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Thread: The Feds Visit Student's Home After He Checks Out Book On Communism From The Library

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005

    The Feds Visit Student's Home After He Checks Out Book On Communism From The Library

    Agents' visit chills UMass Dartmouth senior

    (Gold9472: Talk about irony.)

    By AARON NICODEMUS, Standard-Times staff writer

    NEW BEDFORD -- A senior at UMass Dartmouth was visited by federal agents two months ago, after he requested a copy of Mao Tse-Tung's tome on Communism called "The Little Red Book."

    Two history professors at UMass Dartmouth, Brian Glyn Williams and Robert Pontbriand, said the student told them he requested the book through the UMass Dartmouth library's interlibrary loan program.

    The student, who was completing a research paper on Communism for Professor Pontbriand's class on fascism and totalitarianism, filled out a form for the request, leaving his name, address, phone number and Social Security number. He was later visited at his parents' home in New Bedford by two agents of the Department of Homeland Security, the professors said.

    The professors said the student was told by the agents that the book is on a "watch list," and that his background, which included significant time abroad, triggered them to investigate the student further.

    "I tell my students to go to the direct source, and so he asked for the official Peking version of the book," Professor Pontbriand said. "Apparently, the Department of Homeland Security is monitoring inter-library loans, because that's what triggered the visit, as I understand it."

    Although The Standard-Times knows the name of the student, he is not coming forward because he fears repercussions should his name become public. He has not spoken to The Standard-Times.

    The professors had been asked to comment on a report that President Bush had authorized the National Security Agency to spy on as many as 500 people at any given time since 2002 in this country.

    The eavesdropping was apparently done without warrants.

    The Little Red Book, is a collection of quotations and speech excerpts from Chinese leader Mao Tse-Tung.

    In the 1950s and '60s, during the Cultural Revolution in China, it was required reading. Although there are abridged versions available, the student asked for a version translated directly from the original book.

    The student told Professor Pontbriand and Dr. Williams that the Homeland Security agents told him the book was on a "watch list." They brought the book with them, but did not leave it with the student, the professors said.

    Dr. Williams said in his research, he regularly contacts people in Afghanistan, Chechnya and other Muslim hot spots, and suspects that some of his calls are monitored.

    "My instinct is that there is a lot more monitoring than we think," he said.

    Dr. Williams said he had been planning to offer a course on terrorism next semester, but is reconsidering, because it might put his students at risk.

    "I shudder to think of all the students I've had monitoring al-Qaeda Web sites, what the government must think of that," he said. "Mao Tse-Tung is completely harmless."

    Contact Aaron Nicodemus at
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG

  2. #2
    WhiteGuySaysThis Guest
    Uh oh Jon. I wonder if the Gov't is keeping tabs on all of us?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Of course they are. At least of me anyway.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG

  4. #4
    WhiteGuySaysThis Guest
    Where is our resident lawyer Se7en? Is that legal?

  5. #5
    somebigguy Guest
    Dang, that's some weird, wild, stuff. (Said like Johnny Carson)

  6. #6
    Partridge Guest
    Well fuck me sideways with copy of the Little Red Book! This is shocking. What I wouldn't give to see the whole watch list and see how many of the books I have.

  7. #7
    Good Doctor HST Guest
    It's amazing that the Great Red Scare still exists. I'm wondering what nationality the student is. It's never mentioned. And who cares if someone checks out a book on some different kind of political philosophy? It's a waste of time and funds to hunt down innocent college students.

    A hypothetical though..... if the student was of Middle-Eastern descent, spent significant time overseas, and left the library with a book on explosives, would the government be in the right to monitor that student's activities?

  8. #8
    ThotPolice Guest
    *Gets down on knees and thanks god he doesn't live in the land of the "free"*

    So gold.. how many days should we wait to contact the media, in the case you mysterously stop making posts?

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