Posted by: christinelsmith | July 9, 2009

“Simply Unacceptable”

9-11-lights

Investigators from the Government Accountability Office were able to smuggle bomb making materials past security officers at ten federal buildings. Once they smuggled the bomb making materials into the federal buildings, they went to the bathrooms to assemble the bombs. Once they assembled the bombs, they walked around the federal buildings without confrontation.

Senator Sue Collins, a member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said:

The findings of covert security tests conducted by GAO investigators are stunning and completely unacceptable. In post-9/11 America, I cannot fathom how security breaches of this magnitude were allowed to occur. These security lapses and others show a disturbing pattern by the Federal Protective Service of poor training, lapsed documentation, lax management, inconsistent enforcement of security standards and little rigor.

Senator Joe Lieberman, chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, said:

As we approach the eighth anniversary of 9/11, and 14 years after Oklahoma City, it is simply unacceptable that federal employees working within buildings under FPS’ protection, and the visitors who pass through them, are so utterly exposed to potential attack by terrorists and other enemies (in reference to the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York and Washington and the 1995 bombing of the federal building in Oklahoma City).

The Government Accountability Office said that there were a number of other problems with security. Investigators said that they found a security guard asleep on the job after supposedly taking the painkiller, Percocet. Investigators said that they found a security guard who did not properly x-ray a box possessing handguns or who could not recognize a box possessing handguns. Investigators said that they found a child in a carrier sent through the x-ray machine when a security officer was not watching. Investigators also said that they found a security officer using the computers in a federal building to manage a pornographic website.

art.federal.guard.gao

Bottom line: national security needs improvement. Serious improvement. I’m not sure how the Obama Administration is planning to handle the problem of national security. In my opinion, the security officers for national buildings are not provided with adequate training. I think that the quantity of training and the quality of training need to be increased. I know that the United States of America spends unbelievable amounts of money and resources on national security, especially since 9/11, but maybe even more money and resources need to be spent. More money should be spent in this area and less money should be spent in other areas. We need to prioritize. In my opinion, the only solution for attaining security officers who are passionate about their job and who put their all into their job is to increase their earnings. The job needs to look more appealing to people. We need a higher level of individual becoming security officers for federal buildings. Better background checks would be a start. I also think that more inspections, like the one executed by the Government Accountability Office, need to be performed in the future. On a positive note, although it might seem hypocritical, I honestly give national security officers a great amount of credit for keeping United States of America citizens safe since the attacks. I just think national security measures need to be improved and fast before the United States of America gets taken advantage of.

Take a look at this video: http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/07/07/federal.buildings.security/index.html#cnnSTCVideo

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Responses

  1. I saw an article about this in the Metro news today as well. What I want to know is: should journalists really be reporting about this? Being all over the news, it seems that anyone trying to infiltrate our federal buildings could take advantage of sleeping guards and the lack of safety and get in. Seems kind of scary. I hope they fix the security problems soon! While I think it is inevitable that this story would come out, I would feel a lot safer if the government fixed the problem and THEN reports came out saying “this was a problem. it has now been fixed.”


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