May 7, 2010
Since the non-bomb event in Times Square the corporate media has whipped up irrational hysteria over the prospect of homegrown terrorism.
Neocons now demand that people associated with terrorists (as defined by the government) have their citizenship and constitutional rights stripped. Republicans and Democrats debate if terror suspects should be informed of their right to remain silent and seek legal consul. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee has discussed a proposal to deny more than a million Americans the right to buy and own firearms because they ended up on the terrorist watch list (now containing nearly a million and half names) and the equally erroneous no-fly list.
Bus passengers in New Hampshire experienced this irrational paranoia firsthand on Thursday when a bomb threat was called into the police.
“A tense standoff with a passenger aboard a Boston-bound Greyhound bus ended peacefully last night when he surrendered to police, nearly 10 hours after authorities received a call that a bomb was on board,” reported the Boston Globe. “The scene caused chaos in downtown Portsmouth. Police urged people to stay away from the area, and said they were operating on the premise that an explosive was on the bus. It was not known last night whether any explosive device had been discovered.”
“Coming just days after a failed car bombing in New York City, the threat drew an overwhelming response, with bomb squads, SWAT teams, and a sharpshooter in an armored vehicle descending on the chaotic scene.”
The authorities acted like the bus had been hijacked by al-Qaeda and reacted in a fashion similar to paramilitary goon squads in a third world dictatorship. “The scariest part was seeing the police cruisers surround the bus, and they all had machine guns,’’ said one passenger.
“At about 2 p.m., 2 1/2 hours after arriving in Portsmouth, passengers began leaving the bus one by one, holding their hands in the air as they walked slowly past tactical teams with guns drawn. As they disembarked, some could be seen lifting up their shirts, apparently to show they were unarmed, and being quickly surrounded by authorities. Some could be seen in handcuffs,” the newspaper reports.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
An elderly man made the mistake of refusing to give his name. He was tasered.
“The odyssey involving the Maine-to-New York bus began Thursday morning around 11:15 a.m. with a 911 call about a man on a bus with a bomb. Police evacuated buildings and streets and called the passengers out. One man refused to leave the bus. After hours of negotiations, he was taken into custody at 8:45 p.m,” reports the Associated Press. “Portsmouth Police Chief David Ferland said the man is being questioned but that the case is not terrorism-related.”
The man was considered suspicious and a potential terrorist because he wore camouflage pants and refused to obey orders.
Irrational paranoia over non-existent terrorism has infected the nation. On May 6, authorities at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport halted the takeoff of a Dubai-bound Emirates Airline flight after a passenger was identified as being on the no-fly list. “Several law enforcement officials, however, said that the name match turned out to be a false one,” the New York Times reported.
An abandoned U-Haul truck resulted in New York’s Robert F. Kennedy Triborough Bridge being closed down. “According to officials, witnesses reported seeing a man flee the truck sometime Wednesday night, and the smell of gasoline was reported coming from the vehicle,” reported CBS News.
At the Seattle-Tacoma airport a bomb squad detonated a piece of suspicious luggage that was smoking, according to the Associated Press. “Port of Seattle spokeswoman Terri-Ann Betancourt says the luggage contained only a battery charger and electronics.”
All of this hysterical and paranoid behavior does nothing but instill fear in the populace and give authorities an excuse to continue the construction of a high-tech surveillance grid.
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