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07 December, 2006

Merry Dubai

Praise for Dubai in The Sun over the emirate's multicultural approach to the festive season. Unlike countries such as Saudi, the UAE allows considerable freedom of religion, so it is encouraging to see the holidays of different faiths celebrated alongside Islamic ones:

Ding dong merrily Dubai

AS Britain’s manic PC brigade try to take the fun out of Christmas . . . MUSLIM Dubai shows how to celebrate properly.

Shoppers at the posh Wafi mall in the Arab state are greeted by a massive Christmas tree, covered with dazzling lights and decorations.

And despite being non-Christians locals delight in the “Winter” wonderland — even if the temperature outside was 20°C (68°F) yesterday.

By contrast Christmas festivities are being banned all over the UK, on grounds of political correctness.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like the UK is following in the footsteps of the US in banning Christmas so as not to "offend" the miniscule Grinch minority...

I was driving past Wafi City today and thought: how ironic that my "Christian" country has practically banned Christmas and this Muslim one is promoting it all the way. But then I realized...where there is Christmas, there is Christmas's not about religious freedom - it's about the almighty Dirham. But - that's ok. At least I can put up a Christmas tree here and not have to draw the curtains in shame like I would back home.

07 December, 2006 13:25  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No they are not, dont be so ridiculous.

I do adore this blog SD, and I often admire your linguistic prowess (...look at me blush!), but if theres anything worse than poilitical correctness, its people who complain about its abundance when it is simply not true.

I woke up this morning (in Christian/Muslim/Jewish/Indfidel UK)to childrens TV advertising christmas presents, drove past a bus with a poster of santa across the side, and walked past a security guard in a xmas hat decorating an 8-foot tree in my office.

So im a little apprehensive about agreeing with you on this one... dont believe everything David Cameron tells you, PC isnt killing your beloved freedom of speech, asylum seekers arent taking over Mayfair, and everyone really does love xmas here, regardless of race/religion/political inclincation.

yours truly,

07 December, 2006 13:49  
Blogger littlejimmy said...

The Sun is full of shite. Does anyone have any real examples of Christmas festivities being banned in the UK?

Still, Wafi is superb. We went to see Santa last weekend.

07 December, 2006 14:28  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't blame the PC Brigade.

This wouldnt have happened if we didnt have a certain group of people going around taking offence with everything. The protest against Burger King's Ice Cream packaging. The attempt to get all Pork products banned in govt buildings. The death threats against any person/country/thing/animal that they feel stands in their way. Their refusal to integrate and respect British Society (even though everyone is forced to "respect" their rules when in their country).

Thats where the blame lies.

- DD

07 December, 2006 14:59  
Blogger Alex said...

Well, if you believe the Sun, which is on its third or so year of made-up "war on Christmas" bollocks imported from the States.

07 December, 2006 16:22  
Blogger SIN said...

Bizarre isn't it...whatever this city's pitfalls may be, growing up in this multicultural city has taught me one thing, celebrating the good times without giving thought to religion or caste.

I have celebrated X'mas with friends, Eid with neighbours and Diwali with family. Just when you think that the city's value system is heading towards a certain doom, you suddenly glimpse a sliver of light at the end of the tunnel...

07 December, 2006 16:25  
Blogger Woke said...

As long as they buy stuff from Wafi and not visit homes singing Xmas carols, everythings fine.

07 December, 2006 19:08  
Blogger tobasco said...

Its kind of funny and ironic in a way.

I disagree with the last statement though...

"By contrast Christmas festivities are being banned all over the UK, on grounds of political correctness."

Every year around this time this topic is mentioned. I've been in the UK for a while now and only if you keep reading "The Sun" and "Daily Mail" will you believe this crap. Tabliods just sensationalise this to increase their sales; a similair topic to the "ban of St George's or Union Jack flags on your car/house/etc" back in July.

07 December, 2006 19:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Christmas is truly more of a festive, seasonal holiday rather than a religious celebration. People who enjoy the holiday tend to focus on the decorations, lights, songs, and family feel of the whole event.

08 December, 2006 08:35  
Blogger truedebbie menon said...

Yeah! the irony of christian nations banning christmas...
I have never considered Jesus the Jew a Christian, and I doubt that he would recognize the Christmas story or approve of what his 12 designated rabbis have done in his name, if he returned to earth today. Surely, he would go up on the "new" temple steps, the Shopping Malls of the world, and start casting down and breaking things once more.

Only in Dubai could the Prince afford to bring in real snow and drop it from airplanes. Only The Crown Prince of Dubai is likely to actually do it. So, watch out for that white stuff falling from the sky!

Wish you all a frosty christmas!

08 December, 2006 10:37  
Blogger Al Ain Taxi said...

I hate UK PC. I think the majority of British people hate it too. Let Christmas be Christmas, I know for certain that British muslims would rather see us celebrating Christmas than some watered down 'holiday season'. Who's offended by Christmas in the UK? Who's offended by Ramadan in the UAE? Live and let live, if only Tony and his cronies would realise this.

It's madness and I'm so ashamed of my government!

08 December, 2006 18:46  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This idea that the UK 'banning christmas is basically based on.....nothing at all. Depressing but completely unsurprising. There will always be people willing to believe such non-storiesm, what are we coming to? try and find me one example of such a case - just one and not from the UK tabloids.

Roy Greenslade has done an excellent survey of media coverage of stories related to asylum seekers which is available here:
(do author search for Greenslade).

In a period of just four days, **28** stories related to asylum seekers were published in the tabloids. In one month alone in 2003, the Dailiy Express ran headlines about asylum seekers on **22* separate days. (obviously it has now become fixated with Diana instead).

Tabloid stories which have turned out to be completely unsubstantiated include asylum seekers rustling donkeys and killing and eating swans. But sadly there are some people who don't particularly care whether the stories are true or not.

To quote from Greenslade:
"......(The Express is) ..fixated on the so-called "crisis" with alarmist stories, many of which rested on statistics from unofficial sources that were no more than guesstimates. Nearly all tabloid stories have been alike in not naming any of the alleged culprits unless they happen to have been charged with an offence. Most of the time the simplistic repetition of "asylum-seekers" says it all, sometimes reinforced by photographs showing groups of men, usually masked or furtively shying away from the camera...."

08 December, 2006 18:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm Hindu, but I love it when my Muslim colleagues wish me Eid Mubarak, and when people wish each other Merry Christmas irrespective of religion. Festivals aren't about religion, and that's why they are such lovely times of the year - Diwali, Eid, Christmas - who cares?

09 December, 2006 01:46  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This actually belongs in the newspaper post but...

Gulf News reporter admits to breaking the law!!

09 December, 2006 03:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if you don't like it, LEAVE!!!!!!!!!!

oh and before you go... MERRY CHRISTMAS!! :)

10 December, 2006 09:29  
Blogger Nesa Simon David said...

"AS Britain’s manic PC brigade try to take the fun out of Christmas . . . MUSLIM Saudi and every other muslim country in the world except one city.... um... errr... ooops nevermind!"

10 December, 2006 09:41  
Blogger Nesa Simon David said...

there's a difference between real altruism and altruism motivated by acquisitiveness of tourism dollors...!

10 December, 2006 09:43  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So is it illegal to retain the employees passports in the UAE ?

A certain media company in the UAE just took everyones passport today. Pretty much a case of hand it over or lose your job.

Ahh the fun things these people get away with in sandland.

The labor law section on the ministry of labor website does not have one reference to the word "passport" on it. Go see for yourself

Then they wonder why the outsiders think that the middle east is backward.

Hopefully there are enough smart Emaratis around who will stand up and stop their compatriots from making their nation look bad.

10 December, 2006 17:15  
Blogger Balushi said...

So X'mas is Banned in UK!

Oh than what about Santa Clause can he still come to Uk?

10 December, 2006 19:58  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think "If you don't like it then leave!" should become a ROTFL and LOL. It becomes IYDLITL which is nice - shades of idyll, idle and I did little.

11 December, 2006 01:45  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having fake snow and Indian dudes in Santa's cloth is not open-mindedness. It's just another silly image of Sandlanders being so modern.

As far as Santa helps them to get more digits in their bank accounts, who cares, he's soo welcomed here, not just for festive season, all year round!

11 December, 2006 04:35  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does anybody out there have on their computer that 80's song "Merry Xmas from Dubai ....." I would love to download and hear that again!

23 December, 2006 07:56  

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