Did it really collapse from fire, or was it actually destroyed by a controlled demolition? Evidence presented in a Danish court house on the 9/11 destruction of the third tower World Trade Center 7, may resurrect the whole debate and conspiracy theory.
A libel case in the Danish Eastern High Court (Østre Landsret) in Copenhagen Thursday will now admit more actual evidence on the building's collapse.
[Editor's note: See our report from the actual court proceedings here. ]
A lower court held in 2013 that it was in the realm of press freedoms of speech for Danish newspaper Weekendavisen to call Niels Harrit, an associate professor in chemistry from the University of Copenhagen a ‘crackpot’ [in Danish, 'tosse', ed.] in an opinion piece.
Video will be shown
Niels Harrit will have none of it.
He appealed the ruling to a higher court, and now, a separate ruling will allow him to present evidence on the 9/11 attacks in court.
It will consist of a video of the 47-story building being swallowed up by the ground and replaced with a puff of smoke. A lower quality version of the same video on youtube can be seen here:
Dust is not just dust
But intriguingly, his evidence will also include a sample of dust.
The dust evidence is crucial to understand why the World Trade Center 7 (WTC7) imploded seven hours after the 9/11 attacks on New York City in 2001, according to Niels Harrit.
“I will bring in a dust sample, and drag a magnet along the plastic bag. The little black rim around the rim of the magnet, these are the iron spheres with iron content, and this is specific for WTC dust, “ he says.
The dust thereby shows traces of the use of thermite, an incendiary whose chemical reaction ramps up temperatures to 2500 centigrade, enough to cut thorugh steel columns. This supports his contention that all the three skyscrapers were in fact taken down by explosives and incendiaries.
Read also: 9/11: Cover-up or crazy conspiracy
'Crackpots' from the 9/11 sceptics movement
The video of the collapse of the building will be played in court as part of Niels Harrit’s argument that the collapse could not take place in this way if it were simply following the laws of nature. And his argument will include references to scientists right back from the history of physics, such as Galileo and Newton.
Niels Harrit originally brought the libel suit against Weekendavisen back in 2013. An exhibition about the Armenian genocide at the Royal Library in Copenhagen included Turkey’s view of the events. This was criticised in an opinion piece by Søren Villemoes of Weekendavisen.
"Is the library soon going to open its doors to an exhibition showing us 'alternative' theories about evolution? Should we have a poster promoting creationist deceptions hanging in one of Denmark's finest institutions of enlightenment? Why not just invite in Niels Harrit and the other crackpots from the 9/11 sceptics movement while we are at it? What about the holocaust denial movement? Should they have a wall at their disposal where they can present their usual nonsense about the lack of chimneys on the 'alleged' gas chambers?"
Newspaper held 'freedom of speech'
It was this passage that offended Niels Harrit.
"This was very vicious. I am used to being called ugly things. But I sued them for libel, and I lost the case. Not because I was wrong. But because the journalist was protected by the freedom of speech."
Freedom of speech is one thing. Libel is another, and the Danish criminal code, can still indict people for violating 'the personal honour of another by offensive words or conduct or by making or spreading allegations of an act likely to disparage him in the esteem of his fellow citizens'.
Niels Harrit argues that Søren Villemoes can’t use the freedom of speech, because there has to be some factual basis.
"In this case, the factual basis for my opponents claims is non-existing. They have nothing. I have been an associate professor for more 40 years. I have a reputation as an honest, established scientist. This is my plea," he says.
Weekendavisen's Søren Villemoes: Putting on my tin foil hat
The University Post has so far not been able to get a comment from Weekendavisen.
But Søren Villemoes from Weekendavisen said in connection with the case at the lower court to Jv.dk that "I am not describing him [Niels Harrit, ed.] personally. But rather I describe the viewpoint that he represents in the debate, as 'crackpot'.
He was happy at the time to have the lower court upholding his freedom. "If this was not the case, it would be a serious restriction of the freedom of speech," he then said.
On his Facebook page before the court hearing, Søren Villemoes is upbeat Wednesday.
"I am putting on my tin foil hat and making myself ready for the final showdown in crackpot-gate between Niels Harrit and yours truly tomorrow in the high court. I can't wait to hear about the melting point of steel."
Physicist, architect to testify
According to Niels Harrit, the new trial at the Eastern High Court is different for other reasons.
Professor of theoretical physics, Per Hedegård from the University of Copenhagen's Niels Bohr Institute was originally one of Niels Harrit’s critics. But Niels Harrit will now call him in as his own witness. According to Niels Harrit, Per Hedegård has also been looking at the data again, and has come out on his side, he says.
Supplementing his testimony will be architect Jan Utzon, son of Jørn Utzon, who will say that this kind of building, a steel-framed high rise, has never, EVER collapsed due to fire.
Niels Harrit is optimistic about the case, and will be his own advocate in court.
”If they rule according to the law I will win. Freedom of speech is not limitless”.
[Editor's note: See the University Post report from the actual court proceedings here. ]
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