Cablegate: Media Reaction; September 11 Anniversary; Iraq; 09/10/07
DE RUEHBU #1797/01 2531402
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 101402Z SEP 07
FM AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 9191
INFO RHMFISS/CDR USSOCOM MACDILL AFB FL//SCJ2//
UNCLAS BUENOS AIRES 001797
STATE FOR INR/R/MR, I/GWHA, WHA, WHA/PDA, WHA/BSC,
CDR USSOCOM FOR J-2 IAD/LAMA
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KPAO OPRC KMDR PREL
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION; SEPTEMBER 11 ANNIVERSARY; IRAQ; 09/10/07
1. SUMMARY STATEMENT
Weekend major international stories are related to the implications
and consequences of the September 11 attacks on its sixth
anniversary; and the state of affairs in Iraq.
2. OPINION PIECES AND EDITORIALS
- "Doomed to success"
Daily-of-record "La Nacisn" carries an opinion piece by
international columnist Jorge Elas, who writes (09/09) "... Six
years after the September 11 attacks, the US has not recovered the
wave of sympathy it generated on Tuesday, September 11, 2001. (The
US) did not even manage to change its foreign image, which can be
summed up as imperial adventures guided by a certain dangerous
"... The Muslim world, which is informed more by Al-Jazeera than by
CNN, raises a basic question that has never received an adequate
response - how can one trust a country that has always supported
dictatorships in the name of stability and that, in order to promote
democracy, declared pre-emptive wars and, through them, violated
human rights and raised suspicion with its need for oil...? Iraq,
without WMD or ties to Bin Laden, had no involvement whatsoever in
the attacks against the Twin Towers...
"... The war against Iraq, which Bush knew from the very beginning
was doomed to success, had a lot of collateral damage. Among
others, there is the massive exodus of people towards safer areas of
the country or other countries - on average, 40,000 per month; in
total, over two million, according to the UN High Commissioner for
Refugees (UNHCR). It is the largest exodus in the Middle East since
"... Six years after the horror, only a few would still dare say
'Nous sommes tous Amricains.'"
- "S-11 sixth anniversary - more surveillance, less security"
Oscar Ral Cardoso, international analyst of leading "Clarn,"
opines (09/08) "On the verge of the S-11 sixth anniversary, it seems
inevitable that new episodes, some of them even violent, will mark
the (anniversary of the) date on which the West entered the endless
'global war on terrorism' by imposing a 'pre-emptive paradigm,' as
defined by the Bush administration...
"... This is one of the central problems posed by the 'pre-emptive
paradigm:' its credibility derives from the fact that government
officials distribute blame without feeling obliged to offer the
evidence that would make it possible to identify those responsible.
"Oh, they also expect that racially profiling those accused (Asian
Muslims) will eliminate questions and cause everyone to take it for
granted that their announcement is true. It seems to be a Third
Reich 'property' that some have decided to pull out of the
"... The prevailing climate in Germany seems to have reached a
climax in which one can believe the worst could happen. Given that
Germany does not have troops in Iraq and its presence in Afghanistan
is rather symbolic, Germans appeared convinced that terrorism used
to be a problem for the rest of Europe but not for Germany itself.
"According to a 2005 opinion survey, only 38 percent of Germans
seriously believed that a major terrorist attack could be launched
against them during the following decade. The US Marshall Fund in
Europe carried out the same opinion survey this year only to find
out that the fear is almost two-folded - 70 per cent of the people
believe that they will be affected by international terrorism in the
"The Merkel-led governmental coalition should decide whether it will
pass a series of legal amendments that will seriously limit
citizens' rights to defend themselves from the Government's
"Six years after the September 11 incidents, we should rethink where
we are heading for in terms of democratic guarantees."
- "Osama comes back in a renewed fashion"
Gustavo Sierra, international columnist of leading "Clarn," writes
(09/09) "... Six years after the September 11 attacks, the people
prefer to... turn the page and let it pass into personal and
collective history. However, some more time, perhaps a generation,
will have to pass for the September 11 events to be seen from a
"The only living reminder is the fact that the man who gave the
order to attack is still alive. Bin Laden knows this is his most
important asset and uses it adeptly. Five days before the
anniversary a video was made public in which he looks renewed...
"The September 11 events will not pass into history until Osama is
captured, dead or alive. Seemingly, this (as well as the end of the
war) will be a duty of the next US President."
- "'Coming home'"
Santiago O'Donnell, international columnist of left-of-center
"Pgina 12," opines (09/09) "After considerable wavering, US troop
withdrawal has started in Iraq. It began last Monday with Bush's
six-hour trip to Iraq, the third one since the war started in 2003.
This time, the US president did not meet with troops, not at least
for the photo-op, and instead, he met with Iraqi leaders from
several factions, with General David Petraeus, in charge of the
invading army, and with US Ambassador Ryan Crocker. Nothing is by
chance... In this way, Bush played a symbolic role, traveling to
Iraq to bring troops home and transfering power to Iraqi leaders.
"... Additionally, Bush admitted last week that the Iraqi government
has not been able to capitalize on the new military scenario in
order to meet Washington's political goals...
"... What Bush does not say when he criticizes Al Maliki is that
there is a direct relationship between the military strategy in
Anbar and the president's political weakness, and that Maliki's
weakness is the main obstacle to reaching the accord demanded by
"Truly enough - the Sunni leaders in Anbar are very happy. The US
army has empowered its militias to act as a police force. In the
past, it used to fight them. Now it organizes and trains them... Al
Maliki's mostly Shiite government is irritated by the fact that its
US allies train Sunni opponents, who only have to wait until their
new tutors leave to start attacking the government.
"Maliki has already told Bush that he opposes the Anbar strategy
and, in order to dispel any doubts about his position, he increased
his ties to Iran, the Shiite power in the region. It is not by
chance that Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced that he is
willing to 'fill the gap' left by the US in Iraq.
"In this way, any illusion of the possibility of coming home covered
with glory is at odds with reality. All social, political and
military indicators available show that Iraq is worse off than
before the invasion. WMD never appeared. Terrorism is multiplying.
The boys never learned the White House script. They should have been
Rambos, but they died for nothing..."
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