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Cablegate: Media Reaction - Iraq - Tokyo

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UNCLAS TOKYO 006694

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR I/RF, PA/PR/FPC/W, IIP/G/EA, EAP/PD, R/MR,
EAP/J, EAP/P, PM;
USTR FOR PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICE;
TREASURY FOR OASIA/IMI;
SECDEF FOR OASD/PA;
CP BUTLER OKINAWA FOR AREA FIELD OFFICE;
PACOM HONOLULU FOR PUBLIC DIPLOMACY ADVISOR

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OIIP KMDR KPAO JA
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION - IRAQ - TOKYO


LEAD STORIES: Most Friday morning papers front-paged the
car bombing on Thursday in Baghdad, which killed at least
145 people and injured more than 230.

1. "Review US Middle East Policy Thoroughly" The liberal
Mainichi's editorial writer Fuse commented (11/24): "The
bipartisan 'Iraq Study Group,' led by former Secretary of
State James Baker, is reviewing the US Iraq policy.
Although it is not known what proposal the group will
come up with, the Bush administration should be prepared
this time around to thoroughly review its Middle East
policy. The world will become even more dangerous if the
administration fails to resolve the Iraq stalemate and
deal more effectively with other crises, including the
North Korean nuclear program.... Finding it difficult to
extricate itself from the 'Iraq quagmire,' the US cannot
reduce anti-US feelings among Iraqis with only a partial
revision of its Iraq policy. At a time when Syria and
Iran, both anti-US nations, are showing moves to
strengthen ties with Iraq, the US needs a sense of
magnanimity and balance to unite countries in the
region.... Cooperation among Middle East nations is
indispensable to prevent Iran from strengthening ties
with North Korea over nuclear development programs....
The US should review its Iraq policy in a humble manner,
keeping in mind that the number of Iraqis who died in the
Iraq war reportedly rose to the tens or even hundreds of
thousands."

SCHIEFFER

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