Midnight Oil

[Powderworks] Attacks on U.S. - What Kind of Pilot?

ALEXEI alexeis@usa.net
12 Sep 2001 22:43:39 EET DST

Like everyone else on the list, I would like to express sympathy and pour
hatred.  But questions rush to mind...

>From among theories concerning these horrendous crimes, I am concerned about
this: is flight school actually enough for a person at the controls of a
commercial jetliner to orientate freely in "uncharted" air space, to calculate
altitudes, speeds, to read landmarks, etc. and eventually bring the aircraft
to the target point?  As one pilot told me in a conversation in the wake of
the crashing of the Russian passenger aircraft in Siberia fairly recently, "I
will put you [meaning a novice] in the cockpit only five miles away from where
you have to arrive and will even help you position the aircraft on the other
end of a straight line--and you're gonna miss it".  This phrase was meant to
illustrate how hard it is to fly (forgive this complacency) and that guidance
from the ground is essential, and that outside of an air corridor a pilot is
close to blind and helpless (combat pilots a different story)...  What I mean
to say, whatever is the training the kamikaze pilots may have received,
doesn't it sound like a lot of real-life practice also?  If so, what terrorist
group these days has a testing site for fly practice with Boeing 767 and the
like?  Does anyone on the list have any knowledge or other brains to tap?