Scott Parkin

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Scott Parkin is a Houston, Texas-based peace activist with the Houston Global Awareness Collective. He is also a part-time community college history instructor. (For the full story on his arrest and deportation from Australia in September 2005 see Australia Revokes Scott Parkin's Visa).

Detention in Australia

In September 2005 Parkin was detained by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and immigration officials on the grounds that he constituted a threat to Australia's national security. Australian officials refused to explain the basis on revoking the visa that they had allowed him to enter the country on six weeks earlier.

In the absence of any explantion for the reasons for his arrest, some media wondered whether it was because Australian agencies had discovered something about protest activity he had been involved with in the U.S.

Greenpeace Australia's Campaigns Manager, Danny Kennedy said Parkin had been arrested for a minor offence at once at a protest at ExxonMobil while working for Greenpeace. "He once dressed as Tony the Tiger and ran around the Exxon Mobile headquarters in Texas along with 20 other Tony the Tigers. He wasn't charged with a violent crime," Mr Kennedy said.

"Scott has never advocated violence. He has only ever advocated non-violence and peaceful protest. And if Mr Ruddock knows better he needs to make it clear and transparent and explain it to Scott so that he can defend himself," Kennedy told the Sydney Morning Herald. [1]

In a statement released the day before he was deported Parkin expressed his incomprehension of what occurred. "I find this entire experience incomprehensible and am still baffled as to why my visa has been cancelled," he said.

"I am a student of mass social movements in the tradition of Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jnr and I think that these movements have shown us the way to achieve positive social change," said Mr Parkin. [2]

Following the deportation of Parkin, former Office of National Assessments (ONA) analyst, Andrew Wilkie, dismissed claims that Parkin was a security threat. "If he was genuinely any sort of security threat, well they wouldn't just send him out of the country, he'd be pulled in if he's done anything unlawful, he'd be charged," Mr Wilkie said. [3]

Pentagon surveillance

In January 2006, it emerged that Parkin and his group, Houston Global Awareness had previously been subject to surveillance by the Pentagon's Counterintelligence Field Activity (CIFA). According to Newsweek , a report on a June 2004 protest at the Houston headquarters of military services contractor Halliburton was written and entered into the CIFA database by Pentagon analysts. [4]

Other SourceWatch resources

External links

Articles by Scott Parkin

Profiles of Scott Parkin