Iran seizes another oil tanker in Strait of Hormuz as Gulf crisis erupts



Iran seizes another oil tanker in Strait of Hormuz as Gulf crisis erupts

IRAN is believed to have seized another oil tanker passing through the Strait of Hormuz.

Iran: ‘Startlingly dangerous moment’ in Middle East says expert



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The Israeli Broadcasting Corporation is reporting another ship has been seized in the gulf. Correspondent Amochai Stein said on Twitter: “Iran has seized another oil vessel in the Strait of Hormuz. Iran’s Revolutionary Guard arrests a vessel and 11 crew on ‘diesel smuggling charges’.”

It comes after Iran said accusations it had a role in the attack on Saudi oil installations were “unacceptable” and “baseless”, after a senior US official said the Islamic Republic was behind it.

“These allegations are condemned as unacceptable and entirely baseless,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said in remarks carried by state TV.

On Sunday, a senior US official told reporters that evidence from the attack, which hit the world’s biggest oil-processing facility on Saturday, indicated Iran was behind it, instead of the Yemeni Houthi group that had claimed responsibility.

Iran news

Iran is believed to have seized another oil tanker passing through the Strait of Hormuz (Image: REUTERS/GETTY)

Donald Trump waded into the row by issuing a fierce warning to Iran that America was “locked and loaded” in a chilling esponse to the oil field attacks.

The US President said on Twitter: “There is reason to believe that we know the culprit, are locked and loaded depending on verification, but are waiting to hear from the Kingdom as to who they believe was the cause of the attack, and under what terms we would proceed.”

He then said the US had ‘PLENTY OF OIL!’ despite the attacks on the fields.

READ MORE: Putin swoops on Iran chaos in crunch talks hours after Saudi strike

Last night the US issued satellite images an intelligence backing the claim that Iran was behind attacks on major Saudi oil facilities.

According to the New York Times, ABC and Reuters US officials pointed 19 points of impact from bombs or missiles and evidence indicated the attacks had come from a west-north-west direction – not Houthi-controlled territory in Yemen, which lies to the south-west of the Saudi oil facilities.

US officials suggested launch sites in the northern Gulf, Iran or Iraq were a more likely source of the missiles. And a close-up image of damaged tanks at the Abqaiq processing plant seemed to show impact points on the western side.

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Donald Trump said the US is “locked and loaded” (Image: GETTY)

Iran’s semi-official Students News agency ISNA reported Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have seized the the vessel for allegedly smuggling 250,000 litres of diesel fuel to the United Arab Emirates.

A reporter for ISNA said: “It was detained near Iran’s Greater Tunb island in the Persian Gulf.

“The crew have been handed over to legal authorities in the southern Hormozgan province.”

Donald Trump would take ‘aggressive’ stance on Iran says expert

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Mr Trump said on Monday the United States would help its allies.

Taking to Twitter he said: “We don’t need Middle Eastern Oil & Gas, & in fact have very few tankers there, but will help our Allies!”

The latest reported ship seizure by Iran follows a series of incidents involving shipping around the Gulf after US sanctions on Iranian oil exports took full effect in May.

Flight attendant union head fired for supporting Hong Kong protests on social media

Flight attendant union head fired for supporting Hong Kong protests on social media

Rebecca Sy. Image from Used with permission.

Airline Cathay Dragon, a subsidiary of Cathay Pacific, has fired Rebecca Sy, the chair of its flight attendant union, after she confirmed the posting of three posts on her Facebook timeline in support of Hong Kong protesters.

The taming of Cathay Pacific

The Cathay Pacific saga started on 9 August 2019 when the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) informed the airline that its staff members who had taken part in “illegal protests” and “violent actions” would be banned from China’s airspace beginning 10 August.

On 14 August, the airline fired two pilots and two ground personnel who had taken part in the recent protests. Two days later, Cathay Pacific CEO Rupert Hogg announced his resignation from the company.

On 20 August, the company reminded its employees that social media content expressing support for anti-government protests in Hong Kong could violate CAAC’s new policy. The warning not only covers public posts but also private conversations on Facebook, Telegram and other apps since these messages could be exposed through doxxing by pro-government trolls or China’s immigration checkpoints.

On the same day, lawmaker Jeremy Tam from the pro-democracy Civic Party told the press that he had resigned from Cathay Pacific to “protect the company from unreasonable attacks”. Tam had been a pilot for the air carrier for nearly two decades.

Cathay Dragon labor leader fired

Cathay Dragon fired Rebecca Sy, the chair of its Flight Attendant Union (FAU), after she confirmed that three screen captures of Facebook posts about the Hong Kong protests were from her account. Sy was still able to fly to Beijing and back to Hong Kong on 19 and 20 August. However, she was told not to work on a scheduled Hangzhou trip the following day.

FAU was one of the worker unions which participated in the 5 August general strike. Together with six other airline worker unions, the airport strike led to the cancellation of more than 200 flights. As head of the FAU, Sy has been vocal about her support of the protests.

The company said the decision to fire Sy was not related to her union activities but did not explain the reason behind her dismissal. In a statement issued on 23 August, it affirmed the company’s compliance with Chinese regulations:

We are a leading international airline with global operations and therefore we are required to comply with all applicable laws and regulations in the jurisdictions where we operate.

Sy was not the only victim of what has been described as politically-motivated dismissal. The Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions (HKCTU) said that at least 14 airline personnel had been sacked in relation to recent protests and eight of the cases were related with their online speech. The union coalition plans to stage a protest outside Cathay Pacific’s office building on 26 August.

‘White terror’

Sy described the crackdown on free speech as ‘white terror’:

This is not just about me. This is about the whole industry. This is about Hong Kong. When will this white terror end?

It is unclear how Cathay Pacific obtained the screen captures of Sy’s Facebook messages. However, in the past few weeks, Chinese immigration has started inspecting the mobile phones of travelers for images and chats related to Hong Kong protests at border checkpoints. When suspicious content is identified, the travelers would be questioned and interrogated. Although majority of the questioned travelers were not detained or arrested upon checking, it is likely that the Chinese government could use the data for other purposes.

The pressure exerted by Beijing authorities on Cathay Pacific is seen by some analysts as a warning intended for other multinational companies in Hong Kong that they have to be in compliance with China’s Hong Kong policy or else they risk being sidelined from the Chinese market.

In addition to Cathay Pacific, a number of international accounting firms have issued a warning to their personnel about social media posts and conversations supporting the protests.

Over the years, China has cultivated close relations with local business leaders by appointing them as representatives of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and giving them extra voting rights in the functional election of the legislative council and the election committee of the city’s Chief Executive.

However, the participation of professional groups and labor unions in the protests has shown how Beijing can also export other coercive measures to force the business sector to support its political goals by disciplining their workforce.

But even if the international firms do not control the political behavior of their employees, Beijing could mobilize party affiliated media outlets and online patriots to put political pressure, or to submit ‘evidence’ to corporations and force them into taking disciplinary action against their ‘errant’ employees.

If such trend continues, there are fears that Hong Kong could face a brain drain by forcing skilled professionals to leave and settle in other places where there is freedom of expression.

To read more about the anti-extradition protests in Hong Kong, visit Global Voices’ special coverage page.

5 Forgotten Airlines Everyone Used to Love



5 Forgotten Airlines Everyone Used to Love

Today, everyone looks for the best airline with the most reasonable price. Searches start with the main companies: United Airlines, Singapore Airlines and Lufthansa, among others. What travelers may not know, however, is that many of these popular airlines are descendants of several great airlines that came before. Here are five forgotten airlines everyone used to love.

Pan American World Airways (Pan Am)


Pan American World Airways (Pan Am, as it is more commonly known) is not just the title of a fictional television series starring Christina Ricci. Pan Am is one of the most adored airlines of all time. Founded in 1927, it was a pioneer in the aviation industry, bringing popularity to jumbo jets and other aircrafts when no one else in the industry was really using them yet. It was also the first airline to begin using computerized systems for flight booking and reservation management. This airline was so beloved that, after it closed up shop in 1991, the Pan Am Historical Foundation was created, and it’s entirely devoted to archiving news about Pan Am and its historical significance.

Trans World Airlines (TWA)

Credit: Markus Schmal/

Trans World Airlines (TWA) was born to carry mail in 1920’s. Under the funding of billionaire aviator Howard Hughes, which started in 1939, the airline quickly became much more than that. Deemed “the airline run by flyers,” it released sleek new airplanes (this time for carrying people, not just mail), and was one of the first airlines to receive a jumbo jet. Unfortunately, though, according to USA Today, the airline began to crumble in the ’70’s, and was forced to file for bankruptcy in the ’90’s. In 2001, it was bought out by American Airlines.

Eastern Air Lines

Credit: Markus Mainka/

Like Pan Am, Eastern Air Lines was founded in 1927. It was one of the Big Four Airlines in the 1930s, and was led by a World War I flying ace named Eddie Rickenbacker. For much of its run, it was the undisputed leader in flights between New York and Florida, so much so that it was said to hold a monopoly over this area. As time went on, though, more and more problems began to plague the airline, such as debt and labor disputes, until it went out of business in 1991. The airline was so beloved, though, that the 2000s saw many attempts to bring it back to life. The latest attempt was short lived. According to Airways Mag, the new Eastern Air Lines was forced to give up its Air Operator’s Certificate less than two years after restarting.

Cimber Air

Credit: InsectWorld/

Created in 1950, this Danish airline was extremely successful and was renowned for its great service. It has been linked with several great airlines that are still in business today, such as Lufthansa and Scandinavian Airlines. In 2008, it was large and powerful enough to absorb parts of a bankrupt airline called Sterling Airlines, but this proved to be its downfall. Just four years later it, too, had to file for bankruptcy, and the run was effectively over. There was an attempt by Scandinavian Airlines to get it going again according to The Local, but this did not pan out either.

Gandalf Airlines

Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Gandalf Airlines is perhaps one of the funnest airlines to have been lost to time. This Italian airline, operated just outside of Milan, was created by Luciano Di Fazio, who just so happened to be a huge J.R.R. Tolkien fan. He so loved The Lord of the Rings that the Eye of Sauron was emblazoned on the seat covers on every flight, and the theme from The Hobbit was played in every cabin. Unfortunately, though, this airline was short-lived. It opened in 1998, but according to, it saw a huge decrease in the cities it served starting in 2003, and went bankrupt by 2004. Perhaps one day Frodo can go on a quest to bring it back.

China: Because of Super Typhoon Hundreds of Cancellations and Delays At City Airports



Mass cancellations and delays at city airports

Mass cancellations and delays at city airports

Ti Gong

China Eastern staff make sure an aircraft berthed at the Hongqiao airport is secure.

An orange typhoon alert was issued by Shanghai Meteorological Bureau at 10:10pm on Friday, while a yellow rainstorm alert remained.

Lekima, the ninth typhoon this year, was about 360 kilometers south of Shanghai at 9pm, the bureau said.

Over 500 flights were canceled at Shanghai’s two airports on Friday and more will follow because typhoon Lekima is likely to make landfall in neighboring Zhejiang Province on Saturday morning.

Hongqiao International Airport canceled 320 flights as of 9pm, while the Pudong airport canceled 200, according to the Shanghai Airport Authority. Mass flight cancellations and delays are expected to affect both airports on Saturday.

The air traffic controller has issued an alert for flight delays at both airports and expects their takeoff and landing capacity to be reduced by half to midnight on Saturday.

Shanghai-based China Eastern Airlines canceled 60 flights at Hongqiao and 97 at Pudong on Friday. Updated flight information will be available on the carrier’s website, microblog and app.

The airline has stabilized all its vehicles at the city’s airports while aircraft at berth overnight have been secured to the tarmac with cables. More airport service and crew members have been dispatched to serve stranded passengers at both airports.

Juneyao Airlines announced the cancellation of all takeoffs and landings in Shanghai on Saturday except for an international flight to Helsinki. Juneyao plans to cancel 285 flights between Friday and Sunday due to the typhoon.

Spring Airlines cancelled over 50 flights to and from both city airports on Friday. Four flights due to land at Pudong on Saturday — from Urumqi in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, Yangon in Myanmar, Tokyo and Sabah in Malaysia — have been cancelled.

China Southern cancelled 57 flights due to takeoff or landing at Pudong and 16 at Hongqiao on Friday and Saturday, while Air China has cancelled over 40 domestic and international flights in Shanghai.

Mass cancellations and delays at city airports

Ti Gong

China Eastern staff stabilize an aircraft being berthed at Hongqiao airport as strong winds and rain hit the area on Friday.

Mass cancellations and delays at city airports

Ti Gong

A China Southern Airlines aircraft at Pudong airport

Mass cancellations and delays at city airports

Ti Gong

Passengers check their flights at a ticket counter at Pudong.

Mass cancellations and delays at city airports

Ti Gong

An engineer braves the weather to inspect an aircraft being berthed at Hongqiao on Friday.

Marine Corps’ first female F-35 pilot makes history



Marine Corps’ first female F-35 pilot makes history


Capt. Anneliese Satz conducts pre-flight checks prior to a training flight aboard Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, March 11. Satz graduated the F-35B Lighting II Pilot Training Program June and will be assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121 in Iwakuni, Japan.

(U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Ashley Phillips)

The Marine Corps’ first female F-35 pilot will soon join her squadron in Japan, Corps officials have announced.

Capt. Anneliese Satz, 29 completed her F-35B training in June, according to a Marine Corps press release, which came out the day after a news story about a female Marine who will soon begin training to fly the F-35C.

Satz held a commercial license to fly a Robinson R44 helicopter before joining the Marine Corps and has spent the past four years learning how to fly the F-35B, which will eventually replace the Marine Corps’ fleet of AV-8B II Harriers and other aircraft.

After arriving at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, South Carolina in July 2018, she flew the F-35B for the first time that October.

“The first flight in an F-35 is by yourself,” Satz said in the news release. “The syllabus thoroughly prepares you for that first time you take off and for every flight after that, it’s an exhilarating experience.”

Satz is now headed to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121 in Iwakuni, Japan.

“I’m very grateful for the instructors, the maintainers, and countless others at [Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 501] who lent me their expertise and time while I was going through the syllabus,” Satz said.

“This is a phenomenal program made possible by all of their hard work. I am thankful to have had the opportunity to learn from all of them. I am incredibly excited to get to VMFA-121 and look forward to the opportunity to serve in the Fleet Marine Forces.”

Saudi Arabia Bolsters Coordination with Horn of Africa to Secure Red Sea



Saudi Arabia Bolsters Coordination with Horn of Africa to Secure Red Sea

Thursday, 8 August, 2019 – 09:45
Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki receives Prince Fahd bin Turki bin Abdulaziz, commander of the Saudi-led coalition forces, in Asmara. (SPA)
Riyadh – Fatehelrahman Yousif
Lieutenant General Prince Fahd bin Turki bin Abdulaziz, commander of the Saudi-led coalition forces, discussed Tuesday with Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki the South Red Sea security and the fight against terrorism and smuggling in all its forms.

A number of issues of common concern were discussed during the Asmara meeting, especially threats against international shipping lanes, reported the Saudi Press Agency (SPA).

The meeting was held less than a year after the Kingdom announced the launch of a regional bloc of seven Arab and African countries bordering the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. It includes Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen, Sudan, Djibouti, Somalia and Jordan.

The bloc aims at bolstering regional security and stability and securing navigation and international trade. It was established following a military exercise in Jeddah earlier this year.

“This meeting and the Saudi-Eritrean talks stem from Riyadh’s acknowledgment of the need to secure the Red Sea navigation and activate the bloc,” expert in Iranian affairs Dr. Mohammed al-Salmi told Asharq al-Awsat.

The Saudi approach stems from the potential it possesses to lead these countries and create a regional deterrent bloc that can secure navigation in the Red Sea and protect it from piracy and terrorist threats, he stressed.

Prince Fahd’s visit is an extension of this Saudi-led approach, he added, expecting a summit to be held by countries bordering the Red Sea to maximize joint action.

Salmi explained that the security of the Red Sea and international waterways is a global security and strategic joint task, highlighting the great political, security and military importance of the Red Sea to Saudi Arabia.

China Eastern releases electronic baggage tag



China Eastern releases electronic baggage tag

China Eastern releases electronic baggage tag

Ti Gong

China Eastern Airlines releases a permanent electronic luggage tag at Hongqiao airport on Tuesday.

China Eastern Airlines released a permanent electronic luggage tag at Hongqiao airport on Tuesday that allows travelers to check-in and trace luggage using their mobile phones.

The carrier plans to release the first batch of 4,000 tags to its passengers on flights between Shanghai and Beijing.

The tag has a screen to show the passenger and flight information after coming in contact with a passenger’s electronic tags

smartphone. A chip embedded in the tag lets passengers follow the progress of their luggage on the phone.

“The new tag is convenient and I no longer need to remove the traditional paper tags often stuck tightly on the luggage,” said Li Rui who was one of the first travelers with an electronic tag on a Shanghai-Beijing flight during a trial period.

“It will be better if other carriers can also recognize the tag,” he added.

Some passengers expressed concern. “What if the tag goes missing during transportation,” said a passenger from Beijing surnamed Liu. “The traditional paper tag is difficult to remove but also hard to get lost,” she added.

“It will be better if other carriers can also recognize the tag,” said Li Rui who was among the first batch of travelers experienced the electronic tag on a Shanghai-Beijing flight.

China Eastern platinum card holders can apply for the electronic tag at ticket counters. Other passengers can apply through the airline’s app from Thursday. Frequent travelers between Shanghai and Beijing will have priority.

The service will be expanded to other flights and mainly the hub airports in the future, said Shen Chenyi, general manager of the airline’s luggage control center.

The airline also plans to make bespoke luggage tags for passengers, he added.

The electronic tags were in use during the first test run at Beijing’s new mega airport on July 20 as the sprawling air hub gears up for its opening in September. China Eastern, Shanghai Airlines and China United Airlines operated 12 simulated flights and opened 16 check-in counters at the Daxing International Airport for the exercise.

Previously, China Southern also announced the release of its electronic luggage tags to replace traditional paper tags.

China Eastern releases electronic baggage tag

Ti Gong

The tag, which doesn’t have a battery, has a screen showing passenger and flight information after it is in contact with a passenger’s smartphone.

China Eastern releases electronic baggage tag

Ti Gong

A China Eastern passenger shows his electronic luggage tag at Hongqiao airport on Tuesday.

India: 17 killed as Pakistani military plane on training flight crashes in Rawalpindi



17 killed as Pakistani military plane on training flight crashes in Rawalpindi

There was no immediate word on the cause of the crash or the type of aircraft involved.

WORLD Updated: Jul 30, 2019 08:09 IST


Reuters, Islamabad
Pakistan army officials examine the site of a plane crash in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Tuesday, July 30, 2019.
Pakistan army officials examine the site of a plane crash in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Tuesday, July 30, 2019.(AP photo)

A Pakistani military aircraft on a training flight crashed in a built-up area in the garrison city of Rawalpindi early on Tuesday, killing all five crew members and 12 civilians, an army statement said.

Another 12 civilians were injured in the crash, which set off a fire. Rawalpindi is close to the capital, Islamabad, and is where the headquarters of the Pakistan army is based.

The website of newspaper The News carried footage showing a building engulfed in flames. There was no immediate word on the cause of the crash or the type of aircraft involved.

Military and civilian rescue teams were at the scene and extinguished the fire and took the injured to hospital, the statement from the army’s communications wing said.

First Published: Jul 30, 2019 07:12 IST

4 Oldest Operating Airports in the World



4 Oldest Operating Airports in the World

More than 100 years have passed since Orville and Wilbur Wright took to the air in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. That fateful day in 1903 opened the skies to mankind in ways the Wrights likely never thought possible, and the evolution of aviation continues to inspire humans to fly ever higher.

It’s easy to look back and recognize just how far aircraft technology has advanced since December 17, 1903. What might surprise you is that the first airports still in operation today were established only a handful of years after that short flight in Kitty Hawk. Here’s a quick flyby of four of the oldest airports in the world that are still operating today.

College Park Airport

Credit: Pubdog / Public domain

College Park, Maryland

The “historic general aviation gateway to the Nation’s Capital,” College Park Airport in Maryland is the world’s oldest continually operating airport. It was established in 1909 to serve as the military demonstration site for the Wright Brothers while Wilbur instructed a pair of military officers in flying the government’s first airplane.

You would expect College Park Airport, being the oldest airport in the world, to serve as home base for a number of aviation achievements, and it does not disappoint. In addition to being the world’s oldest airport, College Park’s claims to fame also include:

  • The first mile-high flight by a powered airplane
  • The first women to fly in a powered aircraft
  • The first controlled helicopter flight
  • Home of the first military aviation school
  • The first radio navigational aids (paving the way for modern landing systems)

Today, College Park Airport spreads across 70 acres, utilizes a single runway, and houses the College Park Aviation Museum.

Ljungbyhed Airport

Credit: kimson /

Ljungbyhed, Sweden

Ljungbyhed Airport is located in Southern Sweden and was founded in 1910. Today, the airport is used primarily as a hub for private jets, and it sees more than 90,000 flight takeoffs and landings over the year, making it one of the busiest airports in Sweden.

The site of the Ljungbyhed Airport has long been associated with the Swedish military and has been used for military purposes dating as far back as the mid-1600s.

Hamburg Airport

Credit: horstgerlach / iStock

Hamburg, Germany

Hamburg Airport was founded the year after the Ljungbyhed Airport, but the Hamburg Airport is technically the second-oldest operating commercial passenger airport in the world (since Ljungbyhed mostly serves private jets). As the second oldest commercial airport in the world, it’s no surprise that the Hamburg Airport is also the oldest airport in Germany.

Hangars at Hamburg Airport were utilized during World War I, destroyed by fire in 1916, and used again as a staging area during the Berlin Airlift during the Cold War. The airport serves as a major airline hub for travel into and out of Germany. More than 17.5 million passengers moved through in 2017 according to Hamburg Airport’s annual report.

Shoreham Airport

Credit: Nickos / iStock

Lancing, England

Shoreham Airport (also known as Brighton City Airport) in Lancing, South Essex, England — much like Ljungbyhend Airport — sees much more traffic than its commercial passenger counterparts around the world. Today, Shoreham Airport is used by privately owned light aircraft and helicopter operators, for sight-seeing and pleasure flights, and by a number of pilots and flight schools offering flying lessons.

Shoreham Airport was founded in 1911 and served as a base for the first British aircraft during World War I and again for British aircraft during World War II.

From Point A to Point Z

Credit: Orbon Alija / iStock

Just imagine the number of airports spread across the globe now if this list only covers the oldest four. Airports around the world accommodated more than 8 billion passengers in 2018, according to the annual World Airport Traffic Report released by the Airports Council International.

More than 100 years of aviation improvements and commercial airport history have spread crossed the globe to connect the world. Daily flights navigate nationally and internationally to carry passengers disembarking for business and pleasure, to ship cargo from company to company, and to keep the wheels of the world churning.

5 Airports that Provide the Most Connecting Flights



5 Airports that Provide the Most Connecting Flights

The world grows ever smaller. You could log on, book a flight, and hop an airplane across the world within hours if you live anywhere near these major international hubs for air travel.

5. Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ)

Credit: Nathan Bai /

In fifth place, Toronto Pearson International Airport in Canada is one of the most connected airports in the world. The Air Canada hub is Canada’s busiest metropolitan center and also the country’s busiest airport. In addition to its plentiful international connections, Toronto Pearson also offers non-stop domestic flights to all major Canadian cities. It takes its name from Lester B. Pearson, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Prime Minister of Canada.

4. Amsterdam Airport Schiphol (AMS)

Credit: Lya_Cattel / iStock

AMS of the Netherlands is the fourth most connected airport in the world and the third busiest in Europe. The airport serves 104 different airlines, and in 2016 it was awarded a royal seal from King Willem Alexander of the Netherlands. The origins of its name are cryptic with one of the most popular folk tales being that the nearby lake was the site of several shipwrecks, earning it the title of ship grave, or “schip” “hol.” Its design is based on a single-terminal concept with one large terminal split into three departure halls.

3. Frankfurt Airport (FRA)

Credit: mbbirdy / iStock

Nearly tied with O’Hare, Frankfurt Airport in Germany is the third most internationally connected airport in the world. The Lufthansa main hub boasts twin passenger terminals and four runways with a total capacity estimated at 65 million passengers per year. The airport was strategically developed near the Frankfurter Kreuz Autobahn intersection as it was one of the busiest motorways in Europe at the time of its construction.

Unlike the two airports higher on this list, FRA was initially opened for commercial use in 1936, before the start of World War II and its conversion to a military base. Before its conversion, it had gotten off to rough start, as it once served as the base of the Hindenburg. After restrictions for German air travelers were relived in 1951, the airport began its development into the logistic hub that it is today.

2. O’Hare International Airport (ORD)

Credit: KIVILCIM PINAR / iStock

In close second, Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport takes the cake for second-most-connected. Like the number-one entry on this list, the “busiest square mile in the world” started out servicing military transports in World War II before it was converted for civilian use. It takes its name after Medal of Honor recipient Edward “Butch” O’Hare, the Navy’s first flying ace.

Up until 1998, O’Hare was in fact the busiest airport in the world, whereas it now ranks at sixth busiest. Its ambitious beginnings made it home to several innovations in civilian air travel of the time, including direct highway access as well as the use of concourses, jet bridges, and underground refueling systems. In recent times, connecting flights across distant terminals in the expansive airport had become so common as to warrant recent renovations in the transit system with new terminal buses to transport passengers between flights.

1. Heathrow Airport (LHR)

Credit: BrasilNut1 / iStock

If you’ve done any extensive amount of international travel, the odds are that you wound up at Heathrow at some point. London’s main international airport has a reputation as the world’s most internationally connected airport. As of 2018, Heathrow offered 66,000 different international connections with no more than a six-hour wait at its busiest travel times. In 2015, Heathrow was the busiest airport in Europe, 14 percent ahead of Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport and 22 percent Istanbul Ataturk Airport in passenger traffic.

During its early years, Heathrow was a small air field in a rural hamlet. Development in earnest began in 1944 for long-distance military aircraft travel, but the war ended before its construction was completed, and its development was continued instead as a civil airport.

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