Audio Tapes Chronicling 9/11 Terror Attacks Released by Rutgers Law Review - New York News

Audio Tapes Chronicling 9/11 Terror Attacks Released by Rutgers Law Review


In advance of the tenth anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks, a host of audio recordings has been released.

The tapes lay out what happened on 9/11 in a way we've never heard before: minute-by-minute, through the eyes of air traffic controllers and other civilian and military workers in charge of watching the skies above America.

A phone call to American Airlines was also released. It's from a flight attendant aboard American Airlines Flight 11, which was about to crash into the World Trade Center.

Flight attendant Betty Ong did not know that at the moment, but she knew there was trouble. She made the call at 8:19 a.m. New York time.

“The cockpit's not answering… Getting hijacked,” Ong said.

Four minutes later, air traffic controllers unaware of the flight attendant's call, are trying to figure out why they can no longer track the plane.

One minute later, controllers hear from the terrorist now flying the plane. The terrorist gave no indication he was headed to the twin towers.

Flight 11 hit the north tower at 8:46 a.m.

Meanwhile, United Airlines Flight 175 was being flown toward the south tower of the World Trade Center. Air traffic personnel saw the impact.

At this point the military is involved and it's trying to get information about what's happening. The flow of information was uneven. United Flight 77 was in the vicinity of Washington D.C.

Flight 77 struck the pentagon at 9:37 a.m.

Nine minutes prior to that impact, air traffic control in Cleveland heard trouble in the cockpit of another plane - United Flight 93 - which would eventually crash in Shanksville, Penn.

What controllers heard was a brief part of the attempt by passengers to get control of the plane back from a terrorist.

At 10:07 a.m., an air traffic controller in Virginia spoke to the FAA. The plane crashed at 10:03 a.m.

Twenty-nine minutes later there was talk of military authorization to shoot down any plane that doesn't follow commands to land. But there are no more hijacked planes in the sky.

The final recording in the batch released was of a conversation between two air surveillance technicians who seemed to realize the world had just changed before their eyes.

The tapes were gathered on behalf of the 9/11 commission, but the project didn't get finished in time for the commission's report.

Two investigators then continued the work independently. Law students from Rutgers University helped them review and edit the tapes.

All the recordings FOX Chicago News played Thursday night, except for the phone call from Flight 11, were obtained through the Rutgers Law Review .

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