Thursday, July 07, 2005

"Original" Ideas To Prevent Terrorism

My discussion of overused phrases yesterday, along with the tragic terrorist bombings in London have got me thinking; the Department of Homeland Security and its local counterparts throughout the country need to borrow an overused phrase from Corporate America: "Think outside the box."

See, here's the problem... right after 9/11, the majority of increases in security focused on airports and airplanes. Understandable, but at the same time I would have been shocked if al Quada decided to try another terrorist activity that mirrored the 9/11 attacks. I did see a little bit of increased security on Chicago's el (which had pretty much disappeared by last summer when I moved to Minnesota), and some more barricades around buildings downtown, but otherwise, that was it.

Now, after the attacks on the London Underground and a bus, what are our local security forces doing here in America? Why, they're beefing up security in subways and buses... and that's all that is mentioned.

Don't get me wrong, I do think it is important to learn from past "mistakes" and shore up places where terrorists have been shown to do damage... but shouldn't keeping mass transit safe have been a no-brainer after 9/11? Hell, shouldn't it have been a no-brainer before 9/11 (after the Sarin gas attacks on the Tokyo subway in the 90's)?

It seems our biggest security problem is that we seem to be strictly reactive and we don't "think outside the box."1 What are we doing to seal the borders to prevent an influx of terrorists and the materials they will use? What is being done to keep the ports from allowing terrorist ridden ships from coming to our shores?2 The terrorists have already shown that they have the ability to "think outside the box" in their attacks... shouldn't we counter that by trying to anticipate their next move?

Just my thoughts.

Update: Anthony over at Three Years of Hell... is working over in the UK for the summer and has a good post on his impressions "on the ground" in London. Helps you remember these are real people over there (in case you could have forgotten).

1 This is just my perception, and hopefully Homeland Security is doing more behind the scenes that we don't see... but I can't really comment on what I don't know about.
2I seem to remember this being a point that John Kerry brought up during the presidential debates, and yet I have heard nothing about it since then.


At 8:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We're doing all sorts of things that the government doesn't feel it has to update you on. Do you think we are ignoring the borders and the ports? Are you serious? The media coverage of the upgraded security at airports after 9/11 and on buses and trains after the London attacks is primarily aimed at keeping the public calm and promoting a sense of security so that society can function without mass hysteria. You might want to try "thinking outside the box" and realizing that maybe everything our government does to protect us isn't broadcast on the nightly news.


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