Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Papers, Please*

From the Miami Herald:

Miami police kicked off Operation “Miami Shield” on Monday, sending plainclothes and patrol officers to so-called soft target sites throughout the city in an attempt to thwart terrorism.

Soft targets generally refer to civilian targets such as London or Madrid’s public transportation systems, both of which were bombed by terrorists over the past two years.

At a Bayfront Park press conference, Mayor Manny Diaz and Police Chief John Timoney said Miami is often considered a possible terrorism target.

“The message today was we should always be worried,” Diaz said. “There is still the threat of a terrorist attack out there.”

Officers rode on public buses and the Metrorail system, and strolled through Bayside Marketplace and local banks. Some officers passed out antiterrorism leaflets.

The police oversight will be random. The goal is to avoid routine, and keep terrorists guessing where police might show up. Police also plan on handing out “Miami Shield” cards that will have police phone numbers and other antiterrorism information.

And we should always be worried that some overzealous police chief is going to overdose on testosterone and randomly violate the First, Fourth, and Fifth Amendments to the Constitution. Chief Timoney, as you may recall, was the guy who had demonstrators arrested for using a cell phone in public at the Republican Convention in 2000 and was in charge of the violent police reaction to demonstrations at the FTAA summit in Miami in 2002.

The only danger to the terrorists is that they might laugh their asses off at this ham-handed McGruff-the-crime-dog approach to anti-terrorism.

*HT to Musing’s musings, who covers a similar story in Denver — GMTA.