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Terrorism poses threat to proposed high-speed rail

Posted: July 23, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: July 23, 2014 2:00 a.m.
 

I am a new subscriber to The Signal. I missed your satirical editorial piece on July 13, which Michelle Boehm responded to in the July 20 issue of The Signal.

She closed her article with the plea for “accurate reporting on the program,” and I agree.

However, there is one question that has not been asked in a public forum, nor answered by the California High Speed Rail Authority: How are they going to assure safety of a 400-mile rail system when it is possible for a terrorist to derail a 200-mph train with a $45 IED?

Can anyone imagine the cost for securing these lines?

Our TSA investment at airports is a huge expense, but it pales with the scope of protecting miles and miles of tracks in unpopulated areas.

If there is one question which needs to be answered by Ms. Boehm, it is this: “How will ridership be impacted if a bomb derails a train at 200 mph and the passengers are mutilated by the crash”?

 

Comments

ricketzz: Posted: July 23, 2014 10:13 a.m.

You are Pavlov's Dog. The word "terrorism" rings your bell. The oil companies are the only people in this country blowing up trains.


Nitesho: Posted: July 23, 2014 10:54 a.m.

Ricketzz...a little early to be hitting the sauce isn't? You usually don't start railing against big oil until....oh...11am.

You do you that oil makes more than just gas right?


chefgirl358: Posted: July 23, 2014 12:17 p.m.

Pavlov's dog? Good grief.


stevehw: Posted: July 23, 2014 6:26 p.m.

What do they do now in the U.S. for all those rail lines on the east coast? What do they do in France, Germany, Italy, Japan, etc.?

I'm with ricketzz on this one...everyone is scared to death of the terrorist boogeyman, and nobody can think rationally anymore.

Americans have turned into a bunch of panty-waists who quiver at the very mention of the word "terrorism".


tech: Posted: July 23, 2014 8:55 p.m.

Are you with ricketzz on oil companies "blowing up trains" as well, Steve?

The risk of a domestic mass casualty terrorist attack is indeed low statistically. But as Mr. Oatway pointed out, it is higher for unprotected rail lines while in transit compared to airline travel. The scenario he outlined is, in fact, trivial to execute.

I'd caution you on your broad characterizations about Americans as well. Not all of us are cheese eating surrender monkeys. :-D


Trackmom: Posted: July 23, 2014 11:07 p.m.

stevehw...."terrorist boogeyman" Are you serious?

stevehw... "Americans have turned into panty-waists who quiver at the very mention of the word terrorism".
I guess stevehw "has forgotten".

I'm sure all those who died, or lost loved ones on 9-11, and all our men and women in the military, appreciate your trivializing terrorism.

You are a silly, rude person.


Nitesho: Posted: July 23, 2014 11:10 p.m.

"What do they do now in the U.S. for all those rail lines on the east coast? What do they do in France, Germany, Italy, Japan, etc.? "

Noticed you left Spain off your list....


Nitesho: Posted: July 23, 2014 11:11 p.m.

"What do they do now in the U.S. for all those rail lines on the east coast? What do they do in France, Germany, Italy, Japan, etc.? "

And the UK off the list too....


CaptGene: Posted: July 23, 2014 11:14 p.m.

"I'm with ricketzz on this one...everyone is scared to death of the climate change boogeyman, and nobody can think rationally anymore.

Americans have turned into a bunch of panty-waists who quiver at the very mention of the word "climate change"."

There, that's better.


tech: Posted: July 24, 2014 12:21 p.m.

Nice catch, Nitesho.

UK 7/7 Islamic Terrorist Attack

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/7_July_2005_London_bombings

Spain 11-M Train Bombings

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2004_Madrid_train_bombings


Nitesho: Posted: July 24, 2014 12:47 p.m.

NP Tech. That's the difference between a liberal and conservative...memory


stevehw: Posted: July 24, 2014 1:59 p.m.

OK, so there you go...what do the UK and Spain do now? They didn't stop running trains. How do all of those countries, UK and Spain included, protect all those miles and miles and miles of rail lines?

Trackmom...I'm not "trivializing terrorism". But there's no need to walk around in life constantly in fear of being killed by terrorists, either.


Nitesho: Posted: July 24, 2014 2:37 p.m.

Do your own damn research and let us know...


stevehw: Posted: July 24, 2014 5:07 p.m.

I think you missed my point.


Nitesho: Posted: July 24, 2014 5:22 p.m.

No. No I didn't miss your point.


stevehw: Posted: July 24, 2014 8:30 p.m.

Oh, I think you did.


Nitesho: Posted: July 25, 2014 11:02 a.m.

No I didnt

I'm not interested in playing your little game.


ricketzz: Posted: July 26, 2014 10:42 a.m.

Until you understand the enemy you will fear him. The people you call "terrorists" are actually very effective soldiers reacting to western powers invading their lands for the past 100 years or so. They are tenacious and they are defending their homeland. We are idiots for trying to battle that.

http://www.historycommons.org/timeline.jsp?timeline=complete_911_timeline&complete_911_timeline_alleged_al_qaeda_linked_attacks=firstwtcbombing


tech: Posted: July 27, 2014 11:24 a.m.

Last "100 years or so"? Islam has been waging jihad for millennia.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/islam/history/earlyrise_1.shtml


cms96: Posted: July 27, 2014 12:45 p.m.

I think we all have a better chance being in dying in a car accident in Santa Clarita than from a terrorist.


tech: Posted: July 27, 2014 2:46 p.m.

Concur, cms96. See my initial comment.

That isn't the same as the risk being non-existent. All risk should be subject to cost/benefit review. Yet we see in public discourse that societal and individual risk isn't consistently evaluated.


Trackmom: Posted: July 27, 2014 4:14 p.m.

Stevehw: "But there's no need to walk around in life constantly in fear of being killed by terrorists, either."

I don't think we are walking around in life constantly in fear, but citizens being "aware" is what has saved the US from further attacks i.e. The Shoebomber, the failed SUV bombings in NYC, etc.

cms96: "I think we all have a better chance being in dying in a car accident in Santa Clarita than from a terrorist."

Didn't you watch "24" Season 6? ;)


ricketzz: Posted: July 28, 2014 10:06 a.m.

Tech; we have been in the Middle East for 100 years. Otherwise the Muslims wouldn't give a rip about us.


tech: Posted: July 28, 2014 11:24 a.m.

Time for another history lesson, ricketzz.

The First Barbary War (1801–1805), also known as the Tripolitan War or the Barbary Coast War, was the first of two wars fought between the United States and the Northwest African Berber Muslim states known collectively as the Barbary States. These were the Ottoman provinces of Tripoli, Algiers, and Tunis, which were enjoying a large autonomy, as well as the independent Sultanate of Morocco. The war was fought because U.S. President Thomas Jefferson refused to pay the high tributes demanded by the Barbary states and because they were seizing American merchant ships and enslaving the crews for high ransoms. It was the first declared war the United States fought on foreign land and seas.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/First_Barbary_War

http://www.history.navy.mil/library/online/barbaray_war_docs.htm

The Second Barbary War (1815), also known as the Algerine or Algerian War, was the second of two wars fought between the United States and the Ottoman Empire's North African regencies of Tripoli, Tunis, and Algeria, known collectively as the Barbary states. The war between the Barbary states and the U.S. ended in 1815; the international dispute would effectively be ended the following year by Great Britain and the Netherlands. The war brought an end to the American practice of paying tribute to the pirate states and helped mark the beginning of the end of piracy in that region, which had been rampant in the days of Ottoman domination (16th–18th centuries). Within decades, European powers built ever more sophisticated and expensive ships which the Barbary pirates could not match in numbers or technology.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Barbary_War


ricketzz: Posted: July 29, 2014 9:36 a.m.

North Africa is North Africa; the Middle East is Southwest Asia. The Nile river or the Suez canal is generally regarded as the border twixt the 2.

When the USA was plundering the West how was that not "declaring war on foreign lands?"


tech: Posted: July 29, 2014 12:09 p.m.

I guess you missed the part about the Ottoman Empire and Islam in the links provided, ricketzz. There are, of course, many other examples to illustrate how misguided you are on this topic. Islamists will not leave the West alone under any condition.

You really should read before responding.


CaptGene: Posted: July 29, 2014 5:14 p.m.

Whoa whoa there tech. You do realize you are addressing someone that was part of a team that won a RFK award a mere 36 years ago?


ricketzz: Posted: July 30, 2014 1:08 p.m.

Our current tenure in the Middle East began during ww1 when we began dividing up the oil pools with British Petroleum. This is where we started disrespecting the locals and engendering their animus. Israel was badly bungled and overthrowing the elected head of Iran and installing the Savak and the Shah made it really hard for the Persians to love us. More recently we support Saddam against the Iranians; now we support Iran as they fight remnants of Saddam's Baathist Army. If we support the Kurds against Islamic State we are opposing the government we created in Baghdad.

In the long run Monday morning quarterbacking we should have left the oil in the ground and the Arabs living in tents. If we withdraw and take our sleazy entourage with us we will do wonders for ourselves. After this grief for my whole life I want them all to "go away".


tech: Posted: July 30, 2014 10:14 p.m.

"Our current tenure in the Middle East…" - ricketzz

I understand your desire to truncate history to fit your narrative, ricketzz.

Islamists will not "go away" and you're deluding yourself hoping they will. The initial objective is restoration of the Ummayad Caliphate zenith of the 7th Century AD. Then it's on to a global Dar al-Islam.

Islam is an ideology with no division between religion and the secular state. Islam has from its inception engaged in territorial conquest as aggressors.

http://boylehist9.phoenix.wikispaces.net/file/view/Ummayad_Empire/167468263/Ummayad_Empire

http://www.heritage-history.com/www/heritage.php?Dir=wars&FileName=wars_moorconquest.php

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Siege_of_Vienna

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Vienna


ricketzz: Posted: July 31, 2014 10:20 a.m.

If they start knocking over modern countries in the civilized world I'll worry. Until then I am content with them killing each other in bloody wars of attrition; just let us remove the women and children until you are done.

I don't get the "better to fight them over there" shtick. That sure makes it hard on the warriors. It's better to drive to the front, sleep in your own bed at night. Plus it's much easier to resupply.


tech: Posted: July 31, 2014 3:15 p.m.

We should adopt the WWII European total war model of wholesale infrastructure and civilian casualties on our territory? FDR's "Arsenal of Democracy" was silly, eh?

9/11 was Pearl Harbor II.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/05/22/world/europe/uk-london-attack/

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/3974179.stm


dudeman1961: Posted: July 31, 2014 10:51 p.m.

You don't think 'big brother' isn't gonna be watching it 24/7?


ricketzz: Posted: August 1, 2014 11:12 a.m.

The USA is big and strong enough to sustain a first attack from a conventional power. That is preferable to pre-emptive wars (prohibited by the UN, others) like the one we did in Iraq that appears to have set off ww3. "Oops"


tech: Posted: August 2, 2014 1:52 a.m.

From we'll be left alone to we can absorb an attack. That's quite a transition in a few posts, ricketzz.


ricketzz: Posted: August 2, 2014 11:01 a.m.

There's no transition. We must wait until they open the breeches if we pre-empt, to avoid Iraq situations. Nobody will catch us by surprise if we learn to listen. 9-11 was directly about the USA's behavior since ww2, not just Kuwait or Afghanistan. There is a list several pages long of places we have used military force against, mainly to advance private commercial interests. The corporations abuse our military and sully our reputation of a maverick friend to all enemy to none superfree country. No, we are gunboat pirates. We have been swaggering from tavern to bar, starting fights and refusing to go down. That is until we get sucker punched by 19 architects. Learn some freaking objective history or we will start drinking again.


tech: Posted: August 2, 2014 7:46 p.m.

Such colorful allegories! Nonetheless, you did make a transition. I've noted this occurs when you're pinned down by facts.


ricketzz: Posted: August 3, 2014 10:56 a.m.

Maybe we should try "butting out" before we condemn it as a foreign policy broad stroke.

You are mentally unable to find better facts. Your fear and loathing have emasculated you.


tech: Posted: August 5, 2014 12:46 a.m.

Reflecting on the frequent content of your posts, you're the one flacking fear, ricketzz. This thread reveals how fact challenged you are.


ricketzz: Posted: August 5, 2014 10:45 a.m.

Your fear of mad bombers on the other side of the planet is irrational. You will more likely be maimed in an motor accident than scratched by a "terrorist". War is fomented by psychopaths. It is never justified. Not in today's global village. Who armed the Islamic State? When is a Syrian good guy an Iraqi jihadist? What day of the week is it? (I suspect the Baathists are using the crazies to do the dirty work and that they will regain control of Iraq, reversing our overthrow which set off this chaos in the first place). Destruction of this kind is a sin. Men don't have the right to destroy other men's good works for no reason other than "sending a message".


tech: Posted: August 5, 2014 8:54 p.m.

Hey ricketzz, reviewing my 1st post in the thread validates my rationality. I've copied the salient portion below.

"The risk of a domestic mass casualty terrorist attack is indeed low statistically. But as Mr. Oatway pointed out, it is higher for unprotected rail lines while in transit compared to airline travel. The scenario he outlined is, in fact, trivial to execute."

Was WWII justified?


ricketzz: Posted: August 6, 2014 10:49 a.m.

ww2 happened way outside"today's global village". ww2 was really just ww1 reigniting because we humiliated the Germans and forced them into a corner. Japan was in it for resources and glory. We humiliated them too. A lot of people made a lot of money.

I like war because it reduces the number of idiots on the planet. We will end war when we stop volunteering to kill for Exxon or The Blessed Virgin or whatever.

"Terrorism" is fake. It is the "Mad Bombers" of the 1940s or "Anarchists" at the turn of the 20th century. Stuff breaks. Stuff blows up. Stuff gets shot down by accident. You cannot worry about such things so much it changes what you do. Our energy policies kill at the rate of a "9-11" every week or 2.

We invite retaliation when we pick winners and losers in the Land of the Religious Crazies (aka "holy" land, lmfao!). If we'd just "butt out" I bet we'd be less paranoid. "No foreign entanglements" is a Founding principle that served us well, until the postwar CIA started manipulating the world on behalf of industry.




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