Enemy of the State
Hasan Elahi isn't a terrorist‚ and he can prove it.
Hasan Elahi isn't a terrorist‚ and he can prove it.Since the winter of 2002, Hasan Elahi has documented every urinal he's used. He's photographed every plate of noodles he's eaten. His every movement, in fact, has been tracked through a GPS device in his cell phone and posted online. This is not blog-fuelled solipsism, nor a symptom of obsessive-compulsive disorder. His careful documentation of the mundane details of his life is all part of an ongoing art project called "Tracking Transience: The Orwell Project," which Elahi developed when he discovered that after 9/11 the FBI had taken a keen interest in his life.A professor of art at Rutgers University and a working artist, 35-year-old Elahi frequently travels abroad for shows and lectures. But in 2002, after arriving in Detroit from Europe, he handed over his American passport and the man behind the counter "literally froze." Elahi was led to a detention room and questioned by the FBI about his whereabouts on Sept. 11. Apparently, the owners of a storage unit that Elahi rented had called the police to report that an Arab man had been hoarding explosives and had fled on Sept. 12. "Interestingly," says Elahi, "I am not Arab, nor had these people ever seen the inside of the storage unit."
|Elahi was led to a detention room and questioned by the FBI about his whereabouts on Sept. 11.|