Middle Eastern Immigrant's Experiences After the Events of 9/11

Reasons Why They Left the Middle East

The government was choosing for them, and they had no chances to think for themselves. Education opportunities are always limited, and parents always want the best for their kids. For example, a man named Iraj B that came from Iran said that the education system in his hometown was very weak, and he wanted the freedom to pursue what he loved but he couldn't with the situation he was in. There are definitely more options in America, and that is more of a reason why they came, not why they left. In their hometown countries, immigrants were poor, living in unfit living conditions and large populations swallowed them, making them even more insignificant. A man named Asha G explains in an interview that the happenings after the Iranian Revolution are what really made him come here. The government was enforcing censorship laws, the regime was very strict, and many people were imprisoned. Brutal laws were also being carried out, and persecution was happeneing all around them. For example, a man from Yemen named J T Paul could've been beaten by everyone in town with stones if he cheated on his spouse, also if you stole something you lost all of your fingers. These were definitely not civilized ways of disciplining, and the people wanted a change, and to get out of there. War is one of the main reasons as well why immigrants wanted to leave their home countries. The conditions after a war are almost always unstable, and not a place for someone to live because of the uncertainty that everyone is safe. There are some people that are even offered jobs in America that are more prosperous than the ones they had before. Others may even be transferred, as said by an immigrant named Hira Y.


^Saddam Hussein in picture above^
Middle Easterners fled to America after terrorists, like Saddam Hussein, kill many innocent people.

What They Experienced When the Immigrants Arrived in America

Middle Eastern Immigrants experienced many things once they arrived in America. Everything from sadness to love, they experienced it. They experienced discrimination from the nativists, they did not feel welcome in America. The immigrants thought that they would be in a "perfect world"; yet they weren't. They had pictured a different world, yet America was nothing like their hometown. Although many were dissappointed, they appreciated the fact that America was a free land. In the U.S., they were not being persecuted. The children of the immigrants "loved it in America, they had a great education and freedoms." The tables turned though, after the tragic event of September 11, 2001. The Middle Eastern immigrants started to feel like they were back at home. The immigrants started to feel a since of deja vu; they weren't being treated fairly and nothing was going their way. They were being blamed for everything, even though they, individually, did not do it. The immigrants started to fear the Police Acts that were being made. They no longer felt like they were being in the "Land of the Free."
Middle Easterners that made it to America experienced harsh working conditions.

American's Reaction to Their Presence

America's reaction to Arab Americans and Middle Easterners changed because of nine-eleven. For example, Americans are more tolerant with using *racial profliling now than before 9/11. FBI also began to question the Arabian Americans even though they might have nothing to do with terrorism. Also, after the terrorist attack, American airlines became more cautious with Arab and Middle Eastern immigrants. For instance, Transportation Secretary Norman Minetta sent a memorandum to all airlines to not discriminate against passengers based on their race, religion, ethnic backgrounds etc. since 9/11 because some airlines put Arabian and Middle Eastern immigrants in enhanced security checks. Americans are coming up with solutions to prevent terrorism in this country like attack terrorist and their orginazations, prevent the growth of terrorism protect and prepare against terrorist attacks.

*Racial profiling- a form of discrimination by which law enforcment uses a person's race or ethnic background (etc.) as a primary suspect that an individual has broken a law.


Immigrants rally for rights in New York City
Police officer brutality is a major issue against foreign immigrants.

Middle Eastern man rallies against Airport Profiling.

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