February 17, 2006, - 11:43 am
By Debbie Schlussel
While everyone is justifiably outraged by America’s relinquishment of six major ports to a Dubaian company, Dubai Ports (also, called DP World), the real outrage should be this:
Where was the outrage in the last 4.5 years? Why has our country continued to maintain great relations with the governments of Dubai and its larger federation of emirates, the United Arab Emirates? Since we’ve never disciplined or even scolded either Dubai or the larger UAE, they have been free to operate as usual.
And we’ve never treated or recognized both as anything but allies. It’s hard to let this fester for years, and then one day say to a party we pretend is our friend: hey, you are our enemy and always have been. That should have been what we were saying ever since 9/11 . . . and probably well before that date.
I’ve been screaming (in writing) about this for years. But no-one listened.
In 2002, at the time of the Kentucky Derby, I wrote this about Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum. Dubai, which is one of the seven United Arab Emirates (UAE).
At the time he did not rule Dubai, but now he does (since the death of his brother Sheikh Maktoum on January 4th). Here is an excerpt from what I wrote:
Al-Maktoum, Defense Minister of the United Arab Emirates, is also Crown Prince of Dubai-an Arab Muslim country that strongly supported and recognized Afghanistan’s Taliban, one of only three countries to do so. According to “From the Desert to the Derby,” by Jason Levin, 10 of the 19 September 11th hijackers carried documents and identification from Dubai, a country which also has no laws against money-laundering. Why? Maybe, because money to fund September 11th’s terrorism was laundered to ringleader Mohammed Atta, directly from Dubai’s banks.
Like most Arab leaders, Al-Maktoum gives only lip service to condemning terrorism, while his country sponsors, aids, and abets it. On September 11th, he was spending billions on high-priced yearlings at Keeneland in Lexington, Kentucky. After claiming, “We are 100% against it and 100% with America to get those people to justice,” he was busy spending millions, again, on September 12th-spending $6.1 million on two horses. As for the money from September 11th traced back to Dubai, Al-Maktoum will only say, “It’s been taken care of.” Whatever that means–ie., nothing.
And there’s more on the larger UAE, which unfortunately has a good friend in a certain President’s brother.
Stay tuned for a longer piece on all of this.
Tags: Afghanistan, America, certain President, Crown Prince, Defense Minister, Defense Minister of the United Arab Emirates, Derby, Dubai, Jason Levin, Kentucky, Lexington, Mohammed Atta, Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, Taliban, UAE, United Arab Emirates, USD