12 March, 2006

How The US Media Picture The UAE?

Dubai Ports Cartoons (1)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (2)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (3)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (4)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (5)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (6)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (7)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (8)

Dubai Ports Cartoons (9)

This is how the US media picture the United Arab Emirates. It doesn't matter what the UAE does, it will always be viewed as a terrorist country in the eyes of the US media.

18 comments:

fabio prado said...

Dear Fahad

The same artist(Lalo Alcaraz) that made one of those also made
THIS ONE

That's the point. It's cartoons.

Regards.

P.S. - He's Mexican

black belt 1st dan,shotokan! said...

it only means that you really can't always get what you want! but hey, u have essex house hotel in new york!

Tim Newman said...

And likewise, no matter what the US does it will be lambasted by the Arab world on a daily basis for a multitude of sins ranging from oppression and torture of Muslims to war crimes to state terrorism.

A big PR effort is needed on both sides, not just one. See here.

John B. Chilton said...

Dear Fahad:

Great job compiling all of these.

As an American, these cartoons make me very sad indeed. They display a massive degree of ignorance and racism on the part of the cartoonists, their editors, and most likely most of their readership.

John B. Chilton
American living in Sharjah

secretdubai said...

Why do the "ay-rabs" all look like Bluto out of Popeye?

Anonymous said...

No the UAE can do quite a bit. I would suggest a public realtions campaign. Most Americans would be shocked that Dubai looks like Singapore. Please do not get dihearten. A crisis like this can be used for something positive. Trust me there are a million factors going on here politically that have nothing to do with the UAE. Try to stay positive work is beginning to correct what happen as to perception
james hood
catholiclouisiana@yahoo.com

Richard said...

You should know that not every American feels this way. 20% of us supported the port deal. And in the blogosphere there were liberals (like me) and conservatives who wrote constantly about how horrible this was.

I've rarely been so embarrassed to be an American as I have the past 2 wks.

Fahad Al Mahmood said...

fabio, thanks for the link ... nice one!

Time Newman, you are absolutely correct ... it seems like the media on both sides are only fueling the tension .... certainly they are not making things easy for politicians and businessmen ...

Well John b. Chilton, like I said ... I'm talking about the US media and not the American people. I know many Americans I work with who do not approve the way the US media dealing with the Dubai Ports' deal and the UAE. I have nothing against the American people ... we cannot put all Americans in one category ...

Richard & James Hood, I believe you are correct ... again we are back to the media ... the media on both sides are big factors in not showing the true picture of the real situation.

El Tel said...

Dear All

It's not just the media ..cartoons are just an eye-catching way to transmit a message - one that tends to stick in the mind more easily (contoversy makes headlines.. sells papers remember) ..what is worrying is the 'grassroots' level of oppostion to the DPWorld-P&O deal... are we now to understand that 80% of Americans think that 100% of Arabs are potential terrorists? Can the media play any part in correcting this? P&O, a British-owned company (Britain having produced it's own far higher number of home-grown terrorists - see IRA & London bombings) seems to escaped the attention of US media.. by inference, all Brits (myself included) are therefore terror suspects?
The world needs to remember this episode for the next time the US flexes its' econimic & military muscles. Globalisation ; it ain't a one-way street

John B. Chilton said...

I'm part of the 20%. I believe that many of the 80% cannot be absolved of responsibility for their views by shifting the blame to the media. The media ain't that powerful. We human beings still have free agency and responsibility for our actions.

That said, many of the 80% are not racists and simply have profound concerns that they want addressed. But that group is well aware these cartoons are racist and their failure to speak out loudly enough and say "shame" is their failure.

I am very pleased to see American visitors joining this thread and speaking out in support of Dubai.

Lincoln Madison said...

Most of the American media share the view of most Americans about the UAE: "Huh? The United what?? Where's that?" Most Americans would be hard-pressed to find the United States on a map of North America.

Also, the Bush administration has spent so much time since NINE ELEVEN CHANGED EVERYTHING promoting an atmosphere of fear — fear of Iraq, especially, but fear of all Muslims and all Arabs generally — in order to justify its repression of its own citizens and war and torture against others, that it is incomprehensible that the Bushies didn't see how that fear would boomerang against this deal.

Issues such as actual port security (which is pathetically inadequate, ultimately run by the same clown who was the boss of the boss of FEMA in New Orleans, Homeland Insecurity Secretary Michael Chertoff), actual nuclear threats (like, for example, North Korea), and global warming take a back seat to the real issues, like putting the Christian God back in the classroom and back in the town square, creating massive debt to pay for tax cuts for the wealthiest citizens, and above all, keeping boys from kissing other boys.

I've written two articles about the DP World saga in my blog:
Dubai Ports changes course, 2006-03-11
Ports controversy, 2006-02-24

In particular, I'd like to get some feedback on how badly the translation website mangled my attempts to post something in Ay-rabbic, um, I mean Arabic.

Matt MacLean said...

I'm an American citizen in NYC, am currently completing a master's thesis on the UAE in the 1970s, and have visited the UAE twice, including last month. Needless to say, I'm embarrassed at the failure of the DPW deal and the offensiveness of the cartoons above (although one should note that political cartoonists in the USA mock *everybody*, first and foremost President Bush). I attribute the DPW fiasco to:

1. Election year politics - the Democrats needed an issue for classic demagoguery on national security, since they're generally weak.

2. Bush's blithe failure to educate the US public on the merits of the deal and of the UAE - he tried, but took a "just trust me" attitude at a time when his approval rating is somewhere around Nixon's.

3a. The climate of fear created post-9/11, and blind anti-Arab prejudice (largely on the American Right), and

3b. Blind, universal opposition of the Left to anything Bush supports.
As a result, many who normally oppose racial profiling, Guantanamo, the Iraq War, etc. opposed the DPW deal because they blindly oppose the Bush administration on everything. Their opposition had nothing to do with Dubai or the UAE and everything to do with Bush-hatred so extreme it clouds their judgement.

4. The Dubai government's failure to mount an effective lobbying campaign in Congress; it's unfortunate, but anyone doing sensitive business in the US needs to do this. I hope it's a learning experience.

5. The US media's bizarre reporting on the deal - in mid-February there was hysteria, then suddenly all sorts of reports on how wonderful the UAE is, etc. In fact, I think that the voices of sanity won the media debate in the end - but Congress and the public didn't buy it.

John B. Chilton said...

Thanks to all who are contributing to this thread. Brilliant interaction, brilliant writing present company excepted.

Over at The Emirates Economist
I've assembled some further images to place these cartoons in a larger context.

JBC

David Keymer said...

Dear Fahad:

Thanks for compiling these cartoons. I am an American who has lived and worked in Dubai and who has many friends from the UAE and across the Gulf, they sadden me. I hope that some day America will regain its senses and look at people for what they are and not for what Ameircans fear.

I hope that my Gulf friends and colleagues don't judge my country by the ignorance and fear of many of its citizens.

I'm a loyal citizen but these are rough times for reasonable discourse in my country.

Dave K.

J. Edward Tremlett said...

...

As an American, please accept my apologies for the fact that some of my countrymen are bloody idiots who don't get it.

J

Fahad Al Mahmood said...

David & J. Edward, thank you for your kind words. Like I said, it is the fault of the media and some members of the congress who did not understand what the UAE is. The whole deal was pure business and that's why the UAE backed-off from the deal when it felt that this deal will cause the reputation of the country to be mixed with terrorism. Who knows, if the deal was made and something happens in the future, the UAE will be the first suspect.

I believe at this point of time, it is for the best that the deal did not continue. One day when the US media and the congress start to open their minds and distinguish between friends and enemies .... only that day we will be able to conduct closer businesses with the US.

J. Edward Tremlett said...

I hope that day is soon, friend. I really do.

I still think we should have native companies running our ports and terminals, but a UAE-owned company is as good as any other foreign applicant.

J

Shinto said...

I have nothing to fear from UAE, I have nothing to hate against its government who's trying so hard to be moderate. (but its still not quite there hang just hang on). However the americans have to learn who there true enemies are and what they represent. The enemy of the West are not Arabs, but Orthodox-Muslims. the True muslim who adheirs to the Orthodox Islam (What the west calls fundamental islam is wrong, it is factuall Orthodox Islam, of the living Quran). Americans have more to fear from Iran and the Saudi Royals who constantly stabs americans in the back and there own people! America, learn your enemies. Then your aim would be better. (And that incident with Iraq wouldnt have happend eh?)

And those drawings.. well those are just drawings. Characatures are ment to be provocative. Dont pay any attention to those since they've been happening for years. they are the symbol of free speech and that means free to insult free to judge. Other countries have been doing it. and some have been killed for it. If any you should use that opportunity to open a dialogue. Dont follow what the Orthodox Muslims have been doing towards the Danes. Other countries have depected drawings Muhammed for years (and published) but why weren't they targeted? Denmark is a tiny and a weak country, very easy to bully.

So people let us sit down and think. Ignore people who fabricates Conspiracies, only discuss to people with facts handy and the world will be less unpleasant.

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