From Slate this morning:
Update, March 15, 9:10 a.m.: When the flight first disappeared from air traffic controllers’ radar a week ago, the default assumption was that the plane had crashed. Now it seems unlikely that a plot as ingeniously planned and carefully executed as this one would not also have included plans for safe arrival at some ultimate destination. As I reported earlier, the 777 is capable of landing on small airstrips and on relatively unimproved surfaces, such as packed dirt and dry lake beds. In such a scenario, the odds are good that, unless they were murdered, the passengers remain alive. The motives and intentions of whoever took MH370 remain as murky as ever, but possibilities include a hostage scenario, the repurposing of the aircraft as an enormous flying bomb, or some combination of these and other outcomes.