German Press Review: Terrorism a Global Threat | Europe| News and current affairs from around the continent | DW | 11.09.2003
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German Press Review: Terrorism a Global Threat

German editorials on Thursday focused on the second anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks in America and the issue of global security.


A memorial to the victims of the terrorist attacks in New York.

Munich’s Münchner Merkur reflected on the two-year anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington D.C. "The horrible events of September 11, 2001, ushered in a long-term threat to the civilized world," the paper wrote. "Afterwards, the stricken United States, as a symbol of the values of the West, took its duster in hand and has been encompassed in a dispute over its methods and goals in the fight against terror," it said. The daily said the war on terror however wasn’t just America’s problem. "The West seems split – with anti-Americanism growing in Germany. Some people in search of an enemy see America, the leader of the western world, as an imperial threat to the world. But we are all in one boat. If America loses the war against terror, we lose with."

The Thüringer Allgemeine pointed out that America’s success in Afghanistan has now been thrown into question. "The Taliban, and behind them the followers of Osama bin Laden are again up to violence. Instead of demonstrating in this land that the West is in a position to overcome barbarism and civil war, we go into Iraq, with unknown consequences," the paper said. It cautioned that the threat of terrorism is very real, but that the U.S. had chosen the wrong means to fight it. "With its military breach, the U.S. wins only one thing: new enemies."

Frankfurt’s Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung turned to the issue of European Security. "From the spreading of weapons of mass destruction comes the greatest threat to freedom and security, according the basic plan for a unified European security strategy," the paper wrote. "What is most remarkable is that the Europeans today are dealing with untoward nuclear ambitions and realities and are willing to engage in ‘critical dialogue’". The daily said one needed to look no further than Iran for an example of this new strategic dialogue. "France, Germany, and Great Britain have given Tehran an ultimatum to come clean on its atomic program. Of course, Iran denies all guilt. It is right, that the European nations stand with the proper authorities on this issue. If Tehran maintains its silence, then the next logical step is to the Security Council," the paper stressed.