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ny xmas - Building

One Young Blonde Icelandic Woman's USA Experience*

-from the Icelandic press-

THE STORY OF EVA OSK ARNARDOTTIR: During the last 24 hours I have probably experienced the greatest humiliation to which I have ever been subjected. During these last 24 hours I have been handcuffed + chained, denied the chance to sleep, been w/out food + drink + been confined to a place w/out anyone knowing my whereabouts, imprisoned.
Now I am beginning to try to understand all this, rest + review the events which began as innocently as possible. Last Sunday I + a few other girls began our trip to New York. We were going to shop + enjoy the Christmas spirit. We made ourselves comfortable on first class, drank white wine + looked forward to going shopping, eat good food, + enjoy life. When we landed at JFK airport the traditional clearance process began.
We were screened + went on to passport control. As I waited for them to finish examining my passport I heard an official say that there was something which needed to be looked at more closely + I was directed to the work station of Homeland Security. There I was told that according to their records I had overstayed my visa by 3 weeks in 1995. For this reason I would not be admitted to the country + would be sent home on the next flight.
I looked at the official in disbelief + told him that I had in fact visited New York after the trip in 1995 w/out encountering any difficulties. A detailed interrogation sessesion ensued. I was photographed + fingerprinted. I was asked questions which I felt had nothing to do w/ the issue at hand. I was forbidden to contact anyone to advise of my predicament
+ altho I was invited at the outset to contact the Icelandic consul or embassy, that invitation was later w/drawn. I dont know why. I was made to wait while they sought further information, + sat on a chair before the authority for 5 hours. I saw the officials in this section handle other cases + it was clear that these were men anxious to demonstrate their power. Small kings w/ meglomania.
I was careful to remain completely cooperative, for I did not yet believe that they planned to deport me because of my *crime.* When 5 hours had passed + I had been awake for 24 hours, I was told that they were waiting for officials who would take me to a kind of waiting room. There I would be given a bed to rest in, some food + I would be searched. What they thought they might find I cannot possibly imagine.
Finally guards appeared who transported me to the new place. I saw the bed as if in a mirage, for I was absolutely exhausted. What turned out was something else. I was taken to another office exactly like the one where I had been before + once again a long wait ensued. In all, it turned out to be 5 hours. At this office all my things were taken from me.
I succeeded in sending a single sms to worried relatives + friends when I was granted a bathroom break. After that, the cell phone was taken from me. After I had been sitting for 5 hours I was told that they were now waiting for guards who would take me to a place where I could rest + eat. Then I was placed in a cubicle which looked like an operating room. Attached to the walls were 4 steel plates, probably intended to serve as a bed + a toilet.
I was exhausted, tired + hungry. I didnt understand the officials conduct, for they were treating me like a very dangerous criminal. Soon thereafter I was removed from the cubicle + 2 armed guards placed me up against a wall. A chain was fastened around my waist + I was handcuffed to the chain. Then my legs were placed in chains. I asked for permission to make a telephone call but they refused.
So secured, I was taken from the airport terminal in full sight of everybody. They would not tell me where they were taking me. The trip took close to one hour + altho I couldnt see clearly outside the vehicle I knew that we had crossed over into New Jersey. We ended up in front of a jail. I could hardly believe that this was happening. Was I really about to be jailed? I was led inside + there yet another interrogation session ensued.
I was fingerprinted once again + photographed. I was made to undergo a medical examination, I was searched + then I was placed in a jail cell. I was asked absurd questions such as: When did you have your last period? What do you believe in? Have you ever tried to commit suicide? I was completely exhausted, tired + cold. 14 hours after I had landed I had something to eat + drink for the first time. I was given porridge + bread.
But it did not help much. I was afraid + the attitude of all who handled me was abysmal, to say the least. They did not speak to me as much as snap at me. Once again I asked to make a telephone call + this time the answer was positive. I was relieved but the relief was short-lived. For the telephone was set up for collect calls only + it was not possible to make overseas calls. The jailguard held my cellphone in his hand.
I explained to him that I could not make a call from the jail telephone + asked to be allowed to make one call from my own phone. That was out of the question. I spent the next 9 hours in a small dirty cell. The only thing in there was a narrow steel board which extended out from the wall, a sink + a toilet. I wish I never experience again in my life the feeling of confinement + helplessness which I experienced there.
I was hugely relieved when, at last, I was told that I was to be taken to the airport, that is to say until I was again handcuffed + chained. Then I could take no more + broke down + cried. I begged them to at least leave out the leg chains but my request was ignored. When we arrived at the airport, another jail guard took pity on me + removed the leg chains.
Even so I was led thru a full airport terminal handcuffed + escorted by armed men. I felt terrible. On seeing this, people must think that there goes a very dangerous criminal. In this condition I was led up into the Icelandic waiting room + was kept handcuffed until I entered the embarkation corridor. I was completely run down by all this in both body + spirit.
Fortunately I could count on good people + bothe Einar (the captain) + the crew did all which they could to try to assist me. My friend Avour was in close contact w/ my sister + the consul, + embassy had been contacted. However, all had received misleading information - all had been told that I had been detained at the airport terminal, not that I had been put in jail. Now the Foreign Ministry is looking into the matter + I hope to recieve some explanation why I was treated this way.
*The words YOUNG BLONDE ICELANDIC WOMAN were used to imply that, if this can happen to HER (a young blonde Icelandic woman), then how do u think OTHER ethnicities/genders are being treated?

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