Talk:El Al Flight 402

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Discrepancies with the Hebrew version[edit]

In the Hebrew version of the page, it is said that: (1) The plains were Yak-23 and not MIG. this is according to an article in Ha'aretz newspaper and an interview with a person who was involved in the investigation. (2) the Bulgarian pilots were sentenced to long terms in prison due to the incident --132.65.16.64 (talk) 13:02, 28 January 2010 (UTC)

According to Time magazine, they were Mig 15s. If you have a better source, which contradicts it, we'd have to resolve the difference. If you have a reliable source for the prison sentences, that would be very helpful. Crum375 (talk) 03:40, 29 January 2010 (UTC)
Here is a cold war shoot-down database, which also confirms the Mig-15, and has the actual fighter pilot's name. Crum375 (talk) 04:01, 29 January 2010 (UTC)
And another MiG-15 confirmation (also with the pilot's name). Crum375 (talk) 04:05, 29 January 2010 (UTC)

The article is both inaccurate and one-sided[edit]

This article is just glaring with inaccuracies, and treats as "disputed" facts that have long been established with absolute certainty while omitting other, equally important facts. I begin one by one and let's see how many inaccuracies we'll find. An edit of the original article text is an absolute must.

1. The Bulgarian fighters were a pair of MiG-15 who flew out of Dobroslavtsi airport with pilots Petrov and Sankiiski, by command of general Velichko Georgiev, deputy chief of Bulgarian Air Defense. (Source: Tsvetan Tsakov, "Bulgarian Aviation: Triumphis and Catastrophes, XX century." AirGroup2000, Sofia 2000.) Other sources confirming the pilots and the planes are ubiquitous in Ivan Borislavov, "The Bulgarian Aviation and the Cold War, AirGroup2000, Sofia 2002.

2. The original article claims that El Al pilots, presumably due to a disturbance of navigational equipment due to electrical activity, "thought they were over the Skopje navigation point" and therefore changed course. WHERE IS THE REFERENCE FOR THIS? How does the author know what the pilots thought if this is not reflected either in voice cockpit recorders or with their communications with ATC? This comment should be removed as biased.

3. An entirely different version of the shooting is presented in the memoirs of Gen. Zahari Zahariev, (commander in chief of Bulgarian military aviation) who was in charge of the investigation of the shooting on the Bulgarian side. (Source: Zahari Zahariev, "My life in the aviation", AirGroup2000, Sofia 2005). Zahariev recounts how the area of the crash was encircled by the military who performed an extensive search to remove the debris and document the crash itself. According to Gen. Zahariev "A week after the debris was taken away, local gypsies gave the alarm that metal they had collected to use off of the crash site and which they thought to be tin, did not melt as expected. Further investigation revealed that the metal was not tin but rather silver, and that more than 320 kg of silver bullion had been hidden in the engine nacelles." Zahariev also claims that the main reason for the shooting was that the El Al flight refused to follow instructions of the Bulgarian fighter jets. Petrov and Sankiiski recount that they fired two times nearby the El Al plane in order to make it follow them, but the Israeli pilots disobeyed and were shot down while trying to veer off the border with Greece. Witnesses on the ground also maintained that the Israeli plane changed course after seeing the fighters and tried to escape from them on Greek territory.

4. It is absolutely incorrect that the pilots "were sentenced to lengthy prison terms". Tsvetan Tsakov writes on the subject: "Petrov and Sankiiski were neither promoted nor punished for the accident", because they were simply following orders issued higher up.

Anyone wishing to write more on the subject should first read BOTH the Israeli and the Bulgarian version of the story, because as I said the inaccuracies in the current version are just glaring. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 71.232.34.10 (talk) 03:37, 24 January 2011 (UTC)