May 06, 2008

Full Nelson

From AOL Black Voices: Mistake Lands Mandela On Terrorist List
(May 1) - Nobel Peace Prize winner and international symbol of freedom Nelson Mandela is flagged on U.S. terrorist watch lists and needs special permission to visit the USA. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice calls the situation "embarrassing," and some members of Congress vow to fix it.
The other members vow to find out who this Mandela fellow is.
The requirement applies to former South African leader Mandela and other members of South Africa's governing African National Congress (ANC), the once-banned anti-Apartheid organization. In the 1970s and '80s, the ANC was officially designated a terrorist group by the country's ruling white minority. Other countries, including the United States, followed suit.

Because of this, Rice told a Senate committee recently, her department has to issue waivers for ANC members to travel to the USA. . . .

Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff says . . . the issue "raises a troubling and difficult debate about what groups are considered terrorists and which are not."
Wait, wait, wait, hold on. You mean it's not just a matter of good versus evil? To be blunt, this is not the sort of wishy-washy flip-flopping that I have come to expect from the Department of Homeland Security. Next you're going to tell me that arbitrary visa denials are not in the country's best interest!
". . . [I]t's frankly a rather embarrassing matter that I still have to waive in my own counterpart, the foreign minister of South Africa, not to mention the great leader Nelson Mandela," Rice said.
When reached for comment, President Bush remarked, "What's the big deal? I like waving. It's real friendly-like."

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