A violation of civil liberties anywhere is a violation of civil liberties everywhere. We cannot stand idly by and do nothing. More than 7,000 people came to Change.org to sign a petition that I believe helped get me back in the US to visit my family. Now I need your help again to demand the FBI stop harassing my family and myself, and to ask that an investigation be launched into the circumstances surrounding these violations of our civil liberties. I have no criminal record and served the United States for a decade in the Air Force. The FBI cannot even tell me why they are harassing us!
Here is the summary of recent events starting the week of Thanksgiving:
Since the start of my journey from Doha until after my arrival in the United States to visit my ailing mother, the FBI and other law enforcement agencies have harassed me and violated my civil rights. They have subjected my family in Oklahoma to the same unlawful treatment, turning my ill mother’s dream into a terrible nightmare. Imagine the horror she experienced as I relayed details explaining to her:
-- The harassment began in Amsterdam where I was singled out from the rest of the passengers and taken aside. For nearly half an hour, I had to undergo two interrogations, the first by Dutch authorities and the second by the Department of Homeland Security. Next, I was led away to the airport’s basement where, for close to an hour, the Dutch security agents conducted an exhaustive and painstaking search on me and my luggage. Then, I was brought back upstairs only to go through another extensive and annoying search conducted, this time, by TSA.
-- When I arrived in Detroit, again, I was singled out by the Customs and Border Protection agents and taken to a station where I was put through yet another meticulous search. Following that, two separate teams of Law Enforcement agencies detained and interrogated me for 2 whole hours. I would have missed my final connecting flight to Oklahoma City, but fortunately it was delayed.
-- When I finally arrived at the airport in Oklahoma City on the night of 19 November we were followed by whom we assumed to be the Federal Bureau of Investigation. From that moment on and for the next 7 days, the FBI, led by Agent Ken Western, engaged in illegally conducting surveillance on my sister’s and parents’ homes. The agents went as far as stalking and intimidating my whole family, following us everywhere we went. FBI Agent Ken Western even misled the Oklahoma State Patrol and the McAlester Police Department into thinking that Ava and I were felons on the run which resulted in an all-out hot pursuit by more than a dozen law enforcement agents and our being unjustly apprehended at gunpoint.
Our mother is a strong lady, but it’s extremely upsetting for her to see how her family has been treated, no accountability for those responsible and a lack of common decency during the holidays. This out of control and blatant attack has taken a toll on her health and we are concerned.