Sunday, September 17, 2006
Slave trading Arab shieks
The Ruler of Dubai Sheik Mohammad bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, has been accused of enslaving young children and force them to work is camel jockeys in Dubai.
The Associated Press reported Thursday September 14 that the lawsuit filed in Florida accuses the sheik and his brother Hamdan as well as others in Dubai royal family of kidnapping young boys mostly from poor and ruler areas in Pakistan and Bangladesh and force them to work as Camel jockeys. A very popular sport in this country.
Sheik Mohammad, or “Sheik Mo” as he is affectionately known is one of the richest people in the world and also known for his horse racing and owning some the best thoroughbreds in the world and for his stables and horse Farms in Kentucky and Florida.
In addition to his camel and horse racing activities, Sheik Mohammed Al-Maktoum is the Ruler ( or the Owner if you will) of Dubai which is one of the seven Emirates ( or city-states) that comprise the United Arab Emirates and also the Vice president and Prime minister of the UAE.
( self portrait of a camel)
Ansar Burney who documented the abuse and slavery of these children in an award wining documentary on HBO in 2004 has helped many of those kidnapped children some of whom were as young as 3 years old by taking them back to their countries and their families. (click to watch the video)
http://www.ansarburney.org/videolinks/video-hbo1.html (part one)
http://www.ansarburney.org/videolinks/video-hbo2.html ( part two)
The documentary shows how crazy the sheiks are about their camels. The camels for instance enjoy the finest medical facilities and have their own camel hospitals, have world class trainers and exercise equipments, eat the best and finest food, enjoy the luxury of Olympic size swimming pools. in short those camels live better life than 95% of the world population.
On the other hand, the young boys were kept in cramped dirty quarters that look more like prison camps than housing units,according to the documentary. The boys were also starved to stay under weight so they can jockey the camels and some were sexually abused and mistreated. Others were simply killed or trampled on by the camels.
According to reports Sheik Mohammad was shocked to have been served court papers while attending a horse show in Lexington,Kentucky last week where he was reported to have spent over 30 million dollars.( what's a 30 million! its nothing! )
The lawsuit which seeks class action status,demands compensation for over 30,000 children it claims were abducted, abused and enslaved by the sheiks over the years.
As a result of international pressure, however, and the ripple effects of Mr. Burney documentary the UAE and Qatar have placed a ban on the practice of using young boys as camel jockeys, in 2002,and thus placed a minimum age of 15 to jockey the camels. yet many reports however indicate that the practice is still wide spread and the law is on paper only.
Like other countries in the gulf, Dubai and its rulers have a money glut, they accumulated astronomical wealth and untold billions from selling off the national treasures of their countries. A lot of these billions are spent on buying camels, horses, women,slaves, and every vanity a man could think of.
In addition to owning hundreds of camels, horses, cars, planes, Sheik Mohamed also owns reportedly four wives, and 16 children, 7 boys and nine girls .The latest wife was Princess Haya of Jordan, daughter of the late King Hussein, who married him in 2004.
( Princess Haya, and slave trader his royal highness Sheik Mohamad Al-Maktoum)
Princess Haya, herself a horseracing enthusiast and has participated in several world championships and addition to these activities; Princess Haya is a good will ambassador of the United Nations and campaigns against Child abuse according to her web site. www.princesshaya.net
(a child camel jocky is begging for water)
The Visionary :
Sheik Mohammad is also an author, he has written a book called “ My vision” which is about his plans and vision of development and business. According to the sheik's web site, his book "My Vision" is “one of the most important books to be published in the Middle East in the past 50 years” !
The lawsuit could be a major hurdle for the sheik because he is the vice president of the UAE, the prime minister and the ruler of Dubai, among many other things.
I am just not sure where does sheik "Mo" find the time to do the work of Vice president, Prime minister, and a ruler of Dubai or the time to sit and reflect to write a book called “ My Vision” while he is busy camel racing, slave trading, horse racing, attending horse shows, and also a real estate developer developing super expensive real estates in Dubai and also had the time to have 16 children too!
(Frankly I am a little confused as to how to address the Sheik, should I address him as Sheik Mo, Mr. Vice president, Mr. Prime Minister, Mr. Ruler, Mr.Sheik, your honor, your majesty, your Royal highness, or Mr. Slave trader, child abuser , or perhaps I should just call him Superman)Please email me your suggestions.
like his farms or stables, Dubai for all intents and purposes is more or less a one big farm or stable for the Sheik. The population is 65% Indian, and for sure it feels like you are in India if you ever go there ( I never have) they basically run the country, while the sheiks are left to enjoy their camels, horses and women they keep in their stables and palaces.
Commenting on this observation, Ray Hanania, a stand up comedian and my co-host on Counter Point talk show in Chicago, said when introduced on the stage in Dubai:” I love being in India, I always wanted to go to India, but where is Taj-Mahal”!!
He also told me that the Indians in Dubai live in a “ ghetto” , but that ghetto he said is like “ Orland Park” a very rich suburb of Chicago that has million dollar homes! Hindi is the number language there, not Arabic!
It is amazing how wealth and money glut has transformed the gulf and its people, some for the better and some for the worst.
Though I am sure that there are well-meaning wealthy gulfian Arabs somwhere, however all what we hear about in the western press is of this princess or that princes either enslaving their servants or their extravagant spending habits and thier playboy life style and outlandish behavior.
I am not revealing a secret when I say that rest of the Arab peoples in the Arab world resent such behavior of these slave traders, sheiks & Sheikas. They have become a national embarrassment for their stupid adventures and their immoral behavior.
The Archduke conferring with his court about horses matter ( who has time to run a country!)
Arab gulfies often treat other Arabs with contempt and with a sense of superiority, because they feel that they don’t have to work or do anything, they simply contend that they can hire ( or perhaps buy! )other Arabs, Indians, south east Asians to do basically everything for them. This has evolved to become a national culture in the gulf, in which the idea of “ work” has become a demeaning lowly concept, while the feelings of being a Kuwaiti, or Saudi, or Emaratian for example is more or less akin to the feelings of belonging to the Aryan race in Nazi Germany.
Though there is no such thing, in general terms as the Kuwaiti, Emaratian or Saudi, heritage, culture, language or any aspect of uniqueness that separate gulfic Arabs from the rest of the Arab family.
Bill Gates, the richest man in the world created Bill and Melinda Gate foundation worth over 25 Billion dollars to help the children and poor people of the world get better health and better education, Billionaire Warren Buffet joined them in their foundation and put his money in to double the effort.
Ted Turner too dedicated a Billion dollar to UN to help under develop countries fight poverty.
Bill Gate, Warren Buffet, and Ted Turner to name a few noble men who use their wealth in noble causes to alleviate poverty and improve the lives of millions of people.
Where is Maktoum’s foundation, or the Walid Bin Talal (A Saudi royal-Billionaire) foundation to help the poor, or the children in the Arab world or in Africa or any where in the world!
The sense of philanthropy, charity and good well, seems to be an alien and strange concept to the Sheiks of whom i am speaking about on here. Why? I don’t know.
But it seems perfectly fine for them, or even rational, to provide their camels with great swimming pools and feed them the finest food, give them the best exercise facilities while at the same time abduct small boys, enslave them, tie them up on a camel back then sit and watch them with a complete sense of sadistic satisfaction.!