PM: UK airports to get perv scanners next week
Who? What? Where?
Gordon Brown today said body scanners will be introduced in UK airports next week.
The PM didn't say which airports or who will be scanned.
The Home Secretary has suggested travellers will be selected for scanning by profiling techniques, prompting concerns from the human rights watchdog.
A spokeswoman for the largest airport operator BAA maintained its line, held since soon after the failed Christmas day bombing, that it plans to introduce scanners at Heathrow but could not say when or discuss plans at other airports.
A body scanner has been in trials at Manchester Airport since October.
We've contacted the Department of Transport for clarification of the PM's announcement today and will update you as soon as it responds.
The current generation of scanners - whether using backscatter X-rays or millimetre waves - typically produce a ghostly image of a subject's naked body in an attempt to reveal concealed weapons or contraband. Doubts have been raised over whether they would have detected Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab's device concealed in his underwear.
Brown also said the government is sponsoring "research on the most sophisticated devices capable of identifying potential explosives anywhere on the body", an apparent reference to terahertz technology, which we wrote about last week.
Gordon Brown's speech is here. ®
Inevitable and unstoppable
"...The Home Secretary has suggested travellers will be selected for scanning by profiling techniques..."
Anyone else find that sentence at all chilling?
So this is where we've got to. We should not be surprised. At the same time our Home Secretary is saying he'll merrily disregard the European Court of Human Rights ruling that Section 44 is illegal in the UK, having these scanners installed was always going to go ahead without the need for undue consultation or hesitation. You don't build a surveillance nation by waiting for everyone to agree to it.
FFS, when exactly is the next General Election? It honestly cannot come a day too soon. It's like this bunch of criminals are trying to inflict as much damage on our civil freedoms as they can before the day finally comes they get booted out of office.
Pathetic waste of time
All the demonstrations of this machinery show people hiding knives or guns, these are easily detected by much less expensive scanners which are already in place.
It's already been admitted that these new scanners don't detect things like the partial bomb the would be Chistmas bomber had strapped to his leg.
This is the government paying lip service to keep people calm and prevent panic, it's nothing more than this. It's also a complete waste of money, a lot of money.
The thing that people seem to be missing is that airport security already works. Nobody is managing to get effective bombs onto planes as it is. The 'Christmas Day Bomber' only managed to smuggle aboard a device that set him on fire a bit.
I wish we could stop wasting so much time and money on this shit.