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Moscow Style Attack Possible in United States

I never have written down this nightmare scenario before because who would want to give ideas to terrorists? But now the nightmare has been given an unavoidable real life demonstration at the airport in Moscow. The suicide bomber at Domodedovo Airport killed 35 and injured 168. That would be seen as catastrophic even in Iraq or Afghanistan, and it is unknown in recent European experience.

Very simply, a new door to terror has been opened. It leads right into the waiting areas of air terminals. Not the areas where passengers go after they have been checked by security, but the areas where people gather to meet arriving passengers or to queue up for ticketing. Sometimes there are hundreds of people in such spaces, more people than fly on a large airplane. They may have surveillance, but no baggage checks.

In the US right after 9/11 there were checks of incoming cars before they reached an air terminal. There were police inside the terminals. In Baghdad--at least when I visited there a few years ago--you were checked a mile from the airport--everything--then again when you came into the terminal, and then again before you boarded the plane. It seemed a huge, but necessary, hassle.

This attack in Moscow is setting off bells at Homeland Security and in the halls of Congress, I'm sure. No airport in the U.S. or Europe is safe from this kind of attack right now. Ultimately, the best protection against terrorists is police and FBI detective work that finds terrorists before they find their targets.

UPDATE: Yuri Mamchur, at our Real Russia Blog, describes a similar reaction. And consider: There were metal detectors at the Domodedovo Airport's waiting area, but they weren't being used. That will cause widespread questioning in Moscow. But one might question back, when it's 9 degrees Fahrenheit out, how do you get hundreds of people to queue up for the metal detectors outdoors? If they do line up, what's the keep the bomber from attacking the line?

You can email brucechapman@discovery.org

1 Comment

in Israel there are at least two security checks before you get inside the terminal.
One as the car enters the area - which is about a mile away.
Then there is a guard before the doors of the terminal - checking on the folks who enter and anyone who is suspicious, he asks for ID's and even has an X-ray machine outside to check the luggage.
Then - and I have not even got to the ticket counter yet, the real security folks asks a number of questions - not looking for bad things but bad people. They are trained to notice nervousness, tension, eye-contact etc. But I hear that eye-contact in the US could be viewed as a criminal offense.
By the way, did I mention that Israel does do racial profiling because most of our terrorists are from a certain background. That Jewish grandmother is passed right on through. More time to check out other folks.
Finally, after you get to the ticket counter, there is another security check with X-ray machines for the carry-on luggage. This is usually the only security I run into in the EU or even in the USA.
In the waiting areas, there are also guards outsides the doors to question anyone they think might be suspicious.
Bottom-line - I feel much safer in Israel than in America or any EU nation.
Time to stop being politically correct and start defending the innocent!

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