Sources: Air marshals missing from almost all flights
By Drew Griffin, Kathleen Johnston and Todd Schwarzschild
March 26, 2008
(CNN) — Of the 28,000 commercial airline flights that take to the skies on
an average day in the United States, fewer than 1 percent are protected by on-board,
armed federal air marshals, a nationwide CNN investigation has found.
That means a terrorist or other criminal bent on taking over an aircraft would
be confronted by a trained air marshal on as few as 280 daily flights, according
to more than a dozen federal air marshals and pilots interviewed by CNN.
The Transportation Security Administration flatly denied those reports.
Greg Alter, assistant special agent in charge of the federal air marshal program,
said the 280 number "grossly understates coverage by an order of magnitude"
and that the number is "four digits," but he would not elaborate.
In a post on its Web site responding to the CNN story, the TSA said it would
not disclose the number of air marshals flying each day so as not to "tip
our hand to terrorists." However, it said, "The actual number of flights
that air marshals cover is thousands per day." Read the full response
The investigation found low numbers even as the TSA in recent months has conducted
tests in which it has been able to smuggle guns and bomb-making materials past
airport security screeners.
The air marshal program began in 1970, after a rash of airline hijackings,
and it was expanded significantly after the terrorist attacks of September 11,
9/11 Commission Report – one year later… By Gregor Holland 911truthmovement.org
One year after the release of the 9/11 Commission Report, serious questions that were raised before and during the Commission proceedings remain unanswered. For many, the Commission Report raised more questions than it answered. Not the least of these has been posed by honorable Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney. McKinney recently questioned Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld and Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Myers “about the four war games that were taking place on September 11 and how they may have impaired our ability to respond to those attacks.” McKinney got a partial answer a week later. In the first on-the-record acknowledgement that there were four war games underway on 9/11/01, Myers told her that all battle positions were manned because of the drills…
“..so it was an easy transition from an exercise into a real world situation. It actually enhanced the response.”
This answer echoed one provided by General Ralph Eberhard during the final 9/11 Commission hearing. The question to Eberhard, posed by Commissioner Roemer, was coerced by hearing attendees who interrupted the hearing, forcing the issue by yelling “What about the war games?” The failure of air defenses to respond on that morning does not support the given answer by Myers and Eberhard.…Continue reading