LA Times: JFK plot overhyped, jet fuel damage would have been “limited” (MORE: NYT DOWNPLAYS AS WELL)

Posted by: ST on June 3, 2007 at 8:56 pm

Hate to say I ToldjahSo …. but read this, and you’ll see what I mean:

The premise is right out of a disaster movie: Ignite the massive fuel tanks required to keep an international airport up and running each day, stand back, and watch a chain reaction of explosions throughout the labyrinth of pipelines running underneath the tarmac.

But aviation experts cautioned Saturday that the alleged plot targeting John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York would have faced many hurdles, not least of which is the fact that jet fuel does not easily explode.

“The level of catastrophe that may be created is much more limited than most people would expect,” said Rafi Ron, former head of security at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport. “The fuel that we are talking about is mostly jet fuel, which, unlike the gasoline most people put into their cars, is not that susceptible to explosion.”

That difficulty apparently concerned one of the alleged plotters — an engineer who, federal authorities said in their complaint, explained to his associates that the tanks at JFK would probably require two explosions to provide enough oxygen to ignite the fuel.

But even then, aviation security experts said, fire would not have spread through the pressurized pipelines that bring fuel out to airplanes parked at gates.

“The probability that an explosion would travel through the pipeline and destroy targets along the tarmac is almost nil,” said Ron, now president of New Age Security Solutions in Rockville, Md. “The exception would be pipelines that are not in use and contain vapor.”

Jet fuel is similar to kerosene and, unlike gasoline, requires very high temperatures to burn. Unless it is in vapor or mist form — which can occur in a plane crash — jet fuel does not explode. Additives raise the flashpoint of jet fuel, further reducing the likelihood that it will burn, experts said.

Got that? The LAT is essentially saying that the thwarting of this plot really is no big deal, because if the terrorists had had a chance to carry it off, the damage would have been “limited.”

You see, this story is good news for the Bush administration and the war on terror, so the LAT has to spin it as yawn-worthy in response.

Sound familiar?

Heck, why do we even need the feds? I mean, all the plots they’ve thwarted weren’t that big a threat anyway, right?

Move along now, nothing to see.

Mon AM Update: The NYT follows the LAT’s lead: Papers Portray Plot as More Talk Than Action. Check out the links to the leftie blogs listed here amongst a link roundup for their reactions. Predictable.

RSS feed for comments on this post.


15 Responses to “LA Times: JFK plot overhyped, jet fuel damage would have been “limited” (MORE: NYT DOWNPLAYS AS WELL)”


  1. stackja says:

    December 7th 1941, LAT reports a few motorboats were sunk at Pearl Harbor. No big deal. 9/11 LAT reports a few buildings collapsed. Again no big deal.

  2. steveegg says:

    Well, I guess the elimination of fueling services at a major airport isn’t “sexy” enough for the LA Times.

  3. steveegg says:

    ROFL, stackja.

  4. camojack says:

    *Sigh* S.S.D.D. Unfortunately… :-?

  5. Tango says:

    Can’t you just imagine the outrage if these skanks had managed to execute their plan? There’d be a media feeding frenzy the likes of which have NEVER been seen! 8-x

  6. Mwalimu Daudi says:

    Tango is right. Mark Steyn had a great line (sorry – I cannot find the link right now :( )that all terrorists look like idiots – until the bombs go off.

    If the terrorists had succeeded in carrying out their plan, the MSM would have been screaming how this “proves” that the Iraq war is a diversion and that we are losing the War on Terror and we need to concentrate all of our resources at home. But since it was thwarted, the MSM will say this is no big deal Bush over-reacted, and probably these guys are innocent anyway.

    Heads they win. Tails Bush loses.

  7. omapian says:

    19 individuals with a few box-cutters and airline tickets are no big threat if they could be arrested before they board flights. What damage could they possibly do?
    As an aside, if they were arrested, any lawyer would have them released within hours and the arresting officers would be sanctioned for profiling.

  8. Leslie says:

    On the other hand, The Washington Post noted Saturday:

    “Nonetheless, the charges provided yet more evidence of the threat posed by homegrown terrorists, embittered extremists who hail from the Middle East or, in this case, from the Caribbean and northeastern South America. Less than a month ago, authorities announced that they had broken up a cell of Muslim militants, most of them ethnic Albanians, who were developing a plot to attack soldiers at New Jersey’s Fort Dix.”

    They got it.


  9. NC Cop says:

    19 individuals with a few box-cutters and airline tickets are no big threat if they could be arrested before they board flights. What damage could they possibly do?

    Well said, omapian. A few “motivated” individuals with box cutters caused the greatest terrorist attack on U.S. soil in history. Can you imagine if they had been caught before boarding the plane? The NYT, or as I like to refer to them as the Al Qaeda propoganda branch, and it’s flock of sheep would have been downplaying a few “stupid” individuals with box cutters.

  10. Mwalimu Daudi says:

    To “revise and extend my previous remarks” – as the say in Congressland – I think that the aviation experts quoted in the Times piece were correct. It was unlikely that the explosions would have caused the devastation the terrorists had hoped for. Although, as one expert pointed out, if the conditions had been favorable (an empty pipeline with vapors), it might have been really deadly.

    Remember the first World Trade Center bombing in 1993? AQ’s plan then was to use explosives to topple one tower into the other. That plan failed, but it only seemed to whet AQ’s appetite for an even more ambitious attack on 9/11.

    Had the JFK plot (as well as the Fort Dix plot) been carried out, it would have only invited even more attacks. This is what the MSM seems to be missing when they downplay the significance of these two failed terrorist attacks.

    As Leslie noted, the Washington Post seems to get it.

  11. Lorica says:

    WELL NOW!!!! Looks like Google Earth was used in the this JFK Terrorist attack.


    One of the plotters behind the alleged scheme to explode gas pipelines at John F. Kennedy airport directed his co-conspirators to use Google Earth to obtain detailed aerial photos of the targeted facility.

    Don’t get use to Google Earth folks. – Lorica

  12. G Monster says:


    interesting, considering this subject(google earth) was debated here recently.

  13. The old adage about it coming home to roost, won’t even wake these full blown BDS contagions drawing pay at LAT, et al. Look how soon the morons in NY forgot their catastrophe or the idjuts that RE-ELECTED the same pinheads in NO, responsible for adding to the problems pre and post Katrina, or the crack Mayor in DC- ad nauseam. The list is long and the short memories are matched with an unbalanced understanding, due in large part to the subversive efforts of the traitorous actions rampant in the printed sewage at every snooze stand passing itself off as news.

    Psychologists have names for these particular illnesses, which would only partially describe their denial of reality. It takes a serious effort to initiate and maintain this brand of intentional stupidity.

    The DBM will spare no expense or soul in it’s twisted mission to undermine America! Carpet bombing truth with no regard for collateral damage to the legal citizens who call America home.

  14. Lorica says:

    G Monster: That is exactly why I found this article so interesting. Seems to me those that are crying “no blood no foul” about Google Earth, just got grazed. I refuse to use Google anymore. I won’t even use it as a phrase. They have proven over and over that they are a bunch of anti-American leftists. Go to Zombietime and see what he has to say about them. Apprently for the 8th year, Google has not honored Memorial day “Because it is too controversial”. But they have all sorts of special holidays, that mean little to nothing for the majority of Americans. They have also refused Christian Advertising, but accepted anti-Christian advertising, So I figure they are worthless to me as a whole.

    Forest Hunter: I am with you. I have come to a point in my life, where if you have not served in the Military or you are not a landowner, you shouldn’t be voting. I think the founding Fathers had it right. Ever since that has changed, stupidity has come to power too often. Do you realize just how close we came to a John Kerry presidency. /shiver It horrifies me to even think about it. I think I need to wretch. – Lorica