The movement of 9/11 sceptics has had an astonishing success in sowing doubt across the US. Recent polls suggest more than a third of Americans believe that either the official version of events never happened, or that US officials knew the attacks were imminent, but did nothing to stop them.Errr...???!!! This is a guy who watches hald a million Iraqis die without blinking, who sends US soldiers out to die for the sake of his dented ego.
That's an impressive statistic in itself. Now look at the success Loose Change has had. Google Video acts as a portal for the movie, where you can also see the running tally of the number of times it has been viewed since last August. As I write, it stands at 4,048,990. By the time you read this, it will have risen considerably higher. On top of that, the movie was shown on television to up to 50 million people in 12 countries on September 11 last year; 100,000 DVDs have been sold and 50,000 more given away free. Then there are many more who have watched the film but are never counted, as a result of the active encouragement the film-makers give their supporters to burn the movie and distribute it to their friends. Avery says 100 million people - "easy" - have seen it. That may be an exaggeration, but it's fair to say that something extraordinary is going on...
And so to the message. The Twin Towers in New York didn't fall as a direct result of the planes hitting them and the fire that ensued; they were brought them down in a series of controlled explosions. George Bush's brother, Marvin, sat on the board of a company that insured the towers.
"I think what happened to the World Trade Centre was simple enough," Avery says in the film. "It was brought down in a carefully planned controlled demolition. It was a psychological attack on the American people and it was pulled off with military precision."
Flight 77, which supposedly flew into the Pentagon, could not have flown at that speed without going into a tailspin. There is no sign of any parts of an aeroplane in footage of the crash site, and the building looked as though it had been hit by a missile. Meanwhile, Donald Rumsfeld was safe on the other side of the Pentagon.
Flight 93, said to have come down in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, never did crash there. Instead it landed in Cleveland airport shortly after the airport had been evacuated. The emotive phone calls by the so-called passengers to their relatives before they "died" were staged.
There are several flaws in the argument. The list of those who would have to have been party to the plot is implausibly long for it to have remained secret, from Bush himself to Rumsfeld and Cheney and the FBI and Pentagon ... and on and on. Much of the supporting evidence in the film was taken in the first minutes and hours after the attacks, when confusion reigned. And George Bush may be a disastrous and dishonest president, but would he be capable of such a monstrous act?
Besides which, I very much doubt Dubya Bush was in on the plan, although I suspect the reason he froze like a dummy with his My Pet Goat book is that he knew a few things other people didn't, and he was trying to put it together in his head just in case he went and said the wrong thing.
See the Loose Change website for more.