A Jewish 9/11 Debacle: The Odigo, Missing Jews and Related Claims
It should not come as a surprise to anyone, ie those who are familiar with the colourful and innovative plethora of claims surrounding the terrorist attack on US soil on September 11th 2001, that amongst the numerous rumours there exists a rich floura there-of about jewish involvement and foreknowledge. In this article I will discuss a few of the latter ones; foreknowledge/warnings to jewish people.
One of the more persistent ones in my own experience is the Odigo one. Odigo Inc was a company situatied in New York with offices in Israel as well at the time and were known for their instant messenger service ”Odigo Messenger”. In an interview done between Alex Jones and Matthew Tartaglia the former states that Odigo recieved threats or warnings about an attack and that the workers in Israel then proceeded to warn their jewish co-workers in New York.
Now, the article hinted to is the one which first appeared in the Haaretz. A quote from the article in question gives a somewhat different rendering then the one Alex Jones managed to extrapolate from this story:
”Odigo, the instant messaging service, says that two of its workers received messages two hours before the Twin Towers attack on September 11 predicting the attack would happen, and the company has been cooperating with Israeli and American law enforcement, including the FBI, in trying to find the original sender of the message predicting the attack. Micha Macover, CEO of the company, said the two workers received the messages and immediately after the terror attack informed the company's management, which immediately contacted the Israeli security services, which brought in the FBI. "I have no idea why the message was sent to these two workers, who don't know the sender. It may just have been someone who was joking and turned out they accidentally got it right. And I don't know if our information was useful in any of the arrests the FBI has made," said Macover. Odigo is a U.S.-based company whose headquarters are in New York, with offices in Herzliya.
Odigo usually zealously protects the privacy of its registered users, said Macover, but in this case the company took the initiative to provide the law enforcement services with the originating Internet Presence address of the message, so the FBI could track down the Internet Service Provider, and the actual sender of the original message.”
In another news article it is reported that the Vice President of Odigo's Sales and Marketing said in an interview that there were no specifics mentioned in the messages (as in what kind of an attack or what targets were involved) yet due to their timing he had to regard them as a threat.
There is no evidence given anywhere to suggest that the two workers or even the company had realised the impact of this message before the planes flew into the World Trade Centers, no one was warned prior to the attack because there was no knowledge of what it ment, if it indeed ment anything at all. The workers told their management about the recieved messages after they had been told about the 9/11 attack from where the management alerted the local Israeli security services which then contacted the FBI. What good would a warning, not heeded prior to the attack, not containing any specifics, to two unrelated workers busy in their cubicals do? In light of the absence of actual proof stating otherwise and with nothing more than the erronous extrapolations made by Alex Jones sans any evidence, we are forced to let this tidbit rest in the bin along with the usual daily leftovers of internet rumours.
Another similar claim that floats around the truther camp, allthough not one of the more common ones, is the ”No jews died in the WTC attacks” or ”Hardly any jews died in the WTC attacks” and they are part of adding to the convergent argument that jews thereby either helped to assist the 9/11 attack or were the masterminds thereof.
These tend, naturally, to be more popular for the ardent hardline truthers on race-nationalist forums such as Stormfront or Vanguard National Network, . Accompanied with these is the quite popular claim that 4,000 jews were missing from work in the WTC area and that this provides further evidence that the jews were not only forewarned but complicit in the terrorist attack.
Let's begin with the question of jewish wtc-victims. While only one Israeli died in the WTC attacks and the fact that the number of actual jewish victims is hard to estimate, since no records of ethnic or religious adherence is kept over the WTC victims, there are varying estimates yet many corroborative lists of actual names of the victims which would indicate that the number lands somewhere between 200-400. Here follows a pertinent quote on these matters:
”A total of 2,071 occupants of the World Trade Center died on September 11, among the 2,749 victims of the WTC attacks. According to an article in the October 11, 2001, Wall Street Journal, roughly 1,700 people had listed the religion of a person missing in the WTC attacks; approximately 10% were Jewish. A later article, in the September 5, 2002, Jewish Week, states, "based on the list of names, biographical information compiled by The New York Times, and information from records at the Medical Examiner's Office, there were at least 400 victims either confirmed or strongly believed to be Jewish." This would be approximately 15% of the total victims of the WTC attacks. A partial list of 390 Cantor Fitzgerald employees who died (out of 658 in the company) lists 49 Jewish memorial services, which is between 12% and 13%.
This 10-15% estimate of Jewish fatalities tracks closely with the percentage of Jews living in the New York area. According to the 2002 American Jewish Year Book, 9% of the population of New York State, where 64% of the WTC victims lived, is Jewish. A 2002 study estimated that New York City's population was 12% Jewish. Forty-three percent of the WTC victims lived in New York City. Thus, the number of Jewish victims correlates very closely with the number of Jewish residents in New York. If 4,000 Jews had not reported for work on September 11, the number of Jewish victims would have been much lower than 10-15%.”
The complete list of all victims related to the 9/11 attack is available at this link.
The previously mentioned claim on the 4,000 jews not showing up from is also talked about in the same article:
”Vague conspiracy theories blaming Israel began to appear within 24 hours of the attacks. Syria's government-owned Al Thawra newspaper may have been the first newspaper to make the "4,000 Jews" claim. According to U.S. embassy reporting, its September 15th edition falsely claimed "four thousand Jews were absent from their work on the day of the explosions.
The 4,000 figure apparently came from an article entitled "Hundreds of Israelis missing in WTC attack" which appeared in the September 12th internet edition of the Jerusalem Post. It stated, "The Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem has so far received the names of 4,000 Israelis believed to have been in the areas of the World Trade Center and the Pentagon at the time of the attacks."
Unknown conspiracy theorists apparently seized upon the 4,000 figure, transforming it into the false claim that 4,000 Jews did not report for work at the World Trade Center on September 11.”
The origin of this particular myth is, as noted above, from the article in the Jerusalem Post which didn't talk about jews who didn't show up for work but an estimate on how many of them were in the New York area at the time of the attack yet whose whereabouts were unknown in the turmoil of the attack where friends and families of the missing people had inquired about them through the local authorities, as this quote explains from a subsequent article:
”The Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem has so far received the names of 4,000 Israelis believed to have been in the areas of the World Trade Center and the Pentagon at the time of the attack.
The list is made up of people who have not yet made contact with friends or family, Army Radio reported. Telephone connections between Israel and the New York City and Washington, D.C. areas has been sporadic and unreliable since the multiple attacks yesterday.”
The key words here are ”the list is made up of people who have not yet made contact with friends or family” and please note that this was in the direct afterman, some 16 hours, after the planes had flown into the buildings. There is nothing especially noteworthy about this and it certainly does not provide evidence to the claim that 4,000 jews or Israelis were warned and stayed home from work on Septermber 11th 2001. In the UK a help hotline was set up almost immediately after the attack and was quickly swamped with some 20,000 calls from people inquiring about relatives and friends possibly caught in the middle of the WTC chaos as this article from The Guardian writes:
”Staff at a bureau to help the relatives and friends of people feared caught up in the attacks have been doubled to cope with thousands of calls. The telephone hotline (020- 7008 0000) has received more than 20,000 calls.”
For those interested in aquiring more information about these erronous rumours; an excellent exposé of just about every off-shot claim concerning the myths about missing jews and israelis and how this allegedlyt proof of a conspiracy is given by this thoroughly referenced article; ”The Case of the Missing 4000 Israelis”. An excerpt thereof explains the following:
”To begin with, one should point out the distinction between Israelis and Jews. Most Israelis are Jewish (although there is a significant Arab minority, among others), but most Jews are not Israeli. For instance, there are slightly more Jewish-Americans than Israeli Jews. (There are also more Anglo-Americans than Anglo-Britons. The US is a big country).
Having said that, the fact that 4000 Israelis worked at the WTC is rather unbelievable, to put it mildly. There were about 50,000 workers at the WTC overall, spread out over about 300 companies. Of these companies, only 2 were Israeli owned (ZIM Israel Navigation company and ClearForest. Incidentally, some ClearForest staff - who were Israeli - did show up to work on Sep 11). Also, bear in mind that the entire population of Israel is only about 6 million, compared to roughly 60 million for the UK and 280 million for the US. Having 4000 Israelis working at the WTC is about as believable as having 40,000 UK citizens working at the WTC. (Update, Aug 27, 2004: the number of Israeli-born residents of NYC was 21,288 as of 2000, or about 0.27% of the population of New York; multiplying this by the final WTC toll of 2602 would correspond to 7 Israeli deaths. Thanks to wikipedia for this information).
(On the other hand, it is fairly believable that among the 50,000 employees at the WTC, about 4,000 of them are Jewish. The state of New York is about 9% Jewish. But despite the headline, the body of the Al-Manar article refers clearly to Israelis, rather than Jews). Incidentally, the number of Jewish victims of the WTC attack has been estimated at 400-500.”
As a curiosa there were 68 british, 6 cubans, 17 germans, 8 russians and 7 irishmen who died due to the 9/11 incident, therefor by the critiqued truther-logic of this article (that no jews or not enough jews died hence partial evidence of foreknowledge or more) we could make a case against a british-cuba-german-russian-irish agenda of complicit nature. However, as I do not wish to have my brain arrested for vagrancy or for obstruction of logic, I'll refrain from pursuing such an obvious melon of a theory, as people in general should drop these equally ridiculous claims.
The final accusation I will be addressing in this article is about an Israeli company (well, 49% owned by the Israeli Government) located in the WTC's which moved out a few weeks prior to the WTC attack. Now this is a claim I've seen purported here and there across discussion forums and truther sites on this matter, as a reference I believe an article by the well known (infamous?) truther Christopher Bollyn.
Now, the basic claims made is that not only did they move out just before the 9/11 attack, but broke their lease while doing so, thereby somehow making the fast and sudden move-out of the WTC North Tower suspicious and too much of a coincidence for people like Bollyn. I have a problem with the idea that this proves anything since I, unlike Bollyn, have little problem with NOT listening to my arse for facts.
I am not sure where Bollyn got the idea that the lease was broken, to my knowledge the lease expired before the 9/11 attack and according to this article, the ZIM-American's lease expired on September 1 in 2001. The majority of the company's workers had relocated prior to the attack yet a few remained:
”More than 200 workers at Zim Israel Navigation Company counted themselves lucky Tuesday, having been moved out of their World Trade Center offices by the company just two weeks ago.
At the same time, Israeli company ClearForest, whose international headquarters were located in the 47th floor of One World Trade Center, reported that none of its staff was hurt when the building collapsed. "When we watched the pictures, we felt so lucky," Zim spokesperson Dan Nadler said. "Our entire US operations were run out of the 16th floor.”
This makes Bollyn's case increasingly unconvincing and, well, simply wrong. It doesn't help with the foreknowledge bit very much. Yet, let's move on still. Was the move out of the blue? A sudden case of relocating need since they had, according to Bollyn, been forewarned?
”In a statement to the Virginia shipping community, Shaul Cohen-Mintz, President of Zim-American Israeli Navigation Co., Inc. said it was a most successful move to a brand new building that is designed for Zim s specific needs. Initial planning for this move began as part of a Go Forward Plan initiated almost two years ago. Most managerial and key personnel have been relocated to Virginia to ensure continuity of service and a smooth transition.”
While it a claim can be conjured up that since this statement was made after the attack, they could have stated anything. The problem is that nothing of substance indicates foreknowledge, also the burden of proof is not on those proving there was no foreknowledge but on those who claim that they had been forewarned. So far none of the given claims have been able to prove anything to that end. Another thing to consider is that in the WTC buildings had some 430 companies and a it would not be anything but commonplace to find a number of companies moving in and another number of companies moving out of the buildings each year. Furthermore, as mentioned in the second above article, another Israeli company called ”ClearForest” remained in the WTC's. It is indeed strange that, if we look at the collective image of these conspiracy claims, two workers from Odigo in Israel were warned a couple of hours before the attack, the ClearForest company recieved no warning whatsoever and Zim-American got a warning to move out several months prior to the attack.
No, it just doesn't make any coherent sense and it certainly does not provide any substance to the claim of general jewish/Israeli foreknowledge. Therefore, in light of the substantial lack of evidence for any of these claims, which I've discussed in this article, we should do well to leave these spurious rumours and myths outside of the realm of facts and inside the trash can of ”not so good arguments against jewry”.
 Today it no longer exists, it got shut down by in 2004 by the new owners Comverse Technology.
 Alex Jones is a well known and self-marketing freelance journalist who has made documentaries and several websites dedicated to purport many different conspiratorial theories, especially those involving 9/11 and it having been orchestrated by the US Government unto its people. The interview mentioned is found here; http://www.prisonplanet.com/articles/ma ... ations.htm
 A rescue worker who, after experiencing failing health due his time working in the smoldering aftermath at Ground Zero, came to regard 9/11 as a deed architectured by the US Government.
 http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/pages/ShAr ... ID=/has%5C
 ”Truther” is an oft used nickname for the people whose beliefs are that the US Government orchestrated the 9/11 attack and furthemore commonly purport the WTC DCT (World Trade Center Controlled-Demolition Theory), ie that they were brought down by explosives planted there by the US Government.
 http://www.stormfront.org/forum/showpos ... ostcount=7
 http://www.vnnforum.com/showpost.php?p= ... count=1213
 http://usinfo.state.gov/media/Archive/2 ... 60933.html
 http://www.september11victims.com/septe ... ENSHIP.htm
 Jerusalem Post. Thousands of Israelis missing near WTC, Pentagon. September 12, 2001
 http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2001/se ... ber11.usa8
 http://www.jpost.com/Editions/2001/09/1 ... 34749.html
 http://www.fpp.co.uk/online/02/09/Ameri ... s0902.html
 http://www.israelnewsagency.com/israel9 ... 91104.html
 ”Zim Workers Saved by Cost-Cutting”, The Jerusalem Post, September 13, 2001. Link: http://s3.amazonaws.com/911timeline/200 ... 91301.html
 ”ZIM NY HEAD OFFICE MISSED WORLD TRADE CENTRE EXPLOSION”, The Gleaner, September 18, 2001, Copyright 2001 Financial Times Information, All rights reserved, Global News Wire
 http://edition.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2001/tr ... ants1.html