OTTAWA ó Boasting he could easily slip through one of Canada's new full-body scanners with enough explosives to blow up a jumbo jet, a leading Israeli airport security expert says the federal government has wasted millions of dollars to install "useless" imaging machines at airports across the country.
"I don't know why everybody is running to buy these expensive and useless machines. I can overcome the body scanners with enough explosives to bring down a Boeing 747," Rafi Sela on Thursday told parliamentarians probing the state of aviation safety in Canada.
"That's why we haven't put them in our airport."
Sela, former chief security officer at the Israel Airport Authority and a 30-year veteran in airport security and defence technology, helped design the security apparatus at Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion International Airport.
He told MPs on the House of Commons transport committee via video conference from Kfar Vradim, Israel, that he couldn't reveal how to get past the virtual strip-search scanners, but said he can provide briefings to officials with security clearance.
Sela's pronouncements on the imaging machines come on the heels of the purchase earlier this year of 44 body scanners for major Canadian airports. Each machine cost $250,000 and is being use for secondary screening to detect non-metallic threats, unless the passenger prefers a physical pat-down.
Transport Minister John Baird announced the accelerated rollout of the scanners just days after a Nigerian man attempted to blow up a U.S. airliner on Christmas Day aboard a transatlantic flight.
Baird then announced a hike in the Air Travellers Security Charge, a fee added to the price of airline tickets, to cover the cost of new equipment and other enhanced security measures to be undertaken by the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) over the next five years.
"You are running after the incidents instead of being in front of them," Sela said of Canadian airport security officials.
The head of the transportation security firm AR Challenges, Ltd., also said security decisions aren't being made in Ottawa, but rather in Washington.
"The body scanners are not your decision. That was the (Transportation Security Administration), which Canada is just following. My advice is stop the purchase, but I know they will not do that."
CATSA, the agency in charge of screening airline passengers, declined to provide comment on Sela's analysis of the newly purchased full-body scanners......
I knew from the start these things would be useless.... the whole reason why that loon got on the plane and almost blew it up was because nobody was bothering to adhere to the already existing procedures that protect against these types of things in the first place. So rather then punish the idiots who didn't follow the already existing procedures and enforcing these procedures to be followed accurately, they just added on top of these procedures with a half-assed device that doesn't really solve anything, zaps people with T-ray radiation, and if someone has a bomb on them, it makes more sense to just blow it up inside the airport before you even get checked out.
You'd disable the airport for a few days, cause all sorts of damage and injuries and affect multiple flights rather then just the one one would be flying on..... so no matter how many different precautions one thinks of, there's a multitude of other ways to cause the same level of fear and damage.
One of the things they said these scanners do is blur out your genital area on the screens for "Privacy" I guess.... yet all you'd have to do is put the explosives in your genital region and that's that.
And I never understood why so many people said they'd rather be scanned by t-rays every time they go through security, then have a 5 second pat down..... for one thing, in a pat down, they don't grab and jiggle your junk or have full view of your body, yet in the scans, they get to see all of your body and it's flaws.... which is worse then a pat down.... it's a lazy man's strip search.