Heresy Central

9/11, the Discreet Charm of the Japanese, and the Alchemy of Narrative

Originally published at:

A year and a half ago, I wrote a little piece about 9/11 flight attendant Betty Ong. While I have been certain for some time that Betty Ong never existed, and also reasoned that if one found one such fake, there were bound to be some others, I still assumed that most of the nearly 3,000 victims were…

Great read.

You touch upon the question how they would have managed to get the real employees of that Japanese bank to go along with the story. However, what about the people that actually were supposed to come to work that day at the WTC towers? Did they simply manage to evacuate them all before blowing up the towers? Did they somehow keep them out altogether?

When I visited NY in December 2001, there were vigils with photographs of perished firemen and candle lights in various places in Manhattan. People would stop by and pray or meditate in silence. Your hypothesis would require that these firemen were invented too. This sort of victim “with deep ties to the community” would probably be the hardest to fake. The safe bet would have been to sacrifice at least some people for real.

I guess the victims of 911 are a hybrid of those who really existed, and fake ones like Black/Chinese Betty Ong and (probably) these Japanese victims of 911.

Fake victims (with their mourning friends and relatives) have this beautiful ‘extra’ that they can only talk in the way their inventors make them talk. That usually means that they don’t talk at all. They are just devastated by the terror event, you see. And they also never stand up against the usual routine of Western armies who will bomb countries in order to retaliate the event, kill the perpetrators (who never were convicted in front of a trial) and with them kill hundreds of thousands other citizens. The silence of fake victims must be seen in only one way: they agree with the retaliation and the war. Fake victims also have the advantage that they make the death toll rise from the terrorist event. I don’t think that 200 American deaths in the WTC would have led to an invasion in Afghanistan, or Iraq. But 3000, including people from Japan and elsewhere, that is much more impressive!

Jon, I am reading: ‘breakfast of champions’ from Vonnegut right now. There, one of the characters explains that humans are driven by 2 emotions only: gold and women’s underpants. And since these two emotions are so ridiculous to cling to, though man believes they are not, shows that mankind is able to believe anything.

Gullibility is not a vice of mankind, but given that man is known to be gullible, it is pretty simple for ‘them’ to make mankind believe anything, whether it relates to 911, race, climate, food, addictives, sexuality, anything. And it is not gullibility that is the vice, but the people who abuse other man’s trust who commit a vice. I am sure that PR agents disagree there with me. And I am also sure that they can be pretty convincing in explaining why abusing one’s trust is -not- a vice of mankind. And I am sure that I am able to believe that, because I am a human too. Which is one of the reasons why I turn the screen off, don’t listen to the news, etc. Still, there is quite a lot to unlearn from the days that I still listened to news (and believed it). And since news is everywhere, it is not that simple to completely quarantine yourself from it…

I agree that it is much easier to talk about steel frames and WTC 7 (that fell in its own footprint), than talk about planes that did not hit WTC or victims of 911 who do not exist. The former is quite a dull discussion, the latter ‘explosive’. The latter can also not be made into a movie or a book (too far away from the conventional wisdom that magic on such a grand scale simply cannot happen), while the former can and probably will. Plot: some nerd starts to doubt the official narrative of 911 and finds out that apart from that 2 planes hit the WTC and that 3000 people died on 911, much else was going on! Someday that will be televised, like Oliver Stone’s JFK, and that will be called ‘our history’.

Jon, I want to thank you for writing yet another entertaining and thoughtful essay.

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However, what about the people that actually were supposed to come to work that day at the WTC towers? Did they simply manage to evacuate them all before blowing up the towers? Did they somehow keep them out altogether?

Well, I don’t really know the answer to that. I would guess that it was the latter, or mostly that. Probably, by and large, there was nobody (or hardly anybody) in the buildings to evacuate before they blew them up. But I’m not sure really. This is one of these questions that, if there was a genuine investigation, really taking seriously the task of getting to the bottom of all this, they would locate the people who worked in the towers and interview them all. I personally knew (and have lost touch with him) somebody who was working in one of the twin towers. He told me in a conversation not long after the whole thing that, for some reason (I have no idea what the reason was) he wasn’t supposed to go to work that day. He attributed this to random luck, but now I look back on that conversation and think that probably it wasn’t random luck at all. If I had it back, I would have asked him whether he personally knew anybody who had died. (I would bet he didn’t and probably it would turn out that the other people in the office all had some reason or other not to go in that day. But… I’m not 100% sure on this either.)

As regards the rest of it, the people lighting candles and such could be “professional mourners”. Or not. I remember that when Princess Diana died, there were all these candlelight vigils in England and none of those people knew Diana personally. Though, again, that might or might not have been a “spontaneous” outpouring of public emotion. I really don’t know…

As for the firemen, I did have problems with that as well. One does balk at the 343 (I just looked it up) firefighters all being fake. How could one get away with this? It is much easier to come to an understanding of how they could insert a fake victim or two or three somewhere but over 300 NYC firefighters! Well, I’m not committed absolutely to the strong hypothesis that absolutely nobody died on 9/11, but I guess my position is that it’s all very well to reason on a priori grounds that the firefighters or whoever else must be real people because a hoax of that scale is simply impossible. Well, is it? One is reminded of Hitler’s observation (or attributed to him, anyway…) that the big lie is more readily believed than the little one because nobody imagines that anybody would have the… chutzpah… to attempt the big lie! Again, in principle, a real investigation could get to the bottom of all this, couldn’t it? I think a key question is how many people personally knew (or claim that they did) any of these 9/11 victims? And, of course, there is the related question of how many people really saw any planes crash into any buildings.

I’ve come to realize that the mainstream of the 9/11 Truth movement just adamantly declines to investigate these questions.

Right. That is a very key issue. If you invent the people, you have complete control over the narrative. Real people who had lost their loved ones could say anything, it’s unpredictable, but these fakes, “crisis actors”, just hit the talking points you want them to hit. The downside, of course, is that these fakes tend to come across as fakes. Sometimes they are such poor actors that the whole thing is laughably fake. For a while there was a whole genre of video on youtube laughing at this stuff, but most of those videos have been removed.

I’m going to have to revise the essay a bit because I now found that they did create a bit of a back story in Japanese for the 9/11 Taku. The guy was supposedly from the city of Shimonoseki in Yamaguchi prefecture and attended Toyora High school. But it seems like a pretty half-hearted effort. I am still quite certain that both this guy and Kazuhiro Anai are just fake. I mean, really, the complete lack of any photographic record should be, in and of itself, enough to tell us that.

Today, I revised the article a bit to incorporate some other things I found. What is strange is that they did create a (rather lame) back story of where Taku was from , i.e. Yamaguchi prefecture in southern Japan. The alleged father is from there and so on. Yet, somehow, the people who created the lame memorial pages in English (and they are really lame!) were unaware of that back story, so they didn’t include that, just put him down as being Japanese… and, surely you see how preposterous that is, no? Imagine if somebody dies in a terrorist event and they say the person is from Germany and that’s it. And search as you will, you can’t find any reference to the person being from Munich or Frankfurt or Hamburg or wherever. Or just the general region like Bavaria. The person is just “from Germany”! LOL!

But it doesn’t seem to matter, I guess. It is striking how little people are really paying attention. It would be quite a bit of painstaking work to create a credible life history for nearly 3000 people, but they didn’t bother. Even the most important people in the narrative, like a Betty Ong, there is practically nothing there really. But these lesser ciphers…

Yes, the storyline of the Japanese 911 victims is hard to believe, but not impossible if you look at it superficially. I think that such a storyline is good enough to tell to the (easily distracted) public, so why aim for more if you are into storywriting? It is as if all these incidents are given to the public as an appetizer (the event), but the main course (the explanation) never comes, we just get more appetizers.

Not being American, and not really caring about 911, I remember that I did not pay much interest in 911 at the time. I do remember that I was much more intrigued by the Antrax envelopes that were sent to congressmen; seemed much more sinister to me. And in retrospect that was a perfect distraction (for people like me) to not ask too many questions about the 911 storyline. And from there it just continued with Rumsfeld’s acknowledgement that Al Qaida caved itself in in Afghanistan, the Bin Laden videotapes and then the Liberation of Afghanistan by US troops, etc, etc. If you follow the news on a daily diet (like I did back then), it is very easy to get distracted by the most ludicrous stories: all appetizers; and the moment the audience at large may ask sceptical questions, they are led to another appetizer (e.g., antrax), etc.

Now being a balibomb survivor, and having been in close contact with victims, their friends and relatives, I can assure you that all the 4 Dutch who died there l can be found on internet (Dutch sites), and that friends and relatives did make an effort to make the victims ‘alive’ again by talking with journalists and report their personal stories to some detail. So that not much can be found about the 911 Japanese victims, is a bit odd. Or is it a cultural thing of Japanese people being ‘shy’, not ‘talkative’, ‘mourning for themselves’?

Actually, there are 2 people from Japan who died during the balibombings in 2002, so here is a perfect natural experiment.

Bali really happened, and Japanese people (2 of them) died. See

If 911 is similar to Bali (and not a hybrid or staged event), you would expect at least as little coverage in Japan about the Bali victims as they reported on the Japanese 911 victims.

Here are their names:

Kosuke Suzuki

Yuka Suzuki

So here is a quick result


Kosuke Suzuki Balibombings


Yuka Suzuki Balibombings

In English stories pop-up about names of relatives who mourn for these Japanese. And that is just a quick and dirty Google search (English language). Curious to know what would happen if you expand the search in Japanese language similar as to what you did for the 911 Japanese victims. Will the result be the same or different? - Just a thought for another research project…

Well, thanks a lot for this. It provides some baseline comparison. Let’s see…

It is not hard to find out that the two people, Kosuke Suzuki and Yuka Suzuki were a married couple and their names in Japanese are:

鈴木康介 and 鈴木由香 respectively.

There is a photo of them here:

And that is already more than we have for either of the two alleged Japanese 9/11 victims! One little wrinkle is that (another) Kosuke Suzuki (written the same as the Bali victim in Kanji) is a famous (or moderately famous) actor. You can see that by googling the Japanese name “鈴木康介”.

Well, there’s not a lot of information on this couple, but at least there is that photo that one finds quite quickly. There are some articles that say that this couple had visited Bali many times. They identified the woman from dental records.

I have to admit, very little life history. Something comes up about the parents of both victims. Nothing about them having any children, but maybe they didn’t have any. I was trying to find a memorial page for either of them with a bit of history, like where they went to school and not finding anything. I haven’t looked as hard as I did with the two 9/11 Japanese victims. Maybe I’ll look a bit more later.

Oh, and here is something I forgot to mention that is quite funny. (At least IMHO it is.)

There was (or maybe still is) this project to have bloggers sort of “adopt” a 9/11 victim and write a tribute to that person. It was called the “2996 project”.

I came across the 2996 project blog entry for Kazuhiro Anai. Check this out!

Look at how the guy just fails to find out anything about this person and starts bullshitting. Reminds me of the examination answer of somebody who never studied the material!

Look at the third comment under that blog post. The guy writes that he
also has a Japanese victim to write a blog entry about and can’t find any information about the person! Funny enough, the whole thing has such a presumption of being real that these people don’t see anything so strange about the fact that they can’t dig up any information at all about the people they’re supposed to be writing about!

Pity that nothing came (or seems to have come) out of the test. But then, maybe the sample of 2 individuals (in Bali and 911) was too small and led to a type II error. Or maybe the Japanese really are less ‘loud’ than the Dutch when they remember their victims.

That 2996 project is obviously trying to make worthy victims out of those who died during 911. I would only start to believe in their sincerity, if they would try to the same thing about the victims who died in e.g., Fallujah, Basra, Al-Shifa, Benghazi, etc, due to US, GB, and NATO bombing. But that of course will never happen… And I would certainly start to complain (and not consider the site a joke anymore) if they would try to make a worthy victim out of people that I know who died in such terrorist attacks.

But I am pretty sure that the 2996 bloggers don’t have to be afraid that they will ever get a complaint from a friend or relative of all the victims that they commemorate.

Well, yeah, there is the issue of the sample being so small. That’s for sure. With the Suzuki couple that died in Bali, at least there is one photo that is labelled as having been provided by family members. A bit more searching in Japanese (which is quite laborious for me) I did find that they were apparently from the city of Yokohama and the husband was supposed to have worked for the city. An office worker. Well, a clerk, I guess. Nothing more precise than that. Apparently, the couple went to Bali every year since 1996, loved the place.

Well, are we 100% sure that these two are real people? I honestly don’t know what to think. I honestly don’t know what one’s expectations should be in terms of what one should find. I have to admit that I haven’t found any descriptions from anybody, like friends or co-workers, who seemed to have known these people. Did they have any hobbies besides taking their yearly vacation in Bali? In general, so far, I could say that with this Suzuki couple, it’s hard to find any reality to them outside of them being victims of that Bali bombing. They were from Yokohama and the husband worked for the city. Pretty vague… Trying to narrow in using Yokohama (横浜) in search strings doesn’t get me very far.

Cripes, I honestly just don’t know…

Well, at least there is a photo of these people. Those two Japanese 9/11 victims that I looked at, neither of whom even has a photo, that’s really just crazy. I can’t believe that either of those are real people.

But if you search using the Dutch language, you can find some real biographical information about the Dutch victims, right? You can figure out where they went to school or worked and stuff like this, right?

There is plenty if you Google the 4 Duch names who died during the Balibombings

You will find birth dates, places of burial, names of family and relatives, where they lived, blogs and reports of people who remember the victims, etc etc. Also the people who remembered them have a tracklist on internet, long after Bali, which is related to many things and most often NOT Bali.

Which got me thinking about 911 Dutch victim (n=1): Ingeborg Lariby

Well a quick and dirty search revealed… not much…

She has 2 parents, who are very media and internet shy (understandable perhaps), and for instance “say” according to the info of a Dutch muckymuck journalist specialized in US issues, that they are happy that justice had its course when Bin Laden died in 2011, but that they still grieve about the death of their daughter. See:

I could not find blogs, Facebook pages of friends who remember her. She seemed to have had no partner, friends, brothers/sisters. And I could also find no entry of her on the web before 911. There is one web page (most in Dutch… ) that tells quite bit about her life story: she worked for a very large company (Regius) and was living alone in NY, leading the ‘sex and the City’ life.

There are also names of former classmates of her

But these classmates (again quick and dirty) seemed to have not taken the trouble to write about the tragedy of Ingeborg Lariby on 911 and how they remember her…

And there is also nobody complaining about having been named (as former classmate), even though, you know, privacy is an issue on the web…

And then there is also this (in English, please read…)

Of course, all this does not proof that Ingeborg Lariby did not exist, but it does ring a bell, at least to me, when I contrast Lariby to the 911 Japanese deaths. And it seems to confirm the Bali (real event) vs 911 (staged/hybrid event) test, where you would expect detailed life stories of the victims (but maybe not all) for the former, and find much less detailed life stories for the latter or maybe even nothing at all.

Now this Dutch sample is, admittedly small, I am biased in my assesment (since I know the Dutch victims from Bali almost by heart, and am not really interested in 911), and I have only done a quick and dirty search.

But if you want to research this empirically, you could for instance:

1 sample victims from English speaking countries, except US (since 911 happened in the US), and compare Bali vs 911 in terms of

No. Entries of the victims on the web before the terror event and not related in any way to the terror event (hypothesis: more to be found for Bali victims than 911 victims)

No. Of relatives of the victims

No. Of blogs about the victims

If the victims had a family

If anything of the relatives and friends of the victims can be found on the internet that is NOT related to Bali or 911


This type of research is certainly time consuming, but also worth the effort if you are involved in a movement (where many hands make light work). So if you are in the 911 movement, than I think you have a research project. I am not excluding the possibility that this already has been done. For instance, see here:

Well, okay. However, having slept on this, I have to say that I just have to conclude that the Suzuki couple, Kosuke and Yuka, must be fakes. There is that one (rather unflattering) photo of them and nothing else. And there is just no real information. They don’t really seem to have any existence outside just being victims of the Bali attack.

Kosuke supposedly was an office worker for the city of Yokohama but there is no mention of what administrative department or any of that. Yokohama is apparently Japan’s second largest city, over 3 million people, but actually, I think it’s really just part of the overall Tokyo megalopolis, so like it’s all concrete between there and Tokyo itself. But anyway… Just as I pointed out about these 2 Japanese bankers from 9/11, no description of these people from anybody who knew them. No biographical information to speak of, quite unclear where they attended school or university. You can’t figure out the name of either man’s wife… But simply not a single photo. That has to be the A-1-A killer.

So, the two Japanese victims from Bali look like fakes. They really must be, based on the same reasoning I provided in this article. So I have to stick to my guns on that… Now, that doesn’t logically imply that the four Dutch victims are fakes. If they are real, then this is a hybrid event, with some real victims and some fakes.

You said you personally knew one (or was it more than one) of the victims in Bali? Was that one of the four Dutch victims or somebody else? How well did you know the person? (Sorry to probe, but this is some real information here…)

What you tell me about the one (almost certainly fake) Dutch victim from 9/11 is interesting, that Ingeborg Lariby woman. I had never heard that name before.

Yes, I agree the Japanese couple looks fake, also to me. The grieving Suzuki mother picture that you see is copyrighted which raised my bullshit sensor… Quite schocking actually. Of the Dutch victims: there is one I knew personally very well, another I did not know at the time but with which family I came quite close with and than there is a married couple which I do not know well, although I did have conversations with family and relatives of them. I think they are real as well. I also know quite a lot of relatives of English victims.

Well, oh well. Bali may be a hybrid event too. It happened, and then ‘someone’ tried to make it bigger by adding a few extra victims. There was a ‘global’ war going on then, and hearts and minds had to be won, for instance to get a pass from the population to invade Iraq… I know that they tried to this with Bali (with some succes), but never really thought about the idea that they would go as far as by adding a few fake victims to the list of real victims. Brazen…

I have been thinking about the married Dutch couple. I don’t think they will pass your test and therefore have to be considered as fake as well. I am saying this since I do not want you to withhold ideas to spare my feelings. I, on the other hand, think that fake victims (like the Japanese) were added to the list of real victims of the Balibombings and consider the Dutch married couple as real

A. I spoke on several occasions with relatives of the married couple

B. I considered them to be genuinely mourning and therefore

C. Want to be on the safe side, calling the Dutch couple a false negative test result when you put them to your test.

The other 2 Dutch victims will pass your test.

Oh, and some extra info about Ingeborg Lariby from a Dutch forum blog that you may find interesting (but have to Google Translate I am afraid…)

In that forum you can find that Dutch MSM tv made a program ‘the reunion’ where they showed the old classmates of Ingeborg and they interviewed them in 2011. That program dissapeared from youtube and the Dutch MSM tv sender (KRO), but can (still) be found here, but surprisingly (or not maybe) they only saved the audio…

What is interesting is that Ingeborg went to the Breitner Havo in Amsterdam and that they interviewed the class of 73. In that year the Breitner Havo was located (due to a fusion) at 2 places in Amsterdam, so anyone from the Breitner Havo who fought: this Ingeborg was not in my class, might have thought that she went to that other school. Also Havo is a schoolsystem that is attended by 20-30% of the Dutch population, so even in one school there are probably more than one Havo classes per school

The Breitner Havo was according to above document also an all girl school. I haven’t listened to the the ‘Reunion’ audiotape but saw a photo of her class in 73 here

Seems to me a mixed class of boys and girls. But then, maybe they were far ahead of their time in Amsterdam with lgbtq or 1973 was a transition period of all girl to girl-boy school, who knows… (I haven’t really looked into this possibillity, even though the archief document says “Stichting tot Voortzetting van het Onderwijs aan de Nieuwe Middelbare School voor Meisjes Naamloze Vennootschap Nieuwe Middelbare School voor Meisjes Nieuwe Middelbare School voor Meisjes Breitner Havo “ that means “all girls”

Anyway, there is probably a lot more to be found when you follow this “alchemy of narrative” both for 911 and Bali.

I will stop commenting now, this is time consuming for me and not really my specialty (busting myths), but you may find it intersting material to look further into.

All best!

Well, I am not sure I have any very precise or objective test. The first case I ever tried to look into, with any persistence anyway, was that Betty Ong. I think that what can be said about Betty Ong is that this is a “person” who does not seem to have any real existence outside of her role in 9/11. Even when you look at a biography supposedly put up there by her family members, they have nothing really to say about her and most of the “biography” is just a description of role in the 9/11 narrative.

So, to the extent that I have any “test”, it is simply: *Does this person really have any (verifiable) existence outside of 9/11… or Bali… or…"

So, on the Japanese victims, two from 9/11 and now two from Bali, they pretty clearly do not pass that test. These people just don’t have any real existence outside of their role as victims of these terrorist incidents.

All of these Japanese alleged victims just came to my attention randomly (or maybe pseudo-randomly…) because somebody I was corresponding with had some connection with those two Japanese 9/11 victims. Otherwise, I had no reason to look at those two specifically. And then the other two from the Bali bombing came about because of the connection with you, and you mentioned these two Japanese victims of that event. But, anyway, based on that basic criterion on these Japanese, I’d say we’re batting 1.000, four out of four.

On these Dutch people, we have one 9/11 victim who looks quite strange. And then there are the four Bali victims. I am inferring that you personally knew one of the two Dutch Bali victims who were not the married couple. Now, you don’t have to answer me on this, but I would ask how well you knew this person? You met the person in Bali? Or you already knew the person in Holland? Well, also, which of the two people is it?

But, anyway, you have to understand that, from my point of view, I’m getting this all second-hand. Or 3rd hand, in the cases where you didn’t know the victims personally, but had contact with people who knew them (or say they did…). Well, it’s uncomfortable, but I guess the question has to be posed: in the case of the family members that you met or talked to, how can you be absolutely certain that this is real? I mean, we don’t like to think that people tricked us, but…

With some of the more prominent 9/11 victims, there are family members who really do seem to be fakes, like a prominent case is that McIlvaine guy. And all those “Jersey widows” and any other family members “demanding answers” are almost certainly fakes. Can we be absolutely certain that you were not tricked by people? (Note that I’m not saying that you were tricked or not. I honestly don’t know. I’m just asking the question.)

(Reason for edit). I wrapped this up, but the next comment, wraps it up better

Let’s wrap-up and see what we have and make a wager. Well, the 2 guys I am not going to discuss. They do without a doubt pass your test: they are described by a number of people, they have a clear background, and the people who describe them have a life that is not only related with Bali. You also have my word, but I understand that that does not count as proof for you, but it does for me.

And then there is the married couple of which I found a picture of a tombstone of the guy who died and some anonymous websites that mention the names of the married couple. Not sure if this can be found on the web, but it was surely mentioned by the papers at the time, that from the beginning (12 October onwards) 2 Dutch people (the guys) were missing/killed, which changed after a couple of weeks-months to 4 (the guys plus the married couple). There is more to be said about the married couple that is, at the least, quite coincidental, but that was told to me in private, and so I am not going to discuss that here. In fact, the odds of being involved in a terrorist attack is extremely coincidental, but I am the proof that it happens every now and then. So the a-priori chances of being involved in a terrorist attack don’t count here. Anyway based on this information, I guess that anyone, except me, would wage, as I waged with the Japanese couple, that the Dutch married couple did not exist.

But then, the bet that the couple did not exist, is not a wager because if this would be the case, you can be sure you will never find the ultimate evidence. It is like finding a player opposite of you who holds a deck of cards, which cards will never be played. Therefore, I will not wage for the idea that the Dutch married couple did not exist.

Then there is the possibility that the Dutch married couple did exist, despite that the odds of real existence, based on the available evidence is, apart from me saying that they did exist hardly to be found on the internet. Based on whether you believe my word that they did exist or not, that a-priori chance (of existence) can be large or small, perhaps even zero, but for me it is not zero. And since it is not zero for me, I will opt for the possibility that the couple did exist.

Actually the bet I placed closely resembles the 2 by 2 table from Pascal’s wager:’s_wager

I do not gain or lose anything by betting that the Dutch couple did not exist. I will also not gain infinite bliss if I happen to wage (and find out with certainty) that they did exist in the exact same way as is mentioned on internet and in the newspapers. But I would feel like a jerk if I would wage against their existence, and then, even though the odds are small would find out that they did exist.

Now this wager only applies to me, since it was me who talked with the friends and family of the deceased Dutch married couple and gather the chance of finding out with certainty that the couple did not exist as zero, and the chance that they did exist larger than zero.

But that is not the whole story

Whatever you and I think of me being tricked or not in some narrative, I am absolutely certain that intelligence agencies infiltrate all sorts of groups and communities in their desperate attempts to control the narrative. And that being the case, I can only conclude that working for an intelligence agency must be the most boring job in the world, as whatever you do, you can only ‘find’ that what was beforehand already decided what should be found. And it is not only the most boring job in the world, but also the most stressful job in the world, because at any time the carefully build narrative can fall apart, and expose you, since you cannot have total control of what is being said and thought all the time. Which sums up Walter Scott’s quote nicely: ‘Oh, what a tangled web we weave, when we practice to deceive!’

And then there is the practice on how to deceive. I am sure, you will agree that a lot of assholery below the line, is from ‘intelligence’, which is one way to deceive an audience, and which makes me think about that other quote from Kurt Vonnegut, who said: ‘We are what we pretend to be, so we better be careful what we pretend to be’

So a nice person who behaves like an asshole, is an asshole

And a nice person, who behaves like a nice person, is a nice person

Now it is 16 years when I last spoke with the friends and relatives of the Dutch married couple. I can’t remember exactly what we discussed at the time, but they were surely kind and friendly, and I had no other reason to believe that they were genuinely mourning over their lost ones. So suppose, for arguments sake, that I spoke with intelligence officers, then they they at least had to pretend that they were all of the above, or they would have been found out by me or others. And since they were not found out, they were what they pretended to be, at least for the time that we (the genuinely mourning friends and family) were with them. And that may have been the best thing that could ever have come out of this tragedy that was Bali.

Okay, well, I assume you understand that this is not really about you personally, Willem. The concept of “proof” is that we have something objective that we can look at and agree on.

Well… on the other hand, it’s complex, obviously. The fact that you met these people (their relatives) and had the gut feeling that they were for real… while I cannot really classify this as “proof” (obviously) I’m not saying that it’s absolutely nothing either. Sometimes all we have to go by are gut feelings.

But, look, the biggest conceptual hurdle in all of this is to realize that there really are fake victims and there really are crisis actors. When you met these people sixteen years ago, it probably did not even occur to you, just as it would not have occurred to me at that time, that there were these fakes and that anybody could be claiming to be the relative of a (nonexistent) victim and all that.

So, it never would have occurred to me to doubt these people. But now, that said, given that we know (now we do!) that these fake victims exist and we know that there are these people who pose as their relatives, when you tell me that you met these people’s relatives so many years ago and they seemed real to you…

As things stand, I’m not taking the position that no real person ever dies in these various terrorist events. On the other hand, you yourself pointed out the advantage of having fake victims, which is that they then completely control the narrative.

The problem is that, for most ordinary people, who are not very awake to these things, the whole notion that there are any fake victims is a huge conceptual hurdle to overcome. However, once you have overcome that, and you start understanding the advantages to simply faking the victims, then probably the burden of proof shifts over to people claiming that any of the victims are real!

That said, some might be. Of course, if there are x real victims and y fake victims, I guess you can bet that they (the media, I guess) will mostly focus on the y fake victims because those are the cases where they control the narrative. So, the more mediatic attention is focused on a given victim (and their loved ones) the more likely it is that this is a fake victim.

Well, that’s as best as I can come up with, just thinking about these things. I also think there is an increasing tendency for these sorts of synthetic events to be 100% hoaxes. This whole series of terrorist events in Europe (largely in France, but also U.K. and one very near me in Spain) I think these are all just hoaxes with no real victims. But… that is also just a gut feeling! :slight_smile: