I have been following with interest the daily news of what has become a confounding mystery: What happened to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370? Every day I think the news will come that the plane has been located and the mystery solved, but every day only brings more questions. There is one thing that unfortunately seems very probable, the folks aboard that plane have died.
The New York Times published an article yesterday that tried to put some theories to bed. According to the Times‘ sources the flight’s disappearance was not tied to terrorist activity. Instead, it was more likely linked to smuggling. The plane is now said to have been deliberately diverted. Beyond that, the theories abound, but most of them end in the plane crashing.
When there were no claims out the gate of involvement by terrorist groups, I fully expected to hear that the plane had been hijacked and the passengers were being held as hostages in some obscure place. Yet there have been no demands and no evidence to support that the plane landed somewhere. Instead, the secondary radar devices that picked up the plane in varying places suggest that the plane went down because of either purposeful actions or lack of fuel.
While investigators from multiple countries try and patch together the information they have gathered, the families of those on Flight 370 remain in a horrible limbo. They want so much to hope against hope that their family member on the flight is alive, but know that the likelihood is slim. This hope reminds me of a similar hope we saw from families in the days following 9/11. Families waited for news about those who were reportedly in the towers after the planes hit. Families held on to the hope that their loved ones would be found alive or located in area hospitals. It was heartbreaking what these folks went through. The families of those on Flight 370 are at an even greater disadvantage though, as they do not know the full details of the event or the location of the plane. There is so much unknown and every additional sliver of unknown magnifies the difficulty for the families who stand helplessly on the sidelines. All they can do is watch as the governments involved try and navigate the tricky diplomatic landscape involved in the investigation. They are the second round of victims in this event and with every passing day their agony – the agony of not knowing – is compounded.
I am praying that Flight 370’s whereabouts will be located this weekend and the families will at least be allowed some closure about what happened. And I confess, even though I know the probability that those passengers could be found alive somewhere is a million to one shot, I am also praying for that. Not every mystery has to have a tragic ending; as such, I hope that this one with all its twists and turns still has the potential to deliver an ending that is more hopeful than it seems.
Day one thousand three hundred and forty-eight of the new forty – obla di obla da