By investing in Dubai, celebrities are giving tacit approval to a hideous society and its obscene values.
By George Patrick
Published October 02, 2008
Faced with rapidly disappearing oil reserves, Dubai, one of the seven United Arab Emirates on the Persian Gulf, has decided to transform itself into one of the great tourist destinations of the world.
One of its strategies is to lure celebrities there. It's working. Already, Tiger Woods, Ernie Els, Vijay Singh, Sergio Garcia, and Colin Montgomerie have all built or are building exclusive new golf courses there.
Greg Norman, the Great White Shark, is building sixty-six luxury homes there. Donald Trump is going to build a hotel. Giorgio Armani will outfit apartments, while Karl Lagerfeld will build luxury homes. Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt have bought one of the artificial islands Dubai is constructing out into Gulf waters.
Roger Federer has made Dubai his second home. The Beckhams vacation there. Manchester United, the biggest soccer club in the world, has a training camp there.
The question is: What in God's name are they doing there? Dubai is a slave society.
Not officially, of course. Dubai outlawed slavery forty-five years ago. Prostitution, too, is supposedly illegal. But beneath the ultra-modern skyscrapers, the luxurious hotels and the glitzy twenty-first century technology lies a primeval morass of squalor and depravity.
Whatever the law may say, there are whole areas of Dubai City given over to dozens of brothels where ten thousand women from Eastern Europe, the Far East, and Sub-Saharan Africa are held as sex slaves.
In a country measuring only forty miles by forty miles and containing only one city, it is farcical to suggest that the brothels and the sex slaves have somehow escaped the notice of the Emir's government.
In his book, A Crime So Monstrous, journalist E. Benjamin Skinner points out that his $16 ticket to get into the Cyclone brothel actually bore the official stamp of the Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce.
Skinner interviewed many of the prostitutes, some of them in their early teens. Most of them, seeking to escape desperate poverty in their homelands, were offered the chance to be smuggled into Dubai with the promise of jobs as maids, etc. Then the snakeheads (people smugglers) sold them to brothels and kept their passports.
Now they were trapped and powerless in a nightmare world. Some Eastern European women were kept in line by threats to murder their families back home.
Other women smuggled into Dubai do get jobs working in households. Again, their employers keep their passports. Again, they are utterly in the power of men who rape and beat them and pay no wages.
Some Dubai married men keep foreign sex slaves in special apartments popularly known as "shag pads." If a desperate captive woman flees, the "owner" - in an echo of the "runaway slave" advertisements in pre-Civil War USA - will run an "absconding servant" advertisement in Dubai newspapers.
Foreign working men, if not exactly enslaved, are the next thing to it. The luxury hotels and apartments of Dubai where the celebrities live pampered lives are built by labourers (mostly from India) who are paid starvation wages - often months in arrears - amidst regular threats of violence.
Then there are the child slaves. Outside the city, there are farms where 6,000 boys, often kidnapped as babies, are held in bondage to serve as jockeys in the immensely popular camel races. They are frequently starved to keep their race weight down.
Protection for these grossly abused fellow humans is nonexistent. They don't seem to be viewed as humans at all. They are mere things to be used and discarded.
This, then, is the purulent society in which Angelina Jolie, Tiger Woods, Donald Trump et al. have chosen to invest their money and their reputations. By so doing they give tacit approval to a hideous society and its obscene values.
Has slavery (like torture and indefinite detention without trial) somehow become OK again? It's not that any of the celebrities mentioned are bad people. Most are probably fairly decent human beings. But we humans have a wonderful ability to avert our eyes from the inconvenient ugliness of life, especially when it conflicts with our own desires and interests.
The moral squalor at the heart of Dubai isn't exactly a secret. It's been well documented. A five minutes' Google of "Dubai" will reveal the truth. The celebs must surely know. Perhaps they tell themselves that, sadly, it's simply the harsh reality of the global free enterprise system.
Some of us make millions sinking putts and advertising Rolex watches; others are just pieces of meat to be sold, raped and rented out as semen receptacles. Sometimes the invisible hand in the marketplace is wielding a blackjack.
But what is happening in Dubai is surely so vile, so manifestly an affront to our dearest values, that one must ask again: What in God's name are they doing there?
By Praksie (anonymous) | Posted October 03, 2008 at 03:11:12
This article is so true of the depths to which Dubai has sunk.
The article does not mention the rampant inflation, skyrocketing rents etc. that force people to borrow heavily. Then they cannot repay. Consequently the suicide rate in Dubai is shooting up.
A recent Gulf News article mentioned that many expats can no longer afford to pay their rents and have sent their families home and are sleeping in cars!!!!!
By livingindubai (anonymous) | Posted October 03, 2008 at 05:26:25
Definition of a 'slave' from Meriam-Webster:
1 : a person held in servitude as the chattel of another
2 : one that is completely subservient to a dominating influence
None of these conditinos apply to *anyone* living in Dubai. People come here for work, this is the promised land where they can make 10 times more than what they would make back in their home countries. No one is forcing anyone to come here. No government or government-affiliated agency goes to countries around the world to take people by force and bring them to work. THAT is how slavery works, and thats exactly what does NOT happen in Dubai.
There are police stations all over the city here where a woman can go to if she absconds from her employer. if she fears the police station (which, by comparing their treatment and professinality with those of Canada where I lived before, are MUCH better), they can go to their country's consulate. there is always a way for someone to get help; its not true to say that once they are in here, they are stuck. The money they make, howevr, is so much that it makes them think twice before escaping.
"In a country measuring only forty miles by forty miles and containing only one city, it is farcical to suggest that the brothels and the sex slaves have somehow escaped the notice of the Emir's government" <==== Dubai is actually much, much bigger than that. and its not a Country, it is an 'emirate'; as in, a province or a state, part of a federal union that contains 6 other Emirates, each operating independantly in some ways, and cooperatively in other. get the basic facts right before you write.
"The article does not mention the rampant inflation, skyrocketing rents etc. that force people to borrow heavily. Then they cannot repay. Consequently the suicide rate in Dubai is shooting up" <=== hahahhaha!!!! If you cannot afford to live in dubai, go back to where you came from! You dont have to suffer, you dont have to commit suicide, u dont have to pay exorbrent rent prices and deal with skyrocketing inflation; just pack up and go home!! submit your resignation from your company, and either you are 1) driven to the airport and given ur passport and a nice End of Service package, or 2) you already have your passport, so all you will need is to get the End of Service package and you are out!!! no pain, no suffering, no slavery, no bs!
By Dubaite (anonymous) | Posted October 03, 2008 at 06:21:28
People come to Dubai on their free will to make a decent living with a promise of a high quality of life. If they don't like it they can leave. Dubai Government is not responsible for the activities of a few immature people who indulge in sex trade and give the city a bad name.
Please come to Dubai with your eyes and ears open, or even better, JUST STAY AT HOME.
By Dubai Resident (anonymous) | Posted October 03, 2008 at 06:26:48
The article has a lot of truth to it. But its just the tip of the iceberg. I hope the foreign media will start questioning the following:
1. Transparency & Accountability: The foreign media should question the the local media, Gulf News, Khaleej times, Emirates 24/7, Al Bayan, Emarat Al Youm, Al Khaleej, Al itihad, all local tv & radio stations never report anything related to violations of basic human rights by Dubai Police. Everything is fake and superficial in Dubai papers. Thats whats going to take Dubai down ultimately because mistakes are covered up and those who raise it are silenced or deported.
There is a special division within the dubai police that arrests individuals and keep them for weeks without any legal grounds and or any rights to have a lawyer. Nobody can complain about their actions because sheikh mohammed has given them the green light to do whatever they like for "Security". The reality is that many of those officers are on the payroll of big business interests, so anyone not so cooperative will be traped and the sheikh will get a report about how they have caught someone who has confessed to a series of corruption charges. Commercial benefits under the umberela of State Security. Unfortunately dubai's growth has been limited to an increase in the concrete and steel blocks. Local Emiratis are fed up of the way the government is doing everything from a coffeeshop chain to drycleaners and multi billion dollar real estate projects.
I believe the sheikhdoms will in a decade or so be wiped out to a more demanding and democratic society. Its sad how money has infected everyone in Dubai from the top to the bottom.
By Another Dubai Resident (anonymous) | Posted October 03, 2008 at 14:53:13
I first came to Dubai fourteen years ago as a dotcom engineer with a foundling company. I continue to represent that company now employing six-hundred people and spend eleven months of every year in residence there and I have seen much progress. I have also seen things that I wish that I hadn't! I make a good living and I am human and wear blinkers! Is there slavery in Dubai? By definition or not I would say Yes! Is there poverty? In the midst of so much wealth the worker's compounds are sites of abject Poverty, unequaled even in other states of the Emeritus where I frequently travel. Are there slave-traders? Yes, they pose as employment agents in agencies which I can honestly say our company shuns. Are the Police corrupt? I can't say but in the midst of so much wealth their salaries are inadequate..so I leave the question open. Are the bad things one hears about living in Dubai true? Yes! Are the good things one hears about living in Dubai true? Yes! To deal with one celebrity, Tiger Woods, who first pooh-pooed the criticism of Human Rights groups who claimed sweat shops in third world countries by continuing to sponsor Nike and when Nike relented Tiger Didn't! I have met him here on four occasions and I am sure that he has heard the slave-labour stories and like everyone else who is making money, like me, just hopes that it isn't true..all of the time knowing that..just maybe.
By Teruyoshi666 (anonymous) | Posted October 06, 2008 at 08:59:39
You say that people come to Dubai on their free will to make a decent living, but while you, yourselves turn a blind eye to the world. Yes, if you can't afford to live in Dubai it is better to leave but it is also ture that many young women cannot leave. Before you go and say those things about "your" very small emirate, you should think about the way the world is...war, death, rap and god knows what else...just get over it. Be an adult for once in your live.
By gaiaspirit (anonymous) | Posted October 06, 2008 at 09:13:07
I agree with Teruyoshi666, there are things going on in the world that no one wishes to know. People are disappearing, those that speak against the government also disappear. Its turning into North Koera. But there are those that will stand up for the ones that can not help themselves. So, I ask you, do you really wish to live in a world that is just like Nort Koera?
By Dubai Resident (anonymous) | Posted October 18, 2008 at 09:47:20
As a long time resident of Dubai, I am sick of the way dubai Police has become a monster towards "selected" nationalities. Labourers, foreign businessmen (non european, US) have absolutely no rights when it comes to a "influential local/company". The western media has a responsibility to open the eyes of the western governments especially since UAE has a review of their file in december 4th United nations where Anwar gergash UAE Foreign Minister will be defending his lies!!
By Dubai Girl (anonymous) | Posted October 18, 2008 at 09:56:01
I salute george for the article on Dubai. Please look into the illegal arrests by dubai police, a section called Amn Al- Dawla (State Security) they have arrested my brother without any charges for over 3 months now. We are not allowed a lawyer & they are forcing him to sign confessions that are absolutely not true. I have written to everyone but nobody wants to get involved because this is a section of the police that is run under sheikh mohammed's command. how can i defend my brother? Please help me, I am not the only case. I am a UAE national with no rights in my own country.
When i called the police chief's office they even threatened me to have more problems if i spoke to media, but i am fed up and I don't care anymore. Please contact dubai police and ask about the illegal prisons of amn al-dawla... please help to create an awareness campaign
By Mel (registered) | Posted October 20, 2008 at 11:36:31
This is a well written article and expresses a justifiable outrage that any morally sane human being would when confronted with the monstrosity that is Dubai. I've lived here for 15 years, and I can testify to everything stated in the article. A telltale sign of the moral vacuum in Dubai is summed up in the argument that is oft repeated by the denizens of this hell hole: The laborers should not complain since they receive even less back home."
As if oppression in one place justifies mistreatment in another.
By Saif (anonymous) | Posted November 22, 2008 at 11:15:22
No matter how the emiraties might be so full of pride,that doesn`t give them the right to deny such truth. I`m happy that Mr George Patrick came with this article.
One thing we must get straight to the point, ur emiratie people might not be facing the these situations, but it`s all the poor foreigners but THEY ARE STILL HUMAN.
Remember that no human is more superior than another unless he/she has more faith in Allah than the other. So take ur pride with u to hell.
By Saif (anonymous) | Posted November 22, 2008 at 13:05:35
No matter how the emiraties might be so full of pride,that doesn`t give them the right to deny such truth. I`m happy that Mr George Patrick came with this article.
One thing we must get straight to the point, ur emiratie people might not be facing the these situations, but it`s all the poor foreigners but THEY ARE STILL HUMAN.
Remember that no human is more superior than another unless he/she has more faith in Allah than the other. So take ur pride with u to hell.
By Boycott Dubai (anonymous) | Posted December 15, 2008 at 20:04:32
I Just came back from Dubai. and I have seen something I wont be able to forget for the rest of my life.
These Animals torture kids like you wouldn't believe.
The basterds think it's O.K to torture Christian girls who wont convert to Islam. so they keep them locked up with no food or water for a long time, and meanwhile these poor girls are not only raped but BURNT.
I've seen one of them with both feel burnt in hot oil. can you even begin to imagine what that would do to a kid? she has lost her mind. you would too!
so it's not just what's obvious ... there is alot of underground torture you wouldn't see at a glance. but it's there. a lot of it. it's there.
the stupid basterds, we'll get them one day.
By UAE National (anonymous) | Posted December 19, 2008 at 11:14:12
As a UAE national with PhD in law I have to admit that Sheikh Mohamed has failed to put in place a transparent judiciary and has concentrated more on self PR by anouncing unrealistic projects and reading clever lines which secures his own ego problem. His family members treat the society like animals... they steal from foreign businessmen, threaten them, and some times using the famous state security even arrests them to reach their commercial goals.
it s sad that sheikh mohammed' s brother in law sheikh hasher maktoum has stolen a multi billin dollar bussiness from a foreign investor just because he is related to sheikh mohammed. We have no human rights here, the judiciary is as corrupt as real estate, finance, immigration.... dubai is crashing
By HUMAN (anonymous) | Posted January 05, 2009 at 02:12:28
This replay is for By livingindubai
Posted 10/3/2008 5:26:25 AM
I THINK YOU ARE A DUMP SLAVE DOG.. WHO IS ALWAYS BARKING FOR HIS OWNER… DAT IS ALL… AND YOU DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THE WORLD..
READ THE NEWS PAPERS AROUND THE WORLD.. NOT ONLY GULF NEWS AND KHALEEJ TIMES.. AND THINK ABOUT THE OTHER HUMANS.. NOT ONLY YOUR SELF..
By Bobby999 (anonymous) | Posted March 12, 2009 at 07:01:49
I find your article slightly offensive.
I live in Dubai
By Daniel Smith (anonymous) | Posted April 07, 2009 at 16:26:52
Bobby, why would anyone give a fuck if you find this article offensive. I'm so fucking sorry you accidentally had to open your eyes to the fact that your wonderful little palace of decadence is built on slave labor and suffering. You're a worthless, pathetic thing who can't bear to know the suffering his entire lifestyle is built on, because then he might have to give up some of his comforts and wealth.
By Praveen (anonymous) | Posted April 13, 2009 at 05:38:24
Fuck dubai and its rulers they fuck their mothers so hard even their children resemble them and media in dubai is censored so many men are explited to work for nothing in construction and women for protitites against their will, I worked in dubai and saw that with my own eyes and have one suggestion for uae people the emiratis.
Send you men to work in the hot sun as labourers and your sisters and wifes and even mothers make them protitutes and earn money as you fucking oil is getting over the world with its new trechnology finding and exploring oil from places it coould not before.
By sam_ (anonymous) | Posted May 04, 2009 at 13:32:41
US SHOULD INVADE DUBAI. TAKE ALL ITS WEALTH, WOMEN AND EVERYTHING THEY HAVE...... ME AS A MUSLIM WILL SUPPORT USA IF THEY INVADE DUBAI... I BETTER SEE DUABI AS PART OF USA THAN AN ARAB COUNTRY WHO ARE KILLING AND SLAVING INNOCENT PEOPLE BY THE NAME OF EMPLOYMENT OR REVENGE ...
I WANT TO SEE ALL THE SHEIKHS IN DUBAI LIKE SADDAM HUSSAIN`S SONS..
KILL THEM ALL AND CLEAN THE PLANET EARTH
By This guy (anonymous) | Posted May 23, 2009 at 00:52:00
These Dubai businesspeople are commenting on this article and claiming that these are falsifications, and in my opinion this is immoral on every level. Dubai people seem to me to be obsessed with their self interests.
By Justaguy (registered) | Posted July 15, 2009 at 18:45:35
It's religion problem. in Islam slavery is ok. Torture is ok. Prostitution is ok. Murdering infidels is ok. And there is just one ok thing to deal with these issues: support US troops.
By email@example.com (anonymous) | Posted July 22, 2009 at 22:38:26
Glad to see another site cover this. Many have seen the travel documentaries that portray the lavishness and dream of partaking in such luxuries. What many don't know is the truth. I fell for the magnificent marketing and booked a trip to Dubai. What I witnessed first hand is something every travel documentary I have watched didn't prepare me to see. The inhumanity occurring daily in Dubai is one which the world is oblivious to. Dubai is being built by slaves. //www.voicedup.com/index.php/dubai/
By ana (anonymous) | Posted October 05, 2009 at 16:10:35
you should reed about Islam to say whether these are ok
and about the slavery thing,most of these are done by the construction companies which their chiefs are mostly expatriates
By Sheikh (anonymous) | Posted October 11, 2009 at 11:32:44
Dubai Ruler has to be held accountable for the biggest fraud ever in the history of the world for misrepresenting projects that are never going to be built and giving false promises of residence visas to expatriates and after sucking everybody's money they cancel the empty promises.
I thought my home country India was bad, now i realise the ruling family of dubai are desperate for money because of the high cost of life style and no oil income.
Sad i always thought sheikh mohammed bin rashid al maktoum dubai ruler would actualy do half of the things he had promised.
All I can say is dubai is like a jungle ruled by a bunch of thugs who have no accountability whatsoever. Zimbabwe has more security for investors than dubai.
This has nothing to do with religion by the way. Its personal greed and dictatorship.
By drop of ocean (anonymous) | Posted October 21, 2009 at 19:02:07
well a nice article by George petrick representing the real and horrifying face of not only Dubai but this whole country,telling the truth what really is happening here, these tortures,slavery , no law for locals, all this i have seen with open eyes and really when i see this i feel sad and i only think about the time when these rulers and shaikhs will pay for this in front of God, cz God says whatever i have given u, u have to give its all account.
these labours working for 12 hours under hot sun are only getting 600AED now tell me what can u do for these 600 when u have family back there,and all these shaikhs are well aware but they are pretending that they dont know any thing.
soon after the time will come when these bastards will be back in their early stages where they only sell dates for the sake of life bcz oil is something that has to finish at someday weather by this way (end of Oil) or totall destruction with just a one layer of tsunami and whole uae will be collapsed like a sand mansion.
in last i would like to tell u the name of dubai its not dubai its brothel, cz dubai only runs with the business of brothels.
By Nobody Special (anonymous) | Posted November 28, 2009 at 22:13:03
Read the comments of expats and tourists quoted in articles about slavery in Dubai and the most common one is how much the LOVE THE SERVANTS. They love having everything done for them, love the "service". Like Angleina and Tiger, they turn their heads to it, because slavery WORKS FOR THEM.
Someone should take Tiger on a tour of the slave camps for his workers but not tell him what he is seeing until he has already seen it. Then tell him those people are building or maintaining his golf course or his house. It won't stop him any more than it will stop the average tourist from booking a return visit.
This place is a scar on the earth and on humanity...and now that it is bankrupt, maybe the desert can turn this place back into what it was meant to be.
By Duvanie (anonymous) | Posted December 01, 2009 at 22:03:15
The global community is complicit in the Dubai slavery - multi-national corporations, especially banks, as well as governments. Bringing Dubai down might be the undoing of the global house-of-credit-cards. I for one would be happy to line up and execute every sorry SOB there who has participated in the enslavement or torture of free people.
By european (anonymous) | Posted December 11, 2009 at 03:54:35
I have been living in Dubai ever since 2007. I have seen the period right before the big crash. Slavery is everywhere. I was shocked to see the amount of corruption and bad things in the country. Amsterdam is supposed to be liberal, but the people know how to deal with those liberties. In Dubai you have more prostitutes then all the European countries combined together. I was ashamed to receive my guests in hotels, since they would turn into a brothel at night. A traveler once said: "In Europe I saw Islam, but no Muslims. In the Arabian peninsula (the birth place of Islam, I saw Muslims, but no Islam". This for sure applies to Dubai. Foreigners simply do not have any rights. I had an argument with a local driver once, since he was driving like a madman and put my life at risk. This trucking prick literally said: "I'm a local. I can have you deported this afternoon". NOBODY I know intends to stay in Dubai. They are just there for a short period. That includes me. I hate this place to the bone. No nice people. No justice. No law.
By gio (anonymous) | Posted January 03, 2010 at 18:33:59
How can any human being with a soul consider participating in the sick sinfulness known as Dubai? It sounds like a horror movie, but unfortunately for those poor Pakistani & Indian young men, young European women, and little boys who are tortured to race camels, it's real life. These people live in the Dark Ages. Money never bought class, that's why trashy athletes & "pop" stars like the Beckhams & the Tigers and all the other spiritually bankrupt swarm around these hedonistic hellholes. No souls.
By AJ (anonymous) | Posted January 11, 2010 at 06:31:27
Islam encourage to forbidden slavery in many ways in the holy Quran and sonnah most of Islam icons didn’t involved in any kind of slavery and they did encourage Muslims not to, 1400 years ago Islam comes to all nations , and let me be clear about one thing here those barbarian lots of the west people encourage them to be civilized , not to follow Islam and faith , those barbarian if they are not truly faithful and truly Muslims they are the worst people in earth and that in holy Quran , those barbarian use to live from salves trade before Islam , and let me ask question why would people who comes from civilized countries such as UK and USA rather than changing those people habits of slavery mentality they become a big part of it , who is investing in GCC who runes the company's , when you know and you will know that the company spend less than 5% of total profits in employees cost why you don’t talk about it why don’t you change it its simple because you are earning over 2% from that money that company spends ,
By bombdubai (anonymous) | Posted March 14, 2010 at 22:37:08
we shud invade dubai and kill all the sheikhs and destroy most of the structures and turn it into a republic!
By zookeeper (registered) | Posted March 15, 2010 at 09:45:46
^Um yeah, because nothing says "republic" like mass murder and wholesale destruction. :P
Looks like someone forgot to take their meds yesterday.
By evision (anonymous) | Posted March 16, 2010 at 01:55:24
By Joker1 (anonymous) | Posted June 28, 2010 at 17:00:25
And who the fuk cares if you make 100$ an hour or 5K per project? That's peanuts in Dubai anyway. You bloody loser LOL
By Michelle C. Tacobell (anonymous) | Posted July 27, 2010 at 18:12:36
The world must boycott Dubai until they change.
By Greek cypriot (anonymous) | Posted September 21, 2010 at 11:54:44
A friend recently told me about the world project in Dubai falling apart but i did not really believe him. So i went on line to find out for myself.
Thats is when i realized what Dubai is all about. Its a hellhole in disguise. Just today i came to understand what really happens in Dubai. Slavery, prostitution, corruption and grand theft.
I will certainly not be visiting Dubai! I suppose most of the educated humans in the world know about the open wounds of humanity in undeveloped countries such as slavery, forced prostitution, human organs trade, dictatorships, rapes, womens sexual organs being cut off, , mass imprisonment of innocent people etc and disapprove of them
But i never believed that those same people would be supporting this dictatorships who is responsible for all those crimes by working,buying up property and worse of all visiting Dubai as tourists and spending all their money thus supporting this corrupt system.
i hope nature reclaims its land and destroy once and for all that hellhole!
By Perfectzo (anonymous) | Posted September 24, 2010 at 15:49:20
I am not from Dubai, nor have I ever been. The things said to be going on there (slavery, kidnapping, torture, etc) are horrible things. The United States is not an innocent Country by any means. Dubai sounds like a mirror image to the rich and lavish 50 state empire itself. Built off of slavery and blood, where its most abundant contributors are denied education along with civil rights (the past). The parellelism exists....
I hope things in Dubai turn around, hell, I hope things in America turn around. We are all living in the destuction days of what used to be... The end of one thing is the beginning of something new. I shed tears for the way that mankind harnesses evil. Regardless of individual religion or beliefs, what is wrong is wrong... I hope we all can live in peace and harmony one day. I have a dream to breath in an atmosphere filled with only love and harmony; peace and security.
God bless Dubai,
God bless America,
By moris_stevo (registered) | Posted November 04, 2010 at 16:08:02
I work here in Dubai. Me and a lot of my friends have tried to live and work in west. But the procedures to obtain a job or a visa is impossible. But Dubai has welcomed us with open hands. So stop complaining about Dubai and give us a reason why others are better.
By grainne_mctaggart (anonymous) | Posted July 05, 2011 at 10:29:18
I have been working in Dubai for about 14 months now. I am leaving this summer and will be glad to get back to Britain regardless of the terrible recession that is damaging our country. But what do I have to say about Dubai? I agree with all the comments about it's virtual slavery, abuse of workers, prostitution etc. It is literally a place built on sand. and a funny story in the local press recently proved the point when it was reported a taxi driver and his car drove into a large sink hole on the Palm because a burst water main washed away the sand underground!
Ask most shop workers, Arab ex-patriots, Asian workers doing ordinary jobs if they like Dubai and my experience in nearly all cases is an exasperated look on the face as the person tries to find words to soften the inevitable answer which is no. Why are people there then? Well, you can earn better wages than in many of these workers home countries and thr lifestyle can be good. But the price is horific. Unscrupulous banks pushing credit cards onto people who cannot afford them. A terrible keep up with the Jones' attitude means that all Filipinas must have a Blackberry regardless of their running costs - they need to realise WhatsApp makes a BB redundant! Most shop workers seem to get paid between 700 and 1900 dirhams per month - that's between £100 and £320 per month!! Most people on these wages hope to get a package where their employer may provide accommodation but miles away from work and one is then bussed to and from the workplace each day. International City - regularly reported in the press and hosting loads of brothels is one such location.
Alternately, people live in Bed Spaces (see the stickers on walls and lamposts in Karama, Satwa, Deira) aimed at different nationalities. I know of three young couples living in one room on three matresses around the walls for example. Oh and because they are not married, that's also illegal! or is that immoral! Slightly better than a bedspace is a partition i.e a room with a curtain down the middle or perhaps across one third of the room providing some visual (but not audible privacy).
Back on the subject of money, there is no concept of dept or bankruptcy. Paying for your apaertment calls for Post Dated Cheques one or maybe four if you can get a deal. Should one of those bounce, you are looking at a criminal offence. That's why so many expats do a runner if they realise they are in financial shit. Dumping cars, belongings, etc and fleeing the country. However, if like most of those described above on low paid jobs, it is more than likely your passport will be held by your employer. Current UK leaflets about trafficking of humans describe this an an indicator of such slavery / trafficking. Large and small employers do this in Dubai doubtless many who are franchisees of global businesses. Next time you are at a shareholder meeting, why not ask if their franchisees in Dubai hold the passports of their workers - it is illegal under labour law.
Laws are a mess. At present, it is likely that tourists cannot drink alcohol in Dubai. They can and do, but according to police chiefs, not legally. They need a licence but a tourist cannot get one. The law turns a blind eye however in true hypocritical Dubai fashion unless you come to the attention of the police. Alcohol is one of those "easy nicks" they can use. So would consensual sex between an unmarried man and woman! Illegal. Again, though, blind eyes are turned unless something else happens. Try googling Rape and Dubai to see the horrific levels of rape of young women (and sometimes males) in Dubai. Two Saudis were recently convicted of having consensual sex with a 15 year old South African child who was visiting Dubai with her parents. She was separately tried on charges of consensual sex.
Paranoia levels are high here. Everyone seems to think their calls and emails are monitored. I guess that monitoring everything is impossible but it is certainly true that suchg activity takes place. Internet censorship is severe - even the relatively innocuous Flickr was banned until recently, only being allowed for access around the time the Queen of England visited - perhaps because she has a Flickr page too).
Lies! No-one in authority tells the truth or they simply ignore truisms. The recent petrol shortages in the Northern Emirates being described as being due to pump ugrades when they were clearly the result of economic and oil pricing issues.
Labour camps - appalling places. Easy to find, just follow any of the buses heading out of the city in the evening. For a glimpse, head down to Sharjah and find the cement works there and then take a drive around the hell-hole that is to the north and east of the works.
And finally. for a place where sex is largely illegal (or at least feels like it is) why is one of the most prominent items on display in petrol stations everywhere Durex lubricants!!
By LivinginUAE (anonymous) | Posted October 03, 2011 at 01:44:30
I have a comment for livingindubai
My friend- we have entered into a world where slavery has taken a different name. Have these workers REQUESTED and paid to come work in the UAE? yes...
Do you think, becuse these people REQUESTED to come work in Dubai (mostly because their families face starvation and homelessness in their home countries), that it is then acceptable to have them work in the most despicable conditions possible? Do you think it is right to abuse these workers then? To deprive them of proper health care and safety measures? To force them to work 30 days of a 31 day month? To have them work in 45'c weather? To have countless cases of abuse and rape on these workers?
Do you think, that because these people came looking for a job, that we now have the right to squeeze every drop of sweat and blood from these people simply because they are looking to survivie?
Can you possibly live in Dubai and say, "Yes, the workers, maids servants who live and work in the UAE are treated fairly"?
If you can, I hope, whatever God lies above us, has some mercy on your naive blindness on the cruelty at your doorstep.
By Bdox (anonymous) | Posted December 05, 2011 at 18:36:26
This is what raw capitalism and unregulated free trade look like.
By HumanBeing (anonymous) | Posted January 06, 2012 at 04:04:16
Dubai seems like a hell hole. I always wonder how the normal German citizens just stood by and let Hitler did what he did. It must have bother some, but not enough to do much about it. Hey life is good why rock the boat, right? Yeah sure the low working class are getting fucked, but hey it's not my problem. I guess some will do anything for money; including being a part of or ignoring the injustice that is happening there.
The Westerners who go there to work and abuse their servants f'ing despicable. Low life just like the locals that does the same thing. One day this whole fantasy land will collapse and hopefully people will wake up and realize how shitting they were. I can only dream.
By no one special (anonymous) | Posted January 06, 2012 at 12:52:51
Unfortunately nothing will be done. What can be kept out of sight is hidden down truck roads (special roads for trucks only), or behind barricades, hedges, fences and walls. With what cannot be hidden, it's more convenient for those around it to close their eyes or look away. It's more convenient for those visiting to not stray from the beaten path, and not ask questions. Those with rights (locals) are bribed with convenient living and easy access to jobs and handouts so as not to experience lack. Those with no rights, are met with a "take it or leave it" attitude- those with the economic status high enough to actually have the choice to leave, of course. The media is controlled and largely has adapted to a self-censorship of criticism of authority, so the populace extant within the country will seldom hear of any news they are not 'allowed' to know. Thus, there is no course of action to address these inconvenient issues. This has been planned well, and executed well.
Those without have no power. Those within have no information. Those with knowledge are faced with greater inconvenience of doing something about it.
As long as human nature puts convenience over morality, there will be those trod upon. The level and extent of the underclass being ground underfoot will be different in different countries, depending upon the resources made available to the powerless- but exist it will nonetheless. The economic gap between classes in this particular country is merely greater than many others, plus discrimination and the like need can be overt, not be hidden within bureaucracy, as this is not a democracy. Though this may outrage those without, I assure you, those within have learned to rationalize and accept the convenience over an alternative.
By woopass (anonymous) | Posted May 09, 2012 at 22:16:29 in reply to Comment 26814
Don't forget ur history.
By dieindubai (anonymous) | Posted June 05, 2012 at 22:06:36 in reply to Comment 26814
You must be one of the people smugglers
By MUSLIM (anonymous) | Posted July 12, 2012 at 10:47:55 in reply to Comment 26814
ONE QUESTION TO ALL MY MUSLIM BROTHERS BACK IN UAE. IS THE GOVERNING SYSTEM PRACTICED IN UAE THE SAME INSTRUCTED BY OUR DEAR PROPHET MUHAMMAD, IS IT BASED ON THE QURANIC LAWS?
THE DUBAI LOCALS HAVE A BAD HABIT OF SAYING "IF U DONT LIKE IT GO BACK"!!! WELL TO ALL U ARROGANT LOCAL TRASH WHO BELEIVE THEY R SOMEHOW GENETICALLY OR OTHERWISE SUPERIOR TO OTHER RACES LIKE BANGALIS OR INDIANS OR PAKISTANIS,,FOR ANY REASON WHAT SO EVER ,,U R GOING TO LOOSE ,U R ALL LOOSERS IN THE EYES OF ALLAH,,UR PUNISHMENT WILL BE SEVERE, SO WAKE UP ,,JUST COZ U HAVE AN UNDUE ADVANTAGE IN THAT PIECE OF SHIT COUNTRY COZ THEY PAY U MORE AND U R TREATED AS SUPERIOR TO ALLL OTHER MUSLIMS OF DIFFRENT DECENT ,DOES NOT MAKE UR LITTLE PARADICE HALAL,, UR RULERS AND UR GOVERNING SYSTEM R CRIMINALS ANDTRATOR OF ALLAH,BY APPROVING THEM U BECOME CRIMINALS TOO ,,SO BEWARE AND FEAR ALLAH....AND REMEMBER JUDGEMENT IS NEAR!!!!!
By Whyyoulie? (anonymous) | Posted September 02, 2012 at 15:26:30 in reply to Comment 27910
Man give your facts straight, yes there may be human rights violations as low salaries, longer work hours, prostitution but not that bullshit you just wrote. It is not an african country at all
And by the way the Polic is very gentle and professional here, much more professional and gentle from any of law-enforcement body in the CIS countries for example.
By get a life (anonymous) | Posted September 02, 2012 at 15:30:46 in reply to Comment 30003
Man get a life, Bobby says the article is offensive and that's all!
Everywhere in the world, there is injustice and corruption to some extent.
As if there are no slave from Eastern Europe in your shitty country
By no brother! (anonymous) | Posted September 02, 2012 at 15:47:33 in reply to Comment 32419
It is not related to Islam, get some education.
Slavery was widely prevalent in Arabia before Islam, and the Arab economy was based on it as many 6-7th centuries countries economies were. Islam could not abolish slavery in one "click", instead there are lots of condemnation in Quran regarding slavery and even the ayat (verse) below explains Islamic views on slavery:
And if any of your slaves ask for a deed in writing (to enable them to earn their freedom for a certain sum), give them such a deed if you know any good in them; yes, give them something yourselves out of the means which Allah has given to you. (24:33)
Besides, there is a good example from the Prophet's life practice:
"Hadith - Sahih Al-Bukhari 3.721, Narrated Al Marur bin Suwaid
I saw Abu Dhar Al-Ghifari wearing a cloak, and his slave, too, was wearing a cloak. We asked him about that (i.e. how both were wearing similar cloaks). He replied, "Once I abused a man and he complained of me to the Prophet. The Prophet (peace be upon him) asked me, 'Did you abuse him by slighting his mother?' He added, 'Your slaves are your brethren upon whom Allah has given you authority. So, if one has one's brethren under one's control, one should feed them with the like of what one eats and clothe them with the like of what one wears. You should not overburden them with what they cannot bear, and if you do so, help them (in their hard job).' "
As I said, Islam could not abolish slavery at once, it needed time and development of trade and economic relations i.e. social conditions for abolishment. But Islam was pushing to changes.
Therefore, please research more before stating something negative about something.
Be peace upon you and your family.
By jaluo (anonymous) | Posted September 08, 2012 at 06:10:02
you only need to work in dubai for a brief period like i did to understand the true extent of vanity, arrogance and indifference of the locals. They act like they are doing you a big favour but they suck your blood to the last drop and pay you peanuts.The locals are a very lazy, idle and perverted lot. The hang around malls and hotel lobbies seeking prostitutes and gawking at people's wives. They stare and attempt usually wuthout much success to attract women (and cute men!). one should only go to Dubai if they have absolutely no alternative plan. And the weather really sucks its tooo hot,humid, dusty. its really a fascade! racism is institutionalised and their hypocritical religious pretense deplorable. You will see many pretending to be religious by day while being bullies and whoremongers by night. Is it really worth it? i dont think so. Go work there if you dont believe me. It a waste of peoples lives.
By comingtogetyou (anonymous) | Posted November 29, 2012 at 17:44:02 in reply to Comment 26814
Why would you keep your employee's passport in the first place? This 'if you don't like it just go home' thing is such a joke - any educated person can see right through it. You are a patronizing SOB and I pray for the day you are sick and weak and in the care of your slaves - or better yet . . . me. When that day comes I hope someone shows more pity for you than you show to some of the poorest people in the world.
By comingtogetyou (anonymous) | Posted November 29, 2012 at 17:53:47 in reply to Comment 26948
I know this is an old post but did your brother get out yet? I want to get involved. Please email me at Laurenann7094@gmail.com
By Man in (anonymous) | Posted February 19, 2013 at 19:43:23 in reply to Comment 79400
god is love and what's happening in Dubai is a disgrace and so sad no matter what your race or religion no human being should be subject to this abuse everyone who is not from UAE should boycott this country I feel sick to my stomach knowing that I went to vacation there knowing what goes on and it was the worst vacation I ever went on and wasted money I wish I knew what I know now I would have never
went there and also I did not feel God there although my Heavenly Father kept me from any harm it just felt so empty cold n nothing like I've ever experienced no love at all no body smiles that's from there very unfriendly people n we in the USA would never treat them so coldly I say everyone should boycott vacationing or working in Dubai and not toention Abi Dahbi I love the ocean and the beach Afterall Jesus went by the sea when he wanted to be alone its one of the most peaceful places for me well I walked the beach Fully dressed arms everything covered collected some shells took some photos left to eat and came back to walk the beach again and was walking back after I walked to the end and the next thing I kn
ow the police ride up on a quad n asked y we came back I was appalled n confused what are you not allowed to leave the beach to eat n come back nonsense and complete harassment. Asked for our passports n interrogated us we are law abiding citizens at home and there well we were so disturbed by this we left to drive back to Dubai well guess what than we got pulled over and were told the tint on our vehicle was too dark really what a joke it was harassment I will Never go there again and I will tell everyone I know not to go there it's a big joke there it's all a lie toile that country wealthy where u might be arrested for walking too fast God will deal with this country he sees it all shame shame shame on the UAE release no citizens to go back home you liars you are a disgrace to the world I'm praying Gods judgement on this horrible ruthless careless soulless people and country
By HumanityWakeUpAndLove (anonymous) | Posted March 22, 2013 at 04:04:03
This is so disturbing I don't know where to begin...
@ livingindubai: Wake up. Take off your blinders. See that we are all the same - one human race. Think of the golden rule - treat others as you would wish to be treated. Ask yourself honestly if you would like to endure the slave-culture perpetuated in Dubai. If you could live on those wages, or in those conditions. Would you subject your mother, your sibling, your child to it? So what makes it okay for other human beings? You are delusional and as it sounds like many Western expats in Dubai, you are only seeing what you choose to see. What your ego protects you from, like a child. Well god-forbid you would ever experience what some of these children trapped in Dubai are forced to - or the children growing up without mothers and fathers somewhere else because their poor unwitting parents have come to find a better way to support their families, and remain indefinitely imprisoned - without any way out until the employer says so. You paint the picture like they will get a limo to the airport with bonus pay once they simply decide to go... Purposely ignoring the evil imprisonment, enslavement, and torture of other human beings - so that you can be more comfortably raking in your own profits - makes you complicit in these acts. Believe me - the money you have made will never be worth the price of your soul - or the depth of haunting guilt you will feel for the rest of your life once those last bastions of denial have given way to the awareness that will someday (if it hasn't already) come crashing down...
Same goes for other greedy, selfish Western expats... @ Another Dubai Resident: This applies to you too. Though you seem like you have more compassion and consciousness for what you can admit - you still say you "hope it isn't so" when you know damn well that it is. Wake up. And stop believing for a second that you or your family are better than these exploited people. Your life is not worth more. Find another playground.
@ Perfectzo: Thank you for speaking my mind - the US model is not the answer either people! The imperialist New World Order regime called the US has been also been built on torture and slavery. Though, one correction - it is NOT in the past. It has not ended here either. 25% of the world's imprisoned population is currently imprisoned in the US - and the Us is only 5% of the world's population. They keep building prisons - most of which are privatized businesses - yes, that's right. And they employ SLAVE LABOR to this very day by paying prisoners less than .50 cents an hour to make clothing, assemble missiles, etc. Google it now! And many of the major US corporations exploit this labor instead of hiring more unemployed Americans - i.e Walmart, JC Penney, Kmart, AT&T, Bank of America (corporate banks are all evil anyway - join a credit union), Victoria's Secret (well it ain't no secret anymore!)... The list goes on and on... Boycott THEM!
And it is institutionalized racism in action. Most of these prisons are full of men of color, many of which are in for minor infractions - like marijuana possession, and end up becoming slaves for US corporations. There are actually more black men enslaved in US prisons today than there were slaves in 1850. So it is not in the past...
And the US still employs slaves to fuel its lifestyle at every level - sweatshop clothes from all over the world, slave farm labor to grow our produce (check out CIW and slave farming conditions in Florida), sex trafficking all over the country including US citizens, and a mind-controlled entertainment industry along with a mind-controlled populace that stays addicted to it. The average American is a slave to consumerism and the pharmaceutical industry. "Progress" is achieved at what cost? Do we know what it really takes to fuel our own industrialized lives? Watch The Story of Stuff if you want to know: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9GorqroigqM
So, we all need to wake up, and war is not the answer... Invasion, domination, more violence. We have to love our supposed enemies who have not the consciousness to know what they are doing, and take responsibility for ourselves and our own actions. What about your life could you change to not perpetuate enslavement of other human beings anywhere on the planet? Do you know who made your clothes, who grew your food, your coffee? your chocolate, made your smart phone and other electronics? And under what conditions? Let's get off the moral high horse, open our own eyes, get educated, do what we can, and live an example.
Buy local, buy organic, and buy FAIR TRADE! http://www.globalexchange.org/programs/fairtrade
May we all wake up to the true reality that Love is All there is and may God/dess be with us all!
By Pip Power (anonymous) | Posted April 17, 2013 at 17:53:48 in reply to Comment 79400
SLAVERY IN ISLAM
All the ancient as well as the contemporary scholars acknowledge the fact of slavery in Islam and clarify the status of slaves. I have chosen the opinions of the most famous scholars to shed light on their position.
The Scholars of al-Azhar in Egypt
In his book, "You Ask and Islam Answers", Dr. 'Abdul-Latif Mushtahari, the general supervisor and director of homiletics and guidance at the Azhar University, says (pp. 51,52),
"Islam does not prohibit slavery but retains it for two reasons. The first reason is war (whether it is a civil war or a foreign war in which the captive is either killed or enslaved) provided that the war is not between Muslims against each other - it is not acceptable to enslave the violators, or the offenders, if they are Muslims. Only non-Muslim captives may be enslaved or killed. The second reason is the sexual propagation of slaves which would generate more slaves for their owner."
The text is plain that all prisoners of war must either be killed or become slaves. The ancient scholars are in full agreement over this issue, such as Ibn Timiyya, Ibn Hisham, Malik etc. Ibn Timiyya says (Vol. 32, p. 89),
"The root of the beginning of slavery is prisoners of war; the bounties have become lawful to the nation of Muhammad."
Then (Vol. 31, p. 380), he indicates clearly and without shame,
"Slavery is justified because of the war itself; however, it is not permissible to enslave a free Muslim. It is lawful to kill the infidel or to enslave him, and it also makes it lawful to take his offspring into captivity”.
In Part 4, p. 177 of the "Prophet Biography" (Al-Road Al-Anf'), Ibn Hisham says,
"According to Islamic law concerning prisoners of war, the decision is left to the Muslim Imam. He has the choice either to kill them or to exchange them for Muslim captives, or to enslave them. This is in regard to men, but women and children are not permitted to be killed, but must be exchanged (to redeem Muslim captives) or enslaved - take them as slaves and maids."
This is the statement of Ibn Hisham, on whom all Muslims and students of Muhammad's biography rely. Of course, these matters which Ibn Hisham recorded used to take place continuously in all of Muhammad's wars and invasions. All of Muhammad's people (his wives, and Muhammad himself) owned many slaves - males and females. In his campaign against the children of Qurayza (the Jewish tribe), Muhammad killed all the males (700-900) in one day. Then, he divided the women and the children among his people.
The Caliphs across the ages followed Muhammad's footsteps and enslaved (by hundreds and thousands) men and women who were captured in wars. Many of them were Persians and Byzantines. All the Islamic Chroniclers without exception have recorded these facts. The way Arab Muslims invaded Africa and killed and enslaved Africans is a well-known, historical fact.
In Vol. 2, Part 3, p. 13, Malik Ibn Anas repeated the same text as did Ibn Hisham who is also quoted by Ibn Timiyya, and Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya in his book, "Zad al-Ma'ad" (part 3, p. 486). All of them taught the same principle and said the same words.
This question was delivered to Ibn Timiyya who was Mufti of Islam (Vol. 31, pp. 376, 377),
"A man married a maid-slave who bore him a child. Would that child be free or would he be an owned slave?"
Ibn Timiyya says emphatically,
"Her child whom she bore from him would be the property of her master according to all the Imams (heads of the four Islamic schools of law) because the child follows the (status) of his mother in freedom or slavery. If the child is not of the race of Arabs, then he is definitely an owned slave according to the scholars, but the scholars disputed (his status) among themselves if he was from the Arabs - whether he must be enslaved or not because when A'isha (Muhammad's wife) had a maid-slave who was an Arab, Muhammad said to A'isha, `Set this maid free because she is from the children of Ishmael.'"
Then Ibn Timiyya states (Vol. 31, p. 380) that the legist Abu Hanifa says,
"Muhammad is an Arab; thus it is not admissible to enslave Arabs because of the nobility of this race since Muhammad is from them."
Yet other scholars disagree with him, emphasizing that Muhammad (in one of his campaigns) enslaved Arabs, too. However, it is evident from Muhammad's traditions that he regarded Arabs to be the noblest race, especially the Quraysh, his tribe. His famous saying (that the caliphs must be elected from the Quraysh tribe) is acknowledged by all translators of the tradition without exception.
He should have told A'isha,
"Set her free because she is a human being like you. It is not important whether she is a descendant of Ishmael or of Isaac!"
By Truth (anonymous) | Posted November 24, 2014 at 07:43:42
Every country has there own way of doing things.No 2 countries are exactly alike.If you dont like dubai ,go back home.The choice is all yours.I have been to dubai and i loved it absolutely and wont mind revisiting again.I know that i love dubai alot but havent got the kind of money to move there permenantly,had that not been the case i would have long ago.
My dear people especally my muslim bothers(I am not muslim by the way).Be careful what you write because the media is one of the deadliest tools used by the west to manipulate people and whiping up sentiments that will eventually encourage them to invade countries going about there businesses.
In the words of martin lurther "Dont let anybody make you think God chose america as his divine messianic force to be sort of policeman of the whole world".
You all should use your heads.Its your pride and you all should protect it from the vultures.
As for the author of this article his is public enemy No1
By fuzzy123 (anonymous) | Posted April 14, 2015 at 09:22:48 in reply to Comment 48186
This is one of the best comment I have seen so far.
Dubai is amazing there is no denying that, but its just sickining how it got to where is is now. I do hope it fixes up, until then I don't want to go there and I hope other blind idiots wake up too.
Also I'm sure God will bless everyone who deserves it bit just Dubai or America.
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