JREF loses 9/11 debate by default



By Kevin Barrett, VT Editor


The James Randi Educational Foundation (JREF) purports to defend the official story of 9/11.  But its “defense” consists mainly of ad hominem attacks against critics of the official tale – a strong indication that the government’s version of 9/11 cannot be defended using logic and evidence.  

Christopher Bollyn: JREF is a psy-op funded by the military-industrial complex

Most of the JREF smear artists hide behind pseudonyms. Compare the short list of anonymous, un-credentialed mud-slingers at JREF to the long list of real people with real credentials using real names at PatriotsQuestion911.com, and ask yourself: Why are so many people willing to risk their jobs and reputations for the truth, while so few will openly defend a lie at no real risk to themselves?  The question, I suspect, answers itself. The key word is integrity.

JREF’s latest humiliation: Losing a $1,000 debate challenge from the Association for 9/11 Truth Awareness (ANETA). Last month Rick Shaddock and Michael Frishman of ANETA began posting the 9/11 Physics Debate challenge on the JREF forum. At issue is whether or not the official story of 9/11 violates the laws of physics. Qualified physicists with a Hirsch Index of 50 or higher were invited to participate. (The Hirsch Index is a rating of scholarly stature.)

Dr. David Griscom, a Ph.D. in physics from Brown University, stepped forward to defend the proposition that yes, the official story of 9/11 does indeed violate the laws of physics, including Newton’s 1st, 2nd, and 3rd laws.  Dr. Griscom’s Hirsch Index is a very respectable 52.

ANETA posted the debate challenge on the JREF forum, hoping that an equally credentialed physicist would quickly step forward to defend mom, apple pie, and the official myth of 9/11. Unfortunately, it seems there are few real names at JREF, and even fewer people (if indeed the JREF entities are actual people) with scholarly credentials. Rather than respond to the challenge, the JREF moderators kept removing ANETA’s debate challenge posts.

But one of the few JREFers with a real name and a modicum of integrity – a certain Chris Mohr – took it upon himself to create his own thread:  “9/11 Physics Debate – Any Takers?” The result was typical of JREF: Lots of insults, but no qualified people willing to defend the official story. The only person at JREF willing to debate Dr. Griscom was an entity labeled “Frank3373” who claimed to hold a BA in Liberal Arts with no science courses – and a Hirsch Index of zero!

Couldn’t the JREFers, who fancy themselves experts in everything pertaining to the defense of the official myth of 9/11, find even ONE credentialed physicist willing to debate Dr. Griscom? At stake: $1,000 for the winner to donate to a charity of his or her choice.

When the date of the big debate arrived – Saturday, March 15th – there was a resounding silence from the official story side. Evidently no qualified physicist on earth could explain how the government’s version of the destruction of the World Trade Center can coexist with the basic laws of physics.

The result: Dr. Griscom won by default. At 3 pm Eastern on Saturday, March 15th,  Rick Shaddock of ANETA awarded the $1,000 prize to Dr. Griscom – who, for some unfathomable reason, chose not to give the money to the James Randi Educational Foundation. Instead, Dr. Griscom decided to use it to help fund the New Independent Lab WTC Dust Study being organized by Mark Basile.

Here is the “debate”:

[youtube _m8XaLdGKBw]

And here is our earlier interview when we were looking for challengers:

[youtube X1yogXSpyFM]

David Griscom’s win was not the first victory-by-default in a 9/11 truth debate. I have won several myself.

In October 2006, one of Wisconsin’s leading newspapers, the Oshkosh Northwestern, published an op-ed fairly begging University of Wisconsin faculty to refute my arguments that 9/11 was a false-flag operation: “Unfortunately, those who might consider Barrett unqualified or dead wrong on 9/11 seem more inclined to let him control the discussion…Academia seems hesitant to dissect and destroy his theory…it sure would be heartening if the academic community we rely on to advance human thinking, to cure illnesses and to make the discoveries that shape the future would spend a little time on Oct. 26 soundly stomping Barrett’s 9/11 suppositions. Rather than read headlines like ‘9/11 conspiracy prof speaks at UWO,’ wouldn’t folks near and far love to see one like ‘UWO profs outwit 9/11 conspiracy prof?'”

I responded by challenging any of the University of Wisconsin system’s 32,000 faculty and staff members to debate me on 9/11. Nobody volunteered.

Later that month the University of Wisconsin-Madison History Club scheduled a debate featuring myself and Dr. James Fetzer arguing against the 9/11 Commission, and two UW faculty members defending it. The History Club sent out a massive number of invitations to History, Political Science, and other relevant departments. But they could not find even one faculty member willing to defend the 9/11 Commission Report. The “debate” drew a huge crowd – but there was no debate. Jim Fetzer and I shredded the 9/11 Commission Report; nobody showed up to defend it.

Prior to the Rove-Cheney-Nass 2006 witch hunt, I had been hired for virtually every teaching job I applied for at UW-Madison since I arrived in 1994. Beginning in 2007, I was turned down for several successive job applications. An insider on one of the hiring committees said the committee was told that I could not be hired for political reasons due to my 9/11 research and advocacy.

Every succeeding year, I have continued to challenge the 32,000 University staff and faculty members to debate me on 9/11. If my views are so wrong that I cannot be allowed to teach, why can’t at least one UW faculty member try to explain why using logic and evidence? In 2011 a backer put up a $1,000 honorarium for any UW teacher who would defend the 9/11 Commission in a debate with me. Still no takers. In 2012 the honorarium was doubled to $2,000. I am still waiting to hear from someone who thinks the 9/11 Commission is defensible. Apparently you literally cannot pay anyone to defend the official story.

In 2007, hundreds of University of Michigan faculty members, including the entire Engineering Department, were invited to defend (1) the official US government (NIST) explanation of the destruction of the Twin Towers and (2) the 9/11 Commission Report, in a debate against me and Kevin Ryan, the whistleblowing scientist who was fired by Underwriters Labs for revealing UL’s role in the 9/11 cover-up.

Out of hundreds of U of M faculty members, only two responded. Both were engineers, and both said the same thing: “OF COURSE the three WTC skyscrapers came down in controlled demolitions – but we can’t say that in public or we’ll lose our funding.”

Like Diogenes with his lantern, I have been looking for an honest (and qualified) person to defend the official 9/11 myth for many, many  years. So far, I have found only two such people, sort of: Denis Rancourt and Frank Greening.  Both are qualified Canadian scientists, and both are willing to argue against the claim that the Twin Towers came down in controlled demolitions. Unfortunately for defenders of the official story, Rancourt and Greening have come around to the 9/11 truth side with regard to World Trade Center Building 7; and neither fully believes the government’s version of the destruction of the Twin Towers.

Three years ago Rancourt told me “we don’t know what happened, anything could have happened due to the vast amount of gravitational energy” as the Towers came down. (I hope he has come to his senses since then.) Scientist Niels Harrit and mechanical engineer Tony Szamboti quickly came on my show and ably refuted Rancourt.

A few months ago, Frank Greening – once the only serious scientist who supported the government’s version – came on my radio show to confess that he had come over to the truthers’ side on WTC-7, and that he was simply playing devil’s advocate (a useful role, he believes) on the Towers. His private remarks lead me to believe he now knows, or at least strongly suspects, that the truthers were right all along – a mind-boggling realization that his worldview is still trying to wrap itself around.

In the academy, a growing list of books and scholarly papers are
proving the official story to be a lie. (Here are some.) Almost all of this work stands without even any attempt at a refutation. And while plenty of scholarly papers simply take the official 9/11 myth for granted, there is virtually nothing that explicitly takes the pro-official-story side of the debate or offers any evidence to support it.

In short, the debate – what there is of it, anyway – is being won by the pro-9/11-truth forces. Even Geraldo Rivero now admits that those obnoxious truthers were right all along.

So when can I have my job back?





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Dr. Kevin Barrett, a Ph.D. Arabist-Islamologist is one of America’s best-known critics of the War on Terror. He is the host of TRUTH JIHAD RADIO; a hard driving weekly radio show funded by listener donations at Patreon.com and FALSE FLAG WEEKLY NEWS (FFWN); an audio-video show produced by Tony Hall, Allan Reese, and Kevin himself. FFWN is funded through FundRazr. He also has appeared many times on Fox, CNN, PBS, and other broadcast outlets, and has inspired feature stories and op-eds in the New York Times, the Christian Science Monitor, the Chicago Tribune, and other leading publications. Dr. Barrett has taught at colleges and universities in San Francisco, Paris, and Wisconsin; where he ran for Congress in 2008. He currently works as a nonprofit organizer, author, and talk radio host.