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Ethiopian Airlines black box

Why Hasn’t Boeing Admitted Criminality Behind 737 MAX?

CEO Dennis Muilenburg needs to resign effective immediately

The blaring headlines confirm that the worst crisis that American “multinational corporation” — Boeing — has ever faced since its conception in 1916, will undoubtedly continue to get much worse without any relief in sight.

It was just announced that American Airlines has extended its ban on the use of the ill-fated 737 Max 8 jets through June 5, and Boeing’s stock has been dipping in response to the much too late admission by CEO Dennis Muilenburg, who owns the fact that the hyper-computerized planes, that were rushed through production, did exhibit early warning signs that weren’t taken seriously enough to prevent the worst case scenario.

The embattled corporate head also said that Boeing plans to drastically slow down the production of the problematic jetliners, as the investigation into two high-profile fatal crashes that killed a total of 346 passengers and crew, that’s being conducted in Ethiopia and France — continues to unearth more damning information.

Boeing’s decision to finally admit to the faultiness of the flight control system, and how the anti-stall function was direly initiated immediately after takeoff, causing chaos in the cockpits, and bewildering pilots, who desperately tried and failed to steady their planes from the nose-dive positions, is abhorrently undiplomatic, when you observe the initial pathetic attempt to unleash damage control.

Days after Ethiopian Airlines Flight 320 fell from the sky on March 10, 2019 and heavily impacted a field, killing all 157 passengers and crew onboard, approximately 6 minutes after takeoff from Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, the European Union proceeded to ban activities of all its 737 Max 8 planes — until further notice.

The United States remained firm and resolute in its decision not to follow suit based on the emphatic assurance of Boeing, that kept insisting on the high safety standards of the now grounded fleet, despite troubling preliminary findings that revealed the undeniable similarities between the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines disasters.

Lion Air Flight 610 plunged into the Java Sea after departing Soekarno–Hatta International Airport in Jakarta, on October 29, 2018, killing all 189 passengers and crew. Recovering the black box was no easy feat, but Indonesian divers managed to locate it. After careful examination, it was established that the pilots were caught unawares by the plane’s nose-dive position from the anti-stall status — that emanated from sensors that were sending out “faulty information.”

The pilots tried in vain to regain control, but their efforts never registered with the malfunctioning jetliner.

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Lion Air black box

When all else failed, the terrified Lion Air pilots quickly referred to the manual in the hopes that they could figure their way out of the unfolding crisis, but we now know that they were unsuccessful in their quest to keep the erratic plane from crashing into the sea.

This horrifying episode was replicated by the pilots of the doomed Ethiopian Airlines flight, as they were also scrambling to make sense of the out-of-control nature of their plane in a deadly race against time. The recovered black box depicts the harrowing minutes of the short flight. The panicked voice of the captain issues the order to “pull up!” as the first officer complies, but to no avail, as the jetliner continues its unceasing death drop.

The deep crater in the earth from the impact of the crash was pretty much all that was left of the 737 Max 8, with some larger debris strewn about. For those who reached the site minutes after the crash, it was tragically clear that there would be no identifiable bodies for bereaved family members to bury.

Once news of the Ethiopian Airlines disaster started to spread, and the flight manifest showcased the biographies of the dead, it became apparent that this was an international catastrophe, based on the nationalities of the passengers and their affiliations with global humanitarian agencies.

World leaders like France’s Emmanuel Macron, Germany’s Angela Merkel, Canada’s Justin Trudeau, and Britain’s Theresa May, all followed protocol by issuing statements of condolences to acknowledge loss of life and extend thoughts and prayers to heartbroken relatives of the deceased.

The president of the United States, the Commander-in-Chief of the country that supplied the faulty planes, and caused two of the worst air tragedies in the history of air travel, never bothered to match the reverence on display by former allies, and instead remained silent until he was forced to comment about the last-minute decision to ground Boeing’s deadly creation.

That was the cue for CEO Muilenberg to finally come out of hiding, with the half-assed apology and nonsensical statement, that didn’t bother to take any responsibility for what had happened; not once, but twice.

Instead, Boeing’s chief officer, who closed 2018 with a stunning take-home pay to the tune of $30 million, opted to provide technical details about a model that is under investigation by foreign experts, who don’t trust the competence of American regulators, who’ve demonstrated gross negligence by signing off on stylized airplanes that were never fit to fly based on serious computer glitches.

It’s been 6 months since Lion Air Flight 610 was stalled from what should’ve been a normal flight pattern, and more than a month since Ethiopian Airlines Flight 320 furiously dropped to the ground, and so far we know the pilots on both flights followed standard procedure, and unfortunately died not comprehending the reasoning behind their fates.

Ethiopian Airline officials released a statement, summarizing their findings, and concluded that:

“Despite their hard work and full compliance with the emergency procedures, it was very unfortunate that they could not recover the airplane from the persistence of nose diving. As the investigation continues with more detailed analysis, as usual we will continue with our full cooperation with the investigation team”

I will admit that when the Lion Air crash happened, I was only mildly invested, and even suspected that it was likely pilot error or just a freak accident, and that was due mostly to coverage, and how there was really no indication that the plane’s flight control system could’ve played a major part in the gory outcome.

But as we’ve seen time and time again, additional deaths in senseless tragedies is usually the red flag that can’t be ignored.

When the Ethiopian Airlines disaster blasted through a temperate Sunday morning, the bone-chilling details that illustrated how a brand new plane, under the command of a well-equipped flight crew, and a top-notch captain, literally fell from a clear blue morning sky for reasons that didn’t add up — my attention was permanently hijacked.

The only thing to consider was foul play by Boeing, and these suspicions were enhanced by the brutally cold response by the company’s representatives.

It was also the sheer reluctance to finesse public relations during a tumultous period when so many inquiries are outstanding, and shell-shocked family members are dealing with a traumatizing event without the reassurance of notable perpetrators. That was the irrefutable proof needed to condemn the nefarious actions of a greedy organization.

Boeing royally fucked up, and the whole world is disgustingly fed up with the shittiness of Trump’s America, and how it all rolls up to the adherence to the almighty dollar, that dictates who lives and who violently perishes by the gleaming sword of multi-million dollar contracts, that can only be activated when the Federal Aviation Authority cuts corners by skipping the part when regulators do what’s necessary to ensure that only flight-worthy airplanes are sold to the world’s largest airlines.

The 737 Max 8 models were certified to fly in a rush to capitalize on the futuristic features that engineers had expressed concern during testing, but the FAA downplayed the glaring discrepancies by giving Boeing the authority to override the process where mock flights are performed, in an effort to rule out the likelihood that pilots could be saddled with the unbearable burden of trying to keep a very expensive equipment — carrying human beings— from falling.

There has been no solid admission of criminality from Boeing because profits outweigh human life, and while CEO Muilenburg goes into survivor mode by gracelessly issuing a blank statement, that’s supposed to buy him more time to keep his illustrious position, we can’t help but wonder why on earth he hasn’t had the good sense to resign.

This is 2019, and that means there’s no way we can tolerate the abomination of planes plunging from the sky as if shit like that is just “one of those things.”

Boeing has to pay for its crimes against humanity, and the lawsuits that are piling up are just one of the ways in which the failed company will suffer.

The FAA also has to be penalized for the laziness that led to allotting too much power to an iconic organization that refuses to live up to the spotless standards that birthed it.

At the end of the day people boarded a plane hoping to get to their destination in one piece, and ended up disappearing into the layers of the earth and currents of the seas without leaving anything behind to claim them.

That’s an unforgivable sin by those in charge, and it has to be dealt with accordingly because nobody deserves to be treated with that level of mismanagement.


Written by

Juggling Wordsmith. I have a lot to say!

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