Feb 28 2006
Interestingly enough it appears that many in the UAE were prepared for our failure to discern Arab allies from Arab enemies, and in a very important way are demonstrating to us how we should be addressing the UAE-DPW issue. This is an email fellow blogger Wavemaker (how is apparently on a hiatus from blogging) received from a friend in the UAE on the topic of the UAE response to how the US is ‘responding’ to the false alarms over DPW and ports:
Interesting from this end how the US uproar over the port deal has fomented little controversy. Talking with people here in the office (my company is related to the port operator through Dubai Holding), many see this as an ongoing misunderstanding of the Arab world that must be mutually addressed by both Americans (greater sensitivity to the true character of the region) and by Arab countries by better communicating their culture and character. The problem, they recognize, is a longstanding and persistent lack of communication. September 11th set this process back deep into negative territory, and it will take patience and incremental steps to get away from today’s reactionary cultural assumptions. The people I have met here are decent, smart, capable. Very welcoming to me, as an individual and as an American. Respectful. Open-minded.
It is good to see the UAE is not overreacting to our overreaction to them in a way that would destroy a very important partnership in the Middle East. Another observation from one of my commentors on General Tommy Franks views on the UAE deal:
Why is it Frank Gaffney and Michelle Malkin insist on claiming they know more about the reliability of the United Arab Emirates than Tommy Franks?
More importantly, why is anyone giving more credence to those here behind computer consoles and those who have dealt with the region and The UAE directly? I would not give Michelle more credence, no matter how much I admire her, than my doctor for health advise. Even an unknown doctor with nationally renowned experience. Food for thought.