The official line I keep hearing is the Malaysia flight could have gone south or west along the radius of the last satellite ping.
I am sorry but I call bullshit. A pilot bent on suicide would have sought to do it visibly if he was going to suicide by plane. Also, suicide by plane would not do the climb, transponder off, and ghost act. He also would not fly for hours into the great white south AND have his family move out the day before.
No, as commenter Mitchell pointed out, ghosting under another plane has been recognized as a way one could slip out of being tracked in an area where business as usual isn’t rigorously tracked. It was well-described in Neal Stephenson’s “Reamde” novel.
Let’s go north again. Wherever it went, it arrived there days ago, and looking for it now will only be looking at areas where unusual activity is occurring, using satellites.
Wherever it is, if we know about it, and have not bombed it into a smoking crater, it means a potential hostage situation has stayed our hand. Any action would result in a UN demand for forensics, which would turn up what I suspect would be a lot of suddenly now-dead civilians.
If we don’t know about it, while whoever has it traced all transmitters on the plane to remove them, chatter will go silent, and the NSA and CIA will go nuts looking for it and signs of anything moving towards it. All roads would lead to Rome IF whatever was going to be loaded into it wasn’t already in place, and I think a state sponsored plan will have already done so.
That plane will not be used for some time, is my guess, but the hostages will be kept fresh for it’s final trip.
Yeah, it reads like a damned spy novel, but it already has gone into that territory.
Don’t get me wrong, as I think the best scenario we could hope for at this point is it crashed. It is a PR disaster waiting to happen for the second best scenario, where passengers die and lots of awful things like nukes (bomb or wastes) get scattered as it is shot down.
Worst case is they fly it in with transponder off under a white flag requesting sanctuary, and getting an nuclear bomb air burst over Israel. And if they take out Israel’s infrastructure with an EMP then they can go in using their military forces held in reserve.
Now, my argument for keeping the passengers alive is the tendency of the Islamic fanatics to hide behind the skirts of women and children if it suits their goals.
Tel Aviv, Israel is the only target that makes sense, unless they want to take out a US aircraft carrier. And the fanatics want Jerusalem intact.
Any of those nations from Pakistan westward are completely capable of turning an eye in their airspace.
This is ALL supposition, but the longer this goes without resolution, the worse it will be.