March 7, 2007, - 3:17 pm

Guns on a Plane–Dry Run?: More Evidence We’re Back to 9/10

By Debbie Schlussel
**** UPDATE, 03/08/07: “ZAB” is apparently Zabdiel J. Santiago Balaguer. Balaguer delivered guns and drugs to Puerto Rico several times himself and offered to pay Munoz as much as $5,000 to make the delivery to Puerto Rico. This time, it’s just a small gun-running and drug-runing operation. But at any time, it could be a terrorist operation by those with such motives. A giant, gaping hole in the system. All Airport employees must be screened. As I’ve noted, only airport employees at Atlanta’s Hartsfield airport are screened and that’s only done randomly, not universally. ****
I’ve written several times before about the TSA’s inadequate screening and random checks of airport employees, who usually have badges that get them access to dangerous places (like planes).
The arrest, Tuesday, of Thomas Anthony Munoz, a Comair customer service agent, is more evidence that we aren’t safer. We’re less safe.
Munoz brought 13 handguns, an assault rifle (M-16), and eight bags of marijuana on a flight from Orlando to Puerto Rico. And he wasn’t caught or arrested until his flight made it safely to San Juan. Munoz took money from another Orlando Airport employee–identified only as “ZAB” in a government affidavit–in exchange for getting the guns on the plane. Who is ZAB? Is he a Muslim? Was it a dry run for terrorists? (Watch both frightening video news reports from Orlando’s Local 6 News.) Even if not this time, next time it could be.

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Safe?: Airline Employee Got All of This on a Plane

The passengers on Munoz’s flight were lucky. He didn’t try anything. But what if he was an Arab Muslim employee of Comair or some other airline, with a jihadist disposition and the same all-access badge to get around security?
Munoz’s weapons weren’t caught by the TSA because he DIDN’T GO THROUGH THE TSA SECURITY CHECKPOINT. He didn’t have to, because of his credentials.
The TSA says “no passengers were ever in danger.” Uh-huh. They might have been. As I’ve written before, members of the Detroit Terror Cell worked at Detroit Metropolitan Airport, as did a TSA screener who openly supported Bin Laden (and had been discharged from the Air Force for that very reason).
One day, someone like them will choose to do what Munoz did. And lives will be lost. All airport employees, except federal agents, should be forced to go through passenger screening . . . like the rest of us.

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10 Responses

This (and the feckless TSA/Homeland Insecurity) is why I haven’t flown since 1999 and have no desire to do so again. At least, the Border Patrol was running roadblocks, looking for illegals, in New Mexico last time I drove through there.

Bachbone on March 7, 2007 at 6:07 pm

You combine bad security with bad maintenance scheduling and you another person not willing to take the risk. If anything should be scrapped, it’s Homeland security. Just another layer of bureaucracy we needed to fill. Larger more ineffective government.

warpmine on March 7, 2007 at 6:57 pm

If “ZAB” is “Zach A. Bond,” believe me, they would have given us the name.
However, with CAIR now running the TSA, it’s a very good bet that “ZAB” is a Muslim.
Will the FBI even prosecute Munoz? I doubt it, because then ZAB’s true name might be exposed.
After last month’s dry run on the flight from Paris, where a group of Muslim men simulated a takeover of the plane, makes me wonder when the next strike will occur.

sonomaca on March 7, 2007 at 8:53 pm

“All airport employees, except federal agents, should be forced to go through passenger screening . . . like the rest of us.”
A SMALL PRICE to pay for ensuring passenger safetyƱ

The Canadien on March 7, 2007 at 9:19 pm

As much as I fear the prospect of another terror attack, I feel it will have to happen again to get it through some of our so-called leaders that we ARE at war with these people. The bad part of course is; if 9/11/01 didn’t convince some of our fellow Americans, nothing ever will.

Rich B on March 7, 2007 at 9:26 pm

This latest episode could, in part, help in explaining wht TSA has fought so hard to get union representation. When this type of unacceptable crap happens and they rightfully get fired, they’ll have their spineless union to represent them while they whine their way back into getting re-hired.
If the airlines don’t want to get with the program maybe it’s time for the FAA and DOT to start pulling their commercial carrier licenses and see how fast they scramble.

Gunny on March 8, 2007 at 8:02 am

Guess I was wrong about ZAB. I was temporarily overcome with a severe case of Islamophobia.
Union representation would be a problem, but you certainly can’t say that the TSA is well-run at the moment, so I don’t know how much worse it could be.
Bottom line is that everyone who passes security checkpoints should be screened, including flight crew, airport personnel, food distributors, and TSA personnel.
No one ever talks about infiltration of air marshall corps. It’s a terrorists wet dream.

sonomaca on March 8, 2007 at 10:04 am

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