This has to be the most upsetting news after Sept 11:
United Arab Emirates company to oversee six U.S. ports
WASHINGTON (AP) —A company in the United Arab Emirates is poised to take over significant operations at six American ports as part of a corporate sale, leaving a country with ties to the Sept. 11 hijackers with influence over a maritime industry considered vulnerable to terrorism.
The Bush administration considers the UAE an important ally in the fight against terrorism since the suicide hijackings and is not objecting to Dubai Ports World’s purchase of London-based Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co. The $6.8 billion sale is expected to be approved Monday.
The British company is the fourth largest ports company in the world, and its sale would affect commercial U.S. port operations in New York, New Jersey, Baltimore, New Orleans, Miami and Philadelphia.
Critics of the proposed purchase said a port operator complicit in smuggling or terrorism could manipulate manifests and other records to frustrate Homeland Security’s already limited scrutiny of shipping containers and slip contraband past U.S. Customs inspectors.
Shipping experts noted that many of the world’s largest port companies are not based in the United States, and they pointed to DP World’s strong economic interest in operating ports securely and efficiently.
DP World said it won approval from a secretive U.S. government panel that considers security risks of foreign companies buying or investing in American industry.
The U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which could have recommended that President Bush block the purchase, includes representatives from the departments of Treasury, Defense, Justice, Commerce, State and Homeland Security.
The State Department describes the UAE as a vital partner in the fight against terrorism. But the UAE, a loose federation of seven emirates on the Saudi peninsula, was an important operational and financial base for the hijackers who carried out the attacks against New York and Washington, the FBI concluded.
Feathers: If americans really think they are safe with a UAE company taken over ports, then I have to say they know nothing about the arab culture. Not to say thay they are all terrorist at all but as the article mentioned, there is a lot of money financing terrorism in the arab world. This is a total screw up from the Bush administration.
What is wrong with the Bush administration and his homeland security program? I can do a better job myself. Now if somebody can appoint me I will solve this problem ASAP.