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Sort of good news

By now this seems a bit anticlimactic.

Republican congressional leaders told President Bush Thursday the House and Senate both appear ready to block a Dubai-owned company from taking over operations at several U.S. ports, GOP officials said.

The leadership delivered the assessment in a private meeting at virtually the same time White House spokesman Scott McClellan reiterated Bush's vow to veto any legislation interfering with the deal.

The developments came one day after a GOP-controlled House committee voted 62-2 to block the transfer, which has prompted an election-year Republican congressional revolt against the administration -- made all the more striking because it is related to the war on terrorism.

The Dubai ports deal never sat right with me. Moreover, it never stood a chance of passage in the face of such bipartisan opposition. Under the circumstances, it's best to put it behind as us quickly as possible.

I have to confess to having some mixed feelings about it, however. I'll admit that it's perfectly possible that DP World might have done a fine job of managing our ports. It's also likely that the way this whole unfortunate saga played out will further alienate moderate Arabs, but inside the UAE and out. I have to fault the Bush administration for not anticipating the political firestorm this would trigger. Had it done so, Bush could have very quietly scuttled the deal much earlier, sparing us all this unnecessary melodrama.

On the plus side, it's good to see confirmation that the American public still takes the War on Terror very, very seriously. Another positive bit of fallout is that it has highlighted the port security issue in general. Hopefully that focus will remain in place long enough to take a good luck at one of our weakest security links.


Well, Barry, I guess if Rush and Sean can disagree on this, so can you and I.

First off, I do agree that the Bush administration handled this badly. Add to it the strange reaction of Bush himself who claimed to have read about it only a day or so before the s*** hit the fan and yet, was adamant about it, even threatening a veto...something we both have wished he would have used on a number of pieces of pork over the years.

I firmly believe what we saw was paranoia at its ugliest. The polls did show that a great majority opposed the deal. Well, given the poorly (and sometimes incorrect) phrased questions, it was no surprise.

Add to this, the utter ignorance showed by both sides in congress with each side trying to outdo the other to show they are tough on terror, unsurprising given the elections coming up, and you had the perfect storm.

The Dems wanted this to last longer than it did, even to the point of demanding a vote after the announcement so they could point to their toughness. The GOP, spooked by Bush's position and fearful the Dems were flanking them kept the hysteria level at a fever pitch.

All you need to know about the political motive behind this bipartisan disgrace is that the pols demanded a 45 day delay so that the deal could be parsed and then decided that, in doing so, they just might be shown that their fears and behavior were both groundless and foolish, they killed the 45 day hearings within 48 hours.

They all make me sick.

BTW, does this mean that NJ owes the fired state troopers who had (gasp!)profiled carjackers given proven statistics owe those men an apology and reinstatement?

I fear this one is going to come back to bite us. Nothing like slapping one of our few ME allies in the face.

The UAE is NOT our ally. It never was. It never will. They just pretend to be our ally. Like Saudi Arabia.

Well, if Blue says so, than it must be true. I mean, what more evidence do you need? Other than him declaring it.

This entire fiasco has been ridiculous. It isn't like they were even buying the ports--they were buying the company that OWNED the ports. So now, we've essentially said "We believe in free trade. Unless the companies from the countries we like are bought out by people we don't like. Then it's all about the security."

And we have of course managed to enforce every single stereotype about American attitudes towards Arabs...

...ack. I wash my hands of this affair; there isn't a man left in Washington that I can respect.

...ack. I wash my hands of this affair; there isn't a man left in Washington that I can respect.

Totally agree, Adam.

A collection of whores more interested in re-election than in anything else.

"Well, if Blue says so, than it must be true. I mean, what more evidence do you need? Other than him declaring it." (BW)

If you wouldn't mind terribly, please PROVE that assertion out.

That is BACK IT UP with a few facts.

As is common knowledge, the many of our Naval warships are harbored in Dubai (a province of the UAE) and they fuel and help with routine maintanace on OUR NAVAL vessels!

If they weren't an ALLY, even I'd agree that THAT would certainly pose a HUGE RISK. Of course, it poses very little risk because...well, you know.

They also inspect cargo headed for the U.S. in foreign ports.

And like Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Kuwait and Qutar they are ALLIED with the U.S. & Britain in the current war on terrorism.

I'm awaiting your proofs, with baited breath.


The quote I meant to post was Blue's;

"The UAE is NOT our ally. It never was. It never will. They just pretend to be our ally. Like Saudi Arabia."

And yes, I too would still like a bit more evidence from Blue.

I'm not expecting much, but I'd certainly like to see some.

Ok, I'm confused. Are you arguing with me or with Blue?

My argument is with this quote, "The UAE is NOT our ally. It never was. It never will. They just pretend to be our ally. Like Saudi Arabia."...by Blue, I believe.

See that? Now YOU'RE confusing me!

Ah, that makes sense.

Of course, I think you're seeing why I gave cheer when Blue actually allowed something for the sake of argument in that other post, right?

Things like evidence are beneath him, it seems like.

I think THAT'S often the problem with communications between those who are ideologically opposed, Adam.

There are some, on both sides that refuse to accept the other side's sources and demand evidence from opponents, but rarely feel inclined to give it in return.

I've seen more of this from the Left - those who happily post things from the NY Times and CBS (despite the fact that both those sources have been shown to be tainted by extreme bias over the recent past) as gospel and even, often refer to Liberal bloggers, but scoff at "Conservative sources."

It makes communication much more difficult.

In this case, I'd like to see any evidence that Qutar, Kuwait, Jordan, the UAE, etc are "our enemies."

It would certainly raise concerns over our depending upon the UAE to inspect cargo in foreign ports headed for the U.S., their training Iraqi troops and policement along side us in Iraq and their harboring, fueling and providing basic mainatance for a number of our Navy's ships in that region.

Certainly would at that.

The whole information exchange thing has actually become something of an obsession of mine. I'm rather fortunate to operate in the Virginia Blogosphere--for whatever reason, the VA blogs I frequent seem to have a nice mix across partisan lines in their comments sections, and people are very reasonable and don't get personal. It's nice, but hard to find on the national level I gotta say. Don't know why that is.

But most people, when I beat them over the head with the club of "use evidence or I don't give a crap what you think", they take the hint and then use any opportunity where I'm lacking evidence to bite me in the ass with it and give me a few links I hadn't seen.

Which is what I'd like, from people like Blue. So long as a person doesn't give me evidence, their opinion is worthless to me. So long as they're throwing information at me, I'm benfitting from the exchange, y'know?

Anyway, that's my rant.

Interesting. I'm pretty unfamiliar with Virginia's blogosphere, even though Sandbridge (the southern end of Virginia Beach) is one of my favorite places.

The questions I really wanted answered about the DPW deal was (1) how this commercial contract directly impaired our national security, given that Customs & the Coast Guard still controlled ALL Ports security, (2) why we alientated one of less than 10 nations around the world we had a trade SURPLUS with (the UAE just bought $8 BILLION worth of Boeing F-16s) and (3) specifically from folks like Blue - "What evidence exists that supports the "UAE is our enemy" POV?

Unfortunately, none of those questions has really ever been answered. The last one probably can't be answered, as I don't believe that ANY such evidence exists.

But what good is evidence, if it gets in the way of what you're trying to argue, JMK?

It does make for more lively discussions though, doesn't it?

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