I know just a few people in the security industry, but they all seem to agree that the post-9/11/01 airplane rules — e.g., no nail clippers on planes — are more for show than for security. If you think this is altogether too cynical, consider this account of a charted flight bringing Georgia Army National Guard troops to Kuwait (on their way to Iraq):
Speaking to 280 fellow soldiers before they boarded a chartered DC-10 at the start of their marathon flight from Savannah to Kuwait City earlier this week, King was thunderous, blunt and well armed with an M-16 rifle slung over his shoulder.
King, who in civilian life is the Doraville police chief, rolled his eyes at the FAA regulation that requires soldiers â€” all of whom were armed with an arsenal of assault rifles, shotguns and pistols â€” to surrender pocket knives, nose hair scissors and cigarette lighters.
â€œIf you have any of those things,â€ he said, almost apologetically, â€œput them in this box now.â€
It’s amazing — for some reason the rules about guns didn’t apply to them, but the rules against nail clippers did.
In what world does this make sense?
(Hat tip: Bruce Schneier.)