WASHINGTON - Airport security officers around the nation have been alerted by federal officials to look out for terrorists practicing to carry explosive components onto aircraft, based on four curious seizures at airports since last September.
The unclassified alert was distributed on July 20 by the Transportation Security Administration to federal air marshals, its own transportation security officers and other law enforcement agencies.
The seizures at airports in San Diego, Milwaukee, Houston and Baltimore included “wires, switches, pipes or tubes, cell phone components and dense clay-like substances,” including block cheese, the bulletin said. “The unusual nature and increase in number of these improvised items raise concern.”
Security officers were urged to keep an eye out for “ordinary items that look like improvised explosive device components.”
Oh crap, that's me.
A week ago Saturday it was Play-Doh I'd picked up on the way to the airport for my niece's birthday. The TSA screeners bitched at me for holding up the line and let me through with four 5-oz tubs of the stuff (after the let the Arab guy ahead of me through with two 6-oz bottles of what he claimed was perfume, not that they opened them to check...).
Contrast to the time I tried to take Iowa chops (best pork on the planet!) out to New England. They only let me through after I explained what they were, they unwrapped the whole package to see the frozen meat, and they swapped the package for explosives. Apparently they were out stoned the day it was explained that touching pork before or during your martyrdom disqualifies you for Paradise with Allah. Or, just as likely, the TSA doesn't cover that during employee training.
I need a bacon necklace for travel.
UPDATE 9:08 a.m.:
Heard on the radio the "Milwaukee incident" was someone carrying wires in a block of cheese on June 4. This only makes me MORE disturbed that people were being passed through security with large quantities of liquids in July...