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Cablegate: Bill Gates Lobbies to Integrate Programmes in Dubai With Microsoft

Posted in Asia, Bill Gates, Microsoft at 4:42 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


Summary: How Bill Gates lobbied for Microsoft in 2008 (when he claimed to have moved on to a charitable foundation)

BACK at the beginning of 2008, "Microsoft 'Bought' Dubai Away from GNU/Linux" following a visit from Bill Gates. Later on we saw this reinforced and then we saw people being sent to court/jail. Over three years after the act we discover that, based on the following Cablegate cable, Bill Gates did some clever lobbying even after his alleged departure from Microsoft. According to this, “Bill Gates would visit Dubai on January 27, 2008 to meet with with Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai) and members of the MbRF staff to discuss integration between Microsoft and the MbRF [Mohammad Bin Rashid Foundation] Programs.” Here is the cable:

DE RUEHDE #0614/01 3051111
P 011111Z NOV 07
Hide header
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 DUBAI 000614 
E.O. 12958: DECL:  11/1/2017 
TAGS: PREL [External Political Relations], 
PGOV [Internal Governmental Affairs], PHUM [Human Rights], AE [United Arab Emirates] 
REF: A) DUBAI 601    B)  DUABI 425    C) ABU DHABI 949     D) DUBAI 363 
DUBAI 00000614  001.2 OF 002 
CLASSIFIED BY: Paul Sutphin, Consul General, Exec, Dept of 
REASON: 1.4 (b), (d) 
Classified 1.4 b & d by Consul General Paul Sutphin 
¶1. (U) This is an action cable; see para 12. 
¶2. (SBU) Summary.  During a November 1 meeting in the newly 
established offices of the Mohammad Bin Rashid Foundation 
(MbRF), Nabil Alyousuf (Director General of the Dubai Executive 
Office and defacto managing director of the newly established 
MbRF) and Dr. Yasar Jarrar (Executive Dean of the Dubai School 
of Government) elaborated on several of the fifteen (Reftel A) 
recently announced programs under the auspices of the MbRF, as 
well as a number of initiatives in the offing that have not been 
publicly discussed, including a number of joint programs with US 
universities.  Jarrar will be in Washington, DC, Monday, Nov. 4 
and then in Boston Nov. 5-8; Alyousuf will be in Boston November 
8 and is unlikely to go to DC beforehand. They asked for USG 
assistance in a number of areas (see para 12), most immediately 
in contacts for the Washington office of the Gates Foundation. 
End Summary. 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
Announced Programs with US Connections 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
¶3. (U) Referencing the US's Teach for America model, Jarrar 
elaborated on the MbrF's announced "Pioneers" Program: an 
educational initiative focused on providing financial assistance 
to the top 10% of graduate students at select Arab universities 
in return for their commitment to teach for an as-yet 
unspecified period of time in their home country/community. 
Jarrar pointed to the nascent "Teach for All" partnership 
between the US program and its counterpart UK program (Teach 
First) and mentioned that adding the Pioneers Program would be a 
logical extension into the Arab world. 
¶4. (U) Continuing on educational programs, the announced 
Leadership Program is being modeled after the US's Eisenhower 
Fellowships Program.  Under this initiative, two or three 
individuals would be selected from each Arab country to go to 
the UAE in order to participate in two to three months of 
leadership training, likely at the Dubai School of Government. 
The program is currently envisioned as a three way partnership 
between the Dubai School of Government, the Aspen Institute and 
the London School of Business. 
¶5. (SBU) The MbRF has signed an agreement with the Harvard 
Business School Press (HBSP) that will allow the MbRF the rights 
to translate all HBSP-owned titles into Arabic and then 
subsidize printing and distribution of the texts throughout the 
Arab world.  Translation rights to other authors' publications 
through HBSP will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis. 
¶6. (SBU) Under its announced translation program, the MbRF also 
hopes to expand Western awareness of Arab literature and legacy 
by translating Arabic texts (both popular press releases, such 
as the recently translated "Girls of Riyadh", and more formal 
literature) and working with Western publisher's to produce and 
promote these works. Jarrar said he would appreciate USG 
assistance in identifying likely publishing partners in the US. 
(See action request, para 12.) 
¶7. (SBU) Focusing on entrepreneurship, the MbRF's announced 
Business Incubator Program will work with the top regional 
business schools to develop curriculums focusing on 
entrepreneurial skills and creating incubators that allow 
students to test out their entrepreneurial concepts.  In a 
second tier, the MbRF plans to select the best new ideas, and 
bring those innovators to Dubai and provide further resources 
for developing and testing the concepts. For concepts that have 
passed the second round of screening, the MbRF wants to develop 
joint venture relationships with top corporate innovators (3m, 
Philips, Google, Microsoft were among those named) that would at 
the minimum allow MbRF-sponsored entrepreneur's access to the 
corporate labs (on fellowships) or ideally allow for full joint 
venture development of the projects. Jarrar requested possible 
USG assistance in facilitating corporate contacts.  (See action 
request, para 12.) 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
DUBAI 00000614  002.2 OF 002 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
Unannounced, but Ambitious, Plans for Joint Initiatives with US 
Universities and Businesses 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
¶8. (C) As yet unannounced, Jarrar revealed an imminent agreement 
between the MbRF and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 
Sloan School of Management establishing a Dubai-based branch of 
the renowned MBA program.  The first year would see the launch 
of an executive training program, followed the next year by the 
matriculation of 40 students in a standard MBA curriculum. 
Jarrar envisions the school eventually maintaining around 100 
active students.  Farther down the road, the MbRF is also 
looking to create a similar, undergraduate, joint venture 
between the American University of Dubai and a world class US 
journalism school (preliminary discussions are currently 
underway with the Columbia School of Journalism in New York). 
¶9. (C) In ongoing discussions with Harvard, Jarrar is hoping to 
convince the Harvard Business School (HBS) to place one of its 
Research Centers in Dubai (Jarrar noted HBS has research centers 
in 5 locations world-wide, including Paris, Hong Kong and Buenos 
Aires.  These centers focus on researching local businesses and 
developing the case studies that form the core of the HBS 
¶10. (SBU) A firm advocate of development via technology, the 
MbRF intends to partner with US hi-tech giants such as Intel, 
Microsoft and others to further the utilization of online 
programs for teacher training throughout the Arab world (thus 
bringing best-practices training directly to instructors without 
expensive and lengthy overhead and development issues).  Jarrar 
indicated that initial conversations with Intel have commenced 
and that Bill Gates would visit Dubai on January 27, 2008 to 
meet with with Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Vice-President 
and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai) and members of 
the MbRF staff to discuss integration between Microsoft and the 
MbRF Programs. 
¶11. (SBU) In a similar vein, Alyousuf noted the MbRF has a 
longer-term plan to develop a "traveling museum" focused on the 
civilizations of the region and their contributions to humanity 
through out the ages.  The MbRF would like to work with US 
museums in developing the concept and possibly a partnership for 
the traveling museum. We agreed to try to facilitate contacts 
with the Smithsonian on this initiative. (See action request, 
para 12) 
¶12.  (SBU) ACTION REQUESTS: Most immediately, Jarrar asked for 
USG assistance in contacting and possibly meeting the leadership 
of the Gates Foundation office in Washington DC (both indicated 
a senior management meeting with the Gates Foundation in Seattle 
would be premature and expressed a desire for a lower level, 
preliminary meeting in DC as a precursor to subsequent 
Seattle-based conversations).  Jarrar asked for a name and 
contact information for the Washington office.  Given the 
impending travel by Jarrar, Post (1) requests appropriate 
Department contacts pass this information directly to him at 
"BLOCKED::mailto:yasar.jarrar@dsg.ae"yasar.ja rrar@dsg.ae; or 
call him on his mobile phone at 971-50-640-7281. (2) Jarrar 
expressed openness to possible further consultations with the 
USG during his visit to Washington, noting he was in direct 
contact with S/P; he said he would welcome direct outreach from 
any of the offices with which he met on his previous visit to 
Washington with Minister of Cabinet Affairs (and MbRF Chairman) 
Mohammed Gergawi. 
Medium-term action requests: 
-- Possible contacts for English to Arabic publishing partners. 
-- SG assistance in facilitating corporate contacts for the 
business incubator program. 
-- Appropriate initial contacts at the Smithsonian for the 
Traveling Museum concept. 

We have more examples of such lobbying.

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