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March 1, 2006
Talk About Triangulation

The Democrats have seized the center stage for opposing the Dubai ports deal, claiming that the questionable decision to approve the transfer of port operations to state-owned Dubai Ports World shows that the Bush administration puts profits ahead of national security. Hillary Clinton in particular has assailed the decision and promised to push legislation to block the deal. Perhaps sje should consult with the man who helped the UAE firm defend the deal ... former President and current husband, Bill Clinton:

Bill Clinton, former US president, advised top officials from Dubai two weeks ago on how to address growing US concerns over the acquisition of five US container terminals by DP World. ...

It came even as his wife, Senator Hillary Clinton, was leading efforts to derail the deal.

Mr Clinton, who this week called the United Arab Emirates a “good ally to America”, advised Dubai’s leaders to propose a 45-day delay to allow for an intensive investigation of the acquisition, according to his spokesman. ...

Mr Clinton’s contact with Dubai on the issue underscores the relationship he has developed with the United Arab Emirates since leaving office. In 2002, he was paid $300,000 (€252,000) to address a summit in Dubai.

While Bill provided tactical advice to Dubai's leadership to help complete the deal, Hillary has actively campaigned to do the exact opposite. Here is the statement on Hillary's Senate web site outlining her stance on the DP World deal:

We thank you for joining the call of lawmakers who are gravely concerned about the Dubai Ports World deal. As you know, unless Congress acts, operations at six major U.S. ports, and other U.S. port facilities, will be turned over to Dubai Ports World, a company owned by the government of the United Arab Emirates, on March 2. This sale will create an unacceptable risk to the security of our ports. We therefore request that emergency legislation we are introducing to ban foreign governments from controlling operations at our ports be slated for immediate consideration when the Senate convenes on February 27. ...

This issue transcends philosophical posturing and partisan bickering – it is about our nation’s security.

What are we to conclude from Bill Clinton's intervention with the emirates? If we are to believe that Hillary is sincere, then we should conclude that Bill Clinton has no clue how to secure the nation; after all, he's provided material support to the emirs in attempting to gain control of the ports. While Hillary and her party excoriated George Bush for accepting the unanimous CFIUS approval of the deal -- the result of a process that Congress approved years ago and has never challenged before -- the previous Democratic president helped engineer the UAE response intended to gain final approval of the transfer.

Democrats wonder why the American electorate doesn't trust them with national security. Talking out of both sides of their mouths and stoking fears just to score a few political points are chief among the reasons for the well-earned distrust. (Hat tip: CQ reader Keemo)

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at March 1, 2006 10:13 PM

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