YOURSAY ‘No one knew the pro-Russian rebels had BUK until last Thursday.’
David Dass: If I had family on board I would ask the question - should Malaysia Airlines (MAS) have taken that route, over the airspace of a conflict ridden country? Of course, it is easy to use hindsight.
But the fact of the matter is that some airlines were not using that route. The United States government had warned against it. British Airways and Qantas did not use it. Were we aware of this?
Passengers ordinarily do not think about these things. They make the assumption that airlines will do what is prudent.
I am afraid as loyal as I am to my country and as much as I enjoy travelling by MAS - in the past, my favourite airline - I am now going to need to know the answers to two questions: Are you flying dangerous cargo? And are you flying over the airspace of countries at war?
If the answer to both is in the affirmative or not available, then I am flying another airline. This makes me sad as I have many friends among the crew. They are my people. And I have always seen MAS as my airline.
Swipenter: There are airlines that take pro-active and precautionary actions to ensure that their planes do not fly across the skies of the war zone.These airlines believe that it is better to be safe than to be sorry.
And there are airlines that did, in spite of military planes being shot down recently over the skies there.
It is reasonable to assume that the latter grou, , including MAS, did their calculations and risk management and came to the conclusion that there was nothing to worry about flying over the skies of a war zone.
MAS was the unlucky one and paid the price for it. That is what matters now. We are all angry, upset and shocked at another national tragedy of ours, so soon after MH370, and the needless loss of innocent lives.
How can MAS take the position that it is totally blameless for this tragedy? The consequences of flying the same route in peace and in wartime is now here for all the world and airlines to see.
Damn the Russians and their separatist allies and their geopolitics.
Magnus: I have knocked MAS on occasions because MAS has made mistakes, but I don't see MH17 as one of those mistakes.
MH17 was shot down by Ukrainian war criminals - deliberately or recklessly - using a highly sophisticated Soviet Union-developed BUK surface-to-air (SAM) missile that no one knew these pro-Russian separatist rebels had until last Thursday, when MH17 was shot down with a suspected BUK SA-11.
The separatist rebels had, until then, been using Manpads (shoulder-launched SAM missiles) to down Ukrainian military planes and these weapons do not have the significant range BUK SAMs have.
That is why Ukrainian authorities instructed commercial aircraft to fly above 32,000ft in their airspace as that height was safely out of reach of missiles fired from Manpads.
So someone has covertly supplied the rebels BUK missiles or assisted them with its use. That is why the Dutch and other people are still prepared to board MAS planes today so they can send megalomaniac Russian president Vladimir Putin and those who downed MH17 the right message.
Justice Pao: All the airlines that use this hazardous route over Ukraine made the mistakes and serious error of judgment. That includes MAS.
Trying to justify that just because others are doing it will not deflect the fact that an error has been made where the consequence of this bad judgment has resulted in the deaths of innocent passengers.
It could have been any of these airlines being shot down, but the fact is that MAS happened to be the unlucky one.
It is common sense that when there is a gunfight between two parties, the innocent bystander should not try to walk in between and take the risk just because other stupid people are doing it.
Nothing can be done to bring back the dead but still, MAS and the other airlines are definitely responsible for putting lives at risk by flying into the war zone.
We can only pray that this will not happen again and can only, as peace-loving people, say prayers for the dead passengers.
Aries46: That this MH17 tragedy happened four months after MH370 went missing is unbelievable and most difficult to bear.
We are overcome with sadness, emotion and most of all, sympathy for the perished passengers and their kin, who have to bear the brunt of this tragedy.
This is not the time to blame or point fingers at anyone as no one in his right mind would knowingly contribute to such disaster. If these was an oversight or error of judgment on the part of the administrators in MAS, it was unfortunate.
But let us not discount the fact that for all intents and purposes, it is not safe to fly through a country at war, period. Others like SIA (Singapore Airlines) or Thai International taking the same route is not a reason for us to do so as we are the ones who are now paying a heavy price.
If MAS had stayed true to its objective of placing the safety of passengers above all else, then it ought to have paid heed to the ‘route advisory’ of the US and others that followed suit.
Nevertheless, let MH17 be an eye opener to put MAS on the right track.
Hmmmmmmmm: This episode reminds me of the times when I'd try to give silly excuses like “all my friends also do that” for why I did certain things, and my parents would ask "if your friends asked to jump from the cliff, would you also do that?"
I guess this question should aptly be asked of MAS.
Sleepy: I understand the negative comments about MAS are actually about the competence and credibility of the government.
My focus, though, is not about MAS but the murderers who shot down a passenger plane. I still believe that Russia is the real culprit here.
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