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British Air Passengers Mutiny

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Mutiny on Flight 613. (Hat tip: LGF readers.)

British holidaymakers staged an unprecedented mutiny - refusing to allow their flight to take off until two men they feared were terrorists were forcibly removed.

The extraordinary scenes happened after some of the 150 passengers on a Malaga-Manchester flight overheard two men of Asian appearance apparently talking Arabic. Passengers told cabin crew they feared for their safety and demanded police action. Some stormed off the Monarch Airlines Airbus A320 minutes before it was due to leave the Costa del Sol at 3am. Others waiting for Flight ZB 613 in the departure lounge refused to board it. …

The trouble in Malaga flared last Wednesday as two British citizens in their 20s waited in the departure lounge to board the pre-dawn flight and were heard talking what passengers took to be Arabic. Worries spread after a female passenger said she had heard something that alarmed her.

Passengers noticed that, despite the heat, the pair were wearing leather jackets and thick jumpers and were regularly checking their watches.

Initially, six passengers refused to board the flight. On board the aircraft, word reached one family. To the astonishment of cabin crew, they stood up and walked off, followed quickly by others. …

College lecturer Jo Schofield, her husband Heath and daughters Emily, 15, and Isabel, 12, were caught up in the passenger mutiny.

Mrs Schofield, 38, said: “The plane was not yet full and it became apparent that people were refusing to board. In the gate waiting area, people had been talking about these two, who looked really suspicious with their heavy clothing, scruffy, rough, appearance and long hair.

”Some of the older children, who had seen the terror alert on television, were starting to mutter things like, ‘Those two look like they’re bombers.’ Then a family stood up and walked off the aircraft. They were joined by others, about eight in all. We learned later that six or seven people had refused to get on the plane.

“There was no fuss or panic. People just calmly and quietly got off the plane. There were no racist taunts or any remarks directed at the men. It was an eerie scene, very quiet. The children were starting to ask what was going on. We tried to play it down.” …

Patrick Mercer, the Tory Homeland Security spokesman, said last night: “This is a victory for terrorists. These people on the flight have been terrorised into behaving irrationally. For those unfortunate two men to be victimised because of the colour of their skin is just nonsense.”

Haven’t authorities told us over and over to be vigilant and trust our instincts in these situations? Yet now we have a UK Homeland Security spokesperson denigrating British citizens for doing exactly that.

I suppose it’s one view to say the passengers were behaving irrationally. But you could also look at it as evidence that people are beginning to distrust their governments’ ability to protect them, because of the politically correct touchy-feely multiculturalism they can see all around.

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 Frank says:

If something goes wrong and you tend to smile it away, then you have someone to blame.