Syrian villagers cheer downed jet
[CNN] Villagers in northern Syria picked pieces of a downed fighter jet from an olive grove Wednesday after rebel fighters claimed to have shot down three government aircraft in 24 hours.
Syrian Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir
Scourge of Qusayr...
's government has relied more on air power to battle the 21-month-old revolt against it, and witnesses said a cheer went up when the jet went down near Aleppo
...For centuries, Aleppo was Greater Syria's largest city and the Ottoman Empire's third, after Constantinople and Cairo. Although relatively close to Damascus in distance, Aleppans regard Damascenes as country cousins...
"We want to take this ... to show them in the other villages," a man who identified himself as Abu Dargham told CNN as he showed off two twisted chunks of metal. "Let them see what happened to these planes."
The downed plane's tail was largely intact, but the fuselage was in pieces and the type of aircraft was not immediately identifiable. Locals picked it apart, with some stuffing pieces into in bags as a tractor hauled away what appeared to be an engine. Cheering children were piled on the tractor as it drove away.
Witnesses said two fliers ejected from the plane before the crash. One was found unconscious and taken to a makeshift clinic, while villagers said they were still searching for the other late Wednesday.
Rebels posted two videos online to support their claims. One shows rebels carrying an unconscious man wearing what looks like a military pilot uniform, while another includes footage of medics bandaging a bloodied and moaning pilot.
Posted by: Fred