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Cablegate: Media Reaction: Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Climate, Mideast,

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RR RUEHAG RUEHDF RUEHLZ
DE RUEHRL #1566/01 3431144
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 091144Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY BERLIN
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 6025
INFO RHEHAAA/WHITE HOUSE WASHINGTON DC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHINGTON DC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHINGTON DC
RUCNFRG/FRG COLLECTIVE
RUEHBS/AMEMBASSY BRUSSELS 1812
RUEHLO/AMEMBASSY LONDON 0532
RUEHFR/AMEMBASSY PARIS 1050
RUEHRO/AMEMBASSY ROME 2555
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 1575
RUEHVEN/USMISSION USOSCE 0740
RHMFIUU/HQ USAFE RAMSTEIN AB GE
RHMFISS/HQ USEUCOM VAIHINGEN GE//J5 DIRECTORATE (MC)//
RHMFISS/CDRUSAREUR HEIDELBERG GE
RUKAAKC/UDITDUSAREUR HEIDELBERG GE

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 BERLIN 001566

STATE FOR INR/R/MR, EUR/PAPD, EUR/PPA, EUR/CE, INR/EUC, INR/P,
SECDEF FOR USDP/ISA/DSAA, DIA FOR DC-4A

VIENNA FOR CSBM, CSCE, PAA

"PERISHABLE INFORMATION -- DO NOT SERVICE"

SIPDIS

E.0. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR AF IR KN KGHG IZ XF
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: AFGHANISTAN, IRAN, IRAQ, CLIMATE, MIDEAST,
NORTH KOREA;BERLIN

1. Lead Stories Summary
2. Climate Change: EPA on CO2
3. Terror Attacks in Iraq
4. Bosworth in North Korea
5. Afghanistan: Gates Visit
6. Mideast: EU Ministerial on Jerusalem
7. Iranian Clashes

1. Lead Stories

ZDF-TVQs primetime newscast Heute opened with a story on the EPAQs
decision to declare greenhouse gases as a dangerous pollutant that
it now has authority to regulate. ARD-TVQs primetime newscast
Tagesschau opened with the fine the FDP has to pay for taking
illegal donations. Several newspapers led with stories on the EPA
decision. Headlines included: QMore latitude for Obama in the
dispute over emission limitsQ (Frankfurter Allgemeine), QU.S.
President allowed to limit emissions independentlyQ (Die Welt), and
QObama leads the way,Q (Tageszeitung). Other papers led with
stories on the Federal Audit OfficeQs criticism of the German
governmentQs spending policy, and the fine the FPD has to pay. Many
media carried prominent reports of the terror attacks in Baghdad
that killed more than 100 people. Editorials focused on climate
policy and the fine for the FDP.

2. Climate Change: EPA on CO2

Frankfurter Allgemeine editorialized: QPresident Obama had a
brilliant idea: he told his Environmental Protection Agency to
declare carbon dioxide as poisonous pollutant. He can now go down
an administrative path to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, for which
the Senate has refused to approve legislation thus far. All of
Copenhagen is now jubilant about this coup. The reaction in the
U.S. will be the opposite. If Obama cannot persuade his people that
they are digging their own graves with the wasteful approach to
fossil energy resources, no tricks will help.

Under the headline QNews of symbolic value,Q Sueddeutsche Zeitung
remarked in an editorial: QAmerica has implemented on an
administrative level what is common knowledge in the rest of the
world: carbon dioxide is a climate killer. As a result, the Obama
administration could pass regulation to reduce carbon dioxide
emissions in the United States. It is, of course, not a coincidence
that the EPA decision, which was in the pipeline for half a year,
was announced during the opening of the climate protection
conference in Copenhagen. This is supposed to signal to the world
that the new U.S. government does not just talk but wants to take
action and makes concrete moves on climate protection. The message
was understood: environmental groups enthusiastically welcomed the
news from Washington. However, it is just of symbolic value at the
moment. The limits must still be determined, and this can take
time.

Under the headline QRay of hope,Q regional Nordwest Zeitung opined:
QThe danger that the huge conference will end with an agreement that
represents the least common denominator is big--because national
egotisms can block the path for international actions. However,
this time around, there is a ray of hope. All expectations are now
focused on the new U.S. President. The rest of the world is
expecting him to announce concrete measures on how the largest
environmental polluter might quickly and effectively reduce carbon
dioxide. Barack Obama will attend the final discussions to
Copenhagen. This might seem to be a confidence-building measure,
but Obama will be measured by the things he says, promises and
implements.

Die Welt expressed more skepticism about the current climate change
debate, noting in an editorial: QWithout carbon dioxide in the air,

BERLIN 00001566 002 OF 003


there would be no plants, human being or animals. We might have
increased its level in the air too much, but our health could deal
with 30 times of that increase. LetQs not forget, breath by breath,
we breathe out carbon dioxide. LetQs be calm and simply hold our
breath, particularly when we are told that everything is getting
worseQbefore the gents and ladies of the EPA get the idea that they
can also regulate our emissions.

3. Terror attacks in Iraq

Under the headline QBloody Tuesday,Q Frankfurter Allgemeine
editorialized: QWe can only speculate about the masterminds of the
recent bloody terror attacks in Bagdad. Whoever carried them out is
pursuing two goals: the attacks are supposed to demonstrate that the
Iraqi security forces are not capable of protecting their own
people--not even the members of the government in their
residences--since the American troops have withdrawn to their bases
outside of cities. In addition, the terrorists want to scare the
hell out of Iraqis to prevent the election campaign on March 6 We
can expect an increase in the number of attacks the closer we move
to the election date. It is also a huge problem that there are
several people within the security forces who make it easy for the
terrorists. And also the inefficiency is adding fuel.

4. Bosworth in North Korea

Frankfurter Allgemeine commented: "American special envoy Bosworth,
who is talking to the North Korean leadership, cannot be envied.
What is he supposed to talk about? According to Bosworth, he does
not bring along any additional incentives for Pyongyang. It was
recently said that only the fact of his visit would be an incentive
big enough for North Korea to resume the six-party talks on its
nuclear program. If Bosworth wants to achieve this, he must promise
something else. This is the way North Korea has always achieved
something. However, even if only the economic desperation of the
regime in Pyongyang is big enough to achieve an almost unconditional
return to the six party talks, nothing would be gained. Officially,
the goal is a nuclear-free Korean peninsula. Given that North Korea
will not renounce its only means to exert pressure, the failure of
Bosworth and the six-party talks is inevitable.

5. Afghanistan: Gates Visit

Many media noted that Secretary Gates QunexpectedlyQ visited
Afghanistan, where he emphasized the international communityQs
determination to help the Afghan people. ZDF-TVQs late-night
newscasts Heute-Journal The newscast added: QAnd if this was not
surprising enough, he also says something that has not been said
before: QWe are in this thing to win.Q So far, the U.S. government
has only spoken of success.

6. Mideast: EU Ministerial on Jerusalem

Sueddeutsche headlined QEuropeans take the edge off a Mideast
declaration,Q and noted: QThe EU has rejected the attempt by Swedish
Foreign Minister Bildt to define now the exact borders of the
territory of a future Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its
capital.Q Under the headline QJerusalem belongs not to one side
only,Q Frankfurter Rundschau editorialized: QA peace solution that
excludes Jerusalem will not be worth the name. Therefore it is good
that the EU foreign minister reminds everybody that Jerusalem does
not belong to one side only. If a peaceful future is supposed to
have a chance, Israel and a future Palestine would have to share
Jerusalem as a capital.

7. Iranian Clashes

Frankfurter Allgemeine editorialized: QNothing makes them silent.

BERLIN 00001566 003 OF 003


Thousands of Iranians took to the streets on Monday calling Qdeath
to the dictator,Q despite all the threats, intimidations, and
massive repression However, is the Iranian society, the most
modern in the broader Middle East, really ready for a secular and
democratic political system? Or do we with our Western view on the
small urban elite ignore that fact that the rural people are
backward-minded, religious and conservative? All velvet revolutions
from Leipzig to Tbilisi were made in cities. In Iran, more than two
thirds of the people live in cities, which is more than in Japan,
Egypt and Afghanistan... Greater Tehran alone counts more than 12
million inhabitants. The young urban people are protesting on the
streets--the largest group in Iranian society.

MURPHY

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