- The Washington Times - Saturday, November 9, 2002

Excerpts of editorials from newspapers around the world:


The Guardian

The Yemen missile attack

LONDON Zap. Pow. The bad guys are dead. And they never knew what hit them. Living his presidency like Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan, George Bush etched another notch in his gun butt this week, blowing away six "terrorists" in Yemen's desert. Their car was incinerated by a Hellfire missile, fired by a CIA unmanned aerial vehicle or drone. Dealing out death via remote-controlled flying robots could be the spooks' salvation after the September 11 and Afghan intelligence flops. It makes the agency look useful.

Zap. Ping. Even as the bullets ricochet, it should be said there are some problems with this approach to international peacekeeping. For a start, it is illegal. The Yemen attack violates basic rules of sovereignty. It is an act of war where no war has been declared. It killed people, some of whom may have been criminals, but who will never now face trial. It assassinated men who may have been planning attacks. But who can tell? It is, at best, irresponsible extrajudicial killing, at worst a premeditated, cold-blooded murder of civilians. And it is also, and this is no mere afterthought, morally unsustainable. Those who authorized this act have serious ethical and legal questions to answer. That there is no prospect that they will, and no insistence by Britain or others that they do so, only renders ever more appalling the moral pit which gapes and beckons.


Le Monde

Turkey's election

PARIS An Islamic party has the means to govern Turkey. It's without real precedent in the 79 years since modern Turkey's creation as a secular state. It's also without precedent in the history of NATO members. This represents an enormous challenge for the European Union, which is preparing to take Turkey into its ranks.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, leader of the victorious Justice and Development Party, unjustly banned from the election, has nothing of a fundamentalist mullah about him.

The Justice and Development Party has a historic duty to show that Islam and democracy are compatible. It must prove the existence of a centrist Islam. If the Justice and Development Party can reconcile Islam with modernity, it can provide a lesson to the Arab world.


Ha'aretz

End of the Sharon government

TEL AVIV Prime Minister Ariel Sharon yesterday asked President Moshe Katzav to dissolve the Knesset and call early elections. After 20 months, the Sharon government finally came to an end, and with it the 15th Knesset.

In the name of unity and the need for stability, Sharon expected the Labor Party to back a national order of priorities that clearly put the settlers above the indisputable interests of a majority of Israel's citizens at the expense of the weakest sectors of Israeli society.

Very belatedly, Labor's chairman reached the conclusion that he could not be a partner to the prime minister's policy. Despite the heavy price that a political crisis will exact the collapse of this government can only be welcomed. It will be remembered as one of the worst in Israel's history.


Jordan Times

The Muslim holy month

AMMAN, Jordan With the onset of Ramadan, Muslims around the world begin a month of spiritual rebirth. This is a time of inner cleansing, soul-searching and of coming closer to God.

But this year, the Muslim communities of the world, particularly the Arab world, begin their month of fasting with trepidation. Brothers in Palestine continue to face a fierce occupation by an Israeli government that can only be seen as even more dangerous following the breakup of the Sharon coalition and the arrival of Likud hard-liner Benjamin Netanyahu as temporary foreign minister.

Brothers in Iraq continue to suffer under more than a decade of U.N. sanctions compounded by fears of an attack by the United States. Many in the region have a sense of hopelessness, and they fear drastic changes are in store for this part of the world.

Jordan prides itself in continuously striving for peaceful means to resolve conflicts. Its voice abroad has spoken volumes of what can be achieved by practicing moderation and tolerance. These are the messages that need to be heard. As Ramadan is a test of one's endurance, the work to get these messages out should not stop.


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