Letter of the Day | Anti-terrorism measures critical for Caribbean
The EDITOR, Sir:
Most European cities and some in the US had a terrorist attack over the last decade. Those cities are usually on high alert, but it happens. Imagine where there is no heightened security and terrorist profiling is not high on the agenda.
We in the Caribbean are somewhat comfortable as it relates to acts of terror, but we should not be. It is best to be prepared for a threat, perceived or real.
Jamaica needs to pay keen attention to all acts of terror, analyse and do our own assessment. Immigration and Customs need to be on point as it relates to detection mechanisms, especially bulk and trace explosive detection.
Canine olfaction alone is not enough. The Ministry of National Security needs to procure an ion mobility spectrometer or a chemiluminescence detector for our international airports.
Intelligence sharing between government agencies and among Caribbean states is paramount for success and capacity building. Security control mechanisms should be robust and undergo random performance and evaluation tests.
I hope that the intelligence community is observing that the use of vehicles to commit acts of terror is now the new norm. Vehicle control at events should be taken very seriously. We all need to have an appreciation of our surroundings and ask ourselves 'what if', apply logical thought processes for solutions and look for subtle inconsistencies.
Simple innovations are used by terrorists. For example, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, referred to as the Underwear Bomber, had plastic explosive embedded in his underwear and got past airport security and boarded an international flight. Terrorists are not ghosts, they move around just like all of us.
Let us all choose detection and deterrence measures to mitigate against a negative event.