Dr Demarche posted a response to my previous criticism of his post, and I think its worthwhile reposnding (briefly) to his arguments. To be honest I don't think we're too far apart. I agree the various European nations have done less than they might and some (France, UK, Germany) have done a lot while others (Spain) have pretty much bent over and begged them to not hurt too much. The Netherlands seems to be moving into the former category and sometimes when I look at the moronic actions by the British I wonder if thy are moving the other way. But in general, if there is a problem, it is the same problem that the US is facing, which is that the evidence against most of the captured undesirables is unlikely to stand up in court and our various courts feel that the principle of human rights is more important than the actual deaths of humans.
This latter issue (the courts) is similar to the two ways I still disagree with Dr D. Essentially it boils down to theoretical vs practical. In theory I welcome the EU and indeed the UN as I think that the idea of such transnational bodies is a good one. In practice I find both actually do more good than harm. Much the same argument goes for the two Dr D proposals.
The first is about showing ID. Dr says (and I agree with the theory):
However while I think the theory is fine the practice isn't. The key words are "taught" and "trained". I simply do not believe that you can actually train all airline personnel to the required standard. If not then you have an apparent security hurdle which isn't actually there. This is deadly because it may lead to other people being lax because they think the barrier was present but it wasn't. I have done a certain amount of (computer) security design and one of the more common security holes is that you fail to revalidate security credentials later on because "to get here they must have already had their identity confirmed". This is why I believe the important security check is of the person and his baggage. If, as is most defiitely the case in Frankfurt, the airport which I believe Dr D was talking about in the beginning, this security check is rigourous then anything else fails to add anything to the security situation. The point is that showing ID wastes time and lulls people into a false sense of security unless you are absolutely certain that everyone checking the ID is correctly trained to be notice non-verbal cues etc.
Much the same argument applies to the idea of a pan European police/security service, which in fact sort of exists although no one was told about it and it may be no more than an office full of paper shufflers. The problem here is that the EU always seems to move central bodies down to the standards of the lowest of its members. Because of this although I think that the theory of a combined EU security force (a sort of EU FBI) would be good, I have grave reservations about it in practice. To put it bluntly if such an EU force were to be created and I were a terrorist leader I'd do my absolute best to get one or more of my people in it and, if they applied from somewhere like Spain I bet they would in fact succeed. Then of course we see the whole "false barrier" effect I mentioned with regard to showing ID. Perhaps worse is that the EU has no track record whatsoever in managing large bureaucracies properly but compensates by having a culture of secrecy and obfuscation that hides the embarassing evidence. The fact that the EU accounts have been impossible to audit for the last decade (possibly longer) should be a bit of a hint here as should the experience of investigative journalists such as Hans-Martin Tillack. To put it bluntly I don't trust the EU to not completely cock things up and then lie about it until its too late because some Islamic nutters have just killed a few thousand innocent EU citizens and thus on the principle of "better the devil you know" I would prefer to put my trust in the existing, less than ideal, multinational cooperation.