National Security

‘Demolishing Our Chances To Stop Another 9/11’: Air Marshals Call Out Biden For Deploying Them To The Border

(Photo by Pete Marovich-Pool/Getty Images)

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Jennie Taer Investigative Reporter
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The leader of an Air Marshals association condemned the Biden administration Monday for deploying them to the U.S.-Mexico border, arguing that the mission is compromising air travel security.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been asking federal agencies to send personnel to the border for months; the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) executive assistant administrator, Tirrell Stevenson, and Federal Air Marshals Service recently told personnel that the border deployment may become “operationally necessary to assign,” according to Government Executive, citing an internal email. Air Marshal National Council Executive Director Sonia Labosco said the U.S. Marshals need to be moved back to their role in ensuring travelers’ safety, during an interview on Fox News’ “Fox & Friends First” Monday. (RELATED: Migrants Engage In Violent Clash With Mexican Authorities While Waiting To Cross Border)

“We have been decimated. We have been depleted. We’re on less than 1% of flights. These ground-based duties that they’re pulling us out of the sky to go to the border are just demolishing our chances at stopping another 9/11,” Labosco said.

“They have a humanitarian heart. We empathize with what’s happening at the border as human beings. However, it does not take away the responsibility or the oath that we have as air marshals to protect our aviation domain,” she added.

Federal border authorities have seen record illegal migration at the southern border in the last year, with more than 2.3 million encounters.

REUTERS/Go Nakamura/File Photo

REUTERS/Go Nakamura

Americans’ belief that they’re safe while traveling on commercial planes because U.S. Marshals are on board isn’t true, Labosco said.

A Utah man traveling via commercial flight was recently charged after allegedly assaulting a female passenger with a razor blade, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office for the district of Utah. The victim’s husband solicited help from the flight attendant on board and the woman “lunged for the aisle to escape” when the man with the blade tried to grab her by the shoulder.

“We actually wrote him [Biden] another letter over the weekend because we had a level four and a level three incident,” Labosco said, explaining that the organization hadn’t received any replies from the Biden administration. “Level four means that they tried to breach the cockpit. Level three, we had two of those, which means there were life-threatening behaviors on one of those aircraft. An individual had a straight razor to a passenger’s throat. So these are very serious incidents.”

Labosco’s group is also asking President Joe Biden and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas “to please stop this deployment of air marshals from the aircraft and them to the border,” she said.

“Like in 2019, Federal Air Marshals have deployed to the southwest border in support of our CBP colleagues, and we are grateful for their work,” a spokesperson for the Transportation Security Administration told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “The deployment of Federal Air Marshals to execute DHS’ mission at the southwest border on a reimbursable basis is temporary.  At the same time, our expert Federal Air Marshal Service workforce continues their important work in transportation security.”

The U.S. Air Marshals Service didn’t respond to requests for comment.

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