As I pointed out Tuesday not only has Margolis made contradictory claims about the passengers on Lufthansa flight 592 believing the hijacker was going to crash the plane into Manhattan, seemingly no other media account of the incident said anything about this and that include an article which quoted him.
Not only was I unable to find such an account but the very thorough folks at the “Complete 9/11 Timeline” who have a complete section on “The Warning Signs” were unable to as well. Though their entry on the hijacking included Margolis’ account it did not cite anyone else saying the hijacker threatened to crash plane or the passengers and crew thought he would. It did however include this “While giving television commentary on the morning of 9/11, Larry Johnson—currently the deputy director of the State Department’s Office of Counter Terrorism—will say it was feared when the plane [Lufthansa 592] was flown to
LJ: That's not what I said. I said that when the plane was hijacked one of the concerns we had was the possibility that the hijacker might fly the plane into a building in
. New York
Me: What was that concern based on? Did the hijacker say anything like that to the people on the plane?
LJ: No, we were simply looking at possibilities based on the threat. That's in part the reason that fighter aircraft accompanied the plane to the
Me: Is it OK if I quote you? Do you have any idea how Margolis got wind of this? My guess is that he found out intel folks though this was a possibility and claimed the hijacker said this to "sex up" the story.
LJ: You may quote me. Who is Eric Margolis?
Me: I'm surprised you had not heard of him before he has appeared as a "terrorism expert" on many of the same TV programs you have. The guy has told a few lies since 2000, I mentioned a few in my blog, I imagine there are many more I did not catch see here for more:
LJ: I googled the asshole. There was absolutely no information at the time corroborating Margolis' claim that the hijacker threatened to crash the plane into a building. That scenario simply came up as one possibility we (the folks in the operations centers who were managing the response to this event) considered as the plane was inbound. The Hijacker made no demands and, when the event ended, he only had a starters pistol.// I should point out that I have firsthand knowledge about this. I was alerted by the
and then spent the next several hours in the task force area.* State Department Operations Center
So Margolis gave two contradictory versions and as I suspected neither were true.
* I cobbled together 2 e-mails for simplicity’s sake they are separated by 2 slashes //.