2006_02_portelizabeth.jpgThe storm brewing around allowing a United Arab Emirates-owned company manage ports in major US cities, including New York, Miami and Baltimore, is reaching a fever pitch, with President Bush saying he'll veto any attempts to block the deal. This after even his own party's leaders in the Senate and House are dubious (dare we say, dubai-ous?) about whether or not the deal would allow for national security. In a slick, Karl Rove move, Bush claims that politicians opposing him are biased and ignoring the fact that the UAE is now an ally in fighting the war against terror; the opponent do keep brining up the pesky fact that much of the money that funded September 11 terror came from UAE banks. The big question is, will the President veto a law drawn up in the interest of national security?

For the city perspective, Mayor Bloomberg is saying that if the deal goes through for Dubai Ports World to takeover P&O Ports' domains, then the city might not renew P&O's lease with the city at the NYC Passenger Ship Terminal - aka the cruise terminal on the West Side. AM New York spoke to some people visiting Ground Zero who had mixed opinions about the deal, but the local papers seem to be anti-UAE-port: The NY Times, Daily News, NY Post and the Observer find the port deal bewildering (though the opposition to it might have been slow); the NY Sun questions the motives of the anti-UAE-port crowd, suspecting port union ties.