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February 28, 2006

It’s business

The current hubbub over the Dubai Ports World acquisition of British-owned Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co. is a lot of empty cargo.

As a frequent traveler to Dubai as a marketing consultant, I am very aware of the general management, organizational and operational philosophies of major companies in the United Arab Emirates.

The vast majority companies I worked with there were managed by American and British senior executives, closely followed by executives from Western Europe, Australia and South Africa. In fact, we used to joke about the hierarchy of management nationality in the largest and most successful companies. It was often a point of pride for the Emirati business houses to boast about their American or British chief executives.

I would be very surprised if the management teams at any of these ports were led by an Emirati national. There might not even be major changes from existing management teams.

If you’re a successful Arab company (like Dubai Ports) from a supportive Arab country (like the U.A.E.), the United States is not open for business.

That’s not the message we want to send to the Arab world’s business community.

Richard F. Thomas Jr.
Kansas City

Comments

Ray Seay

MLS;

I'm certainly not a racist, but that's just another fact that Engineer doesn't know.
Posted by: M. L. Stein |

I could support MLS if that condition was applied to all port operators.
Otherwise;
1. it is a racist affront to Arabs or
2 It is being used for political reasons.
Posted by: Ray Seay | Mar 1, 2006 3:25:56

I was not referring to you but to politicians jumping on this. If the company was German this would not be an issue, so Arabs could see this as anti Arab.

Engineer

M. L. Stein
My definition of ludicrous is "causing laughter because absurd or ridiculous; laughably absurd". That is how I would categroize your suggestion. You usually devote some thought to your Posts. From that prospective it seemed that your statement was likely tounge in cheek. However, it is unclear to me just what you were getting at.
As to your being racist, there was no thought of that in my mind. I am unaware that I suggested that you are.
DPW operating the ports makes it no more likely that "terrorists manage to sneak through the ports and perpetrate another horrible tragedy" than under the present operation. If and when there is another terrorist atttack, the Administration will be called upon to answer for it. However, as I understand a number of postings on this blog, there is no reason to worry. There is none is because all of this terrorist threat stuff is just fear mongering by the Bush Administration.

M. L. Stein

Wow, I'm pleased to read that Engineer found it "difficult to understand" "ludicrous suggestion", etc. Of course it's nonsense but ludicrous implies that you know what ludicrous is.

So what happens if, as people fear (cultivated by the Bush administration), terrorists manage to sneak through the ports and perpetrate another horrible tragedy? Bush gets to dress up and make another speech?

I'm certainly not a racist, but that's just another fact that Engineer doesn't know.

Ray Seay

I could support MLS if that condition was applied to all port operators.

Otherwise;
1. it is a racist affront to Arabs or
2 It is being used for political reasons.

Engineer

As has been amply pointed out DPW will only operate the ports, they will not be in charge of security. The actual workers on the ground at the ports will contiue to be the American union members who currently do the work. jack is not fond of the Bush Administration and admits he enjoys the hubhub, although he knows it has no real significance. M. L. Stein is somewhat more difficult to understand. He known DPW would not operate Port Security yet he suggests they be made entirely responsible for its results. Perhaps by making a ludicrus suggestion he just hopes to add fuel to the flames.

M. L. Stein

All of this sounds good on paper, but there's a difference between the real world and the "paper" world. I would feel a lot better if the DPW executives had some real "skin" in the game.

If all the executives and owners that have any authority or responsibility for these port operations signed a contract binding their fate to any terrorist actions that occurred as a result of their operation, that would satisfy me.

That way, if terrorists or any of their weapons or material came through the ports operated by DPW, all of their assets could be seized and given to the families of those harmed. Furthermore, their lives could be held forfeit for such actions.

Now that's what I call "skin" in the game.

Ray Seay

In the Arab world all this opposition to the deal is going to look like a knee jerk racist reaction against Arabs by American politicians.

"My presumption is, and my belief is, that the president and his secretary of state and the Defense Department and others have adequately cleared the Dubai government organization to manage these ports I don't think there's any particular threat to our security." Pres. Carter

irishguy

Follow the money. Who benefits from this deal?

That's the real issue here.

jack

The problem here is mainly that the Administration has spent so much effort filling the populace with fear.

I really enjoy Bush getting buried under the fear he has worked so hard to create.

 
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