ROMULUS, Mich. -- Passengers say an attempted terrorist attack on a Christmas Day flight to Detroit began with a pop and a puff of smoke.
Two law enforcement officials said the man claimed to have been acting on instructions from al-Qaida to detonate the device above U.S. soil and destroy the plane.
The commotion began as Northwest Airlines Flight 253, carrying 278 passengers and 11 crew members from Amsterdam, prepared to land in Detroit.
Travelers said they smelled smoke, saw a glow, and heard what sounded like firecrackers.
People on the plane say at least one person climbed over others and jumped on the man.
The White House said it believed it was an attempted act of terrorism and stricter security measures were quickly imposed on airline travel.