- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 26, 2002

Excerpts of editorials from newspapers around the world:

Il Manifesto
Which are the terrorists?
ROME Israeli Premier Ariel Sharon has thrown a net around Palestine arbitrarily judging and executing those he considers enemies and holding Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat under arrest while U.S. President George W. Bush agrees with it all.
Why do we label only Hamas as terrorists? Israel and Hamas have behaved in exactly the same way, but with an enormous disparity in force. On one side you have the occupying state which portrays itself as the victim of those it oppresses, on the other, the radicalization of those who have nothing more to lose and just one more weapon left their own lives.
Arafat has appealed in vain to the United Nations. Europe has not uttered a word.
Instead, the United States has given itself a license to intervene militarily where it wishes. Israel spurs the Americans on, yesterday against Iraq, today fingering Iran.
Who would bet against fundamentalism fanned by more than 10 years of Israeli and U.S. policies gaining power in all Arab states from the Mediterranean Sea to the Persian Gulf if the people there could vote?
Is this what the survivors of the Holocaust wanted? …

Dialogue of violence
TEL AVIV The deadlock in the peace process and the absence of an Israeli, American or Palestinian initiative will continue to nourish the violent dialogue of [Palestinian] terrorist attacks and [Israeli] assassinations. The declaration, attributed yesterday to Hamas, about a general war against Israel is the latest testimony to the nature of the escalation which can be expected. In such a situation, in which political wisdom is absent, one can only demand and hope that Israel will impose maximum restraint on its forces. They should prevent terrorist attacks, but not punish. This war is against terrorism, not against the Palestinian Authority.

Prisoners at Guantanamo
PARIS [Osama] Bin Laden's men are not, it is readily acknowledged, nice men. Fanatical, conditioned to kill and to die, these are extremely dangerous men. …
The fact remains nonetheless that they are human beings, captured during what President George W. Bush himself has qualified as a war.
Common sense and the respect of our values would want us to treat these men as prisoners of war. A competent and objective court can examine their cases and decide who is and isn't guilty of war crimes and terrorist acts.
And even in the cases of those found guilty, it is necessary to remember that the guilty be treated with respect to human rights.
This isn't the policy chosen by Washington, and that is regrettable. Opposed in principle to international justice that directly affects them, the United States has become the lone lawman of an abominable crime. Although it happened on their soil, the victims weren't all Americans. …
It is certain that after September 11 nothing would be as before. But shouldn't we hold to the same idea of justice?

Jordan Times
A visit to Baghdad
AMMAN, Jordan The mere fact that Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa visited Baghdad over the weekend is an encouraging development. Moreover, reports that Iraqi President Saddam Hussein gave him "proposals" on restoring relations with fellow Arab states have revived some hope that the secretary-general's mission will bear some concrete results. Moussa declared after two-hours of talks with Saddam that he was leaving Baghdad with "an important message and an initiative from the Iraqi leader" related to the Arab states and the United States.
Although Moussa declined to reveal contents of the message, it is almost certain that Iraq, seriously worried about repeated American threats to launch a new military attack against it, may be trying to take steps to head off that possibility.
It is therefore important that Iraq do nothing that would make the achievement of these U.S. aims easier. At the same time, the U.S. should declare that it will be satisfied with the fulfillment of U.N. resolutions as written, and not pursue an agenda that will ensure continued crisis and cause harm far beyond Iraq's borders.

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