Saturday, May 10, 2008

Nelson Mandela on terrorist watch list

That's not an Onion headline. Can we get some competent government, please? Perhaps not:
WASHINGTON — Nobel Peace Prize winner and international symbol of freedom Nelson Mandela is flagged on U.S. terrorist watch lists and needs special permission to visit the USA. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice calls the situation "embarrassing," and some members of Congress vow to fix it.

The requirement applies to former South African leader Mandela and other members of South Africa's governing African National Congress (ANC), the once-banned anti-Apartheid organization. In the 1970s and '80s, the ANC was officially designated a terrorist group by the country's ruling white minority. Other countries, including the United States, followed suit.

Because of this, Rice told a Senate committee recently, her department has to issue waivers for ANC members to travel to the USA.

How about instead of issuing waivers, we just take the ANC off the terrorist group list? At least Secretary Rice has the decency to be embarrassed. Maybe this is a job for Maestro, Internal Monologue's super-secret government contact.

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