (Strange view of democracy.) Again and again the letters I got from the Park Service describe "the continued support that the families of Flight 93 have had for the selected design" (Exhibit 5), as if the families were in unanimous agreement. Having lost the jury vote, objections about Islamic symbolism were no longer even to be acknowledged.
UPDATE: As if on cue, Ed Root has now told reporters, in response to Mr. Burnett's standing up with me in protest of the design: "To allow someone to destroy what so many others have worked so honestly and diligently to do, that's not democracy, that's tyranny."]
TB: Most of the family members, those who voted against the design, they don’t want to speak out. They don’t want to be bothered by the folks who are pushing this.
By the way… Have you gotten any other support besides from me?
AR: Not from family members. I’ve been reluctant. The impression I got from family members is that they felt like they have been hounded by publicity and they just want privacy. I don’t want to go against that so I have been very reluctant to reach out to family members. Even, say, Lisa Beamer, who has been outspoken against this appeasement of the Islamists. I have just been leaving it up to people to contact me if they want to.
[At the beginning of 2006, I sent Mr. Burnett and the other family members on the jury the same report I sent to the Memorial Project leadership, along with my contact information. I had been hoping he would call me, and it was indeed VERY nice to hear from him.]
[Rosemary Woods type gap in tape, where I pressed record by mistake instead of play.]
AR: … that’s right. They are about to start building it.
TB: And there are so many aspects to it. It’s hard for me to recall some of these things until I look in my files.
I’ll do what I can.
Friday, August 10, 2007
Memorial Project Chairman John Reynolds is a fraud
He thinks Islamic prayer times are determined by shadow angle (and hence can be marked on any wall around any tower), when the first thing I explain is that they are determined by shadow length, so that an Islamic prayer time indicator must be placed a precise distance from a shadow-caster, and follow a precise arc.
Even though Reynolds does not know the first thing about my sundial analysis, he is assuring the public that my warnings of terrorist attack are a false alarm. So it has gone, across the entire crescent of betrayal.
Here is what John Reynolds told Brian Whipkey, editor of the Somerset Daily American, about my sundial claim:
I've also thought about the Washington Monument. I mean, since 9/11 - you know, the Washington Monument , as you well know, sticks straight up out of the ground, and security around the Washington Monument was an issue, actually an issue before 9/11, but it became a huge issue after 9/11, and the resulting design is a circular wall. It stands about this high, … it's big and it's thick and - you start thinking, well, gee, you know when the sun hits the angle as it hits the Washington Monument at the right time of day, it's going to point to a place on that circle. Is that a response to protecting the Washington monument, an Islamic response? No, absolutely not. [Reynolds' full fantasia is at the end of this post, forwarded via email from Whipkey. The interview was published on 8/3/07, but is subscriber only at the Daily American. UPDATE: Brian Whipkey has graciously sent me the page PDF so I can make the interview available to my readers.]It is obvious here that Reynolds thinks Islamic prayer times are determined by the angle at which a gnomon's shadow projects away from its base. He thinks that when the shadow of the Washington Monument crosses the security wall at a particular angle, that point on the security wall can be seen to mark the time for Islamic afternoon prayers. But as my report to the Memorial Project explains, Islamic prayer times are determined by shadow length, not shadow angle. Afternoon or "asr" prayers commence when an object’s shadow is equal to the length of its noon shadow plus the object’s height.
To serve as an Islamic prayer-time indicator, the security wall would have to be just the right distance from the Washington Monument, and it would have to follow just the right arc. The exact position and shape of an asr prayer line varies with latitude. I took a couple of hours to plot for Mr. Reynolds where the end of the Washington Monument’s shadow actually lands at asr prayer time on different days of the year. The asr line never goes anywhere near the granite protection wall, nor does it coincide with any other structure:
Radial lines plot middle of the month asr prayer shadows, starting with June at the bottom, going up to December at the top, and back down again to the next June. The connecting line going up the right is the asr prayer line. The granite protective wall is the circle about a hundred yards from the monument.
[My shadow calculations are pasted at bottom of this post. I confirmed their accuracy by going to Islam.com and looking up the asr prayer times for Washington DC. They match the times that come from my shadow calculations to within a couple of minutes each day. Geeks might notice that the Monument’s shadow shows this photo to have been taken on about August 15th, a couple minutes before asr prayer time (4:00PM EST), and no, there is nothing within 20 yards in any direction to mark the spot. From mid-November to mid-January the end of the Monument’s shadow does not even reach the ground at prayer time. It lands on the building at the top of the image.]
Now that you know how an Islamic sundial works, look at the side by side comparison of a traditional Islamic sundial and the Tower of Voices:
Everyone who has read this far now knows a hundred times as much as that idiot Reynolds. He never even looked at this. He does not know the first thing about how an Islamic sundial works. He never even began to do is his due diligence as Chairman of the Memorial Project, yet he is out assuring everyone who asks that there is nothing to see here, nothing but the most ordinary coincidence, even inevitable coincidence.
Just as the editors of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette decided that "you can face any direction to face Mecca" (Crescent of Betrayal, p. 108), Reynolds now says that anything can be an Islamic sundial. On the contrary. The only way to get a blueprint for a year round accurate Islamic prayer-time sundial is by very precise calculation.
I told Reynolds a year and a half ago that he needed to talk to me; that I was warning him that his project is under terrorist attack; that he needs to hear my information. Instead he comes up with ignorant excuses for dismissing my warnings, excuses that I would disabuse him of in a second if he would just TALK TO ME, but he refuses. This man is actively abetting a terrorist plot. Not intentionally perhaps, but his willful blindness IS culpable.
I have reported numerous private exchanges where those responsible for advancing the Crescent/Bowl of Embrace design have admitted features like the Mecca orientation of the giant crescent and the 44 glass blocks on the flight path and made excuses for them, while at the same time telling the press that my claims have been investigated and been found to be false. Reynolds’ sundial remarks break new ground by showing the excuse-making to the public, but otherwise the pattern is the same.
Even though Reynolds has not actually looked at my sundial analysis, he does not deny its factual accuracy. I guess they just all assume at this point that everything I am saying is factually accurate, as indeed it is. All his attention is on the excuse making, and since he is blissfully ignorant of the reality of Islamic sundials, he can grasp at any foolish excuse and have it sound reasonable in his own mind. The question is how he can think it is reasonable to assure the public that he has investigated a warning of terrorist attack and found it to be a false alarm when he has actually been grasping at excuses to avert his gaze.
Washington Monument, shadow calculations
By Alec Rawls, 8-7-07
For John Reynolds
(My calculations for the Tower of Voices are at CrescentOfBetrayal.com.)
Monument is at coordinates 38.88N, 77.03W and is 169.3 meters tall. The terraserver aerial photo I took a screenshot of was at 1 pixel per meter resolution. Gnomon point located at the center of the circle at the base of the Monument.
I used J Giesen’s Sun Shadow Applet to do the calculations. (Un-check DST. Entering the latitude and longitude will automatically set UT to -5.) Giesen’s applet gives the shadow position in polar coordinates. I used Kusashi’s online calculator to convert to Cartesian coordinates.)
Asr prayers commence when an object’s shadow is the length of its shortest shadow (which occurs at solar noon), plus its height. (This is the Shafie definition. Hanfie prayer shadows land even further out from the security wall. Shafie and Hanfi prayer times for DC can be found at Islam.com.). Calculations for mid-month asr prayer shadows are:
Time of shortest shadow: 12:08 PM
Length of shortest shadow: 47.17 m
Asr shadow length (shortest shadow plus monument height): 216.47 m.
Time when monument shadow reaches asr length: 4.16 PM
Angle of asr shadow (degrees CW from north): 90.7
Cartesian coordinates, rounded to the nearest pixel: (Δx, Δy) = (216, -3)
[Microsoft Paint has no zero, so in Paint, go (Δx, Δy) = (217, -4)]
July 15th/ May 15th
Time of shortest shadow: 12:14
Length of shortest shadow: 52.97 m
Asr shadow length (shortest shadow plus monument height): 222.27 m.
Time when monument shadow reaches asr length: 4.09
Angle of asr shadow (degrees CW from north): 88.7
Cartesian coordinates, rounded to the nearest pixel: (Δx, Δy) = (222, 5)
August 15th/ April 15th
Time of shortest shadow: 12:13
Length of shortest shadow: 78.46 m
Asr shadow length (shortest shadow plus monument height): 247.76 m.
Time when monument shadow reaches asr length: 4.00
Angle of asr shadow (degrees CW from north): 79.9
Cartesian coordinates, rounded to the nearest pixel: (Δx, Δy) = (244, 43)
September 15th/ March 15th
Time of shortest shadow: 12:03
Length of shortest shadow: 122.53 m
Asr shadow length (shortest shadow plus monument height): 291.83 m.
Time when monument shadow reaches asr length: 3.34
Angle of asr shadow (degrees CW from north): 66.8
Cartesian coordinates, rounded to the nearest pixel: (Δx, Δy) = (268, 115)
October 15th/ February 15thTime of shortest shadow: 11:55 AM
Length of shortest shadow: 184.34 m
Asr shadow length (shortest shadow plus monument height): 353.64 m.
Time when monument shadow reaches asr length: 3.01
Angle of asr shadow (degrees CW from north): 53.1
Cartesian coordinates, rounded to the nearest pixel: (Δx, Δy) = (283, 212)
November 15th/ January 15th
Time of shortest shadow: 11:51 AM
Length of shortest shadow: 264.62 m
Asr shadow length (shortest shadow plus monument height): 433.92 m.
Time when monument shadow reaches asr length: 2.34
Angle of asr shadow (degrees CW from north): 41.2
Cartesian coordinates, rounded to the nearest pixel: (Δx, Δy) = (286, 326)
Time of shortest shadow: 12:01 PM
Length of shortest shadow: 320.46 m
Asr shadow length (shortest shadow plus monument height): 498.76 m.
Time when monument shadow reaches asr length: 2.32
Angle of asr shadow (degrees CW from north): 35.19
Cartesian coordinates, rounded to the nearest pixel: (Δx, Δy) = (287, 408)
John Reynolds' full answer to my sundial claim
From: Brian Whipkey
Sent: Wednesday, August 08, 2007 10:51 AM
Subject: RE: flight 93 memorial
Hello Mr. XXXXXX,
Thank you for your inquiry. We recently spoke to the chairman of the flight 93 commission for a question and answer feature. The following is his response to comments made by people such as Alec Rawls.
(John J. Reynolds of Alexandria, Va. and the chairman of the Flight 93 National Memorial Federal Advisory Commission, visited the Daily American to discuss a variety of issue with Vicki Rock, staff writer, and Brian Whipkey, editor, for this feature.)
Q: There are a few people who continue to think the memorial design has an Islamic symbol in it. What are your comments on that and the future of the appearance of the memorial?
A: Thanks for asking the question, because it's one I think about a lot. You know, I think that it's easy for people to take a lot of different things and say, well, gee, I can imagine it's this. I was thinking over the last few days, I thought about a cathedral, and sort of commonly we think of a cathedral as a Gothic-like structure and it's big and it's probably usually stone, and you know, that's not what defines a cathedral. A cathedral could be any building that has a cathedra, a bishop's chair, in it. It has to have a bishop and a bishop's chair. It has to be designated, and there's lots of places that people go see in Europe that probably we all walk away from thinking that was a cathedral and it's not, it's just a big, beautiful stone church. And so, you know, it's the intent of the people who are involved with that place I think that that drives, and I think that's the case here, and I think the thing that makes the most upset and the most concerned about this is the imposition of other people who haven't been involved whatsoever, of what they see, to overtake the intent of the people who have thoughtfully gone through the creation of this whole thing, and so I have a lot of angst about not valuing uppermost the intents of the people that created it, in this case I would say mostly the families and the architect and the other partners as well. If this was not a design that pleased the families and made them feel like they and their loved ones were embraced and taken care of appropriately and presented to the future appropriately, then they wouldn't have approved of the design. I've also thought about the Washington Monument . I mean, since 9/11 - you know, the Washington Monument , as you well know, sticks straight up out of the ground, and security around the Washington Monument was an issue, actually an issue before 9/11, but it became a huge issue after 9/11, and the resulting design is a circular wall. It stands about this high, but it's, you're not going to drive a tank or a truck up over it very quickly or easily. It's granite and if you know anything at all about what's behind and below the wall, it's big and it's thick and - you start thinking, well, gee, you know when the sun hits the angle as it hits the Washington Monument at the right time of day, it's going to point to a place on that circle. Is that a response to protecting the Washington monument, an Islamic response? No, absolutely not. It's a response to how the original designers of the Washington Monument expected that place to be seen given the realities of today and nothing more. And it's, gosh, if you haven't been there recently, the completed project is just beautiful. It's so understated that you just have no idea of what it is. So I think that the people who are inventing these theories have the right to do so, but I don't think they should overtake what the families and the designer and the architect have envisioned as the place to embrace what Flight 93 really is.
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