I got up on the soapbox yesterday about this so it’s only right that I follow up. According to one of the passengers, the two guys who were forced off that flight from Malaga were guilty of more than just speaking Arabic and wearing unseasonable outerwear. Quoth the Beeb:
Mr Wearden, who was returning from a nine-day holiday with his wife and three children, said the first he became aware anything unusual was happening was as the plane was due to take off and “the family in front of us just got off”…
The captain then spoke to the two men and returned to the cockpit with their passports, said Mr Wearden.
“We were then asked to get off the plane and go back to the airport where they did a full security check.”
It was then, he said, that his wife Susanne began talking to another passenger who said she had sat next to the two men.
“She said she had heard them saying it was the last 30 minutes of their lives,” said Mr Wearden.
“It may well be that the two simply thought they were being funny, but it perhaps better explains the passenger reaction.”
1. They said it and meant it. They were terrorists who, in accordance with standard jihadi protocol, politely interrupted their conversation in Arabic to state openly, in English, before the flight took off, that they planned to kill everyone onboard.
2. They said it and didn’t mean it. They were wiseasses who, perhaps sensing the woman’s anxiety about having to sit next to them, chose to goose her with an extraordinarily bad joke.
3. They didn’t say it. She either misheard what they said or simply invented a threat to justify her paranoia about being around them. Hearsay, in other words.
Number 1’s the least likely, but who’d want to chance it?