Northwest Airlines was very keen to win the Seattle to Beijing route when it was first mooted. Back then there was competition from even Maxjet. Fast forward to today and Hainan Airways has been flying the route for about 6 months and getting reasonable loads on a 3 to 4 flights a day (A330) rotation set.
Now NW wants to delay its flight but to keep the route.
As I have said many times before the rule should be use it or lose it. (I think that is exactly what the legislation says). But NW's new parent having filed for several new routes that it doesn't want to fly in 2009 - is trying to have its cake and eat it too.
You be the judge