Jueves, 7 de diciembre de 2006

Por Iván Igartua, escritor (EL PAÍS, 07/12/06):

Las vivencias de las víctimas del terrorismo son un material difícilmente convertible, de puro frágil, en motivo literario. Parece, sin embargo, que algo está cambiando en nuestros días. Uno lee Los peces de la amargura, el reciente libro de relatos de Fernando Aramburu, y asiste conmovido, y hasta conmocionado, a la paciente transfiguración literaria -que es, sí, literaria, pero tiene, en el fondo, poco de transfiguración- de una realidad que al instante reconoce como algo insoportablemente cercano. Son muchos los lectores que dicen haber tardado días y semanas en abrir el libro, después de haberlo comprado.…  Seguir leyendo »

Por Juan José Laborda, ex presidente del Senado (EL PAÍS, 07/12/06):

La reciente visita de Teodoro Obiang Nguema a España ha estado acompañada de polémica. La Junta de Portavoces decidió a las nueve de la noche suprimir su visita al Congreso, oficialmente prevista para la mañana siguiente. Dar un plantón semejante a un jefe del Estado no sólo es una falta de consideración con los que mantuvieron las entrevistas de trabajo o protocolarias con él, sino que nos debilita, y mucho, ante otros países que estarán encantados de ocupar nuestro puesto en Guinea Ecuatorial. Al parecer, el presidente del Congreso suprimió la visita cuando varios portavoces le anunciaron que pensaban leer un comunicado contra Obiang durante su permanencia en la Cámara.…  Seguir leyendo »

Por André Glucksmann, filósofo francés. Traducción de María Luisa Rodríguez Tapia (EL PAÍS, 07/12/06):

Una tarde de octubre, sonó el teléfono. Primero desde Moscú, luego desde Roma: Anna acababa de ser asesinada. Un día nefasto para la humanidad. Un día nefasto para Rusia. Un día nefasto para Chechenia. Un día nefasto para todos nosotros y para mí, que era amigo suyo. Quizá un buen día para Putin, condecorado hace poco (a escondidas) con la Gran Cruz de la Legión de Honor por Jacques Chirac.

Anna Politkóvskaya era un ser excepcional, con un valor mental y físico que cortaba el aliento.…  Seguir leyendo »

Por Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, secretario general de la OTAN (EL MUNDO, 07/12/06):

La pasada semana, los jefes de Estado y de Gobierno de la Alianza Atlántica celebraron una cumbre en Riga (Letonia). No se trató de una de tantas reuniones internacionales, ya que los resultados de ésta han dibujado el camino que habrá de seguir la Alianza en los años venideros y harán que la principal organización político-militar del mundo sea más eficaz a la hora de afrontar la complejidad de los problemas de Seguridad que tienen planteados los países miembros en estos momentos y los que se les puedan plantear en un futuro previsible.…  Seguir leyendo »

Por Mariano Aguirre, director de Paz y Seguridad en Fride (LA VANGUARDIA, 07/12/06):

Desde Beirut hasta Bagdad, pasando por Palestina y Teherán, la situación es grave y será peor cuanto más se espere en promover un marco regional de negociación y múltiples diálogos para cada conflicto. La debilidad y falta de política de Estados Unidos debe asumirse como un hecho clave. Europa debe promover iniciativas junto con otros actores.

Hay una línea de continuidad entre la guerra en Líbano el verano pasado y las recientes elecciones legislativas en Estados Unidos. En el primer caso, Israel comprobó que no podía derrotar a Hizbulah en una guerra convencional.…  Seguir leyendo »

Por Francesc de Carreras, catedrático de Derecho Constitucional de la UAB (LA VANGUARDIA, 07/12/06):

Más de uno habrá admirado, desde nuestra deficiente democracia de partidos, el proceso de elección de la candidatura socialista a la presidencia de la República francesa.

No me refiero ahora al resultado final, es decir, a la designación por aplastante mayoría de Ségolène Royal, sino al método de elección en el interior del Partido Socialista. Por lo menos, hay dos motivos de envidia: primero, el cambio en la composición del partido y, segundo, el amplio debate que ha precedido a la elección de la candidata.

Efectivamente, en el transcurso de los últimos doce meses, los adheridos al PS casi han doblado el número de afiliados, acercándose a los 300.000, una cifra altísima para un partido actual.…  Seguir leyendo »

Por Julio José Ordovás, escritor (ABC, 07/12/06):

MI infancia son recuerdos del pueblo viejo de Belchite, un decorado tétrico, espectral, en el que de noche no había quien se atreviera a adentrarse porque decían que se oían las voces suplicantes de los muertos, esas supuestas voces congeladas en el tiempo que algunos pirados y algunos mercachifles aseguran haber atrapado en esotéricas psicofonías. Pero cuando cae el silencio de la noche sobre el viejo Belchite no son voces lo que se oye. Se oye el bramido del viento. Se oyen los goznes chirriantes de algunas puertas que se quedaron abiertas para siempre.…  Seguir leyendo »

Por Luis de Sebastián, profesor honorario de Esade (EL PERIÓDICO, 07/12/06):

Según estimaciones de la Comisión Europea que reproduce el Financial Times, entre 3.000 y 4.000 personas se ahogaron en el 2006 tratando de llegar desde África a las costas de Europa. Ante esta espantosa tragedia humana, el comisario de Justicia de la Unión Europea, Franco Frattini, ha propuesto una serie de medidas para impedir que estos números se repitan y aumenten, que van desde endurecer las penas a los empresarios que contraten a sin papeles hasta crear un sistema moderno, el Frontex, para vigilar los accesos a Europa por mar.…  Seguir leyendo »

By David Ignatius (THE WASHINGTON POST, 07/12/06):

The Iraq Study Group's report achieved the goal of any blue-ribbon commission: It stated the obvious, emphatically.

"The situation in Iraq is grave and deteriorating." Of various proposals for fixing Iraq, "all have flaws." A "precipitate" withdrawal would be a mistake, but so would a big increase in U.S. troops. America should set "milestones" for the Iraqi government to control all provinces by next September. The U.S. military should shift to a training and advising mission so that most American troops can leave by early 2008. But there is no "magic formula," and even if this approach fails, the United States "should not make an open-ended commitment to keep large numbers of American troops deployed in Iraq."…  Seguir leyendo »

By George F. Will (THE WASHINGTON POST, 07/12/06):

The Iraq Study Group, like the policy it was created to critique, was overtaken by the unexpectedly rapid crumbling of the U.S. position in Iraq since the ISG was formed in March. The deterioration was manifested in last week's misbegotten summit between President Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, which made brutally clear how difficult it will be to apply even the ISG's temperate recommendations to the deteriorating reality.

Summits usually do, and generally should, resemble American political conventions -- they should not be deliberative events but should ratify decisions made earlier.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Michael J. Glennon, a professor of international law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and former legal counsel to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (THE WASHINGTON POST, 07/12/06):

With President Bush apparently inclined to accept some of the recommendations released by the Iraq Study Group yesterday and reject others, there's an important consideration to keep in mind. Although it's widely assumed that the president alone is empowered to decide what military option the United States should pursue in Iraq, that is not the case. Congress did not, as many believe, write the president a blank check in 2002 with regard to the use of force in Iraq.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Michael A. Cohen and Maria Figueroa Küpçü, co-directors of the Privatization of Foreign Policy Initiative at the New America Foundation (THE WASHINGTON POST, 07/12/06):

It's unlikely that many Americans know Stewart W. Bowen Jr. They should. As the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction (SIGIR), Mr. Bowen has helped save taxpayers billions of dollars. His audits of reconstruction contracts have turned up waste, mismanagement and fraud; and his investigations led to four criminal convictions and embarrassed excuses from the U.S. government's biggest military contractors.

Yet, for all his good work, some in Congress are not terribly appreciative. On the eve of recent mid-term elections, an amendment, buried deep within a military authorization bill, closed down Bowen's office.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Joe Joseph (THE TIMES, 07/12/06):

Last night (“hier soir”) France (“La Fronns”) launched a 24-hour bilingual news channel (“une manche de nouvelles autour-le-clock”) to counter what it sees as the current Anglo-Saxon bias of the traditional international TV news channels, such as CNN and BBC World.

Why? Because France (“la Fronns”) realised that what the world most needed in these troubled times of war (“la guerre”), economic uncertainty (“vous demandez combien pour cette voiture avec une derrière comme ça de Jennifer Lopez? Etes-vous fou comme un chien?”), and global warming (“ooh-la-la, il fait chaud!”) was a 24-hour news channel delivered from the unique perspective of a country that still relies, for its primary source of medical care, on suppositories (“ooh-la-la!…  Seguir leyendo »

By Jan Raath (THE TIMES, 07/12/06):

The audience in the cinema in Bulawayo was distressed, said the German Ambassador. Pius Ncube, the outspoken Roman Catholic Archbishop, was quite emotional. Paul Themba Nyathi, the articulate opposition figure, had just been charged with inciting the Armed Forces to rise against Robert Mugabe, the President of Zimbabwe. Police had intercepted pamphlets that he and a party worker were distributing, which criticised the Government’s failure to ensure their welfare . “They are struggling to pay for food and health and education because they are poorly paid,” it said. He could get 20 years in jail.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Rosemary Righter (THE TIMES, 07/12/06):

Iraq Study Group report: full text

Ned Parker's blog: after the study group

More breathless speculation has surrounded the report issued yesterday by the Iraq Study Group (ISG) than could ever have been justified by its predictably pallid laundry list of recommendations, or the likelihood that they would transform White House thinking on Iraq and the wider Middle East.

The most, perhaps only, brilliant thing about this report has been the advance publicity secured for it by its co-chairman James Baker III, former Secretary of State under George W’s father and, more pertinently, fixer-extraordinary to Republican presidents since the Reagan years.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Robert Trumbull, (THE NEW YORK TIMES, 07/12/06):

Here, 64 years late, are edited excerpts from a dispatch sent to The New York Times by Robert Trumbull, the paper’s correspondent at Pearl Harbor. It details a triumphant but mostly forgotten story of World War II: the salvage effort that rebuilt the Pacific Fleet after the Japanese attack.

A city of seamen, engineers, divers, carpenters, welders, pipe fitters and other industrial workers arose overnight at the Pearl Harbor Navy Yard. Its slogan was “We keep them fit to fight,” and within two years the yard raised or salvaged all the damaged ships except the Arizona and the Utah.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Simon Tisdall (THE GUARDIAN, 07/12/06):

The battle of Bush's ear began in earnest yesterday following publication of the Iraq Study Group's report. The US president's instinct is to hang tough, gambling that "a last big push" will bring victory of sorts. "We're going to stay in Iraq to get the job done," he said last week. Amid great uncertainty, one thing is sure: George Bush does not do graceful exits.All the same, the president will have to listen up, and change his tune and tactics, as post-midterm intimations of political mortality steadily narrow his choices. Donald Rumsfeld, the Pentagon pit bull, has gone.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Jonathan Steele (THE GUARDIAN, 07/12/06):

James Baker is a lawyer, a fixer, a Republican, a friend of the Bush family, and a deeply political animal. He is not an independent radical or a man known for original thinking. So the question in the wake of his Iraq Study Group's predictably uncontroversial report is why it was ever set up.The first purpose was to provide an alibi for the president ahead of last month's congressional elections. Critics of his disastrous strategy in Iraq could be told that Bush was listening to the American people and understood their concerns. That was why he had set up a blue-ribbon panel to evaluate all options.…  Seguir leyendo »

By David Leigh (THE GUARDIAN, 07/12/06):

All the Chicken Lickens in Britain's business press have been running about for the past fortnight shouting: "The sky is falling! The sky is falling!" The cause of this hysteria, adroitly stoked up by our biggest arms firm, BAE Systems, is that the economy is allegedly in danger because the Saudi royal family may take away a warplane contract worth £10bn.

But a senior British diplomat, Stephen Day, said publicly this week what many sensible people have been thinking for some time. He told the Financial Times that Britain might be better off if it ended its corrupt liaison with Saudi Arabia.…  Seguir leyendo »

By Veena Khaleque, country director for Practical Action in Bangladesh (THE GUARDIAN, 07/12/06):

While the west puzzles over ways to curb future climate change, in the developing world the present climate change is being felt already, and there is nothing abstract about it. Every year an estimated 150,000 people die as a result of global warming - mainly through natural disasters, disease and malnutrition - and the toll is rising exponentially. There is much talk, but little is done.The industrialised world has pumped huge amounts of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, setting us on a course where a global temperature rise of at least two degrees Celsius is inevitable.…  Seguir leyendo »