The Mystery of the Malaysian 777

A couple of months ago, I got into a Youtube binge that lasted for a good several weeks. The theme of this binge-fest was famous air disasters -- well not even famous, a few well known cases from their day and a whole lot of little ones about which you've probably never heard. Of course at the moment, the world's attention is focused on Malaysian Flight 370, the Boeing 777 that vanished eleven days ago without a sign of wreckage in what is unfolding as one of the greatest mysteries in aviation history.

We all love a good mystery or puzzle to figure out and that's what gripped me at first, watching the investigators recount how they gathered wreckage and pieced together thousands of obliterated fragments to determine what brought down each particular plane

Usually it turned out to be some manufacturing defect or human error that set in motion a chain reaction of events leading up to an engine falling off, gas tank exploding, or catastrophic instrument failure. In all these episodes of shows like Mayday and Seconds from Disaster, rarely was the cause ever a hijacking. In fact, hijackings in the post 9/11 years have largely been overlooked in the media since they've all ended in arrests and not crashes.

The family members left looking for answers. In the hours after

Flight 370 vanished a passenger's cell was still ringing when dialed.

So we've grown somewhat ignorant that such occurrences still take place, granted there hasn't been any attempt at another 9/11 style suicide mission or any major incidents outside of Asia and the Middle East. But the possibility presented in the Flight 370 case not just of a hijacking, but that the suspicion that it was perpetrated by the pilots themselves, fires the imagination with a mix of terror and excitement.

Flight 370 pilot, Zaharie Ahmad Shah

As fascinating a puzzle, as frustrating a search, one can't imagine what the families of the missing 239 people on board the vanished plane must be going through. Especially since on top of the agony of just not knowing what the fuck has happened, the families have been royally dicked around by the government's involved in the search. A frightening position to be in, one cannot help but be cautiously hopeful, if only to cope with the crushing uncertainty...

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