The Transportation Security Administration is announcing the implementation of "enhanced screening" for personnel coming in from nations that have been designated as terrorist havens. I wonder if "enhanced interrogation" comes with the package? Could they have picked a worse term?
Because effective aviation security must begin beyond our borders, and as a result of extraordinary cooperation from our global aviation partners, TSA is mandating that every individual flying into the U.S. from anywhere in the world traveling from or through nations that are state sponsors of terrorism or other countries of interest will be required to go through enhanced screening. The directive also increases the use of enhanced screening technologies and mandates threat-based and random screening for passengers on U.S. bound international flights.
File this under "things that would not have stopped Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab from flying from Nigeria through Amsterdam to the United States." Nor would it have stopped the feared "liquid bombers" from the United Kingdom. And it won't stop al Qaeda cells operating in Germany. So exactly how is this security theater meant to protect us? Short answer, it won't. It's just movie drama theater. It will, however, piss off a lot of normal travelers who will decide that flying to America just isn't worth it anymore. It will also cost the airports a great deal of money and slow down security checks even further. So overall, yeah, great news, TSA.
The NY Times has a list of countries who will be affected by this directive.
Citizens of Cuba, Iran, Sudan and Syria, countries that are considered “state sponsors of terrorism,” as well as those of “countries of interest” — including Afghanistan, Algeria, Lebanon, Libya, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and Yemen — will face the special scrutiny, officials said.
But it still won't stop "non-state actors" from flying to America if and when they want.