I've known and worked with a number of Iranians and Egyptians as well. To me, a white European male, none of them looked like 'persons of color.' They looked vaguely Mediteranean, like some Greeks or Italians or, perhaps, Turks. (I've known some naturally blonde Turkish women as well.)
Interesting anecdote: quite a number of years ago, when I was still drinking, I happened into a bar room in the Jamaica Plain section of Boston, a very ethnically mixed neighborhood. There were some other white people there but most of the clientele at the bar were Hispanic, with a small admixture of African-Americans. I got to talking to a black man, downing a few beers, who was seated next to me, the way one does in a friendly pub. We hit it off fairly well as long as the topic was the Red Sox or the rainy weather. But then, emboldened by our growing friendship, he aked me, "Say, if I was to ask you to take me into an Irish neighborhood bar in, say, South Boston, could you guarantee I'd get respect just because I'm with you, a white man?"
I had to think about that for a minute. This was a time when there was quite a bit of racial tension in the largely white Irish-Catholic and Polish-Catholic neighborhood of South Boston. I had to admit that I couldn't guarantee it. He said, "See, there's the difference. There are any number of bars I could take you into where you'd be the only white person there. And as long as you were with me, there'd be no trouble at all."
That conversation has stayed with me for the past maybe 20 years or so.
There seems to be a difference between the types of racism one encounters.