What does Dubai Ports World have in common with CSX, Treasury Secretary John Snow, and the Bush Family? The Carlyle Group is the answer currently gaining ground on the Internet.

What once seemed the propaganda ramblings of none other than “Fahrenheit 911’s” Michael Moore may end up becoming the subject of the Senate’s upcoming investigation into what Washington insiders are beginning to call the “Dubai Debacle.” As reported in the Guardian as early as 2001, Bush ’41 and ’43 have been connected to the Carlyle Group in various ways resulting in substantial compensation to the Bush family from Carlyle Group investments.

Widely discussed is that CSX – the rail and ocean carrier container company – was sold to DP World in 2004 after Treasury Secretary John Snow was no longer CSX’s chief executive officer. What has received far less attention is the transaction announced in December 2002, in which the Carlyle Group acquired a majority stake in CSX for $300 million.

John Snow was sworn-in as secretary of Treasury on Feb. 7, 2003. Then we see that David Sanborn, the U.S. Merchant Maritime Academy graduate who President Bush just nominated to be maritime administrator under Transportation Secretary Mineta was an executive with CSX before he served as DP World’s director of Operations for Europe and Latin America.

Then we find that Dubai International Capital, a private equity investment capital firm that is a wholly owned subsidiary of Dubai Holdings commonly participates in co-investments with the Carlyle Group. Dubai Holdings, like DP World, ends up being owned by the United Arab Emirates government, with ultimate ties to Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the successor currently at the head of Dubai’s royal family.

Even Republican senators are scratching their heads wondering why President Bush has dug in his heals with determination that the DP Worlds deal will go through, even if the first presidential veto of the Bush administration needs to be invoked.

Yet, is the Bush administration really willing to vet before Congress a full “follow the money” investigation that leads ultimately to examination of the Carlyle Group’s many commingled investments with Dubai investment entities that are nothing more than business-front entities for the UAE government? Does the Bush administration really want to go down this trail?

From the sound of recent polls, the American public may demand a full examination. To the average American, the deal still looks like the Bush administration is willing to turn over the operations in 22 U.S. ports stretching from Maine to Florida, and across the Gulf to Texas to a foreign government with proven past ties to terrorists.

Already the conservative wing of the Republican Party is beginning to wonder who George Bush really is. Maybe President Bush is really a “globalist” who truly does value “new world order” international interests over U.S. national security. This perspective is going to add new worry to those of us concerned that the Bush administration has left our southern border with Mexico wide open to illegal immigrants, criminal gangs drugs, and terrorists.

What really is behind the “guest worker” proposal? Could it be that President Bush – despite all his talk about a War on Terrorism to protect America – always had in mind a definition of “America” that stretched from the Arctic Circle to the tip of Argentina? If so, maybe President Bush should have campaigned on that agenda when running for president in 2004. If he had done so, we very much doubt President Bush could possibly have carried Ohio.

 

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