9/11 Anniversary: What Travelers Should Expect On Sunday
Many Americans traveling this weekend might have one question in their minds: What can I expect at the airport on the 10th anniversary of 9/11?
The TSA seems to be toeing the standard line that there is no specific threat aimed at the anniversary, advising that we be cautious, as always.
In a statement to Huffington Post Travel, the TSA said: "As with any other significant day or peak travel period, passengers may notice an increased security presence at airports and mass transit systems. TSA has many layers of security including behavior detection officers, canine teams and explosives detection equipment, among others both seen and unseen. We ask that passengers be partners in security and report suspicious behavior. "
Yet on Monday, US officials said that terrorists could try to use small aircraft in attacks, though they denied having credible information on a specific threat, CNN reports. The alert stated that al Qaeda was considering using aviation again as a method of attack as it "would have a greater impact than other types of attacks."
Also on Monday, CBS News reported that Americans could expect increased security at airports, mass transit stations, government buildings and borders.
Secretary Napolitano said in a statement through the TSA:
While there is no specific or credible intelligence that al-Qa'ida or its affiliates are plotting attacks in the United States to coincide with the ten year anniversary of 9/11, we remain at a heightened state of vigilance and security measures are in place to detect and prevent plots against the United States should they emerge.
Homeland security is a shared responsibility, and everyone plays an important role in helping to keep our communities safe and secure. We remind our federal, state, local partners, and the public to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious activity to local law enforcement authorities."
On September 2, the State Department issued a travel warning to all Americans "traveling and residing abroad of the continued threat posed by al-Qa'ida and its affiliates. While we have not identified any specific threats from al-Qa’ida affiliates and allies to attack the United States or our interests on the 9/11 anniversary, US citizens should be aware that al-Qa’ida affiliates and allies have demonstrated the intent and capability to carry out attacks against the United States and our interests around the world. In the past, terrorist organizations have on occasion planned their attacks to coincide with significant dates on the calendar."
As for tourist spots — not including the Sept. 11 memorial, which is bound to see heightened security — the Associated Press reports that Mount Rushmore, the White House, the Washington Monument, the Liberty Bell and St. Louis' Gateway Arch still have "airport-like" security nearly a decade after 9/11.