It's increasingly apparent that we will never know for sure what happened to cause the loss of Air France Flight 447 and those 228 people who died, unless international search teams, including those from France and Brazil, somehow pull off the impossible and retrieve the black box that is presumably lying three or four miles beneath the Atlantic.
But Patrick Smith, the accomplished aviation writer for Salon, has a very good possible scenario in his weekly "Ask the Pilot" column. Smith is a pilot who flies 767s internationally, including on routes from Brazil. He's an expert, and he also can write. I highly recommend his post this week. It's here.