Humiliating airport security measures for us, free boarding for wanted terrorists

Ann Coulter in her column last week on the Times Square would-be bomber brings out the absurdity of it all:

Even after the NYPD de-wired the smoking car bomb, produced enough information to identify the bomb-maker, and handed it all to federal law enforcement authorities tied up in a bow, the federal government’s crack “no-fly” list failed to stop Shahzad from boarding a plane to Dubai.

To be fair, at Emirates Airlines, being on a “no-fly” list makes you eligible for pre-boarding.

Perhaps the Department of Homeland Security should consider creating a “Really, REALLY No-Fly” list.

Contrary to the wild excuses being made for the federal government on all the TV networks Monday night, it’s now clear that this was not a wily plan of federal investigators to allow Shahzad to board the plane in order to nab his co-conspirators. It was a flub that nearly allowed Shahzad to escape.

Meanwhile, on that same Monday at JFK airport, approximately 100,000 passengers took off their shoes, coats, belts and sunglasses for airport security.

But the “highly trained federal force” The New York Times promised us on Oct. 28, 2001, when the paper demanded that airport security be federalized, failed to stop the only guy they needed to stop at JFK last Monday—the one who planted a bomb in the middle of Times Square days earlier.

So why were 100,000 other passengers harassed and annoyed by the TSA?

The federal government didn’t stop the diaper bomber from nearly detonating a bomb over Detroit. It didn’t stop a guy on the “No Fly” list from boarding a plane and coming minutes away from getting out of the country.

If our only defense to terrorism is counting on alert civilians, how about not bothering them before they board airplanes, instead of harassing them with useless airport “security” procedures?

Both of the attempted bombers who sailed through airport security, I note, were young males of the Islamic faith. I wonder if we could develop a security plan based on that information?

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Daniel S. writes:

Thank you for linking to the article by Ann Coulter on the failed Times Square jihadist. I think the most important part of her article comes at the end:

Our “Europeans Need Not Apply” immigration policies were absurd enough before 9/11. But after 19 foreign-born Muslims, legally admitted to the U.S., murdered 3,000 Americans in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania in a single day, couldn’t we tighten up our admission policies toward people from countries still performing stonings and clitorectomies?

Coulter has taken the first steps toward a rational immigration restriction position, something that few well known conservative can claim. She asks the right questions here. Despite her assorted faults, she is a smart woman and I do hope that she takes this line of questioning further in the future.

LA replies:

Agreed that almost no establishment conservatives would say even the little that she says here: “couldn’t we tighten up our admission policies toward people from countries still performing stonings and clitorectomies?” Realistically, however, I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for her to evolve. In her twelve year career as a conservative star she’s written precisely one column on the negative cultural and other effects of legal immigration, with the insulting and unserious title, “Roach Motel.” Coulter is not into taking positions on difficult issues. She’s into having fun, which she gets by provoking liberals.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at May 11, 2010 01:25 PM | Send

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