Airport Security essay

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There have been different opinions on whether the security at airports works or not. But according to me, it does work, sparing a few numbered incidents. People, who argue against this, forget the numerous instances where unpleasant situations have been avoided due to the security system at the airports.

A few disgruntled and rebellious outfits around the globe have been trying to terrorize the nations by aiming their guns at the airports. But only a few have succeeded (partially) in their atrocious motives. Securities at airports have since been very tight but the 9/11 attacks brought before us some very inconsiderate facts. An overall reality that came to light was that the security at the airports was not tight enough. What does that mean? It means that the security measures employed at that airport were not foolproof (though they were supposed to be). In fact the terrorist outfits have lately become so witty and technology savvy that they have counter measures to avoid being detected. David Rose, while writing for Mail Online argues that, “Unless you adopt an approach that actually works, whatever technology you care to use will make little difference. The terrorists will always be one step ahead.” (Rose, 2010). Joe Pappalardo was also of the same opinion when he said, “This endlessly reactive posture runs afoul of a basic strategic military tenet: A smart enemy will adapt.” (Pappalardo, 2010a). The hijackers of 9/11 were probably equipped with simple box cutters (knowing that plastic items don’t get highlighted in the security scanners) and with these simple ‘weapons’ they took control of four jet planes.

After the 9/11 attacks, airports became even more alert and devised a full body scanner. Though it is an effective measure it takes too much of time for each scanning. Passengers have to go through the hassle of waiting in long queues. But as far as the security is not compromised, passengers should understand and co-operate. Bruce Schneier argues that “Recent developments in screening device technology have increased the ability to detect these threats; however, the average amount of time it takes to screen a passenger still remains a concern.” (Schneier, 2011). Joe Pappalardo is of the same view when he argues that “The recent adoption of full-body scans at airport checkpoints has sparkled an intense debate pitting national security measures against issues of personal privacy.” (Pappalardo, 2010b). Even the court has upheld the use of body scanners at the airports. Jonathan Ernst, while reporting for Reuters wrote, “The court agreed that the deployment of the scanners, which allow screeners to see under a traveler’s clothes in a bid to detect hidden explosives, was significant enough that the TSA should have sought public input.” (Ernst, 2011)

Nowadays the security system has been so alert and effective that by the time a passenger reaches the airport, the officials have his or her complete details. Aussie Dave, while commenting on how effective airport security looks, said “Before you even enter the terminal, you’ve been through three rings of security. The minute you buy your ticket, your name is sent to Israeli intelligence and to Interpol, so they know quite a bit about you before you even get to the airport.” (Dave, 2010)

The points that we have discussed above, are related to the people entering through the gates. But what if someone tries to climb a wall or fence or even tries to drive a vehicle (with a bomb) into the susceptible quarters of the airport? Jeff Tyson and Ed Grabianowski demonstrate their concern, “You know that once you get inside the airport, you will have to pass through metal detectors, bomb-sniffing dogs, and possibly a search of your clothes and luggage. How could you bypass all of those security measures?” (Tyson et al). Some of the counter measures taken are – tall fencing all around the airport, regular patrolling, regular scanning of the complete premises, extra fencing for sensitive areas, large concrete barriers to block large vehicles, etc.

So in my opinion, it makes sense if I say that airport security does work. And in days to come, hopefully we shall have foolproof system of security for our airports to tackle such extremists.

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