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Kamikaze: F-16 pilots planned to ram Flight 93

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posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 09:53 AM
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Might have been a great story of courage except. There were two planes scrabled out of Selfridge airforce base in Michigan. They were over Lake Erie and armed with sidewinders. They were orderd to shoot it down and only 15 minutes from intercepting. My buddy's dad is a Major at the base and a helicopter pilot.




posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 10:26 AM
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reply to post by Violater1
 


No one was following Flight 93 - the Military didn't even know it was hijacked. The fact is that no military knew about the hijacking of United 93 until after it was already 4 feet in the ground. That is proven by the this weeks released transcripts and audio tapes.

The audio and transcripts are at:
www.rutgerslawreview.com/2011/9-the-impact-of-inaccurate-statements/

To listen and read the entire day- beginning to end- go to www.rutgerslawreview.com home page.


"On September 15, 2001, General Paul Weaver, overall commander of the Air National Guard which provided the fighters used to scramble Otis and Langley, told reporters that no fighters were scrambled or vectored to chase United 93: “There was no notification for us to launch airplanes. We weren’t even close.”

"NORAD now acknowledges that at all levels – NEADS, CONR, and NORAD headquarters – they were completely unaware of United 93 .... Indeed, NEADS never learned of the flight until five minutes after it had crashed (at 10:08)."

"Furthermore, NORAD did not receive any form of shoot-down authority until 10:31. Even then, that instruction was not communicated to the pilots.

"In short, the representation that military had been following United 93 as it progressed, and was by virtue of this awareness in position to intercept the plane, was inaccurate."


Can anyone say "Jessica Lynch?"

The beginning of the full audio and transcripts www.rutgerslawreview.com...
The section on United 93:
www.rutgerslawreview.com...
The impact of inaccurate statements (from where I pulled most of these quotes):
www.rutgerslawreview.com...



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 10:37 AM
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Originally posted by wantsome
Might have been a great story of courage except. There were two planes scrabled out of Selfridge airforce base in Michigan. They were over Lake Erie and armed with sidewinders. They were orderd to shoot it down and only 15 minutes from intercepting. My buddy's dad is a Major at the base and a helicopter pilot.



At 10:09 as the news of a bomb on board United 93 spread throughout the floor, the NEADS air defenders searched for the primary radar target and the Mission Crew Commander tried to locate assets to scramble toward the plane.

(by now it had already crashed)

At approximately 10:11, the commander got on the phone with an Air National Guard Unit in Syracuse:

101145 NEADS discussion with Syracuse Cdr.mp3

NEADS Identification Technicians called Washington Center to provide a “heads up” to them about United 93, but Washington Center provided NEADS with startling new information on the flight:

101418 ZDC to NEADS UA93 is down.mp3

The time was 10:15 and the call was NEADS’ first notice that United 93 had crashed.[xxiv] The actual time of the crash was 10:03:11.


Go listen and read the transcripts yourself.
www.rutgerslawreview.com...
edit on 11-9-2011 by Stratus9 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 05:04 PM
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Yeah, yeah it makes tons of sense to have fighter jets sitting unarmed on stand-by at airfields.

LOL.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 06:34 PM
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reply to post by Exuberant1
 



What this means is that the f-16 had the means to fire over fifty bursts at the airliner. The f-16 had the means to destroy the cockpit and it's human contents along with destroying the wings, tail and engines should she have decided to.


The pentagon sees to it that I know more than you:

www.f-16.net...


The rate of fire of 6,000 rpm or 100 rps means that shells are spaced by 0.01 sec. A MiG-29, with a length of 56ft 5in (17.20m) and 90? angle-off (i.e. with a direction of flight perpendicular to the direction of flight of the F-16), flying at 543kts (1,000 km/h) or 278m/sec travels 2.78m in 0.01 sec. Therefore, the Fulcrum will be hit at least 5-6 times if the aim is true (17.2/2.78=6.187).


There is no rate of fire selection on the F-16 application, and the claim in your wiki is not cited.

The pure mathematics involved demonstrate exactly the problem I was talking about. You are only going to see about 10-15 of those rounds land on the airliner. Airliner construction is little different from bomber construction - notably the B-52 (in fact, modern airliners are -better- constructed than the B-52). Bombers have been known to come back full of holes and with whole chunks of stabilizing and control surfaces missing.

Further - a burst selection would be useless on any fighter given the mathematics involved. Two round bursts? Really? Even a 50 round burst would be practically useless. There's a reason that claim isn't cited - it's bogus.


The gun controller is the electronics unit which actually controls the firing of the gun. A voltage pulse is sent out from the gun controller to fire each round in a firing burst. At the end of a burst when the trigger is released, the gun clears itself. In the clearing operation, 5 to 9 unfired rounds are cycled through the gun without firing pulses, and are fed back to the ammo drum. These rounds are carried for the duration of the flight as spent rounds and cannot be used. The SMS (Stores Management System) has a rounds remaining counting function which counts each firing pulse from the gun controller and subtracts these from the loaded number of rounds. In the clearing operation, however, there are no pulses or any way of determining the actual number of rounds cleared, therefore the SMS assumes 7. Due to this fact there can be a discrepancy between the rounds remaining on the SCP and the actual number of rounds left to be fired. This discrepancy can become larger with increasing number of clearings.


I've encountered many combat simulators - and not one has ever had a "burst selection" for -any- airframe equipped with the M-61A1. The closest you come to that are firing rate selectors used on weapons like the GAU-8 in service with the A-10. I'm not aware of any fighter that actually has a firing rate selector.


Who else here believes that 105 rounds of 20mm couldn't down a commercial airliner?


It doesn't matter what people believe. What matters is cold, hard, reality. Unless one or more of those rounds happens to land inside of each engine on the airframe - 105 rounds is virtually useless for bringing down such a large aircraft. You can do damage, sure - but you're not going to bring it down with any kind of reliability.

www.daveswarbirds.com...

You'll see some photos of B-17s and the types of damage they sustained. Structurally, they are inferior to the techniques and reliability behind today's airframes.

You could have had those F-16s up there with a full load of over 500 rounds of ammunition and a duo of sidewinders, and they STILL might have had to "kamikaze" to bring that thing down.

Like I said - aircraft are designed to fly. It is -bad- business for the airline industry when airliners drop out of the sky. Thus - they make damned sure those things can survive well over twice their maximum recommended flight hours and countless failures of primary and secondary systems that extend beyond plausible scenarios.

Human stupidity is about the only thing powerful enough to single-handedly bring down an airliner.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 06:51 PM
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For those interested, this an article presented from the German point of attempting to bring down B-17 bomber formations and the difficulty involved:

freepages.military.rootsweb.ancestry.com...


To reliably destroy a B-17, the attacker had to either break the integrity of the flight deck or explode the bombs in the bomb bay. Anything less only damaged the bomber. Hits on less vulnerable areas like the massive vertical stabilizer and rudder might cause the aircraft to slow but it would struggle on. Consolidated B-24 Liberator’s had a tendency to explode when hit but the B-17 rarely did.



By the summer of 1943, the Germans had deployed the Focke Wulf FW 190A4, a dedicated bomber killer armed with two 7.9mm machine guns and four 20mm cannons. With all guns functioning, a three-second burst fired about 130 rounds of ammunition. The Luftwaffe estimated that it took an average of 20 hits from the 20mm cannon to destroy a B-17. Analysis of gun camera film revealed that the average German pilot scored hits with only 2 percent of the rounds fired, thus on average, 1000 rounds were fired to score the 20 hits required.


The F-16 is only a tad smaller than the B-17, believe it or not. It's a toy compared to the airliners of today.


Desperate to inflict massive losses on the American Bomber stream and force a month long bombing pause, the Germans concocted a plan for a massive ramming attack. Late in 1944, Oberst Hans-Joachim Herrman proposed using 800 or so high altitude Bf-109G’s stripped of armor and armament to reduce weight for such an attack.


In the end - the Germans decided ramming to be more effective. Go figure.


German pilot losses were predicted to be around 300, more or less what was lost in a normal month’s fighting. Aircraft losses would be much higher of course, but by this point numbers of aircraft were not the Luftwaffe’s problem. Trained pilots and especially fuel were. Fully trained fighter pilots were too valuable to be wasted in these attacks, so volunteers were called for from the training units. The first ramming unit, "Sonderkommando Elbe" formed in April 1945 and flew a single mission with 120 aircraft. Its inadequately trained pilots were unable to inflict much damage. Fifteen bombers were rammed but only 8 were destroyed.


I'm pushing the limits of the TOS on externals - but this is pretty much the kicker.

Even ramming a huge chunk of metal (engine) and fuel into a bomber had only about a 50% reliability to bring it down. /Face.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 07:28 PM
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This article smells like Bull-S.H.I.T!

First of all, Vipers generally carry 500+ rounds for their M61's, not 105, why they supposedly only had 105 is strange to say the least.

Second of all, why were no "alert fighters" geared and fueled up present at that time? Owww yeah, the exercises....

Thirdly, even if they had "only" 105 rounds each, they would have been able to absolutely shred that airliner to bits! These aren't cute little 9mm bullets we are talking about. Each of these bullets are high velocity 20mm rounds and they are fired very very very rapidly (100 rounds per second).

Either these vipers were extremely poorly equipped and the pilots really didn't know that 200X20mm round = 1 crashing airliner, or they are lying to our faces.


IT--



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 09:48 PM
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reply to post by edog11
 



This article smells like Bull-S.H.I.T!


Please read some of the previous posts in this thread so you may realize just how full of male bovine fecal matter you are.


First of all, Vipers generally carry 500+ rounds for their M61's, not 105, why they supposedly only had 105 is strange to say the least.


This is incorrect. It is highly atypical for any aircraft to ever be fully loaded with anything. Let alone a rarely used weapon like the M61A1


Second of all, why were no "alert fighters" geared and fueled up present at that time? Owww yeah, the exercises....


Alert 5 is a very costly and expensive condition to maintain. I've already been over this. If you want Alert 5 coverage of any significant portion of U.S. Airspace at all times, you're going to have to see massive cuts to other areas of government spending to compensate. Not that I'm opposed - I hate entitlement programs.


Thirdly, even if they had "only" 105 rounds each, they would have been able to absolutely shred that airliner to bits! These aren't cute little 9mm bullets we are talking about. Each of these bullets are high velocity 20mm rounds and they are fired very very very rapidly (100 rounds per second).


Again - been over this. No. Given the engagement, the most each aircraft could have gotten out of their strafe would have been about a 20% accuracy. Simply putting holes in an airliner is superficial damage. You need to compromise large amounts of structure - and to do that, you need to be able to 'rake' the weapon across a major surface, such as a wing so as to "slice." The problem is that you have 1.3 seconds of firing. The M61A1 has a 0.3 second wind-up before it fires, and will deplete the 105 rounds in one second.

Effective use of the M61A1 against large airframes requires expert slewing of the nose using the available control surfaces - since the gun, itself, is fixed to the airframe. This is difficult, to say the least. Your approach angles are highly limited. Personally, I would choose about 30 degrees high off the tail, offset of the centerline to be parallel with the wing root - taking a shallow dive to draw the nose 'through' the leading edge of the wing root before pulling up - hoping that the natural twisting of the wing will do the rest.

That said, I would prefer at least two seconds of fire to be able to draw a good lead and be sure to sever the leading edge. You also figure that I'm going to be doing this at about 100 yards, or so, and there will always be considerable deviation.

A strafe of the cockpit is virtually impossible at the retardedly high approach velocities involved with a jet liner and a jet aircraft. You could try it from above/below and behind - I would assign that to my wingman if my strafe on the wing failed.

All of this, however, requires some expert flying and some luck. Not to mention an engineer's perspective on bringing down an airliner. Shredding it is not enough. The things will fly looking like a cheese grater (hell, some of them fly -better- with holes to bleed air away and preserve the boundary layer... but that's another discussion). It's exactly what you shred, and where, that matters.

Simply pulling the trigger and aiming at the airliner is not going to do the trick. Even if you had a fully loaded M61A1.


Either these vipers were extremely poorly equipped and the pilots really didn't know that 200X20mm round = 1 crashing airliner, or they are lying to our faces.


It's a case of you thinking you know that which you don't.

It happens. You're merely a human, afterall.



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 09:53 PM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


I'm pretty sure 105 rounds of 20mm could wipe out a cockpit full of terrorists and their hostages.

They weren't wearing tank armour when they jacked that plane.
edit on 11-9-2011 by Exuberant1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 10:02 PM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


I have a very well run flying pig farm which I putting on the market at a rock bottom price.

Interested?


MBF

posted on Sep, 11 2011 @ 10:53 PM
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reply to post by js331975
 


Ten years ago when I heard that planes were sent up to stop the hijacked planes unarmed, the first thing I thought of was to use the exhaust to snuff out the engines of the planes.



posted on Sep, 12 2011 @ 12:33 AM
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Originally posted by js331975
Why on earth would they not have air to air missiles on board? Why even bother to scramble them then? The only other thing they could do would be to stop the engines of the commercial planes with the f-16's exhaust.


According to the news story, the aircraft were still loaded with 20mm rounds for the gatling gun (probably TP or target practice rounds).

The typical combat load for an F-16 is 20mm HEI (High Explosive/Incendiary). However, not all military installations have aircraft on alert.

That means that if an installation is told to scramble aircraft to deal with a potential threat, that may involve pulling missles out of storage, towing them to the flight line and loading them on the aircraft. That all takes time.
Time that you may or may not have.

The rounds loaded on those F-16's would've been more than enough to bring down any airliner and any F-16 pilot would probably tell you the same thing. For some reason, this particular pilot is quoted as saying:


"We wouldn’t be shooting it down. We would be ramming the aircraft, because we didn’t have weapons on board to be able to shoot the airplane down,"


Why an F-16 pilot would state such a thing is beyond me. There's no reason a fighter pilot would need to ram an airliner while carrying 20mm ammunition on board sufficient enough to shoot down said airliner.

And even if it came down to needing to "ram" an airliner with an F-16 there would still be plenty of time to eject beforehand.

Either the pilot was just being overdramatic for the purposes of the news story or she was told to say this by her chain of command (or someone else).

-ChriS



posted on Sep, 12 2011 @ 01:20 AM
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reply to post by Exuberant1
 



I'm pretty sure 105 rounds of 20mm could wipe out a cockpit full of terrorists and their hostages.


You're only going to be able to put about 20 of those rounds in the general vicinity of the cockpit. The inherent scattering of the rounds is going to drop that figure. The Vulcan is used on fighters because of lessons learned in Vietnam where missile-dependency lead to the loss of many F-4s when missiles failed to destroy maneuvering targets or when an aircraft made it inside of the effective range of missiles.

The high fire rate of the M61A1 accomplishes the goal of placing a lot of lead into the air to increase the probability of a hit on a maneuvering fighter.

The 20mm rounds have the 'problem' of detonating on impact. This makes them insufficient for taking out people inside of a cockpit. They will explode only a few millimeters into the skin of the aircraft and do enough damage to perforate the pressure hull and cause a loss of cabin pressure.

Again - in World War II - we saw 20mm rounds used extensively to try and bring down bombers. Aircraft returned riddled with holes from the explosive rounds all the time - with plenty of damage all across the airframe.

A concentrated burst on the cockpit coming from a high/low rear approach would be your best shot - but, again, most of your rounds are going to detonate on contact with the skin and not really penetrate into the cabin - unless they go through a hole already created. The thick, pressurized hulls of airliners makes them much different from a fighter.

This is why I said I would focus on the leading edge of the wing-root and draw slowly across the leading edge. To bring down an airliner, you have to compromise the structure - you can't just put holes in it. To do that, you have to focus your 20mm fire and know what you are doing. The leading edge has to be compromised, or the twisting (torsion) of the wing created by the vortexes inherent to its design will not tear the wing. You're not going to be able to do enough damage to the wing (or the fuselage) to allow it to fail due to compression/tensile stresses (folding).

reply to post by BlasteR
 



The rounds loaded on those F-16's would've been more than enough to bring down any airliner and any F-16 pilot would probably tell you the same thing. For some reason, this particular pilot is quoted as saying:


How many F-16 pilots have shot down an airliner using the 20mm Vulcan?

They are more than free to stroke their egos over the issue. I'm telling you, however, that any pilot who thinks it's a simple matter to down an airliner is going to be in for a rude awakening when they try.

The Germans were so desperate to find effective ways of downing B-17s (hardly built to today's airframe standards) "back in the day" - they tried everything from air launched rockets to dropping bombs on the bombers and finally attempted a kamikaze program (15 B-17s were successfully struck with said kamikaze aircraft; 8 were downed because of it. That means 7 were able to keep flying and land on friendly soil - after having a fighter slam into them).


And even if it came down to needing to "ram" an airliner with an F-16 there would still be plenty of time to eject beforehand.


No, there wouldn't. Human reactions are measured in fractions of a second. You are going to be going for at least 300kts of closure in a collision. In one second, that's about 155 meters - one and a half foot-ball fields. Being able to get a square hit on the airliner at such speeds is not easy. In order to guarantee a hit, you will have to wait until you are less than 100 meters out before ejecting.

By time your brain can process that you are going to hit the airliner, you have already hit the airliner - forget pulling the ejection handle and going through the ejection process (which is set up on time-delays so that you are not shot into your canopy).

science.howstuffworks.com...


When a crewmember lifts the pull handle or yanks the face curtain down on the ejection seat, it sets off a chain of events that propels the canopy away from the plane and thrusts the crewmember safely out. Ejecting from a plane takes no more than four seconds from the time the ejection handle is pulled. The exact amount of time depends on the seat model and the crewmember's body weight.


You have to pull the ejection handle while the airliner is but a dot on the horizon to be able to clear your aircraft before you slam into the airliner.

Even halving the closure velocity to 150 knots doesn't do you much good.

If you think you're going to simply "eject and let your airplane slide into the airliner" - that will work, but the airliner will simply shrug your airplane off. Again - a lot of damage to the skin and scary as all holy hell to anyone aboard - but not really much in the way of ensuring a kill.
edit on 12-9-2011 by Aim64C because: Neglected to add a response to the ejection sequence - fixed



posted on Sep, 12 2011 @ 01:24 AM
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YO.. none of the 'armed vs unarmed' matters in the least-



No one was following Flight 93 - the Military didn't even know it was hijacked. The fact is that no military knew about the hijacking of United 93 until a few minutes before it crashed. That is proven by the this weeks National Archives released transcripts and audio tapes.

The audio and transcripts are at:
www.rutgerslawreview.com/2011/9-the-impact-of-inaccurate-statements/

To listen and read the entire day- beginning to end- go to www.rutgerslawreview.com home page.


"General Paul Weaver, overall commander of the Air National Guard told reporters that no fighters were scrambled or vectored to chase United 93: “There was no notification for us to launch airplanes. We weren’t even close."

"NORAD now acknowledges that at all levels – NEADS, CONR, and NORAD headquarters – they were completely unaware of United 93 .... Indeed, NEADS never learned of the flight until five minutes after it had crashed (at 10:08)."

"In short, the representation that military had been following United 93 as it progressed, and was by virtue of this awareness in position to intercept the plane, was inaccurate."


The section on United 93: www.rutgerslawreview.com...



posted on Sep, 12 2011 @ 12:51 PM
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I think most people are absolutely aghast at the shameless shows of emotional pornography the US govt. staged on 9/11 to celebrate its own crimes. This is very well reflected in the stock market today. It´s not often that you see there a Friday fall extended into Monday.



posted on Sep, 12 2011 @ 10:33 PM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


I am astonished. Are you, or are you not claiming that 2 much more agile F-16 Fighting Falcons would be unable to put a few rounds into each of the 757's PW2037 engines which are 2 meters (76 Inches) in diameter? Do you have any idea what a SINGLE 20mm does to a jet engine running at full speed? Are you at all able to use logical reasoning?



IT--
edit on 12-9-2011 by edog11 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 13 2011 @ 12:04 AM
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reply to post by edog11
 



I am astonished.


I, however, am not.


Are you, or are you not claiming that 2 much more agile F-16 Fighting Falcons would be unable to put a few rounds into each of the 757's PW2037 engines which are 2 meters (76 Inches) in diameter?


This was not the focus of the discussion - and therefor not addressed.


Do you have any idea what a SINGLE 20mm does to a jet engine running at full speed?


I can assure you that you don't.


Are you at all able to use logical reasoning?


Quite.

There are several problems with attempting to hit the engines. First - the engines are a rather small profile target. Turbulence from the engine, itself, is going to wreak havoc on the trajectory of your rounds. Further, the wing serves as very nice cover from an attack over the wing. This leaves an attack from under the wing and a perpendicular intercept. The airliner was flying, at the time, quite low (if I remember correctly). This rules out a reliable attack on the engines from a perpendicular intercept to an under-wing attack. You're more likely to wrap yourself around a tree than you are to score a hit on the engine.

Not to mention - a perpendicular intercept would give you a very narrow window of fire and would drop your accuracy horribly.

You might be able to take out both engines - and the airliner will ditch a dozen kilometers or so down its flight path (depending upon its airspeed and altitude). But your best bet is to compromise the integrity of the leading edge, allow torsion to detach the wing and drop that aircraft like a rock with zero control to the hijackers.

Or, failing that, slam into major control surfaces and/or the cockpit.

When you only have 105 rounds to serve as your armament, you can't send a brute to do an engineer's job. With all due respect to pilots, they inform us equipment is inoperative in the "officer" position (OFF) quite often. They will be ramming that airliner to bring it down.



posted on Sep, 13 2011 @ 12:39 AM
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Originally posted by Aim64C
They will be ramming that airliner to bring it down.


After they pump the cockpit and engines with several bursts of 20mm, then MAYBE they would ram it.

I think it is time to acknowledge that you are wrong.


edit on 13-9-2011 by Exuberant1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Sep, 13 2011 @ 01:20 AM
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reply to post by Exuberant1
 



I think it is time to acknowledge that you are wrong.


There is a reason I wield such massive hubris. You, however, have no such qualifications to be wielding an even larger one.

Large aircraft are no easy thing to bring down - as has been demonstrated time and time again through war and many incident reports involving damage to airframes.

If you could provide a case where an airliner was downed by gunfire that gave credence to your position, then I would gladly entertain your most humorous request. Even an expert analysis agreeing with you would afford your position some respect in the matter.

I have addressed all concerns from the standpoint of both an engineer and a pilot. Perhaps you could load up a sim and give me a screen shot of your radar-gunsight pinpointed on an airliner's engine (we'll even give you the benefit of the doubt and go with a 747 - a much larger airframe with four engines).

Or on the cockpit, for that matter.

"But Aim, pilots are trained, I'm not!"

Then why are you telling me - a student of combat aviation from his earliest memories - what is and is not reality, when you are simply presuming to know?

This is no different than the imbeciles suggesting that the plane that hit the pentagon went through maneuvers that would kill a human pilot.



posted on Sep, 13 2011 @ 02:17 AM
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Originally posted by Aim64C
reply to post by Exuberant1
 



I think it is time to acknowledge that you are wrong.


There is a reason I wield such massive hubris.


And we are here to deny that.

Deny ignorance bro.




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