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International Air Cargo Security - Too many cooks are spoiling the broth


In response to what the US Global Air Cargo Advisory Group (GACAG) considers as "recent significant increases in the number of countries seeking to implement new security measures", the members of GACAG have published a press release and a position paper.  The Group is concerned that "a non-uniform approach to the implementation of requirements for new security measures could result in added bureaucracy, additional costs, and unintended nom-compliance in the aviation sector".

A disagreement has broken out between the Transportation Ministry and the air cargo terminal operators in Israel over who will foot the bill for tighter security arrangements now required at Ben Gurion International airport. This is after a team from the US Transportation Security Administration (TSA) recently examined existing procedures in Israel (where security is considered to be high) and outlined a set of new procedures that will be required.  The new TSA procedures entail a higher level of image scanning and more comprehensive inspections. 
The January 2013 issue of the TSA Air Cargo Newsletter states " A major milestone in global air cargo security has been achieved—100% screening of all cargo transported on passenger aircraft within and into the United States. Since the passage of the 9/11 Act in 2007, we have worked long and hard to ensure the mandate was attained without negatively impacting the flow of air commerce. This newsletter can be accessed here
Recent testimony by Michael Mullen, the Executive Director of the Express Association of America before the US House of Representatives Committee on Homeland Security provided a stakeholders view on TSA's efforts to advance risk based security.  It can be reviewed here.
The UK Daily Telegraph reported that Deutsche Bahn will be deploying a fleet of miniature helicopter drones mounted with Thermal imaging cameras to combat graffiti-spraying gangs on the German railway network. The drones which fly at an altitude of 130 m, will be uses at "graffiti hot-spots" such as Berlin, Leipzig, Cologne and Hamburg.  The drones cost 60.000 Euro each, and are part of the growing civilian market for unmanned ariel reconnaissance 
For Sale: Air Force One (not the current one and the auction ended on May 22nd - Winning bid is not known). In the thirty years this aircraft was assigned to the 89th Airlift Wing (Feb 1975-Sep 2005) it flew Presidential missions, Vice President, First Lady, Cabinet Secretaries (Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense, others), Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff, U.S. Senators, U.S. Representatives, Four–Star Generals, Admirals, Foreign Heads of State and other foreign dignitaries. The US General Services Administration (GSA) auction site is here.