Smash at Indepundit writes a revealing post, Don’t Dump on Dubai, about his own personal experience as a U.S. Navy ports security officer who’s served in the Mideast and visited UAE often. I think he brings a perspective to the debate about the ports deal which no one who opposes the deal brings. He’s been there (Dubai). He knows port security. He knows how to fight terror and maintain naval security in the Mideast (and at home). Here’s what Smash has to say:
[Dubai] is a frequent port of call for U.S. Navy ships, from the smallest frigates to the gargantuan nuclear aircraft carriers.
Am I concerned about Dubai Ports World taking over the franchise to operate certain ports in America? Not at all. And neither should you be. The same union employees will still be running the cranes and forklifts, and the same Coast Guard and Customs officials will still be running the port security.
I’ve been there eight times. The Dubai ports are clean, safe, and efficiently run. The U.S. Navy runs its own port security operation when our ships are in port, in cooperation with the UAE military. I’ve worked port security in high-threat environments, most notably for eight months in Kuwait during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Port operations has very little to do with port security. They do talk to each other, but mostly about shipping schedules. Port operations are about operating cranes and forklifts. Port security is about patrolling the land and water, and inspecting cargo. The difference is not trivial.
I am concerned, however, by the knee-jerk, anti-Arab reaction of certain pundits and politicians on both the Right and the Left. You know who you are. I’m sure you’re not racists, but then again, I didn’t hear any of you complaining when the British were running those same ports.
Regardless of how you might feel about the ports deal, please don’t dump on Dubai. They are our friends – and when you treat our friends this way, you only end up helping our enemies. If Americans can’t learn the difference between Dubai and Damascus, we don’t stand a snowball’s chance in the desert of defeating Islamic terrorism.
So whadaya think about that, Senators Schumer and Frist? What do you know that Smash doesn’t probably know ten times better on this subject? It just makes me sick when pols run their mouths to make political hay while honest, hard-working soldiers like Smash really talk the talk and walk the walk. And that goes for the rest of you opposed to the Dubai ports deal. Instead of fixing your wagon to the latest anti-UAE terror myth spouted by sources like the New York Post, why don’t you listen to alternative voices that really know what they’re talking about like Smash?
Hat tip to Pineapple Juice who discovered Smash’s post at The Moderate Voice.
So whadaya think about that, Senators Schumer and Frist?
They don’t care, especially the Democrats who are scoring big political points on this issue by playing on the fears of a large majority of the public.
Pelosi was having a field day yesterday first accusing DPW of not having any female officers (which was wrong), then accusing them of anti-semiticsm (Arab/Israeli issues need to be addressed but are irrelevant to this issue) and accusing the UAE of ‘treating their women poorly’ a claim which seems to completely unsubstatiated based on everything I know about the UAE (I have an aunt and 2 cousins who lived in Abu Dhabi for a considerable amount of time).. Clearly she is basing this statement on stereotypes of Arab countries than actual knowledge.
The worst part of this is the people I used to look to for a voice of reason have been just as hysterical as the other side. We’re living in a country where fear has become the overwhelming motivation, and excuse, for any and all sorts of behvoir. I can’t see our demise being too far away if we continue down this path.