12 August 2007
doors open or closed
By Bob Mendelsohn
August 12, 2007
Indonesia barred the entry of an Australian man connected with the conservative Islamic group Hizb ut-Tarhir (HT) ahead of a large conference today in Jakarta.
Sheikh Ismail Al Wahwah, of the group's Australian branch, was one of at least two international speakers prevented from entering Indonesia ahead of the huge conference in Jakarta today, HT Indonesia's speaker Ismail Yusanto said.
An Immigration spokesman confirmed Wahwah was prevented from entering Indonesia because he did not meet its immigration criteria on Friday.
Banned in several countries but not in Australia, HT or Islamic Liberation Party, is pushing for the creation of a caliphate, a single Islamic state across the Muslim world.
Across the ocean in Los Angeles, weary international passengers were stuck at Los Angeles International Airport for several hours, unable to set foot in the United States after a computer failure prevented customs officials from screening arrivals.
About 6,000 international passengers, both Americans and foreigners, sat in four airport terminals and in 40 planes starting about 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, when the computer system broke down, said Los Angeles World Airports spokesman Paul Haney.
The system contains names of arriving passengers and law enforcement data about them, including arrest warrants, said Mike Fleming, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman.
"That system allows our officers to make decisions on who we can allow to enter the United States," Fleming said. "You just don't know by looking at them."
Back home in Brisbane, Australian Wallabies Lote Tuqiri and Matt Dunning are to be given alcohol counselling and a blanket curfew is set to be imposed on the World Cup squad in the wake of yet another unsavoury early-morning incident involving Australian players.
Tuqiri and Dunning have been cleared by police of any involvement in an assault around 5.20am yesterday on a taxi driver that left the 52-year-old man in a serious condition in hospital.
Seems the boys stayed out at a Brisbane nightclub until it closed around 4am and then continuing to party in Dunning's room at the Sofitel Hotel, where the Wallabies were staying at the end of a boot camp in southeast Queensland.
They might not have breached any team disciplinary rules but the two Waratahs players certainly were guilty of questionable judgment in staying out so late just a month out from their first World Cup match and then in inviting people they didn't know back to Dunning's hotel room.
Getting in, or getting left out. It’s a matter of judgment, isn’t it? Sometimes the customs officials have to make quick decisions about visa nominees and sometimes decisions about keeping someone in take years to process.
One of my beliefs is that God took forever to decide about our forever. He long ago settled the issue and we now live it out. Here’s how it works.
Each of us is stuck in sin and it’s not preventable. Our condition is sometimes mild and sometimes chronic, but it’s always permanent. And God the Eternal had to decide about His eternity and welcoming us or not.
His justice precludes his allowing us in. After all, He is Holy and as such cannot stand in the presence of evil. Yet, He is Loving and as such cannot fathom our eternal separation from Him.
So in the courts of eternity it was decided that Y’shua would enter earth, more quickly and more determinedly than the Space Shuttle and with less hiccups. Y’shua would live here and die here and rise from the dead here.
As a result of Y’shua’s enterprise, the human race could be welcome into Eternity. What a privilege!
All a man or woman or boy or girl has to do is to welcome Y’shua as Lord of his life, and entry to Eternity is available and assured for him. God has open arms for each of His people.
Have you welcomed Y’shua as your messiah and saviour? Have you been born again? It’s not too late for you. Visa and ticket have already been purchased. It’s your choice now. Make a good one!