January 6th, 2010
09:43 AM ET

The profiling issue from an Afghan traveling to the U.S.

Editor’s Note: Nasim Fekrat started the Afghan Lord blog in 2004 in Afghanistan, where he grew up. He is now a student at Dickinson College in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. The opinions expressed in this guest blog are solely those of Nasim Fekrat.

After the unsuccessful terror attack on an American jetliner by suspect Umar Farouk AbdulMutallab, a 23 year-old Nigerian, security at international airports is getting tighter. In the days after the incident, President Obama vowed to “disrupt and dismantle” every possible threat against the U.S. and ordered enhanced screening and security procedures for all flights, domestic and international. These measures are smart, but they increase the concerns for those travelers who might be suspected by their nationality or religion.

Last week, a viewer called into CNN, to say that anyone who has a Muslim name should not be allowed to fly into the U.S. I have been profiled just because I am coming from Afghanistan, have a Muslim name and identify myself as an Afghan. I personally believe that judging travelers on their ethnicity and religion is not fair. Psychologically, it is disturbing and annoying to be interrogated just because of your nationality. Instead, the security should be reformed and new technology should be developed and used to determine who is actually dangerous.

After the recent incident, there is much discussion in the media about profiling, security screening and issuing special security checks for people coming from mostly Muslim countries. The new order for an extra security check for bag and pat down includes 14 countries. Afghanistan is one of them.

I personally feel comfortable with any kind of security measures that take place at the airports, and I do not find it offensive even to be strip-searched as long as security is the reason. I am from Afghanistan, and I have always experienced tight security at international airports and it doesn’t bother me. But the only thing that concerns me is profiling. As an Afghan, I have faced lots of difficulties at international airports. The security personnel at the airports asked me questions I have never heard, and inquired repeatedly about my destination.

For example, this past August when I got my visa from the U.S. embassy in Kabul to come to the U.S. to attend college, I was stopped at the Dubai airport and questioned more than ever before even though I have traveled to the U.S. before. The security at Dubai international airport was not honestly to check my bags but instead the security worker interrogated me about what I have been doing all my life, questioning me as if I were a member of al Qaeda or the Taliban. Even though I had already passed through security, my bags had been checked and the security personal had stuck a special security sticker on my passport - the security personnel didn’t let me on board while I was in line. He kept me until all passengers were boarded. While he was holding my passport in his hand, he moved around and finally found a camera and a scanner to take my picture and scan my passport. I got on the plane only five minutes before the boarding gate closed. It made me upset and annoyed just because I was profiled based on my nationality. The effect didn’t leave me until I reached my destination.

It is true that most of terrorist attacks have targeted Westerners, and that most terrorists are Muslim. But it is bigoted to judge people according to their religion or nationality. Such extreme measures would be profiling people based on their race, not evaluating them as individuals.

Since September 11, 2001, the security at airports has been effective enough to prevent terrorists from entering the United States, but the case of AbdulMutallab proved that the U.S. intelligence was not capable or failed to conduct a pre-emptive action.

Thus, as the U.S. admitted that its security failed to prevent the Christmas Day attack, al Qaeda has proven itself to not be confined to Afghanistan and Pakistan, but that it is also in Gulf countries like Yemen. The security was not smart enough to track down a 23-year-old man wandering around and boarding at an Amsterdam airport.

It is good to have to be checked to ensure security but it is devastating to be treated and interrogated the same manner as a suspected person, just because I am sharing the same type nationality. In August 2007, a 7-year-old Muslim boy was stopped in the U.S. three times on suspicion of being a terrorist. Also, in August 2009, the Bollywood star, Shahrukh Khan, was stopped for questioning at Newark Liberty International Airport which enraged his fans in India.

Finally, it would be good to investigate and recognize the suspected person before issuing him/her a visa and before traveling to the United States. Profiling is wholly inappropriate and will enrage people who are innocent. Looking for Muslim names and names similar to al Qaeda members that are blacklisted is not smart. Profiling based on nationality breeds anger only. Instead there should be effective and aggressive plans to track down the threats from those who are truly dangerous.

More opinions on the issue: Screening must include religion, ethnicity | Why profiling doesn't work 

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soundoff (76 Responses)
  1. Tareen AFG

    I agree that once terrorists from Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and many other countries used Afghanistan as a base for their terrorist activities and still many countries are using Afghanistan for their activities.
    but this doesn't mean afghans are terrorists or all afghans are terrorist.
    by the way have anyone heard of an afghan blowing himself up in Europe. America or or any other country.

    Answer is Noo.

    Terrorist can be from any nationality not just Afghanistan, Pakistan etc, its unfair to suspect someone by his nationality.

    April 7, 2010 at 9:17 am | Report abuse |
  2. Akbary


    Dear I respect your emotions for your people and your country, everyone feels the same way for there people, for there country if it is US or Iraq or Afghanistan.

    US captured Saddam in a short time and sentenced him to death, WHY? you know WHY? Because US wanted him to die, But in Afghanistan, Osama Bin Laden and Mollah Omar, Emen Azawaheri, three most wanted.. they are no where, US with all its power and all the countries supporting, can not capture these sick guys. WHY? you know WHY? Because US doesn't want to capture them, because US role will be finished in Central Asia, Such a key place for coming 100 Decades of US.

    Thanks CNN, listening our voices...

    February 15, 2010 at 12:33 am | Report abuse |
  3. Akbary

    All these things are a part of a story, it starts from the time Russians were in Afghanistan, American (Politician and those involved in National Based Decisions) well knew that conquering places like Afghanistan is not easy, as they had an experience from Russian Lost, Men Power and Economic Disaster, they never wanted such thing to be happened with them in Afghanistan.
    So, they were working on a Long Term Plan, first; making a force in the name of Taliban to make or show Islam like a black shadow to all Muslim World, Osama Bin Laden was an American Agent when Russians were in Afghanistan this is just an example. When Russians were out of Afghanistan, Osama no more was accepting US policy and politicians because he wanted to make his own choice Country (Emirates of Afghanistan). This was sad for US, US asked Mollah Omar to handover Osama to US, but Mollah Omar refused, "it is against our culture to handover a guest to his enemy" commented by Mollah Omar.
    After September attack on WTC, this was a chance for US and Bush that he never wanted to loose this opportunity to take the Strategic and Geographical benefit of Afghanistan. Keeping an eye on China, Pakistan and of course Iran, controlling Bandar Abbas, the Karakorom Highway of Pakistan-China and also a little more benefits of the Oil Wells of Helmand, Herat of Afghanistan, the world's best Uranium, all these things worth 3000 death for Bush Administration and US 100 Decades.

    Let me just tell you the Yemen invasion plan, that Nigerian Guy, Abdul Mutaleb, how he passed all the security checks at different Airports, how he could block CIA's eyes, it doesn't make sense, US claims the worlds powerful country (Nuclear, Men Power, Technology, Security Techniques) all these things belongs to US right now.... how would someone pass with full of explosives or chemicals from the check points...

    This is a way for profiling Yemen and after Iraq, Afghanistan war going for Yemen.

    Anyway, hope the US Nation understands the feelings of innocent people being targeted in different ways, different names and don't let the sick politicians play with their young sons, daughters by sending them to war wasting their lives.

    I just hope we lived in a world with no borders, at least no politicians....

    Best Regards,

    February 14, 2010 at 2:35 pm | Report abuse |
  4. LM

    If you cant stand a little scrutiny (we have cause to investigate anyone coming from Afganistan) then dont come here! Its Afgans like him that make me sick. If he was really concerned about America and Americans he would also WANT everyone from high risk locations to be heavily scrutinized. No one is doiing anything harmful to him. He needs to BUCK UP.

    February 3, 2010 at 1:36 am | Report abuse |
  5. Kenneth

    What is it to be an American? Have you ever thought about that? What is the common threads that hold our society together and unite us? We embrace diversity, individuallity, and multiple points of view. We defend the freedom of our fellow citizens to express those differences and have a voice in our government. You may not always get your way but you always have a say. It is part of what makes us so flexible and strong. Next we do not punish a person for the sins of his father, family, religion, or ethnic background. We have a long history of holding individuals accountible for their actions. From Pancho Villa (Even though we didn't catch him), the Normandy trials, to Pablo Escobar, Slobodan Miloshevich, and even Osama Bin Laden (in process of hunting down). Part of this value is due process. If forces us to do the best we can to account for the crimes of individuals, prove thier guilt and justify punishment. It helps to protect the innosent (although not always perfect) and insure that in a not so perfect world we are doing our best to only go after and punish those responsible for bad deeds. If you do us harm we are comming after you, as an individual, and we will wade through all those who attempt to defend you and your cause because we value our freedoms and way of life that much. Not just for ourselfs but for our children, their children, and our nation. No power forien or domestic will stand in the way of that and brave bright people stand at the ready to face you and defeat you. Although I am not for assuming American rights on non-citizens I do believe we must hold true to our values. That is after all what it is that we fight for. Once we have determined your guilt in an open court all bets are off. Prey to your God if you want for mercy because you will get none from us. You will see the fury of justice come hammering down on you with the might of our great nation and people. How do you define victory in our war on Terror? I define it as leaving no safe haven for these criminals to operate. Muslem nations putting their stock with us in an epic struggle against the oppresive evil that is Al Qaeda. Seeing them for what they are, close minded simpleton brutes who impose their will on others through deception and terror under the guise of religion. Muslems should be insulted and defend their religion against such slander.

    January 17, 2010 at 3:56 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Bobby chattanooga TN

    This country needs to become more mean and forget about human rights,people from other countries should be profiled and treated like terrorist in todays world.But terrorist come from all walks of life, not just muslims hate us,we should treat everyone as a threat then it would be equal rights.

    January 16, 2010 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Carla

    One attempt at relationship building can start in our nation's airports. However, since terrorists have been so clever and unpredictable in their attacks, we need to stay on our toes. I've studied the culture and history of Afghanistan and I know that support for the Taliban or Al qaeda is based on fear of the consequences if they don't support them. There is some respect, unfortunately, for Al qaeda since the group helped the Mujahideen force out the Russians in the 1980's. All three groups are different yet their common cause is foreign occupation. I would like to see Afghan women walk to the market without fear, or without needing a male member of her family escort her. I hope that Afghan children are receiving an education, and continue to do so. However, the Taliban and Al qaeda are against those things. They want their women and children to be seen and not heard. But the only way they can have those freedoms is through a government to allows those things. By our assertive measures at capturing terrorists we are not only making life safer for our country, but making life better for Afghanis.

    Carla -

    January 13, 2010 at 10:02 am | Report abuse |
  8. Kenneth

    Also lets give the American people someone in the Afgan country to root for. I wish NatGeo would do a special, follow a group of Afgans through training and into the field (Police and Military). Follow a politian through a typical day. Highlight the dangers they go through just doing their job to represent the communities they represent. Follow a telivisions show (either news or social) to show how they are representing the social invironment. Give these people a voice and get America interested in the outcome of our endevor. If we fail in Afganistan we stand to loose quite a lot, I'm sure the live of the American service members we lost would understand. We cannot aford to loose here.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:55 am | Report abuse |
  9. Kenneth

    When I say not to create resentment I do not mean with the terrorist. You put words in my mouth and show you cannot see the forest through the trees. I'm talking about the large majority of people either on the fence, who have nothing against us, Islamic Americans, or brainwashed people we may be able to show another path to. That last one is probably a smaller group but it does happen. By doing things to lend validity to the terrorist arguments and creating resentment in muslem minds you feed the ranks of the terrorist. Sure you need swift decisive action against terrorist but that is not the people I am talking about. I'm talking about not over generalizing/deamonizing an entire ethnic/religious group to the point of making enemies of them when we do not have to. The securithy procedures already in place should have worked with the person in question if information had been shared and acted on in a timely fassion. This was in a muslum country anyway, were they suppose to strip search everyone that came into the airport because the US said so? Devistating military action wins in the short term but in the long haul we need to build relations with Islamic countries, their communities and leaders. Only this way will we truely win. The only way to build such relationships is through respect. To respect them we need to see them as individuals. Keep in mind I'm not talking about the terrorist, go after them with all we have. I was a service member in the military for 8 years, these are my opinions. I can only act on what I have seen, heard, and contimplated. Maybe one day someone will bring a point or fact I had not previously known or considered to change my mind. In the same token lets help to change the mind of or provide examples to the many muslems observing how we conduct ourselves of why their negitive thoughts should be changed.

    January 13, 2010 at 12:48 am | Report abuse |
  10. Luke

    Nasim, it's a pleasure to read your blog and your concern about being racially profiled. Its wonderful that in our great country we give people the right to post their personal opinions on public blogs like this and not be chastised for it. I have been studying this problem for quite some time now and as much as I am against profiling someone based on their race, gender, religious background, or what have you, I felt that when it comes to airport security, it seemed to be the only solution. I felt it was the only solution because you need to tackle the threat from the source, and as much as its distressing that the source of these threats stem from those of Middle-Eastern and Near-Asian descent, I felt it was the only way to try and prevent future catastrophes. It wasn't until I read this article: "How the Israeli's Do Airport Security" a few moments ago that my opinion changed. As much as most people think that technology is the answer, its not. Technology equals racial profiling. Along with enhanced security, every passenger needs to be interviewed before a flight by a highly trained professional trained by intelligence agencies. Airport security needs to be in constant contact with other intelligence officials printing passenger lists and comparing them to those on airport black-lists. Yes this will cost money, but its money people are willing to pay. This will fix the "racial profiling problem" because no matter what religion, nationality, gender, race, etc...you will be interviewed in line along with your bags checked. El Al Airlines has not had a tragedy ever, and its because of this technique used. Yes it takes a lot of training and expertise, but its worth the cost to get there because our safety as humans doesn't have a cost. In this case, airlines will know everyone who is walking on that plane. Its a technique that has proven to be effective. The link to this article is below.

    January 11, 2010 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Nasim Fekrat

    Guys! Thanks a lot for your comments, i keep reading your comments, they are very interesting both from proponents and opponents.

    January 10, 2010 at 11:00 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Baltazar

    Since our taxretirns are now going to India to be reviewed rather than the IRS – we are especially vulnerable. These returns contain our SS numbers, Bank Acct numbers, Employers Tax ID etc. We now get solicitations from all over Asia for financial services. Therefore our vulnerability far exceeds the new airport airport security requirements.

    January 10, 2010 at 6:24 pm | Report abuse |
  13. CHRIS

    For as long as most of the terrorist activities are continously associated with one religion sect, it is not out of place to conduct security measures by profiling based on ethnicity/religion. However, this should be just one of the security measures to " Disrupt, dismantle and defeat" the terrorists

    January 10, 2010 at 4:23 pm | Report abuse |
  14. amir

    I understand the profiling issue but I am more concerned at the blatent killings in Iraq,Afghanistan and Pakistan by the Americans of the local civillians.Each innocent civillian killed by the U.S army has a family and they are as much aggrived as any U.S family member would be for the loss of their family member . Now we need to see who has killed more innocent civillians. While the terrorists have killed over 5000 people in the last 10 years, the U.S has killed more than 500,000 innocent civillians in Iraq,Afghanistan and Pakistan so dont be surprised if people dont like the U.S anymore.Pl. kill all the terrorists whereever they may be but do not kill civillians like they are animals.Also, another hate factor is that most of the corrupt leaders are supported by the U.S and they keep sucking all the money out of their countries and deposit it in the U.S banks.The U.S govt. knows about it but keeps mum about it

    January 10, 2010 at 4:18 pm | Report abuse |
  15. DM

    I see the blindness that an eye for an eye brings

    January 10, 2010 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  16. DM

    Hey contractor, no we don't strap bombs onto ourselves and blow up civilians in their countries. JDAMs work better don't you think? Ass

    January 10, 2010 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Tony

    Every security expert in the world said "Profiling" people based on religion or ethnicity is the wrong idea to stop terrorists from getting on the planes. Because you make it easy for terrorists to figure out who to send next time. They (TERRORISTS) will send somebody doesn't fit the profile, THEN WHAT ???
    Half of the population of the countries they have on the list now aren't MUSLIMS (i.e. Nigeria, Lebanon, Algeria,..etc).
    Do you want search a Lebanese christian and leave british islamic extremist like Richard Reed or American or Jose Padilla to board without extra searching ???

    The smart way to do it is, any male between the age of 18 to 40 regardless of their religion or ethnicity should be searched and INTERVIEWED before boarding planes if they travel to countries where we know there is Al-Qaeda or thei affiliates.

    One thing everybody should remember, 99% of the American people are VERY ignorants as to goes on beyond their borders and sometimes beyond their cities limits. I live in New Mexico state, and a lot people think it is in MEXICO!!!!

    God Bless Amercia because it is GREAT country.

    January 10, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Afghan-American

    What you are saying is just ridiculous...shouldn't be allowed carry-ons and should be stripped search...Look I understand some of the profiling I get it myself a lot due to my name which is probably on list just not in the same order...I am a American BORN male of Afghan descent whose family has been in the US for over 30 years...I get all types of injustices happen to me at airports and other places...I am also currently working for the US Dept. of Defense in Afghanistan as I am reading this...You do not know what is happening here in Afghanistan so don't act like you do...I am helping fight this so called war on terror in Afghanistan and yet I still get profiled and questioned and harassed at times...I am very proud to be an Afghan-American and I love both my countries very much...but the point of this post is why profile against all Muslims or Middle-Eastern sounding names...Think about it its not very logical...Think about previous terrorist attacks on US soil...There was the incident at Ft. Hood he was a US citizen actually of Palestinian descent, there was the VT shooting I believe he was Korean, Columbine shootings, Oklahoma City bombings...These are all terrorists attacks and the culprits are not always Middle-Eastern Muslims...A terrorist can be anyone anybody from anywhere...If I am going to have my rights that I am entitled to so should everyone else then...If you want me to be stripped searched and not allowed carry-ons so should you...You are no different from me and shouldn't be treated any differently...If I am a possible terrorist whose to say your not either...

    January 10, 2010 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  19. You're Serious?

    Some of you people amaze me. Profile Muslims, strip search people that come from an arbitrary list of countries believed to pose a terrorist threat to the United States, and comments about being a veteran and therefore having some manner of "inside" knowledge relevant to this discussion.

    Be careful America, your ignorance and xenophobia are showing.

    This laughable notion that if we racially profile all people who believe in Islam or have even remotely "weird" names is farcical. I can tell you right now that if that happens, terrorist groups will produce bombers from western countries with names that you philistines would feel safe around. Nice, Christian or Jewish names that no one would suspect.

    I caution you to be careful because every time you ratchet down security levels as a blanket response, every time you let the poltroons at the Department of Homeland (in)Security search you – you're surrendering a few more of your freedoms.

    There was one poster on here, just a single one, that talked about the people I see and work with every day. Those would be the Afghan National Army and the Afghan National Police. I am currently deployed in Afghanistan on a small base in a country most of you goons might be able to locate if given access to Google and half an hour. You take your freedom for granted and think that you should be the only ones able to determine who comes and goes, who is allowed the special privilege of being in America.

    Wow. So what you're saying is that only Americans are good enough to be American. How shallow can you get? None of your families originated here, we emigrated from Africa, Asia, Europe, and – OH NO – THE MIDDLE EAST! OH WHAT DO WE DO NOW? THE ENEMY IN OUR MIDST!

    You pitable fools. The enemy is your lack of understanding, your fear, your ignorance. Your willingness to vote for people who cultivate a culture of fear and insist you subjugate yourselves before their so-called wisdom is the real terrorist threat. Educate yourselves, understand the roots of this conflict, and then work toward tolerance and peace.

    But wait, aren't I a uniformed service member? Yes, I am. And I'm waiting for the bozos to come out of the woodwork and call me a traitor. However, I'm not. You are. To paraphrase one of our country's 'Founding Fathers,' you are willing to sacrifice liberty for security and therefore deserve neither.

    I weep for you America, I truly do. It is your ego and your blind stupidity that makes you vulnerable.

    January 10, 2010 at 9:24 am | Report abuse |
  20. zigzag

    It is important to note here that this incident did not happen in the USA, it happened in Dubai– a muslim country. Security excised due care and followed protocols. I do not beleive it is question of profiling, but rather of good security.

    The best security starts before the person comes to the airport, and it involves questioning by visa authorities. This is in fact, the most important step to take. if the person is already inside the airport and boarding a plane and he is terrorist. Its already too late.

    In many countries, people are checked as they entered the airport, by bomb sniffing dogs, and armed policemen. Snipers were placed in all strategic corners of the airports, and passengers randomly questioned. Specially trained interrogrators individually questioned you about your luggage and your activities in the last 48 hours. All this before you even checked into the flight.

    Luggage was screened as it entered the airport- (not after it has sent to the plane), and it was rechecked after it was checked in. Passengers were screened and hand searched if necessary. These measures have always been effective– far more than any security procedure at any US airport I have been through.

    I would say, in fact, security in every international airport I have been to in over 23 countries is far stricter and more secure than virturely any US airport. One failed attack incident does not make the tried and tested procedures over over two decades ineffective and useless, and it is certainly not necessary to virturely strip and seach every muslim in the world, and black-list 99.99% of the1/2 billion people of the world on the14 country list and in the process do more harm to American economic and security interests.

    The present over hyped reaction to the Delta incident is another example of the paranoia gripping the American media and the seige mentality of certain Americans seeking only to further their own agenda. Ultimately this does more economic long term damage to America than any possible action by this young Nigerian. Wisdom (sadly in short supply), is needed amongst our leaders and opinion makers, and measured balanced actions taken to balance security interests, with economic interests, and our long term necessary and vital engagement with the muslim world.

    Finally, I would like to note, for those who would like to strip search, question, or ban all Middle eastern looking or muslim men, a lot of them look like Italians, Portuguese, or Greek or even Spanish people. Some of the women, look like every other white American women- you see walking down the street and guess what many of them are even blond!. How in the world are you going to tell the difference?? Only 100% White, pure anglo saxon can get a free pass???

    Profiling does not work. Good security work, and pervention does.

    January 9, 2010 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
  21. tm

    man please!!!! i agree with the new security measures...and i for one would probably do the same thing as in screening a little harder people from those countries....at the end of the day were attacked in 2001 by people from afghanistan and pakistan so extra tight screenings from all who come from those countries is what i say.

    January 9, 2010 at 8:43 pm | Report abuse |
  22. MFM

    Indeed it is unfortunate that civilised countries behave in this manner. Tere are some key issues that need to be identified first.
    i)The USA and other developed nations are confused and in aquandry. They have no idea what to do. The goal and purpose is to prevent harm to its citizend and property.
    The manner they try to accomplish it is akin to catching atiger or ratlesnake by nthe tail..ie profiling people. This is purely out of ignorance.
    ii)To prevent this hatred of the US government by nationas across the world both in SOuth America, Mid-East, Far-East and Asia..and now Africa,the US needs to operate from a perspective of "HONESTY"
    Propping up the illegal Karzai governement of a thousand enrages amillion; propping up the pakistani Zardari clan enrages several million, being complicit in Saudi government oppression achieves similar resuults.
    Providing a dictator in Egypt General with billions, apakistani dictator with billions, the Israeli governemt that occupies gaza and other lands illegally with billions serves only to enraage millions across the world. In Africa asimilar scenario of engineering a'governemt' of preference through pseudo-democratic means., Recall Hamas was elected democratically..Karzai, Hosni Mubarak and a amriad others in "US Interestes" are non democratic leaders.
    If and when the US government branches stop puruing mythical cold war enemies..turning ablind eye to injustice in several countries in the mid-east and elsewhere..it will continue to have enemies.
    Who the president of the US is, makes little difference, the forces that maneouvre the International agenda soon prevails.
    With the homeland economy in dire straits, unemployment at an alltime high,bankruptcies limiting family life et etc..seeking a war with Iran, Yemen and enhancing troop build-ups in countries where we have placed puppets, should serve to help us understand: The "government for the people, by the people" is an anachronism and non-existent.
    Mr Obama initial honesty and earnestness has been carefully re-directed and altered to serve an agenda with little benefit to us, the MAerican citizens.
    The military budget needs to be appropriately curbed, war mongerers re-directed out of government, interest group agenda's ignored..OUR GOVERNEMENT NEEDS TOS ERVE THE CITIZENS>>NOT the agenda of other nations or interest groups!
    Until that day arruves, we will always be seeking the band-aid approach of identifyiong 1 anti-US person by racial profiling, rather than seeking to solve the issues at its root cause.
    Duplity can never prevail..truth , Honesty, equanimity will!

    January 9, 2010 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  23. olyg

    It is quite simply really – lets turn the table here. Let's say that all middle-eastern contries were free today – that they respected the rights of the individual and cherished their freedom. Then let's say America was ran by a tyrant and a person who forced it's people to believe the way he did or face death. That every move is measure by this government, that we as a people were siolated from the actual news of the world. Lets say we were brainwashed to believe that anyone who did not believe like we did should die.

    Now – lets say our skin color was green Do you think that the middle-eastern countries would single us out at airports and more closely scrutinize us before we boarded a plane? You bet they would. They would profile us in a heart beat. Get a clue.

    January 9, 2010 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  24. stephanie

    If all american forces left all the countries and stopped all aid to them what would happen? what would happen if no more people were allowed to come to america? We even help are enemies,how said.food,money,aid shelter,work etc.and still its not enough.

    January 9, 2010 at 9:50 am | Report abuse |
  25. stephanie

    I live in freedom and I love my country and I feel truly blessed,but now I'm scared for the first time,why do we have to live in fear? We should put a sign out terrorists keep out no trespassing.

    January 9, 2010 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
  26. stephanie

    when you come to america live by our rules not yours,and if you can't don't let the door hit you when you leave. we stand for freedom and it seems like something alot of people don't understand.

    January 9, 2010 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
  27. stephanie

    I'm a American and proud of it I came to this country with my parents,and have been blessed to live her,I have six children,six grandchildren and this is the land of the free,why does everyone want to come here if they hate us? let them fix thier own country and make it a better place,fight for your own freedom like we did. Freedom is not free we wll have to work on it. the only thing I see going on people come over here and want to change america to the land where they came from,you can't, you can keep your religion,your culture but rrm ember you came here to be a American,stand and be one,freedom is not free.If you don't like America,than go back and fix what is corrupt,and make your homeland a better place to live.You have to tart sometime,somewhere,and stop making everyone try to be like you.stop trying to take over the united states,because you don't know how strong we are. stop taking over all the european countries they were there first. go back and live the way you want and make your homeland safe and most of all make it home.You live in aholy land and yet you are destroying it.

    January 9, 2010 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
  28. stephanie

    when we search people we are protecting everyone no matter who you are,but one thing I have learned when you take someones life for the sake of taking it,it is not your right,you never gave therm life so you have no right. I don't care what religion you are. taking ones life s a mortal sin only God,through death can take,and everyone is distant to this. Like many profits have said hell awaits those who break Gods commandments no matter what faith you are. The punishment is eternal fires of hell. Has any terrorist ever come back to tell any what his reward is? no because he took his life plus the lives of innocent people,you cannot be rewarded for a act of violence,nothing good ever comes from this,this is so simple to understand,people who kill themselves burn in hell,unless they are mentally sick,and not at fault. what kind of leaders would send children young adults to kill,only evil the work of satan,I don't care who,or what you believe killing is wrong. When you stand before God what can you say,or explain why you did what you did,and be rewarded,I don't think so.I'm am a mother of six and I am afraid,I believe the devil is at work,but we can stop him.

    January 9, 2010 at 9:22 am | Report abuse |
  29. Peter

    ...and don't hand me that crap about innocent civilians getting killed in Afghanistan. It's never done intentionally, unlike the endless barrage of missile randomly sent into Israel from the Gaza Strip. Seems to me, THAT is intentionally targeting civilians. Sad to think some want to hold Israel responsible for their incursion into Gaza in order to protect themselves.

    What would happen if Canada started lobbing missiles over the border into random cities in the U.S.? Do you think we would try to negotiate? Good grief.

    January 9, 2010 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
  30. Peter

    When is this country going to wake up? Some are so concerned that we might cause "resentment" and more problems by profiling. Good grief, they just don't get it. Islamic terrorists and other extremists will never stop until America is totally destroyed. They will send their wives and even their children to make it so. Our civilian government needs to remain in total control of policy, but they need butt out when it comes to military affairs. Direct our military with an objective, and leave them alone; let them do their job, by whatever means possible.

    It's difficult to understand why our government seems to be more concerned with giving a fair trial to mass murdering terrorists and criminals, costing countless millions of dollars, then they are about addressing our own domestic economic problems. Terrorists are enemy combatants.We must allow our military to practice military justice. Debrief terrorists by any means possible, and if found guilty of a capital crime, or intent to perform a capital crime against this country or it's citizens, swiftly and humanely, execute them.

    We need to understand: extremists will NEVER stop until either we are all dead or they are. It's time to decide, America, who is going to survive? It's down to "us or them".

    January 9, 2010 at 8:06 am | Report abuse |
  31. Contractor


    Abuse it.

    Run it down – every Muslim male, and female from any country, ages 13-70 should be completely strip searched and honestly not allowed any carry-ons.

    Until people stop killing innocent people, preventative measures must and will be taken to ensure lives are being saved. If a few hours or harrassment bothers you, please, stay in your country and forego it. Here's the harsh reality – my countrymen don't strap bombs onto themselves and kill innocent people in your country. Yours however, do do this to mine.

    You claim my country kills innocent people in your country when drones bomb. Here's a helfpul hint – STOP HARBORING TERRORISTS. If you don't want your house or village bombed, don't harbor someone who would warrant this type of action.

    Fix your country first. Then we'll talk about letting up on your exit/entry into mine.

    January 9, 2010 at 7:48 am | Report abuse |
  32. louie

    To PROFILE, GREAT. In the many years of travel, never did I see a need for this, not once. But now, to have the knowledge that there are people out there that want to hurt, KILL, or worse to my country, yes, I am not sorry that you had extra security, should have had more. I have this feeling that all people that board planes now will alwars be looking for, well, YOU know WHO....

    January 9, 2010 at 3:12 am | Report abuse |
  33. Kenneth

    When I say more harm than good what I mean to say is that it creates resentment. Look at the LA riots. So much anamosity built up over so many years. Its one thing to fight the terrorist, to watch out for them, but ultimately to win we have to create friends. I'm not so worries about what profiling in and of itself would do but where it might be taken by those who are in the airports doing those screenings. If you think people in authority left to their own devices have never peformed wrongs look at this current conflict alone. In an ideal world where we could garentee such things would not happen maybe it would be reasonable but in the long run we are only creating more enemies, scaring more opinions. The old slogan of winning hearts and minds is still as valid as it was when first introduced. When I'm talking about other methouds I'm talking about being more agressive with our watch list. If we had been it would have stopped even this event. As far as looking at only the people who have certain nationalitys/skin color/certain sounding names, well its simple not practical to do so with everyone who fits that bill. As far as our American rights are conserned to those who mentioned them above. Those are American rights for Americans. Why we try to impose our rights on people not even from our country I will never understand. The Geniva Convention protections were for military members, not terrorist. I'm all for the military tearing into the terrorist with everyting they have, but lets not forget not every muslam is a terrorist. Some of the people we call terrorist have been brainwashed. You might as well had them some Kool-Aid they are so messed up.

    January 9, 2010 at 1:10 am | Report abuse |
  34. Kenneth

    I have a friend who was originally from Egypt. One day I asked her if she ever heard the term "BFE". After explaining it to her she was somewhat upset. Not at me but the expression seemed to her insulting. Egypt is not nowhere, its somewhere. The reason I bring this up is because too many people do not see individuals, they see hate and religion. Right now there are brave Afgans standing by our troops side fighting alongside of us. In actually they are taking even more risks than our troops. our troops ultimately do get to come home. They live there and their lives depends on the success of our commitment. I wish our new reporting would invest more time humanizing the Afgan people and their struggle/sacrifice/and dedication. Follow their police, their troops in training and the field, their polititions, their community leaders/and schools. As an American I am interested in our countries investment in that country, not just the success of our troops. Stories like yours of individuals and how current events affect you, your opinions, and experiences. As far as the security measures are conserned I sometimes think animals in the wild have more common sence when it comes to self preservation that us. Not everything we may have to do is pleasent, we may offend someone. Success requires sacrifice. Success usually goes to the one willing to go farther than their opponent. When making decisions about what we should be willing to do however we should however ask ourselves if we would be willing to stand in front of the American Public and World to explain why we did what we did. Does that mean I think we should profile people? Well actually no. Not because I do not think it wouldn't work to an extent (not like we haven't had Americans with the terrorist) but the harm it would do outweighs the benefit when we have other options.

    January 9, 2010 at 12:32 am | Report abuse |
  35. Neil

    Deal with it, not all muslims are terrorists but all terrorists are muslim. I say profile them all, whatever it takes.

    If you don't like it then stay in your country and keep your mouth shut.


    January 8, 2010 at 9:34 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Insane1

    Obviously whatever we are doing (profiling not profiling) is not working I mean a terrorist got through over christmas with some really nasty stuff. All of this with the authorities having intel in hand telling them to watch out for this guy.

    The Israelis have not had a terrorist attack on board a jetliner since I believe the 60s. It might have something to do with the fact that they are looking for terrorist while we are looking for tweezers and toothpast, liquids and yes muslims. My point is if profiling the way we employ it worked than we wouldnt have as many "near misses" as we have had recently. Profiling is tool and when used correctly its can be highly effective howver we have turned security into a circus.

    January 8, 2010 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
  37. eric b

    What about the Oklahoma Bomber you know the White Guy Timothy Mcveigh. We fear the wrong things,38,000 people will die in car wrecks every year 38,000 more than any terrorist attack combined in 10 years. Cigerettes killed a Half a BILLION people in the last 20 years why aren't we worried about that. you are more likely to die from lightning strike than a terrorist attack 10 times More again why are we not afraid of these things. We focus on the wrong issues, yeh i know wait till they get the Bomb we'll by then Cigs will have kiled around a Billion people. So seems to me we are afraid of something down the bottom of the Death Chain HHHHHHHMMMMM...............

    January 8, 2010 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Jarred

    Get over who ever called CNN saying that all A-Rabs should be checked they should they have proven time and time again why they can't be trusted and they should be checked more. Every single one of them should be double checked.

    January 8, 2010 at 2:58 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Jim Bomboy

    I am Native American or as i say I'm an Indian..I'm from the old school and would not mind one bit if i were profiled because of being an Indian..I think if you are afraid of being profiled you have something to hide..Jim Bomboy

    January 8, 2010 at 1:52 pm | Report abuse |
  40. jonnyd

    "Psychologically, it is disturbing and annoying to be interrogated just because of your nationality."
    Psychologically, it is slightly more than disturbing and annoying to see thousands of innocent people lose their lives in terrorist attacks because of their nationality and religion. Muslims attack Americans because of our nationality. Quid pro quo. Islam is NOT a religion of peace.

    January 8, 2010 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
  41. Veteran

    As a Veteran, I recently was screened and had to go through the scanners, was I annoyed yes because I did served this country and I am service-connected soilder but you know what I sucked it up and went about my buisness. My family tree goes back to the 1800's and I love America but I think its amazing how people are given "permission" to come into America and than complain because they are screened, we are all screened and even though we may not like it we understand the reasons for it.

    I live in NY and I was here during 9/11 and the destruction and the lives that were affected. Not only in the airplanes but in the buildings as well. So if you dont like the profiling oh well we all go through it.

    We live in an age where people sit back on a computer write articles and complain, but you know what when you get a chance go down to DC and visit the Memorials of the Veterans that sacrificed their lives for our freedoms for us to live in this country. We may not be perfect country but take a look at the mirror of your own country before you write an article complaining about screening or profiling in this country.

    January 8, 2010 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  42. Thiru Gundala

    Wanted to jump in here to make a clarification regarding Shahrukh Khan since I am from India and live in US. Let me give you some background here. Most of my country men are innocent and despite being one of the fastest developing nations we still have high illiteracy rate. There are people who worship Shahrukh in India and his fans can die for him on any day. All this hype might have made him believe that he is specail and should be treated as different from other passengers and my quesiton is why the hell should he be treated differently. Did he come to US as a special guest of the Govt. of US. I dont think so. When a person in uniform asks you a question, all you have to do is answer it to the point. I know (atleast could make out by reading different articles) the kind of conversation this actor had with security personnel and believe me it was nothing less than being arrogant. If he is an actor and worshipped like God, then let him behave like one in the place where he is treated as one. I'm not a muslim but did questioned many a times at airports due to my skin color and I dont have any problem with that. If majority of terrorists have my skin color and some security officer wants to question me for that, I dont have any problem with that. On the contrary, it makes me feel more secured and safe. I have only one advice for the people who are travelling to other nations (specially to US) including Mr.Nasim Fekrat. You are going there for your own needs and not becuase those countries or Govt.s cannot survive without you. If you dont like the way you are treated then all you have to do is just keep away from them. Please dont go out of your country. But if you have to, for your own selfish motives (be it for getting better education or career, they are still selfish motives) then you are not supposed to complain.I am sure Shahrukh would not hesitate for a second to jump on the next flight to US if we prmoise him hefty $$ and tell him that you can dance in front of a huge crowd.
    I just cant stand people who sympathize for such folks.

    January 8, 2010 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  43. butch3421

    I may not be as eloquent at the other posters. I don't want to make any point other than if you don't understand what is going on then I feel sorry for you. Please leave and do not come back. Do not take advantage of what our Country has to offer. It may be exteme to ban or profile based on nationality or ethnic background but maybe that's what it will take. If so then do it.

    January 8, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
  44. tdr

    One of the wonderful things about being in this country is the freedom of choice. If you immigrate to this country and find things that you do not like or feel are unjust then you can exercise one of those rights that are guaranteed to everyone in this nation and simple choose to return to the land you left. Freedom of choice.

    January 8, 2010 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Blasto

    What you are suggesting is what led us to the present problems. Even when these terrorists
    are profiled, they still get into the USA. There is no way to know which of these people will end up totally disrupting this country. We are so disrupted now that continuing the status quo is really in question.

    January 8, 2010 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
  46. allan Tanny

    Really. I suggest you come up with this new technology. I'm Canadian and I would expect if some of my fellow countrymen started doing terrorist acts, that it would be up to my government and my people to stop them. But this idea is not shared in the Islamic world, because you never see Muslims doing anything to stop terrorism, unless of course they are the target. No it is up to us to stop them. I figure we have a better chance of doing just that if we carefully examine most young Muslim men rather than spending time checking 80 year grandmothers from England. To suggest otherwise is insulting to one's intelligence. If you are not happy with that I invite you to either provide some new form of technology that will render present methods obsolete, or work with countries which are home to this stupidity, to eliminate it.

    January 8, 2010 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
  47. George

    It is imperative that we have the tighter security measures for people traveling from Muslim states into our country. We have lost too many innocent lives to suicidal maniacs having a radical Islamic view of the world, with ties to Muslim nations.
    A war has been declared on us when 3000 Americans lost their lives in 9/11. The continuing efforts of persons with ties to Muslim nations to kill our citizens warrant the utmost diligence as to how we check incoming travelers into our mist.
    Politically correct solutions will not provide security to our nations citizens, and anyone who thinks that they will is at best naive if not ignorant of the dangers facing us all in the coming decades.

    January 8, 2010 at 11:49 am | Report abuse |
  48. Carla

    Dear James,

    The 4th Amendment in the Bill of Rights provides that we Americans are secure from "unreasonable" searches and seizures. Do you think being searched in our time of war is unreasonable? I don't! Secondly, people coming into the United States need to be searched. If we know that Muslims and perhaps their allies are the one who terrorize, why would we NOT focus on them? Give me a break!

    January 8, 2010 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
  49. sheriff

    Simple..if your name is on a list you DON'T fly...period! use whatever means required to make us safe including profiling and full body searches. If someone doesn't agree they can walk or move to another country. We have to play by the same rules the other side is or we'll lose it all.

    January 8, 2010 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  50. A. Smith, Oregon

    If the CIA DELIBERATELY aided the Nigerian Muslim bomber or ineptly failed to immediately notify TSA about that man, adding any manner of bend over and cough Medieval Practices would not have stopped that bomber from getting onto his Detroit bound flight.

    President Obama needs to immediately remove all CIA agents that remain loyal to former vice president Dick Cheney who are acting in a manner that places failure as the only outcome for the Obama administration as payback for President Obama closing all of the CIA secret prisons around the world.

    January 8, 2010 at 12:08 am | Report abuse |
  51. Mark Carver


    Security screening can and should be done respectfully.

    It is reasonable to have additional measures at the airports, though I find it disappointing that some authorities think that simply being blatantly hostile does anything helpful for anyone.

    I think that what you may find upsetting is not necessarily the additional questioning, but instead being subjected to outright disrespectful aggressive behavior that sounds like 'guilty-until-proven-innocent' treatment.

    That is unprofessional, inefficient conduct that just alienates people from us. Many of our citizens know that by our own experiences:

    Unfortunately we have 'profiling' right here in the U.S.: we have this thing called 'racial profiling'.

    Essentially that means some of our local police forces illegally profile our own citizens based on their skin color. When this is done, aggressive and often completely unlawful behavior is carried out by some individual police officers, and ultimately this causes harm to the local 'minority communities' who naturally become resentful of the police.

    As an end result, crime does not go down, nor does it get deterred, and ultimately what goes up is ignorance and 'racial' hatred and resent.

    So I sound pretty hypocritical saying all of this and then telling you that I support the right of the authorities to question whoever they choose among the people who desire to enter this country, but many hundreds and sometimes thousands of peoples lives are at stake at a time.

    I do strongly advocate for the authorities to be ethical and respectful.
    Otherwise we will just cause needless resent and more hostility, adding fuel to the fire we wish to extinguish.

    It is unlikely that you personally will be subjected to outright aggression while you are here, but I must warn you if someone has not already, there will be times where you will not be treated as you would be if you were any or all of the following: 'white', born here, and Christian.

    And you will also probably find that many of the people here who say ignorant things about Islam also forget that almost all of our "domestic terror" bombings have been carried out by 'white' male American citizens who viewed themselves as divinely-inspired patriots.

    I am glad that you're here to study. That takes courage and a whole lot of effort. You'll find a lot of good things here and a lot of good people too. And the individuals who have made the highest contributions to this country have often come from afar.

    January 7, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  52. imran kadha

    what about the terrorist western nations who are killing muslim nationals in muslim countries?

    why shouldn't westerners not be profiled?

    after all you westerners are the crucible of terror.

    January 7, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  53. James Swiatek

    If the profiling is for a purpose or not,,,It is still a constitutional violation! Let "Our government", come up with a solution that does not violate our 'Bill Of Rights.' Of course the danger from idiots/terrorists are with us every day, but lets get our greatly educated and learned , scholarly,and erudite educators/citizens, and even politicians involved , to come up with a legal operation to stop the problem.

    January 7, 2010 at 6:48 pm | Report abuse |
  54. Manuel

    Well, sometimes, as is the case, profiling is needed. I have seen a red face, fat lady from Wisconsin, with her two young grandchildren, searched, and all her belongins looked at, with no apparent reason, but doing so, in order to avoid the apparent claim of profiling.
    I have never heard of any other than a muslim or of arab descent, as the one charged with an attemtp or a bombing of a jetliner. We are spending billions on these searches, when they can be cut in less than half, if the potential perpetrators are picked from the line. I have not heard any complaints, from any muslim, when these attacks are perpetrated, except to say they are scared of becoming victims of so called profiling. Inocent muslims have not aided the problem by not voicing concerns, thus, they become part of the problem. I am sure they know who the radicals are...point them out.,.like this responsible man in Nigeria did, even if it was his son.

    January 7, 2010 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
  55. Anne

    I'm a garden-variety New York liberal who at one time would have agreed with you. But when it comes to matters of life and death of innocent people, I think profiling is necessary. There are real threats to our safety and limited resources - not everyone can be checked.

    Perfect world: US has terrific intelligence and stops terrorists before they ever get on a plane. While the British do a good job, we can't seem to get it together in this country.

    My brother is on a no-fly list and has to spend an extra hour going through airport security. He gets frisked and questioned every time he flies. He's in his 50's, a white protestant and while the Justice Department promises to remove his name from the list, it never happens.

    My point is this: this country is a long ways from getting its screening act together. At least we can narrow the focus and check people who might wish us harm.

    January 7, 2010 at 4:03 pm | Report abuse |
  56. Afghan from Kabul

    You should Treat people with respect so that you be respected the same way if you dont respect then alot of problems will come up such as hate !

    January 7, 2010 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Shane

    Your wrong! Everyone should be screened 100% and it should be done well away from the airport. Once you get in the airport area it should be completly safe. Why they only screen 1/2 of the airport is beyond any rational security explination!

    January 7, 2010 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
  58. Carla

    Dear Nasim,

    I too went to Dickinson College and still live nearby. Good luck in your studies. I'm sorry that you feel the way you do about profiling, but perhaps you should try to look at it from an American's point of view. Unfortunately, you are in the age bracket of the men who terrorize our country. While this is fairly new to us, we Must do everything in our power to protect our country, and that includes "profiling." New technology is being implemented (body scanners) and hopefully it will eliminate the questioning of people that don't fit the profile of a terrorist; Women and girls from Muslim countries, small children, and the elderly. But for now, Not to profile would be silly, and those who stand in the way of it (civil libritarians) should be ashamed of themselves. When they are on an airline with someone who has Not been screened properly and the plane is blown to pieces by the bomb he was carrying, then perhaps they will change their minds about the process. If it were up to me, all men from Muslim countries the age of 10-60 would be required to enter airport gates through seperate lanes. They would be then be strip searched. Sorry. They should be lucky they are even allowed to enter our country. Stay well my friend and try not to take it personally. Profiling may save your life, or the life of someone you love!

    January 7, 2010 at 10:07 am | Report abuse |
  59. Adam

    Well honestly America declared a war (quite illegaly) in Iraq, while the president of the most powerful nation on earth believed he was fighting against Gog and Magog and the rapture was imminent. (Google it if you find that unbelievable).

    Many many civilians have been slaughtered there, never mind in Afghanistan, so why are Americans genuinely shocked that there be terrorists all over the place?

    You can't partake in a war which has almost been going on for a decade and then moan about how inconvenient life is, grow up!

    January 7, 2010 at 5:50 am | Report abuse |
  60. Persian_guy

    I'm from Iran, studying in the US and I've experienced such things. I agree with those kinds of profiling, especially as they are steps to protect the US. Even as a non-American, I feel much safer when I'm traveling in this country.
    BUT -and its a BIG but- does the US authorities pay such attention to things they do in Afghanistan or Pakistan or Iraq? Thousands of non-militants have been killed under US missile attacks in Pakistan (just google it in the news). They say the couldn't distinguish these targets from Qaeda or the Taliban hiding places!!
    So, are the *lives* of non-Americans and Americans -all as human beings- worth equal in the eyes of US government? Do they care -as mush they care in the US airports- to prevent such mistaken missile attacks?! Or just they bomb whenever and wherever they are suspected?
    This contradictory behavior is not fair in my opinion.

    January 7, 2010 at 1:22 am | Report abuse |
  61. eppie b

    It uncomfortable being scrutinize detain for hours and hour but it more uncomfortable and horrible to look at dead bodies .So,those who does not like the new rule now to bad,I love to travel and no amount of hours of inconvenience will prevent me from traveling.

    January 7, 2010 at 1:18 am | Report abuse |
  62. 90216

    If there wasn't any profiling at the airports the terrorists would feel more at ease about travelling into the US. Its all perfectly valid. It's the sacrifice you need to make, whether you like it or not, because of the terrorists in your country. We aren't all individuals and not everyone can be assesed by their personality, its impossible, it's not shown in the colour of our skin whether we are kind or not. We are responsible for eachother and if all non terrorists condemn the terrorists in Afghanistan instead of support them, it would also be a start.

    January 7, 2010 at 12:08 am | Report abuse |
  63. Baba

    I want all those 14 nations to do same to all Americans and Europians nationals then everyone understand how it feels to be profiled.

    January 6, 2010 at 10:01 pm | Report abuse |
  64. 1st Gen American

    In many ways I understand Nasim's point but in today's world, it must be done. I am a first generation American of Asian descent and fully know what its like to be looked at differently. I have not had the chance to travel lately but I know that if I do, I will fully cooperate with any measures that are taken to provide security. They can pull me aside and question me all they want. I have nothing to hide and will gladly answer any questions no matter how personal it may be. If this is what I must endure to be safe, then I'll just have to do it. We can't take any chances now, these terrorists are looking to kill Americans by any means. My skin may be the same tone as these torrorists, but I bleed red white and blue. I'm American to the bone and I love America as much as anyone can love their homeland. Our Founding Fathers built this great nation on the fact that it is a nation of people from all over the world – from the proud first generation Americans like myself, to those Americans whose ancestors landed on the Colonial shores – all living under the notions of Democracy and Freedom. I am proud to say that I am American and will have to deal with any type of profiling that may come my way.

    January 6, 2010 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  65. timothyn

    It is sad to read things like "most terrorists are muslim" - the media has gotten to you too. You only doom yourself by saying such inaccuracies.

    January 6, 2010 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  66. Jake

    well, when terrorist walk freely around Afghanistan you should be surprised when they search you in US airports. I rather wait in long lineups than to get blown up by some Afghan or Yemani terrorist.

    January 6, 2010 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  67. mytwocents

    I'm happy for you that you are brave enough to leave your country for opportunities in the US. That takes a lot of smarts. However, you must also realize that the world is not ready to take on random acts of violence from others because there are basic differences of opinion on how to live and on what to believe. Be thankful for your own gifts and after you have achieved your goals, go back to your people and help them to get out of the mire they are in without being violent. No one listens to violent people. We only want to silence them. I'm a racial minority, too, but an American, and believe me, if you're not white in this country there is profiling even though for me and my kind it's relatively mild. Bottom line, take the positive in all your experiences and don't make a big deal about the rest.

    January 6, 2010 at 5:41 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Fredy Rojas

    I am originally from Colombia and we used to live that kind of profiling problem when the drug cartels in the 80's were a big thing in the country. Now the drug cartels are more controlled and we don't have to live those things at the airports or when we travel....well, at least not at the same extension. Even though I don't like it, I understand the reason why security and countries have stronger rules for foreign visitors who represent some kind of risk to the national's stability depending of your place of birth. I do live in Canada now and I am proud to be a permanent resident of this country because we live in a mix of cultures and personalities, so religion and nationality are not a problem as long as they are not extreme. We can keep our own rituals and ways to be at home or with our peers and families but when it is a matter of following the General Rules of the country we live in, we have to be open to obey, follow and respect that armony that assures the good balance we can get in democracy countries like USA and Canada.

    January 6, 2010 at 5:27 pm | Report abuse |
  69. Ajmal

    I agree with you Nasim on the point that UAE police and airport staff unnecessarily, according to my experience, cause inconveniences to the passengers by being indecisive and not knowing what to do. However, on the question of thorough searches I disagree with you. It is really hard to single out the bad guys from the rest of the crowd given the extend of the number ofpeople on the watch list which is growing by the day. It, therefore, necessitate closer screening of people from certain countries. It does not mean everyone is a potential suspect but it is rather a measure to stop individuals like Abdul – Mutalab from hiding bomb(s) in their underwears.

    January 6, 2010 at 3:21 pm | Report abuse |
  70. Mike

    Get over it! Bigoted to judge people according to their religion or nationality? No, profiling is purely pragmatic. These are the people who are trying to kill us. If white haired grandmothers take up a holy war against the west then yes they should be profiled too, So far grannies don't but mid eastern and SE asian Muslims do.

    January 6, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Report abuse |
  71. A. Smith, Oregon

    With 14 nations on the watch list with citizens that hate Americans so much they'll blow themselves up in order to exact revenge, it goes to follow that ever stricter screening and security checks are going to be performed on any citizen that is a national from any of those countries.

    Unfortunately for Americans the number of nations is growing, and the risk for American tourists in other nations besides the 14 is rising as well. Bombing people that hate America appears to add more people that hate America. American tourists are far less safe traveling overseas since the Bush doctrine became the law of the land of America.

    Will the current circle of violence ramp down after America pulls out of Iraq and Afghanistan? I certainly hope so, US war planners are pushing to place troops into Yemen for another proxy Oil War on behalf of Saudi Arabia's control over the entrance of the Red Sea.

    Security analysts are now openly questioning if the CIA deliberately aided or refused to pass on the information they knew about the Nigerian Muslim bomber to the TSA authority's who would have immediately blocked the bomber from boarding his Detroit bound flight.

    Are some of the CIA members acting out of loyalty to former vice-president Dick Cheney? Dick Cheney has repeatedly criticized President Obama's roll back on both wars and shutting down all of the CIA secret prisons around the world including that at Gitmo.

    Is the ability of the Nigerian Muslim bomber to get onto his International Flight the result of a power vacuum within the CIA agency between those still loyal to Dick Cheney and want President Obama to fail?

    It is one thing for Rush Limbaugh to wish and hope for President Obama to fail, but yet another for the CIA agency to wish and act in such a similar manner.

    January 6, 2010 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  72. Jonathan

    "Your people kill our people, we inconvenience you, doesnt seem unfair to me."

    Hate to break it to you, Teejcee, but foreign forces are in Afghanistan killing Afghan people. Inconvenient?

    Hello Nasim. It's a pleasure to meet you and read your blog entry. I'm just a random person take a minute out of my otherwise crazy life to say that I understand. It's a crappy feeling to be judged and interrogated based on skin color, nationality, religious belief. You would think that in a land of freedoms, we would be more willing to defend those freedoms.

    I'm caught in my feelings towards profiling though. I'm a staunch civil libertarian and think that everyone, should retain their privacy. I agree that the ultimate solution is technology. As technology improves, so does the ability of security to detect hidden threats. But until that time, what policies can be implemented by security to focus in on "the threat" while minimizing inconvenience?

    For me, I think random searches amongst 60 year old grandmothers is the wrong approach. Extreme political correctness is a farce and is wasteful of security resources. Crotchbomber wasn't frisked or questioned.

    So where does that leave us? I'd say it's all in security training. You have to get the right personnel who won't trample on civil rights. Train them to profile, train them to recognize erratic or nervous behavior or the way someone walks. Have better-trained professionals question those from questionable countries/backgrounds, but don't harass, interrogate or trample on everyone who is Arabic or Asian and fit some sort of mold just because they are Arabic or Asian. I think profiling goes hand in hand with behavioral profiling.

    I've been discriminated against. I've had old grannies give me the evil eye while they move their purse, judged solely on how I look. The best advice I can give is to not take it personally. To shrug it off. To keep doing good in your life and that's what matters. Because ignorance and bigotry will always exist.

    Peace bro.

    January 6, 2010 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  73. Casey

    Middle Eastern decent keeps getting profiled but the last attempt was by a Nigerian. I understand that security is needed but focusing on Middle Eastern nationalities is obviously flawed.

    "but he had a Muslim sounding name."

    What exactly is a Muslim SOUNDING name? According to whom?

    Shahrukh Khan is a great example here. He's not Middle Eastern and his name doesn't sound Muslim to me. He's going to blow us up with his awesome singing voice and dance skills. I'll ride his plane any day.

    January 6, 2010 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Hunter

    Sad that increased security naturally breeds resentment from the people under more scrutiny. Sadder that it appears many blame nations like the USA that need more security vs the people causing the need for more securit.. Many people from those same nations that are sympathetic and supportive of the killers of innocents should look more closely in a mirror. I still remember the celebrations after 911 in some of those same countries.

    January 6, 2010 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Teejcee

    I understand your feelings, but you need to get over it. I dont even understand why people are concerned about civil liberties when these people have no civil liberites in their own countries. In places where women have no rights, where there is so much injustice and a lack of human rights, what are you complaining about?

    In your own country you dont have rights that can even compare to American's. Anyone from one of these countries should be subjected to the most strict searches ever. Your people kill our people, we inconvenience you, doesnt seem unfair to me.

    January 6, 2010 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  76. Mckenzie

    Unfortunatly, with all the terrorist attacks that America and our other Western countries have undergone, its logical and understandable why middle-eastern nationalities would undergo more thorough security checks than Americans, themselves. The increased security measures are for good reason, and if all muslim-middle eastern people need to be interogated before entering into our country than, so be it. It may seem callous, but lots of people have died at the hands of terrorist and it would ignorant to turn our backs and pretend that muslim extremist who generally are middle-eastern wouldn't be likely suspects to do these attacks again.

    January 6, 2010 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |