Farnaz Fassihi Recounts a Frightening Near Death Experience

Fassihi:    I had several near death experiences or very, you know, close calls, if you may, in Iraq.  You know, there was an incident where I was nearly kidnapped.  We were coming back from an interview and we had the security procedure where I was in the armored car, with the driver and the translator, and the guards were in a surveillance car, following our car and sort of, you know, being mindful, and we have walkie talkies to communicate.  And, you know, we were on this bridge coming back from the interview and this call comes from the walkie talkie from the driver behind us saying, you know, there’s a car that’s been following us through several neighborhoods and I think they may want to kidnap her.  And they tried to put the brakes on to stop the car and he went run around them and we were in this crazy chase and run thing and I, you know, I can’t tell you how many thoughts ran across my mind at that time, you know.  Just thinking, “Okay this is it,” you know.  They’re going to take me, and what are they going to do to me, and what are they going to do to my Iraqi staff?  Because oftentimes they would kidnap the Western reporter and murder the Iraqis right on the spot.  So, it was a terrifying experience.  And, you know, right after it happened, we went to the…  I finally got to the hotel safely because my driver just had been trained in defensive driving and managed to escape.  And I was ordered not to leave the hotel for 3 days by the security advisers that we had.  We had to change our car and the staff couldn’t come to work for an entire week because the idea was that everyone had been identified and it’s possible that they may be looking out for us again.  So, it was very scary that, you know.

A high-speed car chase with Farnaz Fassihi

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

People who engage in fat-shaming tend to score high in this personality trait

A new study explores how certain personality traits affect individuals' attitudes on obesity in others.

Mind & Brain
  • The study compared personality traits and obesity views among more than 3,000 mothers.
  • The results showed that the personality traits neuroticism and extraversion are linked to more negative views and behaviors related to obesity.
  • People who scored high in conscientiousness are more likely to experience "fat phobia.
Keep reading Show less

4 anti-scientific beliefs and their damaging consequences

The rise of anti-scientific thinking and conspiracy is a concerning trend.

Moon Landing Apollo
  • Fifty years later after one of the greatest achievements of mankind, there's a growing number of moon landing deniers. They are part of a larger trend of anti-scientific thinking.
  • Climate change, anti-vaccination and other assorted conspiratorial mindsets are a detriment and show a tangible impediment to fostering real progress or societal change.
  • All of these separate anti-scientific beliefs share a troubling root of intellectual dishonesty and ignorance.
Keep reading Show less

Reigning in brutality - how one man's outrage led to the Red Cross and the Geneva Conventions

The history of the Geneva Conventions tells us how the international community draws the line on brutality.

Napoleon III at the Battle of Solferino. Painting by Adolphe Yvon. 1861.
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Henry Dunant's work led to the Red Cross and conventions on treating prisoners humanely.
  • Four Geneva Conventions defined the rules for prisoners of war, torture, naval and medical personnel and more.
  • Amendments to the agreements reflect the modern world but have not been ratified by all countries.
Keep reading Show less