|Debunking Popular Mechanics|
|Thursday, 18 October 2012 22:06|
Editor’s note: This is a collation of the multiple parts of an extensive report by 9/11 researcher Adam Taylor that exposes the fallacies and flaws in the arguments made by the editors of Popular Mechanics (PM) in the latest edition of Debunking 9/11 Myths. We encourage you to submit your own reviews of the book at Amazon.com and other places where it is sold.
(Quotes from Popular Mechanics’ book are shown in red and with page numbers.)
Part 1: Introduction
A decade has passed since the tragic events of September 11, 2001, and many people feel that we have still not had a real investigation into what really happened that day. Many believe that the investigations into the destruction of the three WTC skyscrapers by the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) were either fraudulent or incomplete, and have joined the 1600+ architects and engineers at AE911Truth in calling for a real, independent investigation into the attacks. However, Popular Mechanics (PM) has been the primary cheerleader in the mainstream media in defense of the NIST reports ever since its book, Debunking 9/11 Myths: Why Conspiracy Theories Can’t Stand Up To the Facts, was published in 2006.
PM next turns to the issue of the plane impacts and fire damage and their roles in the WTC event. Though PM acknowledges that the fires in the buildings could not have become hot enough to melt steel, they nonetheless rehash the constantly heard argument from other defenders of the official story that the steel did not need to melt to cause collapse. According to PM, it only had to be weakened by the fires enough to cause collapse.
In Popular Mechanics’ next section, they discuss the rate at which the Twin Towers were destroyed. PM begins by correctly pointing out that it is difficult to determine exactly how long it took each Tower to collapse, being that much of the destruction was blocked from view by the huge clouds of pulverized debris. However, it is quite evident that PM has again misrepresented the characteristics of the buildings’ destruction.
The next section of PM’s book deals with one of the more direct pieces of evidence of demolition for the Towers – the isolated ejections of dust and debris from the Towers during the collapses. Like most of its arguments, PM’s challenge to this evidence of demolition is extremely weak and was previously refuted by experts at AE911Truth and elsewhere.
The next section of PM’s book deals with another subject not previously dealt with in the 2006 edition: the nanothermite discovered in dust samples from the World Trade Center. PM’s stated objective of the updated book is to debunk “the most common speculation about free-fall times, ‘nanothermite,’ and other aspects of the Twin Towers’ collapses…,” (pg. xxii). However, PM’s section regarding nanothermite utterly fails to do this – not because it presents weak scientific arguments, but because it provides virtually no scientific arguments at all.
The final section of PM’s chapter on the Twin Towers addresses a theory that is not widely believed among members of the 9/11 Truth movement: that large seismic spikes indicative of explosions occurred before the Towers collapsed.
The Popular Mechanics chapter regarding the mysterious collapse of WTC 7 shows itself to be no more promising than its previous chapter on the Twin Towers. PM begins this section by summarizing the history of the controversy surrounding Building 7 and the numerous investigations carried out regarding its collapse.
PM’s next section discusses the actual collapse of WTC 7 and the condition of the wreckage pile after it collapsed. It creates the impression that both of these issues can be explained by natural means rather than demolition. As we shall see, this is simply not the case, as with virtually all of PM’s arguments against demolition.
Editor’s note: This is a critique, written by Jim Hoffman, of the March 2005 Popular Mechanics feature article "Debunking 9/11 Lies." You can find this critique on 911research.com
The Hearst-owned Popular Mechanics targeted the 9/11 Truth Movement (without ever acknowledging it by that name) with a cover story in its March 2005 edition.  Sandwiched between ads and features for monster trucks, NASCAR paraphernalia, and off-road racing are twelve dense and brilliantly designed pages purporting to debunk the myths of 9/11.