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Secret "watch lists" have nabbed more members of Congress than terrorists


http://www.boston.com/news/globe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2006/07/21/the_terrorist_batting_average/

The 'terrorist' batting average
By James Bovard
July 21, 2006

[...]

The federal government has inflated the ``No Fly List" to 200,000 names. 
But the list has nabbed more members of Congress than it has terrorists. 
US Senator Edward M. Kennedy and US Representative John Lewis have been 
inconvenienced by it, and anyone named David Nelson is likely to face a 
major interrogation each time he flies. Federal officials make it very 
difficult to correct the list, thus tormenting citizens who are guilty 
of nothing more than having a name resembling a name suspected sometime 
by some government official.

Hundreds of disruptions have occurred at American airports since Sept. 
11 after security breaches set off fears of terror attacks. The 
subsequent lockdowns boosted local television news ratings. Though no 
terrorists have been apprehended, thousands of Americans have been 
arrested at airports for violating Transportation Security 
Administration regulations or other rules.

[...]

Federal officials have charged 10 times as many people in terrorist 
investigations as they convicted on terrorist-related charges. Bush 
declared a year ago that ``federal terrorism investigations have 
resulted in charges against more than 400 suspects, and more than half 
of those charged have been convicted." But only 39 people were convicted 
on crimes tied to terrorism or national security, a Washington Post 
analysis found.

[...]

Posted by Declan McCullagh on Jul 24, 2006 in category privacy


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