By Greg O'Brien, Codfish Press
Let’s say we dumb down the Dubai deal, Mr. Bush. The Democrats are all over you like a polyester suit, the pundits are waxing intellectual, spraying pellets of opinions that would make even Harry Whittington duck, and many Republicans facing re-election fear you just gave away the company store and duplicate keys to those who would ransack it.
The average Joe is nervous as hell, and doesn’t give a camel’s derrière about offending anyone in the Middle East over this.
With apologies to some of history’s most eloquent observers of the world scene (Churchill, Chamberlain and Roosevelt, among them), the slothful “Bluto” Blutarsky of Animal House said it best when he boldly spoke of the ravenous resolve of those who seek to disrupt: “Over? Did you say ‘over’? Nothing is over until we decide it is!”
Nothing in the Middle East, Mr. President, is over until the terrorists—you know, those whackos who grew up a coconut’s toss from the biblical Garden of Eden and stood this country on its stars and stripes Sept. 11, 2001—say it’s over! And for us working stiffs that gets right to the heart of the Dubai deal, a political handshake to permit a company owned by the Dubai royal family in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to operate six American ports with responsibility for hiring security guards, protecting areas under their control and working closely with U.S. Customs and Homeland Security officials.
It’s a gut issue, Mr. President. You don’t have to be a Kennedy School of Government graduate to get it. A little common sense due diligence would help: the Middle East is signing up suicide bombers like we recruited officer training candidates after Pearl Harbor; the inhabitants of this stewpot generally hate our guts—anything goes in this part of the world at home and abroad; and the UAE, however “trustworthy,” has given financial support to al-Queda, was a way station for nuclear material to Libya and Iran, and was one of the few countries to sanction Taliban regime in Afghanistan.
Now tell me again, Mr. President, why the Dubai deal flies?
Oh, yeah, you’re “trying to conduct foreign policy by saying to people of the world, ‘We’ll treat you fairly.’”
Don’t mean to get personal, Mr. President, but tell that to the families of 911 victims. They may not get it, either.
I see in the papers that you have arranged for a cooling off period perhaps bringing the surface temperature on this down to midday range on the planet Mercury. For the sake of us average Joes, let’s just write this one off, Mr. President. I’m reminded of the mantra of another celebrated observer of life, Dragnet’s Joe Friday who often intoned, “Just the facts, Ma’am, just the facts.”
With all due respect, Mr. President, the facts in this case say it’s a dumbhead idea!