I'm still trying to figure out how it is that security justifies tapping the phones of Americans, but security does not lead the President to pause before handing over control of six major American ports to a state with a checkered history on terrorism. My quandary has nothing to do with racism, bigotry, or prejudice. I wouldn't be happy with the State of Israel controlling American ports with their recent track record and some of the bedfellows they make in the region. If IRA terrorists declared war on America, Ireland would also be a bad choice. If we're going to outsource our ports, can't we find someone a little more neutral, someone with a cleaner record? Better yet, why outsource at all? We should come up with the tax money to nationalize our ports so that the U.S. government has strict control over what comes in and goes out of our currently porous shipping lanes.
According to the AP, the bipartisan congressional resistance to President Bush's veto threat is not the only backlash. Resistance is also getting organized at the local level at the ports affected:
New Jersey's governor, Jon S. Corzine, said Tuesday the state will file lawsuits in federal and state courts opposing the agreement. Corzine, a Democrat, cited a "deep, deep feeling that this is the wrong direction for our nation to take."According to the Telegraph:
A company at the Port of Miami, a subsidiary of Eller & Company Inc., sued last week to block the deal in a Florida state court. It said that under the sale, it will become an "involuntary partner" with Dubai's government and it may seek more than $10 million in damages.
Governor George Pataki of New York and his Maryland counterpart have asked the courts to "explore all legal options", raising the possibility they may seek court approval to void contracts if the deal goes ahead.According to the New York Times, the Mayor of New York City also waded into the fray in order to try to stop the deal from going through next week:
"We have not received the necessary assurances regarding security concerns," [Michael] Bloomberg wrote in a letter to the president on Tuesday evening. He said he was joining New York's two Democratic senators, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Charles E. Schumer, in calling for a 45-day investigation of the deal under a federal law that governs the review of foreign investments.American security is not the only issue at stake in this fight. Cities like New York, Baltimore, New Orleans, and Miami are going to be on the front lines of terrorist attempts on our ports. Local leaders, Republicans and Democrats, should be duly alarmed.