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Ottawa Perspective: Yesterday’s Rules

Dead or alive, Osama bin Laden has struck an enduring blow at western society.


October 2, 2007
By Ken Pole

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Dead or alive, Osama bin Laden has struck an enduring blow at western
society. I'm not referring to what's conveniently labelled ‘9/11’, but
to the global fallout that has beset aviation. It's a pervasive and
corrosive ash of uncertainty, fear and paranoia that is reflected
graphically in a report by the Senate's national security and defence
committee.

Its
premise in examining “the myth of security at Canada's airports” was
twofold: whether we get good value for the nearly $500 million a year
we pay through our $12 trip tax (now $7) and whether the ostensibly
tighter security has made travel any safer. The answer is resoundingly
negative, providing food for thought even if much of it is difficult
for many to swallow.

With the front door, i.e. the passenger
entry, apparently closed, the committee spent more than a year hearing
testimony and reading submissions about the back and side doors. As
Chuck Wilmink, formerly with Canadian Airlines corporate security, told
them: “The current status of airport security is not very good. I could
take anyone in this room in two minutes and train you on how to put a
bomb on an airplane.”


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