Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login

Log In

A valid email is required.
Password is required.
Posted: 5/24/2002 6:26:15 AM EDT
So...I thought the reason for not letting Pilots carry handguns was that our fantastic Marshalls were going to 'protect' us?
The government has cut training for federal air marshal applicants and put new hires on flights without requiring the advanced marksmanship skills the program used to demand, USA TODAY has learned.
View Quote
[rolleyes] [url]http://www.usatoday.com/news/attack/2002/05/24/air-marshals.htm[/url]
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:39:04 AM EDT
That's pretty classic. Get the bodies out there fast then retrain them when some of the pressure is off and you've got enough back up to fill the gaps. While it's far from an ideal situation, it's expected and better than nothing at all.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:43:59 AM EDT
I'd be OK with no Air Marshalls, handguns for Pilots, and KBAR fighting knives for every passenger.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:45:14 AM EDT
Hey - I rented that movie "Passenger 57" from Blockbuster about 3 months ago. Am I qualified?
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:46:57 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/24/2002 6:48:05 AM EDT by CLP]
Pathetic. The only thing that truly makes air travel safer is the attitude of the passengers. They know than when the SHTF, they're all combatants - there is no other option. In that, Todd Beamer and co. did more to improve flight security than the federal government has to date. I suspect the same anti-gun forces in the Administration that nixed armed pilots are behind these ridiculously loose criteria. Mineta should have been sacked long ago, as well as every other fvcking bureaucrat ever hired by Bill Clinton. They are all national security risks.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:48:14 AM EDT
Does anyone know the exact marksmanship requirements for the program?
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:49:01 AM EDT
I hate to see the training requirements lowered but demand will do that to you. The same has happened in the military. The US Marines during Vietnam shortened there training program over what it would have been in times of peace, simply because they needed more and faster. Same thing here. But just because these marshals are not trained to the level they were doesn't mean they will not perform adequately. Before, only about 15% of the candidates could meet the standards of the program's shooting requirements after much practice. Even though this kind of high standards would be nice, it doesn't help in getting more people in the air. I would rather have 50% of flights having air marshals with less training than 1% with very high training. Most of these people still have pretty nice skills with firearms and I have no doubt they are good enough to get the job done. Perhaps they can get more training as time goes and become about as proficient as there predecessors. Sometimes we have to make trade-offs. This one may be worth it because we need more armed people protecting our airliners. Now if we could only get the pilots armed.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:50:44 AM EDT
The reason that the Air Marshalls have always had that "Delta Force" reputation was because of the almost mythical quality of their skill at arms. Sort of modern Jedi Knights. It was known that they were the best shots on the planet in a fluid, CQB environment full of friendlies. Now, at the same time that Mineta is denying commercial pilots (most of whom are former military officers who were trained to fly with a Beretta under their arm) the right to protect themselves and their passengers because that's the Air Marshalls' job, we find out that the qualifications to be an Air Marshall have been watered down to get more of them through the pipeline. There are somewhere in the neighborhood of 30,000 flights a day that either originate, terminate or both in the USA. There are, at best, a few thousand Air Marshalls. And they're [b]lowering[/b] the requirements for pistolcraft just when it's most needed. "You probably feel a bit like Alice, falling down the rabbit hole."
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 6:54:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/24/2002 7:10:53 AM EDT by Dolomite]
I read on the Delphi FAM forum that they were granting people waivers if they [i]almost[/i] made it on the final Tactical Pistol Qualification. They then had a set period of time with which to pass the TPC or be cut loose. It seems that a lot of Border Patrol types are making the big egress to being FAMs, and the BPs have a pretty good training program (they have to, they use Berettas). Regardless, the number of aspiring FAMs getting dropped due to failing the TPC was legendarily high. I can't blame Uncle Sugar for wanting to get a few more LE in the skies myself. However, the FAM TPC is extremely hard for a very good reason in my opinion - the only other worse place I can think of having to engage in a gunfight besides an airplane full of screaming grass eaters would be a nursery or pre-school full of screaming crumb snatchers. Here's what they're failing: [url]http://www.mail-archive.com/cybershooters@compuserve.com/msg02157.html[/url] And for the curious, they are using the SIG Sauer P229 in caliber .357 SIG presented from a Safariland 5181 open-top kydex paddle holster. There is no concealment requirement during the TPC from what I've been told. They are also given multiple chances to pass in the days subsequent to the 40 hours of intense handgun training provided by other FAMs. Our local IDPA club got a bunch of the QIT targets and shot the FAM TPC as a side match. One person out of twenty passed it. I SO'd it and found that most of the people I consider good shots kept up very well… up and until the point that reloads were required. That's when they started going over the time limits.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:01:29 AM EDT
I am not surprised by this. The average concealed carry person fires more round's a year than the leo's do. A person in the shooting sport's fire more in a month than leo's do in a year. By leo's meaning all branches of LE. [smoke]
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:23:06 AM EDT
A suggestion to everyone who thinks they are a badass out of the holster...shoot this course of fire. I shoot IDPA a fair bit, and I found the course to be damn hard. You can get quite far in certain shooting disciplines with just accuracy (even IDPA), but the speed and accuracy combo required for this test is difficult. At any given time, I for one cannot pass all of this test. Passing segments of it can be easy, but passing every segment one after another is tough.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:26:23 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/24/2002 7:27:30 AM EDT by Txsguy]
As for the statement that many airline pilots are former military and therefore skilled in the use of arms-give me a break! I served with some of our most skilled military pilots and had numerous opportunities to observe their skills on the range during qualifications. Take my word for it, finely honed flying skills don't guarantee good small arms skills. I'm a proponent of arming airline crewmembers, but they need training just like anyone else.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:31:40 AM EDT
Originally Posted By CLP: I suspect the same anti-gun forces in the Administration that nixed armed pilots are behind these ridiculously loose criteria. Mineta should have been sacked long ago,
View Quote
let's not forget our bush-appointed "homeland security czar", tom ridge.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:32:17 AM EDT
Dolomite:
and the BPs have a pretty good training program (they have to, they use Berettas).
View Quote
LMAO! I would've liked to have gotten to the IDPA match and tried the FAM course. Were you HS/LD and using a wheelgun, or tupperware? [;)] For everyone's information, I believe that Dolo actually set up and ran the FAM course as a side match to an IPDA event. Props to you for the hard work and letting everyone get a chance to shoot it. I heard it was fun. My guess is that shooting this course would be a sobering experience. Then imagine that the targets are surrounded by a bunch of 8 year old kids.... Anyone know what kind of ammo the FAM's use? Is it frangible?
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:36:55 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Txsguy: As for the statement that many airline pilots are former military and therefore skilled in the use of arms-give me a break!
View Quote
I never said that they were skilled in the use of arms. But they have qualified with a pistol, and could easily be retrained. And don't forget: No one is expecting or asking pilots to leave the cockpit and take on terrorists head to head with their pistols. Arming pilots would be solely for the purpose of defending the cockpit. They would even have the advantage of knowing the threat was coming because the terrorists would have to break down the cockpit door before any engagement could begin.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:45:34 AM EDT
It seems that a lot of Border Patrol types are making the big egress to being FAMs, and the BPs have a pretty good training program (they have to, they use Berettas).
View Quote
Hey! Watch that! I have a Beretta and I like it. [^]
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 7:53:10 AM EDT
Oh Goody -- Airmarshals that cannot shoot adequately. Airport screeners that are dumber than 2 boxes of rocks. [rolleyes] Random searches that are not random. Ane they want me to fly and think it's safe? [whacko] They must think I am airport screener material. Of course it would never occur to them to allow ccws on the planes. We know they can shoot. They wouldn't cost anything. They wont arm pilots, they would rather give a 727 a sidewinder up the pipe. This is common sense? This is acceptable? And they want me to think it's safe to fly? Someones not playing with a full deck and they are in Washington DC, and NYC. The bad news is they are in charge. The good news is that I WILL NOT FLY ON ANY AIRLINE. I don't feel like painting a Bullseye on my ass.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 8:22:15 AM EDT
Hi Corey! True, true. I did order the targets and set it up (and nobody held it against me that I was the only one to pass [owned]). I used my Glock 34 from a Dave Elderton Ky-Tac rig and ended up with time to spare! There's a lot more to being a FAM than shooting though, you have to be highly proficient in HTH-CQB (grappling with someone until [I]all[/I] of their fingers are broken), as well as being able to maintain a high level of situational awareness for long periods of time (ie: learning to sleep with your eyes open). I read in SWAT magazine (which has about as much accurate and useful information in it as SWANK magazine), that they were using "special aluminum bullets" that would disintegrate when they come into contact with an airplane bulkhead. Yeah, right. That was the same issue that featured the Kel-Tec SUB2000 carbine - and of course they gave that ghetto blaster very high marks! [puke]
Originally Posted By Corey: Anyone know what kind of ammo the FAM's use? Is it frangible?
View Quote
I asked Masaad Ayoob a bunch of ammunition questions at the Wisconsin Concealed Carry Movement dinner a few months back and asked if he knew what they were using. If I recall correctly he said that they used the Federal Hydrashock in 125 grain. I can't remember exactly due to the fact I was rambling off questions to him like some kind of "Rain Man" to the point I thought he was going to use his kubaton on me to get me to stop.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 8:36:00 AM EDT
It's too bad candidates can't be more than 37 years old. It might be a nice job for guys that retired early from something else. Or if you just got layed off from your corporate job.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 8:45:59 AM EDT
Well at least they picked a great gun and cartridge! I love my Sig P229, although mine is a .40 S&W. I had tried numerous other pistols and finally broke down and bought a Sig when I found one for a good price. Brought the thing home and loaded it up. Set up a target at about 25 yards and started blasting. After only 2 rounds my jaw dropped and the words "oh $hit" uttered from my mouth! LOL. The thing was the most comfortable and accurate handgun I had ever had the pleasure of firing. The trigger pull was better double action than many pistols are when fired in single action. And reliability is superb. From that day forward I have carried the Sig exclusively and it still looks almost as good as it did the day I bought it. I now want another Sig, this too a P229, only I want to try a .357 Sig this time around. I hear that it's a very potent cartridge. It is my opinion that the Sig-Sauer line of pistols are the finest combat handguns ever made.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 8:59:54 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Jarhead_22: And don't forget: No one is expecting or asking pilots to leave the cockpit and take on terrorists head to head with their pistols. Arming pilots would be solely for the purpose of defending the cockpit. They would even have the advantage of knowing the threat was coming because the terrorists would have to break down the cockpit door before any engagement could begin.
View Quote
This makes so much sense that it was inevitable that the government would decide against it. I frequently fly on business, and I get angry that the government would rather shoot down my aircraft with all its passengers and crew, than permit my pilot to keep a gun in the cockpit.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 3:27:47 PM EDT
Originally Posted By CLP: Todd Beamer and co. did more to improve flight security than the federal government has to date.
View Quote
What do you mean - the Homeland Defense Agency has come up with a color-coded threat alert system. The first step in combatting a threat is obviously knowng when a threat exists, and how serious it is. Mr. Ridge and his team should be congratulated for their quick actions!
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 3:44:16 PM EDT
I could probably ask my sister. She's in Florida on a 1 month assignment to interview potential Air Marshalls. Most I believe are ex military, but I'll try to remember to ask. Right before the FL assignment, she spent another week in Atlantic City doing the same thing.
Link Posted: 5/24/2002 4:23:24 PM EDT
hey now... with FEDERAL employees handling airport sec.. this will no longer be a proplem. [img]comics.com/editoons/ariail/archive/images/ariail2008125520327.gif[/img] [whacko][whacko][whacko][whacko][whacko]
Top Top