Skip to comments.American Airlines Flight 62: A Terrorist Probe?
Posted on 03/05/2007 8:55:22 AM PST by aculeus
The following is an email I received detailing a serious probe on board American Airlines flight 62 traveling from Paris to Miami. The information comes to me second-hand from a trusted source in the field. American Airlines spokesman John Hotard confirmed the incident on flight 62 with me, stating there was a disturbance on board, it was handled by crew. I asked Mr. Hotard the status of the men who were detained by FBI. Hotard told me for security reasons, I cant comment further.
Here it is, unedited:
This is not meant to scare, but it probably will. Consider yourself informed and warned that the threat is real. This crew reported that they were not prepared that something of this nature could be happening to them.
Flt 62, Paris to MIA [Miami], a few weeks ago. 2 maybe 4 mid-eastern types causing minor disturbance from the get-go. Nothing that the FAs [flight attendants] couldnt deal with, but, in hindsight, they seemed to be pushing the envelope. Cross-cabin activity, hanging out in the forward galley, complaining about everything, etc. Mid-Atlantic, the FO [First Officer, or Co-Pilot] called to return to the cockpit after his crew-rest break. One of the perps [perpetrators] was in the forward galley, was instructed by a FA to go aft, but didnt. As the cockpit door opened, another perp suddenly appeared from around the galley, dropped his shoulder into FO while the first one got in the way of the FOs attempt to block the other here Im not certain so .wait for the movie.
FO (one of our first FFDOs [Federal Flight Deck Officers*]) was about to pull his flashlight to use as a weapon in a counter attack, but thought better of it not knowing how many more perps he might have to fight, called lockdown to the FB [secondary B First Officer], inside the cockpit, who slammed the door. As soon as the perps heard the word lockdown, they retreated to their seats.
Im not doing justice to the story, but, if not an attempt on the cockpit, this was a serious probe.
Crew considered divert, but since the threat diminished and seemed to be contained, they pressed on towards MIA. Flight was met in MIA by FBI, FAMS [Federal Air Marshal Service] (none aboard, by the way), AA [American Airlines] Security suits, etc. During the de-brief, which lasted several hours, the FAMs told the pilots that they would have dropped both of the perps with the first shove near the cockpit door. Perps claimed to not understand English, were detained for 4 days and deported, back to Paris, when they are free to attend Sunday school, tell their buddies of their Adventure and plan their next move.
Enjoying the story so far? Its good we cant carry guns on Intl [International] trips, eh?
Upsetting is that we all have to learn of this, by happenstance. Why didnt you and your last crew know of this? We took a delay yesterday while this FB detailed the entire event to my crew. Believe me, there were no disbelievers that the terrorist threat is real in my crew by the time we boarded.
Im more than upset that this is still a secret! The FB is a man Ive flown with often, trust completely and attended FFDO (Federal Flight Deck Officer) training with a year ago January. I hope Ive presented his story accurately, but am certain that the basic details are very close.
On a separate note, American Airlines flight 63, also traveling from Paris to Miami, was the subject of a thwarted terrorist attack in December of 2001 when shoe bomber Richard Reid tried to bring down the aircraft by igniting explosives hidden in his shoes. Reid was later found guilty of terrorism charges in federal court in Massachusetts and sentenced to life in prison.
* Armed Federal Flight Deck Officers are not allowed to carry their guns while flying international routes.
They know the only time they can possibly get access to the cockpit is when some one exits or enters. Schedules are routine. Fix the schedules of rest breaks, etc../.......
It also conitues in the interior of the country at national and regional infrastructure sites.
We must let our people be armed on international flights. These two terrorists should have been dropped on this flight...but there was no one with the weapon to do so.
I believe this, that the passengers, upon learning that ME men have taken a flight, will not allow it to continue, IMHO, viza viz Flight 93 type ction.
Well it appears we have an idea where the next attack will come from.
Move along. Nothing to see. Sounds a lot like those "musicians" headed to Vegas a few years ago.
Agree. Crews may have to forego breaks outside of the cockpit, or reevaluate their procedures against being waylaid when entering or leaving the cockpit. We evidently have muslim psychopaths in final stage of training, who are hot to finish Reid's job and take down an aircraft to get to their 72 virgins.
Exactly. Despite how it was portrayed, the professionals know and have taken note and preparations accordingly.
These kinds of stories are a concern but I'm much more worried about MANPADS which have likely already been smuggled in to the US.
If they know the FO, etc. will come out at exactly 2 hours +/- a few minutes for his break, all they have to do is start some diversion in the galley over some stupid coffee or other trash, get the FA's distracted and wait for the door latch to move. The forward galleys should be OFF LIMITS to ALL passengers for a period of time when the FO's can do their business. This is a TRIAL RUN. Expect many more. I have no doubt that this was a PROBE of the defenses..........
Here's hoping no one links to this post in the next 6-18 months in profound retrospect...
Nothing could comes from the France.
Crews can't and won't forgo breaks. Their bladders are just like yours and 8 hours is a little long.
Why not use some portable potty for flight crew?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.