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The PJ Tatler

Bridget Johnson


March 26, 2014 - 7:45 am

The chairman of the House Homeland Security said he’d like to see the Federal Bureau of Investigation step up its involvement in the Malaysia Airlines investigation now that all signs point to the flight being downed intentionally.

Sources close to the investigation told the Telegraph on Tuesday that signs point to the Boeing 777 being flown “in a rational way” inconsistent with catastrophic mechanical failure, and the probe is now focusing on intentional downing possibilities including pilot suicide.

Rep. Mike McCaul (R-Texas) dismissed the theory that lithium batteries in the cargo hold took down MH370, sparking a fire that somehow took out the electronics.

“The problem with that is, after the transponder is turned off and it reroutes the path, it flies for another seven hours. I don’t think it could withstand that kind of fire for seven hours and stay in the air. As we saw the UPS flight out of Dubai only lasted about 30 minutes,” he told Fox.

The FBI is still trying to retrieve deleted files from the pilot’s home flight simulator, the chairman added.

“I have every confidence they will be retrieved. I don’t know how key that evidence will be in this particular case. The one thing I’ve said all along, is I think this was an intentional deliberate act because of where it took place, and that’s after they went out of the Malaysian airspace and before the Vietnamese airspace, which is a dead zone,” McCaul said.

“The transponder was turned off, and then the plane dramatically turned around back toward Malaysia. Which has all the indicators of an intentional act. Now, what’s the motive behind this, we really don’t know. I’d like to see the FBI be little more involved with the Malaysian government. They’ve been very limited in the scope for their investigation and that’s really to the flight simulator.”

Despite the Malaysian prime minister’s announcement that everyone on the plane is dead, McCaul stressed “this is still a rescue operation, not recovery.”

“And that means that they still have some thoughts that they still may be possibly alive, debris may be found in the ocean. I think the way the Malaysian government has handled this has really been abysmal. And they texted the victim’s families rather than contact them in person. And if I could just backtrack, you know, when we had these two flight patterns, one to the north, one to the south, the Malaysian government was given days after the plane was missing intelligence from a satellite company, that it went southbound, not northbound. And yet the Malaysian government chose to spend a week looking in the gulf of Thailand up towards Kazakhstan. We knew because of the radar detection capability in China, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan that there’s no way this plane went northbound and yet, we wasted a week of valuable critical precious time on the northern route trying to find this plane instead of looking to where it went, that’s the Indian Ocean.”

McCaul said all along lawmakers have been briefed on intelligence indicating the plane took the southern route.

“Which is I think where the aircraft is today,” he said. “Probably sank to the bottom. And so, I, you know, this is an ongoing investigation, there are many theories out there, none connect all the dots at this point in time.”

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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A further somewhat telling quote here:
Before an audience of several hundred relatives and their supporters, the Malaysian delegation read a report by investigators from Britain's Air Accidents Investigation Branch concluding the plane went down in the southern Indian Ocean based on faint signals -- or pings -- from the plane to a British satellite.
During a nearly two-hour question-and-answer session, audience members asked how investigators could have reached conclusions about the direction and speed of the plane, and delegation members said they didn't have the technical expertise to answer."
......didn't have the technical expertise to emphasis.

Suppose you're a parent or sibling of one of those passengers.

[cf: "Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 disappearance Live
The search for debris from Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 continues.
CBC News brings you the latest coverage of the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which disappeared on its route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing earlier this month.

by CBC News 6:10 AM"...pasted Wed 26Mar.

That "pinging" arc extends to the northwest and Bangladesh also.
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yes, there's lots of radar coverage all along that northward route towards those Muslim countries towards the Northwest. Bangladesh is the closest with, perhaps, abandoned Brit colonial airbases in that area. Rough, abrupt landings can be accomplished.....takeoffs are something else again. But if the heavy seats and galleys are removed and empty fuel bladders are installed, a terrible scenario opens up for a Muslim terrorist.

A skilled pilot or well trained hi-jacker can fly under the most effective radar coverage by staying as low as common sense allows, risky business surely with that mountainous terrain, but zigzagging a way through the valleys makes this possible. Requires intimate familiarity with that terrain....area residents with pilot training know this, obviously.

Radar beaming is still basically line-of-sight, isn't it? Is every controller in that area really alert to abnormal flight paths? Who can say?

But that terrain also offers lots of convenient ground clutter to hide the track of an aircraft from those airways, and importantly here, off-airways which a hi-jacker would likely choose, reducing his chances of being "flashed' as we used to say.

Frankly, The Malay government seems to be clutching at straws in doggedly pursuing this peculiar flight path leading to that expanse southwest of Perth, Perth....of all places.

This whole thing has been hopelessly bungled by the Malaysian Civil Aviation Authority, or whatever they call it now. They're clueless, and "Face" has apparently prevented their immediate looking for more professional help, and explains their garbled responses.

This satellite "ping" analysis seems pretty iffey, but I have zero knowledge about that modern stuff.

[...this theory here proposed by a fossil-era GCI controller...]
48 weeks ago
48 weeks ago Link To Comment
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