For her responsible reportage about the situation of continuing danger from Muslim terrorists on airplanes, she was slammed by government mouthpieces as a silly and hysterical woman. However, she received numerous communications from security personnel, flight crews and other passengers who concurred that what she saw was real. Her series of columns grew into a book, Terror in the Skies: Why 9/11 Could Happen Again..
Now the Inspector General of the Department of Homeland Security that the Syrians were indeed engaged in a terrorist probe.
"Agency management was not only covering up numerous probes and dry-run encounters from Congress and other federal law-enforcement agencies, it was also hiding these incidents from their own flying air marshals," said P. Jeffrey Black, an air marshal stationed in Las Vegas. [...]
"One man rushed to the front of the plane appearing to head for the cockpit. At the last moment, he veered into the first-class lavatory, remaining in it for about 20 minutes," according to the report. One man carried a McDonald's bag into the lavatory, and "another man, upon returning from the lavatory, reeked strongly of what smelled like toilet bowl chemicals."
"Some men hand signaled each other. The passenger who entered the lavatory with the McDonald's bag made a thumbs-up signal to another man upon returning from the lavatory. Another man made a slashing motion across his throat, appearing to say 'No.' " [Report confirms terror dry run, Washington Times 5/30/07]
Continuing on the subject of how well the government is protecting us, we learned more today about the man with drug-resistant tuberculosis who resisted mild entreaties from public health officials that he not travel by airplane. (See my article The X-Ray Files: How Political Correctness Is Destroying Effective Public Health Policy.)
Dr Julie Gerberding, director of the Center for Disease Control, said "I think we were surprised that the patient had left the country."
Lou Dobbs opened his program with the story, emphasizing the failure of security agencies to corral one easily identifiable person.
DOBBS: Good evening, everybody. Health officials tonight are struggling to find people who traveled on two trans-Atlantic flights with an American infected with a highly dangerous and contagious form of T.B. The man is being treated in a hospital in Atlanta for what is called extensive drug-resistant T.B. The man drove back into this country from Canada after flying to Montreal from the Czech Republic.
Customs and Border Patrol agents were on alert for this man, but he was still able to cross our border undetected and not stopped. Elizabeth Cohen tonight reports from Atlanta on the global investigation into this T.B. scare. Jeanne Meserve reports on our apparently broken system that does not permit tracking international travelers with dangerous diseases almost six year after September 11th.
Security concerns of various sorts will be made far more complicated by Washington's amnesty scheme. Today's reports of performance are not reassuring, to say the least.