Seven is increasingly being considered unlucky among the Vietnamese community as the number has been linked to a string of air tragedies this year. Although seven can be thought of as lucky in Vietnam as it is associated with togetherness making it lucky for relationships, the online community has begun to express fear for the number. Online forums and social sites have been bombarded with people claiming it was too coincidental that the number has a common thread in the latest plane catastrophes including three occurring within seven days since July 17 in Ukraine, Taiwan, and Mali.
In the most recent aviation disaster, Air Algerie flight AH5017 crashed on July 24 with 118 people aboard dying on board the Boeing 717 jetliner. This follows the Indian air force helicopter crash where seven passengers were killed in the country’s northern region at 17:00 hours on Friday. Both Malaysian airline disasters have seven featuring in the flight numbers – MH370 and MH17 with both incidents occurring on Boeing 777 planes. While the MH17 flight, which was shot down in eastern Ukraine with 298 people on board, has the number seven appear another four times surrounding the atrocity. The doomed plane had been in use for exactly 17 years from 17/07/1997 to 17/07/2014 before it was shot en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur at 17:17 local time.
To add to the nation’s obsession of associating bad luck with the number, there were two air crashes that occurred within 10 days before MH17 was shot down which has seven related to both incidents. A Vietnamese military Mi-171 helicopter crashed on the outskirts of Hanoi killing a total of 19 soldiers at 7:53 local time on 07/07. Exactly seven days later, on 14/07, a military helicopter sank on the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh, killing five trainee soldiers on board. While a helicopter carrying emergency workers crashed in an urban area in the South Korean city of Gwangju, killing five firefighters and rescue personnel happened just three days later on 17/07. To complete the superstitious list, a TransAsia Airways ATR72 aircraft crashed killing all 58 passengers during a second landing attempt on the typhoon-battered island of Penghu in Taiwan on 23/07. This comes as many conspiracy theorists have claimed that The Illuminati carried out the MH17 attack as part of its longstanding masterplan to trigger a third world war and establish a New World Order – mainly because of the plane’s links to the number seven.