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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 006599

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
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 26, 2004


THIS REPORT PRESENTS THE TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE
THEMES:

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

HEADLINES

MASS APPEAL
Silent tension grows Between US, Turkey - Sabah
Parliamentary HR Committee: US commits `genocide' in Iraq -
Aksam
Nicosia signals vote for EU-Turkey entry talks - Hurriyet
Soros warns of looming economic crisis in second Bush term -
Sabah
Israel concerned that `Arafatism' may continue - Milliyet
Walesa supports `Orange Revolution' in Kiev - Hurriyet

OPINION MAKERS
Iraq tension between US,Turkey - Radikal
Dep. PM Sahin: Turkey's economic presence in Iraq to
continue - Cumhuriyet
Heavy fighting prevents Red Cross convoy from entering
Fallujah - Yeni Safak
BBC's Iraq reporter: Conditions in Fallujah a `disaster' -
Yeni Safak
Resistance fighters take 60 percent of Fallujah back from US
forces - Yeni Safak
Pentagon board warns: US is losing Muslim world - Zaman
Hawks warn Bush that US has `lost the war' - Yeni Safak
Barghouti to run for Palestine presidential elections -
Cumhuriyet
Israel may pardon Barghouti - Zaman
A `toughening' Yuschenko calls for general strike in Ukraine
- Cumhuriyet


BRIEFING

Ankara's Iraq tension with US: The AK Party's increasing
criticism of US policies over Iraq has stirred tension
between Ankara and Washington, papers report. On Thursday,
the US Embassy in Ankara reacted to charges by parliamentary
human rights committee chairman Elkatmis that the US is
carrying out `genocide' in Iraq and may have used nuclear
weapons in the Fallujah operation. A US embassy source
termed the charge `ridiculous,' adding that such statements
have the potential to damage U-Turkish relations. Elkatmis
said that the `genocide' and `savagery' carried out by the
US in Iraq has surpassed what was done by the Pharaohs,
Hitler and Mussolini.' Elkatmis said that the `violence,
barbarism and terror must be brought to an end.' He claimed
that `what is done in Iraq constitutes a crime against
humanity.' Parliamentary Speaker Bulent Arinc also
criticizedt the US for `violating international law in
Fallujah.' In response to Elkatmis' reference to
`genocide,' US Embassy sources noted that `Turks rightly
display sensitivity to the use of the word genocide, which
has nothing at all to do with what is happening in Iraq.'
The embassy source noted that one of the goals of the
operation in Fallujah was to root out the groups responsible
for the killing of Turkish drivers and contractors in Iraq.
The embassy source also stressed that reports about US
forces using cluster bombs in Falujah were false. `Turks
may have been among those who were killed in the
slaughterhouses found by US forces in Fallujah,' he added.

Ankara vows to continue economic presence in Iraq: Deputy
PM Mehmet Ali Sahin said Thursday that Turkey's economic
activities in Iraq has become a `lifeline' for the Iraqi
people, adding that the Turkish government is determined to
continue those activities. Despite the fact that Turkey has
lost more lives than some coalition member troops in the
region, sahin said, `our support for the Iraqi people will
continue.' Sahin also characterized the recent US operation
in Fallujah as a `massacre.'
US loses `war of ideas': A Pentagon report submitted to
Secretary Rumsfeld said that although the US won the

SIPDIS
military battle in Iraq, it has lost the war of ideas. US
diplomatic and military activities are not adequately
explained in the Islamic world, the report stressed. The
report said the US has mistakenly viewed Muslims as similar
to those terrorized under the Soviet regime. The report
notes that in Muslim nations, `there are no masses waiting
to be liberated.'

FM Gul may visit Israel: On a regular visit to Ankara,
Israeli foreign ministry U/S Ron Prosor told his Turkish
counterpart Ali Tuygan about Israeli expectations of
Ankara's contribution to the upcoming January 9 elections in
Palestine. Tuygan said FM Gul could visit Israel if he is
invited and his schedule permits. Papers note that a visit
by Gul to Israel seems unlikely before 2005. Acting FM
Mehmet Ali Sahin advised Prosor to ensure that Palestinians
in East Jerusalem are allowed to participate in Palestinian
elections, and to launch new peace talks with Syria and
Lebanon.

US does not `trust' Turkey on Iran: US official
institutions, based on the Iraq experience, do not believe
Ankara will side with Washington in a possible crisis with
Iran, "Hurriyet" reports from Washington. US sources said
that Washington has asked Ankara to enter into a
`constructive' engagement with Tehran in an effort to help
halt a growing nuclear crisis. Thus far, nothing has been
conveyed to the US regarding contacts between Ankara and
Tehran. The US may eventually seek permission to use
Turkish airspace or military bases for an airstrike against
selected targets in Iran, but Washington is inclined to
believe that Turkey will not accept sucha request,
"Hurriyet" notes.

Nicosia wants to open consulate in Istanbul: Turkish papers
cite the Greek Cypriot daily "Politis" as claiming that the
Greek Cypriot administration has applied to the European
Commission to pressure Ankara for allowing a Greek Cypriot
consulate. The consulate would facilitate visa procedures
for Greek Cypriot nationals who visit Turkey.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Ukraine; Israel-Palestine

"The Hands of the US are Everywhere"
Emin Pazarci argued in the conservative-sensational "DB
Tercuman" (11/26): "The US is in the process of
establishing a new world order, and it is happening not only
by the power of American military but also by the power of
money and politics. The occupation of Iraq is only a recent
example that began with military power and now continues
with political propaganda. The propaganda is so powerful
that the US has managed to claim that everyone who has stood
against the Americans is a terrorist. . Following the
Georgia case, where political rule was transferred to a pro-
American figure, Ukraine is the latest example of efforts to
reshape the world based on Washington's interests. The
Russian-backed Prime Minister Yanukovich and the US-backed
Yushchenko are competing. The election results indicate a
victory for the former, yet Yanukovic's fate seems to be no
different than Georgian or Serbian leaders. The Ukrainians
are marching to voice support for Yushchenko, as are
intellectuals and NGOs. It looks like the eventual winner
of this election will be Yushchenko. That means the
Ukrainian elections will be one more victory for the US."

"Jerusalem, the Obstacle for Peace"
Haluk Ulman commented in the economic-political "Dunya"
(11/26): "Arafat is not with us any longer. According to
the West, the biggest obstacle before a peace settlement is
has now been removed. The expectation would be that, with
the elections in Palestine at the beginning of the next
year, a new leader will take over the Palestine Authority
and will sign a peace agreement with Israel. It is not
known whether these people believe in this plan, but at
least their expectations lie in this direction. No one
should have high hopes on this issue. No matter how
strongly the new leader supports peace, it is not possible
for Arab-Israeli peace to be established as long as Israel
refuses to give east Jerusalem back to Palestine. This is
territory that was occupied during the 1967 war. In fact,
the main aim of the Palestinians is to have east Jerusalem
as the capital of the independent state they are going to
establish."

EDELMAN

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