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Another Plane Down in New York 1113

Another plane has crashed, this time in Queens. You can read a blurb at Yahoo. isn't responding for me. LaGuardia, Newark and JFK are closed now. Update: 11/12 14:54 GMT by T : New reports indicate that the plane was departing from JFK, not arriving. Also, CNN has confirmed that this was American Airlines flight 587, an Airbus A 300. Update: 11/12 14:57 GMT by T : Further information is that the plane was en route to the Dominican Republic, and that the disaster actually involves two crash sites, not just one -- an engine fell from the plane some distance from the fuselage.
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Another Plane Down in New York

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  • Unknown (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dbarclay10 ( 70443 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @10:48AM (#2553572)
    Just to let you all know - as off press time for this posting, nobody knows whether this was an accident, or another terrorist attack.

    Let's not jump to conclusions.
  • by HarrisonSilp ( 527951 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @10:51AM (#2553612) Homepage
    I was thinking of going across the office area I'm in to check out CNN but I thought twice, I have better things to do, although there's no word yet I'm betting this has nothing to do with "terrorist" attacks, just another plane crash? If you want to call plane crashes routine.... I'm sure (ok, I hope) this is just a non-event that the media will be all over, news at eleven.
  • bandwidth/capacity (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mgkimsal2 ( 200677 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @10:57AM (#2553674) Homepage
    Did every news site return all the extra servers and bandwidth they acquired during the 9/11 attack? Suddenly I can't get to cnn, yahoo news, and many other sites. What happened to their extra capacity?
  • by sammy baby ( 14909 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:01AM (#2553713) Journal
    Almost exactly 2 months after, they would probably not choose 11 Nov as it would be a Sunday.

    Today is Veteran's Day in the US. I suspect that's why the date was picked.

  • by cyclist1200 ( 513080 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:02AM (#2553727) Homepage
    It's amazing how fluid facts are at this stage in a story. I just got an email from my site director saying the same thing, that the plane was an Airbus A300 outbound to the DR. Everywhere else is reporting it as an inbound 767.
  • by scumdamn ( 82357 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:04AM (#2553744)
    A friend of mine just said "Isn't is horrible that we can now think 'I hope it was just a plane crash' when something like this happens?"

    From the location of the crash and proximity to the airport it looks like it might have just been an accident. If not, then it is yet another nail in the terrorist's coffins.
  • Re:umm... (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:04AM (#2553745)
    If you recall what happened 9/11, the same thing happened over and over again, and we got reports that a plane may have hit the capitol building, the white house, the washington monument (ouch), and the moon.

    Best to take a completely objectivist look at this before rushing to conclusions.
  • Re:*Leap* (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ubi_UK ( 451829 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:04AM (#2553747)
    " Airplane crash == terrorist attack"

    Excuse me but that is just plain bullshit.
    It is actually quite normal for planes to crash every now and then, therefore it is most likely to be an accident.

    However, through your statement all you are doing is spreading fear. Simply by doing that you are *helping* terrorists, as spreading fear is (by definition) their main objective.

    Stay cool. The chance of getting hit by a terrorist attack is smaller than the chance of getting hit by a 4WD because the driver was so afraid of being hit by a terrorist that he/she was not paying attention.
  • Re:*Leap* (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mrogers ( 85392 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:05AM (#2553754)
    Not to open a can of worm here, but neither does doing nothing. I'd rather go after the guy who did it than not.

    Given that neither reaction nor inaction will prevent further attacks, which is the better course to take? Consider these points:

    • Which course will polarise world opinion, leading previously moderate people to support radical organisations? (Clue: look at Pakistan.)
    • Which course will kill innocent people abroad, in addition to those who have already died in the US? (Clue: look at Afghanistan.)
    • Which course will perpetuate a cycle of violence and be used to justify further attacks? (Clue: look at the Balkans, Northern Ireland, Israel and Palestine.)
    Is your desire to feel like you're doing something worth the consequences?
  • by dachshund ( 300733 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:05AM (#2553757)
    Plane crashes in major American cities aren't routine at all. Whether this is a terrorist attack or not (and it's looking like not), it has implications for AA, the economy and cities like New York.

    I have to say it's a hell of a bad run of luck for AA, though. And the aviation industry in general... I always thought it was a little bit nuts to have jets flying low above dense areas of the city.

    246 passengers, plus 9 crew.

  • Nope, it's worse (Score:3, Insightful)

    by athmanb ( 100367 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:08AM (#2553785)
    The problem is that simply firing a few billion $ worth of ammunition into the Afghan wastelands does not only accomplish nothing, it actually worsens the situation by driving even more desperate people into the hands of the terrorist groups.

    Unless we start caring about the causes (Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Iraq etc.) and not simply about the symptoms, we can already mark January 11.

    And if this crash wasn't a terrorist attack, but a simple accident, it changes nothing about the underlying facts.
  • by Abnornymous Howard ( 227643 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:09AM (#2553802)
    Please cut and paste articles since the websites will die one after the other. Thnx.
  • by bmj ( 230572 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:16AM (#2553856) Homepage

    This is yet again proof of why chat groups, bulletin boards and internet newsgroups are useless as a "breaking story" news source.

    sorry...this is why they _are_ useful...they simply mirror the news, and given that i can't reach most news sites at this time, i at least can pick through the *facts* and try and figure out what's going on.....

    What you've said so far: It was a 767. It was inbound to NY. It crashed downtown. It might have been terrorists.

    check what the news outlets were saying when it first happened...hmmm...looks about the same...

    What CNN is saying as of a minute ago: It was an Airbus A300. It was leaving NY on an international flight. It crashed 10 miles from the airport, out in Rockaway (Long Island).

    hmmm...looks like i can find the same info here.....

  • by Sc00ter ( 99550 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:21AM (#2553896) Homepage
    "Or at least it wasn't before 11 Sep 2001"

    I think you answered your own question.. It's different times now, they call for different procedures.

  • by humanasset ( 206242 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:23AM (#2553912)
    How can terrorism be ruled out after less than an hour?

    It may well be an accident, but I would assume that the wreckage would need to be thoroughly examined to make any type of final determination.
  • by richieb ( 3277 ) <richieb&gmail,com> on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:26AM (#2553941) Homepage Journal
    Actually, checking WeatherUnderground I saw that NY winds are out of north-west. Which means that landing airplanes approach over the water to land on runway 32. Taking off from runway 32 takes the airplane over Far Rockway. So it seems more logical that the airplane was just taking off.


  • Re:*Leap* (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Paulo ( 3416 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:26AM (#2553943)
    Sure. OTOH, the terrorists destroy the WTC and kill the father and mother of an american child, who grows up listening to people like you saying that he shouldn't do anything about it and that he should protest any attempts to destroy the terrorists because "violence creates violence". 25 years later, that kid grows up turned into another peaceful, civilized citizen who opposes any U.S. intervention against Afghanistan or other countries... and is killed by another attack perpetrated by the terrorists that we failed to capture after the WTC.

    Don't get me wrong, I do believe that the U.S. should do anything in its hands to solve the Israeli-Palestinan problem (if only to leave Bin Laden without arguments). But that doesn't exclude using the force to capture or destroy the criminals. And if you think otherwise, I invite you to step up the next time the police in your zone has a serial killer surrounded and try to talk him into giving up his evil ways, instead of letting the cops using (horror!!) physical force to arrest him.
  • Re:So do I fly? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by provolt ( 54870 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:30AM (#2553970)
    Hell Yes!!!

    Air travel is as safe as it gets. Even with the terrorist activity you are MUCH more likely to be in a car crash, or hit a deer, or trip and break your collar bone, than you are to be involved in a deadly crash on an aircraft.

    SO YES!!! FLY!!! If you value your safety, you will not drive long distances when you can just as easily take a flight. Plus you'll be saving yourself tons of time. (Ok, so from Heathrow, you'd have to take a boat, but do you really want to take that long? And would it really be safer?)
  • by jd ( 1658 ) <> on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:30AM (#2553972) Homepage Journal
    For the last time, you can't simply use duct tape, and hope the engine stays in place.

    Seriously, this reinforces my conviction that aircraft safety & security is going in completely the wrong direction. Why focus so heavily on trying to prevent very specific types of incident? Why not simply design aircraft on the assumption that they're going to crash (by accident or design), and build them to keep as many people alive as possible?

    For example - there are parachutes, built for jet airliners, capable of safely bringing even a 747 or 757 to a safe(ish) landing, assuming enough altitude to slow the monster down.

    Another example - if a package holding eggs can be dropped from the top of the Empire State Building, and have the eggs intact at the bottom, you can figure that we know a lot about air resistance with various topologies, and that we know how to make a decent bubble-wrap. It should be possible to design an aircraft skin capable of absorbing significant amounts of energy, in the event of an impact.

    Lastly, aircraft are not built out of the safest of materials. Aluminium (aluminum for USians) burns with an intense ferocity. Those who remember the Falkland's War (damn it, it was a WAR, not a "Conflict") will remember the HMS Sheffield, which was built out of aluminium. One direct hit turned it into a giant, inescapable fireball. Many fireworks, and even some modern munitions, use aluminium as a component. Sure, it's light, but so are many other materials. Maybe it's time to change.

    We've entered the 21st century, with aircraft that are practically designed to explode on someone sneezing the wrong way, with no possibility of survival. As ideas go, this does not sound like the brightest there has ever been.

    Of course, maybe I could be wrong. Maybe people enjoy riding oversized firecrackers, with a bazillion mad-men around the world desperately wanting to light the fuse.

  • Re:*Leap* (Score:3, Insightful)

    by goodviking ( 71533 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:30AM (#2553974) Journal
    According to your reasoning, if someone comes into your house, kills your family, and eats your pizza, you should just sit there and hand them a beer lest you run the risk of pissing them off.

    If you really feel this way, let me ask you:

    • Should we have listened to the protectionists during WWII and not gotten involved?
    • Should we have not fought the Civil War?
    • What about the Revolutionary War, would it have been better to sit on our hands lest we run the risk of angering good King George?

    In short, if we are a nation that claims to believe in a set of principles above all else, but we are unwilling to fight for these principles, then we are a nation of hypocrites.

  • by str8-and-sober ( 266417 ) <carllivitt@yaho o . c om> on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:34AM (#2554018)

    As all the major news portals seem to be struggling under the load, check [] - it's up, fast and stayed alive during September 11th. They seem to be up-to-the minute with their information too.
  • by kender ( 111273 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:37AM (#2554040) Homepage
    I agree that this could be an accident, but the government said that the original Anthrax case was just some guy that drank the water while hunting.

    I don't think people should jump to conclusions, but a couple of working hypothesises need to be pursued including terrorism. There is just too many coincidences here to discard terrorism out of hand.
  • by autopr0n ( 534291 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @11:41AM (#2554079) Homepage Journal
    Well, if the engine fell out of the plane, it was probably an accident. Not for sure, of course, but i don't see how Hijackers could do that.

    It might have been sabotage though...
  • by darrad ( 216734 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @12:02PM (#2554082) Homepage
    We all need to stop and take a few steps back. The events of the last 2 months have taken this country to the brink of hysteria and back. The mainstream press is in a feeding frenzy. They are reporting any rumor that they can get their hands on, all in the name of boosting ratings. Take a look at the last Presidential election and you will see that the self-control that the press once had has disappeared. We cannot allow their drive for money to turn us into a country full of "Chicken Little's" waiting for the sky to fall.

    Stop, take a breath, and realize that things like this happen. If we allow ourselves to continue down this road, we will accomplish what no country on this planet has been able to do, bring the US to its knees. People are paralyzed by fear, and the press is feeding this fear. It is time to stop.

    Yes, it is terrible when people die, but it happens everyday. Worrying about it will not change it. I believe we should find the people responsible for terrorist attacks and bring them to justice, but not at the cost of our freedom, which is where we are headed. I have heard more members of the press and the government shouting for "National ID Cards", increased security at all public functions, COMDEX banned bags from the convention floor. All of these steps are doing the terrorist work for them. If we allow these criminals to alter our way of life to the point that we cease to function, or regulate ourselves into and Orwellian nightmare then we may as well lie down and die.

    Live you life as you always have. Go to work, raise your kids, spend your money, and be happy until given a legitimate reason not to be. Out of all the posts on this site, how many are from people directly affected by 09/11, who either knew someone who is missing, or has family that lost a loved one. The rest of us need to feel sympathetic to the victims and their families, but we should also feel grateful that we are alive, living in the best country on the planet, and act that way.
  • by deander2 ( 26173 ) <public@kered . o rg> on Monday November 12, 2001 @12:33PM (#2554112) Homepage
    I've seen video footage of engine failures resulting in total destruction. The engines don't seperate from the wing. They're designed so that the plane can keep on flying even with total engine destruction.

    Total engine destruction is the fan blades seperating. Imagine 100 blades rotating at 1000s of RPMs flying in every direction. The engine case takes the beating without the wing being damaged. The engine is destroyed but the plane keeps flying.

    I don't know what this was, but it wasn't like any mechanical failure I've ever heard of.
  • by A nonymous Coward ( 7548 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @12:48PM (#2554158)
    There are NO such parachutes. Let's do some real simple calcs. I believe a standard human parachute is 28 feet in diameter, for a human weighing 200 pounds. A fully loaded 747 is around 800,000 pounds, 4000 times as much. Let's see, square root of 4000 is roughly 64, and 64 * 28 = 1770 feet -- ONE KILOMETER!

    Are you so nuts as to think that practical?

    And do you think it could be deployed at several hundred miles an hour without shredding?

    Dropping an egg is one thing, an airline entirely difefrent. A egg has a pretty low terminal air velocity because of the weight per surface area. Comparing this to an airliner is like saying an ant can fall safely, why can't humans? Even cats have a sufficiently low terminal velocity that once they fall past 10 stories or so, they don't fall any faster, and they still don't have a great survival rate. Let's give that cat the density of an airliner and see what happens to the terminal velocity.

    Now as to material. The HMS Sheffield DID NOT BURN due to aluminum. It burned because the Exocet has an explosive warhead which scattered and ignited the remaining rocket fuel. It was not a giant inescapable fireball. Jeez, your hyperbole is incredible.

    It's easy enough for you to worry about aluminum burning, but what does that have to do with airliners burning? Hey! It's the FUEL that explodes and burns, not the structure! Maybe we should all fly naked too, so our clothes won't contribute to the fire.

    As for arbitrarily increasing the weight by getting rid of aluminum, common sense ought to inform you that they use expensive materials for a reason. Don't you think that if they could make heavier cheaper planes that they would? There's no secret airplane cabal conspiring to jack up the prices just to keep the bauxite miners employed. Man, they fret over new seat materials to save a pound per seat.

    As for airplane design not being the brightest ideas out there, sounds to me like they've got you beat at any rate.
  • paranoia? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Stephen Samuel ( 106962 ) <samuel@bc g r e> on Monday November 12, 2001 @12:48PM (#2554165) Homepage Journal
    "Plane crash? New York? Bwaaaaaaa! WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!!!!

    This might be another way of killing Bin Laden. Right now I figure he's somewhere near laughing himeself to death at this overreaction. Please remamber that plane crashes happen, and this one does not have any of the hallmarks of terrorist action.

    all of the security in the world isn't going to stop murphy's law fromm causing the occasional f*ck up. Flying is still safer than driving, but reading the news may cause a heart-attack if you attribute every tragedy to terrorism.

    Let investigators do their job. In the unlikely event that they determine this to be of terrrorist cause, then we can take the appropriate actions

  • Re:*Leap* (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mmontour ( 2208 ) <> on Monday November 12, 2001 @12:57PM (#2554202)
    It is actually quite normal for planes to crash every now and then, therefore it is most likely to be an accident.

    A good example to support this point is the Sibir Airlines plane that went down in the Black Sea a month ago. Initially it was assumed to be terrorism (especially since the plane departed from Israel). However the consensus is now that it was hit by a stray Ukrainian missile [] that got away from its test range.

    So even though terrorism might be the most likely reason for the New York crash, and the first thing that should be investigated, it is not the only possibility.
  • by NickV ( 30252 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @01:01PM (#2554218)
    I knew something was wrong when I woke up this morning and none of the news sites were picking up. There was this awful ping of complete and total fear where I literally felt my heart fall into stomach... something was wrong.

    I ran downstairs and turned on the TV and saw the breaking news. I now know, whenever cnn, msnbc and abcnews ALL don't pick up... and then doesn't either... that something awful has happened again in New York.
  • by papa248 ( 85646 ) <{slashdot} {at} {}> on Monday November 12, 2001 @01:05PM (#2554238) Homepage
    A commercial jet is able to withstand the physical (separate) and thrustwise loss of an engine. In fact, aircraft engines are designed deliberately to "fall off" from the wing. Imagine for the sake of argument, that the turbine blades are turning at around 10,000 RPM. Now, stick a Canadian Goose in front of it, so that some of the blades break of an jam the engine so the blades no longer turn. Can you imagine how much momentum (gyroscopic) that these blades have? Suddenly stopping them instantaneously would create so much of an impulse that the engine will twist itself right off. No damage is done to the wing (less some drag) and there is plenty of thrust from N2.

    The tricky part is, if (as is in this case) the engine explodes, THEN falls off, there is likely damage done to the wings (likely the flaps on takeoff as may be the case here) and possibly the hydraulic systems, etc.

    Bottom line is, the plane can withstand flying literally without an engine, but any collateral damage can change the situation.
  • Re:Frustrating (Score:2, Insightful)

    by shomon2 ( 71232 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @01:11PM (#2554279) Journal
    Yeah, it's frustrating. Especially cos no-one will listen to you, or anyone else advocating peace on bulletin boards. This is mass hysteria, and it's not easy to stop. Like a bad case of road rage that's slowly escalating in your street, and your children are playing out there too, but there's nothing you can do inside the house shouting. Then they pull out guns. An angry crowd forms. You keep shouting "bla bla bla, fighting is wrong". They can't hear you.

    You have to go outside. That's real pacifism.

  • Federalization (Score:2, Insightful)

    by DuBois ( 105200 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @01:15PM (#2554304) Homepage
    So you think federalizing airport security will make us more secure? Has the Federal drug war gotten rid of the drug problem? Has the FAA kept hijackers from airplanes? Has the Federal War on Poverty gotten rid of poverty? Why is it that the massive failures of Federal programs are always forgotten when some new "crisis" comes up?

    If you want more security on airplanes, arm the pilots. Or even better yet, let those citizens with concealed carry permits carry their defense with them onto any airplane.

    Or don't you trust "ordinary Americans?" And if you do not trust them, why? Is it possible that the American government has indoctrinated most Americans with the idea that they are helpless and that only the Federal government can solve their problems?

    And if you are not an American, what expertise do you have that makes you an authority for Americans?

  • by Wakko Warner ( 324 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @01:39PM (#2554433) Homepage Journal
    This post is so full of factual errors it's astounding.

    But someone already addressed them all before me.

    I'm just suggesting a new moderation category.
  • Re:Federalization (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ScuzzMonkey ( 208981 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @01:39PM (#2554439) Homepage
    The September 11th hijackers were, for all practical purposes, "ordinary Americans." Timothy McVeigh was an "ordinary American." How do you tell the "ordinary Americans" from the "evil Hijackers?"

    I'm not saying that Federalization is the answer, or even that I'm opposed to CCPs in general, but airplanes are not the place for guns. Federal Marshals with the right ammo, maybe. But even in the right hands, firearms on airplanes are orders of magnitude more dangerous--for all of us--than they are elsewhere. If "ordinary Americans" have to defend themselves on airplanes, they can do it with their hands, and the best we can do is make sure that the potential hijackers are forced to face them on even terms.
  • by cvanaver ( 247568 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @01:57PM (#2554482)
    This [] []article is saying that GW is now meeting with his advisors about whether or not there is enough of a chance of this being a terrorist attack that it warrants shutting down US airspace again. At this time, they have made no decision on the matter.

    My personal thought on the matter is that the only way we are going to know if this was a terrorist attack is:
    A) Somebody claims responisbility (not too likely)
    B) Another plane goes down
    C) The NTSB comes back (after a couple of weeks) and says it was a bomb

    It seems to me that the government is either just going to have to wait and see if it happens again before they make that decision OR, they could shut everything down and start searching engines for bombs, but, in light of the fact that there is no evidence that this is terrorist-related, isn't shutting it all down giving in to terrorism?
  • by joss ( 1346 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @02:12PM (#2554553) Homepage
    I really don't understand why this is marked as flamebait. It seems like a genuine post to me, not even particuarly unreasonable.

    What most anti-war protestors object to is killing a bunch of people who had absolutely nothing to do with the attacks. For instance, it's estimated that 100,000-1,000,000 people will starve as a result of US/UK bombing of Afghanistan. This is not the estimate of those who will starve, it is the difference between the numbers who would have died anyway, and the number who will die now. The assassination of the leaders of those responsible would be just fine with lot's of people who object to the "war" (myself included). Unfortunately this is not very easy to accomplish.

    Just a couple of quick questions for you here: how many of the terrorists were Afghans ?
    where did the majority of the terrorists come from ?
    which country provides most the funding for AlQueada ?

    (hint: 0,Saudi-12/18,Saudi)
    So, given the above, how many dead civilian Afghanis would be acceptable in your opinion ? Seriously, I'm curious, is it

    a) "all of them",
    b) 10,000,000-1,000,000
    c) 1,000,000-100,000
    d) 100,000-10,000
    e) 10,000-1,000
    f) 1-1000
    g) none

    Personally, I would opt for (e),(f) or maybe even (d) *if* I was convinced this would prevent another Sept 11 or worse.

    And I guess the related question is: for what objectives are you prepare to kill that number of people ?
    Would that be acceptable in order to also achieve death of Osama Bin Laden, or OBL + most of Al-Queada, or OBL+AlQueada+Taliban, or what ?

    > we need to stop being so... law abiding? moral?

    What I'm curious about is where you got the impression that the US was doing those things anyway ? What laws do you think the IS abiding by ? On the moral front, I agree with right to defend oneself, I'm just not convinced that this is what's going on here. Are you starting to feel safer now that some Afghans have been blown up too ? Do you believe this reduces the threat of future terrorist attacks ?

    This isn't meant to be rehetorical. I'm just puzzled. I'll answer hawksish questions in response if mine are answered.
  • Accident or Bomb? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 12, 2001 @02:13PM (#2554557)
    While the timing of the crash (just after takeoff) does seem to indicate some kind of mechanical failure this might not be the case. If a bomb was hooked to an altimiter (altimeters work off air pressure) set to explode at a certain altitude and it was placed within a pressurized cargo hold the pressurizationg of the hold might have detonated it. An explosion in a cargo hold next to a fuel line might have caused the line to light causing the burning engine that was reported. Alternatively in light of the footage of the concourd with an engine on fire the blowing out of the airbus's engine may have been an act of sabotage. \

  • Re:Frustrating (Score:2, Insightful)

    by shani ( 1674 ) <> on Monday November 12, 2001 @02:24PM (#2554605) Homepage
    Something I wrote in a private e-mail on 2001-11-02:

    What can we do to protect ourselves from terrorism? Well, we could stop bending over and grabbing our ankles to protect the interests of big business for starters. How about we separate the FAA into a government body that is there to foster the airline industry (deferring discussion about whether we really need this body or not) and one that is there to watchdog the industry. No more "cost-benefit analysis" on security, at least, not driven by shareholders

    Dear Airlines:

    Sorry, you can't protect us, we want our elected officials to do that, thank you very much.

    Of course, the real problem is that we do unpopular actions worldwide.We can't make everyone happy, but I don't think we've had a consistent foreign policy since the end of the Cold War (blame this one on Bush the Father, but unfortunately even more on Clinton). We need to stop supporting governments that don't fit American ideals, simply to protect our economic interests (sorry, Saudi Arabia!). We need to take a stand to Israel and withdraw support until they really, truly pull out of the West Bank (sorry, big Jewish lobby!).

    We need to partipate in the world community the same as everybody else. This means paying our U.N. bill (all of it, and not just when we need something from the U.N.). This means signing treaties to submit to the decisions of world justice (like the court that many countries think Osama should be tried under, but the U.S. doesn't recognize). This means signing small arms, land mine, and other treaties, in spite of the cost to our domestic arms business and inconvience to our military, both in Korea as well as when cluster bombing. This means not forcing U.S. exports on countries that don't want them for health, political, or other reasons.

    I'd be more in favor of a War on Isolationism more than a War on Terror. I'd be even more in favor of no more wars on anything.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 12, 2001 @02:47PM (#2554779)
    This post should be removed. Slashdot should not get free content written by others. Support salon, dont steal from it.
  • Re:*Leap* (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rossz ( 67331 ) < minus language> on Monday November 12, 2001 @03:19PM (#2554803) Homepage Journal
    Which course will perpetuate a cycle of violence and be used to justify further attacks?

    What an incredibly naive statment. When a fanatic wants to kill you, talking to him to "end the cycle of violence" only gives him more opportunities to kill you. When Hitler tried to take over the world, did we try to stop the "cycle of violance" by talking to him? HELL NO! We responded with force. We killed the enemy. That's how you end the cycle of violence.

  • by Yo_mama ( 72429 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @03:31PM (#2554876) Homepage
    I'm guessing it was a catastrophic engine failure.
    Depending on how it fails, it can come off the airframe. There are fuse pins in place that will shear at a certain load to prevent damage to the airframe.

    Two Boeing 747's crashed in the early 1990's when their fuse pins failed. Admittedly it was caused by a cargo door coming open in flight and the debris killing #3 engine which came off and took #4 with it.

    But engines don't normally come off in flight; the stress that would cause that would rip off the wing (or at least parts of it) first.

    I'm leaning towards a catasproohic engine failure, perhaps precipitated by another event such as a cargo door opening (which would happen most often on climb out soon after take off due to the changing pressure). ANother factor is that the airplane had had an "A check" maintenance stop the day before.

  • Re:Possible cause (Score:2, Insightful)

    by JackdawFool ( 456440 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @03:34PM (#2554902)
    This from

    "Carty [American Airlines Chairman and CEO] said the last maintenance "A-check" on the plane was performed Sunday. A heavier maintenance check was done October 3, and the jet's last major overhaul was in December 1999. Another overhaul was scheduled for July 2002."

    I'd speculate that the modification referred to in the parent thread would be done during the overhaul scheduled in July 2002, which is within the 18 month period the modification must take place. According to the above from cnn, no major overhauls have taken place since December of last year, which was prior to the issuance of the modification requirement. Again, I'd speculate that the modification wouldn't be done during a maintenance "check".

    But of course that's all worthless speculation. Regardless, the link is interesting.

  • Re:*Leap* (Score:2, Insightful)

    by wierdo ( 201021 ) on Monday November 12, 2001 @04:37PM (#2555221)

    What an incredibly naive statment. When a fanatic wants to kill you, talking to him to "end the cycle of violence" only gives him more opportunities to kill you. When Hitler tried to take over the world, did we try to stop the "cycle of violance" by talking to him? HELL NO! We responded with force. We killed the enemy. That's how you end the cycle of violence.

    Contrary to popular belief, terrorists are not Hitler, nor are they comparable to Hitler. Terrorists are terrorists by choice, because of some percieved wrong against them. Take away their reason for terrorizing and they stop. Hitler was a madman who managed to subvert an entire country. As another poster pointed out, McVeigh would not have bombed OKC had we not first murdered the Branch Davidians in Waco. When you do such things to begin a cycle of violence and hate, it does not end until you let it end. People like you, unfortunately, choose to not let it end.

    Also contrary to popular belief, killing millions of innocent people in Germany did nothing to end the cycle of violence and hate. Nor, it turns out, did nuking Japan, although I still believe that given the information we had at the time, it was the best course of action known to our leaders. A very unfortunate one. Until we learn to stop killing each other over petty differences and lose this drive for "revenge" (which, btw, does not bring back, or otherwise let the dead rest more easily) the cycle of violence and hate will continue.

    Resist the cycle of violence and hate.

    P.S. Free clue for you: It is not the "cycle of violence," it is the "cycle of violence and hate." Without hate, the violence would stop. The only way to stop hate is to stop violence, and the only way to stop violence is to stop hate. Sometimes I think we are really less evolved than most "wild" animals. We certainly act like it.


  • by einhverfr ( 238914 ) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `srevart.sirhc'> on Monday November 12, 2001 @04:58PM (#2555325) Homepage Journal
    OK. So that makes it sound like a terrorist, but not so fast...

    Here is my logic: A high explosive device that was able to tear the wing off would have caused some pretty spectacular effects and not caused the fires that were seen. So it was probably not a high explosive.

    Low explosives are not much more of a candidate either-- it would be really hard to make a dangerous LE device on a plane.

    However, there is a class of explosives that would work-- high blast pressures, fires, and low ranges: fuel-air explosives, or FAE's. Note that the fuel has to go through the wing to the engine, so it has to go into the wing. If there was a leak, an explosion could have caused everything that was seen.

    So I think that a fuel leak around the junction of the wing was responsible along with a spark, excess heat, or something. So one is back to accident or sabotage.

A consultant is a person who borrows your watch, tells you what time it is, pockets the watch, and sends you a bill for it.