New details released by al-Qaida about the September 11 attacks reveal that the crash of EgyptAir flight 990 in 1999 served as the inspiration for the deadliest terror attack in history.
In an article titled: "September 11 attacks – the story untold," published in its weekly magazine al-Masrah, al-Qaida claimed that the inspiration for the September 11 attacks was the story of Gamil al-Batouti, the Egyptian co-pilot who deliberately crashed EgyptAir flight 990 into the Atlantic Ocean in October 1999, killing all 217 people on board, most of them Americans.
Prior to the September 11 attacks, al-Qaida decided to implement a new strategy, targeting the "Far Enemy" (United States) instead of gradually liquidating all "US collaborators – Arab apostate rulers."
According to al-Masrah, when then-al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden heard about the Egyptian plane crash, he asked: "Why didn’t he crash it into a nearby building?" pronouncing the idea of targeting buildings.
When bin Laden met with Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, who was identified as "the principal architect of the 9/11 attacks" by the 9/11 Commission Report, the latter presented him with an additional idea: crashing American airplanes.
Before presenting his idea to bin Laden, Sheikh Mohammed started working on a plan to crash 12 American airplanes at once. And so, the final plan implemented by al-Qaida was a combination of Sheikh Mohammed’s and bin Laden's ideas: crashing American airplanes into the buildings of the World Trade Center.