Centre for Research on Globalisation

Centre de recherche sur la mondialisation



9/11 and the "War on Terrorism" 


Selected articles and essays


by Michel Chossudovsky



"Millions of people have been misled regarding the causes and consequences of September 11.

When people across the US and around the World find out that Al Qaeda is not an outside enemy but a creation of US foreign policy and the CIA, the legitimacy of the bipartisan war agenda will tumble like a deck of cards." (Michel Chossudovsky, War and Globalization, The Truth behind September 11, 2002)


Global Research E-Monograph and Reports Series, No. 1, 2004

Copyright Michel Chossudovsky and the Centre for Research on Globalization 2004. All Rights Reserved.

See complete copyright note at the end of the page




As the election campaign unfolds, the "war on terrorism" has become the main if not the sole election issue. Ironically, Osama bin Laden has become a central figure of the election debate.

Whatever it takes" said President Bush:

"[We will] fight the terrorists across the Earth, not for pride, not for power, but because the lives of our citizens are at stake."

Senator Kerry has promised to do even better:

"As President, I will fight a smarter, more effective war on terror. We will deploy every tool in our arsenal: our economic as well as our military might; our principles as well as our firepower."

In other words, the tragic events of 9/11 are being used by both political parties to galvanize public opinion in support of America's war agenda.

9/11 is being used as a justification to wage a pre-emptive war against "rogue states" and Islamic terrorists, which are "threatening the security of Homeland".

Meanwhile, the "war on terrorism" has diverted attention from all other issues, including the militarization of America and a looming social and economic crisis, marked by rising levels of poverty and unemployment.

Across the land, the image of an "outside enemy" is instilled in the consciousness of Americans. Al Qaeda is threatening America and the world. The repeal of democracy under the Patriot legislation is portrayed as a means to providing "domestic security" and upholding civil liberties.

The Big Lie

This evolving bipartisan consensus is based on a lie. Confirmed by congressional transcripts, intelligence and news reports, this illusive outside enemy is a creation of the US intelligence apparatus.

The enemy of America is "Made in America". This is an inescapable fact.

The "Islamic Militant Network" (the forerunner of Osama bin Laden’s Al Qaeda), was created and sustained by the CIA. CIA-sponsored guerrilla training in Afghanistan and Pakistan were integrated with the teachings of Islam. The madrasas were set up by Wahabi fundamentalists financed out of Saudi Arabia, with the support of Washington.

The Reagan, Bush senior and Clinton administrations actively supported the Islamic brigades during the Soviet-Afghan war and its aftermath. The Taliban were the "graduates" of the CIA sponsored madrasas. They would not have been able to form a government, had it not been for US military aid, channeled through Pakistan.

Confirmed by official congressional documents, US support to Al Qaeda continued after the Cold war.

Ironically, during the Clinton administration, it was the Republicans who were accusing Bill Clinton of having links to the Islamic Militant Network in Bosnia and Kosovo. A 1997 document emanating from the House Republican Party Committee entitled "Clinton-Approved Iranian Arms Transfers Help Turn Bosnia into Militant Islamic Base", accused Clinton of working hand in glove with Al Qaeda in Bosnia:

"The Clinton administration’s hands-on involvement with the Islamic network's arms pipeline included inspections of missiles from Iran by U.S. government officials... [T]he Third World Relief Agency (TWRA), a Sudan-based, phoney humanitarian organization ... has been a major link in the arms pipeline to Bosnia... TWRA is believed to be connected with such fixtures of the Islamic terror network as Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman (the convicted mastermind behind the 1993 World Trade Centre bombing) and Osama bin Laden, a wealthy Saudi émigré believed to bankroll numerous militant groups." (Congressional Press Release, Republican Party Committee (RPC), U.S. Congress, Clinton-Approved Iranian Arms Transfers Help Turn Bosnia into Militant Islamic Base, Washington DC, 16 January 1997, available on the website of the Centre of Research on Globalisation (CRG) at http://globalresearch.ca/articles/DCH109A.html .

Needless to say these Congressional documents, while revealing the outright lies behind US foreign policy, were not meant to be read by the broader public.

US Support to Al Qaeda (1999-2001)

US and NATO support to Al Qaeda continued during the wars in Kosovo (1999) and Macedonia (2001). Three weeks before 9/11, the US government and the "Islamic Militant Network" were working hand in glove in supporting and financing the self-proclaimed National Liberation Army (NLA), involved in the terrorist attacks in Macedonia. US military advisers mingle with Mujahideen within the same paramilitary force, Western mercenaries from NATO countries fight alongside Mujahideen recruited in the Middle East and Central Asia. And the US media calls this a "blowback" where so-called "intelligence assets" have gone against their sponsors!

Needless to say, the Republicans and the Democrats are complicit. They accuse one another of having links to Al Qaeda. Yet successive Democratic and Republican administrations have been involved from the outset of the Soviet Afghan war in 1979 in developing and sustaining Al Qaeda as a US sponsored "intelligence asset".  

In other words, if the Democrats were to win the 2004 presidential elections, continuity in US foreign policy would be maintained. More importantly, the "war on terrorism" and the lies concerning Al Qaeda and 9/11 would also be maintained.

The 9/11 Commission Report

The 9/11 Commission Report is devoid of a historical perspective. While it provides all the appearances of a constructive critique of the US government, it serves to uphold the myth of an outside enemy.

Following the publication of the 9/11 Commission Report, the unfolding consensus is there were "intelligence failures. "They knew but failed to act".

This line of reasoning is appealing to many 9/11 critics and Democrats, because it tends to place the blame on the Bush administration. Yet in a bitter irony, the very process of expressing public outrage on the failures of senior Bush officials in waging an effective "war on terrorism", the Report has contributed to reinforcing the myth of the "outside enemy", which is being used to justify the largest military build-up since the Vietnam war.

The foreknowledge issue is an obvious red herring. It serves to present Al Qaeda as a threat, as an "outside enemy", when in fact Al Qaeda is a creation of the US intelligence apparatus.

Both the 9/11 Commission Report and the earlier Joint Senate-House Inquiry constitute a cover-up. The function of these reports is to destroy the historical record of US covert support to internationalism terrorism, while creating the illusion that America and "Western Civilization" are threatened. In turn, the various terrorist warnings and code orange alerts have created, across America, an atmosphere of fear and intimidation.

Refuting the Myth of the Outside Enemy

In response to the 9/11 Commission Report, we bring to the attention of our readers a compilation of articles on 9/11 and the "war on terrorism".

This collection includes most of my recent writings on 9/11, together with a few of earlier texts written the immediate wake of September 11 2001.

The material contained in this collection will eventually be the object of a full-length book, as a sequel to my earlier book entitled  War and Globalization, the Truth behind September 11.

However, in view of the urgency and the need to inform public opinion, at this critical juncture in our history, we decided to bring this collection out in the context of The CRG's  E-Reports and Monograph Series.

The Table of Contents provided below provides a link to key articles on different aspects of 9/11 and the war on terrorism.

It does not, however, purport to provide an exhaustive review of 9/11 issues. Its main objective is to refute the myth of "the outside enemy", which has served as a justification for war and the repeal of civil liberties.


Michel Chossudovsky, Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), 8 September 2004



Table of Contents



1.  "The Big Lie"

The presumption is that these forewarnings and intelligence briefs emanating from the intelligence establishment constitute a true and unbiased representation of the terrorist threat.

Meanwhile, the history of Al Qaeda and the CIA has been shoved to the background. The fact that successive US governments since the Soviet-Afghan war have supported and abetted the Islamic terror network is no longer mentioned, for obvious reasons. It would break the consensus regarding Al Qaeda as the outside enemy of America, which is a crucial building block of the entire National Security doctrine.

2. America's War for Global Domination

We are the juncture of the most serious crisis in modern history.

The Bush Administration has embarked upon a military adventure which threatens the future of humanity.

The wars on Afghanistan and Iraq are part of a broader military agenda, which was launched at the end of the Cold War. The ongoing war agenda is a continuation of the 1991 Gulf War and the NATO led wars on Yugoslavia (1991-2001).



3. Who Is Osama Bin Laden?

Prime suspect in the New York and Washington terrorists attacks, branded by the FBI as an "international terrorist" for his role in the African US embassy bombings, Saudi born Osama bin Laden was recruited during the Soviet-Afghan war "ironically under the auspices of the CIA, to fight Soviet invaders".

4. Historical Roots of Al Qaeda

Rarely mentioned in 9/11 news reports, the "Islamic Militant Network" was created during Jimmy Carter’s presidency (1976-1981). In July 1979, Carter signed a presidential directive to launch a secret plan in support of the Mujahideen in Afghanistan. Confirmed by former CIA director, Robert Gates, in his book, From the Shadows, this "secret plan" was instrumental in triggering the Soviet-Afghan war.

5. Where was Osama bin Laden on 9/11? Bush Administration knew the Whereabouts of Osama

According to CBS News, Osama had been admitted to a Pakistani military hospital on September 10, courtesy of America's ally. In all likelihood he was still in hospital in Rawalpindi on the 11th of September, when the attacks occurred.

6. "Osamagate"

Three weeks before 9/11, the US government and the "Islamic Militant Network" were working hand in glove in supporting and financing the self-proclaimed National Liberation Army (NLA), involved in the terrorist attacks in Macedonia. US military advisers mingle with Mujahideen within the same paramilitary force, Western mercenaries from NATO countries fight alongside Mujahideen recruited in the Middle East and Central Asia. And the US media calls this a "blowback" where so-called "intelligence assets" have gone against their sponsors!

7. Who is behind the "Terrorist Network" in Northern Iraq ,

Sec. Colin Powell accused Baghdad of supporting Ansar al-Islam, a "deadly terrorist network" based in the ethnic Kurd controlled region of Northern Iraq

8. Iraq and the "War on Terrorism"

The Bush administration desperately needs the "war on terrorism" as a justification for the killings of civilians in Iraq, which it describes as "collateral damage".

9. The Pentagon's new terrorist mastermind: Who is Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi?

To reach its foreign policy objectives, the images of terrorism must remain vivid in the minds of the citizens, who are constantly reminded of the terrorist threat.

The "war on terrorism" rests on the creation of one or more evil bogeymen, the terror leaders, Osama bin Laden, Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, et al, whose names and photos are presented ad nauseam in daily news reports.

10. The Pentagon’s Diabolical Intelligence Operation in Afghanistan: Kidnapping and deporting civilians to Guantanamo, providing a safe-haven to Al Qaeda fighters,

Al Qaeda fighters and their senior Pakistani advisers were "saved" on the orders of Donald Rumsfeld. Meanwhile, also on the orders of the Secretary of Defense, innocent civilians who had no relationship whatsoever to the war theater were categorized as "enemy combatants", kidnapped, interrogated and sent to Guantanamo.

11. Pentagon Simulated a Scenario of an actual Terrorist Attack 10 months before 9/11, June 2004

In October 2000, a military exercise was conducted which consisted in establishing the scenario of a simulated passenger plane crashing into the Pentagon.



12. Cover-up or Complicity of the Bush Administration? The Role of Pakistan's Military Intelligence (ISI) in the September 11 Attacks


Pakistan's chief spy Lt. General Mahmoud Ahmad "was in the US when the attacks occurred." He arrived in the US on the 4th of September, a full week before the attacks. He had meetings at the State Department "after" the attacks on the WTC. But he also had "a regular visit of consultations" with his US counterparts at the CIA and the Pentagon during the week prior to September 11.

13. 9/09/01: Shah Masood, leader of the Northern Alliance assassinated two days before 9/11,

It happened two days before the 9/11 attacks on the WTC and the Pentagon. Masood died from wounds suffered in the suicide attack on the Saturday (9/15) following 9/11.

In the wake of the September 11 attacks, the killing of Ahmad Shah Masood was barely mentioned. The broad media consensus was that the two events (9/9 and 9/11) were totally unrelated.

14. The 9/11 Joint Inquiry chairmen in "conflict of interest": Mysterious September 11 Breakfast Meeting on Capitol Hill,

On the morning of September 11, the three lawmakers Bob Graham, Porter Goss and Jon Kyl (who were part of the Congressional delegation to Pakistan) were having breakfast on Capitol Hill with General Ahmad, the alleged "money-man" behind the 9-11 hijackers

15. Expose the Links between Al Qaeda and the Bush Adminstration,

The relationship of the Bush Administration to international terrorism indelibly points to the criminalisation of the upper echelons of US State apparatus. Let's use this information to dismantle the Bush Administration's war plans. Sensitize our fellow citizens. Expose the "dubious links." Because when the truth trickles down, the leaders' war plans will not have a shred of legitimacy in the eyes of millions of Americans who believe that Al Qaeda is "A Threat to America" and that their president is committed to their security.

16. White House Nominee to Head the CIA has Dubious Links to the Terror Network

Two weeks before 9/11, Porter Goss, the White House nominee for the CIA Director of Intelligence was being "briefed on the growing threat of al Qaeda" (WP, 5/04/03) by a Pakistani General who "ran a spy agency notoriously close to Osama bin Laden and the Taliban." (WP, 5/18/02)



17 War Propaganda

The blatant distortion of the truth and the systematic manipulation of all sources of information is an integral part of war planning. In the wake of 9/11, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld created to the Office of Strategic Influence (OSI), or "Office of Disinformation" as it was labeled by its critics:

18. Fabricating an Enemy

One of the main objectives of war propaganda is to «fabricate an enemy» . As anti-war sentiment grows and the political legitimacy the Bush Administration falters, doubts regarding the existence of this "outside enemy" must be dispelled.

19. The US Nuclear Option and the "War on Terrorism"

The multilateral safeguards of the Cold War era with regard to the production and use of nuclear weapons have been scrapped.

While Al Qaeda is presented to public opinion as constituting a nuclear threat, the US Senate has provided a "green light" to the use of tactical nuclear weapons in conventional war theaters against "rogue states" and terrorist organizations.

According to the Pentagon, these weapons are "harmless to civilians".



20. The Criminalization of the State,

The "Criminalization of the State", is when war criminals legitimately occupy positions of authority, which enable them to decide "who are the criminals", when in fact they are the criminals

21 Bush Administration "Guidelines" for Postponing or Canceling the November Presidential Elections,

Concurrent with Homeland Security's statement regarding the possibility of a large scale "9/11 type attack", EAC director DeForest B. Soaries , a Bush appointee, has hinted to the need for: "establishing guidelines for canceling or rescheduling elections if terrorists strike the United States again".

22. The Count Down to Martial Law: Coup d'Etat in America?

An Al Qaeda sponsored terrorist attack has been contemplated as a "trigger mechanism" for carrying out a Coup d'Etat. Whether it is going to be carried out is another matter. The statements of the Bush administration regarding the possibility of a red code alert must, nonetheless, be taken seriously.

The coded terror alerts and "terror events" which have been announced by Department of Homeland Security are part of a disinformation campaign carried out by the CIA, the Pentagon, the State Department and Homeland Security. US intelligence is not only involved in creating phony terror warnings, it is also firmly behind the terror groups, providing them with covert support

23. CIA warns of "New 9/11": Why has John Kerry remained Mum on the Issue of Postponing the Elections?

At least two out of the five post 9/11 orange code alerts were based, according to police reports, on phony intelligence. Why are the Democrats not outraged at the recent terror alert and election cancellation announcements, emanating out of Homeland Security and the CIA? Why are they not saying anything? It's a talking point on network TV. Why is not an election issue?

24. Fabricating Intelligence for Political Gain

The decision to launch the code orange terror alert in New York City, Washington DC and northern New Jersey was taken on the night of July 29th, within hours of John Kerry's acceptance speech at the Democratic convention



25. The Spoils of War: Afghanistan's Multibillion Dollar Heroin Trade,

The heroin business is not "filling the coffers of the Taliban" as claimed by US government and the international community: quite the opposite! The proceeds of this illegal trade are the source of wealth formation, largely reaped by powerful business/criminal interests within the Western countries. These interests are sustained by US foreign policy.

26. Oil: The Anglo-American Military Axis,

The Bush Administration's war plans have nothing to do with "Saddam's weapons of mass destruction" or his alleged links to Osama bin Laden. The invasion of Iraq was intended to exclude rival European, Russian and Chinese interests from the Middle-East and Central Asian oil fields.

27. Who are the Financial Actors behind the WTC?

Barely a few months before 9/11, the Port Authority leased the WTC for 99 years to Silverstein Properties and Westfield America Inc. This transfer from the New York and New Jersey Port Authority was tantamount to the privatisation of the WTC Complex. The official press release described it as "the richest real estate prize in New York City history".



28. The 9/11 Commission Report: More Holes in the Official Story: The 9/11 Cell Phone Calls ,

According to the American Airline / Qualcomm announcement, the technology for cell phone transmission at high altitude will only be available aboard commercial aircraft in 2006. This is an inescapable fact.




Michel Chossudovsky is the author of the international best-seller " War and Globalisation, The Truth Behind September 11,   published in ten languages. He is Professor of Economics at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), which hosts the critically acclaimed website www.globalresearch.ca . He is also a contributor to the Encyclopaedia Britannica. His writings have been translated into more than 20 languages.

Global Research E-Monograph and Reports Series, No. 1, 2004

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