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Things We Still Don’t Know About Airport Security on 9/11

twin-towers-9-111As Andrew Cochran points out, there’s so much we still don’t know about what happened on 9/11. Time for some of that transparency the Obama administration has promised.

By Andrew Cochran
Counterterrorism Blog

Here is what we still don’t know, over seven years after the 9/11 attacks, about airline and airport security on that day:

1. We don’t know if all of the metal screening machines at the airports involved had been tested and were actually working as designed;

2. We don’t know if the security personnel working on those machines and screen passengers were qualified and properly trained to find barred and dangerous items; and

3. We don’t know how the terrorists made it through the checkpoints with their deadly box-cutters, knives and mace.

All that, and more, was unilaterally designated by the aviation industry defendants as confidential, wrongfully exploiting a protective order issued by a federal judge in 2004, designed only to protect trade secret and competitive information.

The order was entered in lawsuits filed by families of 9/11 victims against certain airlines, security companies and others responsible for airline and airport security (the “aviation defendants”) on that fateful day.

The remaining three families, out of 96 who filed lawsuits, have challenged the defendants’ “confidential trade secrets” designations, claiming that one of their major motivations for filing lawsuits and not going into the no-fault Victims Compensation Fund created by Congress was to ask questions, demand accountability and shed light on the checkpoint failures that allowed 19-for-19 hijackers to board aircrafts with prohibited weapons and hazardous materials.

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