Democracy Now! March 19, 2003

Program Title:
Democracy Now! March 19, 2003
Series Title:
PRA Archive #: 

Will Iraqi-Americans be detained? Round-ups may be part of the government s Operation Liberty Shield; Hundreds of Pakistanis try to flee to Canada as new registration deadline looms: border cities have been transformed into unlikely refugee camps; As US names 30 countries supposedly supporting war, protests intensify: a cross-continental discussion; Talk-back to war: more listeners tell us what they re doing in this time of war

8:00-8:01 Billboard 8:01-8:06 Headlines 8:06-8:07 One Minute Music Break 8:07-8:12: It received just three sentences on Larry King s show last night: Dozens of Iraqis in at least five United States cities thought to be sympathetic to Saddam Hussein's regime will be detained because war is imminent. The government sources told CNN the individuals could pose a danger to Americans or U.S. interest, sources said, but the sources would not be more specific about the nature of the danger. These Iraqis have been under surveillance until now and the Justice Department is heading the detention effort. The story has barely been mentioned in other outlets. The New York Post reported the round-ups would be part of the government s so-called Operation Liberty Shield. Guest: Anas Shallal, Iraqi-American living in the Washington D.C. area. He is a "Partner for Peace" with the Seeds of Peace program and one of the founders of the Mesopotamia Cultural Society. 8:12-8:20: President Bush yesterday delivered a final ultimatum to Saddam Hussein: he gave the Iraqi President and his son just 48 hours to flee the country, or be attacked. There are just a few hours left. But thousands of people in this country are facing an imminent deadline of a very different kind. By March 21st, just two days from now, immigrants from Pakistan and Saudi Arabia must register with immigration officials. If they don t register, they will be imprisoned or deported. If they do register, many of them will also be imprisoned or deported. People from Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Jordan and Kuwait must register by April 25. The deadline has prompted thousands of Pakistanis to try to flee to Canada. The Detroit Free Press is reporting border cities in New York, Michigan and Vermont have been transformed into unlikely refugee camps for hundreds waiting to get in. Vermont Refugee Assistance is swamped. It is recruiting local families to provide shelter for the hundreds of people awaiting appointments with Canadian immigration authorities or for husbands who are in jail. But after sheltering more than 200 people in the past six weeks, the agency says it can assist no more refugees. If Canada turns away the refugees, they are at the mercy of US authorities, who separate families, detain them, and deport them. Meanwhile, the Department of Homeland Security has implemented a policy of detaining asylum seekers from 33 nations where al Qaeda has operated. The new policy could result in hundreds of arrests. Guest: Monami Maulik, founder & organizer of DRUM, Desis Rising Up & Moving Contact: Guest: Elizabeth Woike, assistant director at Vive La Casa, An Organization for World Refugees in Buffalo Contact: 8:20-8:21 One Minute Music Break 8:21-8:40: In an effort to display a show of international support for the war, the Bush Administration yesterday listed 30 countries that are publicly backing a U.S. invasion. The list includes Britain, Spain and Australia, as well as Turkey, Afghanistan, South Korea, Japan, Colombia, Italy and others. Of these nations, only two, Britain and Australia plan to supply troops. The Washington Post reports that some of the countries were surprised by their inclusion. A senior diplomat at Colombia's embassy was unaware that his nation had been listed. Turkey has voted against allowing US troops to be deployed there. 95% of the Spanish population is against a US invasion of Iraq, despite its government s support. The list includes no governments in the Arab world. Texas Democrat Lloyd Doggett criticized the so-called coalition: He said the posse announced today is mighty weak. It includes such military powerhouses as Eritrea and Estonia and pariahs like Uzbekistan with a human rights record as difficult to defend as Saddam Hussein's. The Congressman added, This list is an embarrassing indication of the administration's foreign policy failure. Meanwhile, protests against the war are intensifying. We thought we'd hold a cross-continental discussion. Guest: Paola, an organizer with Fermiamolaguerra, a national and international coalition to stop the war in Genoa, Italy Guest: Michael Sachs, Head of policy and research with the African National Congress in South Africa and is an organizer for the Stop the War Campaign in Johannesburg. Guest: Mohammad Tahseen, Executive director with the South Asia Partnership Pakistan, an NGO in Lahore which is coordinating a secular anti-war movement in the region. Guest: George Monbiot, columnist with the Guardian of London Contact: 8:40-8:41 One Minute Music Break 8:41-8:50 international discussion, cont d 8:50-8:58 Talk-back to war: more listeners tell us what they re doing in this time of war We turn now to you, the listeners. This is what some of you had to say about what you re doing in this time of war. Tape: Talk-back to war, recorded 3/18/03 8:58-8:59 Outro and Credits Democracy Now! is produced by Kris Abrams, Mike Burke, Angie Karran, Ana Nogueira and Elizabeth Press. Mike Di Filippo is our music maestro and engineer.

Date Recorded on: 
March 19, 2003
Date Broadcast on: 
March 19, 2003
Item duration: 
59 min.
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WBAI; Amy Goodman, host., March 19, 2003
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