What Happened To Flight 370? An Analysis Of What Is Known

21 comments

Posted on 13th March 2014 by Administrator in Economy |Politics |Social Issues

Submitted by Charles Hugh-Smith of OfTwoMinds blog,

UPDATE: As expected (see my analysis of ocean currents and drift-time below), the purported debris was a false lead. The revelation that the automated ACARS was still sending data on the Rolls Royce engines is not surprising given what else is known, nor is the Malaysian claim that the data is false. Engine data indicates Malaysian plane flew four hours after disappearing

The story gets curiouser and curiouser–but so far every piece of new data conforms to my basic analysis of the known facts.

Like many other people, I am following the story of what happened to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 with keen interest. Much of what we’ve been told doesn’t add up, deepening the mystery.

It seems to me that we can already draw a number of conclusions from the known data by pursuing a logic-based analysis of what is possible and what can be excluded as illogical.

Let’s start with what is known:

1. The Malaysian authorities have been evasive to the point of misdirection, in other words, they’ve hidden the facts to serve an undisclosed agenda.
What is the agenda driving their evasion? What is known is that Malaysian security is obviously lax. This fact has caused Malaysian authorities to lose face, i.e. be humiliated on the global stage. Malaysia is an Asian nation, and maintaining face in Asia is of critical importance. We can conclude that one reason the Malaysian authorities are dissembling is to hide their gross incompetence.

It is also suspected that Malaysia is a safe haven for potentially dangerous Islamic groups. (Follow the threads from Pakistan’s secret nuclear proliferation program to Malaysia for documentation of this possibility.) The Malaysian government may have an informal quid pro quo along these lines: you are welcome to set up shop as long as you don’t cause any trouble here or do anything to cause Malaysia to lose face.

This provides another logical source of Malaysian evasion: if there is indeed a terrorist connection to the loss of the aircraft, this would focus the global spotlight on Malaysian tolerance of potentially dangerous groups.

That the Malaysian military was unable to effectively monitor the aircraft or coordinate with civilian air traffic control (ATC) also suggests incompetence at the most sensitive levels. Revealing this would also cause a loss of face.

Summary: Malaysian authorities have not been truthful or timely in their reporting. The logical conclusion is that they’re hiding data to protect national pride and the true state of their abysmal security.

2. Additional information is available but is not being shared with the public. To take one example, the Aircraft Communications Addressing and Reporting System (ACARS) on Flight 370 was functioning and automatically sent data on four critical systems, including the engines. This data has not been released by Malaysian Airlines.

It also appears that the pilot of another 777 airliner heading to Japan contacted the pilot in Flight 370 and reported the transmission was garbled.

Even with the transponder off, the aircraft would appear on primary (military) radar. The Malaysian military tracked Flight 370 but is dissembling. Clearly the authorities are not revealing the full extent of what is known.

3. Satellite imagery did not detect a high-altitude explosion. This excludes all scenarios in which the aircraft crashes into another plane, explodes in mid-air, etc.

4. Flight 370 changed course and altitude, and then maintained the new bearing for hundreds of miles and an additional hour of flight after losing contact with ATC (air traffic control). This limits scenarios in which decompression causes everyone on board to lose consciousness or a catastrophic electrical fire incapacitating the flight deck to an emergency that enabled the pilots to set a new course before losing consciousness or control of the aircraft.

5. The Malaysian military reported Flight 370′s altitude as 29,500 feet. This conflicts with eyewitness accounts from fishermen reporting a large aircraft at a much lower altitude around 1,000 meters (3,000 feet). If the radar altitude is correct, this suggests the aircraft was not experiencing decompression, as the pilots would descend as an emergency response to decompression. If the fishermen’s report is accurate, then decompression would not be an issue.

6. Mobile phone data suggests the passengers’ phones were still functioning after the aircraft lost contact with air traffic control (ATC) and the transponder was turned off/failed.

7. Releasing data from the U.S. intelligence space-based network would reveal U.S. capabilities. The Strait of Malacca is a key shipping lanes chokepoint, and is thus of strategic interest to the U.S. and other nations with space-based assets. U.S. authorities have already revealed that U.S. coverage of the area is “thorough.”

This confirms that U.S. communications monitoring and space-based assets cover the seas around the Strait of Malacca. Given what is known about these monitoring and space-based assets, it is likely that the U.S. intelligence agencies have additional data but are not revealing them, as this would provide direct evidence of U.S. capabilities.

We can surmise that the U.S. maintains thermal imaging capabilities that can detect more than large explosions. We can also surmise that the communications monitoring networks picked up any signals from the aircraft or related to the aircraft.

That the head of the C.I.A. publicly professed ignorance is interesting. What course of action would one pursue if one wanted to keep U.S. capabilities secret? Publicly proclaim ignorance.

This is not to suggest that the U.S. “knows where flight 370 is;” it is simply to note that this is not “open ocean” comparable to the mid-Atlantic where Air France Flight 447 went down five years ago. This is a strategic chokepoint of great interest to the U.S., and therefore it is likely that U.S. networks and space-based assets collected data that would either exclude certain possibilities or make other possibilities more likely.

What can we logically conclude from the most reliable and trustworthy data available?

1. The pilots were conscious when they turned off the transponder (or the transponder failed) around 1:30 a.m. and when they changed course soon after.The aircraft was under the control of the pilots long enough for them to set a new course.

2. The aircraft flew an additional hour or more on the new westward course at cruising altitude.

3. No distress signal was sent during this 1+ hour flight after whatever event caused the the pilots to change course.

If we put these together, we can establish a number of logical parameters around each plausible scenario, where plausible scenario means a situation based on previous losses of commercial aircraft.

1. Pilot suicide. If the pilot had decided to commit suicide by crashing the plane, why not ditch the aircraft in the South China Sea? Why change course and fly for another hour?

Alternatively, the Malaysian military’s reports are completely false and they were tracking an unknown aircraft near Pulau Perak at 2:15 a.m. (previously reported as 2:40 a.m.)

How many unidentified large aircraft are flying around Pulau Perak at 2:15 a.m. on a typical night? The possibility that the radar signal was not Flight 370 seems remote.

2. Mechanical failure that caused decompression or an electrical fire that incapacitated the flight deck. If such an emergency occurred, it enabled the pilots to change course and altitude.

Assuming a decompression event, we could expect the pilots to descend rapidly. If Flight 370 was indeed at 29,500 feet at 2:15 a.m., that suggests the aircraft was still capable of flight at cruising altitude. So either the pilots were still flying the aircraft or the decompression event enabled them to change course and set the autopilot before losing consciousness.

If the aircraft was being flown by autopilot, it could have flown for many more hours, given its fuel load, which raises the question: if the pilots were unconscious at 2:15 a.m., why did the aircraft suddenly crash 10 minutes later? Or did the aircraft simply leave the airspace covered by the Malaysian military?

If an emergency had crippled the aircraft’s electrical system, it’s unlikely the plane could have continued flying at cruising altitude for an additional hour. If a catastrophic electrical fire crippled the flight deck, how could the plane continue flying at cruising altitude for another hour, given that the battery backup would last at best 30 minutes?

In other words, the additional hour of flight time on a new course does not logically align with an emergency decompression or fire that led to the flight deck and pilots being incapacitated. A decompression event would have led to either A. a rapid controlled descent or B. the pilots unconscious/unable to take control and the autopilot flying the aircraft on the new course for many hours.

Alternatively, a catastrophic electrical fire would have either brought the aircraft down within minutes of the event or at best provided 30 minutes on emergency battery power. Neither jibes with an additional hour of flight at cruising altitude.

This leads to the conclusion that the aircraft was still being flown by the pilots, i.e. conscious decisions were being made by either the pilots or someone who had seized control of the flight deck.

If a mechanical emergency had crippled the aircraft, it seems unlikely that the pilots could change course and altitude but not be able to send a distress signal. If the pilots had lost consciousness but the rest of the plane’s systems were nominal, the autopilot would have continued flying the aircraft until the fuel ran out, many hours beyond 2:15 a.m.

That suggests there was conscious control of the aircraft and that those in charge made a decision sometime after 2:15 a.m. that led to the loss of the aircraft. This scenario strongly suggests human action or error as the operative emergency rather than mechanical failure.

Either that, or some key data that has been released as fact is actually false.

Late breaking news: if the satellite images released by China (taken one day after Flight 370 went missing) are in fact photos of wreckage, then the Malaysian military was obviously not tracking Flight 370 to the west an hour later.

The blurry photo does not reveal much, but several features are noteworthy:

1. The three pieces are very large, which means they must be intact sections of the wings or fuselage. It is unlikely these would still be floating hours after a crash. We might also wonder, what sort of impact would create three large pieces rather than a debris field?

2. The three pieces are close together. Unless the aircraft landed intact in the water and sank in one piece, there would likely be a field of much smaller floating debris.

3. What else could this be? The large size of the pieces is certainly consistent with the scale of a 777.

4. Why did China withhold the imagery for three days? Did their own search ships reach the coordinates identified by the satellite?

5. The ocean currents and the location of the presumed debris do not compute. Ocean currents in the area are 2 kilometers/hour. Presumed debris is 141 miles from last known position This doesn’t compute: the satellite image was taken 11 am Sunday 33 hours after MH370 presumably crashed; debris would only drift 33 hr X 2 KM=66 KM or about 40 miles from the last known position of HM370. Debris was 140 miles to the east–100 miles beyond what’s possible in terms of debris drifting with currents from the presumed crash site.

In summary, these images open additional questions. There is no substitute for actually finding the aircraft or debris.

MH370: Satellite images show possible crash debris in South China sea

Malaysian military now reveals it tracked MH370 to the Malacca strait

Radar Blips Baffle Officials in Malaysian Jet Inquiry

The Mystery of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

Malaysian plane sent out engine data before vanishing

21 Comments
  1. dilligaf says:

    that plane is in a hanger somewhere…. count on it.

    13th March 2014 at 5:36 pm

  2. Stucky says:

    Oh, goody, here come the Tin Foil nutters.

    I’m going with the Sandy Hook Ignorance Theory (S.H.I.T).
    —- there never was an airplane
    —- if there was an airplane, everybody on board was an actor

    13th March 2014 at 6:08 pm

  3. bb says:

    I say it’s on the bottom of the ocean in about a billion different pieces .That’s what happens when a jet hits the water going about 600 miles an hour.My guess, the pilots were Muslims and wanted to be with their 72 virgins to have uninterrupted sex for all eternity.Just a guess.

    13th March 2014 at 6:13 pm

  4. What Happened To Flight 370? An Analysis Of What Is Known | Mind Control Rebellion What Happened To Flight 370? An Analysis Of What Is Known | Awareness Is Key… says:

    […] Administrator Submitted by Charles Hugh-Smith of OfTwoMinds blog, UPDATE: As expected (see my analysis of ocean […]

    13th March 2014 at 6:31 pm

  5. Zarathustra says:

    Clearly the space aliens that have been monitoring this planet for millenia have gotten tired of the US taking pot shots at their craft and have decided to make a statement.

    13th March 2014 at 6:57 pm

  6. harry p. says:

    Here’s one of the weirder theories that a coworker mentioned to me over lunch after he told me about the engines being on for hours after it “disappeared”.

    http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/555475-freescale-semiconductor-employees-behind-missing-malaysia-airlines-plane-one-of-conspiracy-theories/

    13th March 2014 at 7:33 pm

  7. SSS says:

    Jemaah Islamiyah

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jemaah_Islamiyah

    13th March 2014 at 8:42 pm

  8. Hagar says:

    dilligaf and Stucky both have a point. Clearly something is amiss and it will be left to the tinfoil hatters to figure it out.

    13th March 2014 at 9:22 pm

  9. Thinker says:

    You’re not kidding, SSS. Only place I ever felt the need to claim I was Canadian was in a cab in the Malaysian jungle on the way from the airport into Kuala Lumpur in 1998. Driver was a veritable nutcase about the evil U.S., claiming all Americans needed to die. When he turned around and asked where I was from, well…

    One thing that seems to be missing from all the coverage is the response to family members’ asking why they can’t track all those cellphones with GPS capabilities. The phones showed for a day or two that people on the flight were still signed in to chat programs, and the phones would ring but not be picked up. If technology really can track us anywhere, any time, why can’t they use it to see where these phones are now?

    Also, it’s being reported that, “U.S. officials have an ‘indication’ the missing Malaysia Airlines jetliner may have crashed in the Indian Ocean and is moving the USS Kidd to the area to begin searching.” That would jive with CHS’ comment about the U.S. having greater capabilities to monitor this strategic chokepoint.

    13th March 2014 at 9:42 pm

  10. EL GORDO says:

    bb says:

    “My guess, the pilots were Muslims and wanted to be with their 72 virgins to have uninterrupted sex for all eternity.”

    After 4 hours of sex, your mind turns to a lettuce tomato and ham sandwich with a bit of mayo and olives. Really, if you are in the anal stage you want an eternity of bowel movements, oral, an eternity of breastfeeding.

    Do heaven got a gamer section?

    13th March 2014 at 9:47 pm

  11. harry p. says:

    its-aliens.jpg

    14th March 2014 at 7:49 am

  12. flash says:

    ref…HP’s story of the engines reporting maintenance data 4 hours after transponder data cut…hijacked and landed whereabouts unknown is as good a guess as any.

    14th March 2014 at 8:08 am

  13. Administrator says:

    Missing Malaysian Flight: Hijacking, Sabotage Theories Added To The Mix

    Submitted by Tyler Durden on 03/14/2014 07:58 -0400

    Until today, the prevailing theory surrounding the mysterious disappearance of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 was either catastrophic midair disintegration and/or terrorism. That changed overnight, following reports by various news agencies that the Boeing 777 was deliberately flown hundreds of miles off course, in a westerly direction toward India’s Andaman islands, heightening suspicions of foul play among investigators, as reported by Reuters. And like that the theory shifts from one of terrorism to hijacking and sabotage, ostensibly by highly skilled operators, yet considering the results, one gone horribly wrong.

    Reuters reports:

    Analysis of the Malaysia data suggests the plane, with 239 people on board, diverted from its intended northeast route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing and flew west instead, using airline flight corridors normally employed for routes to the Middle East and Europe, said sources familiar with investigations into the Boeing 777′s disappearance. Two sources said an unidentified aircraft that investigators believe was Flight MH370 was following a route between navigational waypoints when it was last plotted on military radar off the country’s northwest coast.

    This indicates that it was either being flown by the pilots or someone with knowledge of those waypoints, the sources said.

    The last plot on the military radar’s tracking suggested the plane was flying toward India’s Andaman Islands, a chain of isles between the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal, they said.

    A third source familiar with the investigation said inquiries were focusing increasingly on the theory that someone who knew how to fly a plane deliberately diverted the flight.

    While the western direction is a recent hypothesis, the reality is that searching for the plane so far has been the equivalent of finding the needle in the proverbial haystack, as shown in the map below which plots the potential area where MH370 could have gone:

    A summary timeline of the progression in the MH370 theories:

    Regardless of the plane’s final resting place, the key change is that in addition to possible terrorism, the prevailing theory is shifting to one involving hijacking:

    “What we can say is we are looking at sabotage, with hijack still on the cards,” said that source, a senior Malaysian police official.

    All three sources declined to be identified because they were not authorized to speak to the media and due to the sensitivity of the investigation.

    Officials at Malaysia’s Ministry of Transport, the official point of contact for information on the investigation, did not return calls seeking comment.

    Malaysian police have previously said they were investigating whether any passengers or crew had personal or psychological problems that might shed light on the mystery, along with the possibility of a hijacking, sabotage or mechanical failure.

    As a result of the new evidence, the sources said, multinational search efforts were being stepped up in the Andaman Sea and also the Indian Ocean.

    But if it was indeed a hijacking, who was the perpetrator? And what was the ultimate destination? Question which will hopefully be answered soon. In the meantime, the search for the missing flight continues:

    In one of the most baffling mysteries in modern aviation, no trace of the plane nor any sign of wreckage has been found despite a search by the navies and military aircraft of more than a dozen countries. The last sighting of the aircraft on civilian radar screens came shortly before 1:30 a.m. Malaysian time last Saturday (1730 GMT Friday), less than an hour after it took off from Kuala Lumpur, as the plane flew northeast across the mouth of the Gulf of Thailand. That put the plane on Malaysia’s east coast.

    Malaysia’s air force chief said on Wednesday an aircraft that could have been the missing plane was plotted on military radar at 2:15 a.m., 200 miles northwest of Penang Island off Malaysia’s west coast. This position marks the limit of Malaysia’s military radar in that part of the country, a fourth source familiar with the investigation told Reuters.

    When asked about the range of military radar at a news conference on Thursday, Malaysian Transport Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said it was “a sensitive issue” that he was not going to reveal.

    “Even if it doesn’t extend beyond that, we can get the co-operation of the neighboring countries,” he said.

    The fact that the aircraft – if it was MH370 – had lost contact with air traffic control and was invisible to civilian radar suggested someone on board had turned off its communication systems, the first two sources said.

    They also gave new details on the direction in which the unidentified aircraft was heading – following aviation corridors identified on maps used by pilots as N571 and P628. These routes are taken by commercial planes flying from Southeast Asia to the Middle East or Europe and can be found in public documents issued by regional aviation authorities.

    In a far more detailed description of the military radar plotting than has been publicly revealed, the first two sources said the last confirmed position of MH370 was at 35,000 feet about 90 miles off the east coast of Malaysia, heading towards Vietnam, near a navigational waypoint called “Igari”. The time was 1:21 a.m..

    The military track suggests it then turned sharply westwards, heading towards a waypoint called “Vampi”, northeast of Indonesia’s Aceh province and a navigational point used for planes following route N571 to the Middle East. From there, the plot indicates the plane flew towards a waypoint called “Gival”, south of the Thai island of Phuket, and was last plotted heading northwest towards another waypoint called “Igrex”, on route P628 that would take it over the Andaman Islands and which carriers use to fly towards Europe.

    The only other question is how this too airplane “crisis” will not be put to waste by US authorities, and the FSA…

    14th March 2014 at 8:45 am

  14. flash says:

    D.B.Copper flies again.

    14th March 2014 at 9:09 am

  15. dilligaf says:

    so the plane flew on for 7 hrs after last contact…. i am thinking it is about time for stucky to get fitted for his tin foil hat.

    15th March 2014 at 11:25 am

  16. Administrator says:

    15th March 2014 at 5:01 pm

  17. Thinker says:

    Nice round-ups of the case:

    Flight MH370: What we know – and what’s still speculation

    Malaysian Airlines MH370: how much do we really know?

    It’s hard to know if this was just an accident, where the fuselage developed leaks, depressurized, killed everyone and the plane just drifted until it crashed into the sea. That wouldn’t account for the passengers’ cellphones remaining active, however.

    On the other hand, there’s no group claiming responsibility for hijacking the plane. The strangest option that seems increasingly more credible is that some highly-sophisticated “hijacking” took place and the plane was flown to a secret location after somehow rendering all passengers unable to communicate.

    SSS, you’re an Air Force man; what do you make of all this?

    16th March 2014 at 10:22 am

  18. Thinker says:

    Well, it looks like it was the pilot:

    ‘Democracy is dead’: ‘Fanatical’ missing airliner pilot

    An image has emerged of the pilot of the missing Malaysia Airlines jet wearing a T-shirt with a ‘Democracy is Dead’ slogan as it has been revealed he could have hijacked the plane in an anti-government protest.

    Captain Zaharie Ahmad Shah, a father-of-three, was said to be a ‘fanatical’ supporter of the country’s opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim – jailed for homosexuality just hours before the jet disappeared.

    It has also been revealed that the pilot’s wife and three children moved out of the family home the day before the plane went missing.

    It comes as FBI investigators say the disappearance of MH370 may have been ‘an act of piracy’ and the possibility that hundreds of passengers are being held at an unknown location has not been ruled out.

    Officials also revealed that it is possible the aircraft could have landed and transmitted a satellite signal from the ground. If the plane was intact and had enough electrical power in reserve, it would be able to send out a radar ‘ping’.

    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2581817/Doomed-airliner-pilot-political-fanatic-Hours-taking-control-flight-MH370-attended-trial-jailed-opposition-leader-sodomite.html#ixzz2w9Ir9jiV

    16th March 2014 at 1:48 pm

  19. SSS says:

    Thinker

    This incident is bizarre.

    I still haven’t read any reporting on the passenger list, which by now should have been thoroughly scrubbed by quite a few law enforcement and intelligence agencies, including the FBI and CIA. It is highly unlikely that even the Iranian government would refuse to cooperate if it had any pertinent information on the Iranian passengers. So, that’s a huge blank page thus far.

    I’m not discounting an act of terrorism, but the twists and turns thus far put the whole thing in the Twilight Zone.

    16th March 2014 at 5:03 pm

  20. Thinker says:

    Latest update is that it may have been spotted over the Maldives.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/malaysia/10704769/Malaysian-Airlines-MH370-live.html

    Some other interesting news in there about the “battle between nations to be the first to find the plane.”

    18th March 2014 at 3:57 pm

  21. Stucky says:

    ” … i am thinking it is about time for stucky to get fitted for his tin foil hat.” —– dilligaf

    I’m open to anything. Really.

    The non-stop ridiculous media coverage is basically —- “let’s throw every shit theory against the wall, and let’s see what sticks”.

    They don’t know jack shit. You don’t know jack shit. I don’t know jack shit. So, I’m OK with believing that Captain Kirk time traveled from the 25th century and beamed that fucker aboard the Enterprise. Why not? That actually makes more sense than the shit they’re parading on teeevee.

    18th March 2014 at 4:14 pm

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