America’s airports vulnerable
Last week ABC News confirmed that Transportation Security Administration (TSA) screeners failed 67 out of 70 tests —- or 96 percent —- carried out by special Department of Homeland Security investigators known as “red teams.” The vulnerabilities tests were conducted as part of a DHS Inspector General review. The acting head of the agency was reassigned after the deplorable findings were made public.
As an example of the failures, an undercover agent with a fake bomb strapped to his back set off a magnetometer —- but the screener still neglected to find it. The watchdog report revealed undercover agents were able to sneak fake explosives and banned weapons through checkpoints as part of an investigation that revealed a massive, system-wide security failure at America’s airports.
Following that alarming disclosure, Fox News reports that the TSA failed to flag 73 airport workers “linked to terrorism.” According to TSA data, the people in question were “working for major airlines, airport venders and other employers.”
The agency acknowledged that individuals in these categories “represented a potential transportation security threat,” according to the report.
At a White House briefing following the disclosures, press secretary Josh Earnest said President Obama continues to believe that Americans should feel confident traveling in airports across the country.
Which raised the question, when was the last time anyone in the Obama family traveled in a commercial airliner?
A search of the Inspector General’s reports turned up nothing relating to these mammoth security breaches. However we did find one relating to an investigation of a U.S. Marshal based on an anonymous letter alleging the Marshal had engaged in intimate personal relationships with subordinate employees in violation of U.S. Marshals Service policy.
Which set of circumstances most imperil the security of American travelers —- deserving of information regarding their safety rather than gossipy innuendo?