If an American teen and slip into Iraq, how much easier would it be for the insurgents and terrorists to get in to Iraq?
An American teenager born of Iraqi parents, skipped school on December 13, and ran away to Iraq. His parents have been living here in the U.S. for 35 years. Their son was inspired by a journalism homework assignment and wanted to get a feel for Iraq.
What was he thinking?
His mother had wanted to take him to her homeland to visit family, but wanted to wait until the violence and turmoil had ended.
The AP ran a lengthy article on his misadventures, U.S. Teen Runs Off to Iraq by Himself:
Given his heritage, Hassan could almost pass as Iraqi. His father’s background helped him secure an entry visa, and native Arabs would see in his face Iraqi features and a familiar skin tone. His wispy beard was meant to help him blend in.
But underneath that Mideast veneer was full-blooded American teen, a born-and-bred Floridian sporting white Nike tennis shoes and trendy jeans. And as soon as the lanky, 6-foot teenager opened his mouth he speaks no Arabic his true nationality would have betrayed him.
Traveling on his own in a land where insurgents and jihadists have kidnapped more than 400 foreigners, killing at least 39 of them, Hassan walked straight into a death zone. On Monday, his first full day in Iraq, six vehicle bombs exploded in Baghdad, killing five people and wounding more than 40.
The State Department strongly advises U.S. citizens against traveling to Iraq, saying it "remains very dangerous." Forty American citizens have been kidnapped since the war started in March 2003, of which 10 have been killed, a U.S. official said. About 15 remain missing.
He may have survived his adventure, but he now realizes that his life was in danger once he had set foot on Middle East soil. Just like Dorothy in The Wizard of OZ, he has learned that there is no place like home!