Nearly 15 years after the tragic events of 9/11, family members who lost loved ones in the WTC towers are still fighting for transparency.
Currently sitting in the House and Senate are two pieces of legislation that urge the President of the United States to declassify 28 pages that were redacted from a 2003 Joint Congressional intelligence inquiry into 9/11 which shows foreign government involvement in the New York City attacks.
Someone who has been feverishly fighting for the declassification of the 28 pages is Terry Strada. She represents over 9,000 victims’ family members and survivors as the National Chair of 9/11 Families & Survivors United For Justice Against Terrorism. Her Husband Tom Strada worked on the 104th floor of the North Tower and was tragically unable to survive the attacks on September 11th, 2001.
Terry was kind enough to do a Q&A with us (PlanetFreeWill.com – Ed.) as we sought out to get more insight into the 28 pages and pick the brain of someone who has been directly affected by the attacks as our post-9/11 world continues to develop.
In this Q&A, posted below, Terry Strada shares her focused knowledge about the 28 pages, what she thinks of post-9/11 outcomes and even gives her opinion of the 2016 Presidential race.
Please head to 28pages.org and demand your representative become a co-sponsor of the declassify movement legislation.
Q: From your understanding of the 28 pages from the original Joint Congressional Inquiry into 9/11, that’s being withheld from the public, what role did foreign governments play in the 9/11 attacks? Those who read the 28 pages imply that Saudi Arabia was involved in at least financing the hijackers. What is Saudi Arabia’s role in all this?
Strada: Clearly, I do not have access to the 28 pages so I can only repeat what people who have actually read them have told me. They say they’re about relationships between the terrorists and who they were receiving funding from. Former Senator Bob Graham who co-chaired the Joint Inquiry has stated numerous times that they point a strong finger at Saudi Arabia. The chapter which refers to “specific sources of foreign support” was completely excised. This is outrageous…money is the lifeblood of terrorism, it is the common thread that runs through all terrorist attacks. Without money, terrorists cannot cross borders, buy visas, forge passports or buy airline tickets. They cannot recruit, travel, operate their training camps, websites, purchase weapons and bomb-making material. Simply put, without money, terrorists cannot kill Americans. This is why it is vital to declassify the 28 pages and allow the victims’ families & survivors and the American people to know who is responsible for funding terrorism. We need to hold them accountable and choke off the endless supply of millions pouring out of the mega rich Middle East countries and into the hands of terrorist organizations like ISIS, al Qaeda, Boco Haram and countless others.
Q: While reading the 28 pages Congressman Thomas Massie said he had to “stop every couple pages and try to rearrange (his) understanding of history. It challenges you to rethink everything.” If these papers do become public, how will it affect the public’s trust in the system? After all, the pages have been held behind closed doors for so long on the grounds of national security. According to Rep. Walter Jones, the 28 pages have nothing to do with national security. Can you speak to that?
Strada: I think when they become public there will be public outrage, and rightfully so, but once the anger passes, people will begin to focus on what’s important and that is to hold accountable the people, countries and/or businesses that fund terrorism. This will help deter future terrorist attacks against our country and is an important tool in our arsenal of weapons against terrorism.
Q: You told MintPress News that “Not knowing how the perpetrators were funded is a greater threat to our national security.” Do you think these 28 pages are a threat to the U.S. War on Terrorism narrative? The U.S. went into Afghanistan and then Iraq, but without the full truth behind 9/11 how can the public be totally sure these invasions were justified?
Strada: I believe the invasion of Afghanistan can be justified because that is where al Qaeda’s training camps were and where OBL was headquartered. As far as Iraq goes, I think we need the 28 pages declassified to know the answer to that question. As far as, are the 28 pages being a threat to the U.S. war on terrorism narrative, what I believe is, if they point a strong finger to Saudi Arabia as former Senator Bob Graham has stated, then they’re not a threat to the narrative, it will change the narrative.
Q: Knowing what you know about the 28 pages…what is your overall opinion on the security state of the United States. After 9/11 we saw the implementation of the Patriot Act and TSA checkpoints. Do you feel safer now because of the security measures taken by the U.S. Government post 9/11?
Strada: No, I do not feel safer, but not because the Patriot Act and TSA checkpoints aren’t valid or effective – they have both played a role in thwarting terrorist attacks but we have had several since 9/11, i.e., the Fort Hood shooting, Chattanooga murders, Boston Marathon massacre and most recently the San Bernardino killings. When will enough be enough? There is legislation in Congress right now called the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act – “JASTA” (S.2040/H.R.3815). We need our elected officials to vote this bill into law and allow victims of terrorism on American soil to hold the bankrollers of the acts of death and destruction caused by their global jihad accountable in a U.S. court. I believe the 28 pages will corroborate our (the victims’ families & survivors) claims against the 9/11 financiers.
Q: Donald Trump recently said that he would reveal who “really knocked down the World Trade Center” if elected President. Is Donald Trump worthy of receiving the vote of 9/11 victim family members like yourself? If not, who can the family members get behind in the 2016 Presidential race?
Strada: I have heard presidential candidate Donald Trump say he would reveal who really knocked down the World Trade Center and just last night he said on Hannity he would release the 28 pages if he is to become president. That alone is not enough of a reason for me to support any candidate and I cannot speak on behalf of my organization. They all have their own individual views. My hope is that our next president will understand how important it is to know the entire truth regarding 9/11 if we are ever going to fully protect ourselves from future terrorist attacks. In 2003, Senator Chuck Schumer penned a letter to then President George Bush, asking him to release the 28 pages, stating that, “As you are aware, Saudi Arabia’s banks and charities have been used to funnel money to al Qaeda; its madrassah schools spew hateful anti-American rhetoric to would-be suicide bombers across the Middle East; and fifteen of the nineteen hijackers were Saudis. Given these facts, protecting the Saudi regime by eliminating any public penalty for the support given to terrorists from within its borders would be a mistake.” Former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton signed this letter…I would like to know what her and each candidate’s position is regarding the 28 pages and if they would declassify them if they were elected President.
Q: Are you familiar with the group Architects and Engineers for 9/11 truth? The group released a analysis of the destruction of the World Trade Center towers where they explain that there was direct evidence of explosions inside towers 1 and 2. http://eyesopenreport.com/experts-speak-out-direct-evidence-of-explosions-in-towers-1-and-2-on-911/ Obviously we don’t know exactly what happened to bring the towers down, but what is your take on the “official story” of how the towers came down. And the what is your take on the counter analysis by groups like Architects and Engineers for 9/11 truth?
Strada: I believe the “official story” of how the towers came down and I become very upset when a member from Architects and Engineers for 9/11 truth approach me. My husband was murdered by radical Islamist terrorists who attacked the towers in 1993 and vowed to come back and finish the job, which they did on 9/11, killing nearly 3,000 innocent men, women and children.
Joseph Jankowski writes for PlanetFreeWill.com