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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
03KUWAIT1842
2003-05-05 12:40:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Kuwait
Cable title:  

KUWAIT MEDIA REACTION, MAY 5: KUWAITI POWS; KUWAITI

Tags:   KU  KDMR 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KUWAIT 001842 

SIPDIS

STATE FOR INR/R/MR, NEA/ARP, NEA/PPD, PA, INR/NESA,
IIP/G/NEA-SA, INR/B
WHITE HOUSE FOR PRESS OFFICE
LONDON FOR GOLDRICH, PARIS FOR O'FRIEL
SECDEF FOR OASD/PA
CINCCENT FOR CCPA
USDOC FOR 4520/ANESA/ONE/FITZGERALD-WILKS
USDOC FOR ITA AND PTO/OLIA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KU KDMR
SUBJECT: KUWAIT MEDIA REACTION, MAY 5: KUWAITI POWS; KUWAITI
ROLE IN RECONSTRUCTION; ABU MAZEN; SHIIA IN IRAQ

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 KUWAIT 001842

SIPDIS

STATE FOR INR/R/MR, NEA/ARP, NEA/PPD, PA, INR/NESA,
IIP/G/NEA-SA, INR/B
WHITE HOUSE FOR PRESS OFFICE
LONDON FOR GOLDRICH, PARIS FOR O'FRIEL
SECDEF FOR OASD/PA
CINCCENT FOR CCPA
USDOC FOR 4520/ANESA/ONE/FITZGERALD-WILKS
USDOC FOR ITA AND PTO/OLIA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: KU KDMR
SUBJECT: KUWAIT MEDIA REACTION, MAY 5: KUWAITI POWS; KUWAITI
ROLE IN RECONSTRUCTION; ABU MAZEN; SHIIA IN IRAQ


1. SUMMARY: The lead news story this week is the effort to
account for Kuwaiti POWs still missing in Iraq, with
frustration growing at the lack of information on the POWs
despite the detention and interrogation of former regime
officials.

Kuwait should not only have a role in rebuilding Iraq's
infrastructure, one commentator believes, but also "a role
in the reconstruction of the Iraqis as people." According to
news reports, Kuwait's Ministry of Education has established
a panel to suggest reforms in the Iraqi educational
curricula that taught Kuwait was a province of Iraq. On
government in Iraq, one writer states that the US will never
allow a Shiite government in Iraq, even if it is
democratically elected.

The US presence in Iraq is seen as useful if it will bring
about a solution to the Palestinian issue. However, one
commentator dismisses Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas (Abu
Mazen) as "the latest Israeli innovation." END SUMMARY.


2. News Stories: The Kuwaiti POW issue was the lead story
this week, with all papers reporting that top Kuwaiti
officials raised the issue with Secretary of Defense
Rumsfeld during his April 29-May 1 visit to Kuwait.

The Council of Ministers announced on May 5 that a POW
search team has been created under the authority of the
Minister of Interior Sheikh Mohammad Al-Khaled, Al-Qabas
reports.

Faculty of Science students at Kuwait University staged a
sit-in in support of Kuwaiti POWs on May 5, Al-Anba reports.

Al-Seyassah reports that Kuwait University pedagogy
professors will meet to formulate recommendations on
reforming the Iraqi educational curricula that will be
passed to a new Iraqi government through the Kuwaiti
Ministry of Education.

Al-Rai Al-Aam reports that Arab League Secretary General
Amir Mousa's visit to Kuwait has been postponed to avoid an
escalation of rhetoric during the coming election season in
Kuwait due to popular animosity towards the Arab League and
its anti-war stance.

Al-Rai Al-Aam reports on its front page on May 5 that the

conservative Islamist Salafi Movement is predicting a
decrease in the number of Islamist MPs after the
parliamentary elections scheduled for July of this year.

GCC joint defense "Peninsula Shield" forces that were
stationed in Kuwait during the war in Iraq will depart on
May 5, according to Al-Qabas.

Editorials:


3. "What Do We Need from America?"
Mubarak Al-Hajiri wrote in independent Al-Watan (5/03):
"Looking back at America's history, I believe that they are
honest about [their intentions in] Iraq because America has
never occupied any country in the past. We do not need to
believe the Americans, but we do need to take advantage of
their presence to solve the Palestinian crisis. We should
thank them for what they have done so far, but we also need
a just, fair and comprehensive solution of the Palestinian
crisis and to save the Palestinians from Sharon."


4. "Iraq is not a Needy Nation"
Liberal Kuwait University Political Science Professor, Ahmad
Al-Baghdadi wrote in independent Al-Seyassah (5/03): "Iraq.
is not the poor country that the US and Britain attempt to
portray it as to the world after the liberation. Iraq's
assets are estimated in the billions of dollars in French
banks, which were the revenues of the oil for food program.
We will preserve the dignity of the Iraqi people if this
money is used to buy food and medicine for the Iraqi people,
instead of humiliating the Iraqis by offering them
assistance as we have seen on the media."


5. "Where are the Arabs from Iraq?"
Liberal Secretary General of the Kuwait Journalists
Association, Faisal Al-Qanai wrote in independent Al-
Seyassah (5/04): "Why did not the Arabs volunteer to assist
the Iraqi people by working at Iraqi hospitals or other
vital ministries in Iraq instead of demonstrating against
the war? Why haven't we seen one truck loaded with
humanitarian assistance heading to Iraq from Arab countries?
Kuwait was the only country, which sent humanitarian
assistance for the Iraqis while the Arabs kept reiterating
slogans and burning American flags. The Arab street is just
a "rhetoric street," and will never be active in any way."


6. "What Comes After the Detentions?"
Lawyer Rashed Al-Radaan wrote in independent Al-Watan
(5/04): "Until now, we have not heard that any [Iraqi
regime] detainees have revealed facts about the Kuwaiti
POWs, WMD or the whereabouts of Saddam and his sons.
Moreover, we have not heard one statement from them that
could be useful for the Iraqi people. The Iraqis need to
hear the facts about their former regime that led them to
the current situation."


7. "Abu Mazen: the Latest Israeli Innovation"
Salafi Editor in Chief of Al-Furqan Islamic Magazine, Dr.
Wael Al-Hasawi wrote in independent Al-Rai Al-Aam (5/04):
"In order for Israel to have full dominion in this region,
it has instituted a Palestinian leadership [allied to
Israel] through the appointment of Abu Mazen as the first
Palestinian Prime Minister. Israel has granted Abu Mazen
much authority and has frozen out Arafat, who gave Israel
everything it needed. Abu Mazen is known as a major
supporter of the Oslo agreements, and . and he as a
supporter of ending all attacks on Israel."


8. "Another Iraq"
Dr. Yacoub Al-Sharah wrote in independent Al-Rai Al-Aam
(5/04): "Kuwait's role in rebuilding Iraq should not be
limited to the reconstruction of Iraq's infrastructure. We
must have a role in the reconstruction of the Iraqis as
people. We should have a role in teaching the Iraqis how to
be tolerant with other, how to forgive and how to respect
others. We must help the Iraqis create a new educational
curricula for the children of Iraq in order to [build] a
better and secure future for Iraq."


9. "The Shiia and the Americans"
Salah Al-Fadhli wrote in independent Al-Rai Al-Aam (5/04):
"The US is striving to avert the establishment of a Shiia
regime in Iraq because it realizes that such a Shiia regime
would contribute to losing Iraq as it lost Iran in the past.
The US use the pretext that Iraq is not ready for full
democracy in order to prevent the Shiia from leading Iraq."

JONES