Commentary at the CNN Website on the Downing of Flight 800

Commentary at the CNN Website on the Downing of Flight 800

5 things you didn't know about the crash of TWA Flight 800 (Excerpt)

By Chuck Hadad, CNN
updated 8:01 PM EDT, Tue July 15, 2014

(CNN) -- On July 17, 1996, TWA Flight 800 took off from JFK Airport headed for Paris. Just 12 minutes later, it exploded over the shores of Long Island, New York. There were 230 people on board, and no one survived.

Many eyewitnesses described seeing something heading toward the plane before it exploded, and the suspicion of terrorism was almost instant. The biggest investigation in aviation history, at that time, ensued.

The government spent four years and millions of dollars in that investigation and 18 years later, many still question whether they got it right.

1The FBI interviewed at least 755 witnesses.

TWA Flight 800 crashed eight miles off the coast of Long Island at dusk on a clear summer night. Hundreds of witnesses saw the plane explode from either on shore, on a boat, in a plane or in at least one case, a helicopter.

Of the 755 witness reports that the FBI have made public, accounts vary widely but hundreds describe what they thought was either a flare or fireworks heading up toward the plane before it exploded. A few witnesses even used the words "missile" or "rocket." ... FULL STORY

Comments

Alex Constantine • 5 days ago
" ... the NTSB released its official report: It found the probable cause of the accident was a spark in the center fuel tank that eventually led to the explosion that brought down the aircraft." The tank was empty. So what did the "spark" (not the missile caught on video tape that the FBI confiscated?) "eventually" ignite?
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Anon Alex Constantine • 15 hours ago
They claim fuel vapors which is impossible. The wiring in the fuel tank uses nano volts to send data to fuel indicators. Open flame can't even spark jet fuel type A vapors so how did a supposed spark the power of a nano volt do it? That doesn't even happen with gasoline vehicles and gasoline is much easier to ignite!
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stalcupt • 8 days ago
If this article is any indicator, it appears CNN producer Chuck Hadad is focusing on Leon Panetta's #TWA800 terrorism red herring in his AC360 show scheduled for 9pm tonight. The Pentagon (and CNN sources)dismissed a terrorist missile in the early hours after the crash due to Flight 800's altitude and position offshore. However regarding missiles, that is all the FBI, CIA, and NTSB focused on. The radar, witness, and forensic evidence clearly pointed to a 'proximity fused' missile, which terrorists were not known to have at the time. Any focus on terrorism with the amount of evidence now available is a distraction. I'll also add a two other things you didn't know about the crash:

1) FBI was finalizing a report within two weeks of the crash and after interviewing 500+ witnesses concluding that there was a
"high probability" that a missile was involved.

2) The US
Department of Defense was testing missiles off the East Coast of the US the summer TWA 800 crashed. There were many confirmed and unconfirmed reports of missile/missile-like activity up and down the East Coast before, during and after the crash. Five days before the crash at sunrise, a home video captured what a Defense Intelligence Agency analyst concluded was a missile climbing over Long Island Sound (Flight 800 crashed off Long Island's south shore). FBI made 11 copies of this video, but lost every one of them, which is why you won't see this video on Mr. Hadad's show tonight.
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David Saint stalcupt • 8 days ago
great comment! There was a recent documentary you might like on EPIX, where the former lead investigators released some damaging info about the FBI tampering with evidence. I thought it was fubar the minute Freeh ripped the NTSB off the case and put his minion agents in charge instead...
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stalcupt David Saint • 8 days ago
Thank you, and yes that documentary 'TWA Flight 800' is on NetFlix right now, and I recommend every American watch it. It features six whistle-blowers from inside the original investigation including senior NTSB investigator (Ret) Hank Hughes, TWA former top safety official Robert Young, Chief Army Pathologist Colonel Dennis Shanahan, and others. In full disclosure, I was the correspondent and co-producer of that film.
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David Saint stalcupt • 8 days ago
THANK YOU! that film was well put together, pointed, and seemingly void of an agenda other than simply the truth (a rarity these days it seems). As someone whos "God Sister" was on that flight, I thank you...
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wiseman stalcupt • 8 days ago
Thanks for the additional information, great job; gave you an up vote.

LA Times staff writer John J. Goldman published on 12.06.1997 a news article called, "3 Accused in Theft of Flight 800 Debris."

The highlight was,
"
Prosecutors charged that Sanders took the fabric to a laboratory for analysis and emphasized to lab personnel his desire that the tests show the presence of solid rocket propellant.

When the tests provided no conclusive evidence of rocket fuel, Sanders misrepresented the results to the media, according to the court papers.
"

Could you please comment on the "no conclusive evidence" assertion, plus the credibility of the news piece?

Per this news article,
"
Of the 755 witness reports that the FBI have made public
...
hundreds describe[d] what they thought was either a flare or fireworks heading up toward the plane before it exploded.

A few witnesses ... used the words missile or rocket.
"

Hundreds of eye witness accounts should not have been ignored.
see more
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Homestead2 stalcupt • 8 days ago
For a long time I've worked for people who have to deal with whistleblowers, and we found that most whistleblowers either have some sort of personal problem (to put it diplomatically, a troubled soul), or are angry with their former employer, often based on what the person believes to be true (and is often found to be false), so when I read a post about "six whistleblowers" it makes me whistle. That nonsense aside, the aircraft involved in the ACCIDENT was one of the oldest in the fleet (my Dad was a regular passenger on the TWA JFK-Lisbon route and probably flew on that very jet - in the 1970s) - with a documented aircraft history of electrical problems in the weeks prior, and based on that, and the fact that frayed wire bundles that passed through the gaseous empty fuel tank were found, and the dangerous habit of keeping the main tank empty (that is no longer done) was the basis for the NTSB report and their recommendations - let these people rest in peace, CNN!
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Meg Hinley Homestead2 • 7 days ago
If you have one whistleblower, yeah, in all probability there's an angry soul wanting to spread drama.
When there are SIX, in all probability there's a legitimate problem.
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Guest Meg Hinley • 7 days ago
Yea, but we're all nut jobs if we think that…at least according to those commenting that our questions make us crazy conspiracy theorists.
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RogueGhost24 . Guest • 7 days ago
Well if you can satire people making fun of your own insanity, you must be right!
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stalcupt Homestead2 • 8 days ago
The TWA Flight 800 whistleblowers are legit, proud, and upstanding Americans who rose through the ranks to take leadership roles during the investigation. Most personally handled the wreckage, one was in charge of all the victim autopsies, and another was in charge of analyzing injury patterns. Watch 'TWA Flight 800' on NetFlix to see and hear their stories first-hand before insulting them.

Wire bundles are routed on top or beside the center tank, not through it. Even the NTSB says the alleged short circuit occurred outside the tank entering the tank through a low amperage fuel-quantity probe wire.

Regardless of this, the alleged explosion was determined to be low velocity (due to noting that the tank broke into large pieces, not small pieces as would be the case if the tank detonated), and a low velocity explosion cannot explain the multiple FAA radar sites which indicate a high velocity event caused the crash, launching debris on a trajectory consistent with an object heading outbound, as reported by eyewitnesses after first describing seeing it rise off the surface.
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HCBresson stalcupt • 7 days ago
interesting thread... more so than the article itself!!
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E1craZ4life stalcupt • 6 days ago
I watched it last year and still say there wasn't a missile; however, with the shootdown of MH17, there might be a chance that some degree of the existing theories can soon be discounted. But until then, I say TWA 800 was not shot down.
BTW, you wouldn't happen to be THE Tom Stalcup from the TWA 800 movie, are you?
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mulehead Homestead2 • 8 days ago
With all due respect to the families, I think they deserve the truth. I certainly would - and when the original NTSB investigators say they're looking at a missile as well as 500+ eyewitnesses....well, I'd say that the wiring was a red herring to say the least.
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RogueGhost24 . mulehead • 7 days ago
There was a short in the ICS immediately before the explosion, supporting the spark. The fuel tank exploded outward from within, supporting the spark. Where are the missile contrails, debris, and how does a missile simply cut an airliner in half?
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Richard Anderson RogueGhost24 . • 7 days ago
There is no way possible that a short in the ICS could ever cause a spark in the fuel tank. The only wires within the fuel tanks are those on the fuel quantity sending units. The fuel quantity system on that aircraft is a capacitance type system and the electronic signal in that system is minute. There is not sufficient current (nano-amps) to cause a spark of any type at the tank units. The wiring for the ICS is not routed anywhere near the wiring for the tank units. I have no idea what caused this plane to explode, but as an engineer that has worked on aircraft fuel quantity systems for over thirty five years I can assure you that the fuel system wiring had nothing to do with it.
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Water_Faery Richard Anderson • 6 days ago
Fascinating statement from cnn reporter. I am watching live coverage of the crash of Malaysian Airlines 17 in Ukraine which may have been shot down by Russian Separatists. cnn reporter
has been reporting for several hours. He stated that this is the anniversary of Flight 800 in 1996 which was "shot down near Long Island off the US coast". First reporter I have heard that admitted the flight 800 was indeed shot down! 1o minutes later he came on and corrected himself with the "official" story from Homeland Security, and then this post was taken off the site. I will see if I can post this again.
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bguest RogueGhost24 . • 7 days ago
The is a discernible difference between an explosion outside a plane and one from inside. Although this does not help the lay people, those who grabbed the pieces from the ocean floor know which occurred. Either story is believable, but only one is true.
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Robert RogueGhost24 . • 7 days ago
Disinformation tactics like this are easily spotted. No other fuel tank related explosions occurred before or since. Someone wanted those 18 Egyptian military officers dead and the ignored residual evidence of a missle strike is amusing.
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RogueGhost24 . Robert • 7 days ago
Before: TWA 800 was ancient by aircraft standards, 25 years old at the time of its accident. Many of the existing first generation 747s had been phased out.

Since: Existing aircraft were upgraded as a response.
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humanfan Robert • 7 days ago
First if you have two people in on a secret, it just cannot be a secret any more. This would require hundreds to be part of a cover up. Second why would anyone not want it to be terrorism? at the time we were itching for a fight.. so terrorism was likely what they wanted and they reluctanly concluded it was not. Clinton was president then and I would see no possibility for a motive from him as well to cover it up. But nuts and wacko's love a good conspiracy.. and if you fall into that category.. enjoy no amount of logic or facts will change your tiny minds.
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jim humanfan • 7 days ago
Yeah that's why the F117A was designed in the 50's and 60's but you never heard about it until we first used it in the late 80's.....because our government is incapable of keeping secrets.
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humanfan jim • 7 days ago
Jim I love stupid people and you are one of them. The very first flight was in 1981, the project began in 1975. Even the concept of stealth written by a soviet scientist was published in 1964, but computer technology was not advanced enough to allow it to fly. Rumors of the jet began in 1978, so it was leaked out before it even flew. A simple wikipedia search would have saved you the embarrassment of looking as stupid as you are.
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jim humanfan • 7 days ago
Well, the NRO and NSA existed for quite a long time before they were known by the public. NRO especially.
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Homestead2 Robert • 7 days ago
Robert, you are wrong - there were two "empty fuel tank" fires before TWA 800 - since the accident the FAA warned airlines to discontinue that dangerous practice - that is why this accident thankfully has not happened since...
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Water_Faery RogueGhost24 . • 6 days ago
there were pics even on nightly news on ABC and NBC that night showing probable missile contrails. All that footage seems to have mysteriously been lost, of course. If you watch the documentary TWA Flight 800, on Epix, you will see weather radar views that show missile, contrails and debris.
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John Schwendler Homestead2 • 7 days ago
Not buying that sad sob story for a second. Are there any recorded incidents anywhere of such an internal design flaw on equally aged aircraft, or younger, also blowing up? What? All the ground witnesses who saw an object fly up from the ocean towards the plane were wrong, blind, blurred, drunk, fantasizing? Do explain the fact that none of them were believed, not one. How on earth does that happen? Well, one way is for your govt to, wait for it, lie like a rug. They've done it so well for so long they've become expert at it. Coffee is on.
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PondHawk Homestead2 • 8 days ago
I know this question is not particularly relevant to the story and apologize. The distant connection is in regards to whistle blowers (and their ability to help get to the truth, or not, in circumstances such as this). Homestead2, sometimes people do wrong and sometimes organizations cover up the wrong doing. Occasionally others figure that out. You said "whistle-blowers...most either have some sort of personal problem...or are angry with their former employer..." I can't disagree because I don't have as much personal (or even second hand) experience as you claim to have. I wonder, and ask your opinion, where are and what of those who do legitimately see wrong? Do they not "blow the whistle"? If they do, how do we know they are legitimate? By the way, I'm down with the concept of Occam's razor and you have given a good reason to consider, "frayed wire bundles that passed through the gaseous empty fuel tank." Why didn't someone blow the whistle on that? And if he had, how would we know to listen?
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Homestead2 PondHawk • 8 days ago
PondHawk, thank you for your good comment. Sadly my co-workers often do find most whistleblowers have an agenda of some sort that made them bitter toward their employer, and will ultimately take up against them through event or circumstance (a form of disloyalty or disobedience), and that's not to say all are like that, but many claims are found to be groundless. My guess is that the TWA crash is questioned, the same way JFK's death was, or the Apollo moon landing, because Americans stopped believing in their government long ago and question everything and anything, even though facts tell them otherwise, and in this case it was about an aging 747 with a history of electrical shorts, and the dangerous practice of keeping the center tank nearly empty (which had resulted in other aircraft fires). Some forget that there was an airline crash in New York just 2 months after 9/11 - but was found to be pilot error - accidents happen all the time - even during times of war...
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Christine Shaughnessy Homestead2 • 7 days ago
also as a long islander I remember that night well. my husband and I had just settled in the living room to watch a little tv when at about 8:30 there was a loud explosion that made us jump 6 inches off of the couch. we asked each other what the h-ll was that? being a few weeks after july 4th I thought, omg what kind of firework was that? being a sultry july night all of our windows were open and the explosion was like nothing we had ever heard before. well within 30 minutes we started seeing the news on tv of a crash along the south shore of long island of an airplane bound for France. the water was on fire being the plane was full of fuel and had just moments before left kennedy. what we had heard in the coming days was the plane had been sitting on the runway with its engines running and the heat of the day was oppressive. the empty middle fuel tank had fumes and my father who was chief of the Levittown F D when I was growing up always told me an empty fuel tank was more dangerous then a full one. it was the fumes that were explosive more then the gasoline. so, I guess as human beings we need to have some other reason then a spark in an empty fuel tank, to explain 230 people dead. we live about 5 minutes from the south shore beaches and I will never forget the sound of that explosion.
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Robert Homestead2 • 7 days ago
Wow, it must pay good being a disinformation specialist. Now twa800 whistleblowers are the same as Apollo moon landing people and JFK questionaires? Show us one other fu l tank explosion.....just one that's all.
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Michael Dubanowski Robert • 7 days ago
Show me one other 747 that just fell out of the sky, just one that wasn't blown down by some sort of explosive device.
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cjacja Michael Dubanowski • 3 days ago
Example of 747 crash with no explosives involved: April 2013 at Bagram airbase in Afghanistan. It was not shot down. There was no explosion until after the aircraft hit the ground. Something broke. Likely a cargo hold down broke but I think this is an example you asked for.
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somerandomperson Robert • 7 days ago
*well. It's pay well. Carry on
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cjacja Robert • 3 days ago
You want just ONE example of a fuel tank blowing up? How about two?

A 727 in india. May 4 and involved a Transmile Airlines 727-200. The plane was being repositioned on the ground when the fuel tank in the left wing apparently exploded

Another was in Thiland March 3, 2001 a 737 fuel tank exploded..

How many more examples do you need?
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I Hate Mustard Homestead2 • 7 days ago
Exactly. I always find it interesting when whistleblowers who are so concerned with the truth wait until after they've retired, or something, to tell the truth. If they really wanted the public to know the truth, why wait YEARS??
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Family Doc 2 I Hate Mustard • 7 days ago
Whistleblowers often wait because they have mortgages and other bills to pay, and thus they wait until the backlash is minimized.
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jim I Hate Mustard • 7 days ago
Yeah and why are there 6 of them from high up in different agencies?
There are a lot of reasons why, the most important one being they were probably warned and/or threatened to keep quiet.
When you are facing federal time...you tend not to talk until you see others talking.
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Bart Manne I Hate Mustard • 7 days ago
Well, it is called LIFE and people need to make a pay check and being a correct whistleblower doesn't pay well. You get blacklisted and either demoted in your job or booted out. That is a fact and not a fairy tale like the gas tank explosion
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Bart Manne Homestead2 • 7 days ago
However, what motivates a person to turn into a whistleblower is either a heinous action or anger at the employer. If it was just the six whistleblowers with FALSE information, then why are the witnesses claiming a coverup too?? Especially the military experienced helicopter pilot. I guess they have to believe the story you lay out and not their lying eyes.
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Robert Homestead2 • 7 days ago
Nice disinformation control......no other fuel related tank explosions ever occurred contrary to your disinformation tactics...
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cjacja Robert • 3 days ago
See may post above. There are two cases of airliner fuel tanks exploding in recent years. These happened on the ground and the cause was obvious.
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LuFisherBody Homestead2 • 7 days ago
What a nauseous, short minded response to so many families that lost their friends, wives, husbands, sons and daughters! You don't know the answers, but what the hell.. just bury them, eh? Homestead2 already formed an opinion of "Whistle blowers" and felt they have personal problems or an agenda. What a complete Jerk.
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Homestead2 LuFisherBody • 6 days ago
First, name calling is the sign of a small mind. Second, for many years I've been working for people who deal with whistleblowers and they are usually as we say, people with an ax to grind, to the point some are court-ordered to stop filing one complaint after another. To be fair, a few are genuine and have a legitimate complaint, but most likely watched movies like "China Syndrome" and "Conspiracy Theory" one time too many and end up sleeping with a gun under their pillow, because they've become completely paranoid. The tragedy here is that with each news outlet's idea of mentioning TWA 800 again, it only causes more pain to the families and those involved in the recovery, but media outlets know only the dollar value of one rating point during the slack summer months, so broken hearts mean nothing to them...
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LuFisherBody Homestead2 • 6 days ago
If you took it personally, there may have been a reason why. You claim the 6 people you mention all had False information.. what are you... GOD? Please.. it's obvious you have already established your thoughts on this, and that's fine. Understand the families, friends, and coworkers of these victims are all not thinking as you are.. and still would like honest answers.
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Water_Faery Homestead2 • 6 days ago
There is a HUGE difference between a whistle blower and a conspiracy nut. Sounds like you and your friends deal with conspiracy nuts, NOT whistle-blowers.
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keleynal Homestead2 • 7 days ago
Thanks for providing an employer's perspective on whistleblowers, that's actually a little scary if whistleblowers aren't being given the benefit of the doubt initially. Even if 99 insane liars try to defame the company, the 100th one deserves a fair hearing.
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Water_Faery Homestead2 • 6 days ago
Fascinating statement from CNN reporter. I am watching live coverage of the crash of Malaysian Airlines 17 in Ukraine which may have been shot down by Russian Separatists. Anderson has been reporting for several hours. He stated that this is the anniversary of Flight 800 in 1996 which was "shot down near Long Island off the US coast". First reporter I have heard that admitted the flight 800 was indeed shot down! 1o minutes later he came on and corrected himself with the "official" story from Homeland Security, and then this post was taken off the site. I will see if I can post this again.
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Bonnie Parker Homestead2 • 8 days ago
Well said "homestead2".
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Anon Homestead2 • 18 hours ago
FYI Boeing doesn't wire through fuel tanks outside of fuel indicators and pumps and that wiring is of such low voltage it is physically and scientifically impossible to ignite jet fuel type A without adding another variable to the equation. ...

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