Graduation Date

Fall 12-13-2020

Grading Professor

Alia Malek (

Subject Concentration


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


In The Air is an investigative podcast series about the 1998 Cable Car Disaster in Cavalese, Italy.

On February 3, 1998 disaster struck the Alpe Cermis ski resort in Cavalese, Italy when four American pilots flew their jet through the resort during a low-altitude training mission. The wing of their jet severed a suspension cable that was holding a gondola car aloft. When the cable snapped, the car plummeted to the earth with 20 passengers inside. Only the pilots survived.

The disaster quickly devolved into an international fiasco and has been regarded by some as one of the most gruesome peacetime disasters in U.S. military history. The pilots were court-martialed by the United States Marine Corps and charged with 20 counts of involuntary manslaughter, before ultimately being acquitted. Twenty-three years later and still no one has been held accountable.

In The Air takes a deep dive into this tragedy and its fallout to uncover what it can tell us about how to hold the world’s most powerful military accountable for its actions, and those hurt most by the lack of accountability.

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