Mindy Kleinberg
RE: 9/11 - Statement of Mindy Kleinberg
Mon Apr 21 17:47:37 2003

Statement of Mindy Kleinberg to the National Commission on
Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States t r u t h o u t |

March 31, 2003

My name is Mindy Kleinberg. My husband Alan Kleinberg, 39 yrs old,
was killed in the WTC on September 11, 2001. As I testify here today
about the 9/11 attacks, I will begin by saying that my thoughts are
very much with the men and women who are involved in armed conflict
overseas and their families who wait patiently for them to return.

This war is being fought on two fronts, overseas as well as here on
our shores; this means that we are all soldiers in this fight
against terrorism. As the threat of terrorism mounts here in the
United States, the need to address the failures of September 11 is
more important than ever. It is an essential part of "lessons

As such, this commission has an extremely important task before it.
I am here today to ask you, the commissioners, to help us understand
how this could have happened; help us understand where the breakdown
was in our nation's defense capabilities.

Where were we on the morning of September 11th?

On the morning of September 11th my three-year-old son, Sam, and I
walked Jacob 10, and Lauren, 7 to the bus stop at about 8:40 a.m. It
was the fourth day of a new school year and you could still feel
everyone's excitement. It was such a beautiful day that Sam and I
literally skipped home oblivious to what was happening in NYC.

At around 8:55 I was confirming play date plans for Sam with a
friend when she said, "I can't believe what I am watching on TV, a
plane has just hit the World Trade Center." For some reason it did
not register with me until a few minutes later when I calmly asked,
"what building did you say?" "Oh that's Alan's building I have to
call you back."

There was no answer when I tried to reach him at the office. By now
my house started filling with people--his mother, my parents, our
sisters and friends. The seriousness of the situation was beginning
to register. We spent the rest of the day calling hospitals, and the
Red Cross and any place else we could think of to see if we could
find him.

I'll never forget thinking all day long, "how am I going to tell
Jacob and Lauren that their father was missing?"

They came home to a house filled with people but no Daddy. How were
they going to be able to wait calmly for his return? What if he was
really hurt? This was their hero, their king their best friend,
their father. The thoughts of that day replay over and over in our
heads always wishing for a different outcome.

We are trying to learn to live with the pain. We will never forget
where we were or how we felt on September 11th. But where was our
government, its agencies, and institutions prior to and on the
morning of September 11th?

The Theory of Luck

With regard to the 9/11 attacks, it has been said that the
intelligence agencies have to be right 100% of the time and the
terrorists only have to get lucky once. This explanation for the
devastating attacks of September 11th, simple on its face, is wrong
in its value. Because the 9/11 terrorists were not just lucky once:
they were lucky over and over again. Allow me to illustrate.


The terrorist's lucky streak began the week before September 11th
with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC. The SEC, in
concert with the United States intelligence agencies, has
sophisticated software programs that are used in "real-time" to
watch both domestic and overseas markets to seek out trends that may
indicate a present or future crime. In the week prior to September
11th both the SEC and U.S. intelligence agencies ignored one major
stock market indicator, one that could have yielded valuable
information with regard to the September 11th attacks.

On the Chicago Board Options Exchange during the week before
September 11th, put options were purchased on American and United
Airlines, the two airlines involved in the attacks. The investors
who placed these orders were gambling that in the short term the
stock prices of both Airlines would plummet. Never before on the
Chicago Exchange were such large amounts of United and American
Airlines options traded. These investors netted a profit of at least
$5 million after the September 11th attacks.

Interestingly, the names of the investors remain undisclosed and the
$5 million remains unclaimed in the Chicago Exchange account.

Why these aberrant trades were not discovered prior to 9/11? Who
were the individuals who placed these trades? Have they been
investigated? Who was responsible for monitoring these activities?
Have those individuals been held responsible for their inaction?


Prior to 9/11, our US intelligence agencies should have stopped the
19 terrorists from entering this country for intelligence reasons,
alone. However, their failure to do so in 19 instances does not
negate the luck involved for the terrorists when it comes to their
visa applications and our Immigration and Naturalization Service, or

With regard to the INS, the terrorists got lucky 15 individual
times, because 15 of the 19 hijackers' visas should have been
unquestionably denied.

Most of the 19 hijackers were young, unmarried, and un-employed
males. They were, in short, the "classic over-stay candidates". A
seasoned former Consular officer stated in National Review magazine,
"Single, idle young adults with no specific destination in the
United States rarely get visas absent compelling circumstances."

Yet these 19 young single, unemployed, "classic overstay candidates
still received their visas." I am holding in my hand the
applications of the terrorists who killed my husband. All of these
forms are incomplete and incorrect.

Some of the terrorists listed their means of support as simply
"student" failing to then list the name and address of any school or
institution. Others, when asked about their means of support for
their stay in the US wrote "myself" and provided no further
documentation. Some of the terrorists listed their destination in
the US as simply "hotel" or "California" or "New York". One even
listed his destination as "no".

Had the INS or State Department followed the law, at least 15 of the
hijackers would have been denied visas and would not have been in
the United States on September 11th, 2001.

Help us to understand how something as simple as reviewing forms for
completeness could have been missed at least 15 times. How many more
lucky terrorists gained unfettered access into this country? With no
one being held accountable, how do know this still isn't happening?

Airline and Airport Security

On the morning of September 11th, the terrorists' luck commenced
with airline and airport security. When the 19 hijackers went to
purchase their tickets (with cash and/or credit cards) and to
receive their boarding passes, nine were singled out and questioned
through a screening process. Luckily for those nine terrorists, they
passed the screening process and were allowed to continue on with
their mission.

But, the terrorist's luck didn't end at the ticket counter; it also
accompanied them through airport security, as well. Because how else
would the hijackers get specifically contraband items such as
box-cutters, pepper spray or, according to one FAA executive
summary, a gun on those planes?

Finally, sadly for us, years of GAO recommendations to secure
cockpit doors were ignored making it all too easy for the hijackers
to gain access to the flight controls and carryout their suicide


Prior to 9/11, FAA and Department of Defense Manuals gave clear,
comprehensive instructions on how to handle everything from minor
emergencies to full blown hijackings.

These "protocols" were in place and were practiced regularly for a
good reason--with heavily trafficked air space; airliners without
radio and transponder contact are collisions and/or calamities
waiting to happen.

Those protocols dictate that in the event of an emergency, the FAA
is to notify NORAD. Once that notification takes place, it is then
the responsibility of NORAD to scramble fighter-jets to intercept
the errant plane(s). It is a matter of routine procedure for
fighter-jets to "intercept" commercial airliners in order to regain
contact with the pilot.

If that weren't protection enough, on September 11th, NEADS (or the
North East Air Defense System dept of NORAD) was several days into a
semiannual exercise known as "Vigilant Guardian". This meant that
our North East Air Defense system was fully staffed. In short, key
officers were manning the operation battle center, "fighter jets
were cocked, loaded, and carrying extra gas on board."

Lucky for the terrorists none of this mattered on the morning of
September 11th.

Let me illustrate using just flight 11 as an example.

American Airline Flight 11 departed from Boston Logan Airport at
7:45 a.m. The last routine communication between ground control and
the plane occurred at 8:13 a.m. Between 8:13 and 8:20 a.m. Flight 11
became unresponsive to ground control. Additionally, radar indicated
that the plane had deviated from its assigned path of flight. Soon
thereafter, transponder contact was lost - (although planes can
still be seen on radar - even without their transponders).

Two Flight 11 airline attendants had separately called American
Airlines reporting a hijacking, the presence of weapons, and the
infliction of injuries on passengers and crew. At this point, it
would seem abundantly clear that Flight 11 was an emergency. Yet,
according to NORAD's official timeline, NORAD was not contacted
until 20 minutes later at 8:40 a.m. Tragically the fighter jets were
not deployed until 8:52 a.m. -- a full 32 minutes after the loss of
contact with flight 11.

Why was there a delay in the FAA notifying NORAD? Why was there a
delay in NORAD scrambling fighter jets? How is this possible when
NEADS was fully staffed with planes at the ready and monitoring our
Northeast airspace?

Flight's 175, 77 and 93 all had this same repeat pattern of delays
in notification and delays in scrambling fighter jets. Delays that
are unimaginable considering a plane had, by this time, already hit
the WTC

Even more baffling for us is the fact that the fighter jets were not
scrambled from the closest air force bases. For example, for the
flight that hit the Pentagon, the jets were scrambled from Langley
Air Force in Hampton, Virginia rather than Andrews Air Force Base
right outside D.C. As a result, Washington skies remained wholly
unprotected on the morning of September 11th. At 9:41 a.m. one hour
and 11 minutes after the first plane was hijack confirmed by NORAD,
Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon. The fighter jets were still
miles away. Why?

So the hijackers luck had continued. On September 11th both the FAA
and NORAD deviated from standard emergency operating procedures .Who
were the people that delayed the notification? Have they been
questioned? In addition, the interceptor planes or fighter jets did
not fly at their maximum speed.

Had the belatedly scrambled fighter jets flown at their maximum
speed of engagement, MACH-12, they would have reached NYC and the
Pentagon within moments of their deployment, intercepted the
hijacked airliners before they could have hit their targets, and
undoubtedly saved lives.


Joint Chief Of Staff

The acting Joint Chief of staff on Sept 11th was on the morning of
September 11th, he was having a routine meeting . Acting Joint Chief
of staff Myers stated that he saw a TV. report about a plane hitting
the WTC but thought it was a small plane or something like that. So,
he went ahead with his meeting. "Meanwhile the second World Trade
Center was hit by another jet. Nobody informed us of that," Myers
said. By the time he came out of the meeting the Pentagon had been

Whose responsibility was it to relay this emergency to the Joint
Chief of Staff? Have they been held accountable for their error?
Surely this represents a breakdown of protocol.

Secretary of Defense

The Secretary of Defense, was at his desk doing paperwork when AA77
crashed into the Pentagon.

As reported, Secretary Rumsfeld felt the building shake, went
outside, saw the damage and started helping the injured onto
stretchers. After aiding the victims, the Secretary then went into
the 'War Room'.

How is it possible that the National Military Command Center,
located in the Pentagon and in contact with law enforcement and air
traffic controllers from 8:46 a.m. did not communicate to the
Secretary of Defense also at the Pentagon about the other hijacked
planes especially the one headed to Washington? How is that
Secretary of Defense could have remained at this desk until the
crash? Whose responsibility is it to relay emergency situations to
him? Is he then supposed to go to the war room?


At 6:15 a.m. on the morning of 9/11, my husband Alan left for work;
he drove into New York City, and was at his desk and working at his
NASDAQ Security Trading position with Cantor Fitzgerald, in Tower
One of the WTC by 7:30 a.m. In contrast, on the morning of September
11, President Bush was scheduled to listen to elementary school
children read. Before the President walked into the classroom NORAD
had sufficient information that the plane that hit the WTC was
hijacked. At that time, they also had knowledge that two other
commercial airliners, in the air, were also hijacked. It would seem
that a national emergency was in progress.

Yet President Bush was allowed to enter a classroom full of young
children and listen to the students read.

Why didn't the Secret Service inform him of this national emergency?
When is a President supposed to be notified of everything the
agencies know? Why was the President permitted by the Secret Service
to remain in the Sarasota elementary school? Was this Secret Service

In the case of a national emergency, seconds of indecision could
cost thousands of lives; and it's precisely for this reason that our
government has a whole network of adjuncts and advisors to insure
that these top officials are among the first to be informed--not the
last. Where were these individuals who did not properly inform these
top officials? Where was the breakdown in communication?

Was it luck or No Fault Government

Is it luck that aberrant stock trades were not monitored? Is it luck
when 15 visas are awarded based on incomplete forms? Is it luck when
Airline Security screenings allow hijackers to board planes with box
cutters and pepper spray? Is it luck when Emergency FAA and NORAD
protocols are not followed? Is it luck when a national emergency is
not reported to top government officials on a timely basis?

To me luck is something that happens once. When you have this
repeated pattern of broken protocols, broken laws, broken
communication, one cannot still call it luck.

If at some point we don't look to hold the individuals accountable
for not doing their jobs properly then how can we ever expect for
terrorists not to get lucky again?

And, that is why I am here with all of you today. Because, we must
find the answers as to what happened that day so as to ensure that
another September 11th can never happen again.

Commissioners, I implore you to answer our questions. You are the
Generals in the terrorism fight on our shores. In answering our
questions, you have the ability to make this nation a safer place
and in turn, minimize the damage if there is another terrorist
attack. And, if there is another attack, the next time, our systems
will be in place and working and luck will not be an issue.

Hearing on Terrorist Attacks, Day 1 Part 1

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