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View Diary: Ever been through Tel Aviv's airport? (231 comments)

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  •  This is BETTER than racial profiling! (5+ / 0-)

    Think of all the money we could have put into increasing our real security rather than the one trillion down the drain for Iraq.

    •  OMG, they so do racial profiling. n/t (10+ / 0-)

      Republicans want to take our country back; Democrats want to take it forward.

      by DrJeremy on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 08:12:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Racial profiling in Israel (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Jacques, charliehall, hikerbiker

        wouldn't be possible if they wanted it. Arabs tend to look very similar to Jews (especially Sephardim).

        "A conservative is one who admires radicals centuries after they're dead." -- Leo Rosten; My blog

        by Kylopod on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 08:28:44 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  How many times have you been (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          sofia, unspeakable

          through Ben Gurion?  

          Republicans want to take our country back; Democrats want to take it forward.

          by DrJeremy on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 08:32:19 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Many, many times. I've lost count. (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            miriam, Radiowalla, Corwin Weber, Jacques

            I'm white and Jewish and have been questioned in the same way the diarist describes, every single time I've passed through Ben Gurion airport, arriving or leaving the country.  Everyone has to answer the same long list of detailed questions, every time.

            It helps expedite the process if you can answer in Hebrew.

            My bags were once searched when the x-ray discovered my bag of pottery shards legitimately collected from an archeological dig.

            It made no difference to them whether or not I was Jewish.  Rules are rules. Thank goodness they have figured out how to keep all the travelers safe.

            Consider adopting a homeless pet at PAWS.org (Progressive Animal Welfare Society)

            by hikerbiker on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 08:41:59 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Next time you go, get up all in (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              hikerbiker

              their faces, and watch how quickly you get passed through.  Even better if you get up all in their faces in Hebrew, which of course, is not a language anyone could ever learn, right?

              Been there, done that, was amazed, and not comforted.

              Republicans want to take our country back; Democrats want to take it forward.

              by DrJeremy on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 08:45:42 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  If you've ever read any of simone daud's (12+ / 0-)

              accounts of his experiences at Ben Gurion, you would know that the experience of Palestinian Israelis, occupied Palestinians and Palestinians from other countries is somewhat different to those of Jews, whether Israeli or non-Israeli.

              •  And how is that different from the U.S. airports? (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                zannie, unspeakable, hikerbiker

                I don't remember if it was when I was coming home from one of my pilgrimage trips or if it was when I was coming home from one of my research trips, but as the bearer of a U.S. passport, even when coming more or less directly from the Middle East, I have never gotten more than a cursory question or two about where I've been. The Muslim woman in traditional dress in one of the lines I was able to walk briskly past, however, was being given the third degree. I suspect that if I had been dressed in the male counterpart of her attire, I would have been treated similarly.

                Of the four most recent times I've had to re-enter the United States through an airport terminal (half of them before 2001 and half of them after), I don't believe the Customs folks have ever bothered even to look at the declaration forms they require you to fill out on the plane on your way back. I distinctly remember one occasion when the clerk literally pulled it from inside the passport I was holding, stamped it without looking at it, tossed it onto a pile of similar documents, and waved me through the barrier.

                You won't get that kind of cursory wave-through at Ben Gurion. Hell, even at Charles de Gaulle, on my last trip back from France, I got grilled at check-in, had to endure a complete luggage check, the application of about eleventeen dozen stickers to each pocket of my bags and my passport, and then got pulled aside for one of the random searches at the gate at the start of boarding, plus a further quiz on the jetway. (Though since I answered in French on that one, I got through far more quickly than those of my fellow-travelers whose French was either non-existent or less fluent.)

                •  I hope you understand then, (7+ / 0-)

                  how it sounds to Arabs who've have to deal with this type of profiling, I include myself in this (it happened in Israel), that the Israeli way is the best way.

                  Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

                  by unspeakable on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 09:49:56 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  The salient difference being, at Ben Gurion, (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    hikerbiker

                    everybody gets questioned, all bags get opened and searched, and nobody gets a wave-through (in my experience). In the U.S., however, most people get a wave-through, hardly any bags get opened and searched, and while everybody gets questioned, the questions are all so generic and so scripted that their probative value is useless--unless you happen to look like you might be from somewhere south of the border or from the Middle East, in which case the assumption seems to be that you are automatically a terrorist or here illegally.

                    •  See (4+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      zannie, corvo, sofia, Fire bad tree pretty

                      here.

                      Colorless green ideas sleep furiously.

                      by unspeakable on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 10:03:25 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                    •  That's just not true. (4+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      zannie, Johnny Nucleo, kyril, unspeakable

                      First, if you are an Israeli citizen, with a passport, you get a wave through.  If you are an orthodox Jew, or dressed like one, you get a wave through.  Anyone else gets the usual cursory questions.  If you are a woman traveling alone, you get pulled aside for a make up and birth control search.  Unless you get in their faces, in which case you also get a wave through.  I got the full treatment once, never again, from from then on, I was the bitch from hell, and I got a total wave through.  Because you know, no criminal would ever figure that out.

                      Republicans want to take our country back; Democrats want to take it forward.

                      by DrJeremy on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 10:44:13 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  It is in my experience (0+ / 0-)

                        I've never seen anyone get waved through anything at Ben Gurion. Nor did any of the women in our party ever report any kind of a makeup search such as you describe on either of my two trips to Israel. And I find it both counterintuitive and hard to believe that "getting in their faces" is going to get you treated better. It usually works the other way.

                •  Did I say it was or wasn't different? (5+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  zannie, corvo, sofia, kyril, hikerbiker

                  I was responding to the point hikerbiker made that

                  It made no difference to them whether or not I was Jewish.  Rules are rules.

                  I just pointed out that it actually does make a difference if you're not Jewish - particuarly if you are Palestinian Israeli non-Jewish.

                •  Weirdest customs experience I've had (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  kyril, hikerbiker

                  was in Rome. We literally walked through some gate and there was nobody checking us at all. We just waltzed right on through and looked around puzzled.

                  It wasn't even just because we had flown from another EU country because when we'd made a transfer in Vienna to get onto the flight to Rome they made us go through customs there, and we'd just come from Munich.

                  Starboard Broadside: Firing all guns at the Right since September 2008!

                  by Cpt Robespierre on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 10:33:18 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

        •  they brag about it (7+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          zannie, corvo, sofia, kyril, DrJeremy, Alec82, LtMarechal

          on a regular basis. The profiling is via names and ethnic identity.

          I was paid to post this comment by my cat, but he's a deadbeat.

          by decembersue on Mon Dec 28, 2009 at 09:25:55 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  heeeeeellllo and newsflash (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          corvo, borkitekt

          Racial profiling in Israel wouldn't be possible if they wanted it. Arabs tend to look very similar to Jews

          racial profiling isn't soley based on how you look. when you enter the country you are required to list a religion and atheist /agnostic won't do. even israelis are listed per religion. there's that little piece of paper and your passport. i was required to choose a religion and was questioned as to my grandparents religion. they determined i was christian even when i told them i wasn't.

          racial profiling is absolutely possible in israel.

          •  Do you understand (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            hikerbiker

            the difference between race and religion?

            "A conservative is one who admires radicals centuries after they're dead." -- Leo Rosten; My blog

            by Kylopod on Tue Dec 29, 2009 at 01:08:28 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  absolutely (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              corvo, Johnny Nucleo

              wiki

              Racial profiling is the inclusion of racial or ethnic characteristics in determining whether a person is considered likely to commit a particular type of crime or an illegal act or to behave in a "predictable" manner.

              you do realize ethnicity includes religion don't you?

              •  amend (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                corvo

                i should have said 'can include' religion. if someone doesn't know your religion it makes it harder to profile you based on your religion, which is one reason i presume , as an american i am not required to list my religion to get my passport, or on the census for that matter. a luxury not afforded to anyone in israel.

          •  choose ONE? (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            hikerbiker

            That's like choosing only one ethnicity.

            Americans are mongrels.  

            I have at least four nationalities in my ancestry, and four religions that have little or nothing to do with my nationalities.  

            How'bout "check all that apply"...?

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