By Steven J. Dick, Rebecca Wright, NASA History Office
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Extra resources for NASA at 50 : interviews with NASA's senior leadership
Improve measures to detect explosives on passengers. Examine human factors issues at screening checkpoints. Expedite deployment of inline baggage screening systems. Intensify efforts to identify, screen, and track cargo. Deploy hardened cargo containers. Institute risk-based prioritization as the basis for transportation security policy and the creation of a strategic plan for aviation security.
Because their flight training was conducted in the United States, the 9/11 hijackers would have known about the code and would have been familiar with the transponder. In three of the four hijacked aircraft, the transponders were turned off, making it difficult for the FAA to track the aircraft on radar. S. military agencies were not in communication throughout the entire 9/11 attack sequence. Defending the United States during the attacks was a mission of North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD).
It is estimated that $400,000 to $500,000 was spent to plan and carry out the 9/11 attacks. Al-Qaeda raised money through corrupt charities and donations from sympathizers in certain Gulf countries including Saudi Arabia, but it is not certain that all donors knew how their money was being used. The 19 hijackers were supported with funds wired from KSM, brought in as cash or held in foreign bank accounts that could be accessed from the United States. These findings of the 9/11 Commission highlight the importance of effective immigration and customs inspections as crucial components to national security that also affect aviation security.
NASA at 50 : interviews with NASA's senior leadership by Steven J. Dick, Rebecca Wright, NASA History Office