Looking forward—as are many of us—to an airplane flight in the near future, some questions are occurring to us:
Exactly what in the Hell is going on, how did the guy get high explosives through security, and just how screwed up will air travel become?
There are only a few explanations for how our perp passed through security. He either got very lucky, he had less than three ounces of liquid, or he had prearranged with an accomplice to clear security. A further possibility is that he was specifically aware of some method to defeat the system, but I’ll only believe that when it is adequately explained, which, of course, it never would be.
But, there is another theory.
What if the Detroit incident, and others, including the various “disturbances” on flights were just that. What if they were purposely created to be nuisances? This sort of nuisance, though, would garner much attention. Thus, in terms of “bang for the buck,” assuming that just killing people is not the ultimate goal, nuisance incidents might be the new wrinkle.
As I have said before, if massive death and destruction really were the terrorists’ goal, there are thousands upon thousands of soft targets in this country, which could be exploited far easier than airports. But, by focusing on travel hubs, which are always run by governments, the host government must respond. It must look like it is “doing something.”
This costs lots of money, and creates massive inconvenience and economic loss, with little advance planning on the part of the perp.
And, the mere instituting of new security procedures means that the terrorists have won. After all, air travel has become a nightmare, compared to the free-wheeling days of yore, when people were only searched for weapons to be used for hijacking.
At some point, there will be of day of reckoning. Do we increase security to untold heights, or do we stop that escalation, and concentrate more on enforcement? Why, for example, was the Detroit perp not summarily executed? What possible benefit will a further investigation bring, and why does no one ever ask this?
I am reminded of the Bob Hanssen FBI spy case, where this execrable traitor’s life was spared on the basis that he had so much information to offer in the continuing investigation. In reality, the government got zip from him. There was nothing to learn! He was simply a bad guy, who did bad things, and deserved execution. There was no further meaning in that case, and there is no further meaning in the Detroit case.
At best, we may find an accomplice of two, but so what? We don’t do anything with this intel anyway. Need I remind you that the Virginia Tech killer had been known as a nutcase since he was in the third grade, but nothing was done with the information, mostly because of PC.
Civil libertarians will lecture us that we cannot “lower ourselves” to the level of the terrorists, and this is always offered as some sort of fundamental axiom, without any further justification.
I submit that there are far more pressing issues of freedom and quality of life at play, and they count for a whole lot more than the miserable existence of a would-be mass murderer. What good is it to have a highly reliable and relatively inexpensive system of air travel available, if so-called civil liberty concerns cause us to pervert the entire enterprise?
Perhaps some canny politician will figure out that he can rise to any office he desires, for as long as he wants it, if he simply campaigns on a platform of manning up.