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Cablegate: Media Reaction War with Iraq - Opinion

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 HARARE 000642

SIPDIS

DEPT FOR AF/PDPAP FOR DALTON, MITCHELL AND SIMS
IRAQ PD FOR SMITH, PINESS AND ROOKARD
NSC FOR JENDAYI FRAZER
LONDON FOR GURNEY
PARIS FOR NEARY

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: IZ PREL KPAO KMDR ZI
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION WAR WITH IRAQ - OPINION
PIECES; HARARE


1. The March 30 editions of the government-
controlled weekly "The Sunday Mail" and the pro-
government weekly "The Sunday Mirror" carried a number
of opinion pieces focusing on the war in Iraq.
Excerpts:

2. Under headline "U.N. becomes irrelevant" the "The
Sunday Mail" (03/30) carried the following opinion
piece by William Godwin Nhara, Executive Director of
the Southern African Institute for Democracy and Good
Governance:

". . .The unilateral invasion of Iraq by the
U.S., the United Kingdom and four others will
have reverberating and long-lasting
consequences. This unholy alliance has thrown
the United Nations, its covenants and Charter
out of the window and plunged the world body
into an irrelevant body (sic) that will
henceforth not have any moral voice and
authority within international diplomacy and
relations. . ."

3. Under headline "U.S., UK seek to silence Iraqis"
the same newspaper carried the following opinion piece
by Tafataona Mahoso:

"On March 26, the U.S. and the UK authorized,
carried out and tried to justify the bombing of
the Iraqi television system. This act followed
a similar one on April 24, 1999, when NATO
forces bombed and destroyed Serbian television
studios in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, killing at
least 20 journalists. . . These two cases
indicate that, when it suits them, the
imperialist powers will not hesitate to trash
their own usual slogans about free flow of
information, free flow of ideas, freedom of
conscience, freedom of expression and freedom of
the Press. . ."

4. Under headline "Attack on Iraq compromises U.N.
peace efforts" the "Sunday Mail" (03/30) also carried
an opinion piece by Clever Chirume:

"The current attack on Iraq by America and
Britain should be castigated as it is an assault
on the world's most august institution, the
United Nations. It has cast a shadow on the
effectiveness of international law and the
function of democracy, compromising any future
united efforts for peace and stability in the
world. The attack, which comes amid worldwide
protests against war, legitimizes state
terrorism and violates not only the human rights
of the people of Iraq but also the integrity and
credibility of the U.N. Security Council and all
other U.N. institutions. . ."

5. Under headline "The U.S./UK invasion of Iraq" the
pro-government weekly "The Sunday Mirror" (03/30)
carried the following op-ed:

". . .The (U.S.) National Security Strategy
itself is, therefore, an attempt to provide both
a justification and framework for the `Manifesto
for world dictatorship.' Accordingly, the world
will have to acknowledge now that the debate on
Iraq in the U.N. and, indeed, even the program
of weapons inspections that was attendant to it,
was completely farcical on the part of a super-
power already intent and prepared to invade the
Arab country and thereby effect a regime
change."

6. Under headline "And so the world turns" the same
newspaper carried an opinion piece by Patricia
McFadden about western media coverage of the
war:

". . .All one gets is a deafening cacophony of
conformist voices, screeching out the same
message over and over about the might and
invisibility (sic) of the `coalition' forces,
and the inevitability of the fall of Baghdad.
It's like playing `cowboys and Indians' - with
the fore-knowledge that the cowboys must win,
and there simply cannot be any other outcome to
this infamy. . . ."

7. Under headline "The battle of hearts and minds in
Baghdad" the "Sunday Mirror" (03/30) carried an
opinion piece by Tendai Chari:

". . .The point is the military control of the
media is immoral and a transgression of
journalistic ethics. At the end of the day the
news that we get is contaminated with the
military's points of view. Manipulation of the
media by the invading forces poses the gravest
threat to media freedom and independence of the
war on Iraq (sic). The bombing of the Iraq
broadcasting station is further testimony that
the invading forces are determined to feed the
rest of the world with lies while concealing
their heinous acts. . ."

SULLIVAN

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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