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September 8, 2001: Marine Corps Offices Are Moved out of Pentagon to Adjacent Building, Move Saves Lives on 9/11 Edit
The weekend before the 9/11 attacks, the Department of Marine Aviation and its personnel are moved out of the Pentagon’s Wedge One and into the nearby Butler Building. The building is under construction, as it is being reinforced. Thanks to the move, no marines are killed or even seriously injured on 9/11. [LEATHERNECK, 11/2001]
September 8, 2001: Hijacker Reports Flight 11 Ticket LostEdit
Flight 11 hijacker Abdulaziz Alomari completes a lost ticket form and asks for a replacement ticket for his 9/11 flight. The circumstances in which he lost his ticket are unclear, but he will be issued with a new one the following day at the American Airlines terminal at Logan Airport. [FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION, 10/2001, PP. 265, 271 ]
September 8, 2001: Suspicious Visitors Try to Enter Boston Airport Control Tower Edit
Several unidentified Middle Eastern men try unsuccessfully to get a tour of the air traffic control tower at Boston’s Logan Airport, while, later in the day, a Middle Eastern man is able to enter the tower and look around. In the first incident, around late morning or early afternoon, four or five Middle Eastern men approach an air traffic controller[who?] in the parking area while he is on a cigarette break. The controller will later describe two of the men as “approximately 38 to 42 years of age,” while the others are “approximately 30 to 34 years of age.” One of the older men has a mustache, and all of them are dressed casually. The men ask the controller to let them have a tour of the control tower, but he refuses. After a brief conversation, he gives the men a phone number to call if they want a tour. Later on this day, during the evening, a Middle Eastern man who introduces himself as a pilot is able to enter and tour the tower. The man is able to get to the tower’s 19th floor, even though access to that floor is restricted. Officials later surmise that he waited in one of the elevators until an employee on the 19th floor called for it, and then the employee went down after the Middle Eastern man got off. The man enters a room where some controllers are on break. When the controllers ask the man what he is doing, he says he is a pilot who wants a tour of the tower cab. An unnamed source will later describe: “He showed some ID, said he was a pilot, and because it was not a busy time, they said OK. It is not that unusual for a pilot to get a tour.” The man heads up the stairs to the tower cab where he spends about 15 minutes and engages the controllers there in conversation. He says he lives in Haverhill and has family in Afghanistan, and then leaves on his own. The two incidents on this day will be recalled as suspicious after the 9/11 attacks, but the identity of the Middle Eastern men will not be established. [BOSTON GLOBE, 9/16/2001; BOSTON GLOBE, 9/17/2001; 9/11 COMMISSION, 2003]
September 8, 2001: Hijackers Seen with Unidentified Middle Eastern Male Edit
9/11 hijackers Hani Hanjour and Majed Moqed fail to cash a check at the First Union Bank, where they are accompanied by an unidentified Middle Eastern male. The unidentified male presents a Pennsylvania driving license to a bank employee. [FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION, 10/2001, PP. 265 ] However, there is no record of any of the hijackers obtaining a Pennsylvania driver’s license, or even visiting Pennsylvania before 9/11. For example, no such license is mentioned in the 9/11 Commission’s Terrorist Travel monograph, which lists the documents the hijackers obtained in the US. [9/11 COMMISSION, 8/21/2004, PP. 20-33 ] It is unclear whether the unidentified male is an associate of the hijackers, or whether one of the hijackers obtained a Pennsylvania driver’s license and the FBI and 9/11 Commission failed to uncover this.