The Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States didn't do a mandatory 45-day investigation. CFIUS was so casual that it failed to require Dubai Ports to keep copies of its business records on U.S. soil where they would be subject to orders from U.S. courts, and failed to require the company to designate a U.S. citizen to accommodate U.S. requests.
Those obligations are commonly attached to U.S. approvals of foreign sales.
CFIUS merely asked Dubai Ports to operate our seaports with existing U.S. managers "to the extent possible" and to take "all reasonable steps" to assist the Homeland Security Department.
The UAE has resurrected three has-been politicians to lobby for the port deal: former Republican U.S. Sen. Bob Dole of Kansas; former U.S. Rep. Tom Downey, D-N.Y.; and Carol Browner, President Clinton's head of the Environmental Protection Agency. They have a hard sell.
Former Democratic presidential candidate Gary Hart was plucked from political limbo to sound off on television. He said the deal illustrates "the confluence of the age of terrorism with the age of globalism, and we're just going to have to get used to it."
No, we don't. The American people are ready to ditch globalism and free trade if that means we must acquiesce in a deal made in London to let a Middle Eastern government run our ports in New York, Miami, Newark-Port Elizabeth, Philadelphia, New Orleans, and Baltimore, and exercise some control over the great U.S. Army port at Beaumont, Texas.
Lacking logical arguments, those who back Bush's position try to tar their opponents with smear words such as "racism" and "scaremongering." David Brooks outdid himself in his New York Times column by hurling a torrent of ugly epithets: "xenophobic," "Know Nothing," "nativist," "isolationist," "mass hysteria," "hatemonger," "collective mania," "reactionaries," "panderers," "bogus," "blowhard," "America First brigades," "xenophobic hysteria," and ending up with "garbage."
In a national radio debate in which I participated, the pro-UAE-deal representative's principal argument was that the Arab world would be terribly upset by a cancellation of the deal, and we should be sensitive to their concerns because we all have to live in this world together.
Au contraire. They should be sensitive to U.S. patriotic feelings and quietly withdraw from the deal just as China National Offshore Oil Co. (in the face of U.S. opposition) last year withdrew its $18.5 billion all-cash bid to acquire Unocal, one of America's oldest oil companies.
It's bad news for Republican candidates that Bush has allowed U.S. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., to get to his right on a national security issue.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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