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The wreckage of Itavia flight IH870 on display in the Museum for the Memory of Ustica in Bologna, Italy. (Photo: I, Ghedolo / CC BY-SA (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/))

The ‘Ustica Massacre:’ The 40-Year-Old Aviation Mystery

Almost exactly 40 years ago, in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, civil aviation experienced what would become one of the most mysterious accidents of its history. On June 27, 1980, Itavia flight IH 870, operated by the private Italian carrier, departing from Guglielmo Marconi Airport in Bologna, Italy, bound for Punta Raisi Airport in Palermo, Sicily, broke up in mid-air at approximately 25,000 feet as it was about to start its descent towards its destination. The aircraft, I-TIGI, a…