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Sky marshal

From Academic Kids

Sky marshal (or air marshal) is a popular term for an undercover armed guard on board a commercial aircraft, to counter aircraft hijackings ('skyjackings'). Three carriers are known to have sky marshals on board on selected flights: Swiss (since 1970; formerly Swissair), El Al, and Sri Lankan Airlines. Sky marshals became an issue in late 2003 when United States ordered foreign airlines to have armed guards on flights to and from the country as a precaution against terrorist attacks. Many of the involved countries and carriers have expressed great reservation towards the idea since they fear that having weapons on board only increases the risk of terrorist actions. Sky marshals may be provided by the various airlines or by government agencies such as the US Office of Federal Air Marshals.

Ocean-going cruise ships have similar officers, known as Sea Marshals

Contents

Sky marshals in action

Fictional references

The term "sky marshal" has seen reference in some works of science fiction, albeit in a very different context. In Robert A Heinlein's Starship Troopers, the Sky Marshal is the uniformed commander-in-chief of the Terran Federation military. The Terran Federation of the Starfire universe has a Sky Marshal in the exact same position.

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References

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