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Cablegate: Damascus Media Reaction: Syria/Lebanon, Palestinian

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

UNCLAS DAMASCUS 006640

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR PA, NEA/ARN, INR/IC/CD, INR/S:STHIBEAULT AND
JMCCARTER, VOA NEWS CA, NEA/PPD:CBOURGEOIS, DBENZE AND
AFERNANDEZ, IIP/G/NEA-SA RWINCHESTER
WHITE HOUSE FOR NSC
CENTCOM FOR CCPA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KMDR PREL KPAO OPRC SY
SUBJECT: Damascus Media Reaction: Syria/Lebanon, Palestinian
Territories, Iraq (12/23-26)


1. Summary: Weekend Syrian papers reported statements by
Lebanese personalities emphasizing distinguished ties with
Syria, listing among them Lebanese Minister of Energy &
Water Mohammed Fneish who underlined the importance of
preserving "the distinguished relations with Syria to face
the Israeli danger;" a statement by Lebanese MP Mohammed
Raad, who called for national dialogue including all
national issues, above all, relations with Syria, preserving
the resistance and its weapons, as well as revealing the
truth about the Hariri assassination; a statement by
Lebanese ex-minister Wiaam Wahhab emphasizing that the only
solution for Lebanon is to form a national reconciliation
government and to hold early parliamentary elections; and a
statement by Kamal Shatila, Chairman of the Lebanese Popular
Conference, saying that internationalization measures are
part of the Greater Middle East plan.
Syrian editorials also continued their campaign against the
anti-Syria forces in Lebanon led by the Progressive
Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat and Future Current
leader Sa'd al-Hariri.
As for developments in the Palestinian territories, papers
reported Sharon's decision to establish a security zone in
northern Gaza, and Hamas' resolve to run for candidacy in
parliamentary election.

On Iraq, papers reported demonstrations calling for new
elections and changing the Higher Election Commission.
Headlines featured PM Jaafari's rejection of new elections.

End of summary.

2. Selected Headlines:
"Lebanese Minister of Water and Energy Mohammed Fneish
reiterates the importance of fortifying Lebanon by
establishing good relations with Syria. Head of al-Wafaa
Bloc for resistance, and Member of Parliament Mohammed
Ra'ad: We protest opening our doors to foreign intervention.
Former Lebanese Minister Wiam Wahhab: The only solution in
Lebanon is by forming a new national reconciliation
government and holding early elections" (Government-owned
Tishreen, 12/26)
"Lebanese President calls on the Lebanese to unite ranks and
learn a lesson from miscalculating gamblers. Nasarllah
[Secretary General of Hizbollah]: We disagree with the
government on national issues; Israelis say: our strategy in
Lebanon will be realized by creating a gap between Syria and
Lebanon" (Government-owned Tishreen, 12/24)
"Lebanese calls to cling fast to national principles.
Lebanese MP Raad: Unilateral political decision is behind
the crisis Shatila [Chairman of the Lebanese Popular
Conference]: Internationalization measures are part of the
Greater Middle East plan" (Government-owned Tishreen, 12/25)
"Walkout will continue in the Lebanese Prime Ministry until
further notice. Lebanese President refuses to head the
Lebanese Cabinet. Ex-Lebanese Premiere Salim al-Hoss:
International powers are behind the tension in Syrian-
Lebanese relations" (Government-owned Al-Ba'th, 12/23)
"Sharon approves Gaza security zone. The Palestinian
Authority rejects elections without the participation of
Jerusalem's inhabitants. Bethlehem celebrates Christmas"
(Government-owned Tishreen, 12/25)

"Ministers of Likud and Kadima demand invasion of Gaza. The
world celebrates Christmas amid Israeli harassment of
pilgrims to Bethlehem. Patriarch of Jerusalem calls for the
removal of the racist wall" (Government-owned Al-Thawra,
12/25)
"Mofaz orders tighting the siege of Palestinian territories
and to proceed with assassinations. Head of the Palestinian
Authority Mahmoud Abbas rejects postponement of Palestinian
elections" (Government-owned" (Government-owned
"Palestinian city of Al-Nasra hosts a mass rally as an
expression of solidarity with Syria next Thursday"
(Government-owned Tishreen, 12/25)

"Israeli occupation will wage war in the Gaza strip.
Palestinians confirm Israel's intention to block Palestinian
truth about the Hariri assassination; a statement by
Lebanese ex-minister Wiaam Wahhab emphasizing that the only
solution for Lebanon is to form a national reconciliation
government and to hold early parliamentary elections; and a
statement by Kamal Shatila, Chairman of the Lebanese Popular
Conference, saying that internationalization measures are
part of the Greater Middle East plan.
Syrian editorials also continued their campaign against the
anti-Syria forces in Lebanon led by the Progressive
Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat and Future Current
leader Sa'd al-Hariri.
As for developments in the Palestinian territories, papers
reported Sharon's decision to establish a security zone in
northern Gaza, and Hamas' resolve to run for candidacy in
parliamentary election.

elections. Hamas confirms its right to have candidates"
(Government-owned Tishreen, 12/24)

"Protests against the outcome of the Iraqi elections
continue. The Electoral Higher Commission receives 1500
complaints and Jaafari rejects new elections" (Government-
owned Tishreen, 12/25)

"Iraqi demonstrations demand repeating elections and
changing the Higher Commission. Two US soldiers are killed
in Baghdad; six Sudanese are kidnapped" (Government-owned
Tishreen, 12/24)

"Tony Blair and Donald Rumsfeld, suddenly in Iraq; 35 Iraqi
groups threaten confrontation and reject the election
results" (Government-owned Al-Ba'th, 12/23)

"The US Congress endorses US-Israeli military deals"
(Government-owned Al-Thawra, 12/25)

"Former US Senator Tom Daschle: Congress did not give the
President a power of spying without judicial authorization.
US House of Representatives let Bush down. Congress renews
the Patriot Act for one month" (Government-owned Tishreen,
12/24)

3. Editorial Block Quotes:
"It Has Become Intolerable, No Silence after Today"
Isam Dari, an editorialist in government-owned Tishreen,
said (12/23): "A gang of Lebanese who do not hide their
hostility toward Syria have abandoned tactfulness and every
sense of shame. They have begun to encroach, in undesirable
insolence, upon everything related to Syria and every
honorable and nationalist aspect of the Lebanese stage. They
believe that through the language of curses and rude words,
the continuation of lies, and their joining in on the US-
Israeli pressure campaign, they will be able to convince the
Lebanese and Arab public, and consequently the International
Investigation Commission, of their preset positions and
feeble 'evidence' through which they previously misled
international justice and derailed the investigation,
leading it only in Syria's direction.
"This vulgar gang is knowingly leading Lebanon toward the
unknown, adding fuel to the fire, serving the US-Zionist
plan whether it admits or denies it, and trying to undermine
the strong Syrian-Lebanese relationship...
"Our people no longer accept silence in response to this
group, whose only weapon is lying... Yes, things have come
to a head, and silence about their involvement in the
conspiracy against Syria and about their encroachment upon
Syria is no longer acceptable. Their lies and allegations
are unacceptable. Their cards, files, and dirty roles
the resistance and its weapons, as well as revealing the
truth about the Hariri assassination; a statement by
Lebanese ex-minister Wiaam Wahhab emphasizing that the only
solution for Lebanon is to form a national reconciliation
government and to hold early parliamentary elections; and a
statement by Kamal Shatila, Chairman of the Lebanese Popular
Conference, saying that internationalization measures are
part of the Greater Middle East plan.
Syrian editorials also continued their campaign against the
anti-Syria forces in Lebanon led by the Progressive
Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat and Future Current
leader Sa'd al-Hariri.
As for developments in the Palestinian territories, papers
reported Sharon's decision to establish a security zone in
northern Gaza, and Hamas' resolve to run for candidacy in
parliamentary election.

against Syria and Lebanon must be exposed, and so must their
cooperation with the enemies of the Arab nation and their
cold-blooded involvement in the plans of hegemony through
which superpowers are trying to bring the region back under
colonialist submission."
"A Political Adolescent"
Ahmad Dawwa, an editorialist in government-owned Al-Thawra,
said (12/23): "Sa'd al-Hariri's new allegation and
accusation against Damascus of waging war to topple
Lebanon's democratic government, show confusion and
imbalance.... After the false testimony in Al-Hariri's
assassination case was exposed, the gang of deception and
internationalization in Lebanon had to find a new accusation
against Syria to continue to mislead the Lebanese people.
"Syria has said nothing to suggest that it wants to change
the democratic system in Lebanon. On the contrary FM Shara's
statements in Cairo stressed Syria's desire to build the
best relations with Lebanon and to maintain Lebanon's
security and stability.
"The fact is that the gang of deception and forgery, led by
political novices, is the party that is interfering in
Syria's affairs, once by leveling false accusations and once
through calls for a regime change in Syria. Didn't Jumblat
make such a call a few days ago?"
"Interference in Syrian affairs has become the main
characteristic of the statements of Lebanese politicians.
Thus, they are nothing but parrots working as unofficial
spokesmen for others."
"The Guise of Modesty Has Fallen"
Isam Dari, an editorialist in government-owned Tishreen,
commented 12/24: "Some Lebanese politicians attacked Arab
League Secretary General Amr Musa for his purported plan to
clear the air between Syria and Lebanon. These politicians
are launching a campaign against Musa because the success of
his efforts would foil the conspiracy they are hatching
against Syria. Thus the team of Sa'd al-Hariri, Walid
Junblatt, and their partners reveal an inherent enmity not
only toward Syria but also toward Arabism....
"Sa'd al-Hariri, leader of the Future Current who manages
the anti-Syria group from afar and who is himself managed
from nearby and afar, gave an interesting exclusive
statement to an Arabic-speaking Channel Al-Arabiya, in which
he attacked Syria and accused it of practicing terrorism.
Where was Sheikh Sa'd al-Hariri when Syria was fighting
terrorism and suffering from it? Does he remember --when he
was a child playing with his toys--the terrorist operations
that Syria experienced at various stages?
"We do not want him to remember. He has no memory anyway, or
perhaps they designed a special memory for him to
accommodate specific and known plans and dreams. But if he
does not remember--and this is his [only] excuse--then what
excuse does he have for the racist terrorist attacks on
the resistance and its weapons, as well as revealing the
truth about the Hariri assassination; a statement by
Lebanese ex-minister Wiaam Wahhab emphasizing that the only
solution for Lebanon is to form a national reconciliation
government and to hold early parliamentary elections; and a
statement by Kamal Shatila, Chairman of the Lebanese Popular
Conference, saying that internationalization measures are
part of the Greater Middle East plan.
Syrian editorials also continued their campaign against the
anti-Syria forces in Lebanon led by the Progressive
Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat and Future Current
leader Sa'd al-Hariri.
As for developments in the Palestinian territories, papers
reported Sharon's decision to establish a security zone in
northern Gaza, and Hamas' resolve to run for candidacy in
parliamentary election.

Syrian workers and vehicles in Lebanon? Can he deny that
these are terrorist acts par excellence, and that they are
being carried out by a handful of supporters and party
members who are fighting under the swords of Sa'd al-Hariri,
Walid Jumblat, Marwan Hamadah, and other people showing
ingratitude to Syria and its sacrifices and positions? How
can Al-Hariri Junior install himself as a judge and pass a
decisive verdict that Syria is behind the assassination of
Lebanese figures?
"We would like to remind this racist group of the saying:
'People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones.'
Those who incite terrorism, exercise media and intellectual
terrorism, and use money to reach parliament and control the
destiny of a country and to sabotage its national unity
cannot give us lessons in nationalism or classify countries
according to the US-Israeli way, labeling this country as
democratic and that country as terrorist."
Johnson-Casares

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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