Sunday 13 August 2006

Not leaving on a jet plane soon

A place off the itinerary

The news is full of passenger woes of not being able to board flights or endless queues at British airports.

A foiled terrorist plot, either intended or imagined, whichever the case, it is causing serious disruption to our way of life and freedoms as restrictions are imposed on the so many who are trying to visit the land of the free – the United States of America.

Somehow, we may never know if these plots would ever have been carried out, but the list of items that have been banned from cabin luggage would make travellers look like refugees who have just escaped a situation with only their shirts off their backs.

No handbags, no glass cases, no liquid medication, baby milk should be tasted by passenger, no contact lens solution, free-range tampons – what is this world coming to?

We soon might not be able to pass urine on the plane as the combination of urine and disinfectants might release noxious fumes.

My advice – cut America out of your itinerary, let them visit instead; then cut air travel out, if you can avoid it. However, this is also a British problem, air travel is no more looking like the fastest means of travel of you are visiting continental Europe..

The domestic science of explosives

Somehow, the banned stuff can be concocted into some sort of explosive to bring down planes, it all sounds like science fiction, and not to say that Al Qaeda seems to be been accorded a status of scientific genius that can use everyday items to create dangerous stuff.

I did not fully appreciate this craze till I went through Schiphol Airport; all the rubbish bin compartments were open and visible, and this was not for the cleaner to empty the bins but as a response to our fear of terror dressed up as being secure.

We need a rethink about all this terror stuff, name-calling and lumping groups together under an Al-Qaeda banner is getting us nowhere, the more we advocate our freedoms the more we lose our liberties to quests for greater security.

Terror mind games

These terrorists seem to create a stampede without anyone realising if the reaction is real or imagined, obviously, democratic governments are adopting more authoritarian slant to governance all in the name of greater security.

The sooner we begin to review the causes of terror and why people take up such despicable causes, we leave ourselves with false sense of security.

For one, the British government has dismissed comments by Muslim leaders that our foreign policies in certain Middle-East countries leave us vulnerable as facile – well, we ignore that view at our great peril.


Airport checks 'not sustainable'

Why al-Qaeda's real power may be all in the mind

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