August 18, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact: Rich Aucoin • 781-956-6013 • RichAucoin@comcast.net
Unprecedented Effort for New Investigation
to be Launched on 9/11 Anniversary
U.S. SENATOR LEADS MASSACHUSETTS
INITIATIVE CAMPAIGN FOR A NEW 9/11 COMMISSION
(Boston, MA) Senator Mike Gravel announced today the inauguration of a citizens’ campaign to authorize a new investigation of the events of September 11, 2001. Sen. Gravel has filed a proposed ballot initiative that is expected to be approved by the Attorney General of Massachusetts by September 7. [The text of the initiative is posted below or available as a PDF: Initiative Petition for a Massachesetts Law.] If adopted by the voters, the new law would create an independent, citizen-led investigatory commission that would be seated in Massachusetts and be vested with subpoena power and the power to take testimony under oath.
“I personally initiated this effort to create a new 9/11 commission,” stated Gravel, “in response to the unending outpouring of calls for a new investigation—in the light of new evidence—from Americans across the political spectrum. Because our gridlocked Congress is obviously incapable of taking up this issue, I believe that state initiatives are our best alternative approach. Massachusetts is an optimal state in which to begin this work.”
Gravel is a former two-term Senator from Alaska and a 2008 presidential candidate who is also considering a run for the presidency in 2012 at the urging of grassroots groups. The Senator is currently chair and founder of the Citizens 9/11 Commission Campaign (911cc.org), a California-based citizen’s group that is filing similar ballot measures in other states, notably Oregon and Alaska.
Gravel pointed out that thousands of courageous Americans have lent their names to the call for a new investigation, including over 220 senior military, intelligence, and other government officials; over 1,500 engineers and architects; over 250 pilots and aviation professionals; and over 400 professors. (See PatriotsQuestion911.com.) “Polls have also repeatedly shown that millions of Americans seriously doubt the official story about 9/11,” Gravel stated. “On the tenth anniversary of these events, it is obvious that we urgently need citizen action to get a new investigation.”
Senator Gravel traces his interest in the issue to the charge leveled by the co-chairs that the original 9/11 Commission, Thomas Kean and Lee Hamilton, that the Commission they led was “set up to fail,” as stated in their 2006 book, Without Precedent. Gravel pointed out that, according to an Associated Press review article (August 4, 2006), “the Sept. 11 commission was so frustrated with repeated misstatements by the Pentagon and FAA about their response to the 2001 terror attacks that it considered an investigation into possible deception.” Co-chair Kean stated: “We to this day don’t know why NORAD [the North American Aerospace Command] told us what they told us. It was just so far from the truth. It’s one of those loose ends that never got tied.” Gravel also noted that the Senior Counsel to the 9/11 Commission, John Farmer, openly stated that “At some level of the government, at some point in time . . . there was an agreement not to tell the truth about what happened.”
Statewide Ballot Initiative Campaign
for a New 9/11 Commission
Senator Gravel—a native of Massachusetts—will kick off the ballot initiative campaign on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of 9/11 with a two press conferences, followed by a 12-day tour of the state.
The first press conference will be held on September 12, 2011 at 2:30 pm at the Boston Logan International Airport 9/11 Memorial. (The new memorial commemorates the 206 victims of the 9/11 attacks who had ties to Massachusetts.) The second will be held the following day at 11:00 am on the steps of the Massachusetts state house on Beacon Hill.
Senator Gravel will be supported in the state by a coalition of Massachusetts 9/11 advocacy groups and local concerned citizens led by Rich McCampbell, a Cambridge-based biotech engineer, and Rich Aucoin, former Libertarian candidate for lieutenant governor who has worked in senior positions in three previous initiative campaigns. Working with Gravel, the statewide alliance will create awareness and raise the funds needed for running a petition campaign. The group’s slogan is “..Vote YES to remember 9/11.”
In cooperation with Senator Gravel, McCampbell, Aucoin, and a group of 20 Massachusetts voters submitted the proposed initiative law on August 3. Its formal certification by the Attorney General’s office of Massachusetts is due no later than September 7.
In his public appearances in key cities and towns through the state, Gravel will explain the intent of the proposed law to voters, who will then be asked to support the petition campaign, the first step in the group’s work. According to the Massachusetts initiative law, supporters must collect a minimum of nearly 70,000 valid signatures from registered voters by early December of 2011.
Proposed Powers of the New 9/11 Commission
If Gravel’s petition campaign succeeds in getting its measure on the ballot, and if it is approved by Massachusetts voters in November of 2012, the primary work of the “Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission,” once it is funded and seated, will be to engage in a fair and impartial investigation of the circumstances of the alleged terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
The Commission, supported by its staff, will call or subpoena witnesses and hold evidentiary hearings under oath. It will also be empowered to inquire into events leading up to 9/11, as well as those occurring in its aftermath, and will re-examine the findings of any previous investigations.
The Commission established by the initiative law will consist of at least 15 members. Commissioners will be selected by the Citizens’ 9/11 Commission Campaign steering committee from a screened list of nominations submitted by the public and also from among its own internally compiled list of distinguished citizens. The newly seated commissioners will then elect an executive director who will hire staff. The final report on the Commission’s findings, due no later than January 1, 2015, can be used by a state or federal prosecutor to issue indictments if and when appropriate.
“The previous 9/11 Commission report,” noted Aucoin, “did not hold any U.S. government officials responsible for possible negligence or for intended or unintended missteps that led to the events of 9/11. Well-established rules of evidence were never applied to the original commission’s finding which alleged that Osama bin Laden and a list of co-conspirators committed the crime. The intent of our approach, by contrast, is to hold all parties to this tragedy accountable under the criminal laws of the state of Massachusetts or the laws of any other state that joins our effort.”
Notably, other states may enter into a so-called joint-powers agreement with Massachusetts if the initiative law passes. The authorized powers of the new commission can be extended to any state that enters into this agreement for cooperation. “The Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission created by the Massachusetts law may exercise all investigatory powers of each state that has entered into the joint powers agreement,” explained Gravel, “including but not limited to the power of subpoena in that state and the power to take testimony under oath.”
Using several different state initiative laws to create one citizens’ commission, thereby creating a de facto national effort, is without precedent, but has already been legally accepted in principle by the offices of legislative counsel of the states of California and Oregon. “The law now submitted to Massachusetts,” said Gravel, “was in fact drafted by me in cooperation with Oregon’s State Office of Legislative Counsel. I then slightly altered it for introduction in Massachusetts. We will file the Oregon document shortly. Our intent is to keep the Oregon and Massachusetts texts—and that of any other state initiative that we file—as similar as possible.”
Massachusetts State Requirements for Initiative Laws
Rich McCampbell pointed out that there are several key steps to bear in mind. “If and when our initiative passes in November 2012, funding for the measure will be a separate matter. Under Massachusetts law, the issue of financing of the provisions of an initiative law, once passed, is an exclusive prerogative of the state legislature; funding provisions cannot be included in any Massachusetts initiative.”
Such a requirement is, however, not the case in Oregon initiative law, where funding for the creation of the new commission is built into the proposed initiative legislation.
In Massachusetts, signatures collected by the December 2011 deadline must equal three percent of the votes cast for governor in the last election, or approximately 70,000 signatures. Massachusetts has a distribution requirement that mandates that no more than one-quarter of the certified signatures may come from any one county. By law, after petition signatures are collected and certified, the state legislature is required to consider whether it will adopt the proposed law without the need for a statewide vote of the people. If the state legislature declines to act, supporters of the measure are required to collect a second round of signatures, totaling 0.5 percent of the vote cast for governor in the most recent election. ###
Media Contact: Rich Aucoin 781-956-6013
Frequently Asked Questions about the Citizens 9/11 Commission Campaign: http://9-11cc.org/index.php/about-us/faqs/
Government officials and multiple professions question 9/11 Commission Report: http://patriotsquestion911.com/
Hope Yen, Associated Press (August 4, 2006) “Book: Sept. 11 Panel Doubted Officials”: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/04/AR2006080401026.html
Commissioner Kean: NORAD testimony “far from the truth”: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/01/AR2006080101300.html
Omissions and distortions in the 911 Commission Report compiled by scholar David Ray Griffin: http://911research.wtc7.net/post911/commission/report.html
Dan Fletcher, Time (Sept. 11, 2009), “A New Look at the 9/11 Commission” “It’s almost a culture of concealment, for lack of a better word. There were interviews made at the FAA’s New York center the night of 9/11 and those tapes were destroyed. The CIA tapes of the interrogations were destroyed. The story of 9/11 itself, to put it mildly, was distorted and was completely different from the way things happened.” [John Farmer, senior counsel to the 9/11 Commission] http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1921659,00.html
Senior Counsel to the 9/11 Commission shocked at deceptions:
Laws governing the initiative process in Massachusetts: http://ballotpedia.org/wiki/index.php/Laws_governing_the_initiative_process_in_Massachusetts
Initiative Petition for a Law to Create a
Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission
Be it Enacted by the People, and by their authority:
SECTION 1. Sections 2 to 6 of this 2012 Act shall be known and may be cited as the Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission Act.
SECTION 2. (1) The Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission is established as an independent commission for the purpose of investigating events that relate to September 11, 2001.
(2) The commission shall investigate in a fair and impartial manner the circumstances of September 11, 2001, including the events leading up to and the events that occurred in the aftermath of September 11, 2001. The commission shall investigate:
(a) The destruction of the World Trade Center Towers: WTC 1, WTC 2, WTC 7 in New York City;
(b) The attack on the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia;
(c) The crash of United Airlines Flight 93 near Shanksville, Pennsylvania;
(d) The invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq by the United States;
(e) The Global War on Terror; and
(f) Any other issue the commission deems relevant and necessary to its duties, functions and powers.
(3) The commission shall consider the findings, and the shortcomings of the findings, of any previous investigations of the events of September 11, 2001, and the events leading up to and occurring in the aftermath of September 11, 2001, including but not limited to:
(a) The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States; and
(b) The Joint Inquiry into Intelligence Community Activities before and after the Terrorist Attacks of September 11, 2001, by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.
(4) The commission shall produce a written report detailing the commission’s investigation and findings. The report shall describe:
(a) Any criminal activity, including a war crime or a crime against humanity;
(b) Any individual or corporation that unduly profited from the events investigated by the commission;
(c) Any other malfeasance and any perpetrators of the malfeasance; and
(d) Any other findings made by the commission.
(5) The commission shall deliver the report to the following persons or entities in this state and the analogous persons or entities in any state that has entered the joint powers agreement as described in section 3 of this 2012 Act:
(a) The Governor;
(b) The Chief Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court; and
(c) The Legislature.
(6) The commission shall complete all of the commission’s duties, functions and powers conclude its investigation and complete the delivery of the written report no later than January 1, 2015. The commission shall be dissolved no later than February 1, 2015.
SECTION 3. (1) The Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission established under section 2 of this 2012 Act may enter into a joint powers agreement with another state in the manner described in this section. The commission may enter into a joint powers agreement with another state that has enacted a law similar to this 2012 Act or a law that expresses a clear intent to enter a joint powers agreement. The joint powers of the commission shall extend to any state that enters into a joint powers agreement under this section.
(2) The Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission shall have and may exercise all investigatory powers of each state that has entered the joint powers agreement, including but not limited to the power of subpoena in that state and the power to take testimony under oath.
(3) Any state or local government or other public entity may, as an alternative to entering into a joint powers agreement, endorse the investigation by the Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission by passing, adopting or otherwise submitting to the commission a resolution expressing endorsement of the commission.
SECTION 4. (1) The Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission shall consist of at least 15 members and shall consist of an odd number of members.
(2) The Citizens 9/11 Investigation Commission Campaign Steering Committee, incorporated in the State of California, shall select 15 or more persons to serve as the initial members of the commission. The initial members shall appoint an executive director to serve at the pleasure of the commission.
(3) The executive director may appoint additional members from among candidates nominated by any citizen of the United States.
(4) Membership preference shall be given to persons who have expertise in specific areas or subjects that would assist the commission in carrying out the commission’s duties and objectives.
(5) The executive director shall appoint a special prosecutor to serve at the pleasure of the commission. The special prosecutor shall conduct the investigation and compile the written report described in section 2 (4) of this 2012 Act and shall report to the commission.
(6) The executive director, special prosecutor and any member of the commission may be removed from the commission by a two-thirds vote of the commission. The commission shall replace members of the commission by majority vote.
(7) Each member of the commission shall execute the following oath or affirmation of office as a condition of service, “I, (name), hereby swear or affirm that I will, to the best of my ability, defend and uphold the Constitution of the United States and the principle of truth in governance in investigating the circumstances of September 11, 2001, including the events leading up to and the events that occurred in the aftermath of September 11, 2001.”
(8) The commission may enter into contracts and hire any staff the commission deems necessary.
(9) The commission shall adopt rules and procedures necessary to carry out the commission’s duties under sections 2 to 6 of this 2012 Act.
SECTION 5. (1) The 9/11 Citizens Investigation Fund is established in the State Treasury, separate and distinct from the General Fund. Interest earned by the Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Fund shall be credited to the fund. All moneys in the fund shall, subject to appropriation by the state legislature, be used by the Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission to carry out the duties, functions and powers of the commission.
(2) The Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission may accept contributions of moneys and assistance from the United States Government or its agencies or from any other source, public or private, and agree to conditions placed on the moneys that are not inconsistent with the duties of the commission. All moneys received by the commission under this subsection shall be deposited into the Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Fund established under subsection (1) of this section.
(3) The Commonwealth of Massachusetts shall contractually agree to be a party to the interstate Citizens’ 9/11 Investigation Commission, established under section 3 of this 2012 Act, subject to appropriation.
|Name of Initial Signer||Address [Street No./Town/Zip]||Signature|
|Dr. John Hiebert|
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