724. 12/24/1994

"On December 24, 1994, four Algerian terrorists dressed as policemen took control of Air France's flight 8969 as it prepared for takeoff at Houari Boumediene International Airport in Algiers. On board were 220 passengers and 12 crew members bound for Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris… French counterterrorism authorities learned that the terrorists were planning to crash the aircraft into the Eiffel Tower to cause a mass-casualty disaster in Paris… Once in Marseilles, the terrorists demanded that the plane be fueled to its maximum capacity: 27 tons of jet fuel, far more than needed to get to Paris and a clear indication of their intention to crash into the tower. Elite French commandos then stormed the aircraft and in an intense firefight killed all four terrorists and saved the hostages. …Although filled with explosives, the aircraft did not blow up because the detonators were not properly wired together…"

 – The Search for Al Qaeda, Bruce Riedel, 12/24/1994

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