Sunday, February 26, 2006

It IS about Security

But not the way some people have positioned it. The deal to allow Dubai Ports World to operate port facilities in the US has been debated everywhere. I've read much that I agree with, some that I don't. But I recognize that most people are concerned with our safety, as individuals and as a nation.

So I was glad to read Ollie North's take on the issue in The Freedom Alliance today. He refutes the knee-jerk view that we were talking about a foreign power controlling our security.

Contrary to the canard that “an Arab government will be in charge of security at six of America’s biggest ports,” all security operations will continue to be handled by Customs and Border Protection and the U.S. Coast Guard. DP World, like the British firm before it, will have nothing to do with security operations at the ports in question. But, it’s understandable that casual observers believe there is a security element involved when high-ranking administration officials like Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice say that the port deal "serves our security interests and serves the commercial interest [of the U.S.] as well.''

In fact, not only is this not about losing our security at home, it's about maintaining and gaining security at the source ports:
Like international commercial air travel, port operations do not start at home – they begin abroad and strong, trusted allies are essential to ensure the safety of cargo being loaded onto U.S.-bound ships in port terminals all over the world before it heads for an American port. Lost in all the noise is the fact that Dubai was the first Middle Eastern entity to sign-up for the Container Security Initiative to pre-screen cargo destined for the U.S.

We NEED strong allies in the Middle East and around the globe. We need this deal. Unfortunately, we also need the administration to pay attention, and understand how this whole issue was blown out of proportion. Can we have some dialogue, please??

Go read "Misunderestimated Disconfirmation". I want to hear your thoughts on this.