This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 ANKARA 007338
DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EUR/SE, EUR/PD, NEA/PD, DRL JCS PASS J-5/CDR S. WRIGHT
E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: OPRC KMDR TU SUBJECT: ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 28, 2003
THIS REPORT WILL PRESENT A TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE THEMES:
HEADLINES BRIEFING EDITORIAL OPINION
MASS APPEAL Surprising Thanksgiving Visit from Bush - Hurriyet An Extra Week for Loizidu Case - Hurriyet Shevardnadze Blames West - Hurriyet 100 Thousand Turkish Cypriots Apply for Greek Passports - Milliyet British Consul Short's Body Sent Home with a Military Ceremony - Milliyet Thanksgiving Show in Iraq by Bush - Milliyet Saakasvili: "Turkey Our Most Important Strategic Friend" - Milliyet Shevardnadze Blames US and Europe for the Revolution - Sabah FM Gul Takes UEFA Decision to EU - Sabah FM Gul: "Sports Became the Target of the Terror" - Turkiye Ambassador Edelman: "Turkey Was the Target of Terrorism for Being a Model Country" - Hurriyet(11/25) Bingol-Terrorist Headquarters-Sabah (11/25)
OPINION MAKERS Justice Minister Cicek: "Islamic World Should Take Concrete Steps against Terrorism" -Zaman Gul's Request Postponed Loizidu Case - Zaman Government Divided by Terror - Cumhuriyet UEFA Did Not Take a Step Back - Cumhuriyet
SIPDIS Civilian NSC Will Be Established after the Holidays - Radikal 20 Suspects Arrested after Istanbul Bombings - Radikal Talabani: "We Opened a New Page with Turkey" - Radikal Al-UEFA Gang - Yeni Safak Istanbul Bombers Arrested - Yeni Safak
New NSC Regulations: "Radikal" reports on the new National Security Council regulation adopted at the November 21 NSC meeting. With the adoption of the new regulation, a new period for `civilianization' starts in Turkey, says "Radikal" columnist Murat Yetkin. The AKP government prepared a draft law for to ensure transparency in the functioning of the institution and to restrict its broad authorities. A decision of the Council of Ministers will be sufficient to put the new regulation into effect.
Disagreements in AKP towards Terror: "Cumhuriyet" highlights that while PM Erdogan refuses to accept the Islamic angle of terror, government officials give different statements. Justice Minister Cicek said that Islamic countries should demonstrate concrete determination to crush terror. Dep. PM Sahin said that terrorists picked Turkey as a target because a democratic and secular Muslim country is a bad example for them. "Milliyet" draws attention to Islamist writer Fehmi Koru's words saying that `Islam does produce terror'. "Cumhuriyet" draws attention to the Diyarbakir State Security Court indictment saying that `Hizbullah is an Islamic terrorist organization'. The indictment comes as a response to PM Erdogan, who said that `the expression "Islamic terrorism" makes my blood boil'.
UEFA Decision: All papers criticize a Football Federation
SIPDIS decision on two championship league games to be played outside of Turkey. The two games were to have been played in Turkey. However, after the terrorist attacks in Istanbul, UEFA decided to move the games to other countries. Turkish government officials and the media harshly criticized this decision.
Loizidou Case: The deadline for the payment of the compensation to Greek Cypriot Loizidou expired on Wednesday. However, at FM Gul's request, the EU Commission extended the deadline for another week.
Revolution in Georgia: "Cumhuriyet" reports on Turkey's concerns about an unstable Georgia after Shevardnadze's resignation. An Ankara worried about the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline sent a message of support to the interim government of Georgia saying that the period of turmoil will hopefully end with January 4 elections and Turkey's support for them will continue. Most papers cover Shevardnadze's accusations that the US and Europe supported the revolution in Georgia.
Ambassador Edelman's Visit to Istanbul Bomb Site: Tuesday's "Hurriyet" reports on the Ambassador's visit to the Istanbul Governor and Mayor. Responding to a question during the visit, Ambassador Edelman was quoted as saying that Turkey had become a target of terror attacks because Turkey is a model country combining Islam and democracy successfully. Ambassador Edelman reiterated that PKK/KADEK is on the US terror list and responded to Ocalan's comments on the PKK being ready to help the US by saying that the `US does not cooperate with terrorists'.
EDITORIAL OPINION: "To Benefit from an Opportunity or Not" Ismet Berkan comments in the intellectual-opinion maker Radikal: `In my earlier columns I stated that to name terrorism is the first condition for waging a fight against it. Prime Minister Erdogan has not yet replied to the question of whether the recent bombings are "Islamic terror." During his holiday speech, the Prime Minister reflected on the criticism directed against him and his party for the failure to speak out on this issue. What Erdogan wanted to say was that because the AKP has an Islamist political identity, some people may believe that they won't wage a sufficient fight against terrorism. Whatever it is called, the fact is that the Islamic world now produces terrorism, and the results of these actions create results that affect the entire Islamic geography.We need policies that will accept this fact. We can not stay blind to these ugly developments even though, as Erdogan said, it "freezes our blood" to think of it. Otherwise, terrorism will continue to feed terrorism. .Some others prefer silence. Prime Minister Erdogan and his AK party, who started their administration with a promise to put their stamp on the future, have a huge responsibility to carry out this fight.'
"Who is that AKP Protects?" Hikmet Cetinkaya opines in the center-left Cumhuriyet: Why is the government so reluctant to name the bloody terror attacks in Istanbul as Islamic terror?.We know that those who want to govern Turkey with religious policies have one aim -- to demolish the secular, democratic republic.The people who grew up in the `national view' movement are occupying the seats of government today and turning a blind eye to Islamic terror, saying that "religious people cannot be terrorists." .Unfortunately, they ignore the fact that being religious is very different from being fundamentalist. It is very difficult to fight terrorism without accepting this fact.Unfortunately, it is well known that some fundamentalist organizations are protected by certain units of the state. "Cumhuriyet" received many calls from the foreign media asking why the Turkish government turns a blind eye to fundamentalist terror while screaming about the decision made by the UEFA. .When I compare the comments of the Prime Minister with those of the Foreign Minister, I find Foreign Minister Gul's comments more realistic and honest. .The religious media are still ignoring this difference. .Turkey should acknowledge the existence of fundamentalist terrorist organizations, and the government should explain this fact to the people of this country. EDELMAN