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Americans worry over freedoms

(Xinhua)

16:00, September 05, 2011

LOS ANGELES - After the Sept 11, 2001 terror attacks 10 years ago, many US citizens accepted the government invasion of their civil liberties in exchange for securities, but now more are worried about the further loss of their liberties.

Local press reported that police authorities in Pima County, Arizona, fired 71 shots in seven seconds at 26-year-old Jose Guerena, a former Marine who served two tours in Iraq.

Guerena was killed while his terrified wife and 4-year old son hid in the closet. The SWAT team that killed him was there to serve a narcotics search warrant as part of a multi-house drugs crackdown. As Guerena lay dying with his wife pleading for help, the SWAT team barred paramedics from entering the home.

Guerena's wife asserted that her husband grabbed his gun because he thought his family was the victim of a home invasion, not a police raid. Deputies initially justified their actions by claiming that Guerena fired at officers but later said he kept the gun safety on and never pulled the trigger.

Rania Khalek wrote on www.alternet.org that as it turns out, Guerena's murder is just the most recent in a long line of botched paramilitary operations.

According to an investigation carried out by the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank in the United States, "America has seen a disturbing militarization of its civilian law enforcement over the last 25 years, along with a dramatic and unsettling rise in the use of paramilitary police units for routine police work. In fact, the most common use of SWAT teams today is to serve narcotics warrants, usually with forced, unannounced entry into the home."

The Cato study found that some 40,000 of these raids take place every year, and "are needlessly subjecting nonviolent drug offenders, bystanders, and wrongly targeted civilians to the terror of having their homes invaded while they're sleeping, usually by teams of heavily armed paramilitary units dressed not as police officers but as soldiers".

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Hammad Sethi at 2011-09-0594.197.127.*
Freedom of expression and freedom of peaceful political struggle are two of the very basic human rights. It is when somebody tries to dominate somebody else that generates violent behaviour, but still, you can either be a Muslim or a terrorist.
Hammad Sethi at 2011-09-0594.197.127.*
Nobody needs to lose any freedoms, but we need to be rational and realistic about current international situation. Muslims were never part of any important decision-making in the last 70 years, and the UN is still visibly biassed against Islam. Muslims never created the problem of terrorism, but Muslims have got no choice but to become a part of the solution, at the same time the long-standing human problems of Occupied Palestine and Occupied Kashmir have to be resolved.
  

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