MENU

HOME

DAILY BRIEF

LATEST POSTS

J.M. BERGER

ISIS: STATE OF TERROR

JIHAD JOE

LINKS

Blogs of War

Hizballah Cavalcade

Internet Haganah

Jihadology

Jihadica

Kremlin Trolls

Making Sense of Jihad

Selected Wisdom

Views from the Occident

TAGS

American Terrorists

Anwar Awlaki

Al Qaeda

AQAP

American Al Qaeda Members

Inspire Magazine

Revolution Muslim

OKBOMB


News, documents and analysis on violent extremism


Monday, May 12, 2008
 

Todd Beamer's Cell Phone

A couple of people have e-mailed me now about the item linked below, so I thought I would just save us all some time and briefly post my thoughts about the issues it raises.

This 9/29/2001 FBI lead sheet details phone calls made in relation to the cell phone of Todd Beamer, a passenger on United 93, the airplane hijacked on September 11 that crashed in Pennsylvania. Beamer is famously remembered for reporting that the passengers were planning to storm the cockpit and for issuing the call to that action: "Let's roll."

Todd Beamer cell phone log

The document is confusing. At first glance it appears to list calls that were made by Beamer using the cell phone. What raised questions with my correspondents is the fact that the log shows almost 20 calls after United 93 crashed. All of the calls related to a number in Woodbridge, NJ, and all of them are listed as exactly one minute (suggesting the call was not completed).

My best guess here is that the log represents calls to Beamer's cell, in which case the post-crash calls might have been someone with the phone company or the government pinging to locate the phone in the wreckage, or frantic calls from a friend or family member who was trying to ascertain whether Beamer had been on the flight. The latter theory might make more sense, since the calls start pretty early.

More confusingly, there is a call shortly before the flight took off listed as an "incoming call" with the "number called" being the same number that the document identifies as Beamer's cell phone. (This could be a call to listen to voicemail, or a call to voicemail paired with using the "reply to message" function that most voicemail offers.)

Even if you're of a conspiratorial bent on this issue (which I am not), it's difficult to believe the FBI would release a document showing that Beamer's cell phone was in use after the crash. The 9/11 Commission cites the document but doesn't comment on the post-crash entries.

I'm open to hearing an explanation. If you have actual and specific knowledge of how to read this document, feel free to drop me a line and I'll update this posting.

If you're just guessing, well, you're welcome to speculate and/or investigate-and-publish away, but this post represents the sum total of my insight on the document at this time, and I don't currently have a lot of time to devote to this (either in terms of investigating further or debating it via e-mail). If I get better information, I will post it here. Happy hunting...

Labels: , , ,



Views expressed on INTELWIRE are those of the author alone.


     



     

Tweets referencing this post:

loading..



BOOKS

"...smart, granular analysis..."

ISIS: The State of Terror
"Jessica Stern and J.M. Berger's new book, "ISIS," should be required reading for every politician and policymaker... Their smart, granular analysis is a bracing antidote to both facile dismissals and wild exaggerations... a nuanced and readable account of the ideological and organizational origins of the group." -- Washington Post

More on ISIS: The State of Terror

"...a timely warning..."

Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam:
"At a time when some politicians and pundits blur the line between Islam and terrorism, Berger, who knows this subject far better than the demagogues, sharply cautions against vilifying Muslim Americans. ... It is a timely warning from an expert who has not lost his perspective." -- New York Times

More on Jihad Joe

ABOUT

INTELWIRE is a web site edited by J.M. Berger. a researcher, analyst and consultant covering extremism, with a special focus on extremist activities in the U.S. and extremist use of social media. He is a non-resident fellow with the Brookings Institution, Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World, and author of the critically acclaimed Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam, the only definitive history of the U.S. jihadist movement, and co-author of ISIS: The State of Terror with Jessica Stern.

RECENT

Newest posts!

Suicide bombing in Khost

J.M. Berger on Al Jazeera

A Hidden Face in a Hidden War

9/11 Commission, FBI Source Documents, Chronologic...

9/11 Commission, FBI Source Documents, Chronologic...

New OKC Document Claims Prior Knowledge of Bombing...

Playing Catch-Up On Yahya Al-Libbi

9/11 Commission, FBI Source Documents, Chronologic...

9/11 Commission, FBI Source Documents, Chronologic...

The Perils of Awakening

EXCLUSIVES


New York Pipe Bomb Suspect Linked to Revolution Muslim

The Utility of Lone Wolves

Interview with Online Jihadist Abu Suleiman Al Nasser

A Way Forward for CVE: The Five Ds

How Terrorists Use The Internet: Just Like You

PATCON: The FBI's Secret War on the Militia Movement

Interview About Jihad With Controversial Cleric Bilal Philips

Forgeries on the Jihadist Forums

U.S. Gave Millions To Charity Linked To Al Qaeda, Anwar Awlaki

State Department Secretly Met With Followers of Blind Sheikh

State Department Put 'Political Pressure' On FBI To Deport Brother-in-Law Of Osama Bin Laden In 1995

FBI Records Reveal Details Of Nixon-Era Racial Profiling Program Targeting Arabs

Gaza Flotilla Official Was Foreign Fighter in Bosnia War

U.S. Had 'High Confidence' Of UBL Attack In June 2001

Behind the Handshake: The Rumsfeld-Saddam Meeting