Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The Flying Imams: Publicity Stunt, Probe of Defenses, or Desensitizer?

Major Mike

Update, 11/27/2006: The Flying Imams; Tucson Chapter begin their round of protests...the ground work is being laid for creating the "overly sensitive" security gap...see below.

As the details begin to emerge surrounding the “Flying Imams; Tucson Chapter” begin to emerge it occurs to me that their are a couple of possible scenarios in play, and based on what I have read, I find no fault in US Airway’s actions. From the storyand..

In the incident Monday, a passenger reported overhearing the imams criticize the U.S. in Iraq and speaking angrily near the gate.”

According to a police report, a US Airways manager said three of the men had one-way tickets and no checked baggage.”

Some of the men also asked for seat belt extensions even though a flight attendant told police she thought they didn't need them.”

Witnesses, including a number of passengers and US Airways employees, said they heard some of the men making anti-American remarks and chanting “Allah,” first as they boarded the plane and then when led off,…”

While it is possible that these gentlemen were indeed on their way to a conference, maybe the convergence of circumstances above, rightfully attracted the attention of a public desiring to fly safely in the skies to, from, and above this country. Remember "connect the dots?"

I guess I would equate the Airline’s response to their behavior to be about what I would expect from an airline transporting six Americans in Budweiser shirts, and NASCAR jackets, hooting and hollering about the gold ole US of A, in the ticket line in Jeddah as they get ready to board a plane for Iran. The State department might recommend against that behavior, not only to protect the integrity of the flight, but to protect the individuals who would simply exercising their right to free speech. Yeah, you can do it…but it might not be the wisest of choices.

I get CAIR being up in arms, and wrangling every ounce of publicity out of this. I get the MSM fawning all over the virtuous Imams at the expense of the Neanderthal trolls working for US Airways and the TSA. I get US Airways response will be called over-blown, reactionary, and unnecessary. Heck we may even see a good ole protest or two, replete with signs and slogans at a couple of airports.

But what if there were one, possibly more factors at play here? What if the Imams were… a. Directly testing US Airways by pushing an extreme set of circumstances upon them. Circumstances specifically designed to embarrass them and garner empathy from the MSM; and/or… b. They were directly challenging the security system to test for a response, a response they could perhaps compromise under a different, more serious set of circumstances; and/or… c. They were given the exact response they expected, and that they are using the resulting clamor to get the TSA and airlines to become “more sensitive” to Islamic travelers, and eventually creating a gap in our security… a gap created by this “respect” for Islam…a gap that they could possibly leverage for future attacks. Attacks possibly carried out by some disguised as Imams.(?)

I believe, under the combination of circumstances cited above, that the Imams were treated appropriately in the post-9/11 world. I am sure that there are thousands of Muslims that fly each day, who do not call undue attention to themselves, that suffer only the minor inconveniences the rest of us endure in order to enjoy the benefits of air travel. I think that it is wholly appropriate to provide a firm response when a combination of circumstances generates an elevated level of suspicion.

US Airways will likely issue an apology, but it should not be seriously regarded…they did what they should have done, and they owe no one an explanation. We may become more sensitive to Islam, but we’re not going to become blind and stupid to it.


Mr.Atos said...

You can't blame the enemies of humanity for paving the way for their demonic sappers. The Flying Imams are just walking point, tripping the lines of our defenses.

One is ambushed only if one allows oneself to be ambushed. And frankly, we continue to nod off while ostensibly on guard

dueler88 said...

if it was a probe, i'd say it was successful: potential terrorists would be wise to not broadcast their faith.