View Full Version : APA president advises pilots against using new body scanners

CONF iture
9th Nov 2010, 14:00
Allied Pilots Association president Dave Bates is suggesting that American Airlines pilots go through a pat-down search by Transportation Security Administration personnel rather undergo the repeated radiation from the "advanced imaging technology" body scanners used at many airports.
APA president advises against new body scanners (http://aviationblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2010/11/apa-president-advises-against.html)

9th Nov 2010, 15:43
Morton's Fork. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Morton%27s_fork)

9th Nov 2010, 15:54
Morton's fork.

Actually, the choice is obvious. Any humiliation is better than ionizing radiation. You don't die of cancer because of humiliation.

9th Nov 2010, 16:01

I assume you have loads of evidence for that statement!!

So now all the terrorist needs to do is to get an AA unifrom.........easy:ugh:

9th Nov 2010, 16:30
How about



Feathers McGraw
9th Nov 2010, 17:20
What makes you think the radiation is ionizing?

The full body scanners use RF energy in the Terahertz range, which is longer wavelength than the far-infrared end of the light spectrum, between 0.1 and 1mm approximately.

Ionization starts at a little above 3eV photon energy, which is the energy of ultraviolet light in the UVA band. The wavelength of UV light is from about 400nm downwards.

So in fact Terahertz radiation is a factor of about 250 times too low in photon energy to break chemical bonds and ionize anything.

Any limits on exposure to these frequencies are based on thermal effects rather than any other danger factor.

As for X-ray backscatter scanners, the dosage is claimed to be about 1/200,000th of the dosage given during a CT scan in hospital, so much lower risk that requiring a CT scan.

But if you want to complain, make it about the efficacy of the scanner when used to scan someone who has ingested or inserted explosives into a body cavity.

9th Nov 2010, 17:24
I don't understand the need for these body scanners for either pax or pilots, except for the sake of the politicians who have their fingers in the pies of the companies that manufacture them.

With the new trend in female suicide bombers, all it takes is a tampon or sanitary towel made out of explosive and the they'll be able to blow themselves inside out whilst in mid flight.
Who's going to search the panties of a female terrorist dressed as an AA pilot who looks like she's flying the flag of Japan?:eek:

Feathers McGraw
9th Nov 2010, 17:34
At least an internal explosion will be dissipated by the body tissue around it, thus reducing the damage caused. A member of the Saudi royal family was uninjured within a few feet of such an explosion.

9th Nov 2010, 20:33
Feathers McGraw

Suggest you study up on the theory of explosives.

an internal explosion will be dissipated by the body tissue around it

is not a correct statement.


9th Nov 2010, 20:49
The NPR document mentioned above is a letter to President Obama's science advisor form a group of phyisicans and scientific researchers, including a Nobel laureate.

The file is unaccessible due to the number of people accessing it (it is being heavily ReTweeted at present).

Google has a cache here : Powered by Google Docs (http://bit.ly/cD50kR) but, as many will not like the shortened link the text is below.

To me this looks like a very measured and reasonable set of questions.



We are writing to call your attention to serious concerns about the potential health risks
of the recently adopted whole body backscatter X-ray airport security scanners. This is
an urgent situation as these X-ray scanners are rapidly being implemented as a primary
screening step for all air travel passengers.

Our overriding concern is the extent to which the safety of this scanning device has
been adequately demonstrated. This can only be determined by a meeting of an
impartial panel of experts that would include medical physicists and radiation biologists
at which all of the available relevant data is reviewed.

An important consideration is that a large fraction of the population will be subject to
the new X-ray scanners and be at potential risk, as discussed below. This raises a
number of ‘red flags’. Can we have an urgent second independent evaluation?

The Red Flags

The physics of these X-rays is very telling: the X-rays are Compton-Scattering off outer
molecule bonding electrons and thus inelastic (likely breaking bonds).

Unlike other scanners, these new devices operate at relatively low beam energies
(28keV). The majority of their energy is delivered to the skin and the underlying
tissue. Thus, while the dose would be safe if it were distributed throughout the volume
of the entire body, the dose to the skin may be dangerously high.

The X-ray dose from these devices has often been compared in the media to the cosmic
ray exposure inherent to airplane travel or that of a chest X-ray. However, this
comparison is very misleading: both the air travel cosmic ray exposure and chest X-
rays have much higher X-ray energies and the health consequences are appropriately
understood in terms of the whole body volume dose. In contrast, these new airport
scanners are largely depositing their energy into the skin and immediately adjacent
tissue, and since this is such a small fraction of body weight/vol, possibly by one to two
orders of magnitude, the real dose to the skin is now high.

In addition, it appears that real independent safety data do not exist. A search,
ultimately finding top FDA radiation physics staff, suggests that the relevant radiation
quantity, the Flux [photons per unit area and time (because this is a scanning device)]
has not been characterized. Instead an indirect test (Air Kerma) was made that
emphasized the whole body exposure value, and thus it appears that the danger is low
when compared to cosmic rays during airplane travel and a chest X-ray dose.

In summary, if the key data (flux-integrated photons per unit values) were available, it
would be straightforward to accurately model the dose being deposited in the skin and

Letter of Concern – Page 2

adjacent tissues using available computer codes, which would resolve the potential
concerns over radiation damage.

Our colleagues at UCSF, dermatologists and cancer experts, raise specific important

A) The large population of older travelers, >65 years of age, is particularly at
risk from the mutagenic effects of the X-rays based on the known biology of
melanocyte aging.

B) A fraction of the female population is especially sensitive to mutagenesis-
provoking radiation leading to breast cancer. Notably, because these women,
who have defects in DNA repair mechanisms, are particularly prone to cancer,
X-ray mammograms are not performed on them. The dose to breast tissue
beneath the skin represents a similar risk.

C) Blood (white blood cells) perfusing the skin is also at risk.

D) The population of immunocompromised individuals--HIV and cancer
patients (see above) is likely to be at risk for cancer induction by the high skin

E) The risk of radiation emission to children and adolescents does not appear to
have been fully evaluated.

F) The policy towards pregnant women needs to be defined once the theoretical
risks to the fetus are determined.

G) Because of the proximity of the testicles to skin, this tissue is at risk for
sperm mutagenesis.

H) Have the effects of the radiation on the cornea and thymus been determined?

Moreover, there are a number of ‘red flags’ related to the hardware itself. Because this
device can scan a human in a few seconds, the X-ray beam is very intense. Any glitch
in power at any point in the hardware (or more importantly in software) that stops the
device could cause an intense radiation dose to a single spot on the skin. Who will
oversee problems with overall dose after repair or software problems? The TSA is
already complaining about resolution limitations; who will keep the manufacturers
and/or TSA from just raising the dose, an easy way to improve signal-to-noise and get
higher resolution? Lastly, given the recent incident (on December 25th), how do we
know whether the manufacturer or TSA, seeking higher resolution, will scan the groin
area more slowly leading to a much higher total dose?

After review of the available data we have already obtained, we suggest that additional
critical information be obtained, with the goal to minimize the potential health risks of

Letter of Concern – Page 3

total body scanning. One can study the relevant X-ray dose effects with modern
molecular tools. Once a small team of appropriate experts is assembled, an
experimental plan can be designed and implemented with the objective of obtaining
information relevant to our concerns expressed above, with attention paid to completing
the information gathering and formulating recommendations in a timely fashion.

We would like to put our current concerns into perspective. As longstanding UCSF
scientists and physicians, we have witnessed critical errors in decisions that have
seriously affected the health of thousands of people in the United States. These
unfortunate errors were made because of the failure to recognize potential adverse
outcomes of decisions made at the federal level. Crises create a sense of urgency that
frequently leads to hasty decisions where unintended consequences are not recognized.
Examples include the failure of the CDC to recognize the risk of blood transfusions in
the early stages of the AIDS epidemic, approval of drugs and devices by the FDA
without sufficient review, and improper standards set by the EPA, to name a few.
Similarly, there has not been sufficient review of the intermediate and long-term effects
of radiation exposure associated with airport scanners. There is good reason to believe
that these scanners will increase the risk of cancer to children and other vulnerable
populations. We are unanimous in believing that the potential health consequences
need to be rigorously studied before these scanners are adopted. Modifications that
reduce radiation exposure need to be explored as soon as possible.

In summary we urge you to empower an impartial panel of experts to reevaluate the
potential health issues we have raised before there are irrevocable long-term
consequences to the health of our country. These negative effects may on balance far
outweigh the potential benefit of increased detection of terrorists.

9th Nov 2010, 21:55
It's tough to be clear about the risks of these devices, since there is very little public information on their nature.

Both THz and X-ray scanners have been proposed to look for hidden weapons and explosives, with X-ray machines detecting the enhanced scattering of X-rays compared with flesh, and THz machines detecting the different temperature profiles of a hidden object and flesh.

The machines being used in the US do seem to be based on X-ray scattering. I was initially astonished by this, since unnecessary exposure to ionizing radiation is not usually promoted. Whether the employment of the former homeland security secretary Michael Chertoff by an X-ray machine manufacturer has any relevance to this decision is an interesting question.

From looking at quoted numbers previously, and a rescan of wikipedia :rolleyes:, I think that the `Letter of Concern' (unsurprisingly) contains very valid points. The claimed dose from a scan is comparable to the background radiation dose at sea level in an hour, and much less than the enhanced cosmic-ray dose from a 1-hr flight at 30000ft; however, the energy spectrum and directionality of these sources is different, and so any health effects may be too.

Having a scan before each 5-hour flight should not significantly increase a pilot's total radiation exposure, but why not opt for the non-ionizing patdown instead?

The letter raises the particularly valid concern that it's easier to see how the machines would overdose than underdose. If they were under-powered, the images would probably not be useful and the manufacturer would be called straightaway (I assume that the absolute minimum dose required to obtain a useful image is used). However, the operators would not know to call the manufacturer if the thing was going wild, unless the detectors were saturating. I would hope there are self-diagnostic checks built in, and the absolute dose is frequently measured.

Bally Heck
9th Nov 2010, 22:11
I personally don't want to die because of state sponsored death rays.

I'll leave the responsibility for that to my own misdemeanours.

I may just have to delay flights while I decline when to go through Manchester's scientific death camp experiment. (Why is it always Manchester? Do they still have a convicted ex policeman in charge of security?)

Ex Cargo Clown
9th Nov 2010, 22:59
Any well funded terrorist organisation would know exactly how to get around these ridiculous machines.

I'm not saying anything, but anyone with a scientific background can work it out.

Feathers McGraw
10th Nov 2010, 12:42
Di Vosh

People are limited in how much explosive they could cram inside themselves, both in terms of volume and of toxicity.

Recently (within the last year) an Al Qaeda suspect in the Middle East managed to get quite close to a Saudi minister (and royal) before detonating a bomb concealed in his large intestine. Naturally it killed him, but the blast effects were sufficiently low that none of the people close to him were seriously injured or killed.

That was what informed my comments, I don't see how these scanners can detect explosives internally, and so clearly if suicide bombers decide to take this route then by detonating a bomb inside them it will have much less effect than if it is removed from the body before detonation.

10th Nov 2010, 16:09
At least an internal explosion will be dissipated by the body tissue around it, thus reducing the damage caused. A member of the Saudi royal family was uninjured within a few feet of such an explosion.

In this case it need only be held internally whilst passing through security, transferred to cabin baggage after that, and then placed at a suitable point in the a/c - even as pax, this would give more control than sending it cargo.

By my reckoning (based on published data) the explosive in the recent printer cartridge bombs would fit in a standard drinks can. If you go looking, it will not be difficult to find plenty of video evidence for the feasibility of bodily insertion and removal of objects this size...

Spunky Monkey
10th Nov 2010, 20:31
Once when I was ill, I shat a whole peanut. That hurt like hell.

It would take some doing, to discharge a coke can...

10th Nov 2010, 21:24
People are limited in how much explosive they could cram inside themselves, both in terms of volume and of toxicity.

I agree! :ok: Well about the volume bit (not sure what you mean about toxicity, presumably the device would be inside a condom or similar)

But that statement is a long way from

an internal explosion will be dissipated by the body tissue around it


11th Nov 2010, 02:28
It's rumored that the machines don't actually do anything but pass a visual image to the remote operator. He and the TSA person who stays with you while the "image" is being "developed" use that time to assess you and your demeanor, and decide whether or not to refer you for further examination.

(Just kidding, in case anyone takes the above seriously.)

11th Nov 2010, 03:18
It's rumored that the machines don't actually do anything but pass a visual image to the remote operator. He and the TSA person who stays with you while the "image" is being "developed" use that time to assess you and your demeanor, and decide whether or not to refer you for further examination.

If only that were actually true. Real security requires looking at people, not at things.

11th Nov 2010, 05:25
A few sobering facts about explosives;

PanAm flight 103 was brought down by 250g or half a pound of Semtex.

HMX, the explosive of choice in the 21st Century is very much more powerful than Semtex.(the exact factor is in question but it is at least twice as powerful)

Octanitrocubane is a recently developed product which is again, many times more powerful than HMX. (thankfully it is very difficult to make)

From this it can be seen that even 100g of such an explosive, which would be more than enough to blow a large hole in a fuselage, can very easily be concealed in a bodily cavity. The example of a tampon sized sample of the explosive would weigh about 80-120g.

The human body would do almost nothing to dissipate or lessen the effect of either of the two latter explosives. The surrounding tissue, meaning most of the body, would vapourise under the intense pressure developed in the milliseconds following the blast.

The example of the Saudi assasination attempt is not valid as the explosive was certainly neither of those mentioned above.

Whether you agree with the use of the scanners as a crew member or not, you will find no assurance that the current scanning/pat-down system is able to detect a device as described. If a terrorist opts for the pat-down then it is almost impossible to see how such a device would be detected.

There should be no option for passengers, they should all be made to go through the body scanner. If that policy were to be implemented then it is hard to see how aircrew could justify a simple pat-down check. It has to be all or nothing.

11th Nov 2010, 06:20
It has to be all or nothing.
So in that case, ALL airports will also have to get one of these body scanning things or else the terrorist will just go to somewhere which does not have one

11th Nov 2010, 07:44
Instead of X-rays to see if explosive is being carried, why not just a system that detonates any explosive device ?

The innocent would have nothing to fear, and the terrosists would be destroyed.


( as has been said many times, the bad guys will do what they want, where they want, when they want, and there is NOTHING that we can do about that, all we're doing is slowing things down a bit for the bad guys as they have to work around every new idea and device we put in their way, and infuriating the innocent )

11th Nov 2010, 10:06
Number 2 (http://aviationblog.dallasnews.com/archives/2010/11/union-president-tells-us-airwa.html)

Who is next?

Write/email (http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/Strike+while+the+iron+is+hot) your union.


Feathers McGraw
11th Nov 2010, 10:57
I am not convinced by the argument that the human body would not attenuate the blast from an internal explosion, it is a simple fact that body tissue is very tough and takes significant energy to tear apart.

As to the suggestion that everyone must be made to pass through these scanners, what would happen if people decide that they've had enough and choose not to fly? It might be enough to convince people that they no longer wish to be part of the whole process.

I decided long ago that I do not wish to travel to a country that insists on taking my fingerprints, to me that is something done to criminals. If it turns out that I can't travel anywhere without submitting to these other indignities then I shall simply decide never to travel again, after all I don't need to.

11th Nov 2010, 11:15
Of course crews are a real thread to safety. A tiny bit of c4 in a tampon and we depart from this world.
Hell is below us and there's no scanner.

Tons of unchecked cargo.

Cargo is not subject to cancer, why not check this first.

Just an idea......:}

Ex Cargo Clown
11th Nov 2010, 11:16
The whole charade is just stupid.

There are multiple ways of getting an explosive device on board an aircraft. Of course I'm not going to divulge them here, but having explosives stuffed into body cavities is not high up my list.

Profiling is the way forward, not body scanning.

11th Nov 2010, 13:45
do you refer to the dirigible, the R101?

I've had my fingerprints taken long before 911 in the USA and I'm not a criminal.

get real.

Feathers McGraw
11th Nov 2010, 13:56
Yes, the R101 airship, I can see its departure point from my back garden.

And I can assure you that I am entirely real, and refuse to submit to procedures as described.

11th Nov 2010, 18:24
I flew as SLF out of DCA two weeks ago. While I was being screened, I observed that five people were pulled out for the full-body scans.

All were attractive young women.

Probably a coincidence.


12th Nov 2010, 04:24
I don't wish to put a damper on this discussion but we need to be realistic here. Without going into mathematical and chemical formulae, any substance that increases its volume by a factor of 15 with a detonation/expansion velocity of between 7000 and 9000 metres/second will not be slowed or deflected by the human body. It will be vapourised, totally, within the 1st 100th of a second after detonation. Trying to convince yourself that the human carrying the explosive will 'absorb' or 'attenuate' the blast is a false hope.

Just visualise 9000 metres in 1 second. Flesh and bones will not do anything to slow or stop such a rapid expansion of the gaseaous products of the explosion. I have no idea of the size of hole a person sitting in a window seat would produce when vapourised in such a manner but it will almost certainly be big enough to cause considerable structural damage.

Whatever else this discussion raises, we need to keep in mind the aim of these restrictive and intrusive measures; prevention of an in-flight detonation of an explosive. Whatever it takes...or do you have a better idea?

I'm not saying these machines are the whole answer but they are an effective deterrent at least. But they are only effective if they are seen to be used correctly and in my humble opinion, that means everyone passes through them or they don't fly.

Stand outside on a bright day for a few minutes and you absorb the same amount of dangerous and harmful rays from the sun. Sit in your living room/cockpit and the same occurs from radio/tv/phone/Google snoopers/WiFi etc.

12th Nov 2010, 04:46
Crew (flight & Cabin) are already subjected to enough ionising radiation during flight without additional radiation in screening. The US and EU classify them as radiation workers and they fall into the top 5% of such workers for exposure. Look here (http://www.hps.org/publicinformation/ate/q941.html)for some information.

As their work already involves exposure any additional unnecessary (ie when you have a choice) exposure ought to be avoided. Radiation workers in other industries are educated about managing their exposure and to minimise exposure both at work and outside work. I suspect this education doesn't occur for crew. I strongly encourage crew to learn about their exposure from flight, consider other sources (like background radiation in your home town or medical procedures) and whether you can afford the risks of an ionising radiation scan.

If you work as crew on an aircraft, please educate yourself about your radiation exposure and carefully consider the APA president's advice.

12th Nov 2010, 09:16
A few sobering facts about explosives;

PanAm flight 103 was brought down by 250g or half a pound of Semtex.

HMX, the explosive of choice in the 21st Century is very much more powerful than Semtex.(the exact factor is in question but it is at least twice as powerful)

Octanitrocubane is a recently developed product which is again, many times more powerful than HMX. (thankfully it is very difficult to make)

From this it can be seen that even 100g of such an explosive, which would be more than enough to blow a large hole in a fuselage, can very easily be concealed in a bodily cavity. The example of a tampon sized sample of the explosive would weigh about 80-120g.

The human body would do almost nothing to dissipate or lessen the effect of either of the two latter explosives. The surrounding tissue, meaning most of the body, would vapourise under the intense pressure developed in the milliseconds following the blast.

The example of the Saudi assasination attempt is not valid as the explosive was certainly neither of those mentioned above.

Whether you agree with the use of the scanners as a crew member or not, you will find no assurance that the current scanning/pat-down system is able to detect a device as described. If a terrorist opts for the pat-down then it is almost impossible to see how such a device would be detected.

There should be no option for passengers, they should all be made to go through the body scanner. If that policy were to be implemented then it is hard to see how aircrew could justify a simple pat-down check. It has to be all or nothing.

So your points are:

1) a device as small as a Tampon, carried inside a body cavity of your choice, can easily be enough to destroy an airliner

2) thus ....everybody should be forced to walk through a body scanner, which can not detect such a device.

I don't quite follow to be honest...

12th Nov 2010, 15:35
I don't quite follow to be honest...

Of course you don't, because it's just insane.

If it turns out that I can't travel anywhere without submitting to these other indignities then I shall simply decide never to travel again, after all I don't need to.
Very true. There must be some point when people just say "enough", and refuse to take it any more. For me, fingerprints and radiation scanners are "enough" to refuse from using air transport at all.

Ex Cargo Clown
12th Nov 2010, 15:59
Octanitrocubane is a recently developed product which is again, many times more powerful than HMX

I would love someone to give me a complete synthesis of this incredibly difficult to synthesise compound, I'd get a Nobel Prize in Chemistry!

As I keep on saying, profiling is the only way forward.

Also back to the "RDX Tampon" exactly how are you going to detonate it. This is not like the movies where you light a fuse and boom. High explosives tend to need low explosives to detonate.

12th Nov 2010, 17:37
TSA has over stepped it bounds.
As previously posted cockpit crews are exposed to more radiation than may professions.
For us to opt out of this full body scan makes perfect sense.
But under the same lines we should not be subject to a TSA inspector groping our genitals.
Even my daughter traveling as a pax I would never allow this.
For years we have seen this TSA organization go from protecting us to becoming some kind of militant force.
Ever go through the screening in ATL, these women barking out orders like a drill Sargent in basic training to a recruit.
Passed through there as crew many times have seen some women passengers it tears because of the way they were treated.
Things like I told you to go over here, why did you not listen to me, at a very high angry voice.
I just looked back and never said anything, wondering how a great country like the USA had turned into something like this.
For all pilots to opt out, even the passengers is a good thing.
I just wonder how long it will be before a freight dog ops out and this TSA grabs his genitals?
And TSA ends up with missing dental work!
Time to stop this TSA, Pilots dont trust you.
We all say TSA means Too Stupid for Arbys!
Your credibility is in the gutter.
You just dont get to make up these perverted rules as you go.
You have crossed the line with all of us crews, even the pax!

12th Nov 2010, 18:22
Just wonder why the fully covered muslim women are never pulled aside for screening?
We pilots are profiled and never hurt anyone?
Yet this culture caused the whole issue!

12th Nov 2010, 18:22
How To Beat The Body Scanners:

Muslim Group Advises Women Wearing Hijabs to Allow TSA ?Enhanced Pat Downs? Only on Head and Neck Area | CNSnews.com (http://cnsnews.com/news/article/muslim-group-advises-women-wearing-hijab)

Muslim Group Advises Women Wearing Hijabs to Allow TSA ‘Enhanced Pat Downs’ Only on Head and Neck Area

Friday, November 12, 2010
By Penny Starr

Muslim women wearing hijabs. (AP Photo)

(CNSNews.com) - The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) has issued a travel warning to Muslim airline passengers on U.S. aircraft in response to the Transportation Safety Administration’s "enhanced pat down" policy that went into effect in late October.

CAIR said Muslims who object to full-body scans for religious reasons should know their rights if they are required to undergo a pat-down, including asking for the procedure to be done in a private place. In addition, CAIR offered a “special recommendation” for Muslim women who wear a hijab, telling them they should tell the TSA officer that they may be searched only around the head and neck.

In the “special recommendations for Muslim women who wear hijab,” it states: “Before you are patted down, you should remind the TSA officer that they are only supposed to pat down the area in question, in this scenario, your head and neck. They SHOULD NOT subject you to a full-body or partial-body pat-down.”

It also states: “Instead of the pat-down, you can always request to pat down your own scarf, including head and neck area, and have the officers perform a chemical swipe of your hands.”

The new TSA pat-downs involving “head-to-toe” screening techniques follow recent airliner bombing attempts. Passengers who reject a full-body scan or who are selected for secondary screening may be searched using the enhanced pat-down.

“Pat downs are one important tool to help TSA detect hidden and dangerous items such as explosives,” a TSA statement issued on Oct. 28 stated.

“Passengers should continue to expect an unpredictable mix of security layers that include explosives trace detection, advanced imaging technology, canine teams, among others.”

Posted on its Web site under “TSA’s Head-to-Toe Screening Policies,” the agency said how people are dressed may lead to closer inspection, including baggy or loose clothing. Those policies also include individuals being searched by a “professional” of the same sex.

“It is TSA's policy that passengers should be screened by an officer of the same gender in a professional, respectful manner,” the policy reads.

In February, the Figh Council of North America, a group of Islamic scholars, issued a fatwa, or religious ruling, that full-body scanners violate Islamic law.

“It is a violation of clear Islamic teaching that men or women be seen naked by other men and women,” the ruling states. “Islam highly emphasizes haya (modesty) and considers it part of the faith. The Qu’ran has commanded the believers, both men and women, to cover their private parts.”

CAIR endorsed the fatwa, according to a Feb. 21 article in the Detroit Free Press.

12th Nov 2010, 18:24
........I shall simply decide never to travel again, after all I don't need to.

Spot on, Bean Counters Rule - OK ! and when they get short of beans they might just notice.

I've had my fingerprints taken long before 911 in the USA and I'm not a criminal.

But 'they' must have though that you had the potential to become one or 'they' wouldn't have taken them !

Why treat us all as such ?

There must be a bloody great hole somewhere in North Dakota full of untold trillions of fingerprint photos - or else why bother ? What are they going to do with them all ?

Couple of years ago an Imm. desk occupant ( I won't glorify him with any other title ) told me exactly where and when I first entered the USA, as a junior crew member of my then airline, time, date, service number, type of aircraft, departure point etc 50 years ago !! and could have repeated that info. for every subsequent entry to the present day - he said.

Is that not profiling ?

They have everything that they need on me, so why :mad: me about now in addition ?

CONF iture
14th Nov 2010, 18:57
Hero Bay Area pilot Sully Sullenberger is adding his voice to growing opposition among pilots and flight attendants to those airport body scanners.
Sullenberger opposes airport body scanners (http://abclocal.go.com/kgo/story?section=news/national_world&id=7785108)

17th Nov 2010, 05:48
This, and other related videos, are quite educational!

YouTube - TSA Gangstaz by Zach Selwyn and Eli Braden (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7AWw7t5zj0)

17th Nov 2010, 06:54
Airport security breach as naked body scanner images leaked online | Mail Online (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1330327/Airport-security-breach-naked-body-scanner-images-leaked-online.html)

Romeo E.T.
17th Nov 2010, 09:11
a personal blog by a woman who refused the scanner, and also didn't want her private parts to be "patted" down


17th Nov 2010, 16:15
The head of the Transportation Security Administration is acknowledging that the new pat-downs are more invasive than what travelers were used to in the past.

TSA administrator John Pistole says he has received the new pat-down, as has his boss, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

Some travelers complain that the new inspections target sensitive body areas. Pistole says he understands those privacy concerns, but says the government must provide the best possible security for air travelers.

Pistole was testifying before a Senate committee about TSA policies and procedures. The hearing was scheduled before the recent outrage about airport security

17th Nov 2010, 16:19
Religion Offers No Break on Airport Screening, TSA Says - FoxNews.com (http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2010/11/16/religion-offers-break-airport-screening-tsa-says/)
Religion Offers No Break on Airport Screening, TSA Says
WASHINGTON -- The Transportation Security Administration says airline passengers won't get out of body imaging screening or pat-downs based on their religious beliefs.

TSA chief John Pistole told the Senate Homeland Security Committee on Tuesday that passengers who refuse to go through a full-body scanner machine and reject a pat-down won't be allowed to board, even if they turned down the in-depth screening for religious reasons.

"That person is not going to get on an airplane," Pistole said in response to a question from Sen. John Ensign, R-Nev., on whether the TSA would provide exemptions for passengers whose religious beliefs do not allow them to go through a physically revealing body scan or be touched by screeners.

Civil rights groups contend the more intensive screening violates civil liberties including freedom of religion, the right to privacy and the constitutional protection against unreasonable searches.

The issue is getting new attention after a man posted an item online saying he was thrown out of the San Diego airport for rejecting a full-body scan and pat-down groin check and instead insisting on passing through a metal detector.

Pistole acknowledged the incident was drawing wide attention but told the committee an officer involved was "very cool, calm, professional" in dealing with the passenger.

The Electronic Privacy Information Center is among several civil liberties groups suing the TSA in federal court to stop use of the full-body scanners. Their lawsuit says the machines are overly intrusive and violate civil rights, and that it is questionable whether they can detect powdered explosives such as those used by a passenger in last year's attempted Christmas airliner bombing. They also question whether the machines pose a health risk.

"There's a very strong sense right now that the public attitude on the airport body scanner program has swung dramatically," said Marc Rotenberg, director of EPIC. There is growing opposition from civil rights groups, religious organizations, libertarians, airline passengers and pilots, he said.

EPIC is urging air travelers to take part in a national opt-out day the day before Thanksgiving, refusing to go through the full-body detectors and insisting that any pat-down they receive as a result take place in full view of other passengers.

Several senators asked Pistole to address public criticism of the body-imaging machines and more intrusive pat-downs the agency is using. Pistole said the tougher screening is necessary, and that the FDA has found the imaging machines to be safe. Going through the whole-body scanning machine is similar to getting about three minutes of the radiation that passengers receive at 30,000 feet on a typical flight, he said.

Pistole said his agency was working to address pilot and flight attendant concerns about the screening.

17th Nov 2010, 16:43
Forget Body Scans and Pat Downs -- Let's Get Busy Profiling
Why don’t we start profiling for terrorists and stop trying to put everyone from toddlers to granny through the same security procedures at airports? We’re wasting money, time and the people’s patience in an effort to be politically correct. In the end, it’s not keeping us any safer; if anything it’s making us less safe since it’s diverting resources that could otherwise be used on better intelligence gathering, or developing screening devices for cargo on commercial and civilian aircraft, or checking containers before they enter U.S. ports.

Ultimately, though, the debate over whether to use the new scanners or not isn’t a choice between privacy and security – because we’re not getting security where we need it – we’re reacting to the last type of terrorist threat, not the current one or the next one.

Supposedly, these body scanners may, or may not(!) prevent the next underwear bomber, but again, let’s use some common sense – Al Qaeda has moved on! They’re putting bombs in UPS packages that make their way from cargo planes to passenger planes. They're plotting to place bombs inside bodies – the human bodies of suicide bombers, or of corpses or even animals – which will then be detonated remotely once in plane is in flight. Full body scanners are useless against those threats!

Al Qaeda’s pattern has been to constantly adapt their offense, and force us into spending valuable resources on defense. While we’re busy focusing on preventing the last attack, they’ve moved on to the next one.

Al Qaeda terrorists hijacked aircraft on Sept 11, 2001. We’ve now got locked cockpit doors and we prohibit box cutters on airplanes. They put bombs in checked luggage; we now match every checked bag to a passenger. They put bombs on passengers – in their shoes, in their carry ons, in their underwear; we now take off our shoes, open our lap tops, and put everything through metal detectors. Body scanners and pat downs are our latest security effort.

But, let me say it again, the terrorists have moved on – the UPS packages sent last month were a dry run for their next move – to put bombs in cargo that is then loaded onto civilian or cargo aircraft and detonated to blow up over major population centers.

There's a saying in the military that generals always prepare to fight the last war, well apparently so do Homeland Security officials. Let’s use some common sense and start looking for terrorists, not frisking toddlers. And let’s put our resources into protecting all of us from the next attack, not the last one.

18th Nov 2010, 01:24
so...isn't it time to start wearing a cup? (and for you europeans, I mean the hard plastic shell protecting one's privates during athletic contests)

18th Nov 2010, 02:23
of course finding a cup big enough for some pilots might be tough

18th Nov 2010, 03:03
"so...isn't it time to start wearing a cup? (and for you europeans, I mean the hard plastic shell protecting one's privates during athletic contests)"

It's called a box.

I wonder what the TSA would think when they touched it.
Probably panic stations.

18th Nov 2010, 03:56
how would they cop a large banana? a male descendant of john holmes going commando?
evacuate an airport?

18th Nov 2010, 04:04
i would opt for the pat down panty search until there is a reliable, non government study released to prove there are no long term affects of this device for those who repeatedly go through it each day of work.

while opting for the more erotic version of sexy security screening, you can have a little "fun" messing and denigrating the TSA hump performing the task. i have already tried a wickedly spicy bowl of chili a few hours before departure and emitting the most fabulous fart JUST as the screener is almost squatting patting down my crotch and legs.

i have tried the perfect good cop-bad cop response: good cop being with a sincere look "eewww, sorry dude". bad cop being "who's the bitch now?".

i do plan:eek: very soon to actually enjoy the crotch rub to the point of rolling my eyes back, let my knees wobble a little and in an orgasmic tone tell the screener " what purrrrrfect hands you have, my phone is_________, call me sweet thang"

CONF iture
18th Nov 2010, 12:46

If this doesn’t change, I see what has happened to the American people is we have accepted the notion that we should be treated like cattle. Make us safe, make us secure, put us in the barbed wire, feed us, fatten us up, and then they’ll eat us. And we are a bunch of cattle and we have to wake up and say we’ve had it ... It’s time for the American people to stand up and shrug off the shackles of our government at TSA at the airport.

18th Nov 2010, 20:30


by Ann Coulter

November 17, 2010

After the 9/11 attacks, when 19 Muslim terrorists -- 15 from Saudi Arabia, two from the United Arab Emirates and one each from Egypt and Lebanon, 14 with "al" in their names -- took over commercial aircraft with box-cutters, the government banned sharp objects from planes.

Airport security began confiscating little old ladies' knitting needles and breaking the mouse-sized nail files off of passengers' nail clippers. Surprisingly, no decrease in the number of hijacking attempts by little old ladies and manicurists was noted.

After another Muslim terrorist, Richard Reid, AKA Tariq Raja, AKA Abdel Rahim, AKA Abdul Raheem, AKA Abu Ibrahim, AKA Sammy Cohen (which was only his eHarmony alias), tried to blow up a commercial aircraft with explosive-laden sneakers, the government prohibited more than 3 ounces of liquid from being carried on airplanes.

All passengers were required to take off their shoes for special security screening, which did not thwart a single terrorist attack, but made airport security checkpoints a lot smellier.

After Muslim terrorist Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab of Nigeria tried to detonate explosive material in his underwear over Detroit last Christmas, the government began requiring nude body scans at airports.

The machines, which cannot detect chemicals or plastic, would not have caught the diaper bomber. So, again, no hijackers were stopped, but being able to see passengers in the nude boosted the morale of airport security personnel by 22 percent.

After explosives were inserted in two ink cartridges and placed on a plane headed to the United States from the Muslim nation of Yemen, the government banned printer cartridges from all domestic flights, resulting in no improvement in airport security, while requiring ink cartridges who traveled to take Amtrak.

So when the next Muslim terrorist, probably named Abdul Ahmed al Shehri, places explosives in his anal cavity, what is the government going to require then? (If you're looking for a good investment opportunity, might I suggest rubber gloves?)

Last year, a Muslim attempting to murder Prince Mohammed bin Nayef of Saudi Arabia blew himself up with a bomb stuck up his anus. Fortunately, this didn't happen near an airport, or Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano would now be requiring full body cavity searches to fly.

You can't stop a terrorist attack by searching for the explosives any more than you can stop crime by taking away everyone's guns.

In the 1970s, liberal ideas on crime swept the country. Gun owners were treated like criminals while actual criminals were coddled and released. If only we treated criminals with dignity and respect and showed them the system was fair, liberals told us, criminals would reward us with good behavior.

As is now well known, crime exploded in the '70s. It took decades of conservative law-and-order policies to get crime back to near-1950s levels.

It's similarly pointless to treat all Americans as if they're potential terrorists while trying to find and confiscate anything that could be used as a weapon. We can't search all passengers for explosives because Muslims stick explosives up their anuses. (Talk about jobs Americans just won't do.)

You have to search for the terrorists.

Fortunately, that's the one advantage we have in this war. In a lucky stroke, all the terrorists are swarthy, foreign-born, Muslim males. (Think: "Guys Madonna would date.")

This would give us a major leg up -- if only the country weren't insane.

Is there any question that we'd be looking for Swedes if the 9/11 terrorists, the shoe bomber, the diaper bomber and the printer cartridge bomber had all been Swedish? If the Irish Republican Army were bombing our planes, wouldn't we be looking for people with Irish surnames and an Irish appearance?

Only because the terrorists are Muslims do we pretend not to notice who keeps trying to blow up our planes.

It would be harder to find Swedes or Irish boarding commercial airliners in the U.S. than Muslims. Swarthy foreigners stand out like a sore thumb in an airport. The American domestic flying population is remarkably homogenous. An airport is not a Sears department store.

Only about a third of all Americans flew even once in the last year, and only 7 percent took more than four round trips. The majority of airline passengers are middle-aged, middle-class, white businessmen with about a million frequent flier miles. I'd wager that more than 90 percent of domestic air travelers were born in the U.S.

If the government did nothing more than have a five-minute conversation with the one passenger per flight born outside the U.S., you'd need 90 percent fewer Transportation Security Administration agents and airlines would be far safer than they are now.

Instead, Napolitano just keeps ordering more invasive searches of all passengers, without exception -- except members of Congress and government officials, who get VIP treatment, so they never know what she's doing to the rest of us.

Two weeks ago, Napolitano ordered TSA agents to start groping women's breasts and all passengers' genitalia -- children, nuns and rape victims, everyone except government officials and members of Congress. (Which is weird because Dennis Kucinich would like it.)

"Please have your genitalia out and ready to be fondled when you approach the security checkpoint."

This is the punishment for refusing the nude body scan for passengers who don't want to appear nude on live video or are worried about the skin cancer risk of the machines -- risks acknowledged by the very Johns Hopkins study touted by the government.

It is becoming increasingly obvious that we need to keep the government as far away from airport security as possible, and not only because Janet Napolitano did her graduate work in North Korea.

18th Nov 2010, 20:35

Back to The 'Israelification' of airports: High security, little bother
The 'Israelification' of airports: High security, little bother

December 30, 2009

Cathal Kelly

While North America's airports groan under the weight of another sea-change in security protocols, one word keeps popping out of the mouths of experts: Israelification.

That is, how can we make our airports more like Israel's, which deal with far greater terror threat with far less inconvenience.

"It is mindboggling for us Israelis to look at what happens in North America, because we went through this 50 years ago," said Rafi Sela, the president of AR Challenges, a global transportation security consultancy. He's worked with the RCMP, the U.S. Navy Seals and airports around the world.

"Israelis, unlike Canadians and Americans, don't take s--- from anybody. When the security agency in Israel (the ISA) started to tighten security and we had to wait in line for — not for hours — but 30 or 40 minutes, all hell broke loose here. We said, 'We're not going to do this. You're going to find a way that will take care of security without touching the efficiency of the airport."

That, in a nutshell is "Israelification" - a system that protects life and limb without annoying you to death.

Fliers urged to opt out of airport security en masse

Despite facing dozens of potential threats each day, the security set-up at Israel's largest hub, Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport, has not been breached since 2002, when a passenger mistakenly carried a handgun onto a flight. How do they manage that?

"The first thing you do is to look at who is coming into your airport," said Sela.

The first layer of actual security that greets travellers at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion International Airport is a roadside check. All drivers are stopped and asked two questions: How are you? Where are you coming from?

"Two benign questions. The questions aren't important. The way people act when they answer them is," Sela said.

Officers are looking for nervousness or other signs of "distress" — behavioural profiling. Sela rejects the argument that profiling is discriminatory.

"The word 'profiling' is a political invention by people who don't want to do security," he said. "To us, it doesn't matter if he's black, white, young or old. It's just his behaviour. So what kind of privacy am I really stepping on when I'm doing this?"

Once you've parked your car or gotten off your bus, you pass through the second and third security perimeters.

Armed guards outside the terminal are trained to observe passengers as they move toward the doors, again looking for odd behaviour. At Ben Gurion's half-dozen entrances, another layer of security are watching. At this point, some travellers will be randomly taken aside, and their person and their luggage run through a magnometer.

"This is to see that you don't have heavy metals on you or something that looks suspicious," said Sela.

You are now in the terminal. As you approach your airline check-in desk, a trained interviewer takes your passport and ticket. They ask a series of questions: Who packed your luggage? Has it left your side?

"The whole time, they are looking into your eyes — which is very embarrassing. But this is one of the ways they figure out if you are suspicious or not. It takes 20, 25 seconds," said Sela.

Lines are staggered. People are not allowed to bunch up into inviting targets for a bomber who has gotten this far.

At the check-in desk, your luggage is scanned immediately in a purpose-built area. Sela plays devil's advocate — what if you have escaped the attention of the first four layers of security, and now try to pass a bag with a bomb in it?

"I once put this question to Jacques Duchesneau (the former head of the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority): say there is a bag with play-doh in it and two pens stuck in the play-doh. That is 'Bombs 101' to a screener. I asked Ducheneau, 'What would you do?' And he said, 'Evacuate the terminal.' And I said, 'Oh. My. God.'

"Take Pearson. Do you know how many people are in the terminal at all times? Many thousands. Let's say I'm (doing an evacuation) without panic — which will never happen. But let's say this is the case. How long will it take? Nobody thought about it. I said, 'Two days.'"

A screener at Ben-Gurion has a pair of better options.

First, the screening area is surrounded by contoured, blast-proof glass that can contain the detonation of up to 100 kilos of plastic explosive. Only the few dozen people within the screening area need be removed, and only to a point a few metres away.

Second, all the screening areas contain 'bomb boxes'. If a screener spots a suspect bag, he/she is trained to pick it up and place it in the box, which is blast proof. A bomb squad arrives shortly and wheels the box away for further investigation.

"This is a very small simple example of how we can simply stop a problem that would cripple one of your airports," Sela said.

Five security layers down: you now finally arrive at the only one which Ben-Gurion Airport shares with Pearson — the body and hand-luggage check.

"But here it is done completely, absolutely 180 degrees differently than it is done in North America," Sela said.

"First, it's fast — there's almost no line. That's because they're not looking for liquids, they're not looking at your shoes. They're not looking for everything they look for in North America. They just look at you," said Sela. "Even today with the heightened security in North America, they will check your items to death. But they will never look at you, at how you behave. They will never look into your eyes ... and that's how you figure out the bad guys from the good guys."

That's the process — six layers, four hard, two soft. The goal at Ben-Gurion is to move fliers from the parking lot to the airport lounge in a maximum of 25 minutes.

This doesn't begin to cover the off-site security net that failed so spectacularly in targeting would-be Flight 253 bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab — intelligence. In Israel, Sela said, a coordinated intelligence gathering operation produces a constantly evolving series of threat analyses and vulnerability studies.

"There is absolutely no intelligence and threat analysis done in Canada or the United States," Sela said. "Absolutely none."

But even without the intelligence, Sela maintains, Abdulmutallab would not have gotten past Ben Gurion Airport's behavioural profilers.

So. Eight years after 9/11, why are we still so reactive, so un-Israelified?

Working hard to dampen his outrage, Sela first blames our leaders, and then ourselves.

"We have a saying in Hebrew that it's much easier to look for a lost key under the light, than to look for the key where you actually lost it, because it's dark over there. That's exactly how (North American airport security officials) act," Sela said. "You can easily do what we do. You don't have to replace anything. You have to add just a little bit — technology, training. But you have to completely change the way you go about doing airport security. And that is something that the bureaucrats have a problem with. They are very well enclosed in their own concept."

And rather than fear, he suggests that outrage would be a far more powerful spur to provoking that change.

"Do you know why Israelis are so calm? We have brutal terror attacks on our civilians and still, life in Israel is pretty good. The reason is that people trust their defence forces, their police, their response teams and the security agencies. They know they're doing a good job. You can't say the same thing about Americans and Canadians. They don't trust anybody," Sela said. "But they say, 'So far, so good'. Then if something happens, all hell breaks loose and you've spent eight hours in an airport. Which is ridiculous. Not justifiable

"But, what can you do? Americans and Canadians are nice people and they will do anything because they were told to do so and because they don't know any different."

18th Nov 2010, 22:10
Just FYI folks, as I am a pax and not really into this stuff - but I found this on the Web today I thought might be worth sharing: TSA Screening Pilot Health - TSA Screening Scandal - Popular Mechanics (http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/aviation/news/tsa-screening-pilots-health-fact-check?src=rss)

19th Nov 2010, 13:11
I know several people who have sampled Ben Gurion security, halfnut and none of them have ever been processed in the 25 minutes stated in your post. Their shortest wait was 3hrs 20 min of deeply intrusive questioning.

A plastic screen to protect against detonation of 100kgs of explosive a few metres away? After you! You'd almost think the article was written by someone from an Israeli security company looking for business...!

19th Nov 2010, 15:10
Is there a hint that finally some common sense will prevail ?

U.S. Airline Pilots Will Be Exempted From Physical Checks, TSA Chief Says - Bloomberg (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-11-19/u-s-airline-pilots-will-be-exempted-from-physical-checks-tsa-chief-says.html?cmpid=yhoo)

Romeo E.T.
20th Nov 2010, 09:47
seems as if even the armed forces are getting the "treatment"

Another TSA Outrage | RedState (http://www.redstate.com/erick/2010/11/18/another-tsa-outrage/)

Romeo E.T.
20th Nov 2010, 09:54

20th Nov 2010, 11:53

Cancer surviving flight attendant forced to remove prosthetic br - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC- (http://www.wbtv.com/Global/story.asp?S=13534628)

Well the next step is to sue TSA personnal as sexual offenders ...

Human Factor
20th Nov 2010, 23:16
Didn't "they" consider asbestos to be safe for 30 years? Oops....

Halfwits. Probably in government because no-one else would employ them.:mad:

Loose rivets
21st Nov 2010, 00:05
What I can't understand is that there are senior people in the US government that are exempt from the screening.

Let's go back a step.

Crews might be subject to a threat of harm to their family. It is assumed they may take over their own aircraft at the behest of a terrorist. This faulty logic is bad enough, but just how different are the senior government people? Can we assume they don't have the same human frailties?

If I had to put money on which of the two groups I would trust under pressure, I know in this scenario, it wouldn't be the politicians.

23rd Nov 2010, 19:43

Urine everywhere :sad:

TSA pat-down leaves traveler covered in urine - Travel - News - msnbc.com (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/40291856/ns/travel-news)

Ranger 1
23rd Nov 2010, 20:07
I recently refused a so called low dose dental X-ray despite being told its about the same amount of radioation you would get on two long haul flights. There is now mounting evidence that there may be an increase in oral & throat cancer through excessive dental X rays given by some trigger happy dentists, dismissed a few years ago as very safe.:ugh:

The key thing with any radiation is limiting your exposure to it, although I'm not aircrew or a physicist, it seems that we in the Aviation industry receive a fair dose of Radiation already, from Cosmic radiation, Radar from aircraft and Airport based radars, mobile phones, VHF UHF HF, Xray machines at crew search, its around us all day.

No more thanks :ok:

Airport body scanners 'could give you cancer', warns expert (http://takarat.com/forums/showthread.php?tid=686)

24th Nov 2010, 09:27
Crews might be subject to a threat of harm to their family.No nail files but what about all the guns on US flights (Air marshals) :ugh:

24th Nov 2010, 14:42
Well, Islamic scholars in America have stated their opposition to the scanners months ago, long before the APA advisement:

Airport body scanners violate Islamic law, Muslims say

Updated 2/12/2010 11:48 AM
By Niraj Warikoo, Detroit Free Press

Saying that body scanners violate Islamic law, Muslim-American groups are supporting a "fatwa" — a religious ruling — that forbids Muslims from going through the scanners at airports.

The Fiqh Council of North America — a body of Islamic scholars — issued a fatwa this week that says going through the airport scanners would violate Islamic rules on modesty.

"It is a violation of clear Islamic teachings that men or women be seen naked by other men and women," reads the fatwa issued Tuesday. "Islam highly emphasizes haya (modesty) and considers it part of faith. The Quran has commanded the believers, both men and women, to cover their private parts."

The decision could complicate efforts to intensify screening of potential terrorists who are Muslim. After the Christmas Day bombing attempt in Detroit by a Muslim suspect from Nigeria, some have called for the use of body scanners at airports to find explosives and other dangerous materials carried by terrorists. Some airports are now in the process of buying and using the body scanners, which show in graphic detail the outlines of a person's body.

But Muslim groups say the scanners go against their religion...

Airport body scanners violate Islamic law, Muslims say - USATODAY.com (http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/2010-02-11-airport-scanners-muslims_N.htm)

24th Nov 2010, 16:47
Al-Qaeda vows to continue parcel bomb attacks - Yahoo! News (http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20101121/ts_afp/usattacksyemenqaedaclaim)

"To bring down American we do not need to strike big," the network [Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsular] said in an English-language magazine called Inspire, which was monitored Saturday by the US-based Intelcenter.

"In such an environment of security phobia that is sweeping America, it is more feasible to stage smaller attacks that involve less players and less time to launch and thus we may circumvent the security barriers America worked so hard to erect," Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsular said.

"This strategy of attacking the enemy with smaller, but more frequent operations is what some may refer to as the strategy of a thousand cuts. The aim is to bleed the enemy to death."

"We are laying out for our enemies our plan in advance because... our objective is not maximum kill but to cause a hemorrhage in the aviation industry, an industry that is so vital for trade and transportation between the US and Europe."

The AQAP writer notes that the entire printer-ink bomb plot cost them USD4,200. Any estimates on what it's cost us?

Well, some of us always said it was going to be a long war....

24th Nov 2010, 17:45
the only reason the enemy is having fun with us is that we are too nice...I'll just say that Curtis LeMay was right. bomb them till their all dead.

that' s it.

25th Nov 2010, 09:53
From BALPA's website:

The British Airline Pilots' Association (BALPA) today hailed the 'commonsense' of the United States' Transport Security Authority which has declared that airline pilots need not go through body scanners set up in the USA and that a new system will be introduced that allows free movement of US pilots inside the States based on pre-checks.

Jim McAuslan, BALPA General Secretary, said: 'This is a real victory for commonsense. Both BALPA and pilots in the USA have been pressing their governments to exclude professional pilots from body scanning and it is good to see the US Government has accepted our arguments.

'I can tell our Government that this news has added to British pilots'
frustrations at the increasingly bureaucratic, inefficient and stress-inducing UK security regime which continues to see the pilot as a security threat rather than part of the solution.

'On top of this the UK Government has failed to carry out independent verification of the cumulative impact of these machines and how individuals going through ionising scanners can keep count of their personal cumulative exposure.

'Although body scanners have not yet been installed at crew security lines in the UK they are increasingly being rolled out in passenger security areas, which British pilots also regularly use. The Government's policy is that if anyone refuses to use these scanners they will be told they cannot fly. In the US an alternative 'pat down' is available, albeit this is being applied in an unacceptably intrusive way that many US citizens say is like "groping".

'If the UK ploughs ahead with its plans it is going to face similar levels of civil resistance as the US administration faced. The UK should learn.
The Government should call a halt on any further development until independent health and safety checks have been done and people can be reassured that there is no health risk.

'And the Government should come to an urgent agreement for UK pilots flying into the US to be on the same footing as our US cousins.

'Unless the British Government gets a grip on this then they will face a strong reaction that could see UK aviation grind to a halt.

'The Allied
Pilots Association (APA) in the US advised pilots to refuse to go through scanners and that seemed to get their Government's attention.

'The fact is that airline pilots are the last line of defence in aviation security and are part of the solution, not part of the problem. We know that, the public sees that, and our administrators in the UK have got to get real.'

27th Nov 2010, 04:20
Fact 1 Nobody knows how much radiation is too much.
Fact 2 Low frequency is extremely dangerous because it hits and dissipation of the energy into surface cells. Back-scatter is usually created diagnostic beam is partially absorbed to make an image. ( Ever noticed that all doctors wear glasses in the cath lab? They are lead glasses and they are to protect their eyes from prolonged exposure They wear lead aprons too, but the primary beam is well controlled the problem is the low energy back-scatter, that is generated from the subject. Exposure to it is dangerous)
Fact 3 They eyes are very susceptible to ionizing radiation especially back-scatter because it dissipates into rapidly multiplying cells. Cells like the cornea
Fact 4 If it can see through a solid object it has to be ionizing! (and prolonged exposure IR is just as devastating to vision) !

Stay out of the scanners or get ready to find the ground with a white cane if you live!!

28th Nov 2010, 16:28
The definition of terrorism is: a policy or act intended to intimidate or cause terror, usually for the furtherance of ideological goals
Terror refers to fear: an emtional response to threats and danger.

By carrying out these relatively small acts, like the shoebomber, the diaper one they have instagated terror and terrorism.

The emotional response of the analy challenged, oops government is to install full bodyscanners. Whilst it is an emotional response no proper research has been conducted and all is justified.

If x-ray is carried out on aircraft during maintenance no access is permitted to the hangar for NDT staff. some of the hangars easily fit 4 or 5 B747's wingtip to wingtip, yet it is not permitted on grounds of radiation control. Granted, they x-ray metal parts and it requires a higher dosage, but in relative terms I would be tempted to think the radiotion inside the cubicle is higher than in the enormous hangar..........

Tay Cough
29th Nov 2010, 12:21
If there are any BALPA members who have concerns over the issue of backscatter scanners, you want to get yourself to the General Members section of the BALPA Forum and dig in.:ok:

2nd Dec 2010, 02:45
There must be some point when people just say "enough", and refuse to take it any more.

Yup. About five years ago, when the Brits came up with the no-hand-luggage idea, and the subsequent so-called "liquids ban".

About two weeks after that was the last time I let myself be subject to those illegal practices. What I do, as I approach the "security" (ha!) checkpoint, I advise whoever is there that they should summon a police officer, so he can conduct a search of my person and belongings, if he deems necessary, and that they have exactly one minute to comply, else I'll just walk through with all the consequences that entails for them (theoretically! in practise it doesn't happen).

Depending on which airport and where in Europe you are, the police may take shorter or longer, but if I see they have called with no delay, I'm happy to wait for a reasonable amount of time.

When the police officer arrives I explain that I refuse to allow a search to be carried out on my person by anyone without police powers, as that would be against the law, and that if they wish, they may for reasons of practicality wish to conduct a search themselves. The only times I have had a problem so far have been in CDG and ORY. In the former the rather young officer at first did not believe he should be doing this himself (art. 62 of the French civil aviation code refers, to the extent that this is regulated at all), so it took a call to his superiors to convince him (after I threatened to call them myself).

At Orly, it was similar, except the officer in charge said he did not want to do it in case everybody started asking. I then informed him that in that case I would proceed to the gate anyway, unless he arrested me--his response was, I quote:

"Well, I can't arrest you."
"??? -- Why not?" Says I. I wasn't expecting this.
"Because no offence is being committed. The security checks are a private arrangement between the airport operator and the airlines, not a penal matter, and therefore there are no grounds for an arrest."
I guess that explained why he didn't want to get involved in the first place :ugh:
In any event, as he was saying this, Starky and a female Hutch appeared, they asked the rather obvious question of whether I was carrying anything that I did not wish or was not supposed to be carrying (no I wasn't), then had a cursory look in my bag, checked my passport ("you seem to travel a lot" they said. No scheiße :rolleyes:), and I was off on my way.

Once I was particularly frustrated so I just walked right through the whole circus and into the gates area (at CDG again). Now, as I'm sure you know, the airport operator calls this a "breach of security" (as if) and the procedure is to evacuate the terminal, conduct a search, etc., etc. Did any of that happen? My arse it did, though I would have loved to see it.

What did happen was that about five minutes latter I was approached by police who asked me to come with them. I quickly pointed out that I refused to go unless under arrest, but the guy said he was having a shit day already and would I please just come and not make life more difficult for him--he sounded honest so I followed him. They did a search, asked me why (why not?), one of the "security" women came to greet me ("I know you," she said, "you did the same a couple weeks ago!" at which point the flic shook his head), and then they let me go, wishing to never see me again. As we exchanged greetings, I asked him what about the "procedure" (evacuation, etc.), he said that was the airport's problem not the police's and sensibly asked "you didn't leave anything back there, did you?" So much for all the FUD they feed you :cool:

So there you go. It's simple enough to just say no. I get to keep my dignity, my principles, and most important, it's all for the greater good anyway.

One last aside regarding all those who go saying the terrorists this and the terrorists that... have you actually met any of them? I have, in social and non-social occasions (one non-social occasion being altogether unpleasant), and still I have vastly more respect for those people than I have for anyone who even remotely supports this ongoing idiocy, be it by commission or by omission.

Hope this helps. I would really like to see all this charade taken to the courts--I'm embarrassed to say I haven't yet found the time and dedication to do it myself, but I hope to have the opportunity one day.