By Mohammad Al Mutawa, Special to Gulf News www.gulfnews.com
The UAE sets an example of tolerance and peaceful coexistence between people of all nationalities, religions and ideologies.
People from all over the world have always been warmly welcomed by the UAE, where they felt at home in this country that strikes a balance between the Arab and Islamic cultures on one hand and the rest of the world’s various cultures on the other.
This example was laid by the founding fathers, and has made the UAE an inviting environment since the 1930s. The UAE’s citizens have inherited this culture of hospitality and practised it throughout their history.
This warmth and hospitality has made the UAE a safe haven for everyone, and the kindness of its people has made them a model of civilised people, who do not look condescendingly on others or harass them.
Yet, this peaceful society came under fire by some British media outlets, which deliberately offend it to distort its image.
It appears as if these media outlets were disturbed that an old British colony succeeded in developing its capabilities to become a civilised and advanced country that occupies a leading position on the world map.
There are many examples in the western press of trying to shape global public opinion against the UAE society, despite the noble tolerance shown by the UAE’s political leadership towards these malicious mouthpieces.
Moreover, Emiratis do not pay attention to these hostile media, which are outraged by any success enjoyed by developing countries because they assume that success and development are exclusive to the “First” World.
Yet, the UAE broke the rules and showed that Arabs can succeed and achieve sustainable development that is not oil-reliant, but depends on human capital and the ability to achieve a new model of development.
The UAE’s phenomenal success, which was epitomised by the opening of the Burj Khalifa in Dubai earlier this month stands as testimony to the ability of Arab people to challenge the impossible.
This iconic building, which is visible from a distance of over 90 kilometres, and has the world’s highest observation deck, from which Abu Dhabi and its golden beaches can be seen, along with the landmark man-made islands of Dubai, provides proof that man can beat all obstacles and the harsh desert conditions.
Model of coexistence
This progress provoked the international Masonic Association to fight the people who challenged the desert and overcame obstacles, and the Anglo-Saxon design was to destroy this model of coexistence between all ethnicities and religions.
Those people believed that it was possible to isolate Dubai, but they failed to understand the strength and the spirit of solidarity between the UAE’s people.
This is simply because all of them participated in creating the miracle, which was not the work of one person or even one emirate. Dubai is a product of the UAE and its people, both nationals and residents, who were driven by passion to make an achievement of which man can be proud.
They worked day and night and doubled their efforts to enable Dubai to reach this enviable stature.
Dubai’s experience was admired and appreciated by many, who raced to emulate its development model.
However, not everyone has Dubai’s trade experience, which started in the 1930s. More importantly, not everyone has the will to challenge, which is enjoyed by the builders of Dubai’s glory.
Dubai is still a model of the global city, where the interests of all meet to protect this great achievement and show that survival is for the productive.
A tour of Dubai proves that it can contain everyone in a harmonious and creative social structure, which everyone hoped would continue to succeed and motivate other cities to follow suit and take the same way towards progress and development.
This would break the myth that the West is the only source of modern civilisation.
However, this progress was seen as a potential threat to the interests of some powers, which do not welcome any developing country into the club of successful nations.
The UAE has many assets that enable it to become a global player. Its markets are open to every-one, without taxes or restrictions.
Moreover, tourism in the UAE is safe and enjoyable, and its golden beaches attract thousands of tourists every year from all parts of the world. Dubai’s Emirates is one of the most successful airlines in the world.
Furthermore, those looking for an easy life and peace of mind could buy houses in Dubai without complications.
Safety and security are the trademarks of the UAE, including Dubai.
The UAE’s national Arab and Islamic identity is deeply rooted while maintaining a global dimension, and the cultural and social activities taking place in Dubai underscore that it is a global city taking confident strides on the right path.
Responding to the malicious media campaign against Dubai should not take the form of words and articles.
The best response would be pressing ahead with more achievement and development, and more solidarity between the people of the nation across the UAE.
Holding onto the UAE as the nation and safe haven of its people is a must, because its people know that it will carry on its development miracle under its wise and determined leadership.
Dr Mohammad Abdullah Al Mutawa is a professor of sociology at UAE University in Al Ain.