- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 25, 2003

Excerpts of editorials from newspapers around the world:
The Guardian
Anti-war sentiment rises
LONDON Tony Blair says he "totally understands" why public opinion is skeptical on Iraq but it is far from clear that he does … opposition to war in Iraq is rising, not falling. … This battle for public opinion at home and abroad differs from other eras in several respects. Generally speaking, people are better informed, more connected, more autonomous, much more critical of the political process, and less inclined to accept at face value their leaders' judgments. As a result, modern public opinion, one aspect of a globalized community, is less easily led or manipulated. The public increasingly demands its voice be heard, and contrary views genuinely considered, before decisions are made in its name. War is not inevitable; but neither, if war comes, is public support for it.

Jordan Times
Turkey's regional summit
AMMAN, Jordan Ankara's proposal to convene a regional summit on Iraq by Jan. 23 deserves serious consideration. The Turkish idea is to hold a meeting in Istanbul bringing together the leaders of Egypt, Iran, Syria, Jordan and, of course, Turkey to find a peaceful solution to the present threat of war against Iraq.
It's obvious that all these countries would be critically affected by a war against Iraq. They all share the same dangers, albeit in different degrees. The security and stability of the entire region would be put at risk if war breaks out in the coming weeks or months. The meeting Ankara is offering would certainly do no harm. On the contrary, the countries of the region can still coordinate their efforts and policies not only on how to avoid a disastrous war but also on how to deal with its fallout, whether security-related or economic in nature.
While not all the countries invited to such a meeting share the same perspective on Iraq, there is still a common denominator that binds them on the aftermath of a devastating armed conflict.

Straits Times
The profits of misfortune
SINGAPORE While the richer parts of the world are fixated on security and weapons of mass destruction, the poorest regions have no security from epidemics of mass destruction. It is not just HIV/AIDS, which now colors half the world red two decades since humankind learned about the virus. Malaria would not go away because a vaccine is hard to develop, and tuberculosis is making a comeback.
These three ailments of the wildfire variety account for 13,000 deaths daily in the least-developed and developing countries, according to one estimate. Crucially, this is an issue of prevention and control with affordable drugs, although research to stop HIV and malaria in their tracks continues. The HIV drug cocktail costs U.S. $300 a year per patient if generic versions are used, but brand-name ones cost 10 times that amount. This is the great divide between commerce and morality.

De Volkskrant
U.N. weapons inspections
AMSTERDAM President Bush is being pulled at from all sides. The French want the United Nations weapons inspectors in Iraq to have more time as long as until the fall, if necessary. But Mr. Bush's defense secretary, [Donald H.] Rumsfeld, wants a decision within a few weeks, in order to decide whether to go to war. He's afraid that weapons inspectors will get caught up in an open-ended cat-and-mouse game, as they did in 1998.
Mr. Bush must choose between the two. We hope he will prefer to maintain as broad an international coalition as possible. The public in both Europe and the United States want that. If this means he must give the U.N. inspectors more time for their attempt to disarm Saddam peacefully, then he should do that.

Dagens Nyheter
Imprisoned at Guantanamo
STOCKHOLM The treatment of the prisoners at Guantanamo Bay is a clear crime against human rights and against the internationally accepted rules of warfare.
The United States usually prides itself on being a state governed by law before all others, but the universal rights on which the American Constitution was founded have been dwarfed in President Bush's America.
The United States has drawn a line in the sand at Guantanamo Bay, a line between Americans and the rest of the world.

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