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Tom Handy

President Biden Ordered Air Marshalls to Support the Southern Border

President Joe BidenPhoto byimage from Twitter

There are approximately 3,000 air marshalls but they may not be on as many flights as before. Most of them are helping to secure the southern border.

And, you can thank President Joe Biden for that.

As soon as the holiday season started, Biden ordered the Air Marshalls to assist the border where over 2 million migrants have crossed the United States - Mexican border in the past year.

Air Marshalls started deploying on a 21-day cycle and the second wave started from November 16 to December 7 according to the Herald.

Tirrell Stevenson, Executive Assistant Administrator and Director of the Transportation Security Administration's Law Enforcement/Federal Air Marshall Service wrote in an email on November 14:

“As part of a DHS wide effort, (LE/FAMS) has been called upon to redeploy Federal Air Marshals (FAMs) to the Southwest Border.”

In the past, Air Marshalls have helped along the border.

He added:

“A transparent, equitable, and consistent selection process and deployment plan has been developed and agreed to by all LE/FAMS Supervisory Air Marshals in Charge.”
“I recognize the hardships these deployments can have on personal matters, and have directed Law Enforcement/FAMS supervisors, managers, and leadership to take into consideration a range of factors when scheduling individuals for these deployments.”

Londo said there were 150 Air Marshalls along the border and thinks this is reckless.

Hopefully, the diversion of the Air Marshalls doesn’t lead to issues as it has in the past.

  • Under President Nixon on September 1970, three jumbo air jets were hijacked and blown up in Jordan.
  • Under President Ronald Reagan on June 14, 1985, TWA flight 847 was hijacked from Athens.
  • Under President George Bush on September 11, 2001, four jets were hijacked and crashed into the Pentagon, Twin Towers, and a field in Pennsylvania.

Air marshalls averaged between 12 to 33 in these past events but today the number is much larger at 3,000.

But Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is sending hundreds of air marshalls to help out along the southern border.

According to David Londo, the President of the Air Marshal National Council, the deployments leave “a gaping hole in our aviation security.”

He added:

“What is happening during the busiest travel time of the year, a time where the homeland has been attacked twice in the past, the shoe and underwear bombers, is irresponsible and dangerous.”
“As our families board flights this holiday season they will assume the government is doing their job of protecting their flights, but instead the reality is the government is prioritizing the welfare of migrants over their security.”

TSA Director David Pekoske and Stevenson are sending Air Marshals to El Paso, Laredo, McAllen, Texas, San Diego, California, and Yuma, Arizona.

The Air Marshalls are performing “Hospital Watch, Transportation, Law Enforcement Searches, Welfare Checks, and Entry Control.”

Londo wrote:

“The agency documents never describe or mention that these duties have any relation to TSA’s core mission of transportation security. Instead, the duties relate to assisting migrants who have crossed the border into the United States.”

A spokesperson for TSA said:

“The deployment of Federal Air Marshals to execute DHS’ mission at the southwest border on a reimbursable basis is temporary. At the same time, our expert Federal Air Marshal Service workforce continues their important work in transportation security.”

Representative Van Drew R-NJ said:

“Instead of having just one problem, now we have a few problems thanks to what we are doing to the air marshals.”

He asked Mayorkas how could he justify the Air Marshall deployments.

Mayorkas said that was a valid question and added that the agency plans to hire 300 more Air Marshalls in FY 2023.

Let’s hope an air hijacking is not in our future.

Here is some training that Air Marshalls conduct:

Do you think the Air Marshalls should be supporting efforts on the southern border?

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