The Lie Students Tell Abroad

Two months after the United States invaded Iraq in 2003, I visited Luxor, Egypt, with a fellow professor, an American teaching in Cairo. On a hot, dusty trail high above the temple of Hatshepsut, site of the 1997 massacre of 58 foreign tourists, we were confronted by an Egyptian policeman who sized us up and asked, in English, where we were from.

When my North Carolinian companion answered "Cairo," the policeman shook his head: "What country?" "I'm from Cairo," she insisted, while I