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TWA 800 Investigation Cover-Up:
The Proof

by Ian Williams Goddard

Traces of the explosive PETN (used in both bombs and guided missiles) were found on the debris of TWA flight 800, which crashed off the Long Island shore on July 17, 1996 killing 230 people. The crash has been classified as an accident [1].

The finding of PETN was, however, not revealed to the public at an FBI or NTSB press conference. The only reason this most significant discovery became known to the American people was because several high-level investigators leaked the informa tion to the New York Times [2].

According to Reuters [3], the first FBI reaction to this leaked report was an official "no comment." When chief FBI crash investigator James Kallstrom was asked how long he had known about this evidence, Reuters reported that "Kallstrom would not disclose how long he had known of the findings."

According to the New York Times article [2]:

The [positive] test was conducted as long as two weeks ago, investigators said. But instead of announcing the finding then, F.B.I. officials decided to take extraordinary precautions to keep the findings secret as long as possible. The information was so tightly controlled that only three or four senior investigators knew about it until several [others]...were told...at a private briefing...

The FBI withheld this major evidence for two weeks, and the only reason it ever got out was due to a leak. During those two weeks what were we being told by Kallstrom & Co.? That they had no definite evidence of a missile or bomb on board. Were we being lied to? Was there a coverup underway? The simple and indisputable answer is "yes."

Yet, even as explosives residue was found on the bodies of victims [4] and on the outside of the plane [2], the FBI moved quickly to sweep away the evidence that had become know to the public by suggesting that the explosive material must have been inadvertently tracked into the plane by Gulf War soldiers [5] or as a result of bomb training supposedly conducted inside the plane a few weeks before [6].


When asked by the press about the leaking of truth to the public, Reuters [3] reported that "Kallstrom appeared irritated... He said if the information had come from anyone on his staff, he would fire them."

That -- quantified as fear of dishonorable discharge -- is intimidation. We've just seen proof of cover-up and now proof of intimidation. It is clear that this intimidation was initiated as a means to enforce and preserve the cover-up.

If those who reveal the truth are to be fired, then only those who help to suppress the truth will remain hired. The facts prove that truth suppression is the job for which FBI personnel are being employed. With this proof of intimidation in hand, the question "How could they keep so many people quiet?" is answered loud and clear.


Investigators at the reconstruction hangar in Calverton, New York consistently scored positive PETN "hits" with their "highly sophisticated" Egis bomb-detection system. However, secondary explosives tests conducted at FBI headquarters in Washington D.C. were consistently negative on the same debris. The second negative tests always superseded the first positive tests.

According to the New York Times [6], with their positive tests constantly contradicted by the FBI in D.C., hangar investigators began to suspect that these FBI findings were part of an attempt to cover up the truth. As the New York Times reported:

Certain federal agents, calling the FBI's laboratory in Washington a "black hole," remained convinced that the bureau was hiding its positive lab confirmations.

To put it bluntly, the investigators believed the FBI was lying. The above citation is the testimony of investigators telling us that they believe the FBI is conducting a cover-up. The evidence suggests that while the truth stops at the top, the rank-and-file investigators are generally honest and through them reports have gotten the most true picture.

One means, apart from intimidation, for the cover-up planners on the top to prevent leaks of truth from those partial to the truth below them is to break the investigation into many pieces, thereby preventing any one person from seeing and thus revealing the whole picture.


It appears that even within the investigation, investigators operate in a atmosphere of pervasive secrecy. is Describing day-to-day conditions inside the TWA 800 debris reconstruction operation -- the center of the investigation -- the New York T imes [6] reported that:

Word spread by whispers and winks. The secrecy, even among the federal agents, had people waiting to find "secure lines" before telephoning colleagues. The investigators invented loaded phrases of circumspection.

Such an effort of investigators to hide information not only from the press but from other investigators clearly suggests that the investigation has been broken down according to plan into compartmentalized units that hide information from each other. Such organization ensures that nobody can see the big picture and thus that everyone below the top is mostly in the dark.

Such compartmentalization is the classical structure of secretive government operations. The CIA, for example, compartmentalizes knowledge of its operations, allowing a given agent to know only as much as they need to know to perform their assignment.

We can see such compartmentalization even in the reconstruction, where, unlike past crash reconstructions, TWA 800 has been or is still being (?) reassembled in at least three separate hangars. In each hangar a separate portion of the plane is being rebuilt [7]. Like the blind men and the elephant, if they cannot see the whole elephant, they cannot see the elephant.


The evidence proves that rank-and-file investigators are being intimidated into silence against their initial and natural inclinations to tell the truth. Such instinctive honesty is why, in case after case, we get the truth from a given investigator but then silence, indicating that after their wrongful respect of the truth they were censured.

For example: after Medical Examiner Dr. Charles V. Wetli informed reporters that passengers in the forward portion for the plane were hit hardest -- indicating that the major event was in the front, not the center of the plane -- the New York Times [6] reported that Dr. Wetli and others then "backed off even the shadings of meaning their examinations had produced. An explosion had happened and killed people was as much as he could say."

The statement, "x was as much as he could say," means: x was as much as he is ALLOWED to say. Forget about the most severe trauma being experienced by victims in the front of the plane. Forget about it! The event simply killed people, that is all you need to know, that is all Dr. Wetli is allowed to say. The truth is forbidden, the truth is covered away.


TWA pilots who were interviewed by the St. Louis Post Dispatch [8] said that they had come to the conclusion that "people who had information concerning the explosion, including those who reported seeing a missile, had been pressured to remain silent."

When a reporter from the Southampton Independent [9] was granted an "exclusive behind-the-scenes tour" of a Coast Guard station where debris were gathered -- a location that is "off-limits to the public and the press, except with special permission" -- she observed ATF agents and noted that "The press is forbidden to talk to their staff, or to the FBI agents on site."

Not only is the press "forbidden to talk" but inversely ATF and FBI agents are prohibited from speaking to the press. There is therefore a manditory universal code of silence. As we can see, every effort has been made to keep the American people separated from the truth about TWA 800.


The FBI's desire to conceal the debris from public view was clear from the start. The FBI even made sure that all photographs were developed on-site so as to prevent the possibility that the truth might leak out through private-sector photo shops. As Newsweek (08/5/96) reported:

FBI men stopped NTSB officials from photographing the wreckage because "they didn't want our people taking pictures and sending them out to Snappy photo" as opposed to a secure FBI lab...

Indeed every effort was made to keep debris out of public site. In an article about the recovery scene on the public beach after the crash, Newsday [10] described a boathouse that was used to store the evidence that the Navy crash-recovery team was bringing ashore, observing that:

[T]he boathouse...remained cordoned off by police tape. Windows in the boathouse are blocked with cardboard, and the media is forbidden to take pictures because investigators don't want evidence photographed.

Logical analysis: what did the FBI-Navy do to the windows? They covered them up. What did they do to our eyes by default? They covered them up. What does the physical evidence prove that the authorities have been conducting? The evidence overwhelming confirms that the authorities have been perpetrating a cover-up of the truth about TWA 800.


Not only is the FBI hiding (a) the debris, (b) the reconstruction, (c) the radar records, (d) the satellite records, (e) the photo negatives, but throughout the investigation, even before the gathering of debris, the FBI and NTSB have constantly favored a bomb on-board or mechanical failure even when they are said to have zero supporting evidence, over the missile theory with over 150 consistent and uniformly triangulated eyewitnesses accounts of a missile hit according to investigators [11].

If theory X has 0 truth-points and theory Y has 150 truth-points, and yet Mr. Jones prefers and promotes theory X over Y, then logic clearly dictates that Mr. Jones must have an aversion to the truth and that he must want to suppress and cover up the truth. The FBI-Navy-NTSB cover-up is just so simple to see.


The numerous pieces of evidence presented in this report prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a superstructure of silence, circumspection, deception, and intimidation have been constructed around the official TWA 800 crash investigation. The logical and obvious objective of this superstructure is to conceal and suppress the truth about the sudden and tragic annihilation of TWA 800, which snuffed out the lives of 230 people.

The American people have a right to know the truth about the crash of TWA 800. If the "government of the people" does not tell the people the truth about the deaths of hundreds of the people, but instead works to suppress the truth, then the government is not the servant but the master of the people, and a ruthless master at that. Such an abhorrent reality is a wholesale desecration of the founding principles of this nation.

May the truth and the people be set free.


VISIT Ian Goddard's Universe -----> http://www.erols.com/igoddard

(c) 1997 Ian Williams Goddard - (*) free to copy nonprofit w/ attribute.

TWA 800: THE FACTS --> http://www.erols.com/igoddard/twa-fact.htm

WACO - WTC - OKC ---> http://www.erols.com/igoddard/facts.htm

[1] LEXINGTON HERALD-LEADER: Sonar finds underwater wreckage, 07/21/96.
[2] THE NEW YORK TIMES: Prime Evidence Found That Device Exploded in Cabin of Flight 800. Don Van Natta Jr., 08/23/96.
[3] REUTERS: FBI Finds Traces of Explosive on TWA Debris, 08/23/96.
[4] TIME DAILY: Chemical Found on TWA Victims' Bodies, 07/23/96.
[5] THE WASHINGTON POST: TWA Probe: Building a Case Without Critical Evidence. Serge F. Kovaleski and Don Phillips, 10/03/96.
[6] THE NEW YORK TIMES: Behind a Calm Facade Investigation Embodied Chaos, Distrust, Stress. Joe Sexton, 08/23/96.
[7] NTSB REPORT: TWA 800 Investigation Chronology, September 24, 1996.
[8] ST. LOUIS POST DISPATCH: Some TWA Pilots Support Navy Missile Theory. Monte Reel, 11/09/96.
[9] THE SOUTHAMPTON INDEPENDENT: TWA 800: The Search Continues. Debbie Tuma, 07/31/96.
[10] NEWSDAY: Tent City at Command Center. Al Baker and Soraya Nelson, 07/21/96.
[11] THE NEW YORK POST: TWA Probers: Missile Witnesses "Credible." Murray Weiss, 09/22/96.

Posted here January 7, 1997
Web Page: http://www.aci.net/kalliste/