Terrorists likely are conducting airplane “dry runs” within the United States right now, even at American airports, according to an internal memo from the union which represents US Airways pilots.
One incident apparently took place Sept. 2.
Wolf Koch, a Delta Airlines pilot who flies Boeing 767s, deemed it “foolish” to believe a similar horrific event as 9/11 could never occur again on American soil. Koch also is the Aviation Security Committee Chairman for the Air Line Pilots Association International.
Pilots and flights crews are reportedly concerned about terrorism practice runs on their flights. The warning memo reads, “There have been several cases recently throughout the airline industry of what appear to be probes, or dry runs, to test our procedures and reaction to an inflight threat.” Koch added that security officials typically believe that if a dry run is happening, a real attack will be occurring in the near future.
He told WTSP in Tampa Bay that 9/11 “was very well orchestrated and they’re going to try it again. … 100 percent, no question in my mind. They’re going to try it again.”
The alleged Sept. 2 dry run took place during a flight from Reagan National Airport in Washington, DC, to Orlando.
“A group of Middle-Eastern males boarded in (Washington),” the memos states. “Shortly after takeoff, one got up and ran from his seat in coach towards the flight deck door. He made a hard left and entered the forward lav, where he stayed for a considerable length of time! While he was in there, the others got up and proceeded to move about the cabin, changing seats, opening overhead bins, and generally making a scene. They appeared to be trying to occupy and distract the flight attendant.”
Thankfully, there was a federal air marshal team on the flight, and the marshals thought the threat was significant enough to “make their presence known,” according to the memo.
“Without getting into details of the procedures used, suffice it to say that they dealt with the situation in no uncertain terms,” the memo said. “… The Captain demanded that the aircraft be given a complete security inspection by the TSA, station security, and had the entire airplane searched with bomb dogs before leaving (Orlando). Of course, the Company resisted. However, the Captain prevailed, and guess what? Evidence of tampering was found.”
The terrorism dry run memo also stated that on the same plane’s return flight, eight Middle Eastern women, all adorned in full burkas, reportedly captured the attention of flight staff as well. Since the passengers were in full burkas, they just as easily could have been men in disguise. The return flight was supposed to have a “VIP” aboard, but the man was rebooked when his security detail was made aware of the details from the earlier and return flight.
The memo adds, “Bringing down an airliner continues to be the Gold Standard of terrorism. If anyone thinks that our enemies have ‘been there, done that’ and are not targeting US commercial aviation – think again.”
US Airways and the Transportation Security Administration confirmed the incident to WTSP. The TSA said it was taking the incident seriously and no further investigation was required.
But an unidentified Federal Air Marshal said the investigation is ongoing.
“They’re liars. They’re flat-out liars,” he said of the TSA. “ … We’re waiting for the next 9/11 to happen, because it’s not a question of if. It’s a question of when.”
The air marshal also said that the TSA wants to keep the “flying public” in the dark about possible problems with terrorist dry runs.
The aviation union memo strongly urged all flight attendant to know where “the good guys with the guns are” and make sure all air marshal and local law enforcement procedures are followed to the letter.