A 9/11 Truther. Photo via Flickr user mass_copblock.
With the help of Elizabeth May, Canada's Green Party leader and a sitting member of Parliament, a group of 9/11 Truthers have made Canada the latest target for their eccentric lobbying campaign.
Trotting out a stable of theories, new and old, four representatives of the Truther movement appeared in a press conference on the first floor of the Parliament of Canada.
After May introduced the petition to the House of Commons calling for an independent investigation into the events of September 11, the Truthers were officially welcomed to the steps of Canadian power.
May introduced the petition last week, contending it was her obligation as a Parliamentarian to introduce the petitions to the government.
While the Green leader said she doesn't support the Truther movement in any way, she did help them wedge a foot into the door of Parliament.
Her petition, which calls on Ottawa to "hear our policy recommendations to protect Canadians against future acts of state sponsored terrorism," requires a response from the government within 45 days.
The petition lists several "new forensic evidence" developments as reason to consider the Truther allegations.
Among them the "several tons of molten iron/steel" (even though the official report explains that the molten metal was aluminum, from the plane); "nano-thermite composite incendiaries discovered throughout the WTC dust," (even though you'd need thousands of pounds of thermite to make that happen); and "DVD Material entitled: '9/11: Blueprint for Truth."
Armed with 1,400 signatures and that new "forensic evidence," the Truthers presented their case before two members of the Parliamentary Press Gallery (VICE included) on Wednesday morning.
ReThink911, an Ottawa-based group, was one of three groups that came to parliament. The other two, Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth and the 9/11 Consensus Panel, a group claiming to run a quasi-peer review of the evidence presented by the movement—are US based organizations.
"We applaud Elizabeth for her courage in submitting this historic petition which has been signed by Canadians all across the country," said Isabelle Beenen, from Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth.
All three groups say May didn't work in any capacity with them on this file.
"We've had no conversations with Elizabeth May," said Canadian organizer David Long, admitting May only introduced the petition because she felt she had to.
There are no fewer than two dozen peer-reviewed studies confirming contending both towers' collapse were from the two planes flying into them. Oppositely, only one peer-reviewed paper, published without the editor of the paper's knowledge, supports the theory the 9/11 attacks were an orchestrated conspiracy.
VICE asked the groups why the Canadian Government should launch an investigation into their allegations, given the lack of evidence.
"To believe that simple office fires could cause the collapse of a 47-story office building. It's impossible," said Bill Brinnier, a New York City architect and noted Truther. "Now, there are peer-reviewed studies of alternate explanations of what happened. And they're not being accepted by the mainstream media."
Brinnier's point is true, if you accept a wider definition of "peer-reviewed," a term used in academia meaning scientific or academic papers are thoroughly vetted by professor and equal peers.
One of the chief academic reference points for Truthers is The Journal of 9/11 Studies, an online-only journal that includes such classics as "The Moral Decoding of 9-11: Beyond the U.S. Criminal State," "The Top Ten Connections Between [National Institute of Standards and Technology] and Nano-Thermites," and "Why Did the World's Most Advanced Electronics Warfare Plane Circle Over The White House on 9/11?"
Beyond some of the more outlandish claims typical of the Truther movement, Brinnier did, however, have some pretty solid circumstantial evidence to back his claims.
"There was, in fact, a major elevator renovation to all three buildings, for the proceeding nine months so there was ample opportunity for someone to get in there," he said. "And there have been reports of trucks arriving at the World Trade Centre between 3 AM and 4 AM every morning for the previous two months before 9/11. That was ample opportunity to get things in there. The security was completely controlled by members of the government."
But, no matter how many jokes get cracked at their expense or how many peer reviewed studies debunk their claims, Truthers like Brinnier vow to fight on.
"We're going to continue, as long as it takes," he said. "As long as I have breath in my lungs."