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FLEOA Denounces Call to Eliminate Federal Air Marshals

November 03, 2015  | 

In response to the recent LA Times editorial, It's time to ground America's Air Marshals, which professed that the Federal Air Marshal Service is "little more than an expensive placebo," the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA) National President, Nathan Catura, issued the following statement:

"The LA Times is not only echoing the sentiments of a misguided U.S. Congressman, they are trumpeting the war cries and desires of radical Islamic Jihadists.

It's ironic that a bloviating member of Congress has the audacity to call any law enforcement service "the most needless, useless, wasteful program." Rep. John Duncan Jr. obviously has no memory of the thousands of innocent Americans who were slaughtered. The goal of these cowardly terrorists remains the same today as it was on September 11th: to murder innocent Americans and create chaos.

This pandering drivel expressed by both a member of Congress and the LA Times is helping these radical terrorists get exactly what they desire: the elimination of Federal Air Marshals and the protection they provide to American airliners.

This liberal publication and misguided Congressman are neglecting our history. These radical terrorists have proved they play the long game. They have patience. They rely on the fact that American politicians and the media have a short-term memory of those heinously murdered on 9/11. In addition, the farther we get away from that date, the louder the discontented voices squawk that we do not need protection on American aircrafts. They preach that your family is no longer under any threat from Islamic terrorists. How wrong these voices are.

To suggest that "hardened cockpit doors" are the solution to the problem is a farce, but not a funny one. Go online and observe how quickly a "hardened cockpit door" is breached with the simple use of a serving cart. It takes less than 10 seconds to achieve breach of the flight deck.

Moreover, the massive failing of tests by TSA disproves the other assertion that "enhanced screening" is an effective deterrent. "Red teams" freely moved improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and weapons through screening areas and into secure areas. Further, the other gaping security feature allowing airport employee's unfettered access to secure areas by issuing badges completely bypasses security checks. Recently, in both Atlanta and the Oakland airports, several employees were arrested for transporting weapons and narcotics onto aircraft. So much for the notion of enhanced screening.

The Federal Air Marshal Service is comprised of brave, honorable men and women of integrity who stepped up to serve their country after the heinous terrorist attacks of 9/11. Most were long-time military and law enforcement veterans who left their positions to do something that they, and the country, felt was important: becoming a Federal Air Marshal and stopping another attack.

The success of the Federal Air Marshal Service is not predicated on arrest statistics – this is not the function of a Federal Air Marshal. Their mission is simple. It is to detect, deter and defeat another attack against innocent American citizens. Their mission is not to arrest drunken, agitated or loud passengers. They are to remain undercover, overcome and eliminate any attempt to hijack an aircraft and turn it into a weapon of mass destruction. They perform a mission that they believe in and continue to believe in regardless of the minority who deem them as "ineffective placebos." They remain unseen, unheard and unafraid and stand determined and ready to protect you and your family who fly on American aircrafts. They epitomize professionalism and serve their country proudly.

They have not forgotten 9/11, and you can always count on their dedication to duty."


The Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association ( is the largest nonprofit, nonpartisan professional association that exclusively represents over 26,000 active and retired federal law enforcement officers from over 65 Agencies.

Comments (9)

Displaying 1 - 9 of 9

Ali Akbar @ 11/3/2015 5:07 PM

Duncan is not only stupid and naive but I question his loyalty to the protection of The United States and it's most important resource; its citizens.

kevCopAz @ 11/3/2015 7:34 PM

Based on what I have heard and NOT heard(like any Air Marshall thwarting an attack) I would have to side with the congress. They should know about useless organizations since they are a prime example of one. Perhaps if we heard about Air Marshall actually stopping criminals doing things on airliners then my opinion would be different. We don't expect them to have high arrests like a regular law enforcement organization but surely they have done some arrest, some interventions, some intel avoiding an attack. otherwise the manpower and money could be spent better elsewhere.

Tony @ 11/3/2015 11:19 PM

The AIR MARSHALLS are "on the front lines" far more so than the TSA agents searching old ladies and small childsren getting on the airplane at the gate. Personally, I like the idea that no one knows who they are, when they're flying or where they're sitting on the aircraft. These men (and women) are the final line of defense in this on-going war against Islam. If there was ONE Air Marshall on each of those aircraft that crashed on 9?11/01, those monsters would have all been killed. The program should be EXPANDED, not eliminated. That would be a BIG MISTAKE.

187 1811 @ 11/4/2015 2:20 PM

First of all please learn how to spell. "MARSHAL" is spelled with one (1) L not two (2). Directed @kevCopAz
The FAMS is a semi covert agency! The things they DO and do not do is classified. They do not seek glory nor recognition. A little respect goes a long way. Do some research and formulate an articulate argument. Your anecdotal opinion is as useful as your comment.

john @ 11/4/2015 2:52 PM

Don't blame the Air Marshals for not creating statistics like arrests, interventions etc. The public should instead blame the Managers of the Air Marshal Service.
The working/flying Air Marshal is not allowed to do the job that they were initially hired to do. When a Marshal encounters a situation he his ordered by his supervisors and managers at Headquarters to turn the issue over to the local cops since Management does not want the flying Marshal to miss a flight.
When in flight the Managers do not want the flying Marshal to get involved since it may require paperwork and questions that the non experienced Manager cannot answer.
Folks, the large majority of the flying Air Marshals are seasoned street cops. They know what a crime looks like and how to make an arrest. Management on the other hand are in experienced professional politicians that have never placed handcuffs on a subject and would not know what a bad guy looked like if they were standing in front of them.

john @ 11/4/2015 2:59 PM

The problem with this agency is the Management. The Flying Air Marshal wants to work but TSA is based on smoke and mirrors. The perception that security is better now than pre-911 is garbage. The Politicians of the FAM Service rely on numbers not getting the job done. FAMS Management deals with" Shareholders" and Avition "Partners". Theya re more interested in appeasing the airline industry that going after the bad guys. When has a street cop ever had to worry about a Shareholder? In law enforcement there are only two enities, the "good guys" and the "bad guys".
Simply stated the flying Air Marshal has been shakled by thier own Management who worry more about thier raises and titlesthan doing the job as it was designed.
If you're going to blame someone, please blame the right people.

Michelle @ 11/4/2015 4:36 PM

I once heard an Air Marshal at my school tell us that the Job of an Air Marshals is like a cars air bag. Meaning that we are thankful that when we are in a car crash that the air bag deployed, and saved or lives when it was most needed. When I travel with my family I'm glad that there is an Air Marshal on my flight to protect us. Please don't take the Air Marshals away. Thank you Michelle

MR. F @ 11/7/2015 7:47 PM

Comments like kevcop, is what embolden useless congressman to speak about things they have no knowledge. I hope you sleep well kevcop.

Vince @ 12/30/2015 10:29 AM

I wish someone would bend the ear of a high level politician and realize there are many local and state law enforcement retirees, who would be willing to work as a FAM, without the retirement benefits. There is no reason the government and the airline should split the cost in an attempt to Protect and Serve those who choose air travel in this time of increased terror attacks.

Change the Federal government's age requirement (36) and hire retired cops. Pay a decent salary (health care if applicable), train them, and put them to work. It's not that hard, lets make America safe again.

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