Cablegate: Media Reaction; Argentine Foreign Policy;
DE RUEHBU #1556/01 2220859
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 100859Z AUG 07
FM AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 8874
INFO RHMFISS/CDR USSOCOM MACDILL AFB FL//SCJ2//
UNCLAS BUENOS AIRES 001556
STATE FOR INR/R/MR, I/GWHA, WHA, WHA/PDA, WHA/BSC,
CDR USSOCOM FOR J-2 IAD/LAMA
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KPAO OPRC KMDR PREL
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION; ARGENTINE FOREIGN POLICY;
BEIJING-WASHINGTON TENSION; 08/09/07
1. SUMMARY STATEMENT
Leading international opinion pieces cover Argentina's current and
upcoming foreign policy; and the mounting trade dispute between the
US and China.
2. OPINION PIECES AND EDITORIALS
- "Gestures towards the world"
Ricardo Kirschbaum, general editor of leading "Clarn," writes
(08/09) "The (Argentine) Government is making gestures towards the
world which are in line with the new (foreign) policy Cristina
Kirchner could implement if she wins the presidency... There has
been a test in Buenos Aires - firebrand Hugo Chvez, Spanish VP and
the members of the influential Council of the Americas have come to
"This will continue in September in New York when Nestor Kirchner
attends the UN General Assembly meetings and a panel promoted by
former US President Bill Clinton...
"This is a turning point in Argentina's foreign policy, which is
aimed at making the US-Argentine bilateral relationship more
functional. Diplomatic sources say that Argentina has been
cooperative on crucial issues. Regardless of ideological rhetoric,
the facts demonstrate that ties are much better than they appear to
"Regarding Chvez, Argentina's need to maintain a good relationship
with him is justified by the fact that Venezuela lent a financial
hand to Kirchner when others refused. While Kirchner is not at ease
with the Venezuelan's radical rhetoric, he is a pragmatist (just
like Argentine businessmen who invest in Venezuela).
"On Spain, its VP is a heavyweight. Although with variations, Spain
has always been a permanent ally of Kirchner in spite of the
latter's rebuffs. And this is a bilateral relationship Cristina
would like to greatly improve, as well as reactivate ties to Paris
and Berlin. Her purpose is to reach a deal to pay off the country's
debt to the Paris Club."
- "The pit and the pendulum"
An editorial in liberal, English-language "Buenos Aires Herald"
reads (08/09) "President Nestor Kirchner is widely thought to be
hatching a new political movement which would part company with
Peronism altogether but Tuesday's simultaneous flirtation with
Venezuelan President Hugo Chvez and the Council of Americas... was
entirely typical of Peronism's founder who welcomed Nazi war
criminals in the first years of his presidency while making
Argentina one of the first countries in the world to recognize the
State of Israel. Within hours of each other Kirchner was receiving
from a 'post-sultanate' Chvez energy guarantees and debt bond
purchases of half a billion dollars... while his wife and chosen
successor Senator Cristina Fernndez de Kirchner was fishing for US
investments in the five-star hotel at Tuesday's Council of Americas
"'Argentina is a very good business opportunity' was the core of
Mrs. Kirchner's message but her choice of tense was debatable.'Was a
very good business opportunity,' some might say looking at the
recent financial turbulence and the energy constraints...
"Such pendular politics (Mexico's center-right President Felipe
Caldersn last week, the 'Bolivarian' firebrand Chvez this week or
Chvez at one end of the day and the Council of Americas businessmen
at the other) are all very well and fine but need a sense of balance
and direction - countries which expend their energies swinging from
side to side generally do not move ahead."
- "China threatens to make the US dollar collapse and raise alarm
bells in the US"
Ana Baron, Washington-based correspondent for leading "Clarn,"
writes (08/09) "Patience is one of China's traditional features.
However, everything indicates that it is coming to an end. Tired of
the US pressure to have China revalue the Yuan and facing the
possibility that legislation could be passed by Capitol Hill to
punish China's trade if it does not do it, two members of Beijing's
Communist Party threatened to resort to what they call 'the nuclear
"While this choice does not imply to attack the US with WMD, its
effect could be just as devastating. The idea would be to sell some
of the bonds for 900 billion dollars that are deposited in the
Chinese Central Bank to make the US dollar collapse.
"US President George W. Bush termed the threat as 'senseless'...
"... The situation is complicated because, in full election
campaign, the US trade conflict with China is part of the agenda of
all US presidential candidates. By keeping the Yuan value at a low
level, the Chinese Government has a competitive advantage in the
huge US market...
"... Nonetheless, this is not all. A devalued Yuan also favors the
transfer of US companies to China, which increases the US
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