On September 11, 2001, nineteen foreigners hijacked four planes, resulting in the terrorist attacks that, for a time, defined us as a country. The Transportation Security Administration was formed in response to those attacks, with federal air marshals being a significant component of our air traffic safety and security forces.
Now, 22 years later, we have learned that federal air marshals have been pulled from regular commercial flights, according to the Gateway Pundit.
In a recent interview with Fox News, Sonya LaBosco, director of the Air Marshal National Council, provided what can only be described as a shocking bombshell revelation about the current state of aviation security. She said that primarily, air marshals are not currently aboard commercial airline flights in the United States.
According to LaBosco, for the past two years under the Biden administration, federal air marshals have been reassigned at the southern border, dealing with immigration issues or tracking individuals assigned to the January 6, 2021, US Capitol siege, whether or not those individuals were involved criminally in what Democrats refer to as an “insurrection.”
All of this comes at a time when the TSA was projected to screen a record number of passengers over the Thanksgiving holiday, with some estimates pointing at a total of over 30 million travelers over the four-day holiday weekend. Despite airlines having virtually full flights, federal air marshals have been pulled from the skies and are tasked chiefly with administrative work at the southern border.
During an interview on Fox & Friends, host Carly Shimkus asked LaBosco the following:
“The TSA is expected to screen a record 30 million passengers this Thanksgiving, and it comes as 169 terror suspects were encountered at the southern border last fiscal year, more than the previous six years combined. GIve us an update on the situation with air marshals. Are they still getting sent down to the southern border?”
“Carly," replied LaBosco, "nothing has changed since we’ve been fighting this for almost two years. The air marshals are still down on the border. We are not flying right now. We just received an email last week that the resources are depleted as far as our flying air marshals. So, we are ushering in illegal immigrants on the southern border and leaving the traveling public unsafe."
She also said the decision to pull air marshals from protecting the flying public in the skies could be easily overturned by DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and TSA Administrator David Pekoske.
“We are working with Congress," LaBosco continued. "We are working with the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee. Senator Cruz [R-Texas] recently sent out a letter requesting information on why we are diverting our only resource to secure our aviation and sending them down on the border. And remember, the only thing we’re doing on the border is passing out water. We’re not doing law enforcement duties."
LaBosco said she has contacted Mayorkas and Pekoske numerous times, but her questions have been brushed aside. She said that the safety of the American public is being undermined both at the borders and in the skies.
“Secretary Mayorkas has said more than once that the border is secure. So he is not concerned with that. But we all know that the border is not secure. He will not call this a crisis. But now, not only is the border destabilized, so is our aviation destablized as well,” LaBosco said.
Even more shocking is a group called “Quiet Skies,” which LaBosco told Shimkus has been focusing on individuals in the region of the nation’s capital in January 2021, identifying them as possible threats. She said that tracking occurred whether or not those identified actually participated in the January 6 Capitol event or other activities during that timeframe.
LaBosco said anyone in the vicinity, whether they are there for personal reasons such as attending a funeral or attending a job interview, is potentially put on a domestic terrorist list and stalked by air marshals during their travels.
That prompted further questioning by Shimkus, who asked, “What do you mean by that? You’re following January 2021 people. What does that mean?"
LaBosco replied, "That means our primary mission is a little group called Quiet Skies. It’s a mission called Quiet Skies that we’re following people that flew into the National Capitol region in January 2021. You didn’t have to go to the Capitol or the rally, and you’d be put on a specific list that TSA now has assigned Air Marshals to follow these people who have not had any type of criminal investigation. They haven’t committed a crime, but yet, three years later, we’re following the same individuals day in and day out."
Shimkus responded, "So you’re saying that Air Marshals are now following people that were at the Capitol on January 6, and they’re not tracking terrorists at all?"
"Well," LaBosco continued, "they didn’t even have to be at the Capitol, Carly. They could have just flown into the National Capitol region. So, if anybody was there for a job interview to visit family, we even had a gentleman that was there for a funeral. They [were] put on this domestic terrorist list just because of their geographic location to Washington, D.C. So, these people did not even commit a crime. They weren’t even at the Capitol."
When asked if they are aware of their position on this list, LaBosco said, "Some of them do because when they go to the airport…they have to go through enhanced security. Then, they’re followed by teams of Air Marshals on any leg of flight that they have.
"So yes, a lot of them do know that they’re being followed, yet they haven’t been vetted, and they have not committed a crime. And three years later, we’re still doing the same duty, and we followed the same people over and over for three years who are no threat to this country."
According to the TSA, Quiet Skies is a program using air marshals to track and observe suspicious passengers. The program ostensibly identifies travelers who pose a risk to aviation security.
According to DHS, “TSA uses Quiet Skies rules to create a temporary Quiet Skies list to designate passengers who fall within the Quiet Skies subset of rules for enhanced screening on some subsequent domestic and outbound international travel. Individuals will remain on the Quiet Skies list for a period of time.”
At the end of her interview with Fox, LaBosco said it may be up to passengers to be aware of who is on their flights since they likely will not be protected by air marshals.
“I think you should be very concerned when you’re boarding the aircraft. You need to look around to see who you might be able to ask to help you, like a Good Samaritan, because you’re on your own. If anything happens, please don’t wait. There’s going to be no law enforcement that’s going to help you. So you need to have a plan,” said LaBosco.