Cablegate: Media Reaction Report - Summit of the Americas
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SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION REPORT - Summit of the Americas
Paris Violence India-Pakistan U.S.- China Relations
PARIS - Tuesday, November 08, 2005
(A) SUBJECTS COVERED IN TODAY'S REPORT:
Summit of the Americas
U.S.- China Relations
B) SUMMARY OF COVERAGE:
PM Villepin's televised performance last evening and the
measures he announced to "ensure that security returns" to the
troubled suburbs make up today's almost unanimous headlines.
The revival of a 1955 law allowing mayors to impose a curfew
is widely reported. The tone of today's titles and the
pictures alongside them illustrate France's "State of
Emergency" (Le Parisien.) Liberation headlines: "Villepin On
The Warpath" and France Soir titles "Cities Gripped By Fear."
The economic press also zeroes in on the curfew: "Villepin
Announces Curfews." (Les Echos)
Economic writer Pierre-Yves Dugua pens an op-ed in Le Figaro
titled "In the U.S., the Capitalistic Carrot and the Security
Stick." Dugua analyses the basic differences between the
French and U.S. social models: "The U.S. model, even if it is
not equalitarian, favors integration." (See Part C)
Today's exception in media coverage is marker by Catholic La
Croix, which devotes its lead to "Forgotten Kashmir" and the
lack of solidarity to help the survivors of the earthquake. In
her editorial Dominique Quinio writes: "Last evening in Paris,
the well-known singer Francis Cabrel gave a concert for his
New Orleans musician friends." "Who will sing for Kashmir?"
she asks. Le Figaro analyzes the persisting rift between Delhi
and Islamabad, "despite the tragedy, the most politicized
ever." (See Part C)
Jean-Jacques Mevel in Le Figaro comments on China-U.S.
relations, "the only ones that really count for Beijing. While
the EU is a trade and technology partner, it has disappointed
China politically." (See Part C)
Le Monde headlines that the 4th Summit of the Americas "Ended
in Failure for Bush." (See Part C)
FM Douste-Blazy is said to "be baring his teeth" about the
WTO. Liberation reports that France "is increasing the
pressure on Mandelson: yesterday the FM accused Peter
Mandelson of going beyond his mandate by making increasing
concessions on the CAP." "No one should have any doubts about
France's determination," he said during a press conference.
Economic Les Echos interviews FM Douste-Blazy: "After all,
President Bush is defending America's `green power.' Why
couldn't the EU do the same? . No one should doubt France's
determination to disapprove a Hong Kong agreement if it
undermines the CAP. We do not agree with Peter Mandelson's
Le Figaro Economie reports that the IMF has "for the first
time acknowledged that France's reforms are going in the right
direction." The IMF has also "invited France to pursue
structural reforms" in order to stabilize its public spending.
In an analysis entitled "Dr. Greenspan's Testament," Daniel
Cohen writes in Le Monde: "The end of the Greenspan years
marks not only a change of leadership but the end of an era.
Greenspan, the man, had more luck than talent. But if
Greenspan's time in office serves as a model it is especially
because he was able to prove that a centralized bank could be
interventionist and remain credible so long as it did not
cater to the political ambitions of the powers that be."
A report in Le Figaro notes that Culture Minister Donnedieu de
Vabres who recently visited the U.S. is a proponent of
"cultural diplomacy:" "Culture is a means for rapprochement."
Le Figaro notes that he is the first member of the government
to visit New Orleans after Katrina.
(C) SUPPORTING TEXT/BLOCK QUOTES:
Summit of the Americas
"In the Americas, Free Trade Fails"
Christine Legrand in left-of-center Le Monde (11/08): "The
Summit is a diplomatic failure for George Bush. He was not
able to convince his neighbors in South America who, for the
most part, have veered to the left politically and outwardly
criticized the war in Iraq. The Summit was a failure for the
American continent as a whole because what should have been
the main themes of the discussions; the fight against poverty
and unemployment, were overwhelmingly eclipsed."
"From Words to Action"
Pascal Aubert in centrist La Tribune (11/08): "No one expected
PM Villepin to take ready-made measures out of his hat. But
what he did announce needed to be said. The first measures
will not suffice. What is needed is the political will to go
from words to actions: a step that takes political courage."
Francoise Fressoz in right-of-center Les Echos (11/08): "PM
Villepin's task is more difficult than PM Pompidou's during
the May 68 student revolt. because there are no clear demands.
His only weapons are his words and determination. Even if
words in themselves are not sufficient, it was necessary to
recall the need for order."
"A Sad Farce"
Jean-Michel Thenard in left-of-center Liberation (11/08): "The
use of curfews and other legal measures set forth by the Prime
Minister, which recall those used during the Algerian war, are
the signs that France has made little progress in security
issues. Villepin's answer is a poor one when in fact France's
main problem is the failure of its social model of
"In the U.S., the Capitalistic Carrot and the Security Stick"
Pierre-Yves Dugua in right-of-center Le Figaro (11/08):
"America's model may not be equalitarian, but it is
integrationist. While the U.S. may not have resolved the
matter of its ghettos, it has reduced unemployment among its
minorities. Capitalism does incite minorities to integrate
into the economic system. In a nation where private enterprise
is encouraged, the gratuitous destruction of private property
is not tolerated. Capitalism also dictates the need to defend
private property: Americans have a different relationship than
the French to their police force. and the prolonged detention
of delinquents is considered a positive measure for the
protection of honest citizens."
Dominique Quinio in Catholic La Croix (11/08): "Pakistan does
not elicit the interest of far-way donors. Pakistan's
controversial relationship with its Indian neighbor is present
in everyone's mind as is Pakistan's relationship to terrorism.
Nevertheless there was a small ray of hope as the two enemies
recently agreed to open a border point for humanitarian
"In Spite of the Tragedy, India and Pakistan Remain Divided"
Marie-France Calle in right-of-center Le Figaro (11/08):
"Never before had a natural disaster been as politicized as
the Kashmir earthquake. Yesterday, the line of control was not
opened to the Kahmiri, despite the high-profile announcement
made by Islamabad and Delhi. It may be opened soon. Musharraf
is playing his own game: he knew when he made his announcement
that India would be embarrassed into reacting. The missed
opportunity of the LOC confirms, if confirmation were needed,
that the hastily-reached agreement between the two capitals
was more of a symbolic gesture than proof of a true desire to
reshape history. The peaceful dividends of the earthquake are
melting before our eyes."
U.S.- China Relations
"The Embargo Controversy Revived by Beijing"
Jean-Jacques Mevel in right-of-center Le Figaro (11/08):
"China is pampering its relationship with the EU, all the
while preparing to welcome the only interlocutor it considers
worthwhile: President George Bush. China's busy touring of
European capitals is not enough to hide its bitterness towards
the EU. While Europe remains a financial, technological and
trade partner, the EU-25 have fallen short of their political
promises to China. Beijing is re-opening an old wound that
internal European divisions will not be able to heal: the arms
embargo, which the Chinese see as `political discrimination.'
Meanwhile, the Bush administration, which did everything it
could to keep the embargo from being lifted, enjoys China's
good graces. Beijing is about to sign an agreement on textiles
with Washington. But of course this has nothing to do with
President Bush's forthcoming trip to China." STAPLETON