Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Paranoia? Not if they are really out to get you!

So I'm feeling extremely paranoid these days. I have dreams about police knocking down my door. I have a tendency to look around on the subway and buses to see if anyone might be following me. I watch anyone with radios (the kind you can talk on) like a hawk even if they don't look like cops. And speaking of cops, there about a million of them on my street and and I stare them down and watch their every movement as I walk down the street.

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Masum was arrested right outside our front door. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that the Korean government must know absolutely everything about my life. Maybe it's due to the fact that Masum has been interrogated about me two times in less than a week. Yes. Two times. Less than a week.

So the first time wasn't really an interrogation. The guards at the Cheongju prison were prying in a rather light way about who I am. And maybe that was nothing, but they asked an awful lot of personal questions about me. I should clarify. They asked Masum an awful lot of questions about his relationship to me, how we met, what I do... Masum didn't really answer any of the questions and joked it off.

But yesterday, there was an official interrogation which lasted for about three hours. Government officials, probably from the Ministry of Justice (although they never clearly identified themselves), came to the jail to "interview" all of the MTU officials. Obviously, I was not the only thing they asked about. But most of the questions were rather personal in nature. And a good deal of the questions were about me: What is my involvement in MTU? When did I meet Masum? How long did we live together? Where do I work? Whom do I consort with? But of course, they must know the answers to many of those questions already. My visa is tied to my work place- since I am legal here, they would have to be really stupid to not know where I work and live. And they followed Masum around for a while so of course they know he lived with me... Again, he refused to answer any those questions.

Masum said that the tone wasn't actually threatening, although I have to tell you, I feel quite threatened. Why are they asking questions about me? Am I in some sort of political danger now because of my associations? When I come back from my Christmas vacation in America, are they going to let me into the country again? Are they going to do something weird like fine me and revoke my visa (although I don't know how they could actually legally do that as I haven't broken any law).

I know this is paranoia. Really, I know that. But why do they have to go and be like that? I'm not doing anything to them so they should just leave me out of it. But if they want to fuck with me, I say bring it because I'm all kind of ready to get up in their face with my annoying, obnoxious American privilege. It's bad enough that my boyfriend is a political prisoner (really, Amnesty International designated Masum, Raju and Kajiman prisoners of conscience a couple of weeks ago), but they really don't want to pick a fight with me, too... I know, I know. It's just paranoia.

But is it??

(I should add that they tone of the "interview" may have been more threatening to Raju(VP) and Kajiman (president). Masum said that they both looked broken and defeated when they finished their interrogations, although he hasn't really had time to talk to either of them about it. (They are roomed separately.) I suggested that they might file human rights abuses, but Masum said he wants to talk to Raju and Kajiman to see how they are holding up....)


Not so little sister said...

Sister. I'm worried about you. Do you have to go back?

Rev Dr Mom said...

This just sounds worse and worse. I really hope they don't start to harass you.

Not so little sister said...

If they start to harass my sister I'm going over there to beat them up.

ymp said...

NSLS asks if you want to go back, but I worry about if they can stop you from going back? Could they be sneaky and revoke your visa while you are over here?
Sorry if I added to the paranoia--I just have a healthy suspicion of government.
thoughts and prayers for you and Masum

BerryBird said...

Gah! I don't know what to say... this is all so worrisome. Were you able to see Masum at visiting hours this weekend?