FIRST AIRED: November 16, 2017

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>> It's a public art initiative called Portals. Gold shipping containers, more than 20 around the globe, providing live face-to-face encounters with total strangers. This one in New York's Time Square, transporting us to Herat, Afghanistan, where we meet brothers Omid and Saeed Habibi.>> When you tell an American that you are from Afghanistan, what is the reaction that you get?
>> They were surprised to see that we have Internet in our country. That we have a university that this portal is located inside a university campus. That girls are coming in the portal and talking English. That girls are studying. But, the people will have no idea about it.
People are always seeing that through like mainstream media that there was this explosion happened in Afghanistan, there was a lot of people were killed. That's the whole definition of Afghanistan for them.>> Portal's founder, Omar Bakhshi, says he's using the web to, quote, carve wormholes through the world.
>> So that's the original vision. Basically how do you use technology to get out of your own bubble rather than deeper into it.>> The Portal's often providing an intimacy that's sometimes easier with strangers. Speaking to us from an open portal in Malaga, Spain, her face obscured by the backdrop of daylight, a Russian tourist explains why she's trying to move her family out of Russia to Poland.
>> Have you heard about Stalin's time?>> Yes, definitely.>> Stalin's period of Russian history? It seems that now it is a repetition of this period, but it's more hidden. It looks like people have no flexibility to express their minds.>> The experience is sometimes so deep, you may find yourself wanting to reach through the screen.
>> We can just about hold hands.