Lucky Escapes

Sometimes something which looks very unfortunate and frustrating can actually be a blessing in disguise.

On 21 December 1988 Holly Johnson of Frankie Goes to Hollywood, had a meeting which not go as scheduled. Holly Johnson and his manager were scheduled to arrive in New York for final negotiations about his break with Frankie Goes to Hollywood. Whatever he was doing in London ran late, so when they left for Heathrow, they hit rush hour traffic. Johnson’s ticket was for Pan Am 103, but when they reached Heathrow, they had missed the flight by about ten or fifteen minutes.

Word has it that Johnson was very sullen on the way back from the airport.
When they finally reached his (or his manager’s) flat, he switched the TV
on. The manager went in the kitchen to get a glass of water. When his
manager returned, Johnson’s eyes were transfixed on the screen. There on
the screen, was the flaming wreckage of a small town in Scotland, Lockerbie, and the remnants of Pan Am Flight 103.The flight had just been brought down by Lybian terrorists.

On August 26, 1990, Stevie Ray Vaughan performed two shows with Eric Clapton at Alpine Valley Music Theatre in East Troy, Wisconsin. After the shows some of the musicians boarded four Chicago-bound helicopters, which were waiting on a nearby golf course. Vaughan, along with three members of Eric Clapton’s entourage (agent Bobby Brooks, bodyguard Nigel Browne, and assistant tour manager Colin Smythe), boarded the third of the four helicopters—a Bell 206B Jet Ranger—flying to Meigs Field.

In Clapton: The Autobiography, Clapton explains that, contrary to rumors, his seat was not given to Vaughan, but three members of Clapton’s entourage were on board with Vaughan. According to a witness, there was haze and fog with patches of low clouds. The helicopter took off at about 12:50 am (CDT)on August 27 and, despite the conditions, turned left towards a 150-foot ski hill adjacent to the golf course. It collided with the hill approximately fifty feet from the summit.

All on board, including the pilot, Jeff Brown, were killed instantly.According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, a veteran pilot for Alpine Valley suspected that Brown attempted to fly around the ski hill, but misjudged the location.The Civil Air Patrol was notified of the accident at 4:30 am, and located the crash site almost three hours later.

Although Clapton’s seat wasn’t given to Stevie Ray Vaughan. It is not that much of a stretch to believe that it easily could have been the case. It was a lucky escape for him either way, But he did lose several friends that day, including Stevie Ray Vaughan.

Clapton and Jimmie Vaughan were asked to identify the bodies. The Walworth County coroner conducted an autopsy and found that Vaughan suffered from multiple internal and skull injuries.Clapton issued a statement the next day, saying that the victims “were my companions, my associates and my friends. This is a tragic loss of some very special people. I will miss all of them very much.” A Coptic cross necklace, worn by Vaughan, was given to Jimmie Vaughan.

77 Victims- The day that shook Norway.

On July 22 2011 the thirty-two year-old Anders Behring Breivik, a Norwegian fascist, drove into the city center of Oslo where he placed a car bomb at the government quarter. The bomb went off at 3:25 pm killing eight people and wounding thirty others severely. The office of Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg from the Labor Party was badly damaged, and parts of the governmental quarter are to this day still inaccessible. Thereafter the same terrorist, Anders Behring Breivik, drove to the tiny of Island Utøya, 38 kilometers outside Oslo. Here the annual youth camp of the Labor Youth League was taking place, as it had done each year since 1950. Dressed up as a police officer he was allowed to enter the camp where he shortly after killed an unarmed police officer, the one person being in charge of the security on the Island. The next hour the youth camp was transformed into a nightmare where teenagers in hiding, or on the run, were systematically tracked down and executed. Most of them were shot in the head or in the face at close range. From 17.22 to 6:35 pm sixty-nine people, mostly teenagers were murdered at Utøya. The two youngest victims were fourteen years old.

Over the last few year the media focus has solely been on that pathetic excuse of a human being, Anders Behring Breivik, it even encouraged a few copy cats. Who fortunately were caught before they could do harm, with the exception of ,Brenton Harrison Tarrant, the perpetrator of two consecutive mass shootings at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Today I will try to rebalance this by focusing more on the victims of that fatal day on July 22,2011.

Hanna Endresen, 61, Oslo

Receptionist in the security department of the Government Administration Services. She was described as a “good colleague”.

Tove Ashill Knutsen, 56, Oslo

Secretary with the electricians and information technology workers’ union. On her way to subway station when bomb exploded.

Kai Hauge, 32, Oslo

Owned a bar and restaurant in Oslo. A colleague described his death as “a great loss”.

Jon Vegard Lervag, 32, Oslo

A lawyer who worked in the justice department. He was described as “socially engaged”.

Ida Marie Hill, 34, Oslo

Originally from Grue, Hedmark county, Ida worked as an adviser to the ministry of justice. She was described as “a dear and highly-valued employee”.

Hanne Ekroll Loevlie, 30, Oslo

A senior government worker originally from Tyristrand, Buskerud county. Colleagues said she “represented the best in us”.

Anne Lise Holter, 51, Valer i Oestfold, Oestfold county

Senior consultant to Norway’s PM Jens Stoltenberg’s office. Officials sent their “warmest thoughts and sympathy” to her family and friends.

Kjersti Berg Sand, 26, Nord-Ordal

Worked on international issues in Justice Department. Colleagues said they had lost a “dear and highly valued employee”.

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Utoeya island shooting
Utoeya island victims – photos of some of those who died are not available
Mona Abdinur, 18, Oslo

The committed young politician was described as “a well-loved friend, who was socially engaged and interested in multicultural issues”.

Maria Maageroe Johannesen, 17, Noetteroey, Vestfold county

Student at Greve Forest High School who was interested in music, dance and drama. Described as a wonderful, conscientious girl who was a “ray of sunshine”.

Ismail Haji Ahmed 19 Hamar, Hedmark county

Better known as Isma Brown after appearing on a talent show. The dance instructor was described as a “very bubbly, happy, caring and happy boy. He was very positive with a very big heart.”

Ronja Soettar Johansen, 17, Vefsn, Nordland county

An active blogger, Ronja had a keen interest in music. Friends said she was “a person with courage, commitment and kindness”.

Thomas Margido Antonsen, 16, Oslo

A student council representative. Described by friends as “a boy who spread joy”.

Sondre Kjoeren, 17, Orkdal, Soer-Troendelag county

Described as a gentle but committed person. He was said to have been heavily involved in efforts to get a new sports hall in his village.

Porntip Ardam, 21, Oslo

Known as Pamela. She was described as talented, super-intelligent, politically active and down to earth.

Margrethe Boeyum Kloeven, 16, Baerum, Akershus county

The student council leader was described as an “active and versatile girl”.

Modupe Ellen Awoyemi, 15, Drammen, Buskerud county

Daughter of the city council politician Lola Awoyemi. Described as a kind and open girl, who was active in AUF discussions.

Syvert Knudsen, 17, Lyngdal, Vest-Agder county

The student politician is believed to have been one of the first shot on the island. His family described him as a “bubbly” boy with a keen interest in music.

Lene Maria Bergum, 19, Namsos, Nord-Troendelag

Her head teacher described her as an excellent, beautiful youth, who was sociable, interested in international issues. She had planned to start a summer job as a journalist.

Anders Kristiansen, 18, Bardu, Troms county

An active young politician and leader of the AUF in his area. He was said to be “full of initiative” with “a great desire to work in politics”.

Kevin Daae Berland, 15, Akoey, Hordaland county

Active in Askoey AUF and was involved in local politics as well as being a member of the youth council.

Elisabeth Troennes Lie, 16, Halden, Oestfold county

A board member of the Halden AUF. Described as “the sweetest person in the world”.

Trond Berntsen, 51, Oevre Eiker, Buskerud county

Crown Princess of Norway’s step-brother. The royal court said the off-duty police officer was killed while working as a security guard on the island.

Gunnar Linaker, 23, Bardu, Troms county

Regional secretary of Labour party’s youth wing. Father described him as a “calm, big teddy bear with lots of humour and lots of love”.

Sverre Flate Bjoerkavag, 28, Sula, Soer-Troendelag county

Union official concerned about justice, equality and community thinking. Described as a well-liked young man who fought for pupils and students’ rights. Was training to be a nurse.

Tamta Lipartelliani, 23, Georgia

Secretary of the international committee of the Young Socialists of Georgia.

Torjus Jakobsen Blattmann, 17, Kristiansand,Vest-Agder county

Son of former political adviser. His father said he was a boy “full of humour” who loved playing the guitar.

Eva Kathinka Lutken, 17, Sarpsborg, Oestfold county

She was described as an active politician who was well liked.

Monica Boesei, 45, Hole, Buskerud county

PM Jens Stoltenberg said: “To many of us, she was the embodiment of Utoeya. And now she is dead. Shot and killed whilst taking care of and giving joy to young people.”

Even Flugstad Malmedal, 18, Gjoevik, Oppland county

The student with an interest in politics was described as “a gentle boy who stood up for his friends”.

Carina Borgund, 18, Oslo

Friends and family said she was “kind, caring, gentle and positive. She loved life and spread joy to everyone around her”.

Tarald Kuven Mjelde, 18, Osteroey

Said to be a big fan of Chelsea football team and described as “very warm, friendly and socially engaged”.

Johannes Buoe, 14, Mandal, Vest-Agder county

“An independent boy with a good sense of humour,” his parents told NRK. He was interested in dogs, hunting, snowmobiling and took an active part in the youth community.

Ruth Benedicte Vatndal Nilsen, 15, Toensberg, Vestfold county

Described by friends as “always happy, positive, and without prejudice”.

Asta Sofie Helland Dahl, 16, Sortland, Nordland county

Teachers described her as a wonderful girl who was “open and cheerful”.

Hakon Oedegaard, 17, Trondheim, Soer-Troendelag county

Music student at Heimdal high school and member of Byasen school marching band. Described as a role model for others in the band.

Sondre Furseth Dale, 17, Haugesund, Rogaland county

Had large network of friends through music scene and politics. Described as a dedicated person who put 100% into everything he was interested in.

Emil Okkenhaug, 15, Levanger, Nord-Troendelag county

A sports lover described as modest and liked by all who knew him.

Monica Iselin Didriksen, 18, Sund, Hordaland county

Active in Sund AUF, she was described by friends as a unique and bubbly girl.

Diderik Aamodt Olsen, 19, Nesodden, Akershus county

Vice president of Nesodden AUF. He was the youngest member of editorial staff working on the organisation’s magazine.

Gizem Dogan, 17, Trondheim, Soer-Troendelag county

Described as a clever student who contributed to the cohesion of her class. Elected as central member of local AUF a month before the tragedy.

Henrik Pedersen, 27, Porsanger, Finnmark county

Leader of Porsanger AUF. Described as a “breath of fresh air” in the local community. A Labour colleague said he was very engaged and engaging.

Andreas Edvardsen, 18, Sarpsborg, Oestfold county

Director of Sarpsborg AUF and active in in the Labour youth league regional committee in Oestfold. Described as “a very caring and confident person”.

Rolf Christopher Johansen Perreau, 25, Trondheim, Soer-Troendelag county

Known as Christopher. Long-term member of the AUF and was elected to the board in October. Described as a skilled orator and a charismatic young politician.

Tore Eikeland ,21, Osteroy, Hordaland county

PM Jens Stoltenberg described him as “one of our most talented young politicians”.

Karar Mustafa Qasim, 19, Vestby, Akershus county

Originally from Iraq, Karar was with friends at summer camp when he was killed. The local mayor described his death as “an enormous tragedy”.

Bendik Rosnaes Ellingsen, 18, Rygge, Oestfold county

Had a summer job at the justice ministry before attending camp. He was secretary of Moss Regional Labour Youth, who said they had lost a caring, open and inclusive boy.

Bano Abobakar Rashid, 18, Nesodden, Akershus county

Leader of Nesodden AUF. She was said to have dedicated her life to fighting for democracy and against racism.

Aleksander Aas Eriksen, 16, Meråker, Nord-Troendelag county

Described as socially-engaged as well as “impulsive and passionate”.

Henrik Rasmussen, 18, Hadsel, Nordland county

Treasurer of Hadsel AUF. Said to be a very committed person, both in politics and culture.

Andrine Bakkene Espeland, 16, Fredrikstad, Oestfold county

Described as a politically-engaged girl who was keen to take care of the weakest.

Synne Roeyneland, 18, Oslo

A student described by friends as a “funny girl, who always had something to offer: opinions about politics and love and fun and witty comments”.

Hanne Balch Fjalestad, 43, Lunner, Oppland county

Danish government confirmed the Danish national was killed while working on the island as a first aid assistant. She was with her 20-year-old daughter, who survived the shooting.

Ida Beathe Rogne, 17, Oestre Toten, Oppland county

A keen student described as happy and funny as well as determined.

Silje Merete Fjellbu, 17, Tinn, Telemark county

Student politician described as a “wonderful girl who had much to contribute”.

Simon Saebo, 18, Salangen, Troms county

The student politician was said to be a natural leader. Those who knew him described him as trusting and kind, and a person who showed great concern for others.

Hanne Kristine Fridtun, 19 Stryn, Sogn og Fjordane county

The nursing student was the local AUF county chairman. Described as energetic with great commitment.

Marianne Sandvik, 16, Hundvag, Stavanger

The student was described as a quiet girl who always stood up for those who needed her. Her father said she was concerned with injustice in the world.

Andreas Dalby Groennesby, 17, Stange, Hedmark county

His father had exchanged text messages with him before the shooting. His father told NRK that public support had helped at a painful, terrible time.

Fredrik Lund Schjetne, 18, Eidsvoll, Akershus county

Described by friends as “a great person” whom it was “an honour” to have known.

Snorre Haller, 30, Trondheim, Soer-Troendelag county

Painter and union man. He was a board member of the Joint Association’s Central Youth Committee. Described as a “kind, quiet and generous man”.

Lejla Selaci, 17, Fredrikstad, Oestfold county

Leader of the AUF in Fredrikstad. Described as a “very happy and social girl who committed herself to what she believed in”.

Rune Havdal, 43, Oevre Eiker, Buskerud county

Worked as a security guard on the island of Utoeya.

Birgitte Smetbak, 15, Noetteroey, Vestfold county

Politicians from her local area said hearing news of her death was “a difficult day”.

Guro Vartdal Havoll, 18, Oersta, Moere og Romsdal

An active and determined politician, the young student’s family said she was inspired by Ghandi and wanted to make the world a “better place”.

Isabel Victoria Green Sogn, 17, Oslo

An enthusiastic member of the AUF who saw her future involved in politics.

Ingrid Berg Heggelund, 18, As, Akershus county

A student who said she loved going to school.

Silje Stamneshagen, 18, Askoey, Hordaland county

Active in Askoey AUF and played in school band. Classmates described her as a happy girl who lit up the school day and every day.

Karin Elena Holst, 15, Rana, Nordland county

A member of the Rana AUF, she spoke to her mother during the shooting. She had urged her daughter to hang up and hide.

Victoria Stenberg, 17, Nes, Akershus county

The oldest of three siblings, she was said to be looking forward to the youth camp.

Eivind Hovden, 15, Tokke, Telemark county

Eivind was involved in his local youth centre and was attending his first summer camp. Described as an “amazing guy, always happy, caring and helpful”.

Tina Sukuvara, 18, Vadsoe, Finnmark county

Described as “very talented and engaged” and a person who participated actively in political debates.

Jamil Rafal Mohamad Jamil, 20, Eigersund, Rogaland county

Originally from Iraq, Jamil was described as happy, attentive and curious with a strong desire to contribute.

Sharidyn Svebakk-Boehn, 14, Drammen, Buskerud county

Known as Sissi to friends and family, the schoolgirl was described as a “beautiful, caring and vibrant girl”.

Steinar Jessen, 16 Alta, Finnmark county

A keen member of the AUF. The mayor of Alta described him as “a flower that would have grown big and strong”.

Havard Vederhus, 21, Oslo

Elected leader of Oslo Labour Youth in February. Friends said he was “ambitious and fearless”.

Espen Joergensen, 17, Bodoe, Nordland county

Had recently become head of Bodoe AUF. His best friend said he was someone who could “light up the darkest days”.

77 souls taken

77 dreams stolen

77 ideas destroyed

77 futures interrupted

Sources

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-14276074

Oslo police, Norwegian government, NRK

December 2 1975 Terrorist attacks in the Netherlands.

Train

On December 2, 1975, 7 South Moluccan terrorists hijacked a train with about 50 passengers on board in open countryside near the village of Wijster, halfway between Hoogeveen and Beilen in the northern part of the Netherlands. The hijacking lasted for 12 days and 3 hostages, including the driver were killed.

The terrorists were seeking independence for South Molucca, a group of islands in the Western Pacific under Indonesian rule. Indonesia had been a Dutch colony until the late 1940’s.

At  10:07 the emergency cord was pulled on the local train Groningen-Zwolle.

Simultaneously 7 other south Moluccan terrorists had occupied the Indonesian consulate in Amsterdam.

The train driver, Hans Braam, was immediately killed.

When on the third day the Dutch government had not give in to  the hijackers’s demands, 22-year-old national serviceman Leo Bulter was murdered and his body together with Hans Braam’s body  were thrown out of the train on the rails. That night 14 hostages managed to escape from the train.

The following day a young economist Bert Bierling was brought to the doors and shot  in full view of the police and the military as well as the press.

military

On December 11, the terrorists  released two elderly hostages after talks aboard the train with four mediators. This left at least 27 prisoners on the train.

On 14 December the hijackers surrendered. Among reasons for surrender were reports about retaliations on the Moluccan islands and the sub-zero temperatures in and around the train.

The occupation and hostage situation at the Indonesian consulate in Amsterdam ended on December 19. one hostage was killed.

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9/11 : 2996 minus 19

9 11

9/11 they used to be just 2 numbers until that fateful day in 2001. Ever since then it has become ingrained in the human psyche as one of the days the world changed.

Even now ,19 years later it is hard to fathom the events of that day. Even when it happened it was hard to believe even though we could see it unfold in front of our eyes on TV screens or otherwise.

It was the day where we experienced evil and ruthlessness on so many levels. I say ruthlessness for it wasn’t only displayed by the terrorist. I worked at a telecom company at the time and about half an hour after the attacks, I received a call from a Banker in Switzerland complaining about telephony and data loss between Zürich and New York. He complained even though he was well aware what had happened, to him all that mattered was money transfers.

The one thing that bothers me is the fact that the reported number of casualties is 2996. This includes the 19 who committed the attacks, as if they were victims. Those 19 evil monsters, should not be included in that number. It diminishes the respect and the memories of the real victims.

These are the numbers we should focus on

Total number killed in attacks in New York: 2,753

Number of firefighters and paramedics killed: 343

Number of NYPD officers: 23

Number of Port Authority police officers: 37

Total Number of people killed on United Airlines Flight 93: 40

Total Number killed at the Pentagon attack:184.

2977, each a different story of innocent lives destroyed.

I don’t know all the stories but I know a bit of the story of ‘Victim 0001’

Judge

Mychal Judge

Mychal Judge was born Robert Emmett Judge on May 11, 1933 in Brooklyn, New York, the son of immigrants from County Leitrim, Ireland. His father died when he was still a child.To earn income following his father’s death, Judge shined shoes at New York Penn Station.

After spending his freshman year at the St. Francis Preparatory School in Brooklyn, where he studied under the Franciscan Brothers of Brooklyn, in 1948, at the age of 15, Judge began the formation process to enter the Order of Friars Minor.In 1961, he was ordained a priest.

In 1992, Judge was appointed a chaplain to the New York City Fire Department. As chaplain, he offered encouragement and prayers at fires, rescues, and hospitals, and counseled firemen and their families, often working 16-hour days.

When the planes hit the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, Father Mychal Judge ran into the North Tower alongside the firemen he served..

At the time, French documentary filmmakers were inside the North tower. Their camera captured some of the last moments of Mychal Judge’s life. In the film, according to his friend, Father Michael Duffy, you can see the priest standing by the plate glass window, watching the bodies fall on the patio outside.

“And if you look closely at that film, you’ll see his lips moving,” Duffy stated. “Now, for those of us who know him, he wasn’t one that talked to himself. He was praying. And absolving people as they fell to their death.”

Moments later, the South Tower collapsed. The force of the explosion shattered the windows and flung the priest across the lobby. In the darkness, some firemen stumbled over his body.

Mychal Judge was designated as “Victim 0001” and thereby recognized as the first official victim of the attacks.

mykhal

The bombing of a florist shop that inadvertently caused the death of 583

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On this day  44 years ago, at Tenerife-North Airport (formerly Los Rodeos), two Boeing 747’s – one KLM, the other  Pan Am – crashed on a foggy runway. 583 people were killed in what remains the biggest air disaster in history.

Neither of the planed were supposed to be there, they had both been diverted after a terrorist incident at Gran Canaria Airport,

The Canary Islands Independence Movement (CIIM), also known as the Movement for the Independence and Self-determination of the Canaries Archipelago is a defunct independent movement organization that had a radio station in Algiers and resorted to violence in attempts to force the Spanish government to create an independent state in the Canary Islands.

Mpaiac

CIIM terrorists bombed a florist shop in Las Palmas Airport on 27 March 1977, seriously injuring 8 people. Members then threatened to explode a second bomb in the airport, forcing police to shut down air traffic while they searched for the bomb.A small bomb was  detonated in the Canary Islands Airport, Spain only injuring one person.

However because of this all flights flying in to the Las Palmas Airport.

KLM Flight 4805 and Pan Am Flight 1736 had both been redirected to Tenerife.Both of the 747′ s a were charters. Pan Am had come from Los Angeles, after a stopover in New York,  And the KLM boeing from its home base in Amsterdam.

1280px-KLM_747_(7491686916)

The two aircrafts were then both on the third runway when the incident occurred. The two flights both taxied onto the runway, with the KLM plane told to hold their position with the Pan Am flight told to follow.

The incident then occurred after the KLM flight took off without proper clearance from the airport.

It wasn’t the only problem, as the Pan Am flight also missed the turning off the runway after mistaking the exit C4 for exit C3 in the foggy conditionsThe KLM flight started to take off despite the runway not being clear and was unable to see the Pan Am flight until the last minute.

A recording from the Pan Am flight heard the captain exclaimed: “G******, that son-of-a-b**** is coming!” with the first officer then yelling: “Get off! Get off! Get off!”.

Despite the Pan Am plane attempting to turn off the runway while the KLM flight pulled up, the two planes then collided on the ground.

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One of the 61 survivors of the Pan Am flight, John Coombs of Haleiwa, Hawaii, said that sitting in the nose of the plane probably saved his life: “We all settled back, and the next thing an explosion took place and the whole port side, left side of the plane, was just torn wide open.”

Both airplanes were destroyed in the collision. All 248 passengers and crew aboard the KLM plane died, as did 335 passengers and crew aboard the Pan Am plane,[36] primarily due to the fire and explosions resulting from the fuel spilled and ignited in the impact. The other 61 passengers and crew aboard the Pan Am aircraft survived, including the captain, first officer and flight engineer. Most of the survivors on the Pan Am walked out onto the intact left wing, the side away from the collision, through holes in the fuselage structure.

tenerife_im7

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Daniel Pearl-Killed for doing his job.

Capture

I don’t get shocked easily but the murder of Daniel Pearl shocked me and had a profound effect on me, why I don’t know, meaning he was not the first one to die by Al-Qaeda terrorists and he wasn’t the last either. But it did touch me.

Daniel Pearl (October 10, 1963 – February 1, 2002) was a journalist for The Wall Street Journal with American and Israeli citizenship. He was kidnapped by terrorists and later murdered in Pakistan.

The Pearls settled in Mumbai, India after Daniel Pearl was made Southeast Asia bureau chief of The Wall Street Journal. They traveled to Karachi, Pakistan, which he used as a base for reporting on the United States’ War on Terrorism following the 9/11 attacks by Al-Qaeda terrorists in 2001 in the United States.

North_face_south_tower_after_plane_strike_9-11

On January 23, 2002, on his way to what he thought was an interview with Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani at the Village Restaurant in downtown Karachi, Pearl was kidnapped near the Metropole Hotel at 7:00 p.m. by a militant group calling itself the National Movement for the Restoration of Pakistani Sovereignty. The group claimed Pearl was a spy and—using a Hotmail e-mail address—sent the United States a range of demands, including the freeing of all Pakistani terror detainees, and the release of a halted U.S. shipment of F-16 fighter jets to the Pakistani government.

The message read:

We give you one more day if America will not meet our demands we will kill Daniel. Then this cycle will continue and no American journalist could enter Pakistan.

Photos of Pearl handcuffed with a gun at his head and holding up a newspaper were attached. The group did not respond to public pleas for release of the journalist by his editor and his wife Mariane. United States and Pakistani intelligence forces tried to track down the kidnappers.

Nine days later, the terrorists killed Pearl by beheading. On May 16, his severed head and decomposed body were found cut into ten pieces, and buried, along with an identifying jacket, in a shallow grave at Gadap, about 30 miles (48 km) north of Karachi.When the police found Pearl’s remains, Abdul Sattar Edhi, one of the most active philanthropists in Pakistan, arrived on the scene. He collected all ten body parts, and took them to the morgue. He helped ensure that Pearl’s remains were returned to the U.S. Pearl was interred in the Mount Sinai Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles.

A lot of video and photographic footage of his murder or the moments prior to his murder, has been released over the years, but I will not put any of that in this blog.

Suffice to note he died doing his job, he died a real Hero. Nowadays the buzzword tjat is used a lot is ‘Fake News’ but journalists like Daniel Pearl risks their lives every day to uncover the truth, while politicians only criticize them when the odd time they get it wrong. We should cherish and honour those like Daniel.

Dear sir I salute you.

image525035x

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Munich Oktoberfest bombing 1980

pg-32-oktoberfest-bomb-1-getty

I don’t want to make this a political blog but I can’t avoid some politics without telling the factual story. Last weekend’s elections in Germany did see a rise of popularity of far right politics(and no matter what the leaders of AFD say, that is what they are).

Despite the fact the German economy is sound and unemployment is low, the AFD was able to tap into the fears of the German citizens, the fear for Islam. And yes there are valid grounds to fear Jihadi extremists. The truth of the matter  though no terror groups act out of  religion but out of political reasons and then use any excuse to validate this political act, be it religion,animal rights or otherwise.

Today marks the 37th anniversary of the biggest terror attack in Germany and this attack was not committed by Arabs or Muslims but by a German student, named ,Gundolf Köhler. Although he may have had accomplices.Gundolf_Köhler

It is beyond dispute that Gundolf Köhler, a university student from the Swabian town of Donaueschingen, made the bomb, took it to Munich and deposited it at the scene of the crime. But even today, 37 years later, his motives remain unclear.

Köhler was also killed in the attack, because the bomb went off too soon. Few people believe that he committed suicide, however. He was said to be technically adept and knowledgeable about explosives. But the student also had ties to Wehrsportgruppe Hoffmann, a banned neo-Nazi terrorist organization, and had taken part in their exercises a number of times.

At 10:19 p.m. on 26 September 1980, a bomb exploded at the main entrance to Oktoberfest, killing 13 people instantly (including Köhler) and injuring 225 people. Amongst the individuals killed were one Briton, one Swiss, and three German children, aged 6, 8, and 10; the remaining victims were West German adults.

Oktoberfest-Bomging

The bomb had been planted in a litter bin at about waist level, allowing it to wreak significant havoc upon detonation. Approximately 50 of the 225 “non fatal” casualties experienced serious, life-threatening injuries with the potential to impact the afflicted individuals for the rest of their lives. The area affected by the bombing was the size of a soccer field, which measures at 100 yards long (the same size as a football field) and 60 yards wide. Such demonstrates the devastating impact of this bomb and underscores why it was able to impact a large number of people. Furthermore, analysis of the bomb provides insight into why it was able to be particularly devastating. Reconstruction from the site of the bombing indicates that it was created from a British mortar projectile manufactured in 1954. This particular projectile was modified to ensure an intense degree of fragmentation, which would assist in causing as many fatalities (and severe injuries) as quickly as possible.

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The key eyewitness remains a dubious figure. Frank Lauterjung was able to provide more details about the attack than anyone else. He survived the explosion, even though he was only a few meters away, because he had had a “bad feeling” and thrown himself to the ground before the bomb detonated. Investigators questioned Lauterjung at least five times in 1980. He died of heart failure two years later, when he was only 38. But when he was questioned, the State Office of Criminal Investigation in Munich ignored his most explosive statement.

Lauterjung told investigators that he had noticed Köhler engaged in a heated conversation with two men in green parkas near the site of the bombing, about half an hour before the attack.

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An unnamed nurse told ARD that shortly after the Munich bombing she recalled treating a young man whose lower arm was missing.

“The arm had been injured by an explosion and had to be amputated,” the nurse told ARD. “But he wouldn’t say how he got hurt – he was proud of it. I went into his room and he was smiling all over.

She said he was never visited by his parents but only by “groups of men”, and added: “He disappeared after a week without even having his stitches removed.”

Ulrich Chaussy, the journalist behind the ARD documentary, has suspected irregularities in the Oktoberfest attack investigation for decades. He has long-believed that the severed hand, which was destroyed by federal prosecutors in 1987, did not belong to Köhler.The formal investigation into the bomb attack was stopped in 1982. Mr Chaussy’s investigations prompted the case to be reopened in December 2014.

 

Munich 1972

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In the early morning hours of September 5 1972, six members of the Arab terrorist group known as Black September dressed in the Olympic sweat suits of Arab nations and jumped the fence surrounding the Olympic village in Munich, Germany, carrying bags filled with guns. Although guards spotted them, they paid little attention because athletes often jumped the fence during the competition to return to their living quarters.

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After changing into disguises, the terrorists, toting machine guns, burst into the apartments of 21 Israeli athletes and officials. Yossef Gutfreund, a wrestling referee who valiantly tried to keep the terrorists out, saved Tuvia Sokolovsky, who was able to climb out a window and escape. In another apartment, Moshe Weinberg was shot 12 times but still managed to wound one of the terrorists and save the life of one of his teammates.

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Created in 1970 by a few survivors of the “ten terrible September days” of fighting against Jordan for a Palestinian homeland, Black September succeeded in taking nine hostages before demanding the release of 234 prisoners-most of whom were Arab terrorists. The demands were categorically refused, but it was eventually agreed that the terrorists and the hostages would be taken to the Furstenfeldbruck airport by helicopter and given a plane.

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The German government planned an ambush at the airport, stationing sharpshooters around the runway and officers in the airplane. However, the plan quickly disintegrated when the officers in the plane, worried about their lack of preparation, deserted. There weren’t nearly enough sharpshooters to effectively take down all of the terrorists either, partly because the Germans didn’t realize that two other terrorists had joined the Black September attack.

Still, the ambush was carried out. Three terrorists were taken out in the first wave of shots, but the others were able to hide out of range. One threw a grenade into a helicopter where five hostages were still tied up, instantly killing them all. Another terrorist fired his machine gun into another helicopter, killing the remaining hostages.

Twenty hours after Black September had begun their attack, a German police official, 5 Palestinian terrorists, and 11 Israeli athletes lay dead.

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Three of the terrorists who survived were imprisoned but were set free a month later when Arabs hijacked a Lufthansa 727 and demanded their release.

A few days after the tragic event at the Olympics, Israel retaliated with air strikes against Syria and Lebanon, killing 66 people and wounding dozens. In addition, Israel sent out assassination squads to hunt down members of Black September while Israeli troops broke through the Lebanese border, igniting the heaviest fighting since the Six-Day War of 1967.

Initially some newspapers had reported 9 athletes killed.

Sun Newspaper headline

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Of those believed to have planned the massacre, only Abu Daoud, the man who claims that the attack was his idea, is known to have died of natural causes. Historical documents released to Der Spiegel by the German secret service show willipohlthat Dortmund police had been aware of collaboration between Abu Daoud and neo-Nazi Willi Pohl (de) (aka E. W. Pless and, since 1979, officially named Willi Voss) seven weeks before the attack.

Young Girl- A Poem for Manchester

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Young Girl, the smile on your face when you got the ticket said it all.
Your first ever concert, you first late night out, OMG.
The anticipation of seeing your idol is driving you mad, the time goes so slow.
What outfit you are going to wear is your biggest concern.

Young Girl, the big day has come, you are so excited, today is the day!
You try to eat your breakfast but you can’t. So happy. LOL
On the playground at school you coordinate with your BFF on what accessories to wear.
In the car with your dad on the way to the arena. Dad has a proud face.

Young Girl, you nearly faint as you show your ticket to enter the venue.
The support act is good, but when will she appear. The one you look up to so much.
Then suddenly you recognize the voice and the song, you sing along.
Your heart is pounding in your throat, you never ever felt like this before. Bliss.

Young Girl , the concert is over you walk out, an explosion.
Young Girl. RIP.

The death of Bin Laden

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It is hard to believe that it has already been 8 years to the day since Obama Bin Laden was killed.

I can’t help but thinking what the Iranian born comedian Omid Djalili said about this.”We spent 10 years looking for Bin Laden. We scoured 27 countries looking for Bin Laden, we spent 2 Billions Dollars looking for bin laden . Where do we find him? In his house!”

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He was killed on May 2, 2011, by American military and C.I.A. operatives who tracked him to a compound in Pakistan.

President Obama announced the death in a televised address to the nation from Washington, where it was still late on the night of May 1. “Justice has been done,” he declared.

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The United States had been trying to kill or capture Bin Laden since it launched an invasion of Afghanistan in November 2001. The next month, he escaped from American and Afghan troops at an Afghan mountain redoubt called Tora Bora, near the border with Pakistan. For more than nine years afterward, he remained an elusive, shadowy figure frustratingly beyond the grasp of his pursuers and thought to be hiding somewhere in Pakistan’s remote tribal areas and plotting new attacks.

When he was hunted down, Bin Laden was killed not in the wilderness but rather in the city of Abbottadad, about an hour’s drive drive north of the capital of Islamabad, raising anew questions about whether the Pakistani intelligence services had played a role in harboring him.

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The official mission code name was Operation Neptune Spear. Neptune’s spear is the trident, which appears on the U.S. Navy’s Special Warfare insignia, with the three prongs of the trident representing the operational capacity of SEALs on sea, air and land.

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Behind the raid that killed Bin Laden lay years of intelligence work.  The turning point came in July 2010, when Pakistanis working for the Central Intelligence Agency drove up behind a white Suzuki navigating the bustling streets near Peshawar and wrote down the car’s license plate.

The man in the car was Bin Laden’s most trusted courier, and over the next month C.I.A. operatives would track him throughout central Pakistan. Ultimately he led them to a sprawling compound at the end of a long dirt road and surrounded by tall security fences in the wealthy hamlet 35 miles from Islamabad.

On a moonless night eight months later, 79 American commandos in four helicopters descended on the compound. Shots rang out. A helicopter stalled and would not take off. Pakistani authorities, kept in the dark by their allies in Washington, scrambled forces as the American commandos rushed to finish their mission and leave before a confrontation. Of the five dead, one was a tall, bearded man with a bloodied face and a bullet in his head. A member of the Navy Seals snapped his picture with a camera and uploaded it to analysts who fed it into a facial recognition program.

In its initial account, the American government said that Bin Laden had been armed while taking part in the fierce firefight that broke out after a team of Navy Seals launched its assault. That was later revised to say that Bin Laden had been unarmed.

According to the later account, when the Seals reached the compound, they were immediately fired upon by Bin Laden’s trusted courier, Abu Ahmed al-Kuwaiti.

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The SEALs encountered bin Laden on the third floor of the main building.Bin Laden was “wearing the local loose-fitting tunic and pants known as a kurta paijama“, which were later found to have €500 and two phone numbers sewn into the fabric.

Bin Laden peered through his bedroom door at the Americans advancing up the stairs, and then retreated into the room as the lead SEAL fired a shot at him, which either missed or hit him in the side. Robert O’Neill, who later publicly identified himself as the SEAL who shot bin Laden,rolled through the door and confronted bin Laden inside the bedroom.

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Seymour Hersh reports that, according to his sources, bin Laden was found cowering and shot dead

The commandos killed him and a woman with him. When the Seals moved into the main house, they saw the courier’s brother, who they believed was preparing to fire a weapon. They shot and killed him. Then, as they made their way up the stairs of the house, officials said they killed Bin Laden’s son Khalid as he lunged toward the Seal team.

When the commandos reached the top floor, they entered a room and saw Osama bin Laden with an AK-47 and a Makarov pistol in arm’s reach. They shot and killed him, as well as wounding a woman with him.

And just like that, history’s most expansive, expensive and exasperating manhunt was over. The inert frame of Bin Laden, America’s enemy No. 1, was placed in a helicopter for burial at sea, never to be seen or feared again.

According to U.S. officials, bin Laden was buried at sea because no country would accept his remains. Before disposing of the body, the U.S. called the Saudi government, who approved of burying the body in the ocean.Muslim religious rites were performed aboard Carl Vinson in the North Arabian Sea within 24 hours of bin Laden’s death.

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The claims that O’Neill killed bin Laden came on October 5, 2014, in anticipation of a Fox News special called The Man Who Killed Osama bin Laden,which was expected to reveal his identity and details of the mission Operation Neptune Spear. He had previously been interviewed anonymously in an Esquire magazine article in February 2013.

O’Neill’s statements resulted in criticism by fellow Navy SEALs. Rear Admiral Brian Losey and Force Master Chief Michael Magaraci issued a public statement,

A critical tenant of our ethos is “I do not advertise the nature of my work, nor seek recognition for my actions

 

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