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BA 149 LHR-KWI August 1990  
User currently onlineAR385 From Mexico, joined Nov 2003, 6187 posts, RR: 30
Posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 2855 times:
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I did a search on this and came up empty, so bear with me.

I never thought about this flight, but I watched a documentary on this on a prestigious channel, and I wonder about a few issues.

1. Why did BA 149 landed in KWI in the first place 4 hrs (according to the documentary) after the Iraqi invasion.

2. The documentary hints at the British government need to drop an intelligence team on Kuwait City and BA 149 was their choice to do so. I disagree with this. Wouldn't the UK have more sophisticated means to deploy a covert team than a passenger flight?

3. Wouldn't the ATC at KWI have informed the captain of BA 149 of the ground situation, and suggested a diversion?

4. With further reading on my part, I found out BA compensated its American passengers and its French passengers to the tune of millions of dollars each for their ordeal while no compensation has been forthcoming to the British passengers.

So, what is the real story on BA 149?


MGGS
14 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineRichierich From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 4248 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 2682 times:

Great questions!
As I understand it, the aircraft was destroyed by the Iraqis, presumably soon after it landed.

But what happened to the passengers and crew? Were they released immediately or were they held as prisoners?



None shall pass!!!!
User currently offlineVV701 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 7478 posts, RR: 17
Reply 2, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 2662 times:



Quoting Richierich (Reply 1):
As I understand it, the aircraft was destroyed by the Iraqis, presumably soon after it landed.

No the aircraft had been boarded for its onward flight to KUL and had left the terminal when two Iraqi jets bombed the runway, preventing its departure. This was on 2 August 1990. The aircraft was not destroyed until more than six months later after the Allied invasion had started on 27 February 1991.

Quoting Richierich (Reply 1):
But what happened to the passengers and crew? Were they released immediately or were they held as prisoners?

There were 367 passengers and 18 crew. One passenger, the brother of the Emir of Kuwait who was also the Kuwaiti Head of Security was killed. The other 384 were taken prisoner. The many Malaysians on board and some others were released after about three weeks. Following the efforts of Jesse Jackson and Ted Heath, the remaining non Kuwaiti prisoners were released after about five months.


User currently onlineAR385 From Mexico, joined Nov 2003, 6187 posts, RR: 30
Reply 3, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 2515 times:
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Quoting VV701 (Reply 2):
Following the efforts of Jesse Jackson and Ted Heath, the remaining non Kuwaiti prisoners were released after about five months.

The western women and children were released towards the end of August. The remaining passenges were released at the end of November.



MGGS
User currently offlineMAS777 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 1999, 2935 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 2254 times:



Quoting AR385 (Thread starter):
no compensation has been forthcoming to the British passengers.

nor to the many Malaysian passengers on board i think...


User currently offline1stfl94 From United Kingdom, joined May 2006, 1455 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 2211 times:



Quoting AR385 (Thread starter):
. With further reading on my part, I found out BA compensated its American passengers and its French passengers to the tune of millions of dollars each for their ordeal while no compensation has been forthcoming to the British passengers.

The French and the American passengers sued

Quoting AR385 (Thread starter):
So, what is the real story on BA 149?

IMHO I think it was just bad luck and probably information not reaching the aircraft in time before it landed in Kuwait. While the flight would have provided cover for a covert team at the same time they would be straight at risk since the airport was a key target for the Iraqis.


User currently offlineSQ452 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 1114 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 2111 times:

Quoting AR385 (Thread starter):

2. The documentary hints at the British government need to drop an intelligence team on Kuwait City and BA 149 was their choice to do so. I disagree with this. Wouldn't the UK have more sophisticated means to deploy a covert team than a passenger flight?

Good cover, the enemy wouldn't expect them to be coming in "through the front door" on a civilian flight, instead they would probably be looking for a more covert operation, then again sometimes going in through the front door goes chillingly wrong...

Found this website, looks as if a documentary was produced on the situation. Was this the documentary you saw? http://www.tenalps.com/newsview.php?id=55

[Edited 2008-02-10 19:02:13]


SIN > CVG > BOS
User currently onlineAR385 From Mexico, joined Nov 2003, 6187 posts, RR: 30
Reply 7, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 2083 times:
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Quoting SQ452 (Reply 6):
Found this website, looks as if a documentary was produced on the situation. Was this the documentary you saw?

The documentary I saw was broadcast on the Discovery Channel. It must have been the same though. The narrative I read on the link is exactly the way the program I saw was structured.



MGGS
User currently offlineVV701 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 7478 posts, RR: 17
Reply 8, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2054 times:

The suggestion that there was an intelligence team on board and that is why the aircraft did not divert seems a little far fetched to me. Why? In these days of kiss and tell and collect a big pay packet from the media I would have thought over fifteen years later either someone in that team would have spilled the beans or let something slip. Oh. Yes. And Elvis is still alive. I heard him. He was on the radio only yesterday.

User currently offlineTrekster From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2026 times:

Oh god  Yeah sure

This has been diccussed a few times before, and there are to many websites to mention on the subject.


User currently offlineFlyingClrs727 From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 733 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 2007 times:



Quoting AR385 (Thread starter):
2. The documentary hints at the British government need to drop an intelligence team on Kuwait City and BA 149 was their choice to do so. I disagree with this. Wouldn't the UK have more sophisticated means to deploy a covert team than a passenger flight?

How would they know to put an intelligence team on a flight before the invasion even started? It takes more than 4 hours to fly from LHR to KWI.


User currently offlineStargoldlhr From Heard and McDonald Islands, joined Feb 2004, 1529 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 1888 times:

Wars take months of planning.

Kuwait is a tiny country.


Do you think that if a country amassed an army of hundreds of thousands soldiers with tanks / guns surrounded Manhattan that no one would notice, and really believe that they would invade ?
Further more that the leader of that Army opposed your country and said he would invade.

BA took an unacceptable risk here.

They fled Argentina before the Falklands war,
they Fled Pakistan and Saudi Arabia after Sept 11th..
They fled Beirut in 2006
They even fled LHR in the fog last year

but they didnt do it with the first gulf war ?

An ounce of common sense would dictate... if it's not safe dont go there.
And only stupidty would dicate fly there without radio contact.

Secret Services on board ? Who knows...but what better way to get unnoticed into a war zone than a scheduled flight, spies always goto the battlefield before the soldier and by nature need to be in disguise. I wouldnt be surprised if some had gone there on this flight, flights before hand, and were hoping for later ones as well.



So far in 2008 45 flights and Gold already. JFK, IAD, LGA, SIN, HKG, NRT, AKL, PPT, LAX still to book ! Home Airport LCY
User currently offlineBA777ER236 From United Kingdom, joined Sep 2006, 278 posts, RR: 8
Reply 12, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 1737 times:

Quoting Stargoldlhr (Reply 11):
They even fled LHR in the fog last year

Are you serious!!?

BA did not flee LHR in the fog. All crews and all aircraft in the LHR BA fleet are qualified/equipped to Cat3b limits.

The real problem was the inbound flow rate into LHR. This is severely restricted in Cat3 conditions coming down to as little as 16 landing movements per hour. Even if only BA operated in these conditions, it would still severely disrupt the flying program, but a large number of operators fly to Cat3b limits these days. The knock on effects are huge and therefore the number of cancellations was very large.

Statements like yours are grossly misleading and really p*ss off the majority of my colleagues and myself when we see rubbish like this trotted out by people who don't know what they are talking about! We were well able to operate, sadly LHR wasn't.

Cheers


[Edited 2008-02-11 12:59:14]


Flying would be easy if it wasn't for the ground
User currently offlineTrekster From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 1729 times:



Quoting BA777ER236 (Reply 12):

here here

When ever there is fog at LHR, its a BA aircraft shown on the news.
People dont seem to understand flow rates etc, and just blame the airline.


User currently offlineETA Unknown From Comoros, joined Jun 2001, 2077 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (6 years 6 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 1708 times:

Although I didn't see the documentary, I had heard the BA flight was delayed leaving LHR at the request of the Govt. to get the secret forces on board.

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