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Dubai documentary in 1975 15, January 2010

Posted by thegulfblog.com in The Emirates.
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I’ve just stumbled upon a fantastic blog by Adam Curtis, an exceptional British documentary film maker. I highly recommend a good trawl through his website, there are a number of gems there. One of them is a brief summary and a link to a 15 minute BBC documentary made in Dubai in 1975 focusing and interviewing Shiekh Mohamed bin Rashid al Maktoum, today’s ruler of Dubai.

It is not only quite something to see Dubai before all its gaudy skyscrapers but see how much the Sheikh apparently values his tribal connections. ‘Most days’, it is narrated, he flies in his helicopter into the desert to see, meet and arbitrate with and for his people. It is a mirror image throw-back to the typical notion of a tribal leader in the Arabian Peninsula. How true it was i.e. whether it was mostly for the film crews benefit is, of course, hard to say. The genuflecting visit of the British mission is also worth seeing.