In July 1999, an agent of Pakistan’s intelligence service, in the US to buy illegal weapons for al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan, pointed to the World Trade Center and stated, “Those towers are coming down.” An FBI informant recorded him saying this and similar threats against that building on two other occasions. This information reached higher officials, including the office of Senator Bob Graham, who was chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. [ WPBF Channel 25, 8/5/02 , Cox News, 8/2/02 , Palm Beach Post, 10/17/02 ]
If air traffic controllers believed Flight 11 had been hijacked at 8:13, NORAD should have been informed immediately, so military planes could be scrambled to investigate. However, NORAD and the FAA both claimed NORAD was not informed until 8:40—27 minutes later. [ NORAD, 9/18/01 , AP, 8/12/02 , AP, 8/19/02 , Newsday, 9/10/02 ; one NORAD employee said it took place at 8:31, ABC News, 9/11/02 ] Indeed, before contacting NORAD, Boston air traffic controllers watched Flight 11 make an unexpected 100-degree turn and head south toward New York City [ Christian Science Monitor, 9/13/01 ], told other controllers of the hijacking at 8:25 [ Guardian, 10/17/01 ], continued to hear highly suspicious dialogue from the cockpit (such as, “Nobody move, please, we are going back to the airport. Don’t try to make any stupid moves” ) [ Guardian, 10/17/01 , New York Times, 10/16/01 ], and even asked the pilots of Flight 175 to scan the skies for the errant plane. [ Guardian, 10/17/01 , Boston Globe, 11/23/01 ]
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