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Well, traveling to the US I have had to fill out a green form stating that I'm not a terrorist or a 40-45 Nazi. I guess they capture a lot of pathological truth-telling terrorists/Nazis with this piece of paper

We detached this subthread from https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13811144 and marked it off-topic.

That's form I-94W [1] for those who are curious. We also had to promise we'd not been traficking drugs and were not planning on engaging in illegal or immoral activities, and more.

I always wonder how many idiots have been denied entry because they were dumb enough/drunk enough to think it'd be fun to tick the wrong box on that form.

I also love how under the Paperwork Reduction Act they have had to estimate the burden of filling it out, but seemingly not consider whether or not is serves any actual purpose to ask those questions in the first place.

[1] https://www.cbp.gov/sites/default/files/documents/%20I-94W%2...

You misunderstand the point of the form. The point is that if later you are suspected of one of those activities, you can be deported because you lied on the form, even though it might be impossible to convict you for the activity itself.

This is absolutely correct. Plus, what they did may not be illegal per se, but we might not want them in the country. For example, I'm not aware of any U.S. law that specifically makes it illegal to have been Nazi concentration camp guard. But we don't want people like that in the country and want to deport them if they are ever found here. Hence the purpose of the immigration form.

Unless they are really good rocket scientists...

Nazi concentration camp guards weren't building rockets.

Maybe not guards but that's splitting hairs. Nazi party members with rocketry experience were absolutely granted citizenship. Even von Braun himself used slave labor to build rockets during the war.

Not sure you can call it an immigration form, because it's targeting "nonimmigrant visitor".

Moreover the form do not specifically mention concentration camp guards:

> "(...) between 1933 and 1945 were involved, in any way, in persecutions associated with Nazi Germany or its allies?"

I guess Wernher von Braun, like most of the people included in the "Operation Paperclip"[1] would have fallen in that category in some way.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Paperclip

Note that it's almost impossible to not lie on the form. Even a cold or a hangnail could be classified as a "disorder" under the very first question ("Do you have a communicable disease; physical or mental disorder, or are you a drug abuser or addict?")

The poor grammar is vanishingly unlikely to be unintentional, considering how many reprintings these forms must have undergone.

Travel under the visa waiver program is explicitly on the basis that you have no right to appeal or review any removal action if they believe you've breached the terms so that's entirely unnecessary.

The purpose of these forms is to have an excuse to deport or deny your entry if it becomes convenient. The excuse will be that you lied on your form, regardless of what you put in it.

The question also has a ham-fisted phrasing:

> Have you ever been or are you now involved in espionage or sabotage; or in terrorist activities; or genocide; or between 1933 and 1945 were you involved, in any way, in persecutions associated with Nazi Germany or its allies?

My grandfather, who lost his German citizenship in the 30s and had to leave Germany for England due to the persecutions associated with Nazi Germany would technically have to answer that he was involved (as a victim).

Thus protecting the country from having to endure the sort of people who can't help but ignore the pragmatics of a question.

To be fair, though, the question is already pretty legalese, and presumably precisely as to remove the need for pragmatics or "wriggle room". How hard would it be to also clarify that aspect?

What is a 40-45 Nazi?

1940-1945 Nazi; that is; someone who participated, contributed, collaborated... in the Nazi government during WW2.

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