INDEPENDENT NEWS

Cablegate: Media Reaction: Middle East: Un Peacekeeping Force; Global

Published: Tue 25 Jul 2006 12:13 PM
VZCZCXYZ0013
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DE RUEHSO #0800/01 2061213
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 251213Z JUL 06
FM AMCONSUL SAO PAULO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 5460
INFO RHEHNSC/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA PRIORITY 6534
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO PRIORITY 7304
RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC 2516
UNCLAS SAO PAULO 000800
SIPDIS
SIPDIS
STATE INR/R/MR; IIP/R/MR; WHA/PD
DEPT PASS USTR
USDOC 4322/MAC/OLAC/JAFEE
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KMDR OPRC OIIP ETRD BR
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: MIDDLE EAST: UN PEACEKEEPING FORCE; GLOBAL
ECONOMY: SUSPENSION OF THE DOHA ROUND TALKS; WESTERN HEMISPHERE:
MERCOSUL SUMMIT, CHAVEZ; SAO PAULO
1. "Peacekeeping Force"
Liberal, largest circulation daily Folha de S. Paulo (7/25) opined:
"The proposal of an international force made up mainly of European
troops to be sent to the South of Lebanon is praiseworthy.... That
seems to be the best way both for an immediate ceasefire and to
ensure that the events that triggered the current conflict are not
repeated in the near future. The extinction of Hezbollah as a
militia is essential for peace in the region. The South of Lebanon
can no longer be used as a platform from which radicals launch
rockets against Israel. The Lebanese state must exert a real control
over its territory. This does not mean that the Lebanese Shiites are
to be deprived of political representation. But it is not
reasonable that they maintain, through Hezbollah, a state within a
state.... However, for the plan to be successful, more than NATO
troops will be necessary. The key to neutralizing the militia's
military power is Syria. Diplomatic moves should bring it back to
the negotiation table. It is difficult, but not impossible.
Damascus' alliance with Hezbollah is much more circumstantial than
ideological. If Syrian dictator Bashar al Assad concludes that he
has more to gain by breaking relations with the militia than by
supporting it, it is very likely that he will do that. What remains
to be seen is what the US and Israel can offer in exchange.
Washington could normalize its diplomatic and commercial relations
with Damascus. Israel would need to suggest the return of the Golan
Heights."
2. "Failure at the WTO"
Liberal, largest national circulation daily Folha de S. Paulo (7/25)
editorialized: "The failure in the Doha Round trade negotiations
complicates the future scenario of multilateral agreements due to
the expiration, in July 2007, of the fast track mechanism that
authorizes the US President to negotiate commercial pacts.... The
main obstacle to such negotiations comes from the fact that neither
the US nor the EU will accept any reduction in their tariff and
non-tariff barriers to imports of agricultural products....
Developing nations have been pressured to make further concessions
in the industrial goods sector, but the potential gains in terms of
their agricultural products' access to developed nations' markets
would be very limited.... It is obvious that the developed nations
must advance in their proposals to open their agricultural markets
if they really want to resume multilateral negotiations. The result
of the suspension of the Doha Round may be the proliferation of
bilateral and regional trade agreements, which will fragmentize even
more the norms and rules of international commerce."
3. "Doha Round Collapse"
Center-right O Estado de S. Paulo maintained (7/25): "Brazil and
other developing nations will be the most affected by the collapse
of the global trade negotiations.... Maybe it is premature to
announce the Doha Round's death and prepare its funeral, but it is
hard at this moment to avoid the impression of a final collapse....
The main responsibility for the impasse can be attributed to the
developed powers.... A week ago, there were signs that the US was
preparing to make the Europeans responsible for the probable
failure.... What will remain in the scenario are regional, bilateral
and inter-region agreements, which will make international trade
more complicated. Among the major economies, the Brazilian is the
least prepared to face this game. Tied to a Third World vision, the
current Brazilian administration did not have the necessary
pragmatism to pursue trade agreements with the partners that most
interest the nation."
4. "Mercosul Summit Emitted Politically Mistaken Signs"
Business-oriented Valor Economico commented (7/25): "By attracting
ideology to Mercosul's core, Brazil is running the risk of being
overcome by neighbors that are cleverer in playing that trump card
in addition to lacking common sense.... By inviting Bolivian
President Evo Morales and Cuban dictator Fidel Castro to join
Mercosul, what President Lula da Silva did in practice was to place
political interests not on the same level of the commercial ones,
but above them. The indication of Venezuela to occupy a rotating
seat at the UN Security Council unquestionably revealed the bloc's
political preferences as well as its increasing commitment with a
leader that has distanced himself from democratic practices."
5. "Ideology And Mercosul"
An editorial in center-right O Estado de S. Paulo (7/25) remarked:
"Nothing prevents Mercosul from doing business with other blocs or
nations, but its statute forbids the association with non-democratic
partners.... The premature reference to the entry of Cuba in the
originally Southern group was not the only inconsistency of
President Lula's conduct in Cordoba.... The first problem is
Chvez's clear intention of using Mercosul as a platform for his
anti-Americanism and to affirm his hegemonic aspirations. By
watching what has happened in Venezuela, the second problem is
knowing how long one will consider Venezuela a democracy in
accordance with Mercosul's statutes."
McMullen
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