While there are some who believe that terrorists blowing up aircraft in-flight is becoming less and less likely ~ and I don't agree, by the way ~ you can read here about how explosive devices can be/are being surgically implanted into bombers. So, this obviously presents detection problems since there would be no explosive odor for dogs or devices to sniff out, no heat signature to be picked up by thermal imaging devices.
The most likely reason for this new attack method is to get explosives a/o exploders past devices that can detect stuff that goes boom. If bad-guys want to blow up buses or trains or crowds at the mall or "the big game", they can pull that off without having a genius for cloak-and-dagger. Security, or whatever it's being called these days, won't deploy high-speed low-drag detection devices at these locations or in these vehicles because it's not cost effective for them.
And, to add intentional insult to potential injury, we read here about the many sensitive souls who make up Islam who're trying to blithely bullshit us into falling for the canard that Muslims simply can't be required, expected, or even asked politely to submit to the humiliation of a body scan because the teachings of the "religion of peace" doesn't permit it. Everybody else in the freakin' world can be scanned and probed and bent over and sodomized by TSA but the cry-babies who started the whole mess in the first place demand exemption from any and every kind of search or inquiry.
Staying right on track, and offering more evidence that we are not well protected by our governments, a report from the DEBKAfile on Ethiopian Airlines flight 409 tells us: More confirmation of a terrorist hand behind the attack is found in the deep involvement of US intelligence, including the FBI, in the investigation of the disaster from the first moment. The US survey ship Ocean Alert was dispatched to the area of the crash and dropped a miniature submarine into the depths to retrieve fragments of the airliner from the seabed. A US intelligence and naval headquarters was set up at Beirut harbor to coordinate the salvage of the plane from the sea. Treating the crash as terror-related, Washington ordered the plane to be reconstructed from recovered fragments to establish the site of the explosion and its cause. US officials are also shy of discussing the case in public and admitting the crash was caused by an act of terror. It took place on January 25, shortly after President Barack Obama said “Al-Qaeda has been weakened."
Take a look here for the full story on how governmental "leaders" on both sides of the ocean continue to lie to all of us ~ if only by omission ~ about whether this or that horrific act was or was not terrorism.
Alrightythen; let's explore how some poor, miserable wretch of a Muslim terrorist ~ forgive the quadruple redundancy ~ managed to create, hide and then detonate a bomb on an airplane. Because if he did it that easily, others can do so as well.
Because the bomb was detonated right after take-off, the device was probably not in pieces, carried by different people onto the plane and assembled while in flight. This attack suggests one bomber w/intact bomb alone on the plane or one bomber and one handler with a remote detonator, probably a cellphone. The easiest way to do this is to buy a pair of disposable cell phones and program one to only ring when the other one calls it, attach a detonator to the ringer wire and put the detonator into the high explosive.
The detonator on IEDs carried by these type of bombers, who have planes as their targets, would probably be one of those depicted in the diagrams below. It would be inserted into the explosive with the fuse wire leads protruding from the body cavity through the sutured incision. Or, if the device was properly packaged and protected, it could be placed in the rectum or vagina with wires protruding out an appropriate length. with a pencil detonator: simple pager watch sends the det signal to the pencil detonator and there you have it. Boom! Solid pack electric blasting caps use a thin bridgewire in direct contact with the primary explosive, which is heated by electric current and causes the detonation of the primary explosive. That primary explosive then detonates a larger charge of secondary explosive.
The Solid Pack Electric Type Blasting Cap diagram above depicts a device used for two-step detonations, when the primary explosive has enough power to detonate the output explosive. The Match or Fusehead Electric Type Blasting Cap diagram above depicts a device used when three-step detonations are necessary; usually when the available pyrotechnic ignition mix is not powerful enough to detonate the output explosive, so a booster charge of primary explosive is used as a connection between the other two charges. It's difficult to tell the difference between the two caps.
Close-up of home-made electric match. This end goes in the explosive charge.
The shroud protects the bridgewire connection, it can be pulled back out of the way so the Pyrogen ~ made of stable high explosive such as a pellet of tetryl or RDX ~ can be attached to the main explosive charge. Lead wires connect with the battery array. The passing current heats the wire until it melts. Subsequently, there is a shock wave created in the the Pyrogen, which ignites the main charge of unstable high explosive such as PETN. It's a lot more complicated than that, but that's the basic set-up. Another way of showing it in the diagram below.
Home-made electric matches. This is the end that goes into the larger, less stable charge. It makes a little boom which creates the big BOOM.
This is a photo of an I.E.D - Improvised Electric Delay - Clock, Battery, Blasting cap. Found it at this blog with a couple other cool pictures. Kinda pretty, eh?
The fuse wire leads would be attached to battery arrays which might look like the ones below or the kind we see and use every day. Whatever the package looks like, the wires attached to the batteries would need to be connected to the wires coming out of the body, which go to the bomb inside the body. Once the wires are connected, the electrical charge quickly heats the detonator, which explodes, and that small explosion sets off the larger charge. So, since electricity starts moving as soon as all the wires are connected, there will probably be some sort of switch attached to the battery array.
Below: switches you may see attached to the battery array.
We can see here that terrorists are trying to figure out ways to defeat security at airports, so we have to figure out our own ways to add layers of protection to what's already in place. HUMINT ~ human intelligence ~ is always the best intel, so let's see how we can provide it to those who are supposed to be the Pros from Dover.
So, what are we going to be looking for and where and when?
In this story we can see that some Muslim doctors trained in the UK are returning to hell-holes from whence they came, with proper training and improper intent to surgically implant bombs in women. From there, it's not illogical to extrapolate that other doctors ~ in or out of the UK ~ with surgical training and jihadi intent would be just as willing to implant a bomb in the tummy of some other willing or unwilling jihadi, male or female. So, we'll be looking for both men and women.
Though the brothers will seal the bomb package in such a way that body fluids can't leak in and degrade it, they won't want to take chances that some freak accident ~ like the bomber falling down stairs or getting hit by a car or beat up in a bar fight ~ will disable the device somehow. So they will try to get the bomber deployed to his or her target as soon as they are healed up sufficiently.
Women with breast implants don't need a lot of time to heal ~ I'm guessing here ~ so, after surgery, they would be deployed more quickly than a man with a bomb behind his belly-button. Either way, terrorists are not going to wait until the breast or gut bomber is all healed up and feeling no pain. They might wait until no bandages are necessary to absorb blood or other seepage from the sutures so as to not attract suspicion from nosy guards or inspectors... or fellow-travelers waiting in the boarding area, for that matter. The brothers and sisters don't need to heal to the point they can play golf or hockey again ~ maybe a little piano ~ they just need to be able to move around like someone would do around the house ~ or a stifling, nasty little mud hut, as the case may be.
Someone with wounds that are a still a bit tender might be over-sensitive to being bumped into, or sit down a/o stand up with what appears to be some pain. If you look here you can find a list of the risks of surgery when done under ideal circumstances in a hospital. While there is some chance that a real-live doctor in a real-live hospital would do the surgical implant of explosives, including the necessary detonator and wires, it's not improbable that one of the brothers, the one with the least shaky hands, would slice a incision into one of the other brothers and then slide an IED into the abdomen, setting it close to the surface, not nestled in the intestines, because they would want to keep as little tissue as possible between the detonator/IED inside and the detonation signal trying to find it ~ talking about a cell phone detonator here. If the detonator is electrical, sent by a battery as shown above, the charge can be placed further into the abdominal cavity because the detonation is caused by an electrical charge sent by wire, not by radio waves.
Most contaminated wounds become infected 24 to 72 hours after the initial incision. Signs of wound infection that you might see in an airport boarding area or plane are:
- Pus or cloudy fluid draining fom the wound. It may be seen in soiled clothing a/o bandages on the person or in lavatories and may have an odd color or a bad smell.
- Sweaty fever.
- Obvious positioning of oneself to protect the wound from being touched or turned in a way that causes pain or damage to the package inside the body.
In the boarding area, if a man or woman appears to have some of these symptoms, look to see if he or she is with a man who appears to be offering encouragement, but not in a very tender fashion, more insistent than gentle. They may be speaking a foreign language. In this scenario, the one in pain is probably the mule ~ carries the bomb inside him or her ~ and the other one is the handler, carrying the remote detonator ~ either a cell phone or a pager-watch. The mule might not be a willing participant, some of his family might be held hostage against his completion of this mission. In such a case, he may not only appear ill, but also sad. Unwilling bombers ~ men or women ~ wearing devices meant to be detonated by a handler, will most likely be quiet, sweaty, muttering prayers, appear to need help from the boarding area to their seats, etc. But, when these folks ~ the ill and the well ~ get on the plane, they probably won't sit together, though they will most likely sit across from one another on the same row so the one with the remote detonator, who will actually set off the device at the appropriate time ~ which in this case is probably less than a minute after take-off ~ can keep an eye on his package... the mule.
So you'd better have a plan, eh? See this previous post for more detail on what can be clues to finding bombers. At the boarding gate, do you see someone who appears to be in pain from a wound, as discussed above, who also has a laptop computer battery or two in his possession... but no laptop with him? Or an array of batteries such as depicted above. While it might not be the best indicator, be looking for someone who's wearing two watches, maybe two on one arm, maybe one on each ~ one for keeping time and the other for detonating a bomb. Most people are right-handed and in this case would want to be sure they made the correct entries into their pager watch so what you'll most likely see is two watches on the left arm, digital watch closest to the wrist
As the plane lifts from the runway, look for someone who fetches a bag from under his or her seat and then begins to take out what appear to be oblong blocks of something with wires attached ~ batteries with wire leads ~ to connect to the bomb he or she is bearing. To do this, he or she will have to move some of his or her clothing in order to attach the battery wires to the bomb wires. He or she might go to the lavatory ~ and this lavatory trip is much more likely in a detonation just before landing scenario ~ to connect the wires but have the switch positioned in such a way that they can get to it easily once they return to their seat. If I see some sweaty guy near me pull a bag from beneath the seat in front of him as soon as the plane wheels leave asphalt and then he starts opening/un-tucking his shirt, I'm taking the bag and throwing it up toward the front of the cabin. Why? Because any second terrorist on-board will most likely be sitting behind the guy with the bomb and throwing it forward keeps it away from that second terrorist longer. If I throw that bag and see some guy struggling up that aisle to get it, I'm yelling, Get that guy, Don't let him get the bag.
Another thing to be looking for is a man who might take out a cellphone or Blackberry-type device and begin to push buttons on it once the AC leaves the ground. At that point, assuming this a bombing scenario, the only thing he has to do is either push the call button and the bomb on his buddy across the aisle goes boom. Or he might push a couple buttons on one of his watches and then start muttering a prayer in a foreign language... or one of my favorite mantras: Allah-hu Akbar. Did he just send a signal to a timer attached to a bomb inside that sick lookin' fella over there and we'll all be pink mist in about a minute? I don't know. I do know it's against FAA regs for anyone to be fiddling with electronic devices until the Captain says otherwise and there have been several probes recently where Arab-looking men used cellphones and other electronic devices at take-off or landing, just to see what crew and passengers will do in reaction.
While telling a flight attendant about some such scoff-law is a right thing to do, in a real scenario it will probably not be enough: you're going to have to get the phone from that clown. So, what to do? First, you should have more than just one suspicion before taking action in one of these situations. Remember, you might end up looking in the eyes of a jury, and not a single one of them was there with you that day when you were so sure you acted as a reasonable man would act. As always, you make your decisions, not me.
Nothing I've written here should be seen as me directing you to do anything at anytime against anyone.
If you choose to act, use reasonable force to separate what might be bomb components from people and devices that might make anyone a/o any thing explode. Reasonable force means that you used only that force necessary to make the other person stop his or her dangerous action. It might mean that you take a bag from a man or woman by choking him or her quickly and with violence of action choking from the rear while someone else ~ a good-guy ~ grabs the bag. It could be that you keep a man from remote detonating a bomb with his Blackberry by shoving your elbow up into his windpipe as hard as you can, and keeping it there while you simultaneously twist the phone out of his hands ~ and then once you have it be sure that you do not push any of the buttons on it but turn it over to police on the ground. It might mean you punch him in the nose and make it bleed real bad so he can't see his watch or phone and then snatch it from him before he can push the right buttons in the right sequence, and then fight him until someone helps you subdue the man ~ and there's no guarantee of that ~ and then disable his watch by taking the battery out or cooking it in the AC microwave.
Don't touch suspected cell phone detonators. Cover them where they lay and show the cops were it is when they come aboard later.
I don't know what's going to happen. I do know terrorists are going to keep trying to get to planes. It's not that they want their fifteen minutes of fame, or media coverage so they can get their grievances out in the public and some of their buddies can be released from some jail in BFE.
They're going to keep trying because they want to kill you.
Update: Maybe everybody knew this but me, but if you slip your fingernail under the bottom edge of a newer model Boeing airplane LAVATORY door sign and flip it up, you will find a sliding latch, which can unlock the door if it's locked from the inside.
To answer the question posed below by Redacted: Because you can't tell how a cell phone detonator might be set just by looking at it.
There are two ways to set off a bomb by electric match: 1) Push the Arm button then push the Det button, and then boom, or 2) push the Det button and then boom. Usually those buttons are positive, meaning you can't activate them accidentally, you have to push them on purpose.
But, a cell phone may be set to send a det signal with one push of one of multiple buttons and pretty much any of the numbers can be accidentally pushed, e.g. the "pocket dial". Plus, if there was a sequence of numbers that needed to be entered to send the det signal, you wouldn't know where the button-man was in that process... maybe there was just one left to push and maybe it was any button he could get to.
Too many variables. It's best to leave it where it comes to rest ~ as long as the bad-guys can't get to it ~ and put a bowl over it, lest something fall on it. If the bad-guy(s) might try to get to it, move the bad-guys and "secure" them.