The 9/11 domestic conspiracy theory is a conspiracy theory which asserts that George W. Bush or American intelligence agencies knew, in advance, about the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attacks, and allowed it to happen or even caused it. It is not to be confused with theories that parts of the US government may have had some warning of the attacks but did not act due to error or incomplete information. Like most conspiracy theories, this one is generally derided by authorities as being unsubstantiated.
Theorists often go on to argue that Bush actually supported the attacks as they would provide an excuse to launch the War on Terrorism. (See also: Project for the New American Century). Immediately after the attacks, Donald Rumsfeld was seeking evidence to "pin it" on enemies which were already targets of the administration: Saddam Hussein and Osama bin Laden. Wesley Clark has alleged pressure on himself to participate in this effort, but has failed to provide evidence which has drawn criticism.
Some advocates of this theory claim that, on the day of the terrorist attacks, Israeli workers were warned not to go to work at the World Trade Center and that key government officials were warned not to fly on aircraft heading through New York and Washington airspace. No evidence has ever been offered in support of these theories, although John Ashcroft was earlier in 2001 warned off commercial flight "for the rest of his term" by the FBI; Willie Brown, mayor of San Francisco, was warned the day before against flying; and several "top Pentagon officials" cancelled 9/11 travel plans the day before.
Advocates also claim that Bush has not allowed a proper investigation of the attacks. (As of October 2003, the bipartisan commission continues to be barred from certain "key intelligence" documents by Bush, and is considering subpoena power.class="external">[1)
The theory is also supported by the story of Delmart Vreeland, a career criminal on the run from fraud charges in Michigan who claims to have been a spy for the Office of Naval Intelligence. While in Canadian custody on August 11 and 12 2001, Mr. Vreeland claims he wrote a note which listed a number of targets such as the Sears Tower, World Trade Center the White House and The Pentagon. The note also said: "Let one happen. Stop the rest!!!" The notes which were in an evidence locker on the morning of September 11, can be seen at: " class="external">http://www.guerrillanews.com/wildcard/thenotes Conspiracy theorists like Alex Jones have compared 9/11 to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, referring to the widespread belief that the US government had advance knowledge of the attack which propelled the nation into World War II. They also frequently contrast the terror attacks with the Reichstag fire of 1933, which is generally believed to have been started by the Nazis in order to manipulate public opinion. Some also refer to the now declassified Operation Northwoods documents, which include a recommendation to capture and destroy a commercial plane supposedly "full of college students off on a holiday" (really an unmanned drone), and other similar schemes, to get the public opinion against Cuba.
Some critics say that the Bush administration did not follow its own protocols for dealing with hijacked planes, updated in June 2001 (see links below).