I was pointed to a great article today entitled “The Things He Carried” in The Atlantic, where the author details the ease at smuggling liquids and other prohibited items through security checkpoints, using forged documents, and generally doing all the things the security hassles are supposed to prevent. The following quote sums things up pretty well:
“The whole system is designed to catch stupid terrorists” [Bruce] Schneier told me… “Counterterrorism in the airport is a show designed to make people feel better,” he said. “Only two things have made flying safer: the reinforcement of cockpit doors, and the fact that passengers know now to resist hijackers.” This assumes, of course, that al-Qaeda will target airplanes for hijacking, or target aviation at all. “We defend against what the terrorists did last week,” Schneier said. He believes that the country would be just as safe as it is today if airport security were rolled back to pre-9/11 levels. “Spend the rest of your money on intelligence, investigations, and emergency response.”
It’d be funny if it weren’t so sad – read the rest of the article for even more anger-inducement.