name content Detroit airport officials detain four Saudi Arabian passengers — The North Star National

Detroit airport officials detain four Saudi Arabian passengers

They hasten to tell us they don’t consider it a threat, but officials at Detroit Metro Airport have detained four passengers from Saudi Arabia after they “did not comply with crew member instructions.”

From WDIV-TV in Detroit:

Crew and flight members requested that authorities meet the plane at the gate when it landed at about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday.“Four passengers on flight 243 did not comply with crew member instructions and out of an abundance of caution the crew requested authorities meet the flight upon arrival,” said Northwest/Delta Airlines spokeswoman Susan Elliott. She would only say that the plane, an Airbus 330, had 245 passengers and 12 flight attendants on board. Nobody was injured.

So it wasn’t a threat, but crew members were worried enough that they felt the need to have authorities meet them at the gate and detain these four, er, noncompliants, who just happen to all be from Saudi Arabia?

What sort of noncompliance might they have been engaged in? Presumably they weren’t all trying to go to the bathroom together during the forbidden final hour. Were they reading their Korans when they were supposed to have their hands folded and nothing on their laps?

Seriously, it’s hard to know what to make of this, as silly as some of these rules have gotten. But what sort of noncompliance would be engaged in by four people, all together, who just happen to be from Saudi Arabia?

I suppose they might have just been trying to make some sort of statement, perhaps because they felt they were being singled out. But given the government’s quick propensity for downplaying every incident, even the ones that later turn out to be serious indeed, it’s hard to just take their word for it when they tell us an incident did not involve a threat of any kind.