Thursday, March 02, 2006

Republican Congressman Asserts "There Was No Real Investigation Conducted" Of Ties Between Dubai Ports World And Al Qaeda

A review of a United Arab Emirates-owned company's plan to take over a portion of operations at key U.S. ports never looked into whether the company had ties to Al Qaeda or other terrorists.

Rep. Peter King (R-NY), chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee and a vocal critic of the planned port transfer, told CNN yesterday that officials from the Homeland Security and Treasury departments told him weeks ago that their 30-day review of the deal did not look into the question of links between Dubai Ports World and Al Qaeda.

King said the officials told him after he asked about investigation into possible terrorist ties: "Congressman, you don't understand, we don't conduct a thorough investigation. We just ask the intel director if there is anything on file, and he said no."

"There was no real investigation conducted during the 30-day period," said King. "I can't emphasize this enough."

That contradicts what White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan said Monday: "The Department of Homeland Security also worked to make sure any national security concerns were addressed."

It also flies in the face of news yesterday that key agencies of the United Arab Emirates may have been infiltrated by Al Qaeda. In the spring of 2002, al Qaeda officials wrote a letter to the UAE government claiming the emirates were “well aware” of the infiltration. The letter, translated by the United States Government, is publicly available on the website of the West Point Combating Terrorism Center.

Perhaps that's why the U.S. Coast Guard, a Homeland Security unit, wrote:"There are many intelligence gaps, concerning the potential for DPW or P&O assets to support terrorist operations, that precludes an overall threat assessment of the potential DPW and P&O Ports merger. The breadth of the intelligence gaps also infer potential unknown threats against a large number of potential vulnerabilities."

Various cabinet undersecretaries have spun that the port transfer was a "routine" matter that no one is "second-guessing." With each passing day, those comments are looking like outright lies. The question is: why?

3 Comments:

Blogger thewaronterrible said...

Excellent post.
My only comment: why doesn't Rep. King's findings of truth receive the same amount of coverage as all those stories of dubious value where Republicans accuse Democrats opposed to the deal of racism, and or those stories otherwise trying desparately to frame the debate into a partisan battle.

7:52 PM  
Blogger Jobe said...

This should be all over the news, and yet, it isn't.

5:29 AM  
Anonymous Quakerfriend said...

Nothing surprises me in the least anymore. And, no one is saying much at all about the fact that DPW also just got a contract to make parts for some of our military tanks and vehicles.

What I want to know is this a done deal on the ports OR are we going to be able to fight this and block it??

4:40 PM  

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