- The Washington Times - Friday, September 15, 2006

Excerpts of editorials from newspapers around the world:

Dagens Nyheter

The same old conflicts …

STOCKHOLM — You could say that little has happened on the world stage during the five years that have passed since the terrorist attacks against New York and Washington. … But we have the same oppressors, the same threats, … the same old conflicts that never seem to end. …

After initial humility, it was clear that the USA had an agenda it was willing to carry out on its own if needed. Multilateralism a la carte — in other words, a self-assumed right to pick and choose between international undertakings — was the guiding light. Now the world order would be reshaped, now the old structures and organizations would be sent to the garbage bin of history if they did not perform in a way that Washington expected.

… the war on terrorism as Bush called it, overshadowed everything. …

But a world order that is dominated by a single state becomes unstable, and the American policies have in several cases brought the world toward unsteady ground. There has been an overconfidence in military solutions. There has been a conviction that all threats can be shot down. …

The terror threat remains, as does the schism that resulted from the Iraq war. …

When the 10th anniversary of the attacks is remembered, will the USA once again be the positive and susceptible force that the world so badly needs?

Yomiuri Shimbun

September 11, five years on

TOKYO — Five years have passed since the horrific September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States.

But it is difficult to say with any certainty that the war on terrorism has produced satisfactory results during this period.

The process of rebuilding and maintaining security in Afghanistan and Iraq continues to be rocky. These fledgling democracies cannot do it alone — they need the help and support of the international community.

The deteriorating confidence in Mr. Bush’s leadership also makes it difficult for the United States to implement unyielding strategies against terrorism because they are not widely backed by the public.

Since the 2001 attacks on the United States, countries including Britain, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Spain have suffered appalling attacks at the hands of terrorists.

Egyptian Gazette

Western views of Islam

CAIRO — Since they sprang onto the world scene, al Qaeda’s operatives have been preaching hatred and terror. In their relentless attempts to glorify and sell their horrifying ideology, the forces of the dark have been at pains to exploit Washington’s grave blunders, especially in the Middle East.

The latest videotape, attributed to Ayman al-Zawahri, is no exception. Al Qaeda’s second in command, like his boss, looked determined to take advantage of the latest hot spots in the Middle East: Lebanon and the Palestinian territories. Al-Zawahri called on the Islamic world “to rush with everything at its disposal to the aid of Muslims in Lebanon and Gaza.” He threatened attacks in the Gulf and Israel.

Though his threats may be mere bluffing, events of the past years pointed to al Qaeda’s involvement in terror acts around the world. Al-Zawahri’s videotaped message was timed to coincide with the fifth anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks. The message is that al Qaeda is still alive and kicking.

The problem with al Qaeda is that it has successfully managed to mislead the West into believing that it is the spokesman for Muslims and their faith. Moderate Muslims, who are the majority, are vehemently opposed to al Qaeda’s self-given license to kill, simply because Islam is a heavenly religion, which rejects aggression.

Jihad, a widely misinterpreted term, is proscribed in self-defense. Unfortunately, the self-styled jihadists of al Qaeda have thrown the concept out of proportion and the West, whether purposefully or not, has taken al Qaeda’s distorted notion of jihad for granted.

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