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THE ROAD TO 9/11/01
     2,752 Dead
1st WTC Attack 2/26/93
           • Ramzi Yousef, a refugee
             from Pakistan, rents a
             Ryder van and fills it full
             of 500 kg’s of high
             grade liquid explosives.
           • Drives it into the
             basement parking
             garage under the WTC.
           • Parks it, lights the fuse
             and leaves.
1st WTC Attack
       • 12 minutes later the
         bomb explodes at 12:17
       • First ever Muslim
         extremist terrorist
         attack on U.S. soil.
       • 6 dead; 1,000 injured.
       • WHY? Retaliation for
         American support of
         Israel and oppression of
         the Palestinian people.
 Yousef escapes to the Philippines
• Yousef developed a nitroglycerine explosive
  that he could conceal in empty bottles of
  contact lens fluid.
• Also designed a timing mechanism using Casio
  watches and a detonator powered by 9 volt
  batteries, which he hid in the heels of his
• Goal: Sneak explosives onto an airplane and
  blow it up.
 Yousef Tests the Bomb on an Airplane
• 12/11/94 Yousef boards a Philippine Airlines
  flight in Manila with no trouble passing his bomb
  through security.
• Hides the bomb under his seat and gets off on
  the next stop.
• The planes continues on to Okinawa, Japan.
• Bomb explodes at 11:43.
• Pilot makes emergency landing.
• 1 Killed, 10 injured.
Yousef needs a bigger bomb
             • Yousef and an
               accomplice, Abdul Hakim
               Murad, try building a
               bigger chemical bomb in
               their apartment in
             • Fire starts. The two men
             • Police find the evidence
               with Priest garments, a
               plan to assassinate the
               Pope, and a terrorist code
               named “Bojinka.”
• Yousef escapes, but Murad is captured.
• Murad, a trained pilot, reveals that Bojinka is a
  plan to simultaneously hijack 12 United States
  airline flights and fly the airplanes loaded with
  explosives into U.S. landmarks. (The White
  House, Capital Building, and Wall Street were
  specifically mentioned.)
• They had estimated that about 4000 Americans
  would die in 1 day.
• CIA headquarters was to be his target.
Yousef Arrested
   • In January 1995, the investigation
     of the first World Trade Center
     attack made a major
     breakthrough. Philippine police
     discovered a fingerprint in the
     bombers' Manila apartment. It
     was traced to Ramzi Yousef, who
     had escaped back to Pakistan.
   • On February 7, 1995, Ramzi
     Yousef was arrested in Islamabad
     after his friend turned him in for a
     $2 million reward from the U.S.
  Yousef brought back to America
• Yousef was taken by helicopter into downtown
• 'Look straight ahead, see that Ramzi, the Trade
  Centers are still standing there, aren't they?'
  And in his little accent he said --'They wouldn't
  be if I had enough money and enough
• Yousef was sentenced to two hundred and
  forty years in prison.
          Yousef and Al-Qaeda
• Yousef told news reporter after his sentencing
  that a new Islamic militant group would rise
  up to challenge the United States.
• He was speaking about a network, an
  international network, a network all over,
  different countries, different nationalities.
• He was talking about al-Qaeda.
             Yousef and Al-Qaeda
• While in prison, Yousef
  made a key mistake and
  placed a call to his uncle,
  Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
• American investigators
  soon realized Mohammed
  had provided financing for
  the first World Trade Center
  attack, and had played a
  central role in the plot
  against US commercial
• He would go on to become
  the mastermind of the 9/11
       Khalid Sheikh Mohammed
• In 1995, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed had taken refuge in
  the Persian Gulf state of Qatar. Members of the royal
  family there were known supporters of Islamic
  militants. The U.S. government decided to try to kidnap
  Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, and bring him back to face
  American justice.
• The CIA and the U.S. military didn’t present an easy
  Special Forces raid plan so the U.S. decided to ask
  Qatar to have him arrested.
• Several days later, Mohammed disappeared into
Mohammed and Bin Laden
          • Osama bin Laden came to
            the attention of U.S.
            Intelligence agencies during
            the investigation of the first
            World Trade Center bombing.
          • His name appeared on a list
            of suspects who might have
            financed the operation.
          • By 1996, Osama bin Laden
            had moved to Afghanistan
            and called upon the Muslim
            world to wage war against
                    Bin Laden
• Osama bin Laden methodically built up al-Qaeda.
• In 1997, he opened his training camps near Khost,
• Muslims from all over the world arrived to receive
  elaborate military instruction.
• In May 1998, Osama bin Laden announced he was
  joining forces with the Egyptian group, Islamic Jihad.
• He announced the creation of the International Islamic
  Front for Jihad against the U.S. and Israel. Al-Qaeda
  was merging in this front.
• Khalid Mohammed and Bin Laden are officially now
       12 Page Declaration of War
• In 1998, Bin Laden
  published a 12-page
  declaration of war against
  the United States.
• Also by 1998, there was a
  new power allied with bin
  Laden. The Taliban had
  seized control of
  Afghanistan and were
  imposing strict, religious
  laws on the population.
• Mullah Omar, the reclusive
  head of the Taliban,
  protected bin Laden as a
  guest in his country.
         Tarnak Farm Operation
• The CIA developed a plan to arrest bin Laden and
  bring him to the US to stand trial. A team of
  Afghan commandoes was hired for the operation.
• The Tarnak Farm kidnap operation was scheduled
  for the night of June 23, 1998. Then, just before it
  was to go ahead, there was a debate at the White
  House about how many people were likely to be
• The Kidnapping plan was cancelled to spare the
  lives of innocent victims.
  U.S. African Embassies Bombed
• On August 7th, 1998, the U.S. African
  embassies in Dar es Salaam and Nairobi were
  almost destroyed by truck bombs.
• Two hundred and twenty-four people died,
  including twelve Americans.
• Over five thousand were injured. The
  investigation lead straight to Osama bin
       Plans to “get” Bin Laden
• President Clinton's national security team
  decided to hit back with cruise missiles.
• The CIA had received information that bin
  Laden would be meeting other al-Qaeda
  leaders at one of his Afghanistan training
  camps on August 20th, 1998.
• The cruise missiles fired from the Arabian Sea
  travelled over Pakistan and landed in the
  Afghan training camps but narrowly missed
  bin Laden.
            “Getting” Bin Laden
• After the failure of the cruise missile attack,
  President Clinton reversed his position and
  authorized the CIA to kidnap Osama bin Laden.
• In late December 1998, CIA field agents were
  finally able to get ahead of Osama bin Laden.
  They received a tip that he would be coming to
  visit Kandahar.
• American ships in the Arabian Sea prepared their
  cruise missiles to strike the governor's mansion.
• The military doubted the intelligence and
  estimated that a cruise missile strike would kill or
  injure over 200 people.
• The attack was cancelled.
  “Get” Bin Laden Falcon Hunting?
• The Clinton Administration's last good chance to kill Osama
  bin Laden was at a falcon hunting camp in southern
  Afghanistan in 1999.
• Falcon hunting is wildly popular with the ultra rich
  throughout the Arab world.
• The CIA followed bin Laden to the camp and determined
  that he was going to stay for a few days.
• But satellite photos also revealed the presence of a
  military C-130 aircraft from the United Arab Emirates
  indicating that senior officials from the UAE government
  were hunting with bin Laden.
• Once again the White House decided to stand down.
• They did not want to take the chance of killing some of
  America's closest allies in the Persian Gulf.
President’s Clinton and W. Bush
              • In December 2000, when
                George W. Bush was finally
                declared the winner of the
                U.S. presidential election,
                he sat down for a private
                meeting with Bill Clinton at
                the White House.
              • In that meeting, Clinton
                says he told Bush that al-
                Qaeda was the biggest
                threat to the United States
                and that not catching or
                killing bin Laden was one of
                the greatest regrets of his
President Bush
   • On January 20th, 2001 George W.
     Bush was sworn in as President
     of the United States.
   • Five days later, Bush received a
     memo from his White House
     counterterrorism director,
     Richard Clarke, saying - "We
     urgently need a Principals-level
     review of the al-Qaeda network.“
   • That urgently required meeting
     would not take place for almost 9
   • For the new Bush administration
     al-Qaeda was a low priority.
The 9/11 Plan
     • "After the 1993 attacks on the
       World Trade Centre, I decided
       that explosives and bombs could
       be problematic, and so I focused
       on using airplanes as weapons.
     • The most attractive targets were
       high buildings, both for their
       relative ease of targeting, as well
       as for the symbolic impact.
     • Bin Laden expressed his desire to
       simultaneously hit the Pentagon,
       the White House, and the US
       Capitol building.
     • He had Nawaf al Hazmi and Khalid
       al Mihdhar in mind for the
Flight Training
      • Khalid al Mihdhar and
        Nawaf al Hazmi were al-
        Qaeda recruits from Saudi
      • They had obtained visas to
        the United States with the
        hope that Osama bin
        Laden would send them to
        the U.S. on a suicide
      • They were the first two
        hijackers assigned to the
        9/11 plot.
Flight Training
       • Khalid Sheikh Mohammed
         gave the two men a basic
         training course for their
       • He showed them
         Hollywood movies to teach
         them how hijackers could
         seize control of airplanes.
       • He used a flight simulator
         program to show them the
         basics of piloting.
       • The program would allow
         them to practice crashing
         into buildings.
  CIA Failure To Share Intelligence
• Khalid al Mihdhar and Nawaf al Hazmi became
  the focus of the greatest intelligence failure in
  U.S. history because American agents had been
  following them almost two years before 9/11.
• The two men flew into the United States and
  landed at Los Angeles International Airport.
• The CIA knew that Khalid al Mihdhar had a US
  visa, and yet that information was not shared
  with the FBI or U.S. Immigration.
• The two names did not appear on the list of
  suspected terrorists kept at all U.S. entry points,
  and so the men had no trouble slipping through
  the net.
      Flight School in San Diego
• The two al-Qaeda suspects made their way to
  San Diego.
• Before long they both had driver's licenses,
  and Nawaf al Hazmi was even listed in the San
  Diego phone book.
• The two men signed up for lessons at a local
  flight school, but they were completely lacking
  in natural abilities.
• The two men reported back to Khalid Sheikh
  Mohammed that learning to fly was a lot
  more difficult than expected.
        Different Pilots
Mohamed Atta          Ziad Jarrah
          Different Pilots
Marwan al Shehhi       Hani Hanjour
          Why Different Pilots?
• The al-Qaeda leadership decided that they
  needed hijackers to pilot the planes who would
  be much more proficient in English and
  comfortable in the West.
• Hani Hanjour, was already trained as a pilot.
• Bin Laden wanted Hanjour to pilot the plane that
  would strike the Pentagon because it would be a
  tough target since it is not a tall building
• Hanjour would be the best qualified of the pilots.
     Hijackers Arrive In The U.S.
• The hijackers began arriving in the United
  States in the Spring and Summer of 2001.
• 16 of the 19 shouldn’t have been allowed
  through immigration because there was
  something wrong with their visas and
• They should simply have been stopped at the
• If those people had been stopped, there never
  would have been a plot!
  CIA Learns of the Terrorist Attack
• In the spring and summer of 2001, U.S.
  Intelligence began hearing chatter about the 9/11
• A CIA informant reported that Osama bin Laden
  was interested in using commercial pilots as
• On June 22, the Federal Aviation Administration
  issued a bulletin to airlines warning of a “possible
  hijacking plot by Islamic terrorists”.
• On June 25, there was a threat advisory to all
  government agencies warning about the 'high
  probability of imminent spectacular terrorist
  attack by al-Qaeda.
 President Bush Informed of a Possible
            Attack on WTC
• On August 6th 2001, while on vacation in Crawford,
  Texas, George Bush was given his Presidential Daily
• The headline read – “Bin Laden Determined To Strike in
• The document suggested al-Qaeda “would follow the
  example of World Trade Centre bomber, Ramzi Yousef,
  and bring the fighting to America”.
• The document highlighted “patterns of suspicious
  activity in this country consistent with preparations for
  hijackings or other types of attacks”
• No action was taken!
   CIA Knows the Terrorists Are in the
• In August 2001, the CIA finally shared some key
  intelligence that could have prevented the 9/11 attack.
• The CIA told the FBI that Nawaf al Hazmi and Khalid al
  Mihdhar were al-Qaeda agents with U.S. visas and
  should be tracked down.
• FBI headquarters finally took notice that the two al-
  Qaeda suspects had flown into Los Angeles 18 months
• The cable was sent to the FBI office in LA asking for
  their help in tracking al Mihdhar and al Hazmi.
• The cable is dated September 10, 2001.
9/11/01: American Flight 11
              • American Airlines Flight 11
                took off from Boston at 7:59
              • The Plane was hijacked at
                8:14 am.
              • At 8:19 am the hijacking
                was called in.
              • At 8:27 the plane turns
                around and heads toward
              • The military isn’t informed
                about the hijacking until
              • Flight 11 hits the North
                Tower of the WTC.
9/11/01: United Flight 175
             • United Flight 175 Departs
               Boston at 8:14 am.
             • The plane hits the South
               Tower of the WTC at 9:03.
             • The military was not
               informed that a 2nd plane
               had been hijacked until it
             • Nearest F-16’s were still
               70 miles away from NYC,
               coming from Cape Cod.
9/11/01: American Flight 77
             • American Flight 77 departs
               Washington D.C. at 8:20
             • Terrorist on board had
               knives and box cutters.
             • The plane is hijacked at
               8:54 am.
             • The hijacking is reported at
               9:12 am.
             • Plane crashes into the
               Pentagon at 9:37.
             • 189 people killed (64 on
               board, 125 on the ground).
             The Attacks
WTC Towers                 Pentagon
9/11/01: United Flight 93
            • United Flight 93 departs
              Newark, New Jersey at 8:52
            • The hijacking took place at
              9:28 am.
            • Passengers on board had
              already heard of the other
              hijackings and decided to
              take actions into their own
            • Hijacking was never
              reported to the military
              until the event was over.
“Let’s Roll”
      • Todd Beamer was one of
        several passengers who
        decided to over power
        the hijackers in the
      • The plane was targeted to
        hit the White House but
        Todd and the passengers
        forced the plane down
        into a field in
      • TRUE HEROES!
United Flight 93
        • All 44 People on board
          died 150 miles outside
          of Washington D.C.
        • The plane was traveling
          at 563 mph.
What was President Bush Doing?
               • The President was visiting an
                 elementary school in Florida
                 that morning.
               • After hearing about the first
                 crash into the World Trade
                 Centre, he insisted on carrying
                 on with his planned activities.
               • At 9:05 am, his Chief of Staff
                 Andrew Card told him the
                 second plane had hit the
                 second tower and America
                 was under attack.
               • He famously did nothing for
                 almost 7 minutes. He later said
                 he was trying to project an
                 image of calm.
      Communication Problems
• Inside the presidential limousine, there was
  more chaos.
• The President was trying to speak to his staff
  at the White House but all the secure
  telephone lines were down.
• The communications system overloaded.
• Mr. Bush was reduced to trying to contact
  Washington on a borrowed cell phone but
  even that didn't work.
         Aboard Air Force One
• Mr. Bush expected the communications problem
  to be solved when he boarded Air Force One in
  Florida at 9:45 am but the phones there worked
  only sporadically.
• In the case of any kind of attack in the United
  States, what you're supposed to do is get the
  President off the ground, and Air Force One then
  becomes the command centre.
• And the President is then safe and is commanding
  the forces of the United States from the air.
• The communications didn't work.
What Did the Vice President Do?
                • After the Pentagon was hit,
                  the Vice President was taken
                  to a bunker deep in the
                  ground under the White
                • He ordered emergency
                  measures designed to ensure
                  continuity of the U.S.
                  government in the event of
                  nuclear war.
                • Around Washington, senior
                  government officials were
                  rushed off to bomb shelters
                  and other secure locations in
                  case more planes hit more key
                  decision-making centers.
   All Air Planes in U.S. Grounded
• At 9:42 am, the senior air traffic controller in
  the U.S. ordered that all planes land
  immediately at the nearest airport.
• This was a high-risk procedure that had never
  been attempted.
• Four thousand-three hundred planes all
  landed within two hours and twenty minutes.
      Orders Given To Shoot Down
           Passenger Planes
• The record shows that between 10:10 and
  10:15 in the White House bunker, the Vice
  President ordered military pilots to shoot
  down any hijacked aircraft headed for
• However, the shoot-down order was never
  relayed to the fighter pilots who might have
  carried it out.
               Evening of 9/11
• In the afternoon, the President landed at the
  Offut Air Force Base in Nebraska.
• Because of the communications problem on Air
  Force One, he was transported to an
  underground bunker there.
• Just before 3 pm, Mr. Bush began a
  teleconference with the White House and the
• Late in the day, the President finally returned to
  Washington and addressed the nation at 9:30
           Aftermath of 9/11
• When the President arrived back at the White
  House on September 11th, he was told that
  the FBI had identified the names of two
  known al-Qaeda agents Khalid al Mihdhar and
  Nawaf al Hazmi on the passenger list of the
  plane that hit the Pentagon.
• The President became aware that night that
  there had been a mistake involving CIA and
  FBI and their sharing of information.
• In the twenty-four hours following 9/11, the Bush team was
  ready to go to war.
• In meetings on September 11th and on September 12th,
  the defense department officials, including Secretary
  Rumsfeld, began talking about the need to attack Iraq
  instead of Afghanistan.
• Secretary Colin Powell convinced the White House that the
  world is not going to understand if the U.S. doesn't go after
• That's where the attack of September 11th was launched
• Reluctantly the defense department chose to attack
  Afghanistan first…Iraq second.

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