A Nov. 19 headline in The News -- "Witnesses saw jet breaking up, video shows" -- regarding the TWA Flight 800 explosion is fatuous. The label "CIA Animation" on the video indicates that it can't show what witnesses saw any more than a Disney animation of "Dumbo" can show that elephants fly.
The reality is that 244 eyewitnesses consistently reported missile tracks. Most witness accounts were "remarkably similar." Many of these witnesses had previously seen missile trails and had seen burning airliners on video. The real issue here is: Do we believe a large number of consistent eyewitnesses to an event or "scenic" claims of a highly politicized CIA?
The witnesses had no reason to lie; the CIA had every reason to do so. A jet brought down by "friendly fire" would be a horrendous public relations disaster for all U.S. national security agencies. To avoid such embarrassments, the CIA has repeatedly resorted to coverups. Only later has it admitted lying to the American public.
IRWIN D. BROSS Amherst