I have a theory I’d like to test out on you.

You will recall that the Sept. 11 hijackers totaled 19. The number 19 just doesn’t make sense.

There were three five-man teams and one four-man team.

All three five-man teams completed their missions – crashing two planes into the World Trade Center and destroying it and crashing another airliner into the Pentagon.

The unsuccessful four-man team was apparently overpowered by passengers and the plane crashed into a Pennsylvania field.

Here’s my theory: Someone didn’t show up for work that day. One of the hijack conspirators got cold feet. Someone who went through an immense amount of planning and training is still alive and probably not only on the run from the U.S. authorities but in danger for his life from Osama bin Laden.

Do you see where I’m going?

Now, some of you will recall that Zacharias Moussaoui was arrested in Minnesota a month before the attacks. Some have referred to him as the 20th hijacker. He may well have been. He could be the guy who was planning to be on that hijacked flight that crashed in Pennsylvania.

But I don’t think so.

Moussaoui is the chap who had the manual for a crop-dusting plane among his possessions. That indicates to me that he had other plans than to be on one of the planes Sept. 11. He was going to lead the chemical or biological attack on America. We also now know that Moussaoui was in contact with Mohammed Atta, one of the doomed suicide hijackers of Sept. 11.

What was Moussaoui’s major role with bin Laden’s group? He is a 33-year-old French Moroccan who specialized in recruiting other young Muslims to fight for the cause. It seems unlikely a replacement could not have been found if indeed he was to give his life Sept. 11.

Moussaoui was inquiring about flying lessons for passenger airliners, but I’m not convinced he was the 20th hijacker. Not at all. If we assume he was, we could be making a major miscalculation. We could be ignoring another suspect – one who could greatly help the United States get inside the terrorist network of bin Laden.

It seems to me that bin Laden’s group had ample opportunity to find a fifth member of the hijack team – a whole month following Moussaoui’s arrest, if indeed that was his plan. Why didn’t it? Why did that fourth terror crew risk the operation by being understaffed?

Did you see the photos of the hijackers on that plane? Two of them appeared to be too young to shave. No wonder the passengers were able to overtake them and at least steer the plane into crashing in the middle of nowhere as opposed to a strategic target.

I think the plan was to have four five-member teams active Sept. 11. I think somebody chickened out.

What if we were to find that 20th hijacker? Can you imagine the wealth of information he could provide?

We’ve got to find a way to bring this agent in from the cold. He needs protection from bin Laden. A deal needs to be made.

This could be the most important break in the case – if I’m right.

If I’m wrong, we’ve lost nothing. But I sincerely hope U.S. authorities have considered this possibility and are pulling out all the stops to find the would-be hijacker before he is snuffed by bin Laden.

What do you think? Am I missing something? Or are we overlooking the obvious?

Don’t miss Joseph Farah’s exclusive report “Jihad in America” in the November issue of Whistleblower magazine, WorldNetDaily’s monthly offline publication. Order your subscription now.

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