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Highlights from the world's press

Compiled by Ravi Agrawal for CNN
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(CNN) -- On Iraq, The New York Times says today the question is no longer whether America can win in Iraq; instead, the question is whether it "can extricate itself without leaving behind an unending civil war that will spread more chaos and suffering throughout the Middle East, while spawning terrorism across the globe.

"Americans can only look back in wonder on the days when the Bush administration believed that success would turn Iraq into a stable, wealthy democracy -- a model to strike fear into the region's autocrats while inspiring a new generation of democrats... If an American military occupation could ever have achieved those goals, that opportunity is gone. It is very clear that even with the best American effort, Iraq will remain at war with itself for years to come, its government weak and deeply divided, and its economy battered and still dependent on outside aid."

The Guardian in the UK suggests that the way forward for Iraq would be the creation of federal system granting some autonomy to the country's three principal communities: Shias, Sunnis, and Kurds.

"Apart from the Kurds, there is not one section of Iraqi society that is pushing either emotionally or practically towards partition or secession ... Federalism, though it is fraught with difficulty, may well be the only way of containing the violence and preventing total disintegration."

In a similar vein, India's Asian Age says the number of Iraqi casualties has "reached the realms of genocide."

"[Bush] does not seem to realize that the choice is no longer between staying or leaving. Now it is a choice between a face-saving departure or a humiliating withdrawal."

Sudan slideshow

The Boston Globe says the recent expulsion of U.N. special envoy Jan Kromp from Sudan is merely a "slideshow."

"[Kromp] would have been leaving his post at the end of the year in any case. The great moral and geopolitical challenge for the U.N. and its member states is to muster the political will to stop the genocide in Darfur ... Whether intended or not, the one clear benefit of Pronk's indiscretion is to focus attention on the looming danger for 2 million people in Darfur and neighboring Chad whose survival is at risk if the UN fails to undertake the life saving mission it set for itself in Security Council resolution 1706."

Skilling sentence

The Washington Post says that while it may be unfair that former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling received a 24-year prison sentence -- six times longer than that received by former CFO Andrew Fastow -- he shouldn't complain: "Life is unfair sometimes."

"To the bitter end, and to his sentencing detriment, Skilling refused Monday to demonstrate much regret, or accept much responsibility, for the economic pain and suffering he caused so many people by his action, or inaction, while he was in charge of Enron ... And, in the end, the story of this case and this trial for Skilling is the story of his work at Enron, too. The line didn't hold ... Skilling rose to power as a scrapper. And today he went down fighting, too."

Age concern

The Times in the UK says older people should play a more prominent role in society and in the workplace.

"Beyond a change in attitude, there are practical ways in which an ageing society can improve the conditions for older citizens. Architecture and planning matter. Houses should be designed with the elderly in mind, so that couples do not have to move later or be confined to 'grey ghettos'. A mix of ages is stabilizing to any community."


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