Wednesday, February 22, 2006

New Ammunition in the Port Sale Argument.
It's Not About Racism!

In the wake of 9/11, America has been feed nothing but fear by the Main Stream Media, the far right wing of the Republican Party, and the Bush administration. It should be then, no surprise that America would react out of this embedded fear when we hear about an Arab country running operations at our most strategic and most vulnerable points of entry. As I said before, we can thank the Bush administration for our mistrust of the Arab world. Besides, our fear should be more justified than ever considering all that Bush and Co has done to fan the Arabs' hatred of America. But, this knee-jerk reaction has served us well. We are now well aware of this sale, and are simultaneously investigating it and trying to stop it. But, as it appears to me, the possibility of an attack via such vulnerability is only a subtext to the true breach of national security exposed by this story.

Since the exposure of this sale of American ports, the White house has defended it's actions by claiming that it would look bad to the Arab world if we turn down this deal, insinuating that our opposition is purely based on racist tendencies and a misunderstanding of the deal. But this is not true. It is more of a mistrust of the Bush administration and the fear sown by them in the wake of 9/11. But in the interest of giving them the benefit of the doubt, we have begun to look into the deal, and how it came about. Here's what we found.

In October of 2005, P&O announces that it was approached by an unnamed source with an unsolicited bid for their port operations. As it was speculated soon after, P&O announces on November 29th that DP World was behind the offer and that they were given an offer too sweet to turn down. This is when the White House claims we were informed, and that if there was a problem, we should have spoke up.

What they failed to say, was that a bidding war erupted between DPW and Singapore’s PSA that lasted till February 11th of this year. This is when the deal came to the attention of the press and the American populous. If you weren’t a trader in the stock market, you would know almost nothing about it. It is also notable that US port operations aren’t mentioned in any of the articles I’ve seen prior to February 11th. So how would a layman know anything about the national security questions, even if you heard about this back in November? But it gets worse.

In 2004 DPW got itself in a similar bidding war with PSA over the shipping assets of another company. DPW acquired the international terminal assets of CSX. I will assume, since CSX was an American company, CFIUS had to approve that sale as well. So who is CFIUS? Well, it is a group of administration officials that secretly decide whether a deal such as these present a threat to national security. The Treasury Department is the lead agency involved in making the final decision The Treasury Secretary, as of 2002 is John Snow, who, coincidentally enough, was the head of CSX before he was nominated to this position to replace Paul O’Neal. Conflict of interest number one.

In 2004, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Ruler of Abu Dhabi, was elected as the new President of the United Arab Emirates to succeed his father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. His half-brother and the present Crown Prince, Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed al-Nahayan, was also the former Chief of Staff of the UAE Armed Forces in 1999. According to the 9/11 Commission Report, the CIA was poised to launch a missile strike on a hunting party in Afghanistan hosted by Osama bin Laden. The strike was called off when sat photos shown an official UAE C-130 in the vicinity of the camp.

In Steve Coll’s book, "Ghost Wars", he describes the accounts of “paid agents” that followed bin Laden to a hunting camp, noting that they were using falcons. They informed CIA officials who tasked a spy sat to confirm the target. In the pictures they identified the UAE plane. Although the UAE denied that any officials from their government were in the party, the 9/11 Commission Report confirmed that the CIA believed that a number of UAE Princes were present. Further more, General Hugh Shelton also confirmed that Sheikh Mohammad bin Sultan Al Nahyan was among the princes at the hunting camp. Conflict of interest number two.

It is also interesting to note, until someone proves to me otherwise, that Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan was still the Crown Prince at the time, and is an avid hunter, often using falcon during his expeditions. Was he among the hunting party? I would like this question answered.

The Carlyle Group, the company which connects both the Bush family and the bin Laden family together, is listed as an exhibitor at this month’s “International Property Week” exhibition in Dubai. It is my knowledge that the UAE Royal family, and Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan in particular, are the single largest financier of the construction of Al Raha City in Dubai. So the Bush family has a direct financial interest in the DPW deal. If this deal falls through, the Carlyle group may loss some of the building contracts that are going up for the residential district in Al Raha. That’s how I see it. Conflict of interest number three.

In the long run, I hope that the Arab world sees that, at least from the Democrats point of view, our true reason for opposing this deal is based on how the Bush administration does business. If it wasn’t for the actions of the Neo-Conservatives of both Christian and Islamic faith, and the Bush family’s business partners both in the West and the Middle East, we would have no fear or animosity between our two worlds. In our own ways, we are fighting the same fight; they just don’t know it yet.

So ask your self, what do you think is going on here?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

For those folks, including Rush Limbaugh, claiming that Dems are racists when it comes opposing to foreign ownership interests in Port security, all we have to do is point out that the United Arab Emirates do not allow foreign nationals, not even foreign corporations, to own land in their country, and all foreign companies doing business in the UAE as well as all proposed industrial development in the UAE requires 51% state ownership. They are not stupid and short-sighted and realize that some things are more important than money. See
2005/42194.htm Written by Nawshus.

1:44 PM  

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