Daily Archives: June 9, 2008

America’s Medicated Army

Any drug that keeps a soldier deployed and fighting also saves money on training and deploying replacements. But there is a downside: the number of soldiers requiring long-term mental-health services soars with repeated deployments and lengthy combat tours. If troops do not get sufficient time away from combat — both while in theater and during the “dwell time” at home before they go back to war — it’s possible that antidepressants and sleeping aids will be used to stretch an already taut force even tighter.

“And it seems to me perfectly in the cards that there will be within the next generation or so a pharmacological method of making people love their servitude, and producing a kind of painless concentration camp for entire societies, so that people will in fact have their liberties taken away from them but will rather enjoy it, because they will be distracted from any desire to rebel by propaganda, brainwashing, or brainwashing enhanced by pharmacological methods. And this seems to be the final revolution.”

– Aldous Huxley, author of Brave New World, in a speech at the California Medical School in San Francisco, 1959

TIME | Jun 5, 2008


Seven months after Sergeant Christopher LeJeune started scouting Baghdad’s dangerous roads — acting as bait to lure insurgents into the open so his Army unit could kill them — he found himself growing increasingly despondent. “We’d been doing some heavy missions, and things were starting to bother me,” LeJeune says. His unit had been protecting Iraqi police stations targeted by rocket-propelled grenades, hunting down mortars hidden in dark Baghdad basements and cleaning up its own messes. He recalls the order his unit got after a nighttime firefight to roll back out and collect the enemy dead. When LeJeune and his buddies arrived, they discovered that some of the bodies were still alive. “You don’t always know who the bad guys are,” he says. “When you search someone’s house, you have it built up in your mind that these guys are terrorists, but when you go in, there’s little bitty tiny shoes and toys on the floor — things like that started affecting me a lot more than I thought they would.”

So LeJeune visited a military doctor in Iraq, who, after a quick session, diagnosed depression. The doctor sent him back to war armed with the antidepressant Zoloft and the antianxiety drug clonazepam. “It’s not easy for soldiers to admit the problems that they’re having over there for a variety of reasons,” LeJeune says. “If they do admit it, then the only solution given is pills.”

While the headline-grabbing weapons in this war have been high-tech wonders, like unmanned drones that drop Hellfire missiles on the enemy below, troops like LeJeune are going into battle with a different kind of weapon, one so stealthy that few Americans even know of its deployment. For the first time in history, a sizable and growing number of U.S. combat troops are taking daily doses of antidepressants to calm nerves strained by repeated and lengthy tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. The medicines are intended not only to help troops keep their cool but also to enable the already strapped Army to preserve its most precious resource: soldiers on the front lines. Data contained in the Army’s fifth Mental Health Advisory Team report indicate that, according to an anonymous survey of U.S. troops taken last fall, about 12% of combat troops in Iraq and 17% of those in Afghanistan are taking prescription antidepressants or sleeping pills to help them cope. Escalating violence in Afghanistan and the more isolated mission have driven troops to rely more on medication there than in Iraq, military officials say.

At a Pentagon that keeps statistics on just about everything, there is no central clearinghouse for this kind of data, and the Army hasn’t consistently asked about prescription-drug use, which makes it difficult to track. Given the traditional stigma associated with soldiers seeking mental help, the survey, released in March, probably underestimates antidepressant use. But if the Army numbers reflect those of other services — the Army has by far the most troops deployed to the war zones — about 20,000 troops in Afghanistan and Iraq were on such medications last fall. The Army estimates that authorized drug use splits roughly fifty-fifty between troops taking antidepressants — largely the class of drugs that includes Prozac and Zoloft — and those taking prescription sleeping pills like Ambien. In some ways, the prescriptions may seem unremarkable.

Generals, history shows, have plied their troops with medicinal palliatives at least since George Washington ordered rum rations at Valley Forge. During World War II, the Nazis fueled their blitzkrieg into France and Poland with the help of an amphetamine known as Pervitin. The U.S. Army also used amphetamines during the Vietnam War.

The military’s rising use of antidepressants also reflects their prevalence in the civilian population. In 2004, the last year for which complete data for the U.S. are available, doctors wrote 147 million prescriptions for antidepressants, according to IMS Health, a pharmaceutical-market-research firm. This number reflects in part the common practice of cycling through different medications to find the most effective drug. A 2006 federally funded study found that 70% of those taking antidepressants along with therapy experience some improvement in mood.

When it comes to fighting wars, though, troops have historically been barred from using such drugs in combat. And soldiers — who are younger and healthier on average than the general population — have been prescreened for mental illnesses before enlisting.

The increase in the use of medication among U.S. troops suggests the heavy mental and psychological price being paid by soldiers fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan. Pentagon surveys show that while all soldiers deployed to a war zone will feel stressed, 70% will manage to bounce back to normalcy. But about 20% will suffer from what the military calls “temporary stress injuries,” and 10% will be afflicted with “stress illnesses.” Such ailments, according to briefings commanders get before deploying, begin with mild anxiety and irritability, difficulty sleeping, and growing feelings of apathy and pessimism. As the condition worsens, the feelings last longer and can come to include panic, rage, uncontrolled shaking and temporary paralysis. The symptoms often continue back home, playing a key role in broken marriages, suicides and psychiatric breakdowns. The mental trauma has become so common that the Pentagon may expand the list of “qualifying wounds” for a Purple Heart — historically limited to those physically injured on the battlefield — to include posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Defense Secretary Robert Gates said on May 2 that it’s “clearly something” that needs to be considered, and the Pentagon is weighing the change.

Using drugs to cope with battlefield traumas is not discussed much outside the Army, but inside the service it has been the subject of debate for years. “No magic pill can erase the image of a best friend’s shattered body or assuage the guilt from having traded duty with him that day,” says Combat Stress Injury, a 2006 medical book edited by Charles Figley and William Nash that details how troops can be helped by such drugs. “Medication can, however, alleviate some debilitating and nearly intolerable symptoms of combat and operational stress injuries” and “help restore personnel to full functioning capacity.”

Which means that any drug that keeps a soldier deployed and fighting also saves money on training and deploying replacements. But there is a downside: the number of soldiers requiring long-term mental-health services soars with repeated deployments and lengthy combat tours. If troops do not get sufficient time away from combat — both while in theater and during the “dwell time” at home before they go back to war — it’s possible that antidepressants and sleeping aids will be used to stretch an already taut force even tighter. “This is what happens when you try to fight a long war with an army that wasn’t designed for a long war,” says Lawrence Korb, Pentagon personnel chief during the Reagan Administration.


The Official 2008 Bilderberg Participant List (CONDENSED VERSION)


Chantilly, Virginia, USA June 5-8 2008

* CONDENSED list of the most interesting members according to Aftermath News

Prison Planet | Jun 6, 2008


Honorary Chairman

BEL “Davignon, Etienne”

“Vice Chairman, Suez-Tractebel”

. . .

DEU “Ackermann, Josef” “Chairman of the Management Board and the Group Executive Committee, Deutsche Bank AG”

USA “Ajami, Fouad” “Director, Middle East Studies Program

The Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University”

USA “Alexander, Keith B.” “Director, National Security Agency”

INT “Almunia, Joaquín ” “Commissioner, European Commission”

NLD “Balkenende, Jan Peter” Prime Minister

USA “Bernanke, Ben S.” “Chairman, Board of Governors, Federal Reserve System”

GBR “Clarke, Kenneth” Member of Parliament

USA “Daschle, Thomas A.” Former US Senator and Senate Majority Leader

CAN “Desmarais, Jr., Paul ” “Chairman and co-CEO, Power Corporation of Canada”

USA “Farah, Martha J.” “Director, Center for Cognitive Neuroscience; Walter H. Annenberg Professor in the Natural Sciences, University of Pennsylvania”

DEU “Fischer, Joschka” Former Minister of Foreign Affairs

USA “Ford, Jr., Harold E.” “Vice Chairman, Merill Lynch & Co., Inc.”

USA “Geithner, Timothy F. ” “President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of New York”

USA “Gigot, Paul ” “Editorial Page Editor, The Wall Street Journal”

NLD “Goddijn, Harold” “CEO, TomTom”

USA “Graham, Donald E.” “Chairman and CEO, The Washington Post Company”

NLD “Halberstadt, Victor” “Professor of Economics, Leiden University; Former Honorary Secretary General of Bilderberg Meetings”

USA “Holbrooke, Richard C. ” “Vice Chairman, Perseus, LLC”

INT “Hoop Scheffer, Jaap G. de” “Secretary General, NATO”

USA “Johnson, James A.” “Vice Chairman, Perseus, LLC” (Obama’s man tasked with selecting his running mate)

SWE “Johnstone, Tom ” “President and CEO, AB SKF”

USA “Jordan, Jr., Vernon E.” “Senior Managing Director, Lazard Frères & Co. LLC”

FRA “Jouyet, Jean-Pierre ” Minister of European Affairs

GBR “Kerr, John ” “Member, House of Lords; Deputy Chairman, Royal Dutch Shell plc.”

USA “Kissinger, Henry A.” “Chairman, Kissinger Associates, Inc.”

USA “Kleinfeld, Klaus” “President and COO, Alcoa”

USA “Kravis, Marie-Josée” “Senior Fellow, Hudson Institute, Inc.”

INT “Kroes, Neelie ” “Commissioner, European Commission”

INT “Mandelson, Peter” “Commissioner, European Commission”

NT “McCreevy, Charlie ” “Commissioner, European Commission”

USA “McDonough, William J.” “Vice Chairman and Special Advisor to the Chairman, Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.”

USA “Mundie, Craig J. ” “Chief Research and Strategy Officer, Microsoft Corporation”

DEU “Nass, Matthias” “Deputy Editor, Die Zeit”

NLD “Netherlands, H.M. Beatrix , the Queen of the”

FIN “Ollila, Jorma” “Chairman, Royal Dutch Shell “

NLD “Orange, H.R.H. the Prince of”

GBR “Osborne, George” Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer

USA “Paulson, Jr., Henry M.” Secretary of the Treasury

USA “Perle, Richard N.” “Resident Fellow, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research”

BEL “Philippe, H.R.H. Prince”

USA “Rice, Condoleezza” Secretary of State

USA “Rockefeller, David ” “Former Chairman, Chase Manhattan Bank”

USA “Rose, Charlie [frickin]” “Producer, Rose Communications”

USA “Sanford, Mark” Governor of South Carolina

USA “Schmidt, Eric” “Chairman of the Executive Committee and CEO, Google”

USA “Sebelius, Kathleen” Governor of Kansas

USA “Shultz, George P.” “Thomas W. and Susan B. Ford Distinguished Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University”

ESP “Spain, H.M. the Queen of”

RUS “Trenin, Dmitri V.” “Deputy Director and Senior Associate, Carnegie Moscow Center”

INT “Trichet, Jean-Claude” “President, European Central Bank”

GBR “Bredow, Vendeline von” “Business Correspondent, The Economist”

USA “Wolfensohn, James D. ” “Chairman, Wolfensohn & Company, LLC”

USA “Wolfowitz, Paul ” “Visiting Scholar, American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research”

GBR “Wooldridge, Adrian D.” “Foreign Correspondent, The Economist”

INT “Zoellick, Robert B. ” “President, The World Bank Group”

. . .


AUT Austria HUN Hungary

BEL Belgium INT International

CHE Switzerland IRL Ireland

CAN Canada ITA Italy

CZE Czech Republic NOR Norway

DEU Germany NLD Netherlands

DNK Denmark PRT Portugal

ESP Spain POL Poland

FRA France RUS Russia

FIN Finland SWE Sweden

GBR Great Britain TUR Turkey

GRC Greece USA United States of America

Complete List Here


Amy Goodman & Dan Rather confronted about Bilderberg Group

Dan Rather feigns ignorance. However, according to Bilderberg researcher and journalist Daniel Estulin, Rather, formerly of CBS News, is a member in good standing.

Goodman’s facial expression, when asked about the Bilderbergs, in the video above is priceless, so much so Minnesota Change decided to freeze-frame it and add the Jeopardy theme song.


Mysterious Masons let their secrets out

Hoping to stem a membership decline, lodges contribute artifacts, information for a new exhibit at the Idaho Historical Museum

Idaho Statesman | Jun 7, 2008


The new exhibit at the Idaho State Historical Museum – Brotherhood: Freemasonry’s Mark on Idaho – wouldn’t have happened a decade ago.

“One of the Masons told us that if we’d asked to do this 10 years ago, the answer would have been a flat no,” the museum’s Emily Peeso said. “They wouldn’t have wanted people to learn their secrets. But because their numbers are declining, they thought an exhibit would be a good thing for them now.”

Idaho membership in the once-secretive fraternity has declined from some 15,000 in 1960 to about 4,500 today. Hopeful that telling their story might slow the decline, Masons from throughout the state contributed information and artifacts to the exhibit.

“When we first started, we were worried we weren’t going to get anything,” Peeso said. “Then their lodges started communicating with each other about it, and it was like we got hit with a giant snowball. Now their treasures are here.”

In droves. They fill a 3,000-square-foot room, the museum’s largest, and range from lavish ceremonial regalia to obscure minutiae.

One display, for example, includes a small box with ancient-looking white and black marbles. Masons voted for prospective members by placing white marbles in the box. A single black marble in the box meant the candidate had been rejected. It was the origin of the term “black-balled.”

An ungainly looking contraption placed over the eyes as a blindfold during initiation ceremonies at the Idaho City Lodge was called a “hoodwink,” now an archaic use of the word.

Ever wondered what the prominently displayed “G” stands for on Masonic lodges? Visitors to the exhibit learn that it represents two things: the grand architect of the universe, or God, and geometry.


Freemasonry was founded on the structure and symbolism of the lodges of medieval stonemasons, who used the then-secret science of geometry to build Gothic edifices. Knowledge of the arts and sciences was carefully protected and introduced to new members by degrees, helping seal the fraternity’s reputation for mystery.

Now, the secrets are out.

“It’s all on the Internet if you want to do the research,” museum education specialist Kurt Zwolfer said. “We stayed away from making this a tell-all exhibit. We didn’t want to lose the mystery.”

Zwolfer was one of the exhibit’s originators.

“People think of Idaho history as things like Lewis and Clark, but a lot of it is under the radar like this,” he said. “Almost every small town in Idaho has a Masonic Lodge, and there are a lot of ties to Idaho history.”

A number of early Idaho governors and state lawmakers were Masons. When the Statehouse was being built, the Legislature met in Boise’s Masonic Lodge. The oldest lodge west of the Mississippi is in Idaho City, and related organizations such as the Shriners, the Order of the Eastern Star, Job’s Daughters and DeMolay are active throughout the state.

Idaho Masons have a distinguished human-rights record.

“The Idaho lodge was the first one to speak out against Hitler and what was being done to the Jews,” Peeso said. “The Jewish lodge in New York City has invited Idaho’s grand master to an annual ceremony in New York every year since.”

In 1994, the Idaho lodge became one of only eight in the nation to recognize a Prince Hall Lodge. Prince Hall Lodges are predominantly black. Hall was a founder of the nation’s first black Masonic lodge, in 1775.

Numbers, however, continue to decline. More than 30 of the state’s 97 lodges are inactive.

“Young people don’t join things the way they used to,” Zwolfer said. “They sign up for MySpace or do a blog rather than joining a group.”

Jim Voyles, a Mason and a docent at the exhibit, hopes it helps visitors of all ages understand more about Freemasonry.

“It should fill in some blanks about who we are and what we believe,” he said. “It’s been so much a mystery through the years that not even some Masons’ families knew they were members.”

EU graft and corruption prompts fresh criticism of Brussels “gravy train”

EU politician channels $800,000 of public funds into family business

The episode will prompt fresh criticism of the Brussels “gravy train”

The Express | Jun 6, 2008

By Alison Little

THE leader of the Conservative Party’s Euro MPs resigned last night after admitting he broke expenses rules.

Giles Chichester quit after it was revealed he had channelled more than £400,000 of taxpayer-funded staff allowances into a family firm.

He claimed he was not aware the practice had been banned five years ago and described his actions as a “whoops-a-daisy” mistake that was just a “technical” breach of the rules.

But he agreed to step down as leader amid speculation he was about to be sacked by Tory leader David Cameron.

Mr Chichester may now have to repay some of his £160,000-a-year staff expenses after European officials launched an investigation. He also faces pressure to quit the European Parliament altogether.

The episode will prompt fresh criticism of the Brussels “gravy train” and concern at the lack of scrutiny over MEPs’ use of public money.

It is also highly embarrassing for Mr Cameron who appointed Mr Chichester just three months ago to draw up a new code of conduct for Tory MEPs.

It followed the sacking of then Tory MP Derek Conway for paying his son more than £40,000 as a Commons researcher while he was a student at Newcastle University.

Mr Cameron said last night: “Giles Chichester is right to stand down as leader of our MEPs to prepare a full explanation of how his office is funded.

“Just as I expect our MPs to adhere to the highest standards, so must our MEPs.”

Mr Chichester – son of round-the-world yachtsman Sir Francis – is MEP for the South-west of England and Gibraltar and was appointed Tory Euro leader last November.

Since 1996, he has paid a total of £445,000 to a firm founded by his late father, in an arrangement registered with the European Parliament. The money was for “secretarial and assistant services for the European Parliament, constituency and committee work” and included sums paid to his wife, Virginia, for secretarial work.

However, Mr Chichester said he was not aware when re-registering the deal in 2004 that the rules had changed the year before to ban MEPs from putting Parliament cash into any firm of which they are paid directors.

Mr Chichester cancelled the contract after checking the situation with officials following media interest.

In a statement last night, Mr Chichester said: “I apologise once again for the fact that I have been in breach of the parliamentary rules. I wish to allow myself the space to prepare my report to the parliamentary authorities and demonstrate that monies were properly spent and accounted for.” He insisted there had been “no misappropriation of funds” and that he had acted in “good faith” throughout.

But he confessed: “It is embarrassing, not least because I have introduced a new code for my Conservative colleagues for expenses. Here I am leading that process for the last couple of months and – whoops-a-daisy – I am shown up to have made a mistake.”

Neil O’Brien, director of think-tank Open Europe, last night demanded further action and said: “If this is serious enough to resign the leadership over, it is serious enough to warrant resigning as an MEP.”

Ukip leader and MEP Nigel Farage said: “Any MEP caught misusing funds should step down.”

Tory sources said it was too early to judge the seriousness of the matter but insisted Mr Cameron would act “swiftly and robustly” if necessary.

Liberal Democrat MEP Chris Davies, a leading anti-sleaze campaigner, yesterday called for an annual independent audit of all MEPs’ expenses claims.

‘Baghdad-style’ checkpoints in US capital


D.C. police stop a vehicle at a checkpoint in the Trinidad neighborhood Saturday, June 7, 2008 in Washington. Recent violence in the neighborhood prompted police to create a Neighborhood Safety Zone to make sure people have legitimate reasons to be there. (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Telegraph | Jun 9, 2008

By Tom Leonard

Police in Washington DC have set up vehicle checkpoints in the American capital in a controversial measure aimed at tackling a wave of gun violence.

In a move that critics have compared to the security clampdown in Baghdad, police are stopping motorists travelling through the main thoroughfare of Trinidad, a neighbourhood near the National Arboretum in the city’s northeast section.

Drivers’ identification are checked and those who didn’t have a “legitimate purpose” in the area, such as a church visit or doctor’s appointment, are turned away.

The checkpoints were set up after eight people were killed in the city last weekend.

Most of the killings occurred in the police district that includes Trinidad which has already seen 22 murders this year.

But civil liberties groups have criticised the measures and have dispatched a team of lawyers and law students to monitor the situation.

“Trinidad should not be treated like Baghdad,” said Mark Thompson of the National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People.

The group and various other organisations have threatened legal action if residents’ constitutional rights are violated.

“It seems interesting that police are willing to easily cast aside fundamental freedoms for quick-fix, lazy law enforcement tactics,” said Johnny Barnes, executive director of the local American Civil Liberties Union.

Washington’s police chief and mayor have insisted that the checkpoints are a legal and necessary step to stop a spike in violence.

“It would be unconscionable, maybe even a dereliction of our duty, for the police chief and I to not do something different, to not turn up the heat,” said Adrian Fenty, the District of Columbia’s mayor.

The checkpoints will be enforced at random hours for at least five days, though it could be extended to 10 days, police said.

Officers will search cars only if they observe guns or drugs and pedestrians will not be affected.

10 airports install body scanners

“The technotronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled society. Such a society would be dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values.”

– Zbigniew Brzezinski, CFR member and founding member of the Trilateral Commission, and National Security Advisor to five presidents.

“Diet, injections, and injunctions will combine, from a very early age, to produce the sort of character and the sort of beliefs that the authorities consider desirable, and any serious criticism of the powers that be will become psychologically impossible.”

– Bertrand Russell, “The Impact of Science on Society”, 1953


“Some of this stuff seems a little crazy,” Reardon said, “but in this day and age, you have to go along with it.”

USA TODAY | Jun 5, 2008

By Thomas Frank

BALTIMORE — Body-scanning machines that show images of people underneath their clothing are being installed in 10 of the nation’s busiest airports in one of the biggest public uses of security devices that reveal intimate body parts.

The Transportation Security Administration recently started using body scans on randomly chosen airline passengers in Los Angeles, Baltimore, Denver, Albuquerque and New York’s Kennedy airport.

Airports in Dallas, Detroit, Las Vegas and Miami will be added this month. Reagan National Airport near Washington starts using a body scanner Friday. A total of 38 machines will be in use within weeks.

“It’s the wave of the future,” said James Schear, the TSA security director at Baltimore-Washington International Airport, where two body scanners are in use at one checkpoint.

Schear said the scanners could eventually replace metal detectors at the nation’s 2,000 airport checkpoints and the pat-downs done on passengers who need extra screening. “We’re just scratching the surface of what we can do with whole-body imaging,” Schear said.

The TSA effort could encourage scanners’ use in rail stations, arenas and office buildings, the American Civil Liberties Union said. “This may well set a precedent that others will follow,” said Barry Steinhardt, head of the ACLU technology project.

Scanners are used in a few courthouses, jails and U.S. embassies, as well as overseas border crossings, military checkpoints and some foreign airports such as Amsterdam’s Schiphol.

‘The ultimate answer’

The scanners bounce harmless “millimeter waves” off passengers who are selected to stand inside a portal with arms raised after clearing the metal detector. A TSA screener in a nearby room views the black-and-white image and looks for objects on a screen that are shaded differently from the body. Finding a suspicious object, a screener radios a colleague at the checkpoint to search the passenger.

The TSA says it protects privacy by blurring passengers’ faces and deleting images right after viewing. Yet the images are detailed, clearly showing a person’s gender. “You can actually see the sweat on someone’s back,” Schear said.

The scanners aim to strengthen airport security by spotting plastic and ceramic weapons and explosives that evade metal detectors and are the biggest threat to aviation. Government audits have found that screeners miss a large number of weapons, bombs and bomb parts such as wires and timers that agents sneak through checkpoints.

“I’m delighted by this development,” said Clark Kent Ervin, the former Homeland Security inspector general whose reports urged the use of body scanners. “This really is the ultimate answer to increasing screeners’ ability to spot concealed weapons.”

The scanners do a good job seeing under clothing but cannot see through plastic or rubber materials that resemble skin, said Peter Siegel, a senior scientist at the California Institute of Technology. “You probably could find very common materials that you could wrap around you that would effectively obscure things,” Siegel said.

‘You have to go along with it’

Passengers who went through a scanner at the Baltimore airport last week were intrigued, reassured and occasionally wary. The process took about 30 seconds on average.

Stepping into the 9-foot-tall glass booth, Eileen Reardon of Baltimore looked startled when an electronic glass door slid around the outside of the machine to create the image of her body. “Some of this stuff seems a little crazy,” Reardon said, “but in this day and age, you have to go along with it.”

Scott Shafer of Phoenix didn’t mind a screener looking at him underneath his shorts and polo shirt from a nearby room. The door is kept shut and blocked with floor screens. “I don’t know that person back there. I’ll never seem them,” Shafer said. “Everything personal is taken out of the equation.”

Steinhardt of the ACLU said passengers would be alarmed if they saw the image of their body. “It all seems very clinical and non-threatening — you go through this portal and don’t have any idea what’s at the other end,” he said.

Passengers scanned in Baltimore said they did not know what the scanner did and were not told why they were directed into the booth.

Magazine-sized signs are posted around the checkpoint explaining the scanners, but passengers said they did not notice them.

Darin Scott of Miami was annoyed by the process.

“If you don’t ask questions, they don’t tell you anything,” Scott said. When he asked a screener technical questions about the scanner, “he could not answer,” Scott said.

TSA spokeswoman Sterling Payne said the agency is studying passenger reaction and could “get more creative” about informing passengers. “If passengers have questions,” she said, “they need to ask the questions.”

Passengers can decline to go through a scanner, but they will face a pat-down.

Schear, the Baltimore security director, said only 4% of passengers decline.

In Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, where scanners have been tested since last year as an alternative to pat-downs, 90% of passengers choose to be scanned, the TSA says.

“Most passengers don’t think it’s any big deal,” Schear said. “They think it’s a piece of security they’re willing to do.”