Middle East: Gold in the Ashes


When Israeli commandos raided Bei rut's International Airport last month, eight of Middle East Airlines' 13 planes went up in flames. Despite this destruction, MEA did not really lose much during the raid — and in some ways is better off than before. Though a brand-new Boeing 707 jet was destroyed, the line also got rid of some aging Comets and other planes that it had been trying unsuccessfully to sell.

Keep 'Em Flying. Most important, MEA had shrewdly insured its fleet with war-risk policies that covered the full "book value" of the aircraft. Since the line valued the planes...

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