Qb001
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This Is Scary

Tue Jul 20, 2004 11:43 pm

I hope I'm not posting about something that was already talked about. If so, mods, please delete this thread.

I wish it is what it's supposed to be: an undisciplined music band. If not, we are looking at a new catastrophe right in the eyes...

http://www.womenswallstreet.com/WWS/article_landing.aspx?titleid=1&articleid=711

There was a follow-up on that story in today's NY Times. It really looks like a terrorist dry run.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good theory.
 
777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:06 am

As we sat waiting for the plane to finish boarding, we noticed another large group of Middle Eastern men boarding. The first man wore a dark suit and sunglasses. He sat in first class in seat 1A, the seat second-closest to the cockpit door. The other seven men walked into the coach cabin. As "aware" Americans, my husband and I exchanged glances, and then continued to get comfortable. I noticed some of the other passengers paying attention to the situation as well. As boarding continued, we watched as, one by one, most of the Middle Eastern men made eye contact with each other. They continued to look at each other and nod, as if they were all in agreement about something. I could tell that my husband was beginning to feel "anxious."

Simple paranoia. Should all people looking like they're 'from the Middle-East' be banned from sitting near the flightdeck?! God forbid people who look like they're 'from the Middle-East' look at each other! TERRORISTS!

The man in the yellow T-shirt got out of his seat and went to the lavatory at the front of coach -- taking his full McDonald's bag with him. When he came out of the lavatory he still had the McDonald's bag, but it was now almost empty. He walked down the aisle to the back of the plane, still holding the bag. When he passed two of the men sitting mid-cabin, he gave a thumbs-up sign. When he returned to his seat, he no longer had the McDonald's bag.

Someone looking like they're 'from the Middle-East' eating McDonald's?! Must be a terrorist!

Then another man from the group stood up and took something from his carry-on in the overhead bin. It was about a foot long and was rolled in cloth. He headed toward the back of the cabin with the object. Five minutes later, several more of the Middle Eastern men began using the forward lavatory consecutively. In the back, several of the men stood up and used the back lavatory consecutively as well.

So now people with the right skin colour to be from the Middle-East can't go to the loo without being regarded as suspicious? A new low.

For the next hour, the men congregated in groups of two and three at the back of the plane for varying periods of time

Something I've always done with friends on long flights. It's called talking, not plotting a terrorist attack. Then again, I have the wrong skin colour to be a terrorist.

Meanwhile, in the first class cabin, just a foot or so from the cockpit door, the man with the dark suit - still wearing sunglasses - was also standing

Not only is it suspicious for this person with darker-than-normal skin to be sat near the flightdeck he also had the audacity to STAND near the flightdeck! The air marshall should have taken his Allah-lovin' ass out right then!

Not one of the flight crew members suggested that any of these men take their seats.

Why should they sit down? Because they have the wrong skin colour?

I threw out my friendliest "remember-me-we-had-a-nice-exchange-just-a-short-time-ago" smile. The man did not smile back. His face did not move. In fact, the cold, defiant look he gave me sent shivers down my spine.

That settles it. When a man with darker-than-normal skin doesn't give you a "remember-me-we-had-a-nice-exchange-just-a-short-time-ago" (!) smile, he MUST be a terrorist.

My husband immediately walked to the first class section to talk with the flight attendant. "I might be overreacting, but I've been watching some really suspicious things..." Before he could finish his statement, the flight attendant pulled him into the galley. In a quiet voice she explained that they were all concerned about what was going on. The captain was aware. The flight attendants were passing notes to each other. She said that there were people on board "higher up than you and me watching the men." My husband returned to his seat and relayed this information to me. He was feeling slightly better. I was feeling much worse. We were now two hours into a four-and-a-half hour flight.

Mmm, smells like bullshit! So the crew, flight crew and presumably people 'with higher authority' all felt concerned enough to be passing secret notes to each other, yet didn't divert the flight?

After seeing 14 Middle Eastern men board separately (six together, eight individually) and then act as a group, watching their unusual glances, observing their bizarre bathroom activities, watching them congregate in small groups, knowing that the flight attendants and the pilots were seriously concerned

Or reality: people with darker-skin boarded as a group (or 'friends' to use the white term), looked at each other, went to the toilet and talked to each other. My God.

Before I'm labeled a racial profiler or -- worse yet -- a racist, let me add this. A month ago I traveled to India to research a magazine article I was writing. My husband and I flew on a jumbo jet carrying more than 300 Hindu and Muslim men and women on board. We traveled throughout the country and stayed in a Muslim village 10 miles outside Pakistan. I never once felt fearful. I never once felt unsafe. I never once had the feeling that anyone wanted to hurt me. This time was different.

Nonsense. Nothing that these people with darker-than-normal skin did was suspicious. If a white person had done these things, she wouldn't have thought twice. Then again, who actually thinks this happened? The crew were terrified, yet didn't divert the flight? How would the cabin crew know there were marshalls 'all around' them?

Simply saying 'I'm not racist' doesn't make it so.

Suddenly, seven of the men stood up -- in unison -- and walked to the front and back lavatories. One by one, they went into the two lavatories, each spending about four minutes inside

TERRORISTS!!!!! Oh wait, this was just after the plane started the descent, just before the seat belt light went on. Maybe they just wanted a piss? No, course not! TERRORISTS!!!

The rest of the article is sheer nonsense, based on her idiotic paranoia and absolute racism. A dark-coloured man reading from a small book is automatically deemed a terrorist in her eyes. 'Arabs' talking to each other are terrorists in her eyes. Even someone who doesn't SMILE at her is a terrorist!

What a ridiculous article.
Your bone's got a little machine
 
ben
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:09 am

The only thing I find scary is that 777236ER has a higher "terrorists" to "words" ratio than G W Bush.
 
Qb001
Topic Author
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:36 am

Suddenly, seven of the men stood up -- in unison -- and walked to the front and back lavatories. One by one, they went into the two lavatories, each spending about four minutes inside

TERRORISTS!!!!! Oh wait, this was just after the plane started the descent, just before the seat belt light went on. Maybe they just wanted a piss? No, course not! TERRORISTS!!!

Wait, the author wrote, before:
The fasten seat belt light came on and I could see downtown Los Angeles...
So the guys stood up AFTER the seat belt light came on to go to the lavs; this is VERY odd. I mean, I saw pax being shout at by FAs because they simply stood up to grab a book in the overhead bin when the seat belt light was on. Why didn't the FAs say anything here? Were they scared to death, or have they been informed by the air marshall to do nothing?

If I wanted to read this article with a bit of suspicion, it is like these men wanted to provoke a reaction on the part of the air marshals. And apparently it didn't work.

But yes, indeed, there is a bit of racism in this article. As illustrated by this line:
Since the FBI issued a warning to the airline industry to be wary of groups of five men on a plane who might be trying to build bombs in the bathroom, shouldn't a group of 14 Middle Eastern men be screened before boarding a flight?

Why Middle Eastern men only?
Never let the facts get in the way of a good theory.
 
yanksn4
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:42 am

I saw this story on Scarborough Country last night, but just was too busy packing this morning to post it on here. Anyway, I am glad that there are passengers out there that are actually keeping an eye and ear open for anything suspicious. Even if they were wrong in thinking that these people were terrorist, you can not blame them for being suspicious of these men who get up out of their seats while the plane is landing. I mean please don't call them racist just because they kept themselves on guard.
2013 Airports: EWR, JFK, LGA, LIS, AGP, DEN, GIG, RGN, BKK, LHR, FRA, LAX, SYD, PER, MEL, MCO, MIA, PEK, IAH
 
JetService
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:46 am

777236ER, I don't know what you read, but the way the author descibed the behavior of these men, it sounds incredibly suspicious.
"Shaddap you!"
 
NoUFO
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 12:55 am

777236ER, before you blame people of being racist who start panicing when they just see a group of ME men, you should better watch your words and what you say about people you don't know. Your assumptions base on a much weaker fundament than the fear the woman and other people on this very flight felt.
I support the right to arm bears
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:06 am

Jetservice, in 777236ER's eyes this is only paranoia on the account of some ignorant American. Can't say that I'm surpised.


In reality, it is very suspicious behavior. If I was on board an aircraft that had a large group of middle-eastern males behaving like the ones she described, I would be suspicious as well. If there is a large group of people, white, black, or brown, who are "secretly" communicating with each other to avoid alerting any crew on board, that is SUSPICIOUS behavior. And no 777236ER, it's not simply because of their skin color, despite the fact that that race does have a strong and undeniable history of being involved in terrorism.

777236ER, this is not a story of paranoia, it's a story of suspicious behavior that occured on a flight, regardless of the skin color of the men. You're just focusing on that one thing to make the lady sound racist.



Anyways, I'm happy that the crew on board were professional and responsible in handling the situation. The flight attendants did not make a scene to stir anything up, and the Air Marshal(s) on board were ready in case they tried anything.




-NWA742
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
JetService
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:11 am

NWA742, of course it was the suspicious behavior. Anyone, and I mean ANYONE doing that would raise red flags to anyone paying attention. But since they were Arabs, 777236ER can't bring himself to admit that. He needs to stop treating people differently based on their race.
"Shaddap you!"
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:23 am

But since they were Arabs, 777236ER can't bring himself to admit that. He needs to stop treating people differently based on their race.

So true. It's funny that 777236ER seems so against any kind of racism, yet he treats Americans quite differently than anybody else.



-NWA742
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
Schoenorama
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:23 am

I'm afraid I have to agree with 777236ER here. The fact that these men looked like Arabs is an important factor which contributed the writer (and apparently the rest of the whole crew) to become suspicious. In other words, had they had a more Western look, these people probably would not have worried so much. That is racism, whether one likes it or not.

I believe these people were simply preparing their prayers and they probably performed their prayers in the bathrooms. Also, and against what many people might believe, Muslim in general are very hygenic and many wash themselves several time a day, even when aboard a plane.

Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
 
Guest

RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:26 am

Let's hope that at the worst it was group behaving irresponsibly. The alternative just makes me shiver.

tell us, 777236ER, read the report again thoroughly and tell us honestly: if you had been on that flight, wouldn't you have felt just the teensiest bit apprehensive? Fine, on a site like this to prove how much more cool, suave and liberal you are...but go on, tell us the truth.

That much activity out of seats on what is still a pretty short flight? A trip to the john, fine! As a group? In line?

You'd have been bricking it like the rest of us.

And can't you at least agree that the actions of the suspects in question is deplorable? Let's say they were just being irresponsible. They know the mood across the world right now - did they think they'd get their kicks by deliberately acting suspicious? Kind of makes things harder for others of middle-eastern origin when travelling, don't you think?

Like walking alone down a dark road and there is a woman walking along...you keep well back, or cross to the other side etc etc...just to give out those signals (as far as you can) that there's no threat. Obviously, 777 is the kind of man who would walk 3 feet behind her. Not doing anything illegal....no history of any wrongdoing...but no common-bloody-sense!

 
JetService
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:30 am

In other words, had they had a more Western look, these people probably would not have worried so much

I wonder how the hell you could possibly know that. Amazing!
"Shaddap you!"
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:35 am

The fact that these men looked like Arabs is an important factor which contributed the writer (and apparently the rest of the whole crew) to become suspicious.

Even if it was a factor, it was very small. So the writer noticed a large group of middle eastern men on her flight, big damn deal. Our nation was attacked by groups of middle eastern men using 4 of our airliners, so excuse the hell out of her for noticing them at an airport and on an aircraft.

Also, if you'll read what she said rather than jumping to conclusions, she didn't get really suspicious until she noticed the mens' behavior on board.

That is racism, whether one likes it or not.

More like profiling, which a lot of people have no problem with, for many good reasons.

And how do you know what aroused the crew members' suspicions?



-NWA742

[Edited 2004-07-20 18:37:11]
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
aloges
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 1:42 am

It'd be much less futile to bash each other over this story if it was confirmed to be true. Fishy quotes from the story:

"The next day, I began searching online for news about the incident. There was nothing."

Translation: Even if you don't find anything anywhere, it is still true because I say it.


"I asked a friend who is a local news correspondent if there were any arrests at LAX that day. There weren't."

Translation: No info on the arrests (There must have been some!!) is available because it's all one big cover-up by the TSA, FAA, DHS etc. etc. I say it so buy it.


"I called Northwest Airlines' customer service. They said write a letter. I wrote a letter, then followed up with a call to their public relations department. They said they were aware of the situation (sorry that happened!) but legally they have 30 days to reply."

Maybe NWA didn't want to reply because they feared she would twist their words on their mouths for an even "better" story? Or maybe they just didn't want to put up with this BS?


Gee, why do you folks buy everything with the word "terrorist" in it hook, line and sinker? Are you so afraid ("Be very afraid!) of these nutjobs that you see them everywhere? Look at it, besides 9/11 not one succesful terrorist attack has happened inside the US, and only one more has happened in a Spain, a former member of the "Coalition of the Persuaded Willing", and it was not related to air travel. So chill out people, you're more likely to be killed by lightning strike than by a terrorist.
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
kc7mmi
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:06 am

What a very interesting article. I too would be a little concerned if I was on that flight.

That settles it. When a man with darker-than-normal skin doesn't give you a "remember-me-we-had-a-nice-exchange-just-a-short-time-ago" (!) smile, he MUST be a terrorist.

777236ER takes things out of context.
I'm no expert but this is a change in behavior (which isn't normal, obviously) and mixed with the fact that you have 14 middle eastern people doing suspicious activities (of course you can say "what if they were white?"...but remember, 9/11 happened because of 19 middle eastern people) it's either very coincidental or they were all up to no-good. Even though they didn't bomb the plane, it sure looks as though they were testing the crew and the FAM's.

 
pelican
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:17 am

I don't know whether the story is true or not. But if something like that happened on one of my flights I would be alarmed, too.

Look at it, besides 9/11 not one successful terrorist attack has happened inside the US, and only one more has happened in a Spain

What about Bali, Djerba, Istanbul and some attacks that could be stopped before it was to late?
Sure these attacks weren't in the US of A and not air travel related (exception: Reid) but they show that there is a threat.

pelican


 
diamond
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:26 am

This topic was opened in the Civil Aiviation forum 4 days ago:

http://www.airliners.net/discussions/general_aviation/read.main/1654841/


Whether these men were or were not terrorists, they seemed to be moving in a way that HAD to attract attention, and it sounds as though they did so deliberately.

Everyone (including other Middle Eastern passengers) should have been concerned.

It doesn't have to be about race or racial profiling. If 14 young white American men had acted in this way, it would still have been suspicious.
Blank.
 
Qb001
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:31 am

To all those who doubt this is a true story, there is a follow-up in today's NY Times, here (if you have an account):
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/20/business/20road.html?pagewanted=all

For those who don't have a NY Times account, here are a few excerpts:
There is no doubt that something out of the ordinary happened on Northwest Airlines Flight 327 from Detroit to Los Angeles on June 29. The plane was met at the airport by squads of federal agents and police responding to radio messages from the pilots about concerns that 14 Middle Eastern male passengers had spent the four-hour flight acting suspiciously.

...

I have since spoken at length with Ms. Jacobsen, and also with an official of the Federal Air Marshal Service, who confirmed the gist of Ms. Jacobsen's narrative, if not her interpretation.

...

Then the plane landed without a problem. Waiting at the door were officers from the Federal Air Marshal Service, the F.B.I., the T.S.A. and the Los Angeles Police Department. The 14 men were questioned at length and released.

...

"We interviewed all 14 of these individuals,'' Mr. Adams said. "They were members of a Syrian band" traveling to a gig at a casino near Los Angeles, he said, adding that their names were run through "every possible" data bank and terrorist watch list. "They were scrubbed. Nothing came back."

...

As for the Syrian band, "They gave their little performance in the casino and two days later they flew out on a JetBlue flight from Long Beach to New York," Mr. Adams said.


The journalist, JOE SHARKEY, also wrote that he tried to find that mysterious Syrian Band, but could not locate them.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good theory.
 
aloges
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:31 am

"What about Bali, Djerba, Istanbul and some attacks that could be stopped before it was to late?
Sure these attacks weren't in the US of A and not air travel related (exception: Reid) but they show that there is a threat."


I focused on the "Western world", which does not include Bali, Djerba and Istanbul; places where the author of this gem will probably not go in a lifetime because she thinks she'll be bombed to pieces if she ever sets foot in countries like Indonesia, Tunisia and Turkey.

In case this story is true, I sure hope she'll travel by ground in the future (a.k.a. Greyhound Laugh out loud ), that way, she'll spare us this kind of story. Some people really "paint the devil on the wall" each time they see someone act in a way they don't recognise as totally normal. Paranoia at its best.
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
aloges
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:36 am

"The journalist, JOE SHARKEY, also wrote that he tried to find that mysterious Syrian Band, but could not locate them."

Not that uncommom, is it? If 14 people out of millions visiting the US each year can be terrorists trying out new techniques to blow up a plane with air marshals all around them Yeah sure , other 14 people can be a band that is hard to find - or can't they?
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
Qb001
Topic Author
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:48 am

Not that uncommom, is it?

It's not like these guys were part of a hard-rock garage band out of New Jersey or Ohio - there are probably 500 of them.

How many 14 musician-Syrian band do you know?

I understand all of those who claim that this is paranoia based on racism. But I don't understand how you so easily brush off the possibility that this could be a bit more serious.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good theory.
 
aloges
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 2:58 am

"How many 14 musician-Syrian band do you know?"

None, but what does that prove? I've never been to the Middle East, but there are probably quite a lot of musicians in that area - just like in any other place.

"I understand all of those who claim that this is paranoia based on racism."

I never said anything about racism. But you didn't quote me either.

"But I don't understand how you so easily brush off the possibility that this could be a bit more serious."

Thing is: EVERYTHING could be "a bit more serious", but when it comes to air travel and terrorists, many people act like planes are being bombed to pieces each day. The same people don't care about things that do cost lives on a daily basis.
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
AWspicious
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 4:59 am

This part made me laugh out loud:

As boarding continued, we watched as, one by one, most of the Middle Eastern men made eye contact with each other. They continued to look at each other and nod, as if they were all in agreement about something.

Ever notice how minorities/"foreigners" all seem to know each other? ;-]
I bet this woman probably doesn't even remember what she nor her own child was wearing... She was so pre-occupied minding these people's business - These "fourteen suspicious looking males". However, I bet she could give a vivid description of the men's attire... Right down to their socks.
It's funny and it's sad... This is the era in which we live.

Nevermind political correctness - Envision using your turn signals!
 
NoUFO
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 5:07 am

Aloges, I think it is safe to describe the fear the author expresses in her report as collective concern. Even the crew didn't feel safe, nor have they been able to calm the passengers.

Yet, you accuse the messenger only of being paranoid. What makes you so sure that you would stand above of what the majority felt, that you would have acted differently and that your thinking would have been more appropriate than that of - let's say - the crew.

That being said, the report not only focuses on the ominous musicians but also on the screening process (or rather lack thereof). If passengers and the crew would have been confident that all measures had been taken to keep terrorists off from boarding, then they probably would not have considered all motions by the 14 men suspicious.
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Schoenorama
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 5:21 am

JetService:

"I wonder how the hell you could possibly know that. Amazing! "

By reading the actual article, JetService. This lady spotted one particular group of Middle Eastern men before they even boarded. She says: "They were carrying blue passports with Arabic writing. Two men wore tracksuits with Arabic writing across the back". To me, from the moment on that she saw these men had Arabic passports, she started observing the group throughout the flight and everything a bit out of the ordinary was suspicious to her.
Had these people carried British Passports, I don't think she'd ever have observed these men as thorough as she did now.


NWA742:


"So the writer noticed a large group of middle eastern men on her flight, big damn deal. Our nation was attacked by groups of middle eastern men using 4 of our airliners, so excuse the hell out of her for noticing them at an airport and on an aircraft."

Of course every airtraveler in the US is more suspicious when Middle Eastern men are on the same flight, after what happened on 9/11, but that does not mean that this behaviour can't be labelled as racism, because it is. If I walk down a street at night and I see a group of black teenagers approaching me, I'll try whatever possible to avoid them. That's, apart from common sense in most large cities, also racism and I admit it!! What happened on this flight is also a kind of racism, for a good reason, but it still is racism!

"Also, if you'll read what she said rather than jumping to conclusions, she didn't get really suspicious until she noticed the mens' behavior on board."

I don't think that's true. I think she became suspicious from the moment she saw their passports before they boarded. That simply made her observe them a bit more and that possibly led her to interprete as 'suspicious' perfectly normal behaviour for Muslim men aboard planes.

"More like profiling, which a lot of people have no problem with, for many good reasons."

Racial profiling is also racism, for whatever reason it might be.


"And how do you know what aroused the crew members' suspicions?"

Possibly exactly the same things. It was a Domestic Flight on which crew-members do not have much contact with foreigners in general and Muslims in particular.

This whole incident reminds me of what my grandfather used to say: If you believe in ghosts and want to see ghosts, go the a cementary late at night and you'll see one for sure.
Same thing happens to people who are afraid of flying: every single sound and movement is suspicious. In this case were talking about a bunch of foreigners with a complete different culture. I'm sure that if this had happened on an international flight, with a experienced crew when it comes to dealing with other cultures, surely the crew wouldn't have been suspicious at all.
Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
 
NoUFO
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 5:35 am

Schoenorama, the US of A is often described as "melting pot of nations". It is extremly unlikely the crew never witnessed a group of Arabic people aboard of a plane before.

Just imagine each crew on a domestic flight with "dark skinned people" would issue an alarm to authorities. That simply doesn't happen.
I support the right to arm bears
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 5:58 am

that does not mean that this behaviour can't be labelled as racism, because it is. If I walk down a street at night and I see a group of black teenagers approaching me, I'll try whatever possible to avoid them. That's, apart from common sense in most large cities, also racism and I admit it!! What happened on this flight is also a kind of racism, for a good reason, but it still is racism!

I see your points, but what you are talking about is NOT racism, it's racial profiling.............which is hardly the same thing. Racial profilling involves simply the use of common sense to arouse suspicion in a situation which could be dangerous, and in this case, it involves race, and it is usually justifiable in a sense that different races have histories of doing certain things.

It's not the same as racism, where a racist person would always conclude that an entire race is inferior, or composed of thugs who break the law or terrorists who commit atrocities. Racial profiling is hardly that. You said common sense yourself, so we're on the same track, just with different words.

I don't think that's true. I think she became suspicious from the moment she saw their passports before they boarded. That simply made her observe them a bit more and that possibly led her to interprete as 'suspicious' perfectly normal behaviour for Muslim men aboard planes.

I don't think she really became suspicious until she noted their behavior on board the aircraft. In fact, at first, she attempted to be polite to the men, she probably thought they would mean no harm to her, until she noticed their weird behavior.

Racial profiling is also racism, for whatever reason it might be.

No it isn't, they are not the same thing. There are of course, cases where profiling is unnecessary, but with airports and airport security, I support it. I mean, should our screeners treat the average family the same way as a sweaty and nervous-looking Arabic man with a ticking briefcase?

Possibly exactly the same things. It was a Domestic Flight on which crew-members do not have much contact with foreigners in general and Muslims in particular.

Wrong again, many crew members work both domestic and international flights.



-NWA742
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
aloges
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 6:32 am

"Yet, you accuse the messenger only of being paranoid. What makes you so sure that you would stand above of what the majority felt, that you would have acted differently and that your thinking would have been more appropriate than that of - let's say - the crew."

I wouldn't be afraid if someone didn't return my smile, Middle Easterner or not. I wouldn't be afraid if a group of 14 Middle Easterners boarded my plane and nodded to each other. I wouldn't be afraid because of one of them bringing a McD bag aboard. As for the other oh-so-suspicious activities, I think the author was very anal about writing down to the last bit what these horrible terrorists (who were released after being interrogated and identified as a freaking band) did, and she is too narrow-minded to consider that even a group of Middle-Eastern men acting like complete weirdos might actually not be terrorists. That's paranoia, in my book.

Had anyone talked to them about their weird behaviour, and had they reacted in a strange way or even rude, then I too would have been worried. But still, how many WASP American airplane passengers get up while they're supposed to be buckled up in their seats, how many Europeans act rude towards other passengers and flight attendants, and finally: how many of these are automatically labeled "terrorists"? It all boils down to paranoia. For Christ's sake, nobody even asked those 14 men what they were doing! They could have responded "Oh, we're discussing our mini-gig in LA!" which may very well have been what they were doing. But no, since they were towelheads just like Osama bin Laden, they had to be terrorists.  Yeah sure

Last, but not least: I wouldn't have written & published an article on a website having personally experienced that everything went well (and the plane did not explode), without even researching for more than a couple of minutes, at most.


"That being said, the report not only focuses on the ominous musicians but also on the screening process (or rather lack thereof). If passengers and the crew would have been confident that all measures had been taken to keep terrorists off from boarding, then they probably would not have considered all motions by the 14 men suspicious."

Well, that's not the problem of these guys, is it? They didn't choose to get on without being screened "properly", whatever that would have been in the eyes of the author.

People don't worry about drunk nutjobs navigating passenger ferries and ULCCs through rough seas, but whenever something remotely suspicious happens to/on an airplane, they all go "HOLY SHIT WE'RE GONNA DIE!!!" Why the hell?

[Edited 2004-07-20 23:36:30]
Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
 
777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 6:35 am

What's emphasised throughout the story was that they were Middle Eastern men. Most of the suspicious behavour was suspicious only because they were from, or looked liked they were from the Middle East. A man not smiling is not suspicious, under any circumstances.

Another point against the authenticity of this story: whenever I've ever been on a flight and someone got up to use the toilet once the seat belt light had gone on, the cabin crew quickly told them to sit down. Didn't happen on this flight. Hmm.

I see your points, but what you are talking about is NOT racism, it's racial profiling.............which is hardly the same thing.

Wrong. Racial profiling is discriminating on people based solely on their race - ie. racism.

"And no 777236ER, it's not simply because of their skin color, despite the fact that that race does have a strong and undeniable history of being involved in terrorism. "

What? They were Irish? Cuban? Christians against abortion?

[Edited 2004-07-21 00:04:36]
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777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:00 am

It's funny that 777236ER seems so against any kind of racism, yet he treats Americans quite differently than anybody else.

I have nothing against Americans - find me just ONE post where I've said anything where I discriminated against Americans. Just because I don't like the American administration doesn't mean I'm anti-Americans, nor against the American people.

The problem of 'dark people coming to get us!' isn't solely an American phenomenon - but it seems to be on the rise there.
Your bone's got a little machine
 
MaverickM11
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:06 am

"Racial profiling is discriminating on people based solely on their race - ie. racism."

Wrong. Racial profiling is profiling based on someone's race, quite simply, which is sound science. If everyone at the scene of the crime said they saw a white man commit the crime, you're going to focus on white men. I know you and yours would have them go after little old Asian ladies just in the interest of tolerance and equality, wasting time, resources, and money.

"What's emphasised throughout the story was that they were Middle Eastern men. Most of the suspicious behavour was suspicious only because they were from, or looked liked they were from the Middle East."

The overwhelming majority of air terrorism in the last couple decades has been attributable to Arabs/Muslims/Middle Easterners. This is not an indictment of "brown skin"ned people, Islam, or Middle Easterners. More people being more alert to suspicious behavior (which is entirely subjective) could have prevented 9/11 and many other acts of terrorism. I can envision you sitting next to Richard Reid yammering "He's just playing with a lighter--that's not suspicious! You're just racist!!"
E pur si muove -Galileo
 
777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:11 am

Wrong. Racial profiling is profiling based on someone's race, quite simply, which is sound science

Profiling is discrimination - profile people based on race is to give them different treatment because of their race. Ie. racism.
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MaverickM11
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:13 am

"Profiling is discrimination - profile people based on race is to give them different treatment because of their race. Ie. racism."

You are so wrong. Profiling is a tool used to narrow down a group to a population of interest. Going only after blacks for the sake of going after blacks with no good reason is wrong and racism; going only after blacks because the security camera photographed a black person, the witnesses saw a black person, the finger prints match those of a black man in the registry is COMMON SENSE.
E pur si muove -Galileo
 
777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:15 am

Going only after blacks for the sake of going after blacks with no good reason is wrong and racism; going only after blacks because the security camera photographed a black person, the witnesses saw a black person, the finger prints match those of a black man in the registry is COMMON SENSE.

But picking out other blacks - with no evidence or suspicion other than the colour of their skin - is racism.
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777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:22 am

Going only after blacks for the sake of going after blacks with no good reason is wrong and racism; going only after blacks because the security camera photographed a black person, the witnesses saw a black person, the finger prints match those of a black man in the registry is COMMON SENSE.

But picking out other blacks - with no evidence or suspicion other than the colour of their skin - is racism.
Your bone's got a little machine
 
kc7mmi
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:27 am

Even though it is unfortunate for most Middle Eastern people that we have racial profiling, it is necessary for national security. This wouldn't be a problem if Middle Eastern people weren't the biggest threat to us. I don't see any other ethnicity as large of a threat to our national security as some of these Middle Easterners. I know there are a lot of good Islamic people around, but there are also a lot of bad Islamic people too and since Islam is one of the largest religions around, well...I'm sure you can see where I'm going with this.

Racial profiling is not racism; if a Middle Eastern personal passes the background check before flying, and doesn't act suspicious (ie. congregating around a lav while the seatbelt sign is on), then they get treated just as any other person does; thus no discrimination.
 
777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 7:59 am

Even though it is unfortunate for most Middle Eastern people that we have racial profiling

A basic civil liberty is thrown away and it's UNFORTUNATE?!

Racial profiling is not racism

Yes it is, by definition. For example, black people commit more gun crimes. Therefore is it within the rights of all black people to have extra checks before buying guns, just because their race is more likely to commit gun crimes?
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mikedlayer
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:03 am

For all the people saying how pathetic this article is, I'd like to wonder how you would be in the same situation, and how you would feel if the situation turned into reality. I'd be pretty scared for certain, even if I do adore flying!!!

Mike
 
kc7mmi
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:21 am

A basic civil liberty is thrown away and it's UNFORTUNATE?!
Yes, it is unfortunate! If the damn terrorists (most of which are of Middle Eastern decent) would just stop we wouldn't have this problem!
 
Schoenorama
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:25 am

NoUFO:

"Schoenorama, the US of A is often described as "melting pot of nations". It is extremly unlikely the crew never witnessed a group of Arabic people aboard of a plane before."

True, but after 9/11 its the Arabic people who are always picked out. There's loads of similar incidents. People who have been questioned, held in custody and whatever for the mere fact that they had Arabic looks.

NWA742:

"I see your points, but what you are talking about is NOT racism, it's racial profiling.............which is hardly the same thing. Racial profilling involves simply the use of common sense to arouse suspicion in a situation which could be dangerous, and in this case, it involves race, and it is usually justifiable in a sense that different races have histories of doing certain things."

I understand perfectly well why racial profiling is carried out. In a way, as I tried to illustrate with my example in the previous reply, most of us do it. But one of the negative effects of 'racial profiling' is that one tends to over-react and be hypersensitive to even the slightest deviation from what one considers to be normal behaviour.

"t's not the same as racism, where a racist person would always conclude that an entire race is inferior, or composed of thugs who break the law or terrorists who commit atrocities. Racial profiling is hardly that. You said common sense yourself, so we're on the same track, just with different words."

We are on the same track, but I believe it is racism, perhaps not in thre crudest form but it certainly is prejudice towards Arab people and, unfortunately, 'real' racism normally starts with prejudice.

"I don't think she really became suspicious until she noted their behavior on board the aircraft. In fact, at first, she attempted to be polite to the men, she probably thought they would mean no harm to her, until she noticed their weird behavior."

As I stated above, it all depends on one's own explanation for 'weird behaviour', specially when we all, without calling it as such, perform 'racial profiling' on a daily basis. To give just another example (which I recently saw on TV): there's a person laying on the street in a dirty coat and with dirty pants on. He isn't moving and he has is eyes closed. Nine people might pass by and see the man but only the 10th will stop and actually see if he can help. Why only this person? What made this person stop? Probably a much lower level of suspicion towards 'a man with dirty clothes laying on the pavement'. It's the picture of the situation the 9 others perceived as "a drunken homeless laying on the street" but which the 10th person perceived as "man might have had a heart-attack and has fallen on dirty street" which changes the whole situation. Again, it all comes down to one's own interpretation on what is normal and what not.

"No it isn't, they are not the same thing. There are of course, cases where profiling is unnecessary, but with airports and airport security, I support it. I mean, should our screeners treat the average family the same way as a sweaty and nervous-looking Arabic man with a ticking briefcase?"

Your missing my point. I agree it is done. I do it!! But I believe it is a form of racism nevertheless. I believe I am practising a form of racism. I am a racist. There!


Utinam logica falsa tuam philosophiam totam suffodiant!
 
kc7mmi
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:35 am

One more thing and then I'm done with this thread:
It's UNFORTUNATE they must worry about racial profiling and we must worry about being killed in a terrorist attack!
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:40 am

I have nothing against Americans - find me just ONE post where I've said anything where I discriminated against Americans. Just because I don't like the American administration doesn't mean I'm anti-Americans, nor against the American people.

777236ER, you're kind of like Solnabo is in the aviation forums, you won't admit your true feelings, yet the overall general tone and wording of your posts gives just about everybody a clear idea.

Yes it is, by definition.

Then why are we talking about two terms? Racism and racial profilng DO NOT mean the same thing.

Let's give an example of the two, using the FACT that Arabs have an overwhelming history of being involved in air terrorism.

Racial profiling would be having airport screeners and security personnel keep an extra eye on any Arabs that look nervous, or behave in any other kind of suspicious way. (kind of like the author of the story did) Profiling would also allow screeners to establish a difference between grandma with a cane, and sweaty Abdullah holding a ticking briefcase.

Racism would be a conclusion that all Arabs are terrorists, and therefore must submit to excessive security checks and screening at every single US airport. You don't see anything like that happening, now do you?

Point being, they are two very DIFFERENT things, you're being incredibily naive when you say that racism and racial profiling are the same thing 777236ER, but that's what most have come to expect from you.



-NWA742
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:43 am

Racial profiling would be having airport screeners and security personnel keep an extra eye on any Arabs that look nervous, or behave in any other kind of suspicious way.

Nope, wrong.

Racial profiling would be having airport screeners and security personnel keep and extra eye on certain races simply because of their race, not because they looked nervous. Hence 'racial' profiling. Ie. racism.
Your bone's got a little machine
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:48 am

But one of the negative effects of 'racial profiling' is that one tends to over-react and be hypersensitive to even the slightest deviation from what one considers to be normal behaviour.

Agreed, that is a negative "side effect", however, I don't think it effects many Americans at all.

We are on the same track, but I believe it is racism, perhaps not in thre crudest form but it certainly is prejudice towards Arab people and, unfortunately, 'real' racism normally starts with prejudice.

I can see why you think it's racism, I just have a different viewpoint. I know that it's unfortunate for most Arabs, but that's the price they have to pay, and we paid a far greater price.

Your missing my point. I agree it is done. I do it!! But I believe it is a form of racism nevertheless. I believe I am practising a form of racism. I am a racist. There!

Well, that's where we differ. Refer to my last post above directed to 777236ER, I did my best to explain why racial profiling has nothing to do with racism.



-NWA742
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:54 am

Nope, wrong.

Racial profiling would be having airport screeners and security personnel keep and extra eye on certain races simply because of their race


Think about it 777236ER, use your head, I know it hurts, but USE IT.

Racial profiling uses skin color, but for a LOGICAL AND PROVEN REASON. In the case of airport screening, it's not just because of their skin color, it's because of the fact that that race has an undeniable history of commiting air terrorism. Not just color, it's the history of the color in a particular area, that promotes the need for certain types of racial profiling.




-NWA742
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
777236ER
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 9:02 am

Racial profiling uses skin color, but for a LOGICAL AND PROVEN REASON.

So you admit it's racism? Whether it's needed or not, it's racism?
Your bone's got a little machine
 
go canada!
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 9:06 am

I wouldnt care if it was 18 women wearing bright pink tutus or 12 germans standing around signing, I would still be concerned about a group of people all standing up, chatting to each other, all going to the bathroom on after the other and all make stares at each other.

Terrorists dont have to have arabic passports or be arabic!

Can you imagine the fuss that would have been made had their been no air marshals and these men had carried out a hijacking, no doubt the anti american side of airliners.net would be calling it a show by a desperate president and michael moore would bring out a film!

All pax should have common sense, you dont bring knives or scissors in your hand luggage, you dont stand up when the seltbelt sign was on and you dont all hang around a bathroom then make coded signals to each other!

A bunch of syrian muscians must have surely been on a plane before and surely they knew how to behave?
It is amazing what can be accomplised when nobody takes the credit
 
NWA742
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 10:30 am

So you admit it's racism? Whether it's needed or not, it's racism?

This whole time I've been trying to tell you how it's not racism, I've given you examples and reasons. You don't seem to understand the fact that these are two different terms which have different meanings, I've pointed them out to you, and you ignore it. Do you even know what racism is? Racism is believing a certain race to be inferior by some means, racial profiling means it's name: profiling of a race in a certain environment for a certain reason----it has nothing at all to do with racism.

If you still don't get it, I give up.



-NWA742
Some people are like slinkies - not good for anything, but they bring a smile to your face when pushed down the stairs
 
MaverickM11
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RE: This Is Scary

Wed Jul 21, 2004 11:59 am

"So you admit it's racism? Whether it's needed or not, it's racism?"

I think YOU are racist! If racial profiling is "racist" then tampon marketing is sexist (and racist in your vocabulary) because it only markets to women.

[Edited 2004-07-21 05:01:43]
E pur si muove -Galileo

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