U.S. government warns of terrorist plot to use cargo planes
Recent intelligence indicates that al-Qaeda operatives may be plotting to commandeer a cargo airplane overseas and flying them into the United States to attack nuclear plants, bridges, dams or other critical infrastructure, Department of Homeland Security officials warned late Friday.
According to the Washington Post, officials plan to alert law enforcement and industry officials that cargo planes might be hijacked in Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean because al-Qaeda believes airport security is much more lax in countries bordering the United States.
News reports indicated that the intelligence came from a single source whose credibility had yet to be verified.
Cargo security has been understood to be vulnerable ever since Sept. 11, 2001, but the U.S. government has spent most of its resources trying to shore up passenger and baggage security on commercial flights. The Transportation Security Administration is expected to issue proposed rules to plug gaps in air cargo security by the end of the year.