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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 02 ANKARA 005530

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
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 2003


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


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION
--------------------------------------------- -
HEADLINES


MASS APPEAL
Gen.Ozkok: "We Will Improve, Will Continue to Protect the
Country" - Hurriyet (8/31)
Gen.Ozkok: "Military is Guarantor for Democracy Too" -
Milliyet (8/31)
Ladin Fingerprints in Najef Explosion _ Sabah (8/31)
Denktas: "I'll Have Anatolia's Support and Fight" - Hurriyet
(9/1)
Bargaining over Turkish Troops with the US Starts - Sabah
FM Gul: "Denktas Should Seek the Cypriots' Support First" -
Hurriyet
`Wrongdoing in Iraq' Confessions From US - Hurriyet
General Jones and `EUCOM' Delegation Arrive Today - Hurriyet
Confession from the US Hawks "We Did Not Expect Such Strong
Resistance" - Milliyet
PM Erdogan: "Turkey Will Not Be an Occupier in Iraq" -
Turkiye


OPINION MAKERS
Guarantee for Secularism from Gen.Ozkok - Cumhuriyet (8/31)
Ankara Wants North of Baghdad for Turkish Troops - Radikal
(9/1)
PKK Question to General Jones - Cumhuriyet
Newsweek: "Ladin's Terrorism Summit" - Cumhuriyet
Turkish Military's Iraq Condition is `Peace' - Radikal
Intense Troop Bargaining: US Says "Turkish Troops in Iraq a
Must" - Zaman
US: "We Need Turkey in Iraq - Yeni Safak


BRIEFING


August 30 Reception by Military: Weekend papers covered the
August 30 Victory Holiday and Turkish Military Day
Celebrations and the messages TGS Chief General Ozkok gave
to the public. In his message to the country, Gen. Ozkok
said that the Turkish Military will improve itself
constantly in today's changing world and will continue to
defend the country. Ozkok warned against fundamentalist and
separatist movements and said that such movements assigned
new duties to the Turkish military.
Al Najaf Mosque Bombing: Weekend papers and TV channels
covered the Shi'a Muslims' protest in Iraq following the
August 29 bombing of Imam Ali Mosque. Shi'a leader Al-Hakim
and hundreds of people lost their lives in the explosion.
Al-Hakim's funeral will be held in Najaf today.


General Jones Visit: Most papers today cover the visit of
General Jones to Turkey. "Radikal" says that Gen. Jones is
coming to Turkey to hold discussions about the deployment of
Turkish troops. "Hurriyet" reports that Jones is coming to
Turkey as NATO supreme commander in Europe and talks about
Iraq would be held unofficially. Turkey-US coordination to
eliminate PKK-KADEK will be discussed too.
Turkish Troop Deployment: "Zaman" reports that the US
continues to stress the need for Turkish troops in Iraq.
However, the Governing Council of Iraq is against the
foreign troop deployment. The Turkish government believes
that an invitation from the interim government would open
the path for the parliament's decision on troop deployment.
"Radikal" says that during the talks with the US, Turkey
will stress that Turkish troops should go to Iraq as a
`peacekeeping force'. TGS will indicate that Turkish troops
will not join in any clashes involving US troops in Iraq,
and that they will be there only for humanitarian aid and
for the reconstruction of Iraq. "Radikal" also reports on
FM Gul's comments on PKK/KADEK. Responding to a question
about PKK/KADEK, FM Gul said that `Presently, US and Britain
control the situation in Iraq, therefore, they carry the
responsibilities for fighting against terrorism there. We
are following the developments there closely.' "Zaman"
quotes PM Erdogan's interview with German magazine "Focus",
saying that "Turkey would not become an occupier in Iraq".


Remarks of TRNC President Denktas: Monday's "Hurriyet"
quotes Denktas as saying that `if I lose at the elections,
I'll fight with the support of people of Anatolia'.
Responding to this comment, FM Gul said "The people of
Anatolia already support the Cyprus cause, Denktas should
seek the support of Cyprus people".


EDITORIAL OPINION


"Should we send troops to Iraq?"
Hursit Gunes noted in the mass appeal Milliyet (9/2): "The
U.S. wants to station Turkish troops in central Iraq. If
the U.S. had not asked, Turkey would not be willing to go to
Iraq. Thus, such a deployment will serve U.S. interests
rather than Turkey's. . It would be wrong to correlate
financial aid and military support, for the U.S. has
provided monetary support for Israel and Egypt, the two
countries it did not ask for help. Iraq is increasingly
turning into a military swamp. Sending troops to Iraq would
be extremely risky. . High-risk help that would bring low
gains is irrational."


"Can the UN bring stability to Iraq?"
Sahin Alpay wrote in the intellectual/conservative Zaman
(9/2): "Ankara should go to Iraq only through a UN
resolution, and under a UN command. . Washington is not
cold to the idea of UN peacekeepers in Iraq under U.S.
command. . The question is whether a switch of mandate from
the U.S. to the UN will bring stability to Iraq. From an
Iraqi viewpoint, it is questionable that the credibility of
the UN, which imposed economic sanctions on Iraq for years,
is higher than that of the U.S. . Some analysts think that
such a change of administration will encourage the U.S. to
undertake new military interventions in Iran, Syria, and
Saudi Arabia."


EDELMAN

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