Should I be concerned about the fact that our government is selling the ownership of six US ports to a company based in the United Arab Emirates? (One of the ports is here in Baltimore.) Bush is now distancing himself from the deal and the chairman of the DHS is threatening to veto it all the way up the line, but I don’t know if this is simply political rhetoric or if it’s actually a threat to this country’s security. The ‘Merican in me sez it’s a bad idea, even if I don’t actually believe that our docs would suddenly be swarmed with UAE nationals. However, I’m seriously concerned that we’d sell off control of such important gateways to the country to a foreign-based power with little or no fanfare (or any Congressional hearings…did you hear them talking about it? I sure didn’t). Given the state of sheer panic this Administration likes to keep us at—which is really the only reason I can give for their second term—I’m surprised they tried to end-run this little deal around us, and I wonder who is making money on the deal (and why nobody’s dug up that story yet.)
Update: NPR reports that the current nominee to run the U.S. Maritime Administration, David Sanborn, was a former top official of Dubai Ports World, the overseas company mentioned above. Also, the current Treasury Secretary, John Snow, was a former official of the CSX corporation, who sold their port interests for over a billion dollars, to Dubai Ports World.