- The Washington Times - Saturday, August 4, 2007

Excerpts of editorials from newspapers around the world:

Daily Telegraph

Gordon Brown’s U.S. visit

LONDON — Gordon Brown has played a deft hand on his inaugural visit to America as prime minister. His less than subtle attempt to distance himself from George W. Bush was widely anticipated and will play well, both in his own party and with many other voters who resent our involvement in Iraq. It was also low-risk politics. Mr. Brown is buoyant in the polls, while Mr. Bush is a lame-duck president whose approval ratings are plumbing the depths reached by Richard Nixon at the time of Watergate. Mr. Brown knew he had the whip hand and used it. Those who view our relationship with the United States as the bedrock of our foreign policy may, however, be disappointed to see it being toyed with for domestic political purposes.

[On Tuesday], on cue, Mr. Brown climbed nimbly aboard the United Nations bandwagon. …

The problem with this approach is that the United Nations is a woefully ineffectual institution. It is the hated United States that has led the way on Darfur, not the U.N. As long ago as September 2004, Washington was describing the actions of the Sudanese government as genocide and demanding international action to stop it. …

In aligning himself with the U.N. as the prime mechanism for resolving international problems, Mr. Brown is of course playing to the gallery. … This may be shrewd politics from Mr. Brown, but his misplaced commitment to a moribund institution does not bode well as he seeks to make his mark on the world stage.

Daily Nation

Vision 2030

NAIROBI, Kenya — The National Economic and Social Council has started a round of open meetings across the country on Vision 2030, the project to transform Kenya into a middle-income country. …

We would say such public forums are coming rather late in the day. Vision 2030 is the most ambitious plan ever launched to transform this country. It aims to replicate the successes enjoyed by the “Asian Tigers,” countries that a generation ago were at the same level of underdevelopment as Kenya, but have since knocked on the door of First World economic and technological development while we have stood still.

A project to propel Kenya to such heights cannot be owned by a few technocrats; it must be pushed by all who have a stake in this country.

Jordan Times

Humanitarian situation in Iraq

AMMAN, Jordan — The international relief agency Oxfam is sounding the alarm over the humanitarian crisis in Iraq, but few countries seem to be listening.

Funding for development and reconstruction in Iraq has increased by a whopping 900 percent over the past few years, but support for humanitarian purposes has declined by about 50 percent. …

A glimpse at the humanitarian situation in Iraq shows that unless the international community refocuses its concern on the welfare of the people, an even larger crisis can be expected. …

If there ever was an urgent need for an international conference to address the humanitarian problem in Iraq, it is now.

Khaleej Times

Iraq’s Asian Cup victory

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Guess who had the last laugh. Few months back no one, not even they themselves, gave Iraq an iota of chance in the Asian Cup football championship. Every sport has its own so-called experts and these men with vision didn’t see Iraq getting past the group stage of the tournament, leave alone laying their hands on the majestic cup.

Iraq [was] up against some well-knit teams possessing some seasoned campaigners from the tough European leagues. Minnows they truly were. …

Iraq’s spirited 1-0 victory over mighty Saudi Arabia in the final [Sunday] united a divided land in a way that politicians and religion could not.

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