Department of No Comment:
“Witnesses said three of the imams were praying loudly in the concourse and repeatedly shouted ‘Allah’ when passengers were called for boarding US Airways Flight 300 to Phoenix.
“‘I was suspicious by the way they were praying very loud,’ the gate agent told the Minneapolis Police Department.
“Passengers and flight attendants told law-enforcement officials the imams switched from their assigned seats to a pattern associated with the September 11 terrorist attacks and also found in probes of U.S. security since the attacks — two in the front row first-class, two in the middle of the plane on the exit aisle and two in the rear of the cabin.
“‘That would alarm me,’ said a federal air marshal who asked to remain anonymous. ‘They now control all of the entry and exit routes to the plane.’
“A pilot from another airline said: ‘That behavior has been identified as a terrorist probe in the airline industry.’
“But the imams who were escorted off the flight in handcuffs say they were merely praying before the 6:30 p.m. flight on Nov. 20, and yesterday led a protest by prayer with other religious leaders at the airline’s ticket counter at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.”
“A federal judge has ruled that a portion of a post-Sept. 11 executive order allowing President Bush to create a list of specially designated global terrorist groups is unconstitutionally vague.
“U.S. District Judge Audrey Collins, in a Nov. 21 ruling released Tuesday, struck down the provision and enjoined the government from blocking the assets of two foreign groups which were placed on the list.
“The ruling was praised by David Cole, a lawyer for the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Constitutional Rights.
“‘This law gave the president unfettered authority to create blacklists,’ he said. ‘It was reminiscent of the McCarthy era.’
“Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, in a letter to the American people on Wednesday, accused their government of “coercion, force and injustice” and urged the United States to pull out of Iraq.
“Ahmadinejad’s five-page letter also called on Washington to recognize a Palestinian state and cautioned the Democratic Party that, after gaining control of the U.S. Congress, they would be “held to account by the people and by history.”…
“The Iranian leader, who wrote an 18-page letter to President George W. Bush in May that Bush never responded to, said he was now writing to the American people in friendship because Iran and the United States shared a responsibility “to promote and protect freedom and human dignity and integrity.”
“‘Governments are there to serve their own people. No people wants to side with or support any oppressors. But regrettably, the U.S. administration disregards even its own public opinion and remains in the forefront of supporting the trampling of the rights of the Palestinian people,’ he said.”