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Karlstack's Most Controversial Opinion
Our second honourable mention from the ISF Essay Competition...
We announced our first essay competition in October, asking readers to submit a 1,000-word essay arguing for and against their most controversial opinion. Our first honourable mention was published on Tuesday.
Our second honourable mention goes to Chris Brunet for: World Trade Center Building 7 was a Controlled Demolition. Chris also writes a gonzo journalism Substack called Karlstack where he investigates corruption/fraud/scandals in economics, politics, academia, and crypto:
What’s more, when I told Chris we’d be publishing his essay, he kindly offered a 15% discount to ISF readers. You can claim that here.
Publishing ≠ endorsement. What’s more, the opinion of the writer isn’t necessarily their own. In several cases, they explicitly told us that they didn’t actually hold the controversial opinion but thought a good argument could be made.
Written by Chris Brunet.
Most Americans think that only 2 towers fell on September 11th, 2001.
Most Americans have no clue that 3 towers fell that fateful day.
Go ahead: ask your sister, brother, mother, colleague, boss, plumber, landscaper or dentist what they think about World Trade 7 Building (WTC7); odds are that not a single one of them will know what you are talking about.
You may be thinking to yourself, “That’s preposterous! Everyone knows about WTC7!” — trust me, they don’t — you and your internet friends know about it because, by virtue of reading this Substack, you have self-selected into a group of contrarian, autistic conspiracy theorists… WTC 7 is not a topic that normal people know anything about.
I just used the word “conspiracy theorist” but I want to stress that that’s a loaded term meant to disparage legitimate historical inquiry. Make no mistake about it, September 11th happened over 20 years ago and is now officially “history.”
Textbooks should be teaching both sides.
WTC7 Collapsed Due to Fires Fuelled by Office Furnishings
The official government narrative is provided by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). NIST’s findings are comprehensively summarized on the website Questions and Answers about the NIST WTC 7 Investigation, which steelmans their side of the argument better than I could ever hope to.
These questions & answers include, but are not limited to:
How did the fires cause WTC 7 to collapse?,
Why did WTC 7 collapse, while no other known building in history has collapsed due to fires alone?
Is it possible that thermite or thermate contributed to the collapse of WTC 7?
WTC Collapsed Due to Controlled Demolition
In their investigation NIST claims to have discovered a never-before recorded phenomenon: “fire-driven, progressive collapse.” Your first clue that this is bullshit is that no new standards or safety codes were ever developed to prevent it from happening again.
Your second clue that “fire-driven, progressive collapse” is bullshit is that NIST has never released its computer model/data of the WTC 7 collapse, meaning this is not verifiable nor reproducible.
Why won’t the US government open-source their data and code?
Contrast this with an open-source model by a team of engineering researchers at the University of Alaska, Structural Reevaluation of the Collapse of World Trade Center 7. This is generally considered the most reputable study rebutting NIST.
The principal conclusion of this Alaska study is that “fire did not cause the collapse of WTC 7 on 9/11”. The secondary conclusion is that the collapse of WTC 7 “was a global failure involving the near-simultaneous failure of every column in the building”.
Here is what the open-source Alaska model looks like, compared with the actual collapse:
Near-Simultaneous Failure of All Columns, Perspective 1:
Video of WTC 7 Collapse, Perspective 1:
Near-Simultaneous Failure of All Columns, Perspective 2:
Video of WTC 7 Collapse, Perspective 2:
The leading theory as to what caused this 47-floor building to collapse at free-fall speed into its own footprint is thermite, an explosive material common in controlled demolitions.
Why is this the leading theory? Well, because a team of researchers found thermite residue in the dust, as published in their report Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe.
The final conclusion of this paper is that, “We have discovered distinctive red/gray chips in significant numbers in dust associated with the World Trade Center destruction. We have applied SEM/XEDS and other methods to characterize the small-scale structure and chemical signature of these chips, especially of their red component … we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.”
NIST did not test for the presence of thermite.
I will leave the most compelling point for last: the leaseholder of WTC7, Larry Silverstein, admitted in an interview that they made the decision to “pull it.”
“And then they made that decision to pull, and we watched the building collapse.”
Larry Silverstein would later recant, claiming that “pull it” statement was an innocent mistake of wording.
Larry Silverstein was awarded $4.5 billion dollars by his insurance provider; he had bought extra terrorism insurance two months before 9/11, then collected double its value.
Note that I am not making a claim on what the motive was, per se. It is just interesting that everyone involved profited billions, not only Larry Silverstein but also the entire military industrial complex from the resulting decades-long war on terror in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The 2 most binding constraints in this essay contest is that 1) it must be under 1,000 words 2) I must steelman both sides of the issue. So please know that in such a short article I can only provide a cursory overview of this complex topic. All I can ask in this teaser of an article, then, is that I pique your curiosity. Do your own research.
That being said, with what you know now, how do you feel?