Democrats & Liberals Archives

Ports of Danger

The Republicans like to claim that they are tough on national security. Oh, really? They have set intelligence gathering on Iran back 10 years with the politically motivated outing of CIA agent Valerie Plame. They have sided with their large corporate donors to keep the flow of cheap labor coming across our borders at the cost of national security. Their idea of spreading democracy to the Middle East, by force, has backfired. Terrorist cells are growing, and terror groups are being democratically elected to lead entire countries. Now, the Bush administration has sold our national security to the United Arab Emirates.

Six of the largest and most important commercial ports around the country are being handed over to a company owned by a country that has been linked to the funding and planning of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Anyone who is concerned with national security should be outraged right now, but instead some have us focusing on "Elmer Fudd's" hunting accident.

The Republicans are selling America right before our eyes. The Republican Congress has sold us out to corporate bidders, and the Bush administration has sold us out to the terrorists we are supposed to be at war with.

The time for the Democrats to act is now. If they want to be seen as tough on national security they will shout this treason from the rooftops and act to block the selling of our national security.

Democrat Senator Robert Menendez, has announced he will introduce legislation that will ban companies owned or controlled by foreign governments from running port operations in the United States. The legislation would block the UAE deal from going forward.

Senator Menendez has picked up the ball, now lets see if the Democrats run with it, or as they usually do, drop the ball.


Posted by JayJay Snow at February 17, 2006 12:38 PM
Comments
Comment #126492

Jay,

You don’t think that Elmer’s “accident” was staged to take the attention away from this, do you? :)

Posted by: Rocky at February 17, 2006 2:48 PM
Comment #126541

Rocky
I dont think companies owned or controlled by foreign governments running port operations in the United States is anything new.
My bet is it has more to do with the wiretapping issue.

Posted by: kctim at February 17, 2006 3:50 PM
Comment #126546

Don’t we all notice that every time these “Keystone Kops” paint themselves into a corner, something of global importance suddenly appears?!?!?!?! Coincidence is pretty regular a-la-Dubya. Like I’ve always heard….”you aren’t really paranoid if THEY really are out to get you”.

Posted by: Sandra Davidson at February 17, 2006 4:01 PM
Comment #126549

I agree 100%
WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL WEEK.
Lou Dobbs from CNN reported this
quit some time ago.
We should be upset and rightly so.
Homeland Security , This War ,
The whole Republican platform
now stands ready to be ripped
from under them. But we need a
new messenger. Sure Hillary or
Howard or Kerry or Gore can
stand behind NEW BLOOD but no one
will hear the message if it comes
from what most consider part of
the same OLD CROWD. We all know
the Republicans are crooked liers.
The problem is the dem leaders are
seen as out of touch do gooders.
Smart does not make you popular.
Maybe thats why we have a loser
in the White House.
I pray it is not to late to save
the Ports. But we have another
BIG ISSUE. We as a nation are so
worried about a terrorist hitting
a area and doing damage. We are
failing to see CHINA has built
up massive armies and hidden nukes.
Also a story on Lou Dobbs CNN.


The Republican Party has become
a CULT with Bush, Fox and Rush
the preferred brand of Kool Aid.

We need a Deprograming Team now.

Posted by: HONEYP at February 17, 2006 4:03 PM
Comment #126550

This is just a type of protectionism and isolationism. Foreign firms operate by the same laws as ours do. Presumabley foreigners are as honest as Americans. Besides, it will be mostly Americans who run the actual operations.

This particular law can be made to sound good, but consider that many foreign firms have some foreign government involvement. We made the same argument to try to keep out Japanese cars and could easily make it against ANY Chinese products.

I believe in free trade and that goes both ways. Xenophobia is a bad thing even when ostensibly for good purposes. Talk about a culture of fear.

Posted by: Jack at February 17, 2006 4:03 PM
Comment #126561

Good article, Snowman.
I’m really glad that Sen. Menendez is making this an issue, and like you, I hope the Dems don’t drop the ball on this. It would be nice to think that this topic will now come to the attention of the public and that their concern will be reflected in the form of calls, letters and e-mails to their Senators and Representatives.

Wanting American ports to be controlled by Americans is not xenophobia, it’s just basic common sense in this age of terrorism.

Posted by: Adrienne at February 17, 2006 4:30 PM
Comment #126569

You say, “…terror groups are being democratically elected to lead entire countries.” True enough but this isn’t a direct out-working of Bush policy. It’s a direct result the land for peace deal offer forcing Israel to surrender their land and the duplicity of terror groups like Hamas that simply would not exist if we stop years of sending aid money to illegimate states like the PA.

You say, “…the Bush administration has sold us out to the terrorists we are supposed to be at war with.” An irresponsible statement and you offer no real proof of your declaration.

You can do better than this tripe.

Posted by: Bill at February 17, 2006 4:53 PM
Comment #126573

I worked for MSAS many years ago, which was a subsidiary of The Ocean Group, which also owned Barber Blue Sea Line, Cathay Pacific Airways, and other assets. It should not surprise anyone that a large international shipping organization has been purchased by a company from a country from which we have purchased oil worth trillion$$ We purchased, now they are purchasing us. Oil dependency is the problem. Drive a hummer, but do not give a hummer, should be our new national motto.

Posted by: ray ohrealy at February 17, 2006 4:57 PM
Comment #126588

The sky is falling….the sky is falling…


Sorry, I just wanted to see what it feels like to be on the left side of the political spectrum.

Posted by: joebagodonuts at February 17, 2006 5:30 PM
Comment #126690

A British company that currently has contracts with these ports is being bought out by an Arab owned company—that’s it.

It was not Bush’s idea or the administration’s idea for this British company to be bought out.

But if you think it’s a bad idea, I’m all ears.

Tell me why these contracts that are already in place should be cancelled?

What do these contracts entail? What duties will this firm have, and how would an abuse of these duties make us more vulnerable to terrorism? Security is the job of the Port Authority, so what will this firm be responsible for? Routine paperwork? Changing the coffee filters? Adminstrative tasks? Janitorial services? What?

Do you have any idea what you’re talking about? I believe that you do not.

1). Or are you just racist against Arabs? Or 2). Are you trying to score political points on an issue you actually know nothing about.

Please explain with specifics.

Posted by: sanger at February 17, 2006 9:52 PM
Comment #126741

I’m confused (or someone is). I read this (at the prompting of a republicn detractor):

#1: Intelligence Summit to Air ‘Saddam’s WMD Tapes’
http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewNation.asp?Page=\Nation\archive\200602\NAT20060215a.html

and then find this:

#2: Saddam Sent WMD to Syria, Former General Alleges
http://www.cnsnews.com/ViewSpecialReports.asp?Page=\SpecialReports\archive\200602\SPE20060202a.html

so I assume the administration must know the WMD’s are now in Syria. Among other reports I read this:

#3: UAE group to invest $530mn in Syria (dated Friday 26 August 2005)
http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/21A68998-D238-447F-8618-1AF78196A7EC.htm

which combined with this:
Any Port In A Storm
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ibd/20060218/bs_ibd_ibd/2006217issues

leads me to believe that Bush wants the “smoking gun” close enough next time to be sure we can find it afterwards. Just ask a hunter if it ain’t easier to find “the smoking gun” when it’s pointed right at ya’.

KansasDem


Posted by: KansasDem at February 17, 2006 11:51 PM
Comment #126742

Honey P,

We need impeachment proceedings to start right now!

KansasDem

Posted by: KansasDem at February 17, 2006 11:56 PM
Comment #126746

I am not convinced this is such a great issue. I am sure if the Dems were in the whitehouse we would be hearing the same thing but I believe we can do better that this. Seems to me the insane level of defense spending for obsolete and dangerious weapon systems that actually take money away from developing and supplying the kinds of forces we need to fight the wars we are likely to be in could be a better issue. example:star wars

Off the thread: I had mentioned the asbestos bailout bill last week. It has been blocked for now on a procedural vote in the Senate. About 9 brave Reps and most Dems held their ground. A small but appreciated victory for working people.

Posted by: BillS at February 18, 2006 12:08 AM
Comment #127409

Lieberman was on ABC this morning claiming that Dubai and the UAE are allies of ours in the war on terror. They are one of those countries that has a monarchy responsible to no one, a small population, many guest workers, and lots of oil. One of their sheiks was visiting with OBL before 9/11, when we were already trying to kill him. That plan did not go forward because they did not want to risk killing the sheik.

Posted by: ray ohrealy at February 19, 2006 12:11 PM
Comment #127475

Repubs are argueing that our ports were already
contracted out. The contract is just being sold.
I ask why then was a committee formed quietly to
give this sale a rubber stamp. Bush himself placed
yet another yes man in charge of this sale. When
Democrates woke up and noticed it many repubs joined
them in the concern. They were told no
it is to late the sale stands. dispite the fact
that the UAE has direct ties to 9/11 and refuse
to take a stand against terrorism. To say the
contract gives them no more than janatorial and
paper work rights is astoundingly dense.
Considering
the inspection rate of cargo entering
our country is unreasonably negligent in normal
conditions. To hand a broken system over to
people with questionable political ties is a
lot like handing your child to a petafile. Handing
a murderer a gun. Handing a terrorist the means
to place a nuke in a heavy populated area where
it will tick away and never be located until it
blows.
DO YOU GET IT.

Fear brings the sheep to the shepard.(Bush and GOP)
The shepard sells the sheep to the slaughter house
for profit. ( UAE )
ALLOWING PORTS TO BE SOLD IS THE SAME THING
JUST BECAUSE BUSH IS TO SIMPLE MINDED TO
MAKE A CONNECTION DOES NOT MEAN WE SHOULD NOT.

Posted by: Honey P at February 19, 2006 3:25 PM
Comment #127875

The UAE is getting a spaceport, see:

http://sg.news.yahoo.com/060219/3/3ysji.html
so I guess they will be able to drop something from space onto any destination on earth. Nice.

Posted by: ohrealy at February 20, 2006 3:46 PM
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