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News ::
INS Detention of Arabs (FLASHPOINTS Interview of Attorney) (english)
20 Dec 2002
12 minute report, MP3 format and streaming realaudio
12 minute report, MP3 format and streaming realaudio
The only thing that will separate our time from the 1940s internment of
Japanese American citizens is an educated and vocal population.  Speak
up.  We're on a slippery slope and things are going to likely get worse.
Ban Al-Wardi was interviewed on FLASHPOINTS today, discussing the INS arrests
of hundreds of Muslims in Southern California.  Below is the portion of the website write-up


Leslie: a massive
sweep, INS arrested hundreds of unsuspecting Muslims..
now w attorney, Ban Al-Wardi, with the LA chapter
of the Arab American Anti-Discrimination Committee.. hundreds of men and
boys from Middle Eastern countries were arrested by federal immigration
officials in Southern California this week when they complied with orders to
appear at INS offices for a special registration program.. Ban saw 14 of her 20
clients arrested when she went with them to the registration.. Ban:
these people are not being charged with any crime.. they all have expired
visas.. but most of them already have green cards, work permits, travel
permits.. being mixed with the general jail population.. hosed down.. forced to
sleep on the floor, served pork.. Ban:
LA was just the first.. we've been getting reports from all over the country.. Leslie:
like the internment of the Japanese during WWII.. Ban:
yes, that was declared unconstitutional.. a voluntary program.. if they were
terrorists or criminals they would not have gone to the INS.. spreading all over
the country.. Ban:
although everyone understands the need to protect the nation against terrorist
attacks, the government's recent action went too far.. I saw a lot of teenagers
coming in getting arrested.. pulled one 16 year old sobbing from his mother's
arms.. Ban: all of our
fundamental civil rights have been violated by these actions.. I don't know how
far this is going to go before people start speaking up.. this is a very
dangerous precedent we are setting.. what's to stop Americans from being treated
like this when they travel overseas?..
"First they came for the Communists, but I was not
a Communist, so I said nothing. Then they came for the Social Democrats, but I
was not a Social Democrat, so I did nothing. Then came the trade unionists, but
I was not a trade unionist. And then they came for the Jews, but I was not a
Jew, so I did little. Then when they came for me, there was no one left to stand
up for me."  -- Pastor
Martin Niemöller
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