Czech press survey - June 14


14.06.2014 14:08

Prague - All major Czech dailies comment on the current conflict in Iraq.


Iráčané nastupují do vojenských vozidel, aby se přidali k armádě. ČTK/AP Karim Kadim

Iran is to play the role of a saviour in Iraq if the United States is reluctant to help the regime of PM Nouri Maliki, Zbynek Petracek writes in daily Lidove noviny (LN) today.

He says U.S. President Barack Obama did not react to Maliki´s request for aid in May possibly because he was to give a fundamental speech in which he promised to soften the U.S. military activity and at the same time keep its leading role in the world.

Unlike the United States, Tehran offers "unlimited solidarity" to Iraq, including soldiers about which it is negotiating with the U.N. and the neighbouring countries, Petracek says.

He adds that Iran would thereby strengthen its legitimacy and lose the image of terrorists´ sponsor. It would keep power in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon.

Both Tehran and Moscow would like such a development, while Israel would dislike it. It would eradicate what the U.S. was striving for in the past 35 years. However, it might reflect the wish of Americans tired of their country´s long war involvement. And Obama can understand this calculation, Petracek concludes.

"The Arab Spring has been replaced by sectarian jihad," Teodor Marjanovic writes in Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) about the conflict in Iraq and Syria.

A possible fall of Baghdad would mean a defeat of both U. S. presidents, George Bush and his successor Barack Obama, he adds.

Marjanovic points out the formation of the militant Islamic group ISIS or the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi with the aim to create a "caliphate" in Iraq and Syria.

No matter how the conflict ends, the result will always be bad - cynically speaking in the same way as the border between Syria and Iraq, which the ISIS is erasing from the world map, was wrongly set from the beginning, Marjanovic notes.

It was determined in 1916 without taking local and religious circumstances into consideration.

Its re-drawing would be right if it were possible to do so without violence, but this is impossible, Marjanovic concludes.

Washington is to a high extent responsible for the outcome of the Iraqi drama and President Barack Obama must decide soon how he will react to it, Jiri Roskot writes in Pravo today.

He says the consequences of the formation of the "Islamic state" in Iraq and Syria would be dangerous for the region and the surroundings world, including the United States.

Roskot recalls that the Iraqi army trained and armed by the U.S. is collapsing face to face enraged Sunni radicals. All expectations which Washington connected with Iraq deprived of dictator Saddam Hussein are collapsing, too.

Obama, who withdrew U.S. soldiers from Iraq, faces a number of sensitive questions and he must answer them soon.

A delicate question is also how Tehran will fill the empty space in Iraq after the U.S. withdrawal, Roskot notes.

He says it was exactly Tehran that called on Maliki not to allow for any U.S. soldiers on Iraqi soil. And Maliki complied with Iran´s wish out of gratitude as he spent most of his 24 years in exile there, Roskot writes in Pravo.

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