|06BUENOSAIRES1476||2006-06-30 18:53:00||UNCLASSIFIED||Embassy Buenos Aires|
VZCZCXYZ0000 OO RUEHWEB DE RUEHBU #1476/01 1811853 ZNR UUUUU ZZH O 301853Z JUN 06 FM AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 5092 INFO RHMFISS/CDR USSOCOM MACDILL AFB FL//SCJ2// RULGPUA/USCOMSOLANT
UNCLAS BUENOS AIRES 001476
1. SUMMARY STATEMENT
Local papers lead with the US Supreme Court declaring that military
tribunals created after the September 11 attacks violated the Geneva
Convention; US Congressional ratification of the Peru FTA; and the
US Senate's alleged confirmation of Earl Anthony Wayne as Ambassador
to Buenos Aires, Argentina.
2. OPINION PIECES AND KEY STORIES
- "US Supreme Court inflicts harsh blow to Bush due to Guantanamo
Ana Baron, Washington-based correspondent for leading "Clarin,"
comments (06/30) "In one of the toughest blows to the USG, the US
Supreme Court stated yesterday that the military courts created by
US President George W. Bush to judge detainees in Guantanamo are
violating domestic legislation and the Geneva Convention...
"... During a joint press conference with Japanese PM Junichiro
Koizumi, (US President) Bush did not let the US Supreme Court's
decision intimidate him. He said 'The US people should know that
this ruling, as I understand it, does not mean that murderers will
be released... I will protect the people and, at the same time, I
will abide by the US Supreme Court's decision.'"
Leading "Clarin" reports in a side-box (06/30) "This new US Supreme
Court's decision will put a brake on the White House's plan to use
military courts to judge some of the detainees in the Guantanamo
"What judges decided is that Bush has no power to decide in those
"The ruling itself would not change, at least in the short run, the
USG's power to keep the alleged terrorists in prison. It rather
implies a definition about how they should be judged as long as the
White House makes progress in this regard. This does not mean either
that the Guantanamo base will be immediately closed, although it is
clear that both the final use of the prison and the status of
prisoners are now under strong international pressure."
- "In a tunnel"
Marcelo Cantelmi, international editor of leading "Clarin," opines
(06/30) "This ruling could lead to profound change in the Bush
administration's style, although it will not happen. However, some
weak points might be seen in the White House's tendency to disregard
legislation, domestic and international rights and public freedoms.
"All this is based on the excuse of the war on terrorism, which is
being waged in Iraq (where, in fact, there was no terrorism but a
dictator and a former ally of Washington).
"That weak point is an outgrowth of the public's fatigue with this
unjustified campaign, the disaster in the (Persian) Gulf with a hint
of defeat, and the mounting suspicion over the USG's espionage
plans. This is why, justice, as well as the media, are turning
against the USG..."
- "The US Supreme Court of Justice inflicts a harsh blow to Bush
Business-financial "Ambito Financiero" reports (06/30) "Yesterday,
the US Supreme Court of Justice inflicted its toughest blow to the
Bush administration since the start of the war on terrorism by
declaring 'illegal' the special military courts created to judge
detainees in the Guantanamo base.
"... For 5 votes in favor vis-`-vis one vote against it, the US
Supreme Court stated that antiterrorist courts violate the Geneva
Convention... although it did not make a decision about the legality
of the unlimited imprisonment of Guantanamo detainees."
- "In view of a possible judicial decision"
Leading "Clarin" carries an opinion piece by Leandro Despouy,
Argentine General Auditor and UN Special Rapporteur, who opines
(06/30) "... The report entrusted by the UN at the beginning of this
year to five experts in human rights was direct. In it, the experts
asked the USG to immediately close the base; subject all detainees
to an independent and competent court, or release them; refrain from
torturing them or inflicting inhuman or degrading treatment; and put
an end to abusive interrogation practices.
"... This ruling paves the way for a judicial solution to the
problem faced by the US, whose Special Committees not only prevented
the release of innocent prisoners but prevented the conviction of
those who are liable."
- "Washington pressures for an FTA with Peru"
Daily-of-record "La Nacion" reports (06/30) "The USG urged yesterday
the US Congress to approve 'now' an FTA with Peru as a US reward to
Peru for defending the free market in recent elections. This
happened one day after the Peruvian Congress approved the FTA in
"During a hearing called by the US Senate Finance Committee, the new
Assistant USTR for the Americas, Everett Eissenstat, said 'The time
to act in support for this deal is now'... 'We could turn our back
on Peru by rejecting this deal or we could take the opportunity and
contribute to political stability in Peru and the Andean region.'"
- "Strong (Peruvian) support for an FTA with the US"
Business-financial, center-right "InfoBae" reports (06/30)
"According to an opinion survey performed by Universidad Catolica,
66 percent of Lima inhabitants favor an FTA between the US and Peru,
one day after the Peruvian Congress' ratification of the deal.
"According to the survey, only 20% of Lima's residents reject the
deal, which still requires US Congressional approval.
"48 percent of the people believe that the trade deal will be good
or very good for the development of the Andean country. 29 percent
believe the deal will be not so good, and 15 per cent believe it
will be bad or very bad."
- "The US Senate confirms Wayne"
Ana Baron, Washington-based correspondent for leading "Clarin,"
comments (06/30) "... Yesterday, the US Senate confirmed the
nomination of Ambassador Earl Anthony Wayne as US Ambassador to
Argentina, who will arrive in the country in September...
"Until then, Embassy number two Mike Matera will be in his place...
"Wayne's agenda will be loaded with economic issues. While
Venezuela, Bolivia and Cuba will remain important issues in the
relationship, Wayne has said that he will prioritize the investment
climate, bilateral trade expansion, and FTAA promotion. Then, he
pointed out that he will insist that the Kirchner administration
'should honor its commitments' on arbitrations related to the
Argentina BIT with the US."
To see more Buenos Aires reporting, visit our classified website