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E-mail stirs fears of hijacking 'dry run' Airline response leaves questions unanswered
WND ^ | Posted: December 05, 2009 | By Bob Unruh

Posted on 12/05/2009 7:53:36 AM PST by Irisshlass

An airline is fending off charges fueled by a widely circulated e-mail that an incident on a flight from Atlanta to Houston, reported by news media as minor, actually bore the marks of a "dry run" by Muslim terrorists.

The e-mail account of a purported passenger on AirTran Flight 297 on Nov. 17, bolstered by a separate investigation by Northeast Intelligence Network, contends that about a dozen Muslim men in "full attire" who were spread throughout the jet as it taxied to the runway caused a disturbance prompting pilots to return to the gate and bring law enforcement officers onboard.

The airline, at its InsideAirTran website, denied many of the claims made in the e-mail, which purportedly was written by a passenger, Tedd Petruna of Houston, and circulated by a friend, A. Gene Hackemack. Neither Petruna nor Hackemack responded immediately to WND requests for commentAfter first rebutting Petruna's written account point by point, AirTran later posted on its site a denial that the e-mailer was even on the flight, writing: "After conducting additional research into this situation, we have verified, according to flight manifests (legally binding documents) that the individual that allegedly created a first-hand account of events on-board AirTran Airways flight 297, a Theodore Petruna, was never actually on-board the flight."

Yet questions remain, such as why was the flight crew was changed after a supposedly minor disturbance and why several passengers were so distraught that they refused to continue on to their destination after the men involved were allowed to reboard the airplane.

Now, KHOU in Houston reports the Federal Aviation Administration has begun investigating.

(Excerpt) Read more at wnd.com ...


TOPICS: Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: fraud; lie; urbanlegend
Douglas J. Hagmann, director of the Northeast Intelligence Network, said a passenger on the flight contacted him two days after the incident. Hagmann published a report of his group's investigation, which concluded that the media, the airline and government agencies have not reported the truth.

"The reasons, I have been told, is fear of predatory lawsuits, negative publicity from accusations of religious profiling, and the obligatory subjugation to mindless mandatory Muslim sensitivity training that make a mockery of our American system of values," Hagmann writes.

He said an airline official told him "we don't want to become another flight 300," referring to a similar scenario on a US Airways flight three years ago.

1 posted on 12/05/2009 7:53:37 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: Irisshlass

This didn’t happen.


2 posted on 12/05/2009 7:56:06 AM PST by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: Irisshlass

Wouldn’t “full attire” require a suicide belt and AK-47?


3 posted on 12/05/2009 7:57:48 AM PST by Paladin2
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To: Irisshlass

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2400688/posts


4 posted on 12/05/2009 7:59:55 AM PST by netmilsmom (I am Ilk)
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To: Irisshlass

Causing a minor disturbance is a possible attempt to get the air marshalls to self-identify.

If there are any.


5 posted on 12/05/2009 8:01:25 AM PST by zipper
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To: Principled

Flight attendents were sobbing openly...Robinson was warned not to get on board by another passenger...the orginal crew refused to fly the airplane over a cell phone incident??? A dozen or more passengers left the airplane and rebooked their flight? It did happen.


6 posted on 12/05/2009 8:02:01 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: Principled
You are so right. It is all rumor BS, and makes look so very stupid for believing it.

If it was posted on April 1, everyone would have recognized it as a bad April Fools Joke immediately.

7 posted on 12/05/2009 8:02:19 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: Irisshlass

I wouldn’t doubt that Ted Petruna is a pseudonym, but that the account is substantially real.


8 posted on 12/05/2009 8:04:21 AM PST by Dr. Sivana
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To: netmilsmom

I know what AJC says..if you read this story you would understand why it is being posted.


9 posted on 12/05/2009 8:04:33 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: MindBender26
"and makes look so very stupid"

Quite right.

10 posted on 12/05/2009 8:05:25 AM PST by Paladin2
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To: Irisshlass
Flight attendants were sobbing openly...Robinson was warned not to get on board by another passenger...the original crew refused to fly the airplane over a cell phone incident??? A dozen or more passengers left the airplane and rebooked their flight? It did happen.

Who says so. What person, one who can be easily identified as a real person on the flight, says, "Yes, I saw this happen."

This is all rumor packed on top of anonymous e-mails packed on top of rumor.

I'm sorry but this does not pass the smell test. It's about an 8.5 on the BS meter.

11 posted on 12/05/2009 8:06:36 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: Dr. Sivana

http://www.gillreport.com/index.php Podcast

Steve Gill - December 3, 2009 Hr 3
LIVE from the Opryland Hotel and Convention Center; D

The guy is real.


12 posted on 12/05/2009 8:06:51 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: Dr. Sivana

Nope, he works at NASA down in South Houston. He’s real.


13 posted on 12/05/2009 8:08:09 AM PST by StolarStorm
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To: Irisshlass

PS, back in my Crusading TV Reporter days, we would get about 3 stories a week that were this bad... and all BS.


14 posted on 12/05/2009 8:09:29 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: MindBender26

Dr. Keith Robinson says so..He also did a 45 min interview. Do your own homework.


15 posted on 12/05/2009 8:11:52 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: MindBender26
The more I see the more I believe it. I am not saying it was a dry run. It may have been a attempt to extort money from the airline with a threat of legal action. But let me ask you what happens to the already deep in trouble airlines if a story like this goes viral right during the most heavily traveled time of the year? People cancel, drive, take the train, but what ever the airline industry gets clobbered BIG TIME! A most would go under in a shortly there after.
16 posted on 12/05/2009 8:14:02 AM PST by Kartographer (".. we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.")
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To: MindBender26

Hmmmm...interesting you call it Crusade..


17 posted on 12/05/2009 8:15:01 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: MindBender26

Yes, and you are allowing that experience to color your view of this one. Nope, its real. Ask a pilot or anyone connected to AirTran. It wasn’t a dry run though, it was an attempt to get a payoff.


18 posted on 12/05/2009 8:16:07 AM PST by StolarStorm
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To: Irisshlass

New proof, whole story is BS

This from new AJC posting

"Although AirTran previously had declined to release the flight manifest, that changed Friday evening. In addition to discounting Petruna's story, the airline responded to the amount of attention it believed the circulated e-mail was gaining, said Christopher White, AirTran spokesman.

There was no way Petruna could have seen what he described on Flight 297, AirTran said in a statement. Petruna departed from Akron-Canton, Ohio, on AirTran Flight 205 on Nov. 17, officials said. He was supposed to connect to Flight 297 to head to Houston, but he missed his first flight out of Ohio. And therefore, he missed the connecting flight.

"Flight 297, the flight which Mr. Patruna allegedly wrote a first-hand account of, originally pushed back from its gate in Atlanta at 4:40 p.m. EST, a full 26 minutes before flight 205 arrived at the gate in Atlanta making this flight connection impossible," according to AirTran.

Neither Petruna nor Hackemack responded to requests from the AJC to speak to them Friday evening.

end of AJC story

Petruna could not have seen what he claims to have seen, (and he started it all, it all hangs on him) because he was in midair, on another flight, when it happened. He was pissed at AirTran because he missed his flight, and decided to start a rumor about it to hurt them, and now has been caught.


19 posted on 12/05/2009 8:34:10 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: MindBender26

How can he start a rumor..when you have “other” witnesses.

Doug Hagman interviewed 7 other witnesses which included two law enforcement officers who handled the after action reports.

“According to one airline security official, “This was a deliberate, well planned attempt to disrupt a domestic flight that was organized in advance of the boarding of these [Muslim] passengers. The purpose of their actions appeared to be multi-faceted, not the least of which was an attempt to change their status from passengers to victims of religious profiling”

Petruna was in midair when they incident took place. But you have 7 other witnesses which includes law enforcement. And the orginal crew refused to fly the plane.


20 posted on 12/05/2009 8:52:20 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: MindBender26

Perhaps, but I know you like to cover up for the government regarding airplane stuff. Remember this one:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1461454/posts?q=1&;page=1


21 posted on 12/05/2009 8:54:28 AM PST by Perchant
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To: MindBender26
If that were true, then how did he know ANYTHING at all happened on the flight??? Well???

Tell you what, you claim to be a former TV reporter. Use those skills rather than rely on what you are hearing from "interested" parties online. Use your resources, to locate and talk to several Flight Personnel who work for AirTran. Ask several, because most will be suspicious of a stranger asking them about it. Do not record them, do not tell them you will disseminate the info. Find out first hand what the story is. Do not tell us the details as that would be a personal violation of their privacy. But, if/when you find out what really happened... you can drop your crusade and you can be satisfied in knowing something that most don't.
22 posted on 12/05/2009 8:54:46 AM PST by StolarStorm
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To: Irisshlass
BS, These are all rumors and unsubstantiated stories. All these so called internet journalists, all interviewing witness but no names given, and when names are given, it's all BS as was this guy.

It's like the game of “telephone.” Everyone adds 10% so they have a better bar story.

It is all overblown, and we are the real victims if we believe it.

23 posted on 12/05/2009 8:58:05 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: StolarStorm

Because he was in the area when the flight taxied back in.

Get some critical thinking going here.

The man who started it all lied.


24 posted on 12/05/2009 8:59:37 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: MindBender26

If that is so, then it still indicates that something indeed happened.... that was significant enough for him to have noticed. Like I said, rather than get an ego boost out of acting like the “intelligent” skeptic, use your reporter skills and find out for yourself.


25 posted on 12/05/2009 9:01:22 AM PST by StolarStorm
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To: MindBender26

http://www.gillreport.com/index.php Podcast

Steve Gill - December 3, 2009 Hr 3
LIVE from the Opryland Hotel and Convention Center; D

Steve Gill spoke to Tedd Petruno and this interview above is 45 mins with Dr. Keith Robinson.

Why didn’t the AJC interview him, he is available.


26 posted on 12/05/2009 9:04:46 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: Irisshlass
It certainly did happen and Debbie Schlussel confirmed it.
27 posted on 12/05/2009 9:06:50 AM PST by Stepan12 (Palin & Bolton in 2012)
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To: Irisshlass

It seems we have some CAIR apologists on here, spreading phony “debunking” stories about an actual incident — much like that Liberal site, Snopes.


28 posted on 12/05/2009 9:08:17 AM PST by Stepan12 (Palin & Bolton in 2012)
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To: MindBender26

Dr. Keith Robinson is also a Corps Commander of the Houston Regional Community Chaplain Corps.

This is a name and it is not BS.


29 posted on 12/05/2009 9:09:12 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: Irisshlass
Steve Gill spoke to Tedd Petruno

We now know Steve Gill, and everyone else, was conned by Petruno, because Petruno could not have seen what he claims to have seen, that set off entire story.

The real story here is, why is our Conservative Internet Community so willing to believe a story that was so easily disproved.

We NEED more critical thinking, or we will end up chasing our tails.

30 posted on 12/05/2009 9:09:35 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: Irisshlass

Robinson SAW nothing. He came up afterwards.


31 posted on 12/05/2009 9:10:23 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: Stepan12
Schlussel looks like an ass in this. She calls Robinson a passenger on the flight. In his own statement, which she posts, he says he was NOT a passenger on the flight, but was on another flight. He says he saw NOTHING of the original incident.

Wake up people! It's all BS!

32 posted on 12/05/2009 9:13:27 AM PST by MindBender26 (Never kick Dems when they're down. Wait 'till they're 1/2 way back up. You get much better leverage!)
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To: StolarStorm
"...use your reporter skills and find out for yourself"

IOW, make him prove a negative?

33 posted on 12/05/2009 9:13:31 AM PST by Ben Ficklin
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To: Stepan12
No, they are not CAIR folks. Some people just like to feel superior to the unwashed ignorant masses who buy into "bunk". Its an ego trip for them to be the "smart" skeptics.

They are ususally correct in some details when it comes down to it, but the times they ae not, like this one, it is fun to watch.
34 posted on 12/05/2009 9:16:00 AM PST by StolarStorm
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To: Ben Ficklin

No, ... to do some research since he has the skills to do so. I think its a fair request.


35 posted on 12/05/2009 9:18:32 AM PST by StolarStorm
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To: MindBender26

He saw enough and talked to people...you wake up and quit reading that liberal rag AJC.


36 posted on 12/05/2009 9:21:25 AM PST by Irisshlass
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To: MindBender26; Principled
From an Atlanta Journal Constitution article yesterday:

According to AirTran, shortly after 4:40 p.m. on Nov. 17, Flight 297 bound for Houston taxied toward the runway of Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. But before the Boeing 717 made it to the runway, the pilot made the decision to return the plane to the gate. A flight attendant asked a male passenger twice to put away a cell phone or camera.

At the gate, the passenger -- who didn't speak English -- and a companion were asked to leave the plane, which they did without incident, the airline reported.

When it was determined the problem was caused by a language barrier, AirTran and TSA officials allowed the man, and 12 others traveling with him to re-board, and the flight left for Houston a little more than two hours later. Later, officials said the entire incident was the result of a miscommunication.

Nancy Deveikis was seated in seat 29A aboard Flight 297, directly behind an unidentified man who she believes spoke Spanish. Deveikis said the man was looking at pictures on a camera, and did not understand a flight attendant's requests to turn the device off.

Principled and MindBender, you two actually believe that a domestic U.S. flight with 60-plus passengers bound for Texas, for God's sake, had NO ONE on board that could translate for a Spanish-only passenger a simple "turn off your electronic device, please" request, and that therefore that plane had to RETURN TO THE GATE?

Puh-leeeeeeeeeeze.

You actually believe that of the other 12 passengers "accompanying" the fellow tossed off the plane who were returned later to the plane as reported in this acount, not one of them could translate from English to Spanish for their traveling companion?

You actually BELIEVE as sufficient a report quoting ONE passenger on the plane, seated behind the offending passsenger, a witness so dense that she didn't know for sure whether or not the guy in front of her was speaking Spanish or some other language?

In short, you actually believe that a plane bound for the American Southwest, was forced to the extreme measure of returning to the gate and disembarking passengers AND crew because of ONE possibly SPANISH-only passenger who wouldn't turn off his camera when asked?

Get real. I don't pretend to know what did or didn't happen with Petruna or the Chaplain, but I DO know -- and YOU SHOULD TOO -- that the scenario implied in the AJC report of yesterday is no more believable than the claim that Santa and his reindeers came and towed that plane back to the gate.

37 posted on 12/05/2009 1:11:24 PM PST by Finny ("Raise hell. Vote smart." -- Ted Nugent.)
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To: MindBender26
We NEED more critical thinking, or we will end up chasing our tails.

You're right. And you can start by applying some critical thinking of your own to the AJC excerpt I posted above; it's also easy enough to apply that critical thinking to the whole article here.

I don't claim to know what did happen, but I sure as hell know what DIDN'T happen.

38 posted on 12/05/2009 1:27:20 PM PST by Finny ("Raise hell. Vote smart." -- Ted Nugent.)
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To: Finny

No, you misread. I do not believe this story. I assert that it didn’t happen.


39 posted on 12/05/2009 2:17:16 PM PST by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: Finny

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/2400983/replies?c=2


40 posted on 12/05/2009 2:18:16 PM PST by Principled (Get the capital back! NRST!)
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To: Stepan12; Irisshlass

Thank you, I think it is real as well.


41 posted on 12/05/2009 2:25:10 PM PST by Katarina (Thank God for Conservative talk radio.)
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To: Principled
I'm still not clear. What are you saying didn't happen? The entire incident, all of it made up of whole cloth? Then all news reports, including the AJC report afterward quoting AirTran and TSA officials' explanations of an Atlanta-Houston flight forced to return to the gate, were 100 percent fictional exercises in creative writing that made it into print on the news pages thanks to an email gone viral?

Or are you saying that what didn't happen was the version being presented by AirTran and TSA?

42 posted on 12/05/2009 2:27:42 PM PST by Finny ("Raise hell. Vote smart." -- Ted Nugent.)
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To: Katarina
Thank you, I think it is real as well.

She is an extremely intelligent albeit prickly, unpleasant woman.

Take this fine quote for example:

"B: I contacted Tedd Petruna, and he recently called me back and confirmed the story. I believe him 100%. And FYI, Snopes needs to be de-Snoped. Snopes is completely unreliable, very left-wing, lies about things, tells the opposite of the truth in a number of cases, and gets a lot of things wrong. Why would you rely on some left-wing couple from California to decide the truth for you?"

Debbie Schlussel

And in case she reads this she might as well know who it is:

The Underzog Website

43 posted on 12/05/2009 3:07:50 PM PST by Stepan12 (Palin & Bolton in 2012)
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To: Irisshlass

INDEED.

Sometimes some things get bent overmuch.


44 posted on 12/05/2009 3:44:54 PM PST by Quix (POL Ldrs quotes fm1900 TRAITORS http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/religion/2130557/posts?page=81#81)
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