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A volunteer stands inside a full-body scanner during a demonstration at the Transportation Security Administration facility at Ronald Reagan National Airport on December 30, 2009 in Arlington, Virginia.
A volunteer stands inside a full-body scanner during a demonstration at the Transportation Security Administration facility at Ronald Reagan National Airport on December 30, 2009 in Arlington, Virginia.

Norman Spector

Coming soon to your airport: full-body scans Add to ...

Full body scanning is coming to an airport near you

Transportation Minister John Baird will make the announcement today, according to La Presse, generally a reliable conduit of PMO leaks. Coming one day after the United States announced new rules for passengers linked to 14 countries, today's announcement means that, if you're flying to the U.S. from one of nine Canadian airports, you've got two months to prepare to show all before you get on the plane.

• So what if the body scanners were given the thumbs down after being tested in Canada?

• So what if the near-miss to explode a passenger plane en route for Detroit on Christmas Day was primarily a failure of U.S. intelligence?

• So what if you can count on those who want to blow up an airplane finding new means to kill themselves and others once they're thwarted by technology that can detect explosives stitched into underwear?

• So what if the U.S. list of 14 countries makes no sense? (The last time I checked, Cuba has yet to produce a suicide bomber. Meanwhile, Egypt and Jordan are not on the list.)

• And, so what if by complying with the Obama Administration's new rules, Canada will be coming perilously close to racial profiling?

Here's the bottom line: The Americans have decreed it. And if Canadians want to continue to fly into to their country, we have no choice but to accept it.

(Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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Update In Britain, the House of Commons is in session.

From this report on the website of The Times of London, it appears that Mr. Baird's announcement today is part of a co-ordinated plan among like-minded countries on the day President Barack Obama is to speak to Americans about new security measures:

"Body scanners will be introduced at Heathrow within three weeks, the Home Secretary announced today as he unveiled a review of aviation security in the wake of the failed Christmas Day bomb plot.

Sniffer dogs will also become more common at British airports as security staff try to detect hidden explosives. Body searches and closer behavioural analysis of passengers passing through British airports will also be stepped up.

Equipment to detect traces of explosives will be installed at all British airports by the end of the year, Alan Johnson told the House of Commons in a ministerial statement.

Mr Johnson also said that the Government would consider introducing widespread profiling of passengers to see if that "might help to enhance airport security."

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