The timeline of George W. Bush on 9/11
From Xiandos Info
"No president since Abraham Lincoln had seen such horrific loss of life in a war on American soil. No president since James Madison, nearly 200 years ago, had seen the nation’s capital city successfully attacked. But two years ago, President George W. Bush was thrown into the first great crisis of the 21st century." (CBS, 2003-10-09 +1 +2 +3)
 Keep this in mind
- "In the early 1960s, America's top military leaders reportedly drafted plans to kill innocent people and commit acts of terrorism in U.S. cities to create public support for a war against Cuba." (ABC, 2001-05-01)
- January 26, 1998 - The Project for the New American Century sent President Clinton a letter recommending U.S. military action to get Saddam Hussein out of power saying among other things that he's a threat to a "significant portion of the world’s supply of oil". Of the 18 PNAC members who signed the letter, 10 are now in the Bush administration.
- September 2000 - One year before the attacks, the conservative advocacy group Project for the New American Century (PNAC) advocates the build up of the U.S. military, but won't think it will happen unless the U.S. experiences a major catastrophic event such as a "new Pearl Harbor".
- "The White House denies there was any foot-dragging on plans to take on and eliminate the al Qaeda terrorist threat before Sept. 11. An official said one such plan was drafted during the early days of the Bush administration, but was only ready for presentation to the president on Sept. 10, a day before the attacks." (CBS, 2002-08-05 +
- September 10, 2001 - The White House's battle plan to invade Afghanistan and topple the Taliban and Osama bin Laden awaits President Bush's approval.
- "The last time a plane crashed into a New York City skyscraper was July 28, 1945." (ABC, 2001-09-11)
Contradictions in the "official story":
1. "Q Had there been any warnings that the President knew of?
1. "President Bush and his top advisers were informed by the CIA early last August that terrorists associated with Osama bin Laden had discussed the possibility of hijacking airplanes, according to reliable sources. White House spokesman Ari Fleischer confirmed that Bush had been told about the possibility of hijackings but he declined to say what had been revealed during his intelligence briefings." -Washington Post (5/16/02)
2. "I don't think anybody could have predicted that...they would try to use an airplane as a missile, a hijacked airplane as a missile," National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice. (CBS, 2002-05-17 +)
2. "Suicide bomber(s) belonging to al-Qaida's Martyrdom Battalion could crash-land an aircraft packed with high explosives...into the Pentagon, the headquarters of the CIA, or the White House." (CBS, 2002-05-17 +), 1999 federal report
3. U.S. intelligence agencies had no warning "For all its technological prowess and military might, the United States didn't see this coming. None of the vaunted intelligence tools at the nation's disposal gave any warning of the coming nightmare — a massively coordinated effort to hijack and crash at least four airliners at the same time. U.S. officials confirmed they had no reports that such attacks were imminent. Not from the CIA's networks of spies and informants. Not from the FBI's many counterintelligence agents. Not from the National Security Agency's telephone and computer taps. Not from the military's satellites or spy planes." (USA TODAY, 2001-09-11 +)
3. "White House officials acknowledged that U.S. intelligence officials informed President Bush weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks that bin Laden's terrorist network might try to hijack American planes, and that information prompted administration officials to issue a private warning to transportation officials and national security agencies." (ABC, 2002-05-16)
Video of Bush the morning of 9/11 at Booker Elementary:
- The memoryhole: 5-Minute Video of George W. Bush on the Morning of 9/11
- WhatReallyHappened: Bush's 9/11 Visit to Booker Elementary School
- TheWebFairy: Was Bush complicit with the 9/11 attacks?
 Bush's Poll Ratings Pre and Post 9/11
"Bush is spending a month's vacation at his ranch here, bringing with him a retinue of aides, Secret Service agents and the White House press corps.
Bush knew of terrorist plot to hijack US planes
"In a top-secret intelligence memo headlined 'Bin Laden determined to strike in the US', the President was told on 6 August that the Saudi-born terrorist hoped to 'bring the fight to America' in retaliation for missile strikes on al-Qaeda camps in Afghanistan in 1998." Guardian 2002-05-19 +)
"Q Is the President satisfied...with the performance of the intelligence community...? MR. FLEISCHER: ...clearly, something yesterday took place in New York that was not foreseen, that we had no specific information about." (White House, 2001-09-12 +)
"White House officials acknowledged that U.S. intelligence officials informed President Bush weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks that bin Laden's terrorist network might try to hijack American planes..." (ABC, 2002-05-16)
Bush's timeline on 9/11/01:
 6:00 a.m.
 Is it just a coincidence that Bush was in FLORIDA the day of the attack?
"What are the odds that the school at where you teach gets a visit from the President of the United States? And then... what are the odds that the day the President visits your school is a day that goes down in infamy?" (Laura Wunderlin-vanArsdall, EEB Staff (No date.) +)
"For President Bush, Sept. 11 2001, started with the usual routine. Before dawn, the president was on his four-mile run. It was just before 6 a.m., and at the same moment, another man was on the move: Mohammad Atta, who was caught by a security camera on his way to lead the attack against America." (CBS, 2003-10-09 +1 +2 +3)
Does the President of the United States always gets surface-to-air missiles for protection everywhere they go? Why didn't the Pentagon have any anti-aircraft measures to protect it against incoming enemy aircraft on 9/11?
"At the Colony, the Secret Service was getting everything secured for when the president arrived on Sept. 10. That included snipers and surface-to-air missiles on the roof and the Coast Guard patrolling just offshore." Sarasota Herald-Tribune, 2002-09-10)
 Was there an assassination attempt on President Bush the morning of 9/11 modeled after the one on Northern Alliance Leader Ahmed Shah Massoud two days earlier?
"At about 6 a.m. Sept. 11, Longboat Key Fire Marshall Carroll Mooneyhan was at the front desk of the Colony Beach & Tennis Resort as Bush prepared for his morning jog. From that vantage point, Mooneyhan overheard a strange exchange between a Colony receptionist and security guard. A van occupied by men of Middle Eastern descent had pulled up to the Colony stating they had a “poolside” interview with the president, Mooneyhan said. The self-proclaimed reporters then asked for a Secret Service agent by name. Guards from security relayed the request to the receptionist, who had not heard of either the agent or plans for an interview, Mooneyhan said. The receptionist gave the phone over to a nearby Secret Service agent, who said the same thing — no one knew of an agent by that name or of any poolside interview. The agent told the occupants of the van to contact the president’s public relations office in Washington, D. C., and turned them away from the premises, Mooneyhan said." (Longboat Observer, 2001-09-26 +)
"Ahmed Shah Massoud was an Afghani military leader of the Northern Alliance, a coalition of various Afghani opposition groups in a prolonged civil war. As the Taliban established control over most of Afghanistan, Massoud's forces were increasingly forced into the mountainous areas of the north, where they controlled some 10% of Afghanistan's territory and perhaps 30% of its population. Massoud was the victim of a suicide attack which occurred at Khvajeh Ba Odin on September 9, 2001, two days before the September 11, 2001 Terrorist Attack in the United States, a timing considered significant by some commentators. The attackers were two Arabs who claimed to be Belgians originally from Morocco. However their passports turned out to be stolen. According to some accounts they were posing as journalists, perhaps intending to attack several Northern Alliance council members simultaneously. They set off a bomb hidden in either a video camera or a belt worn by one of the attackers. It appears that Massoud died within 30 minutes, although his death was denied until September 13." (Wikipedia - refer to the "history" page if changed])
 What was Bush's father (the former President, Ex-CIA Director, Carlyle Group employee) doing at the White House the morning of 9/11?
September 11, 2001 A Tuesday - "Afterward, Laura returned to the second-floor family quarters for a quick breakfast with her in-laws. George H. W. Bush and his wife Barbara had spent the night at the White House and were about to board a private jet bound for a speaking engagement in Minnesota." (CBS 'The Early Show' 2002-11-01 +)
"The former President and First Lady had been at the White House the night before the terrorists struck. They were flying to St. Paul, Minn., when the first news was flashed to their Secret Service detail. Their plane was diverted to Milwaukee, Wis., and they were rushed off to a motel beyond the city limits." Time, 2001-09-24 +)
 Why did Jeb Bush, George W. Bush's brother, call up the National Guard in Florida four days before the 9/11 attacks and did he declare a state of emergency after the attacks when no terrorist attacks happened in his state?
Florida under martial law?
"WHO KNEW? Jeb Bush signed Florida TWO YEAR emergency order 4 days BEFORE ATTACK WorldNetDaily investigated. The articles provided links directly to the executive orders themselves, and these were exactly as described. Bush, through Executive Order 01-261, had activated units of the Florida National Guard on Sept. 7, four days before the kamikaze assault on the Trade Center." (WorldNetDaily.com 2001-10-25 +)
EXECUTIVE ORDER NUMBER 01-261
"WHEREAS, the Florida National Guard has the statutory responsibility to provide support to law-enforcement personnel and emergency-management personnel in the event of civil disturbances or natural disasters;" (Jeb Bush, Governor of Florida. 2001-09-07 +)
"His second executive order, EO 01-262, did in fact delegate awesome powers to a non-elected official, the interim head of the Division of Emergency Management, the agency responsible for implementing Florida's Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan. Moreover, the governor issued it shortly after the attacks, strongly suggesting he had been apprised of events ahead of time and was ready to sign the order with a stroke of his pen as soon as he received an appropriate signal." (WorldNetDaily.com 2001-10-25 +)
EXECUTIVE ORDER NUMBER 01-262, (Emergency Management)
WHEREAS, on September 11, 2001 a combination of persons unknown carried out a series of terrorist acts resulting in the destruction of the World Trade Center in New York City and an explosion at the Pentagon, costing the lives of many persons and resulting in injuries to many more; and WHEREAS, the scale of the destruction and the coordination, orchestration, and timing evident in these acts of terrorism suggest that they may be part of a larger pattern of acts of terrorism; and Section 1. - Because of the foregoing conditions, I hereby declare that a state of emergency exists in the State of Florida. (Jeb Bush, Governor of Florida, 2001-09-11 +)
 Why was the White House staff given the powerful anthrax antibiotic Cipro on 9/11, a full month before the first cases of anthrax were reported?
"Evidence obtained through Judicial Watch and confirmed by multiple press reports suggest that White House staff had been given doses of the powerful antibiotic Cipro at the time of the September 11 terrorist attacks, one month before anthrax was detected on Capitol Hill." (Judicial Watch +)
"Oct. 4: Anthrax strikes a Florida man who is hospitalized according to U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson making the announcement to reporters at the White House." (September11News.com +)
Is it just a coincidence that the first anthrax victim was a photo editor at American Media, Inc., who owns the National Enquire, and published a photo of Bush's daughter Jenna shown drunk with a cigarette in her hand falling on top of another girl?
"Investigators probing the bioterrorist attack on American Media, Inc. believe the anthrax spores were delivered in a deadly "letter bomb" -- and the senders were inspired by the best-selling Robin Cook book "Vector." Now experts say the anthrax attack on The ENQUIRER's parent company is already helping authorities prepare for bioterrorism attacks in the future -- and that will save countless lives.
The issue is on sale now also reveals the inside details on how anthrax fatality Bob Stevens, an editor with AMI's Sun magazine, came in contact with anthrax ... the chilling link between Stevens and the terrorists behind the September 11 carnage ..." (National Enquirer, 2001-10-19)
Robert Stevens, 63, photo editor, the Sun, American Media Inc, Boca Raton, Florida. Contracted inhaled anthrax...[found on his keyboard] Died October 5. (Guardian, 2001-11-23)
"LAURA & GEORGE AT WAR OVER DAUGHTERS' BOOZING
The drinking problems of President Bush's teenage daughters Jenna and Barbara have triggered an all-out First Family feud!
An angry and tearful Laura Bush wants to come down hard on the 19-year-old twins after they were nabbed by Austin, Tex., cops on May 29 and charged with underage drinking violations. But George W. Bush doesn't want to discipline his girls, sources told The ENQUIRER.
"Laura Bush is fit to be tied about George's attitude," said a Bush family source. "But the girls have their father wrapped around their fingers. The President doesn't think the girls need reigning in. He and Laura are at loggerheads."
Sources told The ENQUIRER the First Lady wants her girls to get counseling for their drinking problems. And she wants Jenna -- a freshman at the University of Texas at Austin who had another alcohol citation a few weeks earlier -- to drop out of school, move into the White House and enroll in a college nearby." (National Enquirer, 2001-06-08 +)
Anthrax widow sues federal government
"The widow of the Florida man who became the first victim of the 2001 anthrax attacks filed suit Wednesday against the federal government, claiming that lax security at a U.S. Army lab led to his death. Maureen Stevens, the widow of tabloid photo editor Bob Stevens, is seeking $50 million. Stevens died after inhaling anthrax that investigators believe was in a letter sent to American Media Inc. at its offices in Boca Raton, Florida.
Stevens worked on the third floor as a photo editor for The Sun, a tabloid published by American Media, which also publishes the National Enquirer, the Globe and the Weekly World News. He died October 5, three days after he entered the hospital with flu-like symptoms.
The letter with anthrax delivered to American Media was never recovered but at least one other employee who worked with Stevens contracted anthrax and recovered. The American Media Inc. headquarters was quarantined by investigators and remains sealed. In the lawsuit, Stevens said the anthrax that killed her husband was of the same strain as anthrax produced at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Maryland.
Richard Schuler, a lawyer for Stevens, claimed that lax security at the lab may have aided whomever mailed the anthrax . "They have tighter security at a 7-11," he said, referring to the ubiquitous convenience store chain. CNN, 2003-09-24 +)
"You won't find stories about anthrax in the newest issues of the tabloids produced by American Media, the company that evacuated its Boca Raton, Fla., headquarters last week after the lethal bacteria was found to have killed one employee and infected several others. But just as the National Enquirer, Star, Sun, etc., are pledging not to stray from their respective missions, their direction already has taken a detour since Sept. 11.
The Sun, where anthrax claimed the life of photo editor Bob Stevens and sent other employees to the hospital, actually has been the least topical of the tabloids...
Days before anthrax hit his company, Coz said the tabloids already were covering -- or not covering -- certain stories differently. For instance, at least one of this year's headline grabbers now would be considered off limits: "Jenna and Barbara Bush. The Enquirer two or three months ago did one pretty big story after [Jenna] got arrested for underage drinking violations. That is an example of a story that the tabloids wouldn't do at this time. We wouldn't do that under the umbrella of patriotism." (Chicago Tribune 2001-10-16)
 6:30 a.m.
"6:30 a.m. -President Bush rose early the morning of Sept. 11, and went for a four-mile run around the golf course at the Colony Beach and Tennis Resort on Longboat Key, Fla., where he was staying. On Bush's schedule that day was what White House aides call a "soft event"-reading to about 16 second-graders in Sandra Kay Daniels's class at the Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota. The night before, Bush had dined with his brother, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, former governor Bob Martinez and other state Republicans. It was a relaxed evening, full of joking and talk about politics, including some handicapping of Jeb Bush's possible opponents in his 2002 reelection campaign." (Washington Post, 2002-01-27 - page 1 +, page 2 +)
 8:00 a.m.
Why didn't Bush seem to remember his "heightened summer terrorist risk" report when the first plane crashed in the WTC?
"On his return to the Colony, the President...sat down for the first routine intelligence briefing of the day. It was 8 am. The President's briefing appears to have included some reference to the heightened terrorist risk reported throughout the summer, but contained nothing specific, severe or imminent enough to necessitate a call to Condoleezza Rice, his 47-year-old National Security Adviser." (Telegraph, 2001-12-16 +)
 8:20 a.m.
 8:30 - 8:45 a.m.
However, shortly after 8:30 a.m. ET, behind the scenes, word of a possible hijacking reached various stations of NORAD, the North American Air Defense Command, which was conducting training exercises and therefore had extra fighter planes on alert.
"I picked up the line and identified myself to the Boston Center controller," said Air National Guard Lt. Col. Dawne Deskins, the mission crew chief for the exercise. "He said, 'Uh, we have a hijacked aircraft and I need you to get some sort of fighters out here to help us out." (ABC, 2001-09-14 - part 1 - part 2 - part 3 - part 4)
"But on this Tuesday the president wanted to make progress on another top priority — education reform. So after posing for pictures with resort maintenance man Kenneth Kufahl and local VIPs, he climbed into a Cadillac limousine and set out at 8:39 a.m. on the nine-mile trip to Emma E. Booker Elementary in Sarasota." –Washington Times (10/07/02)
8:40 am - FAA notifies NORAD that Flight 11 has been hijacked.
8:43 am - FAA notifies NORAD that Flight 175 has been hijacked.
Why hasn't Bush been informed yet by the FAA or NORAD about two planes being hijacked?
"Two hours later, as Mr. Bush drove to an elementary school, hijackers on four planes were murdering the flight crews and turning the airliners east. As the motorcade neared the school at 8:45 a.m., jet engines echoed in Manhattan." (CBS, 2003-10-09 +1 +2 +3)
 8:46 a.m.
8:46 am - Flight 11 crashes into the North WTC.
8:46 am - NORAD, 2001-11-18
"The first airplane hit the north tower at 8:46 a.m., as the president's motorcade crossed the John Ringling Causeway on the way to Booker Elementary from the Colony Beach & Tennis Resort on Longboat Key." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
8:46 am - NORAD scrambles jetfighters out of Otis AFB
 8:52 a.m.
8:52 am - Jetfighters airborne out of Otis AFB and head towards NY
"Air Force Col. Robert Marr, who along with Deskins was at the National Guard's Northeast Air Defense Sector in Rome, N.Y. — also known as NEADS — got permission from Air Force Maj. Gen. Larry Arnold to scramble jets from Otis Air National Guard Base in Massachusetts, and they would be in the air headed toward New York by 8:52 a.m. ET." (ABC, 2001-09-14 - part 1 - part 2 - part 3 - part 4)
"At 8:52 a.m. ET, ABCNEWS' Good Morning America broke in with a special report showing flames coming out of the World Trade Center. "You can see quite a lot of damage," ABCNEWS' Don Dahler said minutes later from near the scene. "If it was an airplane, it had to be huge." (ABC, 2001-09-14 - part 1 - part 2 - part 3 - part 4)
 Did the CIA know something we didn't about what was going on?
"In Washington, CIA Director George Tenet and David Boren, former chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, were having breakfast at the St. Regis Hotel three blocks from the White House. "Out of the corner of my eye, I could see several people converging on our table," Boren said. "One of them said to George Tenet, 'Mr. Director, the World Trade tower has just been attacked by an airplane.' I was struck by the fact he used the word 'attacked.'"
An aide handed a cell phone to Tenet.
If protestors knew Bush was going to be in town this day and even knew his route, why couldn't the terrorists know this too?
"Sept. 11 was supposed to be what White House strategists call a "soft" day -- no big speeches, just a few events to highlight Bush's education plans.
What time did Bush arrive at Booker Elementary school?
"At 8:52 a.m. ET, ABCNEWS' Good Morning America broke in with a special report showing flames coming out of the World Trade Center. At the time, President Bush's motorcade was arriving at the Emma Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla., for a planned event when the pagers of his aides erupted in a cacophony of beeps and tones." (CBS, 2003-10-09 +1 +2 +3)
"The motorcade arrived at Booker shortly before 9 a.m. School buses were lined up in front of the school to form a barricade. Agents on horseback patrolled the campus on Martin Luther King Jr. Way. Snipers were on the roof. All the phone lines were tapped, and one was linked directly to the White House." -Sarasota Herald-Tribune (9/10/02)
"Mr Bush arrived at the school, just before 9am, expecting to be met by its motherly principal, Gwen Rigell. Instead he was pulled sharply aside by the familiar, bulky figure of 51-year-old Karl Rove, a veteran political fixer and trusted aide of both Mr Bush and his father, George Sr." (Telegraph, 2001-12-16 +)
"What could possibly go wrong on a day such as this? It was 8:46 a.m.
Mr. Bush and his aides, including Mr. Card, arrived nine minutes later [8:55 a.m.] at the elementary school on Martin Luther King Jr. Way, which police considered the most crime-infested street in the county. "We're on time," the president remembered. "I like to stay on time; I like to be crisp." (Washington Times, 2002-10-07)
"The President arrived just shortly before 9:00 a.m., at the elementary school in Sarasota..." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
 When did Bush learn about the first plane crash in the WTC and who informed him of this?
"Before the president goes into the school, [presidential adviser] Karl Rove and I and some others were standing there and informed him of this," said Dan Bartlett, assistant to the president for communications. "The president was surprised," said Ari Fleischer, the White House press secretary. "He thought it had to be an accident." (ABC, 2001-09-14 - part 1 - part 2 - part 3 - part 4)
9:00 A.M. - "President George W. Bush arrives at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Florida and is informed of the first airplane crashing into the World Trade Center by chief of staff Andrew Card." -Patriot Resource
"The President arrived just shortly before 9:00 a.m., at the elementary school in Sarasota, when Andy Card informed him, as the President finished shaking hands in a hallway of school officials, about the crash of the first plane into the World Trade Center...
Q: Okay. And then this morning, when Andy Card told him about the first accident, was Andy Card or Condi Rice or any of those aware of the hijackings? What did they know when they -- MR. FLEISCHER: No, at that point they were not." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
9 a.m. – "Bush arrives at Sarasota, Fla., school for speech. White House chief of staff Andrew Card tells him a plane has crashed into the World Trade Center." -September 11 News .com
"Mr Bush arrived at the school, just before 9am, expecting to be met by its motherly principal, Gwen Rigell. Instead he was pulled sharply aside by the familiar, bulky figure of 51-year-old Karl Rove, a veteran political fixer and trusted aide of both Mr Bush and his father, George Sr. Mr Rove, a fellow Texan with an expansive manner and a colourful turn of phrase, told the President that a large commercial airliner (American Flight 11) had crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Centre. Mr Bush clenched his teeth, lowered his bottom lip and said something inaudible. Then he went into the school. It might have been an accident - as Bush has since said, he saw footage of the crash on a TV in the school "and I used to fly myself, and I said: 'There's one terrible pilot. It must have been a horrible accident.' " But Mr Bush soon learnt that it wasn't." (Telegraph, 2001-12-16 +)
"Atta plunged the 767 jumbo jet into World Trade Center Tower One.
“I thought it was an accident,” says Mr. Bush. “I thought it was a pilot error. I thought that some foolish soul had gotten lost - and made a terrible mistake.”
Mr. Bush was told about the first plane just before sitting down with a class of second graders. He was watching a reading drill when, just after 9 a.m., United Flight 175 exploded into the second tower." (CBS, 2003-10-09 +1 +2 +3)
"Waiting to greet Bush at the school were teachers, administrators, Lt. Gov. Frank Brogan and U.S. Reps. Dan Miller and Adam Putnam, Tampa Bay area congressmen who were supposed to return with Bush on Air Force One. A White House staffer told Putnam and Miller that Bush had to take an important call when he arrived at the school.
As Bush stepped from his limousine in front of Emma Booker Elementary School, Putnam could hear beepers and cell phones going off. Several White House staffers scattered.
The school was well-equipped for the brief presidential visit. Police and Secret Service agents were on the roof, on horseback and in every hallway. The White House had installed 49 new phone lines for staffers and reporters. One special line was known as the "red phone," though it was actually beige. Bush stopped to greet the congressmen and school officials, but Card urged him to go inside. "Mr. President, you really need to take this phone call," Card said.
Brogan followed Bush into a room set aside for the White House staff as the president took the call. At that point, White House officials believed a small propeller plane had hit the tower. Bush ended the call and walked into Kay Daniels' second-grade classroom." (St. Petersburg Times 2002-09-08 +)
"'Here's what you're going to be doing; you're going to meet so-and-so, such-and-such,'" Mr. Bush recalled being told. "And Andy Card says, 'By the way, an aircraft flew into the World Trade Center.' "And my first reaction was — as an old pilot — how could the guy have gotten so off course to hit the towers? What a terrible accident that is. The first report I heard was a light airplane, twin-engine airplane." Washington Times, 2002-10-07)
Bush claims twice to have seen the first WTC plane crash on TV in his holding room at the school, how could he have seen this when he hadn't even arrived at the school yet?
"I was sitting outside the classroom waiting to go in, and I saw an airplane hit the tower -- the TV was obviously on. And I used to fly, myself, and I said, well, there's one terrible pilot. I said, it must have been a horrible accident," Bush. (White House, 2001-12-04 +)
"Anyway, I was sitting there, and my Chief of Staff -- well, first of all, when we walked into the classroom, I had seen this plane fly into the first building. There was a TV set on. And you know, I thought it was pilot error and I was amazed that anybody could make such a terrible mistake. And something was wrong with the plane, or -- anyway," Bush. -White House (01/05/02) (White House, 2002-01-05 +)
"The first airplane hit the north tower at 8:46 a.m., as the president's motorcade crossed the John Ringling Causeway on the way to Booker Elementary from the Colony Beach & Tennis Resort on Longboat Key." (Washington Times, 2002-10-08)
RealVideo of Bush saying he saw the first plane hit the WTC on TV: bushsawfirstplane1.ram
 Did the Rear Admiral Deborah Loewer, Director of the White House Situation Room, suggest that the 1st crash might be an act of terrorism before Bush went into the classroom?
"Loewer, a Springfield native who was raised in St. Joseph Parish, is currently the director of the White House Situation Room. She was the one who informed President George W. Bush of the Sept. 11 attacks. Captain Loewer traveled to Florida with President Bush on Sept. 11 to visit a school. She received the message from her deputy in the White House Situation Room about the plane crashing into the first tower, and she described running from her car in the motorcade to the president's car to pass along the information. Once they reached the school, they watched events unfold on television, along with others in America. A short time later, she recognized the attacks for what they were and reported, "Mr. President, I think it's terrorism." (Catholic Telegraph 2001-12-07)
"MR. FLEISCHER: Well, I think the picture changed for the President immediately upon hearing of the second crash into the World Trade Center. I think when information came in about the first crash, I think the natural reaction was, was it a plane that went off course, what could this be, is this terrorism?" (White House/KnoxNews, 2001-09-11)
"Ohio native Deborah Loewer was the first person to inform President Bush that terrorism had struck New York City the morning of Sept 11.
Loewer, 47, is the director of the White House Situation Room, the White House's crisis-management center. Normally, National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice would have informed President Bush of the attacks. But it was Loewer who had traveled with the president on Sept. 11 to Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla. Shortly before 9 a.m., Loewer got a call telling her that "an aircraft had impacted the World Trade Center." Loewer said that when she arrived at the school, she ran hard and fast to the president. Loewer told the president and his chief of staff, Andrew Card, that an aircraft had hit the World Trade Center. "This is all we know," she told them.
Like most Americans, Loewer was watching television when the second plane struck the second tower. "I tell you, I was so stunned, as I'm sure many of you were," Loewer recalled. "Well, it took me about 30 seconds to realize that this was terrorism."
She relayed that thought to Card, who then whispered to the president, "Capt. Loewer says it's terrorism." (NewsFlash/AP, 2001-11-26)
Why did Bush and his staff automatically think the 1st crash was just an accident when just weeks before there were warned by our intelligence agencies of possible hijackings?
"As it was arriving, pagers and cell phones alerted White House aides that a plane had hit the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Bush remembers senior adviser Karl Rove bringing him the news, saying it appeared to be an accident involving a small, twin-engine plane. In fact it was American Airlines Flight 11, a Boeing 767 out of Boston's Logan International Airport. Based on what he was told, Bush assumed it was an accident. "This is pilot error," the president recalled saying. "It's unbelievable that somebody would do this." Conferring with Andrew H. Card Jr., his White House chief of staff, Bush said, "The guy must have had a heart attack." -Washington Post (01/27/02)
"President Bush and his top advisers were informed by the CIA early last August that terrorists associated with Osama bin Laden had discussed the possibility of hijacking airplanes, according to reliable sources." -Washington Post (5/16/02)
"White House officials acknowledged that U.S. intelligence officials informed President Bush weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks that bin Laden's terrorist network might try to hijack American planes, and that information prompted administration officials to issue a private warning to transportation officials and national security agencies." -ABC (5/16/02)
"Exactly two years before the Sept. 11 attacks, a federal report warned the executive branch that Osama bin Laden 's terrorists might hijack an airliner and dive bomb it into the Pentagon or other government buildings." -Washington Post
Why did Bush implement a military response when he just said he thought the 1st crash was just an "accident" and how did he do it since he said he "didn't have time to think about it"?
"Immediately following the first attack, I implemented our government's emergency response plans. Our military is powerful, and it's prepared." -Bush
"I said, it must have been a horrible accident. But I was whisked off there, I didn't have much time to think about it." -Bush 12/04/01
Did the Secret Service have open lines with the FAA after the first WTC crash as Vice President Cheney blurted out on NBC's Meet the Press?
"VICE PRES. CHENEY: Didn't circle it, but was headed on a track into it. The Secret Service has an arrangement with the F.A.A. They had open lines after the World Trade Center was..." -NBC Meet the Press (9/16/01)
 8:55 a.m.
Flight 77 began turning east, away from its intended course. -Washington Post (9/12/01)
"In the early confusion that day, there was a series of frightening but ultimately false reports: A plane was down near Camp David and another was down near the Ohio-Kentucky border; a car bomb exploded outside the State Department; an explosion near the Capitol, fires on the Mall and at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building; a plane heading at high speed toward Bush's ranch in Crawford, Tex." -Washington Post (01/27/02)
Why didn't our National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, or any other of Bush's staff, get in touch with the FAA and NORAD right after the first plane crash in the WTC?
At 8:55, before entering the classroom, the President spoke to National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice, who was at the White House. She recalled first telling the President it was a twin-engine aircraft-and then a commercial aircraft-that had struck the World Trade Center, adding "that's all we know right now, Mr. President." -9/11 Commission
The President then proceeded directly into his hold and spoke with Dr. Condoleezza Rice, who provided him with that information, as well. -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
Word of the tragedy first came to President Bush in the hallway of a school in Sarasota, Fla., moments after the first plane hit New York's World Trade Center. He went to a private room, where he spoke by phone with National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice; it appeared then that the matter could be just a terrible accident. -September11News.com
The president ducked into an empty classroom and called his national security adviser, Condoleezza Rice, and asked her to keep him informed. -ABC (9/14/01)
The president entered a holding room at the school and picked up a secure telephone to speak with National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice at the White House. She was sitting in her office, watching live coverage of the stricken north tower as it belched black smoke into a cloudless sky. "There's one terrible pilot," Mr. Bush muttered. Turning to Mr. Card, he speculated that the pilot must have suffered a heart attack. Mr. Bush, who had yet to see the TV images, drafted a statement pledging federal assistance. -Washington Times (10/07/02)
About six blocks from the school, a news photographer overheard a radio transmission. Press Secretary Ari Fleischer would be needed on arrival to discuss reports of some sort of crash. The radio also said that Mr. Bush had a call waiting for him at his holding room in the school from national security adviser Condoleezza Rice. Mr. Fleischer told the press what Ms. Rice told the president - a plane had just hit the World Trade Center. Nobody knew how serious the situation was. -CS Monitor (9/17/01)
Why didn't Bush's staff postpone the classroom reading after the 1st plane crash in the WTC just to make sure everything was O.K.?
"But I was whisked off there, I didn't have much time to think about it." -Bush
"When he arrived at the school he had been whisked into a holding room: National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice needed to speak to him. But he soon appeared in the classroom and listened appreciatively as the children went through their reading drill." -Time.com (9/12/01)
"Tose-Rigell had been instructed to greet Bush at his limo and introduce him to the crowd. But on arrival, Bush was instead whisked into a side room to take a telephone call from National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice. After, the president told Tose-Rigell that a plane hit the World Trade Center, but that his visit would continue while his staff gathered more details." -Sarasota Herald-Tribune (9/10/02)
 9:02 - 9:04 a.m.
9:02:54 am - Flight 175 crashes into the South WTC.
9:02:54 - based on seismic data
"The second plane crashed into the south tower at 9:03..." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
When Bush said twice that he saw a plane crash into the WTC live on TV in his holding room, did he really see the second plane crash before he went into the classroom?
"I was sitting outside the classroom waiting to go in, and I saw an airplane hit the tower -- the TV was obviously on. And I used to fly, myself, and I said, well, there's one terrible pilot. I said, it must have been a horrible accident. But I was whisked off there, I didn't have much time to think about it." -White House (12/04/01)
Click here to see about this theory...
Did Bush see the second WTC plane crash on TV?
What time did Bush enter Kay Daniel's second grade classroom for his reading event?
Note: Based on the time from when Bush is seen entering the classroom in the Booker video (full length version), this site has estimated that Bush entered the classroom approx. 3 minutes before Andrew Card whispers in Bush's ear about the second plane crash at 9:05 - 9:07 a.m. as news reports claim.
(Clip from Booker Video)
"Just after 9 a.m., Bush entered Daniels' second-grade classroom. She began a lesson as the Secret Service agents lying in the trusses above her room listened along with the president and the children." -Sarasota Herald-Tribune (9/10/02)
"The second plane crashed into the south tower at 9:03, a minute after the president stepped inside a classroom to watch a teacher put her second-graders through a reading drill before his scheduled speech." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
"The President then went before you all, in the public event, for the first event with the small children. And during the course of his speech to the -- his remarks to the children, Andy Card was notified about the crash of the second airplane." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
"At that point, White House officials believed a small propeller plane had hit the tower. Bush ended the call and walked into Kay Daniels' second-grade classroom. "Hello, boys and girls," Bush said, shaking hands with the children. Principal Gwen Rigell was struck by how closely Bush followed the White House script. He sat in a plain padded chair and listened as the children read him a story about a girl and her pet goat. " -St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
"As he watched, smiling, the president began to ponder the statement he would need to make about the plane crash. "I was concentrating on the program at this point, thinking about what I was going to say," Mr. Bush told The Times. "Obviously, I felt it was an accident. I was concerned about it, but there were no alarm bells." -Washington Times (10/07/02)
Why didn't the Secret Service evacuate the President of the United States out of Booker Elementary when the United States was being attacked by terrorists? Why did they let him continue with the meaningless photo-op?
The Day Before Everything Changed, President Bush Touched Locals' Lives
"Suddenly, a Marine responsible for carrying Bush's phone marched up to Balkwill, who was standing in a nearby side room. "Can you get me to a television?" the Marine asked while listening to someone talk to him in his ear piece. "We're not sure what's going on, but we need to see a television." Three Secret Service agents, a SWAT member, the Marine and Balkwill turned on the television in a nearby front office as United Airlines Flight 175 out of Boston crashed into the south tower. "We're out of here," the Marine told Balkwill. "Can you get everyone ready?" - Sarasota Herald-Tribune (9/10/02)
"In contrast, on the morning of September 11, President Bush was scheduled to listen to elementary school children read. Before the President walked into the classroom NORAD had sufficient information that the plane that hit the WTC was hijacked. At that time, they also had knowledge that two other commercial airliners, in the air, were also hijacked. It would seem that a national emergency was in progress. Yet President Bush was allowed to enter a classroom full of young children and listen to the students read. Why didn't the Secret Service inform him of this national emergency? When is a President supposed to be notified of everything the agencies know? Why was the President permitted by the Secret Service to remain in the Sarasota elementary school? Was this Secret Service protocol?" - Statement of Mindy Kleinberg to the 9/11 Commission (03/31/03)
"MR. FLEISCHER: The President has full faith in the Secret Service, in all that they do, for himself..." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
 9:05 - 9:07 a.m.
Why did Bush resume listening to the kids read when he was just told our nation was under attack?
"And I was sitting in the classroom, and Andy Card, my Chief of Staff, who is sitting over here, walked in and said, "A second plane has hit the tower, America is under attack." -Bush 12/04/01
"Andy approached the President, whispered into his ear, with the press before and the children before him, about the crash of the second plane. The President had been intending to make remarks about the first plane in that session, but he decided to wait until he could ascertain additional information, given the fact now that it was not one, but two, crashes, which was an immediate indication, of course, of the serious nature of this suggesting terrorism." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
9:05 a.m. – "Bush is visiting a second-grade class when Card whispers to him that a second plane has struck the towers. President delays plans to address the tragedy, deciding to get more information first." - September 11 News .com
9:05 A.M. - "While preparing for a photo op with a second grade class, chief of staff Andy Card entered and gave him news of the second crash." -Patriot Resource
"A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack." White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card leaned over and whispered these words into President Bush's right ear at 9:07 a.m. September 11. "I looked at him, and that's all he said," Mr. Bush recalled months later, in a series of extensive interviews with The Washington Times in the Oval Office and aboard Air Force One. "Then he left. There was no time for discussion or anything."
White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card had informed the president of the first, seemingly accidental crash just as Mr. Bush arrived at the school. Then, at 9:07, Mr. Card entered the classroom and seized a pause in the reading drill to walk up to Mr. Bush's seat. "A second plane hit the second tower," he whispered into the president's right ear. "America is under attack." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
"I tried to be very efficient with my words," said Andrew Card, the White House chief of staff. "I knew this was not the place to stand and have a conversation with the president. … I said, 'A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack.'" "The president's eyes got wide … and the face told it all," Compton said, noting that "something terribly grave. … Something beyond imagining" happened around 9:07 a.m. ET, according to her notes. -ABC (9/14/01)
Bush had received the first news of the attack at 9:07 a.m., three minutes after he had stepped into a classroom to hear 18 second-graders show off their reading skills when his chief of staff, Andrew H. Card Jr., leaned over and whispered to him. Bush, whose eyes had been sparkling, looked suddenly grim. That was when officials still thought the crash at the World Trade Center was an accident, and he went ahead with the photo opportunity." -Washington Post (9/11/01)
"Andrew Card stood at the doorway to the Sarasota classroom and decided to do something White House staffers rarely did: interrupt President Bush during a public appearance. Bush had just sat down to hear schoolchildren read a story, but Card needed to tell him that a second plane had hit the World Trade Center. The TV cameras were trained on Bush, so Card knew he had to choose his words carefully. He needed to capture the seriousness of the situation, but he didn't want the president to turn to him and start a conversation on live TV. The White House chief of staff decided on two sentences -- one to state the facts and a second to convey the seriousness of the incident. He strode into the room, leaned down to Bush's ear and whispered: "A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack." Several minutes into the lesson, Rigell sensed commotion in the back of the room. Card walked toward the president. The principal, not realizing who he was, expected the Secret Service to stop him. Card whispered in the president's ear." - St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
"At the moment the second plane was slamming into the south tower, President Bush was being introduced to the second-graders of Emma E. Booker Elementary in Sarasota, Fla. When he arrived at the school he had been whisked into a holding room: National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice needed to speak to him. But he soon appeared in the classroom and listened appreciatively as the children went through their reading drill. As he was getting ready to pose for pictures with the teachers and kids, chief of staff Andy Card entered the room, walked over to the President and whispered in his right ear. The President's face became visibly tense and serious. He nodded. Card left and for several minutes the President seemed distracted and somber, but then he resumed his interaction with the class. "Really good readers, whew!" he told them. "These must be sixth-graders!" -Time.com (9/12/01)
"Meanwhile, Bush's chief of staff, Andrew Card, walked up to Bush as he was listening to the class and whispered in his ear. The president let Daniels finish her lesson, then returned to the side room and got back on the phone with Rice." -Sarasota Herald-Tribune (9/10/02)
"He was with one of our 2nd gr. teachers, listening to her kids doing a reading lesson, when his chief of staff came in the classroom to lean over and whisper in his ear. "The other World Trade Center Tower has been slammed into by a second jet. We are under attack." -Laura Wunderlin-vanArsdall, EEB Staff (No date.)
"In Sarasota, Fla., President Bush was reading to children in a classroom at 9:05 a.m. when his chief of staff, Andrew Card, whispered into his ear. The president briefly turned somber before he resumed reading. Asked what he knew about the planes, Bush replied, "I'll talk about it later." -TCM Breaking News (9/11/01)
"Today we've had a national tragedy," Bush said from Sarasota, Florida, where he had been reading to children at Emma E. Booker Elementary School." "Earlier, the president was reading to children in the school when reporters asked him if he was aware of the two crashes and explosions. The president nodded and said he would talk about the situation later." -CNN 9/12/01
Why did Chief-of-Staff Andrew Card immediately leave the President of the United States right after he just informed him that our nation is under attack without waiting for a response?
9/11: ONE YEAR LATER; Leadership under pressure; Card tells story of president's day
"As he listened to Card's stunning news that sunny morning in Florida, Bush's eyes widened in disbelief. The color drained from his face. But he managed to keep a poker face, fearing he might alarm the school kids or the TV cameras rolling in the back of the room, Card noted. "He looked up - it was only a matter of seconds - but it seemed like a matter of minutes, said Card. "I tried to be succinct . . . so that he understood the enormity of the problem . . . I was uncomfortable about interrupting the president . . . But I felt if I were president, I would want to know. Card walked away from Bush immediately after delivering the bad news. "I did not want to have a discussion with the president in front of that audience and in front of those cameras, he said. - Boston Herald (09/08/02)
9.11 Voices / What If You Had To Tell The President?
"White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card was with President Bush during a children's reading event at a Sarasota, Fla., public school when word came that planes had hit the World Trade Center. Card had to decide how to tell Bush without creating a national panic...
So I was very uncomfortable about interrupting the president during one of his events ... so I wanted to think, how can I convey to the president the situation? And I made a conscious decision to state the facts and to offer editorial comment. And the facts, as I knew them, were -- since he knew about the first plane, I said, "a second plane hit the second tower." Those were the facts. And the editorial comment was, "America is under attack." I said those things into the president's right ear, and I stepped back, because I did not want to invite a discussion from the classroom". - SFGate (09/11/02)
Why didn't Bush, our Commander-in-Chief, even respond to Mr. Card right after he was just informed that the United States was under a terrorist attack?
"In Florida, Bush was reading to children in a classroom at 9:05 a.m. when his chief of staff, Andrew Card, whispered into his ear." "The president briefly turned somber before he resumed reading. He addressed the tragedy about a half-hour later." - DetroitNow News (9/11/01)
Why didn't Bush politely excuse himself from the class and calmly leave the room at this point?
"At 9:05 a.m., United Airlines Flight 175, also a Boeing 767, smashed into the South Tower of the trade center. Bush was seated on a stool in the classroom when Card whispered the news: "A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack." Bush remembers exactly what he thought: "They had declared war on us, and I made up my mind at that moment that we were going to war." A photo shows Bush's face with a distant look as he absorbed what Card had said. He nodded and resumed his conversation with the class. "Really good," he said before excusing himself and returning to the holding room. "These must be sixth-graders." - Washington Post
President Bush was reading to children at Emma E. Booker Elementary School when an advisor whispered the bad news in his ear. When reporters asked him if he was aware of the two crashes and explosions, the president nodded and said he would talk about the situation later. -CNN (12/13/01)
"And I can't remember anything the lady was saying from that point on," Mr. Bush recalled. "I might have been looking at her, but I wasn't hearing. "And my mind was registering what it meant to hear 'America is under attack' and to be the commander in chief of the country at that moment." -Washington Times (10/07/02)
"I knew full well that I had made the absolutely right decision, and history would record that," Mr. Bush recalled. "When the president is under threat, one thing for the good of the country is you want to remove the president from the immediate threat." "There's nothing worse for a country having been attacked than a destabilized presidency," he said. "It would make matters a lot worse." -Washington Times (10/07/02)
 9:06 - 9:08 a.m.
Why does President Bush pick up a book to read about a minute after he said Andrew Card just told him "A second plane has hit the tower, America is under attack"?
"I want the troops here to know that I take my job as the Commander-in-Chief very seriously; that my most important job is to protect America and to protect our homeland." -White House (05/17/02)
President Bush: "I want the troops here to know that I take my job as the Commander-in-Chief very seriously; that my most important job is to protect America and to protect our homeland." -White House (05/17/02)
"Mr. Bush absently picked up his copy of the reader from a pink easel. He glanced at the cover: a cuddly dragon surrounded by butterflies. Turning to the bookmarked page, he tried to follow along. "A — girl — got — a — pet — goat," the children recited. "Go on," instructed Mrs. Daniels, thumping away. As the children plowed through the story, the president kept gazing up, lost in a tumult of urgent thoughts. So the first plane crash had not been an accident after all. The second crash had proven that much. A second plane hit the second tower. But what kind of plane? Another small, twin-engine job? Who were the pilots? Why had they done it? How many Americans had they killed? "But — the — goat — did — some — things — that — made — the — girl's — dad — mad." -Washington Times (10/07/02)
"This time Bush visibly flinched and caught his breath, but he said nothing. "I am very aware of the cameras," he recalled later. "I'm trying to absorb that knowledge. I have nobody to talk to. I'm sitting in the midst of a classroom with little kids, listening to a children's story and I realise I'm the Commander in Chief and the country has just come under attack." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
Did Andrew Card really whisper "A second plane has hit the tower, America is under attack" to Bush or did he say something else to the President such as a "status report"?
"Andy Card states in this recollection of 9/11 that he whispered to Bush "A second plane hit the second tower. America is under attack". There's just one problem with this - the video of Bush at Booker Elementary shows Card delivering this message in roughly two seconds. Here's an mp3 audio demonstration of how quickly Card would deliver his message to Bush. It is impossible to whisper at this speed - try it." - whatreallyhappened.com
If the President is the only one to authorize the shoot down of a civilian aircraft and he says he didn't know if any other aircraft were coming, why is he still sitting in the classroom and didn't any of Bush's staff stop the reading event?
"Military planes could not take aim and pull the trigger [at Payne Stewart's plane] unless they received permission from the White House because only the president has the authority to order a civilian aircraft shot down." -CNN (10/26/99)
"...I was the commander in chief and the president of a nation that had just been attacked by four aircraft, and we didn't know if other aircraft were coming or not," he said. -ABC (12/05/01)
"At the time, more than 4,000 planes were in the skies over the United States." -ABC (9/14/01)
A man plunges from a window of the WTC after it was struck by an aircraft.
► 'I thought it was the start of World War III'
"At one point, a civilian controller said that if another plane were hijacked it would have to be shot down. But that, Nasty says, was an off-the-cuff statement. At no point were pilots instructed by the military to shoot down any airliners. And any discussions now about shooting down airliners, he says, is conjecture. At the time of the first two hijackings, the military pilots couldn't be sure the commercial pilots weren't having electrical problems, for example. Besides, the only person who could have ordered them to be shot down was the president, and he was still at a public event when the second tower was hit. "If we had shot down four airliners on Sept. 11, we wouldn't have been heroes," Nasty says. "You don't have the choice of outcomes. They're all bad." "If we had intercepted American 11, we probably would have watched it crash," he says. "We didn't have the authority to (shoot it down). We didn't suspect they would use kamikaze tactics that morning," he says. -Cape Cod Times (8/21/02)
"The president noticed someone moving at the back of the room. It was White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer, maneuvering to catch his attention without alerting the press. Mr. Fleischer was holding up a legal pad. Big block letters were scrawled on the cardboard backing: DON'T SAY ANYTHING YET. The remarks drafted earlier would be woefully inadequate. "The — goat — ate — things." The president managed a wan smile at the teacher. He redoubled his efforts to appear as though he were concentrating. But it was no use." -Washington Times (10/07/02)
"Back in the Florida classroom, press secretary Ari Fleischer got the news on his pager. The president’s chief-of-staff, Andy Card, stepped in. “A second plane hit the second tower; America is under attack,” Card told the president. What was Mr. Bush's reaction? “I saw him coming to recognition of what I had said,” recalls Card. “I think he understood that he was going to have to take command as commander-in-chief, not just as president.” What was going through Bush’s mind when he heard the news? “We’re at war and somebody has dared attack us and we’re going to do something about it,” recalls Mr. Bush. “I realized I was in a unique setting to receive a message that somebody attacked us, and I was looking at these little children and all of the sudden we were at war. I can remember noticing the press pool and the press corps beginning to get the calls and seeing the look on their face. And it became evident that we were, you know, that the world had changed.” -CBS (9/10/03)
 9:13 - 9:19 a.m.
"The most indelible is Bush's reaction to hearing on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, that the first plane had crashed into the World Trade Center.
Bush was reading to a grade-school class in Florida at that moment. Instead of jumping up and leaving, he instead sat in front of the class, with an unfortunate look of confusion, for nearly 11 minutes. Moore obtained the footage from a teacher at the school who videotaped the morning program. There Bush sits, with no access to his advisers, while New York is being viciously attacked. I guarantee you that no one who sees this film forgets this episode." -FOX News (06/15/04)
"Moore also has footage of Bush sitting in a school classroom, reading a children's book with pupils, for more than 10 minutes after being told the second plane had hit." -BBC (06/19/04)
"Daniels, you see, was standing near Bush last Sept. 11 when White House chief of staff Andrew Card whispered of tragedies in the presidential ear. Precisely what Card said is uncertain, but he reportedly told Bush who already knew a commercial plane had struck the north tower of New York's World Trade Center - that the south tower also had been hit. Slowly, Bush picked up his book and read with the students for eight or nine minutes." -Tampa Bay Online (9/01/02)
President Bush: "Had I known that the enemy was going to use airplanes to kill on that fateful morning, I would have done everything in my power to protect the American people." - CNN (05/18/02), White House (05/17/02)
After President Bush finished reading with the children, what time did he leave the classroom?
"Bush finished the lesson and even took a few questions from the children. He then excused himself and walked into the adjacent staff room." -St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
- Note that the only news article this site could find that reports about when Bush leaves the classroom is at around 9:12 am...
"At 9:12 Mr Bush left the classroom. By now the reporters' mobiles were ringing non-stop, and no one needed to ask why the school visit was being cut short. In a small, back office, the President scribbled a brief statement in black felt tip on a yellow legal pad." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
...but if the earliest Bush was told by Andrew Card about the 2nd plane crash was at 9:05 am and the earliest time Bush finished reading with the children was after eight minutes, then the earliest Bush finished reading with the kids would be at around 9:13 am, but he would have still be in the classroom. There is still no account for how long it took Bush to leave the classroom from the time he finished reading with the children.
"The only source to describe what happened next is Fighting Back by Bill Sammon. Publishers Weekly described Sammon's book as an "inside account of the Bush administration's reaction to 9-11 [and] a breathless, highly complimentary portrait of the president [showing] the great merit and unwavering moral vision of his inner circle." [Publisher's Weekly, 10/15/02] Sammon's conservative perspective makes his account of Bush's behavior at the end of the photo-op all the more surprising. Bush is described as smiling and chatting with the children "as if he didn't have a care in the world" and "in the most relaxed manner imaginable." White House aide Gordon Johndroe, then came in as he usually does at the end of press conferences, and said, "Thank you, press. If you could step out the door we came in, please." A reporter then asked, "Mr. President, are you aware of the reports of the plane crash in New York? Is there anything...", But Bush interrupted, and no doubt recalling his order, "DON'T SAY ANYTHING YET," Bush responded, "I'll talk about it later." But still the president did not leave. "He stepped forward and shook hands with [classroom teacher] Daniels, slipping his left hand behind her in another photo-op pose. He was taking his good old time. ... Bush lingered until the press was gone." [Fighting Back: The War on Terrorism - From Inside the Bush White House, by Bill Sammon, 10/02, p. 90]" - Reprinted from The Memory Hole
Why did Ari Fleischer say Bush got out of the classroom and returned to his holding room "shortly after 9:00 am" when Bush, by all accounts, left the classroom closer to 9:20 am?
"Andy approached the President, whispered into his ear, with the press before and the children before him, about the crash of the second plane. The President had been intending to make remarks about the first plane in that session, but he decided to wait until he could ascertain additional information, given the fact now that it was not one, but two, crashes, which was an immediate indication, of course, of the serious nature of this suggesting terrorism. Then, as you know, the President returned to his hold, received additional information from Dr. Rice. Information was still very sketchy at that point -- this is shortly after 9:00 a.m. And then the President proceeded -- the decision was made by the President that he would go and speak to the nation about what transpired. You have the record of that. And then the President immediately departed for the airport." - White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
Why does Chief of Staff Andrew Card try to make it seem like Bush excused himself from the classroom immediately after he whispered, "American is under attack," into the President's ear when video proved that Bush waited many minutes afterward until he left the classroom?
9.11 Voices / What If You Had To Tell The President?
White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card was with President Bush during a children's reading event at a Sarasota, Fla., public school when word came that planes had hit the World Trade Center. Card had to decide how to tell Bush without creating a national panic...
"So I was very uncomfortable about interrupting the president during one of his events ... so I wanted to think, how can I convey to the president the situation? And I made a conscious decision to state the facts and to offer editorial comment. And the facts, as I knew them, were -- since he knew about the first plane, I said, "a second plane hit the second tower." Those were the facts. And the editorial comment was, "America is under attack." I said those things into the president's right ear, and I stepped back, because I did not want to invite a discussion from the classroom. But I tried to be succinct in what I told him so that he understood the enormity of the problem. He looked up -- it was only a matter of seconds, but it seemed like minutes -- and I thought that he was outstanding in his ability not to scare either the American people that were paying attention to the cameras or, more importantly, the students that were in the classroom. And he just excused himself very politely to the teacher and to the students, and he left". -SFGate (09/11/02)
What time did Bush get back to his holding room?
"Mr. Bush walked into a classroom set up with a secure phone. He called the vice president, pulling the phone cord tight as he spun to see the attack on TV. Then he grabbed a legal pad and quickly wrote his first words to the nation. "Ladies and gentlemen, this is a difficult moment for America,” he said in the speech. “Today, we’ve had a national tragedy. Two airplanes have crashed into the World Trade Center in an apparent terrorist attack on our country.” -CBS (9/10/03)
"The president got his first look at the burning World Trade Center towers on a television that had been rolled in on a cart and hooked up for him in a holding room at Emma Booker Elementary School in a poor, crime-ridden section of Sarasota, Fla. The president sat at a table with his ear pressed to a telephone while he spoke over a secure line to the White House. He craned to watch the sickening images from clear across the room. "I told Ari to take notes," Mr. Bush recalled months later in an interview with The Times, referring to White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer. "I wanted Ari to have a full understanding of what he saw and my reactions to that. "I recognized that a lot of this was going to end up being such a blur that I wouldn't have an accurate accounting." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
9:30 a.m. – Bush meets privately with National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, who briefs him. He delivers first remarks on the tragedy. -September11News.com
"What's going on?" Bush asked. Someone pointed to the TV, which was showing the planes hitting the towers. Bush got on the phone with National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, who was at the White House. He scribbled in a notebook with a Sharpie pen. He got off the phone and told Brogan he would make a statement in the media center, where parents, students and reporters were waiting to hear him speak of the importance of reading." -St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
"From the holding room off the school's portico, Mr. Bush talked first over the secure line with Mr. Cheney back at the White House. The vice president had watched the second crash on live TV in his West Wing office. He was huddled there with Miss Rice, his chief of staff, Lewis "Scooter" Libby and political adviser Mary Matalin. "First of all, we had to figure out what we were going to do and where we were going to make decisions from," Mr. Bush recalled. "I didn't spend that much time about my own safety," the president added, "because I knew others were worried about that. What I was interested in is making sure that the response mechanism that was under my control was sharp and ready to go. And that meant defense, for starters." Mr. Bush also called FBI Director Robert Mueller, then on the job all of six days. The FBI already suspected Saudi exile Osama bin Laden, the Islamic radical who led the al Qaeda terrorist network. The president then consulted with New York Gov. George E. Pataki. He hung up and turned to the top aides present — Mr. Card, Mr. Fleischer, chief political adviser Karl Rove and White House Communications Director Dan Bartlett. "We're at war," Mr. Bush announced." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
Why wasn't President Bush taken to a secure location after being informed about the attacks yet his wife Laura, the First Lady, was taken to a secure location after the planes hit the WTC?
"Mr. Bush was reading to a group of schoolchildren at Emma Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla., yesterday morning when an aide whispered to him word of the first attack on the World Trade Center. For some reason, Secret Service agents did not bustle him away." -The Globe and Mail (9/12/01)
"When the planes hit, Laura Bush was on Capitol Hill, preparing to testify at a hearing on education. She was immediately taken to a secure location." -CBS (9/10/03)
"Victory clicked into my mind," Mr. Bush told The Times. "The one thing that became certain is that we wouldn't let this stand. I mean, there was no question in my mind that we'd respond. "I wasn't sure who the attacker was. But if somebody is going to attack America, I knew that my most immediate job was to protect America by finding him and getting them." Returning to the holding room, where he first saw television images from New York, the president talked by phone with the vice president, who was in his White House office with Miss Rice and Miss Matalin, wife of Mr. Carville. "One thing for certain," Mr. Bush said later, "I needed to get out of where I was." -Washington Times (10/07/02)
"There is no other target, unfortunately, like the president. ... The White House has always, unfortunately, been a target – a target for terrorists, a target for people who have shot at the building," [Fleischer] added." - Washington Post (10/23/01)
9:24 a.m. - FAA notifies NORAD that Flight 77 is hijacked.
9:24 a.m. - Langley AFB gets order to scramble Jets after Flight 77
 9:30 a.m.
9:30 a.m. - Jets from Langley AFB take off to Washington
Why did the Secret Service allow Bush to make a speech from the school and not evacuate him to a secure location when they knew a terrorist attack was going on for 25 minutes already?
"For some reason, Secret Service agents did not bustle him away. Instead, within minutes, even before the attack on the Pentagon, the President made a statement to reporters, promising "to hunt down and to find those folks that committed this act. Terrorism against our nation will not stand." -The Globe and Mail (9/12/01)
"And then the President proceeded -- the decision was made by the President that he would go and speak to the nation about what transpired. You have the record of that. And then the President immediately departed for the airport." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
"After huddling with advisers, Bush entered the school's media center for what was to have been an education speech. He looked stunned, but by the time he reached the podium, he was composed and at 9:30 a.m. delivered the chilling news of "an apparent terrorist attack on our country." -September 11 News.com
Remarks by the President After Two Planes Crash Into World Trade Center Emma Booker Elementary School - Sarasota, Florida 9:30 A.M. EDT THE PRESIDENT: "Ladies and gentlemen, this is a difficult moment for America. I, unfortunately, will be going back to Washington after my remarks. Secretary Rod Paige and the Lt. Governor will take the podium and discuss education. I do want to thank the folks here at Booker Elementary School for their hospitality. Today we've had a national tragedy. Two airplanes have crashed into the World Trade Center in an apparent terrorist attack on our country. I have spoken to the Vice President, to the Governor of New York, to the Director of the FBI, and have ordered that the full resources of the federal government go to help the victims and their families, and to conduct a full-scale investigation to hunt down and to find those folks who committed this act. Terrorism against our nation will not stand. And now if you would join me in a moment of silence. May God bless the victims, their families, and America. Thank you very much." -White House (9/11/01)
"But the president also realized he would have to make a statement. Mr. Fleischer and Communications Director Dan Bartlett hastily drafted one. Mr. Bush, taking a Sharpie fine-point marker from the inside pocket of his jacket, put it in his own words by scribbling on three sheets of crinkly white paper. In the school library, the press corps and his scheduled audience waited. Some close to the podium were unaware of what had happened. The president emerged from behind a blue curtain just before 9:30 a.m." -Washington Times (10/07/02)
"It was just after 9:30 a.m. The president unfolded his hands and straightened three sheets of hand-scrawled notes that he had spread on the podium in the school library. He folded his hands again and looked back up at his audience. "Today, we've had a national tragedy," Mr. Bush said. -Washington Times (10/08/02)
"It was 9:30 a.m. As he spoke, Mr. Bush didn’t know that two more hijacked jets were streaking toward Washington. Vice President Dick Cheney was in his office at the White House when a Secret Service agent ran in. “He said to me, ‘Sir, we have to leave immediately’ and grabbed, put a hand on my belt, another hand on my shoulder and propelled me out the door of my office,” recalls Cheney. “I’m not sure how they do it, but they sort of levitate you down the hallway. You move very fast.” Cheney was rushed deep under the White House into a bunker called the Presidential Emergency Operations Center. It was built for war, and this was it. On her way down, National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice called Mr. Bush. “It was brief because I was being pushed to get off the phone and get out of the West Wing. They were hurrying me off the phone with the president and I just said, he said, ‘I’m coming back’ and we said, ‘Mr. President, that may not be wise,’" recalls Rice. "...I think the thing that was on everybody’s mind was how many more planes are coming.” -CBS (9/10/03)
"9:31 A.M. - President Bush makes a short statement to reporters." -Patriot Resource
"He got off the phone and told Brogan he would make a statement in the media center, where parents, students and reporters were waiting to hear him speak of the importance of reading. Card made arrangements with the Secret Service and the crew of Air Force One for a quick departure. Bush went to a lectern and read his hastily written remarks to the students -- and the world. "Ladies and gentlemen, this is a difficult moment for America," he told them. He said he was returning to Washington. "Terrorism against our nation will not stand." -St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
Is it just a coincidence that Bush's speech is at the same time he was scheduled to speak that day?
9:30 A.M. (ZF) PRESIDENT BUSH REMARKS AT EMMA BOOKER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SARASOTA, FL -Federal News Service (9/10/01)
"Principal Gwen Rigell was struck by how closely Bush followed the White House script. He sat in a plain padded chair and listened as the children read him a story about a girl and her pet goat. " -St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
Why did Vice Pres. Cheney refuse to leave the White House underground bunker at the Secret Service's recommendation? Was it because he was being brave and doing his job, or was it because he was in control of the 9/11 attacks and knew the White House was in no danger?
"Agents swept up the 15 officials who stood to become president if the others were killed. They wanted to move Vice President Cheney, fearing he was in danger even in the bunker. But Cheney says when he heard the other officials were safe, he decided to stay at the White House, no matter what. “It’s important to emphasize it's not personal. You don’t think of it in personal terms. You’ve got a professional job to do,” says Cheney. Cheney was joined by transportation secretary Norm Mineta who remembers hearing the FAA counting down the hijacked jets closing in on the capital." -CBS (9/10/03)
Why didn't the hijackers try to crash a plane into Booker Elementary when it was publicly known that the President would be there and that the school is only 3.5 miles away from an International Airport?
THE PRESIDENT'S VISIT Bush to speak at Booker Elementary Published on September 8, 2001, Article 1 of 1 found. "The centerpiece of President Bush's visit to Sarasota next week will be an education speech Tuesday morning at Emma E. Booker Elementary School. Principal Gwen Rigell said Friday evening that school officials are still working out the details. "Right now we're just excited that we were actually selected to do it," she said. The president is scheduled to arrive Monday evening at Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport and to depart on Tuesday." - Sarasota Herald-Tribune (09/08/01)
Bush Presses Education Agenda in Sunshine State W A S H I N G T O N, Sept. 10 — President Bush headed to Florida today to push for quick passage of his education reforms as the flagging economy commands increasing attention back in the nation's capital. Bush is set to take part in a reading program demonstration and address parents and teachers at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota on Tuesday. The Democratic Party is set to meet in Miami later this week in an effort to raise more questions about the legitimacy of the 2000 election. But the 2002 elections also factor into Bush's visit, as he raises the profile of his brother Jeb, governor of the state. "Obviously we were raised right because Jeb's priority and my priority are the same," the president said in Jacksonville this afternoon." - ABC (09/10/01)
 9:34 a.m.
What time did Bush leave Booker Elementary and why wasn't Booker Elementary School evacuated after President Bush left just incase terrorists had planned to attack Bush at the school?
"At 9:30 a.m., Bush stepped up to the podium in Booker's library and delivered the news of a terrorist attack on the country. Seconds later, the president was whisked away. Said Tose-Rigell: "It was like a blink, and poof, he was gone." -Sarasota Herald-Tribune (9/10/02)
"His limousine barreled away toward the city airport at 9:34 a.m." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
 9:37 a.m.
9:37 am - Flight 77 allegedly crashes into the Pentagon.
(See NORAD timeline below.)
"As the motorcade swung up to Air Force One at 9:43 a.m., he learned that a third jetliner had slammed into the Pentagon." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
 9:45 a.m.
"At 9.45 the Secret Service ordered the complete evacuation of the White House - United Flight 93 was still airborne and heading towards Washington. No one knew, or knows, for sure what its target was, but the obvious candidates were the Capitol buiding, Camp David - or the White House itself." -Telegraph.co.uk (12/16/01)
"As the Pentagon burned, Mr. Bush’s limousine sped toward Air Force One in Florida. At that moment, United Flight 93 - the last hijacked plane - was taking dead aim at Washington." -CBS (9/10/03)
"As the motorcade sped toward Sarasota/Bradenton International Airport, Bush and Card were in the presidential limo speaking by phone with the White House. Bush and Card were told about the attack on the Pentagon. They also received several reports that turned out to be wrong -- of a fire in the Old Executive Office Building, a car bomb at the State Department and that terrorists were targeting Air Force One. As they zoomed away from the school, Putnam saw the protesters waving their signs, apparently unaware of the attacks. One protester made an obscene gesture to Bush's limo. Putnam thought, When that guy finds out about the attacks, he'll regret he gave the president the bird." - St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
 9:54 - 10:00 a.m.
Why isn't there any Secret Service agents or other armed guards escorting Bush up the steps to Air Force One when our country is under attack and the President's life might be in danger?
9:54 A.M. - "President Bush leaves Sarasota Bradenton Int'l Airport onboard Air Force One." -Patriot Resource
"Between phone calls and grave discussions with aides, he saw the televised images of the World Trade Center towers collapsing. He learned that a fourth plane, possibly bound for Washington, had crashed in Pennsylvania. There was even a seemingly credible threat against Air Force One. The Secret Service and Mr. Cheney emphatically urged Mr. Bush to divert to a military base until the crisis could be brought under control. At length, the president reluctantly agreed, and his plane swung toward Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana. "I'll never forget looking out the airplane and seeing the F-16s on our wing," Mr. Bush recalled. "I was very worried about the nation. I wasn't sure what was going to happen next. We just didn't know."
But some Democrats, and journalists like Miss Dowd, would all but accuse the president of cowardice for not returning sooner from what was supposed to be a humdrum trip to Florida to pitch his education reforms — especially after a threat against Air Force One turned out to be a false alarm. Members of Congress and Democratic strategists were among the carpers. "I don't buy the notion Air Force One was a target," said Rep. Martin Meehan, Massachusetts Democrat. "That's just PR, that's just spin." Paul Begala, White House counselor to President Clinton, was more blunt. "He didn't come home for 10 hours — 10 hours, when all the planes were accounted for," Mr. Begala said on CNN. "And he gave us some cock-and-bull story about Air Force One being under attack." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
"At the airport, everyone scrambled onto Air Force One. Secret Service agents with dogs hurriedly checked the luggage. Card was frustrated because so many guests had come on the plane and were delaying the takeoff. The plane taxied quickly, took off and climbed very steeply. The pilots wanted to get to cruising altitude because of the report that their plane was a possible target. As the Boeing 747 climbed high above Florida, Bush said he was eager to return to Washington. But Card replied that they needed to wait. "We've got to let the dust settle before we go back." - St. Petersburg Times (09/08/02)
When did Bush make the order to shoot down any hijacked planes and why did it take him an hour to put our military on high alert status?
The President, upon arrival on Air Force One, called the Vice President. It was the first of many calls that he and the Vice President engaged in at one point. They had an open line between the two of them; the Vice President being here in the White House, the President, of course, being in what amounts to an air borne command center at times like this. The President spoke with the Vice President. The President spoke with Secretary Rumsfeld, he spoke again with the Vice President to receive information and to give direction. It was on the flight to Louisiana where the President authorized putting America's military on a higher alert status.
- Q: Two questions, Ari. At what point did he decide to go to the highest alert, DEP CON alert? And then --
- MR. FLEISCHER: Well, actually, DEP CON 3, it's not the highest.
- Q: At what point did he decide to go there?
- MR. FLEISCHER: The flight to Louisiana, mid-morning.
- Q: In mid-air?
- MR. FLEISCHER: Yes.
- Q: And so that was made in mid-air?
- MR. FLEISCHER: Correct. The President authorized the Vice President to make that happen. -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
10 a.m. – Aboard Air Force One en route to Louisiana, Bush calls Vice President Dick Cheney and puts America's military on a high alert status. Sifts through reports from staff, including erroneous report that a car bomb had struck the State Department. Gets news that plane has crashed near Pittsburgh. -September11News.com
"Vice President Dick Cheney has disclosed that President George W. Bush authorized military jets to shoot down "as a last resort" a hijacked airliner, apparently Flight 93, that was heading for Washington. Officials said later that the decision wasn't made until after Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon." -Newsday (9/23/01)
9:55 a.m. - "Once airborne, Bush spoke again to Cheney, who said the combat air patrol needed rules of engagement if pilots encountered an aircraft that might be under the control of hijackers. Cheney recommended that Bush authorize the military to shoot down any such civilian airliners-as momentous a decision as the president was asked to make in those first hours. "I said, 'You bet,'" Bush recalled. "We had a little discussion, but not much." Bush then talked to Rumsfeld to clarify the procedures military pilots should follow in trying to force an unresponsive plane to the ground before opening fire on it. First, pilots would seek to make radio contact with the other plane and tell the pilot to land at a specific location. If that failed, the pilots were to use visual signals. These included having the fighters fly in front of the other plane. If the plane continued heading toward what was seen as a significant target with apparently hostile intent, the U.S. pilot would have the authority to shoot it down. With Bush's approval, Rumsfeld passed the order down the chain of command." -Washington Post (1/27/02)
"At 9:57 a.m., Air Force One thundered down the runway, blasting smoke and dust in a full-thrust take off. Communications Director Dan Bartlett was on board: “It was like a rocket. For a good 10 minutes, the plane was going almost straight up.” At the same moment, 56 minutes after it was hit, World Trade Center Tower Two began to falter, then cascade in an incomprehensible avalanche of steel, concrete and human lives." -CBS (9/10/03)
"I needed to know what the facts were. But I knew I needed to act. I knew that if the nation's under attack, the role of the Commander-In-Chief is to respond forcefully to prevent other attacks from happening. And so, I've talked to the Secretary of Defense; one of the first acts I did was to put our military on alert.", Bush. - White House
"The president also spoke of making the difficult decision to order the military to shoot down any civilian airliners that might be in the hands of terrorists, like the planes that crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a Pennsylvania field. "That's a tough decision to make, but you've got to understand that I was the commander in chief and the president of a nation that had just been attacked by four aircraft, and we didn't know if other aircraft were coming or not," he said. -ABC (12/05/01)
 9:59 a.m.
9:59 am - WTC 2 collapses.
- based on seismic data
 10:06 - 10:10 a.m.
10:06 am - Flight 93 allegedly crashes in an empty field in Pennsylvania. -Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
"Within minutes, there was a report that a plane had crashed in southwestern Pennsylvania-what turned out to be United Flight 93, a Boeing 757 that had been hijacked after leaving Newark International Airport. Many of those in the PEOC feared that Cheney's order had brought down a civilian aircraft. Rice demanded that someone check with the Pentagon. On Air Force One, Bush inquired, "Did we shoot it down or did it crash?" It took the Pentagon almost two hours to confirm that the plane had not been shot down, an enormous relief. "I think an act of heroism occurred on board that plane," Cheney said. Later, reports of cell phone conversations before the plane crashed indicated that some passengers had fought with the hijackers." -Washington Post (01/27/02)
"10:10 a.m. - United Flight 93 crashes in Shanksville, Pa. Around that time, President Bush authorizes fighter pilots to shoot down airliners that do not respond to intercepts." -USA Today (09/16/01)
 10:20 a.m.
Is this photo really a picture of the State Department on fire that was reported that a huge car bomb went off there, but then was quickly dismissed?
"At 10:20 a report came in that a huge car bomb had gone off outside the State Department in Washington. It wasn't true, but it changed the picture once more. "There really is a fog of war," Mr Bush would say later. "You've heard about it, and you've read about it. Well, there is one." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
3:42:43 PM "There are reports that a car bomb has exploded outside the US State Department in Washington. This is the fifth explosion in an hour and a half in a spate of major terrorist attacks on the United States." -TCM Breaking News (9/11/01)
4:03:06 PM "The State Department was evacuated Tuesday due to a possible explosion or fire amid a rash of explosions in New York and Washington. A senior government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the incident appeared connected with the two plane crashes at the World Trade Center, an explosion at the Pentagon and the evacuation of the White House. "Something has happened at the State Department," the source said. "We don't know what yet. We hear it might have been a plane." -TCM Breaking News (9/11/01)
"The President continued to receive information aboard the plane and some of the information, for example, about a car bombing at the State Department; then the President was given the information saying that was an incorrect report, that erred. The President was given information about the crash south of Pittsburgh; information continued to come in to the President about developments in this case." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
 10:28 a.m.
10:28 am - WTC 1 collapses.
- based on seismic data
 10:36 a.m.
When did NORAD receive a shoot-down authorization?
"A shootdown authorization was not communicated to the NORAD air defense sector until 28 minutes after United 93 had crashed in Pennsylvania." - 9/11 Commission
 11:40 - 11:45 a.m.
"The President arrived at Barksdale Air Force Base, proceeded to the conference room with General Tom Keck, and then made a series of phone calls from the General's conference room. And he addressed the nation, as you know. In the course of one conversation with the Vice President the President said to him, "it's the faceless coward that attacks," which became, of course, the statement the President made to the nation. The President talked with Senator Schumer from the General's conference room. He said this was, "a sad day for America; condolences go to everyone in New York." He spoke again with Secretary Rumsfeld; spoke again with the Vice President." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
11:40 a.m. – Bush arrives at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., where he makes series of telephone calls from a general's conference room. Tells Cheney in telephone call, "It's the faceless coward that attacks." He also talks to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and New York Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. -September 11 News .com
11:44 A.M. - President Bush arrives at Barksdale Air Force Base near Shreveport, Louisiana. -Patriot Resource
"At 11:45, Air Force One landed at Barksdale Air Force base near Shreveport, Louisiana. The official reason for landing at Barksdale was that Mr Bush felt it necessary to make a further statement, but it isn't unreasonable to assume that - as there was no agreement as to what the President's movements should be - it was felt he might as well be on the ground as in the air." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
"At 11:45 a.m., they landed at Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana." -CBS (9/10/03)
"Colin Powell, the Secretary of State, the administration's chief diplomat and its most experienced military man, had been sitting down to a working breakfast in Lima, Peru, with Alejandro Toledo, the Peruvian president, when he was handed a note saying the World Trade Centre had been attacked. On the eight-hour flight back, he told reporters that he would be contacting world leaders in the days to come. But it would be 10 hours before he was able to speak directly to his own leader, President Bush. Why so long? In the weeks before September 11 Washington was full of rumours that Powell was out of favour and had been quietly relegated to the sidelines, but an administration official explained the lack of communication more simply: "I don't think, in those early hours, that the President was looking for a diplomatic solution." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
 12:00 a.m.
"From Barksdale, Mr Bush spoke again to Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, and also to Charles Schumer, a New York senator. At noon the US military was ordered on to Defcon Delta." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
 12:36 a.m.
12:36 A.M. - President Bush makes his second statement of the day. -Patriot Resource
Presidential Response, Barksdale Air Force Base near Shreveport, Louisiana, September 11, 2001 12:36 P.M. EDT "Freedom itself was attacked this morning by a faceless coward and freedom will be defended. I want to reassure the American people that the full resources of the federal government are working to assist local authorities to save lives and to help the victims of these attacks. Make no mistake: The United States will hunt down and punish those responsible for these cowardly acts. I've been in regular contact with the Vice President, the Secretary of Defense, the national security team and my Cabinet. We have taken all appropriate security precautions to protect the American people. Our military at home and around the world is on high alert status, and we have taken the necessary security precautions to continue the functions of your government. We have been in touch with the leaders of Congress and with world leaders to assure them that we will do whatever is necessary to protect America and Americans. I ask the American people to join me in saying a thanks for all the folks who have been fighting hard to rescue our fellow citizens and to join me in saying a prayer for the victims and their families. The resolve of our great nation is being tested. But make no mistake: We will show the world that we will pass this test. God bless." END 12:37 P.M. EDT -Patriot Resource
 1:15 p.m.
He departed at approximately 1:15 p.m. for Air Force One in what is called an up-armored Humvee vehicle. It's a camouflaged vehicle. On the tarmac at the airport there were armed security police with dogs that were there when we arrived and when we departed. -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
1:15 p.m. – Bush departs conference room for Air Force One in a camouflaged Humvee. Talks to Cheney again en route to Nebraska air force base and schedules a 4 p.m. meeting of his national security staff. Also talks to New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Gov. George Pataki. "I know your heart is broken and your city is strained and anything we can do, let me know," Bush says. -September11News.com
Q Who is with him on the plane? MR. FLEISCHER: Chief of Staff Card, Karl Rove, Dan Bartlett, myself, Gordon. -White House (9/11/01)
"The President was taken back to his plane in a camouflaged Humvee surrounded by armed guards, and at 1:15, Air Force One took off - as Mr Cheney had wanted - for Offutt, Nebraska. Twelve minutes later a State of Emergency was declared in Washington.
From the plane, Mr Bush - keeping one line open to Mr Cheney - also talked to New York's mayor, Rudy Giuliani. "I know that your heart is broken and your city is wounded," Mr Giuliani remembered the President saying. "But we will give you everything we can." -Telegraph.co.uk (12/16/01)
"At Barksdale, the tarmac teemed with camouflaged soldiers in full battle gear, brandishing M-16s as they scrambled to set up a perimeter around Air Force One. A Humvee outfitted with a machine gun turret escorted the president's motorcade." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
"At Barksdale, they believed the situation in Washington was still unsafe. So the plane continued on to Nebraska, to the command center where Mr. Bush would be secure and have all the communications gear he needed to run the government. Aboard Air Force One, Mr. Bush had a job for press secretary Fleischer. “The president asked me to make sure that I took down everything that was said. I think he wanted to make certain that a record existed,” says Fleischer Fleischer’s notes capture Mr. Bush’s language, plain and unguarded. To the vice president, he said: “We’re at war, Dick, we’re going to find out who did this and kick their ass.” Another time, Mr. Bush said, “We’re not going to have any slap-on-the-wrist crap this time.” The President adds, “I can remember telling the Secretary of Defense, I said, ‘We’re going to find out who did this and then Mr. Secretary, you and Dick Myers, who we just named as chairman of the joint chiefs, are going to go get them.’” -CBS (9/10/03)
On the flight to Nebraska, the President again spoke with the Vice President. He called the meeting of the National Security Council for 4:00 p.m., upon his arrival, instructed the Vice President to have all the proper people assembled. He made clear that he wanted to get back to Washington as quickly as was possible. He spoke with Mayor Guiliani, and Pataki, together. He said that, "Our sympathies are with you and the people of New York." He said, "I know your heart is broken and your city is strained, and anything we can do, let me know and we will do." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
 1:27 p.m.
"...at 1:15, Air Force One took off - as Mr Cheney had wanted - for Offutt, Nebraska. Twelve minutes later a State of Emergency was declared in Washington. From the plane, Mr Bush - keeping one line open to Mr Cheney - also talked to New York's mayor, Rudy Giuliani. "I know that your heart is broken and your city is wounded," Mr Giuliani remembered the President saying. "But we will give you everything we can." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
1:38 P.M. - President Bush leaves Barksdale Air Force Base. -Patriot Resource
Press Briefing to the Pool By Ari Fleischer Aboard Air Force One 1:47 P.M. EDT
MR. FLEISCHER: While on the ground at Barksdal, the President spoke to the Vice President several times -- the Vice President, of course, being at the operations center at the White House. He spoke with the Secretary of Defense; he spoke to Senator Schumer; he had spoken to his wife prior to landing in Louisiana. END - 1:51 P.M. EDT -White House (9/11/01)
Did Press Secretary Ari Fleischer purposely lie to us when he said that Bush had no warnings about the terrorist attacks?
"Press Briefing to the Pool By Ari Fleischer, Aboard Air Force One , 1:47 P.M. EDT Q Does the President now know anything more about who is responsible, the coordinated attack, and whether this is it or -- MR. FLEISCHER: That information is still being gathered and analyzed. And I anticipate that will be an ongoing process for a little while. Often, at a time like this, information comes in, it turns out not to be true. The proper procedure is to carefully, thoroughly evaluate all information and do so in a ? Q Had there been any warnings that the President knew of? MR. FLEISCHER: No warnings. Q Does the President ? is he concerned about the fact that this attack of this severity happened with no warning? MR. FLEISCHER: First things first: his concern is with the safety of people who have lost their ? the health and security of the American people and with the families of those who have lost their lives. There will come an appropriate time to do all appropriate look backs." -White House (09/11/01)
"Q Is the President satisfied, and should the American people be satisfied, with the performance of the intelligence community in this country, given what happened yesterday? MR. FLEISCHER: The President believes that the intelligence community and the nation's military are the best in the world. And, clearly, something yesterday took place in New York that was not foreseen, that we had no specific information about. " -White House Press Briefing (9/12/01)
"President Bush and his top advisers were informed by the CIA early last August that terrorists associated with Osama bin Laden had discussed the possibility of hijacking airplanes, according to reliable sources. "There was . . . an awareness by the government, including the president, of Osama bin Laden and the threat he posed in the United States and around the world," Fleischer said. "That included long-standing speculation about hijacking in the traditional sense, but not involving suicide bombers using airplanes as missiles." - Washington Post (5/16/02)
"White House officials acknowledged that U.S. intelligence officials informed President Bush weeks before the Sept. 11 attacks that bin Laden's terrorist network might try to hijack American planes, and that information prompted administration officials to issue a private warning to transportation officials and national security agencies. Rice stressed that there was no way anyone could have predicted that terrorists would use hijacked planes as missiles and attack the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. She, and White House spokesman Ari Fleischer earlier in the day, said that before Sept. 11 "hijacking" had a different meaning to people than it did afterwards." -ABC (5/16/02)
Why did Donald Rumsfeld want to attack Saddam Hussein only hours after the attacks when there wasn't even any evidence that he was involved?
"CBS News has learned that barely five hours after American Airlines Flight 77 plowed into the Pentagon, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld was telling his aides to come up with plans for striking Iraq — even though there was no evidence linking Saddam Hussein to the attacks. That's according to notes taken by aides who were with Rumsfeld in the National Military Command Center on Sept. 11 – notes that show exactly where the road toward war with Iraq began, reports CBS News National Security Correspondent David Martin. With the intelligence all pointing toward bin Laden, Rumsfeld ordered the military to begin working on strike plans. And at 2:40 p.m., the notes quote Rumsfeld as saying he wanted "best info fast. Judge whether good enough hit S.H." – meaning Saddam Hussein – "at same time. Not only UBL" – the initials used to identify Osama bin Laden. Now, nearly one year later, there is still very little evidence Iraq was involved in the Sept. 11 attacks. But if these notes are accurate, that didn't matter to Rumsfeld. "Go massive," the notes quote him as saying. "Sweep it all up. Things related and not." - CBS (09/04/02)
"We have no evidence that Saddam Hussein was involved with the Sept. 11" attacks, Bush said at the start of a meeting with congressional lawmakers discussing new energy legislation. But, he added, "There's no question that Saddam Hussein had Al Qaeda ties." Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Tuesday he had no reason to believe that Iraq's deposed leader, Saddam Hussein, had a hand in Sept. 11. The Bush administration has asserted that Saddam's government had links to Al Qaeda, the terrorist network led by Usama bin Laden that conducted the Sept. 11 attacks. And in various public statements over the past year or so, administration officials have suggested close ties. In a television interview Tuesday night, White House National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice said that one of the reasons Bush went to war against Saddam was because he posed a threat in "a region from which the 9-11 threat emerged." Rice, asked about the same poll numbers, said, "We have never claimed that Saddam Hussein had either direction or control of 9-11." - FOX (9/17/03)
2:50 - 3:10 p.m.
Around this time is the first time Bush is told that Al Qaeda is suspected to be behind the attacks.
, and Bush was taken into an underground bunker - again one designed to withstand a nuclear blast. The sprawling base, one of the most heavily-defended in the USA, is home to the US Air Force's 55th Wing, which flies Boeing 747s specially adapted for military use in reconnaissance and intelligence gathering. As Mr Cheney had pointed out, it also houses an advanced strategic command and communications centre, from which Bush was able to teleconference directly with Mr Cheney and Ms Rice in the White House, Mr Rumsfeld in the Pentagon, and members of the National Security Council. The meeting lasted a full hour. According to Ms Rice, the President opened it by saying: "This is an attack on freedom, and we're going to treat it as such. We have to minister to the country, and deal with the horrors, but we're not going to lose focus. We have to mobilise the world and rid it of this scourge." She and her aides were able to tell Mr Bush that there were already "good indications" that the source of the attacks was Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda network." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
"By 3 p.m., Air Force One touched down at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. Mr. Bush and his team were herded into a small, brick hut that gave no hint of what they would find below. At the bottom of the stairs was the U.S. Strategic Command Underground Command Center. It was built to transmit a president’s order to go to nuclear war. But when Mr. Bush walked in, the battle staff was watching the skies over the United States. Many airplanes had still not landed. After a short briefing, Mr. Bush and Card were taken to a teleconference center which connected them to the White House, the Pentagon, the FBI and the CIA. Mr. Bush had a question for CIA Director George Tenet. "George Tenet was just asked, 'Who do you think did this to us,'" recalls Rice. "He said, 'Sir, I believe its al Qaeda. We’re doing the assessment but it looks like, it feels like, it smells like al Qaeda.'" -CBS (9/10/03)
3:07 P.M. - President Bush arrives at U.S. Strategic Air Command at Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Nebraska. -Patriot Resource
3:07 p.m. – Bush arrives at U.S. Strategic Command at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. -September 11 News .com
"The President arrived at approximately 3:10 p.m. to the Command Center in Nebraska. He had a one hour and five minute meeting with his national security team. And during the course of that meeting, the President said -- at the very end of the meeting the President said, "We will find these people and they will suffer the consequences of taking on this nation. We will do what it takes. No one is going to diminish the spirit of this country." The President also, at the security meeting, stressed how grateful he was to have heard from so many world leaders who sent him written communications, standing with the United States and expressing their outrage at the terrorist attacks." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
Was it just a coincidence that billionaire Warren Buffett (who's company NetJets had one of their planes "tracking Flight 93") was hosting a charity event on 9/11 (with a WTC CEO who's offices were right where Flight 175 crashed into) at the same Offutt AFB where President Bush would later fly to for protection?
"On the morning of Sept. 11, Tatlock herself had just arrived with a small group of business leaders at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha for a charity event hosted by Warren Buffett. She then heard the news of the first plane hitting the World Trade Center's north tower. Moments later, back in Omaha, a television picture flashed on a large screen, and Tatlock witnessed the second plane plowing into the south tower. "There on the screen, I saw the second plane crash into my office," Tatlock recalled." -San Francisco Business Times (week of 2/04/02)
"Additional recordings would be played from the cockpit of an executive jet that tracked Flight 93 on Sept. 11... An official for NetJets, a company that sells shares in private business aircraft, confirmed that the plane tracking Flight 93 belonged to the company. The official, who asked not to be identified by name, said the company was asked not to comment on the Sept. 11 flight but would not say who made the request." -Holland Sentinel/AP (8/09/02)
Who is Warren Buffett and what is his connections with 9/11?
 4:00 p.m.
"At 4 pm, as the meeting broke up, Bush again expressed a wish to return to Washington. More than six hours had passed since the last attack, and now a split was developing between the Secret Service, which wanted to keep the President overnight - and by some accounts, indefinitely - at the base, and White House aides who could see ever more clearly the political consequences of his failure to return to the capital." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
"In Nebraska, the White House staff was preparing for an address to the nation from the Air Force bunker. But by then, the president had had enough. He decided to come back." -CBS (9/10/03)
 4:36 p.m.
4:36 p.m. – Bush departs for Washington. En route, he calls first lady Laura Bush and says, "I'm coming home, see you at the White House." Works with aides on his prime-time speech. -September 11 News .com
4:36 P.M. - President Bush leaves Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Nebraska. -Patriot Resource
"At 4:36 pm, the presidential jet took off for Washington. Mr Bush called Laura: "I'm coming home," he said." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
"In Nebraska, the White House staff was preparing for an address to the nation from the Air Force bunker. But by then, the president had had enough. He decided to come back. “At one point, he said he didn’t want any tinhorn terrorist keeping him out of Washington,” Fleischer says. On board, Mr. Bush was already thinking of issuing an ultimatum to the world: “I had time to think and a couple of thoughts emerged. One was that you're guilty, if you harbor a terrorist, because I knew these terrorists like al-Qaeda liked to prey on weak government and weak people. The other thought that came was the opportunity to fashion a vast coalition of countries that would either be with us or with the terrorists.” -CBS (9/10/03)
"The President, on the flight home, spoke with Mrs. Bush -- he had spoken with her earlier in the day, too, upon departure from Florida -- said, "I'm coming home, see you at the White House." -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
 5:20 p.m.
5:20 pm - WTC 7 collapses allegedly from an internal fire.
"As Air Force One sped east, World Trade Center Number Seven collapsed." -CBS (9/10/03)
 5:30 p.m.
Press Briefing to the Pool By Ari Fleischer Aboard Air Force One En Route Andrews Air Force Base 5:30 P.M. EDT
MR. FLEISCHER: The President will address the nation tonight, upon his return to the White House. He met this afternoon for one hour and five minutes with his national security team via live tele-conference from Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. Among the things the President said were, "We will find these people and they will suffer the consequence of taking on this nation. We will do what it takes," and he continued, "No one is going to diminish the spirit of this country." The President has also heard today from countless world leaders either who are calling to -- back to Washington or have sent him directly communiqués. He's heard from Britain, France, Germany, Russia -- a host of nations, all of whom have expressed their outrage at this attack, and who have assured the American people that the international community stands with America. - END 5:36 P.M. EDT -White House (9/11/01)
 6:30 p.m.
"Air Force One, flanked throughout the 1,200-mile-long flight by F16s, landed at Andrews Air Force base just after 6.30pm." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
"As the plane neared Andrews Air Force base around 6:30, the Secret Service said it might be safer for Mr. Bush to complete the final leg of his journey via motorcade, not helicopter. "I'm landing on the South Lawn in Marine One," the president replied. "People want to see me land on the South Lawn at the White House and go into the Oval Office, OK?" He boarded the helicopter, which the pilot flew close to the Pentagon so the president could see the damage. Smoke billowed from a gash five stories high and 150 feet wide. "The mightiest building in the world is on fire," Mr. Bush muttered, staring out a side window. "That's the 21st-century war you've just witnessed." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
"After arriving in Washington, Mr. Bush boarded his helicopter and flew past the Pentagon on the way to the White House." -CBS (9/10/03)
6:54 - 7:00 p.m.
"And I saw a plane on TV this big!"
"The green-and-white helicopter crossed the Potomac and the Tidal Basin, then swung back around the Washington Monument.
The sun still illuminated the tops of the stately trees surrounding the South Lawn as Marine One descended to the gloom of the grass at 6:54 p.m." -Washington Times (10/08/02)
6:55 P.M. - President Bush arrives at the White House. -Patriot Resource
And the President arrived back here, went immediately into the study just off the Oval Office, to work on his speech for tonight. He met again with his national security team, and then he returned to the study to work on the speech. -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
"I'm telling you Dick, I saw this plane crash into a building on TV."
"7 p.m. – Bush arrives at White House to prepare for address." -September 11 News .com
"25 minutes later Mr Bush re-entered the White House to applause from the skeleton staff who had been permitted to remain. He was taken down to the PEOPS where Laura was waiting together with Mr Cheney and his wife Lynne. Minutes later Colin Powell arrived, having been helicoptered to the White House from the airport after flying back from Peru." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
"Mr. Bush arrived back at the White House nine hours after the attacks. His next step was an address to the nation. Karen Hughes and her staff were already working on the speech. Just off the Oval Office, Mr. Bush added the words that would become known as the Bush Doctrine - no distinction between terrorists and those who harbor them. The staff wanted to add a declaration of war but Mr. Bush didn’t think the American people wanted to hear it that night." -CBS (9/10/03)
Bush was asked if there was a time throughout the chaotic day if he had ever thought that the White House might have been destroyed. Bush said he didn't remember thinking about the White House being harmed that day. How can the leader of a country not once think that his headquarters might be harmed in an attack if that leader wasn't involved with the attacks?
"Was there a time when he was afraid that there might not be a White House to return to? “I don’t remember thinking about whether or not the White House would have been obliterated," he recalls. "I think I might have thought they took their best shot, and now it was time for us to take our best shot.” -CBS (9/10/03)
Video- Pres. Bush saying, “I don’t remember thinking about whether or not the White House would have been obliterated" - CBS
 8:13 p.m.
Why is the last press briefing of the day by Ari Fleischer that gives the walk through of the President's day missing from the White House's official website?
Transcript of a Press Gaggle by Ari Fleischer 8:13 P.M. EDT
MR. FLEISCHER: Okay. What I'd like to do is just try to give you a walk through of the President's day, what he did when he learned various pieces of information. So this may take me a moment or two, but let me try to give you a good walk through... END 8:27 P.M. EDT -White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
White House Press Briefings September 2001
 8:30 p.m.
President Bush addresses the nation on the evening of September 11, 2001 from the Oval Office in the White House. (Click photo for source.)
Statement by the President in His Address to the Nation 8:30 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: Good evening. Today, our fellow citizens, our way of life, our very freedom came under attack in a series of deliberate and deadly terrorist acts. The victims were in airplanes, or in their offices; secretaries, businessmen and women, military and federal workers; moms and dads, friends and neighbors. Thousands of lives were suddenly ended by evil, despicable acts of terror. The pictures of airplanes flying into buildings, fires burning, huge structures collapsing, have filled us with disbelief, terrible sadness, and a quiet, unyielding anger. These acts of mass murder were intended to frighten our nation into chaos and retreat. But they have failed; our country is strong. A great people has been moved to defend a great nation. Terrorist attacks can shake the foundations of our biggest buildings, but they cannot touch the foundation of America. These acts shattered steel, but they cannot dent the steel of American resolve. America was targeted for attack because we're the brightest beacon for freedom and opportunity in the world. And no one will keep that light from shining. Today, our nation saw evil, the very worst of human nature. And we responded with the best of America -- with the daring of our rescue workers, with the caring for strangers and neighbors who came to give blood and help in any way they could. Immediately following the first attack, I implemented our government's emergency response plans. Our military is powerful, and it's prepared. Our emergency teams are working in New York City and Washington, D.C. to help with local rescue efforts. Our first priority is to get help to those who have been injured, and to take every precaution to protect our citizens at home and around the world from further attacks. The functions of our government continue without interruption. Federal agencies in Washington which had to be evacuated today are reopening for essential personnel tonight, and will be open for business tomorrow. Our financial institutions remain strong, and the American economy will be open for business, as well. The search is underway for those who are behind these evil acts. I've directed the full resources of our intelligence and law enforcement communities to find those responsible and to bring them to justice. We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them. I appreciate so very much the members of Congress who have joined me in strongly condemning these attacks. And on behalf of the American people, I thank the many world leaders who have called to offer their condolences and assistance. America and our friends and allies join with all those who want peace and security in the world, and we stand together to win the war against terrorism. Tonight, I ask for your prayers for all those who grieve, for the children whose worlds have been shattered, for all whose sense of safety and security has been threatened. And I pray they will be comforted by a power greater than any of us, spoken through the ages in Psalm 23: "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me." This is a day when all Americans from every walk of life unite in our resolve for justice and peace. America has stood down enemies before, and we will do so this time. None of us will ever forget this day. Yet, we go forward to defend freedom and all that is good and just in our world. Thank you. Good night, and God bless America. END 8:35 P.M. EDT -White House (09/11/01)
8:35 p.m. – Bush attends national security meeting. -September 11 News .com
8:35 P.M. - President Bush attends a national security meeting. -Patriot Resource
How did our government come to the conclusion so fast that Osama Bin Laden was the lead suspect for the attacks?
"The hunt for terrorists is under way. Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, and other lawmakers who have been briefed by intelligence officials told ABCNEWS that all signs point to the involvement of Osama bin Laden, who is already indicted on charges he organized the 1998 bombings of two U.S. embassies in Africa." - ABC (9/11/01)
 10:21 p.m.
10:21 p.m. – Meeting has ended. Secret Service radio squawks with news that Bush has gone home to bed: "Trailblazer. Second floor of the residence." -September 11 News .com
10:21 P.M. - The national security meetings ends and President Bush heads to bed. -Patriot Resource
 11:30 p.m.
How come Bush felt so safe that he wanted to sleep in his own bed instead of spend the night in the protected bunker?
"The Secret Service wanted the Bushes to spend the night in the bunker. Mr Bush gave an entertaining account of what happened next to Newsweek magazine. "I said: 'We're not sleeping there. I'm really tired. I've had a heck of a day and I'm going to sleep in my own bed'." The agents reluctantly backed down, but warned that, "if we have any threats, Mr President, we'll come and get you". "And sure enough," said Mr Bush. "We are in bed at about 11:30, and I can hear a guy breathing quite heavily. 'Mr President, Mr President! There's an unidentified aircraft heading towards the White House!' We get into the elevator, and straight down into PEOPS. "And I'm thinking, you know: 'Where's the phone? What the heck is going on? Attacked again.' "Then an enlisted fellow walks into the briefing room, and goes: 'Good news Mr President. It's one of ours'." -Telegraph (12/16/01)
Timelines used for general guidelines:
Note: These timelines may differ in their times from each other.
Transcript of a Press Gaggle by Ari Fleischer - 8:13 P.M. EDT - White House/KnoxNews (9/11/01)
What I'd like to do is just try to give you a walk through of the President's day, what he did when he learned various pieces of information.
Note: This press briefing is suspiciously missing from the White House website press briefings for September 2001.
America's Chaotic Road to War - Washington Post (01/27/02) Bush's Global Strategy Began to Take Shape in First Frantic Hours After Attack
Revealed: what really went on during Bush's 'missing hours' - Telegraph UK (12/16/01) Three months after the attacks on the Twin Towers there remains a mystery as to what happened to the President that day. William Langley pieces together the vital moments in the transformation of a presidency.
Suddenly, a time to lead (First of three parts) - Washington Times (10/07/02) 'Right decision' (Part 2 of 3) - Washington Times (10/08/02) The United States launched its counterattack on Osama bin Laden's terror network in Afghanistan one year ago today. Bill Sammon, senior White House correspondent for The Washington Times, tells the inside story of President Bush's war on terror in his new book, "Fighting Back" (Regnery).
The President's Story - CBS (9/10/03) In a series of exclusive interviews about the events of 9/11, Correspondent Scott Pelley spent two hours with Mr. Bush - one on Air Force One and another in the Oval Office - just before the first anniversary of 9/11.
Terror Hits the Towers - ABC How Government Officials Reacted to Sept. 11 Attacks:
Sept. 11's Moments of Crisis, Part 1 - ABC (9/14/01)
Sept. 11's Moments of Crisis, Part 2 - ABC (9/14/01)
Sept. 11's Moments of Crisis, Part 3 - ABC (9/15/01)
Sept. 11's Moments of Crisis, Part 4 - ABC (9/15/01)
Complete Timeline of President George W. Bush on September 11, 2001. -September 11 News .com
White House Press Secretary Ari Fleischer provided the following details of President Bush's day on Tuesday, Sept. 11. All times are EDT.
9 a.m. – Bush arrives at Sarasota, Fla., school for speech. White House chief of staff Andrew Card tells him a plane has crashed into the World Trade Center. 9:05 a.m. – Bush is visiting a second-grade class when Card whispers to him that a second plane has struck the towers. President delays plans to address the tragedy, deciding to get more information first. 9:30 a.m. – Bush meets privately with National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, who briefs him. He delivers first remarks on the tragedy. 10 a.m. – Aboard Air Force One en route to Louisiana, Bush calls Vice President Dick Cheney and puts America's military on a high alert status. Sifts through reports from staff, including erroneous report that a car bomb had struck the State Department. Gets news that plane has crashed near Pittsburgh. 11:40 a.m. – Bush arrives at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., where he makes series of telephone calls from a general's conference room. Tells Cheney in telephone call, "It's the faceless coward that attacks." He also talks to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and New York Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. 1:15 p.m. – Bush departs conference room for Air Force One in a camouflaged Humvee. Talks to Cheney again en route to Nebraska air force base and schedules a 4 p.m. meeting of his national security staff. Also talks to New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Gov. George Pataki. "I know your heart is broken and your city is strained and anything we can do, let me know," Bush says. 3:07 p.m. – Bush arrives at U.S. Strategic Command at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska. 4:36 p.m. – Bush departs for Washington. En route, he calls first lady Laura Bush and says, "I'm coming home, see you at the White House." Works with aides on his prime-time speech. 7 p.m. – Bush arrives at White House to prepare for address. 8:30 p.m. – Bush speaks to nation (text below). 8:35 p.m. – Bush attends national security meeting. 10:21 p.m. – Meeting has ended. Secret Service radio squawks with news that Bush has gone home to bed: "Trailblazer. Second floor of the residence."
September 11, 2001: Timelines President's Travels - Patriot Resource
9:00 A.M. - President George W. Bush arrives at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Florida and is informed of the first airplane crashing into the World Trade Center by chief of staff Andrew Card. 9:05 A.M. - While preparing for a photo op with a second grade class, chief of staff Andrew Card gives President Bush news of the second crash. 9:30 A.M. - President Bush is briefed by National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice. 9:31 A.M. - President Bush makes a short statement to reporters. 9:54 A.M. - President Bush leaves Sarasota Bradenton International Airport onboard Air Force One. His destination is kept secret for security. 9:57 A.M. - President Bush calls Vice President Dick Chaney and puts the American military on high-alert status. 11:44 A.M. - President Bush arrives at Barksdale Air Force Base near Shreveport, Louisiana. 1:04 P.M. - President Bush makes his second statement of the day from Barksdale Air Force Base near Shreveport, Louisiana. 1:38 P.M. - President Bush leaves Barksdale Air Force Base. 3:07 P.M. - President Bush arrives at U.S. Strategic Air Command at Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Nebraska. 4:36 P.M. - President Bush leaves Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Nebraska. 6:55 P.M. - President Bush arrives at the White House. 8:30 P.M. - President Bush addresses the nation from the Oval Office. 8:35 P.M. - President Bush attends a national security meeting. 10:21 P.M. - The national security meetings ends and President Bush heads to bed.
NORAD'S Response Times, Sept. 11, 2001 [Reprinted at: WayBack Machine]
(Note: On October 27, 2004, Norad took this timeline off their website with no explanation as to why.)
(September 18, 2001 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE) PETERSON AFB, Colo. --The following timelines show NORAD’s response to the airliner hijackings on September 11, 2001.
- All times are Eastern Daylight Time; NEADS = North East Air Defense Sector, NORAD
- Scramble = Order to get an aircraft airborne as soon as possible
- Estimated = loss of radar contact
- Flight times are calculated at 9 miles per minute or .9 Mach
- The FAA and NEADS established a line of open communication discussing AA Flt 77 and UA Flt 93
- Flight times are calculated at 9 miles per minute or .9 Mach
- Estimated = loss of radar contact
- Scramble = Order to get an aircraft airborne as soon as possible
American Airlines Flight 11 – Boston enroute to Los Angeles FAA Notification to NEADS 0840* Fighter Scramble Order (Otis Air National Guard Base, Falmouth, Mass. Two F-15s) 0846** Fighters Airborne 0852 Airline Impact Time (World Trade Center 1) 0846 (estimated)*** Fighter Time/Distance from Airline Impact Location Aircraft not airborne/153 miles United Airlines Flight 175 – Boston enroute to Los Angeles FAA Notification to NEADS 0843 Fighter Scramble Order (Otis ANGB, Falmouth, Mass. Same 2 F-15s as Flight 11) 0846 Fighters Airborne 0852 Airline Impact Time (World Trade Center 2) 0902 (estimated) Fighter Time/Distance from Airline Impact Location approx 8 min****/71 miles American Flight 77 –Dulles enroute to Los Angeles FAA Notification to NEADS 0924 Fighter Scramble: Order (Langley AFB, Hampton, Va. 2 F-16s) 0924 Fighters Airborne 0930 Airline Impact Time (Pentagon) 0937 (estimated) Fighter Time/Distance from Airline Impact Location approx 12 min/105 miles United Flight 93 – Newark to San Francisco FAA Notification to NEADS N/A ***** Fighter Scramble: Order (Langley F-16s already airborne for AA Flt 77) Fighters Airborne (Langley F-16 CAP remains in place to protect DC) Airline Impact Time (Pennsylvania) 1003 (estimated) Fighter Time/Distance from Airline Impact Location approx 11 min/100 miles (from DC F-16 CAP)
The World Trade Center Disaster: A Shock and Vibration Perspective By Tom Irvine Date Richter Scale Time (EDT) Remark 09/11/2001 0.9 08:46:26 first impact 09/11/2001 0.7 09:02:54 second impact 09/11/2001 2.1 09:59:04 first collapse 09/11/2001 2.3 10:28:31 second collapse 09/11/2001 0.6 17:20:33 Building 7 collapse Table Courtesy of Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University.
For an alternative timeline of Bush on 9/11 and an essay about his day, check out the
Center for Cooperative Research's: Bush on 9/11 and "An Interesting Day"
• "If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator."
• "What an impressive crowd: the haves, and the have-mores. Some people call you the elite, I call you my base."
• "I do not need to explain why I say things. — That's the interesting thing about being the President. — Maybe somebody needs to explain to me why they say something, but I don't feel like I owe anybody an explanation."
• "Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists."
• "I'm a war president."
• "After all, this is the guy who tried to kill my dad." - Referring to Saddam Hussein.
• "Lucky me. I hit the trifecta."
• "You know, I was campaigning in Chicago and somebody asked me, is there ever any time where the budget might have to go into deficit? I said only if we were at war or had a national emergency or were in recession. (Laughter.) Little did I realize we'd get the trifecta. (Laughter.) But we're fine."
• "There ought to be limits to freedom."
• "I want justice and there's an old poster out West, I recall, that says, 'Wanted: Dead or Alive.'" - referring to Osama Bin Laden
• "I made the pledge to myself and to people that I’m not going to forget what happened on Sept. 11. So long as I’m president, we will pursue the killers and bring them to justice. We owe that to those who have lost their lives.”
• "I truly am not that concerned about him. He is a person who has now been marginalized." - referring to Osama Bin Laden
• "Americans are asking, why do they hate us? They hate our freedoms -- our freedom of religion, our freedom of speech, our freedom to vote and assemble and disagree with each other."
• "The face of terror is not the true faith of Islam. That's not what Islam is all about. Islam is peace."
• "Bring them on!"
• "I want the troops here to know that I take my job as the commander in chief very seriously, that my most important job is to protect America."
• "We must speak the truth about terror. Let us never tolerate outrageous conspiracy theories concerning the attacks of 11 September - malicious lies that attempt to shift the blame away from the terrorists themselves, away from the guilty."
• "But all in all, it's been a fabulous year for Laura and me." - referring to 2001
• There's an old saying in Tennessee -- I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee -- that says, fool me once, shame on -- shame on you. Fool me -- you can't get fooled again.
• "I call upon all nations to do everything they can to stop these terrorist killers. Thank you. Now, watch this drive."
• "Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."
• "Anyway, it was an interesting day." - referring to 9/11
- See also: September 11, 2001 attacks
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