From the July 2005 Idaho Observer:

WTC janitor (non) story reveals mainstream news complicity in 9/11 coverup

Media big shots at NBC, New York Times ‘hush hush and evasive’ about why Rodriguez’ story never appeared—a story that blows official 9/11 account sky high

Fourteen eyewitnesses verify WTC janitor’s story about a massive basement explosion just seconds before the airline strike of the north tower. Major media reps. refuse to discuss why the story never ran or claim the story provided nothing new, wasn’t important or wasn’t the focus of their attention.

By Greg Szymanski

The media big shots, like a gang of schoolyard bullies taping shut a little guy’s mouth, have placed a big, black curtain around the 9/11 story of WTC janitor William Rodriguez, silencing him as if he screwed up their fictitious plot in a television script already written.

Rodriguez has desperately tried to tell his story, but claims the "bullies with money and power" have kept him quiet, the reporters perpetuating a government fraud and the media bosses, acting like Tony Soprano, sending orders to keep his mouth shut or else!

Although it’s impossible for a working man like Rodriguez to pierce the corporate veil and finger the top dogs, evasive comments by the underlings from places like NBC and The New York Times, when questioned about the Rodriguez blackout, indicate somebody’s hiding something since all lips are zippered tight like a bunch of street thugs protecting the "family name."

Across the board from all the major networks to all the so-called top notch daily newspapers in the country, the ghost of janitor William Rodriguez is now back, alive and well four years later, reminding the big shots everywhere it doesn’t pay to tell a lie, especially with a man on a mission like Rodriguez.

Although the strange media blackout has left Rodriguez shaking his head in disappointment and wondering why he has more freedom of speech abroad than at home, he vows now, more than ever before, never to stop talking until every last American has heard his story, listening to the cold, hard facts how the north tower of the WTC came down from an underground explosion not just burning jet fuel as the government contends.

Admittedly perplexed by being written out of the tragic script by the 9/11 Commission and what he calls the media fiction writers even though he is one of the main characters, Rodriguez now thinks the American people are ready to listen since distrust for big media and big government has reached epic proportions, even creeping into the hinterland and heartland of America where the elite count on a passive following.

But most importantly, Rodriguez hopes his story will finally be told, every last single morsel of truth, in memory of the 3,000 killed and the 200 friends he lost at Ground Zero, adding they "deserve nothing less than full truth."

A nightmare for

government officials

Rodriguez’s story, verified by at least 14 eye witnesses and a burn victim, has become a veritable nightmare for officials clinging to the official story, probably deciding the only way to handle him is to make the "boogey man in the bad dream" go away.

And that’s exactly how Rodriguez has been treated by the so-called big shots in high places, being treated like the "bad guy riding the black horse’’ instead of being heralded as the "white knight" for saving hundreds of lives on 9/11 and sticking to the truth.

In faith walks a man on a mission, but the government’s problem with Rodriguez doesn’t lie in his moral convictions but rather in corroborated eye-witness evidence which, in this case, is much stronger than any scientific proof offered to support the government’s burning jet fuel theory.

So, instead of openly dealing with Rodriguez, he is conveniently hidden from the official 9/11 Commission record—even after testifying behind closed doors. He also has conveniently been hidden by the mainstream media. Rodriguez says that in countless interviews with mainstream reporters his words have either been deleted, manipulated or made to fit the official government account.

And the reason why Rodriguez is a walking time bomb, waiting to explode the government story, is that his story makes complete sense, something the government story has been lacking from day one.

"I’ve never believed the government story that two planes brought down the towers. I know the truth because I experienced what happened that day. By all rights, I should be dead, but luckily I am alive to tell the truth if only someone would listen. I am here to tell the truth for all those who died and especially for my 200 friends who I feel a special obligation," said Rodriguez in a telephone conversation from his New Jersey apartment.

"The American people aren’t stupid. They have just been deprived of the vital information. If they listen to me, the truth will set them free."

And for critics who doubt his honesty and sincerity, Rodriguez says may he be struck by a lightening bolt if he isn’t "telling the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God."

Rodriguez and 14 other witnesses can’t be wrong

On the morning of 9/11 Rodriguez, 44, was huddled together with 14 other people in a sub level 1 basement office, preparing for a day’s work like he did every day for 20 years at the WTC. Without warning, suddenly the group felt a tremendous explosion emanating from somewhere below them in one of the five WTC sub levels.

Not only did the group hear the explosion, all 14 felt the floor tremble and saw the walls crack just seconds before the group heard another distant explosion coming from high above. Although unaware of the cause, Rodriguez later learned the second explosion, occurring seconds after the first basement blast, turned out to be the jetliner strike.

Further evidence of a tremendous basement blast came moments later when a man by the name of Felipe David, burnt on his face, arms and hands, entered the office yelling "explosion, explosion, explosion!"

David had been standing at a nearby sub level 1 freight elevator shaft when he was severely burned from fire coming up the shaft from the basement explosion.

As Rodriguez pulled David to safety outside the WTC, there is absolutely 100 per cent agreement and not one contradiction among the 14 people with Rodriguez, as to exactly what happened in those moments immediately before and immediately after the jetliner strike on the morning of 9/11.

The following quote in italics are the words of Rodriguez:

"Now, what really upsets me is that my story never appeared in the 9/11 Commission report after I told it to them behind closed doors," said Rodriguez about his 2004 meeting with commission members. "They never followed up with verifying my testimony and basically, when the report came out, there was no mention of my statements and the other evidence of a basement explosion when they decided only the airliner brought down the towers.

"This is totally unacceptable and shows they are trying to cover-up something. How could anybody not believe there was a massive explosion below ground level after talking with me and the other 14 people who witnessed the very same thing? It refutes the government story point blank and that’s why they wanted me behind closed doors and why they never mentioned my name or my story in their final report.

"I am asking the American people right now to demand another open and fair investigation not for my sake, but for the memory of all those good, innocent people who died. We can’t allow the real perpetrators of this crime to get away and I believe my testimony, if allowed to be heard, will help bring the guilty parties to justice once and for all."

Since Rodriguez’s story first appeared late last June on The Arctic Beacon website at and The American Free Press, two alternative news outlets, he has been deluged with interviews and appearances by other alternative media sources, but again categorically ignored by the mainstream press.

Summing up his feeling about the media blackout, Rodriguez this week in a letter written to Media Bypass, another alternative news source, while trying to get an interview, wrote:

"Since I was pulled from the rubble after saving hundreds of lives, I had the only master key available on that day (see documentary about my experience at, I realized that my original story was changed constantly by the national networks. It was edited, manipulated, completely deleted, etc. Never once have I had my complete story told by a major news outlet in this country.

"I also testified behind closed doors to the 9/11 Commission and my testimony does not show up on the final report, mainly because I went against the official story. I was there, I was made a ‘National Hero’ here and in Puerto Rico. I have sued the President in an ongoing federal lawsuit after realizing a major manipulation of the facts that I experienced (see . I have become, besides the spokesperson for the families of 9/11, an activist in search for the truth. My story has to be told."

Big shots respond to

media blackout

When Doug Pasternak, head of NBC’s investigative unit, was asked this week in a telephone conversation why not one single second of Rodriguez’s story aired on the network after hours of footage was shot at Rodriguez’s house in June, 2004, after the 9/11 Commission hearings, he said: "It simply didn’t add anything new. The part about the basement explosion wasn’t the focus of our story. We were concerned about his statements of a hijacker he supposedly encountered several months prior to 9/11 in the World Trade Center. Again, it wasn’t the focus of our story and, like I said, his story didn’t add anything new."

Asked why he didn’t question the 9/11 Commission’s overt error of leaving Rodriguez’s statements out of the final report, Pasternak deferred all further questions to Barbara Levin, communications director for the network.

In an email response, dated June 29, Levin said: "Wanted to let you know that NBC News does not comment on our newsgathering."

Besides NBC’s reluctance to air Rodriguez’ story, he was pinning his hopes of airing the truth in a recent NBC 9/11 mini-series project headed by screen writer Graham Yost and Hollywood producer/director Ron Howard.

Although Rodriguez had spent a considerable amount of time interviewing and escorting Yost throughout New York in an attempt to interview survivors, he was recently notified by Yost that NBC had pulled the plug on the project.

In an email sent to Rodriguez by Yost only weeks ago, he wrote in a disappointed manner: "To refresh your memory, my name is Graham Yost. I was the writer/producer working on NBC’s miniseries about 9/11. As you may have heard, NBC has decided not to proceed with the miniseries. It was primarily a financial decision. Dramatizing a story of this magnitude, scope and importance is an expensive proposition. If we were to do something like this at all, we knew we had to do it right. NBC, Imagine (Ron Howard and Brian Grazer) and I decided it would be better not to do it, than to do it in any but the best possible manner.

"The other writers and I had finished scripts for the first four hours, chronicling the events leading up to the attacks. I was half-way through writing a three-hour section of the miniseries depicting the day of the attacks when it became clear that the project was not going to proceed.

"I am very proud of what we wrote and I was, of course, very frustrated and disappointed that we were not going forward. But, as upset as I was, it was one of the other writers (Chris Brancato) who gave me the best perspective. ‘Look at it this way,’ he said, ‘for eight months it was your job to learn as much as you could about the most significant event of our time.’ For that I am truly grateful.

"Going into this, Ron Howard said that doing a miniseries about 9/11 could well be the most important project of our lives. He was right. The fact that it wasn’t produced doesn’t change that.

"P.S. As far as I know, ABC is still working on their 9/11 miniseries. I wish them all the good fortune in the world. I know the writer, director and producers on their project take it every bit as seriously as we did."

Although Yost thinks ABC is taking the project seriously, Rodriguez thinks otherwise.

"I have made numerous attempts to get involved with the ABC project, but they don’t want to have anything to do with me. They won’t return my calls and I just wonder what kind of documentary they are doing?"

Rodriguez said not only has he been ignored by NBC and ABC, The New York Times has also shut its doors on the Rodriguez name and story.

Times reporters Kevin Flynn and Jim Dwyer, who interviewed Rodriguez numerous times before publishing their best seller called "102 Minutes: The Untold Story in the Fight to Survive in the Twin Towers," ended up publishing the book without using Rodriguez’ name or fully recounting his story.

After the book hit the stands, becoming extremely discouraged and disillusioned with the hypocrisy and lying in American journalism, Rodriguez said this about Flynn and Dwyer’s bestseller: "If I was the last survivor out of the north tower, rescued hundreds of people, almost killed three times and declared a national hero, how could they leave my story out of the book? They mentioned nothing about the basement explosion, the other 14 people or Felipe David who was burned with skin hanging from his arms from the basement blast.

"I even brought a man down in a wheel chair from the 27th floor to the lobby, although unfortunately he died there, but when the account of his story came out, they didn’t even mention it was me after I specifically told them.

"Best seller! Right? Who are they trying to kid?"

Regarding the deletion of the Rodriguez story, Flynn in a telephone conversation this week from his office at The Times, said: "I don’t think I should comment about any of this to a third party. If Rodriguez wants to talk to me about it, have him call."

When Rodriguez was told about Flynn’s invitation, he declined the offer, saying he had no need to talk with someone obviously perpetuating a fraud to the American people about a story of such social and political importance.

And to make matters worse, regarding at least four stories by Times reporters that Rodriguez said were either manipulated or changed, Flynn referred all questions by email to media communications director Katherine Mathis, who at the time of this writing did not respond to a request for answers.

Not to be left out of the Rodriguez blackout, Susan Chun of CNN on June 15, 2004, sent an email to Rodriguez, requesting an interview after he testified before the 9/11 Commission. After making arrangements for the taped session, Rodriguez said it was unexpectedly cancelled at the last minute without an explanation.

Regarding the cancelled interview, Chun failed to respond to several email requests and several phone messages asking for answers.

However, Francois Tonju of CNN’s Latin broadcasting division in Miami, said some of Rodriguez’s statements aired in Puerto Rico in Spanish, but added his story never appeared stateside in English.

And in the midst of the blackout continuing to date and remaining frustrated about an untold story, Rodriguez said he remains patient nonetheless and is still available for major network news and television coverage despite the media’s unwillingness to listen.

"Throughout the years, I have been wined and dined at the White House and attended many official functions in an attempt to get me on their side so I would shut up. But I have never succumbed to the subtle intimidation over the years, even by reporters who have taken me aside and said it is better that I keep quiet because I didn’t realize who I was dealing with.

"After they would take me aside, saying all those nasty things, I would always just look every one of them square in the eye, saying I would never waiver for one second from the truth in respect for my 200 friends who died. I am a man on a mission and I will never stop until the truth is finally uncovered."

Rodriguez, the lead plaintiff in a federal RICO lawsuit filed against Bush and others, is also on his way to Amsterdam, where he is going to publish a book of his heroic 9/11 story, complete with the basement explosion segment as well as other aspects of his story censored by the mainstream media. The book is to be published in English and Dutch and a publication date has yet to be finalized.

After pausing a moment about the difference between foreign and domestic accounts of his story, Rodriguez said even though CNN’s Larry King has already been scooped by a number of third world country talk show hosts, he still is available on a moment’s notice for a guest appearance, as long as he can tell his story in the unedited version, which would be a first for a major American news network.

Editor’s note: I think we can all drop the pretense that The IO is just a newspaper, people like Rodriguez just happen to be newsworthy, our writers are just reporters and you are just a reader. We are more like a family of folks bound by our common concern for what is happening to our country and to our world; bound by our common desire to seek and broadcast the truth no matter what the cost to ourselves personally. I think most of us have seen that those bonds are, in many cases, stronger than blood.

Consider the magnitude of this story and what it means for Rodriguez to tell it like it really happened—no matter what—and what it means for Szymanski to write the story and do the follow-up with the "big shots" in mainstream media. Considering the previous sentence, I would like to make a special suggestion that we all keep these two men in our prayers. (DWH)

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