It was supposed to be a normal flight like any other do. Families waiting for their beloved ones after a few days’ travel, couples to meet their relatives back in town, students taking a long break after that enduring, oftentimes excruciating, series of school activities, employees taking their short break to release their stresses, and myriad stories to go. They boarded one of the world’s most excellent airlines, having – despite occasional minor incidents – excellently, and safely, brought more than 12 million passengers worldwide, putting on themselves normal expectations on what to do after their arrival back home.
But the flight, taking place from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, had never arrived ever since. On March 8, deep down in its early dusk, the plane’s signal disappeared. So do the passengers. And up to this moment, the day this post is published, despite intensive efforts by numerous countries to track the aircraft – going so far as involving more than 40 jets and up to 30 ships, none of the attempts has resulted in any definitive answers for its mystery, though. As long as the search goes, rumors, speculation, and even conspiracy theories color the ongoing conversations, in particular social media. We heard stories from Vietnam authorities that the plane has crashed at seas – the source was obscure. The rescue teams discovered slicks of oil thought to be that of the aircraft – these slicks were from tankers. Other teams had discovered what was thought to be parts of the aircraft – they turn out to be random items discarded at sea. Two mysterious passengers, having boarded the flight using forged passports, who were once suspected of a possible terrorism plot, were no more than hopeful Iranian migrants looking for a better life in Europe.
The mystery remains at bay, and frustration escalates into deep anguish, and anger. The passengers’ families in Beijing unceasingly storm the Malaysian Airlines officials regarding their relatives’ fate; as long as the search results in null-and-void, there is nothing much the company can do. They are being shouted at, yelled at, and even thrown water bottles, by some of the family members. Still, though, without any valid results from the search-and-rescue teams, there is nothing much the company can do.
With things remaining in limbo, I can only hope for one thing, though: whether it will be good news, whether it will be bad news, let there be light for the families left behind. May all their beloved ones be allowed to gain the truth, even if it means they have to prepare for the worst consequences. Let there be light for everyone.
The Straits Times has compiled some of the stories from Malaysia Airlines MH370’s passengers, and some of these may be heartbreaking. Read the full article, titled ‘Faces of MH370’, here.