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April 02, 2006

The case for two passports

I never really thought I'd fall direct prey to geo-political polarization, but my trip to Israel these past few days really highlighted the state of affairs.

Due to a combination of late bookings and scheduling, I arrived in Tel Aviv at 2:30 in the morning only to find myself interrogated for 3½ hours by immigration officers. Noone was disrespectful or rude and most of the time was spent just waiting while the system was "checking up on me" -- and, in particular, on my trip to Pakistan last summer.
At 6:05 when they finally recognized that I wasn't a fair-skinned New Delhi-born jihadist, I was granted admission.

Case in point came when I was asked whether I wanted an Israeli stamp in my passport, only to be convinced by the immigration officer that it afterall would be a bad idea should I ever again want to travel to an Islamic republic. As a Dane who has always enjoyed full freedom in travels across the world, it was a true wakeup call of what the world now looks like.

Posted by Nikolaj Nyholm at April 2, 2006 11:02 PM

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I was told that they allow you to have a sheet of paper inserted for this stamp.

Another discussion on a frequent flyer board was to get a bigger passport (because if you do mileage runs you get too many stamps) and the problems of achieving visas for the place of your dreams (aka cheap ticket fares).

While in cyberspace there are no limits in where we can travel (most of the time), there are a lot in real world.

And at least in Israel you should not leave your laptop alone ... see http://www.hebig.com/archives/003743.shtml

Posted by: Nicole Simon at April 6, 2006 12:35 AM

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