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Green Party member prevented from flying to Europe

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  • Joan Sekler
    Status: U Reply-To: From: William Gazecki To: Subject: Green Party Declared
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 12, 2004
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      Status: U
      Reply-To: <wgazecki@...>
      From: "William Gazecki" <wgazecki@...>
      To: <wgazecki@...>
      Subject: Green Party Declared "Terrorists"
      Date: Mon, 12 Jan 2004 00:55:14 -0800
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      This is the kind of stories that confirms for me how much our
      "Homeland Security" is starting to look like Germany in the
      30's.<http://www.alternet.org/issues/index.html?IssueAreaID=33> I
      find it very upsetting. One thing I found most interesting in this
      story is that there is currently no known way to get OFF a government
      list. You're never told how, or even that, you are on a list. And
      once you know, there's no known way to get your name taken off. That
      is spooky.

      Green Party "Terrorists"

      By Frederick Sweet, Intervention Magazine
      January 6, 2003

      Writing about his no-fly nightmare in the Fairfield County Weekly,
      art dealer Doug Stuber, who had run Ralph Nader's Green Party
      presidential campaign in North Carolina in 2000, was pulled out of a
      boarding line and grounded. He was about to make an important trip to
      Prague to gather artists for Henry James Art in Raleigh, N.C., when
      he was told (with ticket in hand) that he was not allowed to fly out
      that day.

      Asking "why not?" he was told at Raleigh-Durham airport that because
      of the sniper attacks, no Greens were allowed to fly overseas on that
      day. The next morning he returned, and instead of paying $670 round
      trip, was forced into a $2,600 "same day" air fare. But it's what
      happened to Stuber during the next 24 hours that is even more
      disturbing.

      Stuber arrived at the airport at 6 a.m. and his first flight wasn't
      due out until nearly six hours later. He had plenty of time. At
      exactly 10:52 in the morning, just before boarding was to begin, he
      was approached by police officer Stanley (the same policeman who
      ushered him out of the airport the day before), who said that he
      "wanted to talk" to him. Stuber went with the police officer, but
      reminded him that no one had said he couldn't fly, and that his
      flight was about to leave.

      Officer Stanley took Stuber into a room and questioned him for an
      hour. Around noon, Stanley had introduced him to two Secret Service
      agents. The agents took full eye-open pictures of Stuber with a
      digital camera. Then they asked him details about his family, where
      he lived, who he ever knew, what the Greens are up to, and other
      questions.

      At one point during his interrogation, Stuber asked if they really
      believed the Greens were equal to al Qaeda. Then they showed him a
      Justice Department document that actually shows the Greens as likely
      terrorists - just as likely as al Qaeda members. Stuber was released
      just before 1 PM, so he still had time to catch the later flight.

      The agents walked Stuber to the Delta counter and asked that he be
      given tickets for the flight so that he could make his connections.
      The airline official promptly printed tickets, which relieved Stuber,
      who assumed that the Secret Service hadn't stopped him from flying.
      Wrong! By the time Stuber was about to board, officer Stanley once
      again ushered him out the door and told him: "Just go to Greensboro,
      where they don't know you, and be totally quiet about politics, and
      you can make it to Europe that way."

      In Greensboro, after Stuber showed his passport he was told that he
      could not fly overseas or domestically. Undeterred, he next traveled
      an hour-and-a-half to Charlotte. In Charlotte, the same thing
      happened. Then Stuber drove three hours to his home after 43 hours of
      trying to catch a flight.

      Stuber said he could only conclude that the Greens, whose values
      include nonviolence, social justice, etc., are now labeled terrorists
      by the Ashcroft-led Justice Department.

      Questions about how one gets on a no-fly list creates questions about
      how to get off it. This is a classic Catch-22 situation. The
      Transportation Security Agency says it compiles the list from names
      provided by other agencies, but it has no procedure for correcting a
      problem. Aggrieved parties would have to go to the agency that first
      reported their names. But for security reasons, the TSA won't
      disclose which agency put someone on the no-fly list.

      Frederick Sweet is Professor of Reproductive Biology in Obstetrics
      and Gynecology at Washington University School of Medicine in St.
      Louis

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