What to do if your vacation is disrupted by a terrorist attack

Julie Hanahan had just checked into the Citadines Las Ramblas, an apartment hotel along Barcelona’s famous La Rambla pedestrian mall, when she heard shouting and sirens.

“People were running by and screaming,” says Hanahan, who flew to Barcelona from Chicago last week with her husband and two children to board a Mediterranean cruise.

Only seconds before, a van had plowed through pedestrians on the tree-lined thoroughfare, killing 13 and injuring 100. Hanahan’s daughter watched the aftermath from her hotel balcony. “We were on the back of the hotel, thankfully, so she did not witness the van going by,” Hanahan says. Read more “What to do if your vacation is disrupted by a terrorist attack”

No good deed goes unpunished after a terrorist attack

Peter McKnight didn’t make it back from Sierra Leone last March — at least not the way he expected to. Read more “No good deed goes unpunished after a terrorist attack”

We’ll always have Paris and other useful advice

The terrorist attack in Paris was our number one story this week — specifically, Ned Levi’s useful advice on how to stay safe on your next international trip.
Read more “We’ll always have Paris and other useful advice”

Is my 15-year-old son a terrorist?

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It’s every parent’s worst nightmare. You arrive at the airport to fly home from your family vacation, and something goes wrong — terribly wrong — at the TSA screening area.

It happened to Susan Bruce recently when she flew from Phoenix to Dallas with her husband, teenage son and daughter.

“When we got to security, my son went first in line through the X-ray machine and TSA flagged him for the hand swab test,” she remembers. “While the rest of the family was stuck on the other side of the X-ray machine, my son was pulled aside for supposedly having a positive result for explosives.”

Bruce, who lives in Dallas and is a mathematician by training and a homemaker, is certain it was a misunderstanding. Her son is no terrorist, she says. He’s a clean-cut honor student.
Read more “Is my 15-year-old son a terrorist?”

TSA Watch: Who’s more dangerous — terrorists or the TSA?

For an agency that claims to have “zero tolerance” for criminal behavior, TSA agents sure spend a lot of time declaring their guilt.
Read more “TSA Watch: Who’s more dangerous — terrorists or the TSA?”