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Thursday, March 11, 2004

The Great Escape

Salon has an excerpt from a book which details how Saudis (many of them bin Ladens) were whisked out of the US in the days after 9/11. Here's what happened with one flight:

    According to the same source, a young female member of the bin Laden family was the sole passenger on the first leg of the flight, from Los Angeles to Orlando. In the immediate aftermath of 9/11, boarding any airplane was cause for anxiety. But now that the name Osama bin Laden had become synonymous with mass murder, boarding a plane with his family members was another story entirely. To avoid unnecessary dramas, the flight's operators made certain that the cockpit crew was briefed about who the passengers were -- the bin Ladens -- and the highly sensitive nature of their mission.
    However, they neglected to brief the flight attendants.

    On the flight from Los Angeles, the bin Laden girl began talking to an attendant about the horrid events of 9/11. 'I feel so bad about it,' she said.

    'Well, it's not your fault,' replied the attendant, who had no idea who the passenger really was.

    "Yeah," said the passenger. "But he was my brother."

    "The flight attendant just lost it," the source said.

Yep. I imagine I'd have lost it, too. I'd probably have made damn sure news of my experience was broadcast far and wide, too.

All images Copyright 2004-2005, cleek.