Weekend Update – Homeland Insecurity

Seucre Communications Tech

I was unable to stay awake over here in Germany long enough to hear the live capture of the second Boston bomber suspect.  I had spent most of Friday listening in on the live feed of the Boston police department (thru a link on Twitter that led to a live UStream police scanner feed).  I hit the sack about the time the Boston police were shutting down their city wide dragnet.

There were so many reports of suspicious vehicles that I began to wonder if I was really listening to a live feed from the police in Boston, or if they had just put previously recorded conversations from troops stationed at Iraqi Checkpoints on continuous loop.

But I digress.

As I listened to the stream and followed Twitter hashtage #bostonscanner, it was obvious that the authorities were busy trying to disable the live feed.  I started seeing tweets from people watching the UStream via mobile phone apps that were finding their scanner apps shut-down.  There were tweets from the authorities imploring citizens not to retweet the very same information they were BROADCASTING all over the city (as if the suspect would read a Twitter feed instead of just listening directly to the cops themselves if so inclined?) The direct http feed from UStream that I was listening to on my computer never suffered from such blocking.

So let’s do a quick recap here. Homeland Security has spent billions of US taxpayer dollars in an attempt to “make us safe(r)’. We’ve seen countless stories and photos from every Podunk county sheriffs office in the US sporting military grade machinery and weapons.

GI Joe Action Figures available separately

Buying at all those fancy weapons, and seeing all those highly polished black boots obviously helped loosen the constricted sphincter muscles of a decidedly nervous nation, (while simultaneously enriching the military industrial arms dealers).  But as the incident with the Grand Theft Auto/Boston Bombers scanner feed on UStream shows, our intrepid terrorist warriors overlooked at least one MAJOR GAPING hole in the system.

Can You Hear Me Major Tom?

Somewhere along the way, they forgot to upgrade the police radios of a major American city with police communications gear that can’t be intercepted by any 14 year old kid (or terrorist) with a $99 Radio Shack police scanner.

And to top it all off, this just popped into the picture : Boston Bomber Bin Laden Determined to Attack America.

The Obama administration version of the August 6 PDB

The FBI and Homeland Security apparently STILL don’t have the manpower to track KNOWN targets of HIGH probability of terrorism or enough money to upgrade Boston police radios? We know they spent bazillions of dollars of Homeland Security money on tanks for the tri-county area of Tuscaloosa (and the like), but not properly following the trail of IDENTIFIED THREATS is WAY over the top.  The FBI, like the town of Waco, must have been lulled into a false sense of serenity as they sat in the cool shadow of their local fertilizer plant.

In the old days (before torture was “enhanced interrogation”) there would probably have been some sort of oversight or review set up to examine these failures, but since Obama decided on a FAIL FORWARD strategy of leadership, that seems highly unlikely.


Homegrown Drone

Francis Fukuyama wrote about the off-the-shelf technology available in February 2012 when he said this:

It is extremely easy to build a drone now that can do not just surveillance but can carry rather large payloads.  If you want to see how large some of these planes get, check out this video of a model Airbus A380.

I suppose you could watch the video of the Airbus for inspiration and then go back to the article that Fukuyama wrote for a parts lists and directions.  Maybe that’s where Hamas got the idea?  From Scott Adams (Dilbert):

Hamas has its own drone production facility, or did, until Israel found it. One presumes Hamas will build more. How long will it be before Israel is facing suicide drones that only cost its enemies $100 apiece, fit in the trunk of a car, and can guide themselves to within 20 feet of any target? I’d say five years.

Five years?  Are you serious?  The Iranians are expected to be able to gear up for a nuclear bomb by the weekend whenever it suits the powers that be, but Scott Adams, (commenting on a contemporary story of a disrupted production facility) thinks it will be FIVE years before the hoi polloi are using this tech routinely.  Shorter, much, much shorter.

Probably get so bad in the near future that you will have to give a DNA sample to buy any device that has a GPS chip in it.  Gonna make getting a new cell phone more like a trip to the doctor’s office.  You might want to hang on to that “old” iPhone 4 for awhile.


Aspiring Saudi Artists

Love is blind
While many Americans struggle to pay off their student loans, at least one group of favored foreigners are not belabored with such debt:

American officials agreed to send the two terrorists from Guantanamo to Saudi Arabia where they entered into an “art therapy rehabilitation program” and were set free, according to U.S. and Saudi officials.

Set free. As in “free to return to attacking America”. Heckuva job Bushie. Worst president ever.
BTW Obama, war crimes trials are LONG overdue.


Bending America Over

The shoe bomber ordeal caused a change in security that requires everyone to remove their shoes for security purposes.

The changes being made to keep us safe on airplanes now that the latest crazy Muslim has taken a swipe at us:

Passengers getting off flights from overseas reported being told that they couldn’t get out of their seat for the last hour of their flight. Air Canada also said that during the last hour passengers won’t be allowed access to carry-on baggage or to have any items on their laps.

Whether or not this method of added security is a good thing will no doubt be hotly debated over the coming weeks. From my perspective we’re just inches away from requiring complete strip searches before boarding an airline. I still look pretty good in my Hanes, so I don’t really care.

On the other hand, it’s only a matter of time before some enterprising young terrorist decides to jam their favorite homemade incendiary up their ass, at which point, “alien probe” will take on a whole new connotation.