Basket of Deportables

On January 27, 2017, Donald Trump's executive order closed U.S. borders to citizens of seven majority-Muslim nations. Some of the people locked out were already on their way... mid-flight.

2017 / Zoe Chace / This American Life, USA


On January 27, 2017, Donald Trump's executive order closed U.S. borders to citizens of seven majority-Muslim nations. Some of the people locked out were already on their way... mid-flight.

Upon arrival, refugees and other immigrants were left stranded at airports around the country. Amidst the chaos, This American Life producer Zoe Chace made her way to JFK Airport, Terminal 4. There, just outside the Dunkin' Donuts, she met a lawyer named Julie Kornfeld, whose client Haider Sameer Abdulkhaleq Alshawi was rushed off his flight & into a little room inside the airport, stuck indefinitely.

How has the current political climate changed the sound of This American Life ? Zoe Chace's answer, in our Behind-the-Scenes interview.


produced by


Featured in


May we recommend…