New cabin rules on US flights may keep you safe

Daesh is in retreat in Syria and Iraq. In Yemen, the AQAP and the Houthis are fighting a losing battle.

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Published: Mon 20 Mar 2017, 11:00 PM

Last updated: Tue 21 Mar 2017, 9:11 PM

Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and Daesh have been contained on the ground in the Middle East. Daesh is in retreat in Syria and Iraq. In Yemen, the AQAP and the Houthis are fighting a losing battle. But their members on the run could pose a threat in the air, which could affect our travel plans. The US under Donald Trump is keen on enforcing travel bans to keep its borders safe. The question is, how far will they go? Enhanced security is good; it is intended to keep us secure, and alive in these troubled times. Such times are also the perfect setting for suspicious minds to go into overdrive in the Pentagon. Now, let's get serious. It's right to err on the side of caution, and it seems the Trump administration is taking no chances for its own reasons. This abundance of caution follows intelligence warnings that cannot and must not be ignored if one is to take a flight out of Middle East airports to the US, which include flights from the UAE.
Security starts with the individual, who should be aware of his or her surroundings - report unattended objects and people who make you nervous. See something suspicious? Inform the authorities immediately. Don't simply hope it will go away. It applies to every public place and transport facility, not just at airports. The US advisory to airlines in the region not to allow gadgets other than smartphones in airplane in cabins should be taken seriously. Passengers have a responsibility to cooperate with airlines and security officials at airports for their own safety and that of others. As we said earlier, these are troubled times; it's important to know the enemy who does not think twice before harming innocent civilians. Groups like the AQAP and Daesh will do everything they can to spread their brand of terror and sick ideology. This should be prevented, which could mean some inconvenience and more frisking at airports. If the latest intelligence input on disallowing smart devices on flights is right, the inconvenience may well be worth it.

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