White Vans, Laser Beams, and Xmas Lights


Living through the 2002 Beltway Sniper episode taught me that mass psychosis is only a few sloppy news reports away. Millions of people lived in mortal fear of white panel vans despite the lack of any real evidence linking the ubiquitous vehicles to the shootings.

With the laser beam "attacks" on airliners I fear we are headed down the same irrational path. First, there is the fact such an attack would be incredibly difficult to pull off. Your target would be thousands of feet in the air, traveling at hundreds of miles an hour, in the dark, and you are aiming for a spot perhaps a couple feet square. Use the Force, Luke, and good luck. And yet this has happened a half dozen times in the past few days?

How about a much more likely cause of pilot encounters with strange lights on the ground in recent weeks, one that even has a sure case history behind it. The FAA blamed a Christmas flood light on a house in Hawaii for distracting pilots trying to land at a nearby airport. The feds contacted the homeowner and had the light put out.

Did the FBI bother to talk to anyone at the FAA about the laser beam theory? Does the FBI even know it is the Christmas season?