Airports part 2: Who are Jew?
And so it comes to be that I now have a country to hate among the dozens that I have visited.
LAND-LOCKED Armenia, the former Soviet Union country and a race nearly eliminated by the TURKS, proves to me that extreme stupidity and racism can exist.
My 12 hours spent there was 13 hours too many.
I am part to blame for I played into their hands by landing on October 4 in the Zvartnots (SIC!) airport without a VISA. I had expected to get one on arrival as they had promised on its foreign ministry website.
Five minutes after landing however, I had already created what must have been the airports greatest challenge and crisis situation as nearly half the idle immigration officers were drawn in to answer :
“where and what on earth is MALAYSIA?”
They took our passports away but not the application form for VISA which we filled up and told us to sit and wait.
Officials were talking on walkie talkies to each other as if we were deaf and dumb and soon at least five officials we could see were working on “our case” which officially have also not yet been presented as we were still holding on to our visa application forms….
From our humble experiences before, we thought this was normal as it usually takes officials awhile to figure out malaysia….
But 15 minutes later, a balding and bespectacled plain-clothes man, who later said he was VISA official, came down in a hurry with an entourage and holding our passports. He had finally worked up the courage to speak to us.
He had the usual questions :
what are you doing here?
where are you going to?
Do you have a airline ticket out?
Fair questions and I gave him honest answers.
He however must have been very disturbed to find that I spoke so much ENGLISH or perhaps he had thought I was speaking Norwegian for his reaction to everything I say was one of CONFUSION.
To my answer that we were tourists for example, here to see Armenia’s fine churches, he replied:” don’t come, you can watch on TV.”
He seems to have made up his mind that I was not worth listening to. We were told to sit down and wait some more.
Another 10 minutes later, a uniformed official came back to us with a slip of paper — a handwritten note which said : “USD 346” and said we should pay this amount for a flight out to Moscow. He was deporting us.
I protested and then shortly, the visa official came back and this time did his best impression of Donald duck when he is frustrated, flagging his hands like wings and jumping up and down.
I stayed calm and said that if they were not issuing us visas for armenia, then at least let us buy a flight out to istanbul or tehran, the nearest capitals….
He turned even more angry at this simple request and then started to push me. I did not respond for I knew the consequences could be ugly if I did. I pleaded for leniency and said again and again:
“I am not a criminal. You have no right to treat me as one. I wish to speak to the police or seek international help.”
Soon, my little incident had drawn a mob, who were mostly airport security officials there to guard Donald Duck. I am guessing that the airport must have shut down on my account although it probably didn’t affect operations as flights in and out of Armenia are rare.
A suited and big-sized man, who claimed to be security head, then approaced me in a more calm manner. He threatened me with 2 choices : board the plane or he will hand me to the police and then I may never be heard from again….
I decided NOT to move.
The same security officer now ordered his men to search our bags, which I insisted must be done with us present. They threw everything out and I laugh when I think back as the two items which they found the most interest in was :
— a name card from a Delhi travel agent I used with the name: HIGH FLYER
and a bus ticket with picture of a BUS on it.
both items were passed to the security officer who shrugged it off but it was most telling to me. They were so stupid that they took these items as perhaps evidence that I was a TERRORIST maybe planning to ram a plane somewhere or blow up a bus!!!!