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WikiLeaks: 2003-05-20: 03ANKARA3287: Ankara Media Reaction Report

Posted: Wednesday, October 26, 2011 at 11:18 AM CT


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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
03ANKARA3287 2003-05-20 13:35 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Ankara
This record is a partial extract of the original cable.
The full text of the original cable is not available.
E.O. 12958: N/A 
MONDAY, MAY 20, 2003 
Al-Qaida turns to `easier' Western targets - Milliyet 
CIA has predicted Al-Qaida attack in Africa - Milliyet 5/18 
Amb. Logoglu: Turkish troops will remain in Northern Iraq - 
WP: Kirkuk under Kurds' control - Turkiye 
Ari Fleischer, bored, to leave White House - Milliyet 
Barney Franks (D) urges Wolfowitz's resignation for Turkey 
remarks - Sabah 
U.S. Administration forgot Turkish Day - Aksam 5/19 
Denktas: Papadopoulos would get me killed in 1967 - Milliyet 
Berlusconi: EU must expand to comprise Turkey - Aksam 5/19 
Casablanca shock - Radikal 5/18 
Amb. Pearson: U.S. warm to Turkish officials' visit - Zaman 
Shiites rally against U.S. in Baghdad - Cumhuriyet 
MFA delegation feels pulse in N. Iraq - Radikal 5/19 
Retired Iraqis queue for $40 - Radikal 
Pentagon's $1 trillion deficit - Cumhuriyet 
Israel besieges Palestine - Yeni Safak 
Suicide attack nightmare in Israel - Radikal 
Suicide attack in Jerusalem: Blood on road map - Cumhuriyet 
Turkey opening doors to Greek Cypriots after 40 years - 
Zaman 5/18 
Syria closes Damascus offices of Palestinian organizations - 
Cumhuriyet 5/18 
EU to give Euro 30 million to Turkish Cypriots - Cumhuriyet 
U.S. loves `weak Dollar' policy - Dunya 
Turkish firms negotiate Iraqi jobs w/ Bechtel - Finansal 
U.S., Turkey relations: The U.S. Embassy in Ankara issued a 
statement denying press reports about a `diplomatic crisis' 
between U.S. and Turkey, Sunday papers write.  Both Turkey 
and U.S. are working to further improve ties, and Foreign 
Minister Gul is welcome to visit Washington as are other 
senior Turkish leaders, the statement said.  Foreign 
Minister Gul also denied reports about a communication 
problem between the two countries, and said he would pay a 
visit to Washington at an appropriate time.  Some press 
reports last week had claimed that U.S., saying time was not 
ripe, turned down Ankara's request for a high level Turkish 
visit to Washington. 
Military `uneasy' about EU adjustment move: National 
Security Council (NSC) Secretary General, General Tuncer 
Kilinc submitted a report to the Prime Ministry, in which he 
outlined some points of concern for the military, "Hurriyet" 
reports on Monday.  The military believes the amendments to 
the Law on Struggle Against Terrorism might encourage 
terror; allowing foreign observers during Turkish polls 
would mean capitulation, and broadcast in mother tongues 
might encourage separatism, Hurriyet says.  The opposition 
party CHP is in support of the government's EU initiative, 
and said such `restrictive attitude' as displayed by the 
Gen. Kilinc report should be abandoned, papers report.  AKP 
deputy chairman, Dengir Mir Mehmet Firat said General Kilinc 
had no authority to issue warnings for the government, and 
added that the EU reform package would be submitted to the 
parliament soon, papers report on Tuesday. 
AKP group `camps' in Antalya: AKP leadership and deputies 
came together in Turkey's coastal province of Antalya over 
the weekend to consolidate group solidarity and discuss 
problems in the party, weekend papers report.  Prime 
Minister Erdogan told his deputies that AKP has taken off 
its trappings of fundamentalist views, and became a party of 
the center right.  Erdogan pointed to the heavy burden 
shouldered by AKP, and complained that the media ignored 
certain democratic achievements by the government.  Erdogan 
also warned his group against fundamentalist and racist 
tendencies, papers note. 
IMF: "Hurriyet" reports on Monday that IMF First Deputy 
Director Anne Krueger had doubts about Ankara's commitment 
to the economic program, and warned against changes in 
public procurement law and privatization.  IMF officials 
believe the new review on May 21 will be `difficult and very 
critical,' all papers say.  Bureaucrats put the blame on 
delayed government action, and are afraid that markets would 
be upset by new troubles, reports comment. 
Repentance Law: Tuesday's "Milliyet" gives details about the 
`Repentance Law' draft which brings gradual reduction of 
penalties for terror organization members.  Defectors who 
surrender and provide information about their affiliation 
will be pardoned, according to the draft.  Defectors will be 
given new ID cards, and job and financial assistance will be 
provided for them and families.  Terrorists who are 
sentenced to life, if found eligible, will be released after 
serving a minimum of six years.  The new law excludes terror 
organization leadership and commanders.  Meanwhile, weekend 
papers report that the PKK/KADEK in Northern Iraq was ready 
to disarm in the face of a general amnesty declared by 
Gul blames Turkish Cypriot administration for lack of 
religious education: Saturday's papers claim Foreign 
Minister Gul blamed the Turkish Cypriot administration for 
the euphoria on the Turkish side to unite with Greek 
Cypriots.  If the Turkish Cypriot government had accepted 
Ankara's proposal in 1996 to open theology schools (Imam- 
Hatip), Turks would not have sought unification today, Gul 
allegedly implied at the AKP summit in Antalya.  `Look at 
the Palestinian children, they are defending their country 
with sticks and stones,' Gul said according to papers.  In 
1996, Gul was a member of Erbakan's Welfare Party (RP) in 
coalition with Tansu Ciller's True Path Party (DYP). 
EDITORIAL OPINION:  Iraq in the post war era 
"The road toward a chaos" 
In mass appeal Milliyet (5/20), Hasan Cemal speculated on 
Iraq, from which he had just returned: "After visiting Iraq, 
the picture about its future remains blurry.  It is not very 
clear if peace and democracy will be the winner in the post 
war era.  There are a lot of question marks about the way of 
Iraq's future is leading to, ranging from radical Islam and 
chaos, to an ultra-nationalist movement, which might produce 
new `Saddam' figures.   . Observing the current atmosphere 
in different Iraqi regions, it seems impossible to talk 
about one single Iraq.  The Shiites areas bring a radical 
Islamic wave, while the northern region demonstrates the 
fact of a Kurdish entity turning into a state-alike 
structure. . It is interesting to see nobody in Iraq calling 
themselves Iraqis, rather preferring the ethnic or religious 
identity, such as Shiite, Sunni, Kurdish, Assyrian and 
others. . Evidently the Iraqi dictatorship failed to hold 
all of these identities together.  Yet it remains to be seen 
whether democracy will be able to shape unity.  In fact such 
questions need to be addressed as quickly as possible before 
Iraq turns into another turmoil." 
"What is the US to do now?" 
Mehmet Ali Birand commented in mass appeal-sensational Posta 
(5/20): "The US wanted for a long time to make a model out 
of Iraq.  Moving from that point it wants to affect and 
reshape the Middle East, the Caucasus and the Central Asian 
Republics.  It will be extremely misleading to believe that 
the US fought the Iraq war only for oil.  Washington's aim 
is to set up in stages a new system in this region.  Under 
the new system terrorism will not be supported.  On the 
contrary, efforts will be made to ensure stability.  In this 
context, expectations from various countries will come to 
the foreground.  The issue to be tackled in Stage One: 
Resolve the Palestinian problem, and ensure Israel's safety. 
. Also there are other issues in the package: such as Syria 
scrapping the Baath regime, Iran's liberalization, Lebanon 
being rid of its hotbed status for terrorism.  More 
importantly, from the US point, Saudi Arabia is at the root 
of Islamic terrorism.  The Saudi family is being asked to 
definitely prevent the channeling of funds into the Islamic 
organizations abroad, so that they will be able to protect 
their own hold on power. . Washington also believes that the 
establishment of democracy and stability in the Central 
Asian Republics will result in ridding all countries, 
Afghanistan included, of the terrorism threat.  It will also 
cause some of them to stop supporting terrorism. . Naturally 
there will be things expected from Turkey as well in the 
process of change.  The way Washington views Turkey is 
gradually changing.  The new way of looking at Turkey has 
not yet taken a full shape." 


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