Thursday, February 12, 2009

Simple Procedure

I came across this on an online bulletin board recently.

All a terrorist has to do is get his commercial pilots license - get hired by an airline - use his 'right' to flying with a gun - get on board - shoot the co-pilot, lock the cockpit door and crash the plane"

I'm not interested in hijacking, and I've already accomplished step one, so thanks to this helpful poster I now see that there's a single trivial step remaining to achieve my goals. Why didn't I think of that?


david said...

That's just one plane, though. The smart terrorist will get pregnant, move to the U.S. to have her baby, raise the baby to be good-looking and charismatic, help him/her be elected president of the U.S., then have access to thousands of nuclear weapons. A lot simpler, really.

Matthew Flaschen said...

David, how do you raise someone to be good-looking?
/always wondered

david said...

Matthew: if I remember my Oscar Wilde correctly, to be good looking you just have to avoid thinking (it furrows the brow).

Anonymous said...

For one, it is very hard to find someone willing to commit suicide. even if it is for some "good" cause. Can you find one with the capabilities and dedication to become commercial pilot? Will you be able to keep him/her loyal to "the cause" through his training? [*]

And then there's the big hurdle: sailing through the job application process, that process is there to filter out unsuited candidates.

[*] It is easy to recruit someone who feels unrewarded and feel like they have little to lose. However, once (s)he has a training and a potential for a good (and socially rewarded) job, his/her outlook on life has significantly changed and (s)he will have a lot of incentives to dump the former (terrorist) friends. (I am not going into the specifics of pilot training, learning how to make independent decisions...)

nec Timide said...

I appreciate the irony of this post, even though the link to the original is now broken. But to respond to mathfox, it is a mistake to underestimate the power of two deeply held beliefs: this life is followed by an infinite afterlife; and the quality of the after life depends upon the actions one takes in this life where great sacrifice earns great reward. History is full of people who have been able to able to do amazing, sometimes heroic, sometimes unfathomable, sometimes terrible things because they held those two beliefs.

Anonymous said...

nec Timide, History has shown a lot of that, but also that the group you are in has an influence on your attitude. Investing in a pilot education is risky for a terrorist group; it is cheaper and with better success probabilities to recruit a pilot in (personal) trouble.

I suggest that we tune back in to the regular aviation program... :-)

Jim said...

How to own real estate worth $100 million:

1) Get $100 million dollars
2) Buy the real estate

Anonymous said...

Ahh but where's the satisfaction in putting a gun to captain's temple? Through hard work and perserverence, you will make it to the flight deck on your own.


Aviatrix said...

Soaring Student, excellent real estate advice.

Anonymous said...

@nec timide
Broken link? Or maybe Aviatrix can read Chinese. I certainly can't, so buying type rating(s) and flying in the Asian market is probably out for me.

Greybeard said...

"I suggest that we tune back in to the regular aviation program... :-)"

I realize that sub-comment was probably a throwaway, but at its core it bothers me.
This is an important, worthwhile subject, certainly worth discussion by intelligent people. But some are uncomfortable with it to the point of trying to quash that discussion.
Are you aware of the Geert Wilders
censorship in the E.U.? Where does open communication and discussion fall on your scale of life's important things? How will you feel when we have to start agreeing that "black is white"?
When the Emperor has no clothes, can we say so? Will having to constantly be aware of the content of your speech or the content of your written comments concern you?

Thanks Aviatrix for this important post. As many have indicated, I don't think this scenario is something we need to lose sleep over. But should we consider it?
Should we keep our "Spidey sensors" on alert?

Callsign Echo said...


ALL they HAVE to DO?

All the HAVE to do?

Nope, it doesn't matter how I say it, it still sounds like some ground-pounding armchair pilot talking out of his ass.

I mean, it's so easy to earn your private, instrument, commercial, multi, high performance, and type ratings/endorsements. I'm surprised more people haven't done it already.

Callsign Echo said...

Ooh! Ooh! I have an even better one! All a smart terrorist has to do is get U.S. Citizenship, join the FBI, become an Air Marshal...

Or, all they have to do is get a degree in Nuclear Physics, join the Navy, get selected to be a Nuclear Specialist, get assigned to a carrier, sabotage the nuclear plant, and blow up a ship.

It's so easy it's frightening.

Aviatrix said...

Callsign Echo, for me the licences and ratings were the easy part.

david said...

I'm with Aviatrix -- I don't have my CPL, Multi, or ATP, but if even I can get a PPL, night, and IFR, then how hard can it be?

Anonymous said...

Greybeard, I agree that terrorism and government reaction to that is a very important topic of discussion. (I know about Wilders and his Koran FUD, plenty of talk about him in the local (Dutch) news.) Also the suppression of discussion by the UK government is IMO a very serious issue that should be discussed.

But I don't feel that this (Aviatrix's) blog is the best place to discuss the issues in detail. That's the background of the "tune back" comment. For me personally, I am actively working on freedom of speech issues, on different fora and in other ways.

Greybeard said...

I understand, Mathfox. But there are two problems with that from my viewpoint-
1. You are still, and I'll accept your explanation that it was innocent, trying to direct the discussion away from an area you don't want discussed here. I've had others here try to censor me personally, so I'm maybe overly sensitive about it.

2. "But I don't feel that this (Aviatrix's) blog is the best place to discuss the issues in detail."

Aviatrix's blog! Who determines the content?
How would you feel if someone did that to you?
(But thanks for pursuing freedom of speech. I hope that's not just smoke and mirrors...
We need more free talk, EVERYWHERE.)

Anonymous said...


I'm glad the original post is tagged with 'humour' first, and only then with 'terrorism'. Might be a reminder to the fearsome that it's better not to stop thinking...

While I don't want the author of a certain, above-mentioned Dutch movie (or anyone else) to be censored, my personal opinion is that this same author and many of his supporters have stopped thinking in favor of being overly frightened or aggressive.

I prefer a world where it's o.k. to think, and part of a healthy, active mind is irony and humour.

"I don't think this scenario is something we need to lose sleep over." How true.

"But should we consider it?" Yes, but only so far as to have a good laugh about it.