YouTube celebrity Adam Saleh, whose prank videos have garnered him a significant online following, has accused Delta Air Lines of kicking him off flight because he spoke Arabic to his mom on the phone before takeoff.
“I speak to my mom on the phone every flight,” Saleh told CBSN shortly after video he posted on Twitter showing his removal went viral. “She only speaks Arabic.”
According to Saleh, a woman in the seat in front of him turned around and told him he ought to speak English. Saleh said he told her he can speak whatever language he likes, and her husband responded by standing up and screaming at him.
It got him taken off the plane:
Then about 20 people allegedly said they were uncomfortable with Saleh and his companion. The pair were approached by the captain, who Saleh said “seemed ashamed and embarassed” when he asked them to leave the plane because of the other passengers’ complaints.
Saleh, who was entirely prepared to record the event, whined about his treatment. Delta Airlines has a public relations nightmare on its hands but this is an atrocious situation. It was a set-up- exactly what Saleh wanted. He has a history of pulling this crap.
The Muslim-American man who posted a video of himself being kicked off a Delta flight — allegedly for speaking to his mother in Arabic on the phone — also has a history of creating hoax videos purporting to detail anti-Muslim discrimination.
Back in 2014, Adam Saleh created a video called “RACIAL PROFILING EXPERIMENT!” that quickly racked up close to two million views on YouTube. In it, Saleh purported to get in a fight with a friend in front of a police officer in Western-style clothing, and then reenacted the same fight dressed in traditional Muslim garb. Police supposedly only intervened when the men looked like Muslims.
There were some obvious clues the video was suspect (“Why are you dressed like that?” the “police officer” shouts at one point). But a handful of liberal outlets fell for the video, and even the The Council on American-Islamic Relations passed it along thinking it was legitimate.
He didn’t come clean until The Smoking Gun nailed him, but he is still peddling the video as legitimate.
Only after The Smoking Gun ran an exposé calling the video an “obvious hoax” did Saleh add the following to the video description: “This video is a Dramatization of previous events that occurred with us in our tradition clothing while filming in NYC.” But today, that disclaimer has been removed and the video is still being passed off as legitimate.
Known for his pranks, Saleh was recently caught out after claiming he had hidden himself into a small suitcase and illegally flew in the baggage hold from Melbourne to Sydney.
However, the airline, Tigerair, was quick to address that the prank was in fact fake and in an open letter stated: “There are a few inconsistencies in your production that don’t line up with reality.”
Saleh has reportedly previously received £26,000 by the London Metropolitan Police as part of ‘counter-terrorist’ efforts, which involved the online sensation recording and performing a rap song titled ‘Survivor’ that was seen as purposely targeting the Muslim community.
His claim about speaking to his mother is also highly questionable:
Also people on plane disputing call to mom
— Soledad O'Brien (@soledadobrien) December 21, 2016
It’s pretty obvious what happened here. Saleh was looking for attention. He wanted to create an incident by inciting fear in passengers trapped in an aluminum tube with him. He succeeded. He engineered a situation that unfairly smeared an airline so he could benefit and he claims to be the victim. Idiot.N Delta should sue his a$$ off.
Now you know why there’s no peace in the Middle East.
Witnesses indicate that Saleh was shouting and being a general ass before he was removed from the flight.
Upon landing the crew was debriefed and multiple passenger statements collected. Based on the information collected to date, it appears the customers who were removed sought to disrupt the cabin with provocative behavior, including shouting. This type of conduct is not welcome on any Delta flight. While one, according to media reports, is a known prankster who was video recorded and encouraged by his traveling companion, what is paramount to Delta is the safety and comfort of our passengers and employees. It is clear these individuals sought to violate that priority.