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Cablegate: Ankara Media Reaction Report

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 ANKARA 002303

SIPDIS


DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EUR/SE, EUR/PD, NEA/PD, DRL
JCS PASS J-5/CDR S. WRIGHT


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR TU
SUBJECT: ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 9, 2003


THIS REPORT WILL PRESENT A TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE
THEMES:


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION
-------


HEADLINES


MASS APPEALS
U.S. Senate's `decree' revenge - Milliyet
U.S. Senate: No money if you enter N. Iraq - Hurriyet
Press is new U.S. target - Turkiye
Baghdad war witnesses targeted - Vatan
Black day for press - Vatan
Two journalists killed, media mourns - Sabah
Friendly fire on media in Baghdad - Hurriyet
Crying broadcast from death hotel - Aksam
Bush, Blair agree on `new Iraq' - Turkiye
Secretary Hoon: Iraqis right to loot palaces in Basra -

SIPDIS
Sabah
U.S. obsessed with regime in Syria - Milliyet


OPINION MAKERS
Baghdad siege complete - Radikal
Civilians victimized, not Saddam - Radikal
Civilians are massacred in the hunt for Saddam - Cumhuriyet
Baghdad in shock, horror - Zaman
They shoot journalists - Yeni Safak
FIJ: Attack on press a war crime - Yeni Safak
Bloody censure on press - Cumhuriyet
U.S. tanks hit media - Zaman
Bush's new target after Iraq, Palestine - Cumhuriyet
Invasion government: Gen. Franks to administer Baghdad -
Yeni Safak


FINANCIAL JOURNALS
Annual industrial output up by 4.4 percent - Dunya
Journalists killed; U.S. doesn't want witnesses - Finansal
Forum


BRIEFING
Iraq: Dailies report that the U.S. Congress included a
clause in its supplemental war budget that would block
disbursement of $1 billion in cash, or $8.5 billion in loan
guarantees, if Turkey enters Northern Iraq unilaterally.
The clause stresses that the aid might also be cut if Turkey
abandons implementation of economic reforms. Commentaries
view the clause as a kind of punishment for Turkey for
refusing full cooperation with the U.S. in the war with
Iraq. Papers give extensive front-page coverage to the
journalists killed by U.S. tank fire in Baghdad on Tuesday,
describing the attack as a `bloody warning' to the press.
An Al-Jazeera manager said to "Zaman": `Whether intentional
or not, coalition forces have begun targeting press members.
You can imagine the threat Iraqi civilians are living
under.' Meanwhile, three Iraqi Embassy diplomats who were
declared persona non grata left Turkey on Tuesday.
Commenting on his visit to Damascus on Sunday, Foreign
Minister Gul said that beside Iran and Syria, Ankara intends
to hold consultations with Israel as well. The Israeli
foreign minister will pay a visit to Ankara next week to
discuss the war and economic relations with Turkey.
Opposition CHP leader Baykal criticized the government for
seeking a rapprochement with Iran and Syria, and added that
such moves blocked possible cooperation with the U.S. MFA
diplomats feel uneasy about the cancellation of Khalilzad's
scheduled visit to Ankara this week, Baykal said. Pointing
to developments in Northern Iraq, Baykal claimed that the
U.S. has not fulfilled pledges made by Secretary Powell
during his visit to Ankara last week to prevent Kurdish
groups from entering Mosul and Kerkuk. Meanwhile, survivors
of a massive 1999 earthquake in Izmit province lined up to
donate blood to Iraqis wounded in the war, pointing out that
Saddam Hussein donated $10 million worth of fuel after the
quake. The fuel was used to build homes for earthquake
victims. Turkey's Red Crescent (Kizilay) announced on
Tuesday that it would send water, food, and medicine to
Northern Iraq and Basra. The Red Crescent said all expenses
would be met by the International Red Cross, papers report.
U.S., the Red Cross, and Red Crescent representatives held a
meeting at the MFA on Tuesday, and will soon sign a protocol
on humanitarian aid activities in the war zone. On the
other hand, all Iraqi opposition groups will reportedly meet
in Nasirija in southern Iraq on Saturday.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Restructuring Iraq


"Military victory and political defeat"
Hasan Cemal commented in mass appeal Milliyet (4/9): "It is
true that making peace can sometimes be harder than making
war. There seems to be a difference of opinion between the
US and the UK regarding the possible role for the UN to play
in post-war Iraq. On the other hand, Washington is also the
scene of a tiff between the Pentagon and the State
Department on the future of Iraq. . All of this clearly
indicates some different tendencies and approaches about how
to establish security and stability in Iraq. We should not
ignore the legitimacy issue either. The new Iraqi
administration will emerge from an occupation, and it
remains to be seen to what extent it will gain legitimacy in
the Arab world and the larger international community. . The
end of Saddam is clear and definite, but Iraq in the post-
Saddam era has uncertainties. Let's hope that we do not see
chaos in Iraq, but rather a speedy normalization process in
the near future."


"End of military war, and the beginning of political war"
Murat Yetkin opined in the liberal-intellectual Radikal
(4/9): "The only way to achieve political victory in Iraq is
to establish an administration with the support of the
people instead of one imposed by foreign military powers.
Yet there is no indication that the former will happen
instead of the latter. It is irrational to believe that a
former US army general or a former ambassador will be able
to establish a new administration in Iraq with popular
support. It is also risky to appoint a local figure to head
an American-led administration. There are names circulating
for the new administration, such as Ahmad Chalabi or Bahram
Salih, which are seen by the majority of Iraqis as either
`crooks' or `traitors.' .If Washington wants to turn its
military victory into a political triumph, it must create a
synergy with the UN system as well as regional countries and
the genuine representatives of Iraqi people."


PEARSON

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