Was Flight 93 Shot Down?
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Was Flight 93 Shot Down?

Comment: In the end, Flight 93 was ONLY 15.6 minutes away at 500mph (speeds from 400 to 600 were reported) from D.C. when it crashed.

Think about this - in order for us to NOT have intercepted Flight 93, fighters would have had to wait until nearly 10am before turning towards it. The 3 fighters (take your pick) that arrived over D.C. at 9:40am proceeded to do something else over D.C. for 15+ minutes WHILE we were well aware of an incoming Flight 93, then mercifully, finally turned toward Flight 93 and made 5-10 minutes progress - which puts them 60 miles out.

That is the Government position - and I think it's either untrue or the Air Guard failed to react as they apparently can now - within 9 minutes we are now able to intercept any aircraft according to Air Guard statements after 9-11-01. Considering 3 nuclear power plants were between Flight 93 and D.C., this failure is totally frightening. I'd like to think they got a fighter there. Wouldn't you?

2 F-15's were scrambled at 8:45 and arrived at the WTC about 9am. Why were the jets that responded BEFORE any crash so quick by comparison to the jets that responded AFTER 2 Towers had been hit?

Federal investigators said on Thursday that they have not ruled out the possibility that United Airlines Flight 93 was shot down over Pennsylvania, after three other hijacked airliners crashed into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon

After the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, President Bush gave the military orders to intercept and shoot down any commercial airliners that refused instructions to turn away from Washington, Vice President Dick Cheney said Sunday.

"I wholeheartedly concurred in the decision he made, that if the plane would not divert, if they wouldn't pay any attention to instructions to move away from the city, as a last resort our pilots were authorized to take them out," Cheney said on "Meet the Press."

Bush was in Sarasota, Fla., at the time. Instead of returning directly to Washington, Bush was shuttled to Air Force bases in Louisiana and Nebraska before returning to the capital.

Another plane was in the area with no markings...
http://video.ibsys.com/popup.cfm?contentid=958495&owner=pit&site=c4k (videos were taken off line - but this was a local news media crew on the day of the crash))

But if United Airlines Flight 93 had not crashed in Pennsylvania, the three North Dakota-based F-16 pilots from Langley two of them commercial airline pilots themselves may have faced the nightmarish decision of whether to shoot down the commercial airliner, along with its 38 passengers and crew of seven.

At 9:30 a.m., six minutes after receiving their orders from the
defense sector, code-named Huntress, three F-16's were airborne, according to the Norad timeline.

Then the pilots received the most surreal order of the awful
morning. "A person came on the radio," General Haugen said, "and identified themselves as being with the Secret Service and he said, `I want you to protect the White House at all costs.' "
Tuesday October 16 12:06 AM EDT
'We Have Some Planes,' Hijacker Told Controller
By MATTHEW L. WALD with KEVIN SACK The New York Times

Comment: Again, authorization was given while Bush was in Florida and after the first two crashes which puts it at 9:15 to 9:35 latest. Remember, the first fighters were airborne before 9am. Flight 93 went down at 10:10am. Why can't we interview the pilots... heck, they weren't even in the area. Right? Yea, right. They were airborne at 9:30. These F-16's had seen the Pentagon on fire, needed to protect the White House at all costs and had the OK to fire by 9:45 at the latest.

"VICE PRES. CHENEY: Well, the--I suppose the toughest decision was this question of whether or not we would intercept incoming commercial aircraft.

"MR. RUSSERT: And you decided?

"VICE PRES. CHENEY: We decided to do it. We'd, in effect, put a flying combat air patrol up over the city; F-16s with an AWACS, which is an airborne radar system, and tanker support so they could stay up a long time...

"It doesn't do any good to put up a combat air patrol if you don't give them instructions to act, if, in fact, they feel it's appropriate.

"MR. RUSSERT: So if the United States government became aware that a hijacked commercial airline[r] was destined for the White House or the Capitol, we would take the plane down?

"VICE PRES. CHENEY: Yes. The president made the decision...that if the plane would not divert...as a last resort, our pilots were authorized to take them out. Now, people say, you know, that's a horrendous decision to make. Well, it is. You've got an airplane full of American citizens, civilians, captured by...terrorists, headed and are you going to, in fact, shoot it down, obviously, and kill all those Americans on board?

"...It's a presidential-level decision, and the president made, I think, exactly the right call in this case, to say, "I wished we'd had combat air patrol up over New York."
--NBC, 'Meet the Press' 16 September 2001

Read about the mystery white jet if you haven't already.

Bottom Line - if it was shot down, would it have come down in a ball of flames? Witnesses report a largely intact aircraft coming down. Ground debris indicates the plane coming apart before impact. Hmmm.... on the military FAQ page I talk about stuff that probably belongs on this page - like cannon fire and the Nashua Air Traffic Controller that saw an F-16 hounding Flight 93 on radar.

From an email I received:
Someone close to me was involved in the improvements of air to air missiles after Vietnam war and various weapon systems during the cold war (primarily on the target tracking part and not explosive part) but he does not believe any air to air missile has the ability to blow a 757 to pieces. The mission of the missile is not to destroy the airplane, but to simply render it out of service by destroying its target's power plant or disrupt its flight. This way, the missile can be agile and fast. If missile was fired it would simply hit one of the two engines on 757. But given the size of the aircraft, it would remain in flight for a short period of time.

Comment: 2 Russian air to air missiles brought down a Korean 747 in 1983. That aircraft had cockpit voice recordings by the crew for two more minutes after the sound of the first explosion was heard. This verifies that a 747 (which is larger than Flight 93, a 757) would not be destroyed in the air when struck by a Russian air to air missile.