Could I get your input on this?
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Bush is facing political pressure to block a deal that would give a United Arab Emirates-based company management of six major U.S. seaports.
Two Republican governors -- George Pataki of New York and Robert Ehrlich of Maryland --- have indicated they may try to cancel port lease arrangements, according to The Associated Press.
The deal -- which would affect the ports of New York and New Jersey; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Baltimore, Maryland; Miami, Florida; and New Orleans, Louisiana -- has triggered security concerns among lawmakers and the public.
The Republican chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security said the deal should not go through without a complete investigation.
"I would urge the president to freeze the contract, hold this contract, until a full and thorough and complete investigation can be conducted," said Rep. Peter King of New York.
The Bush administration contends the UAE is a key ally in the war on terror.
Others point out that two of the 9/11 hijackers came from the UAE. Also, most of the hijackers received money channeled through sources in the UAE, according to the Justice Department and the 9/11 commission. (Watch what role the UAE plays in the war on terror -- 1:57)
This month, shareholders of the British-based Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co. (P&O) approved the company's acquisition by Thunder FZE, a subsidiary of Dubai-based Dubai Ports World.
P&O directs commercial operations at the six U.S. ports. The takeover by Dubai Ports World means that it will be in charge of those operations.
Deal called 'by the book'
Administration officials on Monday sought to downplay the deal, saying it was done properly and that it would not jeopardize port security.
Bush was unaware of the deal until he heard reports of the congressional uproar, presidential adviser Dan Bartlett said.
"The process was done by the book," Bartlett said. "If you start deciding these issues in a guilt-by-association method, you will have a situation which has deep and harmful ramifications to the economic interests of this country."
Former President Carter, a frequent critic of the administration, said he doesn't think the deal poses "any particular threat" to security. "I've been to Dubai, and I've seen the remarkable port facilities they have there, perhaps the best in the world," Carter told CNN on Monday.
"My presumption is, and my belief is, that the president and his secretary of state, the Defense Department and others have adequately cleared the Dubai government organization to manage the ports."
A Dubai Ports World spokesman said that the firm has received all the necessary regulatory approvals and that the security systems in place at the ports would only get better under the new management.
"We intend to maintain or enhance current security arrangements, and this is business as usual for the P&O terminals," the spokesman said.
Industry official alleges 'racism'
A port security expert said that fears the agreement would reduce U.S. security are based on "bigotry" against Arabs and that "shameless" politicians are creating an issue they think will resonate with the public.
"This whole notion that Dubai is going to control or set standards for U.S. ports is a canard ... is factually false," said Kim Petersen, head of SeaSecure, a U.S.-based maritime security company, and executive director of the Maritime Security Council, which represents 70 percent of the world's ocean shipping.
Dubai Ports World must abide by the Maritime Transportation Security Act passed by Congress in 2002 and International Ship and Port Facility Security codes enacted in 2004, Petersen said. The U.S. Coast Guard enforces both sets of security measures.
Ridge cites 'legitimate' concerns
Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff defended the deal in appearances on talk shows Sunday. He said federal law required a review of the sale by a committee that includes officials from the Homeland Security, Treasury and Commerce departments, along with the FBI and Pentagon.
"We look at what the issue of the threat is," Chertoff said. "If necessary, we build in conditions or requirements that, for extra security, would have to be met in order to make sure that there isn't a compromise to national security."
Sen. Robert Menendez, D-New Jersey, pounced on Chertoff, already under fire for his agency's response to Hurricane Katrina.
"You can't just simply tell us, 'Trust us,' " Menendez said. "We trusted the government response to Hurricane Katrina -- and the people of the Gulf were largely left on their own."
Menendez has proposed a law prohibiting the sale of operations at U.S. ports to companies owned by international governments, noting 95 percent of cargo reaching American ports is not inspected.
Chertoff's predecessor, Tom Ridge, said that he believes U.S. officials would not jeopardize national security.
Nevertheless, Ridge said, "I think the anxiety and the concern [over the deal] that has been expressed by congressmen and senators and elsewhere is legitimate.
"The bottom line is I think we need a little bit more transparency here."
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Thread: Calling George Wendt!!!!!!!!!!
02-21-2006, 12:48 PM #1
Calling George Wendt!!!!!!!!!!
02-21-2006, 12:59 PM #2
- Join Date
- Apr 2005
- Las Vegas,Nevada
This should get interesting and as the old saying sort of goes "money talks and the rest walks". Well George here's another fine mess.
02-21-2006, 01:03 PM #3
I'm not George but...
I wonder why we couldnt find a management company from within the U.S. ? So who's palm is getting greased in this deal?IAFF-IACOJ PROUD
02-21-2006, 01:13 PM #4So who's palm is getting greased in this deal?
One is Treasury Secretary John Snow, whose agency heads the federal panel that signed off on the $6.8 billion sale of an English company to government-owned Dubai Ports World - giving it control of Manhattan's cruise ship terminal and Newark's container port.
Snow was chairman of the CSX rail firm that sold its own international port operations to DP World for $1.15 billion in 2004, the year after Snow left for President Bush's cabinet.
The other connection is David Sanborn, who runs DP World's European and Latin American operations and was tapped by Bush last month to head the U.S. Maritime Administration.
The ties raised more concerns about the decision to give port control to a company owned by a nation linked to the 9/11 hijackers.
02-21-2006, 02:03 PM #5Originally Posted by E229Lt
Well, isnt that just peachy. Not that Im surprised. What was the name of that company that the Vice-Press worked for or had stock in, the one that got a big contract in Iraq?Fire Marshal/Safety Officer
"No his mind is not for rent, to any god or government"
Success is when skill meets opportunity
Failure is when fantasy meets reality
02-21-2006, 02:12 PM #6
The situation needs to be looked into, but take a look at all the American companies providing security to governements around the world. Should DynCorp give up all of its overseas contracts? How about Wackenhut? We would be up in arms if they were denied work because of politics.
02-21-2006, 03:27 PM #7
The UAE would be security at the ports thus our homeland security would not be securing our ports. Ahhhh the land of opportunity.You need only two tools: WD-40 and duct tape. If it doesn't move and it should, use WD-40. If it moves and shouldn't, use the duct tape.
02-21-2006, 03:55 PM #8What was the name of that company that the Vice-Press worked for or had stock in, the one that got a big contract in Iraq?
02-21-2006, 03:56 PM #9
I think its a great idea. I'm taking my lead here and supporting it because it makes great economic sense.
I'm sure Norm will as well.Politics is like driving. To go forward select "D", to go backward select "R."
02-21-2006, 05:43 PM #10
Originally Posted by MIKEYLIKESIT
- Join Date
- Feb 2001
- Illinois-where pertnear is close enough!
Why don't we just hold the door open while they pack the car with explosives?
That is the dumbest idea to date.
Falls in with "Brownie, you're doin' a helluva job". And I'm a Bush fan.
Remember Bradley Golden (9/25/01)
RIP HOF Robert J. Compton(ENG6511)
02-21-2006, 05:53 PM #11Former President Carter, a frequent critic of the administration, said he doesn't think the deal poses "any particular threat" to security.
Jimmy Carter doesn't see a threat AND agrees with a conservative administration.
Something is very badly wrong!
02-21-2006, 06:06 PM #12
- Join Date
- Nov 1999
If Jimmy Carter does not see anything wrong with this, then it cannot be a good thing.-------------------
"The most mediocre man or woman can suddenly seem dynamic, forceful, and decisive if he or she is mean enough." from "Crazy Bosses"
Genius has its limits, but stupidity is boundless.
02-21-2006, 06:18 PM #13Originally Posted by scfire86
economically speaking, yes it is a very good deal, right up until we get hit with some kind of attack. THey are one of the few countries that recognize Al-Queda as a legitamite group.Do a little dance, make a little rum, Italian Ice! Italian Ice!
Actual lyric: Do a little dance, make a little love, get down tonight, get down tonight.
(KC & The Sunshine Band "Do A Little Dance")
My thoughts are mine alone and do not represent the thoughts of any Organization to which I am affiliated.
02-21-2006, 06:28 PM #14
- Join Date
- Sep 2004
It can't be any worse than selling F-16's to Pakistan.
02-21-2006, 06:40 PM #15
Did I mention the two Texas ports that ship 60% of our military supplies to the middle east. They would be included in the deal.
As for Carter's okay on the deal, this is the same guy who stood by 444 days and only got our hostages released by handing the presidency to Regan.
Last edited by E229Lt; 02-21-2006 at 06:43 PM.
02-21-2006, 07:57 PM #16
Does it really matter? DHS only checks about 5% of the containers entering the country. A dirty bomb could be brought in via a backpack.
Let's let Bush's buddies in Dubai keep making more money.Politics is like driving. To go forward select "D", to go backward select "R."
02-22-2006, 12:05 AM #17
Originally Posted by E229Lt
- Join Date
- Jul 1999
- Flanders, NJ
This is the most reprehensible, ill-conceived and dangerous thing that I have ever seen. I am embarassed by the defense of this idiotic plan by the administration. I am desperately hoping that someone sane will step forward and talk some sense to these people.
Probably not what you expected, huh?
02-22-2006, 02:02 AM #18
Isn't the UAE our allies? Aren't they part of Coalition of the Willing?Politics is like driving. To go forward select "D", to go backward select "R."
02-22-2006, 07:31 AM #19Probably not what you expected, huh?
Defying Republican allies and Democratic foes, President Bush yesterday vowed to veto any attempt to scuttle a deal that would let an Arab nation run key U.S. ports.
Calling the $6.8 billion deal with Dubai Ports World a "private transaction," Bush noted there were no objections when a British firm ran Manhattan's cruise ship terminal, Newark's containerport and ports in four other major cities.
"I really don't understand why it's okay for a British company to operate our ports, but not a company from the Middle East," he said.
I am truly astonished by all of this.
Last edited by E229Lt; 02-22-2006 at 08:24 AM.
02-22-2006, 09:44 AM #20I am truly astonished by all of this.
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