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Controversial Obama to skip Amritsar in his India tour

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by kds1980, Oct 19, 2010.

  1. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    http://ibnlive.in.com/news/obama-to-skip-amritsar-in-his-india-tour/133313-2.html?from=tn

    Washington: Barack Obama will not visit Amritsar during his India tour said sources. The US President will only visit Delhi and Mumbai in his November tour.

    Sources said, security at the Golden Temple is an issue, it’s too exposed and maybe that is the reason Obama wants to skip the city of Amritsar when he visits India.

    Sources informed that the US President will not travel to Amritsar during his next month's visit to India due to "logistic" issues.

    Obama, who will arrive in Mumbai on November 6, will directly come to Delhi now after a day's stay in the commercial capital of the country. Earlier, he was to fly to Amritsar from Mumbai for a brief visit to the Golden Temple.

    It is not clear yet what "logistic" issues have cropped up but there have been reports that Obama's team was facing a ticklish question of what the President should use to cover his head while visiting the Golden temple.

    According to some reports, the White House team, which visited India last month, had ruled out Obama wearing the traditional scarf to cover his head, which they felt may convey an image of him appearing to be a Muslim, a misinterpretation which the team would like to avoid.

    Americans have not yet formally informed India about this change but it is expected that they will do so in due course.

    Obama’s visit it is aimed at marking achievements in areas of technology, innovation and trade besides defence and security, according to a senior official.

    The technology theme was related to "India's economic rise", inclusive growth was intended "to help lift millions of Indians out of poverty" and defence, security aimed to demonstrate "our support for India's growing global role and influence", Assistant Secretary of State Robert Blake had said.

    (With inputs from PTI)
     

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  3. Mai Harinder Kaur

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    I, for one, will be relieved if he does not visit Darbar Sahib - Amritsar. I felt uneasy from the moment I first heard about his possible visit. Here is why.

    Aside from any security problems, there are the religious problems involved.

    Those not in America may not understand the religious climate in the USA today. It is vital that Obama be perceived as a devout Christian. Mata teking to SGGS ji would be seen by right-wing fundamentalists - a powerful political group - as bowing to a non-Christian, hence pagan, god. Accepting parshad would likewise be considered un-Christian. You may be sure that the Christian right, which is devoted to bringing him down, would be all over this in an effort to discredit him.

    Even covering his head would be a problem. There are those here who also consider him a closet Muslim because his father was a Muslim and he lived in Indonesia for a time as a child. Needless to say, his enemies will grasp on any straw to bring him down. He is walking a religious tightrope which may well decide his political future and his ability to function as President. This is a no-win situation for him.


    I know many Sikhs will be very disappointed, but I think it is for the best that he not visit there. The whole issue of going or not going will have made him more aware and knowledgeable of who we are and what we believe. I think that will have to be enough.
     
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  4. Archived_Member16

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    No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit

    No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit


    Pranab Dhal Samanta - THE INDIAN EXPRES - Posted online: Tue Oct 19 2010, 11:56 hrs

    New Delhi : US President Barack Obama’s visit to the Golden Temple in Amritsar is likely to be called off after a ticklish question on what he should use to cover his head put his aides in a tight spot. Moreover, a packed schedule in Mumbai and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s plan to host a dinner for Obama on November 7 left a very narrow window for Amritsar.


    But it was the first question which created more doubt — what should Obama use to cover his head when he visits the Golden Temple?

    The White House team which visited India last month ruled out Obama wearing the traditional scarf on his head. Indian officials were informally told that Obama wearing a headscarf to visit the Golden Temple may convey an image of him appearing to be a Muslim. This is one misinterpretation Obama’s advisors did not want at any cost, given the political sensitivities over this issue in the US.

    As a result, a final decision on whether Obama would visit the Golden Temple was always kept pending. An American official is said to have explained at one of the pre-visit meetings that each day Obama has to remind the US that he should not be mistaken for a Muslim just because his middle name is Hussain. For this reason, considerable thought was being given to what Obama could wear without offending Sikh sentiments.

    Obama’s aides finally came up with the idea of a “modified” baseball cap. It would have to be modified because the Golden Temple does not permit a baseball cap instead of a headscarf. In fact, the temple authorities have no problems with skull caps.

    As Giani Gurbachan Singh, head priest of the Golden Temple, puts it: “We have no problems if he wears a skull cap, the kind that Muslims wear to the mosque — or any other cap that is modified to something similar. But we don’t allow baseball caps or Army hats.”

    It is within these red lines that Obama’s aides had to find the appropriate headgear which would serve his domestic political purpose while taking care not to hurt Sikh sentiments. The Indian government, on its part, studiously stayed away from this issue, maintaining that it was for US authorities to resolve.
    Obama, who arrives here on November 6, will first touch down in Mumbai, where he plans to visit a 26/11 memorial and Mani Bhawan, where Mahatma Gandhi used to stay. He was then scheduled to go to Amritsar for this brief and only religious engagement in the itinerary.

    source: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/no-headscarf-obama-may-skip-golden-temple-visit/699380/0

    ***********************************************************​

    Sikh temple visit dropped over 'Muslim Obama' fears


    By Dean Nelson, The Daily Telegraph - October 19, 2010 11:05 AM

    A Barack Obama has reportedly abandoned plans to visit Amritsar's Golden Temple during his visit to India next month over fears that photographs of him with his head covered would revive false claims that he is a Muslim.

    Members of Mr Obama's White House team reportedly visited India last month and told Indian officials of their concerns.


    Mr Obama, whose father was a non-observant Muslim, has been dogged by rumours regarding his faith since his battle for the Democratic presidential nomination against Hillary Clinton in 2008. At times since becoming president he has highlighted the fact that his middle name is Hussein to boost his credibility abroad.


    In August, a poll conducted by Time magazine found that almost one in four Americans thought he was a follower of Islam. The results came days after he waded into the dispute over controversial plans to build an Islamic centre near the site of the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York.


    Temple sources said on Tuesday that three teams of officials from the U.S. embassy in New Delhi had visited them in the past six weeks but that they were unaware there was any concern over wearing a headscarf. According to the Indian Express, one American official had told his Indian counterparts that Mr Obama had to remind America "each day that he should not be mistaken for Muslim just because his middle name is Hussein".


    A compromise was reportedly explored in which the president might wear a "modified baseball cap" but it is unclear whether this would have been acceptable to Sikh traditionalists.


    Giani Gurbachan Singh, the temple's head priest, was quoted saying a baseball cap would not be allowed, but Dalmir Singh, secretary of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbhandhak Committee, the Sikh governing body, said the president could wear anything to cover his head.


    "Whatever he wishes to wear, he can. Our concern is to make sure he does. We don't have problem even if he wears a baseball cap or Muslim skull cap. We are all set to welcome him. It will be a great honour. If the visit is cancelled just because of American politics, its will be disheartening," he said.


    But according to Indian officials, plans to visit Amritsar have been abandoned because of "logistical" problems.


    A spokesman for the American Embassy in New Delhi said no plans to visit Amritsar had ever been announced and there would be no comment on whether wearing a headscarf had been a consideration.


    © Copyright (c) The Daily Telegraph

    source: http://www.theprovince.com/life/Sikh+temple+visit+dropped+over+Muslim+Obama+fears/3694968/story.html

    For information:

    [​IMG]

    A file photo of Queen Elizabeth at the Golden Temple
    wearing a hat and a pair of socks.
    <SCRIPT type=text/javascript> // load up cookied story font size getStoryFontSize(); </SCRIPT>
     
  5. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    In 2003 even maulana Fazul Rehman One of the most fanatic Religious leader of Pakistan visited Golden temple.He also met sikh leaders of Akal Takht .When he can bow to Guru granth Sahib then Why should others have problem or America is more fanatic than maulanaicecreammunda
     
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  6. Mai Harinder Kaur

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    I dunno why, but these American fundie Christians are fanatic and powerful and everything I said is absolutely true. I'm sure the USAers here will back me up on thid.
    icecreamkaur

    At least, I hope they will. :happykaur:
     
    #5 Mai Harinder Kaur, Oct 20, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2010
  7. spnadmin

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    Of course the symbolism is important, The PR value to muslims back home. The messages to fundamentalist Christians, etc. But....

    Why is everyone prancing around the obvious? How many presidents of the United States have been assassinated or have been targets of assassination since the beginning of the 20th Century? The answer is in Wikipedia.

    Consider you are the Secret Service. The President is escorted over the sarovar and onto the parkama. How many ways in and how many ways out are there? The President of India took route in her own country. Would her own secret service permit her to do the same, take a similar tactical risk in another country?

    In addition, before the president goes anywhere there is a 2 -week evaluation of the locale - no matter what - St. Peters in Rome is no exception. Then sharp shooters are positioned on every roof-top several city blocks deep. Traffic is stopped and redirected within a several mile radius. Air traffic is halted over an estimated area of risk. There are shady looking guys with earphones and lapel microphones in every nook and cranny.

    Before humming the next line of "America, America, Thou land of bigots and fools" ask yourself this question:

    Do you want Darbar Sahib transformed into some kind of Osbourne Identity flick for a couple of days? Overrun by guys in black suits, and yes they will be wearing shasters, American style. Please, no yeses and buts. I have been there and I have seen it and I have endured it more than once. welcomekaur welcomekaur welcomekaur
     
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  8. spnadmin

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    This may be what they look like. In gray suits.
     

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  9. Tejwant Singh

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    I was not in favour of Obama visiting Darbar Sahib anyway. it is not about the headscarf. Obama and all his security detail can wear baseball caps of their favourite teams, but what is the point? When he retires, he can go and visit as a private citizen. It makes no sense to me for him to visit our sanctum sanatorium.

    It would help us more if he spoke to the both houses and asked for the justice for the holocaust that took place in 1984. After all the US boasts to be the leader in human rights. This would help the Sikhs, not his visit to Darbar Sahib.

    Tejwant Singh
     
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  10. Tejwant Singh

    Tejwant Singh United States
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    Kanwardeep Singh ji,

    Guru Fateh.

    I have no idea what kind of wiring you used to connect Fazul Rehman to President Obama? it makes no sense what so ever. So what if he bowed to the SGGS? It would not have mattered to Sikhi had he not. If you happen to visit Jama Masjid, would you bow during their prayers?

    Did bowing make him a better Muslim?

    What was the reason behind Fazul Rehman's visit? Did he apologise to the Sikhs and visit Darbar Sahib again when his countrymen attacked Mumbai and killed many innocent which also included the Sikh manager of the Hotel whose family was brutally killed by his countrymen? If he had become a better Muslim, then he should have visited the Darbar Sahib and apologised after the attack.

    Let's not try to find any connection where none exists. It does not help anyone and does not further the discussion in a positive manner.

    On another note, it is sad to notice that Darbar Sahib has been turned into an idol worshipping, money raking place rather that the place of solace, introspection and self reflection and who is to be blamed but the honchos who control it.

    Tejwant Singh
     
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  11. Rajwinder

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    Re: No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit

    Some how i am not in that much favour of VVIP visiting such places. Our stuping punjab leaders + great team of fellows leading such place will let these things happen just for the sake of showing something. Check that Rang de basanti movie .. how they are playing with head scarf while in premises like it is a joke being in that place. I understand not all the scenes were like that .. And then see queen wearing cap inside the golden temple and now our leaders are ok with skul cap .. I m pretty sure obama security gaurds will scan things very deaply first and who knows what all they will do .. for ex some time back us security gaurds were using sniifer dog while standing "ON" Gandhi's ( so called father of nation) cremation place with shoes .. so i am not in favour of these visits
     
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  12. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Re: No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit

    about that scarf thingy they call "siropa"...at a televised Joint BJP-SAD Badal Mela..I saw that when SGPC honcho Makkarr gave a scarf to a BJP bald headed guy..the BALDY asked for and got a small handkerchief to put on his head and then had the Bright Orange scarf hung around his neck..the Baldy then whipped off the handkerchief and the scarf and handed both to an aide..and the BJP Honcho stepped forward to place another BRIGHT ORANGE scarf around the SAME NECK of the SAME BALDY..who remained NAKED HEAD !! This was no GURDWARA but a political rally !!...I wonder why the Baldy felt he ahd to cover his head..to receive a sikh scarf..and then go bare headed to receive the Hindu scarf..on same stage !! Ha ha ????...Sometiem ago I saw a folk singer on stage..whenever he sang aline of Gurbani or two..he would place his hand in his pocket, withdraw a handkerchief and palce it on his bare head...holding it there with one hand...and then when he sang a filmi tune..he removed the handkerchief and put it back in his pocket...he did this quite often..at least six times in about 20 minutes...Must be the SAME MINDSET as the Baldy BJP guy !!!
     
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  13. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    Why are SIKHS so happy and overjoyed to see an Obama/Queen Elizabeth/Harper etc etc... wearing a dastaar and bowing to SGGS, sitting on the floor and receiivng parsaad or partaking of langgar...BUT heaven forbid IF say..PM Manmohan Singh were to viist a Hindu mandir and don a TILAK..or offer a coconut to the Goddess or eat the Hanuman parsaad etc...then the Sikhs will scream b.loody murder !!..I always see Badal getting this sort of treatment in the sikh press...????
     
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  14. Chaan Pardesi

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    Re: No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit

    Sikhs appeal to Obama not to ‘cancel’ Golden Temple visit



    <!-- AddThis Bookmark Button BEGIN Post Comment-->23:39 hrs <!-- -->Amritsar


    Instead of appealing for these visits Sikhs should be appealing for the Akal Takhat to embrace the down trodden and the poor Sikhs.Charity starts at home with our own.

    It should be appealing for the UNITY of the community and freeing the Akal takhat from POLITICS.

    What a shame some of these Sikhs think Obama visiting the Harmander sahib will change the reception and image of Sikhs in the world.No body, I repeat, nobody else can chnage the image of the Sikhs except the SIKHS THEMSELVES.

    STOP making fools of the HARMANDER and the Sikhs who deserve attention from the Panth.

    They are ONLY interested in collecting photo opportunities with the heads of foreign countries.


    Sikhs from various walks of life today made an emphatic appeal to US President Barack Obama, asking him not to cancel his planned visit to the Golden Temple on the issue of wearing a ‘headscarf or cap’ on the temple premises. They said though Obama would have to cover his head in accordance with Sikh traditions to visit the gurdwara, they had no objection if he wore a cap or even a hat.


    The Indian Express carried a story in today’s edition (October 19, 2010), saying Obama might skip his proposed Golden Temple visit as US officials fear wearing a cap might create the impression among some Americans that he is a Muslim and alienate a section of US Christians. President Obama is a Christian whose late father was a Kenyan Muslim.


    The Akal Takht Jathedar, Giani Gurbachan Singh, had stated that the US President may wear a scarf or a cap that is worn by Muslims but cannot wear a baseball cap or anything that resembles one. Teams from the White House and the US Embassy have visited Amritsar several times over the past three weeks to assess the arrangements for the visit.








    http://www.indianexpress.com/news/Sikhs-appeal-to-Obama-not-to--cancel--Golden-Temple-visit/699705/
     
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  15. Chaan Pardesi

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    Re: No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit

    Obama's Stop at Sikh Golden Temple During India Visit Unclear


    The Golden Temple, Sikhism's holiest shrine, in Amritsar, India (file photo)


    The White House says President Barack Obama is preparing for his trip to Asia beginning early next month, even as he intensifies his campaign activities in support of Democrats in the November 2 congressional mid-term elections. But, White House officials have declined on the record comment about Indian media reports that Mr. Obama may not visit The Golden Temple, the spiritual center of the Sikh religion, in the city of Amritsar, during his stay in India.

    The White House has not yet released the final detailed itinerary for President Obama's Asia trip, which will begin with a stop in India, before he goes on to Indonesia, South Korea and Japan.

    Amritsar was believed to be on the itinerary, along with Mumbai, and New Delhi where Mr. Obama is expected to address the Indian parliament.

    Indian news reports on Tuesday said a reported plan for Mr. Obama to visit The Golden Temple in Amritsar had been dropped.

    The New York Times,
    in a New Delhi dateline report, quoted what it called an American official involved in planning as saying a visit to the revered Sikh religious complex had been ruled out.

    The question of a Golden Temple stop during Mr. Obama's visit did not come up during Tuesday's regular White House briefing.

    However, late in the day in response to an inquiry on the matter, a White House official said: "there are many more events that the president would like to do, and sites that U.S. advance teams visit, than Mr. Obama will have time for during a three day visit." The official added that the White House will advise when the president's intinerary is finalized.

    Indian news reports quoted Sikh officials as saying that among other issues U.S. advance teams had discussed regarding a possible presidential visit to The Golden Temple, was how Mr. Obama would cover his head, as required in Sikh tradition.

    However, reports have also attributed a decision to drop a visit to The Golden Temple to "logistical problems."

    The head of a special committee in India responsible for maintaining religious sites was quoted as saying Mr. Obama would be welcome regardless of the type of head covering he chose to wear in keeping with Sikh religious tradition.

    White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said the president is having fairly regular meetings with his national security team to ensure a successful visit to India, and he stressed to reporters the importance of the U.S.-India relationship.

    "This is an important relationship," said Gibbs. "It was the first state dinner that was held here. I think that gives you a degree of understanding in terms of the significance that this government and this administration puts on that relationship."

    The president is scheduled to depart on his trip to India, and other Asian stops, after the U.S. congressional midterm elections on November 2.



    http://www.voanews.com/english/news...ple-During-India-Visit-Unclear-105302613.html
     
  16. Chaan Pardesi

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    Re: No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit

    Congress leader urges SGPC to ensure Obama visits Sri Darbar Sahib


    Written by GlobalSikhNews on 19. Oct, 2010 in Asia

    A senior Congress leader from Punjab today urged the Sikh religious leadership to ensure that US President Barack Obama visits the Golden Temple by finding an amicable solution to the issue of what he should wear to cover his head while visiting the holy place.
    S Kewal Singh Dhillon, Punjab PCC vice-president and Whip of Congress Legislative Party, said it would be a “great loss” to the entire Sikh community if the visit is called off due to a “disagreement” on what Obama should wear to cover his head.
    “I strongly urge the Sikh Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) to find an amicable solution to the problem at the earliest so as to ensure that the visit is not cancelled as this would be a great opportunity to take up issues related to Sikh community in the US with Obama,” he said.
    According to reports, White House team which visited India last month had ruled out Obama wearing the traditional scarf to cover his head, which they felt may convey an image of him appearing to be a Muslim — a misinterpretation which the team would like to avoid.
    Dhillon said Obama’s plan to visit Golden Temple will be seen as a gesture of goodwill towards the Sikhs, who form a powerful economic and political community across the world.
    He said the visit will be historic as it will give great recognition and respect to the entire community.
    “It would, moreover, help in clearing confusion over the various cases of mistaken identity, whereby so many innocent Sikhs living in the US have been victims post 9/11 attacks and have had to face many brutalities,” he said.







    http://www.sikhsangat.org/2010/10/congress-leader-urges-sgpc-to-ensure-obama-visits-sri-darbar-sahib/
     
  17. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Tejwant Singh ji

    My post was directed toward Mai ji's post that Christian American will not like Obama bowing to pagan book.Obama is the leader of America Fazul rehman is the leader of Fanatic muslims of pakistan.Does his supporters like that he bowed to book which is mainly written by kafirs? Well the fact is he was not afraid of any kind of backlash which Obama is afraid of

    as far the purpose is concerned ,No one knows what was the purpose but he visited Golden temple.
     
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  18. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Gurdwara's are only Religious place which are open to everybody,That is Why
    some sikhs want to see famous personalities visiting it
    One of the strange phenomina that is going on is that Gurdwara attendance is rising but sikhism is declining as people sikhs, non sikhs love kirtan langar etc.

    On any day You can visit Bangla sahib and you will find much more non sikhs than sikhs.I don't thing we can see this in mandirs or mosques.
     
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  19. Tejwant Singh

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    If President Obama really wants to help the Sikhs then he should allow Sikhs with baana in all the defence forces, police forces and all other federal and state jobs where Sikhs are forbidden to work because of it.

    Tejwant Singh
     
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  20. dushanka

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    Re: No headscarf, Obama may skip Golden Temple visit

    Well its everybodies choice what to do ...
    Americans use to make an issue and create dramas out of everything...
    Why he can't tie a propper Sikh Turban to show officially to the world, that Sikh Turbans have nothing to do with muslim in cloth wrapped heads ? After the Golden Temple Visit he can also give a short official statement about the Sikh Turbans, it would also maybe help other Americans to make difference between Sikh and muslims . How many Sikh have been killed and beaten up after 11.September just because this uneducated Americans do not know and do not (want to) see the difference between Sikh Turbans and muslim style wrapped heads . :fish:yellingsardarni
     
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  21. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Well I would love to hear the news that Obama has allowed sikhs in armed forces ,other services but I don't think it is possible for him.Sikhs are very tiny minority in USA.The numbers i heard is ranging from 1 lakh to 1 million.
    The question is how many Young sikhs are wearing baana,and out of them How many are actually interested in Joining armed force.I don't think for very tiny minority USA wants to change its policy
     

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