Search

 

Cablegate: Chile Media Report -- December 13-15

VZCZCXYZ0021
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHSG #1098/01 3501907
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 151907Z DEC 08
FM AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4131
INFO RUEHAC/AMEMBASSY ASUNCION 3671
RUEHBO/AMEMBASSY BOGOTA 2209
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 1182
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 0576
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 1876
RUEHPE/AMEMBASSY LIMA 5851
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO 4145
RUEHQT/AMEMBASSY QUITO 2027
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC

UNCLAS SANTIAGO 001098

SIPDIS

STATE FOR R/MR, I/PP, WHA/BSC, WHA/PDA, INR/IAA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KMDR KPAO PGOV ECON PREL SNAR EFIN CI
SUBJECT: CHILE MEDIA REPORT -- DECEMBER 13-15

Lead Stories
------------
1. All dailies highlighted the Christian Democrats (DC) proclaiming
Eduardo Frei as their presidential candidate as well as the UDI
endorsement of Sebastian Piera as the Alianza candidate in the 2009
electoral race. Other headlines highlighted concerns over the
effect of declining copper prices on the country's mining sector.

U.S.-Related News
-----------------
2. Embassy-organized fairs and contacts with the local private
sector have yielded results for Chilean Ambassador in the United
States, Mariano Fernandez, who has successfully resolved several
problems and concluded negotiations over the entry of Chilean
agricultural products. This earned him an article in The Washington
Post, entitled, "A Diplomatic Champion for Chile" (El Mercurio,
conservative, influential newspaper-of-record, circ. 129,000,
12/15).

3. Chilean Education Minister Monica Jimenez awarded Doris Atkinson
a distinction for her decision to donate to Chile tons of
unpublished material, personal letters, photographs, and memorabilia
left by Chilean poet and Nobel Prize Gabriela Mistral. Atkinson is
the official heir and manager of Mistral's work, which was located
in the United States. The material arrived in Chile last December
(Chilean government webpage, 12/11).

4. The sports section ran a paragraph on the Little League's final
game of the season at the National Stadium, noting that the U.S.
Embassy has sponsored the league for several years (Sun. La Tercera,
12/14).

5. Photo coverage of Ambassador Simons at the American Chilean
Chamber of Commerce 90th anniversary event (Sat. La Tercera, 12/13).


6. Economist Sebastian Edwards wrote against bailout plans for the
U.S. automobile industry: "Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler have
been extremely arrogant. They are companies structurally
inefficient and manufacture poor quality products that people do not
want to buy. Theirs is a structural problem.... They had time to
change and modernize, but did not. It makes no sense to help them
if they are not truly committed to change.... The bankruptcy or
fusion of the automobile industry would have a minor and limited
effect, but Detroit is trying to show that it would be a
catastrophe. That is not true. It is an exaggeration" (La Tercera,
conservative, independent, circ. 101,000, 12/13).

7. Weekly round-up column entitled, "Chance for Peace in the Middle
East": "It has always been said that the United States is key to
finding a solution in the Middle East. But Bush has been unable to
find such a solution, as he said he would... probably because of the
lack of a real desire to pressure all parties into striking a deal,
which obviously calls for mutual concessions. Immersed in the 'war
on terrorism' ... the U.S. government could hardly be perceived as
the guarantor of a just agreement. Today, hopes are set on what the
new Obama administration ... will propose to make the talks relevant
again (El Mercurio, 12/15).

8. Column by defense journalist Raul Sohr entitled, "A Setback for
Human Rights": "9/11 marked the beginning of the deterioration in
civil liberties and fundamental (human) rights. The United States,
which presented itself as a champion in this area until then, took a
position that contradicted the spirit and text of the (Human Rights)
Declaration. The most serious actions were the Guantanamo prison...
and the Patriotic Act, whereby the United States legalized torture
and authorized the CIA to kidnap individuals who were taken to
secret detention centers.... Beyond the suffering of the victims,
the most serious damage was that it buried the principle promoted
thus far by the West -- that human rights are universal (La Nacion,
government-owned, editorially independent, 12/14-12/20)

9. Editorial entitled, "Senate Seat for Sale": "The scandal
revealed by the FBI ... is a strong blow to the reputation of U.S.
democracy and especially to the Democratic Party.... The contrast
between this scandal and the impeccable democratic process in the
United States... is notorious and calls for a clarification of the
incident itself and the appropriate sanctions for all those
responsible (El Mercurio, 12/15).

10. Column by staff writer with the acronym MOJ: "Sold!": "Some
things in life don't have a price, but others do, and it seems that
a U.S. Senate seat is one of them.... The incident has splattered
over the next President... who will have to prove that he is not
part of this culture (of corruption). Because if the price for
Obama's seat was one-million dollars... we can but wonder how much
it 'costs' to become, let's say, a Secretary of State or of Defense,
or Director of the CIA or the FBI.... It's strange that just as
many are reviving the debate on the limits that between the
government and the market, we might discover that they are not so
far apart (Sat. La Tercera, 12/13).

11. The three largest copper mines in Chile are operating near
their operational costs because of the sharp drop in the
international price of copper, which closed at US$1.35 per pound --
the lowest figure in four years. Among them is U.S. firm Freeport
McMoran (Sat. El Mercurio, 12/13).


Local
-----
12. The DC party unanimously proclaimed Senator Eduardo Frei as its
presidential candidate to run in the Concertacion's primary (El
Mercurio, 12/15).

13. Jose Miguel Insulza endorsed the PPD's agenda, which includes
the de-penalization of therapeutic abortion, nationalization of
water, and opposition to nuclear energy. Insulza noted, however, he
is open to studying the use of nuclear energy (Sat. La Tercera,
12/13).

14. Insulza said he would prefer the Concertacion to hold a primary
to define its presidential candidate, rather than to do it through a
political agreement among parties. Insulza's political agenda
includes constitutional changes to substitute the current binominal
voting system and to build a semi-presidential system. In foreign
policy, he proposes to move from a trade-oriented approach to one
that gives priority to resolving "struggles and desires of the
colonialist past," promotes immigrant rights, and adopts a (policy)
that is focused on Latin America" (Sun. El Mercurio, 12/14).

15. The UDI Party announces its decision to endorse RN Sebastian
Piera as its presidential candidate for 2009 (Sat. El Mercurio,
12/13).

16. Column by Ascanio Cavallo: "A part of the (opposition) Alianza
has believed for some time that (Eduardo) Frei is Sebastian Piera's
true opponent... because the ideological differences between them is
not much and voters closer to the right... could swing over and vote
for Frei without feeling guilty (Sun. La Tercera, 12/14).

Chile and Other Countries
-------------------------
17. The Latin American Conference of Interior Ministers begins
today in Santiago. The goal of this conference is to come up with a
plan of action to strengthen the operative capability of the Haitian
police. To this end, Chile would be committed to extend full
scholarships to train Haitian policemen (El Mercurio, 12/15).

18. President Bachelet will travel to Mercosur's semester meeting
in Brazil. She will also meet with UNASUR representatives tomorrow
to discuss the Pando Report. Meanwhile, the Montevideo press
reports that Uruguay will withdraw from UNASUR if Argentina insists
on proposing Nestor Kirchner as the entity's Executive Director (El
Mercurio, 12/15).

19. Guatemala President Alvaro Colom is on an official visit in
Chile to strengthen bilateral ties, with emphasis on energy and food
(Sat. El Mercurio, 12/13).

SIMONS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Werewolf: Gordon Campbell On North Korea, Neo-Nazism, And Milo

With a bit of luck the planet won’t be devastated by nuclear war in the next few days. US President Donald Trump will have begun to fixate on some other way to gratify his self-esteem – maybe by invading Venezuela or starting a war with Iran. More>>

Victory Declared: New Stabilisation Funding From NZ As Mosul Is Retaken

New Zealand has congratulated the Iraqi government on the successful liberation of Mosul from ISIS after a long and hard-fought campaign. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Current US Moves Against North Korea

If Martians visited early last week, they’d probably be scratching their heads as to why North Korea was being treated as a potential trigger for global conflict... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Lessons From Corbyn’s Campaign

Leaving partisan politics aside – and ignoring Jeremy Corbyn’s sensational election campaign for a moment – it has to be said that Britain is now really up shit creek... More>>

ALSO:

Another US Court: Fourth Circuit Rules Muslim Ban Discriminatory

ACLU: Step by step, point by point, the court laid out what has been clear from the start: The president promised to ban Muslims from the United States, and his executive orders are an attempt to do just that. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC