Thursday, August 19, 2010

The erosion of civil liberties-I got a taste!

This letter waas sent to the Irish Independent
late Thursday evening.

The erosion of civil liberties-I got a taste!

On Wednesday eve I flew into Cork from Amsterdam at 9:20.

I am an Irish citizen, and proud of that. My ancestors were

forced to migrate. I was born and grew up in America.

I had three Irish grandparents and became an Irish citizen in 1995

or 1996. My ex-wife, and children are also Irish citizens and live here.

Our family moved to Ireland in June 1997, and after completing a BCL

and an LLB at UCC I moved to the Netherlands in August 2006 to pursue

an L.L.M. I was coming back to live again.

After I got my baggage a customs officer took my

Irish passport, and asked me to follow him.

He went into an office and came out within minutes.

He brought me to a metal table to search my belongings.

That did not bother me; it happens. I came from Amsterdam.

It was my turn; I thought.

However, his first question to me was ‘The purpose

of my visit?’

Then, how long did I intend to stay here?

He asked if I have a job? I am a Marine Corps veteran

of the Vietnam War and have disability income, and will

do okay in law and writing. A long time coming. That’s what war

does to young boys. He asked how long I was in Vietnam.

He then asked where was I staying? Do I have friends here? I said yes.

He asked ‘Who are they, and where do they live?’

I stopped after one name, and like an Irish politician at a

Tribunal said I don’t remember. To my shock, I later realized

that my mobile had been on 'record' at a point; it has a mind of its own.

Have airport customs, or the Irish government ever heard of ‘The Free

Movement of Persons’ as guaranteed under EU law?

This was none of his, (or U.S. Customs business), or whoever directs an

Irish customs officer to ask such questions. He was a nice man, and I

hold no ill will for the ‘fishing expedition.’

But, we live in a country where the CIA has flown detainees to torture camps

after a ‘pit stop’ here. Rendition is what the Gestapo did! And our government

co-operates. So, these things happen.

I have been under surveillance before for anti-war activity in the U.S. in

the 1970s. And, after I was in a takeover of the Statue of Liberty by Vietnam

Veterans Against the War (all charges dropped) I lost jobs-the FBI. So, I

know what harassment is. I know it wasn’t a drug search because

my body was not frisked!

I will write and speak against the wars of aggression conducted by my

country, and will speak out to my dying breath. I do not apologize for that.

Because, I have seen the truth of war.

I have been under surveillance before for anti-war activity in the U.S. in

the 1970s. And, after I was in a takeover of the Statue of Liberty by Vietnam

Veterans Against the War in 1976 (all charges dropped). I lost jobs-the FBI.

I discovered phone taps, and more. So, I know what harassment is. But, I will not

Be intimidated.

I want an answer from this government, and the customs office as to why

they were asking me questions reserved for non-EU nationals. Do airport

Customs officers normally ask such questions of persons with an Irish passport?

I think not!

Paul Meuse

Kinlay House(temporarily)



  1. I've posted this for comment at forum.

    A bizarre experience. Did you make any more enquiries about this?

  2. Thank you Cactusflower for taking the time to read,comment, and for passing it on.

    I sent what you read to two Irish newspapers-Irish Examiner and the Irish Independent...but doubt they'll print them. Maybe Sunday. I also wrote to the Irish Council for Civil Liberties, but haven't heard back yet.

    But, I had the presence of mind...(when the customs officer went inside
    his office to make a phone call-before
    the search)to tell myself 'remember you're being watched (via camera) right now.' I'm on a
    list, and not surprised. But, I want to know for what specifically. I'll write to the government this week.

    Take Care