Since Feb 2002, the TSA reports it has discovered 2150 firearms, 75,241 box cutters and 4.7 million knives. Standing out from these figures are 2 chainsaws, gunpowder and fuses and a landmine.

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October just gone <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = “urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags” />U.S. screeners picked up ammunition 2,000 times, as well as confiscating 170,940 knives and 73 guns. But while plenty has been picked up, it’s what hasn’t been found that worries authorities.

Oregon Rep. Peter DeFazio, ranking Democrat on the House aviation subcommittee, has reviewed classified reports on the screeners’ performance. He says screeners have trouble finding well concealed objects.

“They’re crippled with machines that only look at items in one dimension and are very primitive,” he said. “They have 1970s technology to find 21st century threats.”

According to DeFazio, better X-ray machines are on the market, but he claims Congress hasn’t given the TSA enough money to buy them.