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F-16 pilot's mission: take down Flight 93

"We wouldn't be shooting it down. We'd be ramming the aircraft," Penney recalls of her charge that day. "I would essentially be a kamikaze pilot." ( More...

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Gary Roberts 1
Huh......I wonder if her story will be vetted or corroborated by the military.
If true - That's one hellacious story! Our Service Members already know that they may have to die to accomplish the mission......but daaaayum! Take out a smaller number of civilians for the sake of potentially saving so many more?
THAT take dedication to duty & mission!
This same story has been floating around for the past 10+ years. It pops up every once in awhile on here.
matt jensen 1
So, they weren't armed? I thought all USAF jets were armed.
Gary Roberts 2
Not then....But likely there are fighters armed and 'At the ready' all across the country now.
Go figure. Thanks Matt - This was actually the first I've seen of this particular story.
matt jensen 0
Gary Roberts 1
Oops....I meant thanks Zach...
PhotoFinish 1
The news came out in the aftermath of the events. It's good to have an actual pilot on the record in an interview being very candid about the incident, their orders and intentions of their mission. There is no reason to not believe her, nor to doubt the need to protect the air space and the capital.

Glad they never got a chance to complete their mission. The passengers become the heroes and we can all continue to live in a world that fighter jets didn't take out a commercial airliner, filled with passengers, on its' way to strike Washington DC.
Roland Dent 1
Photo: So what took out the civil airliner that was downed? I think that was crashed in the PA contry side...
PhotoFinish 2
The passengers attempt to retake the plane. More specifically the terrorists at te controls when the passengers didn't just sit there.

Many family members who were in contact with the passengers in-flight filled them in. Three passenger airliners that had been hijacked that day had already been flown into civilian targets.

Some passengers said good bye, and that they were going to take care of things. "We're gonna roll."

That plane took off at Newark. So there were lots of passengers from New Jersey and New York, who would try to fix the situation, or die trying. Certainly preferable than getting killed as the plane gets flown into other innocent people targeted on the ground.

That flight was covered thoroughly in the news at the time, including transcripts/summaries of conversations between the passengers and their family. They had reported intention of trying to retake the plane.

Not very controversial. It was acknowledged that they would've been willing to take down the plane with fighters, had they had a chance. So there's no need for a cover-up.
Roland Dent 1
Thanks for the answer. Many of us are still dumbstruck that all this took place that day.
99NY 1
Crazy to get an idea of the pilots mindset before they took off. "I'll get the cockpit, I'll get the tail" Thats guts folks.
Roland Dent 1
For those of us on the other side of the Atlantic this account is incredible. All the NATO countries have fighter aircraft ready to go 24/7/365. As the recent event with the LOT B787 that had to land in Iceland due to a faulty transponder illustrated, unless they are identified and are following a logged and cleared flight plan they don't get within 20 miles of land.


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