Perhaps someone with more inside knowledge (on PAVE-PAWS, etc.) will weigh in on this as well, but here's a bit of what I know: turned off transponders are one of the signs that the FAA used to determine that an airline had been hijacked. Once that determination had been made (when in doubt, assume that it is an emergency situation is how the wording reads, I believe) the hijack coordinator of the FAA was supposed to notify the NMCC who would then assign assets (NORAD or non NORAD) to follow the plane. This was all on the books before 9/11. Now, the outward looking donut story might have been true to some extent, but really, are ICBMs, Russian fighter planes, etc. really going to have transponders that they leave on for tracking purposes? When the FAA saw a potential hijack (without transponder) and reported it to the NMCC for them to track it, how was that all supposed to happen, assuming a donut scenario? NORAD did plan exercises for domestic hijackings prior to 9/11. Also, the Secret Service had the ability to see what the FAA sees in real time, according to Richard Clarke, Dick Cheney and another source or two.
Tigerwall System. Tigerwall is an air surveillance system currently used by the U.S. Secret Service to ensure enhanced physical security at a high-value asset location by providing early warning of airborne threats. SSC San Diego has assisted the Secret Service in implementing and maintaining the Tigerwall system by providing expertise gained from other SSC San Diego surveillance and physical security programs.
from the internet archive page of http://www.scitechweb.com/inhousereport/00navy/00spawar.htmlhttp://www.spawar.navy.mil/sti/publication...3105/td3105.pdf
for another source on Tigerwall (well, it used to be anyway- now all I get is a white screen which freezes, but I screenshotted my googling of it
for you; hope that doesn't go away as well, huh?)more Tigerwall
Now the Secret Service was in Florida (obviously, but why was an AWACS circling overhead as Bush slept
, yet Air Force one took off without a military escort on 9/11?!) and had a heightened presence in NYC
(100 extra personnel
with military units assigned
- the United Nations General Assembly was scheduled to open on 9/11
; sand filled garbage trucks blocked off an 8 block stretch of First Avenue
, beginning sometime on 9/11
- would that have prevented a plane hit?) and a presence at the Pentagon
before Flight 77 hit (Bush was scheduled to arrive there later in the day, they had the firetruck out by the helipad). Apparently, the Secret Service was also in contact with Andrews AFB
(more on Andrews AFB here
in the early AM, ordering protection over DC. The Secret Service had been concerned with protection against airborne attacks at least as far back as 1994, when some idiot flew a plane onto the White House grounds to commit suicide (taking off on the night of September 11th). See also: Atlanta Olympics and Genoa Summit for more recent (pre 9/11) examples.
Without knowing the precise defenses which the Pentagon may or may not have had installed prior to 9/11 I can't say anything on whether or not that might have been another line of defense as well.
Those are just a few of my offerings as food for thought. Oh, yeah, no one can get answers to the questions of whether 9/11 was a NSSE in NYC (putting the Secret Service in charge) or find out who the FAA's designated hijack coordinator was on 9/11 (Mike Canavan was in Puerto Rico).
I think Dick Myers also claimed (to the 9/11 Commission) that the military could have shot down all four planes if the FAA had given them timely information.
Here are a few more sources on what I've just written here (as well as some peripheral issues), just so you don't think I'm blowing smoke at you by not citing and quoting everything above.http://web.archive.org/web/20010603195610/...gov/ATPubs/AIM/
A paste of an article I wrote awhile back and posted at Loose Change:
A brief sampling of exactly how lucky the terrorists responsible for 9/11 must have been. This is by no means complete, just a somewhat random sampling with sourced material on some the FAA/DoD connecting dots.
So... Ben Sliney's first day on the job1
at the FAA, John Jumper's first day on his new job as Air Force Chief of Staff at the Pentagon 23
, Capt. Leidig fills in for Winfield during the key time period at the NMCC4
(after qualifying to stand in in August; was it his first time as well?), Mike Canavan, the FAA's hijack coordinator5
, is in Puerto Rico and no one can get a straight answer on who the designated hijack coordinator was on 9/11. The NEADS audiotape won't play. Then an outside contractor gets it to play, giving us a whole new "official story".6
An anonymous FAA Quality Assurance offical crushes, cuts up and distributes into several trash cans a tape of ATC's experiences on 9/11, which reportedly had never been listened to, transcribed or duplicated.7
I guess that's a pretty final statement, huh?
The lack of adequate forensic capabilities for maintaining logs, video
and audio recordings, and storing radar information was a contributing factor to the inaccurate
testimony. Individuals responsible for reporting on the response to the attacks were impeded
because there were no standardized logs. The ability of DoD to accurately report on events was
also affected by inadequate audio recording capabilities. Within DoD, available audio
recordings of activities within the Air Defense Command centers were not easily accessible for
review. In addition, DoD officials did not use the transcripts, even when available, to prepare the
press releases and subsequent testimony to the Commission.8
War games and exercises all over the place- including the NRO (whose employees are conveniently sent home before the Pentagon gets hit), UN General Assembly scheduled to open in NYC on 9/11, IMF World Bank NSSE coming up in a week or two in DC... and to top it all off, the Pentagon has inadequate forensic capabilities... I wonder why those lucky terrorists picked the 60th anniversary of ground breaking on the Pentagon instead of waiting a couple of weeks and trying to hit the IMF/World Bank meeting and the UN General Assembly's General debate while Bush and Powell were there.
I guess the terrorists must have known just how far they could push their luck, huh? Bringing down 3 skyscrapers with only 2 planes and hitting the accountants and budget analysts in the Pentagon is pretty darned lucky if you ask me... the match begins tomorrow9
and note 5 links to this thread which I will paste below:
Who Was The Faa's Hijack Coordinator On 9/11?
I've pulled this information together from various searches, since I haven't seen it thoroughly laid out and documented elsewhere. Feel free to add any more information you may come across that looks relevant to the topic.
Links are to webcitation.org archives of the pages (in case they go 404)
According to FAA employee Jackson Smith
who was with the Civil Aviation Security Division
of the FAA, his boss, Mike Canavan was the
Director of Civil Aviation Security for FAA
on 9/11. They were in Puerto Rico on the morning of 9/11. The 9/11 Ommission heard testimony from Mike Canavan
. He would not have been the only person who they recieved testimony from on more than one occassion, if they found that they had more questions at a later date for someone.
According to archived material from the FAA, Order 7610.4 - Special Military Operations Chapter 7 states in part before
9/11 as follows:
The FAA hijack coordinator (the Director or his designate of the FAA Office of Civil Aviation Security) on duty at Washington headquarters will request the military to provide an escort aircraft for a confirmed hijacked aircraft to:
a. Assure positive flight following.
b. Report unusual observances.
c. Aid search and rescue in the event of an emergency.
7-1-2. REQUESTS FOR SERVICE
The escort service will be requested by the FAA hijack coordinator by direct contact with the National Military Command Center (NMCC). Normally, NORAD escort aircraft will take the required action. However, for the purpose of these procedures, the term "escort aircraft" applies to any military aircraft assigned to the escort mission. When the military can provide escort aircraft, the NMCC will advise the FAA hijack coordinator the identification and location of the squadron tasked to provide escort aircraft. NMCC will then authorize direct coordination between FAA and the designated military unit. When a NORAD resource is tasked, FAA will coordinate through the appropriate SOCC/ROCC.
Canavan quit his job as the "top FAA security official" after 10 months in that position shortly after 9/11 according to CNN
. According to that article,
Shortly after the attacks, Lee Longmire -- who worked under Canavan as the head of civil aviation security operations -- in charge of airport operations -- was transferred from that job to the head of the FAA's aviation security, policy and planning.
Longmire also held his job for less than a year.
More on Canavan's appointment to that post in this press release from the FAA
So what we appear to have here is two people (Canavan and Longmire) who would seem likely to have a pretty good idea on who was acting as the designated hijack coordinator on 9/11, both of whom were interviewed by the 9/11 Ommission. (54
. On the threat to civil aviation, see Lee Longmire interview (Oct. 28, 2003). )
Seems just a little odd, then, that we read the following in the 9/11 Ommission report:
MR. GORTON: Mr. Belger, I want to go back to one of Commissioner Gorelick's subjects. You very clearly describe the protocol with respect to hijacking that was in effect on 9/11. But we have a rather troubling note from the staff that I will share with you and ask you to comment on. Most managers at FAA headquarters have little or no recollection of the protocols in place on 9/11 with respect to their roles and responsibilities on a hijacking. With the exception of a few individuals from the Security Division, there appear to be little or no training at FAA headquarters or Command Center regarding hijacking procedures. Indeed, when asked to identify who the hijack coordinator was on 9/11, it was difficult to find two witnesses who identified the same individual.
I followed that post with this one:
Interesting quote here re: Lee Longmire:
One FAA fax that Cox didn't get that morning, but which made him angry when he heard about it months later, was one the agency sent to the airlines. It was a list of about 300 people who the airlines were told were considered dangerous by the FBI, the CIA, or the FAA. When flights resumed, the directive said, these people were not to be allowed on board. http://www.webcitation.org/5IrWtbfMa
One top American Airlines executive, who had been up all night helping to get the airline's planes back in the air (plus tending to the human and legal issues beginning to emerge from the fact that two of American's planes had been used by the hijackers), was incredulous. Why had they waited until September 12 to send us that, he wondered. They must have had a list on September 10.
Indeed, they would have had such a list had the FAA simply compiled and sent, as they now had done on September 12, the separate lists that the FBI and the CIA had been sending the FAA for at least the prior six months, naming people who were flight risks. The lists were sent to Lee Longmire, a longtime FAA official, who was Director of Civil Aviation Security Policy. They were on his desk on September 10, Longmire acknowledges, although he would refuse to comment about what he did with them or who was on them. But according to an FAA official and a Justice Department official, two of the hijackers were on those September 10 lists -- something that Ashcroft would later say he could not confirm or deny. In fact, says the FAA official, his agency had crossed those names off on September 12 to avoid embarrassment. "We just never got around to setting up a protocol for who would control the list and how we would get the airlines to implement it," says the FAA person.
more stuff which I pulled together from various sources (mostly pretty similar to the above, I think) can be found here
. Really, I couldn't make this stuff up if I wanted to.