The Pentagon was not hit by a missile on 9/11

By: Arron Williams
April 24 2023

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The Pentagon was not hit by a missile on 9/11


The Verdict False

Evidence from official reports and eyewitness accounts confirms that a plane struck the Pentagon on 9/11. There is no evidence of a missile.

Claim ID e513ade0


A video shared on Facebook shows footage of the Pentagon being struck by an object on 9/11. An explosion follows the strike. The video claims a missile struck the Pentagon, not a plane, as official reports state. The speaker in the video further claims that witnesses who saw the missile were silenced and that the missile attack was carried out by the “deep state.” The video has over 60,000 views.

In Fact

As detailed in Encylopedia Britannica, on 11 September 2001, attackers boarded and hijacked four domestic aircraft. The first plane, American Airlines Flight 11, hit the north tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 a.m. The third plane, American Airlines Flight 77, struck the U.S. Defence Headquarters, the Pentagon, at 9:37 a.m.

Claims that a missile hit the Pentagon are a known 9/11 conspiracy theory that evidence has previously debunked.

The footage in the Facebook video is blurry and of poor quality, and its source could not be found. However, the footage was found on TikTok and BitChute alongside other conspiratorial claims that state the footage proves a missile hit the Pentagon. In the footage, the white object that hits the Pentagon is small and blurred by the video quality. There is no easy way to visually verify if it is a missile or plane.

While the footage is of poor quality, the missile conspiracy theory has been debunked in the past, and evidence shows a plane hit the Pentagon. Photos from an FBI investigation show debris from Flight 77 around the crash site. Furthermore, several eyewitness accounts report seeing a plane strike the Pentagon. As reported by CBS, Sean Boger, who was in the control tower of the Pentagon helipad, saw the plane coming towards the Pentagon a few seconds before it struck. An interview report with eyewitness Lt Colonel Steven O’Brien is also available through government records in The National Archives and Records Administration. O’Brien was a Minnesota Air National Guard member and was scheduled to ferry cargo from D.C. back to Minnesota. The report states that, while in the air, O’Brien saw Flight 77 crash and told Washington Air Traffic control that the plane was down. 

Allyn E. Kilsheimer, the first structural engineer to arrive at the Pentagon following the crash, told Popular Mechanics, “It was absolutely a plane.” Kilsheimer further states that he saw and picked up parts of the plane debris and found Flight 77’s black box. The same Popular Mechanics article also addresses the conspiracy that the impact holes were too small for a plane. Mete Sozen, an American Society of Civil Engineers team member and professor of structural engineering at Purdue University, told Popular Mechanics that one of the plane’s wings hit the ground and the other was sheared off due to the impact with the Pentagon. This means that the total size of the aircraft did strike through into the Pentagon. Sozen further stated that a crashing jet doesn’t punch a cartoon-like outline, and instead, what was left of the plane following the impact “flowed into the structure in a state closer to liquid.” 

The Verdict

The missile claims are a known 9/11 conspiracy theory. Official reports and accounts verify that a plane, not a missile, struck the Pentagon on 9/11. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false.

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