Why Did a Serb Hijack Flight 293?

01 Mar


I get accused of only talking about the positives of Serbia and its people….. Here is an interesting article that I just stumbled onto.

In May of 1979 , Nikola Kavaja, a self-described ati-communist, was one of six Serbians that were arrested and convicted of bombing the Yugoslav council’s home in Chicago three years prior. He was released on bail shortly after the incident. He had boarded American Airlines Flight  293 in New York and a few minutes before landing he threatened the pilots saying he had a homemade bomb on board. He demanded the release of Serbian Orthodox priest, Stojilko Kajevich, who was still serving time in jail for the Chicago bombing. He allowed all 135 passengers and the majority of the crew to depart the plane before forcing the pilots back to New York. He demanded they have a fueled Boeing 707 waiting for them at Laguardia Airport . He had intentions of crashing it into the Yugoslav Community Party building in Belgrade, Yugoslavia. They landed in Ireland after his lawyer, who was also on board, urged him to give up this insane plan. He was arrested and sent back to Chicago where he was convicted and sentenced to 67 years in federal prison. imagesHe returned to Belgrade, Serbia after serving only 20 years of his sentence. The New York Times reported the following about his early years :

“The details of Mr. Kavaja’s life are difficult to verify and often clouded by his boasts. He had said he was born in 1933 in what is now Montenegro and grew up in the town of Pec. His family was separated by the Nazis during World War II and sent to prison camps in Albania. The first of the more than 17 people he killed, he said, was a wounded German soldier whom he flung down a well when he was 14.

He became an air force pilot, he said, while engaging in anti-Communist violence and acts of sabotage. After deserting, he was caught. He escaped from prison after four years and, according to an interview in The Paris Review in 2006, found his way to a United States military base in what was then West Germany.

There, Mr. Kavaja said, he became a mercenary for the C.I.A. He said that his biggest assignment was to assassinate Tito, the Communist leader of Yugoslavia, and that he had tried to do so four times without success, once while perched in a tree outside Camp David in Maryland during Tito’s visit with President Richard M. Nixon in 1971.”
Loved by some Serbians and hated by others, he died of a heart attack in November of 2008. Prior to his death, he also claimed that Osama Bin Laden stole his idea of crashing planes into buildings..

You can no longer say that I am spewing too many positive messages about Serbia. 🙂 We all have a few black marks in our history. 🙂


Posted by on March 1, 2013 in Through my eyes


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

5 responses to “Why Did a Serb Hijack Flight 293?

  1. Dario

    March 2, 2013 at 7:46 am

    In my eyes these are just idiots just like the croatian terrorist that murdered Yugoslav ambasadour in sweden.

    Look at USA, therese plenty of folks that dont like the goverment, they still support their troops and dont attack their own goverement because they dont like it.

    And the best thing about americans, they dont talk bullshit about their president when they are abroad, its an ethical code. We serbians throw bullshit on everything we dont like about our country, we are never satisfied with anything.

  2. jj

    March 5, 2013 at 7:22 am

    He was a Montenegrin, which explains some things. They mixed with Albanians and even some “Montenegrins” have the blood feud going, which is Albanian tradition. The border between Montenegro and Albania changed a few times and many Albanians were drawn into Montenegro. His last name is in fact Albanian and not Serb. On Wikipedia it is claimed the family changed the name to hide from the Turks, but maybe that is untrue and said to hide some Albanian roots in the family.

  3. Alban Gashi

    March 17, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    what about the black marks of genocide, Bosnia, Kosovo and pretty much whenever else they could lay their hands upon. You my friend have gone astray, I hope you get back to the path of truth and realism.

  4. Milena (@MilenaVlada)

    March 24, 2013 at 3:42 am

    I just came across your blog and youtube channel! And I am a huge fan already! I’ve decided this year that I need to spend some time in my birth city – Belgrade. After a couple of decades of living as what seems like a life of eternal expatriation, there is something that is pulling me back. Every time I went to Belgrade for a holiday I felt something quite special. And I think I would regret if I didn’t take an opportunity to explore the option of spending more time and actually living there.
    Your videos are fantastic and I think I spent a good part of my weekend watching them all! Look forward to reading and seeing more of your adventures in Serbia. 🙂

  5. Слободан човек

    April 3, 2013 at 3:25 pm

    Too bad he didn’t manage to kill Walter Weiss (Tito).


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