RAF jets practise shooting down hijacked down hijacked airliner.
RAF fighter pilots staged a dramatic rehearsal of plans to shoot down a passenger jet hijacked by terrorists.I know it's from The Sun so it may not be 100% accurate but if it is then this is pretty screwed up. I'm guessing the 'target' was just an ordinary passenger plane. If so, what if one of the pilots was a bit trigger happy? This whole thing was run directly by top people in the British government.
Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, Home Secretary Theresa May and Security Minister Dame Pauline Neville-Jones were on stand-by throughout to give the order to open fire.
Two Eurofighter Typhoons armed with cannons and missiles were scrambled from RAF Coningsby, Lincs, to intercept the incoming plane.
Their crews believed the threat was real and were not told it was a practice drill until the last minute.
It has been government policy since the 9/11 terror attacks in America in 2001 to shoot down as a last resort any aircraft posing a threat in UK airspace.
If the RAF cannot make contact or the intruder fails to obey instructions, a senior government figure has to make the chilling decision to blast a packed airliner from the sky.
The exercise was a grim necessity, due to fears that a high-profile event like the London Olympics in 2012 will offer an inviting target for extremists.
John Yates, the Metropolitan Police counter-terror chief, and senior security and military figures were also involved in the operation earlier this month, which was co-ordinated from Whitehall in London.
Prime Minister David Cameron was aware of the dummy run but was not directly involved on the day. Further training missions are expected.
An anti-terror source said: "The aim was to run through the responses needed to confront an aircraft in terrorist hands.
"The inescapable reality is that such an aircraft, even if it was a passenger jet, would have to be shot down if that was the only way to prevent a strike on Britain. It would be agonising for those involved but there would be no alternative. One concern which has to be addressed is that the London Olympics could be targeted.
"A key tactic would be to intercept a suspect plane over the sea. The decision to destroy it would be taken by a senior government minister."
Terrorists hijacked four passengers jets in the US to carry out the 9/11 massacre, which killed 2,976 people.
And British Islamic terrorists are serving life for plotting to blow up transatlantic jets. The source added: "We know that targeting aircraft is an ongoing al-Qaeda priority."
Last night the Home Office confirmed: "Government departments and other agencies took part in a major incident exercise on July 8. It was an important test of contingency plans."
This is how black-ops are carried out - by blurring real world and simulation.