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The Lone Gunmen show of early 2001 presaged

the 9/11 World Trade Center terrorist attacks

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Gripping drama shows a remotely controlled airliner on course to crash into the World Trade Center.

Screened in March 2001.

Script *

BYERS: We know it's a war game scenario. That it has to do with airline counter-terrorism. Why is it important enough to kill for.

BYERS SNR: Because it's no longer a game.

BYERS: But if some terrorist group wants to act out this scenario, then why target you for assassination?

BYERS SNR: Depends on who your terrorists are.

BYERS: The men who conceived of it the first place. You're saying our government is planning to commit a terrorist act against a domestic airline?

BYERS SNR: There you go again. Blaming the entire government as usual. In fact, a small faction ...

BYERS: For what possible gain?

BYERS SNR: The Cold War's over, John. But with no clear enemy to stockpile against, the arms market's flat. But bring down a fully loaded 727 into the middle of New York City and you'll find a dozen tinpot dictators all over the world just clamouring to take responsibility, and begging to be smart-bombed.

BYERS: We need to know our flightplan.


(LANGLY and FROHIKE are checking the flight data.)

FROHIKE: I'm mapping the data now.

(The monitor changes to show a map. The map increases in detail and a line showing the flightplan is superimposed on it. The line stops at a point on the map and the target building is highlighted. FROHIKE and LANGLY look at each other.)

LANGLY: Byers. Your flight's going to make an unscheduled stop. In exactly 22 minutes.

(Cut to FROHIKE and LANGLY.)

FROHIKE: Corner of Liberty and Washington, Lower Manhattan.


(Onboard the aircraft. BYERS and BYERS SNR are trying to keep their voices low.)

BYERS: World Trade Center. (He turns to his father) They're going to crash it into the World Trade Center.

BYERS SNR: I'll tell the flight crew.


(The Lone Gunmen offices. LANGLY is frantically working at the console.)

BYERS (VO): Langly, can you override the flight control system?

LANGLY: Working on it.


(The aircraft flight deck. BYERS SNR enters. The pilot turns to him)

PILOT: What is this?

(The navigator tries to stop BYERS SNR.)

BYERS SNR: My name is Bert Byers. (He shows them his ID) I work for the government. I believe this plane has been commandeered.

PILOT: Sir, passengers are not allowed in the cockpit. I need you to return to your seat now.

BYERS SNR: You don't have control of this plane and I don't know what we can do to get it back. Turn off your auto-pilot. There may be a chance we can override it.

PILOT: Sir, I'll be happy to contact your superiors in the government -

(BYERS SNR rushes to the flight controls.)

PILOT: Sir! Dammit!

(The navigator hauls BYERS SNR back. The Co-Pilot has grabbed the control stick.)

CO-PILOT: He's right!

(Cut to monitor in Lone Gunmen offices. The screen shows: "ALERT: SYSTEM OVERLOAD. Flushing C- Please wait".)

LANGLY: Dammit! Frozen again. (Exasperated) They've encrypted the manual override commands.

FROHIKE: Well, decrypt them then.

LANGLY: I don't have enough power ...

(We cut between BYERS and the Lone Gunmen offices.)

LANGLY (VO): ... my CPUs are pegged.

BYERS: Langly, what's happening?

LANGLY: I'll try decrypting in background mode.

BYERS: How long will that take?

LANGLY: On my calcs per sec? I estimate (pause) seven to ten days.

BYERS: Oh. Needless to say!

LANGLY: Our asses are fried.

* Contains omissions.

Another 'bizarre coincidence'

Bizarre 9/11 coincidence

Name of publisher and date of publication not known.

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