Another Islamic Front: Sports Broadcasting and Support

By Bob Michael
LAPD Police Detective Capt. (Ret)

Wars are fought on many fronts. There are military fronts, the terrorist front, the political front, the legal front, the media (propaganda) front, the sports front, the entertainment front, the religion front, the raging crowd front, the young front, and probably a few more fronts soon to be created. Islam today employs all these fronts in its 1400 year (with many interruptions) effort to control the entire world.

UAE: Home to another Islamic Front

UAE: Home to another Islamic Front

Let’s take a look at one such front in the United Arab Emirates.

Article 7 of the United Arab Emirates’ Provisional Constitution officially declares Islam as the primary religion of any UAE emirate. Islam is the government endorsed religion.

Visitors are expected to respect, tolerate, or follow Arabic and Islamic laws and culture. They cannot publicly distribute the Bible as a Christian dogmatic text and disturb others with their practice. Judaism is not tolerated in Dubai. Muslims say the roots of Islam can be found deep-seeded into many areas of Emirate laws and policies.

Arabs seem to be in ALL the news these days. All the terrorism in America, Egypt, Syria, Pakistan, Iran, West Bank is certainly the significant aspect today of Islam on the front pages, the TV screen, and the video world. But that is just one front of Islam. The front to be addressed here is in the world of sports with the Emirates investments throughout much of the Western world taking the lead.

I had been too busy to watch much of the sporting events, and American football had not started yet. One day, when I found a few moments, I happened to tune into a rugby match between Canada and the USA, and noticed that the American jerseys had “Fly Emirates” on the front. It provoked thought and concern. With what has taken place in this country at the hands of Muslims, I thought there would be a little more antipathy toward Arab money buying space on a USA sporting team.

The “fly” in the Emirates logo is simply a cover economically for the Emirates political/religious venture. It has become fairly common for public sporting structures (stadiums) in the U.S. to carry business names as a method of economic growth. But “Fly” Emirates flies vastly differently.

Also on their home page is a feature story sub-titled, “Emirates has been awarded the highly coveted ‘World’s Best Airline’ award 2013.” The award came from Skytrax at the 2013 World Airline Awards, Emirates says. I wonder what the criteria for selection was; they say it was a vote by travelers; but who gets paid to count the votes?

I became curious as to how wide the intrusion into sports (propaganda) the Emirates had taken. That led me to their web site. The site says Emirates Airline is:

“…wholly owned by the Government of Dubai.”

Here is just a sample of the involvement of the United Arab Emirates in world activities. Their website says:

Emirates’ sponsorship of FIFA (International Federation of Association Football is the international governing body of 209 national associations) is central to its soccer strategy, facilitating connection with football fans across the world through events such as the FIFA World Cup, the FIFA Women’s World Cup, and the FIFA Club World Cup. A partnership with the Asian Football Confederation allows Emirates to be visible in important markets in Asia.

Emirates has an equally impressive portfolio of sponsorships at the European club level, with partnerships including AC Milan, Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, and of course Arsenal. In 2004, Emirates and Arsenal Football Club signed the biggest club sponsorship in English soccer history. The deal included naming rights to the club’s new stadium, now known as the Emirates Stadium (oops, where did the “Fly” go?), as well as an eight-year shirt sponsorship…

In the rugby world, Emirates says:

Boasting a rich heritage within the game, Emirates’ extensive portfolio of top-class rugby sponsorships was best demonstrated by its becoming the first worldwide partner of Rugby World Cup 2011.

As a true supporter of the game, Emirates strives to make rugby and Rugby World Cup as accessible as possible, transporting rugby fans all over the globe via its ever-expanding network of destinations.

The airline also sponsors the HSBC Sevens World Series Dubai event and Perth-based Emirates Western Force, as well as supporting the US Rugby Sevens and XVs teams.

Emirates uses the USA Rugby team in Australia where Emirates also sponsors.

Other areas in which Emirates is involved around the globe are Tennis, Motorsports, Horse Racing, Golf, Cricket, Sailing, Australian Rules Football, Arts & Culture (the Melbourne and Sydney Australia Symphony Orchestras and the San Francisco, USA Symphony Orchestra and others).

How about some figures on these sponsorships? The Real Madrid soccer team in Spain signed an agreement with Emirates for $39 million a year for five years. FC Barcelona signed a contract in 2011 with an investment fund of Qatar for a total amount of more than $222 million until 2016.

The French soccer team, Paris Saint-Germain signed a contract for nearly $163 over five years; the figure is unheard of in French soccer.

Arsenal FC soccer team has a contract approaching 1/4 billion dollars for a stadium name and shirt naming with Emirates.

The Emirates also have done some small year deals like AC Milan and an $82 million for four years for a shirt contract.

Emirates and the New York City Cosmos re-born soccer team have signed a sponsorship contract for reportedly three million dollars for three years. A low level team gets low level bucks…but it is symbolically New York City for the Arab presence.

Lastly USA Rugby (has a contract for shirt sponsor, meaning the name Emirates is on the jersey) has signed a contract (amount unknown) and their published statement is:

“This is a landmark deal for USA Rugby,” said USA Rugby chairman Kevin Roberts.

“Emirates is more than an airline, they represent a lifestyle of optimism, discovery and passion. A lifestyle all USA Rugby players, members and fans share and aspire to. Emirates is passionate about rugby and will bring fresh impetus to the game’s development in the U.S.”

The six-year deal is estimated at $500,000 a year. Even the third rate New York City Cosmos soccer team got $1,000,000 a year (of course the Arab Emirates bought a presence in the city of Islam’s most successful attack ever), but Emirates name on our country’s national Rugby team uniforms went for a paltry $83,000.

The government of this Islamic nation pays for all Sunni mosques and pays nothing to Shi’a mosques. It does not favor Shi’a Muslims; the government is Sunni. Its legal system favors Sharia law. The Emirates constitution states: “Islam is the official religion of the Union and … Islamic Sharia is a main source of its legislation”.

So that is who is handing all the billions of dollars out. Is it because they love the West? Or, is it because they are looking for something more than support and friendship of the West?

I think I know. Go back and look at the title. Hopefully you can come to the same conclusion.

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