The attack on Northwest Flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas day really hit home for me. Not only is it the airline that I worked for as a pilot for twenty years, but because it also shows us that The Clueless Always Are.
As an airline Captain and aviation security consultant with a lifetime of military and public service, I know that this attempt was preventable. Not by the hordes of TSA screeners we see in our terminals, but by a few other simple things. The first is to positively identify every person who is boarding a commercial airliner and then stopping those who have been identified as suspicious or connected to groups like Al-Qaida. Sufficient technology exists to effectively deal with that part of the problem, yet our Clueless Congress and by extension, the Transportation Security Administration, have ignored it. They have been more interested in having thousands of ineffective screeners placed around our nation’s airports for show. The technology exists to properly screen for explosive and threat items. It’s time we use it and not waste money on unnecessary staff, which would be the second simple change.
As I write this, Janet Napolitno, the Clueless head of the Department of Homeland Security is making the rounds of the Sunday morning talk shows, stating “the system worked”. Only a total idiot could believe that. It’s time for her to be fired or resign. We need those TSA screeners to be trained properly to detect signs of dangerous intent and have them utilize effective screening tools and technology and to identify our enemies and their intentions before they board an airliner. We need our Clueless Congress to stop the State Department from issuing visas to known or suspected terrorists allowing them to enter the United States in the first place. The British had already barred the bomber in this case from entering the UK, but yet our Clueless State Department did not revoke his visa.
The third part of this solution is to keep the military pressure on our enemies. It’s hard to plan any kind of a terrorist operation when you’re running for your life. The previous Administration kept the pressure on Al-Qaida all over the world, and we need to restart those efforts. Our current Administration and our Clueless Congress seem more interested in changing the war on terror into a law enforcement problem, instead of meeting this threat for what is, a WAR.
It’s a war and in a war, you need to kill the enemy to win. But let’s not forget, The Clueless Always Are…and thank God that a few brave Northwest Airlines passengers, like on United Airlines Flight 93 on 9-11-01, stepped up to the plate to defend themselves and their fellow flyers, while our government failed us again.
Written by Dave Funk
Photo by Dave Davidson
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