Saturday, March 11, 2006

The Seattle Times :: Business leaders decry Dubai decision

"It is a victory for the bad guys," said Bill Center, president of the Washington Council on International Trade. "I can't imagine anything Osama (bin Laden) would be happier about."
. . .
On Thursday, The Hill, a newspaper that closely covers Congress, quoted "a source close to the deal" who described members of Dubai's royal family as furious — "They're saying, 'All we've done for you guys, all our purchases, we'll stop it, we'll just yank it,' " the source said.
. . .
Boeing said its orders aren't threatened. "Nothing has been done or said since the ports controversy erupted that would indicate to us that our relationships with customers in the UAE have been damaged," said Boeing spokesman Tim Neale.

And in an interview Thursday in Berlin, Emirates Chief Executive Tim Clark offered reassurance.

"They can be relaxed because the government of Dubai does not have a record of being vindictive," Clark said. "If I go to the sheiks and say I want to buy Boeing, they would never say, "No, you can't buy American because of this.' "

Indeed, Clark asserted the controversy would raise Americans' name recognition of his airline, which flies only to New York. [Currently its only US flight is nonstop Dubai-NYC.*]

"We have a major push into the U.S. coming up," Clark said. "I said to myself before that once the 'Bible Belt' starts talking about Dubai, we've won. And now, from coast to coast, everyone is talking about it. Is there such a thing as bad publicity?"
Purple prose overcomes me: That's a rosy blue-skies attitude that sees the silver lining in the gathering gray clouds. But he's probably right.

Given that the family owns about half of the Bluegrass State, I can appreciate the Bible Belt reference.

*Hillary and Chuck. Note how convenient that it is to fly Dubai and NYC return. Did you ever raise a complaint about it?
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Anonymous Clio said...

Hmm.. Hillary and Chuck? How about all the Republican politicians on this bandwagon? How about the vicious and persistent anti-Muslim rhetoric the Bushies and company have spewed the last five years? John, John, let's be bipartisan: they all sucked.

6:35 PM  

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