You never would’ve guessed it from the Democrats’ behavior in recent years. After 9/11, the nation was unified for just over 2 weeks. Today, partisanship is tearing the US political system apart. If anyone among you doesn’t believe that, I offer up “Cheney-gate” as exhibit 1, and officially close the case. When a vice-presidential hunting accident carries the headlines for an entire week, with conspiracy theories coming even from Democratic Congressmen, you know we have a problem.
But now I actually find myself in a rather akward position…I’m actually agreeing with the Democrats. It becomes more akward still when Hillary Clinton is the Democrat in question. However, on the issue of the operations of 6 major US ports being taken over by a company run out of the United Arab Emirates, I have to agree with anyone who is against it. Time Magazine recently put out a rather disengenuous article criticizing opposition to the port deal on the basis that the opposition stems from the fact that one of the 9/11 hijackers was born there, and that several of the hijackers passed through the UAE on their way to the US. The Time article, however, conveniently leaves out the fact that several banks in Dubai were used to route money used for the 9/11 hijackers. The UAE has only become a friend to the US in very recent years (post 9/11), probably because they (unlike Saddam Hussein), realized that if they didn’t play very, very nice, they would be bombed back to the stone age. However, the fact that they’ve been friendly doesn’t establish a basis to trust them with our ports, unless we can, at the very least, establish beyond a resonable doubt that the Dubai Ports World (the company taking ownership of the ports) has absolutely no ties to any terrorist organization…but the fact that they are centralized in Dubai is enough of a link to say that they shouldn’t be trusted with such a key national security issue as monitoring what comes in and out of the US through our ports.
My question is, where is the US in all of this? Here’s my point: Dubai Ports World is taking control of the ports because it is buying out P&O, the company that used to control the ports…a British company. Why are we outsourcing our ports? Why can’t the US take care of its own national security? I would want a UAE company taking control of our ports just as much as I’d want Britain, China, Russia, Australia, or any other nation controling such a vital national security concern. Bill Frist says that he has no objection to outsourcing control over our ports…he just wants the company controlling the ports to make sense from a national security standpoint. With all due respect to Senator Frist…you must be insane. Only US control makes sense from a national security standpoint…and that’s just common sense.
But from a purely political perspective, the current debate over this takeover of our ports is almost laughable. Democratic Senators have been actively working to against US national security for years now. 9/11 shook everyone to the core, and in its wake, politicians in Washington stood together and said, “Enough is enough.” They authorized the war in Afghanistan, so that we could strike at the heart of Al-Qaida. They passed the Patriot Act so that our government could effectively stop terrorists within the US before they could attack. Then, President Bush decided to take the War on Terror to the next level by attacking Iraq and taking out Saddam Hussein, and it was like an epidemic of ADHD broke out among Democrats across the US. Suddenly, Bush=Hitler, with the Patriot Act turning the FBI into the Gestapo, and GTMO became a concentration camp. These Democratic Senators have shown such concern for the terrorists who have been trying to kill our soldiers (and succeeding all too often) that they actually want foreign terrorists to recieve protection under the Bill of Rights!!!!!
I don’t know what planet these Senators (such as Dick Durbin and Chuck Schumer) are living on, but the last time I checked, the US Constitution only applied to US citizens…but these Congressmen denied that we had an enemy and alleged that we were illegally detaining these ‘insurgents’ or ‘enemy combatants’ (because Heaven forbid we call them what they are: TERRORISTS), and that they are entitiled to ‘due process under the law.’ Guess what? I’m entitled to due process. So are most of the people that I know. Do you want to know why? Because we’re all US citizens!!!! These Congressmen have acted as though we have no terrorist enemies, blocking the President at every turn as he tries to make America secure…and now, all of a sudden, guess what? We have an enemy! Who’d a thunk it?
From the administration’s perspective, this port deal is one of two things: either it’s a monumental screw-up, or it’s a brilliant political maneuver (or it could be a monumental screw-up that could become a brilliant political maneuver). Either way, it’s outed the Democrats for what they are: partisan political hacks. Ever since the first bomb dropped in Iraq, they’ve acted as though we have no enemies. Harry Reid, Democratic Senate Minority Leader, was even gloating that “we killed the Patriot Act” back in December when the Democrats filibustered its extension, even though it is that Act that gives our government the tools to “connect the dots” to prevent future terrorist attacks, something the administration didn’t (and couldn’t) do prior to 9/11. The Dems have repeatedly come out against racial profiling, yet they are now profiling Dubai Port World because it is centered in an Arab nation.
If there was ever any doubt as to whether Dibai Port World’s takeover of our ports was a bad idea, confirmation came in yesterday, when Jimmy Carter came out and said that he saw nothing wrong with it. This was a bit of a surprise, coming from Carter, who has publicly opposed President Bush on pretty much everything (something former presidents just don’t do if they have any class at all…but who said Carter & Clinton have class?). A good way to measure whether it’s a good idea: if Jimmy Carter is for it, run for the hills.