x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Be careful about animal 'rights'

Our readers also comment on slow service at Adnoc stations, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the armed forces' use of foreign contractors, and laws governing the treatment of sex-crime victims.

A marmoset one of the animals taken when Thai police arrested a citizen of the United Arab Emirates at Suvarnabhumi airport in Bangkok

Courtesy Freeland Foundation
A marmoset one of the animals taken when Thai police arrested a citizen of the United Arab Emirates at Suvarnabhumi airport in Bangkok Courtesy Freeland Foundation

Your story Lengthy queues fuel customer complaints (May 15) explained that delays have crept in at Adnoc fuel stations, causing much distress to the public.

I have seen over the years how the level of station service has deteriorated. Windscreen cleaning, for example, formerly was routinely accomplished within the refuelling process of about 10 minutes, but now just getting petrol can involve delays and utter chaos lasting beyond half an hour.

Adnoc's lack of care in planning the introduction of natural gas has compounded the delay. Gas points should have been opened in addition to the existing petrol ones. Instead the new format has led to longer queues.

As a consequence gas fuel consumers - large buses, lorries and the like - often block access for the rest of us to other services such as the car wash and air-hose point.

It would be helpful if the fuel types could be segregated with separate outlets for gas and liquid fuel. In this manner common services could be accessed more easily and the waiting time could be reduced to previous levels.

Another problem is that tyre pressure gauges are too often out of order. Low tyre pressure is dangerous, especially in the summer

Finally, rush hour demand at Adnoc stations should be managed, just as peak-hour immigration queues are managed at the airport.

I hope that Adnoc managers will take notice and work hard to serve the public even though they have monopoly status.

RKS, Abu Dhabi


Do more to fight fake brand names

I refer to your article Brands urge big fines for fakes (May 15). The enforcement is good as far as it goes, but I think they should do better.

They should look more closely at certain malls.

Ahmad Oneissi, Dubai

Time to change sex-crime laws

Thank you for Hassan Hassan's well-informed and well-argued column about the way some sex-crime victims are treated (Victims of sexual assault cannot be forced into silence, May 15).

There are certainly some changes needed, in both law and administration.

It is just too sad that an assault victim can be blamed for a crime that may have already ruined her life.

Nancy Green, Abu Dhabi

Even socialists get benefit of doubt

The shocking news about Dominique Strauss-Kahn (Dirty tricks claim as IMF chief held on sex charge, May 16) must be considered carefully.

We must remember that in the US everyone - even a French socialist - is entitled to be considered as innocent until proven guilty.

Even if acquitted, however, Mr Strauss-Kahn may find that his hope to become the next president of France is now finished.

In the US system as I understand it people are not charged frivolously. And we know that leaders in many countries - Israel, the US, the UK - have had their careers destroyed by their inability to control their sexual appetites.

The exception seems to be Italy's Silvio Berlusconi.

Louise Beaudoin, Abu Dhabi

Good explanation of forces' policy

Your article titled UAE armed forces outline training engagements (on thenational.ae, May 16) represented a well-timed statement by our armed forces.

This explained why and how the UAE armed forces use third parties, unlike what was mentioned in some media outlets.

As a proud Emirati, I believe that our armed forces make up one reason we are proud of our country and leadership.

Thabet al Qaissieh, Abu Dhabi


Avoid emotion on status of animals

The photo with your story Call to curb exotic animal trade (May 16) could hardly have been more poignant: his little paws clutching the bars of his cage, a wide-eyed marmoset peers out at the freedom of which he has been deprived.

This is a provocative invitation to readers to indulge in what literature teachers call the pathetic fallacy - assuming or pretending that animals or inanimate objects share human emotions.

But is it a fallacy? Few animals remain in pens or cages if given the option to leave.

Still, animals have for better or worse been subjected to human control for millennia.

We humans are suckers for a mournful marmoset or a winsome wallaby, but don't muster the same concern for the "feelings" of mosquitos, boll weevils or sharks.

Beware too-easy emotion when you think about animal "rights".

We should avoid cruelty for the sake of cruelty, but let's not forget who's in charge here.

Tom Egan, Dubai