Sunday, February 10, 2008

Winds of War: Our Wonderful Homeland Security at Work

Ever see read Catch 22? This from our Homeland Security is one better.

Talib Al Sawad a Shiite Muslim, found himself in an Iraqi prison cell in 1991 in Basra when a group of armed men stormed the place and overpowered guards or persuaded them to drop their weapons. Al Sawad grabbed the gun but reportedly ditched it after he was out of sight of the civilian rebels/insurgents/freedom fighters, you name it. He instead ran to his sister's house several blocks away, according to a recent court affidavit.

Saddam stamped out the [Shiite] uprisings, and many fingered as rebels were imprisoned, tortured or executed. Al Sawad fled to Saudi Arabia. At a refugee camp there, at the urging of others, he embellished his involvement in the Basra uprising because it would improve his chances of coming to America. He was granted political asylum and settled here in 1996.

As a gesture of thanks, Al Sawad tried to enlist in the U.S. Army after we invaded Iraq in 2003. But he learned he had to become a permanent U.S. resident to do so. So he applied for his green card in 2004.

But now, courtesy of the anti-terror provision of the Real ID Act of 2005, Al Sawad is not only being denied a green card, but he also could face deportation.

What happened? Well, the same law that got him refugee asylum in the US classified him as a “terrorist” and engaged in “terrorist activities” against the Iraqi government in 1991. You know? That government we were so eager to overthrow 10 years or so later.

Sawad "used that weapon to fight against Iraqi military efforts in that area. He also participated in attacking Baath buildings as an armed guard,'' according to the denial letter.

Wasn't this the same dictatorship we went to war against after it invaded Kuwait? Had King George III quelled the American rebels, Al Sawad's befuddled lawyer agrees, "GW (George Washington) and the Minutemen would be slam-dunk terrorists under the Real ID Act.

"This is a man who was invited into the U.S. because he feared Saddam and wanted to join the U.S. armed forces to help America when we went back to Iraq in 2003 but was told he couldn't because of his immigration status,'' said Marc Prokosch. "Now I fear we will deport him for the very reason we invited him here.''

"I was afraid, because these men had guns,'' Al Sawad wrote in the court affidavit, which does not explain the reasons for his imprisonment in Iraq. "I had never shot a gun before, and all I knew was that these men had guns and they were pointed at us. It was either take the gun, or risk being shot by the men.''

Go figure.

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