By Libya Herald staff.
Tripoli, 23 October 2013:
The ever-present rumour mill managed to surpass itself yesterday when, after black smoke were seen . . .[restrict]rising from Benghazi’s Sidi Khalifa district, it was reported on social media that a plane had crashed there. The news even managed to make it onto TV news channels around the world.
Fortunately there was no such accident. What happened was far more prosaic. Locals in Sidi Khalifa had set a mountain of rubbish alight, sending a pall of black smoke into the skies.
Unfortunately, the mere mundane is not exciting enough to be considered as plausible at present.
So when a vehicle carrying explosive blows up in Sirte, as happened last week, it was reported as a US drone attack. Indeed if the rumour mill were to be believed, there have been countless drone attacks this year, particularly in Benghazi and around Derna.
Despite the fact there has been no credible evidence whatsoever to confirm them, the incredulous will doubtless continue to believe and report them.
In yesterday’s case, the rumours were powerful enough to force the commander of the helicopter squadron and Benina control tower issuing denials that any aircraft had crashed or disappeared from the radar. [/restrict]