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Steven Jones questions T. Mark Hightower 10/20/2011 and Hightower’s response

On Thu, 2011-10-20 at 18:20 -0600, Steven Jones wrote:
> Let me add a question — your responses would be appreciated, as I’m
> being asked about your current stand on these issues.
> Thanks.
> On Thu, Oct 20, 2011 at 6:14 PM, Steven Jones
> wrote:
> Subject: What say ye now?
> Mark,
> We talked briefly and have exchanged correspondance also.
> 1. Are you still saying that I said or say that the red-chip material
> is a “high explosive”?
> 2. Are you still saying that I said or say that nanothermite
> is a “high explosive”?
> 3. Do you now say that I place thermite and HMX/RDX in the
> same category?
> 4. What are you saying about these issues now?
> Thanks,
> Steven Jones

Below is Hightower’s response of October 22, 2011, with Hightower’s question for Steven Jones at the end, which Jones has not yet answered as of today, November 24, 2011.


My current views on these issues are best represented by articles I posted on my blog, one on August 24, 2011, “Nanothermite: If It Doesn’t Fit You Must Acquit!”, and another on September 8, 2011, “Engineer’s Nano-Thermite Challenge.”


The “Nanothermite: If It Doesn’t Fit You Must Acquit!” article was also edited further by Jim Fetzer and posted on Veterans Today on August 27, 2011.


The most complete repository of my research on nanothermite and explosives pertaining to 9/11 is on my scribd page.


The above should answer your question number 4. In your other 3 questions, you are using the same tactic on me that you have previously complained about when people used it on you, that is, paraphrasing rather then directly quoting. I will quote directly from your email of July 20, 2011 where you made this complaint.

“Here is my published blog on 911Blogger.com, which offers my views and I hope that JimF will no longer misrepresent me — feel free to QUOTE anything from this — not paraphrase! Paraphrasing is evidently fraught with error and a higher probability for misrepresenting. Note particularly the portions highlighted.”

“You may quote me from my published papers and blogs, but please do not put words into my mouth.”

So I am concerned that you are putting words into my mouth by paraphrasing me in your first 3 questions. I would much prefer if you would directly quote from my writings or interviews, and take issue with me and ask me questions based on that, rather than asking me yes or no questions that I feel misrepresent what I have “said.”

So I will not answer your first 3 questions with direct yes or no answers, but I will attempt to answer what I think (and hope) is the spirit of your questions.

Concerning question 1, I don’t think that I have ever claimed that you said or say that the red-chip material is a “high explosive.”

And concerning questions 2 and 3, below I am going to quote from an email I sent to you on 7/22/2011. My opinions that I believe you have paraphrased in questions 2 and 3 are based upon my interpretation of some of your writings (cited below). I am saying that the most logical interpretation for me of what you wrote, is that nanothermite was placed in the category of high explosives along with HMX and RDX. I know you have gone on record that this is not what you meant, and I accept you at your word on this, but this does not change my opinion of what I think the most logical interpretation is of what you wrote.


In 2006 Professor Steven Jones wrote,

“Highly exothermic reactions other than jet-fuel or office-material fires, such as thermite reactions which produce white-hot molten metal as an end product, are clearly implied by the data. In addition, the use of explosives such as HMX or RDX should be considered. “Superthermites” are also explosive as must be remembered in any in-depth investigation which considers hypotheses suggested by the available data.” (2)

(2) Jones, Steven E., “Why Indeed Did the WTC Buildings Completely Collapse?” Journal of 911 Studies, Volume 3, September 2006

Now ask yourself, what is the most reasonable interpretation of “Superthermites are also explosive” in the above context? Would it be that superthermites are explosives in like manner to the high explosives HMX or RDX?

This seems a reasonable interpretation to me. Jones has defined what he is talking about when he first uses the word explosives by saying, “such as,” and then citing two “high explosives,” HMX and RDX. In the next sentence when he uses the word “explosive”, is it not reasonable to assume he is using it in the same sense that he just used it and defined its use in the previous sentence?

Jones is definitely differentiating “superthermite” from “thermite,” and putting superthermite in the category of explosive rather than incendiary like thermite, but it also seems clear that he is putting superthermite in the category of high explosive because he defined his use of the term “explosive” as high explosive.


I would like to finish by posing a question to you. Do you think that exploring the issue of the detonation velocity of nanothermite is worthwhile in the context of 9/11 nanothermite research? And please explain your answer.

Respectfully submitted,


T Mark Hightower
San Jose, CA

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Comment by Jeff on February 20, 2012 at 10:28am

Mr. Hightower, the data you've provided has been invaluable. I'd like to personally thank you for everything you've done in this arena.

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