As it becomes clearer ISIS was responsible for the downing of a Russian jetliner over the Sinai peninsula two weeks ago, U.S. government officials and leaders are expressing growing concerns about airport security here at home.
"This is a major game changer,” House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul said in a recent interview about the situation. "They [ISIS] have the capability, if proven true, to down aircrafts with bombs. That concerns me a great deal because traditionally they've been focused on the caliphate, not external operations. This is a very significant departure from that mission and one that I think could impact our own homeland as well.”
Now is a good time to remind Americans of two things.
1) TSA failed 95 percent of security tests last year with little to no improvement this year. Undercover investigators were able to sneak a variety of different fake bombs and weapons onto U.S. planes without any problems.
2) According to intelligence, the downed Russian jetliner was brought down by a bomb in the cargo hold and ISIS had been in touch with a baggage handler at Sharm el-Sheihk airport. Why is this relevant? Because it was just last year when we learned American born Abdirahmaan Muhumed, a young man who left the U.S. for Syria to fight with ISIS, worked for Delta at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, had a security clearance and had "unfettered access" to sensitive areas of the airport and airplanes.
He was the second known American killed while fighting for ISIS in Syria, and the second from Minnesota -- and a Fox 9 exclusive uncovering his employment history is raising a few eyebrows.
An airport is probably the last place anyone would want a suspected terrorist to work, but before he died overseas, that's exactly what Abdirahmaan Muhumed did in the Twin Cities. In fact, he may have cleaned your plane at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.
Before he died, Muhumed left behind a trail of selfies and questions. Who recruited him to join the terror group, and how did he support himself and 9 children? Multiple sources tell Fox 9 News that, for a time, he worked at a job that gave him security clearance at the airport, access to the tarmac and unfettered access to planes.
Two former employees confirmed working with Muhumed at Delta Global Services, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Delta Airlines. Earlier this year, the cleaning contract was taken over by another company, Airserv. The Metropolitan Airports Commission is in charge of granting security clearances, but a MAC person told Fox 9 News they could not comment on what Muhumed's were due to the ongoing FBI investigation. Instead, they offered to check with Homeland Security to see if they can release any information at all.
I should note Muhumed became radicalized after being initially hired, but that doesn't necessarily decrease the danger of the situation. Considering the intense use of social media and the dark web by ISIS to radicalize Americans, there is great cause for concern.