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Saturday, December 26, 2009

Passenger Describes Heroic Effort to Stop Terrorist Attack on Northwest Flight 253 - Video 12/25/09

UPDATED 9:43 AM CT: Here is a video report from NBC News on the attempted attack:

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Here is video of a passenger on Northwest Airlines Flight 253 telling about the heroic effort of another passenger to stop a terrorist on board to keep him from completing his attempt to blow up the airplane.

A young man climbed over passengers to get to the Nigerian terrorist to stop him. Reports indicate the terrorist was burned badly on his legs, where he had strapped the explosive device. The heroic passenger was also burned in subduing the attacker:

An attempted terrorist attack on a Christmas Day flight began with a pop and a puff of smoke - sending passengers scrambling to subdue a Nigerian man who claimed to be acting on orders from al-Qaida to blow up the airliner, officials and travelers said.

The commotion began as Northwest Airlines Flight 253, carrying 278 passengers and 11 crew members from Amsterdam, prepared to land in Detroit just before noon Friday. Travelers said they smelled smoke, saw a glow, and heard what sounded like firecrackers. At least one person climbed over others and jumped on the man, who officials say was trying to ignite an explosive device.

"It sounded like a firecracker in a pillowcase," said Peter Smith, a passenger from the Netherlands. "First there was a pop, and then (there) was smoke."

Smith said one passenger, sitting opposite the man, climbed over passengers, went across the aisle and tried to restrain the man. The heroic passenger appeared to have been burned.

Afterward, the suspect was taken to a front-row seat with his pants cut off and his legs burned. Multiple law enforcement officials also said the man appeared badly burned on his legs, indicating the explosive was strapped there. The components were apparently mixed in-flight and included a powdery substance, multiple law enforcement and counterterrorism officials said.

The White House said it believed it was an attempted act of terrorism and stricter security measures were quickly imposed on airline travel. Dutch anti-terrorism authorities said the U.S. has asked all airlines to take extra precautions on flights worldwide that are bound for the United States. . . . MORE


Anonymous,  December 26, 2009 at 10:31 AM  

Why in God's name was that plane not evacuated IMMEDIATELY upon landing. According to this passenger they held the passengers ON the plane for an additional 30 minutes after landing. What if there had been another bomb on that plane? STUPID if you ask me. Law enforcement seems to be getting dumber.

Brian December 26, 2009 at 11:53 AM  

No explanation was given. That's a good question.

Anonymous,  December 26, 2009 at 3:49 PM  

In the, what 20-25 minutes from incident to landing?, I think it was handled well. The crew was on decent and operating a large aircraft into a heavy-traffic airport. They had apprehended the suspect, calmed the passengers, and relayed vital information to emergency personnel. An evacuation of that scale would be rash unless there was immediate danger to the people on board (fire, smoke, evidence that there was more than one device, etc.) I am grateful for the quick thinking and bravery of the crew members and passengers involved. THANK YOU

Larry S December 26, 2009 at 4:47 PM  

Maybe trained security professionals know a little bit more about handling these situations than the average blog commenter?

Just a thought.

acide folique December 31, 2009 at 4:47 AM  

Thank God for that brave Dutchman! But what about all those boastful macho posts I read here on Free Republic about how airline terrorists better beware if they try anything like that again on a U.S. flight because they will be “taken down” in short order their brave American seatmates. According to news reports NOT A SINGLE American passenger made ANY move against the terrorist, even after hearing a bang and seeing smoke coming from his seat.

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