Threats to Aviation Sector Mounting
On May 19, AlertsUSA issued the following
Flash message to subscriber mobile devices:
5/19 – Attempted hijacking of American Airlines Flight 31, LAX to Honolulu. One indiv subdued after attempting to breach cockpit, aircraft has safely landed.
What You Need To Know
On multiple occasions this week AlertsUSA subscribers were notified via SMS messages to their mobile devices of security threats. Most pressing for this report, subscribers were informed on Friday of an attempted hijacking of American Airlines Flight 31 from Los Angeles International Airport to Honolulu.The suspect, 25-year-old Anil Uskanil, is a Turkish national who attempted to force entry into the cockpit while carrying a laptop computer. He was subdued by a mix of passengers and crew members. In response to the incident, U.S. Pacific Command scrambled two F-22 Raptors attached to the Hawaii Air National Guard to intercept and escort the flight to it’s intended destination of Honolulu International Airport (Note that these flights are not sent to protect the aircraft, but to protect those on the ground should the aircraft depart from it’s normal flight route…).
A strange twist to this story are reports that prior to the flight, the suspect had been arrested and cited for breaching a secure area at Los Angeles International Airport. Despite this arrest, the suspect was still allowed to board the American Airlines flight.
Readers are reminded that on multiple occasions over the last few years, AlertsUSA has been reporting on increasing threats to the aviation sector which have led U.S. authorities to implement the new ban on electronic devices in the cabins of U.S. bound flights from 10 airports across the Middle East, including Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Doha, Cairo and Istanbul, Turkey.
Just last week AlertsUSA informed subscribers these restrictions were likely to be expanded to include ALL U.S. bound flights from ALL international points of departure. And during the preparation of this report, news stories surfaced that Secretary of Homeland Security John Kelly had hinted to lawmakers on Capital Hill that the seriousness of the threat may lead to the ban on electronic devices in the cabin of flights departing the United States for destinations abroad. With that mention, the only angle yet to have a trial balloon sent up is a similar ban on domestic flights.
It should be apparent that the incident at LAX, and the flight to Honolulu, will likely hasten this process.
On May 18, AlertsUSA issued the following
Flash message to subscriber mobile devices:
5/18 – AlertsUSA monitoring possible vehicular attack, NY Times Square. At least 10 injured. Add’l alerts as warranted.
What You Need To Know
On Thursday AlertsUSA subscribers were notified of a possible vehicular attack in Times Square. In this incident, Bronx resident Richard Rojas, 26, intentionally swerved his passenger vehicle over a curb and onto the sidewalk at W. 42nd and 7th Ave. He then mowed down pedestrians for a distance of three blocks before striking security bollards.
At the time of this report’s preparation, at least one person had died and more than 20 others were severely injured in the attack. Although this incident is currently believed to be unrelated to terrorism, the Islamic State celebrated the tragedy and called on lone wolves to carry out similar attacks in New York.
AlertsUSA cautions readers that turmoil in Washington and the intentional jamming up of the system has many people charged with the defense of the nation distracted, which directly translates into increased vulnerability. This domestic turmoil also emboldens our enemies. Now is the time to maintain a mindset of increased situational and security awareness when out and about.
AlertsUSA continues to monitor the overall domestic and international threat environment and will immediately notify service subscribers via SMS messages of new alerts, warnings and advisories or any developments which signal a change the overall threat picture for American citizens as events warrant.
OTHER ALERTS FROM THIS WEEK
NOT DETAILED IN THIS NEWSLETTER ISSUE
5/14 – AlertsUSA monitoring mass shooting incident, Dammarie-lès-Lys (SE Paris). France. At least three casualties, shooter at large. Add’l alerts as warranted.
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World News Roundup
May 20, 2017
Other Developments We Are Following
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Brazil’s President Should Resign
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Meeting of the Minds: How Presidents and Generals Stake out Their Territory
Trump administration sanctions Venezuela Supreme Court
Mysterious Russian Satellites On The Move After Being Idle For One Year
EU eyes start of Brexit negotiations on June 19
UK Police: Assange will be arrested if he leaves Ecuador’s embassy
Trump under pressure to assure NATO allies he has their back
Greece approves more austerity to unlock bailout
The Downfall of Chechnya
The End of the Julian Assange Saga?
Vote counting starts after heavy turnout in Iran election
Video: Could Kabul Fall to the Taliban?
Iraqi factions divided over whether US troops stay
Netanyahu Seeks ‘Dirty Harry’ Moment With Iran as Trump Arrives
US makes proposal to Russia for managing Syria battlefield
WHO: Speed of Yemen cholera outbreak ‘unprecedented’.
Saudi looks to assert regional role with Trump summit
Philippines’ Duterte: China threatened ‘war’ over sea row
North Korea conflict would be tragic on ‘unbelievable scale’
Kim’s missile developers receive a hero’s parade as North Korea
China willing to put S. Korea ties back on track, urges THAAD resolution
Is China unstoppable in the South China Sea?
The Key to North Korea Is Russia
ARM YOURSELF WITH KNOWLEDGE
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Travel Security Update
The U.S. Dept. of State is the authoritative federal source for information on the security situation at travel destinations worldwide. With tensions rapidly increasing in most regions, readers planning on international travel, even to such common destinations as Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean Islands, are strongly encouraged to do a little research on the security situation prior to departure.
Latest USGOV Travel Alerts and Warnings
Israel, W. Bank, Gaza
Additional Sources of Travel Guidance
Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.