Customer Reviews: The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (Official Edition)
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on September 12, 2004
You might be wondering what this printing of the book includes versus the others, so I've decided to make up a little grocery list.

1. This book isn't "authorized". That doesn't mean anything to me, but it might to you.

2. This book is cheaper than the authorized paperback version by a few dollars (at MSRP at least).

3. The book is physically smaller.

4. The book includes about 70 pages of reporting and analysis by the New York Times, which the authorized version DOES NOT have.

5. The book DOES NOT include the endnotes, whereas the authorized edition does. However, the superscript endnote references are still included in the text, and correspond to the endnotes section available on-line on the 9/11 Commission website.

6. This version includes the Executive Summary. I am not certain whether the authorized edition includes this or not, but I believe not.

You should be aware before buying either version of this report that the entire authorized edition of the text (including the executive summary and endnotes) is available for FREE on-line at the website for the 9/11 Commission. The only thing in this text that is not available on-line is the 70 pages of New York Times articles, which are (as far as I know) only available in this edition of the book.

The report is generally very interesting to read. It's not as boring as you might be expecting it to be. Any American concerned at all with his government and the fate of his country would do well to read this.
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on September 22, 2004
If you're going to buy an edition of the 9/11 Commission Report, this is probably the one you should get.

Here's why. You can download the whole report for free, in PDF format, from either the GPO or the website of the 9/11 Commission. That means you can read the whole thing on your computer without spending one red cent.

The 'official', and more expensive, editions of the book don't include any text you don't get in the PDF version. This New York Times edition does; it opens with nearly seventy pages of articles from the Grey Lady (none, I think, written by Jayson Blair) about the formation and activities of the Commission.

This edition doesn't include the endnotes, but it does include the superscripts that lead to the notes so that you can check them in the PDF files if you want to. If you're like me, when you sit down to read the report, you don't particularly want to flip back and look at the notes anyway; that's for later, if there's a point for which you want to check a source. And precisely because this edition doesn't include all those additional pages, it's easier to tote around for lunchtime reading.

Of course, since the report itself isn't protected by copyright in the U.S. (it's a government work), you can pretty much do what you want with the free electronic version -- including printing it out. But the paper for that job will probably cost you more than the price of this edition, and the result won't be very handy to lug around with you.

As for the report itself, well, I'm not going to review the content here. Just read it and make up your own mind; that's what we do here in America.
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on July 12, 2016
This product is perfectly what I thought it was and more. It is a very well put together report that has every officially known fact about 9/11. It is well written and formatted to be put in a book. It is a bit dry reading the entire report but I didn't exactly order this for it's page turning thrills. Please ignore reviews that are conspiracies or ones that say "boring" because you hopefully know what this book is. It is an official expert report that lives up to it's title and beyond.
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on November 25, 2004
Many people have said that this Report "reads like a novel." It is indeed surprisingly good when judged in terms of criteria appropriate to works of fiction. But the 9/11 Commission was supposed to conduct a serious investigation into the question of who was responsible for the attacks of 9/11. Instead, it simply presupposed the official conspiracy theory, according to which the attacks were planned and carried out solely by al-Qaeda. The Commission entirely ignored all evidence for the alternative conspiracy theory, according to which the attacks succeeded only because of complicity by members of the US government.

Having written a book that summarizes much of the evidence supportive of this alternative theory ("The New Pearl Harbor: Disturbing Questions about the Bush Administration and 9/11"), I read "The 9/11 Commission Report" to see how it handled this evidence. I found that it simply omitted most of it and distorted the rest.

For example, the Report simply repeats the official story about the 19 Arab hijackers, failing to mention that at least six of the named men have shown up alive. It even suggests that Waleed al-Shehri, who visited the US embassy in Morocco after 9/11, stabbed a flight attendant on AA 11 before it hit the North Tower (page 5). This sloppy scholarship proves to be no aberration.

With regard to why jet fighters failed to intercept any of the flights, the Report provides a radically revisionist account of 9/11. Claiming--in contradiction to the timeline provided by NORAD on September 18, 2001--that the FAA never notified the military about Flights 175, 77, and 93 until after they crashed, the Report fails to explain why NORAD had earlier said otherwise. This new timeline also changes the starting times of all the teleconferences, in order to claim that they could not have been the means for the military to have learned about the hijackings from the FAA. Also, to bolster the claim that the shootdown order was not given until after Flight 93 had crashed, the Report also contradicts by 45 minutes all prior testimony--including Secretary of Transportation Norman Mineta's eyewitness testimony to the Commission itself--as to when Vice President Cheney descended to the Presidential Emergency Operations Center.

With regard to the World Trade Center, the Report fails to mention that fire had never caused steel-frame high-rise buildings to collapse. It also, by way of suggesting why the Twin Towers could have collapsed so easily, says that the core of each building consisted of "a hollow steel shaft" (541n1), whereas in reality the core of each consisted of 47 massive steel columns. While mentioning that the South Tower collapsed in 10 seconds (305), the Report otherwise fails to mention the fact that the collapses manifested 10 standard features of controlled demolitions. The Report handles the collapse of Building 7, which even FEMA admitted it could not explain, by simply failing to mention it.

With regard to the Pentagon, the Report fails to mention that the West Wing would have been the least likely target for terrorists, that its facade did not collapse until 30 minutes after the strike, and other facts in tension with the idea that the Pentagon was struck by Flight 77. And while claiming that al-Qaeda operatives did not strike a nuclear plant for fear that their plane would be shot down (245), the Report fails to point out that the Pentagon is even better protected, so that any aircraft without a military transponder would have been automatically shot down.

With regard to the FBI, the Report fails to mention many stories that are damaging to the official account of 9/11. These omitted stories include attorney David Schippers' report that several FBI agents told him of their advance knowledge of the New York attacks, the complaint by Coleen Rowley (Time magazine person of the year) that FBI headquarters sabotaged the Moussaoui investigation, and the damning allegations made by FBI translator Sibel Edmonds in her 3.5-hour testimony to the Commission.

What about the allegation by Craig Unger (popularized in Michael Moore's "Fahrenheit 9/11") that the White House authorized a private flight carrying Saudis on September 13, before private flights were otherwise allowed? The Report "refutes" this allegation by simply saying that US airspace had been reopened at 11 AM that day (329, 556n25), thereby ignoring the crucial distinction between commercial flights, which were then allowed, and private flights, which were not.

The Report also provides radically ahistorical accounts of the attacks on Afghanistan and Iraq, ignoring all the evidence that these attacks were motivated by desires to establish military bases and to take over the oil (rather than by desires to protect human rights and promote democracy). In this and other ways, the Report omits all evidence that the Bush administration had plans of the sort that could have provided motives for allowing or even engineering the attacks of 9/11.

I have documented these and dozens of other problems in my book "The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions and Distortions." These problems are so great that the Report, instead of being nominated for a National Book Award, should be designated a National Disgrace.
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on September 3, 2004
After reading the first 50 pages or so I began to wonder if I had purchased the wrong book. I wanted the well-written, bi-partisan report I had heard so much about.

Before I get into my criticisms I will point out that the report contains a lot of information and, to a great extent, puts it in a way that reads almost like a novel. It is a long read I fear few will see through to the end. If I am correct, it is a shame because even with its shortcomings it provides a generally good view into many of the significant events of the past quarter-century which led up to the 9/11 tragedy.

Having said that, I will turn my attention to the shortcomings. I listened to most of the televised portion of the hearings and found many discrepancies between what I heard and what I read. I assume that was the result of compromises to achieve unanimity. Unanimity is good, but not at the cost of accuracy. Also, having written many technical reports, I believe I know what to look for when I read one. The attempt to make the report readable results in the use of conversational language which, of course, is not really adequate for describing events and their causes in a truly precise way. Thus, in far too many instances the reader must interpret statements that should be more specific. For example, the report states that a particular document "was read by a tiny number of people." I have no idea how many people make up a "tiny number" in this context.

Most of the book, as one might expect, is a history of the intelligence organizations, their successes and (mostly) failures, and the events leading up to 9/11. It tends to be chronological, which would have been a good idea, but frequently jumps ahead (in time) in order to make a related point and then stays ahead for several other points. Sometimes it returns to its original chronology, but often it does not. Since the reader must keep track of many different aspects of a major event, this annoying practice makes it difficult to maintain a coherent mental image. I would have much preferred either of two approaches: a strictly chronological approach that discusses the various aspects within the time frame or else have separate chronologies for different aspects of the report. What we have is a combination of the two. Perhaps there are other formats that would have worked, but the one chosen can be quite confusing; e.g., it has the reader thinking that the writers have skipped from the Carter administration to the first Bush administration, totally ignoring the Reagan administration during which an awful lot happened. Never fear, fifty pages or so later, the report turns its attention to the Iran-Contra affair for two or three pages but fails to connect it to 9/11 or, for that matter, intelligence issues in general.

The reader who is familiar with the events that actually occurred will have no difficulty spotting the significant events that either received only a slight mention or were ignored altogether. For example, Reagan's bombing of Libya (which shows up in another section) is reported with the comment that it seemed important "at the time". I was not aware that it had ceased to be considered important. Two or three sentences are devoted to the incident. By comparison, several pages are devoted to the cruise missile attacks in 1998 that destroyed an aspirin factory in Sudan and training camps in Afghanistan. It is reported as a very significant event and includes a full discussion of the intelligence that convinced the Clinton administration that the aspirin factory was actually a chemical weapons plant as well as many reasons to believe the attacks were justified. The questions about the true motivation for the attacks are said to have resulted from the movie "Wag the Dog" with only one sentence vaguely referring to "the Lewinsky scandal."

The famous "wall" which was discussed at great length during the hearings for its significance in preventing information sharing is briefly discussed. The report implies that the wall and its problems were evidence of the Clinton administration's determination to arrest and convict potential terrorists. The fact that the wall had a political purpose of intentionally interfering with internal intelligence is barely mentioned.

The worst thing about the report is the recommendations. After all the discussion of intelligence failure at the lower levels because of such things as a shortage of agents and intrusive rules (the wall) as well as failure to act because of political (domestic and international) considerations, the recommendations are mostly bureaucratic changes along with some platitudes about doing things better. For example, it recommends that a better balance between sharing of information (for intelligence purposes) and secrecy (for security purposes) should be established.

The fact that Senator Kerry seems ready to accept the recommendations just as they were presented concerns me. I am only slightly less disappointed in President Bush's apparent acquiescence to the bureaucratic changes. No matter how good the committee's recommendations are found to be, policy must be made by the president and Congress.

Primarily, I am disappointed that the committee was willing to release a report that became bi-partisan (as opposed to non-partisan) through some very obvious compromises that left many criticisms go unstated while others were given more importance than they deserve.
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on September 29, 2005
9/11 is the worst terrorist attack ever done in US soil. It's a big shame that the commission investigating this is, instead of doing their work as expected, just sit there spending lots of money to produce a complete whitewash of this big tragedy in US history.

There are just too many unanswered questions. And some even border to lying to the American public.

One such example is the question of the involvement of foreign nation such as Saudi Arabia and Pakistan with this attack. The evidence that traced Saudi's ambassador for america, Mr Bandar bin Sultan (or also known as Bandar Bush) wife's transferring money, supposedly to help a family with medical problem that end up in the hand of Mohammad Atta.

Or testimony by officials that lead to these foreign nations government's involvement are being ignored, instead of being given a follow up to find whether they're telling a truth or not (which is very easy given today's technology, not to mention the amount of money at the commission disposal).

This is not independent investigation. The keyword is not independent objective investigation, but more accurately bi-partisan politicized whitewash.

Try read the book 9/11 Commission Report Omission and Distortions written by David Ray Griffin, and you will see all the things and evidences that this commission choose to ignore, Professor Griffin did a good job in dissecting the whole book and refuting what's wrong inside it.

Good luck finding the truth.
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on December 6, 2004
This book is by no means a report from an 'independent' investigation. Members on the panel have relations throughout the government, [...]

The entire investigation into 9/11 was hampered from the very beginning. The editor in chief of Fire Engineering Magazine, William Manning, called the investigation a 'half baked farce' in describing the coverup and destruction of evidence which commenced immediately after 9/11.

This book reads like a novel, and to the average person probably makes them feel like they have gained an understanding of 9/11, but in fact this book directly avoided hundreds of questions asked by the 9/11 family steering committee, and failed to answer any of the unknown questions, only to repeat the official story and to attempt to come up with yet another timeline which could cover the differences in the FAA and NORAD timelines.

DO NOT PAY MONEY FOR THIS BOOK. If you want to read it, read it online, do not support such a shoddy 'independent investigation'. If it were a real investigation it would contain a decent index and it would mention WTC7, which it doesn't.
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on May 17, 2005
The Warren Commission is officially off the hook about their lies on the Kennedy Assassination. 9/11 as told by mainstream sources is the biggest joke and should never be believed. The unrefutable documented facts show that there is something wrong with this report. If people don't take time and dig for the truth it's their own fault. Just don't be the one that falls into that naive batch. In the memory of the over 3000 dead on 9/11 and the countless civilians murdered by bombs in Afghanistan and Irag, along with the brave military who are fighting and dying, we can do better than a disgraceful report like this. Check the websites that are mentioned in some of the reviews here and get educated on the unrefutable documented facts. DAVID GRIFFIN is the name you should stamp on your forehead so check out his books please.
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on September 17, 2013
I purchased a copy of this report back when it first came out and read it cover to cover. Over the years, as more information has surfaced and documentation has become available it is more than obvious that this commission was a sham. I recently purchased a new copy of the rerport that I use as a reference point to what is currently known or available. Though this report is full of holes and half truthes I still urge anyone interested in the topic of 9/11 to own a copy. I have read several other books by authors that are very succesful at picking this report apart or offering information that was ommited or downplayed. So having a copy of this report is an excellent way to reference new information, comparing facts in books and reports that have been published since. It does not matter if you believe in the conspiracy theories that are out there, if you believe it was a flase flag attack or are just looking for the truth about what happened. This report, at the very least, will prove to you that our government simply does not care about knowing what the truth really is. I would reccommend pairing this report with the Jim Marrs book "The Terror Conspiracy Revisited" or another well respected author. You can compare side by side the information being offered to you.
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on December 16, 2005
Having read the copy of this work that I bought, I'm compelled to point out, in true government vernacular, I find no evidence of any serious attempt to investigate the true motives, real causes and factual perpetrators of the mass murders committed on 9/11. But, no one will ever convince me that these atrocities were perpetrated by a bunch of Arabs armed with box knives. Like the Warren Commission's absurd report, this one is nothing more than another cheap cover-up. And, this one doesn't even include any volumes of the witnesses' testimony. The CFR and members of their satellite secret societies are learning...

Anyone who seriously believes the nonsensical distortions of fact and truth presented in this book, and who accepts its inexcusable omissions therefrom, undoubtedly still believes in the Tooth Fairy

Like at least one other reviewer, I wish I could have given this work a rating of zero stars; even that's far more than it's worth.

I keep my copy within easy reach of the toilet in my bathroom---not for reading---though it is good for an occasional laugh. I keep it handy in the off chance that I may run out of toilet tissue.
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