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[RC] Our State Dept UAE Rep - Howard Bramhall

Whoa, there, nellie. Man, just got an acutal human from the State Deptartment to talk with me. I felt like one of the reporters from 60 Minutes. "Off the record," she kept telling me. "Yes, we saw the show, the wording on our site concerning the UAE is over a year old, we will revise it." "Don't break off contact with the UAE," she says. "They are valuable friends."

Her last comment was after I said that we do business with them and some of us (maybe it's just me, Kim, Jerry, Randy, Barney, etc.) want to break off interaction with them altogether, "No, don't do that," she says. "That would not be a good thing to do."

Priceless, absolutely priceless. She kept telling me how busy she was, that she had to go, that this was off the record (I wasn't recording), etc. She seemed quite nervous. Imagine me, little ole me (OK, I'm not that little) intimidating anyone from the State Dept on the telephone. I will admit, she thought I was a reporter (aren't I, kinda, sorta?).

The report that the State Department has currently on the UAE is over a year old. She did tell me that. Also, they were going to revise it, they were talking to the UAE about this "situation", she was familiar with the HBO show. Even knew the guy's name who gave the interview, from the State Department, on the show, when I mentioned it. I said, "I have his name here somewhere in
my notes...." and, immediately she stated his name.

"Can you tell me whether or not the camel jockey slave trade exists in the UAE?" I asked her. She hesitated. Told me she could not confirm or deny that it exists. "Is the HBO show a hoax of some sort?" I asked. She told me they (the State Dept) were looking into it and, off the record, that the
film on the show did have some merit.

Then I mentioned Ansar Burney. She know of him. I told her that Mr. Burney stated that all of the Sheikhs who make up the UAE government are involved in this trade. "Is that true," I aske her. She told me that the State Dept did not think that it was. "How many of them are involved?" I asked. She told me somewhere inbetween the number mentioned on HBO (1, although more were implied) and the number Mr. Burney gave (all of them).

I kept her on the line much longer than she wanted. She didn't hang up on me but I could tell she wanted to. Please call her. This would all be quite fun except for the fact that this is such a serious topic. I did ask her if the allegations were true, if this was not a violation of International law? "Not familiar with that aspect of International law," she says, "Gotta go, thanks, Howard."

Here's the number again. 202-647-6572. You gotta call her. Keep calling. She answers the phone when she's there, evidently, but won't return your message if you leave one. At least that's my experience. Tell her Howard sent you.

Howard (you'd think they'd be less nervous since our election's now out of the way)


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