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The other diary on this was wrong and skimpy, so I stepped in.  This is very imPORTant, you might say.

Forget LIHOP, this is pure MIHOP!  How in the name of the Flying Spaghetti Monster could Bush do this, unless he truly does want to leave the barn door wide open for another attack!

This is the most outrageous --

If the Dems don't come out swinging on this one...  Hillary too, Goddamit!

White House Defends Port Operations Sale

AP - 13 minutes ago

WASHINGTON - The Bush administration on Thursday rebuffed criticism about potential security risks of a $6.8 billion sale that gives a company in the United Arab Emirates control over significant operations at six major American ports.

Lawmakers asked the White House to reconsider the deal.

The sale to state-owned Dubai Ports World was "rigorously reviewed" by a U.S. committee that considers security threats when foreign companies seek to buy or invest in American industry, National Security Council spokesman Frederick Jones said.

http://news.yahoo.com/...

Four senators and three House members asked the administration Thursday to reconsider its approval. The lawmakers contended the UAE is not consistent in its support of U.S. terrorism-fighting efforts.

"The potential threat to our country is not imagined, it is real," Rep. Mark Foley (news, bio, voting record), R-Fla., said in a House speech.

The Homeland Security Department said it was legally impossible under the committee's rules to reconsider its approval without evidence DP World gave false information or withheld vital details from U.S. officials. The 30-day window for the committee to voice objections has ended.

DP World said it had received all regulatory approvals.

"We intend to maintain and, where appropriate, enhance current security arrangements," the company said in a statement. "It is very much business as usual for the P&O terminals" in the United States.

In Dubai, the UAE's foreign minister described his country as an important U.S. ally but declined to respond directly to the concerns expressed in Washington.

"We have worked very closely with the United States on a number of issues relating to the combat of terrorism, prior to and post Sept. 11," Sheik Abdullah Bin Zayed al-Nahyan told The Associated Press.

This is insane...

And Bush just appointed the Director at Dubai Port World to become the Maritime Administrator of the whole US of A, working directly under Norm Mineta.  Plus DP World just took over P&O, England's huge port company!

Fox in charge of henhouse, anyone?  

More: http://www.dpiterminals.com/...

NOTE: This is not "The. Biggest. Story. Ever." That will have the title "The. Biggest. Story. Ever."

Originally posted to Sherlock Google on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 06:53 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (4.00)
    Anyone have links to U.A.E. and the terrorists?

    So many containers, and we only inspect 2% right now!

    •  Ahmed Omar Sayeed (or saeed) Sheikh (4.00)
      that's a google-able name.
      •  911 financing rings a bell (4.00)
        "Sheikh turns out to be one of Osama bin Laden's chief money men. About a year before the Sept. 11 attacks, Sheikh wired $100,000 from Pakistan to Atta from an account in the United Arab Emirates capital of Dubai. Sheikh was spotted in Islamabad at the time the money was transferred."

        that's from worldnetdaily, many others have reported on him as well, e.g., peter dale scott.

        •  To the Bush administration, everything in (4.00)
          America is for sale - EVERYTHING! Be it vital resources, national parks, Congressional votes, White House policy, weapons, national debt, natural resources, critical industries, infrastructure, security, soldiers lives... everything is a business deal to them. From exploiting 9/11 to exploiting Katrina to exploiting the chaos in Iraq - it's all about looting from the coffers, and at this endeavor, never have there been such competent thieves!

          I think, therefore I am NOT A REPUBLICAN!!!

          by Reality Bites Back on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:51:06 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  these dudes r all on shrub's speeddial. (3.50)
            no surprise he flew all his buds out of the US after 911 when no one else in the country could get air transportation and was stranded.

            it's all gettin curiouser and curiouser...

            this admin is beyond sick, corrupt, illegal, evil. completely unacceptable.

        •  Question (4.00)
          Why the hell is anyone citing WorldNetDaily? It's a right-wing news outfit.
    •  Who OK'ed this sale? All members of BushCo. (4.00)
      "The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, run by the
      Treasury Department, took into account an assessment from U.S. intelligence agencies. The committee's 12 members agreed the sale did not present any problems, the department said.
      "

      Who is on the Committee on Foreign Investment in the US (CFIUS)?,

      "In 1993, in response to a sense of Congress resolution, CFIUS membership was expanded by Executive Order 12860 to include the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs and the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy. In February 2003, the Department of Homeland Security was added to CFIUS. This brought the membership of CFIUS to twelve under the chairmanship of the Secretary of Treasury. The other members are the Secretaries of State, Defense, and Commerce, the Attorney General, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the U.S. Trade Representative, and the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers. "

      http://www.treas.gov/...

      All people from the Executive Branch.

      •  Paul Sarbanes (none)
        Is going to shit.  Even Richard Shelby is not going to be happy, if he ever learns to pronounce "CFIUS" (it's SIF-ee-yus).  I, on the other hand, will make loads of money from all the hearings the Banking Committee will hold on this matter.

        The Committee is already jumping CFIUS' case, saying their reviews are ineffectual.

        The GOP rats will be jumping off this ship soon.

        The last time people listened to a talking bush, they wandered 40 years in the desert.

        by DC Pol Sci on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:42:50 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Hearing in October (4.00)
          There was a hearing in October by the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs (headed by Richard Shelby (R-AL) and Paul Sarbanes (D-MD)).

          It involved a GAO report stating strong concerns about CFIUS and National Security.  

          Shelby voiced concerns also, and had trouble getting the members to testify at the hearing. (Emphasis added is mine)

          "Neither the public nor the agencies that comprise CFIUS should be under any misunderstanding about this Committee's position on the current process. Evidence and analysis indicates that improvements are needed. The extent to which changes are warranted, however, is unclear. The current process for reviewing proposed acquisitions remains excessively murky. It is too opaque to allow for the appropriate level of congressional oversight into a process established by Congress with passage in 1988 of the Exon-Florio amendment to the Defense Production Act. That is why Congress has repeatedly tasked its investigative arm, the Government Accountability Office, to conduct studies on this subject."
          http://banking.senate.gov/...


          But Shelby and other lawmakers seemed unfazed by business objections. Shelby's concern over Treasury's absence from his first hearing escalated to frustration when Sarbanes noted some anonymous quotes from an administration official critical of a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report recommending that Congress step up its oversight of CFIUS.

          "National security cannot take a back seat to world trade. Everything in America is not for sale," Shelby said. "I'm very supportive of the president, I trust the president, but we in Congress have a role to play here. I'd never cede all congressional power to the executive, no matter who the president is."
          http://www.hillnews.com/...


          So this Senate committee and the GAO have raised a red flag about CFIUS.  And perhaps Congress was blindsided by this whole thing also.  Note that Treasury Secretary Snow heads CFIUS.

          On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

          by joanneleon on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:08:03 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Uhhhhhh........ (none)
            That's my transcript you're quoting from.

            The last time people listened to a talking bush, they wandered 40 years in the desert.

            by DC Pol Sci on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 02:27:04 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  LOL (none)
              I didn't know what you meant when you said more hearings would be profitable for you.  

              I wanted to add more detail that I had found when looking further into CFIUS, a seemingly dark corner in our govt. that I had never heard of.

              On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

              by joanneleon on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 04:43:33 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  Red Herring (4.00)
      Look... this is a non issue. CBP already has officers working in the main transhipment points the world over as part of the Container Security Initiative. All of said countries have their own customs and excise people in the port with legal authority over what goes onto the ships. The port operators being owned by the UAE does nothing to hurt security.

      Think on this the United Arab Shipping Company is one of the top carriers in the world today, not top 5 but definitely top 20. They ship millions of tons of cargo, countless containers, on Arab flagged ships, with third world crews, many of whom are islamic and come from dirt poor areas. Having said that the Danes control the largest share of shipping cargo, on ships with flags of conveinience, staffed with third world crews, many of whom are islamic etc etc. These people are alone with the boxes for weeks at a time.

      If you want to put a bomb in a box you don't do it by buying the port terminal, you do it by bribing the originating longshormen, or the people who stuff the box in the first place. There are so many massively cheaper and more plausible ways to try to hit the system than this.

      The UAE has a ton of money, they're allowed to buy things, including port terminal operators, just like they're allowed to own the ships that carry goods into Long Beach, New Jersey, Savannah, and everywhere else in the country every month of the year. Any risk people might think this adds is already inherent in the system today. Its not like they're going to layoff the staffs of these places and replaces them with Arabs. The same unions control the same workforces. Same guys unlading and draying the cargo. You really think the international longshoremen's association is going to support terrorism b/c their employer happens to be the UAE?

      Finally you have one of the smallest nations on earth, with only foreign trade between it and eventual abject poverty, investing BILLIONS of dollars for capital on US soil, where it is immediately seizable by the Feds should somthing go amiss. They can be fined to death for relatively minor infractions and their US staff can be JAILED for deliberate evasion of the law.

      The US doesn't own the global supply chain anymore, we dictate it, run it, police it to a large extent, but US companies no longer own the vast majority of the actual pieces that move the cargo. Thats just a fact of life. You can't get Walmart prices while paying US wages all the way down the logistical chain.

      There are dangers and they need to be addressed by CBP, ICE, TSA etc. But this is not one of them.

      And the 2% inspection number is years old and no longer accurate.

      To lodge all power in one party and keep it there is to insure bad government and the sure and gradual deterioration of the public morals. - Mark Twain

      by Windowdog on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:36:57 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Of course (none)
        To make things better, we could sell the DoD to Pakistan since they rarely do trade with us. Or have Saudi Arabia operate all the control towers at airports. Hey, those former Afghani warlords could do security at our federal buildings.

        Stupid, libertarian. You'd sell America just to get cheap, plastic, Chinese shit at Wal-Mart.

        A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

        by Tux on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:17:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  We already sold the DoD (none)
          to Halliburton. What happens when Shotgun Dick sells Halliburton to the Saudis?

          This whole deal stinks to high heaven, despite any lame attempts to spin it as business as usual, or another example of inevitable globalization.

          The US became a world power because we use to make things and sell them to the world in American ships crewed by American sailors. Now we work at Wal Mart for shit wages while the rich get richer and put ourselves at the mercy of foreign rivals, and some people try to tell us that it's better. That dog won't hunt.

          Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

          by drewfromct on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:36:51 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  stupid? (none)
          The conflation of the words "Arab" and "terrorist" you mean?  

          I had my own blog for a while, but I decided to go back to just pointless, incessant barking. --Cartoon Dog, The New Yorker

          by markymarx on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 02:05:47 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  No, you're barking up the wrong tree. (4.00)
      I live in the UAE (and, yes, I'm a U.S. citizen) and, believe me, these folks are not the ones you have to worry about. Particularly Dubai: it's one of the most secular, tolerant, non-dogmatic Arab countries on earth. How? Well, here I can buy alcohol, Maxim, pork, go to church, watch Showtime (although not "The L Word," granted), wear a swimsuit on the beach, ogle hot babes at nightclubs dancing to techno and drinking martinis...  Believe me, this is not Saudi, and these folks are not Wahhabis or Salafis. They worship, above all, money and profits, although, like all American politicans, they pledge support to God and the church (erm, mosque).

      Please don't fall into the typical, knee-jerk, "they're all Ay-rabs" style of thinking. It's beneath you.

  •  I had one of the 3 diaries on this (4.00)
    a few days ago. This is a "stop the presses" kind of story if you ask me. Between this, and the Taliban in Waziristan declaring themselves an Islamic Republic, with tens of thousands of guys in camp in training (my last diary), you'd think Dems would be taking Bush's "strong on terror" b.s. and trashing it all over all the time.

    Oddly, there are some who argued that there's no evidence of huge support for the terrorists amongst the Gulf States' upper classes.

    •  ah, sh*t! due to all the cheney redux, (none)
      i missed your taliban diary!  thanks for commenting on it - i'll pull up your "history" and read it.

      we are so overwhelmed by real issues that are getting buried by every tom, dick and harriet's attempt to be "first" of breaking news - or to be the latest to try to top our resident wits (dood, bob j and all) that so much garbage is overwriting the good stuff!

      i haven't figured out what to do about it yet - but an idea hit me earlier - if the site had the means to "cluster" repetitive diaries (say, 10 in a 50 set) into a mega diary with links to all the little ones - we could be better organized in what we read.

      for example, all the cheney individuals could go into a "cheney mega" that simply lists diary links while the main ones are archived or sub categorized off the main index page - unless it is a recommend).

      just thinking here - and annoyed that i missed your diary - but glad to have an opportunity to find it!  thanks.

    •  Am I the only one here who doesn't see a problem? (4.00)
      Seriously, I'm as anti-bush as the next guy.  But, I really don't see the problem with the sale.  It's not a problem.  These are terminals not ports, single terminals.  They're a small part of the overall ports in the area.  It's a contract to allow them to load and unload cargo.

      Listen to this

      It's still all checked out by the port authorities, coast guard, etc, just like everything else.

      Their terminal is no less secure then any other terminal in this country.

      Listen to that NPR broadcast and then come back here and tell me that it's still such a cause for alarm.

      "To BushCo, the truth is but a lie undiscovered."

      by Siberian on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:33:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Clarification (none)
        Port security is definately a concern.

        But this is an issue we should be addressing as a serious issue for the entire system, not just singling out a terminal contract to the U.A.E. as the main threat.

        The main threat is the security issues in the overall system with or without the U.A.E.

        I just don't see this sale/contract to the U.A.E. making things any worse.

        "To BushCo, the truth is but a lie undiscovered."

        by Siberian on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:35:59 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I disagree (none)
          I'm not big on nationalism but there are some functions that should just be run in-house, as it were. Period. No further discussion needed.

          P & O shouldn't have been responsible for port management anywhere in the US. DP World shouldn't be responsible for port management anywhere in the US. Period. No further discussion needed.

          However, knowing that the Dubai banking system was used to launder money for al Qaeda and was used to help finance 9/11 does add to my sense of urgency to derail the deal. It isn't because I have some irrational fear of Arabs or Muslims, or even the Mid East. It's because Dubai wasn't slick enough to spot money laundering and terrorist funding in their own banking system - why in the hell should they be trusted to operate some of this nation's most vital ports? They've got porosity issues.

          Granted, there are no guarantees - even with your own compatriots. But the instinct to consider operational security is presumed to be more innate. I guess that's all we have the right to hope for. Well, we used to.

          The soul that is within me no man can degrade. - Frederick Douglass

          by Kimberley on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:48:50 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  I heard the NPR story (none)
        when it ran the other morning, and it struck me as a total whitewash. So what if customs and the Coast Guard have jurisdiction? They're still underfunded so that Paris Hilton and the Bush twins will never have to pay a penny of inheritance tax on the millions they'll recieve for being born into the lucky sperm club.

        Is that the same "liberal" NPR that is being overseen by Bush-appointed Bush cronies, btw?

        Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

        by drewfromct on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:25:51 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  bullshit (none)
          In NPRs coverage on this I actually learned something about Dubai other than knee-jerk racism towards all arabs. And that coverage was inaccurate--how?  Please be specific...

          I had my own blog for a while, but I decided to go back to just pointless, incessant barking. --Cartoon Dog, The New Yorker

          by markymarx on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 02:16:22 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Recomended (4.00)
    This is THE underreported story du jour, IMHO.

    Another big fat IOKIYAR--can you imagine what Rush&Co would be saying if Clinton had allowed an Arab company to run our ports after 9/11?

    I'll repeat what I've said in other threads: The Dems need to jump all over this, majorfuckingbigtime. Cargo Containers should be the centerpiece of an public awareness campaign that shines a spotlight on how BushCo is selling us out, from the trade deficit, to the lack of port security, to this latest outrage.

    Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

    by drewfromct on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 06:59:42 PM PST

    •  Just to be contrary.... (4.00)
      (preface: I'm actually concerned about this, but..)

      What would the response be if a Dutch, Greek, or Japanese company had bought into our ports?  Is the issue that these countries are not conduits for terrorists?  I'm much, much more concerned about the offshoring (er, pardon the pun?) of US assets than I am about the terrorist connection, partly because I don't buy that all Muslims or Arabs are terrorist sympathizers.  It's not as if these folks are going to kick out DHS inspectors.

      As a political matter, though, you're wholly correct: if the John Kerry Administration (sigh...) had allowed this sale, even if there were NO increased possibility of harm to our national security, Right Wing pundits would be barking like kicked dogs about it.

      You can never ask too many questions.

      by socratic on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:04:45 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  point taken (4.00)
        however, this administration's position is not at all consistent.  Muslims can be rounded up, invaded,  profiled, tortured, etc., simply for being muslim.  Now this?  What's wrong with this picture?  
      •  As a matter of fact (4.00)
        DP world is buying out P&O, which is, IIRC, a British company. It still matters. Read Wealth and Democracy by Kevin Phillips. Phillips traces the economic rise and fall of a few of history's great powers: Spain, Holland, and Great Britain. These nations relied on shipping and manufacturing to fuel their rise. Then their upper classes got fat and lazy and turned to speculation and investment. Shipping and manufacturing declined, and thus so did their fortunes, along with their power and influence.

        Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

        by drewfromct on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:12:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Oh, I definitely agree with that (4.00)
          I'm just questioning the "gutting national security" meme.  I don't entirely disagree that it's a worry, but I also don't think it's the primary concern (your comment, in my most humble opinion, is of far greater concern).

          You can never ask too many questions.

          by socratic on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:14:40 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The importance as a fact and a meme (4.00)
            it seems to me, is this has got to be great news for any terrorist sitting thinking "but how? how? will I get it into the US?" Maybe, now, he just needs to call a friend, walk past a loyalist, visit the docks...

            As meme it's one of the flock of "Protecting Us!?! Who Is This Guy Kidding?" facts.

            •  That's all (4.00)
              they need to do right now!

              I want to see a Dem ad campaign that shows the stacks of cargo containers on an incoming ship. The narrorator points out how only 2% of incoming containers are open and inspected. Voice over and subtitles point out the cost of upgrading port security to open and inspect 100%, and counterpoint that against BushCo's tax cuts for bazillionheirs.

              We should point out how many cargo containers could be inspected with the money being spent on Paris Hilton's tax cuts.

              Close the ad with a scene in which actors dressed as Al Qeada wheel a large crate into a cargo container and slam the door shut, then fire their AK 47s into the air in celebrator glee as they shout "Death to America!"

              Run the ad late at night in small markets, so as to get the most bang for the buck, then tout it on the national news because it's so "contraversial", so that thousands who never see it will be aware of the ad and absorb the message, swift-boat style.

              Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

              by drewfromct on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:30:12 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Don't know if it's enough (none)
                for the dems to throw a fit.  It hasn't made much of a difference on many other issues.

                I think this one will take an uprising of the people.  Protests and such.  And at this point I don't have much confidence that said protests would  even make a difference.  In fact, I don't know of any effective way of stopping this administration.

                I'm wondering which advocate organization might be getting involved or considering it.  Moveon?  I don't even know.

                Nonetheless, I will contact my Senators' and my Congressman's office tomorrow.  I heard something about a Congressional recess next week.  If my Congressman is going to be back home, I'm resolved to find out when he will be in his office and to go there.  The office I'm speaking of is no more than 5 miles from the Philadelphia's port.  How could he let this happen without even objecting?

                On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

                by joanneleon on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:40:24 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  hows, whys, and spies (none)
              If we had a militarily competent administration, we could console ourselves thinking this could be part of a great big sting operation.  But we don't.  And in all probability it's not.

              However it is an excellent opportunity for Al Qaeda to spy on our security operations, and apply the knowledge elsewhere.  

              They won't do it by getting their people hired as longshoremen.  The longshoremens' unions won't let that happen.  Instead they'll do it by sneaking their operatives in as management.  Get them visas, slip them in, and let them go to work collecting info and sending it back home.

              And then, some time later, at some other port, so there won't appear to be a connection ...BOOM!

      •  Arab != terrorist (4.00)
        Thank you for posting this comment.

        It just really rubs me wrong to read comments like this:

        Another big fat IOKIYAR--can you imagine what Rush&Co would be saying if Clinton had allowed an Arab company to run our ports after 9/11?

        Would it be better if they were white instead? Let's please try to get away from Arab/Muslim = terrorist.

        •  It might just be his shorthand (none)
          for the wingnut worldview, which is so blazingly self-contradictory, ie, not his view, no offense intended.
        •  For the record (4.00)
          this country was attacked on 9/11. The perpetrators of that attack just happened to be: Arab. Muslim. Terrorists.

          Now, also for the record, not all Arabs are Muslims, and not all Muslims are terrorists, and not all terrorists are Arab Muslims. But, at this moment in history, this nation is at war with Arab Muslim Terrorists and our president has just approved letting our ports be operated by a company based in a country where quite a few of these people live.

          It's almost, but not quite as bad, as if FDR had allowed our ports to be run by a German company during WWII

          Finally, for the record, in a crucial and hotly contested election which will, once again, play out on issues of security, it would be the height of folly to be the party which is seen as being soft on terrorism, which is exactly how "try(ing) to get away from Arab=terrorist" will be spun by our enemies in the "liberal" media. Rightly or wrongly, a significant proportion of the populace does equate Arab Muslims with terrorists, and not entirely without some justification.

          Hammering BushCo for selling us out to our enemies is a winning strategy. Period.

          Al Qeada is a faith-based initiative.

          by drewfromct on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:16:31 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  sorry, no (none)
            Just because a lot of Americans think that most Arabs/Muslims are terrorists doesn't mean that we should pander to that.

            It's this kind of attitude that alienates moderates in the Arab and Muslim worlds, leading them to think that they're suspect just by religion or ethnicity. If we really want to win the "war on terrorism", we need to make extremism less attractive to people. Acting in a prejudiced manner to them isn't very helpful.

            Americans launched a war of aggression against an Arab country (Iraq) based on a series of lies. We've killed (at even the most conservative estimate) tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians - more than the number of Americans killed on 9/11. We set up torture sites like Abu Ghraib. There are now death squads in Iraq.

            With that in mind, turn your argument back around to how Arabs might justifiably feel about America. It cuts both ways, I'm afraid.

          •  no (none)
            So knee-jerk racism towards all arabs is patriotic now?  Sorry, no.  Racism is wrong.  If most white Americans are still racist towards black people are you going to defend that too?

            Rightly or wrongly, a significant proportion of the populace does equate Arab Muslims with terrorists, and not entirely without some justification.

            I had my own blog for a while, but I decided to go back to just pointless, incessant barking. --Cartoon Dog, The New Yorker

            by markymarx on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 02:22:25 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Bottom line is (4.00)
        some things in this country should not be available for sale to any foreign country.

        On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

        by joanneleon on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:36:58 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  the dems and repugs (4.00)
      were speaking about this today.

      The NYT had an editorial in the paper.

      But no, it's all Cheney all the time. The press has Cheneyied itself to death.

      The guys who ran on National Security are selling our ports to the Sauds. OMG.

      This should be a front page story in every paper, and a talking point for every single motherfucking dem (as you say)

      inspire change...don't back down

      by missliberties on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:45:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The fox is now guarding the (4.00)
    hen house folks.  This is just unreal!  WTF??

    Somebody pinch me........this can't be really happening.....it's all just a bad dream, right?

    If the people lead, the leaders will follow.

    by Mz Kleen on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:04:00 PM PST

  •  See diary below n/t (none)
  •  I'd be interested in knowing who is on the board (4.00)
    of DP World.

    At face value, this seems bizarre.

    •  Good Point! Anyone wanna bet (4.00)
      there are members of the Carlyle Group on the Board?
      •  Our Bill has provided plenty of cover (none)
        for the Carlyle bunch since he's bosom buddies with Bush 41.
        I question his judgement in this regard.

        Clinton could have pursued any of these humanitarian missions without 41 who has gotten much positive PR from their relationship. Who even talks about the evil Carlyle group anymore?!?

  •  UAE 9/11 links--a hell of a lot more than Saddam.. (4.00)
    From the 9/11 Commission's Report Executive Summary

    September 11 financing
    ...Additionally, several of [the September 11 hijackes] kept funds in foreign accounts, which they accessed in the United States through ATM and credit card transactions. The hijackers received funds
    from
    facilitators in Germany and the United Arab Emirates or directly from Khalid Sheikh Mohamed (KSM) ...

    ...The hijackers returned approximately $26,000 to a facilitator in the UAE in the days prior to the attack.

    From the main report:

    Although the UAE was aware that terrorists and other international criminals had laundered money through the UAE, and that it was the center for hawala and courier operations, it did little to
    address the problem. Additionally, the United States expressed its concern about UAE support for Ariana Airlines and the movement of Bin Ladin funds through Dubai. Shortly before the September 11 attacks, the departing U.S. ambassador to the UAE warned senior officials in the Emirates that they needed to move forward on money-laundering legislation, so as not to be placed on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) "blacklist" of countries not fully complying with international standards in this area. These warnings
    had no discernible effect.

    You can get the PDF of above from a google search of "UAE terrorist ties 9/11". A search of the PDF shows 85 references to the UAE. Maybe one exonerates them. I didn't check them all.

    From the original AP report:

    But the UAE, a loose federation of seven emirates on the Saudi peninsula, was an important operational and financial base for the hijackers who carried out the attacks against New York and Washington, the FBI concluded.
  •  at last (4.00)
    finally someone, even the Saudis, would guard our ports.  They are all but undefended, as I wrote in this diary.

    No one in military history, ever, has made it less than a number one priority to first secure the ports, whether offense or defense.  Which makes Bush's war on terror immediately smell foul.

    According to the article quoted in my diary, the Chinese are more concerned about port security than the US - they screen containers for radiation before they come onshore:


    Norfolk-based federal law-enforcement officials would give few details about how they target vessels and containers for scrutiny. Davis-Martin said it was a combination of intelligence, the practical experience of local agents and police, and databases that highlight ships with murky histories of ownership, ships coming from ports with lax security or ships with inconsistent cargo, such as a load of bulk wood chips bound for a facility that does not use wood chips.

    Since 9/11 the federal government has established a 24-hour command center for the port of Hampton Roads -- the Joint Harbor Operations Center -- where the Coast Guard and Navy track incoming ships, analyze intelligence and respond to potential threats...

    ___But critics say the U.S. still needs to tighten port security, particularly scrutiny of containers, which "can be filled overseas at many different locations and are transported through complex logistical networks," as the Government Accountability Office recently reported.

    The GAO, the investigative arm of Congress, warned that a terrorist still could use fake documents or a bogus company to hide an explosive device in a container. U.S. Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Patty Murray, D-Wash., recently called for searching a greater percentage of containers. Collins said some of the post-9/11 improvements in port security "appear to be hollow." The Port of Hong Kong recently began screening all containers for radiation, anomalies in density and identification numbers -- a level of scrutiny the U.S. so far considers unnecessary.."


    According to what I've dug up about our second largest east coast port:
    Today a cargo ship has to give notice of 96 hours -- four full days -- before calling on a U.S. port, along with a list of officers and crew and a manifest specifically identifying the cargo, Laria said. A shipper wanting to send a container from a foreign port to the U.S. has to submit a manifest to customs agents at the foreign port 24 hours before the cargo can be loaded.

    The constantly updated reports of ships approaching Hampton Roads are fed into the command center, where the Coast Guard decides which vessels are suspicious enough to be stopped and boarded offshore.

    At least one vessel a day heading into the port is stopped and boarded by an armed team from an 87-foot Coast Guard cutter, usually 12 miles offshore, Davis-Martin said. Boarding teams are equipped with radiation sensors and other gear...

    ...The logical place for a port's radiation sensors is offshore, where they could detect radioactive cargo before it reached U.S. shores. But no sensors have worked consistently at sea, Merkle said, and even if they did, every passing ship probably would contain enough legitimate, low-level radioactive cargo to trigger an alert.

    Robert Newman, deputy assistant to Gov. Mark R. Warner for emergency preparedness, said businessmen recently approached his office with what they advertised as a greatly improved offshore screening system. Entrepreneurs constantly pitch new anti-terrorism systems and devices to the state, he said.

    Some ports have tried attaching radiation sensors to the unloading cranes, which would allow containers to be screened before reaching the pier, Merkle said. But the violent banging of the cranes quickly wrecked the sensors. Merkle said he thinks sensors will be built to withstand crane duty during his lifetime.

    In the meantime, the Port of Virginia's radiation sensors stand at the exit routes, where imported containers depart by train and truck for points inland. The sensors resemble large versions of the anti-shoplifting devices at the exits of retail stores. Merkle said the sensors are always tuned low to detect the weakest levels of radiation, despite the hassle of constant false alarms.

    By the time a container passes through the sensors, however, it has already come ashore and through the port terminal. It may have sat in the container yard for days. So the sensors do not protect the port, but the world outside its gates.

    The number of containers going through Hampton Roads has been growing steadily and is expected to double to 4 million when the world's largest shipping firm, Maersk Sealand, opens a $450 million terminal in Portsmouth in 2007.

    This is ridiculous.  It points to the fact that the war on terror is a farce - a war on citizens and our security, not on Al Qaeda.  Our twice-taxpayer-funded runaway Frankensteins (Hussein, Bin Laden) of the Washington DC weapons manufacturing cabal in the Pentagon are a great investment for them, and they know how to create good war-mongering investments from scratch.

    •  Good Work! (none)
      We Kossaks need to pound on this issue.

      Any man on the street would exclaim WTF! to this one!

      •  asfd (4.00)
        Hate to be so crude, but they're hiring all these creeps to grope people's crotches at airports, and yet no interest in cargo containers?

        Which would effect more collateral damage: a) smacking airliners into skyscrapers, or b) detonating the infamous "shoebox-sized device" in water, where a tsunami could be provoked?

        One blast in Houston and we're out of oil, out of trucking, out of gas for SUVs, out of food, shut down for good.  Does anyone suppose Bin Laden, a native oil boy, does not realize that?

        And still Bush doesn't guard our ports?  

        The war on terror is a complete farce, a tool for edging us into a dictatorship.

    •  They are not the only radiation sensors (none)
      We have radiation sensors at the major transhipment ports that check the boxes as they LOAD. Then there are portable radiation sensors all over the ports. Finally the massive immobile ones are a last line of defense.

      Your article claims that checking at sea is the logical way to do it, then goes right on to point out that we import radioactive cargoes all the time. Crude oil is even radiactive. Plus add in high seas four thousand containers stacked on one another shielding/muddling the results.

      Radiation is the easy thing to check for. We do it in several layers beginning before the boxes ever enter US waters, and those are just the ones the Feds publicly admit to.

      To lodge all power in one party and keep it there is to insure bad government and the sure and gradual deterioration of the public morals. - Mark Twain

      by Windowdog on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:58:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  The war on terror is a farce (4.00)
      It is a red herring and a political ploy that is used by this administration to push their real agenda - a strong US presence in the Middle East, particularly in oil rich nations. I don't think UAE ownership of ports will make them any more or less secure. What I do suspect, though, is that this is part of a payoff. Bush needs an advance base for operations if he is going to launch any kind of attack on Iran. Qatar was used for the Iraq invasion along with Kuwait. I suspect that the UAE will be part of the base of operations for the move against Iran. Whether or not the Bush administration is willing to seek a diplomatic solution to the Iranian problem remains to be seen, but you can be sure that plans are in the works for a US led strike on Iran.
  •  Thank You Sherlock! (4.00)
    I tried to highlight this a little while ago and it whizzed past the rec list.

    Your fame as a Kos journalist has brought this to light.

    I don't care how it gets on the front page, just so it gets there.

    Now isn't this an issue that we could reach across (not around) the aisle and work together on.

    This is utterly and completely unprecedented breech of the Prez's strong National Security stance.

    My unfamous dairy

    Thank you for bringing this to the forefront with your kick ass headline!

    It went of 2/11, you know the day folks don't pay attention, Sat.

    Then Elmer Fudd's shoot out, blackouted all other news.

    This is HUGE in MHO.

    inspire change...don't back down

    by missliberties on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 07:57:39 PM PST

  •  WSJ Oct. 2001 (4.00)
    Yesterday we noted a report from a Pakistani newspaper that Lt. Gen. Mahmud Ahmad had been fired as head of Islamabad's Inter-Services Security agency after U.S. linked him to a militant allied with terrorists who hijacked an Indian Airlines plane in 1999. Now the Times of India says Ahmad is connected to the Sept. 11 attacks:

    Top sources confirmed here on Tuesday, that the general lost his job because of the "evidence" India produced to show his links to one of the suicide bombers that wrecked the World Trade Centre. The US authorities sought his removal after confirming the fact that $100,000 were wired to WTC hijacker Mohammed Atta from Pakistan by Ahmad Umar Sheikh at the instance of Gen Mahumd.

    Senior government sources have confirmed that India contributed significantly to establishing the link between the money transfer and the role played by the dismissed ISI chief. While they did not provide details, they said that Indian inputs, including Sheikh's mobile phone number, helped the FBI in tracing and establishing the link.

    http://www.opinionjournal.com/...

    •  Is that the same Ahmad (4.00)
      who was having breakfast with Porter Goss and Sen. Bob Graham (heads of intelligence committees) on the morning on 9/11?  The one who supposedly transferred $100K to Mohammed Atta?  

      I'm pretty sure that's the same guy.

      On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

      by joanneleon on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:46:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  yes to the wire transfer, not sure on (4.00)
        Goss & Graham, but it sounds familiar.  I'm certain he has been labeled an asset to UK, US, and Pakistani secret services by a number of sources.  He has several aliases, which makes it harder to recall.  But he did his Atta banking in Dubai.
  •  It's not enough that Bush abandoned New Orleans (4.00)
    after Katrina. He's now sold the security of our port (the nation's largest by the way) to the Arabs.
  •  What do you want to bet the next terrorist attack (4.00)
    comes via one of these ports if the sale is completed? Probably sometime just before the 2008 elections...

    </tinfoil>

  •  Combine this story with the following one (none)
    http://www.house.gov/...

    Maybe they're deciding they want some real, tangible things in return for their oil.

  •  Relax (none)
    I'd bet drugs, antiquities, arms, and perhaps even slaves may move in and out of these ports with a bit more ease in the future.  Who'd want to slip in a nuke when there is so much money to be made? Unless . . .
    •  unless what (none)
      unless someone got sick of waiting for the national debt to be repaid?  And so many nations out of the dollar's blackmail capabilities?
    •  Unless (4.00)
      we need a catastrophic and galvanizing event in order to nuke Iran?

      "Free nations listen to the hopes and aspirations of their people. Free nations are peaceful nations." George Dubya Dumbass, Nov 30, 2005

      by paraphrase on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:29:35 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Unless slipping in the nuke.... (none)
      IS part of the money-making scheme a la the phony War(s) on Terror and the usual profiteering by the Military Industrial Complex and the likes of BushCo and their favorite corporate sponsors.

      And what a convenient location, operationally speaking, for such AQ luminaries as Osama bin Laden himself!  He can get his 9/11-style groove on while also seeking treatment/dialysis for his kidney condition while in Dubai!  Hey, we aim to please!

      "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich." ~ Napoleon

      by Appalachian Annie on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:41:04 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Even Middle America Will Get This (4.00)
    I've almost lost all hope that anyone in the Democratic Party can actually see a real problem and then act on it.

    Oh, we'll probably hear some impotent whining about how this puts us at risk...but is there any chance that anything will really come of this?

    Nope.

    Oh, how I want to be proven wrong, but look at the ridiculous string of activities that Bushleague has gotten away with already.

    I've pretty much lost all hope. Just watch. This is going to go nowhere, and after maybe a day or two of discussing it among ourselves, some of our leaders will side with the Republicans on why this makes sense.

    Does anyone here really think things will change anytime soon?

    http://www.democratpassions.com

    by worker on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:38:48 PM PST

    •  I think this is different (4.00)
      If we put this in the Kossak Echo Chamber, the man on the street will lose faith in Bush as protecting our National Security.  

      "He's what!?!?  Allowing a United Arab Emirate company to run U.S. ports!?!?  What?!?!"

      And that's all that's still propping Bush up, his ratings on security.  Take that away and...

      Bush may just have to give in on this one if we hit it hard.

      •  Homeland Security (none)
        says that the 30 day window for objections to the approval of the sale is now passed.

        Why did no one object during the official 30 day period?  This is nothing less than gross negligence on the part of our leadership.  Every single one of them, elected, appointed, makes no difference.

        A Lou Dobbs poll on his show tonight said that 98% felt that this should be investigated.  98% of those who responded have a problem with this, and not one of our leaders objected?  Now, when the time for objections has passed, and the story hits the news after it's too late to do anything about it, Congresspeople are stepping up?  Come on - something really smells here.  

        On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

        by joanneleon on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:22:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Don't you know? (none)
          Why did no one object during the official 30 day period?

          Lobbyists' cash. Elections are coming up which means TV and radio air time is needed as well as newspaper ads. All need money. And a vacation trip doesn't hurt either.

          A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

          by Tux on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:27:28 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I thought Lou was going to stroke out on this. (none)
          My MIL (koolaid swilling bushie) will throw a fit over this.
          There was a water treatment plant sold to the Germans in West Virginia that has driven her nuts for years.
          Plenty of bushites are still fighting WWII.
          They will flip over this.
  •  Could it Be (none)
    that the US bank account is so zeroed out that we can't support our own infrastructure?

    Can you imagine if New Orleans asked the Saudi's to help them rebuild the levees and their cities.

    Tell me that the Supreme Court will not have to rule on international issues, re businesses.

    A crock of shit.

    There is NO good reason for this.

    No the Bush administration is outsourcing cronyisn to the Saudis.

    inspire change...don't back down

    by missliberties on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 08:49:59 PM PST

    •  finally (none)
      someone gets it.  We really are that broke.

      The biggest evil the administration has brought upon the US is the fiscal impropriety of... everything they've done.

      Mines, strategic reserves of all kind, and now ports are up for grabs by our debtors.  This is Cheney's many decades as a "washington insider" at work for us.

      The national debt should be a treasonable offense.  Our international reputation in business has been demolished.  Nations only keep buying US debt instruments to shim up the dollar in order to keep their forced investments at a decent value.  In a word, it's economic blackmail by this administration foisted upon economies worldwide.

      And everybody gets it except the US public, most of whom have never visited another nation anywhere and probably couldn't figure out how to exchange currency for the lives of them.  Without this personal experience of trading and neighborliness, few US people comprehend how the international money picture works.

      Everyone else on earth strives under the tyranny of the US dollar, which is, functionally speaking, even a form of world government with the help of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund and their offshoots.  

      We will go under, in the end, because of our collective ignorance about the US dollar-based world economic system.  Most US people have no clue how Washington's economic madness afflicts all other nations on earth.  We have, as a nation, no idea how our bread&circus orgy is demolishing the order of things - an we are indeed being used by our government (remember when we were called "citizens" not "consumers?").  No one will get it straight before the Chinese fly in to recoup their investments.  And then it will be too late.

      But then crashing the international economy - and it's coming - is a handy way for a totalitarian dictatorship to seize control on a planetwide basis.

  •  Not to worry... (none)
    Michael Savage is blaming the sale on democrats...
  •  God help us (4.00)
    From the Washington Post article "White House Defends Port Sale to Arab Co.":

    The world's fourth-largest ports company runs commercial operations at shipping terminals in New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia.

    The Homeland Security Department said it was legally impossible under the committee's rules to reconsider its approval without evidence DP World gave false information or withheld vital details from U.S. officials. The 30-day window for the committee to voice objections has ended.
    DP World said it had received all regulatory approvals.

    The lawmakers pressing the White House to reconsider included Sens. Schumer, Tom Coburn, R-Okla., Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., and Chris Dodd, D-Conn., and Reps. Foley, Fossella and Chris Shays, R-Conn.

    This makes me physically ill.  Three of these ports happen to be with 100 miles of my home.  One of them is a mere 15 miles away.  But I guess I'm just one of those liberal alarmists wearing a tinfoil hat.  Is it just me, or is anyone else wondering how much more of this they can take?  Somebody tell me that I'm overreacting, failing to see some redeeming information in this insanity.

    I trust Sen. Lautenberg.  But how much can he do about it?  Is Chertoff okay with this?  How can he possibly be okay with it?  How can the hypocrites 9/11 9/11 9/11 us to death every goddamn day and then sell our ports to a country which was involved in financing 9/11?

    On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

    by joanneleon on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:08:56 PM PST

  •  Maybe this is one of Condo's brilliant ideas like (none)
    allowing Hamas to be involved in election.
    The Condon's thinking goes, if we keep them close at hand we can better monitor them. (snark)
  •  Lou Dobbs was having a snit fit ... (4.00)
    about this issue this afternoon.  He was blowing his mind as we all should be about this shit.  This is crazy, crazy, crazy.  Can there be any doubt left in anyone's mind that Bush is dangerous to us all.  He simply does not care if he puts us all in danger.

    Perhaps he is the antichrist after all?  Wasn't he supposed to come disguised as a savior?  Didn't Bush come promising redemption to the fundies?  How much money and how many people has he killed?  Really, is what he has done Christian or anti-Christian?

    Where is he going to live after  it all comes down, Saudi?

  •  You really have to wonder.... (4.00)
    I'm sure that some will consider this tin-foil territory... but I don't care.  This government hasn't given me any reason NOT to assume the worst about them.

    That said, does anyone else think that this is just more in a growing pile of events and little pieces of information that would seems to point toward the "War on Terrorism" being completely bogus?

    Is it wrong to start finding it more reasonable to believe that the only reason why we're "fighting a war on terror" without end - or that we were attacked - is because it gives more power to people like Bush, and more wealth and influence to organizations like the Carlyle Group, and that perhaps at the highest levels these terrorists are really our government's operatives - creating a reason for their military misadventures?  Basically, that the reason why we can't catch OBL is because he's really our government's man?

    You know, as opposed to believing that there's a 6'2" boogy man hiding in caves with a dialysis machine that coordinates terrorist attacks around the world; a boogy man puts out a new video more often than Madonna yet we can't seem to find; that has family ties that in turn have personal and business ties to our own leader; that he attacked us because our government couldn't "connect the dots" on this one thing when the dots were painted across their faces;  that for some reason we attacked a country whose leader hated this boogy man the most out of any leader of a Muslim nation in the Middle East instead of going after the boogy man himself;

    ...and that now we've sold our ports of entry into this country to foreign interests from a place where money changed hands for the 9/11 attacks and it's no big deal?

    If I was less informed, I'd think the first was total moonbat Kool-Aid BS.  But when you stop and think about the official version of events, that's what really seems absolutely batshit crazy.

    The first may seem like classic Conspiracy Theory 101... but the second is just this side of believing in the Easter Bunny.  I'm finding it increasingly difficult to believe in the wild tales and misadventures of the "incompetent" Bush administration.  

    Seriously, what's crazier?  Because I just can't tell any more.  If that qualifies me for tin foil, then fine, I'll call Alcoa and get a lifetime supply.  But I just can't believe the war on terrorism is real when the people who are supposedly fighting it do things like this.

    "It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong." - Voltaire

    by JAS1001 on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:32:41 PM PST

  •  WTF? (4.00)
    The United Arab Emirates has a 6,6 rating from the Freedom House (Link), making it be one of the least free countries in the world. For comparison, Iran also has a 6,6.
  •  C'mon, Democrats. Hammer away (4.00)
    and don't let up on this one.

    Novus Ordo Seclorum. Since 1776.

    by Ignacio Magaloni on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 09:42:22 PM PST

  •  That's one way to reduce his deficit.... (none)
    Sell of the country in piecemeal.
  •  "DP World" indeed (none)
    Screwed on economic grounds as well as security.

    More like "DVDA World".

  •  not the BIGGEST story i'm afraid!!!![!!!] (4.00)
    yeah.  having grown up in sharjah and dubai i can't really say that i'm the least bit put off by the fact that a "UAE!!!" company has bought a bunch of ports in this country.  was it a 'big business' bushco family connection, damn sure it  was.  is it some big national security issue we should "RAISE HELL ABOUT, GODDAMN!!!"  ... no.  i'm afraid i have to agree with at least one previous post and say young sherlock is letting his well understood rage turn a tad ugy for my taste.  ok, i'll say it. racist.  mr. google, why don't you google this- "dubai jobs".  let's also find out who is on the board of this company.  you really think they're a bunch of "towelheads?"  Cuz that's how you sound.  you'll soon find out that dubai resembles south florida more than it does jeddah or cairo or tripoli (all places I have also lived) in demographics as well as politics.  I say that knowing full well the irony it  carries.  This is a bullshit story that only weak-kneed dems who feel like they need to show some ruffled feathers to impress us will take up.  I'm sure we'll hear much bloviations from the likes of shrum on  the inestimable hardball... god help us.  [btw, can you dis-recommend]
    •  Thanks (none)
      We need more centrist/moderate/libertarian shit to justify this. Thanks for helping Bush, dickweed.

      A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

      by Tux on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:36:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  A few questions (none)
      Do you live anywhere near these ports?

      I would like to know your justification for saying this is a "bullshit story."

      I would also like to know you feel it is "racist" to be concerned about a country that was heavily involved in financial transactions related to 9/11.

      Racist guilt trips don't work when there is real cause for concern that is not based on racism.

      On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

      by joanneleon on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 05:45:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'll bite (none)
        Port terminals unload cargo from the ships and move it to waiting rail/trucks. CBP targets boxes coming off the ships the same no matter what terminal they happen to be at. The workforce is unionized and won't be changing. Same people working the same ships. I really don't think people understand what it is a terminal operator actually does. But they have no control over what boxes get stopped and what boxes get searched.

        We also have US customs officials at all the major transshipment ports across the world targeting and scanning cargo before it ever gets on ships bound for the US.

        The system is not foolproof, but it IS much more rigorous than pre-9/11 and DP World buying these terminals from another foreign entity does nothing to lessen that.

        And yes this thread is a prime example of FUD and racism driving people into an illogical frenzy.

        And yes I live near a major US port.

        To lodge all power in one party and keep it there is to insure bad government and the sure and gradual deterioration of the public morals. - Mark Twain

        by Windowdog on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 06:29:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  In response to your questions (none)
        My home?  zip code 10027.

        When I say bullshit, i mean it is a lot of hot air that finds its only traction in a fundamentally xenophobic outlook, one that views the entire arab world as a 'threat.'

        maybe 'racist' is the wrong word to use.  maybe it's a little  much at this  point.  for that i apologize.  we have every reason to be concerned about any country in the middle east.  be concerned, that's fine.  I am.  It'ss just not the big story you say it is.  that's all.

        you don't stop there though.  you go on to declaim that  the whole country was involved in a financial transaction with respect to 9/11.  okay, even if that could be true, so fucking what?  what country wasn't?  what bank wasn't?  what do you drive to work everyday in?  You cycle, you take the subway, the train?  The biggest supplier of construction equipment throughout the middle east is the bin laden group who freely financed their little black sheep till 9/11.  How far do you want to go with this?

        And before you  throw another one of those  holier than thou "but 9/11!" remarks my way, check the zip above.  

        to the other reply, you think i'm being a centrist/moderate/libertarian?  gimme a break.  you're pitching fear and little else.  you call that radical or progressive?  have at it.

  •  Who sold China a beachhead in Long Beach? (none)
         So we sold some commercial port capacity to the UAE.

         The UAE is not a sworn enemy of the USA.

         China, which >IS< a sworn enemy of the USA was sold a military beachhead port in Long Beach.

         China intends to use that base to supply USA patriots with man-portable SAM missles, and cement China's place as the French-like savior in the second American revolution.

         So a UAE port will allow the WMD attack that will benefit China, and the NEW USA will be beholden to China.

         That is China's plan, and China has bet it's future that it will happen that way.

    •  wow (none)
      now THIS is front page stuff.  I thought no one would ever mention it.

      Has anyone ever had the opportunity to tool around the Long Beach Harbor area on a boat?  Then one would have an idea just how many vessels are clustered around our shores from just about everywhere, including named enemy states.

      Our vulnerability at Long Beach is unacceptable.  And yet there are still people naive enough to lose sleep about airport security while ignoring Long Beach.

      Things like this make me doubt that the public will catch on.

  •  Are all Americans torturers? Well, not all Arabs (4.00)
    are terrorists.

    Dubai Ports is a huge maritime shipping company, run to an incredibly high standard of operational efficiency.  DP has a lot of money behind them because Americans are addicted to imported oil and imported everything else - which all gets to America on ships.

    DP is a capable of securing ports as any American company - and probably more efficient at it, as they already run some of the most advanced, modern port facilities on the planet.

    Calm down.

    How would you feel if the rest of the world banned Americans from owning foreign assets because some Americans are lying, psyopathic, sadistic torturers?

    "Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing - after they have exhausted all other possibilities." Winston Churchill

    by LondonYank on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:02:49 PM PST

    •  thank you (none)
      The way everybody seems to be going hysteric over this is very disheartening. Unless there's evidence that this company specifically or the people involved with it were directly involved with terrorism, we could with a whole lot less "selling our ports to terrorists" just because the people involved happen to be Arabs.
    •  Six major ports (4.00)
      are not just some ordinary assets.  

      And UAE isn't just any Arab country.  The fact that it's Arab is not nearly as significant as the fact that it was heavily involved in the financing of 9/11.  Should that be of no concern to us?  Aren't we supposed to be concerned about countries with ties to 9/11?  Didn't we invade one because of supposed ties?  

      I think by getting offended at the fact that this is an "Arab" country, some are missing the bigger points about which of our assets should be protected more strictly, which countries should raise a red flag, and the hypocrisy of a President who wages war on one country with fabricated ties to 9/11, then sells ports to another country with real ties to it.

      On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

      by joanneleon on Thu Feb 16, 2006 at 11:44:10 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Dubai? (none)
        Dubai was involved in 9/11?  Isn't that like saying the midwest funded oklahoma city?

        I had my own blog for a while, but I decided to go back to just pointless, incessant barking. --Cartoon Dog, The New Yorker

        by markymarx on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 06:13:56 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  asdf (none)
          Since there are already numerous posts in the comments citing how Dubai, its people, institutions and government were involved, why don't you address the real issue or tell me how Dubai holds no responsibility.

          On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

          by joanneleon on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 07:31:04 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  uh...the real issue (none)
            The issue is I really don't get it.  All I see here is hints, suspicions and inneundo--reminding me of the last time we went and attacked the wrong arabs in Iraq based mostly on rightous stupidity and  trumped up charges that Saddam had WMDS.  

            Here I see more of the same--unless you have evidence that this particular company was involved with 9/11?  I don't see any in this thread.  

            I'm also curious--do you hold the midwest responsible for Oklahoma City?  

            I had my own blog for a while, but I decided to go back to just pointless, incessant barking. --Cartoon Dog, The New Yorker

            by markymarx on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 04:36:33 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  They're not buying the ports they're buying the (none)
        Port Terminals. More than one terminal can and usually does exist in major ports. Its not like they can now go in and kick out the Port Authority, US unionized labor, and Customs in order to set up some islamofacist logistics providing beachhead of mayhem and terrorism on US soil.

        Look the colombians didn't need to buy port terminals in Miami to flood the US with drugs. The system is too open to completely secure, but it IS much better than it used to be, and this sale does nothing to effect that.

        To lodge all power in one party and keep it there is to insure bad government and the sure and gradual deterioration of the public morals. - Mark Twain

        by Windowdog on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 06:36:34 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks for the clarification (none)
          about Port Terminals.  I can't say it gives me that much comfort, but it does give me more information to learn more about the specifics of what this means.  More reading to do.  

          I'm curious as to whether you feel that it would make no difference who owns such port terminals.  Is there any entity that would give you cause for concern if they owned port terminals in six major U.S. ports?  I can't discern that from your posts and as you seem to have a lot of specific knowledge about the operation of ports, which I respect, I'm curious to know if you think that the infrastructure we already have in place makes it irrelevant who owns the terminals.

          On Bush: "He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." --(borrowed from) Churchill

          by joanneleon on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 07:26:34 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  To Protect and Defend (none)
    Who do you trust more to protect America, Dubya or Dubai?

    Because Dubya just picked Dubai over himself.

    It's not that they don't know Jack. It's that they don't know him on a first-name basis. :)

    by cskendrick on Fri Feb 17, 2006 at 01:17:44 AM PST

  •  asdf (none)
    I just returned to home page and learned that this diary has now fallen off the rec'd diary list.

    Ah, back to the fine points of democracy, then?

    Sherlock thanks for trotting it out.  Make me wrong, I hope to see another diary emerge on the rec list about it.  But I have my doubts that the powers that be around Kos even get it.

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