INDEPENDENT NEWS

Cablegate: Media Reaction Report - Iraq - Formation of New

Published: Fri 29 Apr 2005 12:15 PM
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 PARIS 002926
SIPDIS
DEPT FOR INR/R/MR; IIP/RW; IIP/RNY; BBG/VOA; IIP/WEU; AF/PA;
EUR/WE /P/SP; D/C (MCCOO); EUR/PA; INR/P; INR/EUC; PM; OSC ISA
FOR ILN; NEA; WHITE HOUSE FOR NSC/WEUROPE; DOC FOR ITA/EUR/FR
AND PASS USTR/PA; USINCEUR FOR PAO; NATO/PA; MOSCOW/PA;
ROME/PA; USVIENNA FOR USDEL OSCE.
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR FR
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION REPORT - IRAQ - FORMATION OF NEW
GOVERNMENT AFRICA - DARFUR - NATO INVOLVEMENT LEBANON - SYRIAN
PULLOUT
PARIS - FRIDAY, APRIL 29, 2005
(A) SUBJECTS COVERED IN TODAY'S REPORT:
1. IRAQ - FORMATION OF NEW GOVERNMENT
2. AFRICA - DARFUR - NATO INVOLVEMENT
3. LEBANON - SYRIAN PULLOUT
B) SUMMARY OF COVERAGE:
A WIDE VARIETY OF DOMESTIC STORIES ARE REPORTED ON TODAY'S
FRONT PAGES, WITH FORMER SOCIALIST PM JOSPIN PROMINENTLY
FEATURED AFTER HIS TELEVISED INTERVENTION LAST EVENING IN
FAVOR OF THE EU CONSTITUTION. LEFT-OF-CENTER LIBERATION
HEADLINES: "JOSPIN: YES TO THE YES" WHILE LEFT-OF-CENTER LE
MONDE ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY AFTERNOON: "JOSPIN TO DEFEND THE
LEFT'S YES." LE MONDE ALSO CARRIES A FRONT-PAGE EDITORIAL BY
JEAN-MARIE COLOMBANI WHICH ECHOES HIS "WE ARE ALL AMERICANS"
EDITORIAL AFTER THE 9/11 ATTACKS. THIS ONE IS TITLED "WE ARE
ALL EUROPEANS." COLOMBANI, LIKE JOSPIN, DEFENDS THE `YES' VOTE
AND THE IMPORTANCE OF EUROPE'S WEIGHT ON THE INTERNATIONAL
SCENE: "HISTORY DOES NOT WAIT. TOMORROW, IN INTERNATIONAL
NEGOTIATIONS, WHEN WE WILL NEED TO ESTABLISH UNIVERSAL RULES
IN TRADE, CULTURE, THE ENVIRONMENT, ENERGY AND IMMIGRATION, TO
NAME A FEW, BUT ALSO TO DISCUSS WAR AND PEACE AT THE UN, THERE
WILL BE THREE OR FOUR HEAVY DUTY PLAYERS AROUND THE TABLE: THE
U.S. AND POSSIBLY A UNIT COMPRISED OF LATIN AMERICA, CHINA AND
INDIA; AND EUROPE IF IT DECIDES THAT IT WANTS TO. IN
WASHINGTON, NEW DELHI AND BEIJING THEY ARE WAITING FOR AN
ANSWER TO THE QUESTION: TOMORROW, WILL THERE BE A EUROPEAN
SITTING AT THE TABLE AMONG THE GREATS?"
CATHOLIC LA CROIX CARRIES A FULL-PAGE INTERVIEW WITH JEREMY
RIFKIN ON THE EUROPEAN DREAM, "WHICH IS RADICALLY DIFFERENT
FROM THE U.S. DREAM OF INDIVIDUAL ACHIEVEMENT. IN EUROPE
EMPHASIS IS ON CULTURAL DIVERSITY, REJECTING POVERTY AND
EXCLUSION, ON QUALITY OF LIFE., SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND
RESPECTING THE PLANET."
IRAQ'S NEWLY-FORMED BUT INCOMPLETE GOVERNMENT IS ONE OF
TODAY'S INTERNATIONAL STORIES. LE FIGARO DEVOTES ITS EDITORIAL
TO "IRAQ'S SLOWNESS." (SEE PART C) THE SYRIAN PULLOUT FROM
LEBANON IS THE SUBJECT OF AN EDITORIAL IN RIGHT-OF-CENTER LES
ECHOS TITLED "THE LEBANESE PUZZLE" WHICH CONCLUDES: "THE WEST
WOULD BE WELL ADVISED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE LEBANESE
RECONSTRUCTION. THE COST WOULD BE MINIMAL BUT THE GAINS IN THE
EQUILIBRIUM FOR PEACE WOULD BE GREAT." (SEE PART C)
THE SITUATION IN TOGO IS THE BASIS FOR SEVERAL REPORTS, WHILE
LE FIGARO DEVOTES A STORY TO THE WORSENING CONDITIONS IN
DARFUR AND NATO'S DESIRE TO INTERVENE. IN HER REPORT
ALEXANDRINE BOUILHET NOTES THE CONFLICTING POSITIONS OF THE
U.S. AND FRANCE ON A NATO ROLE. (SEE PART C)
SEVERAL REPORTS ARE DEVOTED TO PRESIDENT BUSH'S "LOSS OF
GRACE" AFTER THE FIRST ONE HUNDRED DAYS IN OFFICE. FOR LES
ECHOS "THE PRESIDENT IS ON THE DEFENSIVE. HIS POPULARITY HAS
FALLEN. HE IS FACING DIVIDED REPUBLICANS WHEREAS THE DEMOCRATS
ARE UNITED. IF JOHN BOLTON IS NOT CONFIRMED, IT WOULD BE THE
FIRST OF HIS NOMINATIONS TO BE REJECTED."
(C) SUPPORTING TEXT/BLOCK QUOTES:
IRAQ - FORMATION OF NEW GOVERNMENT
"IRAQ'S SLOWNESS"
PIERRE ROUSSELIN IN RIGHT-OF-CENTER LE FIGARO (04/29): "IT
TOOK THREE MONTHS FOR THE EXEMPLARY COURAGE OF THE IRAQIS WHO
VOTED IN JANUARY TO BEAR FRUIT. AND THE GOVERNMENT IS ONLY A
TRANSITION GOVERNMENT. BECAUSE BRINGING TOGETHER THE THREE
FACTIONS ON FIVE PORTFOLIOS HAS PROVEN TO BE IMPOSSIBLE. IF
THE AMERICANS HAD NOT BANGED ON THE TABLE IT IS FAIR TO SAY
THAT THE DISCUSSIONS WOULD STILL BE GOING ON. BUT THE TRUTH IS
THAT THE TASK OF FOLDING IN THE SUNNI MINORITY WAS NOT BEEN AN
EASY ONE. THE RESULT IS NOT GREAT. THE FACT THAT THE DEFENSE
AND OIL MINISTERS COULD NOT BE NAMED PROVES THAT THE MOST
DIFFICULT IS STILL AHEAD. MEANWHILE, AHMED CHALABI, THE
PENTAGON'S MAN, MAKES A NOTICEABLE AND STRONG COMEBACK. BUT
THE LEGISLATIVE AGENDA COULD BE COMPROMISED, AND THIS IS
UNFORTUNATE BECAUSE DURING THIS DELAY THE INSURRECTION
CONTINUES WITHOUT WEAKENING. ON THE CONTRARY IT IS ENHANCED BY
THE INSTITUTIONAL VACUUM. IF THERE ARE FEWER AMERICAN VICTIMS,
IT IS BECAUSE IRAQI SECURITY FORCES ARE TAKING OVER FROM THE
COALITION. CIVILIANS CONTINUE TO PAY A HEAVY PRICE IN THE
DAILY VIOLENCE. TO EXTRICATE THE COUNTRY FROM CHAOS, THE
GOVERNMENT MUST GET TO WORK FAST. TOO MUCH TIME HAS ALREADY
BEEN WASTED IN IRAQ."
AFRICA - DARFUR - NATO INVOLVEMENT
"NATO WANTS TO INTERVENE IN DARFUR"
ALEXANDRINE BOUILHET IN RIGHT-OF-CENTER LE FIGARO (04/29):
"THE HUMANITARIAN CRISIS IN DARFUR COULD OFFER NATO A HISTORIC
OPPORTUNITY TO INTERVENE IN AFRICA. DESPITE FRANCE'S
RETICENCE. THE AFRICAN UNION TROOPS DEPLOYED NEED HELP. BUT
WHOSE? THE EUROPEAN UNION'S OR NATO'S? ONCE AGAIN THE TWO
ORGANIZATIONS ARE IN COMPETITION. WITH THE DARFUR TRAGEDY AS A
BACKDROP, FRANCE'S STRATEGIC INTERESTS ARE CLASHING AGAINST
THOSE OF THE U.S., WHICH IS INCREASINGLY PRESENT IN AFRICA.
WASHINGTON IS PUSHING FOR A NATO INTERVENTION IN SUDAN. ROBERT
ZOELLICK WAS THE FIRST TO SUGGEST IT. TO WHICH FM BARNIER
ANSWERED THAT `NATO MUST NOT BE THE SHERIFF OF THE WORLD.' IN
SPITE OF THE URGENT NEED TO DO SOMETHING, FRANCE PREFERS TO
GIVE THE LEAD TO THE EUROPEAN UNION TO RESOLVE THE CRISIS.
FRANCE'S LACK OF TRUST IN NATO HAS ELICITED SARCASM ON THE
PART OF SOME OF ITS EU PARTNERS. WHILE A FRENCH DIPLOMAT ASKS:
`CAN THE U.S. NOT WORK WITH THE EU WITHOUT GOING THROUGH
NATO?' KOFI ANNAN MEANWHILE, IGNORING THE QUARREL BETWEEN NATO
AND THE EU, HAS ASKED THE AMERICANS AND THE EUROPEANS TO REACH
AN AGREEMENT."
LEBANON - SYRIAN PULLOUT
"THE LEBANESE PUZZLE"
FAVILLA IN RIGHT-OF-CENTER LES ECHOS (04/29): "WHILE WE CAN
BUT REJOICE IN THE FACT THAT THE LAST SYRIAN SOLDIER HAS JUST
LEFT LEBANON, TWO THINGS CAN STILL DAMPEN OUR ENTHUSIASM. THE
FIRST IS THAT THE SYRIANS HAVE LEFT UNDER PROTEST. THEIR
DEPARTURE IS DUE TO AN EVOLUTION OF WASHINGTON'S POLICY.
BECAUSE THIS PULLOUT IS THE RESULT OF PRESSURE, WE CAN FEAR
THAT IT WILL LAST ONLY AS LONG AS WASHINGTON'S PRESSURE
CONTINUES. THE SECOND HAS TO DO WITH LEBANESE SOCIETY AND
ECONOMY. THE COUNTRY IS WEAK, ECONOMICALLY, AND ITS SOCIETY IS
FOUNDED ON RELIGIOUS COMMUNITIES. THE QUESTION IS HOW TO MAKE
THE DIFFERENT PARTS OF THIS PUZZLE WORK OUT, PULLED AS THE
PIECES ARE BETWEEN THE SHIITE IRANIAN BIG BROTHER, SOLIDARITY
FOR THE PALESTINIAN CAUSE, AND THE MEMORY OF LEBANON AS A
MEETING POINT FOR EAST AND WEST? THIS IS THE MAJOR CHALLENGE
OF THE LEBANESE ELECTIONS. THE WEST WOULD BE WELL ADVISED TO
HELP IN THE LEBANESE RECONSTRUCTION. THE COST WOULD BE MINIMAL
BUT THE GAINS IN THE EQUILIBRIUM FOR PEACE WOULD BE GREAT."
WOLFF
View as: DESKTOP | MOBILE © Scoop Media