Speculation About What Happened on Board the Doomed Flights
The official story of the fates of the doomed flights asks us to believe a long series of improbable events including:
- The alleged takeover of all four flights without a any of the pilots managing to communicate to ground controllers that a hijacking had occurred, except the pilots of Flight 93.
- Peculiar characteristics of some of the phone calls allegedly made from the jets.
- The hijackers' selection of routes exposing them to certain interception had air defenses been operating normally.
- The amazing piloting skills by hijackers with dubious competence at piloting even light aircraft.
- The lack of any physical evidence, such as airport security video footage, showing that any of the hijackers boaraded any of the commandeered flights.
- The alleged failure of investigators to recover data from the black boxes of Flight 77, or even to recover the black boxes from Flight 11 or Flight 175.
- The suppression of flight evidence, such as interviews with air traffic controllers
Other purported anomalies in the official story have yielded to explanations, and may well be hoaxes. These include:
- A story that 757s and 767s were secretly equipped with systems allowing remote override of manual flight control to rescue hijaked planes
- Allegations that phone calls made from Flight 93 were faked
- Allegations that the names of the alleged hijackers were missing from the flight manifests
If one rejects major aspects of the official story beyond the hijacking scenario, such as self-shredding steel buildings, or the inexplicable freezing of the entire air defense network, then it follows that the attack was not simply the work of cells of Islamic extremists, but that the hijackers, if indeed there were any, were simply patsies. If that were the case, then it seems highly unlikely that the perpetrators would have endangered the whole operation by leaving its success in the hands of the hijackers.
Given the implausibility of aspects of the official story, and the paucity of public evidence documenting the fates of the flights, several theories have emerged to account for the fates of Flights 11, 175, 77, and 93.