JULES NAUDET'S FIRST PLANE SHOT WAS STAGED
A Clue to the Truth about 9/11 ?



5. Objections and answers

This shot (58:47) demonstrates the total misconception that the Twin Towers dominated the street landscape of Lower Manhattan, and were visible from just about everywhere. At the top centre of the photograph is the antenna of the North Tower, almost the only part visible : the rest of it is hidden behind the building in the foreground (also seen in Appendix 4, Picture 20b), sitting between Reade and Chambers on Church Street : a building only 75 feet tall almost completely obscuring one 18 times as high (1,368 feet), from six blocks away to the north-east — before the camera even reaches Reade Street, by which time the disappearance is 100%, antenna included — itself, at 360 feet, nearly five times as tall as the building.

Why not from somewhere west of the flight path ?

Because that would mean filming eastwards, towards the sun. That whole region is completely excluded for that simple reason: it has to be east of the plane, with the sun behind the camera, to avoid any possibility of flashes of sunlight ruining the impact shot or the close-ups. (Please note that all three actual shots of Flight 11 — Naudet, Hlava and Staehle — were indeed filmed from east of the plane; see also Appendix 4, Pictures 16d and e, for examples of lens flares caused by sunlight).

Why not from somewhere north of Canal Street ?

Because, as shown in the shot, the plane is quite small as seen from Lispenard Street; it would be even smaller from further north. He could have used his zoom lens to get a closer view, but that would also apply to Lispenard, where we get no close-up until after the impact. He could have shown the plane's markings in the film with his zoom lens — but he didn't.

Why not from an east-west street ?

Look at Picture 1d in Appendix 4. Only the antenna on the North Tower is above the height of the cafe sign at the south-east corner, and the two tallest buildings in New York are apparently smaller than this one. At that distance from the Trade Center towers — less than a mile — a 20-foot building on the south side of an east-west street would completely hide them, unless the street was 25 yards wide — and very few buildings in Manhattan are only 20 feet tall. There may be streets in New York with no buildings on the south side, but not many in this part of the city. This close to the Trade Center, north-south streets are a far better proposition for a view of the towers — the closer the better, without being too close, southwards or eastwards. Intervening buildings are a problem in both directions — south and east.

Why not from further east — say, the Bowery or the Brooklyn Bridge ?

For two main reasons : because the plane would be further away, smaller and less audible, especially with the traffic on the bridge, and because the impact shot would be from an angle of 45 degrees or more — not the best view for a close-up.

Why not from nearer the tower, say Duane Street ?

Because of the time factor : it would halve the amount of time available to capture the plane, since Duane Street is only three seconds of flying time from the North Tower (Map 2). It has to be done from somewhere nearer Canal Street, giving about six seconds. That period could be extended by filming the plane arriving from the north, but it would involve tracking it in flight as it approached the camera and flew on towards the target — too wide a panning angle — if, in the first place, the plane's noise gave enough warning to film it approaching before it passed the photographer. It would be better not to attempt filming it until after that point.

Why not from West Broadway ?

Partly because of the 370-foot-tall Western Union Building (C on map), which hides the North Tower from view (the "blind area" shown in blue in Map 1) until about White Street, where the impact point starts to become visible. Even if filmed from somewhere between White Street and Canal Street, the plane would be too visible for comfort : it would look far too convenient that the photographer just happened to find himself almost right under the plane, with its target almost directly in front of him. From the junction of West Broadway and Lispenard, only about the top 350 feet of the tower would be visible above the Western Union, with the plane hitting 150-200 feet from the top (See Appendix 4, Picture 17a). If Church Street, with the top 400 feet visible, looks too convenient, this would be even worse. There would also be the major problem of how to film a plane flying above the photographer, especially with no large building to hide it behind. The Western Union itself can be rejected, only four seconds of flying time from the tower.

Why not from Broadway ?

Because, as the map shows, the part of Broadway from Canal Street southwards as far as Worth Street is a blind area, because of two buildings — the AT&T "Long Lines" Building (D on the map), 551 feet tall, and the Tribeca Tower (E on the map), 545 feet. South of Worth Street, the time factor and the angle factor come into play — and distance, a quarter of a mile from the plane. Plus, the buildings on Broadway’s west side — and Church Street’s east – would be in the way.

Why not Cortland Avenue, Lafayette Street or Centre Street ?

Cortland is excluded because it is entirely within the same blind area that excludes the above part of Broadway. Lafayette is partly inside that blind area and partly inside one caused by the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building (F on the map), 587 feet tall, which also excludes half of Centre Street. Either might still be theoretically suitable: the map seems to show a "window" in both giving a view of the WTC, but it would mean filming it between the Javits Building on the left and the Tribeca Tower on the right, which might look rather too convenient — presuming, that is, none of the intervening buildings on the west of Broadway or the east of Church were an obstruction; there is also, again, the distance problem, Centre Street being 700 yards from the plane. The sound would certainly carry that far, but the further away, the less likely to be audible above ambient noise. Plane noise does carry quite a distance, but the reason we hear most planes — away from airports — is because they are hanging around flying in circles, waiting to land, long enough for their sound to be noticed — far longer than Flight 11, which flew straight towards its target, audible only very briefly to anyone under or near its flight path.

This shot from "In Memoriam : New York City" (19:38) shows that there was a clear, unobstructed view of the Trade Center from Lafayette Street, and that it would have been possible to film the Flight 11 impact from there — although (a) the street stretches almost from City Hall to 9th Street, and this could have been shot with zoom, from north of Canal Street — possibly even from inside a building ; and (b) there is an obvious difference between filming a plane impact lasting just seconds and filming a building that was sitting there burning for 102 minutes, allowing plenty of time for cameras to be set up, etc (and Ms Klainberg is an award-winning professional film maker) — which probably explains why no-one did film the impact from Lafayette's entire length.

The only candidate left, having pretty much disposed of everywhere else, is far superior to any of the above in several different ways : the top end of Church Street, south of Canal Street, is firstly not in a blind area. Not only does it have no large buildings hiding the Trade Center — except right at the top, where it meets Canal Street — but the two giant buildings that cause that problem from Broadway and West Broadway are both hidden from sight from Church Street — the Western Union completely hidden behind the Tribeca Grand Hotel (B on the map, and under the North Tower in the impact shots), the "Long Lines" Building barely visible (above and to the left of the traffic lights in Picture 1d). It is the closest street to the plane, after the too-close West Broadway, and allows a full six seconds of flying time from the plane's target.

Most importantly, Church Street has the 430-foot AT&T Building (A on the map) — more than tall enough to hide a plane flying at 1,200 feet 250 yards away, and long enough to hide its flight from Lispenard Street southwards, until two seconds from impact. It would also telescope those two seconds of flight into a 20 degree angle, in a stationary picture.

It might, of course, assist the process of selecting the best location by doing it in 3D, in reverse — studying the view from different angles on the topmost floors of the Trade Center, using a zoom lens if necessary, to see which part of which street supplied the best combination of all the factors required. A single photograph — like the one in the next section — does not tell the whole story, but, along with maps showing the crucially important view from above, it gives us an idea of how the location was in fact probably picked out.

One piece of genuine luck in this story — unless this, too, was designed that way — may be that the Tribeca Grand, opened in May 2000, is only eight floors and 85 feet tall, when its "sister" hotel, the SoHo Grand, between Canal and Grand Streets, opened in August 1996, is 15 floors and 176 feet. What would a 176-foot-tall building in front of the AT&T do to Naudet's view of the North Tower ? But, luckily, there wasn't one: if there had been, perhaps a different location would have been chosen. As it is, the Church-Lispenard junction may not be the only option, but it is by far the best. How strange that that should be exactly where Jules Naudet managed to find himself, with the right equipment, in the right company, facing the right direction, with the right view, at the right time, on the right morning, on the right side of the street, etc. What are the odds of the only photographer in Manhattan to capture this impact being in the best possible place to do it, and in the best of all possible circumstances ? Is this remotely credible ?

A sceptic asks : would it have made any difference if Naudet had been on the other side of the street ? The towers were so far away their position would hardly have changed. The shot on the right above, by an unknown photographer but about 20 minutes after impact and shot from the same Church-Lispenard intersection, proves that idea false — and this view is only from about the centre of Church Street, showing how close to disappearing behind the AT&T the North Tower is. Over on the west side, on the right side of the shot, Naudet would have had no chance of capturing the view on the left. Another point it also illustrates is the importance of avoiding the near end of the Tribeca hotel in front of the North Tower : look how high up the tower it reaches, squeezing the impact zone into the corner between the hotel and the AT&T. Could Naudet credibly have captured the impact from this position, and with the filmed trajectory of the plane reduced to almost nothing ? Another point : the top of the near end of the hotel would have been even higher up the tower if Naudet had been further down the street — quite possibly obscuring the view altogether by the south end of the AT&T (just one block south — Walker Street), or even before it. The shot had to be from Lispenard, and from the east side — and it was.