That's certainly the official story. I may have vaguely heard of this plane crash, but since it was brought up, I figured I'd look into it a little bit. I found a link from a site that has consistently provided me with information that I've found to be credible, whatreallyhappened.com. Here's an excerpt from their page on the crash:
In 1996 TWA Flight 800 was shot down south of Long Island.The government of the United States, despite the embarrassment of having been caught in court rigging lab tests and lying in its reports, still officially attributes the disaster to a spark in the center fuel tank, while government spokespeople insist that the witnesses who saw a missile hit the jumbo jet are all drunks.
On the evening of July 17th, 1996, shortly after the sun had set, but while the sky was still light, a Boeing 747-131 jetliner, TWA's flight 800, was taking off from JFK airport on its way to Paris, France. On board were 230 people. Approximately 11 minutes into the flight, the 747 was flying at an altitude of 13,700 MSL, or 13,700 feet above sea level. Normally higher at 11 minutes, flight 800 had delayed climbing to make room for another jetliner descending into Rhode Island. The plane was over the Atlantic ocean south of Long Island, New York.
Just as flight 800 received clearance to initiate a climb to cruise altitude, the plane exploded without any warning. Thousands of pounds of kerosene, dumped from the center and wing tanks, vaporized and ignited, creating a fireball seen all along the coastline of Long Island. Under the orange glow of the fireball, sections of the 747 tumbled into the ocean. So completely had the plane broken up that weather radar confused the expanding bubble of debris for a cloud.
The First Hints
Almost at once, eyewitnesses were being interviewed on radio and TV who reported that something strange had preceded the explosion of the 747. Witnesses, many on the ground, reported seeing a bright object "streaking" towards the 747. The object in question turned in midair as it closed on the jumbo jet. Witnesses reported horizontal travel, as well as vertical. The broad geographical range covered by the eyewitnesses eliminates foreground/background confusion. To be seen as being near the 747 from so many different directions, the bright object had to actually be in the immediate vicinity of the 747.
Other pilots in the air reported seeing a bright light near the jumbo jet before it exploded.
In the days following the disaster, many industry executivesprivately concluded that TWA 800 had been shot down..
The article goes on, looks pretty good.