Most of the essential facts concerning the events of 11 September 2001 will be all too familiar to anyone likely to be reading this work: approaching 3,000 people died after four airliners were hijacked. Two airliners were deliberately piloted into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City and one into part of the Pentagon in Washington. The fourth airliner, following resistance from the passengers, crashed into the Pennsylvania countryside. Its intended destination is still a matter for conjecture but either the White House or the US Capitol in Washington are considered the most likely. There were 19 direct perpetrators. From the outset it was known that those bent on thus committing suicide were of Middle Eastern origin, for they had thoughtfully allowed their intended victims on the airliners to make telephone calls. And soon the US Government was able to confidently indicate that al-Qaeda in general and bin Laden in particular held ultimate responsibility.1
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