Say “No” to Sochi because of Russia’s Drunken Skies
Last week, we reported on how the passengers of an Aeroflot airliner had been forced to take matters into their own hands in order to stop a drunken Russian pilot from taking off and killing them all. In America, the pilot saves the passengers by skillfully and heroically landing a stricken airliner on a river in the middle of one of the world’s greatest cities. In Russia, it’s exactly the reverse.
Those passengers didn’t know how right they were to act. Just days later, Reuters reported:
The chief pilot of a Russian airliner which crashed last year killing 88 people had alcohol in his blood but the primary cause of the crash was poor training, investigators said on Tuesday. A Boeing 737-500 operated by Aeroflot subsidiary Aeroflot-Nord crashed as it tried to land in the Ural mountains city of Perm early in the morning, killing everyone on board in Russia’s worst air crash for two years. “A forensic study … detected the presence of ethyl alcohol in the crew commander’s body before his death,” Alexei Morozov, head of the investigating commission, told a news conference.
Reuters reminds readers of “March 1994 when 70 people were killed in a crash in Siberia. Investigators found that the pilot’s teenage son had been allowed to enter the flight cabin and had accidentally switched off the autopilot.” Click the “air disasters” category in our sidebar to read about numerous other horrifying recent incidents that make Russia one of the world’s most dangerous places to board an airplane.
The reason such things can happen so routinely is simple: In Vladimir Putin’s Russia, individual human life outside the Kremlin has no value.
This is the meat grinder into which the world has chosen to pour its best and brightest athletes for the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi. Even without this appalling risk, Russia’s invasion of Georgia and the risk of terrorism from Chechnya and Ingushetia would be more than enough reason to disqualify Russia immediately from hosting the games.
But considering these nauseating developments, if the leaders of the free world do not divest Russia of the Sochi games, which it cannot even afford because of its catastrophic economic crisis, then they may well have blood on their hands.
We call for an international repudiation of the Sochi games before it is too late.