After the arrests of two University of South Florida students in early August, CAIR-Tampa executive director Ahmed Bedier cried foul.
|...To Bedier, at least from what he has said, the arrests were nothing but a case of racism or, as he put it, “racial profiling.” He stated, “Obviously their heritage and background is playing a major role in blowing this out of proportion.” And “We believe that there’s an overreaction that [is] happening here just because of their Middle Eastern and Muslim backgrounds...”|
The students claimed they were simply carrying "fireworks" in their car.
|...deputies pulled over 21 year old Youseff Megahed and 24 year old Ahmed Mohamed for speeding... Deputies then noticed what are being called suspicious items.|
[Authorities said] the men told deputies they had items in the car for making fireworks...
Despite the exhortations of predictable apologists like Bedier, the "profilees" were indicted earlier today.
Odd. No mention of any fireworks. But I'm sure that's just a typo.
Update 9/1/2007 07:30: Reuters Africa reports that Egpyt has requested access to the students, which the U.S. supposedly has "evaded":
|U.S. authorities have refused Egyptian embassy officials access to two engineering students held on explosives charges in the U.S. state of South Carolina, Egypt's state news agency said on Saturday.|
The two Egyptian students, Ahmed Abdellatif Sherif Mohamed and Youssef Samir Megahed, are charged with transporting explosive materials across state lines without permits.
"U.S. authorities have refused to allow the Egyptian embassy and cultural office in the United States to contact them," news agency MENA reported... MENA quoted Egyptian embassy sources as saying that Egyptian officials had repeatedly tried to contact the students, but that U.S. authorities were "evading" their requests.
MENA said authorities would either say that the students did not want to talk to the embassy, or would give incorrect information about where they were being held...
What's the emoticon for a yawn?