an area of the map for world news.
January 2002 issue of
World Press Review
(VOL. 49, No. 1)
The War in Afghanistan
The Sydney Morning Herald (centrist), Nov. 14: Even
before the fall of Kabul it was clear that an international
peacekeeping force was urgently needed to hold open the possibility
of forming an acceptable representative coalition in Kabul.
Ideally, peacekeepers from Muslim nations should form a temporary
administration under the U.N. But that now seems only a distant
possibility. It has been left behind in the rush by the Northern
Alliance to Kabul, as has, it seems, the almost forgotten primary
object of the warthe capture of Osama bin Laden.
Rio de Janeiro Jornal do
Brasil (conservative), Nov. 7: A drawn-out war was exactly
what George W. Bush did not intend when he authorized the attacks
of Oct. 7 [in Afghanistan]. When he decided to retaliate against
the Taliban for harboring Osama bin Laden, he was thinking of
a campaign in the style of the Gulf War: fast, technological,
Colombo The Island (independent),
Oct. 22: The message from the world leaders is that the
war against terrorism is a collective undertaking directed at
all terrorists and would be executed patiently over a long and
sustained period. The initial focus is on Osama bin Laden and
the Al Qaeda network. In the meantime, collective action is
to be taken to counteract the activities of other terrorist
groups the world over. While this prioritization is vital...there
is concern that America would make a distinction between those
who committed acts of terrorism against America..and those who
do not focus on America.
London Al-Sharq al-Awsat
(Saudi-owned), Oct. 12: It has been said...that truth is
the first victim of war....It is also true that information
represents the most important component of war. And especially
during a time such as today, governments that are normally supervised
by the “watch-dog” status of the media should not be given hegemonic
control over information....Now, with the actual fate of Afghanistan
in question, press freedoms are important to show all viewpoints.
Beijing China Daily (state-run),
Nov. 2: Recently, the Upper House of Japan’s Parliament
gave a final nod to a controversial bill that enables Japan
to dispatch military forces and vessels to provide rearguard
logistical support to the U.S. army in the antiterrorism war.
Japan’s willingness to contribute to the anti-terrorism war
is positive since terrorism is posing a serious threat to all
human beings. But its enlarged role in the military field has
hit a nerve with the consideration of its history of aggression.
Despite the loudly trumpeted pledge to contribute to anti-terrorism,
the motivations “behind the scene” for passing the bill should
not be neglected.
Dar es Salaam Rai (Swahili-language weekly), Oct.
25-31: The U.S.-led attacks have run concurrently with concerted
diplomatic efforts to whip up support for the war against terrorism.
For President Bush, it has been like being born again.
Dubai Khaleej Times (independent,
English-language), Nov. 7: The intensity of bombing in Afghanistan
is a...pointer that the U.S.-led alliance lacks a clear strategy
to deal with the issue of terrorism....Osama is no longer the
main target, but [rather] Taliban leaders, who have resisted
every effort to bribe them into abandoning their supreme leader
Mullah Omar and to raise the banner of revolt.
Havana Juventud Rebelde
(communist youth), Nov. 9: The systematic carpet bombing
of the Taliban positions that defend the cities of Mazar-i-Sharif
and the capital Kabul—including explosions powerful enough to
kill everything within square kilometers and resembling tactical
nuclear arms in their destructive potential—are little more
than battering rams so that the incompetent forces of the Northern
Alliance can take these cities, kick the Taliban out of power,
and thus deliver a victory that will satisfy the expectations
of U.S. public opinion.
Karachi Dawn (centrist),
Nov. 6: The round-the-clock bombing of Afghan cities by
the Anglo-U.S. warplanes, and the admission by the U.S. defense
secretary and British prime minister that it was almost impossible
to capture Osama bin Laden or to occupy Kandahar should bring
home to Washington the bitter truth that there was no instant
military solution to the complex political problems in Afghanistan.
It was perhaps owing to this realization that diplomatic initiatives
have been made in Islamabad with a view to forging a broad-based
coalition of all persuasions in that embattled country.
Accra Statesman (independent
liberal weekly), Oct. 30: Conventional military action is
not the answer to this 21st-century menace to civilization.
The killers who boarded those planes on Sept. 11, like the senders
of the anthraxgrams, were not in Afghanistan at all. This new
enemy does not wear [a] uniform and belongs to no state, but
he can bring a superpower to its knees. To try and defeat him
with B52s and cruise missiles is as ludicrous as confronting
tanks with bows and arrows. The conditions that breed terrorism
will have to be transformed.
Stockholm Dagens Nyheter
(liberal), Nov. 5: The debaters, who as a rule were wrong
about both communism and the Gulf War, are again complaining
about the United States in the European media. At the same time,
Bin Laden’s people are secretly mulling over completely different
scenarios. After Sept. 11, the thoughtless people in the West
still refuse to comprehend that the creativity of these mass
murderers is much greater than their own.