When last we heard from the geniuses spearheading the investigation into the disappearance of Malaysian airlines flight MH370, they weren't buy into suggestions by Walt (and others) that the plane might have been hijacked by persons unknown and flown to a place unknown (but really, Diego Garcia).
Instead, the official line as of two weeks ago was that everyone on board somehow fell asleep, and the plane flew by itself into a "water landing" in the far southern reaches of the Indian Ocean -- a long way from Diego Garcia -- where it would likely be found, errr, sometime in the future. This theory was based on an educated guess by Inmarsat, with which the Australian Transport Safety Board more or less agreed.
Today, in a stunning 179-degree turn, the ATSB issued a new report by the air crash investigators which found the jumbo jet suffered a mysterious power outage after taking off from Kuala Lumpur.
Power supplying equipment on board missing flight MH370 may have been tampered with, they said. Cutting the power could have rendered the flight invisible to radar, including that operated by Inmarsat, which makes the Inmarsat theory a little less than sound, to say the least.
Aviation experts have now concluded the power cut was a deliberate act by somebody "messing about" in the cockpit of the Boeing 777. No shit, Sherlock!
How did they figure out that the power had been cut? Because the plane made unexpected contact with a satellite about 90 minutes after it took off on March 8th -- after MH370 had turned off course from Beijing, but before it turned south toward the Southern Indian Ocean. Inmarsat now professes bafflement. Their spokesthingy told the meedja, "We cannot explain it. It's another little mystery." A master of understatement, that man!
Peter Marosszeky, of the University of Wooloomaloo [New South Wales, surely! Ed.] opined that switching off the power must have been an attempt to hijack the plane. "It would have to be a deliberate act of turning power off on certain systems on the aeroplane," he said. "The aircraft has so many backup systems. Any form of power interruption is always backed up by another system. "The person doing it would have to know what they are doing. It would have to be a deliberate act to hijack or sabotage the aircraft."
Air safety expert David Gleave, of Loughborough University [Where dat? Ed.], agreed, saying it could have been "deliberate". He told The Telegraph [Oh. UK, then. Ed.] that "A person could be messing around in the cockpit which would lead to a power interruption."It could be a deliberate act to switch off both engines for some time. By messing about within the cockpit you could switch off the power temporarily and switch it on again when you need the other systems to fly the aeroplane." See Malaysia Airline MH370: 9/11-style terror allegations resurface in case of lost plane.
Now who would have done something like that? Islamic extremists, like al-Qaeda? Tibetans or Uighurs trying to strike a blow for freedom from China? Or? Well, let us not jump to conclusions. Look in Diego Garcia!