Fran ShureEditor’s Note: Frances Shure, M.A., L.P.C., has performed an in-depth analysis addressing a key issue of our time: “Why Do Good People Become Silent — or Worse — About 9/11?” The resulting essay, being presented here as a series, is a synthesis of both academic research and clinical observations.

In this installment, we continue Ms. Shure's analysis with "Part 13: Prior Knowledge of State Crimes Against Democracy and Deep Politics," which explores how our prior knowledge of state crimes by governments, as well as our knowledge of the deep state — as opposed to the visible public state in which we participate as citizens — affects our reception of evidence that indicates we have been lied to about 9/11.

Please note that because Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth is dedicated to researching and disseminating scientific information about the destruction of three World Trade Center skyscrapers on September 11, 2001, and does not speculate as to the identity or motives of the perpetrators, any reference to names or motives of the attackers in this series of articles, made by either the author or the individuals she quotes, is a personal opinion and not the viewpoint of AE911Truth.

People with prior knowledge of corporate and governmental malfeasance, but especially of State Crimes Against Democracy (SCADs), have an increased capacity to accept evidence that contradicts the official 9/11 conspiracy theory.

Lance deHaven-Smith Lance deHaven-Smith What are SCADs, and how do they differ from other political crimes? Lance deHaven-Smith, a professor of Public Administration and Policy at Florida State University, coined the term “state crimes against democracy” to distinguish them as the illegal or extralegal actions of public officials or elites who manipulate or subvert democratic processes and undermine popular sovereignty. In other words, State Crimes Against Democracy are high crimes that attack not only people, but democracy itself.1

Therefore, according to deHaven-Smith, "election tampering, political assassinations, voter fraud, government graft, non-governmental rogue operations, state counter-democratic actions, and corporate collusion with extralegal initiatives can be classified as SCADs."2

Before September 11, 2001, each of us had varying degrees of knowledge about political intrigue. If, for example, we had already read professor Peter Dale Scott’s Deep Politics and the Death of JFK, or if we already had a solid understanding of known SCADs, such as Iran-Contra,3 the Gulf of Tonkin,4 and especially Operation Northwoods,5 then we likely had minimal resistance to the evidence pointing to 9/11 as a false-flag operation. On the other hand, those of us who possessed none of this knowledge before 9/11 would have been challenged by a huge paradigm shift when we awoke to the facts that contradicted the official storyline regarding that terrible day. 

Peter Dale Scott Peter Dale Scott Like State Crimes Against Democracy, the term "deep politics" is invaluable in that it helps us wrap our minds around the concept that there is a "public state" and a "deep state." The public state consists of the democratic republic that we are taught is our system of government and in which we dutifully participate as citizens. The deep state, on the other hand, is composed of the realpolitik powers and behind-the-scenes decisions about which ordinary citizens are unaware.6

Scott defines "deep state" more specifically:

Those parts of the government responding to . . . [the top 1% of wealth holders] influence I call the "deep state" (if covert) or "security state" (if military). Both represent top-down or closed power, as opposed to the open power of the public state . . . that represents the people as a whole. . . . The deep state's secret top-down powers have become a major threat to democracy.7

Unless we have had a prior understanding of the deep state, we will likely dismiss the evidence presented by 9/11 skeptics. Peter Dale Scott's invaluable book, The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America, offers us this sorely needed historical context. In it, he writes:

In one sense, 9/11 is an event without precedent, and one that threatens to move America beyond the age of public politics to a new era in which power, more than ever before, is administered downward from above. But at the same time, 9/11 must be seen as a culmination of trends developing through a half century: toward secret top-down decision making by small cabals, toward the militarization of law enforcement, toward plans for the sequestering of those who dissent, toward government off-the-books operations, transactions, and assets, and toward governance by those [the 1%] who pay for political parties rather than those who participate in them.8 [Emphasis added]

Without some knowledge of this historical context, our deepest beliefs about our government and our democratic republic will be profoundly challenged when we first encounter evidence that refutes the official account of 9/11. The same is true when we encounter reports of past governmental treacheries, such as the deception that led to the Pearl Harbor attacks;9 Operation Northwoods — the 1962 false-flag plot designed by the Joint Chiefs of Staff to commit acts of terrorism in American cities and elsewhere to justify an invasion of Cuba, which was rejected by President Kennedy;10 Operation Mockingbird, a CIA plot to control the media, instigated after World War II;11 the atrocities of Project MK-ULTRA experiments on unaware citizens;12 and the 1933 plot by wealthy businessmen to overthrow the U.S. government and create a fascist state, as Major General Smedley Butler testified to in a 1934 congressional hearing.13

"The deep state's secret top-down powers have become a major threat to democracy.

~ Peter Dale Scott

With rare exception, our educational system avoids the history of these and other betrayals by our government and/or elite interests, thus creating a naïve and credulous population, willing to accept passively the "reality" portrayed by the CIA-and-corporate-controlled media. 

In fact, as Florida professor Lance deHaven-Smith informs us in his groundbreaking book, Conspiracy Theory in America, we have been conditioned to recoil psychologically from such "conspiracy theories," even when these theories are documented and credible.

Our current inability to look unselfconsciously at the evidence pointing to an official conspiracy behind 9/11 can be traced to a highly successful CIA operation. In 1967, four years after President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, the CIA became concerned with the growing number of newspaper articles and books reporting on evidence in the Warren Commission report itself that contradicted the lone-gunman and single-bullet theories. Public opinion polls were beginning to indicate that a plurality of Americans did not fully accept the Commission's report, and the integrity of democracy in the U.S. was coming into question.14

The CIA responded to this growing crisis by sending a secret dispatch — memo 1035-960 — to CIA agents worldwide. This directive instructed these agents to contact journalists and opinion leaders in their locales and ask for their assistance in countering the influence of "conspiracy theorists" who were publishing "conspiracy theories" that blamed top leaders in the U.S. for Kennedy's death.15

Skeptics of the official 9/11 account have heard ad nauseam the retort, "I cannot believe that a conspiracy of this magnitude could be true because people can't keep secrets — someone would have talked!" 

This belief comes directly from one of the talking points of the memo: "Conspiracy on the large scale often suggested [by "conspiracy theorists"] would be impossible to conceal in the United States. . . ."

This now-ingrained belief in our society has successfully deterred many people from seriously considering the 9/11 evidence that contradicts the official story.16 As explained in Part 8 on brain research, it is these strong beliefs that may keep us from even considering the compelling evidence that 9/11 skeptics present.

Fortunately, memo 1035-960 was declassified through a Freedom of Information Act in 1976 and was released in full in 1998.17 Since 1967, the derogatory nature of the conspiracy meme skyrocketed in the press, so that anyone who had the audacity to question the official storyline of a significant event was viewed by most Americans as deranged or unstable. These CIA talking points are used to this day by ill-informed journalists and citizens to avoid seriously looking at facts and evidence that contradict any official story, including the story we were told about 9/11.18

I was one who was thoroughly conditioned. A few years before 9/11, I responded, as if on cue, to a friend who was suspicious of the government's unlikely account of an event (it may have been the Oklahoma City bombing) with a glib "Oh! I don't believe in conspiracy theories!" But just weeks after 9/11, I began to open my eyes to the crystal-clear evidence of a conspiracy, which was presented to me by the then-nascent 9/11 Truth Movement. After reading a book on the subject in the summer of 2002, I was completely cured of my old conditioning!19

One would ideally expect academics to do research and think critically — and to encourage students to do the same — in order to determine whether the government's theory or an alternative theory is the more substantiated and correct one. Sadly, most professors disdain and even censor information that points to as-yet-unproven conspiracies.20

Fortunately, though, social psychologists have taken the lead in reversing this censoring trend. They recognize that the term "state crimes against democracy" encourages inquiry, unlike the meme "conspiracy theory," which, because of our knee-jerk conditioning, encourages censorship.

Once social psychologists begin inquiring into suspected SCADs, they then will be able to identify "patterns in SCAD victims, tactics, timing, those who benefit, and other SCAD characteristics,"21 writes deHaven-Smith. The social psychologists who systematically examine suspected SCADs — as they would examine any other social phenomena — will better understand deep politics. This scholarly examination will then lead them to identify our system's institutional vulnerabilities. Armed with such studies, they will be able to recommend that protections be established or strengthened.22

Without scientific inquiry by scholars and other concerned citizens into State Crimes Against Democracy, we are left floundering in a sea of competing theories, believing that we will never know the truth, so why even try. As deHaven-Smith observes:

When suspicious incidents occur that alter the nation's objectives, disrupt presidential elections, provoke military action, or otherwise affect the national agenda, Americans tend to accept the self-serving accounts of public officials, seldom considering the possibility that such incidents might have been initiated or facilitated by the officials themselves. The role and function of the universally understood concept of "agent provocateur" is grossly neglected in the idiom of American political discourse. This mass gullibility, which itself invites SCADs, is unlikely to change until SCAD detection and prosecution are improved.23 [Emphasis added] 

The word "corruption" is far too weak to describe the condition in which we find ourselves in the U.S. today. For example, there has been a merger of corporate interests within segments of our government—such as the revolving door of the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and other federal agencies designed to protect citizens. As a result, officials no longer even bother to adhere to the ethical standard of recusing themselves from a position of power or influence when faced with a conflict of interest.

Moreover, our government representatives have accepted a system of legalized bribery in the form of massive corporate campaign contributions. Thus we have, as investigative journalist Greg Palast satirically puts it, "the best democracy money can buy."24

Add this to the stunning fact that, to date, we have yet to witness a real criminal investigation into the attacks of 9/11, and we clearly see that the United States of America has become a culture of unaccountability. More precisely, there is wholesale impunity for the elite operatives of the deep state, but not for the rest of us.

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ron Suskind's report of a conversation with a former George W. Bush senior advisor gives us an idea of the relative invulnerability of these deep-state operatives. In his New York Times article, "Faith, Certainty, and the Presidency of George W. Bush," Suskind wrote:

In the summer of 2002, after I had written an article in Esquire that the White House didn't like about Bush's former communications director, Karen Hughes, I had a meeting with a senior adviser to Bush. He expressed the White House's displeasure, and then he told me something that at the time I didn't fully comprehend — but which I now believe gets to the very heart of the Bush presidency.

The aide said that guys like me were "in what we call the reality-based community," which he defined as people who "believe that solutions emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality." I nodded and murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut me off. "That's not the way the world really works anymore," he continued. "We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality. And while you're studying that reality—judiciously, as you will—we'll act again, creating other new realities, which you can study too, and that's how things will sort out. We're history's actors . . . and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do."25 [Emphasis added]

With blatant arrogance and remarkable clarity, this senior advisor was outlining his participation in the deep state. In fact, the operatives of the deep state, whether they are government officials or the business and banking elite of our country or their proxies, are the ones who would necessarily be the perpetrators of State Crimes Against Democracy — the aforementioned historical SCADs as well as 9/11 and the accompanying anthrax attacks in 2001.26 Hand in hand, piece by piece, they destroy the representative democracy that we inherited from our forefathers, who, by the way, predicted and adamantly warned us against such treachery.27

"This mass gullibility, which itself invites SCADs, is unlikely to change until SCAD detection and prosecution are improved."

~ Lance DeHaven-Smith

Another aspect contributing to the destruction of our republic is the common citizen's ignorance (willful or not) and/or acquiescence (witting or not). This is where the importance of the 9/11 Truth Movement and other movements working toward transparency and democracy can make a significant impact. There are numerous active groups around the world whose members have become informed on various issues. They work diligently to educate and transform societies so that all peoples may have health, prosperity, sovereignty, a sustainable environment, and accurate information for making informed decisions.

How does our knowledge of SCADs and of deep politics influence how we approach individuals with the evidence that indicates our government is lying to us about 9/11?

Well, this essay has established that a person's prior knowledge of high political crimes is key to whether or not they remain silent — or worse — about 9/11. Thus, we 9/11 Truth activists will be more successful in convincing people to accept our information if we first ascertain what our listeners already know. Then we can start a dialogue with them, based on how much knowledge they currently possess, rather than where we want their level of knowledge to be.

Clearly, prior knowledge of State Crimes Against Democracy and an understanding of deep politics are empowering assets that help us detect signals warning us that we are, once again, being deceived. However, as we shall see in the following section, detecting such signals may weaken some people, not empower them. This may be because they are the victims of "learned helplessness."


[1] Lance deHaven-Smith, “Beyond Conspiracy Theory: Patterns of High Crime in American Government,” American Behavioral Scientist 53, no. 6 (February 2010): 795–825; this entire issue is devoted to research on State Crimes Against Democracy.

Lance deHaven-Smith, “When Political Crimes Are Inside Jobs: Detecting State Crimes Against Democracy,” Administrative Theory & Praxis, 28, no. 3 (2006): 330–355.

Lance deHaven-Smith, Conspiracy Theory in America (University of Texas Press, 2013).

[2] Daniel K. Sage, “An Overview of State Crimes Against Democracy,” 2013. See this article for other SCAD-like operations not mentioned by deHaven-Smith.




[6] Mike Lofgren, “Anatomy of the Deep State.”

[7] Peter Dale Scott, The Road to 9/11: Wealth, Empire, and the Future of America (University of California Press, 2007), 4.

[8] Ibid. 2.

[9] Robert B. Stinnett, Day of Deceit: The Truth About FDR and Pearl Harbor (Free Press; Touchstone edition, 2001).


[11] Alex Constantine, Virtual Government: CIA Mind Control Operations in America (Feral House, 1997), 35–66.

Carl Bernstein, “The CIA and the Media: How America’s Most Powerful News Media Worked Hand in Glove with the Central Intelligence Agency and Why the Church Committee Covered It Up.”

William Casey, CIA Director, 1981–1987, candidly said, “We’ll know our disinformation program is complete when everything the American public believes is false.”

[12] Constantine, Virtual Government.


An excellent article on proven conspiracies:

[14] deHaven-Smith, Conspiracy Theory in America, 108.

[15] Ibid.

[16] Ibid. 200.

[17] Ibid. 107.

See full dispatch here.

[18] An article depicting the continued use of several of these talking points here.

[19] Michael Ruppert’s talk on VHS, Truth and Lies About 9/11 became available as early as the fall of 2001, and Nafeez Mosaddeq Amhed’s book, The War on Freedom, was published in July 2002.

[20] Adnan Zuberi, 9/11 in the Academic Community. This excellent film details the taboo nature of 9/11 in institutions of higher learning.

[21] deHaven-Smith, Beyond Conspiracy Theory, 799.

[22] Ibid. 796.

[23] Ibid. 811.

[24] Greg Palast, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy, (First Plume Printing, 2003), 25.

[25] Ron Suskind, “Faith, Certainty and the Presidency of George W. Bush,” New York Times Magazine, October 17, 2004.

[26] Graeme MacQueen, The 2001 Anthrax Deception: The Case for a Domestic Conspiracy (Clarity Press, 2014).

[27] deHaven-Smith, Conspiracy Theory in America.

Note: Electronic sources in the endnotes have all been archived. If they can no longer be found by a search on the Internet, readers desiring a copy may contact Frances Shure for a copy [ This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ].