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Old 01-07-2010, 07:06 PM   #161
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I also don't think the issue is terribly significant. The individual obviously intended to down the aircraft,
In terms of terrorism and airline security, isn't it of critical significance? The press value of an explosion that kills 20 people is much lower than an explosion that causes an airplane filled with 300 people to crash, killing everyone.

If the current screening techniques are good enough to prevent the downing of a plane, then they are doing what they are intended to. A bomber could set off his explosion in the ticketing area and not even have to go through security.
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Old 01-07-2010, 07:15 PM   #162
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Originally Posted by TromboneAl View Post
In terms of terrorism and airline security, isn't it of critical significance?
I'm probably missing your point. As far as I can see, the ability of this particular device to destroy an aircraft could be significant only in terms of prosecuting this person (to prove both capability and intent). I don't think anybody believes this is the most dangerous device that could be brought aboard an aircraft given the present security posture, or that these guys have thought up some new technique, etc, that exploits a previously unidentified weakness in our defenses, etc. If any of that stuff were true, then the question would have value in terms of improving our procedures.
But again, I'm probably missing something.
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Old 01-07-2010, 08:59 PM   #163
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After the passengers of Flight 253 deplaned in Detroit, they were held in the baggage area for more than five hours until FBI agents interviewed them. They were not allowed to call their loved ones. They were given no food. When one of the pilots tried to use the bathroom before a bomb-sniffing dog had finished checking all the carry-on bags, an officer ordered him to sit down, according to passenger Alain Ghonda, who thought it odd. "He was the pilot. If he wanted to do anything, he could've crashed the plane." It was a metaphor for the rest of the country: Thank you for saving the day. Now go sit down.
I see your point, but there's another thing about it that disturbs me:
it's another example of our law-enforcement establishment reacting
to incidents where THEY failed to perform their job, by becoming
more arrogant and authoritarian. Although your point is well-taken,
it seems like it's reasonable to expect they could have managed this
one after the terrorist's own father came forward with a warning.

As far as searching the pilot, it's not quite clear he could have crashed
the plane. Thinking about the apparently-absurd practice of requiring
pilots to go through gate security, it occurred to me that a rogue pilot
would have to overcome the resistance of his colleague on the flight
deck, and a weapon would certainly facilitate this.

But to not allow anyone, pilot or not, to go to the bathroom for 5 hours,
is swinish, pure and simple.
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Old 01-07-2010, 10:16 PM   #164
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No potty for 5 hours? I'd do the 'out camping squat.'

The bomb doggies would have more than explosives to sniff on the floor by me!

At my age, how embarrassed would I be? Not too much

ta,
mew
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Old 01-08-2010, 09:58 AM   #165
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.............. Thinking about the apparently-absurd practice of requiring pilots to go through gate security, it occurred to me that a rogue pilot would have to overcome the resistance of his colleague on the flight deck, and a weapon would certainly facilitate this......................
.........or a good video game, on some airlines
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:31 AM   #166
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In terms of terrorism and airline security, isn't it of critical significance?
I guess my point was that the main thing that people are taking away from this episode seems to be "OMG, the screening failed, the government failed, and terrorists can blow up planes at will." But if the explosive that got through couldn't really have done much damage, then the system worked.
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Old 01-08-2010, 12:40 PM   #167
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I guess my point was that the main thing that people are taking away from this episode seems to be "OMG, the screening failed, the government failed, and terrorists can blow up planes at will." But if the explosive that got through couldn't really have done much damage, then the system worked.
As the video I posted above shows, a plane could be destroyed by more than person each bringing small quantities of explosives and then combining them after screening. In this failed attempt it may not have been enough, but if there had been 2 or 3 of them then things could be much worse. They don't even need to be on the same flight. Four of them get through security, all booked on different flights and three of them pass on their quantities to the one doing the bombing.

So, I thing it was a serious failure of the security services.
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Old 01-08-2010, 02:10 PM   #168
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To be trite: There's no perfect security system. Defensive security measures should be designed to discourage attacks, raise public confidence in the transportation system (so they'll fly--not a small consideration) and, in conjunction with other measures, identify attacks before they occur or reduce the damage from a successful attack.
So, if a particular defensive protocol causes attackers to have to have 3-4 people breach security, that may be significant. That's 3-4 more chances that one of the guys will be on a watch list, or will behave suspiciously enough to be questioned, maybe the bad stuff found and the whole plot thwarted, 3-4 chances that one of the required guys gets cold feet, etc. Conversely, if the measures cause the plotters to decide to use a smaller amount of explosive to reduce chances of getting caught, or to avoid use of more reliable electric or metal-containing detonation means, maybe "the system" should get a little credit in this case.

Again, it's all a cost/benefit question.
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Old 01-08-2010, 09:23 PM   #169
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Alan and I have the same perverse thinking patter.
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Old 01-08-2010, 10:55 PM   #170
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Originally Posted by RustyShackleford View Post
.

Thinking about the apparently-absurd practice of requiring
pilots to go through gate security, it occurred to me that a rogue pilot
would have to overcome the resistance of his colleague on the flight
deck, and a weapon would certainly facilitate this.
Every cockpit has a crash ax. A fellow pilot friend had a laminated picture of himself in uniform in the cockpit holding the crash ax. When hassled by the TSA about nail clippers or the like, he would pull out the picture indicating the absurdity of some of their demands.

Every pilot will tell you the two most important changes in security since 9-11 was the replacement of the cockpit doors and the newfound passenger awareness as aptly demonstrated by the Dutch passenger on the NWA flight.
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Old 01-09-2010, 08:53 PM   #171
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It is almost a guarantee that the next airline terrorist will not pay cash for his ticket, buy a one way ticket, and will have luggage! Any more things we are looking for that we would like to put on the news?
Hahaha, I just had a good laugh at the idea of terrorists saying, darn ( or some similar Farsi phrase) all we have to do is buy a ticket with a credit card, buy it roundtrip and carry lots of luggage.

So I can just see the TSA morons now changing the criteria to match. Therefor, I will now pay cash, buy one ways and travel with only a tee shirt and jeans. I should get waved right thru.
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Old 01-09-2010, 09:11 PM   #172
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:07 PM   #173
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A dumb question: Why are we so worried about security on planes and forgetting about cinemas, theaters, malls, stadiums, queues fior the buses, stations...etc etc?
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:13 PM   #174
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A dumb question: Why are we so worried about security on planes and forgetting about cinemas, theaters, malls, stadiums, queues fior the buses, stations...etc etc?
I think it is more disruptive. Bring down enough planes and people refuse to fly and commerce is seriously impacted. There have been relatively many bombs in trains, shopping malls etc across the world but it doesn't have the same impact on commerce or even have quite the same horror impact, imo.
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:16 PM   #175
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And, by the way,...How could your FBI use a photo of our Member of Parliament Gaspar LLamazares as a model to update the photo of Bin Laden? And -what is worse- how could this gaffe leak out and reach general knowledge?
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:27 PM   #176
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How could your FBI use a photo of our Member of Parliament Gaspar LLamazares as a model to update the photo of Bin Laden?
Photoshop? - plenty of tools available.
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:34 PM   #177
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I remember now in 2004 or 2005 visiting the US Federal Reserve Bank in Philadelphia. Though tourists were only allowed to go into the front lobby to view the exhibits, we had to pass through an enclosed booth, where we stayed for 10 to 15 secs. It is now obvious that that was an early full-body scanner that is now being installed for airports.
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:39 PM   #178
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Photoshop? - plenty of tools available.
I know , Alan, but what I meant was...Shouldn┤t the Feds have first ascertained who was the one on the model photo first? Not having been able to contain the leakage of their "model" ?┐ makes this caution seem more necessary.
I hope fellow posters don┤t take offence, but the Feds screwed up big time
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:48 PM   #179
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I know , Alan, but what I meant was...Shouldn┤t the Feds have first ascertained who was the one on the model photo first? Not having been able to contain the leakage of their "model" ?┐ makes this caution seem more necessary.
I hope fellow posters don┤t take offence, but the Feds screwed up big time
That's asking a bit much from the FBI I think. May be another round of sensitivity training is required in Washington? (or wherever the Feds HQ is).
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:55 PM   #180
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That's asking a bit much from the FBI I think. May be another round of sensitivity training is required in Washington? (or wherever the Feds HQ is).
Thank you for your understanding. HQs in Quantico. Read too many mysteries I think...
Things like these make people lose credibility in some iconic institutions.
Same can be said about the 8 CIA members killed in Afghanistan, I think.
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